Sunday, August 05, 2007

Last Stop: The Monastery in Serres

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On Fr Joseph and Kh Sophia’s last full day in Greece, we went to the monastery here in Panorama for Sunday morning liturgy and then, still armed with the rental car, took a drive up to the Monastery of St John the Forerunner in Serres, about 1.5 north-northeast of Thessaloniki. We’ve been there several times, since Gerontissa Efpraxia of Goldendale, WA first took us there last August, but Fr Joseph and Kh Sophia hadn’t.

On the windy mountain road from the city of Serres up to the monastery, we ran into a shepherd and his flock coming down the road (see the top photo). But we still managed to get there just before the gates closed for mid-day at 2 PM.

They fed us a nice lunch, and then we visited with our friend Sister Katherine, an American nun who has been there about 3 years.

She gave us a full tour of the monastery, including the cemetery and gardens in the back that we had never seen before. While back there, we ran into a bull which a neighbor lets wander all over. He was hanging out by a stream, and we weren’t about to tell him to leave. ( ;

You can see him in the third photo, as well as the back of the monastery (one of the many parts that is still badly in need of renovation).

The second photo is of Fr Joseph standing in the exo-narthex of the main church, and the fourth photo is of the Copelands in the courtyard of the monastery.

For all my photos from the day, click here.

We headed back to Thessaloniki in the evening. Fr Joseph and Kh Sophia packed and then the Lillies invited us for dessert.

Early Monday morning, it was off to the airport – thus ending the first installment, at least, of their Greece adventure! ( :

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