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Does your parish have 9th hour before Vespers?

Yes
1 (6.7%)
No
8 (53.3%)
Other/Sometimes (please comment)
6 (40%)

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Offline wynd

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9th hour before Vespers?
« on: April 30, 2015, 11:03:23 AM »
Hi everyone,

I searched but didn't find any other threads on this. My old parish (OCA) had 3rd and 6th hours before Liturgy on Sunday and 9th hour before Vespers on Saturday. My current parish, also OCA but in another state and another diocese, has 3rd and 6th hours before Liturgy on Sunday but no 9th hour before Vespers on Saturday. I asked the priest and he said he's never seen a parish that consistently has 9th hour before Vespers. I'm wondering what everyone else's experience is, or what the actual liturgical guidelines are.

Thanks!

Offline wgw

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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #1 on: April 30, 2015, 11:54:12 AM »
My experience is that tragically, outside of monasteries, the 9th hour is generally not a part of the Saturday night service.   It should,be, IMO, but it's not.  There are exceptions, for example, the Hours on Great and Holy Saturday read before the Vesperal Divine Liturgy.

Also for that matter, more generally in Lent and Holy Week I believe the common practice is to do the 9th hour before the Presanctified Liturgy.

And of,course any time the Royal Hours are appointed, namely Christmas Eve and Good Friday,,but these are different from the standard hours and indeed each other.  Also, I believe before a service of the vesperal Divine Loturgy generally you might be more likely to encounter it.

I do think the 9th hour should be universally celebrated and I'm delighted to hear of an OCA parish that was doing that.  But there are some people here who would insist, based on no rule I can find anywhere, that this is an incorrect practice; I took so,e heat from another member in the past for suggesting in my blog the frequent celebration of the 9th hour was warranted, together with a more spirited service of the Hours, with the psalms chanted rather than intoned, and Followimg in the footsteps of St. John Chrysostom, the possible secondary use of the Hours as a place for a longer sermon than the Divine Liturgy itself would bear without a certain sense of interruption.

Of course sadly in many parishes there are no Hours, just an abrupt transition from Orthros to the Liturgy.  And no Vespers.  And I've seen some parishes, two prominent, beautiful cathedrals in fact, here in LA, that serve the Sunday Morning Divine Liturgy only except during feasts and presumably Lent and Holy Week.  And that makes me very sad.  This is done without even the consolation of Orthros.
« Last Edit: April 30, 2015, 12:06:13 PM by wgw »
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Offline Pravoslavac

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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #2 on: April 30, 2015, 12:00:31 PM »
Hi everyone,

I searched but didn't find any other threads on this. My old parish (OCA) had 3rd and 6th hours before Liturgy on Sunday and 9th hour before Vespers on Saturday. My current parish, also OCA but in another state and another diocese, has 3rd and 6th hours before Liturgy on Sunday but no 9th hour before Vespers on Saturday. I asked the priest and he said he's never seen a parish that consistently has 9th hour before Vespers. I'm wondering what everyone else's experience is, or what the actual liturgical guidelines are.

Thanks!

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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #3 on: April 30, 2015, 12:09:56 PM »
Hi everyone,

I searched but didn't find any other threads on this. My old parish (OCA) had 3rd and 6th hours before Liturgy on Sunday and 9th hour before Vespers on Saturday. My current parish, also OCA but in another state and another diocese, has 3rd and 6th hours before Liturgy on Sunday but no 9th hour before Vespers on Saturday. I asked the priest and he said he's never seen a parish that consistently has 9th hour before Vespers. I'm wondering what everyone else's experience is, or what the actual liturgical guidelines are.

We have to keep in mind that these are all technically "stand alone" services, even if we commonly serve one or more of them together. 

That said, in my experience, this is the first time I'm hearing of an OCA parish serving Ninth Hour before Vespers outside of Lent.  Serving them together is more of a "Greek" thing in my experience, and even then not always in the US.   



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Offline wgw

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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #4 on: April 30, 2015, 12:12:07 PM »
Also seminaries are the only place where one is likely to find the exquisite, disused liturgies: the Presanctified Liturgy of St. James, the Divine Loturgy of St. James, and the Divine Liturgy of St. Mark.  I believe Holy Trimity Seminary simce 2014 has done the first two annually, whereas the GoArch seminary also does St. Mark.   These services are very beautiful and if I discover oil or something and strike it rich, I will create an endowment to benefit parishes that commit to serving these liturgies at a minimum on the feast days of their saint, and more frequently if the Bishop allows, during the week, as a means of luring curious parishioners to otherwise poorly attended midweek services.  Also my endowment would pay for additional priests for major parishes so there would be enough man power to actually do this.  Perhaps some multi millionaire or billionaire lurker on OC.net with a passion for the liturfy will read this and decide to set such an endowment up.  Ideally with an impressive name, like the St. Cyril of Jerusalem Fund for Liturgical Excellence.   ;)
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Offline rft183

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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #5 on: April 30, 2015, 12:12:41 PM »
The only Orthodox church near me (that has a priest and meets every Sunday) is a Western Rite parish.  It has ninth hour before Vespers on Saturday.  I don't know if the rite would make a difference, though.

