Thousands Ditch Meat for Lent After PETA Appeal

Campaign Urging Compassion for All God's Creatures Inspires Christians to Take Vegan Pledge This Lenten Season

For Immediate Release:
February 14, 2018

Contact:
Audrey Shircliff 202-483-7382

Norfolk, Va. – Thousands of people have pledged to go vegan for Lent after PETA posted a feature encouraging Catholics and all others to keep animals, including fish, off their plates during the 40-day period of reflection. In the feature, the animal rights group notes that everyone can improve their health, protect the environment, and show mercy for all animals simply by going vegan.

“God’s design for the world was one in which animals and humans co-existed peacefully and humans were caretakers—not killers,” says PETA President Ingrid Newkirk. “Every single person who was inspired by PETA to choose merciful vegan meals for Lent is helping to bring His vision of peace and compassion into our turbulent world.”

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat”—notes that animals used for food experience joy, pain, fear, love, and grief and value their lives, just as humans do. But in today’s meat and dairy industries, cows are forcibly separated from their beloved calves, chickens’ throats are cut while they’re still conscious, piglets are castrated without painkillers, and fish are cut open while they’re still alive. In addition to sparing the lives of more than 100 animals a year, people who go vegan reduce their carbon footprint and their risk of suffering from heart disease, diabetes, cancer, obesity, and numerous other ailments.

Pope Francis, named PETA’s Person of the Year in 2015, has publicly encouraged his followers to treat animals as kindred beings. PETA has also placed ads near churches in Milwaukee and Miami and near a Catholic university in Fairfield, Connecticut, encouraging Christians to choose compassion and go vegan during Lent. PETA offers easy vegan meal plans (available here and here) for people who go vegan for Lent, as well as a free vegan starter kit full of recipes, tips, and more.

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“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind