I thought it necessary to enlighten you as to the proper use and meaning of this great symbol of the office of the Bishop. I have corrected the article to reflect the church we serve. Many people still, after many years do not know the proper meaning and use of this great symbol. My brothers and sisters it is knowledge to know and to teach. I pray that I am of some help to you.
When a bishop is in his district, the crozier head is turned out, symbolizing his jurisdiction. When he is visiting another district, it is turned in, if he is involved in the worship service with another bishop.
The placement of the head of the crozier has to do with place not person. If the Bishop is in a possession he can hold it is his right hand, as he does not give blessings in procession. Please take note. The pastoral staff is carried in the Bishop’s left hand except in cases like a procession where he does not have to pronounce a blessing.
The bishop carries the pastoral staff in his own territory as a sign of his pastoral office, but any bishop who, with the consent of the district bishop, solemnly celebrates may use the pastoral staff. When several bishops are present at the same celebration, only the presiding bishop uses the pastoral staff. This is very important and noteworthy for current and aspiring office holders.
As a rule, the bishop holds the pastoral staff, its curved head turned away from himself and toward the people: as he walks in procession, listens to the gospel reading, and gives the sermon; also when receiving religious vows and promises or a profession of faith and when he bestows a blessing on persons, unless the blessing includes the laying on of hands. At this point the armour bearer if not, another Bishop must hold the staff with gloved hands. (He is not a Bishop and cannot hold the staff with his bare hand)
What’s a crozier?
A crosier (also spelled crozier) is a tall staff, or walking stick with a crook at the top, used by bishops at worship service. Because a staff was used by shepherds, it is symbolic of the bishop’s role as successor to Christ, the Good Shepherd.
The top of a crosier is often ornamented with carvings. A crosier may be made of wood or metal. A crosier is given to a bishop at his consecration. A newly consecrated bishop received the crosier “that he may govern and correct those below him or to offer support to the weakest of the weak.”
The bent or crooked top of a crosier symbolizes the bishop’s role as one who should draw in or attract souls to the ways of God. For that reason, when a bishop carries the crosier within his own district, the opening is turned outward. When he is outside his own district, the opening is turned inward. It is always carried in the bishop’s left hand.
What’s the proper term for “Bishop hat”?
The distinctive “bishop hat” is actually one type of mitre. A mitre is a tall, pointed ceremonial headpiece worn by Bishops, Cardinals, Archbishops and the Patriarch. Others who wear a mitre (such as some Apostle ) must have special Patriarchal permission. The term mitre comes from a Greek word (mitra) meaning “headband.” Although the exact history of the mitre is somewhat unclear, its shape and design have developed over time. Some version of it has been worn by bishops in the Church for at least 1,000 years. The current shape is created by two identical pieces of stiff fabric that are sewn together at the sides. Two rectangular pieces of fabric called lappets hang down the back of the mitre and are tipped with red fringe.
There are three different types of mitre. The simple, unadorned version is called the mitra simplex. The mitra auriphrygiata and the mitra pretiosa are elaborately embellished with jewels and embroidery. The type of mitre worn is determined by the occasion. It is always removed when the wearer is praying.
Your servant and brother,
+ Sir Godfrey Gregg
Archbishop and Presiding Prelate
Administrator and Apostolic Head
Follow me on Twitter @ArchbishopGregg
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