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Holy Saturday from Kirkland Lake
Holy Saturday from Kirkland Lake
by Veronica.H, April 24
Byzantine Catholic Outreach of Iowa
Exterior of Holy Angels Byzantine Catholic Parish
Church of St Cyril of Turau & All Patron Saints of Belarus
Byzantine Nebraska
Byzantine Nebraska
by orthodoxsinner2, December 11
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Dear Friends,

A fascinating thread! Thanks, Brad! smile

Just wanted to add my two cents' worth.

In the Confession of Dositheus (I believe) that was written against Protestantism (as well as in other times ie. Met. Stefan Yavorsky's efforts), the Orthodox Church maintained that the only attitude toward the Most Holy Mysteries of the Body and Blood of OLGS Jesus Christ is one of adoration.

Archbishop Raya wrote that the East has a "dynamic" devotion to Christ in Holy Communion and the West has, with the Adoration of the Reserved Communion, a "static" devotion.

I don't know if we can make such a hard and fast distinction here so as to accuse the West of having devotion to Holy Communion as an "end in itself."

Certainly, the West has adoration of Holy Communion but has also developed the practice of frequent Communion much moreso than the East.

In the East, the often onerous preparations for Holy Communion and other factors have led to infrequent Communion - something that movements like the Kollyvades and saints like John of Kronstadt have sought to alter.

Eastern Catholics (until the advent of "Orthodox in communion with Rome" wink ) have developed the same kind of adoration of Holy Communion, even with the monstrance - something that Orthodox parishes in E. Europe have ALSO adopted.

Our New Martyrs of the soviet yoke had GREAT devotion to Holy Communion, especially Bl. Theodore Romzha and Bl. Pavel Goydicz.

Pat. Josef Slipyj never failed to do his Hour of Adoration at the Church of St Neil in Rome.

I've met UGCC priests from Ukraine who say that their entire villages and towns are taken up by the perpetual adoration of the Holy Eucharist before the Altar - night and day, including the very young who have their prayer-books and assigned daily hour.

Bl. Leonid Fyodorov, the Russian Catholic New Martyr, said that when it comes to adoration of the Holy Eucharist "then we are the students of the Roman West."

While we EC's here would like to reconstruct the actual devotional practice of our parishes in this regard, the fact is that Eucharistic Adoration has been an integral part of our Church life for a very long time now.

To try and see our Churches' practice in this regard as part and parcel of the Orthodox tradition is simply wishful thinking and only to be had in particular parishes.

I remember the true story of a group of UGCC nuns who were adoring the Holy Eucharist on the altar night and day.

They were sentenced to death by freezing on top of a mountain by the soviets.

People sent there lasted only a day before succumbing to the cold.

And yet, on the third day, the guards came and saw them singing Eucharistic hymns and the Rosary et al. and they were quite warm and even smiling!

The guards let them go . . .

As for particular devotions to the Holy Eucharist within the liturgical context of the Divine Liturgy, the EC tradition is second to none.

We have formal offices of preparation and thanksgiving, we are to pray the Divine Office in full a day before Holy Communion (in the Old Rite tradition, for a week before that is satisfied by reciting the Jesus Prayer 1,000 times daily for seven days before), we kiss the edge of the Chalice to venerate the Wounded Side of Christ from which we are nourished in Communion, our heads are touched by the Chalice afterward, and we are enjoined not to make bows to the ground for the rest of the day.

Alex

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Dear Brad,

One more thing, as to "when" the actual consecration takes place . . .

In the Latin tradition, it is immediately following the Words of Institution.

Thus, when the RC priest recites the Words of Institution separately, the Bread and the Wine are consecrated by means of these.

In the East, the Consecration takes place following the recitation of the entire Eucharistic Canon when the entire Holy Trinity is invoked.

So this "point" would be after the Epiclesis is recited, calling down the Holy Spirit etc.

In the West, in some liturgies, the Epiclesis comes BEFORE the Words of Institution are read.

