Jump to content


Photo
- - - - -

Who can give monastic tonsure?


  • Please log in to reply
5 replies to this topic

#1 Fr.Alexei

Fr.Alexei

    Junior Poster

  • Members
  • 7 posts

Posted 12 June 2012 - 02:13 PM

Dear Forum Members,
Glory be to Jesus Christ!

A question I have had for a long time is what is the practice & teaching of the Orthodox Church with regard to WHO can "give" a "valid" monastic tonsure i.e. when a man or woman is ready to embrace monastic life, (their spiritual father considers them ready), WHO can give the monastic tonsure to them/receive their vows to God in the order of the Great Schema? Can only bishops or abbots canonically give it?-could a simple monk do it? As, I believe I remember reading in the earlier days of the Church, a simple monastic or even a simple priest could give monastic tonsure, but later the practice changed. I also read in the life of St. Paisius Velichkovsky that he was tonsured into the mantle by his elder who was not even a priest, and this was considered acceptable. Would the Orthodox Church consider a man or woman tonsured into the mantle not done according to the current canonical form a real monastic, or not? Does Oikonomia ever come in? I also remember reading in "Russia's Catacomb Saints" that it happened several times during the persecutions that tonsure was given by simple priests or monks to others desiring this state of life. It would seem to me that even if not done according to canonical norms it would still be accepted...I remember a story told to me by a monk I know which was told to him by the late Metropolitan Laurus of ROCOR: a Roman Catholic nun was received into Orthodoxy by ROCOR and then went to Vladyka Laurus wanting to get married...Vladyka said to this monk, "...but she PROMISED herself!", in other words, no such "dispensation" to get married would be coming from him!

Thank You!

#2 Kusanagi

Kusanagi

    Very Frequent Poster

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 719 posts

Posted 12 June 2012 - 08:03 PM

I am guessing only priestmonks and higher can tonsure someone as a monastic. I know 2 priest monks and a bishop has done so.
Also St Paisius' elder was a priest so it was valid.

#3 Dusja

Dusja

    Junior Poster

  • Members
  • Pip
  • 24 posts

Posted 14 June 2012 - 07:50 AM

The head of the parish writes a recommendation to the diocese and the applicant writes an autobiography, and these are sent to the head of the diocese. If the bishop/archbishop/metropolitan finds them acceptable, he provides a written permission for tonsure (rassaphore or monastic) and names the bishop or hieromonk who will do it.

#4 Fr. Ambrose

Fr. Ambrose

    Junior Poster

  • Members
  • 4 posts

Posted 23 August 2012 - 08:31 PM

The head of the parish writes a recommendation to the diocese and the applicant writes an autobiography, and these are sent to the head of the diocese. If the bishop/archbishop/metropolitan finds them acceptable, he provides a written permission for tonsure (rassaphore or monastic) and names the bishop or hieromonk who will do it.


In the old Orthodox countries monastic tonsure is given within the monastery community and to someone living in a parish. This has not always been strictly followed in American Orthodoxy, which is one of the reasons why we have a few "loose" monks or nuns.

In Greece and on the Holy Mountain monastic tonsure is usually given by the elder of the monastery (be it a monastery for men or women), upon the recommendation of the monastery brotherhood or sisterhood. ln most common recent usage in Russia the tonsure is given by the bishop. However, a bishop can also designate or bless a hieromonk to tonsure someone, which has sometimes been done also in this country. --Fr. Ambrose

#5 Ilya Zhitomirskiy

Ilya Zhitomirskiy

    Regular Poster

  • Members
  • PipPip
  • 66 posts

Posted 19 September 2012 - 06:21 PM

A priest monk can tonsure monastics up to his own rank (A Rassophore priest can tonsure monks up to rassophore rank), but a bishop can tonsure into any rank, including Megaloschemos

#6 Father Stephanos

Father Stephanos

    Regular Poster

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 162 posts

Posted 20 September 2012 - 05:51 AM

Within some Orthodox Christian monastic traditions only a Megaloschemos can tonsure another Orthodox Christian as a Megaloschemos monastic.

With agape in our Lord Jesus Christ,

+ Father Stephanos






0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users