Jump to content


- - - - -

Order of the megaloschema


  • Please log in to reply
18 replies to this topic

#1 Guest_andreas r robberstad

Guest_andreas r robberstad
  • Guests

Posted 13 April 2003 - 01:15 PM

Brothers and sisters:

"Why have you come here, Brother (Sister), falling down before the holy altar (53) and before this holy Assembly?

Answer: I desire the life of asceticism, Reverend Father."

more at:

http://ortodox.webco...unkevigsel.html


#2 Maria Mahoney

Maria Mahoney

    Regular Poster

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 91 posts

Posted 22 February 2007 - 04:56 AM

I tried your link and it says the page cannot be displayed?

#3 Fr Seraphim (Black)

Fr Seraphim (Black)

    Retired member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 366 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 22 February 2007 - 06:45 AM

I tried your link and it says the page cannot be displayed?


Dear Maria,

A fine article on the Great Schema can be found here:

www.3saints.com/schema.html

If you have any other questions I know some Great Schema monks and nuns whom I could pass your questions on to.

faithfully,

fr. seraphim

#4 Fr Seraphim (Black)

Fr Seraphim (Black)

    Retired member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 366 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 23 February 2007 - 03:02 PM

Dear Maria,

A fine article on the Great Schema can be found here:

www.3saints.com/schema.html

If you have any other questions I know some Great Schema monks and nuns whom I could pass your questions on to.

faithfully,

fr. seraphim


Dear Monachos Brothers and Sisters,

May I ask your prayers for my unworthy self, as this day I celebrate the fifth anniversary of the Blessing of the Great Angelic Schema.

Five years ago, on the Sunday of the Prodigal Son (which was Feb. 23rd n/s) with the Blessing of my Bishop I was clothed in the Angelic Schema.

How I remember that day, and the nights spent alone in the Church beforehand. I cannot though share with you the movements of my heart and soul at that moment as they are ineffable and hidden in the mysterion of His Grace.

Pray that I be renewed, that I turn from the stench of my foolish ways. I often am perplexed. Having tasted the bitter waters of Disobedience so many times, why is it, that I never seem to quench my thirst of this filthy water?

May our Lord and His Most Pure Mother look down from their Heavenly most Sacred Realm and touch my heart by the prayers of the Monachos brotherhood and sisterhood.

May I be permitted the audacity to speak and say that it is my heartfelt feeling and certainty that Matthew was and has been blessed by our Lord and the Theotokos to give to us with such love, care, and continuous sacrifice this blessed meeting point.

Please share with me, my joy, my tears, this day. It is Friday, tonight we will hear the glorious heart fulfilling and heart breaking Salutations to the Theotokos, but in our hearts I invite you to a short Lenten moment (no food, or beverages to be brought, please). This is the way we can proceed, this evening during the Akathist please supplicate the Panagia, that she remember me, that as Athanasia said to me this week, that she had placed a candle before Her Icon and prayed: "Remember Father Seraphim, he once lived in Your Holy Garden (To Perivoli tis Panagias)."

May Christ bless us all, and grant us a great joy, an overflowing of grace, this day and each and every day of our lives.

#5 John Charmley

John Charmley

    Very Frequent Poster

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,101 posts
  • Guest from Another Religious Tradition

Posted 23 February 2007 - 04:02 PM

Dear Fr. Seraphim,

Father, bless, for your words have pierced my heart and brought forth tears.

We are, to be sure, sinners all, and your words remind us all in this Lenten season of how far we all fall short of what it is we are called to be and to do.
But I hope you will permit me to say that in your posts about your beloved and blessed Fr. Sophrony and his sayings and writings, you edify us all.

I hope that what you have recorded can be made available in more permanent form, for you provide a powerful witness for us all.

May you be supported by the prayers of all those of us here, and may you know the love and compassion with which you are regarded. May we be with you in spirit, and may the Most Holy Theotokos intercede for you before Her Son, our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, in whom we are all saved.

