• Miss Izabella Ellinas

Greek Orthodox Xmas Fasting

The 40-day fasting period otherwise known as Christmas Lent is when the Greek Orthodox Church gives the faithful periods of fasting and reflection in order to refocus on the spiritual life, to challenge them and to help them make adjustments, as they experience the Holy Nativity of our Lord and Saviour.


The Nativity Fast is one of four main fast periods throughout the ecclesiastical year. Beginning on November 15 and concluding on December 24,




The fast usually involves abstaining from certain foods.

Eggs, dairy, poultry, red meat, meat products are all abstained from.

On Saturday and Sunday, fish, oil, and wine are acceptable to consume.

Oil and wine are also allowed on Tuesday and Thursday, with some exceptions.

Fish, wine, and oil are allowed on November 16, November 30, December 4, 6, 12, and 20. No fish may be consumed from December 20-24.

From the 20th of December on it is a strict fast with wine and oil allowed only on Saturday and Sunday.


After the Christmas Eve service in Greece & Cyprus, it is the tradition to come home from church to break the fast.

This is their first time they are able to eat certain foods, and the people definitely make the most of it by enjoying a lavish meal.