OCU head may allow easing or abolishing fasting for New Year feast

Epifaniy Dumenko. Photo: a screenshot of the “Novoe Vremya” YouTube video channel

The OCU will consider easing the fast for the New Year before switching to the celebration of Christmas on December 25, Dumenko said.

The head of the OCU Epifaniy Dumenko said in an interview with Radio Svoboda that his religious structure may consider easing or cancelling the Christmas fast on December 31 and January 1 – during the New Year celebrations.

Explaining his position, he said this is the tradition followed by some churches. "There is a tradition in some Local Orthodox Churches that on these two days, December 31 and January 1, the Church may ease the fast or cancel it altogether for two days. The Church, as a loving mother, can act leniently," Dumenko said.

He noted that easing or abolishing the fast could be subsequently lifted when the OCU starts celebrating Christmas on December 25. "If it is a joint decision of the Council, we can ease the fast for those days until we switch to the New Julian calendar so that there is no violation," said the head of the OCU.

As reported, the head of the OCU believes that Ukraine will start celebrating Christmas on December 25 within 10 years.

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