Offline wgw

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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #6 on: April 30, 2015, 12:19:48 PM »
Hi everyone,

I searched but didn't find any other threads on this. My old parish (OCA) had 3rd and 6th hours before Liturgy on Sunday and 9th hour before Vespers on Saturday. My current parish, also OCA but in another state and another diocese, has 3rd and 6th hours before Liturgy on Sunday but no 9th hour before Vespers on Saturday. I asked the priest and he said he's never seen a parish that consistently has 9th hour before Vespers. I'm wondering what everyone else's experience is, or what the actual liturgical guidelines are.

We have to keep in mind that these are all technically "stand alone" services, even if we commonly serve one or more of them together. 

That said, in my experience, this is the first time I'm hearing of an OCA parish serving Ninth Hour before Vespers outside of Lent.  Serving them together is more of a "Greek" thing in my experience, and even then not always in the US.   

Indeed.  I've never heard of an OCA parish doing this.  But it gives me a major rush!  I want to know which parish that is and call up the priest and tell him how awesome he is.

I was disappointed by the way to discover shortly after my conversion that there are very few places that serve each Hour at the appointed time.  I wish there was some parish in some exotic land in so,e city with a great bazaar where this was the norm.  One thing in my teenage years, before 9/11 anyway, when the Islamic world held a certain Romantic appeal as this magical moorish land vis a vis Lawrence of Arabia and the Moorish Kiosk of "Mad" King Ludwig II at Schloss Linderhof in Bavaria (the only one of his splendid palaces he managed to complete, in a idyllic setting near Oberamgau, less overrun with tourists than Schloss Neuschwanstein), was the idea of praying regularly at consistent intervals throughout the day.  I imagined that this would bring great peace.  And later I learned the Muslims essentially copied the practice of their five daily prayers wholesale from Christianity while reducing the liturgy to such a minimal extent as to be intolerably dull.

But I think actually experiencing the Hours at the times they suggest, or a close approximation, would give tremendous peace.  Perhaps it might even be possible in the Muslim lands where everything grinds to a halt at the hour of prayer anyway.
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Offline wgw

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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #7 on: April 30, 2015, 12:25:30 PM »
The only Orthodox church near me (that has a priest and meets every Sunday) is a Western Rite parish.  It has ninth hour before Vespers on Saturday.  I don't know if the rite would make a difference, though.

It would but I am not sure how common this is in the traditional Latin Rite, or the ancient Latin Rites, which they're doubtless following.  There is a diversity of praxis in the Western Rite, which I love, but as a result in some places you'll get Orthodoxified Choral Evensong.  Which is fine by me, more than fine, splendid.  But I guess what I'm trying to say is, I have no idea if at traditionalist Roman Catholic monasteries, this is a normal practice.  The input of one of our RC members familiar with the pre-conciliar Western liturgy might help.

I think in the Pauline liturgy of the hours Noone is subsumed with Terce and Sext into "Midday Prayer", with Prime suppressed.  Alas sadly the Liturgy of the Hours is seldom served, but I believe a local Catholic parish does something with it on Saturdays; I was there for a Bach concert on a lovely Saturday afternoon and a table full of the modern equivalent of Breviaries was set out.  This was absent the one time I visited that parish for a Sunday evening mass.
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Offline Tikhon29605

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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #8 on: April 30, 2015, 12:30:40 PM »
Also seminaries are the only place where one is likely to find the exquisite, disused liturgies: the Presanctified Liturgy of St. James, the Divine Loturgy of St. James, and the Divine Liturgy of St. Mark.  I believe Holy Trimity Seminary simce 2014 has done the first two annually, whereas the GoArch seminary also does St. Mark.   These services are very beautiful and if I discover oil or something and strike it rich, I will create an endowment to benefit parishes that commit to serving these liturgies at a minimum on the feast days of their saint, and more frequently if the Bishop allows, during the week, as a means of luring curious parishioners to otherwise poorly attended midweek services.  Also my endowment would pay for additional priests for major parishes so there would be enough man power to actually do this.  Perhaps some multi millionaire or billionaire lurker on OC.net with a passion for the liturfy will read this and decide to set such an endowment up.  Ideally with an impressive name, like the St. Cyril of Jerusalem Fund for Liturgical Excellence.   ;)

While I have never personally attended the Divine Liturgy of Saint James, I have read through it a number of times.  Its a very moving liturgy and it has an eloquent epikelsis in addition to a superb anaphora.  Personally, I think it would make an topic for a parish study taught by a priest as a "history of our liturgy" class.  Structurally, it is still very very similar to Chrysostom's and Basil's liturgies except that the prayers tend to be much longer.

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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #9 on: April 30, 2015, 12:32:09 PM »
I do think the 9th hour should be universally celebrated and I'm delighted to hear of an OCA parish that was doing that.  But there are some people here who would insist, based on no rule I can find anywhere, that this is an incorrect practice; I took so,e heat from another member in the past for suggesting in my blog the frequent celebration of the 9th hour was warranted, together with a more spirited service of the Hours, with the psalms chanted rather than intoned, and Followimg in the footsteps of St. John Chrysostom, the possible secondary use of the Hours as a place for a longer sermon than the Divine Liturgy itself would bear without a certain sense of interruption.

