Sunday, November 29, 2020 UTC

FEB 24: FIRST DAY OF THE GREAT FAST (PURE MONDAY)

bridegroom The first day of the Fast, called Clean or Pure Monday, is a day of exceptionally strict fasting and is 48 days before the feast of Pascha. The name Pure Monday is alluding to the leaving behind of sinful attitudes or behavior as well as non-fasting foods.

The Great Fast is a period of strict fasting, with mitigation for Saturdays, Sundays and Holy Days. Holy Week, with some mitigation, is a special time of intense prayer and fasting. For further information about “fasting,” please see “SPIRITUALITY” tab and “BYZANTINE FASTING.”

The Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts is celebrated during the Great Fast, and provides the faithful with the opportunity to receive Holy Communion on those days when the Eucharistic Sacrifice is not celebrated.   The word “presanctified” indicates that the “gifts” (the Body and Blood of Christ) which are distributed at the service are those consecrated at a previous Eucharist.