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The Liturgy of St. James

DennyB

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I have been studying liturgy,and how it has developed over the centuries,and I saw a mention of the Liturgy of St. James on another borad and I was wanting to know if someone here could tell me more in terms of how old it is,and which churches still use it.
 

ozgeorge

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The Liturgy of St. James is believed to be the original Liturgy of the Patriarchate of Jerusalem. The Greek Orthodox Church still uses the Liturgy of St. James. It has been used in unbroken tradition on the Island of Zakynthos on the feast of St. James and in the Patriarchate of Jerusalem on the Sunday after Christmas. This latter use of the Liturgy (Sunday after Christmas) has seen an increase in popularity in Greece in recent years.
 

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Cool thread. I was going to ask about this. I would say that this was a coincidence if I believed in them.

Does it predate the First Council?
 

alexp4uni

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Patron Saints Day for St. James in the EO calender is celebrated on October 23. The main liturgy is Saint John Chrysostom liturgy based on the so-called "shortened" 4-hour Saint Basil's Liturgy. Saint Basil had re-edited the Church of Antioch's version of Saint James Liturgy.

-Greek monastery in Harvard, ILL of the US frequently supplies it with Apostikarions, Horologion and Euchologion prior to the Liturgy which is an addition to the liturgy. 

-Russian monastery of Optina uses it. 

-Greek Orthodox of Jerusalem uses the Byzantine rite

-the Coptic Mission Churches in U.K. uses this liturgy because this was one of the very few liturgies practiced in the early church prior in England. Howver the mass was cut by 3/4ths of the worship including all of the anaphora's which has remnant's of it in the Anglican Hymnal.

Legitimately the Syriac Church of Antioch which is the Oriental Orthodox not in communion with EO have as its main liturgy. This is the only church that has an original text prior the Byzantinization. They have a Syriac influenced 61 anaphora addition. This is literally every saint that has participated in the liturgy including St. John Chrysostom, Saint Basil, St Gregory a few apostles including James himself and continues with modern (prior to 8th century including St. Severus of Antioch) Saints.
 

Aristibule

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The Coptic British Orthodox Church does use an adaptation of the Greek St. James (which differs from Syriac St. James), but it should be noted that the theory of its use early on in Britain is nothing more than speculation on their part. There is no evidence nor early tradition for the use of St. James in Britain or the West early on. Rather, the tradition refers to three other liturgical streams: that of St. Mark through Alexandria into Milan, that of St. Peter into Carthage and Rome, and that of St. John from Ephesus into Gaul, Britain and Spain.

The B.O.C. St. James is interesting as it is the Greek St. James (again, different than the Syriac St. James) but with Coptic hours of prayer, vestments, and calendar, but with feasts of Western saints added along with some Western hymns.

The St. James is also blessed for use by ROCOR parishes. There is also another translation of the St. James done at New Skete monastery (OCA).

It is a long liturgy, and communion is given after the canons for this liturgy - the Body is received in the hands, which are made into a throne.
 
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Thomas

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Just an FYI---In Reviewing the ROCOR website today, I noted that the Synod of Bishops just approved a translation of both the Liturgy of St James and St Mark in English.

Thomas
 

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FrChris said:
Is there a link to an approved translation?
Is this a good one?

http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf07.xii.ii.html
 

Aristibule

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The approved translation is to be published (at least, the Divine Liturgy of St. Mark) in the near future, with Fr. John R. Shaw as editor. Not sure about the St. James, for some reason I had thought it was already approved years ago - and a translation published. However, I'm not sure - I'm not an expert on the Byzantine rite by far.
 

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The Indian Orthodox Church uses the liturgy of St. James.

See: http://www.icon.org.in/church_liturgy.icon

Here's a paragraph from the site:

The liturgy we use is the Syriac version of the St James Liturgy, this liturgy Holy Tradition tells us, was first chanted by St James, Bishop of Jerusalem, on the Wednesday after Pentecost Sunday. St James said that the words of the Liturgy were recited to him by the risen Christ himself saying, "God lives I have not added anything to or omitted anything from what I have heard from the Lord"
 

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The Liturgy of St. James has also been occasionally served in OCA churches, like on the Feast of St.James, but  seemed to be more of a variation of the regular Divine Liturgy to the people.  Once while working in a prison I was surprised to walk in on the "Catholic" service and find a priest wearing Byzantine vestments serving the Liturgy of St.James to the convicts.  I got to know the chaplain and found out that he was a contract priest for the Catholics but claimed to be EO.  I later heard that he tried to join up with the local OCA parish but was rebuffed.  I did have a problem seeing this "priest" offering the Eucharist to any convict who approached knowing that they were not even Catholics.
 

Fr. George

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We did the Liturgy of St James every year on his feastday at Seminary, and there are a number of parishes that do it annually as well.  Holy Cross press had done a text for it, but it is sadly out of print at the moment.
 

