Skip to comments.MEATLESS FRIDAYS and the Official Church Law (Surprise!)
Posted on 02/28/2006 10:01:19 AM PST by NYer
The National Conference of Catholic
(American) Bishops - NCCB
The vast majority of Catholics today do not know that there is an existing obligation to abstain from meat on all Fridays of the year. While it is true that the Code of Canon Law allows for the substituting of another penitential practice, authorized by the NCCB, one has not been defined. As a consequence the abiding custom of the Church has been set aside. Neither bishops nor priests, with rare exception, inform the faithful of their obligations. Laxity and indifference have become the rule throughout most of the American Church in all matters of faith and morals. The congregations are being led straight into Hell.
Laxity and indifference are particularly notable in relation to human life. As the value of life expands in its deterioration, the bishops continue their practice of public posturing. As noted in the news article following the quotations from the Code of Canon Law, the bishops are now consideringg the possibility of reintroducing that which is, in essence, already the existing law of the Catholic Church.
If the average Catholic were asked if they abstain from meat on Fridays, they would say no. If asked what penitential practice they have substituted in place of not eating meat, they would commonly say none.
Bishops, and the priests in their jurisdictions, have long neglected to teach about the obligatory requirement of either abstaining from meat on all Fridays of the year, or of substituting another observance. They have sinned by omission. It should be noted that even Pope Paul VI's variance in Paenitemini of 17 February, 1966 did not abrogate (terminate) the obligation to at least substitute another form of penitential practice.
The bishops are proposing to possibly have Catholics -- do what they were commonly supposed to be doing anyway (NOTE: Most Catholics no longer believe in condemnatory sin and consequently do not go to obligatory confession when in grave sin. It is probable that today there are more Catholics with non-Catholic beliefs than there are Protestants.) -- express their concerns in regard to abortion and euthanasia by abstinence (not eating the meat of mammals, amphibians, reptiles, and fowl). This might to some seem an improvement to expressing the need for prayer in regard to the multitudes of innocent people daily being slaughtered by Godless people. During the seven month period of time intervening between making the proposal to discuss and actually possibly discussing the proposal their will have been between one-half million and over five million people legally murdered in America. Obviously they do not consider this to be a matter of grave concern.
What else could be said or done?
Jeeze I knew that since I was a kid. I guess the Catholics nowadays don't have to go to Mandatory Religious Instruction once a week like I did as a kid. It was required for all Catholic public school kids.
Not to mention fasting also on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday.....
Precisely what does "meatless Fridays" have to do with the teachings of Christ?
What are the repercussions of eating meat on Fridays?
Brussel sprouts definitely fall in the category of "some other food."
Oh we had mandatory religious instruction (CCD) every week when I was a kid (80s and 90s). Unfortunately it mostly consisted of self-esteem lessons and art projects and precious little actual religious instruction.
I would agree with Father that I would like to hear some mention of Friday penitential practice from the pulpit more than once in a lifetime. Considering that I still hear the "Vatican II changed all that" nonsense from laity on a regular basis.
Unfortunately it mostly consisted of self-esteem lessons and art projects
You have no one to blame but yourself if you didn't find salvation through making macaroni pictures of The Manger. In fact, it probably speaks unfavorably about your macaroni composition skills. I'd suggest more glitter next time.Owl_Eagle
(If what I just wrote makes you sad or angry,
"At the heart of all penance is the call to conversion. Jesus' imperative "Repent, and believe in the gospel" (Mk 1:15) makes explicit this connection between authentic discipleship and penitential discipline. Discipleship, our following of Jesus, embraces discipline, a firm commitment to do whatever is demanded in furthering God's kingdom. Viewed in this way, the virtue of penance is not optional, just as weeding a garden is not optional for a responsible caretaker. The gardener is concerned with a bountiful harvest; the disciple is concerned about greater conformity to the person of Jesus.
If we are serious about embracing the penitential discipline that is rooted in the call to discipleship, then we will identify specific times and places for prayer, penance, and works of charity. Growth in spiritual maturity demands a certain level of specificity, for it shows that we take seriously God's call to discipline and are willing to hold ourselves accountable. In our Catholic tradition we specify certain days and seasons for special works of penance: Fridays, on which we commemorate the death of the Lord, and Lent, our forty days of preparation for the Easter mysteries."
We had to go to the Catholic Schools and were taught ONLY Religious Instruction by the Nuns. The Catholic school kids got the afternoon off on Wednesdays. I went in the 60's and 70's.
It's a form of fasting. (A very wimpy, watered-down, and easy-to-observe form of fasting, but a form of fasting nevertheless.)
Christians have fasted since the earliest days. Christ commends "prayer and fasting" to drive out demons, and himself fasted in the desert for 40 days at the beginning of his public ministry. The Didache (ca. AD 80) commands fasting on Wednesdays and Fridays. Fasting is a form of self-denial and mortification. There are whole books written on fasting and other spiritual disciplines. A simple explanation of "why should I fast" is that, by fasting, you voluntarily give up some created natural good to remind yourself to focus on supernatural goods: God and intimacy with him through grace.
Or do people get used to abstaining this or that during proscribed times decided upon by the Catholic hierarchy and do it as a rule without ever spending time daily in prayer and actually asking God's for a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit, as well as forgiveness for one's sins; daily Bible Study and meditation on the message that they have just read?
I'm not trying to be contentious here, just trying to understand the Catholic faith.
Same here. My whole office does not eat meat on Fridays during lent.
I just don't understand why if I fast at a time specified by another, how that really ever relates to me or my personal communication with God.
I think in every religion there are people who lose themselves in external observances and conforming themselves to various "rules" and then miss the essential inner core of things.
Any Catholic who doesn't take time to pray every day, though -- not just during Lent but all year -- just plain isn't doing it right. Any Catholic catechism or spiritual director worth his salt will make that abundantly clear.