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Thursday, March 7, 2013

Why Catholics eat seafood on Fridays?

This is a great question remains unanswered at least to me. Considering the cost of seafood is more expensive than say chicken. Shouldn't be the spirit of abstinence necessitate that any sort of luxury food or thing be given up during Lenten season?

Saint Thomas Aquinas gives two theological reasons for the prohibition against meat in Lent. 

First, Christ offered his flesh for our us on the wood of the cross. Since Christ gave us his flesh, we also give up flesh meat.

Saint Thomas' second reason for "no meat" requires a bit more explanation. Here is Thomas in his own words:

'Such are the flesh of animals that take their rest on the earth, and of those that breathe the air and their products, such as milk from those that walk on the earth, and eggs from birds. For, since such like animals are more like man in body, they afford greater pleasure as food, and greater nourishment to the human body, so that from their consumption there results a greater surplus available for seminal matter, which when abundant becomes a great incentive to lust. Hence the Church has bidden those who fast to abstain especially from these foods. 

Fasting was instituted by the Church in order to bridle the concupiscences of the flesh, which regard pleasures of touch in connection with food and sex. Wherefore the Church forbade those who fast to partake of those foods which both afford most pleasure to the palate, and besides are a very great incentive to lust.'

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