FreerangeFriday: Shrove Tuesday ONLINE

by Lilly Lewin

by Lilly Lewin,

Since many of us are not meeting in person this year, how do we do Shrove Tuesday online? At thinplaceNASHVILLE, we are having pancakes together on the Sunday before Shrove Tuesday and then again on the day with our Tuesday night group. We are each going to make our own pancakes prior to gathering and eat dinner together online via Zoom. You could do this as a breakfast/brunch gathering too. Just let people know ahead of time what your plans are. And if you don’t have a church that is doing this, get some friends or family members together via Zoom and host your own Shrove Tuesday Pancake Gathering. And since I’m a freerange Christian, I say that you have freedom do have your pancake gathering any time between now and the first week of Lent which begins this year on February 17th.

Once upon a time, Shrove Tuesday was the day to clean out all the sugar, fat, etc from the pantry and get ready for the Lenten fast to begin on Ash Wednesday. Thus, pancakes were made from some of those ingredients.

Since pancakes aren’t very good cold, I would eat first and then do the prayer practice together.

pancake ingredients 1

get your ingredients together

If you are leading the online worship gathering this year, gather various pancake making ingredients and have them on a table so they can be seen by other participants. If you are doing this gathering at home or in a small group, have a centerpiece created with various pancake making ingredients and supplies. This creates the visual you can use to pray with together.

. Use this imaginative prayer before you eat.

Imagine the pancakes cooking on the griddle. Perfect pancakes, light and airy, browned just right.
Picture them stacked on a plate, rich butter on the top. Perhaps with blueberries or strawberries added in, or on the top. Perhaps filled with chocolate chips and topped with whipped cream! The butter melts. The syrup flows. Your pancakes might be plain but they are still a gift from Jesus. Imagine these abundant pancakes as a gift from Jesus to YOU!

Allow this image to represent the Richness and Abundance of God’s Love for you. The Richness and Abundance of Jesus’s Love for each of us today and always! Let’s taste and receive this Love today and each day between now and Easter. And all God’s People said, AMEN!

The Richness and Abundance of Jesus’s Love for us today and always! Let’s taste and receive this Love today and each day between now and Easter. AMEN

AFTER EATING YOUR PANCAKES begin the devotion/worship time. To transition from the food to the worship you might light a candle, saying IN THE NAME OF THE FATHER AND THE SON AND THE HOLY SPIRIT. AMEN.

ASK: What are the ingredients you need as you prepare for your journey with Jesus this Lent? Ask Jesus to show you tonight as you look at the ingredients….



At thinplaceNASHVILLE, we talk about using the forty days of Lent to fall more in love with Jesus.

What ingredients do you need to add to your life in order to fall more in love with Jesus between now and Easter?

Have participants consider all the different ingredients that go into pancakes… flour, salt, milk, eggs, baking powder, oil or butter…

Flour… add more faith, trust, prayer, reading, creativity, walks with Jesus, time alone, silence, what else?

What new ingredients does Jesus want to add? or do you need to subtract an ingredient or use less of something?

Less worry, less news, less social media for examples.

Do you need to change out artificial for real ingredients? Or be more organic?

You can have participants have a piece of paper to write down the ingredients they need to add or subtract. They could even have a recipe card to do this on that you design and send out, or a coloring sheet with ingredients drawn on it to color in.

When we gather in-person or online, the key is participation. Let people know what they need to have ready and at thinplace we call these “props to pray with”… For this gathering people will make their pancakes ahead of time. And then have several items to pray with. Small dish of Sugar, DRYER LINT, A large spoon.

Have participants pick up their spoon and hold it. How is God mixing you together this Lent? What is being stirred up in you as you prepare for Lent, as you prepare to journey with Jesus this year between now and Easter. What new recipe is Jesus inviting you to create with him? How can you fall more in love with Jesus during Lent this year? Ask Jesus to show you.

Give people time to pray between each question. Pause. Don’t rush. Let the Holy Spirit teach.

The word SHROVE comes from SHRIVE… to be forgiven for one’s sins. Let’s read/listen to JOEL 2:12-17

Have 3 people read the passage. We usually read it from three different versions including the Message and the NIV. (lectio divina)

SHARING: Give people the opportunity to share if they’d like to share. What did you notice? What word or phrase did God highlight for you? You can also invite people to share about their ingredients… what they’d like to add or subtract this Lenten season.

Take out your DRYER LINT (CONFESSION)…. Sin acts like lint, clogs up the system and causes problems between us and God. We need to clean our dryer lint trap before drying a load of clothes. We need to get rid of the LINT, the junk that is clogging up our lives. HOLD YOUR DRYER LINT…. Consider all the LINT that is clogging up your life right now. All the things clogging up your life and getting between you and Jesus? What is the LINT that needs removing as you begin the season of LENT?  (allow people time to consider this and pray). Ask Jesus to show you and talk to him about these things.

Jesus, thank you for cleaning up the LINT of sin in our lives. Thank you for forgiving us and making us clean each day and every time we ask. AMEN.


HOLD YOUR SPOON AGAIN. What ways can you stir up good things in the lives of those around you? How can you bring the sweetness of God’s love to your friends, neighbors, coworkers? How can we be salt and light to those around us even in a pandemic? Make a plan. Consider what flavors we want to bring into our World this week and in the weeks ahead. TASTE THE SUGAR. Receive the Richness and Abundance of Jesus’s Love for you today and always! Let’s taste and receive this Love today and each day between now and Easter. And all God’s People said, AMEN!



If you are looking for a way to pray through Lent, check out our downloadable prayer kit: 40 Days toward Love. You can use it on your own, or with your family, or buy it and send the PDF to your whole church. 

40Days toward Love

40Days toward Love

You can find other resources for Lent and Easter too at and The Community of Iona has a downloadable Shrove Tuesday Service… that uses ingredients too.

©lillylewin and

Available now in our store! Check out our New Lenten Bundle which includes the downloads of A Journey Into Wholeness book, Lent/Easter Prayer Cards, and 40 Daily Ideas Guide for Lent!

New lenten bundle with price 1

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1 comment

Lisa DeRosa February 16, 2021 - 1:50 pm

Lilly, thank you for this post! We used this practice last night with our housemates and everyone really enjoyed it!

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