Chalk Sunday

Chalk Sunday

Between February 8 and March 14; first Sunday of Lent
In rural Ireland it was at one time customary to brush chalk on single men and women as they entered the church on the first Sunday of Lent. Because Roman Catholics were not permitted to hold weddings during Lent, those who were still unmarried at the beginning of the Lenten season had to remain so until Easter—if not longer. Back when it was less common for young people to stay single well into their 20s and 30s, marking them with chalk was a way of chiding them for their unmarried status.
SOURCES:
FolkWrldHol-1999, p. 167