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Christ the Bridegroom

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{{cleanup}}[[Image:Bridegroom.jpg|thumb|right|Christ the Bridegroom icon]]'''Christ the Bridegroom''' is the central figure in the [[parable]] of the ten Virgins (Matthew 25: 1-13); [[Christ]] is the divine Bridegroom of the Church as described in the Book of [[Isaiah]] (chapter 54), as well as the primary image of '''Bridegroom Matins'''. The title is suggestive of his divine presence and watchfulness ("Behold the Bridegroom comes in the middle of the night...") during [[Holy Week]] and his selfless love for his Bride, the [[Church]].
[[Image:|Christ The '''Bridegroom''' is also the name given to the central icon used in Bridegroom Matins. The Bridegroom of icon and service is also commonly known in the Church]]Greek tradition as '''O Nymphios'''.
'''Christ The == Bridegroom Matins ==Bridegroom''' comes from Matins is a service specific to the central figure first four evenings of [[Holy Week]] (though it is often omitted on Holy Wednesday in favor of the parable service of the ten Virgins (Matthew 25: 1-13); [[ChristHoly Unction]] ) and commemorates the last days in the earthly life of the Lord. Incorporated into these services is the theme of the first three days of Holy Week; which is the divine ''Bridegroom last teachings of Christ to his disciples. As such, these services incorporate readings and hymns inspiring this theme. The mood of the Church'services is to experience sorrow and to feel Christ's voluntary submission to His passions and highlight the purpose behind the evil that is about to take place against the Lord. This title The atmosphere is suggestive one of His divine presence mourning (for sins) and watchfulness (‘’’"Behold is symbolic of the shame the Christian should feel for the Bridegroom comes in Fall of Adam and Eve, the middle depths of hell, the lost Paradise and the night absence of God.The vestments of the Priest and the altar clothes are black or deep purple to symbolise and enhance the atmosphere of mourning and remembrance of sins.The main emphasis of the Bridegroom Service is ''[[metanoia]]'' and each service has its own particular theme on repentance and watchfulness."’’’) during One of its primary features is its [[Holy Weektroparion]].:
The ''':Behold, the Bridegroom''' comes in the middle of the night, and blessed is also the name servant He shall find vigilant; but unworthy is he whom he shall find neglectful. Beware therefore, O my soul, lest you be weighed down by sleep, lest you be given over to death and be closed out from the central icon used in '''The Service kingdom; but rise up crying out: "Holy! Holy! Holy are You our God; through the intercessions of the Bridegroom'''Theotokos, have mercy on us. The '''Bridegroom''' icon and service has been more commonly known as '''"O Nymphios"''' but over the last decade, this title has caused much confusion to the ever-growing English speaking christian population.
== Service of the Bridegroom = Palm Sunday evening ===The '''Service of During the Bridegroom''' is an first service on [[OrthrosPalm Sunday]] type service specific to evening, the priest carries the first three evenings of [[Holy Weekicon]] and commemorates of Christ the last days in Bridegroom into the earthly life of our Lordchurch. They were sorrowful days because The Bridegroom troparion is sung during this procession, and the purpose icon is brought to the front of the evil was to dispose of Jesus church and rid His message for everremains there until Holy Thursday. The icon of depicts Christ as the Bridegroom is brought into of the [[Church]], bearing the marks of his suffering, yet preparing the church wearing way for a crown of thorns and it remains marriage feast in the church until Holy Thursdayhis Kingdom. In He is dressed in the services we read and chant hymns telling us about icon according to the beginning mockery of the passion and anticipate His Roman guards just prior to his crucifixion and resurrection (or “Marriage” .*The crowns - a symbol of his marriage to the “Church”) – releasing [[Church]].*The rope - a symbol of the passage from death bondage to life. Each nightsin, we sing death and corruption which was loosed with Christ's death on the Cross.*''Hymn to the BridegroomThe reed'' and - a symbol of his humility; God rules his kingdom with humility. Sunday evening also includes this kontakion::Jacob lamented the vestments loss of the Priest Joseph, but that noble one was seated in a chariot and the altar clothes are black or deep purple honored as a king; for by not being enslaved then to symbolise and create the atmosphere of mourning and remembrance pleasures of the great shame of the Fall of Adam and EveEgyptian woman, he was glorified by Him that beholdeth the depths hearts of hell, the lost Paradise men and the absence of God. The main emphasis of the ''Bridegroom Serve'' is ''[[metanoia]]'' and each service has its own particular themebestoweth an incorruptible crown.
