The Apostles Fast

(2016: June 27 through June 29)

The Apostles Fast is one of the four Canonical Fasting Seasons in the Church year. Like the Nativity fast, the Apostles fast is more lenient. The length of the fast varies from year to year, depending on the date of Pascha and the ensuing 40 day celebration of the resurrection. The Church does not abbreviate the 40 day celebration. The fast can be as short as 0 days, if Pascha falls on May 3 or later, or it can be as long as 29 days, if Pascha falls between April 4 and May 2. When Pascha is later in the year, the fast is shorter. When Pascha is earlier, the fast is longer. We observe the traditional fasting discipline (no meat, poultry, eggs, dairy, fish, wine and oil) during the fast, which lasts from the Monday following All Saints Sunday through June 28th. Generally speaking, there is dispensation for wine and oil on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and for fish, wine, and oil on Saturdays and Sundays. Here are the guidelines:






beef, chicken, pork, turkey, elk, veal, lamb, deer, rabbit, buffalo, and so forth

milk, eggs, cheese, butter, yogurt, cream, and so forth

fish with a backbone (not including shrimp, octopus, shellfish, squid, or other seafood.

(some include all types of alcohol in this category)

(some include all types of oil in this category)



Saturdays and Sundays. (some permit fish daily except Wednesdays & Fridays)

(except Wednesdays and Fridays

(except Wednesdays and Fridays.

Abstinence includes refraining from the food and drink mentioned above as well as smoking. The Eucharistic Fast means abstaining from at least the previous midnight for communing at a morning Liturgy.


The purpose of fasting is to focus on the things that are above, the Kingdom of God. It is a means of putting on virtue in reality, here and now. Through it we are freed from dependence on worldly things. We fast faithfully and in secret, not judging others, and not holding ourselves up as an example.


Do Not Fast