Busted Halo
March 7th, 2014

Show Us Your Ash Contest Winners

Busted Halo's® Annual Ash Wednesday Challenge and Photo Contest


Thank you for entering your photos in the Show Us Your Ash Photo Contest! Here are the winners — selected from the photos that received the most votes in the contest:

Happiest Ash a.k.a. “Don’t Be A Jack Ash!” from Carla Hilton
Best FX Ash from Dash X Gonzalez
Best Group Ashes a.k.a. “7th Grade students from Holy Savior Menard” from Renee Robichaux Hicks
Best Parent/Baby Ashes from @MUengineer via Twitter and Theresa Fox Graybill
Best Accident of Expression Ash a.k.a. “first Ash Wednesday for our little lady” from @aimeegrushdavid via Twitter
Most Authentic Winter 2014 Ash from Ciara Boucher Buxton
Best Preschoolers Ashes from Stefanie MacDonald

If you don’t already, follow BustedHaloPhoto on Instagram. Stay tuned for our next photo contest. And now that your ashes have worn away, but there’s still 30+ more days of Lent — check out our Fast Pray Give Lenten Calendar. Each day of Lent, the calendar will feature a Daily Jolt of spiritual contemplation relating to Lent and practical ideas for fasting, prayer, and almsgiving. BONUS: When you’re visiting the calendar you can enter a contest for a chance to win an iPad Air.

The Author : The Editors

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Please note that the editorial staff reserves the right to not post comments it deems to be inappropriate and/or malicious in nature, as well as edit comments for length, clarity and fairness.
  • Lacey Kocian


  • Lacey Kocian


  • Karla

    The Ash Artist is at it again – Thanks Father Louis! Ashes receive at 9 am and at 9 pm they are still going strong!

  • Erwin F.

    Proud to be catholic

  • Kelli McIlnay

    I remembered to wear my hair back this year. Oil and ash does not make pretty hair!

  • Kevin Cummings

    This is what happens when you have a LOT of forehead for the priest to cover! But, as the Apostle Paul said, “…I am not ashamed of the gospel.”

  • Sherry

    As a EM at St. Michael’s in Garland TX I found it very stressful applying the ashes tonight. So worried my cross would look too much like a smudge.

  • Bob D

    Where’s the Ash Wednesday stencil when the priest needs it?

  • Bob D

    Fr. Tom could’ve used the stencil

  • Renee Hicks

    7th Grade at Holy Savior Menard in Alexandria, LA showing off their ashes!

  • Calista

    Ashes selfie

  • Veronica

    Here are my ashes…got ’em at 7:00 a.m. and they’re still going strong!!

  • Murray

    Dad and Maudie get ashed

  • Veronica Koehne

    I thought we were supposed to get a cross on the forehead, not a big black blob!

  • Tom

    Mia and Daddy’s first Ash Wednesday!

  • rose

    where do you see the ashes photos so you can vote, or get your friends to vote?

    • barbara_wheeler

      Hi Rose — In the contest entry form there is a “Vote” button in the upper right corner. When you click that you’ll see all of the photos and be able to vote on them.

      • lsolava

        Where is the contest entry form?

      • Phil Fox Rose

        The contest form is right below the main part of the post. If you see other people’s photos, look to the top right corner of the contest area to see a switch from “Vote” to “Enter”.

      • Veronica

        I don’t see the contest entry form. Is there a link?

      • Phil Fox Rose

        Veronica, the contest form is right below the main part of the post. If you see other people’s photos, look to the top right corner of the contest area to see a switch from “Vote” to “Enter”.

  • BJB

    As a Catholic, every year I would go to Ash Wednesday Mass, receive my ashes, and then spend the rest of the day walking around with my ashes on my forehead. I almost wore my ashes like a badge of honor. “Here I am everyone, I’m Catholic!” However, this year I am going to greatly change my actions, and hopefully my heart too. Arch Bishop Jackels (Archdiocese of Dubuque) said this week in The Witness, “As an aside, if we do begin Lent with this radical gesture [get ashes placed on our heads], we should look for the first opportunity after Mass to wash the ashes off our forehead. Indeed, in the Gospel passage for Holy Mass on Ash Wednesday (Matthew 6), Jesus teaches that doing works of penance, like throwing ashes on the head, is between God and us, and not to parade in front of others for them to see.” Here we go, God, this is between me and you!

