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Author Topic: New Western Rite Orthodox parish comes to valley / New Western Rite parish in northern Virginia  (Read 2804 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: June 19, 2012, 11:06:02 AM »

The Holy Family Orthodox Church will bring something new to the area as it is the only Western Rite Orthodox church in the northern Shenandoah Valley...
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« Reply #1 on: June 19, 2012, 03:22:28 PM »

In Woodstock, Virginia, a new Western Rite Orthodox parish has come to town. It currently meets in the home of its priest.

From the article:
Quote
The Rev. Richard Reed was recently ordained in New York, and is in the process of establishing the parish. He is holding liturgies at 10 a.m. on Sunday mornings in a temporary chapel in his Woodstock home.

"Establishing a parish is just like establishing a church in that it takes time, effort and funds," Reed said. He and his wife have been searching the area for a facility to house anywhere from 50 to 100 people, he added.
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« Reply #2 on: June 19, 2012, 09:57:22 PM »

Slight problem: the choice of "Holy Family" as patron of this parish. Honest mistake, I'm sure, but doctrinally and theologically problematic from the Orthodox perspective.
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« Reply #3 on: June 19, 2012, 10:56:57 PM »

This parish is part of the ROCOR.

Is the use of the phrase "Holy Family" pre-schism? If so, then use of "Holy Family" as a parish name is perfectly legitimate. I wonder when they will celebrate their patronal feast day?
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« Reply #4 on: June 19, 2012, 11:03:29 PM »

Slight problem: the choice of "Holy Family" as patron of this parish. Honest mistake, I'm sure, but doctrinally and theologically problematic from the Orthodox perspective.
Oh? Why?
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« Reply #5 on: June 19, 2012, 11:04:41 PM »

The Holy Family Orthodox Church will bring something new to the area as it is the only Western Rite Orthodox church in the northern Shenandoah Valley...
Deo Gloria.
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« Reply #6 on: June 19, 2012, 11:19:19 PM »

The notion of a "Holy Family" is not of Orthodox origin. It arose from the shift in emphasis of the veneration of St Joseph the Betrothed through the influence of the Roman Catholic saint Theresa of Avila in the 16th century. The Orthodox veneration of St Joseph the Betrothed is on a very different basis to that of the western churches, including the RCC.

The imagery of the Holy Family prevalent in western religious art of St Joseph holding the Christ-child, and of St Joseph embracing the Mother of God who holds the Child, is completely unacceptable as Orthodox iconography.
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« Reply #7 on: June 19, 2012, 11:35:35 PM »

LBK 1 - "Holy Family" 0

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« Reply #8 on: June 20, 2012, 12:05:02 AM »

The notion of a "Holy Family" is not of Orthodox origin.
The Gospels aren't Orthodox?
It arose from the shift in emphasis of the veneration of St Joseph the Betrothed through the influence of the Roman Catholic saint Theresa of Avila in the 16th century.
If it were, it still wouldn't ipso facto be "unOrthodox."

The Orthodox veneration of St Joseph the Betrothed is on a very different basis to that of the western churches, including the RCC
What basis would that be?

The imagery of the Holy Family prevalent in western religious art of St Joseph holding the Christ-child, and of St Joseph embracing the Mother of God who holds the Child, is completely unacceptable as Orthodox iconography.
Oh?
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« Reply #9 on: June 20, 2012, 12:12:12 AM »

My dear Isa (and anyone else, for that matter), I would be happy to send you a monograph which covers the matter in depth, from the historical, hymnographic, and iconographic perspective. It should answer many questions. It is too long to post here in its entirety.
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« Reply #10 on: June 20, 2012, 12:36:31 AM »

My dear Isa (and anyone else, for that matter), I would be happy to send you a monograph which covers the matter in depth, from the historical, hymnographic, and iconographic perspective. It should answer many questions. It is too long to post here in its entirety.

I'm open to hear the argument.
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« Reply #11 on: June 20, 2012, 12:38:15 AM »

A note on the icons Isa posted, which are, in the main, canonical:

They do not primarily proclaim the notion of a Holy Family, and neither does the hymnography for the feasts of the Nativity and the Meeting of the Lord. The hymnography is noteworthy in that St Joseph, when mentioned, is very much a background figure. It is the Mother of God who is presenting the Child to Symeon, not Joseph. It is also worth remembering that the Mother of God is never referred to liturgically as a wife, but profusely as a mother. For the feasts of the Meeting, and of the Circumcision of the Lord, St Joseph is only mentioned in one verse for the entire feast. By contrast, the Virgin is frequently invoked. This is no accident.
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« Reply #12 on: June 20, 2012, 12:42:59 AM »

The notion of a "Holy Family" is not of Orthodox origin.
The Gospels aren't Orthodox?
It arose from the shift in emphasis of the veneration of St Joseph the Betrothed through the influence of the Roman Catholic saint Theresa of Avila in the 16th century.
If it were, it still wouldn't ipso facto be "unOrthodox."

The Orthodox veneration of St Joseph the Betrothed is on a very different basis to that of the western churches, including the RCC
What basis would that be?

The imagery of the Holy Family prevalent in western religious art of St Joseph holding the Christ-child, and of St Joseph embracing the Mother of God who holds the Child, is completely unacceptable as Orthodox iconography.
Oh?