And from this sinner, my unworthy prayers and tears.

In Christ,

John

#6 Marie+Duquette

Marie+Duquette

    Frequent Poster

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 302 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 23 February 2007 - 11:33 PM

Father Seraphim.

Father bless!

As I stand in this solitary space, You will be specially remembered tonight in prayer to the Theotokos! May Our God be blessed and glorified through your life and prayer.

"My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior!..."

united in prayer and life,

marie_duquette

#7 Anna K.

Anna K.

    Regular Poster

  • Validating
  • PipPip
  • 77 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 24 February 2007 - 03:22 PM

Father Seraphim, bless!

Although I'm not yet in the true Church, I shall pray for you, too.

Thank God for your prayers for the world, us all.

Please pray for me and my family that I find guidance to join the Body of Christ and that my family could join too.
I feel the heaviness of this world around us and the true need of Life for all of us.
It's like I'm outside a house looking in seeing bright warm lights in the windows...

Please pray that my heavy laziness, fear and despondency will not win.

May the Lord and the Theotokos be with you.

Anna

#8 Marie A.

Marie A.

    Regular Poster

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 35 posts

Posted 24 February 2007 - 03:50 PM

Father Bless!

Thank you for your beautiful witness of the Orthodox faith. I will offer my prayers to the Theotokos for you and for your perseverance until the end. May you recall all the blessings and graces you have received from the Lord since that day you received the Great Angelic Schema.

With you in prayer in Christ,
Marie

#9 Paul Cowan

Paul Cowan

    Very Frequent Poster

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 3,064 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 24 February 2007 - 07:19 PM

Dear Fr. Seraphim:

Many years Father. Not for more endurance of your illness but so that I (the sinner) may be edified and have more time to taste of your spiritual fruit. I drink in your words of spiritual profit you have graciously donated to us here on Monachos.

As with most of my acquaintences in my life, I meet them too late to fully take advantage of their wisdom. Either from retirement, job transfers or death. For selfish reasons only, I entreat the blessed Panagia to preserve you for me so I might grow to be more of what God wants me to grow into. Equally, I will pray to her to release you of the burden of this life to Blessed Memory so you can pray for me (and us all) as a pure spirit in God's presence.

In selfish humility and love blessed Father.
Paul

#10 Fr Seraphim (Black)

Fr Seraphim (Black)

    Retired member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 366 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 23 March 2007 - 04:50 PM

Please pray for me and my family that I find guidance to join the Body of Christ and that my family could join too.
I feel the heaviness of this world around us and the true need of Life for all of us.
It's like I'm outside a house looking in seeing bright warm lights in the windows...

Please pray that my heavy laziness, fear and despondency will not win.
Anna


Dear Anna,

I am very moved, touched and blessed by so many extraordinary prayers and wonderful thoughts. May I be worthy of such overflowing love.

Anna, your post touches on two aspects which I feel I should address. The first concerns your family.

My humble advice is to pray for them; but I have been Orthodox for over half of my life and not one member of my biological family has entered the Orthodox Church. And consider this: all of them spent considerable periods of time visiting me at the Monastery in England, while Father Sophrony was still alive and very robust. (Actually now that I reflect on this, it is undoubtedly due to my poor example.)

The second is the heaviness of the world which your heart and soul feel. This is a precious grace of the Holy Spirit.

Father Sophrony speaks beautifully of this:

'The word accidie means etymologically, "lack of care", i.e. about one's salvation. With few exceptions, all humanity is now living in the state of accidie. People have become indifferent about their salvation. They do not seek divine life. They confine themselves to forms of life which appertain to the flesh, to everyday needs, to the passions of this world, to mundane activities. God, though, created us out of nothing, in the image of the Absolute and after His likeness. If this revelation is true, then the absence of concern for salvation is nothing else than the death of the human person.'[italics, mine]

This heaviness is the accidie that surrounds all of us (moving within and without our person). This is why I feel that it is the grace of the Holy Spirit to be sensitive to this aspect of our fallen human condition.

