You are here: Bombay Orthodox Diocese»Learn Orthodoxy»The  Consecration of the Holy Chrism (Mooron) in Malankara

The  Consecration of the Holy Chrism (Mooron) in Malankara

His_Holiness_blessing_the_ingredients_of_H._MyronIt was in the year 2009, April, 3rd, the Consecration of the Holy Chrism (Holy Mooron) was held in Malankara Church, by  His Holiness Moran Mar Baselios Marthoma Didimos I, the Catholicos of the East and Malankara Metropolitan. It was  held at Devalokam Aramana Chapel, at the Head Quarters of Malankara Orthodox Church. Besides His Holiness, all their Graces the Metropolitans  participated in the service. 12 specially deputed priests, 12 Full Deacons, and 12 Sub Deacons  assisted them in the service.

Given below a list of Myron Koodasha held in Malankara.

SL.No Year Chief Celebrant Venue
1.         1876   Patriarch Mar Ignatius Patros III Marthoman Church, Mulanthuruthy
2.        1911 Patriarch Mar Ignatius Abdulla II Marthoman Church, Mulanthuruthy
3.        1932 Catholicos Mar Baselios Geevarghese II Old seminary Chapel, Kottayam
4.        1951 Catholicos Mar Baselios Geevarghese II Old seminary Chapel, Kottayam
5.        1967 Catholicos Mar Baselios Augen I Old seminary Chapel, Kottayam
6.        1977 Catholicos Marthoma Mathews I Old seminary Chapel, Kottayam
7.        1988 Catholicos Marthoma Mathews I Old seminary Chapel, Kottayam
8.        1999 Catholicos Marthoma Mathews II Develokam Aramana Chapel, Kottayam
9.        2009 Catholicos Marthoma Didimos I Develokam Aramana Chapel, Kottayam

 

IMG_2162_1For the preparation of the Holy Chrism, either His Holiness the Patriarch or His Holiness the Catholicose will be the chief celebrant. The Holy Chrism is prepared by mixing olive oil with more than ten types of fragrant materials are mixed in a certain proportion. A Metropolitan will be spending time in special prayers and meditation for 40 days prior to the main day of consecration. His Holiness Pathros III was the chief celebrant for the consecration of Holy Mooron at Mulanthuruthy in 1876. H.H. Abdullah II Patriarch was the Chief celebrant of the Mooron Koodasa held at Mulanthuruthy in 1911. H.H. Moran Mar Baselios Geevarghese II, Catholicose was the chief celebrant for the preparation held at Old Seminary in 1932 and 1951. H.H. Moran Mar Baselios Augen I, Catholicose was the chief celebrant of the preparation held at Old Seminary in 1967. His Holiness Moran Mar Baselios Marthoma Mathews I Catholicose was the chief celebrant of the preparation held at Old Seminary in 1977 and at Devalokam Aramana Chapel in 1988. H. H. Moran Mar Baselios Marthoma Mathews II was the chief celebrant of the preparation held at Devalokam Aramana Chapel in 1998. In substance Holy Mooron is like perfumed oil. In all Orthodox Churches Holy Chrism (Mooron) which literally means perfumed oil, is administered along with the Holy Baptism. The anointment of the Holy Mooron is considered as the anointment of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Mooron is used to consecrate the Church buildings, including the altar and the Tablaitos (Portable altars).

Ingredients and preparation of Holy Mooron (Holy Chrism)

 


The olive oil the main ingredient itself is prepared with much care and attention, if not purchased. These days we buy the virgin olive oil. In olden days the olive was prepared after special selection of the seeds and following certain formalities with utmost attention.
CinnamonAs soon as the olive oil is ready, the ingredients like cinnamon (1/8 portion of the Olive oil), Nard (Jatamansi) (3/20 portion of the Olive oil), Nutmeg (1/20 portion of the olive oil), Saffron (1/20 portion of olive oil), Storax (½ portion of the olive oil), Clove (1/20 portion of the olive oil), Dry Ginger (1/20 portion of the olive oil), Black Pepper (1/20 portion of the olive oil) and Balsam Peru (Half portion of the olive oil) will be taken in the exact proportions. Among these Nard (Jatamansi), Cinnamon, Nutmeg, Clove, Dry Ginger and black Pepper are locally available and they will be powdered nicely after the needy warming up. Jatamansi (Nard) is a local medicine, which has a tail like thing as that of the squirrel, having the same color of the squirrel’s tail. Olive oil of good quality, Storax, Saffron and Balsam Peru are usually imported from the Middle East. Storax is a gum like thing usually taken from a tree “Styrax”. It is in ivory color and is a semi loose compound.