In the last icon shown of the Flight into Egypt, who is the young man walking behind the donkey?
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« Reply #13 on: June 20, 2012, 12:43:54 AM »

My dear Isa (and anyone else, for that matter), I would be happy to send you a monograph which covers the matter in depth, from the historical, hymnographic, and iconographic perspective. It should answer many questions. It is too long to post here in its entirety.

I'm open to hear the argument.
The monograph is on its way.  Smiley
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« Reply #14 on: June 20, 2012, 12:45:34 AM »

Quote
In the last icon shown of the Flight into Egypt, who is the young man walking behind the donkey?

The young St James, Brother of the Lord.
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« Reply #15 on: June 20, 2012, 12:49:00 AM »

Quote
In the last icon shown of the Flight into Egypt, who is the young man walking behind the donkey?

The young St James, Brother of the Lord.

Thanks. I thought that might be the case, but the Greek type was hard to read as the photo did not do it justice.
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« Reply #16 on: June 20, 2012, 02:37:25 AM »

I wonder when they will celebrate their patronal feast day?

Probably on the Sunday within the Octave of the Epiphany or on the Sunday within the Octave of Christmas. The Byzantine feast on 26 December resembles the Holy Family feast to some to some extent.
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« Reply #17 on: June 20, 2012, 04:09:43 AM »

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The Byzantine feast on 26 December resembles the Holy Family feast to some to some extent.

No, it does not. Here are all the verses of the Vigil hymnography for the Sunday after Nativity feast (or Dec 26, if the Nativity falls on a Saturday) commemorating Prophet David, James the Brother of the Lord, and Joseph the Betrothed) which mention St Joseph:

In old age Joseph the Betrothed beheld the things foretold by the prophets clearly fulfilled, having received a strange betrothal and a revelation from angels who cry: Glory to God, who has imparted peace upon the earth.

Proclaim, O Joseph, the glad tidings to David the ancestor of God, for you have seen the Virgin give birth. With the shepherds give glory, and with the Magi offer worship. You that were instructed by an angel, entreat Christ our God that He save our souls.

The choirs of angels stood before Joseph in Bethlehem, saying: Glory to God in the highest. With them let us hymn Him whose good pleasure it was to become incarnate.

Let us fittingly hymn the righteous Joseph, the betrothed of the Virgin, with James and David; for, having trod the righteous path, they have attained the mansions of heaven, and fittingly joining chorus with the angels, they beg remission of sins for us.

The choir of prophets divinely celebrates the wonder which took place in you, O Virgin; for you gave birth to God, incarnate upon earth. Therefore, angels and shepherds hymn, and the Magi and Joseph sing of the wonders to David, the forefather of God.

With the Magi let us worship him who has been born; and with the angels and Joseph let us join chorus, singing in godly manner: Glory to Christ our God in the highest.

Glory to You; glory to You, O God incarnate, whose good pleasure it was to take flesh of the pure Virgin; thus Joseph sang.

Today the divine David is filled with gladness, and Joseph offers praise with James. They rejoice, receiving a crown through kinship with Christ; they praise Him, ineffably born on earth, as they sing: O compassionate One, save those who honour You.

Amazed beyond words by the birthgiving of Mary, the Mother of God, the angelic choirs cried out to Joseph: Glory in the highest, and on earth peace.

Christ incarnate, glorified by the hosts of heaven, is also unceasingly hymned by Joseph the Betrothed: All you works of the Lord, hymn and exalt Him above all for ever.

On the mountain Moses beheld the unconsumed bush; and in the cave Joseph witnessed the ineffable birth: O Mother of God, Virgin undefiled and unwed Mother, we magnify you in hymns.

Let us hymn David, the forefather of God, and divine Joseph, the betrothed of the Mother of God, with James, the glorious brother of God, for, with the angels, the Magi and the shepherds, they ministered in godly manner at the divine nativity of Christ in the city of Bethlehem, singing a hymn to Him as God and Master.


December 26 sees the commemoration of the Synaxis/Sobor of the Mother of God. This service makes no mention whatsoever of St Joseph.
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« Reply #18 on: June 20, 2012, 08:00:16 AM »

A note on the icons Isa posted, which are, in the main, canonical:

They do not primarily proclaim the notion of a Holy Family, and neither does the hymnography for the feasts of the Nativity and the Meeting of the Lord. The hymnography is noteworthy in that St Joseph, when mentioned, is very much a background figure. It is the Mother of God who is presenting the Child to Symeon, not Joseph. It is also worth remembering that the Mother of God is never referred to liturgically as a wife, but profusely as a mother. For the feasts of the Meeting, and of the Circumcision of the Lord, St Joseph is only mentioned in one verse for the entire feast. By contrast, the Virgin is frequently invoked. This is no accident.
Because, like modern fathers, he has been thrust into the background to serve an unnecessary agenda.

The Gospel begins with St. Joseph's genealogy "the husband of Mary, of whom was born Jesus" although St. Joseph did not beget Him: for at least twelve years God the Son called St. Joseph father, as did His mother (Luke 2:41 "His parents", 42, 48).

In the Gospel of the Feasts of the Meeting and the Circumcision (though the latter is only a major feast in the West, so its texts should be the ones looked at) St. Joseph is mentioned in more than one verse, and not just in the background (e.g. Luke 2:33).  This is no accident either.


