Wednesday, January 2, 2013
Saturday, December 8, 2012
The Russian Church is a missionary church. The first Russian missionaries to America came to Alaska over 200 years ago. The Russian Church sees the South as Alaska once was. Those in Russia as well as cradle-Orthodox in America are both impressed and joyful at our zeal, but at the same time baffled by us converts in the Bible Belt. I imagine the final product will express some of this, as well as highlight the various struggles of mission parishes--amidst distinctively delicious Southern victuals. The "world premiere" will be at our coffee hour on Sunday, December 16, but will be available January 1 online.
The producer has told us it has gone "viral" relative to the other videos they have made which include such notable speakers as Metropolitan Kallistos Ware, Archimandrite Irineii (Steenburg), and Fr Artemy Vladimirov. Perhaps it's because of the clever use of -doxy and -dixie--or maybe because it's only a few minutes long with a jaunty tune in the background.
Regardless, I think this video has the potential to undo a few stereotypes of both southerners and stodgy ROCOR priests. Well, maybe not the southerners...
Thursday, April 12, 2012
This is just a reminder that as Orthodox we should live the life that has the resurrected Christ at the center of everything that we do. We have been given the fullness of God’s revelation to mankind in Christ and His Holy Church and it is for us to live in His Holy Church. The center of the Church is Pascha and everything that we do as Orthodox comes from our understanding of Pascha.
Pascha permeates everything. When we celebrate our nameday, it’s connected to Pascha; when we celebrate our family Slava, it’s connected to Pascha; when we have a festal meal and celebration and when we have fellowship together, it’s connected to Pascha. Pascha is the source of our joy and hope and if we remove Pascha from our lives, all of these things: namedays, Slava celebrations, festal meals, etc, all become meaningless events. In other words, they become superstitions.
As Orthodox we should attend the Paschal services on Saturday night that usher forth the brightness of the empty tomb of our Lord; we should participate in the night where the darkness is eclipsed by the brightness of the Lord. Whether we have strayed away from the Church during the year or not, we are all called to be at the Paschal services and partake of the Paschal Joy. If we know Orthodox people who have fallen away from the Church, we should invite them to join us. If we have families, we should come together as a family to Pascha. In the words of St John Chrysostom that are read every Pascha night:
“You rich and poor together, hold high festival! You sober and you heedless, honor the day!
Rejoice today, both you who have fasted. And you who have disregarded the fast. The table is full-laden; feast ye all sumptuously. The calf is fatted; let no one go hungry away. Enjoy ye all the feast of faith: Receive ye all the riches of loving-kindness.”
I look forward to seeing all of you on Pascha night and greeting you with the saving words, “Christ is risen!”
With much love in our risen Lord,
Archpriest Mark Mancuso
ST ELIZABETH'S HOLY WEEK SCHEDULE
Tuesday, March 20, 2012
Their favorite story (and mine) is when Treesa, after winning a cake-baking contest against her big brother Jimmy, stuffed his losing cake in his leather church shoes because he snidely remarked he knew his cake was better than hers whether he won or not.
My beloved big brother, Jim, who is now a successful lawyer in Atlanta and a extraordinary chef, once took on his little sister in a cake baking contest. We were both in middle school and had time to kill after school before our parents got home from work. Occasionally we would make cookies, pizzas, or other miscellaneous junky and snacky foods. I don't remember how it happened but we decided to have a bake-off.
One of us was convinced he could make an amazing cake; the other knew how to read a cake recipe.
Big Brother made a two layer black-walnut cake with coconut maple brown sugar icing. Little Sister made a chocolate cake with Cool Whip wiped over the top. We decided that our mother would be the judge. After being presented with a slice from each of our cakes my mother, a natural (if not a very good) politician, said, "Well, I like Treesa's cake best because I really do like chocolate more...But Jimmy, yours is good too!"
"Do you think Treesa had to clean out her brother's stinky shoes while he watched?" YES!!
Despite the genuinely disgusting nature of this (well-deserved) punishment, Treesa did have the satisfaction of telling her brother that at least his shoes smelled more like cake instead of his stinky nasty feet.
Sunday, February 26, 2012
I really did enjoy foraging through these boxes full of often legitimately, slimy vegetables in search what a solicitous hippie might toss aside as rotten, but a humble, frugal mommy sees as cash (or slightly wilted cash) in the bank. My biggest boon was green onions, lettuce, and Swiss chard. I still can’t figure out why they threw away the lovely, crisp bunches of onions I rescued, but I won’t complain. Some of the regularly tossed items were broccoli sprouts, cilantro, parsley, sweet potatoes and kiwi. A few times I ran across a pear or a strawberry which an employee had partially eaten and tossed away. So this job of mine wasn't without its share of nastiness.
We were also given two huge salmon carcasses. I boiled one for fish stock and let the other one sit on the patio till it was positively wretched. Then I dug a big hole next to the garden and buried it there. My mom says this keeps bunnies away. Whether this helped, I'll never know. But next time, I’m going to skip the rotting fish and rely on my cats.A few weeks into Lent Rose showed up after work with three gallons of expired, raw milk and four gallons of expired whole buttermilk. Having been making tvorog at Pascha for years, this was indeed a Godsend, and it turned out lovely. I also made buttermilk cheese which turned out very nicely too.
This year the kids and I have been dumpster diving of a different sort. I have a friend whose son built his entire treehouse from discarded lumber. There are a number of new neighborhoods popping up all around us, and since hearing this we have hauled in an amazing number of boards and posts from these dumpsters. Some are only slightly warped or knotty, and most of them are treated deck lumber. But they are entirely useful for our purposes.
At one house we visited there was a long board just waiting for us. We pulled it out and pushed it carefully into the back of our van. Just then, around the corner came a man with two other long boards on his shoulder. We thought we were going to get into trouble, but he asked, "Would you like these too? And there are a few more in the back I'll go get for you." Apparently he was making the stairs for the back door and had just finished his job. We were delighted and happy to accommodate.
Now I no longer have any excuses for not building the treehouse, the chicken coop, the picnic table and the miscellaneous other things I have wanted to do since buying this house with the acre of woods at the back. I got a miter saw for Christmas. So that with my circular saw and my jigsaw should be enough for us to get started on something soon.
I have wondered, though, which were worth more before they were thrown away, the banana boxes of organic veggies or the pile of lumber.
Tuesday, February 14, 2012
Here's the recipe:
4 Cups - hot tap water
1 Fels-Naptha soap bar (I have heard you can use any kind of bar-soap, but I don't know)
1 Cup Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda*
½ Cup Borax
Grate bar of soap and add to saucepan with water. Stir continually over medium-low heat until soap dissolves and is melted.
Fill a 5 gallon bucket half full of hot tap water. Add melted soap, washing soda and Borax. Stir well until all powder is dissolved. Fill bucket to top with more hot water. Stir, cover and let sit overnight to thicken.
Stir and fill a used, clean, laundry soap dispenser half full with soap and then fill rest of way with water. Shake before each use. (will gel)
Optional: You can add 10-15 drops of essential oil per 2 gallons. Add once soap has cooled.
-Top Load Machine- 5/8 Cup per load (Approx. 180 loads)
-Front Load Machines- ¼ Cup per load (Approx. 640 loads)
*Arm & Hammer "Super Washing Soda" - in some stores or may be purchased online. Baking Soda will not work, nor will Arm & Hammer Detergent - It must must be sodium carbonate.
I'm grateful there are enough homemakers in Lexington, SC that the WalMart has all three items right next to each other on the shelf. I found this at the Duggar Family Website.