THE BRONX - Christians across the Bronx observed the beginning of Lent with Ash Wednesday.

Lent is a 40-day period for penance leading to Easter.

News 12 The Bronx reporter John Dias was outside St. Benedict's Roman Catholic Church on Otis Avenue Wednesday morning, where Father Stephen Norton said that Ash Wednesday always has a special place for Catholics.

Millions across the city received ashes on their foreheads. 

Father Norton said the ashes symbolize the dust from which God made people.

Many churches celebrated extra Masses across the city to accommodate parishioners.