OrthodoxChristianity.net
April 21, 2014, 01:03:53 AM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News: The Rules page has been updated.  Please familiarize yourself with its contents!
 
   Home   Help Calendar Contact Treasury Tags Login Register  
Pages: 1   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Why Cross yourself for "Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal"?  (Read 1709 times) Average Rating: 0
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
Maximum Bob
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: Catechumen
Jurisdiction: Antiochian
Posts: 2,120


Personal Text? We can have personal text?


« on: January 08, 2012, 01:04:50 AM »

Does anyone know why we Cross ourselves (and touch the floor) for "Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal"? My wife wants to know. She says she understands why for "In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit", but doesn't understand the other.
Logged

Prov. 3: 5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart, lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.
Psalm 37:23 The Lord guides a man safely in the way he should go.
witega
Is it enough now, to tell you you matter?
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Diocese of the South
Posts: 1,614


« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2012, 01:14:02 AM »

Does anyone know why we Cross ourselves (and touch the floor) for "Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal"? My wife wants to know. She says she understands why for "In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit", but doesn't understand the other.

The reasoning is exactly the same. "Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal" is considered a Trinitarian formula, just like, if slightly more poetic than, any other reference to the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
Logged

Ariel Starling - New album

For it were better to suffer everything, rather than divide the Church of God. Even martyrdom for the sake of preventing division would not be less glorious than for refusing to worship idols. - St. Dionysius the Great
Gamliel
OC.net guru
*******
Online Online

Faith: Greek Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Metropolis of San Francisco
Posts: 1,808



« Reply #2 on: January 08, 2012, 01:15:17 AM »

 I think it is also because we are invoking a blessing?
Logged
Irish Hermit
Kibernetski Kaludjer
Warned
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Posts: 10,991


Holy Father Patrick, pray for us


« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2012, 01:18:20 AM »

Here is the ways things are done in the Russian Church Abroad...

http://www.roca.org/OA/150/150e.htm

It doesn't cover all parts of your question.
Logged
NicholasMyra
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Antiochian/Greek
Posts: 5,627


Avowed denominationalist


« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2012, 01:42:51 AM »

Does anyone know why we Cross ourselves (and touch the floor) for "Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal"? My wife wants to know. She says she understands why for "In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit", but doesn't understand the other.

What witega said.

Holy God refers to the Father, the origin of and proper "Theos", the Unbegotten source of Divinity and Divine Personhood.

Holy Mighty refers to the Word, who is the mighty hand of the Father by, through, and for Whom He accomplishes His mighty acts.

Holy Immortal refers to the Holy Spirit, Who gives life to all flesh, Whose operation brings about resurrection, and Who will grant the incorruptible flesh of the Spirit in the coming age.

« Last Edit: January 08, 2012, 01:56:59 AM by NicholasMyra » Logged

"...you are the orphan, not the protagonist."

-St. Seraphim of Vyritsa, 'This was from me'
Maximum Bob
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: Catechumen
Jurisdiction: Antiochian
Posts: 2,120


Personal Text? We can have personal text?


« Reply #5 on: January 08, 2012, 11:03:51 AM »

Thanks everyone.
Logged

Prov. 3: 5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart, lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.
Psalm 37:23 The Lord guides a man safely in the way he should go.
Jonathan
High Elder
******
Offline Offline

Faith: Oriental Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Coptic
Posts: 753


WWW
« Reply #6 on: January 08, 2012, 01:26:58 PM »

I'm just curious, when you say "Holy God, Holy mighty, Holy immortal", do you cross yourselves once, or three times (each time the word holy is said)?
Logged
Asteriktos
Pegleg J
Protostrator
***************
Offline Offline

Faith: Like an arrow to the knee
Posts: 27,243



« Reply #7 on: January 08, 2012, 01:36:28 PM »

I'm just curious, when you say "Holy God, Holy mighty, Holy immortal", do you cross yourselves once, or three times (each time the word holy is said)?

Don't know about everyone, but for me just once, often with a bow.
Logged

I'll bet I look like a goof.