The Gospels at those liturgies refers to her as a wife.  As does her iconography:

how else did the Lord get brethren, and St. James the Brother of God become so?
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« Reply #19 on: June 20, 2012, 08:53:00 AM »

Wut? So the family consists of God, the Mother of God, and a Saint but somehow it isn't holy enough to be considered as "Holy Family"?
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« Reply #20 on: June 20, 2012, 09:06:43 AM »

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how else did the Lord get brethren, and St. James the Brother of God become so?

The brethren of Christ (James, Joses) are Joseph's children, an elderly widower when he was betrothed to the Virgin. His first wife was called Solomonia, or, in some sources, Salome.

There is much food for thought in what I sent you.  Smiley
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« Reply #21 on: June 20, 2012, 09:09:00 AM »

Wut? So the family consists of God, the Mother of God, and a Saint but somehow it isn't holy enough to be considered as "Holy Family"?

Alpo, I'd be happy to send you the document I sent Isa if you're interested.
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« Reply #22 on: June 20, 2012, 09:39:25 AM »

I have no objection to the reference to the Holy Family. I think it is clear in both the RCC and the Orthodox Church that we believe in the perpetual virginity of the Theotokos, and we know that St. Joseph, although he doesn't "have a lot of lines" in the Gospels, did in some way love and support the Theotokos and the Christ Child. Just as the Theotokos humbly accepted what God had in mind for her, so did St. Joseph do something very remarkable and exemplary, when he also decided not to "put her away quietly" but remained where he was and accepted what God wanted him to do.

Therefore, I think it is acceptable for iconographers to, within reason, show St. Joseph in some kind of fatherly role, such as carrying the Christ Child or standing with the Theotokos. When I was in the RCC, we used to sometimes refer to St. Joseph as the "foster father" of the Lord. It's an interesting term.
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« Reply #23 on: June 20, 2012, 10:11:00 AM »

I have no objection to the reference to the Holy Family. I think it is clear in both the RCC and the Orthodox Church that we believe in the perpetual virginity of the Theotokos, and we know that St. Joseph, although he doesn't "have a lot of lines" in the Gospels, did in some way love and support the Theotokos and the Christ Child. Just as the Theotokos humbly accepted what God had in mind for her, so did St. Joseph do something very remarkable and exemplary, when he also decided not to "put her away quietly" but remained where he was and accepted what God wanted him to do.

Therefore, I think it is acceptable for iconographers to, within reason, show St. Joseph in some kind of fatherly role, such as carrying the Christ Child or standing with the Theotokos. When I was in the RCC, we used to sometimes refer to St. Joseph as the "foster father" of the Lord. It's an interesting term.

St Joseph may have, or may not have, physically touched, even held and embraced the divine Child during his life. Orthodox tradition is silent on this, and, as illustrated by the liturgical texts, doesn’t seem to be of importance in how the Orthodox Church regards St Joseph. Iconography is not about “pious custom” or “what feels right”, or even “social justice”, such as the notion that Joseph can be an inspiration to fatherless children. Iconography is about theology and doctrine, of expressing the Mysteries, the things of God which cannot be fully known and comprehended by mere human minds. The Mystery of the Incarnation is best expressed in icons of the Annunciation, and of the Virgin with her Child. What is the equivalent theological premise which allows St Joseph to be placed on an equal level with the Mother of God?

Iconographically, the only other figure apart from the Mother of God who is "entitled" to hold the Child is Righteous Symeon the God-receiver. The hymnography for this feast contains more than 30 verses referring to the infant Christ being taken into Symeon's arms. It becomes obvious that this is not just a literal, physical event, but one of immense and profound theological importance. Symeon proclaimed this Child to be the Savior of mankind promised of old by God through the prophets: "Now, Master, let Your servant depart in peace, according to Your word....".

To this day, the words of Symeon's confession are sung at the close of every Orthodox Vespers service. The Song of Symeon the God-receiver at this point in the service symbolizes the end of Old Testament history, and the beginning of the New, with the coming of the Savior into the world. The icons of Symeon holding the Child show him in complete and utter awe at the unimaginable honor he has been given, to hold God Himself in his arms.

By contrast, the hymnody concerning St Joseph in the post-Nativity vigil which I quoted earlier speaks of him in very different terms.
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« Reply #24 on: June 20, 2012, 10:33:15 AM »

Quote
how else did the Lord get brethren, and St. James the Brother of God become so?

The brethren of Christ (James, Joses) are Joseph's children, an elderly widower when he was betrothed to the Virgin. His first wife was called Solomonia, or, in some sources, Salome.
Exactly my point.  No marriage, no brothers.

I haven't had the chance to download the document yet, but I'll say beforehand that part of the problem I think is the suppression of the local Tradition of Alexandria, Antioch and Jerusalem and the imposition of the rite of Constantinople.  In Egypt, the Entry into Egypt is a feast which was spread by Egyptian monks as far West as Ireland, as, for understandable reasons, it is a subject of local concern and pride.  In the iconstasis of St. Mary in Heliopolis, where I used to attend, the icon of the patron (the Theotokos) is taken up by an icon (westernate, unfortunately) of the Entry into Egypt, in which St. Joseph is a major figure (and often in icons of this type St. Joseph is the one carrying the Christ child).  Antioch and Jerusalem, having descendants of St. Joseph as bishops, also has more interest in St. Joseph from the local connections.

