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Author Topic: Crossing Arms For Communion  (Read 7539 times) Average Rating: 0
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Gorazd
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« Reply #45 on: August 25, 2012, 05:02:05 AM »

So we should allow kneeling on sundays, so that people who don't come to church during the week can kneel, even though it is against the canons?

If it is important for them to kneel, they should do it at the appropriate times, either by making an effort to come to church on another day, too, or simply by kneeling at home.

I don't believe that kneeling is a virtue in itself. It is a sign of humbling yourself in front of God. And I don't consider it humble to insist on kneeling on a day the Ecumenical Council has forbidden to do so.

This cannot be compared to sitting during liturgy, since sitting is more comfortable than standing, kneeling is not. We can allow people to sit in order not to stress their bodies. But I do not think we should allow them to take a position that is considered a denial of the Resurrection.
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« Reply #46 on: August 25, 2012, 05:23:06 AM »

So we should allow kneeling on sundays, so that people who don't come to church during the week can kneel, even though it is against the canons?

I'm only saying that we should not be so harsh on them. Did pre-canon Christians knew about canons, knew liturgy and so forth? It's our way to venerate, canons say that it's the best way for everyone. But it's not the only way.

If it is important for them to kneel, they should do it at the appropriate times, either by making an effort to come to church on another day, too, or simply by kneeling at home.

I don't believe that kneeling is a virtue in itself. It is a sign of humbling yourself in front of God. And I don't consider it humble to insist on kneeling on a day the Ecumenical Council has forbidden to do so.

I fear of Orthodoxy becoming an army unit. It is all about venerating God, not about paying attention to rituals. The liturgy is supposed to help us get closer to God. If someone feels he should kneel, because in this one moment he realizes how small he is compared to God, why forbid him doing that, if it's no sin. I highly doubt that when Christ would come to you, or me, or anyone else, on Sunday, we would not kneel, or prostrate because it's the day of Resurrection. Canons are to help us and teach us, and should be followed, but not absolutely and without thinking. Someone broke the tradition to allow us cross ourselves the way we do it together. Orthodoxy lives, it does not change, it breathes. Making people absolutely obedient to the canons is like putting an oxygen mask in the middle of the forest.

This cannot be compared to sitting during liturgy, since sitting is more comfortable than standing, kneeling is not. We can allow people to sit in order not to stress their bodies. But I do not think we should allow them to take a position that is considered a denial of the Resurrection.

If a person feels weak and needs to sit down, and there's moment of Epiclesis - and the canons forbid you to sit during Epiclesis - should you allow her to sit down? Let's not be so harsh on it.
« Last Edit: August 25, 2012, 05:23:46 AM by Pan Michał » Logged
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« Reply #47 on: August 25, 2012, 07:45:08 AM »

Interesting that Roman Catholics have made this a signal that the person approaching the chalice is not going to receive, but just wants a blessing.

This is also the custom with Anglicans/Episcopalians.  It is because we recieve the Body in the hand I should think.
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« Reply #48 on: August 25, 2012, 09:08:29 AM »

i went up to the RC altar with arms crossed (in order not to receive) and then had to work out how to say 'i don't wish to take Holy Communion' without opening my mouth! (the Holy bread was coming towards my mouth very quickly!)
 Wink
Ummm, what about remaining seated?

in many catholic and protestant churches, people worship God sincerely. if this is the case in any church i am visiting, and especially if they are following tradition (or trying to return to it), for example by believing in Holy Communion as a sacrament, not just a symbol, then i like to worship together with them as much as is appropriate (depending on the theology there).
i have occasionally visited churches where i feel very uncomfortable, due to various theological errors or lack of love for God; then i sit politely and do not take part.
the catholic tradition of people going up to seek a blessing at the time of Holy Communion is a beautiful and humble tradition and i think it is good to follow it when visiting the church.

in the example i gave; i found a catholic church near where i was staying when i had to be in ireland to take an exam.
the day before my exam, i went to the catholic church and there was a beautiful liturgy and the priest talked to us about trusting in God and seeking His will.
it was a weekday, and there was no orthodox service anywhere near that area, so i went to the catholic church.
i was greatly encouraged and went on to pass the exam.
 Smiley
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Gorazd
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« Reply #49 on: August 25, 2012, 09:17:24 AM »