"And since when have Christians become afraid of rain?"
Jonathan
High Elder
******
Offline Offline

Faith: Oriental Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Coptic
Posts: 753


WWW
« Reply #8 on: January 08, 2012, 01:40:34 PM »

I just ask out of curiosity, since in the Coptic Church this is not a hymn to the Trinity, but to Christ... Yet Copts cross themselves at each verse, which would make more sense if it were a hymn to the Trinity... And not only at each verse, but at each mention of the word "Holy". I wonder if this practice was adopted from the EO who use it as a hymn to the Trinity without regard to consistency in meaning... or if there is another reason for making the sign of the Cross here that I do not understand Smiley I was just told by people in the Church "you must make the sign of the cross every time the word holy is said"
Logged
NicholasMyra
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Antiochian/Greek
Posts: 5,627


Avowed denominationalist


« Reply #9 on: January 08, 2012, 08:54:38 PM »

I just ask out of curiosity, since in the Coptic Church this is not a hymn to the Trinity, but to Christ... Yet Copts cross themselves at each verse, which would make more sense if it were a hymn to the Trinity... And not only at each verse, but at each mention of the word "Holy". I wonder if this practice was adopted from the EO who use it as a hymn to the Trinity without regard to consistency in meaning... or if there is another reason for making the sign of the Cross here that I do not understand Smiley I was just told by people in the Church "you must make the sign of the cross every time the word holy is said"
Both versions are old. It makes sense to cross on Christ because, y'know, He was crucified on one, and the Coptic trisagion mentions that fact.
« Last Edit: January 08, 2012, 08:55:03 PM by NicholasMyra » Logged

"...you are the orphan, not the protagonist."

-St. Seraphim of Vyritsa, 'This was from me'
Maximum Bob
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: Catechumen
Jurisdiction: Antiochian
Posts: 2,120


Personal Text? We can have personal text?


« Reply #10 on: January 08, 2012, 11:24:48 PM »

For us all three times, each with also touching the floor.
Logged

Prov. 3: 5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart, lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.
Psalm 37:23 The Lord guides a man safely in the way he should go.
Asteriktos
Pegleg J
Protostrator
***************
Offline Offline

Faith: Like an arrow to the knee
Posts: 27,243



« Reply #11 on: January 08, 2012, 11:27:45 PM »

For us all three times, each with also touching the floor.

I may have this confused, but I think he was asking if you cross three times for every "holy" you say (for a total of nine times), but I could be wrong... Smiley

EDIT--I meant one time for every holy, for a total of nine times...
« Last Edit: January 08, 2012, 11:58:21 PM by Asteriktos » Logged

I'll bet I look like a goof.

"And since when have Christians become afraid of rain?"
Maximum Bob
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: Catechumen
Jurisdiction: Antiochian
Posts: 2,120


Personal Text? We can have personal text?


« Reply #12 on: January 08, 2012, 11:53:43 PM »

I re-read it and I beleive you are correct and so to clarify would problably say the same as you, Asteriktos. We do a total of 3 times, once for every repitition not 9 times (not once for each "Holy").
Logged

Prov. 3: 5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart, lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.
Psalm 37:23 The Lord guides a man safely in the way he should go.
minasoliman
Mr., Sir, Dude, Guy, Male, tr. Minas in Greek, Menes in white people Egyptologists :-P
Section Moderator
Merarches
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Oriental Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Coptic Orthodox Archdiocese of North America
Posts: 8,891


Pray for me, Sts. Mina & Kyrillos VI for my exams


WWW
« Reply #13 on: January 09, 2012, 01:22:55 AM »

I just ask out of curiosity, since in the Coptic Church this is not a hymn to the Trinity, but to Christ... Yet Copts cross themselves at each verse, which would make more sense if it were a hymn to the Trinity... And not only at each verse, but at each mention of the word "Holy". I wonder if this practice was adopted from the EO who use it as a hymn to the Trinity without regard to consistency in meaning... or if there is another reason for making the sign of the Cross here that I do not understand Smiley I was just told by people in the Church "you must make the sign of the cross every time the word holy is said"

I've seen different traditions a reason to cross oneself.  We cross when we hear the word "holy", "blessed", "glory" (or glorify), "worship" (when it is in reference to Christ or any hypostases of the Trinity), and I've even heard some priests mention that we should bow and cross ourselves when we hear the word "Jesus" or "Christ".  And also at times, we cross ourselves when we hear "Kyrie Eleison!"

