Day 41, attics and All Saints
[Sunday, 26 June] I seem to be a day behind getting my blog posts written. This is Sunday, the 42nd day of the sabbatical, but I still have things to say about Saturday.
In the afternoon, I asked what there were for laundry facilities were. Oddly enough, monastic laundry facilities are not as straightforward as monastic liturgies or meals. True, they have a new front-loading washing machine that can spin the clothes at up to 1200 rpm (your clothes come out clean, but tired), and a choice of powdered or liquid soap, but there isn’t a dryer. Instead of a dryer, I was shown where to hang up my clothes. Let me just describe the route: you pull your clothes out of the washer into a basket, carry them out of the old rectory, cross to the new rectory, go up the stairs to the second floor, pull down the trapdoor in the ceiling and extend the aluminum ladder, climb up the narrow ladder with your basket into the attic, and there you find the clothes-lines to dry your clothes. Verily, you never know when adventure will overtake you.
After vigil and dinner I walked again with Fr Melchizedek and we chewed over a bit more theology. He is responsible for giving the talk in English on Sunday afternoon, but he is clever and has roped me into giving part of the talk, and Fr Kyrill the Abbot has given his blessing for it, so I now have to prepare an adult ed class for the first time in weeks.
I also found out from Fr M that the old stone church I wrote about in my last post, in fact, belongs to the monastery. It is a 12th century church dedicated to All Saints, and Elder Sophrony, when he came by the property, put a simple Iconostasis in it, and the community has one of its Sunday Liturgies there. I get to concelebrate again on Sunday in that church, which I’m very much looking forward to. I don’t think I’ve ever celebrated in a 12th century church before; the oldest I’ve served in were the 13th ad 14th century churches in Moldavia & Bucovina that I visited when I was in Romania in 1999. The Liturgy in that church is late—10:15—so I’ll have plenty of time to mosey down there and take pictures.