I prefer remaining seated. Thereby I express not being in full communion with the religious group I am visiting.
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« Reply #50 on: August 25, 2012, 10:54:53 AM »

Hows about you just not flail your arms about whilst communing?  police

Good luck with that. As someone who regularly  helps to hold the red napkin under the chin of the communicants, I can tell you that there are plenty of near accidents as is. This is especially true of the elderly and kids.. Then there is the difficulty holding the head of an infant still. I've learned that is a skill all unto itself... It  may look easy to do but crossed arms are really necessary.
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« Reply #51 on: August 25, 2012, 12:30:46 PM »

So we should allow kneeling on sundays, so that people who don't come to church during the week can kneel, even though it is against the canons?

If it is important for them to kneel, they should do it at the appropriate times, either by making an effort to come to church on another day, too, or simply by kneeling at home.

I don't believe that kneeling is a virtue in itself. It is a sign of humbling yourself in front of God. And I don't consider it humble to insist on kneeling on a day the Ecumenical Council has forbidden to do so.

This cannot be compared to sitting during liturgy, since sitting is more comfortable than standing, kneeling is not. We can allow people to sit in order not to stress their bodies. But I do not think we should allow them to take a position that is considered a denial of the Resurrection.
Perhaps kneeling in church, among Romanians is so widespread since it could be a reflex inherited from the times they most certainly used a Latin rite; the Slavonic rite was imposed on them by the Bulgarians.
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« Reply #52 on: August 25, 2012, 01:14:03 PM »

Kneeling on Sundays is forbidden by the Council of Nicea.
Don't you mean Trullo?
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« Reply #53 on: August 25, 2012, 01:17:49 PM »

Kneeling on Sundays is forbidden by the Council of Nicea.
Don't you mean Trullo?

Both, actually. But Nicea, of course, came first historically.
More here: http://orthodoxinfo.com/praxis/kneeling.aspx
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Gorazd
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« Reply #54 on: August 25, 2012, 01:18:39 PM »

Perhaps kneeling in church, among Romanians is so widespread since it could be a reflex inherited from the times they most certainly used a Latin rite; the Slavonic rite was imposed on them by the Bulgarians.
Maybe so. But the Council of Nicea also applies to the Latin rite.
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Gorazd
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« Reply #55 on: August 25, 2012, 01:37:55 PM »

I fear of Orthodoxy becoming an army unit. It is all about venerating God, not about paying attention to rituals. The liturgy is supposed to help us get closer to God. If someone feels he should kneel, because in this one moment he realizes how small he is compared to God, why forbid him doing that, if it's no sin. I highly doubt that when Christ would come to you, or me, or anyone else, on Sunday, we would not kneel, or prostrate because it's the day of Resurrection. Canons are to help us and teach us, and should be followed, but not absolutely and without thinking. Someone broke the tradition to allow us cross ourselves the way we do it together. Orthodoxy lives, it does not change, it breathes. Making people absolutely obedient to the canons is like putting an oxygen mask in the middle of the forest.
I understand your concerns. But Orthodoxy is not just about praising God, but about praising God in the right way. Surely Orthodoxy does live, but what is life, if not the resurrection? Adopting a practice that is considered by the Church to be a denial of Christ's resurrection, is not a sign of life, but of death. And we are one body, the Body of Christ. Therefore, our worship should not fall into individualistic pietism, but we should join the practice of the Church and even the worship in heaven.
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« Reply #56 on: August 25, 2012, 02:13:55 PM »

Calling it a denial of the resurrection is absurd. I kneel absolutely every single Sunday and believe wholeheartedly in the resurrection. There is no dichotomy.

Truly, is it more important to show reverence for God or preserve a custom?
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« Reply #57 on: August 25, 2012, 03:57:19 PM »

Calling it a denial of the resurrection is absurd. I kneel absolutely every single Sunday and believe wholeheartedly in the resurrection. There is no dichotomy.

