Ember Days for Spring 2018

The Spring 2018 Ember Days begin today, and continue on Friday and Saturday. There is an intensity of prayer, fasting and almsgiving for Ember Days.

Ember Days are days of ¬†fasting and partial abstaining from meat: days of penance with the intention of thanking God for the gifts He gives us in nature and asking Him for the discipline to use them in moderation. The fasts, known as “the fast of the four seasons,” are rooted in Old Testament practices of fasting four times a year:

Zacharias 8:19

Thus saith the Lord of hosts: The fast of the fourth month, and the fast of the fifth, and the fast of the seventh, and the fast of the tenth shall be to the house of Judah, joy, and gladness, and great solemnities: only love ye truth and peace.

It is good to ponder what St Cyril of Jerusalem once said,

“I praise and glorify Him that made us; for it is a divine command which saith, Let every breath praise the Lord. I am attempting now to glorify the Lord, but not to describe Him, knowing nevertheless that I shall fall short of glorifying Him worthily, yet deeming it a work of piety even to attempt it at all. For the Lord Jesus encourageth my weakness, by saying, No man hath seen God at any time.”