This is a very eventful week in the USA. Today, Monday, is President Abraham Lincoln’s birthday. Let’s celebrate the Republican president who kept our Union together and who freed the slaves from bondage.
Happy Birthday, President Lincoln!
Tomorrow is Mardi Gras:
Mardi Gras, also called Shrove Tuesday, or Fat Tuesday, in English, refers to events of the Carnival celebrations, beginning on or after the Christian feasts of the Epiphany (Three Kings Day) and culminating on the day before Ash Wednesday. Mardi Gras isFrench for “Fat Tuesday”, reflecting the practice of the last night of eating richer, fatty foods before the ritual fasting of the Lenten season.
As indicated above, the day after tomorrow is Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent. But wait! It’s also St. Valentine’s Day:
Each year on February 14th, many people exchange cards, candy, gifts or flowers with their special “valentine.” The day of romance we call Valentine’s Day is named for a Christian martyr and dates back to the 5th century, but has origins in the Roman holiday Lupercalia.
Happy Valentine’s Day!!
(and please don’t forget your sweetie.)
Can Catholics hope for a dispensation from fasting so they can enjoy Valentine’s Day? Seems they’re out of luck, for the most part. Catholic leaders in Birmingham, Chicago, New York, and Detroit have already said no, but the ever-hopeful can always check with their local bishop.
Finally, Friday is Chinese New Year:
Chinese New Year is the most important holiday in China. In 2018, Chinese New Year begins on February 16 and marks the beginning of the Year of the Dog. Tied to the Chinese lunar calendar, the holiday was traditionally a time to honor household and heavenly deities as well as ancestors. It was also a time to bring family together for feasting.
Chinese Catholics will also face a conundrum this year: Feast or fast?
There’s something for everyone this week, and we can also count on the carnival clowns in Washington DC to keep us entertained, as well.