What is the reason for giving up something for Lent?

I’ve just always accepted the fact that you’re supposed to give something up to Lent. But why do we do this? Is it because Christ gave up his life for us, and so we’re trying to live like him by giving something up?

And while we’re on this topic, what is the reason behind fasting?

Thank you!

Hi Angela
Hopefully some of this will help to answer your question:

justforcatholics.org/a37.htm

beginningcatholic.com/precepts-of-the-catholic-church.html

And from the Catechism of the

1430 Jesus’ call to conversion and penance, like that of the prophets before him, does not aim first at outward works, “sackcloth and ashes,” fasting and mortification, but at the conversion of the heart, interior conversion. Without this, such penances remain sterile and false; however, interior conversion urges expression in visible signs, gestures and works of penance.23

1431 Interior repentance is a radical reorientation of our whole life, a return, a conversion to God with all our heart, an end of sin, a turning away from evil, with repugnance toward the evil actions we have committed. At the same time it entails the desire and resolution to change one’s life, with hope in God’s mercy and trust in the help of his grace. This conversion of heart is accompanied by a salutary pain and sadness which the Fathers called animi cruciatus (affliction of spirit) and compunctio cordis (repentance of heart).24

scborromeo.org/ccc/p2s2c2a4.htm

Following Our Lord’s counsel and example.

It’s practice at LOVING things of the SPIRIT more,
and
It’s practice at LOVING things of the FLESH less.

Why do that?

Because “God is SPIRIT.” (John 4:24).

We can’t be CLOSE with God unless we love more the things of the SPIRIT.

Its a process of inner conversion. Fasting doesn’t always have to mean food. We always see something and cling to it as if its the most important thing in the world. Fasting is just reminding us that only God is important, everything else is secondary.

Additionally, it must be remembered that food and water are the next most important things for survival after breathing.

And we can’t abstain from breathing, so… :smiley:

To add on to ConstatineTG’s point, it must be remembered that food and water are the next most important things for survival after breathing.

And we can’t abstain from breathing, so… :smiley:

It is think more of others and God compared to ourselves. I am sure that we should do more works of mercy all year round, not just during certain times of the year. Same for doing something penitential and/or religious in nature like going a few days without a favorite food, playing an online game, going to Confession, praying the Rosary, attending Daily Mass, spending some in adoration of the Blessed Sacrament, etc.

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