Sunday, March 28, 2010

Lazarus Saturday - Of Flowers And Bread

Here in South Wales, Palm Sunday is more colloquially known as Flowering Sunday - a reference to the tradition of visiting family graves and adorning them with flowers.  My mother has many vivid memories as a child of travelling to family graves to lay flowers on the weekend of Flowering Sunday.

I was not in the least surprised, therefore, to receive a telephone call from her on Thursday asking if we would be able to take her to the cemetery to lay flowers on the grave of my father and brother this weekend.

The weather forecast was very mixed, so on Saturday morning, during a brief period of sunshine, I raced to our lovely local florist, chose some springlike flowers, and off we went to pick up my mother and her neighbour John to go to visit the grave. The sun had gone by this stage, but at least the rain held off !

Because there were six of us, and Mum needs both her wheeled walker to get from the front step and into the house as well as her wheelchair because she struggles to walk for more than a few steps, we needed to take both our car and John's car, but we made it.  Mum was determined to walk to the grave, and after several trial runs, was able to stand briefly at the graveside and give flowers to DD3 & 4 to lay on the grave for her ...

My brother and father's grave looked lovely.

There were so many people at the cemetery, tending graves and laying flowers, as we expected. Almost every grave and memorial had fresh flowers there..............

It seemed so appropriate for Lazarus Saturday :-)

When we got home, the small fry and I made Lazarus bread, the first time we have ever done so. The dough was done in the breadmaker to save time, but we had such fun shaping it. 
 DD4 was adamant that her Lazarus had to have legs or he couldn't have walked out of the tomb, and there was no arguing with that !
My feeble efforts were on the left side.....I have all the creativity of a stunned stoat. Next year I will buy a gingerbread man cookie cutter and make them that way, LOL.

They did taste delicious, even if mine did look rather misshapen !

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elizabeth said...

Beautiful. What a life giving way to celebrate this feast. Memory Eternal.

My love and small prayers.

DebD said...

I just love the sea of flowers. Here in America there doesn't seem to be any traditions surrounding visiting one's grave. I wish there were as I think it is lovely.

DebD said...

ack! "visiting a loved one's grave"...obviously I won't be visiting my OWN grave :)

Michael said...

How beautiful! It is clear that my break from reading blogs coincided with your brother's repose. Of course I had known he had been in poor health and that this was a constant worry for you all. I'm so sorry to have missed this, and it is lovely that you have a physical place to go to.

It's my father's anniversary today but I wasn't even well enough to travel to church today (I went to the local Ukrainian church this morning instead) so I don't think I'd have made it all the way to Leigh and back. Still, my friend drove me to Vespers last night and we did the Panykhida as well, so that was good.

I love your Lazarus bread men. Seeing them laid our before baking, my first thought was "YMCA" Next time, please would you lay them out in that formation and take a photograph, specially for me? ;-)

Mimi said...

I also love the Lazarus bread men! Too cute!

And, what a wonderful tradition! Memory Eternal.

Ian Climacus said...

He he Michael re YMCA. They are wonderful.

Memory Eternal! And what a wondrous way to keep the Feast and remember loved ones. My continued prayers.