Great Lenten Regulations 2001
Ukrainian Autocephalous Orthodox Church in the USA

The Crucifixion of Our Lord


-The law of abstinence forbids the use of meat, permitting the use of eggs and dairy products.
-All faithful of the Metropolia who are regular communicants are obliged to abstain.
-Abstinence is to be observed on Wednesdays and Fridays during the Great Fast.

Strict Abstinence:
-The law of strict abstinence (fast) forbids the used of meat, eggs and dairy products.
-All adult faithful of the Metropolia who are regular communicants are obliged to observe Strict Abstinence.
-Strict Abstinence is to be observed on the First day of Great Lent, Monday, February 26 and on Great and Holy Friday and Saturday, April 13 and 14.

Holy Communion:
A fast of one hour from food (prior to the service beginning time) should be kept by those receiving the Eucharist at the evening celebration of the Divine Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts. Those taking medication should follow their doctor's instructions and take the medicine at the perscirbed times.

Those of a sterner discipline are greatly encouraged to keep the traditional fast of the church, that is the law of Strict Abstinence is applied throughout the season, with the usual mitigations for fish, wine and oil on the permitted days.

Laws of fasting and abstinence should never take the place of active, charitable deeds and generosity, which are to be practiced by all of the faithful.


-Pastors and Administrators may, with just cause, grant dispensations from the above fasting regulations to individuals or families for reasons of health or other serious matters. In these cases, other pious practices should be put into effect.

The Sacrament of Confession:
Confession and Communion have always been an integral part of the Lent/Easter experience. According to the universal practice of the Church, all Orthodox faithful are obliged to receive the Sacrament of Reconcilliation (Confession) during Great Lent, in preparation for Pascha. Likewise, all baptized persons are to receive Holy Communion during the Easter Season.


This year, our Metropolia has devised a Lenten project called "Spare Change For Ukraine."

It is important that besides the traditional practices of prayer and fasting, each Christian also be involved in active, charitable deeds called "almsgiving" which reach out to our brothers and sisters in need, both at home and around the world. One way in which we can be involved in this pious practice as a corporate eparchial community is through this project.

We are asking every parishioner in our Metropolia to place their spare change at the end of each day of Lent into a bank or box of some type. The program is meant to be a daily reminder of our obligation to respond to others' needs, as we are called to do in the Gospels and emphasizes the universal nature of the Church.

On Good Friday, parishioners are to bring their filled banks to church and place them at the Grave of Our Lord.

This charitable act will unite our sacrifices to those of Our Lord Jesus Christ, who gave the ultimate sacrifice of his life, for the sake of our salvation.

The coins should be collected and rolled by a team of parishioners and the proceeds forwarded to the Chancery Office for donation to "Caritas Ukraine - Lviv, Uzhorod, and Ternopil." Caritas Ukraine is a social welfare, health and training agency maintained by the church in Ukraine. Click here for more information on Caritas Ukraine.


In keeping with our Typikon, the color of vestments worn on Sundays of Great Lent is to be white or bright. Red, or other penitential colored vestments are worn on Lenten weekdays and on the Third Sunday of Great Lent (Veneration of the Holy Cross), only. The Divine Liturgy of St. Basil the Great is celebrated on the five Sundays of Great Lent.

The Divine Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts is to be celebrated at least once a week in our parish churches. On Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays, a liturgical service at which Holy Communion is distributed (ie: Sixth Hour with Typika) may be celebrated.

On Saturday mornings, the Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom is to be celebrated.

The second, third and fourth Saturdays of Lent are "All Souls' Saturdays." The Requiem Divine Liturgy is offered which commemorates all the faithful departed from the beginning of time. The petitions for the departed during the Great Ektenia and the "Ektenia for the Departed" after the "Ektenia of Fervent Supplication" (after the Gospel) are taken. A Panakhyda is celebrated at the conclusion of the Liturgy, at which the names of the faithful departed of the parishioners' families are read aloud during the Ektenia. The family surname is read first and then, under these categories, each of the departed's first names.

On the Third Sunday of Great Lent, the decorated Holy Cross is carried from the Altar to the Tetrapod and venerated by the priest and faithful throughout the week, until Friday.

March 9, the feast of the Second and Third Findings of the Head of St. John the Baptist and March 22 (Julian dates), the remembrance of the Forty Martyrs of Sebaste are feasts of Polyeleos rank. A Presanctified Liturgy with Prokimenon, Epistle and Gospel readings is perscribed on these days. The Entrance is made with the censer and Gospel Book.

On the fifth Thursday of Great Lent (March 29), the Great Canon of St. Andrew of Crete with prostrations is perscribed. This may be anticipated on Wednesday evening. Because of the strenous nature of this penetential service, the Presanctified Liturgy is offered on this Thursday evening.

The fifth Saturday of Lent (March 31) is Akathist Saturday, which commemorates the Annunciation of the Mother of God. The Akathist Hymn to the Mother of God is to be celebrated on Friday evening or Saturday morning. If celebrated on Friday, it takes place after the Presanctified Liturgy or, if on Saturday, before the Divine Liturgy.

Other liturgical services in our tradition which have become part of the expericence of Great Lent for the faithful may also be celebrated. These include the Lenten Hours, Molebens, Akathists and other devotions. It is strongly encouraged to keep a full cycle of liturgical services during Great Lent in each parish.

Great Lent officially concludes on Friday, April 6. Lazarus Saturday and Palm Sunday are festal days which introduce the solemn period of Passion Week. This year, according to the Julian Calendar, the Feast of the Annunciation of the Mother of God (April 7) falls on Lazarus Saturday. The liturgical texts of both feasts are combined, as indicated in the Typikon.

Willow Branches along with Palm are to be blessed on Palm (Flowery) Sunday, April 8. The Rite of the Blessing of Branches takes place either during Matins or immediately before the Divine Liturgy. The faithful approach the tetrapod or other prepared place, and receive the branches from the priest. A procession of clergy and faithful with the newly-blessed branches may take place after the blessing and before the beginning of the Liturgy. The clergy and faithful are to hold their blessed branches during the Divine Liturgy, particularly at the reading of the Gospel, in which the narrative of Our Lord's Entrance into Jerusalem is mentioned.

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