as Christ fasted. And every 33 years they used to fast the passion week separately
from the forty days. Then, the passion week time was transfered, instead of every 33
years to every year. Afterwards they joined the forty days to the passion week {see
the introduction of the katameros of lent- 5th edition page 26}. But this did not make
the fast 47 days because they ommited 1 week of lent. Thus, the fast remained 40
days including the passion week. So, the fast increased in weight not in length {see
Athanasius - the 40 paschal letters}The chatechumens used to fast 40 days before
baptism during which 40 homilies on the creed were delivered to them. After the 40
days were completed they received baptism on Baptismal Sunday {the completion of
the forty days fast of the chatechumens in preparation for baptism}. After their
baptism they became christians and they continued to fast with the church the
remaining 2 weeks (15 days) from Baptismal Sunday to Easter Sunday. This fast (55
days=40+15) is for the chatechumens only. But beleivers used to fast 40 days
only.But, did the church fasted weillingly with the chatecumens 2 weeks before lent
to support them with prayers? Quite possible. But it was not a canon.The proof of
this is found in the Lenten Katamerous as it begins with the Sunday of temptation
which comes 2 weeks after the beginning of lent.