Rorate Caeli

Reminder: the one-day pre-Christmas fast

It may be a far cry from the Advent fasts of old, but it is better than nothing!

Read more here.

This day of fasting has, of course, been entirely optional since 1966. However, I am certain that many of those committed to the liturgy as it existed before 1966 would also be interested in observing at least some of the disciplinary regulations of the same era.

[Image: Francisco Collantes, Winter landscape with Adoration of the Shepherds - detail]


  1. in 1991 when I lived in Germany there was a Polish woman in my language class who commented that on Christmas Eve in Poland they fasted and had fish for the evening meal. It used to be the custom in northern Germany to eat fish on Christmas Eve as well as in Catholic times.

  2. To all at Rorate Caeli,

    Merry Christmas! And I wanted to let you know that I greatly appreciate your work. Thanks for being my favorite read of the day.

    Saint Louis Catholic

  3. Anonymous5:03 PM

    It's still the custom in Italy to eat fish on Christmas Eve. I'll be having it with my Irish/Italian family (mussels in white wine and garlic)

    I think, however, I'll observe the fast on Christmas Eve, until evening dinner time, with just bread - well, spread with basil-infused olive oil and toasted. But in order to keep the spirit of fasting I'll leave off the cheese I'd normally put on it. That's a penance for me ;)

  4. It is also the strict custom in Lithuania fasting on Christmas Eve (in Lithuanian it is called Kucios, read Kouchos) and special 12 meals (all meatless, majority being prepared from fish) for Christmas Eve evening meal.
    Merry blessed Christmas to ALL Rorate coeli worldwide catholic community!

  5. Anonymous9:11 AM

    In Poland 24th was traditionally day of fasting. The one big meal was vigil supper in the evening (but always without meat). Altough now according to bishops it is not necessary to fast, they recommend to do so in accordance with tradition.


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