Reverence to the Holy Gospel
The Orthodox Churches gives the most importance or reverence to the Holy Gospels, the written Word of Living God (Jn. 1: 1). We, Orthodox offer maximum reverence to it.
- In the Church, we keep the Holy Gospel in special place called, ‘Evangelion Table; in the Madbhaha – Holy of Holies)’ not anywhere else. The Holy Bible is also kept on the Namaskara Mesha
- There is not one prayer or sacramental service without readings from the Holy Bible or proclamation of Gospels.
- The Evangelion Mesha is brought to the Centre of Sanctuary (Madbaha/Holy of Holies).
- Chief celebrant brings the Gospel accompanied by lighted candles and Sacramental fans, in a procession.
- Lighted candles (2) symbolize believers and John the Baptist (1).
- Marbahso are rung to symbolize presence of Heavenly Hosts, angelic community.
- Incense is offered and the smoke rises from the censor as the Evangelion is being proclaimed.
- Bells remind Noah heralding the Kingdom of God. “Just as it was in the days of Noah, so also will it be in the days of the Son of Man. Lk. 17: 26. In the practical sense, it is a call to a solemn occasion and to pay attention.
- Deacon admonishes the congregation to stand still or stand well in reverence with sober minds and listen to the living Words of God. (With calmness and reverence and with sober minds, let us give heed, and listen to the Proclamation of the living words of God, in the Holy Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, that is read to us).
- The celebrant proclaims the Holy Gospel of Jesus Christ, life and redemption to the world. The Gospel is never read but proclaimed or chanted.
- In the Orthodox Tradition the faithful Congregation will stand, to listen to the Holy Gospel and never should be sitting.