Our Lady asks us to fast, especially on Wednesdays and Fridays.

Moderators: Andy08, mamamary

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By willywee
I understand that on Wednesdays and Fridays we are to fast on bread and water. However, does that mean we can eat bread and feel satisfied or are we to feel hungry all day and eat a little bread to get us through it?
I just don't know for sure how it is suppose to be and would appreciate a little more insight. Do we eat one meal and just bread the rest of the time or do we eat bread all day?

Also, sometimes when I fast I start to feel ill and so I have been putting peanut butter on my toast to see if that helps. Is that ok?

Thanks for all your help.

By Gael
I think any effort you make is "OK" Willy. God will see all you do and be pleased. I dont think there are hard and fast rules, probably the stricter the fast the more pleasing to God, but even a small fast, like missing a meal, or not having something you want will also be pleasing to him.
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By Andy08
Sr. Emmanuel has an excellent audio CD on fasting. It's at the Childrenof medjugorje. Any fast is beneficial but "the best fast" is on bread and water. This is very clearly stated by the Gospa. This CD has gone a long way in helping me complete a bread and water fast on most Wednesdays with little or no problem. I have not commited to wed and fri but hope to at some point. It helps to have a friend to fast with. I have a friend and we encourage each other to complete the fast and also we pray for each others intentions as well as Our LAdy's intentions. I know he is fasting and he knows I am. Before we stuck up this partnership neither of us had much success. Since starting the partnership i think we have only not completed the fast once or twice over the past 3 to 4 months.

Fasting has greatly enhanced my connection to God, Christ, Our LAdy and the church. As sister Emmanuel says and I have come to experience: It is a great joy to make this sacrifice for God. It also gives me a great deal of extra time to pray and contemplate as I do not have to prepare meals, go out, or eat or got to the market. Check out her CD. She has great access to the visionaries and shares many of their thoughts on this subject.

One story: A pilgram askeds Mirjana if he could have his morning cup of coffee on fast days because he's no good in the morning without his coffee. Mirjana responded, "Sure that's fine as long as you get up before Our Lady so she won't know."

Finally, it is really important to get really good, healthy, and fresh bread. There is a local bakery and I usually stop tuesday evenings for my Wednesday fast. Having good fresh bread is essential. Not white bread. Good luck, it takes some practice, but after a while it gets easier.

God Bless,

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By Andy08
WillyWee, any sacrifice is good. Any move toward God is good. The best fast is on bread and water. This is Our Lady's words. It's a goal to strive for. After all, Christ is the "bread of life" not the peanut butter of life. Bread alone is a powerful symbol of Our Lord. Good luck my friend. Pray for the grace to succeed and it will be granted.
By Maxie
There are different way of fasting not just bread and water. I might be wrong but fasting does not mean less food on ly. One can fast by being deprived from thinhs he is in greed off. Jut to give some examples. If I am a heavy smoker I can deprive myself from smoking. That is a way of fasting and a sacrifice at the same time. Others who spend a huge amount of time watching TV can fast by deciding to cut the number of viewing houses and instead he'she recite the rosary. Tis is another way of fasting and at the same time observing something which Gospa frequently speaks about to the visionaries. I can give a considerable number of other examples. Comments on how I see fasting appreciated.
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By Andy08

You are right, any sacrifice to God is beneficial. There are endless ways to sacrifice and fast. When we talk about fasting only on bread and water on Wednesdays and Fridays this is not the only way to fast, but Our Lady tells us time and time again that this fast is without any doubt the "best" fast.

God Bless,

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By Mt. Carmel
Andy - Perhaps we in the overfed and demanding West should contemplate more than we do that for all too many in this 'Vale of Tears', fresh bread and clean safe water are akin to a feast rather than being a fast.

Tomorrow, 2 Slightly warmed [from the freezer] chiabatta rolls and a bottle of water, après the Blessed Sacrament for my fast/feast then.

