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  #1  
Old Jan 28, '08, 6:23 pm
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Fizendell Fizendell is offline
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Question Lent and pregnancy

Hello all!

I'm new to this side of the boards and very happy to find other Catholic moms!

I returned to the church just three short years ago, so truly observing lent is still fairly new to me.

Last year, I was diligent about observing fasting and abstinence during lent and found tremendous blessings from doing so. In fact, one Friday, I discovered God wanted me to head in a new direction - without knowing what it was!

Now I know! I'm pregnant! Due in July. I have one other son.... who is 17 and will graduate high school this year! While that's currently my favorite part of the story, we are ultimately thrilled to be experiencing this blessing and opportunity to "begin again" for the first time!

Alas, with Lent in sight, I understand that fasting (and abstinence??) are not required when pregnant - plus I have the added challenge of being diabetic - so I'm being carefully monitored and eating well will be important.

So here's my question - what kinds of alternate forms of penance have you found to be as helpful, as rewarding, as sacrificial as fasting/abstinence if you have also been pregnant during lent??

thanks!
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  #2  
Old Jan 28, '08, 6:46 pm
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CatholicSam CatholicSam is offline
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Default Re: Lent and pregnancy

Last time I was pregnant during Lent I made a point of cutting out the junk food and eating the good and healthy things instead. Not only was it a sacrifice for me, but it actually helped me to have a healthier pregnancy and get the nutrients I needed.

Last year I was breastfeeding a colicky infant and had to cut out dairy from my diet. I made that part of my Lenten sacrifice too. Motherhood, as you know, is full of built-in opportunities for penance.
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  #3  
Old Jan 28, '08, 6:59 pm
stayathomemommy stayathomemommy is offline
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Default Re: Lent and pregnancy

we always give up sweets which will be hard this pregnancy because i want everything sweet!!!!!!

but we also gave up TV last year and it turned out to be the biggest blessing of Lent! I also tried to keep computer time down to only one log on a day. Hard for me to do!!
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  #4  
Old Jan 28, '08, 7:24 pm
StephanieC StephanieC is offline
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Default Re: Lent and pregnancy

I was pregnant during Lent last year.

I give these forums up every year. Not because I go overboard during the rest of the year, but just because posting here is so much fun. A teeny-tiny mortification of my time and energy and brain power and amusement.

Different talk radio programs have been a great way for me to stay connected to the outside world that I miss as a mom....but giving them up or drastically limiting them for Lent always brings so much serenity! (Especially during this election year, when it seems like all the programs are talking about the exact same things, anyway).

This year, I feel called to add something in, or pick up a devotional practice, rather than sacrificing alone. Still thinkin' on it. Maybe daily Mass, maybe a devotional while exercising? Not sure.

What if you added in a pro-life devotional...say something to do with Our Lady of Guadalupe (patroness of the unborn & pro-life cause) or St. Gianna?
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  #5  
Old Jan 28, '08, 7:48 pm
Phemie Phemie is offline
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Default Re: Lent and pregnancy

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fizendell View Post
Alas, with Lent in sight, I understand that fasting (and abstinence??) are not required when pregnant - plus I have the added challenge of being diabetic - so I'm being carefully monitored and eating well will be important.
While fasting is not required since you are both pregnant and diabetic, is there anything preventing you from abstaining from meat on Ash Wednesday, and all Fridays of Lent? You can substitute fish or eggs or another source of protein, can't you?
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  #6  
Old Jan 28, '08, 7:54 pm
Sina Sina is offline
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Default Re: Lent and pregnancy

Hey! Great thread. Totally applies to me too. I was wondering too what some lent ideas were.
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  #7  
Old Jan 29, '08, 6:40 am
Teakafrog Teakafrog is offline
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Default Re: Lent and pregnancy

What I did was to observe the abstinence from meat, but never fast. You are NOT obligated to do either when pregnant or breastfeeding. Your first responsibility is to take care of your baby by taking care of yourself. If you are diabetic, make sure you follow your diet closely, which means NO fasting. You can substitute non-meat forms of protein though, like eggs, beans, milk or peanut butter, etc. if you want to.
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  #8  
Old Jan 29, '08, 6:52 am
Em_in_FL Em_in_FL is offline
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Default Re: Lent and pregnancy

I agree with the others above...
Keep the abstinence from meat... that's not hard... but if you have a medical reason (pregnancy, diabetic, etc) then you don't have to "fast"...
You can sacrifice in other ways!
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  #9  
Old Jan 29, '08, 7:53 am
susie g. susie g. is offline
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Default Re: Lent and pregnancy

You can still "fast" from junk food, as others have mentioned. I was pregnant last year during Lent, and am breastfeeding this year. I do not intend to strictly fast, but I can certainly eat less, and no junk.

