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» Ship of Fools   » Special interest discussion   » Ecclesiantics   » Giving up something for Lent (Page 1)

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Source: (consider it) Thread: Giving up something for Lent
Mama Thomas
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Seems most parishioners I know have been taught NOT to give up anything, but to “take on something” instead.

Is there merit is self-imposted abstinence or is it a silly waste of time that now-elderly parishioners have been taught?

Is the pendulum swinging back?

In most churches, there’s no pre-Lent preparation for Lent and hasn’t been for decades, so people no longer think about what to read, give up or take on.

Sunday before Ash Wednesday, priest announces the time of the ashes service and there’s probably a book study or a soup supper.

Is that what Lent has become for most Christians?

Thoughts?

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mark_in_manchester

not waving, but...
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I'm trying (again) to give up sugar. When a fast works, it's quite something, in my experience. I should really give up the internet, too - that's kind of addictive and not always life-enhancing...

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"We are punished by our sins, not for them" - Elbert Hubbard
(so good, I wanted to see it after my posts and not only after those of shipmate JBohn from whom I stole it)

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Fuzzipeg
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An interesting sermon last night on the aspects of Lent to a largely poor student congregation focusing on Prayer, Almsgiving and Penance.

Prayer ...anyone can give up chocolate but time is more important. I know who is really serious about Lent if I see them at the 6,00am Mass.

Almsgiving...not everyone has money but it can mean doing other things. For example we have a free lunch every day for any student who wants to come....help with that, assist with the cooking, anything.

Penance....it's more than being sorry or confessing something it's turning things round and righting the wrong if possible...changing your attitude to people and your life.

I am not sure that this is an Ecclesiantics thread?

[ 15. February 2018, 06:56: Message edited by: Fuzzipeg ]

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MaryLouise
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Lent is a collective rather than an individual journey in my experience, the Church’s solemn call and responsibility to do penance and grow in faith, a time for repentance, reflection, sacrifice and prayer in the hope of metanoia, that the Church and each of us who believe may be transformed and renewed. Each year I’m moved and inspired by those who undertake this journey alongside me.

I try to keep it simple. The catechism talks about ‘voluntary self-denial such as fasting and almsgiving, and fraternal sharing (charitable and missionary works)’ with particulars left to the discretion of each person observing the penitential season.

The both/and option. It's been helpful to do ‘more’ (going to confession, attending daily Mass, doing retreats, involving oneself with activism out of concern for the poor and the defence of justice, making donations to charities and causes), making specific and concrete amends to those I have disappointed or hurt in the last year; as well as fasting, doing without certain comforts and conveniences, changing daily habits in a way that hurts a little, making more of an effort with Difficult Relatives, etc.

I agree with Fuzzipeg’s comment above that giving up time hurts some of us more than giving up chocolates.

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-- Ivy Compton-Burnett

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Ecclesiastical Flip-flop
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What I AM giving up - sugar.
What I am NOT giving up - facebook.
What I am taking on - house groups.

I think Lent is both an individual and a collective journey; in fact, I know.

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Joyeuses Pâques! Frohe Ostern! Buona Pasqua! ¡Felices Pascuas! Happy Easter!

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no prophet's flag is set so...

Proceed to see sea
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I'm trying to respond to others more thoughtfully, less bossily, with less wrath, most of the thing being internal control of feelings. I don't generally express much along this line in real life. I realize Jesus did get angry, but it was rare.

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Out of this nettle, danger, we pluck this flower, safety.
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Bishops Finger
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If anyone asks me what I'm giving up for Lent, I reply (graciously) that I'm giving up telling anyone what I'm giving up for Lent.

As Our Lord pointed out in last night's Gospel, prayer, fasting, or whatever, is between the individual and God.

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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churchgeek

Have candles, will pray
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Rightly understood, "giving up" something is taking on something: it's taking on a spiritual discipline.

That's part of the reason it's a shame so many people use it for non-spiritual self-improvement, like it's a great time to try out a diet or something. Sure, doing that may be a spiritual discipline for some, but many people don't seem to use it that way.

