So most people consider Lent a time of abstinence and sacrifice. We give things up – most notably dessert – in order to grow closer to Christ. We tried that for a few years, but it just made us sad. For one thing, we tend to show love with still-warm chocolate chip cookies and homemade not-quite-blue-ribbon brownies. For another, we now have as many as four birthdays likely to fall during the Lenten season. No, we try to do Lent a little differently here. Instead of focusing on giving something up, we focus on acts of service. I figure that’s more likely to result in positive post-Lenten behaviors anyway.
Today is one of our Lenten birthdays, and I thought you might like to hear our Lenten Birthday Guidelines.
1. Lenten babies are worth celebrating, too! No birthday shall be skipped or postponed unnecessarily.
2. All birthdays are considered both feast days and national holidays. Therefore, there will be no school and, if the birthday should fall on a Lenten Friday, no abstaining from meat, unless your favorite meal happens to be meatless.
3. The aforementioned guidelines are null and void if the birthday falls on either Ash Wednesday or Good Friday, which days are so solemn that Holy Mother Church requests fasting on these two days alone. In this case, the birthday shall be celebrated with all due pomp on the day immediately following.
4. If you did give up sweets for Lent, it would be uncharitable to decline a piece of birthday cake. Say thank you, eat politely, and offer up your sacrifice for the holy souls in Purgatory.
Do you have Lenten birthdays? How does your family handle them?
And now for a gratuitous baby photo. 🙂