The Byzantine Forum
Newest Members
Soraya, CuriousMarten, Pilgrim500, Waylon, reikan
5,755 Registered Users
Who's Online Now
0 members (), 88 guests, and 39 robots.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Latest Photos
Church of St Cyril of Turau & All Patron Saints of Belarus
Byzantine Nebraska
Byzantine Nebraska
by orthodoxsinner2, December 11
Church of the Holy Trinity (UGCC) - Brazil
Church of the Holy Trinity (UGCC) - Brazil
by Santiago Tarsicio, March 17
Papal Audience 10 November 2017
Papal Audience 10 November 2017
by JLF, November 10
Upgraded Russian icon corner
Upgraded Russian icon corner
by The young fogey, October 20
Forum Statistics
Forums26
Topics35,027
Posts413,850
Members5,755
Most Online3,380
Dec 29th, 2019
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Joined: Aug 1998
Posts: 4,246
Likes: 10
Moderator
Member
OP Offline
Moderator
Member
Joined: Aug 1998
Posts: 4,246
Likes: 10
Since this subject got brought up in the photo forum I thought I would raise the topic here. It is often bemoaned, rightly so, that most Greek Catholic parishes do not celebrate Vespers or Matins. It has also been said that one cause is lack of materials coupled with the complicated nature of the services, and lack of familiarity with them. To this end it would seem that until recently New Skete and their predecessor Byzantine Franciscans of New Canaan were the only Greek Catholics (New Skete was Greek Catholic until 1979) with the exception of Archbishop Joseph Raya that made a real attempt to get the services into a usable format in English. I would like to see a discussion of the merit (or lack of) of the changes New Skete has made to the Offices and whether they facilitate the use of the Divine Office on the parish level. However, please no "New Skete monks are crypto-Uniates ruining the Liturgy" comments. In looking at the changes they have made please be aware they made changes in the direction of the Cathedral Usage of Hagia Sophia. If you are not familiar with the structure or content of this Usage St. Simeon of Thessalonika's Treatsie on Prayer is the most readily available reference. I post outlines of the Sunday Offices:

New Skete Usage

Great Vespers

Wisdom! Stand Aright!
Behold Christ the Light of the Universe!
O Joyful Light
Let us pray to the Lord!
Prayer of Light (4 options)
Come let us worship…
Pslam 103
Prayer (2 options)
Psalm 1 Happy is the Man…
Prayer (2 options)
Psalm 140 (as at Presanctified + Stichera or with Hear me O Lord as refrain + Stichera)
Prayer
Prokimen
Count us worthy…
Aposticha
Canticle of Simeon
Trisagion Prayers
Resurrectional Troparion and Theotokion

continues with:

Vigil

Psalms 134, 135, 116 (+136 in Pre-Lent and Lent)
Prayer
Evlogitaria
Hypakoe
Prayer before Gospel
Gospel
Gospel Sticheron
Canticle of Moses with Irmos as refrain
Hymn of the Resurrection
Litany
Prayer of Litany (2 options)
Prayer of Bowed heads (2 options)

Matins

Blessed is the kingdom…
Glory to God…
Psalms 3, 18, 62
Prayer (2 options)
The Lord God…
Resurrectional Troparion and Theotokion
Sessional Hymns
Psalm 50
Resurrectional Verses
Prayer of Psalm 50
Canticle of the Three Youths with Irmos as refrain
Prayer
Kontakion
Canticle of the Theotokos with Irmos as refrain
Hymn of Light
Prayer of Praises
Psalms 148, 149, 150
Great Doxology
Trisagion
Troparion
if Divine Liturgy does not immediately follow:
Litany
Prayer of Litany
Prayer of Bowed Heads







My cromulent posts embiggen this forum.
Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 3,437
Administrator
Member
Offline
Administrator
Member
Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 3,437
Father Deacon Lance,

I do not make any claims that the material that New Skete uses is crypto-anything. I know that a lot of time and effort has gone into their research before actually implementing their present Typicon. I am unaware of any parishes outside of the monastic communities of New Skete actually having the blessing of their hierarch to use the services in their parishes. I have heard mixed reactions from many that have experienced the order of services from loving it to outright not feeling comfortable with it because of how different it is from the norm they have experienced in their liturgical lives. I tend to hold a neutral view, and do have a number of their service books in my library, most of which have been gifts.

It would be interesting to hear some of the comments regarding this order of services and if it would spark an interest in the celebration in their parishes.

