Blog Template Theology of the Body: Lenten Regulations on Fast and Abstinence

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Lenten Regulations on Fast and Abstinence

Ash Wednesday, February 6th, marks the beginning of Lent. The
following fast and abstinence regulations should be observed:

• Abstinence from meat is observed on Ash Wednesday, Good Friday, and
all the Fridays of Lent by all Catholics 14 years of age and older.

• Fasting is observed on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday by all
Catholics who are 18 years of age but not yet 60 years of age. Those
bound by this rule may take only one full meal. Two smaller meals are
permitted as necessary to maintain strength according to one's needs.

• The special Paschal fast and abstinence are observed on Good Friday
and, where possible, on Holy Saturday. On these days, Christians
prepare themselves by these disciplines in anticipation of the
renewal of their baptismal commitment on Easter.

From its earliest days, the Church has urged the baptized and the
catechumens to observe the threefold discipline of fasting,
almsgiving and prayer as a preparation for the celebration of Easter.

During Lent, the Church encourages attendance at daily Mass,
reception of the Sacrament of Reconciliation, self-imposed times of
fasting and personal prayer, and generosity to local, national, and
worldwide programs of sharing.