Then again, I'm not very good with or fond of Lent, myself. And the Ash Wednesday service becomes a bit absurd if you actually listen to the Scripture readings:

quote:

Isaiah: "Don't make a big show about your penitence, just go live justly and do good to others."

Us: "OK, got it. Now for Psalm 51 and the Litany of Penitence, followed by 40 days of penitential rites."

Jesus: "Don't show off your piety, especially when fasting."

Us: "OK, got it. Now let's put ashes on our foreheads and wear them all day long in public on a day of fasting."



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leo
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I'm giving up austerity.

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My Jewish-positive lectionary blog is at http://recognisingjewishrootsinthelectionary.wordpress.com/
My reviews at http://layreadersbookreviews.wordpress.com

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georgiaboy
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I used to tell people that I was giving up hope. [Big Grin]

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Gee D
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Giving up value judgments

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Not every Anglican in Sydney is Sydney Anglican

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Fuzzipeg
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Well, Churchgeek, I'm sure most people rub the ashes off as soon as they exit the church!
Having ashes on and working in an office for the rest of the day would be a bit crass.

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Basilica
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My favourite responses to "what are you giving up for Lent?" came from a youth group.

"Pancakes," said one. "Brussels sprouts," said another. "Kicking my sister," said a third.

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Amanda B. Reckondwythe

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The priest, in the homily for the service I attended, said that whatever we give up makes more room for God to come in.

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"I take prayer too seriously to use it as an excuse for avoiding work and responsibility." -- The Revd Martin Luther King Jr.

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Lyda*Rose

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My roommate who is Catholic insists that as a Catholic she needs to give up eggs on Fridays in Lent and possibly dairy products also because they are from animals on four legs. Any Catholics weigh in on this?

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"Dear God, whose name I do not know - thank you for my life. I forgot how BIG... thank you. Thank you for my life." ~from Joe Vs the Volcano

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Brenda Clough
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Chickens do not have 4 legs. At least, not here.

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Science fiction and fantasy writer with a Patreon page

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Lyda*Rose

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True enough. Bad example. [Hot and Hormonal] But Catholics definitely consider chickens to be "land animals" and don't eat them on Fridays in Lent. I did a little research after posting above and came up with this attached to some quotations of Canon Law:
quote:
The law of abstinence requires a Catholic 14 years of age until death to abstain from eating meat on Fridays in honor of the Passion of Jesus on Good Friday. Meat is considered to be the flesh and organs of mammals and fowl. Moral theologians have traditionally considered this also to forbid soups or gravies made from them. Salt and freshwater species of fish, amphibians, reptiles and shellfish are permitted, as are animal-derived products such as gelatin, butter, cheese and eggs, which do not have any meat taste.
I got the impression that this addendum pertained to the part of the Canon that said a country's conference of bishops determines exactly what constitutes the list of required things to be abstained from in their juristiction. So I think it implies that in the U.S. eggs and dairy are fine.

My old smartass self would have waved this under her nose and told her she was wrong. But my more supportive self says, "Meh. If abstaining from eggs and dairy on Fridays feels right to her, go with it."

I'm just wondering what kind of churchmen or theologians have been promoting these stricter rules, though.

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"Dear God, whose name I do not know - thank you for my life. I forgot how BIG... thank you. Thank you for my life." ~from Joe Vs the Volcano

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Bishops Finger
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Good Catholic chickens do... [Paranoid]

I'm sure we all take the meaning of Lyda*Rose's friend's remark, though.

It sounds a bit mediaeval to me, as I was told that in the Middle Ages one was meant to abstain from eggs, and all dairy products, for the whole of Lent, not just on Fridays.

Hence the using-up of dairy products on Shrove Tuesday, perhaps?

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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churchgeek

Have candles, will pray
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quote:
Originally posted by georgiaboy:
I used to tell people that I was giving up hope. [Big Grin]

And I say I'm giving up piety. [Two face]

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I reserve the right to change my mind.

