Ex Fonte: Journal of Ecumenical Studies in Liturgy
As a new journal for liturgical studies, Ex Fonte is an international and ecumenically oriented platform for a dialogue between liturgical history and liturgical theology. The multifaceted historical dimensions of Christian worship enrich a present-day liturgical-theological discussion. In this way, the journal accentuates and affirms the contribution of liturgical studies to a renewal of ecumenical efforts. For more information, or to read the latest, visit exfonte.org.
Welcome to Ex Fonte!
Florian Wegscheider, Elias Haslwanter
“All you have created rightly gives you praise”:
Re-thinking Liturgical Studies, Re-rooting Worship in Creation
This essay challenges interpretations of Christian worship that have constricted the understanding of who worships in starkly anthropocentric ways. In conversation with some hitherto largely ignored early Christian ritual texts, the essay seeks to return liturgical studies to an earlier, arguably more foundational and primordial interpretation of worship, one that re-roots worship in principio, i.e., in God’s primordial activity in creation. Recovering this understanding of worship is driven by contemporary realities, namely life (and worship) on a planet now clearly in peril, a peril that is anthropogenic no less.
From Mosul to Turfan:
The ḥūḏrā in the Liturgy of the Assyrian Church of the East
A Survey of its Historical Development
and its Liturgical Anomalies at Turfan
Catholicos-Patriarch Mar Awa Royel III
The “Upper Monastery” at Mosul was an important centre of liturgical development and reform of the Assyrian Church of the East. There, the liturgical book called ḥūḏrā received its form as it is presently known. After a discussion of the genesis of the ḥūḏrā in general, this paper examines fragments found in Turfan, China, which provide valuable insights into the spiritual and liturgical richness that shaped the Rite of the Assyrian Church of East. These fragments are particularly noteworthy in light of Anton Baumstark’s assumption that mission stations far from the place of origin (such as Turfan) tend to preserve older customs. Therefore, an exploration of these fragments will allow for a fuller understanding and appreciation of this rite and its development.
Der liturgische Vorsteherdienst im monastischen Kontext:
Gleichzeitig ein Beitrag zum Verständnis des Abtsamtes
The monastic liturgy of the Regula Benedicti was realized within two poles: the Divine Office and the Eucharist. The former grows out of the community itself and is constitutive of it, while the Eucharist is externally related to it. The understanding of the role of the abbot is not sacramental, but charismatic. The role of the abbot finds its value in a horizontal hierarchy, as first among equals. The liturgical-sacramental substratum realised in the Divine Office is that of baptism, which aims at the unity of liturgy and life in the sense of a “liturgical” lex vivendi or form of life in and from the liturgy.
Theology and Liturgy as Life in Community and Shared Spirituality
Theology and Liturgy are two important dimensions of the Christian faith. Since faith can only be thought of in a holistic way, both Theology and Liturgy must have a place in the lives of the faithful. Theology as a reflection on faith is not a science that uses only methods of empirical sciences, but is first and foremost the experience of communication with God. The fundamental form of communication with God, however, is Liturgy. Therefore, Theology as well as Liturgy must always be practised in community as “church”. The Ecumenical Institute at Bossey aims at such a holistic approach of Theology, Liturgy and life in communion. This per-spective has implications for the upcoming 11th Assembly of the World Council of Churches in Karlsruhe, Germany.
The Barcelona Papyrus and the Opening Dialogue of the Christian Anaphora: Resituating Egyptian Scribal Practices Amid Scholarly Anaphoral Re-constructions
Inscribed within the liturgical portions of the manuscript commonly known as the “Barcelona Papyrus” (MS P.Monts.Roca Inv. 128–178, 292, and 338) are various acclamations consisting of Εἷς Θεός, among others. Previous scholars studying these phrases have argued that they represent a part of the liturgical formulary, generally replacing the staple opening of the anaphoral dialogue of the celebrant’s “The Lord be with you”, and the congregational response, “And with your spirit”. In this paper, I demonstrate, through a detailed paleographical analysis of the phrase Εἷς Θεός with its various appendages in the liturgical portions of the said manuscript, and in comparison to other literary and material, visual cultural sources within Egyptian Christian customs, that these invocations are scribal practices rather than part of the pronounced prayers and thus are “marginalia” that function externally to the liturgical formulary.
Warum Kartäuserinnen Stola tragen:
Zur Übergabe der Stola an Kartäusernonnen bei der Jungfrauenweihe nach der Pratique de la bénédiction et consécration des Vierges von 1699 und dem Rituel Cartusien de Consécration des Vierges von 1986
Nuns of the Carthusian Order receive a stole at their consecration as virgins. Initially, this rite was practiced only in individual houses, but in 1699 it was extended to the entire Order, and this remains the case even today. Since the liturgical reform following the Second Vatican Council, Carthusian nuns even wear the stole at certain liturgical functions. This article presents the rite of reception of the stole at the consecration of virgins according to the Pratique de la bénédiction et consécration des Vierges of 1699, which was used in the Carthusian Order until the liturgical reform, as well as the Rituel Cartusien de Consécration des Vierges of 1986, which is used today. It attempts to interpret the rite in light of the way of life of the Carthusian nuns, and to propose a model of diaconal service for women.
A Tradition of Invention:
Rites and rituals surrounding the death and funeral of Queen Elizabeth II
Queen Elizabeth II died on 8 September 2022. Her death, after a reign of over 70 years, set in motion a series of events, political and constitutional, religious and ceremonial, which both conformed to a long-established pattern while also introducing new elements. The death of the monarch, the proclamation of the successor, and the mourning and funeral rites are, as they always have been, vehicles for more than the bare protocol itself contains. Choices are made, even – and perhaps especially – when the desired impression is one of continuity; the very presentation of these events requires decisions to be taken and plans to be made which project a certain aura, and attempt to direct the ways in which they are received. This article places those rites in their liturgical and historical context, and asks what meaning can be discerned in the liturgical and other choices made.
Propettive ecumeniche nella Sacrosanctum Concilium
The present contribution provides some reflections on the path marked out by the Second Vatican Ecumenical Council towards the visible unity of the Church of Christ, starting from the main outlines indicated in the very first document that was promulgated: Sacrosanctum Concilium. The intimate connection between Liturgy and Ecumenism is evident from the very beginning of this document: “to foster whatever can promote union among all who believe in Christ; to strengthen whatever can help to call all mankind into the Church’s fold. Accordingly, it [the Council] sees particularly cogent reasons for undertaking the reform and promotion of the liturgy” (SC 1). For this reason, the article sets out the principles out-lined in the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy that could favor this reform and argues that it is necessary to maintain a lively dialogue with those principles, so that the Liturgy can manifest itself as a place of encounter, culmen et fons (SC 10), for all Christian Churches.