The West Syriac Rite or West Aramean Rite, also called Syro-Antiochian Rite, is an Eastern Christian liturgical rite that uses the Divine Liturgy of Saint James in the West Syriac dialect. It is one of two main liturgical rites of Syriac Christianity. It is chiefly practiced in the Syriac Orthodox Church and churches related to or descended from it. It is part of the liturgical family known as the Antiochian Rite, which originated in the ancient Patriarchate of Antioch. It has more anaphoras than any other rite.
The rite is practised in the Syriac Orthodox Church, an Oriental Orthodox body; the Syriac Catholic Church, an Eastern Catholic Church in full communion with the Holy See; to a great extent in the Maronite Catholic Church, another Eastern Catholic body. A regional variant, the Malankara Rite, developed in the Malankara Church of India, and is still practised in its descendant churches.
Versions of the West Syriac Rite are currently used by (the Indian churches use the Malankara Rite):
The oldest known form of the Antiochene Rite is in Greek which is apparently its original language. The many Greek terms that remain in the Syriac form suggest that this is derived from Greek. The version must have been made very early, evidently before the schism occasioned by the Council of Chalcedon, before the influence of Constantinople had begun. No doubt as soon as Christian communities arose in the rural areas of Roman Syria, the prayers which in the cities (Antioch, Jerusalem, etc.) were said in Greek, were, as a matter of course, translated into the local vernacular for the people's use.
Early sources, such as Peregrinatio Silviae describe the services at Jerusalem as being in Greek; but the lessons, first read in Greek, are then translated into Syriac. As long as all Western Syria was one communion, the country dioceses followed the rite of the patriarch at Antioch, only changing the language. Modifications adopted at Antioch in Greek were copied in Syriac by those who said their prayers in the national tongue. This point is important because the Syriac Liturgy (in its fundamental form) already contains all the changes brought to Antioch from Jerusalem. It is not the older pure Antiochene Rite, but the later Rite of Jerusalem-Antioch. The Liturgy of St. James, for example, prays first not for the Church of Antioch, but "for the holy Sion, the mother of all churches", that is, Jerusalem. (Brightman, pp. 89–90). The fact that both the Syriac and the Byzantine Orthodox Churches have the Jerusalem-Antiochene Liturgy is the chief proof that this had supplanted the older Antiochene use before the schism of the 5th century.
The earliest extant Syriac documents come from about the end of the 5th century. They contain valuable information about local forms of the Rite of Antioch-Jerusalem. The Syriac Orthodox Church kept a version of this rite which is obviously a local variant. Its scheme and most of its prayers correspond to those of the Greek St. James; but it has amplifications and omissions such as is found in all local forms of early rites. It seems too that the Syriac Church made some modifications after the schism. This is certainly the case at one point, that of the Trisagion.
One Syriac writer is James of Edessa (d. 708), who wrote a letter to a priest Thomas comparing the Syriac Liturgy with that of Egypt. This letter is an exceedingly valuable and really critical discussion of the rite. A number of later Syriac writers followed James of Edessa. On the whole this church produced the first scientific students of liturgy. Benjamin of Edessa (period unknown), Lazarus bar Sabhetha of Bagdad (ninth century), Moses bar Kephas of Mosul (d. 903), Dionysuis bar Salibhi of Amida (d. 1171) wrote valuable commentaries on this Rite. In the eighth and ninth centuries a controversy concerning the prayer at the Fraction produced much liturgical literature. The chronicle of a Syriac prelate, Patriarch Michael the Great, (d. 1199) discusses the question and supplies valuable contemporary documents.
The oldest West Syriac liturgy extant is the one ascribed, as in its Greek form, to Saint James, "the brother of the Lord". It is in the dialect of Edessa. The pro-anaphoral part of this is the Ordo communis to which the other later Anaphoras are joined.
This follows the Greek St. James with these differences:
In this Syriac Liturgy many Greek forms remain, e.g. Stomen kalos, Kyrie eleison, Sophia, Proschomen. Renaudot gives also a second form of the Ordo communis (II, 12–28) with many variants.
