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Author Topic: Conception of the Theotokos  (Read 1371 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: December 10, 2012, 02:11:22 PM »

Is this not a big feast in the Orthodox Church?  I know it is not one of the 12 Great Feasts, but isn't it celebrated in some way?  I mean, the Feast of Sts. Peter and Paul aren't one of the 12 but they are celebrated.

I just noticed there was no mention of it in yesterday's Liturgy, and none of the clergy was wearing blue.
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« Reply #1 on: December 10, 2012, 02:15:28 PM »

I just noticed there was no mention of it in yesterday's Liturgy, and none of the clergy was wearing blue.

Because the Liturgy was yesterday?
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« Reply #2 on: December 10, 2012, 02:16:56 PM »

It was mentioned in our Parish.  Also as I understand it the Priest always wear white during Liturgy on Sundays in recognition of the resurrection regardless if a feast falls on that day.
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« Reply #3 on: December 10, 2012, 02:17:09 PM »

I just noticed there was no mention of it in yesterday's Liturgy, and none of the clergy was wearing blue.

Because the Liturgy was yesterday?

December 9 is the feast day, so yes it was yesterday.
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« Reply #4 on: December 10, 2012, 02:18:18 PM »

It was mentioned in our Parish.  Also as I understand it the Priest always wear white during Liturgy on Sundays in recognition of the resurrection regardless if a feast falls on that day.

Ah, I see.  Is this standard practice in all of Orthodoxy?  In the UGCC we have a different practice.  If there is a Marian Feast then the clergy wear blue even on a Sunday.
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« Reply #5 on: December 10, 2012, 02:19:32 PM »

I just noticed there was no mention of it in yesterday's Liturgy, and none of the clergy was wearing blue.

Because the Liturgy was yesterday?

December 9 is the feast day, so yes it was yesterday.

My bad. It's not a big feast, you know.

Also as I understand it the Priest always wear white during Liturgy on Sundays in recognition of the resurrection regardless if a feast falls on that day.

Not here.
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« Reply #6 on: December 10, 2012, 02:30:23 PM »

I just noticed there was no mention of it in yesterday's Liturgy, and none of the clergy was wearing blue.

Because the Liturgy was yesterday?

December 9 is the feast day, so yes it was yesterday.

My bad. It's not a big feast, you know.

Also as I understand it the Priest always wear white during Liturgy on Sundays in recognition of the resurrection regardless if a feast falls on that day.

Not here.

So it will only supercede Sunday's colors if it is a Great Feast?
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« Reply #7 on: December 10, 2012, 02:32:37 PM »

The Epistle reading was for the feast. This time of year there is no standard color: gold, purple, red, blue - they all get used.

Anna is the focus of the feast. Just as the Theotokos is the center of the Annunciation. So, while the feast is Mary centered, she is not the focus of the feast.
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« Reply #8 on: December 10, 2012, 02:34:35 PM »

Is this not a big feast in the Orthodox Church?  I know it is not one of the 12 Great Feasts, but isn't it celebrated in some way?  I mean, the Feast of Sts. Peter and Paul aren't one of the 12 but they are celebrated.

I just noticed there was no mention of it in yesterday's Liturgy, and none of the clergy was wearing blue.

It is not a big feast because the Orthodox Faith did not ascribe a heretical teaching that she was conceived without sin.
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« Reply #9 on: December 10, 2012, 02:34:44 PM »

The Epistle reading was for the feast. This time of year there is no standard color: gold, purple, red, blue - they all get used.

Anna is the focus of the feast. Just as the Theotokos is the center of the Annunciation. So, while the feast is Mary centered, she is not the focus of the feast.

So is the wearing of blue in the Eastern Catholic Churches a product of Latinization?  The effects of the Feast of the Immaculate Conception?
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« Reply #10 on: December 10, 2012, 02:35:35 PM »

Is this not a big feast in the Orthodox Church?  I know it is not one of the 12 Great Feasts, but isn't it celebrated in some way?  I mean, the Feast of Sts. Peter and Paul aren't one of the 12 but they are celebrated.

I just noticed there was no mention of it in yesterday's Liturgy, and none of the clergy was wearing blue.

It is not a big feast because the Orthodox Faith did not ascribe a heretical teaching that she was conceived without sin.

