Sunday, November 15, 2009

The Nativity Fast Commences

And so it begins...So many of my Roman Catholic and Christian family and friends are often surprised that today, forty days before Christmas, we begin a fast. They are normally surprised that there are meant to be Christian fasts during times other than Lent. My response to them is usually, “Yes. What is a feast without first a fast?” As strange as it may seem, I look forward to these fasts. It is an opportunity and excuse to step back and examine my life and the ways I have ventured into sin. I was raised as a Roman Catholic and I was taught that Advent was a time of alms and being good (i.e., be good and Santa will bring you gifts), therefore there is a celebration of bounty and giving. However, as an adult I do not believe there can be a true appreciation of the bounty without first purgation and purification. Truly, these teachings were there in my Roman Catholic upbringing, but in a different way.

So, what does this fast involve. Monday, Wednesday, and Friday are strict fast in which we have 1 ½ meals. We cut out all meat, dairy and eggs, including meat and dairy substitutes. Sundays are always feast days, so we can eat meat.

On this week's fasting dinner menu:
Sunday – Saute Garlic, Spinach, Tomato and Meatballs
Monday – Greek Lentil Soup and Homemade Bread
Tuesday – Elbow Pasta with Marinara and Asparagus
Wednesday – Curry Chickpeas with Mixed Veggies
Thursday – Veggie Pizza (Okay this one has cheese, but it's the night of my Mom's group and I don't have time to cook. The next time this occurs, I will work to prepare something ahead of time.)
Friday – Pan Fried Tilapia and Herb Potatoes 

Saturday – (Happy Birthday Andrew) Orzo Soup

This is our especially designed by Anne, Jesse Tree



My favorite ornament for the tree is this censer, complete with bells on the chains. :-)


2 comments:

Anne said...

oh, this just warms my heart :) I'm so glad you like it! Has Alexander gotten into it yet? I remember my sibs and I (well, mostly Viv and I) used to fight over who got to snap the ornament on each day :)

Yay for Advent and fasts! I know what you mean about looking forward to them--I'm totally there this year. Though since we were in NY this weekend, it sort of snuck up on me and I'll have to do my "preparing" this week :) Oops!

Michelle M. said...

Does Anne take orders?? I would love something like that. I really want to make our own Jesse Tree, but we go back to NY every Thanksgiving for at least a week (this year it is two) and I'd love to have a jesse tree that I could take with me. I am seriously wondering if I could pay her to make one for me. let me know!