Mardi Gras is strongly connected to the Catholic Church it marks the last day before the start of Lent, a time of fasting and repentance. This is why in New Orleans the cops shut down the party at midnight. Yes, even the famous Bourbon Street closes at midnight. The holiday became popular around the fest of foods that would be given up during the forty days of Lent. Meats, eggs, and milk were finished off in one day, giving the French title of “Mardi Gras” which means Fat Tuesday. Today, Mardi Gras is so popular that even if you are not Catholic it is celebrated with family and friends. Did you know that it’s officially a state holiday for us now. Kids get out of school and businesses close just to celebrate Fat Tuesday before the Lenten season starts. The colors purple, green, and gold are the official Mardi Gras color palette. The color gold symbolizes power. The color purple symbolizes justice, and what is “right” and Green symbolizes Faith. I’m sure all my non-Catholic friends maybe scratching your heads as we are starting this Lent season, but to us it’s a time of transformation. We acknowledge the ways we have turned away from God in our lives and we focus on turning our hearts, and minds back toward God.
I’m hoping for a really good Lent season this year. I always say, “this is the year” but I always fall back year after year. I’ll never give up on my Faith and I’m hoping you wont either, and just because Mardi Gras “Fat Tuesday” is over, doesn’t mean you still cant sport around these beautiful colors. Now is a great time even if you’re non-Catholic to practice your Faith. Challenge yourself this year! Here is a list of ideas that I’m aiming for and might help you along the way this Lent Season!
1. Attending Mass faithfully! Sometimes I cheat and just drop my son off for CCD. This has been weighing on me. Are you guilty of this?
2. Having An Open Mind! I have joined a non-Catholic bible study group, once a month, not that I’m losing my Faith but I’m curious and maybe we can help either other grow.
3. Getting to know my neighbors!
4. Pray For A Stranger! The random person walking by you in the office, or street, pray they have a blessed day.
5. Spend A Weekend Fully Commented To Prayer! No cell phones, no TV. No outside world. My grandmother has inspired me to do this. Set up a mini retreat at your house, with family and friends. Mmmm….. a making in the works!?
6. Visit and Volunteer! I’m seriously thinking about visiting a nursing home and getting to know an old soul.
7. Time Well Spent! Take advantage in your car, mediate, pray or reflect on daily devotions.
8. 40 Days! Each day of lent take the time to do a random act of kindness. A phone call a day to each friend, mail a letter each day, send a goodie box, etc.
9. Anima Christi! This is one of my favorite prayers. Order a bulk of your favorite prayer cards and send them out.
10. Make Someone Dinner! Bring a love one dinner or pay for their meal!
These are all simple yet powerful gestures you can take on this Lent season. Make it the best one yet!
Jewelry | P.S. Jewelry
Photography | Anna Buller