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Ash Wednesday in West Michigan kicks off Lent Season


Catholics and Christians packed churches throughout West Michigan to celebrate Ash Wednesday, the official start of the Lenten season. Lent is a period of 40 days of fasting in anticipation of Easter Sunday. 

“Lent is all about taking in mind the fact that we are fallen human beings, and so it’s us recognizing that we’ve made mistakes, that we’ve turned away from God, and so that is what Lent is really about. Calling us back to what God has called us to,”

That’s Father Dan Schumaker from St. Mary's Catholic Church in Grand Rapids. He says, during Lent, believers will sacrifice or refrain from something they enjoy for 40 days.

“I think the most important thing is to find something that’s going to be a little sacrificial. So it’s going to hurt a little bit. And so that is what I would say, go and try and find the one thing that gives you a little bit of sacrifice, it’s going to hurt a little bit, so you can grow closer to the Lord in that,” Schumaker said.

According to a Religious Congregations and Membership Study, Catholics make up the largest religious demographic in West Michigan. The Lent season officially ends the day before Easter at sunset. 

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