I don't think anyone objected to your suggestion that the Ninth Hour should be celebrated more often.  But your suggestion involved turning a service that can be read in ten minutes into something well over an hour long on top of a day already filled with a few hours' worth of services.  That's nice in theory, but hard to pull off in practice, even in monasteries.  We pray these services in order to worship God throughout the day.  When we turn worship into a burden too heavy for us to lift, we stop worshiping.  Who loses?  Not God.     
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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #10 on: April 30, 2015, 12:36:10 PM »
The only Orthodox church near me (that has a priest and meets every Sunday) is a Western Rite parish.  It has ninth hour before Vespers on Saturday.  I don't know if the rite would make a difference, though.

It can.  For instance, among the OO it is a lot more common to attach Ninth Hour to Vespers.  If a parish has an evening service at all, it will be Ninth Hour, Vespers, and Compline.  Ninth Hour is usually not omitted in the evening unless it was done earlier because it happens to be a fasting day. 
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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #11 on: April 30, 2015, 12:36:40 PM »
Structurally, it is still very very similar to Chrysostom's and Basil's liturgies except that the prayers tend to be much longer.

Actually, it's the other way around.  ;)
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Offline wynd

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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #12 on: April 30, 2015, 12:51:26 PM »
Alas sadly the Liturgy of the Hours is seldom served, but I believe a local Catholic parish does something with it on Saturdays; I was there for a Bach concert on a lovely Saturday afternoon and a table full of the modern equivalent of Breviaries was set out.  This was absent the one time I visited that parish for a Sunday evening mass.

This is the priest you should call up and congratulate. I've never, ever seen or even heard of the LotH publicly served in any Catholic church anywhere outside of Rome.

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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #13 on: April 30, 2015, 12:54:06 PM »
Alas sadly the Liturgy of the Hours is seldom served, but I believe a local Catholic parish does something with it on Saturdays; I was there for a Bach concert on a lovely Saturday afternoon and a table full of the modern equivalent of Breviaries was set out.  This was absent the one time I visited that parish for a Sunday evening mass.

This is the priest you should call up and congratulate. I've never, ever seen or even heard of the LotH publicly served in any Catholic church anywhere outside of Rome.

One of the local RC parishes here used to have it on Saturday mornings, another used to have it daily (not sure if they still do it).  In both cases, it was a lay initiative.  The only place I ever saw a priest involved was at a cathedral. 
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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #14 on: April 30, 2015, 01:34:15 PM »
Also seminaries are the only place where one is likely to find the exquisite, disused liturgies: the Presanctified Liturgy of St. James, the Divine Loturgy of St. James, and the Divine Liturgy of St. Mark.  I believe Holy Trimity Seminary simce 2014 has done the first two annually, whereas the GoArch seminary also does St. Mark.   These services are very beautiful and if I discover oil or something and strike it rich, I will create an endowment to benefit parishes that commit to serving these liturgies at a minimum on the feast days of their saint, and more frequently if the Bishop allows, during the week, as a means of luring curious parishioners to otherwise poorly attended midweek services.  Also my endowment would pay for additional priests for major parishes so there would be enough man power to actually do this.  Perhaps some multi millionaire or billionaire lurker on OC.net with a passion for the liturfy will read this and decide to set such an endowment up.  Ideally with an impressive name, like the St. Cyril of Jerusalem Fund for Liturgical Excellence.   ;)
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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #15 on: April 30, 2015, 01:55:58 PM »
We do 9th hour before Presanctified Liturgies (along with Matins, 1st, 3rd, 6th hours and Typica) , and Vesperal Liturgies like Holy Thursday and Holy Saturday, Eve of Nativity and Eve of Theophany (if not a Sunday, together with 3rd and 6th hour).

I know an Antiochian church that routinely does 9th hour prior to Vespers on Saturday evening.  This does not seem unreasonable if Vespers is your evening service. However, I don't think it makes any since to routinely do the 9th hour in parishes that follow the Slavic practice of holding Vigil (Vespers/Matins/1st hour), Vigil is already abbreviated in the parish practice, I don't think the service needs to be longer than 3 hours on a regular basis, and if you want it to be longer I'd begin by decreasing the abbreviations in Matins rather than adding the 9th hour.

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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #16 on: April 30, 2015, 03:03:53 PM »
We do 9th hour before Presanctified Liturgies (along with Matins, 1st, 3rd, 6th hours and Typica) , and Vesperal Liturgies like Holy Thursday and Holy Saturday, Eve of Nativity and Eve of Theophany (if not a Sunday, together with 3rd and 6th hour).
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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #17 on: April 30, 2015, 03:25:39 PM »
I do think the 9th hour should be universally celebrated and I'm delighted to hear of an OCA parish that was doing that.  But there are some people here who would insist, based on no rule I can find anywhere, that this is an incorrect practice; I took so,e heat from another member in the past for suggesting in my blog the frequent celebration of the 9th hour was warranted, together with a more spirited service of the Hours, with the psalms chanted rather than intoned, and Followimg in the footsteps of St. John Chrysostom, the possible secondary use of the Hours as a place for a longer sermon than the Divine Liturgy itself would bear without a certain sense of interruption.