How can our hearts not be moved when all about us we see so much tragedy. Humanity is soaked in tragedy. We have become inebriated with this demonic addiction: seeking our own fulfillment. To the point now where we bleed the vast majority of humankind dry to maintain our comfort level to which we have become accustomed and feel some sort of unquestionable entitlement.

May our Lord Jesus Christ grant us the grace of repentance and prayer for all humankind.

I will pray for you Anna. Please keep us informed of your pilgrimage!

#11 Anna K.

Anna K.

    Regular Poster

  • Validating
  • PipPip
  • 77 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 04 April 2007 - 03:57 PM

Dear Father Seraphim, bless.

Thank you so much for your encouraging post.

My family is in my prayers, as you wrote. I'm comforted to hear that it's the best we can do for them. It has been an issue for me these couple of years if I should wait for them and try to "pull" them to Orthodoxy with me - since I feel it actually is a matter of life and death, I felt I couldn't leave the sinking ship and jump into the Life-boat without them. But perhaps that thought is somewhat prideful, as if it were in my hands...

Thank you for your translation on the heaviness! It's not easier to deal with, but it's good to have a name for it. And it is precious that you tell us many difficult things in our lives can actually be gifts.
But actually, it is unbearably horrible, what we see around us.

What a treasure it is for us here to have you to write to us your wise words and share the heritage of your spiritual Father as well. I was in New Valamo Monastery for the weekend on Palm Sunday. In the book-store I found Father Sophrony's book "His Life is Mine", which has been translated into finnish last year. I have it now, I'm proceeding slowly but already I feel I'll be coming back to it time and time again, to ponder on it.

There is a precious miracle-working Icon of the Mother of God of Konevitsa in the church of New Valamo, which Saint Arsenios of Konevets took there from Athos in (I think) around 1300.

I took my poor prayers for you, to Her too.

A Blessed Pascha to all.

Anna

#12 M.C. Steenberg

M.C. Steenberg

    Former Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,843 posts

Posted 17 November 2008 - 01:00 PM

Dear friends,

I would like to re-kindle this thread, to enquire over practices regarding the Great Schema in different traditions. In my own Russian Orthodox Church, the Great Schema is normally taken on by very few, and often includes lives of extreme remoteness and withdrawl (in some cases even amounting - more or less formally - to 'vows of silence' except for a few spoken words a year).

However, as is well known, in Athonite monasticism (which is the form I know most personally), the Great Schema is awarded essentially to all, following the novitiate, most often at the same time as the Small Schema.

I wonder if members could share experiences of their knowledge of how the Great Schema is approached in both Russian- and Athonite-style monasteries abroad (i.e. Russian monasteries outside of Russia itself; and Athonite monasteries outside of Athos) as regards these particular customs.

INXC, Deacon Matthew

#13 Dcn Alexander Haig

Dcn Alexander Haig

    Frequent Poster

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPip
  • 323 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 17 November 2008 - 06:40 PM

However, as is well known, in Athonite monasticism (which is the form I know most personally), the Great Schema is awarded essentially to all, following the novitiate, most often at the same time as the Small Schema.


As I understand it, I don't think the Athonite custom gives the Great Schema as well as the Small Schema: it is bestowed by itself. The Small Schema is given to Rassophore monks working out their salvation in the world (e.g. hieromonks working as parish priests, bishops etc.) while the Great Schema is given to those staying in the monastery. Obviously there are cases where a Great Schema monk will be elected bishop, but I think this general rule applies.

In either case, the service remains the same for both types of Schema.

