Bees Wax Candles from Ukraine
I have another wonderful find from Etsy: bees wax candles made by Volodymyr Povkh from Ukraine. I ordered some beautiful tapers for our nightly prayers and then couldn't resist these little beauties kissed with roses.
I have had the pleasure of knowing some wonderful people from Ukraine. One of them is my friend Oleh, whom I met in Krakow in 1999. He told me the story of how his grandmother baptized him as a child in secret, swearing him to silence because of the oppressive Soviet regime. Not even his parents knew.
A year later, Oleh and I crossed paths again in Washington, D.C. when we were both enrolled at Catholic University. For a short while, I hired him to teach me his native tongue. One day, we went to lunch. The bill was $27, which I happily paid, knowing that he was on scholarship and likely living very frugally. The price of our lunch, he told me, was about the same amount of money his mother made each month.
Today, Oleh is an Orthodox priest, living in Ukraine again with his wife and family -- such a beautiful fruit of his grandmother's faithful act decades ago.
My experience with Oleh and others, and the awareness that their country is rebuilding spiritually and financially after Soviet decimation, has left me with as soft spot in my heart for Ukrainians. It was a joy to purchase candles from Volodymyr through Etsy.
A father of two who lives with his family in Uzhhorod, Ukraine, Volodymyr told me that he started making candles in 2013 when he noticed the lack of beeswax candles at his parish church at Candlemas (he is Greek Catholic). Since then, he has been adding new styles of candles with more ideas in the works. Volodymyr says he draws inspiration for his work from his daily rosary.
Volodymyr's work is really fun, with dozens of unique designs that can be used for everyday or for sacraments, all made to order. The wax for the candles comes from Povkh's own hives and other local sources. One of the best features, which cannot be conveyed with a photo, is the rich honey scent of each candle.
It took about three weeks for my candles to arrive (the box covered on both sides with foreign stamps was a delight to my children and ended up as a valentine's mailbox). Most of the three weeks was simply transit time to the U.S. -- so order ahead!