The development of "The Holy Family" is not heretical like the Immaculate Heart, nor heterodox like the Sacred Heart, nor unorthodox like the Divine Mercy, nor even questionable, like Corpus Christi.  It stands as a Western development outside of Orthodoxy which comports with it, like Christ the King.
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« Reply #25 on: June 20, 2012, 10:34:05 AM »

My dear Isa (and anyone else, for that matter), I would be happy to send you a monograph which covers the matter in depth, from the historical, hymnographic, and iconographic perspective. It should answer many questions. It is too long to post here in its entirety.


I think it's awesome that you have one at the ready.
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« Reply #26 on: June 20, 2012, 10:35:07 AM »

Wut? So the family consists of God, the Mother of God, and a Saint but somehow it isn't holy enough to be considered as "Holy Family"?

That's not the point.
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« Reply #27 on: June 20, 2012, 10:41:21 AM »

My dear Isa (and anyone else, for that matter), I would be happy to send you a monograph which covers the matter in depth, from the historical, hymnographic, and iconographic perspective. It should answer many questions. It is too long to post here in its entirety.


I think it's awesome that you have one at the ready.

PM me, and I'd be happy to send it to you.
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« Reply #28 on: June 20, 2012, 10:58:04 AM »

I have no objection to the reference to the Holy Family. I think it is clear in both the RCC and the Orthodox Church that we believe in the perpetual virginity of the Theotokos, and we know that St. Joseph, although he doesn't "have a lot of lines" in the Gospels, did in some way love and support the Theotokos and the Christ Child. Just as the Theotokos humbly accepted what God had in mind for her, so did St. Joseph do something very remarkable and exemplary, when he also decided not to "put her away quietly" but remained where he was and accepted what God wanted him to do.

Therefore, I think it is acceptable for iconographers to, within reason, show St. Joseph in some kind of fatherly role, such as carrying the Christ Child or standing with the Theotokos. When I was in the RCC, we used to sometimes refer to St. Joseph as the "foster father" of the Lord. It's an interesting term.

St Joseph may have, or may not have, physically touched, even held and embraced the divine Child during his life. Orthodox tradition is silent on this, and, as illustrated by the liturgical texts, doesn’t seem to be of importance in how the Orthodox Church regards St Joseph. Iconography is not about “pious custom” or “what feels right”, or even “social justice”, such as the notion that Joseph can be an inspiration to fatherless children. Iconography is about theology and doctrine, of expressing the Mysteries, the things of God which cannot be fully known and comprehended by mere human minds. The Mystery of the Incarnation is best expressed in icons of the Annunciation, and of the Virgin with her Child. What is the equivalent theological premise which allows St Joseph to be placed on an equal level with the Mother of God?

Iconographically, the only other figure apart from the Mother of God who is "entitled" to hold the Child is Righteous Symeon the God-receiver. The hymnography for this feast contains more than 30 verses referring to the infant Christ being taken into Symeon's arms. It becomes obvious that this is not just a literal, physical event, but one of immense and profound theological importance. Symeon proclaimed this Child to be the Savior of mankind promised of old by God through the prophets: "Now, Master, let Your servant depart in peace, according to Your word....".

To this day, the words of Symeon's confession are sung at the close of every Orthodox Vespers service. The Song of Symeon the God-receiver at this point in the service symbolizes the end of Old Testament history, and the beginning of the New, with the coming of the Savior into the world. The icons of Symeon holding the Child show him in complete and utter awe at the unimaginable honor he has been given, to hold God Himself in his arms.

By contrast, the hymnody concerning St Joseph in the post-Nativity vigil which I quoted earlier speaks of him in very different terms.

Not to be all pointy-headed, but is there any canon related to the acceptable iconography in this case? How 'bad' does an icon have to be, in order to become 'non-canonical'? Again, even though we don't have a Bible verse saying so in as many words, I'm sure St. Joseph did pick up the Christ Child at some point. I don't know how they went through the sojourn in Egypt without it.
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« Reply #29 on: June 20, 2012, 11:32:08 AM »

I have no objection to the reference to the Holy Family. I think it is clear in both the RCC and the Orthodox Church that we believe in the perpetual virginity of the Theotokos, and we know that St. Joseph, although he doesn't "have a lot of lines" in the Gospels, did in some way love and support the Theotokos and the Christ Child. Just as the Theotokos humbly accepted what God had in mind for her, so did St. Joseph do something very remarkable and exemplary, when he also decided not to "put her away quietly" but remained where he was and accepted what God wanted him to do.

Therefore, I think it is acceptable for iconographers to, within reason, show St. Joseph in some kind of fatherly role, such as carrying the Christ Child or standing with the Theotokos. When I was in the RCC, we used to sometimes refer to St. Joseph as the "foster father" of the Lord. It's an interesting term.

St Joseph may have, or may not have, physically touched, even held and embraced the divine Child during his life. Orthodox tradition is silent on this, and, as illustrated by the liturgical texts, doesn’t seem to be of importance in how the Orthodox Church regards St Joseph. Iconography is not about “pious custom” or “what feels right”, or even “social justice”, such as the notion that Joseph can be an inspiration to fatherless children. Iconography is about theology and doctrine, of expressing the Mysteries, the things of God which cannot be fully known and comprehended by mere human minds. The Mystery of the Incarnation is best expressed in icons of the Annunciation, and of the Virgin with her Child. What is the equivalent theological premise which allows St Joseph to be placed on an equal level with the Mother of God?
The Gospel.

