Isaiah 58:1-9 / Matthew 9:14-15
In the Roman Catholic Church, there are only two obligatory days of fasting.
One is on Ash Wednesday, which was just two days ago, and the other is on Good Friday.
Yet the Church encourages the faithful to embrace this spiritual discipline of fasting especially during this season of Lent, and especially on Fridays.
This spiritual discipline of fasting is not just a religious or pious act but rather one that expresses a deep longing for conversion and repentance and for the healing grace of the Lord.
It is because we see how detestable our sins and transgression is that we pray and fasting is indeed a form of prayer.
Also when we see sin and evil happening around us, like oppression of the poor and violence on the weak, injustice and deceit, then all the more we must pray and fast.
For the sin and the evil in the world, and even in the Church, let us take seriously our prayer and the discipline of fasting.
Then when we cry out to the Lord, He will answer; when we call out to Him, He will answer: I am here.