Autumn Ember Days: fasting, prayer and meditation

The autumnal Ember Days (Michaelmas Embertide) are upon us. I found this helpful post on Rorate Caeli about the origin of Ember Days to encourage you to devote three days this week to prayer, fasting and penance. Pray especially for Holy Mother Church during these difficult times.

Listen to this lecture by Father Chad Ripperger about Ember Days and Rogation Days. The part about Ember Days ends at minute 22.45.

The Ember Days mark the beginning of every season. As the days grow shorter and the nights cooler, I’m filled with joy and expectation because autumn is my favourite season.

Consider that Ember Days are not only for fasting, but for prayer, giving thanks to God for the bounties of nature, silence and meditation. Meditate on the sins of pride and covetousness. Use the Ember Days to bring your physical appetites under control and to develop a regular fasting routine (one day a week).

Here are a few books I’ve found helpful if one wishes to cultivate a habit of mental prayer and silence:

The Power of Silence Against the Dictatorship of Noise by Robert Cardinal Sarah (after you read this, you’ll wish he was the Pope)

The Ways of Mental Prayer by Dom Vitalis Lehodey

Introduction to the Devout Life by Saint Francis de Sales

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