The Fast of Jonah
Each year, the Assyrian Church of the East as well as others among the Eastern churches observe something called the Fast of Jonah. It is based on Jonah 3:6-9:
The word reached the king of Nineveh, and he arose from his throne, removed his robe, covered himself with sackcloth, and sat in ashes. And he issued a proclamation and published through Nineveh, “By the decree of the king and his nobles: Let neither man nor beast, herd nor flock, taste anything. Let them not feed or drink water, but let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and let them call out mightily to God. Let everyone turn from his evil way and from the violence that is in his hands. Who knows? God may turn and relent and turn from his fierce anger, so that we may not perish.”
This year, the fast is being observed next week from Monday to Wednesday, followed by a day of prayer and thanksgiving on February 9. The Iraqi Christian Relief Council is asking Christians of all denominations to join in the fast to seek the deliverance of our Assyrian brethren. The ICRC has put out a document on the fast explaining its origins as well as how it is observed today, as well as a portion of Church of the East liturgy that can be used in prayer. You can find it here. Feel free to pass this link, or the document, on to anyone who would like to join in raising the cause of the Assyrians before God, and thank you again for your help for these victims of genocide.
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