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New Service Books in Zulu and English

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At a gathering of the clergy of the Archdiocese of Johannesburg and Pretoria we presented Archbishop Damaskinos with a copy of a new service book in English and Zulu, and copies were offered to all the clergy present.

The book has the Third and the Sixth Hours and the Reader’s Service, based on the Typika used in monasteries on days when the Divine Liturgy is not celebrated. In its present form it is designed for use in mission congregations for Sunday services when there is no priest, and it may be led by a deacon or reader. Some parishes use it if, for any reason, there is no priest available.

The Readers Service (ObednitsaTypika) consists mainly of the parts of the Divine Liturgy that are not reserved to the priest or deacon.

It took rather a long time to get printed in its present form.

In 1997 the African Orthodox Episcopal Church wrote to His Eminence Metropolitan Paul Lyngris, the then Archbishop, asking to be received into the Orthodox Church. The Archbishop asked me to teach them to prepare them for their reception into the Church, and gave his blessing for their clergy to be taught to use the Readers Service, which we then had partly translated into North Sotho. Later His Eminence Metropolitan Seraphim gave his blessing for it to be translated into Zulu, and we printed a few copies for use at courses and conferences, but we did not have money to print a large number.

Three years ago Father Daniel Sysoev, a priest who was doing missionary work among Muslims in Moscow, was shot dead, and a group of Serbian Orthodox Christians, inspired by his example, formed a missionary society in his memory. They wrote to Father Pantelejmon, a Serbian priest in Johannesburg, asking if they could help us to print liturgical books in local languages. Father Pantelejmon asked me if we had anything ready for publication, and I remembered the Zulu translation of the Reader’s Book. With the blessing of His Eminence Metropolitan Damaskinos 500 copies were printed by the missionary society in Belgrade, in memory of Fr Daniel Sysoev.

Source: Khanya

Written by Stephen

January 28, 2013 at 4:38 pm

Prayer Book and Psalter in Thai and Laotian

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Pages from the Russian-Laotian prayer book.

Russian-Laotian Orthodox prayer book published.

A parallel Russian-Laotian Orthodox prayer book has been published. The publication under the Representation of the Russian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchate) in Thailand, is part of the pastoral responsibility to the Lao People’s Democratic Republic. Financial support for the publication was provided by the Foundation of the Orthodox Church in Thailand. The volume was edited by archimandrite Oleg (Cherepanin), Representative of the Russian Orthodox Church in Thailand. Peter (Pone) Somepheth and Anthony (Tongkham) Phiaxayavong, currently seminarians at St. Petersburg Theological Seminary, translated the text from Thai. Dr. Vladimir Buntilov was in charge of formatting and design. Five hundred copies will be sent to the Orthodox believers in Laos, as well as several copies going to religious educational institutions in Russia and missionary organizations.

A published edition of the Psalter for liturgical use in the Thai language.

The Representation of the Russian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchate) in Thailand with the financial support of the Orthodox Church in Thailand published the liturgical Psalter in Thai. The division of the sacred text is according to the Kathismas. This first edition of the Psalter in the Thai language according to the Septuagint version with the appropriate numbering and verses. The publication of the liturgical Psalter in Thai was done in view of the increasing number of Orthodox Thais and the need for their more active involvement in church services. Five hundred copies will be distributed among the Orthodox churches in Thailand. Several copies will be sent to religious educational institutions of Russia and missionary organizations.

Source: Orthodox Christian Church in Thailand (Moscow Patriarchate)

Hat Tip: Byzantine, TX

Written by Stephen

November 13, 2012 at 5:48 pm

New Book on Orthodoxy in China

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A unique book entitled “Orthodoxy in China” has come out. It describes the birth and development of the Orthodox culture in the Celestial Empire. During his official visit to China on 27 September 2010, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev presented the Chairman Hu Jintao with a copy of this book.

The book is an academic edition published in Russian and Chinese with rich illustrations. It was prepared for print and published with the blessing of the DECR chairman, Metropolitan Hilarion of Volokolamsk, and through the efforts of his staff members, as well as the Russian Academy of Science’s Institute of the Far East and the Russian-Chinese Business Council.

“Russia and China are countries with rich spiritual traditions. At present our countries follow with confidence a path of developing strategic partnership. An important support on this path is provided by the knowledge of our common history, including the history of Orthodoxy in China”, Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russian noted in his address to the readers of the book.

