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Jerusalem: Patriarch urges fasting for conversion, peace

Catholic World News - February 21, 2012

In his Lenten pastoral letter, the Latin Patriarch of Jerusalem urges local Christians to offer up their fasting for peace.

“[C]onversion rests on the understanding that ‘man does not live on bread alone but by every word that comes forth from the mouth of God’ (Mt. 4: 4), that ‘the flesh [alone] is of no use,’ and one must ‘watch and pray that you may not undergo the test’ (Mt. 26:41),” Patriarch Fouad Twal wrote in his February 20 pastoral letter. “In this case, fasting is an excellent antidote to the many excesses of every day.”

In addition to keep the Church’s discipline of fast and abstinence, “during Lent it is advised to avoid succulent meals and alcoholic beverages,” he added. “It is suitable to abstain from or limit smoking. To promote an atmosphere of contemplation and of piety, it would be beneficial to avoid or reduce viewing spectacles, especially on television and the Internet.”

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