In oratione, et jejunio {the Ember Days are upon us}


Christ in the desert

“And when He was come into the house, His disciples secretly asked Him: Why could we not cast him {the demon} out? And He said to them: This kind can go out by nothing, but by prayer and fasting.”
-Gospel of today

I just wanted to put out a reminder about the Michaelmas Ember Days (today, Friday, and Saturday). If you aren’t familiar with the concept of Ember Days, they are three days (always a Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday) which occur in the traditional calendar of the Church four times a year, roughly at the start of every season. They are days of fasting and abstinence (partial on Wednesday and Saturday, meaning you can have meat at your main meal; full on Friday) as well as additional prayers and lessons in the liturgy. They are intended to thank God for the fruits of the earth and pray for the continued blessing of them, and also, since ordinations used to happen typically on Ember Days, to pray for priests.

If you’d like to read more about Ember Days, Mary gathered some excellent resource material last year on the subject here. (Thanks Mary!)

I don’t think it’s necessary to say that the practice of this beautiful penitential tradition of the Church, directly especially towards the sanctity of priests, is more needed today than ever before. If we desire (as we certainly should) to rid our Church of the evils afflicting Her today, our Lord clearly dictates that the only way this can happen is through the avenue of prayer and fasting. So let us not delay in embracing this wonderful opportunity!

“We beseech Thee, O Lord, that our weakness may be upheld by Thy healing mercy, so that what of itself is falling into ruin may be restored by Thy clemency. Through our Lord.”


Image from Wikipedia