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Old Feb 20, '08, 6:51 am
kgpink kgpink is offline
Observing Member
Join Date: May 5, 2007
Posts: 2
Religion: Catholic
Default What is a proper Lenten meal?

We are a vegetarian family, so we find other ways to fulfill our Lenten Friday sacrifice obligations. I mention this because it may be that being vegetarian influences our opinions....

Recently I went to a meal take-out place and they advertised certain dishes as vegetarian for Lent. I found one to have chicken broth in the ingredients. I very politely told them that they probably should not advertise that dish as being appropriate for Lent and they were grateful for the education.

When I got home I asked my husband if he thought a dish with chicken broth is Lent-approved and he said "Absolutely not," so he agreed with me that I should have said something. However, it got me wondering about it still. Are we just more sensitive to this issue because we are vegetarians?

What does the Church consider a non-meat meal to be specifically, i.e., is a meal containing meat broth considered a non-meat meal? Would most Catholics be upset to have eaten a meal for Lent and later found it to have been made with meat broth?

Last edited by Michelle Arnold; Feb 20, '08 at 4:06 pm.
Old Feb 20, '08, 4:15 pm
Michelle Arnold's Avatar
Michelle Arnold Michelle Arnold is offline
Catholic Answers Apologist
Join Date: May 3, 2004
Posts: 5,123
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: What is a proper Lenten meal?

Although a dish containing meat or chicken broth should not be considered "vegetarian for Lent," it could still be offered to a Latin-rite Catholic as appropriate for Friday abstinence. The Church allows Latin-rite Catholics to eat dishes made from meat broth or containing trace amounts of meat (e.g., bits of chicken in chicken-noodle soup) on the days of abstinence. Strict vegetarians though would not consider it appropriate to eat either meat broth or small pieces of meat.

What you might have suggested to the proprietors of the take-out place is that the dishes they were offering be advertised as "Lenten friendly" instead of "vegetarian for Lent."

Recommended reading:

How do vegetarians observe Lent?
Does beef broth break the Lenten meat abstinence?

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