October 29, 2014

The Liturgy of Saint James: the Trojan Horse of "Liturgical Renewal" (6 of 7)


In the following pages we will practically support all that has been written in this text regarding the so-called Divine Liturgy of James. We will demonstrate in the most incontrovertible way the facts, that the restoration of this Liturgy has no other purpose than to bring a forced liturgical renewal into the life of our Church, a renewal that in turn is solely intended to remove liturgical differences with Catholics in order to bring about faster and with the least possible resistance from the faithful the union of "churches". But the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church is not an organization, a company or a religion that requires the discussion of union for it is the very Body of Christ, Truth itself. The liturgical life as it developed in our Church is so perfect that it does not require the slightest change, rather, it is only required to live it and leave it be so we can understand how easily it brings us into communion with God.

What, then, is needed, if we do not experience the perfection of our worship how it is, then we must change ourselves and not our worship. So many of our saints have become links in the tradition of this worship and testified to its perfection. So many people have experienced this perfection and gained immortality, and through this way of worship have become gods by grace. Not one saint ever dared to touch it or complain about our worship given to us by our God-bearing Holy Fathers. Those, therefore, who want changes, it would be good for them to reach the measure of a saint in order to change it for the purpose of our greater sanctification, although it is improbable that this will happen, as I do not consider those who want changes to have reached those measures.

To begin with, let us see some announcements from various churches connected with the so-called Liturgy of James. In all of the texts below, which can all be found on the internet, the emphasis is ours to emphasize what is wrong.

A) Press Release of the Sacred Church of Saint Marina in Ilioupolis

"Moreover we want to announce the following worship services and events:

The Liturgy of Saint James. The archaic Divine Liturgy of Saint James the Brother of God, will be performed on Monday the 22nd of October in commemoration of the Saint, at 6:00pm in the Church of Saint Marina."

First, this announcement shows what we mentioned in the beginning of our text, emphasizing that this Liturgy is archaic in order to convince the faithful that this is the traditional way how the Divine Liturgy was performed, allowing the faithful to seek a similar way of worship in the other Liturgies.

Second, note the time for the performance of this Liturgy. If this is not a typo, then what is it? This shows how one error leads to another. It also shows that they are doing it in order for it to be a spectacle, by changing the time of the Liturgy to make it more convenient for the people. Are we allowed to perform the Liturgy at whatever time we want? How can we commune believers after they have eaten lunch? Certainly someone will bring up the Presanctified Liturgy which takes place in the evenings, but even for these we should neither eat nor drink water until after the ceremony, because Wednesdays and Fridays in Great Lent are complete fast days where no food is eaten until a meager dinner after the ninth hour (3:00pm), also known as xerophagy.

B) Press Release of the Sacred Church of the Holy Apostles in Psalidi

"On Sunday 23 October 2005 there will be performed in the Sacred Church of the Holy Apostles in Psalidi Marousi the Archaic Divine Liturgy of Saint James the Brother of God. During this the faithful will receive the Blood and Body of the Lord separately, that is, they will commune directly from the Holy Chalice. For this reason the appropriate preparation is required."

Another advertisement of this Liturgy with the characteristic word "archaic". But this ad does not omit to advertize the way communion will be received in order to attract every lover of curiosity to the church to witness the spectacle. It even emphasizes that the faithful will commune from the Holy Chalice. This act, besides being arbitrary and uncanonical, since it abolishes the holy tong that the Church established for no good reason, it is also extremely dangerous since the faithful are not accustomed to this way of reception. 

It is worth noting that as many Liturgies of Saint James take place, so also are there different methods for receiving communion. The same could be said for the entire ceremony, as each priest performs it as they wish, as it suits them, and as they like, which proves the fraudulence of the claims surrounding this Liturgy. Some priests will give the Body into the hands of the faithful, and then it can be observed that the faithful begin to wipe off the crumbs from their hands, since they are ignorant of the fact that each crumb contains the entire Body of Christ. Others give the Body with a literal tong, and in this way they invent new liturgical vessels. Some place the Body only on the fingers. The same takes place with the Blood: some give it directly from the Holy Chalice and some from the holy tong without the Body. There are even differences in the order: one priest will first give the Body then the Blood, another will give the Blood then the Body, elsewhere the priest will baptize the Body in the Blood and either place it directly in the mouth of the faithful or give it on their fingers. Some even first give the Body, then a new line is formed for the reception of the Blood. Then after the adults receive this way, the children receive them combined.

If the experimentation described above is not acceptable or disrespectful, then what can we call it?

C) Press Release of the Sacred Metropolis of Larisa

"His Eminence Metropolitan Ignatios of Larisa and Tyrnavou yesterday performed in the Metropolis Cathedral of Saint Achilleus the archaic, early Christian Divine Liturgy of Saint James the Brother of God, in commemoration of Saint James the first Bishop of the Church of Jerusalem, amidst many of the faithful. The Divine Liturgy of Saint James is performed once a year and is the prototype for the Divine Liturgy of Saint John Chrysostom that the Church has established to be performed daily. So the opportunity was given to the faithful to taste the early Christian way the Divine Liturgy was performed."

We think the word "archaic" is part of every announcement together with the fact that the faithful will be able to taste how the early Christians celebrated the Liturgy. Do we consider the Church to be a museum? Do we consider the Divine Liturgy to be a representation of historical events? During the Divine Liturgy the faithful have the opportunity to participate in the Miracle of miracles, and to repeatedly partake of the Kingdom of Heaven, and this is why we call it the Divine Liturgy and it would benefit us to teach them this and not urge them to seek original spectacles. The only novelty needed is to experience the Divine Liturgy as it should be experienced and to participate in it as if it were the first time, not as if it is routine, since familiarity is dangerous and it makes it a part of normality and something simple. Unfortunately, the so-called Liturgy of James does not prove that we view the Liturgy as it should be viewed.

Translated by John Sanidopoulos.