I don't think anyone objected to your suggestion that the Ninth Hour should be celebrated more often.  But your suggestion involved turning a service that can be read in ten minutes into something well over an hour long on top of a day already filled with a few hours' worth of services.  That's nice in theory, but hard to pull off in practice, even in monasteries.  We pray these services in order to worship God throughout the day.  When we turn worship into a burden too heavy for us to lift, we stop worshiping.  Who loses?  Not God.     

Actually LBK did object to my desire that the ninth hour be more frequently served very specifically, and you if I recall disagreed with her.  And I don't want the Hours to take an hour, and didn't call for that, rather, I want them to be sung.  But moving the bulk of the homily into the sixth hour for example would allow the homily in the liturgy itself to be briefer and more mystical, and by this, I'm thinking of the 20+ minute homilies favored in the Coptic church.  But I would not want the hours to take an hour, just to be sung or even chanted with more zeal.  And a more energetic sung service of the hours might take less time than the sort of monotonous chanting of it that presently dominates. 

But it would be completely impractical to draw out the hours.  I just wish they were served more emphatically and I am not confessed this would take longer.  It might be fun to mock it up however to see.  I'll bet it might even be possible to reduce the duration while singing or chanting the service with more vigor.  But in the case of Terce and Sext, this might not even be a good idea in all cases; in EO parishes I commonly see Terce and sext occurring while the priest is hearing confessions, and sometimes there is an aggravating pause between the end of Sext and the start of the liturgy.  So perhaps having an ability to extend the length of these services to avoid that pause might be beneficial.

Also regarding the ninth hour and the All Night Vigil, I do understand how that might seem a long time.  But if the Third and Sixth hours can be done in 15 minutes than so too might the Ninth Hour, and this might also provide more time for confessions at the Vigils service, which has become one of its major functions.
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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #18 on: April 30, 2015, 03:28:37 PM »
Another thing to bear in mind is that in the Russian tradition, Saturday night vespers are "Great Vespers", and the 9th hour is not meant to be read before Great Vespers (in monasteries, they would read 9th hour and so-called Small Vespers before the Saturday evening meal, then after the meal they start the Vigil with Great Vespers, followed by Matins and 1st hour).

In a Byzantine tradition church, ordinary Vespers are sung on normal Saturday evenings (i.e. unless some important feast day coincides). It would be appropriate to read 9th hours before Vespers in that case, but I think outside monasteries they generally won't. 9th hour on Saturday is no more important than the hours for the rest of the week, and in parish churches you're not going to have the full cycle of weekly services in any case, in the way you do in monasteries.

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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #19 on: April 30, 2015, 03:49:55 PM »
Also seminaries are the only place where one is likely to find the exquisite, disused liturgies: the Presanctified Liturgy of St. James, the Divine Loturgy of St. James, and the Divine Liturgy of St. Mark.  I believe Holy Trimity Seminary simce 2014 has done the first two annually, whereas the GoArch seminary also does St. Mark.   These services are very beautiful and if I discover oil or something and strike it rich, I will create an endowment to benefit parishes that commit to serving these liturgies at a minimum on the feast days of their saint, and more frequently if the Bishop allows, during the week, as a means of luring curious parishioners to otherwise poorly attended midweek services.  Also my endowment would pay for additional priests for major parishes so there would be enough man power to actually do this.  Perhaps some multi millionaire or billionaire lurker on OC.net with a passion for the liturfy will read this and decide to set such an endowment up.  Ideally with an impressive name, like the St. Cyril of Jerusalem Fund for Liturgical Excellence.   ;)
I was at Holy Cross for the feast of St. Mark, and his liturgy was not performed.

Well I have read of them serving it in the past, I assumed it was a current practice.  I do know there are seminaries and monasteries where this most splendid liturgy has been served in recent years.  Unfortunately it is not served as consistently as that of St. James, which is a tragedy given the beauty of this service and the fact that it exists in an 1890 recension, which features all the standard litanies and Antiphons.  In fact the Liturgy of St. Mark, on account of that recension, is probably a great deal easier to serve than some of the reconstructions of St. James that are out there, which involve oddities like the use of a temporary altar set up in front of the Holy Doors, versus populum and the presence of 13 priests (I have seen on YouTube St. James celebrated in a much more ordinary manner by a Russian bishop, and a link to that video should be on the page describing the Liturgy of St. James on OrthodoxWiki).   There are also some differences in the Liturgy of the Catechumens with St. James and of course the use of Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silemt instead of the customary Cherubic Hymn.

Now the 1890 recension of St. Mark is so Byzantinized it really differs only in the anaphora.  But here all the key verbal exclamations like "Thine own of thine own, we offer unto Thee, on behalf of all, and for all" are present, and actually a naughty priest in a parish where the silent prayers are said silently could probably get away with substituting St. Mark for St. John Chrysostom without anyone noticing.  I say probably because his timing might be off causing him to seemingly inexplicably fall out of sync with the choir.

