THE NATIVITY FAST, ADVENT BEGINS November 15th - December 24th (Orthodox Church in America) and/or November 28th - January 6 (Julian Calendar)
Why we fast before the Nativity?
We fast before the Great Feast of the Nativity in order to prepare ourselves for the celebration of Our Lord’s birth. As in the case of Great Lent, the Nativity Fast is one of preparation, during which we focus on the coming of the Savior by fasting, prayer, and almsgiving.
By fasting, we “shift our focus” from ourselves to others, spending less time worrying about what to eat, when to eat, how much to eat, and so on in order to use our time in increased prayer and caring for the poor. We learn through fasting that we can gain control over things which we sometimes allow to control us—and for many people, food is a controlling factor.
"...our greedy, sensual flesh, gross and inert, withdraws us from Thee. Fasting and abstinence are necessary for us whilst we crave after sensual gratifications. Strengthen us in abstinence."
St. John of Kronstadt
My Life in Christ p.153
We wish all fellow Orthodox Christians to have a blessed Nativity fast, with much peace, and joy as we prepare for the birth of Jesus Christ !