tomorrow is shrove tuesday...

and i can hardly contain myself, i am overjoyed. there is a history behind it and i found a cool link, which you too can read if you click on my title, above.

my husband's family has always called it "faschnat day" or "donut day;" i've always known it as "fat tuesday" and now, from this article, it's also known as "pancake day." who knew? i bought tickets to our church's annual pancake supper for tomorrow night - i am the only one i know that will bring her own dinner because i don't eat pancakes, but it's the fellowship i am after. i love hanging out with the folks from my church, they are so cool (and most of them, over 70!)

Perhaps the best known one is Shrove Tuesday or Pancake Day, which heralds the beginning of fasting in Lent. On this day (so the historians say) there were feasts of pancakes to use up the supplies of fat, butter and eggs... foods that were forbidden during austere Lent.
regardless, i am so excited because to me, it is the "Christmas Eve" of my lenten experience. it's not that i don't lament and fast and mourn all the other times of the year, but this is my *focused and concentrated* time of looking inward, remembering what Jesus did for me on the Cross and transforming my life to another level of Christianity and service to others, and that service might be giving up a vice or correcting a wrong or amending my ways to be more like Jesus. it is a stern inward look, if you will, and it isn't always pleasant (nor is it meant to be).

however, my big question to you all is this: if you are the type to give up, say, chocolate - how does that further the Kingdom in your life? and once the 40 days is over, do you necessarily go back to consuming the delicious confection again?

i've mentioned in a couple of other posts elsewhere that i had a time when i gave up gossiping for Lent - i could neither partake by listening nor contributing. not the easiest thing to do when you work in a law firm and converge in the lunchroom with a bunch of chatty women daily.

at first, it was *funny* to everybody. then, after i guess the first week when it appeared i was serious about it, i started getting funny *looks* when i walked in for lunch. then it got to the point where i thought i was sporting a tunic and apostle shoes because it got almost hostile. i took to eating my lunch in an empty office and to this day, i find gossip to be very off-putting. it is a practice i have upheld for about 6 or 7 years now, and i am happy to do so.

two years ago, i began attending daily mass, which is another practice i continue. i can't imagine not spending 30-45 minutes daily with Jesus, uninterrupted. it sustains me - if it is a good habit, why break it simply because Lent is over?

thoughts? discussion welcomed, please - both Catholic and Protestant brothers and sisters welcomed - i would love to know what everyone feels about this issue, so please don't be shy.


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