- Lenten Calendar: We began the Lenten season on Ash Wednesday and will end on Easter Sunday.
- Food Fasting: Abstaining from meat, except for fish on all Lenten Fridays for Sista Beehive. Sista Laurel already eats this way 365 days a year. (As with our 30 Days of WoW it seems Sista Beehive does a lil’ mo’ sacrificing.) In addition we will observe our LDS practice of Fast Sunday; fasting for two consecutive meals, accompanied by prayer and offerings on the 1st Sunday of each month.
- Personal Fasting: During the entire Lenten season Sista Beehive is abstaining from soda. Sista Laurel is abstaining from TV and online videos.
- Spiritual Food: Our daily scripture study and prayer continue and we have added Daily Reflections for Lent, which consists of scripture passages, a message and a thought for meditation for each day of Lent.
- Almsgiving and Service: Sista Beehive is focusing on serving her family and Sista Laurel is focusing on her visiting teaching service. We will also participate in our LDS practice of Fast Offering; giving to help those in need.
On Ash Wednesday we attended Catholic Mass, we’ve both been to Mass many times, but had never attended an Ash Wednesday service. Both of the services we attended were beautiful and the receiving of the ashes took place. The ashes are from the burning of palm leaves and symbolize human mortality and our need of repentance as we look toward the resurrection. We wore our ashes not with pride, but with humility as we each personally reflected on where we are on our path to the Father and asked for his guidance as we focus on correcting any deviations from the straight and narrow in our lives.
How did you like Mass, were the Catholics nice to the Mormons?
We both felt very welcomed by our Catholic brothers and sisters. We participated in most of the service; standing and kneeling when appropriate and the receiving of the ashes. We did not however take communion. Our first reason is that we had both attended LDS churches on Sunday where we both partook of the sacrament in remembrance of Christ’s atoning sacrifice and renewal of our baptismal covenants. Secondly, while the receiving of the ashes is what Catholics call sacramental and open to Catholics and non-Catholics, communion or Eucharist is considered a sacrament and should for the most part be taken by those who have gone through particular steps in the Catholic faith in preparation to do so.
What were the differences between Catholic Mass and a Mormon church service?
One of the things that we enjoy when attending Mass and some services of other faiths is that there is a portion of the service where you greet your neighbors in the congregation. Another difference was that both of the Masses we attended served communion wine from a communal cup, we are both big fans of the individual cups. Although we know some folks who prefer the Catholic way of filling them with wine instead of water.
Have the Sistas learned anything new since beginning Lent?
Yes, that there’s one Wednesday a year when black people are alright with being ashy!
Do you observe Lent or have you done so in the past? What is your favorite thing about visiting churches of faiths other than your own? Yay or nay to communal sacrament cups?
Peace Be Unto You,
Sista Beehive & Sista Laurel