The diet of Lent

Dear Editor,

March 1st marks the beginning of Lent, the 40-day period preceding

Easter, when many Christians abstain from animal foods in remembrance of

Jesus’ 40 days of fasting in the wilderness before launching his


The call to refrain from eating animals is as old as the Bible. In

Genesis 1:29, God commands humans to eat only plants; then Prophet

Isaiah predicts that “none will hurt or destroy on God’s holy mountain.”

A number of Christian leaders have followed the call, including

Methodist founder John Wesley, Salvation Army founders William and

Catherine Booth, Seventh-day Adventist Church founder Ellen G. White,

and prominent evangelical leader Franklin Graham.

A meat-free diet is not just about Christian devotion. Dozens of medical

studies have linked consumption of animal products with elevated risk of

heart failure, stroke, cancer, and other killer diseases. A United

Nations report named meat production as the largest source of greenhouse

gases and water pollution. Undercover investigations have documented

farm animals being caged, crowded, mutilated, beaten, and shocked.

Lent offers a superb opportunity to honor Christ’s powerful message of

compassion, but also to protect the health of our family and our planet

Earth by adopting a meat-free diet.


Carl Devlin

Cave Creek