Home Forums All Things Catholic What are you giving up for Lent?

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    Yes, it’s that time of year again – Lent is just around the corner :shock:

    So, in keeping with Catholic custom most people give something up for Lent or do something extra like community service to help draw themselves closer to God.

    So, I must ask the perennial question: What are you giving up for Lent or what are your Lenten preparation plans?

    Personally, I haven’t really even though about it yet, since for the most part all the talk about Lent I have done has referred to finishing projects related to the website.

    However, in my parish I am in charge of helping coordinate some small faith-sharing groups during Lent. The idea of them is to start talking more about Jesus on a personal level and get an awakening of your faith. It looks to be a good time. <img decoding=” title=”Smile” />

    Once again, what are [b:248s1ccr]you[/b:248s1ccr] doing for Lent?


    Back in the day when I worked as a caterer I used to give up sweets for Lent. We used to make these 6″ cookies by the gross (at times I took inventory of over 100 trays of a dozen cookies each) and we were always free to eat at least one a day.

    This year I do not know what I will give up.


    I have not entirely decided yet, but I think I will spend more time in prayer. I have a lot of big things happening this year and I want God to be in on them. I also realize I need a bit of his help so I don’t go crazy trying to do it all on my own. <img decoding=” title=”Very Happy” />

    I will have to give you and update as to what my final plan is in a few weeks.


    [quote:3lt424fr]Back in the day when I worked as a caterer I used to give up sweets for Lent. We used to make these 6″ cookies by the gross (at times I took inventory of over 100 trays of a dozen cookies each) and we were always free to eat at least one a day.

    This year I do not know what I will give up.[/quote:3lt424fr]

    mmm…makes me think of chocoloate chip cookies <img decoding=” title=”Smile” />

    You know, so many people so the thing where they give up sweets each year, but I have to ask – does that really bring you closer to God? Especially if you do it [i:3lt424fr]every, single[/i:3lt424fr] year? To me the sweets thing is just kind of a cop out (no offense, I’m not trying to criticize you specifically, just people in general).

    A couple years ago the school newspaper at my college interviewed a few people right before Ash Wednesday and asked people what they were giving up for Lent and one girl said that she was giving up tv except for 7th Heaven because she just had to watch it. Another said she was giving up sex because her boyfriend is going to Ireland for the semester.

    Here’s a link to the actual article: http://www.daily.umn.edu/articles/2002/03/04/6376

    Now, I know one of the girls that I mentioned so I know this is not a fake story, but there is seriously something wrong with that picture. I mean, that was certainly not the best portrayal of what Lent is all about. That one girl really shouldn’t be having sex in the first place and the only reason that she is giving it up is because her [i:3lt424fr]boyfriend[/i:3lt424fr] is leaving the country – not her husband, but her boyfriend. <img decoding=” title=”Confused” />

    The other girl, Amber, is just a poor example of commitment. I mean, seriously if you are going to do something for Christ, do it all the way, don’t make any exceptions just to appease your appetites. Are Seventh Heaven and the Olympics worth more than reconciling with God? As far as I am concerned she didn’t give up tv at all!

    I think the whole “giving up something for Lent” thing has been skewed and people take all these shortcuts to skirt around the issue.

    Just my 2 cents.


    For me, sweets and other foods are like “gateway drugs.” I find that the more I control my eating the more I control the other, more important parts of my life. The line is best summed up as “Discipline in particular leads to discipline in general.” It worked as an exercise in overcoming temptation.

    So, as I made cookies by the dozen I could constantly remind myself why I was not going to eat them.


    Well, I suppose that may be the case for you since you were working with all those cookies <img decoding=” title=”Wink” />

    What I am talking about are the people with lukewarm faith – the ones who just do Catholicism because they were raised Catholic and traditionally give up something because they are “supposed to.” Well, I mean, that’s not the only group of people I am talking about, but I’m just not so sure that sweets has the same effect on everyone else as they do you.

    There’s a lot of people that give up sweets, but I don’t know if it actually makes a change in their lives. Perhaps I am encroaching on the thing where God says not to judge lest you be judged.


    Great subject!!!! Do I remember correctly that the word lent actually refers to the spring season???? If that is true—-even in the midst of winter I feel as if I should ‘spring’ open every cupboard door along with the refrig and all the tins on the counter—‘spring them open’ and get rid of the excess ‘turtles’, and mints, and cookies and chips you name it!!! Ironically this excess of foods stemmed from our Christmas celebrations and gift exchanges.

    To the editors; I know this once again refers to food, and so many people use food as their lenten experience (by giving up certain things) I am not sure that this brings many closer to God, but in our culture of obvious overconsumption of everything—cutting back somewhere can’t hurt.

    Sorry for the length here but you friends have inspired my January return to the internet. I was inspired by BerryCat who talks about adding something to her Lenten experience(versus removing some habit). She talks about adding prayer.

    In these past few years I have learned that the length of Lent is exactly the length of time required to launch some activity into a regular habit. (so say the ‘self help’ folks). This is true for any habit good or bad.

    I love Benedict’s line that discipline in particular leads to discipline in general. BECUZ discipline is what I lack . In my case I struggle with knowing whether my failings are for lack of discipline or lack of ability.

    So you all have helped me to figure out that I am not ‘giving up’ anything for Lent

    instead I plan to petition my Heavenly Father for more self discipline . In that way making myself a better vessel to do His will.

    Thanks everyone <img decoding=” title=”Razz” />


    For Lent, I never really “give up” anything just to see if I could or what it was like, rather, I (like it was mentioned previously by several people) give up or add something that would make me a better person- whether the way of acheiving this was direct by giving up a bad habit, or indirectly, by doing or giving up something that would help me to become more diciplined and ready for Christ to better work though me.

    It sounds like you all have the same idea though. <img decoding=” title=”Very Happy” />


    Ok, I thought of something I could give up for Lent and that is all my homework and demands from my jobs. That would ease my stress almost immediately! <img decoding=” title=”Very Happy” />


    It would be nice, but I don’t think it is supposed to be meant that way. <img decoding=” title=”Sad” />

    But it would be possible to give up excessive worrying since God does not want us to worry that much. He wants us to put trust in him too. <img decoding=” title=”Smile” />


    Well, perhaps I can be like that guy in the movie Office Space and just give up paying my bills.


    Those are all very good ideas for things to give up or add to your lifestyle during lent. I have also gone the “easy way out” a few years and given up chocolate or candy, or something like that, and I too found that it didn’t bring me much closer to God. I like Berrycat’s way of thinking and am going to try to two things this lenten season. I want to add more prayer to my daily life and I also want to begin more steadily thinking positive. Lately I find myself feeling very overwhelmed, very easily, and by putting trust in God, like Berrycat suggested, I think I will find things a bit less stressful and hopefully getting a little closer with God in my spiritual life. I always go in spurts through my prayer life, doing it pretty regularly and then stopping abruptly for some reason, and hope to kick it in as a habbit that I won’t soon forget.

    <img decoding=” title=”Smile” />

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