Fowl Suggestion for Lent

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PARIS, MARCH 5, 2006 ( A French bishop is recommending to the faithful of his diocese that they should eat chicken for Lent.

Bishop Philippe Breton of Aire-Dax explained that in light of the outbreak of avian flu, consumption of poultry "is showing a marked decline," despite the fact that governmental authorities and experts "state that the consumption of fowl has no risk for the health of the population."

The act of eating chicken, he said, would be a "significant gesture of solidarity" to those who depend on poultry for their livelihood.

The bishop added that those who work in the poultry industry are facing "serious financial difficulties: Some fear they will soon lose their jobs.”

Bishop Breton, 69, clarified that this gesture of solidarity does not replace abstinence from meat on Fridays, or the required fast on Good Friday.