LENTCAzT 00: Shrove Tuesday

Today is Shrove Tuesday, a day upon which many would seek to be “shriven” before the beginning of Lent.   In other words GO TO CONFESSION!

It is “Fat Tuesday”.  When the discipline of Lent was more serious in the Latin Church, this was the last day you could eat animal fats, etc.

With this audio offering, I am beginning a series of daily podcasts for Lent.  They are intended to give you a small boost every day, a little encouragement in your own use of this holy season.

I am doing this again this year, first and foremost, in thanks to my donors.

LENTCAzT 00: Shrove Tuesday
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About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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19 Responses to LENTCAzT 00: Shrove Tuesday

  1. MBinSTL says:

    Today is, or at least for a brief historical period used to be, the Feast of the Holy Face.

    On April 17, 1958, Pope Pius XII approved the observance of a “Feast of the Holy Face of Jesus” on Shrove Tuesday. This was in response to a request Our Lord made to Maria Pierina, an Italian religious Sister (d. 1945). She was later beatified during the pontificate of Benedict XVI, in 2010.

    The words of Our Lord, as recorded in Bl. Pierina’s spiritual diary:

    “See how I suffer. Nevertheless, I am understood by so few. What gratitude on the part of those who say they love me. I have given My Heart as a sensible object of My great love for man and I give My Face as a sensible object of My Sorrow for the sins of man. I desire that it be honoured by a special feast on Tuesday in Quinquagesima [Shrove Tuesday]. The feast will be preceded by a novena in which the faithful make reparation with Me uniting themselves with my sorrow.”

    Please pardon me if I am so bold as to ask my fellow Christians to reconsider their “Fat Tuesday” plans. Consider making it a day wherein you unite yourself with Jesus’ sorrow. Offer a strong fast (maybe even just water/liquids, no food at all) for our world, so saturated in sin and so indifferent to Jesus and the Redemption He won for us. Offer it for the Church, which is surely in great need as she stands on the edge of intensified persecution.

    It’s too bad that this Feast was effectively dropped when the liturgical calendar was reformed. But like the Memorials of the Precious Blood and the Holy Name of Jesus (restored in recent editions of the Roman Missal), let’s pray and and hope it makes a comeback.

    Bl. Maria Pierina, ora pro nobis!

    O Blessed Face of my kind Savior, by the tender love and piercing sorrow of Our Lady as she beheld you in your cruel Passion, grant us to share in this intense sorrow and love so as to fulfill the holy will of God to the utmost of our ability. Amen.

  2. StWinefride says:

    Thank you, Fr Z, for the LentcaZts.

    Lent is also the time to journey to the desert of our own heart. As St Francis de Sales so wisely said:

    Since the heart is the source of all our actions, as the heart is, so are they.”

    MBinSTL, thank you for mentioning the above Feast. St Thérèse de Lisieux also had a great devotion to the Holy Face. In fact her full name was St Thérèse of the Child Jesus and the Holy Face. In Story of a Soul she says: “Ah, I desired that, like the face of Jesus, my face be truly hidden that no one on earth would know me.”

    Her sister Céline (who was known as Sister Geneviève of the Holy Face) said:

    “Devotion to the Holy Face was, for Thérèse, the crown and complement of her love for the Sacred Humanity of Our Lord. The Blessed Face was the mirror wherein she beheld the Heart and Soul of her Well-Beloved. Just as the picture of a loved one serves to bring the whole person before us, so in the Holy Face of Christ Thérèse beheld the entire Humanity of Jesus. We can say unequivocally that this devotion was the burning inspiration of the Saint’s life. …Her devotion to the Holy Face transcended, or more accurately, embraced, all the other attractions of her spiritual life.”

