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The Divine Liturgy: A Commentary in the Light of the Fathers

   
Hieromonk Gregorios

“Some may say that a contemporary commentary on the Divine Liturgy should reflect how a contemporary Christian sees, hears and touches Christ, but on account of the present author’s spiritual blindness, deafness and insensibility he has turned to those who have seen the true Light, who have heard the Word and ‘touched the immaculate head of the Master’, and who are eternally contemporary. And so this book is compiled from the eucharistic experiences of the saints and presents the Divine Liturgy as it was actually lived by them, and as it is still lived within the Church. For even today, in these difficult times, there are hearts that burn with His love (cf. Luke 24:32) and experience His presence at the Altar and people who during the Divine Liturgy concelebrate with the angels and saints, and truly live in the blessed Kingdom of the Triune God.”
—“FOREWORD TO THE FIRST GREEK EDITION”

CONTENTS

   Note on the English translation
   Abbreviations
   Foreword to the first Greek edition
   Foreword to the fourth Greek edition
INTRODUCTION
   1. The Last Supper and the early Christian Liturgy
   2. The earliest liturgical prayers
   3. The first written texts of the Divine Liturgy
   4. St John Chrysostom and the Divine Liturgy
   5. What is the Divine Liturgy?
   6. The fruits of the Divine Liturgy
I. THE PREPARATION FOR THE LITURGY
   1. THE RITE OF THE KAIROS
      The preparation of the celebrant
      My heart is ready, O God
      The day without evening
      The Theotokos: the gate that faces east
      The Cross: the glory of Christ
      Glorify God in your body
      Through the icons, we see the Lord and the saints
      Priesthood: a ministry of service
      The celebrant enters heaven
      The workshop of the gifts of the Holy Spirit
   2. THE VESTING OF THE CELEBRANTS
      The vestments are holy and transmit holiness
      Christ: the vestment from heaven
      The epitrachelion, symbol of Grace
      The symbolism of the girdle
      The priest acts as the hand of Christ
      Gird on Your sword, O Mighty One
      Priests, clothe yourselves in righteousness, in Christ
      The deacon, minister of the Mysteries of Jesus Christ
      I will wash my hands in innocency
   3. THE SERVICE OF PREPARATION OF THE EUCHARISTIC GIFTS
      The Chalice and the Paten
      ‘Make ready, O Bethlehem’
      You have redeemed us from the curse of the law
      The offering of bread and wine
      Bread and wine, symbols of unity
      Celebrating the remembrance of Christ
      A narrative of the Passion in actions
      The Lamb of God is sacrificed
      There came forth blood and water
      Sober inebriation
      The Queen stood at Your right hand
      Holy angels assist the priest
      The assembly of the saints
      Remember, O Master, Lover of mankind
      God in the midst of gods
      When the soul becomes a censer
      The Lord is King, He is clothed with majesty
      Your virtue, O Christ, has covered the heavens
      The blessing of God and the blessing of man
      From the Father through the Son in the Holy Spirit
      The entire church is censed
      Time for the lord to act
II. THE DIVINE LITURGY
   1. THE LITANY OF PEACE AND THE ANTIPHONS
      The Liturgy transforms earth into heaven
      The Cross is the symbol of the Kingdom
      The faithful conclude with the Amen
      The Mystery of the peace of God
      Christ is our peace
      The peace of the whole world
      One who seeks peace is searching for Christ
      The church is heaven on earth
      Man is a Christ-bearing temple
      He who presides in the place of God
      Christians sustain the world
      Let creation rejoice
      Those who are weary and heavy laden
      For our deliverance from affliction
      That we may be delivered from wrath
      That we may be delivered from danger
      That we may be delivered from constraint
      Let not your hearts be troubled
      Let us entrust ourselves to Christ our God
      God’s love for mankind beyond all telling
      The soul is a consummate musician
      Behold the Lamb of God
      Again and again let us pray to the Lord
      To share in the inheritance of the saints
      The God who is not proud
      Common and united prayers
   2. THE ENTRANCE WITH THE GOSPEL BOOK AND THE SACRED READINGS
      Angels and humans intermingle
      A festival shared by heaven and earth
      The throne on high
      The foretelling of Christ’s coming
      We beheld His glory
      Praise God
      The light of divine knowledge
      Let us approach the Bridegroom bearing lamps
      We see and hear Christ
      Let us raise our minds above earthly things
      My peace I give to you
      The good news of the Kingdom
   3. THE LITANY AND THE GREAT ENTRANCE
      Christ is the abyss of mercy
      Lord, have mercy
      The catechumens
      The dismissal of the catechumens
      Make us worthy
      Make radiant the garment of my soul
      The Cherubic Hymn
      Lord, You offer and are offered
      For we are about to receive the King of all
      The transfer of the precious Gifts
      Taking your most pure Body down from the Tree
      The Holy Spirit concelebrates
   4. THE LITANY OF THE PROSKOMIDE AND THE CREED
      Perfection without end
      A guardian angel
      Things profitable for our souls
      Death: the beginning of a better life
      Sins and acts of ignorance
      Peace prepares the way for love
      The kiss of love
      The doors, the doors!
      Enumerating the gifts of God
   5. THE HOLY ANAPHORA
      Let us stand with fear
      A mercy of peace, a sacrifice of praise
      A trinitarian gift
      The miracle of the liturgical transfiguration
      Let us give thanks to the Lord
      It is meet and right
      For all these things we give thanks to You
      The Triumphal Hymn
      Angels and men give glory together
      God so loved the world
      The sacrifice of Christ is accomplished
      The Last Supper and the Divine Eucharist
      Remembrance of Christ
      Remembrance of Christ’s Kingdom
      We offer to You Your own of Your own
      The descent of the Paraclete
      It is truly meet to call you blessed, Theotokos
      Provider and nourisher of the faithful
   6. DIPTYCHS* AND PRAYERS
      In memory of the saints
      Visit us, O God
      An offering for the world
      With one voice and one heart
      As a sweet-scented spiritual fragrance
      The unity of the faith
      For communion of the Holy Spirit
      Boldness before God
      Now are we children of God
      The Table of peace
      The bowing of heads
   7. HOLY COMMUNION
      Above I have you, and below I intermingle with you
      The Holy Things for the holy
      One is Holy, one is Lord: Jesus Christ
      The Lamb of God is broken
      Christ is one
      The fervour of the Holy Spirit
      Communion prayers
      Employ a mother’s boldness, All-pure Lady
      This has touched my lips
      We can always be celebrating Easter
      Preparing to draw near
      With faith, fear of God and love
      He calls His sheep by name
      We and Christ are one
      Christ nourishes us in both worlds
      We have seen the true Light
      Be exalted, O God, above the heavens
      I have no words, my Saviour
   8. DISMISSAL
      Let us go forth in peace
      The fullness of the Church
      Blessed be the name of the Lord
      The blessing of the Lord and His mercy
III. THANKSGIVING AFTER HOLY COMMUNION
      I give thanks to You, O Lord
   EPILOGUE
   The Catechetical Homily of St John Chrysostom
   Glossary
   List of main Patristic Texts concerning the Divine Liturgy
   Index of scriptural references
   Index of subjects and names

Item Number: BKDH119
Publication Data: Karyes, Greece: Cell of St. John the Theologian, Koutloumousiou Monastery, 2009
Format: hardcover
Number of Pages: xx + 370
Dimensions (l × w × h): 21.5 cm × 14.9 cm × 3.0 cm
Additional Information: black-and-white illustrations, dust jacket
ISBN: 978‒960‒89067‒9‒2

$44.95 (USD)

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