A daily study of the Network’s diverse faiths
Chushu (处暑, 처서, xử thử, End of Heat). Start of the second solar term of Autumn when the Sun travels between the celestial longitudes of 150° and 165°, the fourteenth of the twenty-four terms into which the traditional Chinese lunar calendar divides the year. Temperatures in the areas to the north of the Yangtze River gradually drop after an unseasonably warm Indian summer’s thunderstorms. Ancient festivals that preceded Chushu were the 14 August Herd Boy and Weaving Maid Festival on Double Seventh Day and the 22 August Festival of Hungry Ghosts. Customs during Chushu include floating river lanterns, fishing festivals at the start of the fishing season in coastal regions such as Xiangshan, Zhoushan and Jiangchuan, and water-splashing games. The traditional food is duck and in Fuzhou, Fujian Province, there is a tradition of eating longans (a type of lychee) with porridge. Farming activities include harvesting millet, rice and sorghum as they mature, with the sun-drying of produce. The next solar term is the 7 September White Dew (Bai Lu), which is followed by The Autumn Equinox (Qiu Fen) from 23 September, Cold Dew (Han Lu) from 8 October and Frost’s Descent (Shuang Jiang) from 23 October to 6 November as Autumn ends and Winter begins. Image: ccccph.org.
Prayer As the summer heat ends and the rains cease, we wait for the eagles to hunt, the flowers to wither and the leaves to fall as we worship our ancestors and pray that the homeless ghosts who had no resting place or descendants may cross the sea of torment to Nirvana to find release. Om Amen
St Irenaeus (Εἰρηναῖος) (c130-c 202). Eastern Catholic, Eastern and Oriental Orthodox Churches Feast Day for Turkish Christian Trinitarian priest of the Church of Lugdunum (Lyon) and second Bishop of Lyon noted for his rôle in guiding and expanding Christian communities in what is now the South of France and, more widely, for the development of Christian theology by combating heresy and defining orthodoxy. As Bishop, he divided his activities between the duties of pastor and missionary, almost all his writings being directed against Gnosticism, including his famous Adversus Haereses (Against Heresies). Irenaeus died in Lyon and was buried under the Church of St John there, which was later renamed in his honour. The tomb and his remains were totally destroyed by the Huguenots in 1562. Venerated in Roman Catholic Church, Eastern Catholicism, Assyrian Church of the East, Eastern and Oriental Orthodox Churches, Lutheran Church, Anglican Communion. The Catholic Church named Irenaeus as a Father of the Church and Teacher of the Faith, regarding him as martyr, as do some within the Orthodox Church. Lutheran Commemoration, Roman Catholic and Anglican Communion Feast Day and Church of England Lesser Festival 28 June. Image: seekingvirtueandwisdom.com.
Apodosis of the Dormition of Our Lady the Blessed Virgin Mary. The last day of the Afterfeast (Apodosis, ἀπόδοσις, отдание, Leave-taking, Giving-back) of the 15 August Feast of the Dormition of Our Lady. An Afterfeast is a period of celebration extending one of the Great Feasts in the Orthodox Christian and Eastern Catholic Churches, somewhat analogous to the Western Church Octave, but not of a fixed period, the present Afterfeast being of nine days. On the Apodosis, most of the hymns that were chanted on the first day of the Feast are repeated. An ancient tradition in Jerusalem is the procession of the cross with the shroud of the Theotokos (Our Lady), which bears a two-sided icon with a silver oklad covering frame. This miracle-working shroud is kept throughout the year in Gethsemane directly opposite the Church of the Resurrection of Christ. During the Dormition period, the shroud passes to the Sepulcher of the Mother of God for believers to venerate on their knees. The Apodosis of the Dormition sees worshipers bid farewell to the shroud, with a multitude of nuns gathering from all over Jerusalem to lead a procession that lasts for over an hour. His Holiness Patriarch Theophilos of Jerusalem and All Palestine and his clergymen bless the Christians as they pass and the procession ends in the courtyard of the Church of the Resurrection of Christ under the Paschal peal of bells from the Church of the Holy Sepulcher. The 22 August Feast of the Queenship of Mary celebrated Mary’s deserving that title as she is: the Roman Catholic Mother of God; closely associated as the New Eve with Jesus’ redemptive work; of preeminent perfection; and of intercessory power. Image: moscap.ru.