With love in Christ

Alex

#14 M.C. Steenberg

M.C. Steenberg

    Former Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,843 posts

Posted 17 November 2008 - 06:52 PM

Dear Alex, this is correct oftentimes in effect, if not in point of detail. The Lesser and Great Schemas are generally given together in most Athonite houses, as the full tonsure into the community. If it is the case that a monk will spend most of his time away from the monastery, he will occasionally be given only the lesser, and not the great; it is felt that the great places too great a burden for such a life. But for those who live in, it is normally both together.

INXC, Dcn Matthew

#15 Paul Cowan

Paul Cowan

    Very Frequent Poster

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 3,064 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 18 November 2008 - 02:04 AM

That would explain why when I was at SimonPetra, many of the monks including most of the younger ones were wearing the Schema. I did not see this as much in the other monasteries.

Paul

#16 M.C. Steenberg

M.C. Steenberg

    Former Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,843 posts

Posted 18 November 2008 - 09:14 AM

Dear Paul,

Yes, this is the reason. The normal Athonite custom is that the schema itself (i.e. the physical apparatus) is generally only worn in the katholikon, and only when one is going to commune (though in some sketae, and amongst some of the older monks in the main houses, it will be worn in the katholikon at all times); and since in the Greek custom the Great Schema is almost entirely covered by the mantia, it is often the case that one doesn't notice it is being worn - except for brief flashes of red that sometimes catch the eye as people move.

The Small Schema is always worn, as the paramon is tied under the cassock.

INXC, Dcn Matthew

#17 Father David Moser

Father David Moser

    Moderator

  • Moderators
  • 3,581 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member
  • Verified Cleric

Posted 18 November 2008 - 02:40 PM

Dear friends,

I would like to re-kindle this thread, to enquire over practices regarding the Great Schema in different traditions.


Archbishop Anthony of San Francisco was a schema monk who was elected as a bishop. I have been told that at that time there was some debate in the Synod whether or not a schema monk could be bishop (as there is a canonical prohibition to a bishop taking the great schema - since it involves the expectation of reclusion, which is not possible for an active hierarch.) Archbishop Anthony accepted this ordination as a monastic obedience and lived the rest of his life in the fulfillment of that obedience. When he died, he was not buried at the cathedral (as his predecessor, St John, had been) but at his specific request was laid to rest a Holy Trinity Monastery, the brotherhood of which he considered himself an inseparable member.

Two of our new ROCOR episcopal candidates are also schema monks - Bishop John of South America and Archimandrite George (who will be made bishop Dec 7). I don't really know about how Bishop John came to take the great schema, however, I do know that Archimandrite George was tonsured on the Holy Mountain and then came to Holy Trinity. Because he was tonsured on the Holy Mountain, he was given the Great Schema in relation to the normal Athonite practice and he remained in the Great Schema, even though he was no longer on Athos but at Jordanville.

One of the members of the monastic brotherhood of St Ignatii Brianchaninov in San Francisco (that is the monastic clergy who serve parishes in that area, led by the Archbishop), is also a great schema monk by virtue of his original athonite monastery, however he now lives more in the world than one would expect of a great schema monk. His life is more like a hybrid of small and great schema.

Fr David

#18 Herman Blaydoe

Herman Blaydoe

    Moderator

  • Moderators
  • 4,157 posts
  • Orthodox Christian Member

Posted 18 November 2008 - 04:32 PM

Monastics no doubt take the schema under the absolute best of intentions, and of course the biggest part of that is obedience to God, who might have other ideas as how best we might serve Him.

This reminds me of an old saw:
Do you want to make God laugh? Tell Him "I have plans".

Herman the Pooh

#19 Alexander Zhdanov

Alexander Zhdanov

    Regular Poster

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 70 posts

Posted 29 November 2008 - 06:07 PM

Once, I attended the ceremony of taking the Great Schema. It was in the skete of Optina Pustyn. The sacrament touched my heart. As elder Iliy served with his servant Fr Raphael.
In Russia, there is a tradition to take the Great Schema during a serious illness. Anyway, only spiritually skilled monks take the Great Schema. I did not see young schemamonks in russian monasteries.

Alexander




0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users