Ash Wednesday seems like an odd tradition to those who don’t observe it.
Think about it. The ashes of burned crosses from the previous year’s Palm Sunday are saved. Then, a clergyman or layman rubs the cinders on the foreheads of “the faithful” in the shape of a cross.
(Speaking of ashes, the holiday also represents “National No Smoking Day” in Ireland.)
So what’s the point of wearing ashes on Ash Wednesday? The cinder residue is reminiscent of the biblical act of repenting “in dust and ashes” (Job 42:6).
Many Christians have no connection with Ash Wednesday’s tradition.
But we all have need of what it represents.