Sunday, December 11, 2005

Taking Shortcuts (or how to inadvertently introduce liturgical innovation)

Tonight we had Great Vespers for St. Spyridon and I was in charge of the right chant stand. I went a couple of minutes early, started getting ready for the service, and then we had to decide what we were going to do about the readings (we usually do one of the three readings in Greek). As we were deciding, a good friend of mine and overall wonderful person was on the other side setting up the English, even though the left chant stand was chanting in Greek this week. We finally decided that we would have the first reading on the left, in Greek, and the last two on the right, in English.

At this point, I decided to be lazy and not search for a Bible on the right side of the chapel. Instead, I went and asked if the readings were set on the left side. When I was told they were, I asked if I could take the Bible over to the right. I was told that I could and this is where I made my second short-cut: I did not check the readings. I took the Bible, asked a couple of the other students who were at the chant stand to read the second and the third readings and left it at that. Imagine the surprise (both on my part and that of the reader) when he opened the Bible to the third reading and out of his mouth came the words "The reading is from the Song of Solomon." Thank God the equivalent verses to the corresponding Wisdom of Solomon passage that should have been read were relatively tame. It would also help if it were called the Song of Songs, as other languages (e.g., Romanian) do.

I wonder what the odds are that a Song of Songs passage has been read liturgically previously in the US...


Anonymous Jim N. said...


"Is OUTRAGE!" says Fr. Vasely (of Oniondome fame) :)

10:55 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home