MOSCOW, March 8. /TASS/. The Shrovetide also known as the Maslenitsa or the Pancake Week, the last week before the Great Lent in the Russian Orthodox Church, kicks off on March 8.
The Church dedicates the last Sunday before the Shrovetide to reminiscence of the Day of Judgment. "The Judgment of God awaits each of us and each of us has less and less time before this Judgment," Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia Kirill said in his Sunday message to believers. "That is why the Lent is granted to us, the time of penitence and pray, because there can be no penitence without pray. At the same time, we are able to obtain the grace of God and change ourselves, that is, to give the complete penitence - the change in our thoughts, in our heart, the change of our will. And, probably the most important, to obtain through this the grace and mercy of our Lord to us, to sinful and unworthy people," the Patriarch noted.
Each service during the last week before the Great Lent is called to prepare believers for fasting.