Author Topic: Liturgical book recommendation  (Read 743 times)

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Offline The_Convert

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Liturgical book recommendation
« on: October 25, 2013, 12:34:30 PM »
I'm looking to build up my liturgical library. I already have the Jordanville prayer book. I'm thinking about getting either the Jordanville horologion or A Psalter for Prayer. Would anyone recommend one of these over the other? Or should I go in a different direction altogether? Also, I'm having a hard time figuring out just how unabridged the Unabridged Horologion actually is - for example, does it have the full services for every day of the week, or just generic rubrics?
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Offline Mor Ephrem

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Re: Liturgical book recommendation
« Reply #1 on: October 25, 2013, 12:41:36 PM »
I'm looking to build up my liturgical library. I already have the Jordanville prayer book. I'm thinking about getting either the Jordanville horologion or A Psalter for Prayer. Would anyone recommend one of these over the other? Or should I go in a different direction altogether? Also, I'm having a hard time figuring out just how unabridged the Unabridged Horologion actually is - for example, does it have the full services for every day of the week, or just generic rubrics?


The Horologion you mention has the full text and rubrics for the unchanging parts of the daily cycle of services, but little of the variable material (these are found in various other books).  The Psalter is just the psalms of David plus the biblical odes and some other material.  With the latter, you will not be able to do the daily services.  With the former, you will be able to do just about everything except Vespers and Matins.  Ideally, you'd have both because the Psalter is read during Vespers and Matins. 

Building up a liturgical library can be a costly initiative, so how to do it depends on what you want out of it.  Why do you want this sort of library?  How do you plan on using it?   
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Offline The_Convert

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Re: Liturgical book recommendation
« Reply #2 on: October 25, 2013, 09:47:02 PM »
Why do you want this sort of library?  How do you plan on using it?   

Primarily, to pray and to familiarize myself with the services through practice.


The Horologion you mention has the full text and rubrics for the unchanging parts of the daily cycle of services, but little of the variable material (these are found in various other books).  The Psalter is just the psalms of David plus the biblical odes and some other material.  With the latter, you will not be able to do the daily services.  With the former, you will be able to do just about everything except Vespers and Matins.  Ideally, you'd have both because the Psalter is read during Vespers and Matins.

How extensive are the variable parts of Matins and Vespers? And does the Horologion have the full texts of the Psalms in their proper places? (Honestly, I may not even be asking the right questions. I'm still getting used to all the vocabulary and the structure of Eastern liturgies.)
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Offline xOrthodox4Christx

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Re: Liturgical book recommendation
« Reply #3 on: October 25, 2013, 10:21:02 PM »
The Psalter According to the Seventy by Holy Transfiguration Monastery
« Last Edit: October 25, 2013, 10:21:23 PM by xOrthodox4Christx »
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Offline Mor Ephrem

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Re: Liturgical book recommendation
« Reply #4 on: October 26, 2013, 09:40:34 PM »
The Horologion you mention has the full text and rubrics for the unchanging parts of the daily cycle of services, but little of the variable material (these are found in various other books).  The Psalter is just the psalms of David plus the biblical odes and some other material.  With the latter, you will not be able to do the daily services.  With the former, you will be able to do just about everything except Vespers and Matins.  Ideally, you'd have both because the Psalter is read during Vespers and Matins.

How extensive are the variable parts of Matins and Vespers? And does the Horologion have the full texts of the Psalms in their proper places? (Honestly, I may not even be asking the right questions. I'm still getting used to all the vocabulary and the structure of Eastern liturgies.)

The variable portions of Vespers and Matins are found in several books, depending on the day and the liturgical season.  I suppose you could buy these too, but it'll put you out at least a thousand dollars, and perhaps not everything is currently in print.  Really, the best way to learn these services is to go to as many of them as you can at church, or enroll in a seminary, or become a monastic.  The other canonical hours are fairly straightforward. 

