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Lichnidos
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« on: May 05, 2010, 08:52:32 PM »

When clergy and alter boys go out for the Great Entrance procession, is there a prescribed order in the procession? I know that the Censor/Chalice come prior to the fans but the question that was posed to me was that the candles lead the procession, while I believe that the cross does. Or is this a tradition by tradition practice?
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« Reply #1 on: May 05, 2010, 08:58:40 PM »

Or is this a tradition by tradition practice? 

I have experienced different things in different places.  Here are a few varieties:


Cross, Fans, Candles, Censer, Clergy w/ gifts
Candles, Fans, Cross, Censer, Clergy w/ gifts
Cross, Fans, Censer, Clergy w/ gifts
Fans, Candles, Censer, Clergy w/ gifts
Candles, Fans, Censer, Clergy w/ gifts

The only constants?  Fans (somewhere), Censer then Clergy w/ gifts.
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« Reply #2 on: May 05, 2010, 09:07:21 PM »

Or is this a tradition by tradition practice? 

I have experienced different things in different places.  Here are a few varieties:


Cross, Fans, Candles, Censer, Clergy w/ gifts
Candles, Fans, Cross, Censer, Clergy w/ gifts
Cross, Fans, Censer, Clergy w/ gifts
Fans, Candles, Censer, Clergy w/ gifts
Candles, Fans, Censer, Clergy w/ gifts

The only constants?  Fans (somewhere), Censer then Clergy w/ gifts.

Fr. George - how do you do it at your parish?
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« Reply #3 on: May 05, 2010, 09:11:09 PM »

Ours is the middle one (Cross, Fans, Censer, Clergy), although it would be more than that.  The Sanctuary/Altar area is small - large enough only for the 3 clergy and 4 altar boys to move about.  So we are forced to have the smaller Great Entrance because of that limitation.

(At my ordination to the deaconate, we had to move out all the movable furniture, tell the Altar Boys to stay outside the altar in the vestry, have them enter and exit from a side door, and the altar was still way too crowded.  It was an interesting day.)

The parish I grew up at used the topmost model - and when the number of altar boys swelled greatly, we doubled many things (2 Crosses, 2 sets of Fans, and many candle-holders).
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« Reply #4 on: May 05, 2010, 09:13:42 PM »

Or is this a tradition by tradition practice? 

I have experienced different things in different places.  Here are a few varieties:


Cross, Fans, Candles, Censer, Clergy w/ gifts
Candles, Fans, Cross, Censer, Clergy w/ gifts
Cross, Fans, Censer, Clergy w/ gifts
Fans, Candles, Censer, Clergy w/ gifts
Candles, Fans, Censer, Clergy w/ gifts

The only constants?  Fans (somewhere), Censer then Clergy w/ gifts.

There is also the tradition of the clergy with gifts being followed by the fans.

The current practice of the Great Church of Constantinople is as follows

2nd Priest with Omophorian
Candles
Cross
4th Deacon with 2 hand fans crossed in front
2nd Deacon with Trikiria and Censer
1st Deacon with Paten
3rd Deacon with Dikiria and Censer
1st Priest with Chalice
Fans on poles
Additional priest

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« Reply #5 on: May 05, 2010, 09:16:55 PM »

When clergy and alter boys go out for the Great Entrance procession, is there a prescribed order in the procession? I know that the Censor/Chalice come prior to the fans but the question that was posed to me was that the candles lead the procession, while I believe that the cross does. Or is this a tradition by tradition practice?

Just so you know there is likely an unique answer to this question as their are unique parishes in the world.
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« Reply #6 on: May 05, 2010, 09:28:22 PM »

There is also the tradition of the clergy with gifts being followed by the fans.

True.  I restricted my post to describing only what I've seen in parishes where I have chanted or served in the altar in some capacity.

The current practice of the Great Church of Constantinople is as follows

An entire other bag of marbles...

2nd Priest with Omophorian

I thought about including this with my post, but decided to omit it, as (a) hierarchical Liturgies are rare for most folk, and (b) some bishops (*gasp*) don't do it.