It is because of St. Joseph that Christ is "the Son of David"-no genealogy of a mother counts in the whole of Scripture, something St. Matthew deals with at the beginning of the Gospel.  It is because of St. Joseph that Christ fulfills the prophecy of His birth in Beth Lehem (the House of Bread), the City of David, registered in the city of his house and lineage, and it is because of St. Joseph that Christ fulfills the prophecy of being a Nazarene (Mt. 2:23). St. Joseph names Him Jesus, fulfilling the type of Joshua, and it would have to be St. Joseph who brought Him to be circumcized under the old law.  The oldest surviving icon of the Circumcision shows St. Joseph holding Him with the Theotokos.

This is not historic, as according to the example of Father Abraham and the Tradition of the day, St. Joseph probably circumcized Christ, drawing the first Blood shed for us and for many.  It is also because of St. Joseph that Christ was not stoned in the pure womb of the Holy Theotokos.

Iconographically, the only other figure apart from the Mother of God who is "entitled" to hold the Child is Righteous Symeon the God-receiver. The hymnography for this feast contains more than 30 verses referring to the infant Christ being taken into Symeon's arms. It becomes obvious that this is not just a literal, physical event, but one of immense and profound theological importance. Symeon proclaimed this Child to be the Savior of mankind promised of old by God through the prophets: "Now, Master, let Your servant depart in peace, according to Your word....".

To this day, the words of Symeon's confession are sung at the close of every Orthodox Vespers service. The Song of Symeon the God-receiver at this point in the service symbolizes the end of Old Testament history, and the beginning of the New, with the coming of the Savior into the world. The icons of Symeon holding the Child show him in complete and utter awe at the unimaginable honor he has been given, to hold God Himself in his arms.

By contrast, the hymnody concerning St Joseph in the post-Nativity vigil which I quoted earlier speaks of him in very different terms.

The Kondak says:
Today godly David is filled with joy;
Joseph and James offer praise.
The glorious crown of their kinship with Christ fills them with great joy.
They sing praises to the One ineffably born on earth,
and they cry out: "O Compassionate One, save those who honor You!"

My copy of the Menaion is not handy, so I can't look at the hymns of the Nativity.

The idea of St. Joseph not touching Christ does not comport with His choice of him as father. "Iconography is not about “pious custom” or “what feels right”, or even “social justice”," might be true (but perhaps not completely), but not relevant, as usually icons I've seen of the Entry of Egypt has St. Joseph bearing Christ, holding Him for the Circumcision (which he probably did), etc...  That the West continued to magnify St. Joseph while the East increasingly downplayed him does not the indicate the Orthodoxy of the latter nor the heterodoxy of the former.
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« Reply #30 on: June 20, 2012, 12:07:17 PM »

December 26 sees the commemoration of the Synaxis/Sobor of the Mother of God. This service makes no mention whatsoever of St Joseph.
According to the "Catholic Encyclopedia," earlier they did.
http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/08504a.htm

The tenth century Mar Saba calendar has a Feast of St. Joseph, the menology of Basil II commemorates him on Christmas and the Flight into Egypt on Dec. 26. Others have a commemoration of the Holy Theotokos and her husband Joseph on the 26th.  The oldest feast (3rd century) seems to been on the Alexandrian calendar Abib 26 (July 20/August 2), still kept by the Copts.
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« Reply #31 on: July 10, 2012, 02:50:52 AM »

I have a personal interest in this mission.

You can say whatever you want, but how this:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ihgHMzTaatE

If this gorgeous hymnody is somehow not Orthodox music...than I am a monkey not a man, I would almost think I am in the wrong church...were that to be true.

I was working on typesetting the english words to it earlier but didnt finish.

here are the words to the same music there in latin:

1.  Jo-seph,  heavenly  hosts   thy  wor-thiness  proclaim,                         
    And  Christen-dom  conspires    to   ce- le- brate  thy  fame,
    Thou  who  in  pur-est  bonds   wert  to  the  Vir-gin  bound;
                    How   glo-ri-ous  is  thy  name  re-nowned.
 
2. Thou,  when  thou  didst  behold   thy  Spouse  about  to  bear,
   Wert  sore  oppressed  with  doubt,  wert  filled  with  won-der-
        ing  care;    At  length  the  An-gel's  word   thy  anxious
         heart  re-lieved:   She  by  the  spi- rit  hath  con-ceived. 

3. Thou  with  thy  new-born  Lord   didst  seek  far  E-gypt's land,
      As  wan-dering  pil-grims  ye    fled  o'er  the  de- sert  sand;
That  Lord,  when  lost,  by  thee    is   in   the  Tem-ple  found,
                 While  tears  are  shed,  and  joys   a- bound.
   
 4.  Not   till  death's  hour  is  past   do   o-ther  men  ob-tain
       The  meed   of   ho- li- ness,   and  glor-ious  rest  at- tain;
     Thou,  like   to   Angels  made,    in  life  com-plete-ly  blest,
                   Dost  clasp  thy  God  un- to   thy   breast.
   