As I understand it, the Syrian and Indian Orthodox cross themselves when they hear the word "cross" or "crucified."

So when it comes to the Trisagion, we cross ourselves everytime the word Agios is said.
« Last Edit: January 09, 2012, 01:24:40 AM by minasoliman » Logged

Vain existence can never exist, for \\\"unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain.\\\" (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.
Seraphim98
High Elder
******
Offline Offline

Posts: 539



« Reply #14 on: January 12, 2012, 12:46:42 AM »

This might have something to do with the WHY:

Revelations: 4:8 and following:

8     And the four beasts had each of them six wings about him; and they were full of eyes within: and they rest not day and night, saying,  Holy, holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, which was, and is, and is to come.
9     And when those beasts give glory and honor and thanks to him that sat on the throne, who liveth for ever and ever,
10     the four and twenty elders fall down before him that sat on the throne, and worship him that liveth for ever and ever, and cast their crowns before the throne,


Good enough for the four and twenty elders…good enough for me…and I suspect for the rest of us. It's the Tradition.

Recall that this is done at the entry of the Holy Gospel which is set upon the throne. There is then a parallel in this and the Heavenly worship.
« Last Edit: January 12, 2012, 12:49:53 AM by Seraphim98 » Logged
Maximum Bob
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: Catechumen
Jurisdiction: Antiochian
Posts: 2,120


Personal Text? We can have personal text?


« Reply #15 on: January 12, 2012, 12:53:20 AM »

Works  for me too, my wife still stuggling with it though. Oh well, Lord may I be patient. I 've been working through things for 9 to 10 months longer than she has.

Thanks, Seraphim I will read this to her.
Logged

Prov. 3: 5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart, lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.
Psalm 37:23 The Lord guides a man safely in the way he should go.
Seraphim98
High Elder
******
Offline Offline

Posts: 539



« Reply #16 on: January 12, 2012, 01:08:44 AM »

The history of our particular use of this hymn is quite interesting to me. If memory serves, way way back, centuries ago in Constantinople a plague was running rampant. I forget the details, but at some point a small boy was witnessed being caught away high into the air. He was returned a short time later and reported hearing the angels singing the version of the hymn we sing to this day (Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal). A procession was made through the city with icons and with the people singing this hymn. From that day forward incidences of the plague fell away sharply until the epidemic was clear within just a few days more.  In honor of that we still sing the angelic hymn in memorial of God's mercy.

This also serves as a reminder that the grace of the Holy Spirit has never ceased to abide in the Church and its fulness did not evaporate with the repose of the Holy Apostles…the Church and its life from then till now is one…an unbroken ontological union and communion. The life of the seed is the life of the blade and the the ear without difference.
« Last Edit: January 12, 2012, 01:12:03 AM by Seraphim98 » Logged
Spartan563
Jr. Member
**
Offline Offline

Faith: Greek Orthodox
Jurisdiction: GOA
Posts: 59



« Reply #17 on: January 12, 2012, 01:32:19 AM »

For us all three times, each with also touching the floor.

Me too. Until my back says no more  Wink
Logged
LizaSymonenko
Слава Ісусу Христу!!! Glory to Jesus Christ!!!
Global Moderator
Toumarches
******
Offline Offline

Faith: God's Holy Catholic and Apostolic Orthodox Church
Jurisdiction: Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the U.S.A.
Posts: 11,360



WWW
« Reply #18 on: January 12, 2012, 01:40:29 AM »

The history of our particular use of this hymn is quite interesting to me. If memory serves, way way back, centuries ago in Constantinople a plague was running rampant. I forget the details, but at some point a small boy was witnessed being caught away high into the air. He was returned a short time later and reported hearing the angels singing the version of the hymn we sing to this day (Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal). A procession was made through the city with icons and with the people singing this hymn. From that day forward incidences of the plague fell away sharply until the epidemic was clear within just a few days more.  In honor of that we still sing the angelic hymn in memorial of God's mercy.

