The word \"Lent\" is derived from an old English word meaning \"spring\" and is a period of penance and abstinence observed by many Christians. Lent usually begins on Ash Wednesday (itself a different date every year) and ends on Holy Thursday (the day before Good Friday when Christians commemorate Jesus Christ's crucifixion). Lent is an homage to Jesus's 40 days spent fasting in the desert in preparation for his ministry on Earth. The purpose of observing Lent is for Christians to prepare for the coming of Easter by getting closer to God and repenting of sins. \"One can relax the 'fasting' ingredient on the six Sundays and still have 40 days fasting,\" says Rev.