In IC XC,
Father Anthony+


Everyone baptized into Christ should pass progressively through all the stages of Christ's own life, for in baptism he receives the power so to progress, and through the commandments he can discover and learn how to accomplish such progression. - Saint Gregory of Sinai
Joined: Aug 1998
Posts: 4,246
Likes: 10
Moderator
Member
OP Offline
Moderator
Member
Joined: Aug 1998
Posts: 4,246
Likes: 10
Fr. Anthony,

My comment was not directed at you, but the issue has come up before here and elsewhere and the discussion quickly ended along the lines New Skete started Uniate and therefore their Usage must be suspect, etc.

The former Evangelical Orthodox Church seems to have made use of these services and they actually have the introductions to many of their works with some of their material here:
http://www.ogreatmystery.com/newskete/

Fr. Deacon Lance


My cromulent posts embiggen this forum.
Joined: Mar 2002
Posts: 7,461
Member
Offline
Member
Joined: Mar 2002
Posts: 7,461
Quote
To this end it would seem that until recently New Skete and their predecessor Byzantine Franciscans of New Canaan were the only Greek Catholics (New Skete was Greek Catholic until 1979) with the exception of Archbishop Joseph Raya that made a real attempt to get the services into a usable format in English


Archpriests Roman Galadza and Conrad Dachuk as well as some Ukrainian Greek Catholic parishes in the western part of Canada (Winnipeg, etc.) have been celebrating English Great Vespers since about the same time (late 1970s or early 80s). The Sheptytsky Institute also came out with a very usable Vespers book as well.

Fr. Taft made an extensive commentary of the New Skete Restored Rite and other aspects of their usage; interestingly enough as I recall he was not in favor of all of their usage.

I do like Fr. Laurence's Paschal Canon for Matins and I have used it as the English translation with Paul Harrilchak's musical settings alongside Ukrainian or Slavonic texts (as I was taught by Fr. Galadza).

Joined: Aug 1998
Posts: 4,246
Likes: 10
Moderator
Member
OP Offline
Moderator
Member
Joined: Aug 1998
Posts: 4,246
Likes: 10
Fr. Deacon Randy,

I have Fr. Taft's article from OCP. He liked some aspects, disliked others and offered his suggestions. New Skete's Usage has evolved. They pretty much took all Fr. Taft's suggestions and re-revised the Restored Rite of the 76 Prayerbook and implemented them in their 88 Book of Prayers. I could post a comparison if you would like.

Fr. Deacon Lance


My cromulent posts embiggen this forum.
Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 856
B
Member
Offline
Member
B
Joined: Jun 2004
Posts: 856
I would be interested, Father Deacon.

One of my practical concerns is that adoption of the New Skete usage makes it harder to see the parallels between ordinary Matins and the various "special forms" of Matins for high feasts, as well as to the moleben service, etc. As I have mentioned once before, too many of our people already hear the Tone 6 Resurrectional canon melody as a "funeral" melody, rather than hearing that a Resurrectional hymn is being used at a funeral! In the same way, it would be sad if we had two completely different orders of Vespers, one for ordinary usage (New Skete) and one when we had existing Vespers books for a feast (using the traditional order).

When the MCI Matins book came out, we had a lot of requests for advice on how to shorten the existing service for parish use - and in the revised version we make suggestions for introducing the service of Matins, beginning with the most important parts. Certainly accomodations like this are important as people learn the services - and I would want them to have to unlearn as little as possible!

I would very much like to see how the New Skete usage has evolved over time.

Yours in Christ,
Jeff Mierzejewski

Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 3,437
Administrator
Member
Offline
Administrator
Member
Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 3,437
Father Deacon Lance,

Actually, I did not think the comment was directed at me or anyone in particular. But, I have heard all sorts of comments over the past couple decades. I am just interested to see what comments are offered.

In IC XC,
Father Anthony+


Everyone baptized into Christ should pass progressively through all the stages of Christ's own life, for in baptism he receives the power so to progress, and through the commandments he can discover and learn how to accomplish such progression. - Saint Gregory of Sinai
Joined: Oct 2005
Posts: 477
L
Member
Offline
Member
L
Joined: Oct 2005
Posts: 477
I love Melkite VEspers, Orthros, Compline...all of the hours.

The new Horologion put out by the Eparchy of Newton's Sophia Press includes all of these and more (the mid-night hours).

All English.

Joined: Mar 2002
Posts: 7,461
Member
Offline
Member
Joined: Mar 2002
Posts: 7,461
Last time I directed someone towards the Melkite Horologion is was sold out pending another print run. Are they for sale again? I think the Stamford Horologion is also awaiting another print run. But I digress...

Yes, Fr. Deacon, I would be interested in the comparison, as I only own the 1976 books. I do very much enjoy singing the Paschal Canon of Fr. Laurence with Harrilchak's music every year.

