Remembering the survivors, lost and fallen..at the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and Pennsylvania... From what I have read, there was also one person from Ukraine that is missing and presumed dead. My grandfather was not only a Ukrainian patriot, but an American as well. He loved this country and was always thankful for the freedom he was given and the ability to have a business and raise his family in such a place. Although he also knew the atrocities that many Ukrainians suffered in their plight for freedom, I know that he would have wanted me to share this with you. SLAVA BOHU!
"9-11-2001.. a day that we won't easily forget.. an emergency call goes out to our Lord on behalf of the thousands who have died and the many who have been injured in this terrible tragedy and national emergency.. Our prayers go out to the families and the many that have been affected by this horrible time in America's history.. God IS STILL on the throne.. Let us not forget it.. and please PRAY for America!!!!! The Lord God is giving us an opportunity.... don't let this go unheeded.. ".
Special message outline by Georgia's husband, Pastor Tom Sawhook, is now available for you..
Visit "9-11 Commemoration" was preached at the one year anniversary of 9/11.
UKRAINIAN EASTER EGGS
Pysanky comes from a Ukrainian verb "pysaty" which means 'to write', so actually a pysanka is an egg that is written on.
My name is Georgia Sawhook. I am a mother of 7 and the grandmother of 13. I am married to a pastor from Fairfield, Ohio...Fellowship Bible Church and have been a pastor's wife for over 30 years. You can usually find me on the web at The Pastor's Wife's Home Page . I now have this page available with many tips and ideas and links... I hope you find it interesting and, indeed, a very beautiful ancient art.
The music you hear playing is the Ukrainian National Anthem and the yellow and blue flag is that of Ukraine, also.
On a trip to Washington, D.C. (September, 2002), I had the privilege to go to the Ukrainian Embassy.. well I got to see the outside of the embassy, let's say.. I tried to get in.. but as the man spoke to me on the speaker.. All I could say in Ukrainian was, "I don't understand what you're saying.". So needless to say, I wasn't allowed in... ha.. ha.. so anyway.. here are the pictures my son took of me while there (on the outside).
My ethnic roots go back to Ukraine. My grandfather, Michael Markiw, came to America in 1907. He was born October 27, 1890 in the village of Zdeshiew (phonetic spelling), Ukraine, near Kiev and Bila Tserkva, populated by around 50 families. As of this time, I have not been able to locate that village for genealogy purposes. Either the name has been changed or it is no longer there. My grandfather's memoirs are located on another page, if you care to read them. (March, 2003) I am proud to announce that our Grandfather's words can be found in the 2003 Macmillan/McGraw-Hill "Our Nation" fifth grade textbook on page 514. You can see photos of the book and page where this is listed on my Grandfather's memoir page listed above.
I was raised in Western Pennsylvania (Lyndora near Butler), where Grandpa and Grama Markiw settled. My father, Michael, was also from Ukrainian descent. With my father and my mother, Anne, I grew up in a Ukrainian Orthodox Church and was there for 18 years (until I married and left home)..during which time I was taught how to cook traditional Ukrainian cuisine, embroider pillowcases and aprons with Ukrainian designs, learn the Ukrainian language (dobree), Ukrainian folk dancing (hopak kolum) and also the fine art of egg decorating (pysanky). I have been doing this since I was 12 years of age, which makes that some...mmmmmmm...44 years?????
Some of my embroidery surrounded by pysanky!!
The art of making these eggs goes back many years.. but approximately the year 988 A.D. is when the Ukrainians accepted Christianity, and that's when the egg's symbols took on different meanings.. According to Ukrainian legend, people decorated eggs believing that great powers were embodied in the egg. To them, eggs symbolized the release of the earth from the shackles of winter and the coming of spring with its promises of new hope, new life and prosperity, and that as long as pysanky were decorated, goodness would prevail over evil throughout the world.
The symbols took on many different shades concerning good luck and tightening the chain on 'evil' in the world....Must not be too many made??? Eh? We should send hundreds over the Iraq.. don't you think??
Many ancient Ukrainians believed the eggs possessed magical powers and that wealth could be obtained by decorating the eggs with certain symbols. When Christianity was introduced into the Ukraine, the symbols changed and others were added to reflect Christianity, the Resurrection and a promise of eternal life..
Making pysanky became a Lenten ritual in Ukraine. A family produced many eggs during this time to be shared with friends and family and the local priest. Some were planted or placed in the fields or feeding troughs to insure a wealth or abundance in their crops and livelihood. Some were placed by the family graves or placed in the coffins out of respect for their loved one. Others were kept in the home for protection. And then, some were presented to young men as signs of affection. (Have you given a pysanky to your boyfriend lately?).
It seems that the women of the house were to make all these eggs during Lent. They even had secret recipes for their own special dyes in the villages. These were always handed down from mother to daughter. An interesting piece of information I found was that before they would begin to create the pysanky, they would pray "God help me" and they also prayed that the person who received the eggs would be given joy, good fortune, happiness and protection from harm.
The process - although looking difficult - is very simple. It is a long process and takes a steady hand, time, and patience. Once completed, you have a real sense of accomplishment.
