Break-the-Fast meals after church on Fast Sunday are very common in YSA wards here in Provo. At the suggestion of a ward council member, our ward recently modified the long-standing tradition and instead we started holding a "Start-the-Fast" meal on Saturday. I wanted to share how it has been going so far, as it may be helpful for other wards.
So far, response has been very positive. Here are the things we've seen:
– Members are not skipping third-hour meetings to prepare food or set up tables.
– Because it is a Saturday, people are able to do any last-minute shopping the day of the event.
– A member is asked to give a short message at the beginning of the event (for example, about fasting). This is hard to do at the beginning of a Break-the-Fast, because everyone is hungry and focused on the food.
– Members who would otherwise forget are reminded that it is Fast Sunday, before the beginning of the fast.
There are a few things about our ward that make this work more easily:
– We all live close to each other (in the same apartment complex).
– Our ward meets 2:00–5:00 PM (which is one of the reasons we were discussing a change), so most of our members fast dinner-to-dinner rather than lunch-to-lunch. We hold our Start-the-Fast 5:00–6:00 PM, allowing members to have their evenings and afternoons free.
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