Why do, people, have, black, stuff, on, their, forehead, today
The sign of the cross is placed on a worshippers forehead. Getty Images

Walking around town today, you’ve likely noticed a few passerbys with black marks on their foreheads as today – Wednesday, Feb. 14 is Ash Wednesday in addition to Valentine's Day.

Last year, Ash Wednesday fell on Wednesday, March 1.

Ash Wednesday signifies the first day of Lent in Western Christianity and many Catholics and Methodists have “ashes” in the shape of the cross marked on their foreheads in observation of the day.

The practice comes from blessing ashes from palm branches that were blessed on Palm Sunday from the year prior.

 

Ash Wednesday occurs 46 days prior to Easter.

Good Friday 2018 comes on March 30 and this year Easter also falls on a holiday of sorts - April 1, which is also known as April Fools' Day.