1917 Fast Observance Today*: Fasting, maximum food intake is one meal, along with two small meal (that together don’t equate to another full meal). No snacking in between and no alcohol consumption today. No high-caloric “drinks” like milkshakes, smoothies, etc.
*Applicable to healthy adults between ages of 21-60 (some exemptions exist – see 1917 Fast: The Specifics)
1917 Abstinence Observance Today**: Partial abstinence, meaning that meat can be eaten only at the principal meal on these days
**Applicable to all age 7 and over.
Potential Prayer(s): The Liturgy of the Hours and the Sorrowful Mysteries Rosary
Potential Fast Intention: For those who persecute Jesus and his followers.
Potential Give: Spend time with Jesus quietly today, meditating on Him suffering all alone in the Garden of Gethsemane.
Fasting Inspiration of the Day: Matthew 26:38-41 NABRE
From The Agony in the Garden
Then he said to them, “My soul is sorrowful even to death.* Remain here and keep watch with me.” 39u He advanced a little and fell prostrate in prayer, saying, “My Father,* if it is possible, let this cup pass from me; yet, not as I will, but as you will.” 40When he returned to his disciples he found them asleep. He said to Peter, “So you could not keep watch with me for one hour? 41Watch and pray that you may not undergo the test.* The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”
Comments of the Day: Today is the day of the Last Supper, where Jesus institutes the Sacrament of the Eucharist. The true food of our lives; the food that sustained Saint Catherine of Sienna for seven years alone, the food that sustains all others.
The Last Supper institutes the reality of transubstantiation, of Jesus turning the bread and wine into literally His Body and Blood, right in front of His Apostles, and the in turn, institute their role as ministerial priests.
Catholics belief in transubstantiation separates us from numerous other Christian sects and offshoots; the belief is also well-grounded in Scripture, Tradition and 1st-2nd century A.D. historical accounts.
There is so much that happens on Holy Thursday
- The Institution of the Eucharist
- The institution of the ministerial priesthood
- The washing of the feet
- The betrayal of Jesus
- The agony in the Garden of Gethsemane
Jesus last moments before betrayal revolve around food and giving thanks to God, spending time with friends, serving others, even until His most trying hours, even until His very last moments. We must remember these events, sear them into our conscience and daily lives and meditate on them whenever our times get trying or we are looking for something to do.