Posted by: St. Mark Lutheran Church | February 21, 2012

It’s Fat Tuesday…don’t just eat a bunch of donuts!

Today is known by many names:

  • Shrove Tuesday
  • Mardi Gras
  • Fat Tuesday
  • Fasching

In other words, today is the day before Ash Wednesday, the day on which the season of Lent starts.  In some places, people will be removing certain foods and ingredients from their homes.  Some will be enjoying the last day of certain luxuries before the abstinence and sacrifice of Lent.

But what God calls for is the sweeping away not of literal yeast, lard, eggs, meat, butter, chocolate, cigarettes, beer, or any such thing.  Listen to the apostle Paul, “Your boasting is not good.  Don’t you know that a little yeast works through the whole batch of dough?  Get rid of the old yeast that you may be a new batch without yeast — as you really are.  For Christ, our Passover Lamb, has been sacrificed.  Therefore, let us keep the Festival, not with the old yeast, the yeast of malice and wickedness, but with bread without yeast, the bread of sincerity and truth” (1 Corinthians 5:6-8, NIV84).

And so, Lent begins.  We journey once more to the cross and the tomb, hearing the Words of Scripture, “Cleanse me with hyssop and I will be clean; wash me, and I will be whiter than snow.  Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones you have crushed rejoice.  Hide your face from my sins and blot out all my iniquity” (Psalm 51:7-9, NIV84).

At St. Mark, we will mark the beginning of Lent with Divine Service tomorrow, Ash Wednesday, beginning at 6:30pm.  Each Wednesday until Holy Week, we will also gather around Word and Sacrament as we journey to cross and tomb.  Our focus will be the Passion account recorded by the evangelist Matthew, and our sermon texts will be based on themes coming from the psalms connected to portions of Dr. Luther’s Small Catechism, focusing on God’s gift of forgiveness.

You can see the entire Lent and Easter schedule here.

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