Truly, is it more important to show reverence for God or preserve a custom?

To stand is not a lack of reverence. To kneel is not a denial of the resurrection.

Each of us should be humble and follow the customs that have been given to us, wherever we are and whatever they are. If it's so important to do it one way or the other, our bishops will enforce the canons.

Let's not be canon vigilantes. Most of all, let's not argue so passionately about such things when there are much more pressing matters, both in the church and in our own lives.
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« Reply #58 on: August 25, 2012, 04:13:01 PM »

Calling it a denial of the resurrection is absurd.
It is not absurd, but the understanding of the Church.

Truly, is it more important to show reverence for God or preserve a custom?
We should show reverence for God the way the Church shows reference to God - for example honouring his resurrection by standing on Sunday and from Easter to Pentecost.
There are other opportunities where kneeling is the appropriate way of showing reference to God.
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« Reply #59 on: August 25, 2012, 04:57:06 PM »

It is absolutely not the understanding of the Church that to kneel on a Sunday denies the resurrection. I'm not arguing that it can't be a useful reminder, but it doesn't work the other way and negate it. Actions are neutral and have no inherent meaning. The people provide the meaning.

It's quite simple; I do not deny the resurrection, especially when I drop to my knees in awe at its reality during liturgy.
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« Reply #60 on: August 25, 2012, 05:16:47 PM »

It is absolutely not the understanding of the Church that to kneel on a Sunday denies the resurrection.

Read the canons on the link I have posted. The position of the Church can be found in them.

Btw, what kind of "awe" is that when you claim to know better than the Church what is the right way to worship God?

We must be careful not only to worship God, but to worship God the way God wants us to worship him. May God preserve us all from the sin of Korah.
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« Reply #61 on: August 25, 2012, 05:31:23 PM »

It is absolutely not the understanding of the Church that to kneel on a Sunday denies the resurrection.

Read the canons on the link I have posted. The position of the Church can be found in them.

Btw, what kind of "awe" is that when you claim to know better than the Church what is the right way to worship God?

We must be careful not only to worship God, but to worship God the way God wants us to worship him. May God preserve us all from the sin of Korah.
Why do you keep pressing this to, what seems to me absurd lengths. It's obvious that for some reasons we are talking about a rule that was never enforced universally and strictly for a long time, no matter what the books say.
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« Reply #62 on: August 25, 2012, 05:39:02 PM »

Why do you keep pressing this to, what seems to me absurd lengths.
Because this is about the very essence of Orthodoxy. Is it just another kind of individualistic "I praise God as I feel good" religion? Or do we, when we worship, humbly join ourselves to the Body of Christ and participate in its universal worship?

And what is more important for us? To follow the Church's call to stand for our faith in the ressurection of Christ, or our own selfish "I feel better when I kneel on Sundays?

Whether it was universally enforced or not is not the question. (Though some argue that Latin practises in the Romanian Church developed on in Habsburg times, as well as independent Romania with its Roman Catholic monarch.) The point is not what was done, but what we should do. And on Sundays, the canons tell us that we should stand, because Christ is risen.
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« Reply #63 on: August 25, 2012, 08:08:52 PM »

legalism |ˈlēgəˌlizəm| noun: excessive adherence to law or formula.

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« Reply #64 on: August 27, 2012, 05:16:10 PM »


Guilty as charged.

I kneel on Sundays.

I doubt God will strike me down for it...as I have offended Him with greater sins than kneeling before Him.

There are many canons that I am certain all of us do not adhere to.

I once took a good look at the Rudder and was amazed what I found written there.

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« Reply #65 on: August 27, 2012, 05:27:42 PM »


Guilty as charged.

I kneel on Sundays.

I doubt God will strike me down for it...as I have offended Him with greater sins than kneeling before Him.

There are many canons that I am certain all of us do not adhere to.

I once took a good look at the Rudder and was amazed what I found written there.

