Wednesday, 23 March 2011

Saint Patrick´s day

As some of you may remember, I was born in Ireland.

On the 17th of March the Irish people celebrate St. Patrick´s Day. St. Patrick is the patron saint of Ireland.

A symbol of Ireland is the Leprechaun. This is a type of Irish fairy who looks like an old man and is very badly behaved. He likes to play tricks on people. The legends say that they hide a pot of gold at the end of a rainbow. If they are caught by a person, the leprechaun can give the person 3 wishes.

Another symbol of Ireland is the shamrock. This a
St. Patrick used it to explain the holy trinity to the people of Ireland when he brought Christianity to the country.

Saint Patrick's Day has come to be associated with everything Irish: anything green and gold, shamrocks and luck. Most importantly, to those who celebrate its intended meaning, St. Patrick's Day is a traditional day for spiritual renewal and offering prayers for missionaries worldwide.

Do you know what a patron saint is? Can you tell me about the special saints to your region or town or country? Or maybe you have a saint that is special to your family. Some people in England wear a bracelet with a symbol of their saint to keep them safe.

Wednesday, 9 March 2011

Shrove Tuesday

Yesterday, Tuesday March 8th, was Shrove Tuesday in England. It is more commonly known as pancake day!

Pancake Day (Shrove Tuesday) is the last day before the period which Christians call Lent. It is traditional on this day to eat pancakes. It is the day before Ash Wednesday.

Lent is a time of abstinence, of giving things up. So Shrove Tuesday is the chance to use up the foods that aren't allowed in Lent. Pancakes are eaten on this day because they contain fat, butter and eggs which used to be forbidden during Lent.

A pancake is a thin, flat cake, made of batter and fried in a pan. They can be thin like a crepe or thicker ones called Scotch pancakes.
Sugar is sprinkled over the top and a dash of fresh lemon juice added. The pancake is then rolled. Some people add golden syrup, chocolate spread or jam.

Do you do anything special like this? Do you like pancakes? Can you tell me what Lent is?
In England it is usual for people to give something up for Lent, for example this year my friend has given up chocolate. This means she won't eat chocolate until Easter Sunday. Do you give anything up for Lent?