Symbolically, this part of the Qurbana is a proleptic celebration of the suffering, death and burial of our Lord Iso’-Msiha.
Thursday, October 09, 2014
24. Rite of Preparation
Rite of Preparation includes everything connected with the arrangement of Eucharistic gifts on the altar. This section of the Qurbana is also considered an immediate preparation for the central part of the celebration, namely, the Quddasa or Anaphora. Thus it includes elements of Spiritual and Material Preparation.
The Eucharistic gifts, as is already described are prepared during the Karozutha Prayer. The chalice is prepared in the Bet-Gazza on the southern side. The water mixed with wine during preparation is the symbol of the Holy Spirit (Jn 7, 38-39). The paten is prepared in the Bet-Gazza on the northern side.
The Gifts are transferred to the altar during the Onita d-Raze, “anthem of the Mysteries”. The transference-procession, namely, the procession from Bet-Gazze to the altar is seen as the transference of the Body of our Lord to the sepulchre. The presentation of the Gifts at the altar in the hands of celebrant in cross-form proclaims the reality of Iso’-Msiha’s death on the cross. The deposition of the gifts on the altar is equal to laying the Body of our Lord in the tomb; covering the Gifts with Soseppa is the same as covering of the Holy Sepulchre. All these liturgical actions are normally led by ordained deacons.
There are several prayers, hymns and liturgical actions involved in the Spiritual Preparation. Prostration in the Raza is an expression of unworthiness to celebrate the Mysteries. Washing of hands symbolizes internal purification. Solemn approach with special prayers and actions after professing the faith is another act of spiritual preparation. The exchange of peace and everything connected with it also stress the internal silence and recollection necessary for a worthy celebration.
Peace is the embodiment of the risen Lord for Mar Toma Nazranees. Hence, the wish of Peace repeated several times in the Divine Liturgy, expresses the intimate relation the people of God keep up with the risen Lord during liturgical celebrations.