North Country Observes Ash WednesdayPosted: Updated:
The pews are filled with people and the church filled with song.
St. Patrick's Catholic Church in Watertown marked the beginning of Lent with a noon service on Ash Wednesday.
Father Christopher Looby says this is a time to focus on important relationships with others and with God.
"That cross of ashes reminds us that the Lord loves us very much and we should spend our days here on earth, especially these next 40 days, thanking the Lord for everything he's done for us," he said.
Traditionally, people fast or give up something for Lent - a symbolic sacrifice. But some also take it as a time to give back.
"I'm not so much giving something up as I am going to be doing. I'm going to be helping those in need and visiting people who may not have someone," said Joanne Lavarnway, St. Patrick's Catholic Church member.
In Carthage, the Elks Lodge is getting ready for Lent by having a fish fry dinner.
"Carthage is a big Catholic community. We're just trying to offer something to the public," said Adam Fuller, past exalted ruler, Carthage Elks Lodge.
That means prepping at least 200 dinners that will also help raise money for the Augustinian Academy.
So, until Easter Sunday, the season of Lent will be filled with faith, fish, and self-reflection.