=== Palm Sunday evening ===
At the service of '''Palm Sunday''' evening, the priest carries the [[icon]] of Christ the Bridegroom in procession, and we sing the ''"Hymn of the Bridegroom."'' We behold Christ as the Bridegroom of the Church, bearing the marks of His suffering, yet preparing a marriage Feast for us in God's Kingdom.
:'''The Bridegroom icon'''
:The icon depicts Jesus dressed according to the mockery of the Roman guards just prior to his crucifixion.
:*The crowns - The crown of thorns are a symbol of His marriage to the church.
:'''The Hymn of the Bridegroom'''
:''Behold, the Bridegroom cometh in the middle of the night, and blessed is that servant whom He shall find watching; and again unworthy is he ...''
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=== Holy Monday evening ===
On '''[[Holy Week|Holy Monday''']], the Blessed Joseph, the son of Jacob the Patriarch, is commemorated because he is seen as a prototype of Christ.  Joseph was betrayed by his brothers, thrown into a pit and sold into slavery by them. In the same way, the Lord was rejected, betrayed by his own, and sold into the slavery of death and like Joseph forgave and spared his brothers during the famine when they came to him, so too, [[Jesus]] [[Christ]] offers himself as a sacrifice and forgives all those who come to him in faith.  The Gospel reading for the day is of the Barren Fig Tree, which Christ cursed and withered because it bore no fruit. The fig tree is representative of those who have heard God's word, but who fail to bear the fruits of faith. Originally the withering of the fig tree was a testimony against those Jews who rejected God's word and his Messiah. It is also a warning to all people, in all times, of the importance of not only hearing the God's word, but putting it into action.
Joseph was betrayed by his brothersMonday evening also includes this kontakion::Being mindful of the hour of the end, O my soul, thrown into a pit and sold into slavery by them. In fearing because of the same waycutting down of the fig tree, our Lord labor diligently with the talent that was rejectedgiven thee, betrayed by His ownO hapless one, and sold into be watchful and cry: Let us not remain outside the slavery bridal chamber of deathChrist.
The Gospel reading for the day is '''The Barren Fig Tree''', which Christ cursed and withered because it bore no fruit. The fig tree is a parable of those who have heard God's word, but who fail to bear the fruit of obedience. Originally the withering of the fig tree was a testimony against those Jews who rejected God's word and His Messiah. However, it is also a warning to all people, in all times, of the importance of not only hearing the God's word, but putting it into action.
