Lent is the 40-day season of penance in preparation for the celebration of the redemption of the human race by Jesus Christ. Lent begins Ash Wednesday, Febr. 22, and ends on Thursday, April 5, followed by the Sacred Triduum, April 5-7, and Easter Sunday, April 8.
1. The days of both Fast and Abstinence during Lent are Ash Wednesday and Good Friday. The other Fridays of Lent are days of Abstinence.
On a day of Fast, only one (1) full meal is permitted. Those between the ages of 18 and 59 are obliged to fast.
On a Day of Abstinence, no meat may be eaten. Those who have reached the age of 14 are obliged by the law of abstinence.
2. The obligation to observe the laws of Fast and Abstinence “substantially,” or as a whole is a serious obligation.
3. The Fridays of the year, outside of Lent, are designated as days of penance, but each individual may substitute for the traditional abstinence from meat some other practice of voluntary self-denial as penance.
4. The time for fulfilling the Paschal Precept (Easter Duty) extends from the First Sunday of Lent, February 26, 2012 to the Solemnity of the Holy Trinity, June 3, 2012.