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Lesson Transcript

Hello, and welcome to the Culture Class- Holidays in Greece Series at GreekPod101.com. In this series, we’re exploring the traditions behind Greek holidays and observances. I’m Michael, and you're listening to Season 1, Lesson 15- Monday of the Holy Spirit. In Greek, it's called [Δευτέρα του Αγίου Πνεύματος].
Monday of the Holy Spirit falls on the day following Pentecost, and therefore is celebrated fifty days after Easter. Although it is based on the same events as the Pentecost, Churches have divided the two holidays, so as to sufficiently honor the Holy Spirit by giving it its own day of recognition. The Holy Spirit bears its importance through being one of the three manifestations of the Holy Trinity.
In this lesson, we will see the various customs that occur on the Monday of the Holy Spirit.
Now, before we get into more detail, do you know the answer to this question-
When and in what form did the Holy Spirit reappear on Earth?
If you don't already know, you’ll find out a bit later. Keep listening.
For the Greek Church, this day is important because it is the day that the Holy Spirit descends upon people, orienting them toward the greater good. The Greek customs occurring on the Monday of the Holy Spirit are many and varied. On the island of Limnos, for example, people gather herbs like chamomile and sage from the fields, believing that, if harvested on this day, they will possess special therapeutic properties. In the olden days, it was believed that this Monday was a "bad time," or in Greek [κακιά ώρα], during which bad things could be expected to happen. For this reason, people were extremely careful on this day, avoiding potentially dangerous situations like going near the sea, for example.
In Smiksi of Grevena, the women give out pies, sweets, and chickpea pulp bread with herbs. In Alibista of [Αιτωλοακαρνανία], a morning festival or [πρωινό πανηγύρι] is organized. After the Divine Liturgy or [Θεία Λειτουργία], everyone lines up in front of the itinerant butcher, who carves roasted lamb using a cleaver. Many bring pies [πίτες], cheeses [τυριά], and other foods along with them to complement the meal. The origins of this festival have been lost over time, though many people believe it may have developed out of an ancient custom related to the rising of the sun and the worship of the god Apollo or in Greek [Απόλλωνας].
In Volakas of Drama, young people with decorated horses and mules start heading for the chapel of the Holy Spirit in the morning, starting the trek from the village square, and climbing up Falakro Mountain. This is followed by praising hymns and a feast, which features the Greek food [κουρμπάνι], a traditional food made from boiled young goat with greens. Afterwards, everyone returns to the village square with the priest on a horse, and the religious icon in front.
For many, the holiday of the Holy Spirit means one thing in particular—a three-day weekend, or in Greek [τριήμερο]! Because this day is a holiday for civil servants and schools, many people take the opportunity to go on trips, or simply to catch up on rest.
Now it's time to answer our quiz question-
If you remember well, we talked about this in one of the previous lessons. On the day of Epiphany, it’s believed that people saw the Holy Spirit in the form of a dove or [περιστερά], during the baptism of Christ in the Jordan River, carried out by St. John the Baptist.
How did you like this lesson? Did you learn anything interesting?
Are there many holidays that fall on a Monday in your country?
Leave us your comments on GreekPod101.com, and we'll see you in the next lesson.


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Monday at 06:30 PM
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Are there many holidays that fall on a Monday in your country?

GreekPod101.com Verified
Thursday at 04:24 AM
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Hi Elisabeth,

Yes, you are right. Not all countries have that.

Good for the Norwegians and the Greeks that have these 3-day weekends :)


Team GreekPod101.com

Wednesday at 01:42 AM
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We also have a three day weekend in Norway, including the Whit Monday (Pentecost Monday). I don’t think many countries have that any more. We also have Easter Monday off