Candles
Cross
4th Deacon with 2 hand fans crossed in front
2nd Deacon with Trikiria and Censer
1st Deacon with Paten
3rd Deacon with Dikiria and Censer
1st Priest with Chalice
Fans on poles
Additional priest 

Reason #1 why I didn't speak about Typikon or the Great Church: who else serves with 4 deacons? Cheesy

Just so you know there is likely an unique answer to this question as their are unique parishes in the world. 

Amen.
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« Reply #7 on: May 05, 2010, 09:28:28 PM »

Thank you both. It seems like it's not something to get up in arms for and if are those who insist on a certain order, it is better to just let them have it their way. Pastorally speaking ...  Smiley
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« Reply #8 on: May 05, 2010, 09:30:14 PM »

Thank you both. It seems like it's not something to get up in arms for and if are those who insist on a certain order, it is better to just let them have it their way. Pastorally speaking ...  Smiley

Within reason, yes.
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« Reply #9 on: May 05, 2010, 10:47:43 PM »

There are so many varients, some not even mentioned here:  cross, candles, fan 1, paten, chalice, fan 2, candles.   
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« Reply #10 on: May 05, 2010, 11:05:53 PM »

Thank you both. It seems like it's not something to get up in arms for and if are those who insist on a certain order, it is better to just let them have it their way. Pastorally speaking ...  Smiley

Within reason, yes.

So does that mean no balloons?
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« Reply #11 on: May 06, 2010, 12:42:37 AM »

In our parish, in a Sunday with all acolyte team members present and three priests serving:   Crucifer, candlebearers (in pairs), fan-bearers (in pairs), lantern-bearers (in pairs, censor, priests (single file:  chalice, diskos, and spear).
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« Reply #12 on: May 06, 2010, 02:33:14 AM »

Does anyone know why the Slavs do not process around the nave during the Great Entrance as the Greeks do?

In my parish, during the Small Entrance, the Deacon brings the Gospel out to the center aisle for the faithful to venerate before returning to the heavenly gates. During the Great Entrance, the procession goes from the deacon door to the heavenly gates, so in some respects it would seem that the "small" entrance is grander in size to the "great" entrance.

While I do not object to the veneration of the Gospel, I was just wondering when the tradition changed for the Slavs to skip processing around the nave.
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« Reply #13 on: May 06, 2010, 03:51:37 AM »

Does anyone know why the Slavs do not process around the nave during the Great Entrance as the Greeks do?

In my parish, during the Small Entrance, the Deacon brings the Gospel out to the center aisle for the faithful to venerate before returning to the heavenly gates. During the Great Entrance, the procession goes from the deacon door to the heavenly gates, so in some respects it would seem that the "small" entrance is grander in size to the "great" entrance.

While I do not object to the veneration of the Gospel, I was just wondering when the tradition changed for the Slavs to skip processing around the nave.

I would suggest that you should read Robert Taft's book on the Great Entrance.
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« Reply #14 on: May 06, 2010, 04:04:37 AM »

Does anyone know why the Slavs do not process around the nave during the Great Entrance as the Greeks do?

In my parish, during the Small Entrance, the Deacon brings the Gospel out to the center aisle for the faithful to venerate before returning to the heavenly gates. During the Great Entrance, the procession goes from the deacon door to the heavenly gates, so in some respects it would seem that the "small" entrance is grander in size to the "great" entrance.

While I do not object to the veneration of the Gospel, I was just wondering when the tradition changed for the Slavs to skip processing around the nave.

I would suggest that you should read Robert Taft's book on the Great Entrance.

Okay, well since I'm kind of bogged down with school work, can I have the Cliff's Notes answer?  Grin

(I'm taking courses over the summer too.)
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« Reply #15 on: May 06, 2010, 05:42:18 AM »

Does anyone know what the practice is on the Holy Mountain? I have heard a couple of priests from there say it is inappropriate to use the Cross (can't remember what they said about fans) during the Great Entrance.
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« Reply #16 on: May 06, 2010, 07:11:11 AM »

In my OCA parish we have candels(pairs) Deacon with sensor,Deacon with Paten, priest with blessing cross, priest with spear/blessing cross(when three priests are serving), and priest with chalice 

The only time my parish uses the fans is at Pascha.
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« Reply #17 on: May 06, 2010, 10:17:40 AM »

Does anyone know what the practice is on the Holy Mountain? I have heard a couple of priests from there say it is inappropriate to use the Cross (can't remember what they said about fans) during the Great Entrance.
For a typical liturgy(one priest with one deacon):
Two candles(ekklesiarch and parekklesiarch)
Deacon with censer and paten
priest with chalice
(no corss ,no fans,no surplus 'altar boys')
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« Reply #18 on: May 06, 2010, 10:39:05 AM »

If we have everyone in the procession we go...

