ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – A group of religious leaders in Tower Grove put a twist on today’s Ash Wednesday to show solidarity with the LGBTQ community.

Pastor Samuel Voth Schrag of St. Louis Mennonite Fellowship says for the past eight years, they’ve performed Ash Wednesday ceremonies with their “Ashes to Go” pop-up stand outside MoKaBe’s Coffeehouse.

This year, the group added glitter ashes into their ceremony as a welcoming gesture to LGBTQ members.

“It’s a way for people to say, in kind of a significant way, that we are together, we all dust together, we’re all people together,” Voth Schrag says.

The move comes at a time when some states are considering “religious freedom” bills targeting LGBTQ people.

Missouri state senators early Wednesday morning voted against a proposal to ban discrimination based on gender identity and sexual orientation.

Senators voted 20-10 against the protections for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people.

The plan would have banned discrimination against LGBT people in employment, housing and public accommodations.

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