Welcome to Lent in the Welland Fosse Benefice.

This is the first of the Lent Blog Posts, from Jane Williams. Thankfully, I’ve got the easy part with a general heading of SETTING A COURSE which I am writing from the perspective of a Churchwarden. And as today is Shrove Tuesday – Pancake Day – that gives me a good starting point.

I once suggested to our then Priest-in-Charge, Geoff Angell, that we liven up the March Family Service by cooking pancakes in church. “It will be a great way to relate Pancake Day to Lent and stuff,” I said. “And it will be fun.” Always game for a laugh, Geoff agreed at once.

Fun? What was I thinking of? Morcott church is not exactly equipped for catering: we don’t even have hot water: just a cold tap and sink in the space under the tower. And what were we going to cook on? The answer turned out to be a borrowed paella kit, consisting of a gas bottle/burner and a huge steel paella pan – great for kids to drop their individual pancakes onto, so each could cook their own – and no-one would be tempted to toss them! But it was definitely NOT non-stick and I had no idea how hot it could get.

I couldn’t have told you a thing about Geoff’s sermon that day, because I was fiddling with the gas ring and trying not to set fire to any small children, so I couldn’t concentrate. But Geoff and half a dozen brave children (the rest rightly worried about third degree burns) made scotch pancakes from scratch and cooked, or should I say burned, them in front of an on-the-edge-of-their-seats congregation.

Afterwards, everyone stayed for melt-in-the-mouth-still-warm-from-the-Aga pancakes safely made by someone else before church. Pancakes may not be very biblical, but I do think those children remembered what they did in church that day, and I certainly did!

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