My article on the Virgin of Vladimir

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The Scrumpmeister
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quote:
Originally posted by churchgeek:
...the Ash Wednesday service becomes a bit absurd if you actually listen to the Scripture readings...

Not if it's done properly.

There is nothing in the rubrics (at least not on the traditional services) about making a visible mark on the face. It simply says that ashes are to be placed on the head.

In most parts of the non-English-speaking world, this is understood to mean sprinkling a few ashes on the top of the head, in line with many scriptural references to such a practice as a sign of mourning or grief. It is the act of receiving the ashes on the head that is a reminder of penitence and our mortality. The ashes then fall off or blow away, and what is left is barely noticeable to anybody. There is no conflict with the warnings not to display our fasting or piety to be seen by others.

The problem only arises in places where it has become the custom to make a visible mark on the face, or even to mix the ashes with oil in a deliberate attempt to make the mark more prominent and longer lasting. It is important to remember that this is not called for in the service as it is written but rather is a custom that clergy in certain parts of the world seem to have adopted.

There is no good reason why they cannot simply follow the older practice.

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If Christ is not fully human, humankind is not fully saved. - St John of Saint-Denis

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The Scrumpmeister
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Ashes.

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If Christ is not fully human, humankind is not fully saved. - St John of Saint-Denis

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Aravis
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I'm giving up chocolate and starting to attend counselling (these two aren't connected).

My new Muslim colleague was quite surprised to discover Lent was a Christian practice. She thought it was like Veganuary or something. I have explained how very much older the practice is!

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The Scrumpmeister
Ship’s Taverner
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quote:
Originally posted by Lyda*Rose:
My roommate who is Catholic insists that as a Catholic she needs to give up eggs on Fridays in Lent and possibly dairy products also because they are from animals on four legs. Any Catholics weigh in on this?

Abstaining from the meat of quadrupeds is part of the monastic rule of Benedictines (specifically mentioned in the Rule) but I do not think it applies generally in wider western fasting, although this has varied considerably in different times and places in the Western Church.

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If Christ is not fully human, humankind is not fully saved. - St John of Saint-Denis

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Cathscats
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In my first parish was an enthusiastic young man who one year, quite off his own bat (we are Church of Scotland, no one need give up anything unless they want to) gave up all sugar and all meat. He decided the fast should end after worship on Easter Sunday. Come Easter Sunday and, against his usual custom he attended at the other church, where the service was earlier. This was so that he could drive on to another village which had (and has) a truly excellent ice cream shop. He was unable to attend evening worship as he was still being sick. He has now joined the Greek Orthodox Church. I do not say this as cause and effect!

Another pious small boy in that church gave up chocolate. As various relations gave him Easter eggs, he laid them in a row in his bedroom. And on Easter Saturday the dog found them and ate them and had to go to the vet.

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"...damp hands and theological doubts - the two always seem to go together..." (O. Douglas, "The Setons")

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The Scrumpmeister
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A cat would have more sense.

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If Christ is not fully human, humankind is not fully saved. - St John of Saint-Denis

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Enoch
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I may be completely wrong in this, but as people are signed with the cross on their foreheads as a preliminary to being baptised, it strikes me that signing with the cross in ash on the forehead is an obvious symbolic way of ashing on Ash Wednesday. So irrespective of how it is done or not done in some other countries, is there any reason for saying that the way we normally now do this isn't the right way?

Also, is there any evidence that this practice isn't in world terms just as widespread currently in places that don't speak English?

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Brexit wrexit - Sir Graham Watson

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The Scrumpmeister
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quote:
Originally posted by Enoch:
I may be completely wrong in this, but as people are signed with the cross on their foreheads as a preliminary to being baptised, it strikes me that signing with the cross in ash on the forehead is an obvious symbolic way of ashing on Ash Wednesday.

