The Fellowship of Life
a Christian-based vegetarian group founded in 1973


'Catholic Herald' Debate (1980)Letters

The roots of mercy

As a "Daft Vegetarian", I would quote Genesis 1, verses 29 and 30. "See, I give you all the seed-bearing plants that are upon the whole earth, and all the trees with seed-bearing fruit; this shall be your food. To all wild beasts, all birds of heaven and all living reptiles on the earth I give all the foliage of plants for food. And so it was."

Also, Daniel 1, verses 11 to 16. "At this Daniel turned to the guard whom the chief eunuch had assigned to Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael and Azariah. He said, 'Please allow your servants a ten days' trial, during which we are given only vegetables to eat and water to drink. You can then compare our looks with those of the boys who eat the king's food; go by what you see, and treat your servants accordingly.' The man agreed to do what they asked and put them on ten days trial. When the ten days were over they looked and were in better health than any of the boys who had eaten their allowance from the royal table; so the guard withdrew their allowance of food and wine they were to drink, and gave them vegetables."

One hears and reads of "the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ". What is grace? It is that quality of putting people at their ease. Jesus did exactly that by not criticising us unduly. He said he came not to judge us, but to bring us to repentance.

Perhaps the most important verse in the whole Bible is John 21, verse 25. "There were many other things that Jesus did; if all were written down, the world itself, I suppose, would not hold all the books that would have to be written."

One of these things could easily have been the teaching of vegetarianism.

I am a wine-drinking vegetarian and a Catholic full of faults, but in my way I do try.

Zena Kendall

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