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Author Topic: Bread and water fast  (Read 5353 times)


Bread and water fast
« on: December 24, 2006, 12:08:am »

I have read about bread and water fasts many monastics and lay people do on Wednesdays and Fridays.  How is this fast carried out exactly?  Does one eat a slice a bread for each meal of the day?  Or is bread eaten only once? 


Bread and water fast
« Reply #1 on: December 24, 2006, 05:43:am »

I think throughout the day, bread and water are taken (thrice, water also on other times). I must advise you however, to eat some vitamin pills if you do this fast. Bread does not contain all you need. We must take care of our body too.

„Ja, Ja, wie Gott es will. Gott lohne es Euch. Gott schütze das liebe Vaterland. Für Ihn weiterarbeiten... oh, Du lieber Heiland!” ("Yes, Yes, as God wills it. May God repay it to you. May God protect the dear fatherland. Go on working for him... oh, you dear Savior!") - Clemens August Cardinal von Galen, his last words.


Bread and water fast
« Reply #2 on: December 25, 2006, 02:56:pm »
I'd also advise you to get permission from a confessor before undertaking this serious penance or really any abnormal penance. Just like you shouldn't start medicating yourself for a heart condition, you really should not undertake any extraordinary penance (beyond normal fasting, extra prayers, abstinence or other common penances) without advice, because, though well-intentioned, it could actually be problematic for your particular spirituality and personality.


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Bread and water fast
« Reply #4 on: December 26, 2006, 02:32:pm »
Thank you for the responses.  I have not decided if I personally want to undertake this kind of fast.  I just want to learn more about how this fast has traditionally been done.


Bread and water fast
« Reply #5 on: December 29, 2006, 02:00:am »
Try it during the Wednesdays and Fridays of Lent; unless you have some sort of medical condition, of course.
Arreptisque Nadab et Abiu, filii Aaron, turibulis posuerunt ignem et incensum desuper, offerentes coram Domino ignem alienum quod eis praeceptum non erat.  Egressusque ignis a Domino devoravit eos et mortui sunt coram Domino.  Loose Translation:  Don't monkey around with the Mass.

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Bread and water fast
« Reply #6 on: December 30, 2006, 12:30:pm »
Those who fasted on bread and water in the olden days probably had bread that was a lot more nutritious than our breads of today. Most people know that white flour has had all the nutritious parts taken out, so white bread has very little nutrition at all.

Few today know that they also used to soak the flours made of the entire grains or leaven it in a particular way so as to bring out the nutritional properties in a way that we don't do anymore. So today even those who were to fast on a "whole" grain bread don't get as much nutrition as they used to.

On the other hand, prisoners who subsisted on bread and water usually got old bread, maybe even moldy, but definitely really hard. I can't imagine that they gave someone who was fasting bread fresh out the the oven, but I doubt they gave it to them that old, either.
Other ages... are prone to faction, and it is our business to inflame them. Any small coterie, bound together by some interest which other men dislike or ignore, tends to develop inside itself a hothouse mutual admiration, and towards the outer world, a great deal of pride and hatred which is entertained without shame because the 'Cause' is its sponsor... Even when the little group exists originally for the Enemy's own purposes, this remains true.... The Church [H]erself is, of course, heavily defended... but subordinate factions within [H]er have often produced admirable results, from the parties of Paul and Apollos at Corinth down...." —The Screwtape Letters; number 7. C.S. Lewis

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