The acolyte in the Byzantine tradition
The Orthodox Church no longer possesses an exact equivalent for this office. The order of acolyte has fallen into disuse with other minor orders, such as doorkeepers and exorcists. At one time there was a rank of minor clergy called the taper-bearer, responsible for bearing lights during processions and liturgical entrances. However, this rank has long ago been subsumed by that of the reader and the service for the ordination of a reader mentions both functions. The functions of an acolyte or taper-bearer are therefore carried out by readers, subdeacons, or by unordained men or boys. Subdeacons wear their normal vestments consisting of the sticharion and crossed orarion; readers and unordained servers generally wear the sticharion alone.
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