From Mother Laura, in RevGalBlogPals...
1. Did you celebrate Mardi Gras and/or Ash Wednesday this week? How?
I forgot about Fat Tuesday (would have had pancakes for dinner--although my son and I did order a pizza and the next day, I decided that was a celebration).
For Ash Wednesday, we went to the service at our church and talked about it in our homeschooling. In fact, we talked about the whole Lenten time period, and drawing closer to God and experiencing some of what Jesus did, etc.
2. What was your most memorable Mardi Gras/Ash Wednesday/Lent?
I didn't grow up celebrating Lent, but as a young adult, I occasionally gave up things as a small way of honoring it. I have two really memorable Lent experiences, one of them more recent.
One occurred the year I decided to give up self-criticism for Lent. I had a terrible habit of saying really mean, nasty things to and about myself. And I decided that every time I did that, I would stop myself and say, "the truth is..." and come up with something positive. By Easter, I had broken the habit of saying those awful things.
My other most memorable experience was a few years ago!
I decided to give up meat for Lent. It was my way of experimenting with becoming vegetarian. Well, let me just say that though I survived the Lent experience, I am not meant to be vegetarian!!!
I really, really understood the longing for Jesus, the death and the resurrection in a way I hadn't before :).
3. Did you/your church/your family celebrate Lent as a child? If not, when and how did you discover it?
I didn't. I discovered Lent along with Advent!
For a couple of years, I attended an Episcopal church and that was my introduction into church seasons and celebrating holidays for more than one day, or week. I'm so grateful for that experience!
I attend a Methodist church now and am really able to enjoy the richness of their celebrations.
4. Are you more in the give-up camp, or the take-on camp, or somewhere in between?
Somehow I missed the possibility of "taking on" until this year. There was a discussion in an online community I belong to and a few of the people posting mentioned what they were going to "add". I did a Scooby head-scratch and asked about it.
So, I think this year, instead of giving anything up (I considered cookies, but I don't think that's going to happen), I'm going to deepen my spiritual connection!
5. How do you plan to keep Lent this year?
In addition to my focus on deepening connection, I plan to read The Last Week, by Marcus Borg and John Dominic Crossan.
And I plan to add a Lenten focus to homeschooling whenever possible. I'm still working on how I will do that, though. Jonathan wasn't terribly interested in our discussion the other day.