No fasting for San Jose Catholics who celebrate Chinese New Year

Chicago archdiocese: we don't care if it's Valentine's Day, you still have to fast

Dispensation from Abstinence for The First Day of the Lunar New Year, Feb 16, 2018 I am pleased to inform you that Bishop Patrick J. McGrath has granted a dispensation from the Lenten discipline of abstinence from meat to all the faithful of the Diocese of San Jose who will be observing Friday, February 16, the first day of the Asian New Year. I would ask that word of … [Read more...]

Lent is over. Now what?

How to avoid treating Lent as just one big detox program

Once the Easter Triduum is over and Catholics cast off their Lenten penances, what comes next? Was Lent just one big detox program, and is the Easter Season a marathon of steak dinners, chocolate eggs, Netflix binges and bigger bar tabs, while practices of daily Mass and prayer are neglected? Not so, said liturgical experts, who stressed that Catholics can both celebrate … [Read more...]

What’s the point of fasting?

The Lenten practice is a weapon against demons and a powerful way of putting our spiritual life in proper balance

God commanded it, Jesus practiced it, Church Fathers have preached the importance of it – fasting is a powerful and fundamental part of the Christian life. But for many Catholics today, it's more of an afterthought: something we grudgingly do on Good Friday, perhaps on Ash Wednesday if we remember it. Would we fast more, especially during Lent, if we understood how helpful it … [Read more...]

What ever became of Advent fasting and penance?

Msgr. Charles Pope: Contradicting tradition, "Advent has become almost devoid of any real penitential practices. Neither fasting nor abstinence is required; they are not really even mentioned."

The following comes from a December 13 Community in Mission article by Msgr. Charles Pope: I was explaining to a new Catholic recently that the reason the color purple (violet) is used during Advent is that Advent, like Lent, is considered a penitential season. During these times we are to give special attention to our sins and our need for salvation. Traditionally, Advent … [Read more...]

Bishops urge daily Rosary, fast and abstinence on Fridays

The following comes from a Dec. 6 press release issued by the U.S. bishops. The U.S. Catholic bishops have launched a pastoral strategy addressing critical life, marriage and religious liberty concerns. The five-part strategy or call to prayer was approved by the bishops in November and is set to begin after Christmas. The overall focus is to invite Catholics to pray for … [Read more...]