"Lent is the time for entering into oneself. It is the period of the particular intimacy with God in the secrecy of one’s own heart and conscience… Lent is essentially an invitation to conversion."
~ Pope John Paul II
"The act of putting on ashes symbolizes fragility and mortality, and the need to be redeemed by the mercy of God. Far from being a merely external act, the Church has retained the use of ashes to symbolize that attitude of internal penance to which all the baptized are called during Lent." — Directory on Popular Piety and the Liturgy
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