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CHRONICLE – MAY 22nd, MONDAY


On this day by the Old Style (the Julian calendar) is celebrated the transfer of the relics of Saint Nicholas the Wonderworker in the city of Bari, Italy. For all Christians in Italy, it is a great holiday.



 

On the same day Collegium HOSANNA had to sing the Holy St. John Chrysostom Liturgy, written in German. The peculiarities of the language and the German music posed difficulties for the performers, related to the text and the typical for German music accuracy, brevity, and clarity of the musical expression which should be infused with the subtle and very powerful expression of the Orthodox spirit.


 

The singers met this difficult requirement with precision and maturity, where the latter is characteristic of choirs with quite long church practice. The choir also performed the Troparion and Magnification hymn to St. Nicholas in Church-Slavonic.



After the Divine service, Pastor Heiner Bludau, provost of the Lutheran Evangelical Church in Italy, came to greet the choir. After he followed (in a German manner) the whole Divine service by score, he expressed his admiration for the music and the performance of the liturgy with an undisguised rapture. He especially congratulated the performers for their very good pronunciation and for the inseparable connection between the priests and the choir. Pastor Bludau asked for cooperation between Collegium Hosanna and the musicians from the Lutheran church in Italy. He also made a specific request to the composer Georgi Popov if these musicians could have his permission to study and perform his Orthodox Holy St. John Chrysostom Liturgy, written in German.


Father Ambrose: Just as languages like Greek and Slavonic, in which we already held services, the German also perfectly fits into the Orthodox service, and the Devine liturgy in the German language transforms into grand joy. Let us remember that two archimandrites had come into our church – Archimandrite Theophan of Berlin and Archimandrite Mark of Berlin…, who were truly one hundred percent Germans. And since we had had such grand figures from Germany in our church, we hope that even more worshippers, guests, and friends would visit us…These liturgies are not only a dear memory…, but also of great help to us in order to become more open to all people and nations...
 

It turns out that along with the liturgy in English that will be held tomorrow, this week we held and sang with our wonderful choir HOSANNA all these liturgies in a way that we could be understood by a billion people. And one billion people is a large number of people who believe and will believe in God. There are six billion people left to join. The truth is some of them more or less understand these languages. And that makes us think how careful we should be when proclaiming the Gospel to all nations. This is something that Jesus Christ says in the end of Gospel of Matthew: “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations”…”All nations” means all nations. We might not be able to hold liturgies in the more complicated and remote languages, but we should at least try to do it in these languages that we already know…


 

Thanks to all for your participation during the liturgy and to those who, without comprehending German, were able to overcome this difficulty. But tell me one thing – if the liturgy is held in a language which we do not understand, when we enter into the liturgy’s spirit and we know that all is in our Lord’s name – there truly would not be a language who could divide us.

Christ is risen!








 







 



 

 
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