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Youth at Trinity Church in Towson benefit from a Lenten pancake tradition

Youth Group members gather to work in the kitchen at Trinity Church in Towson on Shrove Tuesday.
Youth Group members gather to work in the kitchen at Trinity Church in Towson on Shrove Tuesday.(Aimee Grable)

We’re two weeks into Lent, observed by many in the community as a time for sacrifice, reflection and helping others. Trinity Church on Allegheny Avenue in Towson kicked off the Lenten season on Feb. 25 by hosting its annual Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper.

The event was a fundraiser for Trinity’s Youth Group, which is preparing for a Youth Pilgrimage in the summer of 2021.

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The Shrove Tuesday pancake tradition takes place the night before Ash Wednesday. Stemming from the custom of using up all of the fattening ingredients in the house and preparing for fasting, it’s sometimes referred to as Fat Tuesday.

Trinity has been hosting its Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper for more than 20 years. It has more recently become a particularly special occasion for members of the church Youth Group, because the youths who are preparing for their pilgrimage cook and serve the pancakes!

“The years leading up to the Youth Pilgrimage are filled with opportunities for the young people to get to know each other better and to find ways to work together to accomplish their goals," said Youth Leader Ellen Torres. "They also learn so many new skills, like how to pitch tents on our camping trip or how to cook enough pancakes to serve 100 dinner guests. Whatever the challenge, the kids figure it out together.”

The 100-plus attendees for this year’s event were members and friends from the parish, preschool and the community at large. One supper guest who is a member of the neighboring Immaculate Conception Church remarked, “We love that you open this up to the community and welcome us here.”

Trinity’s youth ministry is called J2A (Journey to Adulthood). The J2A program has four main goals: to celebrate the transition from youth to adulthood; to train young people in the skills of adulthood; to explore the mystery of faith heritage; and to establish experiences in the strength of community and liturgy.

It currently has nine youth members and two leaders. They’ve been together for two years and are working toward a pilgrimage that will include a service component and exploration of faith. They reportedly have not yet made a final decision on the location of the pilgrimage but have narrowed their selection to three options: Galveston, Colorado Springs or Navajo Nation.

This event added $655 to the Youth Group’s reserves. So far, they’ve raised about $8,000 toward their ambitious goal of $15,000, and they have more ideas for fundraising in the works.

Upcoming: On March 20, they will host an Italian Dinner & Cake Auction; on May 2-3 and on July 4, they will park cars on their lot for the Towson Festival and Fourth of July Parade; and in the fall, they will host a Trivia Game Night, Dinner & Auction.

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For more information about any of these events, or to help pitch in for Pilgrimage fundraising, contact Ellen Torres at etorres@alz.org.

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