Aristocles

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Perhaps this might help:

http://web.ukonline.co.uk/ephrem/lit-james.htm

Note: Page is dated and one must use "Up" link instead of 'Home' if needed.
 
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alexp4uni said:
Patron Saints Day for St. James in the EO calender is celebrated on October 23. The main liturgy is Saint John Chrysostom liturgy based on the so-called "shortened" 4-hour Saint Basil's Liturgy. Saint Basil had re-edited the Church of Antioch's version of Saint James Liturgy.

-Greek monastery in Harvard, ILL of the US frequently supplies it with Apostikarions, Horologion and Euchologion prior to the Liturgy which is an addition to the liturgy. 

-Russian monastery of Optina uses it. 

-Greek Orthodox of Jerusalem uses the Byzantine rite

-the Coptic Mission Churches in U.K. uses this liturgy because this was one of the very few liturgies practiced in the early church prior in England. Howver the mass was cut by 3/4ths of the worship including all of the anaphora's which has remnant's of it in the Anglican Hymnal.

Legitimately the Syriac Church of Antioch which is the Oriental Orthodox not in communion with EO have as its main liturgy. This is the only church that has an original text prior the Byzantinization. They have a Syriac influenced 61 anaphora addition. This is literally every saint that has participated in the liturgy including St. John Chrysostom, Saint Basil, St Gregory a few apostles including James himself and continues with modern (prior to 8th century including St. Severus of Antioch) Saints.
What do you mean by Byzantinization? I know in the 6th century Justinian added the Cherubic hymn to many of the liturgies. Later on their were minor modifications like adding the trinity at the end of the Lord's Prayer, but what were the major changes?
 

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Rowan said:
Cool thread. I was going to ask about this. I would say that this was a coincidence if I believed in them.

Does it predate the First Council?
Historically as a whole it does not, although certain prayers within the text do. If the Liturgy of St. James preceded the council of Nicea there probably would of never been an Arian controversy to begin with, since the Nicene/Constantinopolitan understading of the Trinity is already spelled out in the Liturgy of St James. On the other hand it does precede Chalcedon and Ephesus, of course after these councils the liturgy evolved and certain teachings dogmatized in those councils were inserted into the appropriate parts of the text.
 

DanM

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buzuxi said:
Historically as a whole it does not, although certain prayers within the text do [predate the First Council].
I am particularly fond of this liturgy because of its reference to "those who pass their lives . . . in holy wedlock."
A pity a line like this cannot appear in the usual liturgies.
DanM
 

mike

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Pictures from this year:
http://www.cerkiew.pl/index.php?id=33&tx_ttnews[tt_news]=19943&tx_ttnews[backPid]=1&tx_ttnews[nphoto]=1&cHash=f42756a2e19d46983db8e2132316fd41

http://orthodox.bialystok.pl/pl/cms/album/index/id/3184

edit:

and a video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7A-Pa2Rcvho
 

Dominika

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Michał Kalina said:
Pictures from this year:
http://www.cerkiew.pl/index.php?id=33&tx_ttnews[tt_news]=19943&tx_ttnews[backPid]=1&tx_ttnews[nphoto]=1&cHash=f42756a2e19d46983db8e2132316fd41
I was there but I managed to hide myself ;)

I'm so glad that this year I was able to attend this Liturgy - although I'm so interested in such liturgics and I consider myself as a traditionalist (at least in regard to Liturgy and chanting), I've been just the 2nd time on the Liturgy of st. James. It's a deep spiritual experience, that enable us to discover the Holy Eucharist, the use of scriptures and some liturgical phrases in a new way...
 

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antiderivative said:
alexp4uni said:
Patron Saints Day for St. James in the EO calender is celebrated on October 23. The main liturgy is Saint John Chrysostom liturgy based on the so-called "shortened" 4-hour Saint Basil's Liturgy. Saint Basil had re-edited the Church of Antioch's version of Saint James Liturgy.

-Greek monastery in Harvard, ILL of the US frequently supplies it with Apostikarions, Horologion and Euchologion prior to the Liturgy which is an addition to the liturgy. 

-Russian monastery of Optina uses it. 

-Greek Orthodox of Jerusalem uses the Byzantine rite

-the Coptic Mission Churches in U.K. uses this liturgy because this was one of the very few liturgies practiced in the early church prior in England. Howver the mass was cut by 3/4ths of the worship including all of the anaphora's which has remnant's of it in the Anglican Hymnal.