To the Ordo communis, the Syriac Church has added a very great number of alternative Anaphoras, many of which have not been published. These Anaphoras are ascribed to all manner of people; they were composed at very different periods. One explanation of their attribution to various saints is that they were originally used on their feasts.
Brightman (pp. lviii–lix) mentions 64 Liturgies as known, at least by name. Notes of this bewildering number of Anaphoras will be found after each in Renaudot. In most cases all he can say is that he knows nothing of the real author; often the names affixed are otherwise unknown. Many Anaphoras are obviously quite late, inflated with long prayers and rhetorical, expressions, many contain miaphysite ideas, some are insufficient at the consecration so as to be invalid. Baumstark (Die Messe im Morgenland, 44–46) thinks the Anaphora of St Ignatius most important, as containing parts of the old pure Antiochene Rite. He considers that many attributions to later miaphysite authors may be correct, that the Liturgy of Ignatius of Antioch (Joseph Ibn Wahib; d. 1304) is the latest. Most of these Anaphoras have now fallen into disuse.
There is an Armenian version (shortened) of the Syriac St James. The Liturgy is said in Syriac with (since the 15th century) many Arabic substitutions in the lessons and proanaphoral prayers. The Lectionary and Diaconicum have not been published and are badly known. The vestments correspond almost exactly to those of the Byzantine Orthodox, except that the bishop wears a Latinized mitre. The Calendar has few feasts. It follows in its main lines the older form of Antioch, observed also by the Nestorians, which is the basis of the Byzantine Calendar. Feasts are divided into three classes of dignity. Wednesday and Friday are fast-days. The Divine Office consists of Vespers, Compline, Nocturns, Lauds, Terce, Sext, and None, or rather of hours that correspond to these among Latins. Vespers always belongs to the following day. The great part of this consists of long poems composed for the purpose, like the Byzantine odes. Baptism is performed by immersion; the priest confirms at once with chrism blessed by the patriarch. Communion is administered under both kinds; the sick are anointed with oil blessed by a priest — the ideal is to have seven priests to administer it. The orders are bishop, priest, deacon, subdeacon, lector, and singer. There are many chorepiscopi, not ordained bishop. It will be seen, then, that the relatively small Syriac Church has followed much the same line of development in its rites as its Byzantine neighbours.
The Syriac Catholics, that is, those in communion with Rome, use the same rite as the Syriac Orthodox, but perhaps in a more organized manner. There is not much that can be called Romanizing in their books; but they have the advantage of well-arranged, well-edited, and well-printed books. The most prominent early modern and modern students of the West Syriac Rite (the Assemani, Renaudot, etc.) have been Catholic. Their knowledge and Western standards of scholarship in general are advantages from which the Syriac Catholics profit. Of the manifold Syriac Anaphoras, the Catholics use seven only — those of St James, St John, St Peter, St Chrysostom, St Xystus, St Matthew, and St Basil. That of St Xystus is attached to the Ordo communis in their official book; that of St John is said on the chief feasts. The lessons only are in Arabic. It was inevitable that the Syriac Liturgies, coming from miaphysite sources, should be examined at Rome before they are allowed to Syriac Catholics, but the revisers made very few changes. Out of the mass of anaphoras they chose those believed to be the oldest and purest, leaving out the long series of later ones that they regarded as unorthodox, or even invalid. In the seven kept for Syriac Catholic use what alterations have been made are chiefly the omission of redundant prayers, and the simplication of confused parts in which the Diaconicum and the Euchologion had become mixed together. The only substantive change is the omission of the clause: "Who was crucified for us" in the Trisagion. There is no suspicion of modifying in the direction of the Roman Rite. The other books of the Catholics — Diaconicum, officebook, and ritual — are edited at Rome, Beirut, and the Patriarchal press Sharfé; they are considerably the most accessible, the best-arranged books in which to study this rite.
Arethusa (or Aretusa) is a Roman Catholic titular see in the former Roman province of Syria, near Apameia. The modern, Arabic name of the site is Al-Rastan.
