On this, the last day of October, people are celebrating Halloween, an event that has become so popular that it has even spread into Eastern and Southern Europe. Not that many know its meaning and significance. It comes from the Roman Catholic Holy Day of all Souls when the dead are remembered and prayed for. It falls on 1 November, so the day before is known as Hallowed [Holy] Eve[the day before] or, in its contracted form, Halloween. There is little that we can do about it because it has also become a secular and commercially profitable event. Instead, we should remember that we have our Parental Memorial Saturday [this coming Saturday] when we serve a memorial for all our deceased relatives and friends. I was promptly informed that I made an error in yesterday’s diary when I wrote that I used bananas for Vladika, in that they are high in carbohydrates. I should have asked Vladika for more information, and when I did, he told me that his doctor told him to refrain from four items—bread, potatoes, rice, and pasta and that, in itself , would be a great victory. One of the lowest in carbohydrate content is the popular watermelon, so I suggested that I might try making watermelon pancakes!
[Photos below: Mount Cheam in the “Coast Range” from across the East field of the monastery]