On a recent Sunday Morning, from the pulpit came a lecture on responsibility. While the Catholic Church has never, and will never endorse one candidate over another, we do hear about the issues. Tangled within a political message was a reminder of Friday Penance.
No Meat on Fridays did not simply go away. Instead, the rule was reworded to make it easier on the faithful. Friday Penance of no meat created a universal observation, much like the Fridays of Lent. This is how the Cannon Law reads today:
Abstinence from meat, or from some other food as determined by the Episcopal Conference, is to be observed on all Fridays, unless a solemnity should fall on a Friday. Abstinence and fasting are to be observed on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday.
Unfortunately, most Episcopal Conferences have determined that, instead of abstaining from meat, Catholics may perform an act of penance of their choosing. What does that mean? Simply put, the main rule is still to abstain from meat on Fridays, unless another penance is observed as an optional alternative. Somewhere along the line, the whole idea of Friday penance throughout the year fell by the wayside. Yet I get the feeling that Meatless Fridays may be making a comeback. There is a unity in the observation that personal penances do not provide.
More and more I see woman who cover their heads in church. (And for the record, I am one of them) More and more I meet Catholics who practice the disciplines of old. Our parish has Eucharistic Adoration. I can remember it as a child, but had not seen it practiced outside Good Friday as an adult. Simply put, lay people spend time with the Eucharist separate from communion. More and more, I see organized Rosary groups. Some are geared to families, some to men or women. There is a revival happening within the church. It’s exciting.
But then again, you don’t need to be Catholic to appreciate a good fish supper. Eating fish once a week has all sorts of health benefits. Enjoy!
Pan Grilled Tilapia
1/3 cup Olive Oil
1-1/2 teaspoon Lemon-Pepper Seasoning
1 teaspoon Cumin Seasoning to taste
1 teaspoon Paprika
1 teaspoon Ground Mustard
1/2 teaspoon Garlic Powder
4 (4 oz) Tilapia Filets
Olive Oil for skillet
Parsley for garnish
In a small bowl, whisk oil with lemon pepper, cumin, paprika, ground mustard, and garlic powder together in a small bowl. Brush each tilapia fillet with mixture using a pastry brush. Flip; brush the other side. Wrap fillets with aluminum foil and refrigerate for 1 hour.
Heat a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Lightly oil skillet to prevent fish from sticking. Cook fillets in the pan until flakey, about 6 minutes per side.
Spray a large piece of foil with cooking spray and place on the grill. Transfer tilapia onto the foil.
Cook fillets on the preheated grill until they’re easily flaked with a fork, about 5 minutes per side. While the fish cooks, mince a little fresh parsley for a splash of color.
Place Tilapia on a serving platter. Scatter parsley over the fish, serve and enjoy.