FOR EASTER. Lent is a season of prayer and penance set apart
by the Church to prepare us for Easter and to recall Our Lord's
fast in the desert (cf. Matt 4:1-11, Luke 4:1-13). This season
of preparation and sanctification can be fittingly accomplished
through voluntary amendment of life, acts of penance, and works
of charity. Use this helpful guide to consider what you should
do for Lent.
AND ABSTINENCE (self-denial). To foster the spirit of
penance and of reparation for sin, to encourage self-denial, and
to guide us in the footsteps of Jesus, Church law requires the
observance of fast and abstinence (CIC, 1249-1253). Abstinence:
All persons who have already celebrated their 14th birthday,
are bound to abstain from meat on Ash Wednesday and all Fridays
of Lent. Fasting: Everyone, from the celebration of their
18th birthday to their 59th birthday, is bound to fast on Ash
Wednesday and Good Friday.
fasting on other weekdays of Lent, especially on Wednesdays and
Fridays, is highly recommended. Fasting is generally
understood to mean eating one full meal each day. Two other
partial meals, sufficient to maintain strength, may be taken;
but together they should not equal another full meal. Eating
between meals is not permitted, but liquids are allowed. Other
forms of "fasting," especially regarding alcoholic
drink, needless television, video games, internet use, and
social entertainment, is of true spiritual value and is strongly
encouraged. When health or ability to work would be seriously
affected, neither the law of fasting nor the law of abstinence
obliges. If in doubt, one's parish priest or confessor may be
consulted. Airport workers, travelers, and others while on board
ships or airplanes are dispensed from the laws of fast and
abstinence for the duration of their journey (except on Good
Friday). It is desirable that they perform some other pious act
Proclamation of the Date of Easter on Epiphany dates
from a time when calendars were not readily available. It was
necessary to make known the date of Easter in advance, since
many celebrations of the liturgical year depend on its date. The
number of Sundays that follow Epiphany, the date of Ash
Wednesday, and the number of Sundays that follow Pentecost are
all computed in relation to Easter. Although calendars now give
the date of Easter and the other feasts in the liturgical year
for many years in advance, the Epiphany proclamation still has
value. It is a reminder of the centrality of the resurrection of
the Lord in the liturgical year and importance of the great
mysteries of faith which are celebrated each year.
brothers and sisters, the glory of the Lord has shone upon us,
and shall ever be manifest among us, until the day of his
return. Through the rhythms of times and seasons let us
celebrate the mysteries of salvation.
Let us recall the year's culmination, the Easter Triduum of the
Lord: his last supper, his crucifixion, his burial, and his
rising, celebrated between the evening of the 20th of March and
evening of the 23rd of March.
Easter - as on each Sunday - the Holy Church makes present the
great and saving deed by which Christ has for ever conquered sin
and death. From Easter are reckoned all the days we keep holy.
Ash Wednesday, the beginning of Lent, will occur on the 6th of
February. The Ascension of the Lord will be commemorated on
the 4th of May. Pentecost, the joyful conclusion of the season
of Easter, will be celebrated on the 11th of May. And this year
the First Sunday of Advent will be on the 30th of November.
Likewise the pilgrim Church proclaims the passover of Christ in
the feasts of the holy Mother of God, in the feasts of the
Apostles and Saints, and in the commemoration of the faithful
departed. To Jesus Christ, who was ,who is, and who is to come,
Lord of time and history, be endless praise, for ever and ever.
GOOD FRIDAY LENTEN REGULATIONS
Good Friday is a day of abstinence from meat and also a day of fast; that is, only one full meal is allowed. No solid food between meals. Two other meatless meals or snacks, sufficient to maintain strength, may be taken according to
one's needs but together they should not equal another full meal.