Clove
IMG_2104_1

When it is heated, we will get loose liquid. The Holy Mooron will be prepared in big glass jars. The jars will be completely covered with coir systematically to avoid breakage. The powder of the six local ingredients will be put into the jars equally. And olive oil will be poured into the jars and the powder will be mixed into the oil. The oil and the mixture in a jar will be up to the 3/4th portion of the jar and ¼ portion of the jar will be left free for boiling of the substance. The number of jars will be decided in accordance to the quantity to be prepared. As soon as the powder and the oil are poured into the jars, they will be kept in the hanging position on strong iron rods above the big stainless/brass vessels. ¾ portion of the vessel will be filled with water, while the jar will be immersed in the water in it. Then only the vessels will be kept on the fire grate. Saffron will not get dissolved in olive oil so easily. So usually saffron will be dissolved in pure water and the liquid will be made highly concentrated. Balsam peru is clear and red in color. If a small drop is taken on a needle and shown to burning light, it will produce extra shining light. Pure Balsam will remain sink in the water and it will produce bright light when shown to the burning light. On this basis the quality of the Balsam is identified. As soon as the powder is mixed in the olive oil, the concentrated saffron will also mixed in the proper proportion in the jars. When the water in the stainless steel/brass vessel will be boiled, the jars will be kept open. Whenever more quantity is to be produced, more number of vessels, jars and proportionate quantity of the ingredients are to be arranged. After boiling the water in the vessel for three hours continuously storax will be added in the due proportion into the jars. Again the same water is to be boiled for one more hour. After this process, the water in the vessel is to be allowed to cool down. In due course of time the temperature of the jar will also get down. When the jar will get cooled, it could be removed from the vessel. Again the substance in the jar is to be stirred well with a metal rod. The mixture of olive oil and the ingredients will be transferred to bid clean vessels with wide openings. From there perfumed oil will be transferred to the bottles meant for the consecration.

NardThe perfumed oil has to be prepared at least two weeks before the consecration. This is the usual practice and teaching of our Church Fathers. Interpretation of the preparation of the Holy Chrism (Mooron) When the ingredients are mixed together and processed as mentioned above and finally Storax is added to it, we get the final mixture of the Holy oil. This represents the manhood incarnated from the Virgin Mother of God. When Balsam is added to it during the consecration process, it symbolizes the Godliness of our Savior. When the both are mixed together, it becomes the personality of our Lord in which manhood and Godhood were mixed together as inseparable. When the prayers for the indwelling of the Holy Spirit would be recited and prayed in awe feeling, it symbolizes the Holy Spirit indwelled in the divine manhood of Lord Jesus.IMG_2105_1

IMG_2149_1When the Holy oil is utilized for anointing, Holy Spirit transfers the graces and blessings from the divine manhood of the Savior to the one who is anointed. This is what is happening during the Holy Baptism, Anointing of the Holy Mooron, Consecration of the Church buildings, including the Altars and the Tablets. In such events blessings ideal for each occasion will be granted. Above all the blessings of the Holy Spirit, especially the co-existence of the Holy Spirit in us will be granted in addition to the graces and fruits of the Holy Spirit. Long time back Maundy Thursday was considered as the ideal day for the consecration of the Holy Mooron. There is no doubt about the great Lenten season as the most ideal time for the preparation of the Holy Chrism. We have opted the 40th Friday as the most convenient day for it. The chief celebrant and the deputed assistants for the purpose could spend the time in meditation, special prayers, fasting etc. Preparation and processing of the ingredients are performed by specially deputed priests in the presence and blessings of the chief celebrant. The required Holy oil will be processed well in advance. The vessels required for the consecration, bottles for sharing the Holy Chrism, Tablitos, Sosaffos, Marvahasas (Fans), censors, etc are to be arranged well in advance. Twelve Priests to carry censors, twelve Full Deacons to carry Marvahasas, twelve sub Deacons to carry the lighted candles and one Arkadayakon (Arch Deacon) to announce the exhortations in between the consecration, will be appointed for the service in advance. More priests are to be deputed for the other needy services during the consecration. All of them will have their vestments in complete. All their Graces the Metropolitans will assist His Holiness during the consecration having their canonical vestments. Special training will be given to the choir (including Metropolitans, Priests, Deacons and the selected laity) so that the hymns, prayers and other sayings could be recited as three groups. The first group will remain inside the sanctuary with the chief celebrant and the second at the entrance of the sanctuary, and the third group at the Beema in the centre of the Church. This type of arrangement is needed for the first portion of the consecration. For the procession during the consecration, a Kubto (a tent like thing with four poles) will be prepared in which the chief celebrant will move and during the procession, the chief celebrant will be covered from top to bottom) all the four sides and top will be covered with colored cloth and four poles will be carried by priests during the procession.GingerNutmegPepperSaffron_CrocusIMG_2195_1