Matrimony in the Nazarani Rite
Matrimony According to the Nazarani Rite by Hadrian Mar Elijah Bar Israel
|Author||Hadrian Mar Elijah Bar Israel|
|Translator||Hadrian Mar Elijah Bar Israel|
|Cover artist||Hadrian Mar Elijah Bar Israel|
|Published||September 19, 2014|
|The Aramaic Service of Holy Matrimony is maybe the most beautiful of any such service in the world, and it is therefore our pleasure to offer it here in English translation. Carefully transcribed from over twenty Aramaic and Syriac manuscripts and arranged in a way that is familiar to modern churchgoers; this is the most ancient, authentic and beautiful marriage service ever presented in the English language.|
As well as being one of the most epic and beautiful sacraments in which anyone might participate, the mystery of Holy Matrimony is central to the building of the family, and the cornerstone of righteous living.
Love is sacrifice - the giving up of parts of the self in order to unify oneself with another. They are united through the grace of the Holy Spirit into one body. "And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man. Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh. And they were both naked the man and the wife, and they were not ashamed." marriage is honorable in all things, and the bed undefiled, for the union of man and woman together is God's plan.
“In this same way husbands ought to love and protect their wives as they do their own bodies. He who loves his own body, his wife does love. For no one has ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, such does the Lord love the Church.” There have been marriage ceremonies ever since man was first Created by God. Ever since then there have been immutable aspects that play a part in marriage, such as love and agreement.
Such union of the two souls into one, should seek to mirror on Earth, the sacred mystery that exists between God and His Holy Bride, the church. For the “Messiah loved the church and gave Himself for her, that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by bathing her in water, that He might present her to himself in all splendor, not having any spot or wrinkle, or any such thing, but that she may be holy and unblemished.”
The mystery of marriage is an estate blessed by God, and hence a holy one for Christian living, whereby two souls are bound together by the blessing of the church, to grow in mutual love, and thereby to live in harmony as one, and to evolve together in mutual respect. Therefore the gospels say:
Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.
It is also the estate wherein a couple may be entrusted with the care of other evolving souls, their children, and hence should never be entered into lightly. Since the raising of children requires a whole community. As Nazarani, we teach that family as the highest form of the spiritual life, taking precedence over even monasticism and the priesthood - for even a priest takes off his wedding ring when he approaches the Altar in order to serve the Divine Offering.
Marriage is an equality: For God took Eve from Adam’s side, not from his head. If God had taken Eve from Adam’s head, then we would know that the woman was above the man. And God did not take Eve from Adam’s foot. For if He had taken Eve from Adam’s foot, then we would know that God intended women to be beneath the man. Instead God chose to make woman from the side of man, and place her together with him in Paradise. Saint Paul calls on Christian couples to subject themselves one unto the other in fear of God.
Whereas the other sacraments are administered by the Priesthood, the minister of Holy Matrimony is the couple themselves. It is their vows, and their covenants that they make one unto the other, before God as covenants for life, and before man as their witnesses, that make the marriage sacred, and promise to keep it until death. The Officiant is in attendance to bless the union of their souls together in the name of Holy Mother Church, which imbues the husband and wife the most powerful Grace of the Mystery, the acceptance by the Holy Spirit as a pair unified as one together.
Marriage is something that is meant to last a lifetime. The Sacraments do not work in a merely mechanical way, so that marriage, although a Sacrament, cannot be taken for granted. There are many considerations in making marriage work. Marriage like all other Sacramental rites demands a spiritual response by its recipients, before it is able to have an effect on the souls of the participants. This work requires prayer and self sacrifice.
Readings for the Service of Matrimony
|Evening Prayer||John 15:9-12|
|Covenant Prayer||John 2:1-11|
|Old Testament||Genesis 2:4-9, 18-24|
|Song of Solomon||2:10-13,8: 6-7|
|General Epistle||1st John 4:7-16|
|Pauline Epistle||Ephesians 5:21-33|
|1st Corinthians 13:1-7|
|Gospel Reading||Matthew 7:21, 24-29,19:1-12|
|Mark 10:6-9, 13-16|
- Matthew 19:6, Mark 10:9