Coptic Church Fast & Feasts

By: GEORGE YOUSSEF

“The Holy Week of Pascha is central in the church life. It is a celebration of God the Heavenly Father’s love. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16). It is also a living remembrance of our Lord Jesus Christ, “who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God” (Hebrews 9:14).

-Holy Pascha: Order of Holy Week Services in the Coptic Orthodox Church

The word “Pascha” translates to “Passover” which refers to the angel of death that passed over the houses of the Hebrews. These houses were sprinkled with the blood of the Passover lamb, symbolizing the sacrifice of the Cross. Pascha is the name given to the period between Palm Sunday and Good Friday. The entire Holy

Read more: The Holy Week of Pascha

By: GEORGE YOUSSEF

            The Great Lent is undoubtedly the holiest fast observed by the Coptic Orthodox Church. During the Great Lent, we fast for a total of fifty five days; seven days from the preparation week, forty days to fast as Our Lord fasted in the wilderness for forty days and forty nights (Matthew 4:2), one day for Lazarus Saturday, and the seven last days for Holy Week [1]. It is important to constantly remember the value of fasting during this period. On the surface, we abstain from food, drink, delicacies, and other pleasures; however, this is done to express the love, commitment, and sacrifice we offer up to God who sent His Only-Begotten Son to die for us[2]. In addition to fasting and sacrificing to express our devotion and commitment to God, we take this blessed opportunity to grow spiritually and avoid the sinful distractions that may pull us away from our holy state. This is done by increasing the times we pray and contemplate. To help us do this, the church provides an organized set of

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