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What is the color of Lent?

Purple is the color of Lent.

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Jesus was dressed in a purple robe prior to his crucifixion.

Jesus was dressed in a purple robe prior to his crucifixion.

Highlights

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)
Catholic Online (https://www.catholic.org)
3/17/2017 (4 years ago)

Published in Lent / Easter

Keywords: Lent, FAQ, questions, what is, why

What is the color of Lent? Purple is the color of Lent and it symbolizes repentance as well as the royalty of Christ as King of all Kings.

Before Jesus was crucified, he was dressed in a purple robe and a crown of thorns was placed on his head (see Mark 15:17). The purple color is deliberate as Jesus was accused of declaring himself "king of the Jews." The inscription "INRI" often seen above Jesus on crucifixes, means "Jesus Christ, King of the Jews" in Latin.

Purple dye was a precious commodity and it was painstakingly manufactured. Because of the laborious process to extract purple dye, purple cloth was expensive and worn by royalty and nobility, often the only people who could afford to purchase it. Kings and emperors would dress entirely in purple to emphasize their wealth and power. Therefore, dressing Christ in a purple robe was a symbolic act, even if intended to disrespect him.

When we see the purple color, we are reminded that we too have disrespected Christ though our sins, and we are called to repent and ask forgiveness.

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