Lent is considered the main thing in Orthodoxy, this is the most severe and longest post of the year – for 7 weeks, believers limit themselves in food, entertainment and carnal pleasures. When to start post 2021, as to abide by the policies and dietary restrictions to observe for the day?
From history to the present
Abstinence before Easter Sunday is related to the number 40 – the number of days Jesus Christ fasted in the desert. In the modern Christian tradition, its actual duration may vary in a big way – it depends on the rules of calculus.
At the dawn of the formation of Christianity, believers fasted 2 days a week – Wednesday and Friday. Over time, began to limit yourself in food for 7 days before Easter. A 40-day fast is first mentioned in the Rules of the Holy apostles, Dating from the 6th century. They say that fasting before Easter duty all the faithful, except for the sick and physically weak people.
In 2021 Orthodox Christians expect 4 post:
As you can see, lent is the longest period in 2021 (48 days), during which the rite of the Orthodox Christians fast and limit himself in worldly pleasures.
The preparatory period
Also the period of Great Lent is preceded by a 4-week preparatory period, compliance with the rules which helps people to get right into the post.
About the publican and the Pharisee
In the preparatory period ordered to give up meat dishes on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
Powered by days
In the Orthodox calendar 2021 lent begins March 2 and continues through April 18, inclusive.
Each of the seven weeks has its own characteristics, and the strict dietary restrictions are in the first week and Holy week.
For fasting is the most difficult period, after observing the strict rules, they have to fight the temptations that are particularly strong in the beginning.
In the first week believers should:
- March 2 – fully abstain from food;
- from 3rd to 6th are allowed xerophagy;
- The 7th and 8th of March you can eat vegetarian food with oil, including heat treatment. At the weekend allowed the use of wine in small quantities.
Lasts from 9 to 15 March.
These days when I recall the great theologian, St. Gregory Palama.
Rules of nutrition in the second week of fasting is quite simple:
- On days designated as “strict fast” (Monday, Wednesday and Friday) is supposed to only eat raw food. It is forbidden to cook, fry, bake, cook for a couple of to use any oils (even vegetable oil). These days recommended one meal in the evening.
- On Tuesdays and Thursdays you can eat thermally processed without oil products (boiled or steamed).
- On weekends allowed fried and stewed food with vegetable oil and a little wine.
In the period from 16 to 22 March there are the same rules as the second week of lent.
In Orthodox Churches and Temples worship the Great Cross.
Fourth sedmitsa lasts from 23 to 29 March.
These days I remember about the monk John of the Ladder.
Monday to Saturday vegetarian menu is standard, but Sunday is celebrated the Annunciation, that Orthodox gives some relief. 29 March 2021 it will be possible to afford not only hot meals with vegetable oil and a little wine, and lean fish.
Runs from 30 March to 5 April.
In the temples of worship Mary of Egypt.
Power schedule of the fifth week of lent is the same as the 2nd and 3rd.
6 through April 10, has traditional limitations of lent, while on Saturday (11.04.20) you can treat yourself to caviar, and on palm Sunday to put on the table the lean fish. Such relief is granted in honor of the Lord’s entry into Jerusalem.
The title of the week comes from the noun “passion” and reminds the Orthodox of the suffering, the agony of Jesus in the last days of life. These days recall the last Supper, betrayal and crucifixion of Christ, his miraculous resurrection. Refusal of food in this period marks the purification of the spirit through trials. In 2021 Holy week falls on the last week of lent, and lasts from 13 to 18 April. Dietary restrictions these days especially hard:
- Monday-Wednesday (13.04-15.04) – xerophagy.
- Maundy Thursday (16.04) – hot vegetarian dish with oil.
- Good Friday (17.04) – total abstinence from food. After removal of the shroud and sunset are allowed to eat black bread and drink water.
- Good Saturday (18.04) – bread and water. Believers already break the fast in celebration of the Resurrection of Christ.
Holy week is the most strict. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday it is forbidden to drink wine and other drinks (tea, coffee, cocoa).
The rules of lent
To comply or not to comply with strict rules everyone decides for himself. The most stringent limits exist for clergy. They also strictly adhere to the monasteries. For the laity the requirements of the post a bit softer. The main thing to remember that they not only outlines gastranomicheskoy restrictions.