  5.   O   Ho-  ly    Tri- ni- ty,   Thy  sup-pliant  ser-vants  spare;
   Grant  us  to  rise  to  heaven   for   Jo-seph's sake and  prayer,
    And  so  our  grate-ful  hearts   to  Thee  shall  ev- er   raise
                Ex- ul- ting   can- ti- cles   of   praise.     A-men
             
                                                                                                                                 
  Written by Fr. Juan Escollar (d. 1700). METER: Asclepiadic and Glyconic.
    Metrical English Translation: T.I. Ball

I had no idea there was controversy about the name. But it is true that I have never encountered a byzantine rite church by the name "Holy Family".  I am not aware of why there necessarily must be a controversy for it, but am open to hearing explanations.

I think that it is true that it is a feast of recent origin. It is connected to and celebrated toward the octave of epiphany since the 17th c, and still is in the Orthodox western rites. Though the novus ordo calendar moved it to Dec. 30. for present time latin heterodox catholics.

"Veneration of the Holy Family was formally begun in the 17th century by Mgr François de Laval, a Canadian bishop who founded a Confraternity."

I do think there is some truth to the idea that St. Joseph's feast is a different development than in the East. There was a zealous greek man years ago who seemed to think there was a heresy involved. This idea against St. Joseph's feast is not new, it has been spread throughout the Greek Orthodox Church. I can't say I have taken the time to understand it, unfortunately.

Here are two other texts for the western feast which date between the 15th and 18th centuries are :

"1. Joseph, the praise  and glory of the heavens,
sure  pledge  of  life, and safety of the wide world,
as in  joy we sing  to thee, in kindness
list to our  praises.

2. Thou by the world's Creator wert appointed
spouse of the Virgin; thee He willed to honor
naming thee Father of the Word and guardian
of our salvation.

3. Thou thy Redeemer, lying in a stable,
whom long ago foretold the choir of Prophets,
sawest rejoicing and thy God adoredst
humble in childhood.

4. God, King of kings, and Governor of the ages,
He at whose word the powers of hell do tremble,
He whom the adoring heavens ever worship
called thee protector.

5. Praise to the Triune Godhead ever-lasting,
Who with such honor mightily hath blest thee;
o may He grant us thy blest petition
joys everlasting.

Translation by Alan G. McDougall (1895-1964).
Sung to the Same meter as hymn above.

from Matins, the sung responsories:

R. The blessings of thy father prevailed over the blessings of his fathers, X so that the Desire of the everlasting hills should come.
V. Let them be on the head of Joseph, and on the crown of the head of the Nazarite among his brethren  R. so that the Desire of the everlasting hills should come.  Glory be to the Father....

R. The parents of Jesus went to Jerusalem every year at the Feast of the passover; when they had fulfilled the days they returned the child Jesus tarried behind in Jerusalem X And Joseph and his Mother knew not of it.
V. But they supposing him to have been in the company sought him among their kinsfolk and asquitances X And Joseph and his Mother knew not of it.  Glory be to the Father....

R. The Mother of Jesus said unto him: Son why has thou dealt with us? X behold, thy father and I have sought thee sorrowing. V. And he saint unto them: How is it that ye sought me? Wist ye not that I must be about my Father's business? X. Behold thy father and I have sought thee sorrowing.  Glory be to the Father....

Those are all from what are now considered the official texts of the Antiochian WRV from the Benedictine Divine Office booksl lancelote andrewes press sells
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« Reply #32 on: July 10, 2012, 03:26:49 AM »



A distinct western rite icon for the feast.
Is there a problem with it..perhaps a bit overly gothic, is it in the right direction and easily corrected? yes.

Sermon by S. Bernardino of Siena , circa 1420 AD.

Sermon 1 on S. Joseph Lesson v.

 It is a general rule of all special graces imparted to any rational creature, that whenever Divine grace chooses anyone for some special favour, or for some exalted position, it bestows all those gifts which are needful for the person so chosen, and for his office; and it abundantly adorns him with them. This is eminently shown in S. Joseph, the reputed father of Our Lord Jesus Christ, and the true spouse of the Queen of the world and Lady of the Angels: he who was chosen by the Eternal Father as the faithful guardian and keeper of his choicest Treasure, that is his Son and the Saint's own Spouse; an office which he most faithfully fulfilled. Therefore to him the Lord said, Good and faithful servant, enter thou into the joy of thy Lord.

If you compare him with the Universal Church of Christ, is not this man essentially one chosen and set apart, through whom and under whom Christ was regularly and honourably brought into the world? If therefore the Holy Universal Church is debtor to the Virgin Mother because she was worthy that of her Christ should be born, so certainly, after her, special thanks and reverence are due to Joseph. For he is the key of the Old Testament, in whom the dignity of Patriarch and Prophet attains to the promised fruit. Moreover he stans alone, who actually posessed what Divine condescion promised to them. Rightly therefore is he prefigured by Patriarch Joseph, who preserved corn for the people. But he excels this latter, since he nourished not merely Egypt with bread of mortal life, but all the elect with the Bread from heaven, which bestows heavenly life.

