Category Archives: Anglican

March 25: Waffle Day

wafflesAt first glance, Waffle Day may seem to be just another silly food holiday, but this March 25 celebration actually has some funny roots. The holiday originated in Sweden, due to a strong similarity in pronunciation between the words Vårfrudagen (Our Lady’s Day) and Våffeldagen (Waffle Day).

Giovanni Battista Salvi Il Sassoferrato, Jungfrun i bön 1640-1650For centuries, much of western Christianity has celebrated March 25* (nine months before Christmas) as the Feast of the Annunciation (in other words, the announcement from the angel Gabriel to Mary that she was to have a child, the son of God). It’s often referred to as Lady Day, Our Lady’s Day, or, in Sweden, Vårfrudagen.

Since Our Lady’s Day and Waffle Day sound so similar in Swedish, people took to celebrating Our Lady’s Day with waffles! In addition, March 25 is very close to the vernal equinox,  so the day has also become a bit of a de facto celebration of spring.

SPRING!It seems that other countries (especially the U.S.) heard the words “Waffle Day” and immediately responded “Ooh! I like waffles!” Sounds good to me!

You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you are to call him Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over Jacob’s descendants forever; his kingdom will never end.”

Luke 1:31-33

*Correction: It is always celebrated on March 25, unless that happens to be a Sunday and unless that happens to fall during Holy Week. In 2013, March 25 is the Monday of Holy Week (Easter is this coming Sunday), so most groups move the Feast of Annunciation all the way to April 8, the day after Divine Mercy Sunday. Whether or not that moves Waffle Day is up for debate, but the general consensus is no.

Two more things:
1) In 2013, March 25 is also the first day of Passover.
2) March 25 is also Tolkien Reading Day, and the day that Sauron fell. I blogged last year about this holiday for one of my favorite authors here.

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April 3: St. Mary of Egypt

“Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature: sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry. . .   Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.”

Colossians 3:5&12

St. Mary of Egypt lived in the fourth century. According to her biographers, she became a prostitute at a young age, a job which she greatly enjoyed. Around age 30, she went on a pilgrimage to Jerusalem with the sole purpose of finding more clients there and along the journey.

In Jerusalem she was suddenly confronted by the realization of her sinfulness, when a force stopped her from entering the Church of the Holy Sepulchre for the feast of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross. She prayed for forgiveness and crossed the Jordan, becoming a hermit. After many years of solitude, she met a monk named St. Zosimus of Palestine. After sharing stories, he left, and returned the next year to share Communion with her. She died the next day, and Zosimus told her story to the other monks at the monastery.

Many traditions celebrate her life on different days. April 3 is her feast day in the Catholic church.

January 28: Thomas Aquinas

Thomas Aquinas was a thirteenth century Italian nobleman who defied his family and become a Dominican priest. He is best known for his in depth theological writings, particularly Summa Theologica. 

In today’s world, it seems to me that feelings often supersede logic. I believe we would do well to practice thoughtfulness on the feast day of one of the church’s great thinkers.

 

“A simple man believes anything, 
   but a prudent man gives thought to his steps.”

Proverbs 14:15

January 18*: Week of Prayer For Christian Unity

January 18 kicks of the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. This great week is just what its name implies — a time of designated prayer “for the unity of the Church as Christ wills it, and in accordance with the means he wills” according to Abbé Paul Couturier of Lyons, France. Many groups participate including most

In the northern hemisphere it is celebrated from January 18, the Feast of the Confession of St. Peter, to January 25, the Feast of the Conversion of St. Paul. In the southern hemisphere, many churches celebrate this week during Pentecost.

The theme for 2012 is “We will all be changed by the victory of our Lord Jesus Christ” from 1 Corinthians 15:51-58.

Please take a moment to pray for the unity of the believers, remembering Jesus’ words in John 17:20-23:

“My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one: I in them and you in me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.”

January 13: St. Hilary of Poitiers

In the fourth century AD, a man called Hilary lived in Poitiers, in modern day France. As a young man, he was a highly educated pagan, but later he studied the Bible and became a Christian. His feast day is now celebrated on January 13.

Much of his life was spent writing and debating theological points, particularly Arianism – the belief that Jesus is a created being, less than the father. In fact he is known as the Hammer of the Arians.

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

John 3:16