It has been used as a titular episcopal see in both the Roman Rite and the West Syriac Rite, but is now vacant in both.Catholicos
Catholicos, plural Catholicoi, is a title used for the head of certain churches in some Eastern Christian traditions. The title implies autocephaly and in some cases it is the title of the head of an autonomous church. The word comes from ancient Greek καθολικός, pl. καθολικοί, derived from καθ' ὅλου (kath'olou, "generally") from κατά (kata, "down") and ὅλος (holos, "whole"), meaning "concerning the whole, universal, general"; it originally designated a financial or civil office in the Roman Empire. The name of the Catholic Church comes from the same word.
The Church of the East, some Oriental Orthodox, Eastern Orthodox churches, and some Eastern Catholic Churches historically use this title; for example the Armenian Apostolic Church and the Georgian Orthodox Church. In the Church of the East, the title was given to the church's head, the Patriarch of the Church of the East. It is still used in two successor churches, the Assyrian Church of the East and the Ancient Church of the East, the heads of which are known as Catholicos-Patriarchs. In the Armenian Church there are two catholicoi: the supreme catholicos of Ejmiadzin and the catholicos of Cilicia. The title Catholicos-Patriarch is also used by the primate of the Armenian Catholic Church. In India, head of Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church, an autocephalous Oriental Orthodox Church; and regional head of Malankara Jacobite Syrian Orthodox Church, an autonomous Church within Syriac Orthodox Church, use this title. The first is known as Catholicos of the East and the latter as Catholicos of India.Christianity in Kerala
Christianity is the third-most practised religion in Kerala, accounting for 18% of the population according to the Indian census. Although a minority, the Christian population of Kerala is proportionally much larger than that of India as a whole. A significant portion of the Indian Christian population resides in the state.Gazireh (Turkey)
Gazireh is a town in Turkish Kurdistan, double former eparchy (Eastern Catholic diocese) (Chaldean Rite and West Syriac Rite) and former Latin Independent mission.Holy Qurbana
The Holy Qurbana or Holy Qurbono (ܩܘܪܒܢܐ ܩܕܝܫܐ qurbānā qadišā in Eastern Syriac, pronounced qurbono qadisho in Western Syriac), the "Holy Offering" or "Holy Sacrifice", refers to the Eucharist as celebrated in Syriac Christianity. This includes various Oriental Orthodox and Eastern Catholic churches, including the Syriac Orthodox Church based in Syria, the Coptic Orthodox Church based in Egypt, the Maronite Catholic Church based in Lebanon, the Syriac Catholic Church based in Lebanon, the Syro-Malabar Catholic Church based in India, the Chaldean Catholic Church based in Iraq, the Ethiopian Orthodox Church based in Ethiopia, the Jacobite Syrian Orthodox Church based in India (an archbishopric of the Syriac Orthodox Church), and the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church based in India. The East Syriac Rite is used in the Assyrian Church of the East based in Iraq as well, however they are not in official communion with Oriental Orthodoxy, and they are not a part of the Eastern Catholic churches.
The main Anaphora of the East Syriac tradition is the Holy Qurbana of Saints Addai and Mari, while that of the West Syriac tradition is the Divine Liturgy of Saint James.Holy See of the East
Holy See of the East is an honorary name of the sees of a number of Christian churches in the Middle East and India.
The Head & Father of the Marthoma Nazrani Church and the Gate of All India is commonly known as the successor to the Holy Apostolic See of St. Thomas. The Seat of the Patriarchs of the Chaldean Catholic Church and the Nestorian Catholicos-Patriarchs which emerged from the Ancient Church of the East is also a part of the Holy See of the East.
The group of Saint Thomas Christians who left the Church of the East after the Coonan Cross Oath and joined the Church of Antioch also claims the title of the Holy See of the East, since St. Thomas is also the founder of this churches. The Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church which evolved out of the Malankara Church as a part of the Oriental Orthodox Churches claims the title of the Catholicos of the East and the Holy Apostolic See of St. Thomas. The Malankara Syrian Catholic Church which evolved from the Malankara Church as a part of the Eastern Catholic Church in full communion with the Holy See of Rome also claims the title of the Catholicos and the Holy Apostolic See of St. Thomas.Malabar Independent Syrian Church
The Malabar Independent Syrian Church, also known as the Thozhiyur Church, is a Independent Oriental Orthodox Christian church centred in Kerala, India. It is one of the churches of the Saint Thomas Christian community, which traces its origins to the evangelical activity of Thomas the Apostle in the 1st century.