In like manner I believe that the Anaphora of St. James and the essence of its Liturgy of the Faithful could probabaly be substituted for the Anaphora of St. Basil at the Vesperal Divine Liturgy on Great and Holy Saturday without anyone noticing because the main clue once one gets past the bizarre synaxis that one is using St. James, Let All Mortal Fleah Keep Silent, is already present.  But again the priest might appear out of sync with the choir, or due to the greater length of that Anaphora, he might seem to be taking an unusual amount of time.

Note that I am in no respect advocating such liturgical chicanery, merely noting that it might be possible.

However there is no mistaking the synaxis of St. James for the standard Byzantine synaxis shared by the morning liturgies of St. John Chrysostom and St. Basil (as opposed to Vesperal St. Basil, which has a very different Synaxis, as I'm sure you have experienced many times).

Now Metropolitan Seraphim of Pireaus recently celebrated, using a temporary holy table setup in front of the holy doors, the so called Divine Liturgy of St. Serapion of Thmuis, from the ancient Euchologion of the same saint.  This has some distinction as being the oldest complete liturgical service book to have survived intact (as opposed to volumes like the Didache or the Apostolic Constitutions which contain a mix of canons, instruction and liturgical material).  I would be very interested to see a translation of the Greek booklets that were handed out at the celebration of this liturgy, which is the first time it was served in well over a thousand years; I would be very interested to note of the exact service from the Euchologion was followed or if aspects of the contemporary Byzantine liturgy were included, and also where some of the strange rubrics apparently being followed, like the holy table in front of the altar, came from (perhaps a desire to recreate the appearance of a church before the invention of the Templon?).  But I have thought this recreated service of the Serapion liturgy is broadly interesting, and might be of particular interest to the Coptic church or the Greek Patriarchate of Alexandria.  Metropolitan Seraphim it should also be noted is a very colorful bishop who has attracted some controversy, but he certainly could not be accused of being of the modernist party in any sense.   So it was surprising and thrilling to see him serve that liturgy.
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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #20 on: April 30, 2015, 04:30:21 PM »
Actually LBK did object to my desire that the ninth hour be more frequently served very specifically, and you if I recall disagreed with her. 

I'm aware that you and she had a disagreement on this issue, I just don't think that her objection was what you think it was. 

Quote
And I don't want the Hours to take an hour, and didn't call for that, rather, I want them to be sung.  But moving the bulk of the homily into the sixth hour for example would allow the homily in the liturgy itself to be briefer and more mystical, and by this, I'm thinking of the 20+ minute homilies favored in the Coptic church.  But I would not want the hours to take an hour, just to be sung or even chanted with more zeal.  And a more energetic sung service of the hours might take less time than the sort of monotonous chanting of it that presently dominates. 

How long do you think an Hour will take if you sing it straight through vs reading straight through?  What kind of singing do you have in mind?  Which rite?  How much "zeal"? 

As for homilies, what is the role of the homily?  How many do you have?  Where do you put them? 

There are a lot of questions that need to be answered before such a proposition could be considered.  You come across as being so enamoured of the services that you want to see them performed fully and according to your own ideas of what is appropriate, but there's more to it than just doing things found in books. 

Quote
But it would be completely impractical to draw out the hours.  I just wish they were served more emphatically and I am not confessed this would take longer.  It might be fun to mock it up however to see. 

Have at it, but I don't need to mock it up because I've seen various forms in various rites and I've even experimented with some things in my own home.  If you tried to pull some of this stuff in a parish and expect people to stay for it all, they wouldn't.  They don't even do some of these things in monasteries where the community is dedicated and capable enough to pull it off.  Many ideas are more attractive in theory than they are in practice. 
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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #21 on: April 30, 2015, 04:58:59 PM »
My parish is Antiochian and in the Diocese of Wichita and Mid-America (DOWAMA) under Bishop BASIL.  When Bishop BASIL was in charge, through his protos, Dr. Sam Cohlmia, of providing the notes for all the services each week, ninth hour was always included.  When that responsibility was transferred to Englewood, no longer are notes providing for rubrics for the ninth hour.  However, my parish sometimes still does it, sometimes not, depending upon the mood of the priest.
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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #22 on: April 30, 2015, 05:17:15 PM »
And a more energetic sung service of the hours might take less time than the sort of monotonous chanting of it that presently dominates. 

...  I'll bet it might even be possible to reduce the duration while singing or chanting the service with more vigor.

Impossible


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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #23 on: April 30, 2015, 05:21:20 PM »
My experience is that tragically, outside of monasteries, the 9th hour is generally not a part of the Saturday night service.   It should,be, IMO, but it's not.  There are exceptions, for example, the Hours on Great and Holy Saturday read before the Vesperal Divine Liturgy.

Also for that matter, more generally in Lent and Holy Week I believe the common practice is to do the 9th hour before the Presanctified Liturgy.

And of,course any time the Royal Hours are appointed, namely Christmas Eve and Good Friday,,but these are different from the standard hours and indeed each other.  Also, I believe before a service of the vesperal Divine Loturgy generally you might be more likely to encounter it.

I do think the 9th hour should be universally celebrated and I'm delighted to hear of an OCA parish that was doing that.  But there are some people here who would insist, based on no rule I can find anywhere, that this is an incorrect practice; I took so,e heat from another member in the past for suggesting in my blog the frequent celebration of the 9th hour was warranted, together with a more spirited service of the Hours, with the psalms chanted rather than intoned, and Followimg in the footsteps of St. John Chrysostom, the possible secondary use of the Hours as a place for a longer sermon than the Divine Liturgy itself would bear without a certain sense of interruption.

