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Pre-lent Festivities #91729 01/02/05 04:41 AM
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Mrs. H. Offline OP
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Happy New Year! Was just curious what other churches do (if anything) in the way of a "last fling" before Lent starts (Feb. 7). I've heard some churches do a Fasengi (Hungarian pronounced "fa-shang-ee") after Sunday liturgy with a potluck luncheon and a DJ. Then everyone goes back into church for a Lenten Service. Does anyone do anything and, if so, what?

Re: Pre-lent Festivities #91730 01/02/05 05:26 AM
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The youth group prepares and serves dinner on Meat Fare Sunday. It works good for the parrish and the youth group, since it is a fund raiser for their convention trip. Everyone enjoys Kibbee or Greek Chicken, the last to see the meat for lent.

Then the true celebration begins with Forgiveness Vespers. I can't think of any greater way to begin the glorious Lent of the Church.

Pani Rose

Re: Pre-lent Festivities #91731 01/02/05 01:29 PM
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theophan Offline
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If the Byzantine Catholic Churches are moving to the Julian calendar, it'll be a few more weeks beyond February 7th before you have any pre-Lenten festivities.

BOB

Re: Pre-lent Festivities #91732 01/02/05 08:26 PM
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In Greek Orthodox churches in the U.S., a 'carnivale' or 'apokreatiko' party is usually held for all the families of the church the weekend right before the onset of Lent. There is usually lots of food, music and dancing.

In Greece, this is the time for dressing in costume for adults and children alike, and for parades and wholesome partying..(UNLIKE the parades of 'Mardi Gras' in New Orleans mad )

Alice

Re: Pre-lent Festivities #91733 01/02/05 10:16 PM
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Alice Offline
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OOPS...I don't know if it was clear, but--the 'angry' emoticon was aimed at the decadent partying of New Orleans and NOT the wholesome pre Lenten partying in Greece.

Re: Pre-lent Festivities #91734 01/02/05 10:39 PM
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Alice writes of the wholesome pre-Lenten parties in Greece. I wonder when Alice last spent Clean Monday in Athens. It has become - incredibly but truly - the quasi-official day for the first barbecue of the season. I won't even report the number of parties I was invited to during the first few days of that week when I was last in Athens for it not many years ago.
Also of interest along the same line - on Clean Monday I was invited to lunch at one of the hotels by a friend in the church-goods business. I tried to beg off by pointing out that on that day one really should fast strictly. My friend assured me that the the hotel kitchen was well aware of this and I need not worry. He was right; the hotel had two buffets in the same restaurant - one the regular buffet and the other the, ah, "xerophagy" buffet which, I can (to my shame) assure you was irresistibly delicious but had no relationship to abstinence. It was all kosher food, so to speak - but a diet of the most luxurious shellfish is not fasting as ordinary people understand the term. [Again, I am ashamed to admit that I partook fully of this feast, and I shall not bother to list all the usual excuses I might offer.]
Wishing everyone a good Clean Monday, albeit a couple of months early,

Incognitus

Re: Pre-lent Festivities #91735 01/03/05 12:11 AM
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Isn't Kibbee raw ground lamb with olive oil poured over it? I remember some Lebanese ladies in my hometown who made this. Although nothing is quite so delicious as the stuffed grapeleaves with ground lamb. My mom makes them every summer and they are quite a treat!

Dan

Re: Pre-lent Festivities #91736 01/03/05 12:39 AM
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Irish Melkite Offline
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Quote
Originally posted by Danj:
Isn't Kibbee raw ground lamb with olive oil poured over it? I remember some Lebanese ladies in my hometown who made this. Although nothing is quite so delicious as the stuffed grapeleaves with ground lamb. My mom makes them every summer and they are quite a treat!
Danj,

Yes, although when it is being served raw, it's usually referred to as kibbee nayyeh or nayee or nayeh (all versions pronounced ni-yeh - with a long i sound). It can be hard to get these days, except homemade or in very traditional Middle East restaurants, as a lot of folks are leery about consuming uncooked meats.

When folks say "kibbee" alone, they are generally speaking of baked kibbee (kibbee sineyee), which is usually cooked in the shape of small sort of elliptically-shaped balls, a bit pointy at the ends, although it can be baked in sheets as well.

Stuffed grapeleaves are great biggrin , whether made with lamb or vegetarian-style.

Many years,

Neil, hungry now biggrin


"One day all our ethnic traits ... will have disappeared. Time itself is seeing to this. And so we can not think of our communities as ethnic parishes, ... unless we wish to assure the death of our community."
Re: Pre-lent Festivities #91737 01/03/05 01:52 AM
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Alice Offline
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Alice writes of the wholesome pre-Lenten parties in Greece. I wonder when Alice last spent Clean Monday in Athens.
Dear Incognitus,

No need to be so cynical! frown

I thought we were friends. wink

I was last in Athens on Clean Monday when I lived there twenty-three years ago...a long time ago, I admit.

