Prosfora and Playdough

Prosfora Bakers: Holy Fathers Spyridon and Nicodemus

Prosfora Bakers: Holy Fathers Spyridon and Nicodemus

I needed to bake prosfora (communion bread) today because the monks will have Divine Liturgy tomorrow. I will usually bake enough prosfora for a week at a time, sometimes I will bake enough for two weeks. Most Saturday nights I am in the kitchen baking prosfora. The temptation to bake a huge batch for the month so I don’t worry about it comes to mind sometimes. But I know it is better for me to take it a week at a time and not think of baking prosfora as a task I just need to check of my long list of to-do’s. I won’t use the mixer but kneed by hand and think of prosfora making as a privilege and not just another job to do. This helps me to look at all of life like this actually. The making of prosfora is special but that doesn’t make the rest of life not special too. Life is sacred and as Christians we have God dwelling in us at all times, all of life is sacramental.

So of course I am getting the dough going and Marina (7) comes along and asks if she can help. I instruct her to change her shirt, pull her hair back in a ponytail and wash her hands well. Once she is ready I let her knead. I asked her if she remembers what to do. She said, “Yes, I knead the dough and say the prayers.” Once she was finished she reminded me that I had promised to make playdough awhile back. Oh yes, that’s right. I did promise and kept postponing it. Well there is no time like the present so I said okay.

Of course, everyone wanted to make their own batch of dough to play with so we we moved to another table and ended up mixing up enough for everyone to have their own. What is it about dough that kids just love?! It’s like when I bake prosfora, they all want to help with the kneading.

My dining room table covered in dough and dye wasn’t what I had planned for the night but I am glad Marina mentioned it. The kids are having fun and enjoying playing with the dough and each other. The prosfora is baking in the oven and life is as it should be. I am glad my kids will have memories like this. There is bread we made baking in the oven which will become the body of Christ at Church tomorrow, and dough we made for fun. This is an ordinary, everyday, sacred, holy goodness kinda evening.

Salvador making pizza with his playdough.

Salvador making pizza with his playdough.

Marina having fun with her playdough!

Marina having fun with her playdough!

Speaking of children and prosfora baking, have ya’ll read The Woman and the Wheat by Jane G. Meyer? It is a favorite in my house. A lovely story about a woman farmer who is a communion bread baker. She grows the wheat and uses it to make flour and then bake the prosfora for church. My children have all enjoyed this story. Here is a link to the authors site with info about the book and also an audio recording of the story: http://www.janegmeyer.com/books/the-woman-and-the-wheat/

2 Comments

  1. matthew and christine says:

    this is wonderful. our children and I (we have 5) love to help make prosphora too!!! I just got our youth group together at our church and taught a prosphora class. we had a wonderful time. thank you for sharing

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