A Possibly Unappealing Post: An Invitation to Ember Days
Do you want a great Christmas? Of course you do. Do you want to work towards holiness in a very tangible and fruitful way? I should hope so. Do you want to help the Church? God help you if you don’t.
Selling something that is difficult runs the risk of being a futile endeavour. One’s internal desire must be evident for success. Nevertheless, I will give a brief pitch anyways: Ember Days begins this Wednesday. I invite anyone and everyone to participate. It doesn’t matter if you attend a traditional Latin Mass, the worst hootenanny Mass in town, or just your average Catholic parish, this is a worthy tradition sure to aid you and the entire Church.
From my 1962 Roman Catholic Daily Missal:
At the beginning of the four seasons of the Ecclesiastical Year, the Ember Days have been instituted by the Church to thank God for blessings obtained during the past year and to implore further graces for the new season. Their importance in the Church was formerly very great. They are fixed on the Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday: after the First Sunday of Lent for spring, after Pentecost Sunday for summer, after the Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross (14th September) for autumn, and after the Third Sunday of Advent for winter. They are intended, too, to consecrate to God the various seasons in nature, and to prepare by penance those who are about to be ordained. Ordinations generally take place on the Ember Days. The faithful ought to pray on these days for good priests. The Ember Days were until c. 1960 fast-days of obligation.
So what can you do? Preferably fast this Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday, as well as offer extra prayers. If not, consider doing some other form of penance. I am certain your participation in Ember Days will bear good fruit.