I don't own the Jordanville Horologion, but I presume the fixed psalms of each service are printed in full in their proper places.  The variable psalmody is assigned to Vespers and Matins and distributed over the course of the week; you'll need the Psalter for that, or at least a chart with the proper distribution so you can read it out of a Bible. 
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Offline LBK

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Re: Liturgical book recommendation
« Reply #5 on: October 27, 2013, 04:14:11 AM »
Why do you want this sort of library?  How do you plan on using it?   

Primarily, to pray and to familiarize myself with the services through practice.


The Horologion you mention has the full text and rubrics for the unchanging parts of the daily cycle of services, but little of the variable material (these are found in various other books).  The Psalter is just the psalms of David plus the biblical odes and some other material.  With the latter, you will not be able to do the daily services.  With the former, you will be able to do just about everything except Vespers and Matins.  Ideally, you'd have both because the Psalter is read during Vespers and Matins.

How extensive are the variable parts of Matins and Vespers? And does the Horologion have the full texts of the Psalms in their proper places? (Honestly, I may not even be asking the right questions. I'm still getting used to all the vocabulary and the structure of Eastern liturgies.)

As someone who is called upon to compile the texts for quite a few services in up to three liturgical languages, I can assure you that a "full liturgical library" runs into dozens of volumes, though, for Greek and Slavonic, there are collections online which are almost complete. Texts in English are not quite as replete, though there's still a good amount online out there.

A tip: The higher the rank of feast, the easier it is to put together the fixed and variable texts. At the other end of the scale, the Lenten services can be the most complicated. Having a well-detailed liturgical calendar with clear rubrics is essential, particularly when feasts overlap.
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Offline Clare G.

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Re: Liturgical book recommendation
« Reply #6 on: October 27, 2013, 05:04:51 AM »
If this is just for personal use, and you are not putting together services for use in church, consider items 922 and 923 on this page:
http://www.holymyrrhbearers.com/catalog/index.php?cPath=22&osCsid=dda5d23bf63b762b1d32ef833591762a

When the Nativity draws near you could add 921.

The back cover of the Kathisma tells you which psalms are used each day of the week at Vespers & Matins.

Item 901 is a very much abridged version of 923 that will easily fit in a pocket or a handbag. Not a bad starting point for a beginner. You will soon know when you are ready for more, but best to start short and be faithful, rather than complex and give up on it.

You can find the Troparion & Kontakion for each day with a calendar such as this one: ]http://www.holytrinityorthodox.com/calendar/rss/troparion.htm]


Offline The_Convert

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Re: Liturgical book recommendation
« Reply #7 on: October 27, 2013, 02:19:48 PM »
Thanks for the input, everyone. I'll probably start with the Horologion and get the Psalter later - I've got a good Bible, so the Psalter is far less urgent.
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Offline The_Convert

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Re: Liturgical book recommendation
« Reply #8 on: October 27, 2013, 02:25:33 PM »
Has anyone tried out these commemoration cards? http://www.bostonmonks.com/product_info.php/cPath/75_105/products_id/897

It seems like they could be useful for filling in some of the gaps with the variable parts.
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Offline Mor Ephrem

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Re: Liturgical book recommendation
« Reply #9 on: October 27, 2013, 02:49:21 PM »
Has anyone tried out these commemoration cards? http://www.bostonmonks.com/product_info.php/cPath/75_105/products_id/897

It seems like they could be useful for filling in some of the gaps with the variable parts.

Based only on the photo, I suspect it would fill in, at most, one or two gaps.  The liturgy is a minefield.   
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Offline The_Convert

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Re: Liturgical book recommendation
« Reply #10 on: October 27, 2013, 03:00:00 PM »
Has anyone tried out these commemoration cards? http://www.bostonmonks.com/product_info.php/cPath/75_105/products_id/897

It seems like they could be useful for filling in some of the gaps with the variable parts.

Based only on the photo, I suspect it would fill in, at most, one or two gaps.  The liturgy is a minefield.   

Oh, yeah, I just looked more closely at the picture - that's definitely not what I thought it was.
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