Pancake Day will soon be upon us, it’s Tuesday 13th February this year, but what is it all about and why do we celebrate it?
Most people, if they’ve ever had an inkling to find out, will know it’s got something to do with the bible, but whilst all our kids care about is what topping they’re going to put on their pancake and us adults get to pig out (any excuse), do we really know anything about it at all?
It’s actually rather poignant.
Why on a Tuesday?
Pancake Day, or Shrove Tuesday as it’s traditionally known, (shrove comes from the old word of shrive which means to confess) is a Christian celebration to mark the day before Lent, Ash Wednesday. Lent refers to the period in the bible when Jesus spent 40 days and 40 nights alone in the desert, fasting and praying so as to not be tempted by the devil, in preparation for his work ahead.
After the 40 days and 40 nights (six and a half weeks) was the execution then subsequent resurrection of Christ, which is why we celebrate Easter.
So on this day before Lent, Christians would traditionally empty out their cupboards to rid them of all the fatty and rich foods in preparation for the remembrance of the 40 days and 40 nights, by fasting. Eggs were the important ingredient that had to be used up as anything fatty could not be eaten again (except on Sundays) until Easter. Pancakes evolved from this. Lent was also a time to spring clean their lives and homes and for confessing their sins before the fasting period began.
Whilst most Christians of today would not fast, it is a time for giving up luxuries and practicing self discipline.
40 is a special number in the bible as it is significant for many events: The rain lasted for 40 days in the mighty flood, Moses stayed on Mount Sanai for 40 days, Jonah gave the people of Nenevah 40 days to repent and of course, Jesus fasted for 40 days and nights.
The last week of lent begins with Palm Sunday, when Jesus entered Jerusalem and people lay palms at his feet, this is the week before Easter Sunday. It ends on Holy Saturday, the day before Easter Sunday, when Jesus was resurrected.
Sundays are not counted in the 40 days of Lent as they were a celebration day anyway in the Christian church because of the resurrection.
Are you ready for Pancake Day? Do you have all the necessary ingredients to make the basic pancake?
Read this post below which gives you some great ideas for Pancakes that you can whip up for your family next week!!
Happy Pancake Day!