Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

The Divine Liturgy Project on the New Liturgical Movement

Greetings to the Editors and Clergy of the New Liturgical Movement!

Thank you for posting a link to our blog.  We have been busy at the Divine Liturgy Project working on the first phases of the project as well as finding a publisher.  We look forward to your suggestions on artwork and content.


Thank you again!

-The Staff of the Divine Liturgy Project

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

An Excellent Question about Liturgical Variation between Parishes

Question #3: You speak of a collaboration between "faithful Orthodox Christians, the clergy and the hierarchy" - how will you coordinate this collaboration? My first instinct is to see this as a problem - it sounds like a "book by committee", but perhaps you can help me see how this might work. There is also a great diversity of opinion, and a great number of clergy in the US even in the same jurisdiction celebrate liturgy differently. For example, a) some priests never close the Beautiful Gate and the curtain, others do. Some hierarchs forbid it, others do not; b) some priests preach the sermon after the reading of the Gospel, others do not; c) some priests do not read the inaudible prayers aloud, others do etc… etc… the list is quite lengthy
Response: You have a great point. To be completely honest, we have never envisioned a book by committee- but rather from a core group that will submit manuscripts regularly to the hierarchy. Having spoken to several Orthodox clergy, we will seek the blessing and endorsements from Hierarchs in the US and abroad before official work commences and when the manuscript is near completion.

The way that the DLP will be presented is a distinct advantage. It is not meant to be a historical book on the development on liturgical vessels, vestments, or rubrics. It is for the edification and knowledge of the faithful, encouraging them to "lift up their hearts."
We think that this point would be well illustrated by an example. During the Creed, in the Greek Liturgical tradition the priest gently waves the aer over the holy gifts. " As ours is a devotional book we will state that this motion has a symbolic meaning. For us as Orthodox Christians, it calls to mind that the Creed is for us the victorious flag of Christianity, which despite persecution always emerges victorious. This explanation is in several patristic texts- Greek and Russian.

In regard to the beautiful gate and curtain, we intend to have descriptions of these objects in the part of the book that describes the Architecture and Design of the Orthodox Church. We could add a comment after describing their historical and devotional value that in many places the use of the curtain has been retired. We will seek further guidance from hierarchy whether we should incldue these rubrics.

We feel that certain practices, such as the tradition of males and females sitting separately on different sides of the Church, is not a part of parish life in Greek Orthodox parishes in this country. If it was included, one can imagine how some might see this negatively as advocating outdated practice.  We have to realize that not every practice in the Orthodox world can be included, and remember that this volume is geared toward faithful in the parish setting.

In the end, we would trust the judgment of the clergy collaborating with us.  For the silent prayers, as they are to be said in a low voice, we think that this instruction should be reproduced in the text and why they are to be said silently.  However, we would qualify this ancient practice by stating  that some priests pray the inaudible prayers aloud so that the faithful might appreciate their beauty. As to the placement of the Homily, we would not even include it as different priests do insert it at different places during the Liturgy.

Saturday, February 8, 2014

The Divine Liturgy Project Now on Google Plus

We are now on Google Plus- Add us at TheDivineLiturgyProject@gmail.com !

Seminarian Interest in the Divine Liturgy Project Growing!

As an Orthodox seminarian, I think that this project, as you have laid it out for us, is a noble endeavor and could be of great benefit to the Orthodox faithful of this country. I am humbled that you have asked us for our input and offered us the opportunity to join in the effort. As for myself, I am very interested in helping you. My only reservation is that I am not an expert on anything in particular.  Also as a seminarian, I am to an extent under obedience to a hierarch and want to make sure that what you publish will be in harmony with the Orthodox Faith.


We are impressed how humbly you described yourself!  Prudence and humility will take you a long way in life and especially (God willing) life as a priest.  It is important to realize,  that the spiritual health of your parish will be important in the future not only for the salvation of the souls of your congregation but for practical reasons as well. 

A devout parish that is spiritually healthy will provide for your livelihood and that of your future family and provide an atmosphere that allows you to be the best priest you can be. 
As a seminarian, your contribution will be highly valued and you can be sure that all who give time and talent on behalf of this project will be acknowledged in the final volume.  Your help (and those of your brother seminarians) will be particularly helpful on the section of “Major Feast Days” and “Saints Days.” We will include Icons with descriptions of the event (for Major feast days) or highlights from the life of the saint who is commemorated, the troparion and kontakion for the day, and perhaps a hymn or prayer that holds particular devotional value. Most importantly, get the word out and tell priests and co-seminarians about the project.  The staff of the DLP would be happy to personally speak at your seminary and present the project.
As all of those involved in the project are faithful Orthodox Christian laity and clergy who are obedient to the hierarchy of the Greek Orthodox Church and the Ecumenical Patriarch.  The content will be proofread multiple times and submitted to the hierarchy for blessing before being printed. 
  This book is not meant to be a polemic nor a historical treatise.  As described in statement of purpose, we will use established sources and cite them appropriately.  These sources will be well known Orthodox hierarchs, theologians, patristic sources, patriarchal encyclicals (especially form his All Holiness Patriarch Bartholomew I), the Orthodox Study Bible, etc.

As always, do not hesitate to contact us at TheDivineLiturgyProject@gmail.com  if you wish to be a contributor or have any feedback for us!

-The Staff at the Divine Liturgy Project

Thursday, February 6, 2014

The Divine Liturgy Project- Target Audience

The Staff of the Divine Liturgy Project are committed to delivering a text with visual standards that have the same beauty and richness of the texts of the Orthodox Church. We will present Orthodoxy in a way that will inspire and edify faithful in parishes and encourage an authentic popular piety based around the Liturgical life of the Church. It will hopefully inspire vocations to the Holy Priesthood and consecrated life, bring hope to struggling families, and give the faithful that come to church a reason to come next week.  It will also be helpful for visitors and inquirers into Orthodoxy that have never been to an Orthodox Church and want to know “what is happening and why” and will be a witness to the Catholic nature of the Orthodox Church.

At this time, my assistant editors and I are working on compiling the Divine Services in Greek and Enlgish listed in the Table of Contents. We continue to receive letters of praise and interest from Orthodox clergy around the country but we need your help!  Please contact us if you are willing to help or support our endeavor. This is truly a collaborative effort and we are actively seeking a Publisher with standards as high as our own.   

 “The Divine Liturgy Project” (which will eventually be renamed when completed) will be an asset to any parish.  Why?  The faithful will come to appreciate the great graces that they receive at each Liturgy and how our Tradition has clear, tangible links to Our Lord, God, and Savior Jesus Christ and the apostles transmitted through the centuries through the Divine Services of the Orthodox Church. 

-The Staff at the Divine Liturgy Project