Peace and Love.
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By Andy08
Mt. Carmel,

I imagine if you live in part of the world where you literally starve most days you would not be called to fast. Fasting is a piece of cake (no pun intended) when compared to starving.

Good luck with your fasting.

By gnipgnop
Andy08 wrote:Christ is the "bread of life" not the peanut butter of life.
Thanks for that...I literally LOL'ed when I read that (my daughter asked why I was laughing!). And peanut butter happens to be my huge weakness.
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By Mt. Carmel
gnipgnop wrote:
Andy08 wrote:Christ is the "bread of life" not the peanut butter of life.
Thanks for that...I literally LOL'ed when I read that (my daughter asked why I was laughing!). And peanut butter happens to be my huge weakness.
I empathise with you! These days I am too nervous of my weak will, so avoid looking at the peanut butter 'shelf' in shops. A standard size jar would not last a week in my house.

On fresh bread thickly layered with quality butter first, or just a sneaky spoonful as I pass - if only the Good Lord gave it the calorific value of celery!

Peace and Love.
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By Andy08
Mt. Carmel,

I can't take full credit for that. Sr. Emmanuel's CD on fasting has a very beautiful explanation of the reason we fast on bread and water. That was one of her lines,
Christ isn't the tomato of life or the banana of life but the bread of life. She makes a good point that I stole from her.

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By julia60
:cry: ah wil ya stop it ! It is Wednesday today and I'm trying to be good and not treat my tummy to food !!

All of you who are trying to get there with the fast, keep up the good efforts, even when you fail, Our Lord will be happy with you, and for every minute you succeed on the fast days, He will reward you. And reward you too when you tell HIm you are sorry when you fail.

Other fasts I have heard about are.
1 Fast from the sharp tongue (don't say cross or unkind things)
2 Fast from the clenched fist (resist the temptation to wallop someone!)
3 Fast from pride
4 Fast from unkind thoughts (say a prayer if someone makes you cross)
5 Fast from congratulating yourself when you succeed in fasting (my crime :oops: )
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By Andy08

Your post reminds me of a poem by Kabir. I don't recall it completely but the essence was any effort for holiness is followed by a sin and a failure.

I gave up fancy clothes and now dress in a burlap sack,
but I noticed I through it over my should with pride.

I gave up being a sexual giant and now
I find I'm angry alot.

Then I gave up my anger and discovered that
I was proud of myself.

That's a little of what I can remember. I think I can relate.

God Bless and good luck with your fast.

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By bluecross
When we talk about fasting only on bread and water on Wednesdays and Fridays this is not the only way to fast, but Our Lady tells us time and time again that this fast is without any doubt the "best" fast.
Andy... I think your statement may be a little misleading.

From my recollection Our Lady has only mentioned probably two or three times that the best fast is bread and water.

I certainly don’t think she has ever mentioned bread and water in her hundreds of fortnightly and monthly messages to the world – or even Wednesdays and Fridays.

Our Lady frequently requests us to fast but she does not insist on which days or the type of fast.
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By Andy08
Could be like cable news. Someone says something once and it gets played and replayed on every show and repeated on every medium until one thinks the person stated it 1000 times. I know I didn't make this up. I've heard in from CD's like Sr. Emmanuels fasting discussion where she goes into great detail explaining why the bread and water fast on wed and Fri is so important and why it is best. I have an old VHS tape from 1988, The Madonna of Medjugorje where Marija reminds pilgrims to fast on bread an water on Wed and Fri. If read interviews and go to the fasting discussions you'll usually read this recommendation. So Our Lady may have only said it once but someone took the ball and carried it to it's present prominence in the landscape of Medjugorje.

Didn't mean to be misleading.

God's Peace,

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By bluecross
Andy... We have to take into account Our Lady’s Jewish roots. She repeats the three tennants of the Jewish faith: Prayer, Fasting, Almsgiving

This is probably best summed up in the message given to Mirjana on the date of her annual apparition this year (March 18.):
Pray, fast and have a heart full of mercy.