===Holy Tuesday evening ===
On '''[[Holy Week|Holy Tuesday''']], the Parable of the Ten Virgins is read. It tells the story of the five virgins who filled their lamps in preparation for receiving the bridegroom while the other five allowed their lamps to go out and hence were shut out of the marriage feast. This parable is a warning that we Christians must always be prepared to receive our the Lord when He he comes again. The theme of the day is reinforced by the expostelarion exaposteilarion hymn we sing ''":: I see Thy Bridal Chamber adorned, O my Savior, but have no wedding garment that I may enter. O Giver of Light, enlighten the vesture of my soul, and save me. Holy Tuesday's Bridegroom Matins also includes commemoration of [[Kassiani the Hymnographer|Kassiani]] ([[September 7]]), also known by the names of ''Kasia'', ''Kasiani'' or ''Ikessia'', was a great [[hymnographer]] from the 9th century. According to the Synaxaristi not many details of her life have been recorded but she has remained in ecclesiastical history for her great hymns. His Eminence Metropolitan Sophronios Eustratiadis of Leontopoleos <ref> Σωφρόνιος Ευστρατιάδης (Μητροπολίτης Λεοντοπόλεως) </ref> writes that Kassiani was "an orphaned girl from the Byzantine era, beautiful and wise, a saintly ascetic and respectful virgin". <ref> «ορφανή κόρη του Βυζαντίου εκ των ευπατρίδων, ωραία και σοφή, οσία ασκήτρια και ευσεβέστατη παρθένος» περ. «Εκκλ. Φάρος Αλεξανδρείας», τ.ΛΑ' (1932) σελ. 92 </ref> Kassiani is also linked to the Emperor Theophilos (9th century) and his search for a bride. Theophilos was angered with a reply by Kassiani to a question of his, and he impulsively chose St. Theodora, who was standing next to Kassiani, to be his elected bride. Kassiani also played a great role in the restoration of the Holy Icons.  Heartbroken by Theophilos, one of those poems was the beautiful hymn of Kassiani, which in the Byzantine tradition is such a major feature that the service held on Holy Tuesday evening is often referred to simply as the ''Hymn of Kassiani''. Theophilos searched for Kassiani and found her at a convent and the two never saw each other again. Her repentance and love for Christ is the theme of the wonderful Hymn of Kassiani which is chanted on this night, reminding all that they may be forgiven if they repent. The text of the hymn, based on the account of the sinful woman who is introduced by the Evangelist St Luke in his Gospel (7:36-50). Kassiani contrasts the repentance of the sinful woman with Eve's fall (Gen. 3:8-11)::The woman who had fallen into many sins, perceiving Your divinity, O Lord, received the dignity of a [[myrrh-bearer]], for with lamentation she brought fragrant myrrh to You before Your burial. And she cried: Woe is me, for love of sin and stings of lustful passion envelop me as the night, dark and moonless. As You cause the clouds to drop down the waters of the sea, accept the fountain of my tears. As by Your indescribable condescension You bowed down the heavens, so incline to the groaning of my heart. I shall kiss Your most pure feet and wipe them with the hair of my head, those same feet whose sound Eve heard at dusk in Paradise when she hid herself in fear. Who can count the multitude of my sins? Who can measure the depths of Your judgments, O Saviour of my soul? Do not turn away from me, Your servant, for You have immeasurable mercy. Tuesday evening also includes this kontakion::I have transgressed far more than the harlot, O Good One, yet have never brought you showers of tears; but entreating in silence, I fall before you, as I kiss your immaculate feet with love, that as Master you may grant me forgiveness of offences, as I cry out, O Saviour: deliver me from the filth of my works. == See also ==*[[Holy Week]]*[[Kassiani the Hymnographer]]*[[Jesus Christ]]
We also remember ''Kassiane''== External links ==*[http://www. Kassiani was a beautiful young aristocrat, who came from a Byzantium family at the time of the Emperor Theophilos (9th century)svots. While choosing a bride from a parade of eligible girlsedu/news/recent/schmemann-holy-week-monday-wednesday/ Holy Week - Monday, Theophilos became angry at a reply Kassiani gave as a reply to a question of hisTuesday, so he impulsively chose Theodora, who was standing next to Kassiani, as his bride. kassiani played a great role in the restoration of the Wednesday] - from ''Holy Icons and dedicated her life to the composition of sacred poetry. Heartbroken by Theophilos, one of those poems was this beautiful hymn. It retains the original Byzantine music which may be difficult for all to understand. Theophelos, searched Week: A Liturgical Explanation for Cassiani and found her convent but the two never saw each other again.Her repentance and love for Christ is the theme Days of the wonderful Holy Week''"Hymn of Kassiane" (St Vladimir'' which is chanted on this nights Seminary Press), reminding us one more time, before ''"it is too late,"'' that we too may be forgiven if we repentby Very Rev. [[Alexander Schmemann]]
=== The Hymn of Kassiane ==={{stub}}[[Category:Liturgics]]
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