Tuesday, 29 December 2020

Eastern Rite - Incense

Today is the Feast of the Holy Innocents, 14,000 in number, in Bethlehem and within the borders of Judea, put to death for Jesus Christ by the order of King Herod.

It is also the Feast of Our venerable father, Marcellus, Hegumen-Abbot of the monastic order of the Acoemetes, so named because they recited their Divine Office day and night without interruption. He died about A.D. 485.
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Incense is a product of aromatic plant matter, often with an oil or resin as a base. In Eastern Christian practice, incense is an important liturgical implement which is often considered distinctive to the Faith as well.

Incense is burned in a gold censer and ignited by burning charcoal. Customarily, the censer is suspended by chains and swung; however, a hand censer can be used when necessary. The censer is employed only by the priest and/or deacon to venerate all four sides of the altar, the Holy Gifts, the clergy, the congregation, icons, and the church structure itself.

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