Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of the season of Lent. Through its twofold theme of repentance and baptism, the season of Lent disposes both the catechumens and the faithful to celebrate the paschal mystery. Lent is also a time for fasting and abstinence. Below are the regulations for each of these practices.
Ash Wednesday, February 17, 2021 and Good Friday April 2, 2021 are days of fast and abstinence. Fridays of Lent are also days of abstinence.
Fasting is to be observed by all 18 years of age and older, who have not yet celebrated their 59th birthday. On a fast day, one full meal is allowed. Two other meals, sufficient to maintain strength, may be taken according to each one’s needs, but together they should not equal another full meal. Eating between meals is not permitted, but liquids, including milk and juices, are allowed.
Abstinence is observed by all 14 years of age and older. On days of abstinence, no meat is allowed. Note that when health or ability to work would be seriously affected, the law does not oblige.