I don't see that the tracing of the Cross on the catechumen at baptism (which is not limited to the forehead but is done on various parts of the body in different rites) is a precedent for imposing a visible mark on the face on Ash Wednesday. It just wouldn't occur to me to link the two.

quote:
So irrespective of how it is done or not done in some other countries, is there any reason for saying that the way we normally now do this isn't the right way?
I think the issue is what churchgeek raised.
On the very day we go to receive the ash, we hear the Scripture readings, including the Gospel in which the Saviour explicitly tells us that, when we fast, we are not to disfigure our faces to be seen by others.

Churchgeek raised the concern that the common practice of doing just that seems at odds with what we hear in Scripture, and seemed to suggest that this was part of the Ash Wednesday service. I was merely pointing out that the actual service calls for no such thing, but rather that this action is the choice of some clergy based on a cultural custom.

It is certainly not the first, second, third... time I've heard Christians express consternation at what seems to be a contradiction that makes them feel uneasy. I can understand it as I feel it myself. I was just pointing out that there's no reason why it need be so.

quote:
Also, is there any evidence that this practice isn't in world terms just as widespread currently in places that don't speak English?
I'm not able to provide detailed figures; the evidence is anecdotal only, based on what others have shared of their own experiences when we have discussed this issue here before, as well as what I have seen myself.

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If Christ is not fully human, humankind is not fully saved. - St John of Saint-Denis

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Nick Tamen

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quote:
Originally posted by The Scrumpmeister:
I don't see that the tracing of the Cross on the catechumen at baptism (which is not limited to the forehead but is done on various parts of the body in different rites) is a precedent for imposing a visible mark on the face on Ash Wednesday. It just wouldn't occur to me to link the two.

The fact that it's visible is beside the point. Historically, marking the sign of the cross on the forehead has always been connected to baptism. That’s how the sign of the cross, now done head-to-breast-to-shoulders, was originally made, and it was done that way specifically to recall ones baptism. The only possible exception I can think of to the connection between marking a cross on the forehead and baptism is the triple marking of forehead, lips and breast at the Gospel reading in some traditions.

I get what you, churchgeek and others are saying about the dissonance between the act of marking the forehead and the Gospel lesson. That’s why I unless I’m driving straight home, I remove the ashes as soon as I leave the church. I’d wager most people around here do that. But also, I’d question whether marking the sign of the cross on the forehead is really "disfiguring" the face in the sense meant by Jesus in the day's Gospel reading.

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The first thing God says to Moses is, "Take off your shoes." We are on holy ground. Hard to believe, but the truest thing I know. — Anne Lamott

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Huia
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One year I told the Vicar I was giving up church for Lent. He suggested I might have missed the point.

Huia

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Charity gives food from the table, Justice gives a place at the table.

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The Scrumpmeister
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quote:
Originally posted by Nick Tamen:
quote:
Originally posted by The Scrumpmeister:
I don't see that the tracing of the Cross on the catechumen at baptism (which is not limited to the forehead but is done on various parts of the body in different rites) is a precedent for imposing a visible mark on the face on Ash Wednesday. It just wouldn't occur to me to link the two.

The fact that it's visible is beside the point.
I would say that it's precisely the point. I understand that the Saviour, when referring to people disfiguring their faces (Matthew 6: 16), was most likely referring to people screwing up their faces and openly complaining about the physical discomfort that can often come with fasting, in order to draw other people's attention to the fact, and I concede that wearing an ash Cross on the face isn't technically the exact same thing. However, when taken in the wider context of the message of the Saviour's words in that chapter, that technical difference seems, to me at least, to pale into insignificance.

While you, and others, may well remove the mark as soon as you leave church, many others are actively encouraged not to do so, and a number of clergy add substances to the ash to form a sort of ash paste, specifically to make it last.

I know that practices vary and I'm a great enthusiast for learning about and celebrating the various ways that rites and customs have developed around how Christian people across times and places have worshipped God. It's just that this one poses a hurdle for me and others, and as it's a completely unnecessary hurdle introduced by a practice not called for anywhere in the rite, I thought I'd point that out when I saw that this practice had led someone to think of the Ash Wednesday service as absurd.

quote:
Historically, marking the sign of the cross on the forehead has always been connected to baptism. That’s how the sign of the cross, now done head-to-breast-to-shoulders, was originally made, and it was done that way specifically to recall ones baptism.
You are right, of course. Various practices exist of the anointing in terms of the body parts done, but they all include the signing on the forehead, which seems to be the most ancient form. However, this isn't in dispute.

