Ash Wednesday 2012

February 21, 2012 by staff 

Ash Wednesday 2012, After Mardi Gras, Ash Wednesday and Lent 2012 observations begin ahead of the Easter holiday. As Fat Tuesday revelers end King Cake madness in New Orleans and Brazil, Catholics, Lutherans, Anglicans, and Episcopalians begin 40-days of fasting.
First of all, it’s called many names. There’s Carnival, Fat Tuesday, and “Party Time.” The celebration, made famous in Louisiana (namely New Orleans), is a time when organizations or “Krewes” get together and build elaborate floats to roll down streets of the Big Easy, according to MardiGrasDay.

As parade-goers line the route, they are entertained with float riders dressed in gaudy costumes, who shower them with beads, doubloons, and other trinkets. There’s dancing, bands, music, and a host of other forms of entertainment for a week leading up to Fat Tuesday or Mardi Gras. In short, it’s a time to “let the good times roll.”

You’ve thrown back Hurricane drinks at Pat O’Briens in the French Quarter, yelled “throw me something mista’, and did the Mardi Gras Mambo. Now, it’s time to join other Christians across the world during the Lenten season, beginning on Ash Wednesday.

For 40-days, Christians renew their faith in Jesus Christ and build on their spiritual growth. There are songs of praise, recitals, church celebrations, prayer, and deep reflection on salvation and atonement. It’s quite fitting that Ash Wednesday and Lent begins the day after Mardi Gras.

While the Bay Area does not formally celebrate Mardi gras like New Orleans and Rio de Janeiro, it does observe Ash Wednesday and the Lenten season. Besides, who needs Carnival in Tampa when there’s Gasparilla?

The Franciscan Center in Tampa is hosting a LENTEN RETREAT: Beginning Lent with Blessing (Ash Wednesday). As it says on this Facebook site, “This retreat day will incorporate the Liturgy of the Word and the Liturgy of the Eucharist to celebrate our ‘Original Blessing’ of being wondrously made in God’s image and likeness (Genesis 1 and Psalm 139).”

The Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Tampa is hosting daily and weekly events in observation of Ash Wednesday. Check out its Lent 2012 calendar for more.

For pre-Easter celebrations in Brandon, Florida: There will be Lent celebrations at Mass, community activities, a Picnic at the Park, and more. Go here for more.

On Feb. 22, at 7:00 p.m., the Palm Lake Christian Church in St. Pete hosts Ash Wednesday worship services. Everyone is welcome. The church is located at 5401 22nd Ave. N, St. Petersburg. Call 321-8356.

These are just a few events taking place around the Tampa Bay area for the 2012 Lent season, beginning on Ash Wednesday. There’s more to life beyond King Cake and Mardi Gras.

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