...and also more recently to Marija (October 25, 2009):
Pray, fast and joyfully witness your faith...
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By bluecross
In all of what Our Lady requests of us, we should remember that she does not expect a complete response to everything overnight. Conversion is a lifelong process.

Sometimes, when people return from Medjugorje, usually on a ‘high’, they try to go straight in on the so-called ‘five stones’. Great for a few weeks, then slowly the five become four, the four become three and so on. Because it is all too much to take on all at once.

Our Lady never asked the visionaries to attempt all of this from day one. She is still guiding and encouraging them 28 years later. So that says much. Although we are all in the School of Love, no-one ever graduates, at least not this side of death.

Fasting is probably the most difficult undertaking of all that Our Lady asks of us. It’s the age old battle of the spirit versus the flesh, and as St Pio once said, this battle is never over until the blood stops coursing through our veins.

Personally I think it is far more difficult to fast for one day than, say three days, or even for a nine-day novena. I know someone who used to do 40-day fasts. Not anymore. It damaged his health.

Marija the visionary used to fast more days than Our Lady asked her to. That was until Our Lady told her that she did not want this.

My advice. Don’t go hungry when fasting on bread and water. Eat as much bread to satisfy your hunger. And by drinking plenty of water you will find that your intake of bread will lessen.

Which Mother wants her children to go hungry?

The difficulty for many people attempting to fast on bread and water is identifying just what the body is telling them. ‘Feeling’ hungry is not necessarily the body needing food. An intake of water will often satisfy this ‘feeling’.

And someone who is very active during the day will also require extra intake than someone sitting in a chair for most of the time.

Watch for the highs when a fast day is completed. Next day is congrats day and that can mean succumbing to extra portions to make up for the “gap”. This is similar to a cigarette smoke who stops for a day. Doing so brings about a drop in the level of nicotine in the body. Next day they smoke twice as many cigarettes to top up the nicotine level again.

And watch for the “feasting” on Thursdays thinking this will help stop the hunger pangs on Friday. It’s kidology. Mind games. In reality it only increases the “hunger” because the stomach is conditioned to receiving its daily level. It’s like pigging out on pancakes on Shrove Tuesday because Lent starts the next day. :)

Finally, stay out of the kitchen on fast days. Don’t put yourself in the danger zone. This is a bit like Sansom flirting with Delilah. I’m not sure if he really felt he was strong enough to resist her advances of if, deep down, he was looking to be seduced. The same can happen with fasting. Question why you have a need to be in the kitchen on fast days? I liken this to the alcoholic torturing himself by going to bars and drinking Cola. It’s stupid and we know what the eventual outcome will be.

With fasting, you begin to discover what honesty is about. Honesty with oneself. We can have a book of excuses and good reasons why we don’t fast or why we cave in.

I can eat for all sorts of reasons. I eat when I’m sad. I eat when I’m happy. I can always find a reason for eating. Getting honest with myself and accepting the good reasons why I should fast isn’t so easy. :)

Well, that’s my twopennyworth. Is it Friday already?!
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By OnASpiritualJourney2
Still Thursday here! :lol:

I found on a message search that up through October 25th of this year, Our Lady of Medjugorje mentioned the word "fast" 17 times in her messages intended for the public. This was the first one listed:

Weekly Message, August 14, 1984 [O]

This apparition was unexpected. Ivan was praying at home. After that he started to get ready to go to Church for the evening services. By surprise Our Lady appeared to him and told him to relate to the people.

“I would like the people to pray along with me these days. And to pray as much as possible! And to fast strictly on Wednesdays and Fridays, and every day to pray at least one Rosary: the joyful, sorrowful and glorious mysteries. ”

Our Lady asked that we accept this message with a firm will. She especially requested this of the parishioners and the faithful of the surrounding places.