The church split from the main body of India's Malankara Church in 1772. The church obtained its current name after a court verdict in 1862; although the church is independent under the Malankara umbrella, the church faith and traditions are strictly Oriental Orthodox, adhering to the West Syriac Rite and consistently using western Syriac and Malayalam during the Holy Qurbana (Qurbono Qadisho).
Today the church remains small, with about 35,000 members, and maintains good relations with the other Malankara churches.Malankara Rite
The Malankara Rite is the form of the West Syriac liturgical rite practiced by several churches of the Saint Thomas Christian community in Kerala, India. West Syriac liturgy was brought to India by the Syriac Orthodox Bishop of Jerusalem, Gregorios Abdal Jaleel, in 1665; in the following decades the Malankara Rite emerged as the liturgy of the Malankara Church, one of the two churches that evolved from the split in the Saint Thomas Christian community in the 17th century. Today it is practiced by the various churches that descend from the Malankara Church, namely the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church (Indian Orthodox Church), the Jacobite Syrian Christian Church, the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church, the Malabar Independent Syrian Church, and the Mar Thoma Syrian Church.Maronite Cypriots
The Maronites in Cyprus are members of the Maronite Catholic Archeparchy of Cyprus whose ancestors migrated from present-day Lebanon during the Middle Ages. They traditionally speak their own variety of Arabic in addition to Greek. As Eastern Catholics of the West Syriac Rite, they are in full communion with the Catholic Church of Rome.
As of 2018 the Archbishop of Cyprus was Youssef Soueif, born in Chekka, Lebanon on 14 July 1962. He was ordained Archbishop on 6 December 2008 at the Basilica of Our Lady of Lebanon-Harissa by the Patriarch Cardinal Nasrallah Boutros Sfeir. The Mass of Enthronement was held at the Maronite Cathedral of Our Lady of Graces in Nicosia, Cyprus on 21 December 2008. He succeeded the Emeritus Archbishop of Cyprus Boutros Gemayel, who lives in Lebanon.Syriac
Syriac may refer to:
Syriac language, a dialect of Middle Aramaic
Syriac (Unicode block)
Neo-Aramaic languages also known as Syriac in most native vernaculars
Syriac Christianity, the churches using Syriac as their liturgical language
West Syriac Rite, liturgical rite of the Syriac Orthodox Church, and the Syriac Catholic Church
East Syriac Rite, liturgical rite of the Assyrian Church of the East, and the Chaldean Catholic Church
Assyrian people (Syriacs)
Suriyani Malayalam, dialect of Malayalam influenced by SyriacSyriac Catholic Apostolic Exarchate of Canada
The Syriac Catholic Apostolic Exarchate of Canada (informally Canada of the Syriacs) is an Apostolic exarchate (Eastern Catholic missionary pre-diocesan jurisdiction) of the Syriac Catholic Church sui iuris (West Syriac Rite in Syriac language) covering Canada.
It is exempt, i.e. directly subject to the Holy See (notably the Roman Congregation for the Oriental Churches), not part of any ecclesiastical province.Syriac Catholic Church
The Syriac Catholic Church (Classical Syriac: ܥܕܬܐ ܣܘܪܝܝܬܐ ܩܬܘܠܝܩܝܬܐ, translit. ʿĪṯo Suryayṯo Qaṯolīqayṯo), also known as Syriac Catholic Patriarchate of Antioch, is an Eastern Catholic Christian Church in the Levant that uses the West Syriac Rite liturgy and has many practices and rites in common with the Syriac Orthodox Church. Being one of the twenty-three Eastern Catholic Churches, the Syriac Catholic Church has full autonomy and is a self-governed sui iuris Church while it is in full communion with the Holy See of Rome. The Syriac Catholic Church traces its history to the earliest days of Christianity. After the Calcedonian Schism the Church of Antioch became part of Oriental Orthodoxy, and was known as the Syriac Orthodox Church, while a new Antiochian Patriarchate was established to fill its place by the churches which accepted the Council of Calcedon. The Syriac Orthodox Church came into full communion with the Holy See and the modern Syriac Orthodox Church is a result of those that did not want to join the Catholic Church. Therefore the Syriac Catholic Church is the continuation of the original Church of Antioch.
