An unworthy Deacon, named for the brother of God: James, striving to "work out his salvation with fear and trembling" within the Tradition (paradosis) of the Eastern Orthodox Faith. It is a strange and marvelous journey, and I am accompanied by the fourfold fruit of my fecundity. My wife, the Matushka or Diaconissa Sophia, is my beloved partner in the pursuit of Theosis, and she ranks me in every way.
Since arriving in Uganda I've made it my custom to pray some Reader's services for my own spiritual benefit (of course), but also to help me from being a blabbering out of practice "fresher" by the time I get home. (Fresher is a sort of joking term teasingly applied to new med students here at Makerere University).
It has been a tremendous blessing to me to go through some of the hours each day and to go through Vespers as best as I can. And each time I pause to remember my wife and kids back home...I miss them and I am a lucky man to have them miss me in return.
I'm told Valentine's Day here in Uganda has only been celebrated since the 90's. One of the techs in the lab, while cursing his "requirement" to purchase flowers, told me today that it all started when a single radio DJ had to go and bring the western holiday to everyone's attention. I told him I had little sympathy for anyone who is currently able to embrace their beloved.
In any event: though the geographical context is reversed, I was reminded of this song today and it naturally fell right in line with the activities taking place inside my humble little Ugandan Chapel here. For Valentine's day it is the best that I can offer when half the world lies between us.
I miss you...and between my mournful visits to see my "homesick counter"...I pray for you.