Original Research - Special Collection: Romania

The orthodox liturgical year and its theological structure

Dan A. Streza
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies | Vol 77, No 4 | a6742 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v77i4.6742 | © 2021 Dan A. Streza | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 14 April 2021 | Published: 02 September 2021

About the author(s)

Dan A. Streza, Department of Orthodox Theology, Faculty of Orthodox Theology, Lucian Blaga University of Sibiu, Sibiu, Romania; Department of Systematic and Historical Theology, Faculty of Theology and Religion, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, South Africa


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Abstract

The concept of ‘liturgical year’ indicates a reference to the meaning of the measuring units of civil time, and especially to the cosmic entities that determine the general rhythm of time – the sun and the moon. Interestingly, the liturgical time depends both on the structure of civil time, and, on the two discrete systems of the solar and lunar cycles, which have always been underpinnings of time measuring. The special importance and influence that the cosmical rhythms exert on the entire human life are also felt in the structure and theology of the liturgical time, where it signals the attempt to merge and reconcile the cosmical solar and lunar cycles within the liturgical year. This leads to a unique theology, expressing the powerful synthesis of the variability of the lunar cycle compared to the structure of the solar year’s fixed dates.

Contribution: This research reveals the unique orthodox perspective on both civil and liturgical time, expressing their profound theological meaning, as a conscious, permanent reflection upon the mysterious, yet real, presence of Christ in the divine services of the Church.


Keywords

liturgical time; orthodoxy; liturgics; anthropology; feast; calendar; Chronos; Kairos

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