Of course, all of our Christian life is linked to our baptism but what I don't see personally is that there is such a link between the specific act of the signing with the Cross at baptism and a reminder of penitence at the start of Lent.

To me the obvious symbolism is the practice seen throughout the Old Testament of putting dust on the head at times of grief and penitence, and as a reminder of human mortality.

"Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return."

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If Christ is not fully human, humankind is not fully saved. - St John of Saint-Denis

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Forthview
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From earliest times the Church has asked its faithful to make on certain days an act of self denial. Gradually this became centred on Friday abstinence from meat products. For those who like to know about exceptions to a general rule the Roman authorities (and others)would give detailed explanations to such questions as whether soups with meat stock count as meat products or not.

Until Vatican 2 there was a general perception amongst both Catholics and those who were aware of Catholicism that eating meat on a Friday was not supposed to be done and indeed constituted a 'mortal' sin for a Catholic.

Varican 2 as part of its 'aggiornamento' decided that individuals should decide their own act of self denial at some time in the week, particularly on Fridays, the day which recalls the crucifixion of the Lord.

Since then generations of Catholics have grown up who have little knowledge of Friday abstinence, though a certain number of people will still observe this pious practice.
Some bishops' conferences, as I think in the USA have indicated that the Fridays of Lent should be meatfree days for the faithful. This is not because meat is unclean, but rather it is a symbol of an act of self denial.

It is quite true that the ashes on the forehead 'smudge' (either dry or mixed with oil) are very common in the Anglophone world. As in everything else to do with religion it depends on how the person interprets the action. Of course it can be seen in contradiction to the Gospel passage of the day, showing others that one is observing the penitential aspect of the day and thus letting others know that that person is holier and 'better' than others who have not done that. On the other hand it could be seen as an act of evangelization, reminding others, who might be unaware of the special character of the day.

In matters like this one might even ask, could the action of going to church at all be seen by others as letting them know that the churchgoer is superior to the person, who does not go. Some people going to 'evangelical' churches will sometime carry big gold embossed bibles. Does that also let people know that they are particularly religious and better versed in Biblical texts and interpretations than the others. One can ask questions like this all the time and the answer is that it depends on the motive of the person.

In non Anglophone countries indeed ashes are normally, but not exclusively, sprinkled on the heads of the penitents. It is also not common in non Anglophone countries to have the dried palm crosses which one finds all over the UK. Usually in other parts of Europe certainly branches of other trees are used.

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Twilight

Puddleglum's sister
# 2832

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I'm Lutheran/Episcopalian now, but my background was Methodist/Presbyterian where I never actually heard of such things as ashes and giving-ups.

I really like all that the Lenten season means. The pulling back from the outward celebration of Christmas into a more introspective state is something I look forward to when the Christmas parties are wearing me down.

I may well have it completely wrong, but I thought it was a very small scale imitation of Jesus 40 days in the desert, fasting and praying. So that actually "giving up" certain foods and praying more would be more appropriate than the "adding on" that so many people are doing these days. To me it is more individual the collective, again as Jesus used that time alone to prepare for the coming years when he would be constantly surrounded with people.

Perhaps, I've made Lent what I want it to be because I'm an introvert at heart.

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Nick Tamen

Ship's Wayfaring Fool
# 15164

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quote:
Originally posted by The Scrumpmeister:
quote:
Originally posted by Nick Tamen:
[qb]The fact that it's visible is beside the point.

I would say that it's precisely the point. I understand that the Saviour, when referring to people disfiguring their faces . . . .
I wasn’t clear, I’m afraid. You said it wouldn’t occur to you to link the visible marking using ashes with the baptismal marking with the sign of the cross. When I said the fact it’s visible is beside the point, I meant beside the point in the baptismal linkeage. Any marking of the cross on the forehead, visible or not, is linked to baptism.