The volume is published to coincide with the 325th anniversary of Orthodoxy in China. To mark this anniversary, Orthodox divine services have been resumed in several churches in Beijing, Harbin and Shanghai — a result of long-standing efforts to find new ways in which the Russian Orthodox Church could help normalize the situation of the Chinese Autonomous Orthodox Church and to broaden cooperation with religious, public, academic and governmental bodies in China.

Orthodoxy came to China in 1685 when a Russian priest by name of Maxim Leontyev came to Beijng together with Cassock captives. In 1712, a Russian Orthodox Mission was established in China, which acted for a long time as Russia’s diplomatic representation. The linguistic and cultural studies undertaken by the Mission made a considerable contribution to the development of sinology in Russia and the world.

The Mission’s principal concern however was the preaching of the Gospel. By the 20th century, a numerous Chinese flock had formed in China with their own national clergy and later episcopate. The Chinese Autonomous Orthodox Church was a fruit of spiritual work of Russian missionaries and Russian re-settlers in China, but the development of this young church body was tragically interrupted by the Cultural Revolution.

Nevertheless the Orthodox Church in China has survived to this day. Today there are about 15 thousand Orthodox believers there.

Hat Tip: Orthodoxy in China

Written by Stephen

September 30, 2010 at 11:00 am

Posted in Asia, China, Publications, Russia

New Iconography Book in Chinese

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The Russian parish of Ss Peter and Paul in Hong Kong published an album “An Icon. Its History, Symbolism, and Meaning,” ‘Voskresenie’ Association of Russian Culture reported on 10 February 2010.

The album contains reproductions of icons painted by contemporary Russian icon painters and texts in Chinese and English that introduce the reader to the history of iconography, the iconographic traditions, and the place of icons in the divine services and spiritual life of Orthodox Christians.

The album offers the Chinese readers an opportunity to get acquainted with a broad and versatile world of Orthodox iconography and with the icons by contemporary icon painters who preserve the best traditions of the Russian schools of icon painting.

Source: DECR
Picture source: Fr. Dionesy Pozdnyaev’s blog and the Ss. Peter and Paul Orthodox Parish in Hong Kong website.

Written by Stephen

February 17, 2010 at 2:03 am

Posted in Asia, Publications

New Issue of Indonesian Newsletter

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The Friends of Indonesia website, which supports and promotes the work of the ROCOR portion of the Indonesian Orthodox Church, has recently published the winter edition of their biannual newsletter. The newsletter can be found here, and to read back issues or subscribe, click here.

Written by Stephen

January 26, 2010 at 1:51 pm

Podcasts: Death to the World and Orthodox House

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Last July, Kevin Allen of the Illumined Heart podcast on Ancient Faith Radio interviewed members of the ‘zine Death to the World about their time at Cornerstone 09, one of the largest Christian rock festivals in the world. That podcast can be found here.

More recently, AFR has a special feature on The Orthodox House, which is student housing on the University of Illinois–Urbana-Champaign campus for Orthodox students. That can be heard here.

Lastly, while this isn’t directly linked to contemporary missions, but does include some historical missions and lessons which perhaps could be drawn for today, Matthew Namee has an excellent and fascinating podcast on American Orthodox history. That can be found here. Matthew is also a member of the Society for Orthodox Christian History in the Americas, where he is quite active on their website/blog.

Written by Stephen

December 10, 2009 at 3:05 pm

Mongolian Booklets on Orthodoxy

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T20091027mongoliahe first booklet in Mongolian in the series ‘The Path of Orthodoxy: Everyone Can Become a Saint’ has come out, Rev. Alexiy Trubach, rector of the Parish of the Holy Trinity in Ulan-Bator, has reported to the DECR Communication Service.

This educational series has been written by Yu. Maximov, a well-known researcher of religion and lecturer at the Moscow Theological Academy. He has admitted that this catechesis was written with a missionary purpose to preach the gospel to peoples raised in Buddhist traditions and therefore to the people of Mongolia.

The first booklet is devoted the questions: what brings suffering, who has established physical and spiritual laws and what are the ways of our Creator? In total, it is planned to publish 15 booklets.

Source: Orthodoxy in China

Written by Stephen

November 16, 2009 at 11:25 am

Posted in Mongolia, Publications