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Tammy wrote:

Hi, guys —

My question deals with fasting during Lent.

I don't find it difficult to give up meat for Lent, seeing I don't like it anyway; it's really not a sacrifice. This year I am giving up:

  • Face book
  • T.V.
  • junk food, and
  • movies for 40 days.

I explained this to my grandmother and how giving up these other things is much harder and brings me to a deeper spiritual level.

She almost fainted and thinks that if I eat meat, I would be committing a sin. I tried to explain to her that the whole fasting idea is to make an effort to give something up for God, instead of filling yourself with something you would prefer. I told her giving up meat, for me, really isn't a sacrifice.

  • Am I wrong in my approach toward fasting?
  • Am I wrong to eat meat during Lent even though, for me, it's really not a sacrifice to abstain from eating it?

Thank you,


  { Is it OK for me to eat meat during Lent, if giving it up for Lent is not a real sacrifice for me? }

Mary Ann replied:

Dear Tammy,

We are commanded by the Church to abstain from meat on Ash Wednesday and the Fridays in Lent. The purpose is not necessarily sacrificial, but to remember that the flesh passes away and to honor the passion of the Lord.

The part that may be hard for you is the obedience part, not the meat part, so in giving up meat you will be fulfilling the will of God, who wants "obedience, not sacrifice"!

Mary Ann

Mike replied:

Dear Tammy,

Although I applaud what you are giving up for Lent, your grandmother is correct.

Whether it is easy for us or not, we are obligated to abstain from eating meat during all Friday's of Lent and on Ash Wednesday.

If we knowingly eat meat on any of these days, when we know we shouldn't have, it is a mortal sin and has to be confessed before receiving the Eucharist on Sunday.

Hope this helps,


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