Still more reflections on liturgical texts

Part 4 of Metropolitan Hilarion’s “Orthodox Worship As A School Of Theology” has appeared at Preachers Institute. In this part, he addresses “uncanonical” services such as Moleibens and Akathists:

We can say that processes are taking place in the Russian Church similar to those that occurred in Protestantism and Catholicism at various periods, during which ancient, theologically rich, liturgical texts were replaced by more easy-to-understand chorales, hymns and chants …. treasures of theological content were sacrificed for the sake of ease of comprehension. As a result, their services ceased to be a school of theology and meditation on God and remained at most a school of piety.

He offers an antidote for those of us in parishes where it’s impractical to serve, or impractical for believers to attend, a full, monastic-type cycle of services: to read liturgical books at home.

Fortunately, many are available online. Anastasis (Archimandrite Ephrem Lash) and Monachos are two instances. At some point in the past, I also got an English Menaion, suitable for study if not for liturgical use.

 

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