Cross
Candle
Fan
Censer
Clergy w/ gifts
Fan

I think, but we also have other variations depending on how many of us are available to help (that is, vested) with the Great Entrance.

I should also note that we have one priest and no deacons, we have two readers, and the rest of us are acolytes/altar servers...
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« Reply #19 on: May 06, 2010, 08:39:28 PM »

Does anyone know why the Slavs do not process around the nave during the Great Entrance as the Greeks do?

In my parish, during the Small Entrance, the Deacon brings the Gospel out to the center aisle for the faithful to venerate before returning to the heavenly gates. During the Great Entrance, the procession goes from the deacon door to the heavenly gates, so in some respects it would seem that the "small" entrance is grander in size to the "great" entrance.

While I do not object to the veneration of the Gospel, I was just wondering when the tradition changed for the Slavs to skip processing around the nave.

Actually, there is in some local Ukrainian practice the nave Great entrance.  For example, coatesville, dover, and philadelphia cathedral.  I know that there are a few others that do it as well.  In fact, I think either coatesville or philadelphia or both do the entrance with the Gospel around the nave as well as the entrance with the gifts 
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« Reply #20 on: May 09, 2010, 01:45:26 PM »

Thank you both. It seems like it's not something to get up in arms for and if are those who insist on a certain order, it is better to just let them have it their way. Pastorally speaking ...  Smiley

I'm not too rigid as far as this is concerned, although at my parish I like to follow the same order each time so we have consistency and avoid confusion.

Therefore, the ideal for us would be:

Candles > first fan > deacon with censer and diskos > priest with chalice > second fan, (then any additional stray priests laugh who may have happened by, carrying blessing crosses).

I would also find perfectly acceptable the practice of having both fans together preceding the clergy, although this would mean that the clergy with the Oblations would have to pass the server with the second fan in order to get to the centre of the solea.  So practically, it simply would not work at my parish as our solea is not wide enough for two people to pass by simultaneously.

The other thing that is variable and which wouldn't get me too upset if done differently is the practice surrounding the censer.  As it was explained to me, the censer serves no purpose during the Great Entrance.  Nothing is censed at this point so it is not swung but is merely carried by the deacon, (draped over his shoulder if there is one deacon, as he carries the diskos aloft, or held aloft by one deacon if there are two, while the other deacon follows him with the diskos).  The only reason he carries it in the procession is because he and the priest use it at the Oblations table immediately prior to the Entrance and then at the Holy Table immediately after the Entrance. Therefore, carrying it in the procession is simply a way of getting it from A to B without undue fuss.  Because of this, in the absence of a deacon, if there are enough servers that the censer can be put away without delaying the Entrance and easily retrieved when needed again, it seems to me that to do this would be best practice, and this is the arangement that I have at my parish.  If this would cause a delay, then I don't think I would go into anaphylactic shock if a server were to carry it in the procession.  However, I would not place him with the clergy carrying the Oblations, but rather have him stand below the solea, in the middle of the servers carrying candles. He is, after all, not a deacon and should not behave as such.

Any surplus servers usually simply carry more candles and stand at the foot of the solea while those with fans would stand on the solea, holding the fans above the diskos and chalice, held by the deacon and priest in the middle.  However, as we currently have neither fans nor deacon, what usually happens is:

Candles > priest with diskos and chalice.