Thus, the Words of Institution are read and the consecrated Host is elevated for the adoration of the Church - the same with the Chalice.

What I don't understand is the position of the Orthodox East on the epiclesis being a "kind of consecratory formula."

The Old Rite, for example, prescribes the Sign of the Cross and a bow after the Bread is consecrated, after the Wine is consecrated by the Words of Institution.

IF the Change will occur only after the Epiclesis, why are we bowing at those points?

Alex

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Father Michael wrote:
The actual state of Orthodox theology must be characterized by two words: confusion and awakening. Are we to believe that the Body & Blood of Our Lord is not to be: revered, adored, or contemplated by us mere creatures?
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Administrator:
I am not sure what Father Michael is attempting to state here.

Dear JohnR,
That is precisely what I mean. We are bnot confused in the Eastern Catholic Church, nor are we in need of reqwakening of the "Presence" of Our Lord in the reserved "species."
That IS why we keep the particles on the Altar in our churches; for veneration/adoration/prayer before it/contemplation. etc.

Very rarely do I use them for the sick, as they are like crunchy croutons. You know, the particles in the tabernacle must be air dried after consecration otherwise you would have an example of pennicillin in the chalice!

That is also why we bless ourselves while we reverently (usually) bow when we come into church, and when we cross from one side of the church to the other. Jesus/God is with us, as we exclaim each Christmas. He is in our church because our church is not a mere meeting place, it is God's House.

Don't let anyone fool you to thinking that we EC's are "paying too much attention" to the Blessed Sacrament, or that the Orthodoxs' nonchalant attitude is to be emulated. It's not.

If adoration, contemplation, and veneration of the Blessed Sacrament is something that we have learned/adopted from our brethren in the West, then as far as I'm concerned, it's a good thing.

That's why you'll see(and in some distant far off places, still hear) a beautiful Benediction Service in some of the old prayer books, and the closing hymn in the back of the Sokol Plain Chant Book is just as beautiful.


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Bless, Father Michael,

Thank you for your moving witness to the established tradition of Eucharistic Devotions in our Church!

Alex

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Father MichaelJS,

Have you noticed that our bishops are discouraging the service of Eucharistic adoration and benediction and that this service has disappeared from most Byzantine Catholic parishes?

Have you noticed that at the Uniontown Otpust the candlelight Eucharistic procession and benediction are no longer taken?

Metropolitan Basil has told a lot of people at Otpust that the Eucharistic procession and benediction were dropped because of Rome�s request for us to return to our Orthodox roots.

As to your accusation that the Orthodox are nonchalant towards the Eucharist, that�s just untrue.

JD

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Quote
What is the proper way of regarding the Eucharist outside of communion in an Eastern Church?
The question perhaps is more how is it to be regarded outside of the liturgy itself. Bishop Kallistos in the book the Orthodox Church says the following

In every Orthodox parish church, the Blessed Sacrament is normally reserved, most often in a tabernacle on the altar, although there is no strict rule as to the place of reservation. Orthodox, however, do not hold services of public devotion before the reserved sacrament, nor do they have any equivalent to the Roman Catholic functions of Exposition and Benediction, although there seems to be no theological (as distinct from liturgical) reason why they should not do so. The priest blesses the people with the sacrament during the course of the Liturgy, but never outside it.

That�s sort of a background to the topic. Within the liturgy among other things the priest blesses the people with the sacrament, in some traditions the faithful kiss the chalice, and at times (such as the pre-sanctified liturgy) prostrations are done before the consecrated gifts.

Outside of the liturgy, anyone would of course cross themselves and/or bow before the altar in reverence to the sacrament - either upon entering or leaving the sanctuary, or when going past a church. Another important factor is educating the laity to understand the nature of the gifts and what that means for the church. What would happen if people became unaware that what they were receiving was the true body and blood of Christ? What if they began to doubt or question it? That would be a disaster.

