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Days of Prayer and Repentance
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Israel has its yearly Yom Kippur (day of atonement), with sacrifices for the sins of the people (Leviticus 16). In times of crisis a fast or day of prayer and repentance might also be proclaimed (Judg. 20:26; 1 Sam. 7:5–6; 31:13; Joel 1:13–14, etc.).

The Western church developed weekly fasts on Wednesday and Friday, the Lenten fast before Easter, and in a limited sense the Advent fast and seasonal Ember Days based on pagan models. The authorities might also order fasts for special occasions.

In Europe and America the Protestant churches followed this tradition. New England Pur…

Cite this page
Schmidt-Lauber, Hans-Christoph, “Days of Prayer and Repentance”, in: Encyclopedia of Christianity Online. Consulted online on 02 June 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2211-2685_eco_D30>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004169678, 20080512

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