On Thursday night I had the pleasure of attending an event for Scottish Interfaith Week at the Andalus Mosque in Glasgow.
This event was probably my favorite event that I attended during Scottish Interfaith Week.
The theme for this event was “Could Fasting Change the World?”. There were three presentations, including a look at fasting from the Jewish tradition, Muslim tradition, and Christian tradition.
As a Catholic, I personally partake in fasting during the liturgical season of Lent. After hearing the three presentations, I became informed that the Catholic fast is very different then other traditional fasts in other faiths. In the Catholic Church, we are called to fast during Ash Wednesday and Good Friday. On these days Catholics are only supposed to have one regular meal and two “snacks” or two smaller meals that together do not equate to the one regular meal of the day. Some parishes, like my own back in Villanova, Pennsylvania, may add another day of fast during the week of Lent. Fasting for me was always hard, but after hearing from the other faith traditions on Thursday night, I have come to understand that there are different variations of fasting, and I believe the Catholic Church’s guidelines for fasting are less strict than other faith traditions.
I was amazed to hear from each of the three speakers on what fasting means for their faith community as well as hearing their personal experience of fasting.
It was a great evening and I felt that I learned a lot from the three speakers as well as from others during the large group discussion.
-Mary Catherine O’Reilly-Gindhart