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Discussion related to living as a Catholic in the single state of life. As long as a topic is being discussed from the perspective of a single Catholic then it will be on-topic.

Tobias and Sarah's story is from the Book of Tobit, and his journey is guided by Saint Raphael.
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10/09/2012 new

(Quote) Lynea-297530 said:Woops! "Abstinence" in the fuller sense --- yeah, we are supposed to abstain from meat ...
(Quote) Lynea-297530 said:

Woops! "Abstinence" in the fuller sense --- yeah, we are supposed to abstain from meat on all Fridays, unless there is a dispensation, and then you must have another penance that is at least as challenging. It's not enough to say I am using the dispensation because I enjoy meat so much --- you have to have a real reason. Also, we're supposed to follow this on Ember days as well, and of course, Ash Wednesday. After that, we should ALSO aim to mortify our appetites with not always seasoning our food exactly as we would like it, or always eating what we want because it is available. Our Lord says that these types of penances ALONG with prayer (not just prayer alone) are sometimes the only way to rid certain types of devils. Also, it curbs the fighting of one's own flesh against the spirit of God's grace. This obtains an increase in temperance, which then develops into an increase of meekness, chastity, and even eventually fortitude. How cool is that?

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Using U.S. rules for the Latin rite (apologies in advance if you are Eastern rite; I don't know their discipline, so I can't comment), the quoted post contains a number of errors regarding the penitential practices:

> yeah, we are supposed to abstain from meat on all Fridays, unless there is a dispensation

This is correct only for Fridays during Lent; Fridays outside of Lent are penitential days: some form of penance is required, but each individual is free to choose this on their own; no dispensation is required.

> and then you must have another penance that is at least as challenging

While this would be meritorious, there is no such requirement.

> It's not enough to say I am using the dispensation because I enjoy meat so much --- you have to have a real reason

When a dispensation is required, it is the responsibility of the priest who grants it whether the reason is sufficient; otherwise, the person is free to choose an alternate penance for whatever reason they choose -- or no reason at all.

> we're supposed to follow this on Ember days as well,

The Ember Days no longer exist on the liturgical calendar. Those who choose to follow the older penitential practices on the former Ember Days are certainly free to do so, and doing so with the proper disposition is meritorious, but doing so is not required. Note that those who attend the traditional Mass, now known as the Extraordinary Form, are not bound to the older law or penitential practices.

> and of course, Ash Wednesday

Ash Wednesday and Good Friday are days of mandatory abstinence and fasting; saying "supposed to follow" the practices on these days may leave the reader with the impression it is strongly suggested but not mandatory.

10/09/2012 new

(Quote) Angela-899626 said: My family has always abstained from meat on Fridays. I didn't even realize there were some Catholic...
(Quote) Angela-899626 said: My family has always abstained from meat on Fridays. I didn't even realize there were some Catholics that didn't do this until I was in my early teens.
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My family has also always abstained from meat on all Fridays. Living in the South, I wasn't surrounded by a lot of Catholics so I too didn't realize that all Catholics didn't do this, though I didn't realize until I was in college.

10/09/2012 new

(Quote) Jim-624621 said: Christina, that's right. And abstaining from meat isn't about eating lobster and other expensive s...
(Quote) Jim-624621 said: Christina, that's right. And abstaining from meat isn't about eating lobster and other expensive sea foods either. It's more of a tunafish, catfish or peanut butter and jelly kind of thing. That is penance, not a 2 pound lobster.
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However, just because one eats lobster (or other expensive sea foods) on Friday doesn't mean there is no penance involved. I have always hated fish (I can manage tuna only) so even eating lobster would be a severe penance for me.

10/10/2012 new
I also abstain from eating meat on Fridays and have since I (surprisingly) became aware of the unchanged law five or six years ago. And like many have mentioned, most of the Catholics I am close to either choose not to do it, or don't seem to be aware of it. I usually don't mention it unless asked.
10/10/2012 new
(Quote) Elsa-217341 said: However, just because one eats lobster (or other expensive sea foods) on Friday doesn't mean there i...
(Quote) Elsa-217341 said:



However, just because one eats lobster (or other expensive sea foods) on Friday doesn't mean there is no penance involved. I have always hated fish (I can manage tuna only) so even eating lobster would be a severe penance for me.

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Welcome Elsa! I don't like seafood either so I usually stick with soup, salad, eggs, or some kind of meatless pasta.
10/10/2012 new

I really should be better about doing this. My parents never paid attention to the new rules....and "stayed with the program" of abstaining from meat on Fridays. In fact my Mom used to say it really wasn't a sacrifice to "give up" meat since fish was something she and Dad loved and ate every Friday. I will try to be better at practicing this. Thanks you all....for the reminder!

10/10/2012 new

Since Lent is mentioned....I wanted to share this. My uncle.....realized a direct BENEFIT from "giving up" something during Lent. He had smoked for years (maybe 30) and decided to give up cigarettes for all of Lent. Guess what? He never went back!!

10/10/2012 new
(Quote) Jim-624621 said: Aside from my mother and sister-in-law in Atlanta, no woman has cooked for me in more years than I can remem...
(Quote) Jim-624621 said:

Aside from my mother and sister-in-law in Atlanta, no woman has cooked for me in more years than I can remember. That's okay.... another good Friday meal is spaghetti and plain Ragu.
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Jim, put Italian seasoning in the Ragu. Along with fresh garlic, onions and bell peppers. I like the "Tomato, Onion and Garlic" from Ragu. Even then, I add fresh garlic, onions, peppers, Italian seasoning. And sometimes, ground beef seasoned with lots of Italian seasoning...once the meat has been drained (after being cooked about 90%)

Jim, I can't imagine why it has been a long time since a woman has cooked for you. If you lived in my area, I would cook for you!
10/10/2012 new

A great witness??



10/12/2012 new
It is a pity that people think that abstinence and fasting is only for Lent, when in reality it is something you can do for a variety of things-such as make a special request of God. Being somewhat familiar with the Byzantine tradition, in Byzantine Christianity, the ideal is prescribed, and dispensations freely granted by the bishop or parish priest. In the Latin Church, the minimum is prescribed, and the faithful are encouraged to make additional sacrifices in keeping with their ability. Unfortunately, in today's culture, people have taken to an attitude that is useless to do anymore than the minimum-then deride people who do more. I see nothing wrong in Matt's response in the original post or anything disrespectful about it. Kudos.
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