Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Пасха 2009

Our Easter, in pictures

The night before, we went to bed with this:

Solemn vigil

And woke to find:
The stone rolled away, and the tomb empty!
What a wonderful way to start a day of celebrating the resurrection!  I love this series of photos of Asya discovering the empty tomb, too.

Raia was so excited to see the butterflies that she had made hanging on the cross. I don't think she picked up on the new life symbolism, but she noticed the beauty.  We read the last part of Lenten Lights, and then had breakfast.

"Христос Воскрес!"

"Воистину Воскрес!"

It's a real holiday when you have cake for breakfast.

Then we headed off to church. I took photos on the way. Then we got to church:


Jaan saying his poem
He was hilarious!  They handed him the microphone, and he just stood there, with it hanging from his hand, whispering to me, "What?  What do I do?"  I told him to say his poem, but he just stared at me blankly.  The babushka next to me said, "Lift the microphone and say your poem!"  He listened to her, and said it perfectly.

Sunday school craft
Raia and Asya really enjoyed this! I wish I had also gotten photos of Asya in her frilly dress, sitting at the table, smearing glue with the big kids.

After church we had to wait around for a while. We enjoyed just being there, being outside. Asya had to lie flat on the ground, in her dress, to watch "babies" (ants).

New puppy at church!

Our ride finally came to get us and we went out to the. . .

Youth picnic

Catching "babies"
There were so many of them! Little beetles of all different kinds everywhere!

Asya was ready to eat, long before the food was ready.

Raia and Dasha

Jaan working hard

From there we all went to a village nearby, where one of the church families has their dacha, and had tea there.

This doesn't even show half of how beautiful it was.
After that, it was just the ride home, before falling into bed, exhausted.

We thoroughly enjoyed the whole day of celebrating our Saviour's resurrection with our church and friends!  Monday night, when we prayed before bed, I asked Jaan what he wanted to say, and right off he wanted to thank God for the wonderful holiday the day before.

And beyond photos, at little commentary:
We have been doing a lot of comparing of how similar and different Easter in Russia and Ukraine is.  In both countries it's the main church holiday of the whole year.  Just like it is all the world over, it's the one day when everyone who considers himself even close to Christian goes to church.  The general way people celebrate in both countries is almost exactly the same.  What's different is that here is seems to be really a family holiday.  In Russia, it's only something you go to church for (or, more often, stay home to watch the church service on TV).  Our church always had tea or even a meal and lingered together for the whole day.  Here everyone hurried home after church for big family celebrations.  The baking and partying here are a much bigger deal than in Russia!  I never saw the thousands of kulich all over the market, or the supplies for decorating eggs and cooking the proper foods in Russia! (They don't say kulich here either. It's called paska, but it's exactly the same.)  Some people make them in Russia, of course, and there are a few for sale, but not like this.  Now I understand why Tanya had to have their Ukrainian relatives send sprinkles and such.  Oh, and Easter baskets--by the Orthodox definition, not the American fake grass and candy idea--are everywhere.  I don't know that I ever even saw them in Russia, but here people were hurrying around with them all day.  Anyway, Easter Day was wonderful for us!



Baba Julie said...

Wonderful!! And, I like the new look for the blog! Thanks for sharing! Love to you all!! Baba Julie

katherine said...

Your commentary is really interesting to me. I couldn't figure out why a woman at our parish from Ukraine handed me a beautiful Kulich and told me that she baked a Pascha for our family. Now it makes sense.
How wonderful to experience Orthodoxy in different cultures.

Christ is Risen!

Phyllis said...

Yes, Katherine, it's really confusing, because we speak Russian here, so the holiday is still Пасха, but the cakes are паска. I asked people, if these are paski, then what are kulichi? And they said, "We don't know" or "Kulich is completely different." So I came home and looked it up: paska is just Ukrainian for kulich. :-)

Actually, I had kind of figured it out on the playground, since children in Russia make kulich in the sand box, but children here make paska.

He is Risen indeed!

Anonymous said...

That's very interesting about kulich and paska. I always thought that Ukrainians named it after the holiday, but apparently not. :-)