First Day of Lent 2024
When is the First Day of Lent 2024?
The First Day of Lent 2024 is on Wednesday, February 14, 2024
(in 258 days). Calendar for 2024
The First Day of Lent 2023 has already passed: it was on Wednesday, February 22, 2023 (98 days ago). Calendar for 2023
What is the First Day of Lent?
Lent celebrants participating in a street procession during Holy Week
(the final week of Lent).
The First Day of Lent is the beginning of the 40 day fasting period of Lent
, or the Lenten season. It always falls on Ash Wednesday
and occurs 46 days before Easter Sunday
(there is no obligation to fast on the six Sundays in Lent). The earliest possible date it can occur is February 4, the latest possible date is March 10.
It is preceded by Fat Tuesday
(also called Pancake Day
, Shrove Tuesday
and Mardi Gras
), the last day of feasting before the fasting of Lent
begins. It occurs just after the excesses of two days of Carnival, which are celebrated in regions of Latin America and the Caribbean as well as Northern Europe. Some observant Christians conduct a full fast (complete fast or bread and water fast) during daytime on the First Day of Lent and only break the fast at sunset. A few continue fasting all through Lent.
It is a national public holiday in some countries (eg. Jamaica, Cayman Islands), a holiday for bank and/or government workers and some businesses in others (eg. Guadeloupe, Panama), and not a public holiday in the United States, Canada, Australia, the United Kingdom and other European countries (though some local observances may be held).
Why does the date of the first day of Lent change every year?
The dates of Lent depend on the date of Easter Sunday. Easter is a 'movable feast', which means that its date is not fixed in the calendar, but is instead calculated according to the lunar calendar, formalised in Ecclesiastical date tables. It is based on the date of the vernal equinox
(March equinox). In AD 325 the Council of Nicaea decreed that Easter always falls on the first Sunday after the first full moon that occurs on or after the vernal equinox. The date of Easter Sunday can thus fall between March 22 and April 25, with the first day of Lent occurring 46 days before this date (consisting of 40 days of fasting and six Sundays counted as feast days, for a total of 46 days for Lent).
Further reading: Lent
When is the First Day of Lent 2025?
The First Day of Lent 2025 is on Wednesday, March 5, 2025
(in 643 days). Calendar for 2025
Dates for the First Day of Lent from 2019 to 2029
The next occurrence of the First Day of Lent is marked in red
|When is ...?
||Day of the week
|First Day of Lent 2019
||March 6, 2019
||1547 days ago
|First Day of Lent 2020
||February 26, 2020
||1190 days ago
|First Day of Lent 2021
||February 17, 2021
||833 days ago
|First Day of Lent 2022
||March 2, 2022
||455 days ago
|First Day of Lent 2023
||February 22, 2023
||98 days ago
|First Day of Lent 2024
||February 14, 2024
||in 258 days
|First Day of Lent 2025
||March 5, 2025
||in 643 days
|First Day of Lent 2026
||February 18, 2026
||in 993 days
|First Day of Lent 2027
||February 10, 2027
||in 1350 days
|First Day of Lent 2028
||March 1, 2028
||in 1735 days
|First Day of Lent 2029
||February 14, 2029
||in 2085 days
Data provided 'as is' without warranty
Free printable 2024 calendar templates
A selection of downloadable, printable calendar templates for 2024 with US federal holidays, suitable for a variety of applications. Available for Word, Excel and PDF.
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