Monday, February 20, 2012

Shrove Tuesday and the Forgotten Feast of Our Lord

I used to like the idea of Mardi Gras (fat Tuesday) when I was a kid because we always had to give up candy and sweets for Lent but also I liked the bright, deep metallic gem color tones I saw with the beads and masks.  It wasn't until I got much older that I realized what a depravity it was - Mardi Gras, I mean.  Think about it - people with lax morals partying in an atmosphere that is steeped in complete lack of moral fiber... To get the beads from the floats, some cities (not all I admit), women flash their bare breasts at beastilized costumed float attendants, and the float parade itself is interspersed with with scantily-clad women.  Drunken, gluttonous festivity has replaced one of the most honorable feasts of the Catholic Church: the Feast of the Holy Face.  For brief periods of time over our 2000+ year old history as Christians, we have recognized what Lent and Easter were really all about, especially in the nineteenth century with the establishment of the Feast of the Holy Face of Jesus.  People don't want to 'do' Lent anymore because it causes them considerable moral trouble.  Well, it should - that's why it's there!  To bring us back in humility and obedience to the Faith, to God our Father who sent His Only Begotten Son to wipe away our sins, and at least once a year we could take the time to acknowledge that more fully than we do the rest of the time.  I only knew of devotion to the Holy Face of Jesus through St. Therese of Liseux's devotion, which began when the feast was solemnly approved by the Church in her lifetime.  It is only of late, with all of the suffering this year has brought, in my increased prayers for my lapsed Catholic brethren and conversion of those who are pro-choice, pro-death, and pro-abortion, that I had come to learn more intimately of this reverential day.  As I struggle with my health tonight as I write this, finding it difficult to even use the right words, and for lack on my part of full understanding, I encourage you to visit this link and at least read the one page if you truly love Jesus.

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