I also added extra prayers when I couldn't fast. Maybe say the rosary if that's not something you already do each day?
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  #10  
Old Jan 29, '08, 10:26 am
Britt Britt is offline
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Default Re: Lent and pregnancy

This year will be my third Lent as a Catholic and I am pregnant also so I have been wondering what to give up as well. My parish has put out a leaflet with many suggestions that do not include fasting from a healthy diet.

Some these suggestions include:

Daily prayer either alone or with others (especilly regular family prayer). Possibly saying the Rosary daily during Lent.

Scripture Reading/study - Daily readings from the lectionary can be found at www.usccb.org/nab. Attend a scripture study program at your parish.

Attend regular adoration during Lent or begin going to daily Mass if you do not already do so.

Ideas for fasting are:

Fast from shopping other than food and necessities for personal hygene. Give some of the money you save to a charity of your choice that serves the poor (almsgiving).

Fast from junk food, fast food, convienence foods and eating out. Give some of the money you save to a charity of your choice that serves the poor (almsgiving).

Fast from television or other forms of electronic media.


Our first Lent we fasted (as a family) from eating out. We were spending a rediculous amount of money (probably $200-$300 per month) eating in resteraunts and fast food places. To this day we now only eat out maybe 1 or 2 times per month. 40 days plenty of time to break almost any bad habit.
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  #11  
Old Jan 29, '08, 11:17 am
duskyjewel duskyjewel is offline
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Default Re: Lent and pregnancy

Lent is not just about giving up things....it's about adding things too. Perhaps a new prayer discipline (My 9 year old is going to try saying the Rosary every day. That girl puts me to shame.) or a new way of giving service, like working at food banks or a St. Vincent de Paul thrift store a few hours a week.

I never fasted while pregnant or in the early weeks of breastfeeding. God knows why and I think He not only understands, but expects me to use my wisdom on that one. However, I did keep the abstention from meat on the required days. That one is not so hard. Besides, I LOVE Stouffer's mac and cheese. That's actually a treat for me. But also, abstaining from meat, even for the whole of Lent, is not necessarily a nutritional danger. Ovo-lacto vegetarians have healthy babies too.

Lent during pregnancy need not be difficult. And remember, you would be fasting for your baby too, and the Church does not require fasting of young children.
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  #12  
Old Jan 29, '08, 1:31 pm
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Jeanne_dArc Jeanne_dArc is offline
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Default Re: Lent and pregnancy

Consulting a doctor about what foods are safe to cut out (before you do anything drastic) is always a good idea.
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  #13  
Old Feb 12, '10, 9:27 am
lfrieboes lfrieboes is offline
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Default Re: Lent and pregnancy

I had an idea for a pregnancy-friendly Lenten fast... instead of abstaining from food, I am going to abstain this year from all unnecessary speech. Of course, this may not be feasible for some based on their job, situation in life, etc. However, I did it once before while working full-time and was surprised to find how easy it was. These are some of the benefits...
1. I learned to weigh my words carefully to see if they were truly necessary or not.
2. It improved my ability to listen to others.
3. I avoided many common sins (gossiping, idle chit chat, criticizing others unjustly, complaining).
4. It gave me more time for prayerful reflection during the day.
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  #14  
Old Feb 12, '10, 5:22 pm
tapiocapudding tapiocapudding is offline
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Default Re: Lent and pregnancy

Last year I prayed a daily rosary during lent. It was really a great experience. This year I think I'm going to pray a decade or two of the rosary every day and also cut out junk food. I will miss it a LOT!
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