This also serves as a reminder that the grace of the Holy Spirit has never ceased to abide in the Church and its fulness did not evaporate with the repose of the Holy Apostles…the Church and its life from then till now is one…an unbroken ontological union and communion. The life of the seed is the life of the blade and the the ear without difference.

I've never heard that story before.  Very interesting.  Thanks for sharing it.
Logged

Conquer evil men by your gentle kindness, and make zealous men wonder at your goodness. Put the lover of legality to shame by your compassion. With the afflicted be afflicted in mind. Love all men, but keep distant from all men.
—St. Isaac of Syria
HabteSelassie
Ises and I-ity
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: Oriental Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church
Posts: 3,332



« Reply #19 on: January 12, 2012, 04:23:53 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Does anyone know why we Cross ourselves (and touch the floor) for "Holy God, Holy Mighty, Holy Immortal"? My wife wants to know. She says she understands why for "In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit", but doesn't understand the other.

Quote
For indeed in each of these we confess that we know the Trinity, in that we indicate upon our faces that the sign of the revered Cross is a dissolver of every evil influence; and, when therefore we sign ourselves, we sign three times, and we show that it is through the Cross that we have obtained knowledge in the Trinity. And this sign is a thing which makes known and completes all things that are done among Christians; and it is everywhere adopted, at the performance of baptism, at the consecration of water, at the celebration of the rational, spiritual sacrifice, and at the symbolic and ineffable ordinations to the priesthood of those who are duly appointed to the sacred ministry, though in all these things we do not call upon one of the hypostases only, that is God the Word who |50 was humanized, but on the three together, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, indicating that it is by the power of the Cross that we have partaken of all these things and have obtained knowledge in them
  Saint Severus Letter XXIV

I understand this prayer to be a specific reference to the Trinity as the Father is the source of the Godhead (Holy God), the Son is the manifested Might of the Godhead in the Flesh (Holy Mighty), and the Holy Spirit is Life-Giver (Holy Immortal).

The Ethiopian translation is "Qidus Igziabeher (Holy God), Qidus Hayal (Holy Strength), Qidus Hiyaw (Holy Immortal/Life)"

The Cross symbolizes the intersection between the Divine and Human through the Incarnation, God from Heaven came down to Earth, and as intersected left to right across all of Creation, even the depths of Death and Hell.  It is through the Cross that we are saved, and we remind ourselves of the power of God the Trinity when we cross ourselves and recite the prayer "In the Name of/Glory to the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit."

Stay blessed,
habte selassie

Logged

"Yet stand aloof from stupid questionings and geneologies and strifes and fightings about law, for they are without benefit and vain." Titus 3:10
username!
Section Moderator
Protokentarchos
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Ukrainian Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Pennsylvaniadoxy
Posts: 4,748



« Reply #20 on: January 12, 2012, 04:31:28 PM »

Really how many times the people cross themselves and touch the floor seems to be different everywhere.  The mainly convert oca church here crosses and touches the floor alot.  The ACROD/Ukrainians are quite reserved in bowing and so forth.  The Greeks are about as reserved as we are.  The Russians are more outwardly and open about crossing themselves and bowing and touching the floor and lighting candles at each icon and putting their heads on the icons.  In our tradition we just have one icon on the tetrapod (you probably have this table off to the side against the wall in the Antiochian parish) that is in front of the church in the centre.  People come up and kiss it.  They don't sign themselves at every petition in the litany, just at the priest's prayer at the end or at the Birth Giver petition. 
Logged

podkarpatska
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: ACROD
Posts: 7,571


SS Cyril and Methodius Church, Mercer, PA


WWW
« Reply #21 on: January 12, 2012, 05:19:39 PM »

Really how many times the people cross themselves and touch the floor seems to be different everywhere.  The mainly convert oca church here crosses and touches the floor alot.  The ACROD/Ukrainians are quite reserved in bowing and so forth.  The Greeks are about as reserved as we are.  The Russians are more outwardly and open about crossing themselves and bowing and touching the floor and lighting candles at each icon and putting their heads on the icons.  In our tradition we just have one icon on the tetrapod (you probably have this table off to the side against the wall in the Antiochian parish) that is in front of the church in the centre.  People come up and kiss it.  They don't sign themselves at every petition in the litany, just at the priest's prayer at the end or at the Birth Giver petition. 

