Ash Wednesday in the diocese of Leicester, from the diocesan website and social media pages

“On Ash Wednesday, 10th February, the day on which the Christian season of Lent starts, clergy and other staff from the Diocese of Leicester gave away cake to commuters at Leicester Train Station. The cake was offered as a symbol of God’s generosity with the aim being to challenge the perception of Lent as a time to give things up, and instead try to embody God’s generous giving to the people of Leicester.

Donated by Blueberry Foods, part of Samworth Brothers, the cakes were used by the clergy to encourage people to look at what’s important in our lives and to acknowledge the good things. The cake was wrapped in a printed napkin with [the] words below.

Have Your Cake and Eat it!

This cake is a gift from John, the Bishop of Leicester [sic*], to mark the beginning of Lent. Lent is traditionally a time to give up yummy things, like chocolate, so why is the church giving away cake today of all days? This cake is a symbol of the freedom, purpose and fulfilment that Jesus came to give to you, and like this cake it is a free gift for you to accept. You can eat this cake to celebrate and say thank you to God for all the good things in your life, and particularly for the gift of Jesus. We will be praying for everyone who has received a cake today.”

* The Rt Revd John Holbrook is Bishop of Brixworth, in the diocese of Peterborough. He has been “Acting Bishop of Leicester” since autumn 2015. See Editorial and The Way We Live Now for further comment. ND