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#313896 02/28/09 02:30 PM
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Do any of you know if there are any Byzantine Catholic Reader's Service materials online. I can only find the Orthodox version of the Reader's Service through a search. I need texts for lay led Matins, Vespers and Typica for Lent that use the Ruthenian recension and are approved by ecclesiastical authority. I did not feel that it was right to just do a cut and past job and make my own using Father John Whiteford's texts as a model--

http://pages.prodigy.net/frjohnwhiteford/horologion.htm


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Unfortunately there is no similar "Reader's Horologion" amongst Greek Catholics.

There are, however, extant versions in English in use amongst UGCC, BCCA, and Melkite groups floating around of Vespers and Matins, Akathists, Hours, etc. without a priest.

The only texts that I know of that have actually been approved by a bishop without the celebration of a priest are several UGCC versions of Typika with Holy Communion from the Presanctified Gifts to be offered by a Deacon when a priest cannot be present.

I am sure several here can offer texts that are in use in their communities or missions. While Father John's texts are certainly very useful and a good place to start, there are some occasional differences between the Kyivan or Carpatho-Rusyn usage and the Muscovite usage that he uses as his model.

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The "Reader's Service" is simply a modification of the regular services, for the fact that a priest and deacon are not present. That is, various short prayers are substitute for the priest's and deacon's responses.

I see no reason not to use your jurisdiction's existing texts, and just use the substituted prayers.

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Deacons do Reader Services if the Priest, or Bishop is not present.

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Do I need to get the bishop's permission to hold a lay led service of typika or vespers for a group? would I have to get the permission of both Latin and Byzantine Eparchs since Latin Catholics may be attending? I am just going to use the ROCOR text until I get more liturgical documents to assist me. I was surprised our Church doesn't have a book for missions or something that is helpful for lay people doing services without a priest. Maybe, I just need to dig more.

Thank all of you for your help.

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I'm no expert - I'm just a minimally informed layman. But...

...if it's purely private, I wouldn't imagine you'd need permission. However, if you were to pray in a parish you certainly would need the priest's permission. If you wanted to make this an official mission or somesuch, I'd definitely suggest you contact your bishop.

All the basic instructions are one the webpage - someone who knew how to do the services with a priest would be able to pray a reader's service easily with only those instructions.

The best shortcuts I can recommend are some of the compilation-books out there, as well as the recordings that are available of the services from diverse places. For instance, the Ukranians put out a book that has most/all the texts for vespers and Orthros compiled (does anyone have a link to them?). I can recommend some good recordings of the Greek/Arabic tradition. Unfortunately, I can't help with the various Slavic chant traditions.

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I wrote a readers vespers service using the MCI's info and the recommendations of a few priests. We plan to start doing them on weekdays in the next few weeks.

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I ran across this old topic of Reader services. Most of the answers are now available in the Pittsburgh Archeparchy's cantor site.

Through the work of Cantor Jeff many of the answers to the above questions are provided in this link:

http://www.metropolitancantorinstitute.org/liturgy/ReaderServices.html

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It may need some updating as it has some divergences from every other Reader Service I have seen.


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Father Lance,

Are the divergences related to the prayers that are inserted, and the "Amen"s that are omited (along with the concluding doxology after the Our Father"? Otherwise this seems to be the order i have seen and generally followed. I wonder what the source for inserting these prayers is.

Adam

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No doxologies, no vestments, no incense -- all for obvious reasons!

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Originally Posted by akemner
Father Lance,

Are the divergences related to the prayers that are inserted, and the "Amen"s that are omited (along with the concluding doxology after the Our Father"? Otherwise this seems to be the order i have seen and generally followed. I wonder what the source for inserting these prayers is.

Adam

Every Orthodox source I have seen allows censing with a hand censer at Psalm 140 at Vespers, the Polyeleos and 9th ode at Matins, and the Alleluiarion and of the Holy Gifts (if distributed) at Typica.

Nor is the specific prayer of the hour suppressed at the Little Hours. And yes the insertion of the Prayer of the Hours and the other Monastic Prayers at Vespers and Matins is our innovation. I also find it unusual that this is okay but ending the Our Father with the Jesus Prayer is too much.



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There's no such thing as a "Reader's service."

If a deacon is present, do they become "Deacon's services?"

If a priest, are they "Priest's services"?

No. They are ALL services of the Church, whether done with a priest or led by a lower clergyman.

They are NEVER called "reader's services" in women's monasteries.

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Sorry, but at both our sister OCA Cathedral and our church when (rarely) a priest is absent, the services are called Deacon's Vespers. Now, I know that laymen burn incense in their cell-rule prayer, but to do offer incense publicly during the Church's Liturgical Prayer . . . who blesses the incense? Similarly, one puts on no vestment since there is no one present to bless it.

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The OCA has a "readers service" for the use of military people. From what I have experienced these readers services are mostly popular with converts and not well received or understood by "ethnics" http://www.scoba.us/military/readers-service.html

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