Fasting help from our Muslim brothers and sisters

I'll be blunt (and I know Lino Rulli agrees with me): The Church is too light on us when it comes to Good Friday fasting.

One meal, and two small meals that do not equal a full meal? Call me crazy, but Jesus died on the cross on Good Friday, and Mother Church does not ask us to sacrifice a bit more?

Before I go any further, if anyone thinks I'm tooting my own horn and bragging about my holiness, they could be right. But I have a prayer life that is sorely in need of work and Good Friday is the only day I'm currently fast on. Lest anyone think I'm some awesome Christian, they can rest assured that I am a broken, flawed man, a worthless piece of shit sinner.


Last year I tried to completely fast on Good Friday, and broke down around 5 p.m., inhaling cheese fries from the Mall. This year, I was going to prepare a little better. When it comes to fasting, Muslims are the best at it, in my opinion. During Ramadhan, Muslims refrain from eating, drinking and sex from dawn until the sun goes down. That's a solid example of disciplined faith, something Christians could really learn from.

So I put it out there on Twitter to Peter, who goes by the Twitter handle Muslimerican, and he was kind enough to retweet my question.

@Muslimerican I'm going to attempt to fast completely from sunrise to sunset. Any advice?Mon Apr 18 22:34:27 via Echofon

I got several responses that have been really helpful so far.

@16bitcatholic 1. It's not as bad as you think 2. Eat a breakfast with a lot of fats, and drink lots of water beforehand :)Mon Apr 18 22:39:59 via web

@16bitcatholic Eat a good breakfast bf dawn. Drink as much H20 as u can bf sunrise & after sunset. Not eating is easier than not drinkingMon Apr 18 22:37:58 via TweetDeck

@16bitcatholic @Muslimerican don't eat something very salty , drink lots of water , try to eat beans ( very helpful )Mon Apr 18 22:38:56 via web

My favorite one was this though.

@16bitcatholic @Muslimerican Beforehand, solemnly make your intention before God. Continue your normal routine. Replace food w/ scripture.Mon Apr 18 22:48:25 via Twitter for BlackBerry®

See last year, I didn't pray about it. I just tried to wing it, no prep and no prayer. But last night as I was driving home from Allicia's, I told God what I wanted to do tomorrow. I told him that if Jesus was on the cross, I wanted to be able to sacrifice for just one day to show him how much I love him and what he did for me on Good Friday.

Will I succeed? I certainly followed their advice. I didn't eat anything salty. I didn't have any beans on hand, but I drank nearly three tall glasses of water (about 36 ounces), two packets of oatmeal (with water, not milk) and a banana.

Despite a really good breakfast (at 6:20 a.m., right before the sun poked out), I think it's the prayer, as Askia said, that's going to get me through the day more than potassium.


Dan Sealana April 22, 2011 at 9:37 AM  

Vatican II teaches "the Church also has a high regard for the Muslims." The Church is clear that there are major differences, but we can definitely admire the example of Muslims when it comes to things like fasting and prayer devotion.

Anonymous April 23, 2011 at 6:09 AM  

The orthodox fast properly as well also, they in fact have the best discipline when it comes to proper fasting.

I know very well a few Catholics who every year perform the traditional paschal fast of not eating between Maundy Thursday mass and the end of the easter vigil.

Still, we have to remember that most of the religions that have been great in fasting and asceticism have also been heretical-The manicheans, the donatists, the montanists they were all really were all great ascetics- the montanists for example did 2 weeks without eating full stop (only drinking water) once a year.

We fast for many reasons but ultimately it is to draw closer to the suffering Christ. We must keep our intentions pure, performing the acts out of love for God and realising that any Spiritual increase from the fast will be as a result of His gratuitous grace. Our true religion is ultimately about giving everything over to God for Him to heal, for Him to renew. He is able to do this and I AM NOT.

Rendfest April 30, 2011 at 9:42 AM  

Wishing you luck.

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