Friday, March 21, 2008


The following is an actual conversation:

Ethan: "Papa, don't forget you can't eat meat on Friday."

Me: *Staring quizzically at boy child* "erm, what?"

Ethan: "Yeah! You aren't supposed to eat meat this Friday."

Me: *My brain's department of birthdays/holidays/anniversary's brings a notice to my upper consciousness and understanding dawns on me* "No meat, eh?"

Ethan: "Yep that's the rule."

Me: *never missing an opportunity to make a child of mine think a bit more" "Tell me Ethan, from where did this rule come from?"

Ethan: "Ummm, I dunno. They've been talking about it all week at school."

Me: "Were your teachers saying that?"

Ethan: "No, the other kids were."

Me: "Did they say 'why' it was important to skip meat on this Friday and not next Friday?"

Ethan: "No."

Me: "Ethan, you barely listen to any of the requests your mother and I ask of you. So why would you care so much a bout a rule that kids at school spout to you when you can't tell me the origin of this rule and the necessity for it?"

Ethan: "Well they said it's really important!"

Robert: "Indeed? Well please tell me why."

Ethan: "Well...."

Robert: "Did your teachers say anything about this rule?"

Ethan: "No."

Robert: "Did your mother or I say anything about any such rule?"

Ethan: "No."

Robert: "Do you really think it's important that you follow a 'rule' that some children in your school is important? Yet I, your mother and your teachers have said nothing about it."

Ethan: *looks pensive* "Well what the heck are they talking about then?"

Robert: "Christians refer to this coming Friday as 'Good Friday', certain segments of the Christian tradition feel it necessary to abstain from meat on that day because 'Good Friday' is the day that Jesus Christ was killed. But it's not really a rule, unless you observe that tradition. "

Ethan: *eyes wide* "What would be good about that!?"

Robert: "The reasons for why they call it 'Good' are....complicated... and a very long story, you'll learn more about it soon."

Ethan: "Does this have something to do with God?"

Robert: "You could say that, yes."

Ethan: "Why would God care whether or not I eat meat on Good Friday?"

Robert: *smiling slightly* "I don't know. What do you think?"

Ethan: "I think people can do some weird things for God."

Robert: "Amen, E-man, amen indeed...."



Anonymous said...

Happy Easter Robert!!! Dang religous people, ruin it for everyone! ;)

SirRobert said...

Happy Easter to you as well Deb...

I happen to love the 'radical catholics' they are quite me anyway!


Ed said...

Robert, I am in favor of any holiday, religious or otherwise.

I hope you enjoy the Easter weekend as much as I did. I even went to a church service on Sunday and was not struck by lightning. :) The local priest is a friend of mine.

Think of all the Catholic Saints days you could have off if the US made holidays of them all.

GG, we won't mind if you celebrate Nat'l Atheist day with us, April 1st of course. :)

Anonymous said...

I didn't observe Lent this year, didn't go to church on Palm Sunday, Holy Thursday or Good Friday. Didn't even make it to church on Easter Sunday.

On Good Friday I served meat loaf to the kids in school, against the complaints of some of the (non-Catholic!) staff. Most kids don't like fish - it's silly.

Anyway - I never once felt a twinge of guilt. This is something that I could not have said just last year. The holidays are cool - great ways to commemorate important things while getting together with family. But they certainly are not essential for a healthy faith. In fact, they often get in the way.

hoverFrog said...

Can I get away with not eating meat on any day with a "y" in it? Because I plan to.

What is "Good" about Good Friday anyway? Other than a day off work.

Anonymous said...

Hey Robert.....Wondering where you are???? Let us know ur ok!!!! You can email me if ya like @