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ST. MARY OF ZION

ETHIOPIAN ORTHODOX TEWAHEDO CHURCH - LONDON

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'Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit'

St Matthew 28: 19

Charity No. 282910

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Ecclesiastical Objects

The ecclesiastical objects are those with which the priests administer the sacraments of the Church.  There are different objects used for administering these sacraments.  These are:

 

a. The Paten (Tsahil) - on which the Holy Body of Christ is sacrificed.

b. The Chalice (Tsiwa) - in which the precious blood of Christ is poured.

c. The Cross-Spoon (Erfe Meskel) – by which the Holy Body of Christ is given.

d. The Corporals (the coverings) (Mahfed) – the cloth with which the Holy Communion is covered symbolizing the shroud over Christ’s body.

e. The Golden Mesob (Mesobe Werq) – in which the Holy Communion is carried into the church.

f. Censer (Tsina) - used for burning incense.

g. The Bell (Kachil) - the bell is rung at the beginning of the Liturgy, when the deacon says, "Go forth, ye catechumen"; when the clergy come out from the Holy of Holies to offer the Body and Blood of Christ and they and the people say, " Lord have mercy upon us"; and on other occasions of solemn prayers and service.

 

All these ecclesiastical objects are used for the above mentioned services after they are consecrated with prayer, holy oil and blessings.

 

The order of prayers and the anointing of the holy oil for blessing the ecclesiastical objects is found at the beginning of the Liturgy Book.

 

The Vestments (Libse Tekihino) :

 

Vestments which the clergy wear to administer the sacraments of the Church are clothing blessed with prayer, specially woven, and are kept in a particular place befitting the spiritual services:

 

a. Liturgical Vestments should be kept in vestry of the Church in a clean condition.  It is forbidden to wear them in other places for other purposes and by other persons.  (Ezk. 44:17-19; Fetha Negest Article 12).

 

b. It is commanded that the chasuble which the clergy put on their robes should have five hunging strips.

 

c. The vestment worn for Mass by priest must extend upto their ankles (Fetha Negest, Article 12), basic).

 

d. The priest must choose the vestment that fits him before he puts it on.  He should not take the vestment off once he puts it on.  If it is long he should use a girdle (Ex. 28: 2-43; Fetha Negest, Article 12, Basil).  

 

e. Before the priest puts on the vestment it must be blessed by a bishop if there is one.  If there is no bishop the priest himself shall bless and put it on.  Also the deacons’ vestments must be blessed . After all the ecclesiastical objects and vestments are dedicated to a church and consecrated, they should neither be taken out of the Church nor used for other purposes.  (Ez.44:14-19; Fetha Negest, Article 12).

 

If anyone takes these objects and vestments out of the church and uses them for non-spritual purposes, he will bring wrath and chastisement upon himself like Uzziah and Bleshazzar (2Chron. 26:18-20, Dan. 5:1-31).

Copyright © 2010 tserhasion. All Rights Reserved I pc@tserhasion.org.uk I St James Church, Clapton Pond, Hackney, London, United Kingdom, E5 0PD I  phone: 0208 807 5885

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Archbishop Yesehaq. (1997). The Ethiopian Tewahedo Church. Winston-Derek Pub