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Author Topic: anointing with oil after liturgy / prayer service  (Read 740 times) Average Rating: 0
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mabsoota
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« on: April 09, 2012, 02:21:28 PM »

this may be a language question, but i want to open it to non speakers of romanian as well.
i have noticed that in the romanian orthodox church, after service, people are anointed with holy oil ('mir') which smells a bit like chrismation oil.
the word 'mir' in romanian seems to be translated 'chrism'.

but i thought that chrism oil should be used only at chrismation.
so is it the coptic tradition only that doesn't use chrism at other occasions (eg. do your churches also use chrism after the service on the people who attend), or is it a language problem (that 'mir' is not 'chrism')?

i am sitting at the computer with some lovely 'mir' on my forehead after the evening Holy Week prayer service / vespers, and i would like to know what it is in english!
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jmbejdl
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« Reply #1 on: April 11, 2012, 11:31:17 AM »

It's anointing oil. If you look it up in a Romanian dictionary you will see that it is literally described as blessed, perfumed (not sure if that's the best translation but you'll get the idea) vegetable oil. Whether that means that it's exactly the same oil as used in Chrismation I couldn't exactly say but I don't think I've ever heard that chrism is reserved solely for that purpose so I imagine that it could well be. It certainly does smell like it. My daughter's godfather is a Romanian deacon so I could find out for sure but I'm afraid that I'm not totally certain without checking.
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« Reply #2 on: April 11, 2012, 11:50:20 AM »

It's anointing oil. If you look it up in a Romanian dictionary you will see that it is literally described as blessed, perfumed (not sure if that's the best translation but you'll get the idea) vegetable oil. Whether that means that it's exactly the same oil as used in Chrismation I couldn't exactly say but I don't think I've ever heard that chrism is reserved solely for that purpose so I imagine that it could well be. It certainly does smell like it. My daughter's godfather is a Romanian deacon so I could find out for sure but I'm afraid that I'm not totally certain without checking.

In the EO tradition, the primate of a local church is empowered to make chrism - usually during Holy Week if I recall correctly. This chrism (mir to others than Romanians I might add) is not, again if memory serves me here, reserved only for Chrismation - albeit for special annointing after feasts in our tradition I think that blessed olive oil is used - not chrism. I think it is used for annointing the sick as well.
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augustin717
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« Reply #3 on: April 11, 2012, 12:00:57 PM »

Romanians don't kiss the Cross at the end of every liturgy, but they get anointed more often, whereas the Russians would kiss the Cross. it's also another occasion of collecting some cash.
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podkarpatska
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« Reply #4 on: April 11, 2012, 12:09:38 PM »

Romanians don't kiss the Cross at the end of every liturgy, but they get anointed more often, whereas the Russians would kiss the Cross. it's also another occasion of collecting some cash.

Same is true in the Rusyn tradition regarding the annointing. It seems to me that there are more that a few customs which survived along the spine of the Carpathian mountains that are shared by Romanians, Serbs, Rusyns, Lemkos, Gallicians and some Ukrainians to the present day. Some will counter that they are a result of Latin influence and geopolitics but others will argue that they predate the fall of Constantinople. Probably a little of both if we are honest with ourselves. Anyway, four or five hundred years of practice probably gives the 'little t's' of tradition some legitimacy regardless of your background as I also suspect that if we could time travel we would be surprised at what we discovered was the practice at any particular point in time......Not that things would be radically foreign but just ----different that what we experience today.....
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Michał Kalina
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« Reply #5 on: April 11, 2012, 01:36:08 PM »

Isn't that the oil bleseed on litya?
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podkarpatska
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« Reply #6 on: April 11, 2012, 03:39:55 PM »

Isn't that the oil bleseed on litya?

I believe so...
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podkarpatska
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« Reply #7 on: April 12, 2012, 08:26:12 AM »

I asked our priest about chrism last evening and I offer the following to my first-hand reply yesterday. Chrism per se is ONLY typically used for Chrismation and the consecration or reconsecration of a new church, including a new altar. Oil for annointing, including Unction, is either blessed during the Unction service (as was witnessed by those of us who attended the same yesterday evening or at other times) or during the litya preceeding a feast.
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