Legitimately the Syriac Church of Antioch which is the Oriental Orthodox not in communion with EO have as its main liturgy. This is the only church that has an original text prior the Byzantinization. They have a Syriac influenced 61 anaphora addition. This is literally every saint that has participated in the liturgy including St. John Chrysostom, Saint Basil, St Gregory a few apostles including James himself and continues with modern (prior to 8th century including St. Severus of Antioch) Saints.
What do you mean by Byzantinization? I know in the 6th century Justinian added the Cherubic hymn to many of the liturgies. Later on their were minor modifications like adding the trinity at the end of the Lord's Prayer, but what were the major changes?
The Cherubic Hymn from the Liturgy of St. James is used in the Byzantine Rite in place of the regular Cherubic Hymn during the Divine Liturgy on Holy Saturday morning. "Let all mortal flesh keep silence..."

Fr. John W. Morris
 

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Sorry for reviving an old thread, but does anyone know where I can listen to the Liturgy of St James online, in full? Preferably in English but it's not necessary.
 

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http://youtu.be/UdI58Sv4fGY
http://youtu.be/HUKXUtA5_rk
http://youtu.be/ZOBzve9XHas

A few results from Youtube.
 

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hecma925 said:
http://youtu.be/UdI58Sv4fGY
http://youtu.be/HUKXUtA5_rk
http://youtu.be/ZOBzve9XHas

A few results from Youtube.
Cheers, for some reason my searches only churned out 5 minute snippets. But I guess as I was searching in English I wouldn't have known what these were. Thanks again!
 

hecma925

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You're welcome. :)

I'm sure there are even more results from the Syriac Orthodox Church, since they use it far more frequently than EO churches do.
 

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hecma925 said:
You're welcome. :)

I'm sure there are even more results from the Syriac Orthodox Church, since they use it far more frequently than EO churches do.
Due to missionary efforts from churches within the Alexandrian patriarchy, I may be using the Liturgy of St James upon conversion to Orthodoxy. :)
 

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bergschlawiner said:
The Liturgy of St. James has also been occasionally served in OCA churches, like on the Feast of St.James, but  seemed to be more of a variation of the regular Divine Liturgy to the people.  Once while working in a prison I was surprised to walk in on the "Catholic" service and find a priest wearing Byzantine vestments serving the Liturgy of St.James to the convicts.  I got to know the chaplain and found out that he was a contract priest for the Catholics but claimed to be EO.  I later heard that he tried to join up with the local OCA parish but was rebuffed.  I did have a problem seeing this "priest" offering the Eucharist to any convict who approached knowing that they were not even Catholics.
When I did prison ministry at a federal prison, I was told that if I served a Divine Liturgy, I had to give Communion to anyone who approach the Chalice and could not refuse anyone. I decided it was best not to try to serve a Divine Liturgy. However, the prison chaplain was forced to back down because of help from the local Catholic Bishop and the Orthodox Prison Ministries. However, since none of the men wanted to go to Confession, I did not serve a Liturgy there. Instead, I did Vespers. Fr. Benedict Crawford, an OCA Priest chanted. After a riot, the prison was shut down and we could not do anything there. When it was time to begin again, I could not because I had knee surgery. We then found a ROCOR Priest with prison experience who was closer and he took over the Orthodox ministry at the prison. Thus, we had pan-Orthodox cooperation there.

Fr. John W. Morris.
 

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Fr. George said:
We did the Liturgy of St James every year on his feastday at Seminary, and there are a number of parishes that do it annually as well.  Holy Cross press had done a text for it, but it is sadly out of print at the moment.
In theory the Liturgy of St. James can be offered in any Eastern Orthodox Church on the Feast of St. James, and the Sunday After Christmas. I have never tried it because it would be to confusing for the people of my parish.

Fr. John W. Morris.

 

ialmisry

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Btw, for the Greek text of the CoG
http://glt.xyz/texts/Oro/StJames.htm
 

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I've seen this liturgy done two ways, not counting the Syriac Orthodox version: I've seen primarily Greek bishops flanked by twelve priests serve it at a temporary altar in front of the iconostasis, versus populjm, and I've seen Russian priests serve it behind the iconostasis, ad orientem.

I am in favour of the latter option.  I've read compelling arguments to the extent the former is a reconstruction of what ancient liturgies are like; I do know this liturgy never fell out of use, so I can't say whether or not it is an organic tradition.

My thought is that for ordinary parish use, what would work best would be to take the anaphora of this liturgy and serve it with the standard liturgy of the catechumens, ad orientem, with the usual antiphons, vestments and so on, so the experience of attending it would be essentially the same as attending the Holy Saturday liturgy with Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silent instead of the usual cherubic hymn.  In that manner, the rite is preserved, without the risks of confusion that would accomoany serving it otherwise.

I think, by the way, this is what the Russians normally do.
 

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wgw said:
My thought is that for ordinary parish use, what would work best would be to take the anaphora of this liturgy and serve it with the standard liturgy of the catechumens, ad orientem, with the usual antiphons, vestments and so on, so the experience of attending it would be essentially the same as attending the Holy Saturday liturgy with Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silent instead of the usual cherubic hymn.  In that manner, the rite is preserved, without the risks of confusion that would accomoany serving it otherwise.
I's not preserving.

