Consecration

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Consecration is the solemn dedication to a special purpose or service, usually religious. The word consecration literally means "association with the sacred". Persons, places, or things can be consecrated, and the term is used in various ways by different groups. The origin of the word comes from the Latin stem consecrat, which means dedicated, devoted, and sacred. [1] A synonym for to consecrate is to sanctify; a distinct antonym is to desecrate.

Ritual set of actions, performed mainly for their symbolic value

A ritual is a sequence of activities involving gestures, words, and objects, performed in a sequestered place, and performed according to set sequence. Rituals may be prescribed by the traditions of a community, including a religious community. Rituals are characterized but not defined by formalism, traditionalism, invariance, rule-governance, sacral symbolism, and performance.

Something that is sacred is dedicated or set apart for the service or worship of a deity or considered worthy of spiritual respect or devotion; or inspiring awe or reverence among believers. The property is often ascribed to objects, or places.

Synonym Words or phrases having the same meaning

A synonym is a word or phrase that means exactly or nearly the same as another lexeme in the same language. Words that are synonyms are said to be synonymous, and the state of being a synonym is called synonymy. For example, the words begin, start, commence, and initiate are all synonyms of one another. Words are typically synonymous in one particular sense: for example, long and extended in the context long time or extended time are synonymous, but long cannot be used in the phrase extended family. Synonyms with exactly the same meaning share a seme or denotational sememe, whereas those with inexactly similar meanings share a broader denotational or connotational sememe and thus overlap within a semantic field. The former are sometimes called cognitive synonyms and the latter, near-synonyms, plesionyms or poecilonyms.

Contents

Buddhism

Images of the Buddha and bodhisattvas are ceremonially consecrated in a broad range of Buddhist rituals that vary depending on the Buddhist traditions. Buddhābhiseka is a Pali and Sanskrit term referring to these consecration rituals. [2]

Bodhisattva Any person who is on the path towards Buddhahood but has not yet attained it

In Buddhism, a bodhisattva is any person who is on the path towards Buddhahood.

Pali middle Indo-Aryan language

Pali or Magadhan is a Middle Indo-Aryan liturgical language native to the Indian subcontinent. It is widely studied because it is the language of the Pāli Canon or Tipiṭaka, and is the sacred language of some religious texts of Hinduism and all texts of Theravāda Buddhism. The earliest archaeological evidence of the existence of canonical Pali comes from Pyu city-states inscriptions found in Burma dated to the mid 5th to mid 6th century CE.

Sanskrit language of ancient India

Sanskrit is a language of ancient India with a 3,500-year history. It is the primary liturgical language of Hinduism and the predominant language of most works of Hindu philosophy as well as some of the principal texts of Buddhism and Jainism. Sanskrit, in its variants and numerous dialects, was the lingua franca of ancient and medieval India. In the early 1st millennium CE, along with Buddhism and Hinduism, Sanskrit migrated to Southeast Asia, parts of East Asia and Central Asia, emerging as a language of high culture and of local ruling elites in these regions.

Christianity

Roman Catholic Church

The Consecration of Deodat (1620, Claude Bassot). Consecration-de-Deodat.jpg
The Consecration of Deodat (1620, Claude Bassot).

"Consecration" is used in the Catholic Church as the setting apart for the service of God of both persons and objects.

Catholic Church Largest Christian church, led by the Bishop of Rome

The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is the largest Christian church, with approximately 1.3 billion baptised Catholics worldwide as of 2017. As the world's oldest continuously functioning international institution, it has played a prominent role in the history and development of Western civilisation. The church is headed by the Bishop of Rome, known as the pope. Its central administration, the Holy See, is in the Vatican City, an enclave within the city of Rome in Italy.

Ordination of bishops

The ordination of a new bishop is also called a consecration. While the term "episcopal ordination" is now more common, [3] "consecration" was the preferred term from the Middle Ages through the period including the Second Vatican Council (11 October 1962 – 8 December 1965). [4]

Ordination religious process by which individuals are consecrated as clergy

Ordination is the process by which individuals are consecrated, that is, set apart and elevated from the laity class to the clergy, who are thus then authorized to perform various religious rites and ceremonies. The process and ceremonies of ordination vary by religion and denomination. One who is in preparation for, or who is undergoing the process of ordination is sometimes called an ordinand. The liturgy used at an ordination is sometimes referred to as an ordination.