Of course sadly in many parishes there are no Hours, just an abrupt transition from Orthros to the Liturgy.  And no Vespers.  And I've seen some parishes, two prominent, beautiful cathedrals in fact, here in LA, that serve the Sunday Morning Divine Liturgy only except during feasts and presumably Lent and Holy Week.  And that makes me very sad.  This is done without even the consolation of Orthros.
The Cathedral Rite of Hagia Sophia had no little hours on Sundays.  In fact, only in Lent did they have Tersext on Mon-Fri.
« Last Edit: April 30, 2015, 05:21:40 PM by Deacon Lance »
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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #24 on: April 30, 2015, 05:28:31 PM »
The Cathedral Typikon was in terms of the Divine Office a completely different animal than the Sabaite Typikon (the Sabaite-Studite synthesis) we now use or its deeply flawed 19th century derivative.  So what is appropriate or desirable in it would naturally be different vs. what would work well in the Sabaite Typikon.

It's a bit like comparing the Anglican liturgy with the Roman Rite.
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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #25 on: April 30, 2015, 07:15:54 PM »
Alas sadly the Liturgy of the Hours is seldom served, but I believe a local Catholic parish does something with it on Saturdays; I was there for a Bach concert on a lovely Saturday afternoon and a table full of the modern equivalent of Breviaries was set out.  This was absent the one time I visited that parish for a Sunday evening mass.

This is the priest you should call up and congratulate. I've never, ever seen or even heard of the LotH publicly served in any Catholic church anywhere outside of Rome.

My Novus-Ordo parish in Virginia had Sunday Vespers every Sunday before the 5pm Mass, but it was virtually always merely read. Occasionally, it would be replaced by Solemn Vespers in the traditional (well, 1962 anyway) rite. There is an unfortunate tendency for more traditionally-minded RC priests not to promote the Office, as if it were something peculiar to the clergy (which of course it has been in practice for centuries), and instead promote Rosaries, Benedictions, Holy Hours and various novenas. I get the feeling that the "online revival" of the Roman Office is the product of devoted laypeople. That's probably a good thing for its survival, but reading the Office alone might become a private devotion rather than truly liturgical prayer.
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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #26 on: April 30, 2015, 11:06:09 PM »
My Novus-Ordo parish in Virginia had Sunday Vespers every Sunday before the 5pm Mass, but it was virtually always merely read. Occasionally, it would be replaced by Solemn Vespers in the traditional (well, 1962 anyway) rite. There is an unfortunate tendency for more traditionally-minded RC priests not to promote the Office, as if it were something peculiar to the clergy (which of course it has been in practice for centuries), and instead promote Rosaries, Benedictions, Holy Hours and various novenas. I get the feeling that the "online revival" of the Roman Office is the product of devoted laypeople. That's probably a good thing for its survival, but reading the Office alone might become a private devotion rather than truly liturgical prayer.

That's great that they had it. Like I said, I only ever saw one church with public LotH and it was in Rome. When I was Catholic, the thought was "If there's time on Saturday evening for LotH, why not just have another Mass instead?"

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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #27 on: April 30, 2015, 11:10:39 PM »
My Novus-Ordo parish in Virginia had Sunday Vespers every Sunday before the 5pm Mass, but it was virtually always merely read. Occasionally, it would be replaced by Solemn Vespers in the traditional (well, 1962 anyway) rite. There is an unfortunate tendency for more traditionally-minded RC priests not to promote the Office, as if it were something peculiar to the clergy (which of course it has been in practice for centuries), and instead promote Rosaries, Benedictions, Holy Hours and various novenas. I get the feeling that the "online revival" of the Roman Office is the product of devoted laypeople. That's probably a good thing for its survival, but reading the Office alone might become a private devotion rather than truly liturgical prayer.

That's great that they had it. Like I said, I only ever saw one church with public LotH and it was in Rome. When I was Catholic, the thought was "If there's time on Saturday evening for LotH, why not just have another Mass instead?"

Exactly. Vatican II's call for the LotH to reenter parish life is thwarted by the permission for evening Masses. Vespers is perhaps the most likely candidate for introducing into parish life, but Catholics seem incapable of doing anything unless there's a Mass...
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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #28 on: May 01, 2015, 10:46:17 AM »
Exactly. Vatican II's call for the LotH to reenter parish life is thwarted by the permission for evening Masses. Vespers is perhaps the most likely candidate for introducing into parish life, but Catholics seem incapable of doing anything unless there's a Mass...

Which is a whole 'nother issue. Maybe I'll start another thread... :D

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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #29 on: May 01, 2015, 04:31:21 PM »
I visited an Antiochian parish in Raleigh that did 9th Hour before Vespers. Never witnessed it before or since.

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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #30 on: May 01, 2015, 05:26:49 PM »
The Cathedral Typikon was in terms of the Divine Office a completely different animal than the Sabaite Typikon (the Sabaite-Studite synthesis) we now use or its deeply flawed 19th century derivative.  So what is appropriate or desirable in it would naturally be different vs. what would work well in the Sabaite Typikon.

