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Click2Daily: Houstonians commemorate Ash Wednesday

HOUSTON – Christians throughout southeast Texas flocked to area churches to commemorate Ash Wednesday.

The day marks the official start to the Lenten season, which precedes the Easter holiday.

"You are called to righteousness," said Cardinal Daniel DiNardo in his Ash Wednesday address to worshippers at Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart in downtown Houston on Wednesday.

A crowd gathered at Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart to receive ashes on their foreheads and her DiNardo's homily. Those in attendance told KPRC2 the Lenten season is an opportunity to reflect and sacrifice before the Easter holiday.

"We try to think about what is important to is," said Bobby Villa Gomez, who received ashes at Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart. 

Christians acknowledge Easter as a celebration of Jesus’ rising from the dead.  The Lenten season marks a period of fasting and reflection, leading up to Easter.

"Ash Wednesday is a chance to get a fresh start," said AJ Merrifield.

"It may seem ironic, because we make our faces dirty [with ashes in the sign of the cross] but it reflects the fact that we, as Christians, are not clean," Merrifield continued.

DIGITAL DAY: We spoke to worshippers today about what Ash Wednesday and the Lenten season mean to them. Take a look.

Posted by KPRC2 Brandon Walker on Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Throughout the day, thousands in southeast Houston attended church services and received ashes across their foreheads, a symbol of penance, according to the Roman Catholic Church. 

"It means a time to repent," said Margie Ortega. "To confess to our sins and get back to God." 

For some, the Lenten season includes fasting. Christians offer to give up something of theirs in response to Jesus' giving of his life, Christians believe, for the sins of others.

"It reminds you of the sacrifices made by God," said Robert Woods, following Mass at Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart.

The Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston estimates there are 1.7 million Catholics in the Houston metropolitan area.

PHOTOS: Houstonians visit drive-up Ash Wednesday

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DIGITAL DAY LIVE POST: Daniel Cardinal DiNardo presides over Ash Wednesday Mass at Co-Cathedral of the Sacred Heart in downtown Houston.

Posted by KPRC2 Brandon Walker on Wednesday, March 1, 2017

DIGITAL DAY: Christians throughout southeast Texas will flock to area churches to commemorate Ash Wednesday. The day marks the official start to the Lenten season, which precedes the Easter Holiday. Christians acknowledge Easter as a celebration of Jesus’ rising from the dead. The Lenten season marks a period of fasting and reflection, leading up to Easter. Ash Wednesday marks the start. Throughout the day, thousands will attend church services and receive ashes across their foreheads in the shape of a cross. The ashes, according to the Catholic Church, symbolize penance. Stay with KPRC2 and click2houston.com throughout the day. We will share how Christians in our area recognized the day. Might you have anything from which you plan to fast? What does the Lenten season mean to you?

Posted by KPRC2 Brandon Walker on Wednesday, March 1, 2017