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Author Topic: godfather presents a cross at chrismation?  (Read 4164 times) Average Rating: 0
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Tikhon.of.Colorado
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« on: February 01, 2010, 01:11:56 AM »

Hello all.  I have a question about holy chrismation that may seem rather small, but I just wonder.  I've been looking around my church and almost everyone (even the converts) wear a three-barred Russian cross.  I've also seen in my parish website's pictures of chrismation, the godfather puts a cross on his godchild as a part of the serimony.  is this true?  when I am chrismated, will my godfather give me a cross?   I'm just wondering if thie is the custom in the Orthodox church.
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« Reply #1 on: February 01, 2010, 01:19:25 AM »

Indeed it is. There are many folk customs, some quite unneccessary, which have, over the years, crept into use regarding baptisms and chrismations, but the most essential one is the provision of the baptismal cross by the Godparent. Whether the cross is put on the newly-illumined one by the priest or the Godparent at the appropriate time in the baptism or chrismation ceremony depends on what the local custom is, but, whatever the case, the Godparent is responsible for providing a baptismal cross. No buts about it.
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Tikhon.of.Colorado
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« Reply #2 on: February 01, 2010, 01:22:23 AM »

Indeed it is. There are many folk customs, some quite unneccessary, which have, over the years, crept into use regarding baptisms and chrismations, but the most essential one is the provision of the baptismal cross by the Godparent. Whether the cross is put on the newly-illumined one by the priest or the Godparent at the appropriate time in the baptism or chrismation ceremony depends on what the local custom is, but, whatever the case, the Godparent is responsible for providing a baptismal cross. No buts about it.

I see.  how interesting.  I was looking in mu parish's library today and there is a catologue of crosses, some of them well in the 70-100 dollar range.  is it commen for a godparent to really spend alot on their godchild's cross?
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« Reply #3 on: February 01, 2010, 01:27:27 AM »

I would recommend your Godparent shop around, if he wants to. There are perfectly good Orthodox crosses, which are not too expensive, to be found in small jewelry shops, particularly those run by Asians. The Russian church in my town gets most of its crosses (very nice ones, at that!) at a very reasonable price from a local Vietnamese jeweler.

Even if your Godparent was to spend $70-100 on a cross, this is small potatoes compared to the rackets spruiked by the "baptism industry", where unsuspecting Godparents can be suckered into spending thousands on a baptism, on things that have absolutely nothing to do with the sacrament.
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« Reply #4 on: February 01, 2010, 02:10:47 AM »

After putting on the baptismal cross, is one really required to continue wearing it from then on?  I only ask because I'm not really a jewelry person at all!
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« Reply #5 on: February 01, 2010, 02:17:38 AM »

After putting on the baptismal cross, is one really required to continue wearing it from then on?  I only ask because I'm not really a jewelry person at all!

I don't think so.  I have two friends, both baptized two years ago, who never wear their crosses to church.  they rotate jewlery.  I have also seen peoplewear their crosses outside of their shirts at church.  I , for example, have a cross my mother gave me when I turned 15.  I wear it even to bed.  I will probabl do this with my Chrismation cross.
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« Reply #6 on: February 01, 2010, 02:23:24 AM »

Getting a Cross for baptism is a beautiful custom, yet it is not universal, nor is it required by the baptismal rite itself, if I remember correctly .
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« Reply #7 on: February 01, 2010, 03:55:41 AM »

Getting a Cross for baptism is a beautiful custom, yet it is not universal, nor is it required by the baptismal rite itself, if I remember correctly .

Not so. I would alarmed if any Orthodox priest does not request the provision of a baptismal cross, unless there was a case of extreme hardship on the part of the person or family to be baptised. In the ceremony itself, there are several important references to the cross, be it of the Cross of Christ, or the blessing of the water and oil by the priest by moving his right hand in the shape of a cross, the anointing with chrism in the form of a cross on the face, hands, feet, chest, etc, and the blessing of the baptismal cross before the ceremony on the altar of the church, as well as dipping it in the font in a crosswise motion during the baptism ceremony itself.