It's a bit like comparing the Anglican liturgy with the Roman Rite.
The point being the Cathedral Typikon was the Typikon of the parishes the Sabaite Typikon is largely a monastic usage.     The Little Hours and Compline are often said by the monks in their cells.  Not saying the Little Hours before Liturgy or Vespers is not a major thing or terrible abuse.
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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #31 on: May 01, 2015, 05:32:29 PM »
The Cathedral Typikon was in terms of the Divine Office a completely different animal than the Sabaite Typikon (the Sabaite-Studite synthesis) we now use or its deeply flawed 19th century derivative.  So what is appropriate or desirable in it would naturally be different vs. what would work well in the Sabaite Typikon.

It's a bit like comparing the Anglican liturgy with the Roman Rite.
The point being the Cathedral Typikon was the Typikon of the parishes the Sabaite Typikon is largely a monastic usage.     The Little Hours and Compline are often said by the monks in their cells.  Not saying the Little Hours before Liturgy or Vespers is not a major thing or terrible abuse.

I agree with the Deacon on that. Frankly, we ought to ask why so few attend the scheduled services like vespers and come up with practical ideas about what can be done to encourage greater participation in them, rather than fretting about adding additional things for the average parishioner to ignore.

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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #32 on: May 01, 2015, 05:33:45 PM »
The Cathedral Typikon was in terms of the Divine Office a completely different animal than the Sabaite Typikon (the Sabaite-Studite synthesis) we now use or its deeply flawed 19th century derivative.  So what is appropriate or desirable in it would naturally be different vs. what would work well in the Sabaite Typikon.

It's a bit like comparing the Anglican liturgy with the Roman Rite.
The point being the Cathedral Typikon was the Typikon of the parishes the Sabaite Typikon is largely a monastic usage.     The Little Hours and Compline are often said by the monks in their cells.  Not saying the Little Hours before Liturgy or Vespers is not a major thing or terrible abuse.

One of my (OO) teachers made a point of demonstrating how, even in our tradition, the Midnight Office and the Little Hours (though not necessarily Compline) were monastic services. 
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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #33 on: May 01, 2015, 07:43:12 PM »
My understanding is that in the Byzantine Rite the Cathedral Typikon died as the fall of Constantinople loomed as the laity found the hymns and vigils of the monastic services spiritually comforting.  In fact many parishes had been using the monastic Typikon before the Cathedral Typikon was discontinued.  One aspect of the Cathedral Typikon was the absence of hymnody; it was psalmody + canticles.  And there was a slo a grandeur of the services optimized for Hagia Sophia and the presence of the Emperor.   My understanding is that outside of the Great Church it was used primarily at larger parishes and cathedrals in Athens, Thessalonica and so on.

From what I've read the small parishes were largely doing what they did today; using either the Sabaite Typikon or the Cathedral Typikon with the popular monastic hymns for the saints added in, and the grandeur dialed back, but not all the services.  But after the Ottoman conquest, for a time, many people attended at least the full course of Saturday and Sunday services due to the terror they faced.  I think we ought to consider the idea of church-as-refuge any time we look at longer services and consider who might benefit from them.  And also not think of a long stretch of services as a monolithic block that everyone attends, most arriving at the end for the Eucharist, but rather as multiple services, perhaps with people not taking communion doing Orthros and the third hour, where there might be a homily, and people taking communion confessing at sext and attending the Divine Liturgy, where there would be another homily.  Orthros itself might be a repeat of Matins from the All Night Vigil, if it's licit to serve it twice, with the idea being most communicants would ideally go to that also.  And perhaps the morning Orthros-Terce service group might be run in a parish with two priests by one of them, alternating every week so as to reduce the strain, or by a deacon authorized to do catechesis.  Just ideas.  As it is, such a model is not uncommon in the Protestant world.

Even if my ideas are wrong, which they probably are owing to my inexperience and lack of training, I think we do need to have a conversation about how in many parishes there's this sudden crush of people who turn up for the Eucharist, at the end of the Divine Liturgy, having missed all the theological instruction provided by Vespers, Matins and the Synaxis.  As far as the Hours are concerned they are almost ornamental.  But there is so much theological instruction in Byantine Matins and to a lesser degree Vespers, and taking communion having missed the Gospel reading in the synaxis and the homily just seems wrong. 

In the Coptic Rite, that theological instruction one finds in Byzantine Matins happens in Holy Psalmody, commonly combined with hours 9,11 and 12, the latter two technically Vespers and Compline, and the Evening Raising of Incense, which actually does take a long time and which feels the church with a sweet fog, so that the clergy up front are blurred and look like angels to someone sitting in the back, into a service commonly called Vespers.  But many parishes omit the Holy Psalmody as its complex and takes a while.  And of course, the book containing it is the one with lacunae in the English translation.  The Khiak Psalmody is particularly fine however, and popular, and has its own book (also with a few lacunae here and there).  But on the whole these beautiful services are mostly accessible to English speakers, having been at least 90% translated.   The books I have might be obsolete; there is a computer program which runs the LCD screens providing English and Arabic translations of the Coptic that has the latest versions of everything.