Second Vatican Council Roman Catholic ecumenical council held in Vatican City from 1962 to 1965

The Second Ecumenical Council of the Vatican, commonly known as the Second Vatican Council or Vatican II, addressed relations between the Catholic Church and the modern world. The council, through the Holy See, was formally opened under the pontificate of Pope John XXIII on 11 October 1962 and was closed under Pope Paul VI on the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception on 8 December 1965.

The Vatican II document Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy n. 76 states,

<i>Sacrosanctum Concilium</i> Catholic Constitution on the Liturgy

Sacrosanctum Concilium, the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, is one of the constitutions of the Second Vatican Council. It was approved by the assembled bishops by a vote of 2,147 to 4 and promulgated by Pope Paul VI on 4 December 1963. The main aim was to achieve greater lay participation in the Catholic Church's liturgy. The title is taken from the opening lines of the document and means "this Sacred Council".

Both the ceremonies and texts of the ordination rites are to be revised. The address given by the bishop at the beginning of each ordination or consecration may be in the mother tongue.

When a bishop is consecrated, the laying of hands may be done by all the bishops present.

The English text of Catechism of the Catholic Church, Second Edition, 1997, under the heading "Episcopal ordination—fullness of the sacrament of Holy Orders", uses "episcopal consecration" and "episcopal ordination" interchangeably (CCC, 1556–1558).

<i>Catechism of the Catholic Church</i> book by Congregatie voor de Geloofsleer

The Catechism of the Catholic Church is a catechism promulgated for the Catholic Church by Pope John Paul II in 1992. It sums up, in book form, the beliefs of the Catholic faithful.

Holy orders sacraments of the Catholic Church

In the Christian churches, holy orders are ordained ministries such as bishop, priest, or deacon, and the sacrament or rite by which candidates are ordained to those orders. Churches recognizing these orders include the Catholic Church, the Eastern Orthodox, Oriental Orthodox, Anglican, Assyrian, Old Catholic, Independent Catholic and some Lutheran churches. Except for Lutherans and some Anglicans, these churches regard ordination as a sacrament. The Anglo-Catholic tradition within Anglicanism identifies more with the Roman Catholic position about the sacramental nature of ordination.

The Code of Canon Law Latin-English Edition (1983) under "Title VI—Orders" uses the term sacrae ordinationis minister "minister of sacred ordination" and the term consecratione episcopali "episcopal consecration" (CCL, 1012, 1014).

Consecrated life

The consecration of Saint Genevieve, 1821 (Ste. Genevieve, Missouri). Painting of Ste Genevieve in the Church of Ste Genevieve in Ste Genevieve MO.jpg
The consecration of Saint Genevieve, 1821 (Ste. Genevieve, Missouri).

Those who enter religious institutes, secular institutes or societies of apostolic life are also described as living the Consecrated life.

The rite of consecration of virgins can be traced back at least to the fourth century. [5] By the time of the Second Vatican Council, the bestowal of the consecration was limited to cloistered nuns only. [6] The Council directed that this should be revised. [7] Two similar versions were prepared, one for women living in monastic orders, another for consecrated virgins living in the world. An English translation of the rite for those living in the world is available on the web site of the United States Association of Consecrated Virgins. [8]

Churches, altars, and other ritual objects

Chrism, an anointing oil, is (usually scented) olive oil consecrated by a bishop.

Objects such as patens and chalices, used for the sacrament of the Eucharist, are consecrated by a bishop, using chrism. The day before a new priest is ordained, there may be a vigil and a service or Mass at which the ordaining Bishop consecrates the paten(s) and chalice(s) of the ordinands (the men who are transitional deacons, about to be ordained priests).

A more solemn rite exists for what used to be called the "consecration of an altar", either of the altar alone or as the central part of the rite for a church. The rite is now called the dedication. [9] [10] Since it would be contradictory to dedicate to the service of God a mortgage-burdened building, the rite of dedication of a church is carried out only if the building is debt-free. Otherwise, it is only blessed.

Eucharist

A very special act of consecration is that of the bread and wine used in the Eucharist, which according to Catholic belief involves their change into the Body and Blood of Christ, a change referred to as transubstantiation. To consecrate the bread and wine, the priest speaks the Words of Institution.

