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Daily Almanac for Wednesday, May 23, 2018: Ember Days of Fasting and Prayer; Day 143 of the Year

PRESS RELEASE WRITTEN BY & COURTESY OF www.almanac.com

 

Ember Day Tart The recipe was originally made for King Richard II 2012 photo By Richard Symonds - Own work, CC BY 3.0, https commons.wikimedia.org

 

EMBER DAYS

Upcoming Ember Days are May 23, 25, and 26. Ember Days occur four times a year at the start of each season. In Latin, they are known as the quattuor anni tempora (the “four seasons of the year”). Traditionally observed by some Christian denominations, each set of Ember Days is three days, kept on a successive Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday. These three days are set apart for fasting, abstinence, and prayer. The first of these four times comes in winter, after the Feast of St. Lucia, December 13; the second set comes with the First Sunday in Lent; the third set comes after Whitsunday/Pentecost Sunday; the four and last set comes after the Feast of the Holy Cross, September 14. Their dates can be remembered by this old mnemonic: “Sant Crux, Lucia, Cineres, Charismata Dia Ut sit in angaria quarta sequens feria.” Which means: “Holy Cross, Lucy, Ash Wednesday, Pentecost, are when the quarter holidays follow.” Folklore has it that the weather on each of the three days foretells the weather for three successive months. As with much folklore, this is grounded in some common sense since the beginning of the four seasons cue the changes in weather as well as a shift in how we keep harmony with the Earth and respect our stewardship of the Earth, our “garden of Eden.”

 

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