I should add that when I've been to Coptic Psalmody it was jam packed.  Also Vespees without Psalmody was well attended.  So maybe we should ask the Copts how they do it.  I'm technically Syriac Orthodox; I go to a Coptic parish, but I can't claim to have a deep grasp on either tradition.  I do enjoy it.  But I also love the Byaantine Rite and attend periodically a ROCOR parish with a most blessed and compassionate Archimandrite.  Note that I do not illicitly take communion at both.  I did have to acquire EO membership by confession when duty called me to a place where there was no OO, just the OCA.   But having returned to my "homeland" I also returned to where I was first received.  But I think it was a blessing, being able to live three ancient liturgical rites each of exquisite beauty.
« Last Edit: May 01, 2015, 07:48:56 PM by wgw »
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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #34 on: May 01, 2015, 08:20:28 PM »
The Cathedral Typikon was in terms of the Divine Office a completely different animal than the Sabaite Typikon (the Sabaite-Studite synthesis) we now use or its deeply flawed 19th century derivative.  So what is appropriate or desirable in it would naturally be different vs. what would work well in the Sabaite Typikon.

It's a bit like comparing the Anglican liturgy with the Roman Rite.
The point being the Cathedral Typikon was the Typikon of the parishes the Sabaite Typikon is largely a monastic usage.     The Little Hours and Compline are often said by the monks in their cells.  Not saying the Little Hours before Liturgy or Vespers is not a major thing or terrible abuse.

One of my (OO) teachers made a point of demonstrating how, even in our tradition, the Midnight Office and the Little Hours (though not necessarily Compline) were monastic services.

As in these services are reserved for monastics?  Reminds me of a time a Serbian priest came to our church during a Great Compline Lenten office.  He said he didnt realize this church was a monastery.  Just because monastics are able to serve the hours (such is their rule for the spiritual lives), that doesnt and shouldnt preclude parish churches from serving them, if there is a desire.
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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #35 on: May 01, 2015, 09:13:21 PM »
The Cathedral Typikon was in terms of the Divine Office a completely different animal than the Sabaite Typikon (the Sabaite-Studite synthesis) we now use or its deeply flawed 19th century derivative.  So what is appropriate or desirable in it would naturally be different vs. what would work well in the Sabaite Typikon.

It's a bit like comparing the Anglican liturgy with the Roman Rite.
The point being the Cathedral Typikon was the Typikon of the parishes the Sabaite Typikon is largely a monastic usage.     The Little Hours and Compline are often said by the monks in their cells.  Not saying the Little Hours before Liturgy or Vespers is not a major thing or terrible abuse.

One of my (OO) teachers made a point of demonstrating how, even in our tradition, the Midnight Office and the Little Hours (though not necessarily Compline) were monastic services.

As in these services are reserved for monastics?  Reminds me of a time a Serbian priest came to our church during a Great Compline Lenten office.  He said he didnt realize this church was a monastery.  Just because monastics are able to serve the hours (such is their rule for the spiritual lives), that doesnt and shouldnt preclude parish churches from serving them, if there is a desire.
I don't think anyone is saying they should not be served, just not to get upset if they are not served especially if Vespers and Matins are being served.
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Re: 9th hour before Vespers?
« Reply #36 on: May 02, 2015, 01:00:54 AM »
The Cathedral Typikon was in terms of the Divine Office a completely different animal than the Sabaite Typikon (the Sabaite-Studite synthesis) we now use or its deeply flawed 19th century derivative.  So what is appropriate or desirable in it would naturally be different vs. what would work well in the Sabaite Typikon.

It's a bit like comparing the Anglican liturgy with the Roman Rite.
The point being the Cathedral Typikon was the Typikon of the parishes the Sabaite Typikon is largely a monastic usage.     The Little Hours and Compline are often said by the monks in their cells.  Not saying the Little Hours before Liturgy or Vespers is not a major thing or terrible abuse.

One of my (OO) teachers made a point of demonstrating how, even in our tradition, the Midnight Office and the Little Hours (though not necessarily Compline) were monastic services.

As in these services are reserved for monastics?  Reminds me of a time a Serbian priest came to our church during a Great Compline Lenten office.  He said he didnt realize this church was a monastery.  Just because monastics are able to serve the hours (such is their rule for the spiritual lives), that doesnt and shouldnt preclude parish churches from serving them, if there is a desire.

No, those services aren't reserved for monastics.  Unlike the "cathedral" hours of Vespers and Matins for which the music is "general" (i.e., it doesn't change: this Monday's Matins will be sung with the same words and music as last Monday's Matins and Matins three Mondays from now, etc.), Midnight Office and the Little Hours are sung according to the tone of the day (e.g., if this Monday's Midnight Office is sung in tone eight, the Monday Midnight Office will be sung in tone one the following week), and, as I was taught, this was a development of the monks.  The "cathedral" services are easy enough for a congregation to learn and sing, but the "monastic" services require more training to execute properly.  But it's not like the services are omitted.  In standard parish practice, everything gets sung in church with the possible exception of the Midnight Office, which is often sung/read at home or in the cell.     
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