Fasting is more than diet – Cardinal

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Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle celebrates Ash Wednesday Mass at the Archdiocese of Manila chapel. (Noli Yamsuan/RCAM)


 MANILA, Feb. 13, 2013—Losing some extra padding through “fasting” may please some people, but if that’s all they get, what a waste.

Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle said that fasting, an obligatory practice for Catholics during Lent is not a matter of diet but same with abstinence are virtuous acts, which require that people grow in charity.

“Other people are happy during fasting because they want to reduce (weight). It is not like that,” Tagle said. “This is not to go on a diet and have old clothes fit you.”

In his homily during a Mass to celebrate Ash Wednesday at the Archdiocese of Manila’s chapel, the cardinal said that fasting during Lent, if used for the wrong intention, is useless.

“Fasting is also not to save money since you will only have one meal for the day. It is to be done in purity of intention, purity of heart,” he said.

According to him, fasting and abstinence should be aimed to endure sacrifices in order to root out the sinful pleasures.

“This season of faith is becoming a desert. But while it is uncomfortable in the desert, a desert experience brings out the essentials,” Tagle added.

“Just like these 40 days of desert experience, may we be able to join Jesus in His passion and also Resurrection,” he said.

In the Catholic Church, Ash Wednesday marks the start of Lenten season or the 40-day liturgical period of prayer, penance and reflection. (Roy Lagarde/CBCPNews)


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