Through the grace of God the weather began to clear and, after a good night’s rest and warm shower, we returned to Dokhiari to regroup.

Thankful to the Theotokos for her protection during the difficulties navigating her mountain we prayed another akathist on the road to the Vatopedi monastery. There, at one of the most beautiful communities on Mt. Athos, we were blessed to venerate the Belt of the Mother of God, and her icons “Queen of All” and “Of Joy and Comfort.” With that very joy in our hearts we prayed another akathist on the road to the Pantokrator monastery. There, before the Greontrissa icon of the Theotokos we once more sang hymns of thanksgiving and praise, and asking intercession for our friends and loved ones. Our last stop before returning to Dokhiari was a brief visit once again to the Skete of the Prophet Elijah, in order to gift the fathers there with a new set of airs. Before leaving we were treated to a visit into the Skete’s museum of artifacts in the lower levels of the grounds. Back at Dokhiari we attended Vespers and following the service were treated to a spectacularly unique and wonderful experience. Our dear friend Father Parthenius brought us to his workshop and taught us his method of making incense. Using machines of his own design, Father Parthenius makes fourteen kilos of incense nearly every evening. Through the intercession of the Theotokos we were able to help him to fill his quota and afterwards, over tea and sweets, spoke with Father and shared in his wisdom before heading to bed to rest for the upcoming early morning services.