Joined: Aug 1998
Posts: 4,246
Likes: 10
Moderator
Member
OP Offline
Moderator
Member
Joined: Aug 1998
Posts: 4,246
Likes: 10
New Skete Usage 76

Great Vespers

Blessing
Trisagion Prayers
Psalm 103 (Psalm 85 in Lent)
Prayer (Vesper Prayer 4 or Prayer from Prime)
Psalms (prayer after each Stasis, Vesperal Prayers 1,2,3,5, or Entrance Prayer)
Wisdom! Stand Aright!
Behold Christ the Light of the Universe!
O Joyful Light
Pslams 140, 141, 129, 116 + Stichera
Prokimen
Litany
Prayer of Litany (Vesper Prayer 7)
Count us worthy…
Prayer of Bowed Heads
Aposticha
Canticle of Simeon
Trisagion Prayers
Resurrectional Troparion and Theotokion
Dismissal



Matins

Blessing
Psalm 102
The Lord God…
Resurrectional Troparion and Theotokion
Prayer 6
Psalms 134, 135, (+136 in Pre-Lent and Lent)
Hypakoe
(Evlogitaria, Gradual Hymns, or Sessional Hymns optional after Hypakoe)
Prokimen
Prayer before Gospel
Gospel
Canticle of Moses
Psalm 50
Resurrectional Verses
Prayer of Psalm 50
Canticle of the Three Youths
Kontakion
Canticle of the Theotokos or Zachary
Hymn of Light
Prayer of Praises
Psalms 148, 149, 150 + Stichera
Great Doxology
Trisagion
Troparion
Litany
Prayer of Litany (12)
Prayer of Bowed Heads
Dismissal

Fr Taft's comments from The Byzantine Office in the Prayerbook of New Skete: Evaluation of a Proposed Reform (OCP 48 Pgs 336-370)

On the distribution of the prayers of light throughout vespers:

"The seven vesperal prayers now said silently by the priest, one after another, while the reader chants Ps 103, came from the Euchology of Constantinople, where they were found throughout the office. Later they were inserted somewhat artificially into the strucutre of the Palestinian Book of Hours when the Palestinian Office was adopted in the monasteries Constantinople. The present reform attempt to distribute them in their proper palce throughout the office. The attempt is laudable, if only partly successful. The received usage of reciting them all together at teh beginning of Vespers is obviously meaningless. But in distributing them anew throughout the office the editors have not always put them in their proper place. Prayer#4 originally an opening prayer and #7, once the collect of the final synapte, have been restored where they belong. The prayer from prime, used in the reformed rite as alternate opening prayer, would be more suitable as the collect of the lucernarium. Prayer#1, on the other hand, is the collect of Pslam 85, the original Constantinopolitan vesperal invitatory and should replace Prayer#4 as the opening collect when Pslam *% is used as Lenten invitatory in the reformed rite.

This eliminates Prayer#1 as one of the collects to follow the staseis of the monastic psalter. Furthermore, the Introit Prayer, also used as one of these collects in the reformed rite, is actually a prayer to accompany Ps 140 in the fixed cathedral vesper psalms. This pryaer should be restored as the prayer of the cathedral psalmody. So the collects for the variable monastic psalmody should be prayers 2,3,5,or 6not 1,2,3,5, and the Introit Prayer as in the proposed reform."

On the moving up of O Joyful Light to before the incense psalms:

"This was probably its original position...I would judge the restored arrangement clearly preferable."

On the insertion of the Constantinopolitan light service (blessing with the candle while proclaiming "Behold Christ the Light of the Universe!") before O Joyful Light:

"Though this can hardly be called a 'restoration', it is nevertheless eminently suitable and perfectly 'Byzantine' in every sense of the term: part of the ancient heritage of the Churh of Constantinople, still in use today, though in another Byzantine vesperal service, the Litrguy of Presanctified Gifts."

On the suppression of the Ektene and joining of the Great Synapte with the Aiteseis at the end of the service:

"The Great Synapte at the beginning of the office has been suppressed, and the concluding intercessions have been rearranged. The ektene before 'Count us worthy...' has also been suppressed, and the synapte with aiteseis has been moved up to before 'Count us worthy...' from its traditional position following this chant. To supress the initial synapte and the ektene can be justified. The traditional place for intercessions in Christian services was not at the beginning but the end...As for the ektene, a penitential litany, it does not seem original to the office, but rather an addition from the penitential rogations of the stational Liturgy of the Great Church.