The sabbath was made for man, not man for the sabbath, etc.  But I suppose I'm doomed to the path of Protestantism for quoting Christ over the Rudder. 
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« Reply #66 on: August 27, 2012, 05:30:15 PM »

To be strict - canons forbid kissing icons/cross after taking the Eucharist. Guess we're pretty much all damned now, eh?
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« Reply #67 on: August 27, 2012, 05:35:11 PM »


Ah huh!  I'm not guilty of that!

I stick to that canon!!!  Wink
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« Reply #68 on: August 27, 2012, 05:41:13 PM »


Ah huh!  I'm not guilty of that!

I stick to that canon!!!  Wink


Am I the only one damned, then...? Sad
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« Reply #69 on: August 27, 2012, 05:44:46 PM »


LOL!

....and I also do NOT kneel after taking the Eucharist.

I guess I am all over the board.
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« Reply #70 on: August 27, 2012, 05:46:06 PM »


LOL!

....and I also do NOT kneel after taking the Eucharist.

I guess I am all over the board.

Ah uh! I do not kneel after, either! Guess that Hell will not go full Dante on me, after all Smiley
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that is not the teaching of...


« Reply #71 on: August 27, 2012, 05:56:05 PM »

I would need to see these canons before deciding whether I am condemned or not...
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« Reply #72 on: August 27, 2012, 06:06:28 PM »

This is not legalism, because I am not arguing the law for the law's sake, but because of its meaning, both material and functional.
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« Reply #73 on: August 27, 2012, 06:09:32 PM »


I do understand Gorazd's point.

After all, we do not kneel after Pascha.
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« Reply #74 on: August 27, 2012, 06:10:43 PM »

This is not legalism, because I am not arguing the law for the law's sake, but because of its meaning, both material and functional.
"What does Easter/Pascha mean?"
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« Reply #75 on: August 27, 2012, 06:10:54 PM »

I would need to see these canons before deciding whether I am condemned or not...





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« Reply #76 on: August 27, 2012, 06:14:36 PM »

This is not legalism, because I am not arguing the law for the law's sake, but because of its meaning, both material and functional.
"What does Easter/Pascha mean?"

Christ is risen, and he gives life to those in the tombs.
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that is not the teaching of...


« Reply #77 on: August 27, 2012, 06:27:30 PM »

I would need to see these canons before deciding whether I am condemned or not...







I have none of these canons...
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« Reply #78 on: August 27, 2012, 06:29:18 PM »


I have the middle one.  It has a swivel window! 
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« Reply #79 on: August 27, 2012, 06:34:57 PM »

This is not legalism, because I am not arguing the law for the law's sake, but because of its meaning, both material and functional.
"What does Easter/Pascha mean?"

Christ is risen, and he gives life to those in the tombs.
From the answers: "What happened on Easter?"
"Nothing happened"
"I kill a lamb or a rooster..."
"We eat eggs and sweetbread."
"Who has eats, who doesn't watches."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EQjuN98lnjs
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« Reply #80 on: August 27, 2012, 06:42:26 PM »


You trivialize the greatest day of all.

That is worse than kneeling on a Sunday.
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« Reply #81 on: August 27, 2012, 07:05:58 PM »

Why do you keep pressing this to, what seems to me absurd lengths.
Because this is about the very essence of Orthodoxy. Is it just another kind of individualistic "I praise God as I feel good" religion? Or do we, when we worship, humbly join ourselves to the Body of Christ and participate in its universal worship?

And what is more important for us? To follow the Church's call to stand for our faith in the ressurection of Christ, or our own selfish "I feel better when I kneel on Sundays?

Whether it was universally enforced or not is not the question. (Though some argue that Latin practises in the Romanian Church developed on in Habsburg times, as well as independent Romania with its Roman Catholic monarch.) The point is not what was done, but what we should do. And on Sundays, the canons tell us that we should stand, because Christ is risen.

Tradition is a deposit and an act: it is what is handed down and the act of handing it down. The reality is, for many Orthodox, the traditional thing is to kneel. That's what their Fathers handed down to them. Romanians kneel multiple times per Liturgy even on a Sunday.

