OAKHURST — An Ash Wednesday service will be offered for the mountain community again this year at the Little Church on the Hill at the Oakhill Cemetary.
The service, which will begin today at 5:30 p.m., is open to the public.
“For me, receiving ashes on a winter afternoon in the middle of a cemetery is a sobering experience and a helpful way to begin Lent,” said Little Church Foundation President Jackie Mallouf.
The service marks the first day of Lent and continues an ancient tradition that first began when public penitents ceremonially began their penance by covering themselves with ashes.
“Today, Christians receive the imposition of ashes on their foreheads. The service reminds worshippers of their mortality and ushers in a 40-day penitential season in anticipation of Easter Sunday,” Mallouf added.
Built by volunteers with donated materials more than 130 years ago, Oakhurst’s Little Church on the Hill was the area’s only house of worship for half a century. Services were discontinued in the early 1950’s but the community rallied to save the church and moved it to its present location within Oakhill Cemetary. In the early 1990s, the church was restored with local donations and volunteer labor and has been open to the public since 1995.