Whether someone chooses to continue to wear their cross after the ceremony is an entirely different matter.
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« Reply #8 on: February 01, 2010, 04:03:08 AM »

Where I come from the custom is far from being universal and was even less so in former
times, when people were poorer.
The Order of Baptism in our Euchologion doesn't say anything about blessing any cross on the altar, although it happens enough times.
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« Reply #9 on: February 01, 2010, 04:11:17 AM »

The Order of Baptism in our Euchologion doesn't say anything about blessing any cross on the altar, although it happens enough times.

Such a blessing is found in a different part of the Euchologion.
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« Reply #10 on: February 01, 2010, 04:12:24 AM »

The Order of Baptism in our Euchologion doesn't say anything about blessing any cross on the altar, although it happens enough times.

I've never heard of blessing the baptismal Cross on the "Altar" (Holy Table), and I've been a Godfather seven times. The baptismal Cross is a wonderful tradition, but it is not an official (or even required) part of the Rite of Baptism. The baptisimal clothes of the neophyte are a required part of the Rite, and the Baptismal Cross was simply added as part of the vesting of the neophyte after Baptism.
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« Reply #11 on: February 01, 2010, 01:14:10 PM »

My Baptismal Cross given at my Chrismation was a simple wooden cross on a leather thong, the cost about $8. A cross should be given but it does not have to be in gold or silver.

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« Reply #12 on: February 01, 2010, 01:35:57 PM »

I bought my baptismal cross in Kiev, on a hunch that I might become Orthodox. It is silver-coloured and cost me no more than $5 US. All the baptisms I've observed, including my own, included a ceremony of blessing the baptismal cross (usually that involved dipping the cross into the baptismal waters, if I'm not mistaken). I started to wear my cross even before I became a catechumen. AFAIK, everyone, man and woman alike, wear their crosses constantly, but NOT on the exterior-it is ALWAYS to be hidden, tucked away under the clothing and against the body. It is NOT a decoration. For this reason, most people have their crosses on a very long chain, so it can be hidden if you are wearing a more open neckline.
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« Reply #13 on: February 01, 2010, 03:00:05 PM »

My second daughter was baptized at around age 2. Her godmother bought her a very simple St. Olga 5/8 inch cross from the site below. It cost only $2 at most. When our youngest daughter was baptized she was given a small silver cross that was quite similar and a larger cross to wear as an adult. But getting a larger cross wasn't a necessity. She wears the smaller one daily and we keep the larger one safe elsewhere for her to wear when she is old enough. You don't have to look for a "baptismal cross." At the site below you can look in "gift items" then "pins, pendants and buttons" and find small silver crosses that will work just fine as a baptismal cross that cost between $2-7

http://www.light-n-life.com/index.asp
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« Reply #14 on: February 01, 2010, 05:05:58 PM »

Quin, I just checked out the link you provided and discovered that my pewter cross is also a St. Olga cross! I hadn't realized that was the name of this particular style. Does anyone know why it's called the St. Olga cross?
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« Reply #15 on: February 01, 2010, 05:38:14 PM »

I have no idea. My cross is a "St. Xenia" cross (which is cool since my patron saint is St. Xenia) but I have never seen any reason why a given cross is called what it is. I think my cross looks quite similar, though not the same as a St Olga cross. My son and my husband have essentially the same cross. But my husband's cross is called a "Soldiers cross" and my son's is called a" St Nicholas cross" The only real difference between the two is that my son's cross is much smaller and the spear like top is sharper on my husband's cross.




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« Reply #16 on: February 01, 2010, 06:13:16 PM »

AFAIK, everyone, man and woman alike, wear their crosses constantly, but NOT on the exterior-it is ALWAYS to be hidden, tucked away under the clothing and against the body. It is NOT a decoration. For this reason, most people have their crosses on a very long chain, so it can be hidden if you are wearing a more open neckline.

The tradition of wearing it on the inside away from view is something that I've noticed that is practiced by the Russians, but I have not seen it practiced amongst the Ukrainians, Greeks, or Arabs. The Russians seem to be the most discreet about wearing their baptismal cross, whereas other groups wear it openly.
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« Reply #17 on: February 01, 2010, 06:33:30 PM »

AFAIK, everyone, man and woman alike, wear their crosses constantly, but NOT on the exterior-it is ALWAYS to be hidden, tucked away under the clothing and against the body. It is NOT a decoration. For this reason, most people have their crosses on a very long chain, so it can be hidden if you are wearing a more open neckline.