I think, by the way, this is what the Russians normally do.
No.
 

Alpo

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(unfortunately with a guitar band during the Communion)
So much for the U-people being Orthodox in communion with Rome.
 

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Falls on a Sunday this year, we'll be serving it.
 

xOrthodox4Christx

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Has anyone elaborated on the differences between the Byzantine and Syriac versions?
 

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Dominika said:
(unfortunately with a guitar band during the Communion)
Unsurprisingly I'm with you on that. UGH! This goes against our policy, which is against changing the Eastern rites.
 

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xOrthodox4Christx said:
Has anyone elaborated on the differences between the Byzantine and Syriac versions?
Yes.  John D. Witvliet, "The Anaphora of St. James," which is one of the essays contained in Essays on Early Eastern Eucharistic Prayers, edited by Paul F. Bradshaw, which I highly reccommend.  The essays contained therein are much more analytical and informative than the more general, and somewhat Liturgical Movement-biased commentary in The Eucharistic Liturgies, by the same editor and Maxwell Johnson, although that work also discusses the variation, although I could not say it "elaborates" on it.

It does however point out the interesting fact that the current Armenian Orthodox liturgy has an anaphora, named for St. Athanasius, that is a condensed version of the St. James liturgy with some elements of St. Basil, attached of course to a near-Byzantine Liturgy of the Catechumens and closing with the Last Gospel, John 1:1-14, as a result of the influence of the Eastern Orthodox and Roman Catholic churches on the Armenian.

If, however,  want a point by point comparison of the textual variants, Witvliet's essay is what you want, in addition to also reading copies of the text itself. 

Also, Essays on Early Eastern Eucharistic Prayers has similiar chapters on the other ancient Divine Liturgies of Eastern provenance, including St. Basil (there was or is a Syriac Orthodox St. Basil anaphora, although I've never seen a text for it, as well as an Armenian), St. Mark/St. Cyril (the Greek and Coptic variants), and St. John Chrysostom, as well as its Antiochene predecessor the Anaphora of the Twelve Apostles, and the Anaphora of Hippolytus.

These essays only go into detail on the Anaphorae, and not the Prothesis or Liturgy of the Catechumens, so if you are looking for information on that, you will want either the aforementioned Eucharistic Liturgies, which compares the whole rite, and as an added plus also covers the Western liturgical tradition (the Roman Canon, the Mozarabic Rite, et cetera), or alternately, the Oxford Handbook of Christian Worship, which is itself a collection of essays on the worship practices of all branches of Christendom.  All three books I highly reccommend. 

Also, there is a book entitled The Eucharistic Epiclesis, which I love, because it focuses on that part of the Anaphora that I think is the Holiest and also the most interesting to compare; this is by John H. McKenna, CM.  This naturally features a detailed analysis of the Epiclesis from the St. James liturgy, although not so much of a comparison between the Syriac and Byzantine recensions.  That work gets a bit more interesting when it comes to the complex dual-epiclesis structure of the Alexandrian liturgies (St. Mark, St. Cyril, and the Euchologion of St. Serapion of Thmuis, which His Eminence Metropolitan Seraphim of Piraeus recently celebrated), and also in its analysis of what we might call the distributed Epiclesis of the Roman Canon, and the controversy over when the Real Change happens, but is at its absolute most interesting when it provides us with a parallel comparison of the Epiclesis from the three Anaphorae of the East Syriac Rite (attributed to Sts. Addai and Mari, Theodore of Mopsuestia, and the unpleasant figure of Nestorius, although the liturgy attributed to him looks to me and to many scholars like an importation of St. Basil, a sort of generic Constantinopolitan liturgy renamed for the Assyrians' favorite Constantinopolitan bishop).

All of the above are available as e-books from iBooks and Amazon.com.

In the Syriac Orthodox Church, that portion of the liturgy is more or less standardized (we begin with Ho Monoges, and then there are the Scripture Lessons, the Qawmo, a series of linked bidding prayers or collects, and the Trisagion and Gospel, and of course the Creed, not in that precise order, but more or less; also I believe you can hear the clergy chanting the Prothesis behind the curtain immediately before the liturgy, at least I think this is what they are chanting, immediately following what I think is our Mattins; the schedule for St. Ephrems Cathedral in Burbank calls this period "Morning Prayer" and I like to arrive in time for it, but unlike with the liturgy, a translation is not put up on the monitor, and we use a lot of liturgical shortcuts, for example, in our Archdiocese we only use the Anaphora of St. Dionysius Bar Salibi, because it is the shortest, but to comply with the Rubric requiring the Anaphora of St. James to be used on certain occasions, the Institution Narrative and Epiklesis are from the latter liturgy).
 
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