The most fitting way of regarding the Eucharist outside of the liturgy in my opinion is preparing oneself to be ready to receive it. That of course means praying, confessing, and fasting at all normally proscribed times. That would of course usually be Wednesday, Friday and from Midnight leading up to the divine liturgy itself. This combined with the restriction of communion to Orthodox Christians only to me does not indicate an air of nonchalance, rather in my estimation it shows the highest regard for the gifts possible.

Andrew

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Dear John Damascene,

I, for one, am all for returning to our Eastern roots as much as possible.

I'm sorry to hear, if this is the case, that hierarchs carry on an "Easternization" program by dropping devotions that our people are used to.

In fact, St Alexis Toth, convert to Orthodoxy, as you know, would have strenuously opposed such moves himself!

He looked after new converts to Orthodoxy from ECism with "kit gloves" so as not to allow them to fall under what he obviously considered to be "insensitivity" by those Orthodox hierarchs who might have been "rough" with them in getting them to stop practicing their cherished devotions.

And what about Orthodox parishes in Eastern Europe that have Stations of the Cross, Benediction of the Blessed Sacrament, their own "Odpusts" and even images of the Sacred Heart?

Perhaps these hierarchs haven't been to Eastern Europe where there is a real renaissance of devotion among our peoples, both EC and Orthodox?

To return to our roots need not mean getting rid of devotions that the Orthodox here don't have.

The OCA has officially stated that the rosary is a Latin devotion.

Yet, St Seraphim of Sarov practiced it, along with many other Russian saints and it is widespread in monasteries in Russia today.

The new Orthodox Encyclopaedia lists this devotion as "Orthodox" (2003, Moscow).

But if we were to limit ourselves only to what the Orthodox here do (very often, they may get rid of things the Orthodox in the "old country" do in a kind of mindless, convert's zeal to distinguish themselves form RCism), then I think we run the risk of losing touch with our own history and our own Life in Christ.

St Tikhon of Zadonsk was very devoted to the Way of the Cross - perhaps we should scold his memory for this?

He loved reading scripture incessantly and taught this to his children. As did St Seraphim. Were they tending toward Protestantism perhaps?

Personally, I think our Hierarchs should butt out of the local parish life.

If they want us to be so "Orthodox," then they should begin by growing some beards themselves.

And if they want to listen to Rome's injunctions about returning to our true Eastern traditions - how about starting by ordaining more married priests?

Now that's being truly "Eastern!"

Alex

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Quote
Originally posted by Orthodox Catholic:
The OCA has officially stated that the rosary is a Latin devotion.

Yet, St Seraphim of Sarov practiced it, along with many other Russian saints and it is widespread in monasteries in Russia today.

The new Orthodox Encyclopaedia lists this devotion as "Orthodox" (2003, Moscow).

But if we were to limit ourselves only to what the Orthodox here do (very often, they may get rid of things the Orthodox in the "old country" do in a kind of mindless, convert's zeal to distinguish themselves form RCism), then I think we run the risk of losing touch with our own history and our own Life in Christ.

St Tikhon of Zadonsk was very devoted to the Way of the Cross - perhaps we should scold his memory for this?
Alex, perhaps this is a bit more nuanced. I do think it's sad if someone has just sad flatly the Rosary is wrong. As you stated, and as this article says on the Western Orthodox [westernorthodox.com] site, it can be an Orthodox devotion. More rightly stated perhaps it should be called the Prayer Rule of the Mother of God. I only say that because I think in the Eastern context it connotes a private devotion. The Rosary in the Latin context has other associations (group recitation, visualization) and so on.

I love the prayer rule of St. Dmitri and pasted it in to the back of my Jordanville.

Personally, I can say I was not and would not be comfortable with western style Eucharistic adoration.

Andrew

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Dear Andrew,

Excellent!

And I too would not be comfortable with "monstrancities!" wink

But that doesn't prevent me from praying to our Lord on the Altars of our Churches!

