Thursday, June 28, 2007

Friday abstinence

This friday is the Solemnity of Sts. Peter and Paul and we can celebrate their feast day with a good meal. However, all fridays of the year are days of penance. So, catholics from age fourteen to sixty are bound to abstinence of meat or another food or acts of penance according to their Bishops' conference (exceptions: when the friday falls on a first class feast or during an octave) . Both Ash Wednesday and Good Friday are days of required fast and abstinence and abstinence from meat is also obligatory on the fridays of Lent. Children, the elderly, the sick, pregnant and nursing women are not bound to this obligation. It is also good to remind ourselves that any deprivation that would hinder the service of our vocation and of our state in life is not the will of God.

The Church shows its wisdom by prescribing days of fast, abstinence and penance. Meals are important to the domestic church and are essential in living the Liturgical year. By following the days of fast, abstinence and the feasts, we can recall to our memory the events of the lives of Christ, Mary and the Saints. It also helps us curb our passions (starting by the one for food) and realize how blessed we are by Our Lord. More importantly, it unites us to His suffering and the suffering of His Church in a special way. The Feast days are then appreciated and celebrated in a deeper manner.

The domestic church can live friday penance in many small ways:

- cook a vegeterian or fish dish

- make the meal plain and forego desert

- if the children do not like your menu, have them eat a small "offering" portion as a sacrifice before giving them something else

- collect money from each member of the family for the Sunday offering

- make the day a "no complaint day" and reward the family with a surprise treat on Sunday or Saturday

To help vary the menu, here is a recipe of Quiche (from my mother) that is easy to make and nutritious as well. It is crustless, so no pate brise to make!

3 eggs, beaten

1 cup of milk

1 cup of flour

1 teaspoon of salt

1 teaspoon of baking powder

2 cups of broccoli florets (or any other vegetable), cooked

1/4 cup of chopped onion

1 cup of grated cheese

2 tablespoons of butter

Warm up the oven at 350C.

Melt the butter and pour in a baking dish.

Whisk the milk and eggs together in a large bowl. Add the flour, salt and baking powder; whisk until smooth. Add the chopped onion, broccoli and cheese and mix. Pour in the baking dish and cook for about 45 minutes or until cooked. Et voila!

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