The capybara kap-i-‘bar-uh, hydrochoerus hydrochaeris, is a semi-aquatic rodent of South and Central America. It is the only species in its genus, which belongs to the family Hydrochoeridae, order Rodentia.
When the Spanish missionaries found the capybara in Brazil during the 16th century, they wrote to the Pope to ask – there’s an animal here that’s scaly but also hairy, spends most of its time in the water but occasionally comes on land; can we classify it as a fish (and thus, the indigenous people could continue to eat it during Lent)?. Not having a clear description of the animal (and not wanting the petitioners to starve), the Pope agreed and declared it to be a fish.
Jimmy Akin has a good roundup of Lenten information.
Jimmy also has the guidelines for fasting from the Code of Canon Law.
Aggie Catholics Lent mega-post
Let’s cook up some capybara!
A few months ago at our local fair they had a banner up advertising a terrifying GIANT RIVER RAT with a painting depicting an enormous vicious rodent eating a cat. When we went in to see it, it turned out to be a capybara who looked like nothing more than a mellowed out three foot tall hamster. Papal decree or no, I just can’t eat hamster.
We could eat alligator, though.
As usual, I’ll probably be off topic but you Jeff Miller, I think, having once been an atheist probably must have heard “IT” all
and besides, as far as I know, you’ve never turned guys like me away cause we need so much help. Anyway, I’ll first apologize to the ones that wrote so many great stories for not having read them and you know what Jeff, some of my weakest/strongest cells I think are starting to change their mind and once they finish picking our brain cells apart and find out that they’ll never become “IT”, they’ll probably start checking out some of these great reads of others.
I hear ya! WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT VICTOR?
Ash Wed ness day?
I give UP!
Ok guys! That’s enough and whatever else you do, let’s not UP SET or make fun of “The Easter Bunny” who will soon be showing it’s shadow cause believe “IT” or not he’s a good friend of ‘The capybara kap-i-’bar-uh, hydrochoerus hydrochaeris’ and the sooner we all learn and accept that ”The Easter Bunny” is loved by all true Atheist, Agnostic and many other non believers of this so called “Jesus The Christ”, the better off this world will all be.
Why can’t we just hold an Easter Election to see who would win and no cheating, in other words all true Christians who know in their heart of heart that they would lay don’t their life today for this “Jesus” if the capybara and/or Papa asked are not entitled to vote.
I again here ya Jeff! What a bummer Victor cause one more time you find yourself left out of one of your endervours of “The Holy Spirit”.
All I can say Jeff is that you can’t win them all and I don’t like “IT” one bit. 🙂
Thanks again and keep UP the good words and works.
God Bless Peace
We have lots of Nutria down here in south Louisiana and they look similar to this critter. But it’s considered meat 🙁
How about the CHUPACABRA?
My girl (who is 7yrs, to be fair) bought dinosaur shaped chicken nuggets at school on Ash Wednesday. I think she thought they were made with real dinosaur, neither she nor her five year old brother could be convinced that they were meat (which is probably quite a reasonable position).
Now, why a Catholic school was selling meat, or pseudo meat products on Ash Wednesday is another matter.
There is a similar dispensation in Detroit for eating muskrat during Lent. It dates back to the early missionary work in the 1700’s among the local indians
to Jenny: well, chickens are related to dinosaurs. Most people don’t eat reptile on a regular basis, how much does it count as meat per se?
In regard to the capybara, once heard similar decree about beaver, it too was declared “fish”, at least for Lent.
I’ll admit I’ve always loved shrimp, does this count?
Well, a lot of why we eat fish vs. not eating flesh meat, is that flesh meat is symbolically of the earth and the flesh, whereas veggies don’t have flesh and fish (besides being eucharistic and Resurrection symbols) live in the water, symbolically free from earth and living in the water of life. So a lot of seabirds, sea mammals, and so forth have often been thought of as (symbolically) not flesh meat because of their habitat, just as seaweed is sometimes regarded as (symbolically) a more spiritual food for Good Friday than beans or veggies, even.
You left out the best part of the story: When a later pope was given a more accurate description of the capybara (yes, spell-checker, it is too a word!) and asked if he would revise the description, since it’s clearly not a fish, he responded, “I believe eating such an animal is penance enough.”
Got that from a comment on a blog post: http://www.scifiwright.com/2011/08/harry-potter-and-the-christian-magicians-ii-%e2%80%94-baptizing-dumbledore/comment-page-1/#comment-64794