But a feast nonetheless.  We do celebrate the conception of St. John and the aforementioned Feast of Sts. Peter and Paul.  Is this not a feast of equal footing with those two?
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« Reply #11 on: December 10, 2012, 02:37:14 PM »

Everyday there is a feast (there are multiple feasts).
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« Reply #12 on: December 10, 2012, 02:38:40 PM »

Everyday there is a feast (there are multiple feasts).

Great!  No fasting everyday!  Grin
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« Reply #13 on: December 10, 2012, 03:10:43 PM »

The Epistle reading was for the feast. This time of year there is no standard color: gold, purple, red, blue - they all get used.

Anna is the focus of the feast. Just as the Theotokos is the center of the Annunciation. So, while the feast is Mary centered, she is not the focus of the feast.

So is the wearing of blue in the Eastern Catholic Churches a product of Latinization?  The effects of the Feast of the Immaculate Conception?

I would not say wearing blue is wrong. Some wear blue for the Entrance of Mary into the temple, other wear red because of the advent fast. There are really no hard rules for these things.

I would say that this is a larger feast with the Eastern Catholics because of latinazation due to the concept of immaculate conception. The festal hymns concentrate on Anna.
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« Reply #14 on: December 10, 2012, 05:10:04 PM »

Is this not a big feast in the Orthodox Church?  I know it is not one of the 12 Great Feasts, but isn't it celebrated in some way?  I mean, the Feast of Sts. Peter and Paul aren't one of the 12 but they are celebrated.

I just noticed there was no mention of it in yesterday's Liturgy, and none of the clergy was wearing blue.

It is not a big feast because the Orthodox Faith did not ascribe a heretical teaching that she was conceived without sin.

But a feast nonetheless.  We do celebrate the conception of St. John and the aforementioned Feast of Sts. Peter and Paul.  Is this not a feast of equal footing with those two?
SS. Peter and Paul might be said to be a little higher/greater, as it has a fasting preparation for it.

But what is dispositive is that the Church celebrates the Birth of the Holy Theotokos and her Presentation to the Temple as two of the 12 major feasts, while her conception not only is not on that par, her mother St. Anne is the focus of the feast, as Arimatea pointed out.
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« Reply #15 on: December 10, 2012, 06:44:06 PM »

[SS. Peter and Paul might be said to be a little higher/greater, as it has a fasting preparation for it.

But what is dispositive is that the Church celebrates the Birth of the Holy Theotokos and her Presentation to the Temple as two of the 12 major feasts, while her conception not only is not on that par, her mother St. Anne is the focus of the feast, as Arimatea pointed out.

Great!  Good to know.  Thanks!
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« Reply #16 on: December 10, 2012, 07:42:06 PM »

It is traditionally a Great Doxology rank Feast, but unique among those as it is only one of two with a fore-feast.  Byzantine Catholics have raised it to Vigil rank. 

The texts for the Feast from an Orthodox menaion:
http://www.st-sergius.org/services/EngMN/12-09.pdf

and a Byzantine Catholic one:
http://www.metropolitancantorinstitute.org/sheetmusic/general/12-08_Maternity_Anna_Vespers_pod.pdf
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« Reply #17 on: December 10, 2012, 10:58:22 PM »

It is traditionally a Great Doxology rank Feast, but unique among those as it is only one of two with a fore-feast.  Byzantine Catholics have raised it to Vigil rank. 

The texts for the Feast from an Orthodox menaion:
http://www.st-sergius.org/services/EngMN/12-09.pdf

and a Byzantine Catholic one:
http://www.metropolitancantorinstitute.org/sheetmusic/general/12-08_Maternity_Anna_Vespers_pod.pdf

The eastern Catholics have inserted a Litia into their vespers for this feast, which contains hymns which specifically proclaim the RC doctrine of the immaculate conception of the Virgin. The Orthodox service does not, and never has had, these hymns.
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« Reply #18 on: December 10, 2012, 11:45:24 PM »

It is traditionally a Great Doxology rank Feast, but unique among those as it is only one of two with a fore-feast.  Byzantine Catholics have raised it to Vigil rank. 

