Ss Peter and Paul Orthodox Church
Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America
Ben Lomond, California
Home / Ministries / 2019 Parish Ministries / Holy Bread Bakers

The usual schedule is as follows:

1st week of the month:  Linda Young
2nd week of the month: Valerie Pflueger
3rd week of the month:  Kathleen Elwell
4th week of the month:  Michele Auldridge
5th week of the month:  (alternate)

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Holy Bread Schedule for March 2019 *amended

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Fr. Nathan's Holy Bread Guidelines 2016-present.pdf

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“Baking is an art.  That means, just because you followed the recipe doesn't mean the bread always comes out the way you intended.  Just like singing or painting icons, it takes some practice and still there will be mistakes.  Go easy on yourself as you learn. 

Don't pour holy water in the dough or make long prayers in front of your first loaf, since you will more than likely be feeding it to the birds or wishing you could put jam on it as you eat your mistakes.  You are not in the 5th century, so you don't bake bread daily.  If you do bake every day, then your prosphora probably comes out pretty reliable.  For those of us in this century, it takes years to acquire the skill...and still we have problems.  After all, yeast is a living creature. 

Most of all, enjoy learning!  It is the Christian calling to grow in the life with God, and so try to grow as a baker and continue developing your skills all your life.  Learn from your mistakes, glorify God for your successes and never cease to relish the feel of well-kneaded dough!”    (quote taken from prosphora.org)


Links about Holy Bread

LOTS of interesting facts and info about Holy Bread:  www.prosphora.org      Please note: this site is no longer active, but still is very informative!

A link explaining why Holy Bread must be made without sugar or whole wheat flour:  http://www.prosphora.org/page4.html

 

The Monks Spiridon and Nikodim, Prosphora-Makers of Pechersk (XII), for 30 years fulfilled their obedience -- they baked prosphora. The Monk Spiridon came to the monastery during the time of the hegumen Pimen (1132-1141), already no longer young a man. The ascetic combined his work with unceasing prayer and the singing of psalms.


Recipe for making Holy Bread

Ss. Peter & Paul requires 5 loaves each Sunday, so use this recipe for the 4 loaves, then make one more (larger) loaf. (please note: there is no sugar in Holy Bread)

For 4 small loaves:

Combine in large bowl: 
3 cups very warm water
2 pkg dry yeast or 4-1/2 teas yeast

Add, mixing well until very smooth, (300 strokes or use mix master):
4 cups BREAD FLOUR
1-1/2 teas salt

Add until ready to knead: 
approx. 3+/- cups BREAD FLOUR (add just enough flour to work dough, it will be soft)

--Knead 10 minutes (or use mixmaster for ~20 minutes).
--Form dough into four smooth balls, place in pans.  (can put on baking sheet, or use individual 9" cake pans).  Remember, no grease on pans. If necessary, 
you can use pure bees wax or line pans with foil.
--Cover, let rise 30 minutes.
--S
prinkle top very lightly with flour, press seal in very firmly.  Pierce for bubbles as needed.

--Bake in preheated oven at 350 degrees for ~40 minutes.    Remove from baking sheet or pans.  Allow to cool on rack (do not let bread cool in pans!).  Use soft brush to brush off excess flour from loaves.    (consider getting yourself a small brush dedicated to only using on the holy bread)

For 1 larger loaf(use same method as above except form into one loaf,  bake at 350 for 50-55 minutes)
1-1/2 cups very warm water
1 pkg dry yeast or 2-1/4 teas yeast
4 cups BREAD FLOUR
3/4 teas salt

 


**Note:if using a combination of The Gifted Pan and a regular seal, use the same recipe as above.  Shape one loaf for the seal as noted above.  The second loaf can be shaped for use in The Gifted Pan as noted in recipe below. Bake both loaves at same time.

Recipe for Holy Bread using "Gifted Pan"
Makes 1  loaf.  Ss. Peter & Paul requires 4 loaves each Sunday.

Combine in large bowl: 
1-1/2 cups very warm water
1 pkg dry yeast or 2-1/4 teas yeast
Add, mixing well until very smooth, (300 strokes):
2 cups BREAD FLOUR
1 teas salt
Add until ready to knead: 
approx. 2+ cups BREAD FLOUR

--Knead 20 minutes, form into smooth ball. Cover with cloth, let rise until double, about 30 minutes.
--After dough has risen, punch down and let rest for a few minutes.
--Pinch off approx 1/3 of dough.  Knead, popping air bubbles with toothpick, then form into a ball with a very smooth surface.   Flatten with rolling pin.
--Place the smooth side down into The Gifted Pan and press firmly into the seal in order to make a more distinct impression.
--Lightly moisten top of the dough with water (to allow layers to adhere).
--Take the remaining dough, knead, pop air bubbles and flatten as above.
--Place into The Gifted Pan and press down for an even surface, spreading out to walls of pan.
--Bake in preheated oven at 325 degrees for approx. 60 minutes.

When it is done, immediately remove from pan and let cool on rack.


The Prosphoran Seal

The square piece in the center is the piece that will be changed into the Body of Christ; it is called the Lamb of God. It has the letter ICXC NIKA.  It means Jesus Christ Conquers

See the large triangular piece? This represents the Virgin Mary

See the nine smaller triangles? These pieces commemorate the angels, prophets, apostles and saints of the church.

During a service before liturgy starts, the priest breaks the bread and the seal and prays for the different people represented by the seal; the Theotokos, the prophets, angels… The priest also prays for all those living whose names have been submitted to him. Then he prays for all those who have passed away whose names have been submitted to him. Even if they are Orthodox Christians or not.

Weekly Services

Please check monthly calendar for full listing of Lenten services

Sunday
8:20 am Orthros
9:30 am Divine Liturgy
10:30 Church School

Tuesday
6:00 am Orthros

Wednesday
6:00 pm Vespers
(Paraklesis 4th Wed)

Thursday

9:00 am Orthros

Saturday
6:00 pm Great Vespers

7:00 pm Compline

Great Lent:
REMEMBER ME, O LORD, WHEN THOU
COMEST INTO THY KINGDOM!

O Lord and Master of my life, take from me the spirit of sloth, meddling, lust of power and idle talk. But give rather the spirit of chastity, humility, patience, and love to Thy servant. Yea, O Lord and King, grant me to see my own sins and not to judge my brother, for Thou art blessed unto ages of ages. Amen. (The Prayer of St. Ephrem the Syrian)

 

Sunday of Orthodoxy (March 17)

Scripture Readings
Monthly Calendars

March 2019*amended-see yellow circles

2019 Fasting Calendar

Announcements

A schedule of Great Lent services and a booklet explaining fasting and Great Lent are available in the narthex

SIGN-UP now for:   Antiochian Women Lenten Retreat - April 12-14,  Frazier Park


Stewardship supports Ss Peter & Paul Antiochian Orthodox Church (online donations are safe & secure)

Reverend Father Nathan Thompson - Priest
Ss Peter & Paul Antiochian Orthodox Church
P.O. Box 458       
(9980 Highway 9)
Ben Lomond, CA 95005
Email: 
pastorssppaoc@gmail.com

Phone: (831) 336-2228
Office Email:  ChurchOffice@ssppaoc.org

Send mail with questions or comments about this web site to:   webmaster@sspeterandpaulorthodox.com