Eastern churches

In the Eastern Orthodox Churches and the Eastern Catholic Churches, the term "consecration" can refer to either the Sacred Mystery (sacrament) of Cheirotonea (ordination through laying on of hands) of a bishop, or the sanctification and solemn dedication of a church building. It can also (more rarely) be used to describe the change of the bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ at the Divine Liturgy. The Chrism used at Chrismation and the Antimension placed on the Holy Table are also said to be consecrated.

Protestant churches

Church buildings, chapels, altars, baptismal fonts, and Communion vessels are consecrated for the purpose of religious worship.

A person may be consecrated for a specific role within a religious hierarchy, or a person may consecrate his or her life in an act of devotion. In particular, the ordination of a bishop is often called a consecration. In churches that follow the doctrine of apostolic succession (the historical episcopate), the bishops who consecrate a new bishop are known as the consecrators and form an unbroken line of succession back to the Apostles. Those who take the vows of religious life are said to be living a consecrated life.

The Methodist Book of Worship for Church and Home (1965) contains a liturgies for "The Order for the Consecration of Bishops", "An Office for the Consecration of Deaconesses", "An Office for the Consecration of Directors of Christian Education and Directors of Music", as well as "An Office for the Opening or Consecrating of a Church Building" among others. [11] Among some religious groups there is a service of "deconsecration", to return a formerly consecrated place to secular purpose (for instance, if the building is to be sold or demolished). In the Church of England (Mother Church of the Anglican Communion), an order closing a church may remove the legal effects of consecration.

Hinduism

In most South Indian Hindu temples around the world, Kumbhabhishekam, or the temple's consecration ceremony, is done once every 12 years. It is usually done to purify the temple after a renovation or simply done to renew the purity of the temple. Hindus celebrate this event on the consecration date as the witnessing gives a good soul a thousand "punya", or good karma. [12]

Jainism

Panch Kalyanaka Pratishtha is a traditional Jain ceremony that consecrates one or more Jain Tirthankara icons with celebration of Panch Kalyanaka (five auspicious events). The ceremony is generally held when a new Jain temple is erected or new idols are installed in temples. [13] The consecration must be supervised by a religious authority, an Acharya or a Bhattaraka or a scholar authorized by them.[ citation needed ]

Mormonism

Mormonism is replete with consecration doctrine, primarily Christ's title of "The Anointed One" signifying his official, authorized and unique role as the savior of mankind from sin and death, and secondarily each individual's opportunity and ultimate responsibility to accept Jesus' will for their life and consecrate themselves to living thereby wholeheartedly. Book of Mormon examples include "sanctification cometh because of their yielding their hearts unto God" (Heleman 3:35) and "come unto Christ, who is the Holy One of Israel, and partake of his salvation, and the power of his redemption, ... and offer your whole souls as an offering unto him, and continue in fasting and praying, and endure to the end; and as the Lord liveth ye will be saved" (Omni 1:26).

See also

Notes

  1. "Definition of CONSECRATE". www.merriam-webster.com. Retrieved 2019-06-03.
  2. Jr, Robert E. Buswell; Jr, Donald S. Lopez (2013-11-24). The Princeton Dictionary of Buddhism. Princeton University Press. ISBN   9781400848058.
  3. "By a margin of 5:1 on the Vatican website, e.g." Retrieved 31 October 2013.
  4. See, e.g., the Vatican II decree Christus Dominus on the Pastoral Office of Bishop, which exclusively uses the term "consecration", rather than "ordination", to refer to the act by which a priest becomes a bishop.
  5. The Sacraments (Liturgical Press, 1987, ISBN   978-0-8146-1365-8), p. 211
  6. Apostolic Constitution Sponsa Christi – AAS 43 (1951), 16
  7. Sacrosanctum Concilium Archived February 21, 2008, at the Wayback Machine , 80
  8. "Wayback Machine" (PDF). web.archive.org. 2009-02-07. Retrieved 2019-06-03.
  9. Caeremoniale Episcoporum . chapters IX-XI
  10. Roman Missal , Ritual Masses for the Dedication of a Church and an Altar
  11. The Book of Worship for Church and Home: With Orders of Worship, Services for the Administration of the Sacraments and Other Aids to Worship According to the Usages of the Methodist Church. Methodist Publishing House. 1964. pp. 53–354. Retrieved 25 March 2017.
  12. "Account Suspended". modernhinduculture.com. Retrieved 2019-06-03.
  13. Jaini, Padmanabh S. (1998) [1979], The Jaina Path of Purification, Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass, ISBN   81-208-1578-5

Bibliography

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