Saturday, December 23, 2006

HM Simonos Petras

At Simonos Petras, we again had Vespers at 3 PM, followed by dinner around 4 PM, and then Compline. Again, one of the priests brought out the monastery's relics for veneration -- they included St. Demetrios the Great Martyr and St. Anna, the mother of the Theotokos.

The weather took a decided turn for the cold and the wind was whipping. We retired to our rooms and I read "Mother Gavrilia -- Ascetic of Love" for quite awhile. What a book! As usual, the English translation is pretty rough, but the material is wonderful! I HIGHLY recommend this book.

Anyway, their schedule here was slightly different. As the Greek expression goes: "Every monastery has its own typikon." We had Orthros and Liturgy from 3 AM until about 7:00, followed by coffee and loukoumia. We rested for a bit, and then went to Hours from 9:00-9:30. Afterwards, we had breakfast (they called it lunch).

Here was RM's comment:

It struck me that daily monastery life is organized around the apostolic admonition to ‘pray without ceasing’. That’s why everything is salted with prayer – labor, eating, everything. It’s a life of prayer – prayer for the whole world, prayer for the rest of us. You can see it in their eyes – they are praying without ceasing.

As for the photos, the top one was taken on our walk up to the monastery. The middle one is of one of the bells just outside the katholikon (main church), which is at the very top of the monastery. The bottom one is of some of the outbuildings of the monastery.

Click here for some historical information on the monastery.

Also, we're only picking a handful of the photos. All of them are available here.

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