Phone: 216-696-6525

Toll Free: 1-800-869-6525

Address: 1404 East 9th Street, Cleveland, OH 44114

Why Catholic? Meet Bishop Edward C. Malesic

  Share this Page

Back to news list

Friday after Ash Wednesday – Feb. 19, 2021

Bishop’s Reflections

February 19, 2021

For every day during Lent, Bishop Edward Malesic writes a scripture reflection for the faithful. Follow the bishop on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Click HERE for the readings.

Friday after Ash Wednesday – Feb. 19, 2021

There are only two days that most Catholics are required to fast: Ash Wednesday and Good Friday. But we are not confined by the minimum requirements. We can fast on more than just two days a year.

So, why fast at all?

Fasting reminds us that we hunger for something more. We hunger for justice for the poor. We hunger for the presence of God. We hunger for salvation. When our stomachs grumble, let it remind ourselves that we are empty and needy. Only God can fulfill our greatest expectations. Our fast, then, is a sign of our longing for God.

Fasting also reminds us that “not by bread alone do we live.” There is something more essential than material things. We live by every Word that comes from the mouth of God.

Fasting allows us to give up some of our excesses so that something is left for those more in need than we are. What we don’t use, or what we save by our fasting, we can give away. This is how food pantries are filled up.

But ultimately, our fast from food is meant to help us fast from sin. If all we do is give up food for the sake of dietary religious norms, without allowing God to change our hearts, then our fast is empty and meaningless.

Listen again to the words of the prophet Isaiah

“This, rather, is the fasting that I wish:
releasing those bound unjustly,
untying the thongs of the yoke;
Setting free the oppressed,
breaking every yoke;
Sharing your bread with the hungry,
sheltering the oppressed and the homeless;
Clothing the naked when you see them,
and not turning your back on your own.”

If we don’t do what the prophet urges, doing good and avoiding evil, then what good will this Lent be for us?

Subscribe! Sign up to receive news & updates.

Share This


Photo Gallery

1 of 22