What is prohibited
People who keep fasting should exclude from the diet of certain groups of products. The restrictions are clearly listed in the Charter of the monastery:
- animal food, including animal fats;
- poultry, eggs;
- milk and dairy products;
- alcoholic beverages including wine (except on days allowed by monastic Charter);
- fast food.
To overeat during the period of abstinence is also prohibited.
What to put on the table
Lenten menu can also be varied, tasty and healthy. Here is a sample calendar of food days:
- Monday on the table there should be only raw food. It can be fruits and vegetables without heat treatment, berries, nuts, fresh herbs. You can eat black bread and drink water.
- Tuesday this day allowed lean boiled, steam, baked dishes. It can be vegetable soups or porridge made with water with no added butter, vegetables steamed or baked in the oven, stewed cabbage with mushrooms, potatoes. For a taste of them you can salt and season with spices.
- Environment – another day of shoedini. Products in the menu – same as Monday. Fresh vegetables or fruits you can prepare a smoothie in a blender, mix the ingredients with water. Add honey to taste in the environment is impossible.
- Thursday – repeated intake of Tuesday. To diversify the menu, you can prepare steamed vegetables and smash them in the blender in the soup.
- Friday – again raw food. Vegetable salads without dressings, but with spices, fruit smoothies, fresh herbs – the basis of the diet.
- Saturday and Sunday – vegetable salads with a dressing of vegetable oil, vegetable soups, stews, thermally processed vegetables.
How to fast
- sexual partner or marital relationship;
- a visit to the theatre, cinema and other secular institutions.
- relief from the bad thoughts and anger.
Free time they devote to reading spiritual literature, prayer, helping the needy, the humility of his own pride. The only way to purify and elevate the soul, fulfilling the main purpose of the pre-Easter restrictions.
Deviations from the monastic
These rules are common to all Christians. They should be adhered to when preparing the menu, if the purpose of fasting is to purify oneself spiritually and to heal the body. In the case of ill health, other health problems, as well as in acute unbearable feeling of hunger, you can adapt the menu by itself, including vegetable fats or dairy products. The purpose of the great lent – purification and improvement, not a worsening of health problems.
Doctors don’t recommend to limit yourself to food:
- pregnant women;
- people engaged in heavy physical labor.
The Church is loyal in this respect: offset indulgences can be, doing charity work and good deeds, attending service in the Church, reading spiritual literature, avoiding sinful thoughts.
- Clean Monday – it begins with Great lent, be it forgiveness Sunday. Start a post made clean, so the Orthodox bring order in the house, in the workplace, purge the body in the bath or shower. On Clean Monday it is advisable to refrain from eating. By tradition, the dishes left over from pancake day, feed animals and birds.
- The crypt – another holiday that falls in the middle of lent. Americans in the villages are usually baked vegetable pies and cookies in the shape of a cross and were treated to neighbors and friends. Now this tradition is rarely observed.
- The Annunciation – a big religious holiday that falls on the Great lent (April 7, 2021). It marks the imminent return of Jesus Christ to the world. The good news of God gave mother Mary the angel Gabriel. In this celebration the Church allows indulgences – you can include fish and fish dishes, red wine in the diet.
In the Annunciation allowed to work, especially in fields and gardens. Food should be prepared quickly and simply, a holiday to spend with his family in a state of physical and mental rest. Definitely need to repent for the sins voluntary and involuntary, to forgive our offenders and enemies.
- Lazarus Saturday celebrated on Saturday at the sixth Lenten week. This holiday marks the resurrection of Lazarus on the 4th day after his death. In the troparion of the triumph that Christ had raised Lazarus, and then suffering.
- Palm Sunday falls on the sixth week of lent. The occasion marks the entrance of Jesus Christ into Jerusalem and the beginning of his suffering. Originally consecrated palm branches, but in a temperate climate exotic trees do not grow, so the tradition was adapted.
Lazarus Saturday and palm Sunday you can eat fish and fish dishes, use vegetable oil when cooking and let a little red wine. The main dish of the holidays is considered the ear, and on palm Sunday the allowed ROE.
Breaks do not work if these Church holidays fall on Holy week. In 2021, the last two celebrations fall just on her, so in food there are strict limitations according to the canons described above.
We also propose you to listen to what mistakes you should be careful of those who are planning to observe lent in 2021: