Four times a year, the Church sets aside the Ember Days. These quarterly periods take place around the beginnings of the four natural seasons. These days are spent fasting and partially abstaining (voluntary since the 1983 Code of Canon Law) in penance, and are days favoured for priestly ordinations, prayers for priests, First Communions, almsgiving and other penitential and charitable acts, and prayers for the souls in Purgatory. Because of the days’ focus on nature, they are also traditional times for women to pray for children and safe deliveries.

The Ember Days of September fall on Wednesday, September 19, Friday, September 21, and Saturday, September 22.