But the displacement of the synapte with aiteseis is intolerable. This litany with its collect Prayer#7, Peace to all, and the Prayer of bowed heads form a single, inseperable concluding unit that goes back to the end of the 4th century. I see no reason or justification for displacing it this way. To do so is to do violence to a basic liturgical structure general throughout the Christian East.

Furthermore 'Count us worthy...' is a concluding chant parallel to the Great Doxology of matins... At any rate it certainly does not belong between the synapte collect and the concluding Prayer of Inclination."

He offers very little criticism or suggestions for Matins other than that Evlogitaria should be retained and not made optional:

"The troparia of the Myrrhbearers give the sense of the vigil, and should by all means be preserved."






My cromulent posts embiggen this forum.
Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 506
Member
Offline
Member
Joined: Mar 2006
Posts: 506
Father Deacon Lance-

Just a moderately educated layman's view. But first a few points:

1. when I say "vespers" and "orthros" I mean a set of services conducted according to/in a manner proscribed by the Typikon, Horologion, Octoechos, Menaion, and other such books authorized by the Ecumenical Patriarchate and accepted (sometimes with variants) by the rest of the Chalcedonian Churches of the East. In the Greek tradition, we do Vespers at around sundown the night before and orthros in the morning, whereas apparently in slavic tradition it's common to put them all together in one long evening service.

2. I disagree that "It has also been said that one cause is lack of materials". It seems to me (correct me if I'm wrong) that there are too many English language materials out there but there's problems with most of them. We Melkites have a whole edition (a portion of which is presently out of print); the Ukranians apparently have a volume which puts much of what you would need into one thick book (and I have seen this used at a UGCC Vespers service). I believe Jordanville has a set of complete books (including an Horologion) and Holy Transifguration Monastery has them as well, in various stages of availability - and I'm told that for various reasons these are considerably more suitable than many of the other versions out there. There are probably also a few more complete assemblages, as well as numerous sundry translations floating around.

3. As far as familiarity, this is our own doing and it's a bit of a chicken and egg problem. If we do not have these services in our parishes (and if the people don't bother to attend!!!), if we do not have our seminarians live a reasonably full liturgical life including daily or near-daily Vespers and Orthros, and if we do not train cantors/readers with nearly the same attention that we do deacons, priests, or even Sunday school teachers to learn an incredibly complex genre of chant - then no one's going to be familiar with them. To my mind, it's a matter of motivation and organization more than available books.

4. Before commenting on the New Skete offices themselves, I have two comments on the exercise:

A. I have no problem going back or utilizing older typkia and other related books. However, I would oppose their use if our particular church (Melkites, Carpatho-Rusyns, Ukranians, etc.) never used this particular variant - ergo, I would disagree with the adoption of the Italo-Greek variants Archimandrite Robert has described in the use of the Ukranian church. More importantly, I think that if we used these older variations we should use them EXACTLY as they were meant to be used (as far as we can tell) - that is, that we not take some things that we think or cool about that usage and covert them to our needs. It'd be great if the Bishop of Thessaloníki tried to reestablish the Cathedral Rite at St. Demetrius (something that I believe would require great expense). It'd be good if we had a solid idea of how the Cathedral Rite was used (if at all) in parish churches or monasteries. I don't think it'd be useful if someone did a poorly put together mish-mash adapted to "pastoral needs" (I'm not saying New Skete did this). Liturgical scholars should be our primary source for these texts (though if I were involved in the pastoral aspects of this I want to look at their footnotes).

B. Unfortunately, I don't see how having a variant set of the services would benefit the majority of Eastern Churches in the US. Such a thing might be useful in the old countries, or even in our cathedrals and our stronger parishes in the US with Eparchal approval, but I think it would just add to confusion if individual parishes picked it up wily-nily. I don't think that any revived variant should take the place of the established texts. - it would just confuse people - unless the Eparchy were to make the concious decision to go with the older texts vice the current texts across the board. But of course that's the bishop's decision.



Now, finally discussing my thoughts on the usage itself (which will be comparatively brief): assuming they rest on solid scholarship, it looks fine.

My question for someone who would propose this in my parish (which has Orthros and Vespers, and does it reasonably well according to our resources) again is "why would we adopt this?". I fail to see any advantage that it presents over the regular Horologion/Typikon/etc; I also fail to see how this would make it more "interesting". In a parish where they want to establish Vespers/Orthros, I suppose it's a doable option. But using variants like this complicates training with the rest of the Eparchy or our ability to integrate/learn from clergy from other parishes.

Anyway, my thoughts. A lot of overworded fluff from someone who pseudo-knows what he's talking about. But I hope this is some of what you were looking for.

