Jonah being a fasting ritual

Jonah being a fasting ritual

     Jonah’s fast occurs two weeks before the Lent. Christians fast following Jonah’s example and beseeching God for mercy. Also it refers the memory about the lent being a time for repentance, getting ready to be buried and resurrected in Jesus Christ - the same way as was experienced by Jonah the prophet.

*the ritual of Jonah’s fast:

         It is similar to that of the lent

*early morning incense prayers:

    -this precedes the Liturgy.” God have mercy”

    -Deacons say (kirialeison) of the fast instead of the everyday hymns following the thanksgivings payers

     -the Doxology of St. Mary. The congregation would answer (kerialeison) 3 times

     -the priest prays “Evnouty” (asking God’s mercy)

     - Candles are put off and the lights are switched off, then the curtain of the altar is drawn. Then the readings from prophecies are read.  Prostrations are then performed and the lights are switched on as the congregation prays “kerialeison” God have mercy”. The priest then recites the prayers before listening to the readings from the gospel, in the same way as that of the lent. The Psalms as well as the gospel in the Coptic language are also recited.


    It starts at noon time. The prayers of the 3rd, 6th, and 9th hours as well as that of last hour of the day and veil prayer are recited in the monasteries.

    The liturgy ends by sunset (11th hour of the day)

     The hymn (Eie Ai IKhon) is chanted instead of (Fai Papi...) followed by (Nif senty Amen)

This is followed by 3 prostrations (Eklinomeen Taghonata...)

    + At the beginning of the liturgy the hymn “Alleluia ei ai ikhon” replaces the hymn “Alleluia fai bebi sotis” followed by “Nif centi Amen”

+ The priest performs 3 prostration while saying “Eklonomeen taghonata” then the priest reads out the “clergy’s Absolution”

+ Then the congregation replies “Ti Tei shouri” followed by “Hitiniat” the deacons recite the hymn of “Entho” & “Tin o’o’ sht” before reading St. Paul’s Epistles. Then the hymns of the Apostles, then the prayers lead to the readings of the Bible.

+The prayers of the Holy Lent are recited, and then the hymn “Jonah in the belly of the great fish for 3 days “as Jesus was in the grave for 3 days” then the hymn “Be May Romy” then the final hymn is one that suits the fast.

+The Sunday prior to “Jonah’s fast” follows the regular church readings as usual, unless it is the 5th Sunday in the Coptic month.  In that event, the readings of the Sunday prior to the lent are recited.

+ Thursday is Jonah’s fast. The rituals follow the yearly tradition.