However, it is absolutely necessary that he who keeps outward fasts also fasts spiritually, that is, he who fasts and prays outwardly must at the same time avoid all sin and unrighteousness and be charitable and diligent in every good work.
A short exhortation by the abbot of Holy Trinity Monastery, Archimandrite Luke, on the eve of Great Lent (Feb. 5/18, 2018) on the constant struggle necessary to change our life in conformity to the Gospel commandments.
We begin the Great Fast with the command of our Saviour to forgive one another in order to receive from our Lord complete forgiveness of our sins. But this is only the beginning.
By comparison to Great Lent, the Nativity fast may leave us feeling liturgically unmoored. But if we delve into the services of this season, we will find a great wealth of liturgical texts and commemorations that are beautifully and intrinsically tied to the coming birth of our Saviour.