Lent is a season of 40 days (46 including Sundays) leading up to Easter, beginning with Ash Wednesday and concluding on Holy Saturday. Sundays are considered "feast days" when fasts can be broken to celebrate the Sabbath. During these 40 days, Christians around the world dedicate themselves to prayer, fasting, and almsgiving, imitating Jesus' 40 days in the wilderness, where he fasted and was tempted by Satan. It is a season for repentance, self-denial, and remembering our mortality.
Three Pillars of Lent
Traditionally, the church has turned her attention to three spiritual practices during Lent: Prayer, Fasting, and Almsgiving (serving others). These practices are based on Jesus' teachings in Matthew 6:1-18, where he instructs his followers to pray, fast, and give to the poor, but to do it all in secret, unlike the hypocrites who do it publicly, for show.