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Great Canon

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[[Image:Andrewofcrete.jpg|right|thumb|200px|St. Andrew of Crete]]The '''Great Canon of St. Andrew of Crete''' is a lengthy penitential [[canon]] composed in 7th century, which is performed during the [[Great Lent]]. It is divided into four portions, which are read during the Great Compiline on Monday, Tuesday, Wendesday and Thursday of [[Pure Week]]. The whole canon is read all over again on Wendesday evening of the fifth week of the Great Lent.
==Structure and Composition==The Great Canon consists of four parts, each divided into 9 odes like a regular [[canon]]. However, there are slight differences between the the odes of the two compositions. In the Great Canon, there is a greater number of [[troparia]]. At the refrain "Have mercy upon on me , O Lord, have mercy upon on me" accompanies each verse of the Great Canon. Several , a full [[tropariaprostration]] in honor is performed. Also, some of the odes have additional refrains and troparia to the author of the canon, [[Andrew of Crete|St. Andrewof Crete]], composer of the canon, and to or [[Mary of Egypt|St. Mary of Egypt]] are also included, one of the greatest models of repentance in Christianity. The Church [[Image:Zosimas and Mary of Jerusalem implemented this practice during StEgypt. Andrew’s lifetimejpg|right|frame|Sts. When in Zosima and Mary of Egypt]]==Performance==The Great Canon is performed during the first week of the year 680 AD, StGreat Lent. Andrew traveled to Constantinople for During the [[6th Ecumenical CouncilCompiline]]on Monday, he brought with him Tuesday, Wendesday and made public both his great composition and the life Thursday, one portion of StCanon is read after Psalm 69 is read. Mary On Wendesday of the fifth week of Egyptthe Great Lent, written by his compatriot and teacher, Sophronios, Patriarch of Jerusalem. The Life of St. Mary of Egypt is read together with the entire Great Canon at [[Matins]] on Wednesday service. This practice was implemented during the life of St. Andrew, who was also the fifth week author of Great LentSt. Mary's hagiography.
==Contents==A basic distinguishing feature of the Great Canon is its extremely broad use of images and subjects taken from [[Bible|Sacred Scripture]], both from the Old and New Testaments. As the Canon progresses, the congregation encounters many biblical examples of sin and repentance. The Bible (and therefore, the Canon) speaks of some individuals in a positive light, and about others in a negative one - the penitents are expected to emulate the positive examples of sanctity and repentance, and to learn from and avoid the negative examples of sin, fallen nature and pride. However, one of the most notable aspects of the Canon is that it attempts to potray the Biblical images in a very personal way to every penitant: the Canon is written in such form that the faithful identify themselves with many people and events found in the Old and New TestamentsBible.

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