Book review: Toward the Endless Day – I love France 183

 Toward the Endless Day:
The Life of Elisabeth Behr-Sigel


Toward the endless day

Author: Olga Lossly
Translator: Jerry Ryan
Publisher: University of Notre Dame Press
Release date: 2010
“Vers le jour sans déclin”
was first released in French in 2007
Pages: 344
ISBN: 9780-268-03385-9
Genre: Nonfiction/
History – Byzantine & Orthodox
Religion & Theology – Christianity


Visit the publisher’s page for Table of Contents, Reviews, and  Excerpt



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Until 1582, all Christians used to celebrate Easter  on the same date. That year, a new calendar was adopted in Western countries, leading then Catholics and others to calculate the date of Easter in a different way from the Orthodox, who kept to the original calculation.
Henceforth, some years, in 2017 for instance, Easter is celebrated by all on the same date.
This year 2016, the Orthodox Pascha will be celebrated on May 1st! Therefore, as our Catholic brothers and sisters are almost done with Lent, today is actually the very first day of Lent for Eastern Orthodox Christians.
I’d like then to wish a Blessed Great Lent to all Eastern Orthodox Christians, on this “Clean Monday“.
This is another interesting difference: whereas the beginning of Lent is on Ash Wednesday for Catholics, when they receive on the forehead a dark mark made of ashes to remind them of death, the Great Orthodox Lent starts with Clean Monday (Καθαρά Δευτέρα): along with a service of mutual forgiveness the day before in Church (Forgiveness Sunday), they are invited today, through a strict fast, to start this blessed liturgical time with a “katharsis”, a cleansing of their conscience and renewed love.

I chose this day to present to you a unique person, in fact the most important woman Orthodox theologian of the 20th century. She happens to have lived most of her life in France. Unfortunately, she is not too well known in the United States, not even among Orthodox Christians, even though Towards The Endless Day, her biography, was already translated and published in English six years ago!
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My favorite Lenten recipe: Lentil burgers

Eastern Orthodox are one of the few, or the only?, surviving species of Christians who still take the fast very seriously, and I’m not only talking about monks and nuns, but about lay people as well.

We have several fasting periods during the year, the longest one being during the Great Lent, the weeks preparing to Pascha, that is, the celebration of Christ’s Resurrection.

We enter progressively into this fasting period, first by fasting of meat a week ahead, and then, it’s: no meat, no fish, no dairy, no egg, for 40 days.

Conclusion: you really need to be creative to provide healthy meals with enough proteins and nutrients.

I have shared this fantastic recipe with some friends, but more ask for it, and the page is totally gone from the internet, I cannot even access the cached copy!
There are lots of Lentil burgers recipes out there, but I know for sure this one works really well

Thank God I had printed it.

So here it is, enjoy, it is so easy to make, totally Lenten, and so very good:

Makes 8 burgers – or more if you form small patties, which I tend to do.

  • 1 cup of lentils.  I also tried with red lentils, I thought it was even better
  • 4 cups of water
  • 1-1/2 cups of regular oats
  • 3/4 cup mild salsa [that’s what makes everything stick together]
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt = totally unnecessary and not as healthy
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  1. Place the lentils in  4 cups of water
  2. Bring to a boil
  3. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 mn or until done
  4. Pour off the excess of water
  5. Allow to slightly cool
  6. Add oats through pepper to the lentils
  7. Mix thoroughly
  8. Place in the refrigerator and allow to cool completely

Next day if you wish:

  1. When ready to make, scoop out 1/2 cup of servings or less
  2. Form into a patty
  3. Place on a parchment paper lined baking sheet
  4. Bake at 400 degrees for 30 mn
  5.  Flip the patties
  6. Bake for 15 more mn

They are good warm or cold.

I usually make a lot and freeze some. They are also good eaten in a pita with salad leaves. Or any other creative way you may come up with!