On today’s Bible Answer Man broadcast (03/07/22), Hank discusses Clean Monday, a day in which we are to leave behind our sinful attitudes and is the start of the journey towards Pascha (Easter) in the Eastern Church. For those who are able and willing, it is encouraged by the Church to keep a strict 3-day fast until we partake of the Holy Eucharist on Clean Wednesday. During these three days of fasting, we are enabled to see our weaknesses and our spiritual poverty more clearly. Physically we recognize that the spirit may be willing, but our flesh is weak. And when we partake of the Holy Mysteries after three days of fasting, we gain a deep appreciation for the Lord’s presence within the Mysteries. Preparations for Clean Monday started yesterday with the reading of our Lord’s words in the Sermon on the Mount: “For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins. When you fast, do not look somber as the hypocrites do, for they disfigure their faces to show others they are fasting. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, so that it will not be obvious to others that you are fasting, but only to your Father, who is unseen; and your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you” (Matthew 6:14-18 NIV). In this manner, we celebrate the fact that “The springtime of the Fast has dawned, the flower of repentance has begun to open…”

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