Wednesday, March 6, 2013
A few years back on a Friday evening, my wife and I walked into an Applebees Restaurant in Fall River for supper. We expected a long wait, but were surprised to find the restaurant nearly empty. When we mentioned it to the waitress she replied, “Oh, this is typical for a Friday in Lent.”
Since then I have noticed that many restaurants do try to accommodate Catholics who faithfully observe the practice of abstaining from meat on Fridays in Lent. Jillian’s Restaurant in nearby Swansea has changed its sign promoting $2.00 drafts and replaced it with “We now have a Lent menu.” And McDonalds rolled its new “fish bites” on Ash Wednesday. All this in response to loyal Catholics practicing their faith.
Now imagine if Catholics were just as zealous and faithful when it comes to issues that really matter. What if we insisted that our government protect the dignity of all unborn human life? What if we demanded that our legislators honor the sanctity of marriage? What if we unfailingly held politicians accountable for their failures to see that justice is done for the poor? What if we made the common good our highest priority whenever we stepped into the voting booth? Then we would witness a real and lasting change in our society that would accomplish much more good than making sure that scrod and haddock are offered as special at our favorite restaurants.