    • Veronica

      I can totally see your point of view. My sister-in-law told me last night that her dad used to wipe the ashes off his forehead as soon as he walked out of the church! I can get the idea that some folks wear their ashes as a “badge of honor”. But as for me, I leave them on to remind ME that I am “from dust, and to dust” I will return. When I absentmindedly scratch my forehead and then see ash on my fingertip…when I see myself in the mirror as I wash my hands…when someone’s gaze goes straight to my forehead…those instances will remind me that I AM a sinner, first and foremost, and that my Lenten journey has just begun. I guess what it comes down to, is that every person has to decide just exactly what the ashes mean to him/her. Have a fulfilling Lent!!

      • Sarah Livingston Schlicht

        I agree, Veronica. To wipe it off immediately would prove that I am ashamed of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

      • BJB

        I don’t want to make this into a big deal, but, if we think about what the ashes are meant to represent: mourning, penance, and death, and if we also consider the words in the Gospel on Ash Wednesday, “Take care not to perform righteous deeds in order that people may seen them…”, maybe we should reconsider the true meaning of the ashes as a symbol between ourselves and GOD, and not as a symbol to others. I will share with you that last night, after Mass, I immediately went into the restroom and washed off my ashes. I will tell you, that was a very spiritual moment for me. For when I stepped out of that restroom, more than ever, I felt that I needed to “walk the walk”. I felt closer to God. That symbol on my forehead was temporary (very temporary), but the impact it had on my heart will not likely go away anytime soon. That is what I think Lent is all about. Coming to God, from the Ashes, as a sinner, asking for forgiveness. I am not ashamed, and never will be of my Faith and of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I am more ashamed that I, for 38 years, never really thought and prayed about the significance of the ashes in my life. I am blessed for Sharon, a women at my Church, who showed me the article written Arch Bishop Jackels about Ash Wednesday. I would recommend for everyone to go to the Archdiocese of Dubuque, IA website and read it. It may just change your paradigm in a way you never imagined. You may, just like me, find that that symbol on your forehead is representative of not who you are (i.e. Catholic), but what we all need to do more of… a closer relationship to God. As the Gospel readings closed with, “and your Father who sees what is hidden / secret will repay you.” What ever the Ashes mean to you, may you have a blessed Lent and may you come closer to God in all that you do.

      • ready1923

        So are we suggesting that the Catholic Church doesn’t understand the meaning of Matthew 6? Personally, I think we are being told that we shouldn’t do penance SOLELY for the purpose of being seen doing penance not that we shouldn’t be seen doing penance. If my only purpose for getting ashes is so someone will point at me and say that person must be Catholic or if I only kneel in prayer so people will think that I am holy, then I shouldn’t bother. But if I wear those ashes and do something to improve my relationship with God or I kneel and go to that “inner room” inside myself where I can truly connect with my heavenly Father then I have lived the Gospel.

      • BJB

        ready1923, thank you for your reply. I am blessed that you have shared with me your thoughts. I may have not communicated my thoughts entirely. I feel that the Catholic Church completely understands Matthew 6. However, I feel like I didn’t. I think that what the Gospel tells us is, we have to be very careful with how we are wearing our ashes. Lent is a time for each of us to come closer to God. It is through fasting, prayer, and almsgiving that the Church teaches us to become closer to God. Matthew 6 reinforces this by stressing that we should do these things in “secret”. We are a faith that is filled with many wonderful and beautiful symbols and traditions. We use these symbols and traditions as a means to understand our faith, and God. The challenge is, at least for me, to try to understand the deeper meaning of the symbols and traditions. Again, for me, I can honestly say that when I washed off my ashes, I truly felt closer to God. That deliberate act on my part, caused me to understand that, what I feel in my heart, in my actions, in my thoughts, God “sees”. The challenge for me was, and will be, the second I stepped out of that Church, how would my heart respond to praying, giving, and fasting. Granted, we should live our lives in a manner that is representative of our Faith for others to see as an example, but during Lent, I think Jesus is telling us to seek a deeper relationship with God in all that we do. This, again, is why I immediately washed my ashes off after Mass. At that moment, I chose to use that symbol to change my heart.

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