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All Issues > Volume 14, Issue 2


<< Tuesday, February 24, 1998 >>
 
James 4:1-10
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Psalm 55 Mark 9:30-37
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MARDI GRAS OR LENT?

 
"Where do the conflicts and disputes among you originate? Is it not your inner cravings that make war within your members?" —James 4:1
 

Tomorrow, we observe Ash Wednesday and begin the season of Lent. Today, some people observe the custom called Mardi Gras. This is a French expression, meaning "Fat Tuesday." On this day before Lent, some people make provision for the desires of the flesh (see Rm 13:14) and indulge these desires (see 1 Pt 2:11). The results of Mardi Gras as practiced in our times are that people live in darkness (Rm 13:12) and wage war against their own souls (1 Pt 2:11). This inner war due to indulging our inner cravings eventually results in an exterior war marked by conflicts, disputes, murder, envy, quarreling, and fighting (Jas 4:1-2).

Today, we can begin a civil war or prepare to begin Lent. We can submit to God, resist the devil, and cause him to flee (Jas 4:7), or we can submit to our worldly desires, resist God, and be put to flight. We can cleanse our hands and hearts (Jas 4:8) or defile ourselves. We can humbly cry in repentance for our sins or laugh at sin, guilt, and Confession (see Jas 4:9). We can humble ourselves and be exalted, or we can exalt ourselves and be humbled (Jas 4:10). Lent and Mardi Gras don't fit together. Which one do you want?

 
Prayer: Father, by Your grace I decide to crucify my "flesh with its passions and desires" (Gal 5:24).
Promise: "If anyone wishes to rank first, he must remain the last one of all and the servant of all." —Mk 9:35
Praise: Anna prepares for Lent by going to Confession.
 
 
 
Nihil obstat: Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, July 26, 1997
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July 29, 1997
 
The Nihil obstat and Imprimatur are a declaration that a book or pamphlet is considered to be free from doctrinal or moral error. It is not implied that those who have granted the Nihil obstat and Imprimatur agree with the contents, opinions, or statements expressed.
Volume 14, Issue 2
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