The Church is headed by Mor Ignatius Joseph III Younan, who has been the Patriarch since 2009. Its Patriarch of Antioch has the title of Patriarch of Antioch and all the East of the Syriacs. and resides in Beirut, Lebanon.
Jesuit and Capuchin missionaries began to work among the Syriac Orthodox in Aleppo in 1626. So many of them were received into communion with Rome in 1662, when the Patriarchate had fallen vacant, and the Catholic party was able to elect one of its own, Andrew Akijan, as Patriarch of the Syriac Church. This provoked a split in the community, and after Akijan’s death in 1677 two opposing patriarchs were elected, one being the uncle of the other, representing the two parties (one pro-Catholic, the other anti-Catholic). But when the Catholic Patriarch died in 1702, this very brief line of Catholic Patriarchs upon the Syriac Church's See of Antioch died out with him.
Later, in 1782, the Syriac Orthodox Holy Synod elected Metropolitan Michael Jarweh of Aleppo as Patriarch. Shortly after he was enthroned, he declared himself Catholic and in unity with the Pope of Rome. Since Jarweh there has been an unbroken succession of Syriac Catholic Patriarchs.Syriac Christianity
Syriac Christianity (Syriac: ܡܫܝܚܝܘܬܐ ܣܘܪܝܝܬܐ / Mšiḥāyuṯā Suryāyṯā) is the form of Eastern Christianity whose formative theological writings and traditional liturgy are expressed in the Syriac language.The Syriac language is a variety of Middle Aramaic that in an early form emerged in Edessa, Upper Mesopotamia in the first century AD. It is closely related to the Jewish Palestinian Aramaic spoken by Jesus. This relationship added to its prestige for Christians. The form of the language in use in Edessa predominated Christian writings and was accepted as the standard form, "a convenient vehicle for the spread of Christianity wherever there was a substrate of spoken Aramaic". The area where Syriac or Aramaic was spoken, an area of contact and conflict between the Roman Empire and the Sasanian Empire, extended from around Antioch in the west to Seleucia-Ctesiphon, the Sasanian capital, in the east and comprised the whole or parts of present-day Lebanon, Palestine/Israel, Syria, Turkey, Iraq and Iran.Syriac Rite
The term Syriac Rite or Syrian Rite may refer to:
West Syriac Rite, liturgical rite of the Syriac Orthodox Church, and the Syriac Catholic Church
East Syriac Rite, liturgical rite of the Assyrian Church of the East, and the Chaldean Catholic ChurchSyro-Malabar Catholic Church
The Syro-Malabar Catholic Church (Classical Syriac: ܥܸܕܬܵܐ ܩܵܬܘܿܠܝܼܩܝܼ ܕܡܲܠܲܒܵܪ ܣܘܼܪܝܵܝܵܐ Edta Qatholiqi D'Malabar Suryaya; Malayalam: മലബാറിലെ സുറിയാനി കത്തോലിക്ക സഭ Malabarile Suriyani catholika Sabha) or Church of Malabar Syrian Catholics is an Eastern Catholic Major Archiepiscopal Church based in Kerala, India. It is a sui iuris particular church in full communion with the Pope and the worldwide Catholic Church, with self-governance under the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches.
