St. Justin Martyr on Christian Liturgy

Between work and school, I have a lot on my plate right now, so I’m afraid I’m going to have to delay another serious post for a few days at least. I am kicking around some ideas, and may tinker on them some — but for today I’ll leave you with a worthy patristic quotation.

Here is St. Justin Martyr (100–165) again, describing the Christian liturgy of the Early Church in his First Apology (ca. 150) (Chapter 65):

Justin Martyr

St. Justin Martyr (André Thevet, Les Vrais Pourtraits et Vies Hommes Illustres, 1584) (Wikipedia)

But we, after we have thus washed him who has been convinced and has assented to our teaching, bring him to the place where those who are called brethren are assembled, in order that we may offer hearty prayers in common for ourselves and for the baptized [illuminated] person, and for all others in every place, that we may be counted worthy, now that we have learned the truth, by our works also to be found good citizens and keepers of the commandments, so that we may be saved with an everlasting salvation. Having ended the prayers, we salute one another with a kiss. There is then brought to the president [i.e. he presiding] of the brethren bread and a cup of wine mixed with water; and he taking them, gives praise and glory to the Father of the universe, through the name of the Son and of the Holy Ghost, and offers thanks at considerable length for our being counted worthy to receive these things at His hands. And when he has concluded the prayers and thanksgivings, all the people present express their assent by saying Amen. This word Amen answers in the Hebrew language to γένοιτο [so be it]. And when the president has given thanks, and all the people have expressed their assent, those who are called by us deacons give to each of those present to partake of the bread and wine mixed with water over which the thanksgiving was pronounced, and to those who are absent they carry away a portion.

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  1. Pingback: St. Justin Martyr on the Eucharist « The Lonely Pilgrim

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