Truly it cannot be doubted that the friendship, respect and high honour, which Christ, when among men, showed him as a son towards his father, will not be denied to him in heaven, but rather fulfilled and completed. Wherefore, in the words uttered by the Lord, not undeservedly is there added, Enter into joy, so that (as is mystically suggested) that joy shall not only be within him, but be everywhere surrounding and absorbing him, and as it were plunging him into its infinite depths.

Be mindful of us, therefore, blessed Joseph, and intercede for us, helping us by thy prayers with thy reputed Son; and obtain for us grace, with thy Spouse the Blessed Virgin, Mother of Him who with the Father and Holy Spirit liveth and reigneth throughout infinite ages of ages. Amen.

MATINS - Lesson v:
Sermon by S. Bernard, Abbot          Homily 2 on Luke 2

LEARN  from his title what manner of man was blessed  Joseph. For  although he was only a deputy, he was found worthy,
both of being called, and of being believed to be, the father of God. Learn it also from his own name, which undoubtedly means, Increase. And at the same time call to mind that great Patriarch who was sold into Egypt in olden times: and be assured that this Joseph not only had the same name, but also attained unto his chastity and equalled him in innocency and grace.

Lesson vj:

THAT  Joseph, sold through the envy of his brothers and led into Egypt, prefigured the selling of Christ:  this Joseph, fleeing from the
envy of Heord, carried Christ into Egypt. The former, faithfully serving his master, would have no intercourse with his lord’s wife, the Mother of his Lord, was a virgin and being chaste himself,  faithfully guarded her.

Lesson vij:

TO  the former was given understanding of the mysteries of dreams: to the latter it was given to know and to share in the heavenly
mysteries. The former preserved wheat, not for himself, but for all the people: the latter received the Living Bread from heaven to preserve  both for himself and for the whole world.

Lesson viij:

THERE  is no doubt but that this Joseph was a good and faithful man,  he to whom the Mother of the Saviour was espoused. He was, I say, the faithful and wise servant whom his Lord hath made protector of his Mother, guardian of his own Manhood, and, in short the sole, and most faithful assistant on earth of his mighty counsel.
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« Reply #33 on: July 10, 2012, 11:46:12 AM »

A distinct western rite icon for the feast.
Is there a problem with it..perhaps a bit overly gothic, is it in the right direction and easily corrected? yes.

Do you know where that icon comes from? I love the style.
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« Reply #34 on: July 10, 2012, 08:44:50 PM »

Agreed! Why must everything good and godly come from Constantinople?

Quote
how else did the Lord get brethren, and St. James the Brother of God become so?

The brethren of Christ (James, Joses) are Joseph's children, an elderly widower when he was betrothed to the Virgin. His first wife was called Solomonia, or, in some sources, Salome.
Exactly my point.  No marriage, no brothers.

I haven't had the chance to download the document yet, but I'll say beforehand that part of the problem I think is the suppression of the local Tradition of Alexandria, Antioch and Jerusalem and the imposition of the rite of Constantinople.  In Egypt, the Entry into Egypt is a feast which was spread by Egyptian monks as far West as Ireland, as, for understandable reasons, it is a subject of local concern and pride.  In the iconstasis of St. Mary in Heliopolis, where I used to attend, the icon of the patron (the Theotokos) is taken up by an icon (westernate, unfortunately) of the Entry into Egypt, in which St. Joseph is a major figure (and often in icons of this type St. Joseph is the one carrying the Christ child).  Antioch and Jerusalem, having descendants of St. Joseph as bishops, also has more interest in St. Joseph from the local connections.

The development of "The Holy Family" is not heretical like the Immaculate Heart, nor heterodox like the Sacred Heart, nor unorthodox like the Divine Mercy, nor even questionable, like Corpus Christi.  It stands as a Western development outside of Orthodoxy which comports with it, like Christ the King.
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« Reply #35 on: July 11, 2012, 12:47:15 AM »

That is something I've been pondering lately too. Some Orthodox seem to think the Eastern tradition has the corner on worship in spirit and truth, and if the Western tradition doesn't follow the same logic, or the same particulars, etc., it's illegitimate or worse.

It is apparently easily forgotten that the light of orthodox catholic Christianity during the earliest centuries and during the Seven Councils was not Constantinople, nor Antioch, nor Alexandria...but Rome.

St. Maximus the Confessor:  "The extremities of the earth, and everyone in every part of it who purely and rightly confess the Lord, look directly towards the Most Holy Roman Church and her confession and faith, as to a sun of unfailing light awaiting from her the brilliant radiance of the sacred dogmas of our Fathers, according to that which the inspired and holy Councils have stainlessly and piously decreed. For, from the descent of the Incarnate Word amongst us, all the churches in every part of the world have held the greatest Church alone to be their base and foundation, seeing that, according to the promise of Christ Our Savior, the gates of hell will never prevail against her, that she has the keys of the orthodox confession and right faith in Him, that she opens the true and exclusive religion to such men as approach with piety, and she shuts up and locks every heretical mouth which speaks against the Most High." (Opscula theologica et polemica, p. 90)

It's popular, of course, to believe this ceased at an arbitrarily selected date for whatever caused the gradual estrangement of East and West. But much of what flowered in later centuries were seeds planted during this most fruitful of seasons in the Western Church. It's unfortunate that the estrangement prevented the mutual enrichment of East and West.