The Syro-Malabar Church is headed by the
Metropolitan and Gate of all India Mar Cardinal George Alencherry of the Archeparchy of Ernakulam-Angamaly in Kerala. The Church uses the Divine Liturgy of Saints Mar Addai and Mar Mari belonging to the East Syriac Rite, which dates back to 3rd century Edessa, as such it is a part of Syriac Christianity by liturgy and heritage. The name Syro-Malabar is coined from the words Syriac (referring to the East Syriac liturgy) and Malabar (the historical name for Kerala). The name has been in usage in official Vatican documents since the nineteenth century. As per Mar Paremmakkal Thoma Kathanar's travelogue Varthamanappusthakam (dated to 1790), the Church was known then as the Malankare Kaldaya Suriyani Sabha (Malankara Chaldean Syriac Church). The Church shares the same liturgy with the Chaldean Catholic Church based in Iraq and the Nestorian Chaldean Syrian Church based in Thrissur, Kerala, which is an archbishopric of the Assyrian Church of the East based in Iraq. The Syro-Malabar Church is the third-largest particular church (sui juris) in the Catholic Church (after the Latin or Roman Church and the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church).The Syro-Malabar Church is the largest of the "Nasrani" (St. Thomas Christians) denominations with over 4 million believers and traces its origins to the evangelistic activity of Thomas the Apostle in the 1st century. Syro-Malabar scholar and theologian Mar Placid Podipara describes the Church as "Catholic by faith, Indian by culture, and East Syriac/Oriental in liturgy." The Syro-Malabar Church members are predominantly of the Malayali ethnic group and speak Malayalam.The members of the Church are colloquially known in Kerala as Marthoma Nasranis and Malankara Nasrani. Following emigration of its members, eparchies have opened up in other parts of India and other countries due to facilitating the Malayali diaspora living in North America, Australia and the United Kingdom. Saint Alphonsa is the Church's first canonized saint, followed by Saint Kuriakose Chavara and Saint Euphrasia. It is one of the two Eastern Catholic churches in India, the other one being the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church which uses the West Syriac Rite.West Syriac
The term West Syriac or Western Syriac may refer to:
West Syriac Rite, liturgical rite of the Syriac Orthodox Church, and the Syriac Catholic Church.
West Syriac alphabet, western form of the Syriac alphabet
Western Syriac, the western dialect/pronunciation system of the Classical Syriac language.
Surayt/Turoyo, sometimes colloquially referred to as "Western (Neo-)Syriac".West Syriac Church
The term West Syriac Church or West Syriac church may refer to:
- with capital "C" in Church, any Church that uses the West Syriac Rite:
Syriac Orthodox Church, the Syriac Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch
Syro-Malankara Orthodox Church, uses Malankara variant of the West Syriac Rite
Syro-Malabar Independent Church, uses variant of the West Syriac Rite
Syriac Catholic Church, the Syriac Catholic Patriarchate of Antioch
Syro-Maronite Catholic Church, the Maronite Catholic Patriarchate of Antioch
Syro-Malankara Catholic Church, uses Malankara variant of the West Syriac Rite- with small "c" in church, church building belonging to any of the Churches that are using the West Syriac Rite.West Syriac liturgical rites
West Syriac liturgical rites, also known as West Syrian, Jacobite, or Antiochene liturgical rites, are the liturgical rites practiced by churches following the West Syriac tradition of Syriac Christianity. These rites developed out of the ancient Antiochene Rite of the Patriarchate of Antioch, adapting the old Greek liturgy into Syriac, the language of the Syrian countryside.West Syriac liturgies represent one of the major strains in Syriac Christianity, the other being the East Syriac Rite, the liturgy of the Church of the East and its descendants. Distinct West Syriac liturgies developed following the Council of Chalcedon (451), which largely divided the Christian community in Antioch into Melkites, who supported the Emperor and the Council and adopted the Byzantine Rite, and the non-Chalcedonians, who rejected the council and developed an independent liturgy – the West Syriac Rite. An independent West Syriac community that grew around the monastery of Saint Maron eventually developed into the Maronite Church, which uses its own Maronite Rite. A variant of the West Syriac Rite, the Malankara Rite, developed in the Malankara Church of India and is still used in its descendant churches.West Syrian
The term West Syrian or Western Syrian may refer to:
western parts of the modern state of Syria
western parts of historical region of Syria
West Syrian Rite, alternative term for the West Syriac Rite
West Syrian script, imprecise term for the West Syriac script
West Syrian dialects, imprecise term for the West Syriac dialects
|Other liturgical services|
of the faithful
|West Syriac, legacy of |
the Patriarchate of Antioch
Saint Thomas Christians
|East Syriac, legacy of|
the Church of the East
(the "Nestorian Church")
|Saint Thomas Christians,|
the Malankara Church