At that time, the pass time was for families to go out and fly kites and to buy 'lagana' a special lenten bread, and eat lenten foods. Clean Monday was a day off. This was also the same experience my husband had there ten years ago.

I will, however, take your word for it that things have changed.

In the city of Patras, the costumed parades for 'apokries' (carnivale) are infact still quite wholesome in comparison to New Orleans.

Recently, I have noticed that some affluent and cosmopolitan Athenians, especially in the younger to middle aged age group, think that fasting for Lent is a 'quaint' custom, and they have admitted that American Orthodox of Greek background in the U.S. in the same age groups are much more religious and observant.

Alice

Re: Pre-lent Festivities #91738 01/03/05 04:12 PM
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Dear Theophan, is the Byzantine Catholic Church moving to the Julian calendar? I haven't heard a word about it. Just checked our church calendar and the calendar from the link on this site's home page and our lent begins Feb. 7. Do you know something we don't? <smile>

Re: Pre-lent Festivities #91739 01/04/05 12:17 AM
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Michael B Offline
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Happy New Year to all.
Christ is Born!
Glorify Him!

Our parish typically holds a Brunch on Cheesefare Sunday, with fresh homemade (by the parish) kielbasa, eggs, potatoes o'brien, kolachie, etc., and a very large platter of cheese, to provide a "send off" before we start the great fast the following Monday. It is a very popular and successful parish event for everyone. The giftshop overflows with chotkis, and many copies of a book to help with meditation and prayers for Lent.

The brunch really brings a fellowship of love and support to all the members of our Church.

Michael (a sinner)

Re: Pre-lent Festivities #91740 01/04/05 12:28 AM
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I don't even want to think about Lent, or fasting, or anything related for a couple of months. I had enough of all that before Christmas. It's party time biggrin

Re: Pre-lent Festivities #91741 01/04/05 12:39 AM
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Alice Offline
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I don't even want to think about Lent, or fasting, or anything related for a couple of months. I had enough of all that before Christmas. It's party time biggrin
HEHEHE! cool

Re: Pre-lent Festivities #91742 01/04/05 01:18 AM
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Neil,
Thanks for the clarification. This year with all the rain here in PA, the grapeleaves were "sparse" many were marked with black from all the rain, but we had a small batch to make. The ground lamb is tough to get also, had to put in a special order at Wegman's 3 weeks before my mom planned on making them. But, oh yes, the end result is great. I've never had the meatless version, except at a greek wedding in 1996 in Cleveland OH, they had the grapeleaves filled with rice and dill only, is this the same as you are referring to?

Dan (who has visions of grapeleaves dancing in my head)

Re: Pre-lent Festivities #91743 01/04/05 07:52 AM
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Dear Alice,
I certainly wasn't trying to insult you - I was merely stunned by the contrast between your report and what I've experienced in Athens. I hasten to add that (unlike many tourists) I enjoy Athens immensely, so much so that I seldom go anywhere else in Greece. I'm not surprised to learn that in other parts of the country, fasting still goes on.
As in so many places, it's often a matter of finding what one wants and enjoying it. It is certainly possible to find traditional Greek piety in Athens. But it does seem to have been losing ground for the past couple of decades (I can remember the days when beggars in the street would chant hymns while requesting alms - they are now more likely to play noisy tapes of rock music).
One year a friend and I were visiting, and an Athenian friend took us to dinner on Meat-Fare Sunday. We went slightly north of the city, to a simple and very pleasant restaurant which specializes in roast lamb. Utterly delicious - there was an entire lamb for the 3 of us, and we were about ready to bleat by the end of the meal, but I would gladly rush to Athens for another round!
Then of course there is Greek pastry, concerning which I could write a book. It's not so easily found in these northern climes.
Note for Slavs and Slavophiles spending Holy Week in Athens: if you are young and muscular, go to the market just below Omonia and fight your way through the huge crowds to find the good Polish butchers, whereupon you can buy some really excellent kolbassy, Polish ham, and whatever else strikes your fancy for the Paschal table. Then make sure you find a priest who is willing to bless the Paschal foods and knows how to do it (the prayers are in the Euchologion but fell out of use in Greece centuries ago). Nowadays there are good-sized Slav communities in Athens so there shouldn't be any difficulty; again it's only a question of looking in the right places.
But this is all making me hungry. Again, my apology to Alice; I really wasn't seeking to be offensive.
Incognitus

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