Holy Supper is a tradition of Slavic Orthodox Christians in central 
Europe and the western parts of Russia. It apparently is a practice 
introduced from Italy.
Holy Supper is a traditional lenten meal on the Eve of the Nativity 
of Our Lord (Christmas Eve). Since Christmas is preceded by forty 
days of fasting, the Holy Supper is the last meal of the fast. The 
twelve fasting foods usually served are: barley, honey, stewed 
prunes, pierogi, sauerkraut, potatoes, lima beans, garlic, Lenten 
bread, mushroom soup and salt. The meal begins with the singing of 
the Christmas troparion (a hymn) and the lighting of a candle placed in the center of the table. The candle symbolizes the star of 
Bethlehem.
The bread is then broken by the father of the house and given to 
everyone present. This symbolizes Christ at the Last Supper. The 
foods range from bitter to sweet to remind us of the bitterness of 
life before Christ was born and the sweetness of life which comes 
after His birth. The number 12 symbolizes the twelve apostles. When 
the meal is finished all attend the Christmas Eve vigil.