The prayer rule of St Dmitri - you mean the "Tale of the Five Prayers?"

He actually got that from the devotion to the Joys and Sorrows of our Lady as it existed in Paris and the West! He received books on the lives of the Saints from the West for his magnum opus on the same - he read the lives of the Western Saints and adopted what he felt inspired by.

At Venice, the 15 prayers of St Brigitte were published in Slavonic for Orthodox Christians, the Little Office and some other Western devotions as well.

And "Unseen Warfare," as you know, is based on an RC work by an Italian priest that was "Orthodoxized" by St Nicodemus of the Holy Mountain and, even moreso, by St Theophan the Recluse.

Alex

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I agree with Father Michael and John Damascne about the striking beauty of our Bendiction service, and the short-sightedness of suppressing it.

Alex, "monstrancities!" is worthy of a Jack Chick, not a believer.

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I did not mean to say in all cases the Orthodox are nonchalant about the Real Presence. As someone has posted, there is no rule for even having the Reserved Species on the Holy Table!

As far as many services being relegated to the dust bin of supposed Latinizations in our church, many times we throw out the baby with the bathwater!

I think that any services which are a long standing tradition in our churches "may" be taken, and well, should be taken, even in Uniontown. That was always a highlight for everyone. "Opps, there goes the baby again!"


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Since Father Michael Sopoliga likes these forms of Benediction, I could fish out a Church-Slavonic translation of "O Salutaris Hostia".

One question arises from his comments, though: if Father Michael does not use the reserved Holy Gifts for the Communion of the sick, then what does he use for that purpose?

"Ad processionem pro festo corporis Christi faciendam ne adigamur, hoc est, ne simili ratione processionis cum Sacramento peragendae necessitas nobis imponatur, quandoquidem apud nos alius est modus et usus sacramentorum." Union of Brest, article 7.

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In emergencies, then of course a particle is taken from the Tabernacle, and with a few drops of wine, the Precious Body is ingestible.
Most of the time however, when making sick calls on a regular basis, a daily Liturgy that day, will provide the needed communion for the homebound.
I guess theoretically, because we, unlike the Orthodox, do celebrate weekday Liturgies, there does not need to be any reservation of the Blessed Sacrament in our churches.
Therefore, our reservation of the Blessed Sacrament (would) be for the inherent "Holy Presence" of the Lord in our churches.


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I do think it's a bit unfair to categorize the Latin opinion as an "either/or" stance.

Yes, we do offer adoration to the Most Blessed Sacrament apart from our consuming It in the Holy Mass. But the difference is, we do eat and drink of the Sacred Species as well, and this is unquestionably our first and foremost use of It.

It would be a whole nother (I'm from Georgia; I'm allowed to say "nother" wink ) issue if consuming the Sacred Species wasn't our #1 use and we placed adoration above that.

And, if it turns out that us Latins our totally wrong for adoring the Body and Blood of Our Lord outside of consuming it at Mass (which I very highly doubt), and this is the worst thing Our Lord can bring against us on Judgment Day, I think we shall be very, very happy.

A lot happier than those who might, just might, have to answer for a lesser developed veneration of Our Lord in the Eucharist. eek

Logos Teen

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Dear djs,

Well, I guess a number of our priests are "Jack Chicks" in disguise.

One of our priests, in order to decry the use of Latin pictures in some of our churches, refers to them not as "ObrazY" with the accent on the last syllable, but as "ObrAzy" with the accent on the middle one - a play on the word that means, in the latter instance, "offences" rather than "pictures."

Sorry to have offended you so, that was not my intention.

One may have Eucharistic Benediction without completely and slavishly imitating the Latin forms - even though there are those who would argue that to have such Benediction is already imitating a Latin form.

It is amazing how you would express yourself so strongly against someone like me who shares your appreciation for Eucharistic devotion in our Church.

I apologise, once again for having offended you.

Alex

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