What are you giving up for Lent?

February 27th 2017
By: Melanie
What are you giving up for Lent?

With such a strong history embodied by St Albans Cathedral even in this increasingly secular age it is hard to miss some Christian festivals. Coming up is Ash Wednesday, which marks the start of Lent in the Christian calendar, its date changes every year, because it is determined by when Easter falls but it is always the day after Pancake day   and this year, it is on Wednesday,1st  March.
Ash Wednesday marks the first day of Lent, a period of 40 days (excluding Sundays) before Easter. During Lent, Christians are remembering the sacrifice made by Jesus 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 fast begins.
So Lent is nearly upon us but can it continue to be relevant? Even if you are not religious Lent offers an opportunity to try and ditch habits that might be having a negative effect on your life. If you manage to give up something you enjoy for 40 days and 40 nights Easter Sunday is all the more joyous. We all know from the 5/2 diet that fasting can be good for you but if you’re not into fasting giving up a favourite food like chocolate, cakes or biscuits might be an option or you could go alcohol fee or stop smoking or vaping.
Positive acts can also form part of the Lent festival where participants try and perform one positive act for another every day between Ash Wednesday and Easter Sunday. These 'positive acts' can include contacting someone who is alone, donating to a worthy cause, clearing up after dinner or letting someone go ahead of you in a queue.