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The first thing God says to Moses is, "Take off your shoes." We are on holy ground. Hard to believe, but the truest thing I know. — Anne Lamott

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leo
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# 1458

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quote:
Originally posted by Huia:
One year I told the Vicar I was giving up church for Lent. He suggested I might have missed the point.

Shows how narrow his view of discipleship is - finding a spirituality in nature, in friendships, music etc. could be a real advance.

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My Jewish-positive lectionary blog is at http://recognisingjewishrootsinthelectionary.wordpress.com/
My reviews at http://layreadersbookreviews.wordpress.com

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L'organist
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# 17338

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I'd love to say I was giving up good behaviour but chance would be a fine thing [Razz]

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Rara temporum felicitate ubi sentire quae velis et quae sentias dicere licet

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mark_in_manchester

not waving, but...
# 15978

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I like Twilight's summary. But then I'm a Methodist introvert. [Razz]

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"We are punished by our sins, not for them" - Elbert Hubbard
(so good, I wanted to see it after my posts and not only after those of shipmate JBohn from whom I stole it)

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Huia
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# 3473

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quote:
Originally posted by leo:
quote:
Originally posted by Huia:
One year I told the Vicar I was giving up church for Lent. He suggested I might have missed the point.

Shows how narrow his view of discipleship is - finding a spirituality in nature, in friendships, music etc. could be a real advance.
It was. Since then I've moves cities and am going to a Presbyterian church which has a much more diverse and inclusive spirituality.

Huia

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Charity gives food from the table, Justice gives a place at the table.

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Enoch
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# 14322

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As regards ashing and the Gospel for Ash Wednesday, it makes a difference whether you live in a society where all will think well of you if you make a visible display of piety, or whether you live in one where most people will think you're a bit stupid, odd or old-fashioned.

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Brexit wrexit - Sir Graham Watson

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Galilit
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# 16470

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Or putting youself in danger of attack.

A friend neglected to wipe off his Ashes last year and got on the Cairo Metro to travel home, sat down and was immediately approached by a worried-looking person proffering a tissue

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She who does Her Son's will in all things can rely on me to do Hers.

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wild haggis
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# 15555

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I always want to ask why? I'm just an awkward whatsit!

Why give up things for Lent ........ unless you are going to spend more time with God or doing something for someone else?

I never saw the point of just arbitrarily giving up things just because it was Lent. What's the point? Just to self righteously feel proud - and boast about what you have given up to your friends and church? Surely that's not the point of Lent at all?

OK, maybe giving up chocolate or cakes will make you thinner but you can do that anytime.

Why not get up earlier to do extra devotions, or miss your favourite TV programme and spend time in prayer, or instead of buying chocolate give the money to charity. But don't boast about it, just do it.

Christian Aid used to have a good Lent leaflet and each day you did something different and put money aside for Christian Aid. Now that to me is more of what Lent is about - not giving up chocolate or eggs.

Ash Wednesday: One year, the vicar and I nearly set the school on fire at an Ash Wednesday assembly I was leading. The Vicar burned last year's palm crosses to make ash in a metal bowl................right under the smoke alarm!
The safety jug of water came in useful but he had to burn the crosses outside and bring the ash back into the hall so he could put the sign of the cross on the heads of the kids who wanted it!

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wild haggis

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Jengie jon

Semper Reformanda
# 273

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Why give something up for lent:
  • As a nod to the traditional fasting nature of lent
  • So that money thereby saved may be used for charitable purpose
  • As a way of making space for prayer or other devotion
  • As a discipline that reminds you that the season is Lent and a time of preparation for Easter
  • in an attempt to build good habits. Six weeks is about the time it takes to build a new pattern of behaviour.

