Today we have one of the most important Orthodox Holidays: Saviour’s Transfiguration (Праздник Преображения Господня), popularly known in Russia as the Apples Feast (Яблочный спас/Yablochnyi Spas):
This important event in Christ’s life on earth occurred not long before His Crucifixion. In order to sustain His disciples’ faith when they would see Him suffering, the Lord first showed them His divine glory. Taking along three of His disciples – Peter, John and James, the Lord ascended a high mountain, called Mount Tabor, to pray. While Christ was praying, the disciples fell asleep from fatigue. When they awoke, they saw that Christ was transfigured: His face shone like the sun, while His garments had become radiant as light. Two prophets – Moses and Elias – appeared to Him in their heavenly glory and spoke with Him about His forthcoming suffering and death. Seeing all this, the disciples’ hearts were filled with extraordinary joy. When they saw that the prophets were about to withdraw from Christ, Peter, trying to hold them back, cried out: “Lord! It is good for us to be here; if You wish, we will make three tents here: one for You, one for Moses and one for Elias.”
Suddenly a bright cloud enveloped them and out of the cloud they heard the voice of God the Father: “This is My beloved Son, in Whom I am well pleased; listen to Him!” In great fear the disciples fell to the ground.
Christ came and touched them, and said: “Arise and do not be afraid.” The disciples arose and saw Christ in His usual appearance. Through His glorious Transfiguration the Lord also showed us how mankind will appear in future life, in the Heavenly Kingdom, and how our entire world will then be transfigured.
In Russian folklore the feast of the Second Saviour is associated with the custom of eating apples and other fruits that had been blessed in church, and with the following events in nature:
- Ripe apples are picked on this day and blessed in church.
- The nights are becoming cold.
- The cranes begin to fly away.
It is customary not to eat any fruits or vegetables before the Second Saviour, except cucumbers.
On the feast of the Second Saviour even a beggar will eat an apple.Read more about all Three Saviours here.
Today we watch two videos:
Blessing of First Fruits” for the year. Transfiguration
This is a very unique video: how they celebrate Saviour’s Transfiguration in the Church of Our Saviour’s Transfiguration. This video is full of light: in the nature and in the faces of kids (in Sunday’s Church School), in voices of pray and in the site of the Church what was raised from ruins! (This long video is in Russian but we hope it will be interesting for you!)
Best wishes and since we are allowed to eat apples now please don’t forget “An apple a day keeps doctor away!”
Svet and Kyle
comments always welcome.