I like to buy and eat protestant/catholic altar bread sometimes. It is those small, round-shaped hosts of unleavened wheat bread, they are sold in our local protestant book-shop in package of 100 hosts (with price tag around 1.25$). Usually I eat whole package at once, it is very tasty.

I am now looking for Prosphora bread to buy and taste in the similar manner. I have found so many web pages with recipes, there are lot of prosphora stamps for sale on ebay and Amazon and any other place. But I have not found any single webpage which would offer Prosphora for sale!

Is it really prohibited to sell and buy Prosphora? Generally - there are no such rules for protestant and catholic altar bread which is not consecrated. I understand that it may be a bit more tricky with Prosphora, because is is (more or less strictly) required to use holy water for baking. But anyway - quasi-Prospohra (baked with the usual water instead of holy water) is definitely the good without any meaningful restrictions, but I can not find them either.

So - why Prosphora is not available for sale or any other transaction (e.g. against donation)?

  • 1
    As fascinating as this subject is, I'm struggling to see how this question fits in with the Christianity Stack Exchange guidelines on what sort of questions are allowed. It seems clear that anybody can bake and consume unconsecrated Prosphora bread. Perhaps there simply isn't any demand for it in the U.S.? en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prosphora
    – Lesley
    Commented Jul 23, 2020 at 11:37
  • 2
    Indeed, while I haven't had Eastern Orthodox communion wafers, most people I know would say that Protestant/Catholic wafers are anything but tasty. "Tasteless cardboard" would be a more common description!
    – curiousdannii
    Commented Jul 23, 2020 at 11:42
  • 2
    They are usually prepared, on a weekly basis, and in small quantities, by a pious elderly lady of the parish (1 Timothy 5:9-10), called precisely by that name (were one to translate it in English, it would roughly sound like prosphor[er]ess), as opposed to being mass produced on an industrial level.
    – user46876
    Commented Jul 23, 2020 at 15:37

1 Answer 1


No, prosphora is not intended to be bought or sold! Prosphora is an offering, prayerfully baked by a parishoner, never for pay. Part of the bread becomes the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ in Holy Communion, and part of the bread is set aside for antidoron and distributed after Divine Liturgy. Sometimes some of this bread is taken home and eaten by those who offered it.

How should prosphora be eaten?
Prosphora is blessed bread and should be handled and eaten with due reverence. Those eating it should take care not to drop crumbs on the floor, and the paper in which it was wrapped should be burned rather than thrown in the rubbish. Any crumbs that fall should be collected and either eaten or burned with the paper. Children eating prosphora should be carefully supervised. From ancient times it has been the custom to eat prosphora on an empty stomach, often with Holy Water or, if appropriate, a little sweet red wine.
Who may take the wrapped prosphora at the end of the service?
The wrapped prosphora may be taken by those who offered them. When this has been done, any prosphora left over may be taken by those who wish to have them.

(Link to source, Saint Panteleimon Russian Orthodox Church, West Gosford, and Saint Nicholas Russian Orthodox Church, Wallsend, Australia)

  • 1
    Your quote doesn't explicitly say that it can't be sold. I don't think it even implies as much.
    – curiousdannii
    Commented Aug 13, 2020 at 4:31
  • As far as I understood the question, the OP wants to know if it would be allowed to bake the same type of bread and sell it instead of using it in the mass. ... and of course if it would still be called "prosphora" if you would bake it for being sold. Commented Aug 14, 2020 at 18:03

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .