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Annenberg School of Communication and Journalism University of Southern California

Southern California

Local Catholics Celebrate Ash Wednesday

The day or repentence preceding Lent is observed across the region.

Ash Wednesday is upon Southern California, inciting an invigorated sense of religious zeal starting off the many celebrations around the region.

USC students and faculty receive ashes Wednesday at a tri-lateral service at Bovard Auditorium. (Photo Courtesy ATVN)
USC students and faculty receive ashes Wednesday at a tri-lateral service at Bovard Auditorium. (Photo Courtesy ATVN)

Ash Wednesday is considered the start of a 40-day period preceding the Christian holiday of Easter. Ash Wednesday is observed by repenting. In the Roman Catholic Church, it is observed by fasting and not eating meat on Fridays. Those who partake in todays services are marked with a cross on their forehead in ashes, signifying their inner repentance.

Lent allows people to repent for their sins, good deeds and self-denial in order to reach spiritual renewal.

 “Lent reminds us that we need to always be growing in virtue and holiness, so we have the strength we need to continue along our pilgrim way,” said Archbishop Jose Gomez.

Gomez will be hosting Ash Wednesday Mass at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels today. The services in English are scheduled for 12:10 p.m., 3 p.m. and 5:15 p.m. The Spanish service is at 7 p.m. The Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels is located at 555 W. Temple St. in Los Angeles, CA.

Ash Wednesday will be observed by the USC community as well:

Roman Catholic Mass Services

  • 5:30 p.m., 7:00 p.m.
  • Taper Hall of Humanities (THH) 101
  • (213) 740-8800,

Episcopal Service

  • 7:00 p.m.
  • St. John's Episcopal Cathedral, 514 W. Adams Blvd.
  • (213) 740-2673,

Lutheran Service

  • TBA
  • St. Mark's, 3651 Vermont Ave.
  • (213) 740-2669,


For more information call the Office of Religious Life, (213) 740 – 6110 or email .

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