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Rome Reports

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Pope Francis to celebrate Ash Wednesday on Aventine hill


As he does every year, Pope Francis will celebrate Ash Wednesday on one of the seven hills of Rome, Aventine hill. 

He will do it to begin Lent, the time of preparation for Holy Week. There are two basilicas where the beginning of Lent will take place: the Basilica of St. Anselm and St. Sabina. 

On March 6 at 4:30 pm, Pope Francis will lead the penitential procession first departing from the Basilica of St. Anselm. In order to reflect on the spirit of conversion demanded by the new liturgical season, the pope will walk up the hill leading to the other basilica: St. Sabina.

Pope Francis will celebrate a Mass where the titular cardinal of the basilica, Jozef Tomko, will place ashes on the pope's head first. Subsequently all the bishops and cardinals will also distribute the ashes to the congregation.