Sunday, 20 May 2018


Today is the Feast of the Pentecost (Pfingsten, previously)—coming ten days after the Feast of the Assumption (Christi Himmelfahrt, a Thursday observance that’s translated into Fathers’ Day in Germany and a long weekend)—which marks what many to believe is the foundational moment of the Church when the Holy Ghost again descends and speaks to His followers.
We have in our front garden what are known as Pfingstrosen (peony in English and named for Paeon the hapless physician’s apprentice of Asclepius who had a bit of an ego problem and did not want to see the student surpassing the teacher, and was turned into a flower by Zeus to protect him from the healer’s wrath) because they bloom around the time of movable feast—too soon but maybe they’ll open up later today.
This year Pentecost—from the Greek for the fifty(ish) day after Passover—coincides with the saint day of Lucifer of Cagliari, a fourth century bishop of Sardinia, who as a staunch orthodox and fighter against Arianism would be pleased to see that the tripartite being of the Father, Son and the Holy Ghost has endured—rather than the heretical belief that Jesus was God’s son and not eternal and coterminous with the divine. While many appreciated Lucifer’s fervent support for one, united theological front, others regarded him as an abrasive bully who did not allow freedom in interpretation. Enjoying fine strawberries on Pfingsten, which we’ll do later, is said to signal a good year for wine.