Lent 2017: five steps for a successful Fast Day

9 March 2017

Supporters serving soup and rolls for CAFOD's Family Fast Day

Sharing a simple soup lunch on Lent Fast Day can be a great way of sharing fellowship and raising money for the CAFOD Lent Appeal

CAFOD was born out Fast Days, and for years you, through our annual Family Fast Days, have raised millions of pounds for the world’s poorest people.

Support the CAFOD Lent Appeal today

Why fast at Lent?

Lots of people take up traditional Catholic fasting during Lent, such as giving up meat on Fridays. The first ever Fast Day in 1960 asked Catholics around the country to go without a meal on just one day and donate the money they saved to help people in need. The appeal was so successful that it was repeated and became CAFOD’s annual Lent Fast Day.

What do I do on Fast Day?

If you’re planning to cut out a meal on Lent Fast Day –  Friday 10 March – here are our top tips:

1. Take time to reflect

By joining in with CAFOD’s Lent Fast Day, you are performing an act of self-sacrifice that will help your sisters and brothers around the world. This is a wonderful act that will truly change someone’s life. You could use the day to reflect or pray on the people you’re helping with your Lenten almsgiving. Watch Florence’s story and use our Lent calendar to guide you.

2. Get together with friends or in your parish

Fasting is not only about abstaining from food. It also means sharing food with those who are hungry.

Pope Francis

Mutual support is so important when you’re challenging yourself, so come together to keep each other’s spirits up.

Others in your parish may be organising a special simple lunch or supper, or if not, you could organise one. Get some friends to bring an ingredient or two – make soup together and then sell bowls of it to others who want to join the meal. You’ll have a great time and raise money for people in need.

Read our Lent Fast Day soup recipe ideas

3. Drink water

Make sure you drink enough fluids and stay hydrated, maybe keep a handy bottle of water on you. Dehydration makes everything harder - being hungry can be enough of a challenge.

4. Keep busy…

Keeping your mind in use so that you’re less likely to notice if you do become hungry. This could be by doing a crossword or visiting friends.

You can send in your Lent fundraising collection online

5. But don’t overdo it!

When you’re running low on fuel even the simplest-seeming tasks can become much harder. So don’t push yourself to be superhuman.

Share your stories 

Whatever you're planning to fast from on Lent Fast Day, we'd love to hear your stories. Tell us what you're doing on Facebook, Twitter or by email.

Support the CAFOD Lent Appeal today

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