Monday, March 22, 2010

Advice on fasting from St. Bernard of Clairvaux

Lent is not just about fasting and abstince from foods. Here is what St. Bernard had to say:

Let the eyes fast from curiosity.
Let the ears fast in not heeding vain words or anything unnecessary for the soul’s salvation.
Let the tongue fast from defamation and gossip, from vain and useless words.
Let the hand fast from idleness and unnecessary busyness.
Let the soul fast even more from all vices and sins, and from imposing its will and judgments.
For without such fasting, all other fasting is rejected by God.

(From a Lenten sermon by St. Bernard of Clairvaux, Cistercian abbot, 12th century)


  1. How true, and very much what we need in this crazy world... and how difficult to achieve this "conversio morum" as Bernard calls it. Thanks for posting this and reminding us, Timmie!

  2. Sometimes it is easier to fast from sweets! What a great reminder that we need to fast from these things as well! And just in time for a final push in Holy Week!

  3. Brilliant reminder.... Belated thanks.