As you said Bluecross, she does not expect us to do all she has asked overnight - it's a slow process of making changes and it's lifelong.
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By bluecross
Yes, I don’t think Ivan was the most popular guy in town the day he arrived with the message to fast on both Wednesdays and Fridays.

At the time, the message was understood to be directed at the local people of the parish.

A month later, after giving Ivan the message about fasting, Our Lady also gave another message in which she said: “I ask the parish to fast out of gratitude because God has allowed me to stay this long in this parish.”

I would imagine that this message was in response to the question: “Are you sure Our Lady has asked us to fast on Wednesdays AND Fridays?”

The weekly messages that began in 1984 and ended in 1987 are understood to be directed at the parish of Medjugorje. Many of these messages mention the word “parish”.

Marija, commissioned by Our Lady, to announce her messages to the world, has never given a message (monthly or weekly) that mentions bread and water, or even Wednesdays and Fridays; fasting, yes.
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By bluecross
Could be like cable news. Someone says something once and it gets played and replayed on every show and repeated on every medium until one thinks the person stated it 1000 times.
Yes, this often happens with Our Lady’s messages. Sometimes her words are used out of context, often because of a personal agenda. The ‘secrets’ are a good example of this.

It’s a bit like taking parts of the bible and using them to back up a point or belief. Sometimes the message is distorted when this happens.

When Our Lady says that the ‘best fast” is bread and water she implies by this that there are other acceptable ways of fasting.

And if one fasts on bread and water but the heart is not in it, then is it a better fast than one who fasts from TV and does so with the heart? It is the heart that matters.

The sacrifice of the woman who put two small coins in the treasury was considered greater than the those who gave their spare cash, because the woman gave all – her heart.

Similarly, like the two brothers who were asked to help their father in the field. One said no, but did. The other said yes, but didn’t. Action stems from the heart.

So any action, any sacrifice, if it comes from the heart, is acceptable and pleasing to God. This action may be insignificant in the eyes of the world, but if it is done with the heart, it is not insignificant to God.

When we give all that we have, we give our heart and soul, and God knows this. This is when we give our “best”.

There are obviously many special graces to be received when the “best fast” is observed, just as there are when one prays, attends Mass and Confession, reads Scripture and makes a sincere effort to walk towards God.

To fast... to make sacrifice... to give... should be the focus (as it is in Our Lady’s messages). How much we choose or are capable of giving will vary from person to person depending on circumstances and the strength of grace in our lives.

But the more we give... the more we receive. :)
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By bluecross
I came across this little item from a talk given by Fr Svetozar Kraljevic, way back in 1986.

“Fasting has been a reason of concern for many people. Some say bread and water. Others, this or that. It amazes me how again and again God allows us to be free. He invites us to do penance, to allow him to have more space in our lives, but he doesn’t say it has to be on bread and water. No saint was able to become a saint without doing some serious penance. We each have to find our own way of doing penance, to sacrifice something to allow the Lord to have more room in our lives.”
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By aoise
I was listening to a CD of a talk given by Father Slavko some years ago. Refering to the early days of fasting in Medjugorje, he said he used to 'prepare very well on thursdays'. This was greeted with much laughter as we've all been there.
By Acquamarine
I prefer to fast on water only. If you eat bread, then you are not fasting anymore. And eating bread for a day is very easy. If you only drink water, then you are giving up something and feel the hunger a bit.
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By Andy08
Bread is not breaking the fast.

Christ is the bread of life. What is bread? Wheat. How do you make bread? First you must kill the wheat, (it must die) destroy it, pulverize it, crush it into powder--flour. You bake it with yeast after it has died then you bake it and it rises and creates sustinance. Taking a bite of bread should create a meditation of the crucifixtion.

Also, Bethlehem means the house of bread. When Our Lady recommends fasting on bread and water She's not making a mistake.
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By Andy08
I believe Jelena said that if she did not fast she did not have an inner locution.


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