There does not need to be a direct equivalent in the Eastern tradition in order for something to be harmonious with our Apostolic faith.
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« Reply #36 on: July 11, 2012, 01:49:00 AM »

Quote
That is something I've been pondering lately too. Some Orthodox seem to think the Eastern tradition has the corner on worship in spirit and truth, and if the Western tradition doesn't follow the same logic, or the same particulars, etc., it's illegitimate or worse.

Much of this is because clown masses, liturgical dancers, and churches that turn their altar around twice a day (depending which direction the priest needs to face - new mass/old mass) never appeared in the eastern christianity.

There is therefore a certain justification to hold up the eastern tradition as the role model for that which ought to be harmonious with the western tradition.

Rome may have been more Orthodox in the 1st millenium, but East was more Orthodox for the 2nd millenium.
Recent history is therefore more relevant I think.

I admire your statement sleeper, it's very true, good developments still occured and perhaps even now occur, only one ought not go too far with the trust. A balance is best. The more a person knows the faith, especially as lived by various saints, the more easily it is possible to do that.

The image above was made by (papal) benedictine Abbey of St Joseph de Clairval in Flamigny, France, in 2006
http://www.traditions-monastiques.com/en/icons/270-seven-sorrows-joys-saint-joseph-ic-4050.html
Ultimately their work is debateably overly gothic, early humanist elements occur in some, but it's closer to being with whatever older canons than say the work of Giotto. Use at your own discretion.


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« Reply #37 on: July 11, 2012, 06:08:27 AM »

I don't think anyone meant post-Vatican II Roman Catholicism when they were defending legitimate Western developments...

Quote
That is something I've been pondering lately too. Some Orthodox seem to think the Eastern tradition has the corner on worship in spirit and truth, and if the Western tradition doesn't follow the same logic, or the same particulars, etc., it's illegitimate or worse.

Much of this is because clown masses, liturgical dancers, and churches that turn their altar around twice a day (depending which direction the priest needs to face - new mass/old mass) never appeared in the eastern christianity.

There is therefore a certain justification to hold up the eastern tradition as the role model for that which ought to be harmonious with the western tradition.

Rome may have been more Orthodox in the 1st millenium, but East was more Orthodox for the 2nd millenium.
Recent history is therefore more relevant I think.

I admire your statement sleeper, it's very true, good developments still occured and perhaps even now occur, only one ought not go too far with the trust. A balance is best. The more a person knows the faith, especially as lived by various saints, the more easily it is possible to do that.

The image above was made by (papal) benedictine Abbey of St Joseph de Clairval in Flamigny, France, in 2006
http://www.traditions-monastiques.com/en/icons/270-seven-sorrows-joys-saint-joseph-ic-4050.html
Ultimately their work is debateably overly gothic, early humanist elements occur in some, but it's closer to being with whatever older canons than say the work of Giotto. Use at your own discretion.



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« Reply #38 on: July 11, 2012, 09:47:08 AM »

Correct, I was not thinking of post-1960s Roman Catholicism at all.

I was thinking more of an underlying logic. While similar, the Western and Eastern traditions developed the Apostolic deposit of faith differently, with different emphases, different approaches, etc. during the first millennium. The gradual estrangement of the second millennium did not interfere with each tradition continuing to follow its own internal logic and develop naturally. That's not to say there weren't some missteps along the way (in both traditions) but its erroneous to think that the lack of one particular development in one tradition means it's inconsistent with our faith and unorthodox.
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« Reply #39 on: July 11, 2012, 01:42:25 PM »

It's popular, of course, to believe this ceased at an arbitrarily selected date for whatever caused the gradual estrangement of East and West. But much of what flowered in later centuries were seeds planted during this most fruitful of seasons in the Western Church. It's unfortunate that the estrangement prevented the mutual enrichment of East and West.

This logic works both ways. If Rome was the "the light of orthodox catholic Christianity during the earliest centuries"* and then ceased to be so, the seeds of that fall were also planted long before the 'arbitrary date'. I agree with you that just because something is uniquely Western doesn't mean it is not 'harmonious with our Apostolic faith'--but given what we know of the final ends of the Western path, actual discernment and due care is called for in considering what is actually harmonious and what is not. Indiscriminate acceptance of uniquely Western 'seeds' just because they were planted before some arbitrary date is essentially playing Russian roulette with the seeds of schism and heresy (forgive the mixed metaphor).

*Christopher's first millennium is a decided exaggeration. More like first 5 or 6 centuries with a long, slow decline afterwards. Even St. Maximus in the seventh century is engaging in a bit of (typically Byzantine) rhetorical excess once Pope St. Martin's council had backed his war on Monotheletism, as he certainly didn't think that St. Martin's predecessor Honorius was a "sun of unfailing light" whose "orthodox faith and right confession" should be a guide to anybody.
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« Reply #40 on: July 11, 2012, 02:16:28 PM »

I don't think anyone is advocating a wholesale adoption of all things Western without thought. Indeed, we all need to be diligent in assessing our heritage, whether East or West. The point was about a popular approach to the development of different traditions that places the Byzantine over and above all others, making its particularities essentially binding on everything else, as if it is the only legitimate embodiment of the Apostolic faith and life.

You quoted me so I'll assume you meant me instead of Christopher. Maximus' quote was but one of many over the course of the early centuries and Councils that was indicative of the role Rome played, not merely of a single Pope. I chose it because he is a better writer Smiley
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