Personally, I don't kneel, being in a Greek church, but I recognize that it's the most Orthodox thing for many people to do.
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« Reply #82 on: August 27, 2012, 07:08:10 PM »

Just because something is handed down, that doesn't make it right. We should adjust ourselves to the Tradition of the Holy Fathers, not the tradition of the Romanian custom.
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« Reply #83 on: August 27, 2012, 07:21:17 PM »


It's not just the Romanians.  We, Ukrainians, kneel too...at least in the States.  Don't know what they do back in Ukraine.

I've never really understood this "rule".  I was aware of it....and realized that when I visited a Greek or OCA church on a Sunday, I would not be kneeling.

If the King were before you....would you not automatically fall to your knees?

At the Transfiguration, did not the Apostles fall to their knees in awe?

What about the shepherds who were first to see the newly born Christ....did they not fall to their knees before Him?

I'm just curious.

I can kind of wrap my head around not kneeling post Communion, because now Christ is not before you, but, within you....but, the whole not kneeling on Sundays I'm not sure I understand.

However, IF my bishop told me that I was forbidden from kneeling on Sundays, you better believe you would NOT see me kneeling on a Sunday, unless I were cleaning the dust bunnies from under my bed.

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« Reply #84 on: August 27, 2012, 07:37:27 PM »

If the King forbids you to fall on your knees and you insist on doing it anyway, wouldnt that be considered rebellion?

There occasionally are people kneeling on Sunday in Ukraine, though not many, and there is increasing awareness that it is forbidden, so the clergy and theologians actively discourage this practice.

And I dont see whats so hard to get about the rule? Christ is risen, so we must be standing with him, because we rise with him into true life.

PS: Transfiguration was before the ressurection. And I dont see why your bishop explicitely needs to tell you. Are the councils of Nicea and in Trullo not enough for you?

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« Reply #85 on: August 27, 2012, 07:39:56 PM »

I was just asking.

It seems that not everyone is fluent in all the canons, as you are.  I think that's great that you have broadened your theological knowledge.

I don't know how it is in your home church....but, we, as cradle Orthodox, did not get a formal "education".  

Therefore, what we know is exactly what was passed down to us from our elders.

Unless someone told us we were wrong, how would we know?
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« Reply #86 on: August 27, 2012, 07:47:39 PM »

Just because something is handed down, that doesn't make it right. We should adjust ourselves to the Tradition of the Holy Fathers, not the tradition of the Romanian custom.

It *is* a Tradition of the Holy Fathers: thousands of them for centuries have done exactly this throughout Eastern Europe.

Canons far more important than these have been informally abrogated through the weight of Tradition. It's especially common with canons on liturgical matters. That's the nature of liturgy: it evolves.
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« Reply #87 on: August 27, 2012, 07:49:02 PM »

My main parish is maybe 90% cradle, mostly ethnic Greeks, and has an adult theological education every Wednesday. Much of my knowledge comes from that. There are classes for children, too. I humbly suggest all Orthodox parishes in the world to offer a regular Orthodox teaching for all of its members, whether they are minors or adults.

Of course, if someone has no idea, he or she is excused. But what really shocks me is how many people in this thread have seen the Canons and still rebel against them. And the usual argument is some variation of "I feel better that way". That is Protestantism, everyone his own Pope! Orthooxy is to confirm ourselves to the mind of the Church.
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« Reply #88 on: August 27, 2012, 07:52:53 PM »

My main parish is maybe 90% cradle, mostly ethnic Greeks, and has an adult theological education every Wednesday. Much of my knowledge comes from that. There are classes for children, too. I humbly suggest all Orthodox parishes in the world to offer a regular Orthodox teaching for all of its members, whether they are minors or adults.

Of course, if someone has no idea, he or she is excused. But what really shocks me is how many people in this thread have seen the Canons and still rebel against them. And the usual argument is some variation of "I feel better that way". That is Protestantism, everyone his own Pope! Orthooxy is to confirm ourselves to the mind of the Church.

You have a lot to learn about canon law, especially in the Slavic churches.
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« Reply #89 on: August 27, 2012, 07:53:37 PM »


You are lucky that you have regular classes at your church.

We have classes for kids, ...and one hardly goes over the canons with 5 year-olds....but, we've never had anything for adults.
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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
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