Divine Liturgy with a Non-Celebrating Hierarch


Divine Liturgy with a Non-Celebrating Hierarch

NOTE: In most cases only things that are done differently when the Bishop is present are noted here. If a particular item is not mentioned then that means to do it the same as in a regular Liturgy.

If Orthros will not be served, the Bishop is received in the back of the Church in the usual manner. After the Bishop ascends the Episcopal Throne, the Clergy approach the Bishop and the Deacon exchanges the “Opening Dialogue” with the Bishop. When the Bishop says, “Thy Priesthood and thy Diaconate, the Lord God remember…” the Priest makes one metania, asks the Bishop’s blessing and kisses his right hand, followed by the Deacon who does the same. The Priest proceeds through the south door and the Deacon takes his place on the center of the solea.

If Orthros is served, the clergy, at the end of the Great Doxology, exit through the Royal Doors to the Episcopal Throne. Once the Troparion has begun, the Deacon exchanges the “Opening Dialogue” with the Bishop. When the Bishop says, “Thy Priesthood and thy Diaconate, the Lord God remember…” the Priest makes one metania, asks the Bishop’s blessing and kisses his right hand, followed by the Deacon who does the same. The Priest proceeds through the Royal Doors and the Deacon takes his place on the center of the solea.

After making three metanias in their respective places, the Priest and the Deacon bow together to the Bishop and then the Deacon says in a loud voice, “Bless, Master!” After the Priest completes, “Blessed is the Kingdom…” the Deacon and the Priest turn and bow together to the Bishop. The bow to the Bishop is repeated after every exclamation by the Priest throughout the entire service. The Priest takes his place on the south side of the Holy Table facing north. (NOTE: The Priest stands to side and leaves the center of the Altar open at all times except when he is reciting lines that are for Priests; those are said from the center of the Altar.) The Deacon intones the Great Ektenia. At the commemoration of the Hierarchs, the Deacon turns, points his orarion and bows to the Bishop as he says, “For our father and Metropolitan PHILIP and for our Bishop MARK…” while the Priest bows from the Royal Doors. At the conclusion of the Ektenia, the Deacon moves to stand before the icon of Christ and the Priest moves in front of the Holy Table to intone the exclamation. This process is repeated after each Ektenia. Prior to intoning each of the Little Ekentias, the Deacon turns and bows to the Bishop. After the Priest intones the last exclamation, the Priest and Deacon bow together to the Bishop and the Deacon enter the Altar through the south door and takes his place at the southwest corner of the Holy Table.

The Little Entrance is made in usual manner except that the Deacon, after exiting from the north door, proceeds directly to the Episcopal Throne. The Priest remains in his normal place in the center of the solea. The Deacon takes his orarion off of the Gospel, places the Gospel over his left shoulder, points his orarion at the Royal Doors and says to the Bishop, “Bless, Master, the holy Entrance.” The Deacon replaces the orarion over the Gospel while the Bishop blesses the Entrance. The Deacon offers the Gospel Book for veneration by the Bishop, himself kissing the Bishop’s right hand. The Deacon then proceeds to the normal place on the solea and the Little Entrance is completed in the usual manner.

Following the Kontakion, the Deacon, from the Royal Doors, bows to the Bishop and then faces the people and intones, “Let us pray to the Lord.” During the Thrice-Holy Hymn and after the Priest proceeds to the High Place, the Deacon takes the censor, and, from the Royal Doors, asks the Bishop’s Blessing on the incense. The censing is completed in the usual manner. During the Epistle reading, the Priest takes the Gospel book and hands it to the Deacon who proceeds out the Royal Doors to the Episcopal Throne. There, he says to the Bishop, “Bless, Master, he who proclaims …” After receiving the blessing, the Deacon offers the Book to the Bishop for veneration, himself kissing the Bishop’s right hand. He then proceeds to the place where he will read the Gospel. The Bishop gives the Peace at the end of the Epistle and before the Gospel. Following the Gospel reading, the Deacon proceeds to the Episcopal Throne and offers the Book to the Bishop for veneration, himself kissing the Bishop’s right hand. The Bishop blesses the people and gives the Book back to the Deacon who takes it through the Royal Doors and gives it to the Priest to place on the Holy Table. (Note: The Priest does not bless the people here since it was done by the Bishop.)

During the Cherubic Hymn, the Priest takes the censor (without blessing it) and does the Great censing. After censing the Altar, the Prothesis, and the High Place, he exits the Altar through the Royal Doors and goes all the way down onto the Solea (to the lowest possible position). He asks the Bishop’s Blessing on the incense and censes him three times. After censing the icons and the West of the Church, he censes the Bishop nine times (three sets of three), the people, and the Bishop nine times, again. He completes the censing in the usual manner, entering through the Royal Doors.

The Great Entrance will need to be made at a faster pace than usual. The Deacon intones, “All of you, the Lord God …” followed by the Priest who intones, “All of you, and all Orthodox Christians, the Lord God …” These are the only two petitions said prior to reaching the solea. When the Deacon reaches the solea, he turns toward the Bishop and intones “Thine Episcopacy, the Lord God remember …” Then the Priest turns toward the Bishop and does the same. The Priest then finishes the remaining petitions of the Great Entrance (Commemoration of the Metropolitan, Prayers for the President, Living and Departed).

The Bishop gives the Peace after the Ektenia of Fervent Supplication. At the Kiss of Peace, the Priest exits the Altar through the Royal Doors and followed by the Deacon, exchanges the Kiss of Peace with the Bishop at the Episcopal Throne. When the Creed begins, the Priest, standing on the south side, waves the Aer over the empty center part of the Altar. If there is only one Priest, the Deacon may enter the Altar and assist the Priest with the Aer. In any case, the center of the Altar must be open. The Priest says, “The Grace of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, and the love of God the Father…” turns and without Blessing the people, bows to the Bishop. At this point, the Priest may remain in the center of the Altar until after the gifts are consecrated.

At “Among the first…” the Clergy, Subdeacons, and Servers commemorate the Metropolitan first, followed by the Bishop, “Among the first, be mindful, O Lord, of our father and Metropolitan PHILIP and our Bishop MARK…” The Priest says, “And the mercies of our Great God…” turns and without Blessing the people, bows to the Bishop.

If the Bishop will Commune from the Altar he will descend the Throne, don the epitrachelion and omophorion and Commune first. If he will Commune from the Solea, he shall be the first one to Commune from the first Chalice. After all have Communed, the Bishop Blesses the people saying, “O God, save thy people …”

The Bishop gives the Blessing, “The Blessing of our Lord and His Mercies…” and says the Dismissal. After the commemoration of the Saints of the Day, the people chant, “Preserve, O Lord, our Master and Chief Priest…” The Bishop intones, “Through the prayers of our Holy Fathers…” and the Priest intones, “Through the prayers of our Holy Master…”