The main thing that surprises me here is that people have mentioned the Cross being carried.  According to my sources and experience, the Cross is only carried in outdoor processions and not during the Entrances of the Liturgy.  The only exception to this is when the Primate of one of the local churches is serving, in which case, the Cross is used at the reception of the bishop, and again during the Lesser and Great Entrances - that is, only the Patrriarch/other Primate gets this honour and and not other bishops - certainly not priests!  This seems to be corroborated by Orthodox11's aforementioned encounters with Athonite priests.  If I were to see the Cross being carried in the Entrance when just a priest were serving, I would probably jokingly ask him afterwards whether he had been elevated without telling anyone. Shocked

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« Reply #21 on: May 09, 2010, 03:17:11 PM »


The other thing that is variable and which wouldn't get me too upset if done differently is the practice surrounding the censer.  As it was explained to me, the censer serves no purpose during the Great Entrance.  Nothing is censed at this point so it is not swung but is merely carried by the deacon, (draped over his shoulder if there is one deacon, as he carries the diskos aloft, or held aloft by one deacon if there are two, while the other deacon follows him with the diskos).  The only reason he carries it in the procession is because he and the priest use it at the Oblations table immediately prior to the Entrance and then at the Holy Table immediately after the Entrance. Therefore, carrying it in the procession is simply a way of getting it from A to B without undue fuss.  

This is a major difference between the Greek and Russian practices. The gifts are censed during the procession in the Greek practice.  You will even notice that in the model I put forth earlier, if you have enough deacons the Chalice and the Paten get their own individual censers. It is so key that in the small churches in Greece that do weekday liturgy, the old lady who helps the priest will take a candle and censer, walk backwards, and cense the gifts.

It is my opinion that the Russians developed this strange idea that only a deacon or priest may use a censer. It is very common for a hand censer to be used in ones own home in Orthodox cultures from around the Mediterranean and Balkans but you never see this being done in homes of people from the Slav lands. The altar boy censes when he receives the censer back from the priest or deacon in the Greek practice but this is never done in the Russian practice.
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« Reply #22 on: May 09, 2010, 03:57:33 PM »

It is my opinion that the Russians developed this strange idea that only a deacon or priest may use a censer. It is very common for a hand censer to be used in ones own home in Orthodox cultures from around the Mediterranean and Balkans but you never see this being done in homes of people from the Slav lands. The altar boy censes when he receives the censer back from the priest or deacon in the Greek practice but this is never done in the Russian practice.

I occasionally help out in the altar at the church near my university, which is shared by two parishes - one Russian and one Greek. One week I'll get told off for censing the priest when taking the censer back from him, the next week I'll get told off for not doing it.

I was always under the impression that the Russian practice was the more correct though.
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« Reply #23 on: May 10, 2010, 04:11:57 PM »

I was always under the impression that the Russian practice was the more correct though.

What beautiful words are these that grace my eyes?

I find this a beneficial approach to liturgics generally.  Wink
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« Reply #24 on: May 11, 2010, 10:45:05 PM »

I was always under the impression that the Russian practice was the more correct though.

What beautiful words are these that grace my eyes?

I find this a beneficial approach to liturgics generally.  Wink

Perhaps you just find the Russian tradition closer to your heart? I do as well to a point. Smiley

I agree that censing the priest is a bit overboard, eventhough we practice it at my parish. But the Greek practice of the longer procession and censing the gifts during is a very nice practice, I appreciate it. And it definitely helps to set the focus on why we're there.
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« Reply #25 on: May 11, 2010, 11:58:05 PM »


I agree that censing the priest is a bit overboard

It is not a censing of the priest but rather the gifts that are being carried.
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« Reply #26 on: May 12, 2010, 10:33:38 AM »


I agree that censing the priest is a bit overboard

It is not a censing of the priest but rather the gifts that are being carried.

Well I understand that part. But there is also a point in the Liturgy after the Priest finishes censing and he hands the censor back to the Deacon/Subdeacon and then they cense him three times. Could be a total misconception on my part.
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« Reply #27 on: May 12, 2010, 06:34:13 PM »

That's right, Lichnidos.  I have only ever seen this done in former Anglican convert parishes so I had assumed it was an importation from the western liturgical tradition, (where the priest is indeed censed after he performs a censing).  Perhaps I was wrong and it is more widespread.  It certainly doesn't happen in the Russian tradition.
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