Thursday, June 13, 2024

Pictures of a Byzantine Priestly Ordination and First Divine Liturgy

We are very pleased to share these pictures of the priestly ordination and first Divine Liturgy of Fr Philip Gilbert of the Ukrainian Greco-Catholic Church; we have previously published a number of articles about the Byzantine Liturgy by him, as well as photographs of his subdiaconal ordination in 2018. The ordination was done by His Grace Benedict (Aleksiychuk), bishop of the Ukrainian Catholic Eparchy of Chicago; both ceremonies took place at the Holy Transfiguration Monastery in Redwood Valley, California. Our congratulation to Fr Philip, and to all his family and friends; thanks and kudos also to the photographer, Mr James King. 

Fr Philip (in white) and another deacon incense the bishop as he enters the church. The ordination was celebrated on Saturday, May 25th, the Leave-taking of Pentecost, which is celebrated in green in the Slavic tradition.

The bishop is solemnly vested in the nave of the church before the Liturgy begins.
At the Little Entrance
The church is customarily decorated on Pentecost with greenery, to represent the renewal brought by the coming of the Holy Spirit.
The soon-to-be ordained deacon sings the Epistle (the Gospel is read by the first deacon, “the deacon of the Mass” we would say in the West.)
In the Byzantine ordination rituals, the ordinand is led around the altar three times before the imposition of hands.

The bishop imposes his hands and reads the ordination prayer.
The newly ordained priest distributes Holy Communion...
and reads the final prayer of the liturgy, which is normally assigned to a concelebrating priest at a hierarchical Divine Liturgy.
Congratulations also to the new presvitera!
First Divine Liturgy
At the Little Entrance: the Sunday after Pentecost is the feast of All Saints in the Byzantine Rite, which is celebrated in bright vestments, typically white.
The reading of the Apostle...
and of the Gospel.
The end of the Litanies after the Gospel.
The prayer at the Cherubic hymn.
The Great Entrance
During the Creed, the celebrant waves the veil over the elements.
The blessing after the Consecration.
The final blessing.

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