Starting the Lenten journey in archdiocesan parishes
Feb. 17 - Ash Wednesday - marked the first day of the season of Lent.
Although it's not a holy day of obligation, most Catholics, including students at St. Bernard School in Omaha, pictured top right, and Richard Egr, a member of St. Vincent de Paul Parish in Omaha, pictured bottom right, attended Mass and received ashes on their foreheads as a sign of repentance.
Catholics ages 18 through 58 were required to fast on Ash Wednesday, which means they could consume one ordinary/full meal and two lesser meals sufficient to maintain strength for the obligation of their circumstances. There is no eating between meals.
Fasting also is required on Good Friday (April 2).
Those two days, as well as other Fridays during Lent, also are days of abstinence from meat for those 14 years of age and older. There is no upper limit for abstinence.
Lent concludes with the beginning of the Triduum April 1. The Triduum begins with the evening Mass of the Lord's Supper and concludes with vespers Easter Sunday, April 4.