The texts for the Feast from an Orthodox menaion:
http://www.st-sergius.org/services/EngMN/12-09.pdf

and a Byzantine Catholic one:
http://www.metropolitancantorinstitute.org/sheetmusic/general/12-08_Maternity_Anna_Vespers_pod.pdf

The eastern Catholics have inserted a Litia into their vespers for this feast, which contains hymns which specifically proclaim the RC doctrine of the immaculate conception of the Virgin. The Orthodox service does not, and never has had, these hymns.

I checked my book (UGCC, Anthology) and we do not have those "additions".  Although the Anthology is very faithful to Orthodox tradition, actual practice in parishes may be more Latinized.
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« Reply #19 on: December 11, 2012, 12:12:49 AM »

The eastern Catholics have inserted a Litia into their vespers for this feast, which contains hymns which specifically proclaim the RC doctrine of the immaculate conception of the Virgin. The Orthodox service does not, and never has had, these hymns.

Which was why I stated it was raised to Vigil rank and posted both texts.  It should be noted that not all Greek Catholic Churches have done this.  As far as I can tell the Melkites and Ukrainians keep it as a Polyeleos class, so no Litia stichera which are the only added hymns referncing the Immaculate Conception.
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« Reply #20 on: December 11, 2012, 12:14:09 AM »

It is traditionally a Great Doxology rank Feast, but unique among those as it is only one of two with a fore-feast.  Byzantine Catholics have raised it to Vigil rank. 

The texts for the Feast from an Orthodox menaion:
http://www.st-sergius.org/services/EngMN/12-09.pdf

and a Byzantine Catholic one:
http://www.metropolitancantorinstitute.org/sheetmusic/general/12-08_Maternity_Anna_Vespers_pod.pdf

The eastern Catholics have inserted a Litia into their vespers for this feast, which contains hymns which specifically proclaim the RC doctrine of the immaculate conception of the Virgin. The Orthodox service does not, and never has had, these hymns.

I checked my book (UGCC, Anthology) and we do not have those "additions".  Although the Anthology is very faithful to Orthodox tradition, actual practice in parishes may be more Latinized.

Here is the text from the Eastern Catholic litia:

It is fitting that the Queen of heaven and earth,
who is more precious than the Cherubim,
and incomparably more glorious than the Seraphim,
be conceived and remain immaculate as the angels,
so that they who are servants of the Lord
can boast of their own Queen, the Mother of God.
Glory and praise to the Lord who willed it so,
the Creator of all things.

It is fitting that the unique and chosen woman
be conceived without sin,

and the power of Satan is now taken away;
for the Mother of God will never bow before him.
Glory and praise to the Lord who willed it so,
the Creator of all things.

It is fitting that the Second Eve
be created and remain without sin
in the manner of the Second Adam;

for the rebirth of mankind now takes place,
just as the fall came through the first Adam and the first Eve.
Christ has renewed all through his new birth,
and it was Mary that gave birth to Him.
Glory and praise to the Lord who willed it so,
the Creator of all things.

Glory… Now…

Before the nativity of the Son of God,
it was fitting for the Father
to bestow the most pure conception upon the Mother of God,
who is betrothed of the Holy Spirit,
that she might be filled with heavenly gifts
in a manner beyond all other creatures.
Glory and praise to the Lord who willed it so,
the Creator of all things.


http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,45039.msg759895.html#msg759895
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« Reply #21 on: December 11, 2012, 05:16:00 AM »

Well it certainly was mentioned in our Liturgy and we unusually had two priests (one of whom brought a relic of St. Theodore of Crowland with him for us to venerate). Both our priest and the visitor were vested in blue. Of course we're Romanians (though the visiting priest was not) so I wouldn't be surprised if someone claims we've been latinized (saddened but unsurprised) in this.

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« Reply #22 on: December 11, 2012, 09:12:57 AM »


Here is the text from the Eastern Catholic litia:

Hm, Polish Roman Catholics also all the time are repeating "It is fitting...". A unique argument for this "dogma".


In my parish on Saturday during All-Night Vigil the troparion and canon of the feast were chanted, but on the next day (during Liturgy) nothing. And gold vestments, not blue.

Last days I had a kind of quarrel with my one of the best friends, who is very pious Roman Catholic, and I was shocked when she said that Orthodoxy didn't appreciate St. Mary's holiness. Huh She hasn't noticed that all the time we mention Holy Theotokos in prayers, say "Most Holy Theotokos save us" and so on. But what's I'm getting to, we have more important Theotokos feasts, including Her Entrance into the Temple, which Roman Catholic treats only as feast of remembrance (don't know if it's appropriate word in English) class. Moreover, we start and finish the liturgical year with Her feasts.

