Catholics eat fish on Friday as a form of penance, commemorating Christ's supposed death on 'Good' Friday. During pagan Lent, eating fish on Friday is mandatory.
True repentance involves pain, particularly emotional pain. To repent is wrenching to the psyche. It really hurts because it is difficult to do.
Fasting puts us in a proper humble and contrite frame of mind, allowing God to respond to us, freeing us from our burdens and guiding us into His Kingdom.
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