submitted by George Poulos on 15.05.2004
FORTY-DAY MEMORIAL SERVICE AFTER DEATH
....It is traditional for the family to sit in the front row of the church before the icon of Christ during the service. The family provides a wheat dish called kollyva, a symbolic custom based on [Biblical scripture]:
Truly, truly, I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit. John: 12:24
The Christian message of everlasting life and hope is symbolically represented by the white mound of kollyva on a tray bearing a cross and the deceased's initials in Greek. The tray rests on a small table with candles in front of the church ikonostasion during the memorial service. After church the family shares the kollyva with the rest of the congregation.... [Recipe provided on page 149]
From, A Guide to Greek Traditions and Customs in America. Second Edition. by Marilyn Rouvelas. 2002.
411 pages, hardbound, notes, illustrations, and bibliography.
ISBN #09638051-1-8 US$30 retail.
For information contact:
Nea Attiki Press, P. O. Box 34008, Bethesda, MD 20827.
In Australia, the book is available from
Peters of Kensington,
57 Anzac Parade
Ring (61 2) 9662 1099
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