Penitential season in preparation for the observance of Easter
Lent, in the Christian tradition, is a period of about six weeks before Easter. It is a time in which Christians are supposed to be quiet and thoughtful, preparing themselves for Easter. They should pray a lot, give money to charities and give up some of the things they might otherwise do for pleasure. The period of Lent ends at Easter, which is a time of great celebration as the Christians think of how Jesus had died on the cross but then rose again from the dead.
Lent is traditionally supposed to be forty days long. That is because the Bible says that Jesus spent forty days in the wilderness, preparing for his death and resurrection.
Lent is traditionally a time for fasting (not eating much). This tradition was useful because it was a time when food which had been kept for the winter had to be eaten up before it went bad. Many Roman Catholics do not eat meat other than fish on Fridays during Lent.