~ catholic fasting ~
Gemma's Seat at the Giannini Table

Gemma practiced heroic mortification. As to her sense of taste, nothing could induce her to gratify it. No one knew which foods she liked. The Giannini family would have to press her to partake of what was on the family table; otherwise she would deprive herself of what was even absolutely necessary. To hide her mortification she used many tactics such as feigning to take food while her hands moved but nothing entered her mouth. She went so far as to carry into effect the thought of making a small hole in her spoon, so that broth might leak through before she brought it to her lips. Gemma did this because she well knew the saying that if you do not control your passions, they will control you.