ARCHDIOCESAN LENTEN REGULATIONS
“For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through him.” (John 3:16-17)
The Church has always helped us fulfill these words of Jesus by prescribing very definite penance for all Catholics, so that we too might have Eternal life. Accordingly, the Pope and the American Bishops have outlined obligatory fast and abstinence as follows:
Ash Wednesday (February 18, 2015) and Good Friday (April 3, 2015) are days of abstinence for all Catholics over the age of 14. On these two days, fast, as well as abstinence, is also obligatory for those from the ages of 18-59. Abstinence means refraining from meat. Fast means one full meal a day, with two smaller meals and nothing between meals (liquids are permitted). No Catholic will lightly excuse himself or herself from this obligation.
All Fridays in Lent are days of abstinence from meat. Here again Catholics will not hold themselves lightly excused, but if there is a serious health problem, this obligation would not apply.
We should strive to make all days of Lent a time of prayer and penance.