And as for the feast of Conception of the Theotokos, we focus on the fact that She was born of infertile parents, a many important and holy personalities of the Old Testament.
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« Reply #23 on: December 11, 2012, 10:32:13 AM »

Wearing white each Sunday is more of a Greek tradition. In Slavic churches, we usually go with the season. The Russian practice (can't speak for other Slavs) is to wear red during St. Philip's Fast. This is what my OCA parish did on Sunday, no blue. But the troparion for the Conception was sung, though it wasn't sung first...Sunday generally trumps non-Vigil Rank feasts.

We do, however, wear blue for the Entrance of the Theotokos into the Temple, which occurs during this fast, but it is a Great Feast, as has been mentioned.
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« Reply #24 on: December 11, 2012, 12:08:09 PM »

It is traditionally a Great Doxology rank Feast, but unique among those as it is only one of two with a fore-feast.  Byzantine Catholics have raised it to Vigil rank. 

The texts for the Feast from an Orthodox menaion:
http://www.st-sergius.org/services/EngMN/12-09.pdf

and a Byzantine Catholic one:
http://www.metropolitancantorinstitute.org/sheetmusic/general/12-08_Maternity_Anna_Vespers_pod.pdf

The eastern Catholics have inserted a Litia into their vespers for this feast, which contains hymns which specifically proclaim the RC doctrine of the immaculate conception of the Virgin. The Orthodox service does not, and never has had, these hymns.

I checked my book (UGCC, Anthology) and we do not have those "additions".  Although the Anthology is very faithful to Orthodox tradition, actual practice in parishes may be more Latinized.

Here is the text from the Eastern Catholic litia:

It is fitting that the Queen of heaven and earth,
who is more precious than the Cherubim,
and incomparably more glorious than the Seraphim,
be conceived and remain immaculate as the angels,
so that they who are servants of the Lord
can boast of their own Queen, the Mother of God.
Glory and praise to the Lord who willed it so,
the Creator of all things.

It is fitting that the unique and chosen woman
be conceived without sin,

and the power of Satan is now taken away;
for the Mother of God will never bow before him.
Glory and praise to the Lord who willed it so,
the Creator of all things.

It is fitting that the Second Eve
be created and remain without sin
in the manner of the Second Adam;

for the rebirth of mankind now takes place,
just as the fall came through the first Adam and the first Eve.
Christ has renewed all through his new birth,
and it was Mary that gave birth to Him.
Glory and praise to the Lord who willed it so,
the Creator of all things.

Glory… Now…

Before the nativity of the Son of God,
it was fitting for the Father
to bestow the most pure conception upon the Mother of God,
who is betrothed of the Holy Spirit,
that she might be filled with heavenly gifts
in a manner beyond all other creatures.
Glory and praise to the Lord who willed it so,
the Creator of all things.


http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,45039.msg759895.html#msg759895

I don't know what the original source of this translation? Is it the Raya work of the late 1960's?  The EC's surely have a confusing chronology and hymnology regarding this whole matter. For example, in the 1993 reprint of the  Ruthenian pew book compiled by Father Levkulic, the feastday of December 8th is clearly labeled Immaculate Conception. Yet, the Troparion and Kontakion as well as the Irmos seem to be accurate translations of the original Slavonic for the 9th of December:

Tropar: Today the bonds of childlessness are loosed for God has heard the prayers of Anna and Joachim. He promised against all hope that they would give birth to a divine virgin from whom the indescribably would be born as a man - the Same Who ordered the Angels to sing to her: "Hail, O woman Full of Grace, the Lord is with you."

Kondak: Today the universe rejoices, for Anna conceived in a manner caused by God; and because the one born to her will be give birth to the Word.

Irmos: Let the faithful extol the Mother of God, the ever-loving fountain of life, a radiant lamp of grace shedding light upon all, a most pure shelter covering heaven and earth.


I wonder if the UGCC translations are similar or if they trend more to referring to the IC?
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« Reply #25 on: December 11, 2012, 12:43:18 PM »

The Russian practice (can't speak for other Slavs) is to wear red during St. Philip's Fast.