I have been told with a wink that sometimes these practices arise because someone went beyond his village, saw it differently somewhere else, thought it was 'cool' and brought it, or something like home with him! I know that is not going to satisfy those looking for a theological answer to everything, but sometimes things just are what they are.

On the same subject, the sign of the cross, does anyone besides the Rusyn/Ukrainians make the sign of the cross during the chanting of the Christmas Troparion at the  point of 'Son of Truth' or "Tebi Klanatisa Solncu Pravdyj' ?
Logged
vamrat
Vamratoraptor
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Serbian Orthodox
Jurisdiction: New Gracanica
Posts: 7,099



« Reply #22 on: January 12, 2012, 05:31:05 PM »

According to the Canons, you are supposed to watch the old grandmothers and see when they cross themselves, then follow suit.
Logged

One day we will talk about why people fetishize children, but for now I'll keep on the side of humanity that doesn't think the height of life is a drinking a juice box and eating a tater tot while defecating in their pants.
podkarpatska
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: ACROD
Posts: 7,571


SS Cyril and Methodius Church, Mercer, PA


WWW
« Reply #23 on: January 12, 2012, 07:01:05 PM »

Or the priest's wife! I remember one time when a Lenten service was over, the doors were closed and she remained in her customary place for an extra prayer or two....No body budged. It was hilarious.
Logged
WPM
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Posts: 1,781



« Reply #24 on: January 14, 2012, 12:16:34 PM »

Tertullian commended crossing oneself on a regular basis.
Logged
Agabus
The user formerly known as Agabus.
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Pan-American Colloquial Convert Hybrid Orthodoxy.
Jurisdiction: We are all uncanonical now.
Posts: 1,944



« Reply #25 on: January 14, 2012, 12:22:32 PM »

According to the Canons, you are supposed to watch the old grandmothers and see when they cross themselves, then follow suit.
So, pretty much constantly.
Logged

Blessed Nazarius practiced the ascetic life. His clothes were tattered. He wore his shoes without removing them for six years.

THE OPINIONS HERE MAY NOT REFLECT THE ACTUAL ORTHODOX CHURCH
Asteriktos
Pegleg J
Protostrator
***************
Offline Offline

Faith: Like an arrow to the knee
Posts: 27,243



« Reply #26 on: January 14, 2012, 12:59:23 PM »

Tertullian commended crossing oneself on a regular basis.

I've read that Tertullian spoke of making "the sign," but it was not necessarily the sign of the cross; and that if it was the sign of the cross, it was most likely with one finger and signed on the forehead. I do not think this takes away from the practice, as the idea or concept is still there early on, just posting this in case anyone wants to discuss it...
Logged

I'll bet I look like a goof.

"And since when have Christians become afraid of rain?"
HabteSelassie
Ises and I-ity
Archon
********
Offline Offline

Faith: Oriental Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church
Posts: 3,332



« Reply #27 on: January 15, 2012, 12:28:04 AM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

According to the Canons, you are supposed to watch the old grandmothers and see when they cross themselves, then follow suit.
[/b]
So, pretty much constantly.

Exactly Wink

Quote
Honor thy mother and father with promise..

stay blessed,
habte selassie
Logged

"Yet stand aloof from stupid questionings and geneologies and strifes and fightings about law, for they are without benefit and vain." Titus 3:10
Tags: trisagion 
Pages: 1   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.18 | SMF © 2013, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!
Page created in 0.098 seconds with 54 queries.