Jengie

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"To violate a persons ability to distinguish fact from fantasy is the epistemological equivalent of rape." Noretta Koertge

Back to my blog

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Thurible
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# 3206

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quote:
Originally posted by Lyda*Rose:
My roommate who is Catholic insists that as a Catholic she needs to give up eggs on Fridays in Lent and possibly dairy products also because they are from animals on four legs. Any Catholics weigh in on this?

Stricter than 1917.

Thurible

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"I've been baptised not lobotomised."

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Fuzzipeg
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# 10107

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The Orthodox give up dairy products and eggs in Holy Week and I also think for most of Lent...it used to be the case in the West but over the centuries it has been dumbed down.

I am sure one of our Orthodox people can correct me on this.

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http://foodybooze.blogspot.co.za

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leo
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# 1458

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quote:
Originally posted by Enoch:
As regards ashing and the Gospel for Ash Wednesday, it makes a difference whether you live in a society where all will think well of you if you make a visible display of piety, or whether you live in one where most people will think you're a bit stupid, odd or old-fashioned.

It never ceases to provoke a conversation in the pub after mass.

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My Jewish-positive lectionary blog is at http://recognisingjewishrootsinthelectionary.wordpress.com/
My reviews at http://layreadersbookreviews.wordpress.com

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SvitlanaV2
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# 16967

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I wonder if they bother with ashing in the Global South? It doesn't show up on dark skin, so the proclamatory element is lost.
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MaryLouise
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# 18697

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Ashes show up as a lighter grey and are obvious enough on black skin. And 'black' skin is pigmented in many different ways, as I'm sure most of us realise.

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“As regards plots I find real life no help at all. Real life seems to have no plots.”

-- Ivy Compton-Burnett

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Graven Image
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# 8755

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What if anything are you holding onto so tightly that you are unable to take the hand of God when it is offered to you in love?

If you search your heart and find such a thing, then that is what you should give up for Lent.

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Amos

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# 44

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quote:
Originally posted by SvitlanaV2:
I wonder if they bother with ashing in the Global South? It doesn't show up on dark skin, so the proclamatory element is lost.

1) It does show up.
2) The 'proclamatory element' is for the person receiving the ash, and is not dependent upon looking in the mirror.
3) Chrismation doesn't generally 'show up' either. That's not the point.
4) It is easy to find images on the internet of people with very dark skin being ashed. It shows up.
5) Likewise, there are people of colour living outside the Global South. They get ashed on Ash Wednesday too.

[ 22. February 2018, 06:11: Message edited by: Amos ]

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At the end of the day we face our Maker alongside Jesus--ken

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Karl: Liberal Backslider
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# 76

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quote:
Originally posted by Graven Image:
What if anything are you holding onto so tightly that you are unable to take the hand of God when it is offered to you in love?

If you search your heart and find such a thing, then that is what you should give up for Lent.

Difficult to give up a conscience.

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Might as well ask the bloody cat.

Posts: 17938 | From: Chesterfield | Registered: May 2001  |  IP: Logged
SvitlanaV2
Shipmate
# 16967

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quote:
Originally posted by Amos:
quote:
Originally posted by SvitlanaV2:
I wonder if they bother with ashing in the Global South? It doesn't show up on dark skin, so the proclamatory element is lost.

1) It does show up.
2) The 'proclamatory element' is for the person receiving the ash, and is not dependent upon looking in the mirror.
3) Chrismation doesn't generally 'show up' either. That's not the point.
4) It is easy to find images on the internet of people with very dark skin being ashed. It shows up.
5) Likewise, there are people of colour living outside the Global South. They get ashed on Ash Wednesday too.

Thanks for that!

Ashing doesn't show up on me. I suppose it depends on the strength of the mixture, and the skin tone of the person. Not many of the photos on Google are of Africans, for example.

I mentioned the 'proclamatory' element because someone above made the point that the visibility of the mark made it a good talking point at the pub. I suppose if we take that outcome to be relatively unimportant then proclamation isn't the issue.

True, at the evening service I went to there was provision for the ashes to be washed off at the end, so there was clearly no expectation that the ritual was meant to have any kind of evangelistic element.

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