Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!
Does anyone know what the rarest church incense available might be and where to obtain it? Thanks!
I buy directly from the Ethiopian importer. Here are the grades:
Boswellia frereana Maydi (Myrrh Gum- finest)
Grade 1 - Mushaad
Grade 2 - Mujaarwal
Grade 3 - Fas-Kabir
Grade 4 - Fas-Saqir
Grade 5 - Fas-Shooar
Grade 6 - Jimanjim
Grade 7 - Fooh
Olibanum. Beyo (Frankincense Gum - lesser grades)
Grade 1 - Fasass (white)
Grade 2 - Casaan (red)
Grade 3 - Shooto (mix of light and dark colored
Grade 4 - Fooh (garbling, dust, bark and leaves)
I grind together Maydi and Beyo with a little water, then set in cornstarch until it dries. It makea a great, long-lasting natural incense with little bitterness at the end like you get from the cheap stuff.
It ends up being about $13/lbs. for the blend I make.
Go right to the source
Ethiopia and Somalia are the indigenous origin of both Frankincense and Myrrh trees, and essentially these resins and oils are dried or extracts of the sap/syrup of these trees. It is interesting the history and interconnection in regards to this, as incense was the center of Liturgical worship across the Levant for thousands of years before Christianity. This brought the Ethiopians into the mix, and it is also part of why the Hellenists thought that the Ethiopians in fact invented ritualized, liturgical prayer. The Queen of Sheba, who according to Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo tradition, was the Queen of Ethiopia, came to King Solomon precisely because she had heard of his glory from the incense merchants who traded frequently with Jerusalem to supply the Jews with the needed (and in fact legally prescribed by Moses) for their worship.
Through out its history, Ethiopia has provided this crucial incense, and continues to do so up unto this day, though this should not discredit the Somalis (and also some Kenyans and Eritreans who also produce incense)