Begin using a clean smooth white egg, a candle, beeswax, and the tool, which is called a 'kistka'. (I will give links or addresses where these supplies can be purchased.) The egg must be at room temperature. If the egg is cold or even cool, when the wax is applied, it can come right off. Just like our skin has pores to breathe, the egg also has pores. When the egg is covered with the wax, it fills the pores, therefore preserving what is underneath. Be sure your hands are washed, clean and dried. Any oils or sweat from your skin can cause the dyes not to take or smear.
The kistka is a small wooden dowel with a hole drilled through one end where a small copper funnel-like cone is inserted and wrapped secure by copper wiring. It is a conductor of the heat and the tip comes in different sizes so the lines may be fine to thick as it's put upon the egg. The beeswax is a softer wax..and is inserted into the wide part of the funnel. Then the kistka is heated by direct contact to the candle. The design begins usually by encircling a line completely around the egg and then it becomes a series of adding or connecting lines in a geometric pattern. Sometimes..flowers, and other pictures and symbols are added to the eggs (to be explained later.)
After the initial design is put on the egg with the wax, the egg being white itself is sealed by the wax. It is then put into the lightest color dye (usually yellow)...(These dyes are chemical called analine dyes and are not edible and are permanent.) When the egg is removed from the dye, everything under the wax will remain white because it is preserved by the wax on it. The next step is to fill in with wax everything you want to keep yellow...whether it is filling in an area or drawing something new on will be protected. Then it is put into the next darker shade and so on and so on until the process is done and the egg is nearly covered with wax.
Above is a sample of an egg in 7 stages .
First white with initial design written, then dipped in yellow and covered with wax..
then dipped in orange and filling in the spaces that need to be covered.
I then put it into a pink and repeated the procedure..
And then it was placed in a red and wax was filled in to preserve the red.
In the next photo..you can see that it's completely covered with wax and looks really pretty unattractive.. and black...the last dye was black and when I removed the wax, it revealed the beautiful surprise beneath (as shown in the final egg in front.
When finally complete, the egg is heated to the side of the candle until the wax begins to melt and is wiped away with a soft paper towel or clean rag to reveal the beautiful design underneath..The egg is then covered with a thin coat of varnish or polyurethene spray (I use this) ..to protect it and give it a shine. I have an egg drier made out of cardboard and many thumb tacks sticking up on which to dry them.
The best part of demonstrating this to any group, is to watch their faces when they see this egg completely covered in black wax and I melt and wipe away the wax to reveal this marvelous treasure underneath. There's always "ooooohs.." and "aaaaaaahs" to be heard.. It never ceases to amaze me that no two eggs I've made are ever totally alike. It's like a snowflake..in a way. Even if it's the same design, the dye may not color it the same or I may add or take away something little. They are certainly unique and one-of-a-kind works of art. Each egg seems to have its own personality.
My eggs are raw and will eventually dry up..some are blown out. I was not taught to blow the eggs out, but was told that the raw egg traditionally stood for the Resurrection of Jesus Christ (since making and selling the eggs on the internet, I now blow out the eggs because they would not make it with the air pressure in shipping... but the meaning remains the same.) I still have eggs from my mother that I made as a teenager.
Here they are...
Here's the newest eggs I have for 2008
Here are some meanings of the colors:
Black - Remembrance, eternity, and death.
The egg itself represents life and with the eternal cycle of creation
Especially around the Easter season..I love to share with you why it makes this such a special time....As a child, holidays such as Christmas and Easter were very important. Easter was especially so...with the onset of this holy time, I would prepare weeks ahead by making many pysanky..As the time approached, Mom would busy herself with the making of the traditional Paska (Rich Egg Bread) and Nut and Poppy Seed Rolls .
After a period of lent for 6 weeks, we would be looking forward to these tasty morsels even more. Mom would prepare for the day before Easter by not only baking these things, but ham, kolbassi (sausage), beet relish, Yayechnyk (custard) and hard boiled eggs. These would be placed in a big basket and taken to the church for the priest to bless as tradition warranted...Then after the midnight mass, we would all remember what Jesus had done for us and symbolicly encircle the church 3 times representing the three days Jesus spent in the tomb and then triumphantly enter the church remembering that on the third day, He arose from the dead, resurrected forevermore.. "Death .....where is thy sting......grave...where is thy victory??"
On Sunday morning..we would all greet one another joyously saying..."Christos Voskres"...CHRIST IS RISEN...and the response would be "Woyeesteno Voskres"...HE IS RISEN, INDEED!!! What a wonderful time and memory that brings to me...But you know...the outward, visible traditions that I kept all those years was climaxed when I found THE CHRIST of that Resurrection Morning...
Years later, when I was 23, I accepted that the Christ who died on the cross nearly some 2,000 years before...died for ME. God loved me enough to send His only precious Son, Jesus Christ to be the supreme Sacrifice to become MY Saviour!! What a difference He has made in my life.. Scripture reads.."For God so loved the world...that He gave His only begotten Son...that WHOSOEVER believeth in Him...should not perish, but have EVERLASTING LIFE."..John 3:16.
Please visit my Easter page...Happy Easter From The Sawhooks and see even more why this means everything to me.
If you have any questions at all, please do not hesitate to write. I will be glad to help any way I can.
CHRISTOS VOSKRES!!! WOYEESTENO VOSKRES!!!
Pysanky And Other Ukrainian Sites..
Pittsburgh Ukrainian Home Page is based in my home town area and has wonderful Ukrainian links, churches, pyrohi sales.. and the Ukrainian Hour Radio Program..
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