Not here.
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« Reply #26 on: December 11, 2012, 12:55:00 PM »

Well it certainly was mentioned in our Liturgy and we unusually had two priests (one of whom brought a relic of St. Theodore of Crowland with him for us to venerate). Both our priest and the visitor were vested in blue. Of course we're Romanians (though the visiting priest was not) so I wouldn't be surprised if someone claims we've been latinized (saddened but unsurprised) in this.

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« Reply #27 on: December 11, 2012, 01:57:22 PM »

I wonder if the UGCC translations are similar or if they trend more to referring to the IC?

We don't have such text, at least in our Eparchy.  I don't know if other Eparchies would have it.  I think ECs in the US tend to be more Latinized especially with the Feast of the Immaculate Conception because Mary the Immaculate Conception is the Patron Saint of the Catholic Church in the US.
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« Reply #28 on: December 11, 2012, 01:57:55 PM »

Well it certainly was mentioned in our Liturgy and we unusually had two priests (one of whom brought a relic of St. Theodore of Crowland with him for us to venerate). Both our priest and the visitor were vested in blue. Of course we're Romanians (though the visiting priest was not) so I wouldn't be surprised if someone claims we've been latinized (saddened but unsurprised) in this.

James
Can Romans be Latinized? Huh

If you ask the Traddies, the Roman Catholic Church is being delatinized faster than Eastern Catholic Churches.
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« Reply #29 on: December 11, 2012, 03:47:10 PM »

I wonder if the UGCC translations are similar or if they trend more to referring to the IC?

We don't have such text, at least in our Eparchy.  I don't know if other Eparchies would have it.  I think ECs in the US tend to be more Latinized especially with the Feast of the Immaculate Conception because Mary the Immaculate Conception is the Patron Saint of the Catholic Church in the US.

So - the question remains - what is the source of the claimed Litya prayers?
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« Reply #30 on: December 11, 2012, 03:54:13 PM »

So - the question remains - what is the source of the claimed Litya prayers?

I thought they were Byzantine Catholic, ie. Ruthenian Catholic Church.
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« Reply #31 on: December 11, 2012, 05:37:53 PM »

So - the question remains - what is the source of the claimed Litya prayers?

They come from the Festal Menaion compiled by the Uniontown Basilians.  I don't know whether they authored the Litya stichera or translated them from Mukachevo/Presov/Lviv books.  I would think it likely it was kept as a Great Doxology or Polyeleos rank in the old country and was raised to Vigil in America and Litya stichera authored since the Immaculate Conception is the patroness of the US.  Melkite Catholic Byzantine Daily Worship by Raya does not have the Litya stichera nor does the Ukrainian Catholic Anthology, so it is possible these are unique to the US Ruthenian Metropolia.
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« Reply #32 on: December 12, 2012, 04:53:33 AM »

Well it certainly was mentioned in our Liturgy and we unusually had two priests (one of whom brought a relic of St. Theodore of Crowland with him for us to venerate). Both our priest and the visitor were vested in blue. Of course we're Romanians (though the visiting priest was not) so I wouldn't be surprised if someone claims we've been latinized (saddened but unsurprised) in this.

James
Can Romans be Latinized? Huh

Yes it seems ridiculous to me too, but I've been told it before. Apparently when we have a tradition that is slightly different to say the Slavs or Greeks, the default position of some people seems to be to call it a Latinization. I have pointed out in the past that Romanians are actually Latin already, but I've given that up. What it generally tends to seem to mean is that because Romanians are the only romance people who are Orthodox and our church has been generally on better terms with Rome than some others, we're instantly suspected of being 'Latinized'. The fact that often the differences from Greek practice are Slav in origin and vice versa seems to be discounted out of hand.

FWIW, our clergy have been vested in red throughout the fast (which someone said was Slav practice) except on the Entrance where the deacons were in blue but the priests and bishop in white (that was a heirarchical liturgy with Bishop Ignatie Muresanu - no idea if that's why they weren't in blue) and on the Conception of the Theotokos where, as I said, both priests were in blue.

James
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We owe greater gratitude to those who humble us, wrong us, and douse us with venom, than to those who nurse us with honour and sweet words, or feed us with tasty food and confections, for bile is the best medicine for our soul. - Elder Paisios of Mount Athos
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