Use caution at fish frys

The Lenten season is upon us, and despite the COVIID-19 pandemic traditional fish frys are making a comeback.

Lent, a 40-day season of prayer and fasting, began Feb. 17 and continues until April 3. This period of reflection and repentance is meant to help Christians prepare to celebrate Christ’s resurrection on Easter.

One way many people observe Lent is by abstaining from eating meat, especially on Fridays — hence the popularity of fish frys.

Although dozens of these local events had to be canceled last year as the coronavirus spread across our region, many churches, fire departments and civic organizations are reviving them this year. Some locations are providing fish sandwiches, dinners and more menu items for carryout only, while others are inviting diners to stay on site — with social distancing provisions in place.

Not only do these events provide faithful Christians and other community members with some delicious food options, but they also give the organizations hosting them the chance to earn some much-needed funding. In Smith Township, for example, it seems proceeds from this year’s sales will go toward the purchase of a new fire truck. Typically held on Ash Wednesday at the beginning of Lent and on Fridays throughout the season, these activities often bring in quite a bit of revenue, benefiting all sorts of causes.

We must not forget, though, that the virus that causes COVID-19 is still among us. It might be a simple thing to feel at ease with old friends and neighbors who are participating in these sales for a good cause, but we can never know when one of these individuals may have been exposed to the virus. This is especially true since many people can be asymptomatic carriers of the disease.

So, while we urge area residents to patronize these fundraisers and to enjoy the fare they provide, we also encourage patrons and event volunteers alike to be cautious. Don’t let down your guard. Maintain social distancing, wash your hands frequently and wear a mask when not eating or drinking. Continue to protect one another until the danger passes.


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