Lent 2017 - Alpha Taxis, Teignmouth

What is Lent and why do people give things up for it?

When is Lent in 2017?

Lent this year starts on the 1st March and will end on 13th April.

What is lent?

Ash Wednesday marks the first day of Lent, a period of 40 days (excluding Sundays) which comes before Easter in the Christian calendar.

Christians who observe Lent use it as a time for prayer and penance. By observing Lent, Christians are remembering the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, who withdrew into the wilderness and fasted for 40 days before his crucifixion.

Traditionally, pancakes are eaten on the day before Ash Wednesday to use up rich, indulgent foods like eggs and milk before the 40-day fasting season of Lent begins.

This year, Easter falls on Sunday, April 16. The English word Lent is a shortened form of the Old English word ‘lenten’, meaning ‘spring’.

What are you giving up for lent?

Some people fast for the whole period of Lent, as a reflection of Jesus’s sacrifice in the Judean desert.

Some Christians will fast only on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday, the Friday before Easter Sunday.

Lent 2017 - Alpha Taxis, Teignmouth

However, many people, even those who do not go to church, choose to give up a particular vice, such as their favourite food, alcohol or smoking for the period of Lent.

Instead of giving up chocolate, fizzy drinks or chips, many others use Lent as a period of time to help others. Hundreds of people take part in the Lenten Positive Acts Challenge, as another way to show praise for God.

Participants perform one positive act for each of the days between Ash Wednesday and Easter Sunday. These ‘positive acts’ can include calling up someone who is alone, donating to a worth cause, clearing up after dinner and letting someone go ahead of you in a supermarket queue.

We’re going to give up walking for this Lent ;)

Source: The Telegraph

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