  3. Hank Igitur says:

    The Mass of the Holy Face was today celebrated in our parish together with veneration of the image of the Holy Face (Vernicle), incensation, Benediction of the congregation and distribution of Holy Face blessed medals and devotional booklets. The Mass propers were obtained from a monastery overseas. In another parish related Masses have also been offered for the Nails, Lance, and Crown of Thorns similarly as a series of Masses of preparation for Lent. A more fitting forerunner to Lent than the excesses of Mardi Gras especially as carried out in some places with Sydney Australia being perhaps the most notorious. Shrove comes from shriven, as used in Shakespeare, meaning imposition of penance and absolution.

  4. Netmilsmom says:

    I’d rather listen to Father Zs podcast than eat Paczki anyway!

  5. Sorry if this has been asked hundreds of times already, but can I download the podcasts to my regular android type phone, not having itunes?

  6. acardnal says:

    my soul waits for you alone,
    why not download iTunes to your android phone? It’s free!

    Father Z, thanks so much for making the extra effort in your busy life to prepare these Lentcazts. I appreciate them. I will be making a donation to you during Lent.

  7. Nevermind! With the help of my daughter we worked it out. Looking forward to the podcasts as part of my Lenten practices.

  8. Vecchio di Londra says:

    Thank you Father Z for keeping us so helpfully attuned to the preparation for Lent in your Septuagesima /Sexagesima /Quinquagesima posts. What a powerful preparatory tool those Propers are!
    I think that pre-Vatican II, many Catholics did not adequately appreciate the potency and relevance of the Epistle and Gospel readings for each Sunday and Feastday. Hence the innovatory impatience to delve into more and other areas of scripture. (And perhaps a contributory reason was that there was a general ignorance of the scriptural riches of the Office, which priests said daily but rarely discussed or recommended to the faithful – why not, I can’t imagine.)
    In recent years I’ve found the Lent volumes of Dom Prosper Guéranger’s ‘The Liturgical Year’ really inspiring, including the thought-provoking introductory chapters on Fasting and the History of Lent etc.
    This rare book (compiled between 1841 and 1875) is blessedly online – I hope Fr Z will allow me to post a link to the first vol on Lent, in case others also find it useful.
    Wishing everyone here a ‘good Lent’.

  9. OrthodoxChick says:

    Beautiful, as always! Thank you, Father!

  10. slainewe says:


    Thank you for the information about the Feast of the Holy Face. This is one of the reasons I appreciate this blog – Catholics sharing that which helps their spiritual lives. Thanks to all who have inspired, challenged, and (especially) corrected me. And (of course) to Father Z, who makes it possible. May the Lord continue to bless all his work. A blessed Lent to all! – Slain Ewe

  11. Sword40 says:

    Thank you, Fr. Z. I so look forward to your podcasts.

  12. Sonshine135 says:

    Thanks Father Z!

  13. happyCatholic says:

    Thanks, Vecchio, for the link. I stumbled upon the section on Lent — very edifying and instructive.
    And thanks, Father Z, for the edifying podcasts.
    A blessed Lent to all.

  14. mary says:

    Praying to make a good confession today. Blessed Mother, Holy Spirit and my Guardian Angel please give me the courage and strength.

  15. Andreas says:

    Many thanks for the splendid Podcast, Father Z., and especially the beautiful music therein. Although there exists a wealth of sacred music for this very holy time of Lent, sadly a great deal of it is rarely heard in the US. For example, might I recommend seeking out the Lenten Missae of J. Michael Haydn. They have been recorded on CD (Hungaroton HCD 32567) and examples can be found on YouTube (for example: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EwsHiRc4iFQ). Wishing you all a Blessed Lent.

  16. APX says:

    I decided I would start Lent by watching For Greater Glory to spur me on. Still the only movie to make me cry.

  17. SophiaGrace says:

    Thank you, Father. Thank you.

  18. Mariana2 says:

    Thanks, Father! What a delightful surprise, Lentcazts!

  19. IntroiboAdAltareDei says:

    Pax in Maria. @Hank Igitur,
    I was curious to know more about which parish / community was apparently offering the Mass of the Holy Lance and Nails (and Crown of Thorns). Such beautiful Masses and devotions, at least in those parts of the world where they were offered in the past. A very blessed Ember Week and holy season of Lent to all!