Did you know?: Lent

The information below has been taken from LiveLent.net

About Lent

Lent is a reminder that Jesus went through suffering to make him stronger and more trusting in Father God. You can read the story in the Bible.

Lent is the Christian season that takes us from the end of winter through to Easter and is linked to the time when Jesus went for 40 days without food in the desert. It is a reminder that Jesus went through suffering to make him stronger and more trusting in Father God.

In the early days of the Church, Lent was a time when new Christians prepared for their baptism on Easter Day by being instructed in the Christian faith and through fasting (not eating food, or eating only one meal a day) and penance (being sorry for wrong things they had done and trying to put them right).

The modern version of Lent encourages us to give things up so that we have more time to concentrate on Jesus.

Special Days

During Lent there are a number of special days for Christians including Ash Wednesday, Mothering Sunday, Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday and Good Friday.

Shrove Tuesday

The beginning of Lent is marked by Shrove Tuesday. This was the day when everyone used up their best and richest food such as eggs and fat, to prepare for 40 days of limited, mini-meals!

Shrove Tuesday has become known as ‘Pancake Day’, because traditionally pancakes used up the good food and made a feast to begin the season with. The word ‘Shrive’ means to confess, so people were encouraged to say sorry to God before the beginning of Lent itself.

Ash Wednesday

Ash Wednesday follows the celebrations and feasting of the day before. In the past (and still now in some churches) ash is used to put a cross shaped mark on the forehead of Christians to remind them of Jesus. The ashes used on Ash Wednesday are often form the burnt remains of the Palm Crosses used the year before at Easter.

Mothering Sunday

Mothering Sunday is always on the 4th Sunday during Lent, and is a time when Mothers are remembered, thanked and celebrated.

Palm Sunday

Palm crosses are sometimes given out on Palm Sunday as a reminder of Jesus. They remind people that Jesus died and came alive again. Palm Sunday is the day when Jesus’ ride into Jerusalem on a donkey is remembered, and people grabbed palm leaves off trees to wave at him in welcome.

Maundy Thursday

Maundy Thursday comes the day before Good Friday. The word ‘Maundy’ is based on the Latin for command, remembering Jesus telling his friends to love one-another. Jesus and his friends met on Maundy Thursday before he died to have a feast celebrating the Passover. Their meal is sometimes called the Last Supper. The Last Supper is remembered in most churches with special services called Holy Communion or Eucharist.

Good Friday

Good Friday is the day when Jesus’ death on the cross is remembered. It is called ‘good’ because, when Jesus died, he paid the price for all the bad things people do – even you and me. So now we can be forgiven and start again.

Easter Day

Easter Day is the Sunday, when Christians celebrate Jesus rising from the dead.

Be a part of these Special Days of Lent!
Join us for the Easter Services at St. John’s

Shrove Tuesday

this article has been copied from Anglican Online Resources

The day before the beginning of Lent is known as Shrove Tuesday. To shrive someone, in old-fashioned English (he shrives, he shrove, he has shriven OR he shrives, he shrived, he has shrived), is to hear his acknowledgment of his sins, to assure him of God’s forgiveness,and to give him appropriate spiritual advice. The term survives today in ordinary usage in the expression “short shrift”. To give someone short shrift is to pay very little attention to his excuses or problems. The longer expression is, “to give him short shrift and a long rope,” which formerly meant to hang a criminal with a minimum of delay.

On Shrove Tuesday, many Christians make a special point of self-examination, of considering what wrongs they need to repent, and what amendments of life or areas of spiritual growth they especially need to ask God’s help in dealing with.

On Shrove Tuesday, many Christians make a special point of self-examination, of considering what wrongs they need to repent, and what amendments of life or areas of spiritual growth they especially need to ask God’s help in dealing with. Often they consult on these matters with a spiritual counselor, or receive shrift.

Shrove Tuesday is also called Fat Tuesday (in French, Mardi=Tuesday; gras=fat, as in “pate de foie gras”, which is liver paste and very fatty), because on that day a thrifty housewife uses up the fats that she has kept around (the can of bacon drippings, or whatever) for cooking, but that she will not be using during Lent. Since pancakes are a standard way of using up fat, the day is also called Pancake Tuesday. In England, and perhaps elsewhere, the day is celebrated with pancake races. The contestants run a course while holding a griddle and flipping a pancake. Points are awarded for time, for number and height of flips, and number of times the pancake turns over. There are of course penalties for dropping the pancake.

The day (or sometimes a longer period immediately preceding Lent) is also called CARNIVAL, which means “farewell to meat.” “Carni” as in carnivorous, and “vale” as in valediction, valedictorian, etc. One last hamburger before the Lenten fast begins!!

A thrifty housewife uses up the fats that she has kept around for cooking, but that she will not be using during Lent. Since pancakes are a standard way of using up fat, the day is also called Pancake Tuesday.