The tradition of wearing it on the inside away from view is something that I've noticed that is practiced by the Russians, but I have not seen it practiced amongst the Ukrainians, Greeks, or Arabs. The Russians seem to be the most discreet about wearing their baptismal cross, whereas other groups wear it openly.

I wonder why this is so? I know my godmother, who is Siberian, sharply "rapped my knuckles" so to speak, when once I allowed my cross to hang outside my clothing. I never did it again. I started to look around at church (which is a pretty even blend of Ukrainian/Russian) and nearly everyone seems to have their crosses tucked in rather than on the outside. Maybe if I went to an all-Ukrainian parish, it would be different though.
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« Reply #18 on: February 01, 2010, 06:43:14 PM »

After putting on the baptismal cross, is one really required to continue wearing it from then on?  I only ask because I'm not really a jewelry person at all!

You should always wear your baptismal cross as a provision against demons.
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« Reply #19 on: February 01, 2010, 09:37:01 PM »

I have a question about this. I have already purchased http://www.catholicfaithstore.com/Store/Products/Item/-8-112/2/Saint-Andrews-Crucifix_2797.html?MYEZSTORE=sl45kn1j73qgq6ah017lvvdp9352v7pj . Were I to convert to Orthodoxy (and I fully intend to do so after I am out from under my parents' authority), would the purchase of a new cross be necessary?
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« Reply #20 on: April 16, 2010, 07:04:59 PM »

If someone loses their Baptismal Cross is it appropriate to just buy another to replace it?  I am 64 and lost my Cross recently.  Do I simply obtain another?
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« Reply #21 on: April 16, 2010, 07:17:16 PM »

If someone loses their Baptismal Cross is it appropriate to just buy another to replace it?  I am 64 and lost my Cross recently.  Do I simply obtain another?
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I would say, yes.   Buy another and get your priest to bless it.  Some priests will place it on the altar during the time of Liturgy, others will bless it in a small ceremony with Holy Water, others will do both.

At the baptism itself I bless the baptismal cross by 1) keeping it on the Gospel book for most of the service and then 2) swooshing it three times crosswise through the baptismal water immediately after the person is baptized.  Then I hand it to the godparent to hang around the neck of their godchild.  I don't know how many other priests do it this way but it is what I learnt in Serbia.
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« Reply #22 on: April 16, 2010, 07:18:11 PM »

Witamy na forum! Welcome to the forum!
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« Reply #23 on: April 16, 2010, 07:26:01 PM »

At the baptism itself I bless the baptismal cross by 1) keeping it on the Gospel book for most of the service and then 2) swooshing it three times crosswise through the baptismal water immediately after the person is baptized.  Then I hand it to the godparent to hang around the neck of their godchild.  I don't know how many other priests do it this way but it is what I learnt in Serbia.

This is also the Russian practice.
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« Reply #24 on: April 16, 2010, 07:45:11 PM »

My Baptismal Cross given at my Chrismation was a simple wooden cross on a leather thong, the cost about $8. A cross should be given but it does not have to be in gold or silver.

Most of the baptismal crosses worn by the older generations of Russians are simple crosses made of tin.  The figure of Christ has been stamped on one side and on the other side the words "Save and Protect."  They could not be cheaper but they are much loved.
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« Reply #25 on: June 28, 2010, 03:31:34 AM »

I have a question about this. I have already purchased http://www.catholicfaithstore.com/Store/Products/Item/-8-112/2/Saint-Andrews-Crucifix_2797.html?MYEZSTORE=sl45kn1j73qgq6ah017lvvdp9352v7pj . Were I to convert to Orthodoxy (and I fully intend to do so after I am out from under my parents' authority), would the purchase of a new cross be necessary?

Hey Person!

I do not think Orthodox is that strict that you HAVE to get a new cross. I think you could ask your priest to bless it. Or if you feel really into Orthodoxy, then sure you can get a new one with a design you like!

Be happy!
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