Last edited by MarkosC; 10/27/07 05:03 AM.
Joined: Aug 1998
Posts: 4,246
Likes: 10
Moderator
Member
OP Offline
Moderator
Member
Joined: Aug 1998
Posts: 4,246
Likes: 10
Markos,

Please note I said until recently there were lack of materials. Go back 30-40 years and they were scarce. But even with today's multiplication of sources none of them are in an easy to use format and by that I am refering to the need to use two to three volumes at a minimum. This ceratinly does not encourage the celebration of the services. With a general lack of formally trained cantors coupled with many priests covering multiple parishes and the fact that most parishes are unfamiliar with the services if the services are complicated to put together and perform the less likely there will be any movement to celebrate them. We are in an unfortunate catch 22. Nobody celebrates the services because they are unfamiliar and difficult, nobody learns the services or becomes comfortable with them because they are not celebrated.

As for the ability of variant uses to co-exist, I don't know why that should be problematic. Several usages once co-existed within the Byzantine Rite, the Monastery of St. Sabbas, the Studite Monastery, The Cathedral of Holy Wisdom in Constantinople, the Cathedral of the Resurrection in Jerusalem.

There have been celebrations of the Cathedral Rite and the Apostolic Diakonia has published both the Cathedral Tersext and Vigil services for use.

A for parishes that have the resources and man-power to perform the services as given in the Typikon now I would leave alone. I am concerned rather with those who do not.

Fr. Deacon Lance





My cromulent posts embiggen this forum.
Joined: Aug 1998
Posts: 4,246
Likes: 10
Moderator
Member
OP Offline
Moderator
Member
Joined: Aug 1998
Posts: 4,246
Likes: 10
For comparison purposes I post outlines of Cathedral Vespers and Matins as St. Symeon of Thessalonika descibed them in his cathedral:

Cathedral Vespers

Blessing
Great Litany (Synapte)
Prayer
Psalm 85 with R. Glory to you O God
Little Litany
Prayer
Psalm 67 vs1 with R. Alleluia
Psalm 140 with R. Glory to your life-giving Resurrection (entrance made at vs 8)
Stichera
Prokimen
Fervent Litany (Ektene)
The Little Antiphons (just like at Liturgy)
Little Litany
Prayer
Pslam 114 4vs with R. Through the prayers of the Theotokos…
Little Litany
Prayer
Psalm 115 4vs with R. O Son of God Risen from the Dead…
Only Begotten Son
Little Litany
Prayer 116 4vs with R. Trisagion
Litany of Supplication (Aiteseis)
Prayer
Prayer of Bowed Heads
Aposticha
Lite
Troparia
Dismissal

Cathedral Matins

Blessing
Litany of Peace
Prayer
Psalms 3, 62, 133 with R. Glory to you O God
Little Litany
Prayer
Psalm 118 vs 1-72 with Alleluia
Little Litany
Prayer
Psalm 118 vs 73-131 with R. Give me understanding O Lord
Little Litany
Prayer
Psalm 118 vs 132-176 with Alleluia
Canticle of Three Youths (Cross with three candles placed on ambon and entrance)
Psalm 50
Resurrection Troparion
Psalms 148, 149, 150
Stichera
Eothinon
Troparion: You are truly blessed, O Virgin Theotokos…
Canticle of Zachary with Blessed be the Lord God of Israel
Canticle of the Theotokos
Great Doxology
Troparion: Today Salvation has come to the world… or You came forth from death…
Prokimen: Arise then O Lord lift up your hand…
Gospel of the Resurrection
Litany
Dismissal


My cromulent posts embiggen this forum.
Joined: Mar 2002
Posts: 7,461
Member
Offline
Member
Joined: Mar 2002
Posts: 7,461
Markos - what I do in our UGCC outreach in Topeka is have a book with the common parts of Vespers, and use a handout for the propers that week (any extra stikhera for the saints, readings if appropriate, etc.). It is not that difficult for Great Vespers. Fr. Michael Winn does a great job on the St. Ireneaus Mission Society site http://stirenaeus.net/vespers.htm making those in an easily printable format. Many years, Fr. Michael!!!


Link Copied to Clipboard
The Byzantine Forum provides message boards for discussions focusing on Eastern Christianity (though discussions of other topics are welcome). The views expressed herein are those of the participants and may or may not reflect the teachings of the Byzantine Catholic or any other Church. The Byzantine Forum and the www.byzcath.org site exist to help build up the Church but are unofficial, have no connection with any Church entity, and should not be looked to as a source for official information for any Church. All posts become property of byzcath.org. Contents copyright - 1996-2020 (Forum 1998-2020). All rights reserved.
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.5