Blog Template Theology of the Body: The Catholic Fast

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

The Catholic Fast

... I have just about had it. I am going to check into a beautiful retreat center for one night at the end of this week, and do that dreaded thing that so many ardent Christians talk a lot about but practice seldom (including me!)... I am going to fast.

Having said that, I am going to do a Catholic fast. Protestants and Catholics fast very differently. Ever prone to that nuisance, Gnosticism, we Prots are given to the denial of the body in the most rigorous forms in order to achieve spiritual transcendance. Ugggh. I once went for 21 days on water and vegetable broth with a group of Charismatics in such a spirit. Once I started visiting my RC friends, I discovered (oh relief!) that the body is part and parcel of our redemption, CF The Incarnation rightly understood. So Catholics fast differently. They are respectful of hunger pains! They are moderate! They care! ... so on a Catholic fast day, you get to have lovely tea and crackers and perhaps a salad and some soup. AND it's still a proper fast, with all attendant benefits in tow.

So I am going to fast like a Catholic.

(CF the amazement that this post provoked from our friends at Holy Whapping)