Photo Gallery: 2012 Ash Wednesday Ceremonies 101/117

The Rev. Carl McCarthy, right, stirs in water into a bowl of palm ashes while server Ron Daugherty dresses in a vestment, Wednesday, Feb. 22, 2012, before the Ash Wednesday service at SS. Joseph & Paul Catholic Church in Owensboro, Ky. Last year's palms from Palm Sunday were burned and used to mark the foreheads of parishioners. Blessed items are never thrown away; they are returned to the earth, a parishioner said.  (AP Photo/The Messenger-Inquirer, John Dunham)