Monday, July 09, 2012

Things I like about our local Melkite Catholic Parish, II

11. Lover of Mankind. One of many reasons I enjoy the Divine Liturgy is hearing God referred to in prayers as the Lover of Mankind. I can't explain how moving I find that phrase. It reminds me of Song of Songs and the idea of God chasing after us like a young man pursues his beloved.
12. Icon of Moses with bronze serpent. There's an icon of Moses holding up the bronze serpent wrapped around a cross before the afflicted Israelites. Its a beautiful drawn out expression of John 3:14
13. Akhathist. I love going to the Akhathist during Lent and meditating on all the ways that the Theotokos is described: the burning bush, unplowed field, murex who dyed a robe of purple for the King of Hosts!
14. Repeated affirmation of Christ's Divinity. I love singing "The Lord is God and has appeared to us." among other parts of the Divine Liturgy that affirm Jesus Christ's Divinity as the Second Person in the Trinity. It touches a special place in my heart because I've known and been friends with so many Mormons and even a few Catholics I've met also deny His divinity.
15. Repeated prayers for mercy. I couldn't tell you how many times we pray Kyrie Eleison or Lord have mercy. There's also "Through the prayers of the Mother of God, O Savior save us". I don't know about you but I always need the Lord's mercy and I'll probably never stop praying for it.
16. Songs appropriate to the day.  I've never understood why Latin parishes will often pick the most random songs for Mass. For instance, "A Mighty Fortress is Our God" on Corpus Christi. It has nothing to do the Feast Day and does not further instruct the laity on the Eucharist. Whereas all the songs in the Melkite parish always relate specifically to the saint or event celebrated. On the celebration of St Helena discovering the True Cross, one of the songs was about prefigurings of the cross in the OT.
17. Orthodoxy Sunday. What can I say? I just really like the idea of processing around the church with our icons in celebration of the victory of orthodoxy over iconoclasm.
18. Kissing the Gospel. Not only is the Gospel book ornate to show its importance, but at Orthros and Vespers everyone walks up after the Gospel reading to kiss the cover.
19. Bowing. There's a lot of bowing in the Byzantine liturgies. I really don't know why I like it, but I do.
20. Good Thief. Both the example and the prayer of St Dismas are a part of the Divine Liturgy. He has been an inspiration for me that lowly sinner that I am salvation is still possible through the Divine Mercy of our God.


    May God bless all who read my ramblings,

    Adopt A Catholic Blog

    1 comment:

    Annmarie Pipa said...

    last week I was at mass and all of a sudden. like a ton of bricks I realized how much I LOVE my faith... I looked around at the windows, the altar, the statues and realized how very blessed I am....