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Source: (consider it) Thread: Pascal Candle and the Church liturgical year
Evensong
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What is the standard tradition (if there is one) in the Anglican Communion of when Pascal candles are lit during the cycle of the church liturgical year?

Now we light the new one at Easter and it's supposed to last the whole year but are there seasons where it is not lit on a Holy Communion service on a Sunday?

i.e. Is the pascal candle not lit on a Sunday service in Advent or Lent?

Thanks in advance.
#rookiepriestwhosesupervisorisverylowchurchanddoesn'ttalkaboutthesethings

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Bishops Finger
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I think it's common practice in the C of E here to have the Paschal Candle lit on Sundays during Eastertide only, unless there's a Baptism, in which case it is lit for that service (whether it be within the main Eucharist, or a 'stand-alone'.)

It's also used at funerals in Church, and we lit ours - moving it beforehand to the All Souls chapel - for a short All Souls' commemoration after the All Saints' Eucharist.

I can't think offhand whether we would use it at any other time, though. Someone may now come along to put me right!

IJ

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Amanda B. Reckondwythe

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quote:
Originally posted by Bishops Finger:
I think it's common practice in the C of E here to have the Paschal Candle lit on Sundays during Eastertide only, unless there's a Baptism.

Which, indeed, is how the Baby Jesus and his Blessed Mother do it at that great altar in the beyond.

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Arethosemyfeet
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The tradition I grew up with was Easter to Ascension, and then at Baptisms (and I suspect funerals, though I didn't attend any). I have since seen it lit on Good Friday, and extinguished at 3pm, but it seems to me that if one were to retain the Christ candle from advent then it would be more appropriate to use that one in Holy Week.
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Brenda Clough
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We mostly do it the way BF does. It's out at Christmas (actually for the Christmas Eve services) and stays there until Epiphany, getting put away with all the Xmas decorations. Out again for Easter, and stays out through Pentecost. It's also brought out for baptisms, confirmations, and other big-shot occasions, ordinations, etc.

Do we distinguish here between Paschal Candles (decorated with the 4 studs representing nails, the chi-rho, etc.) and pavement candles, which are simply honking big candles that are too big to stand on tables and therefore need to stand on the floor? At our place these all look pretty similar, except for the decorations. We have a pair of pavement candles and at least a couple Paschal Candles in varying states of repair. Their brass candlesticks, about waist high on me, are heavy as sin and all identical.

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Bishops Finger
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I think Evensong is referring to the suitably-decorated Paschal Candle, rather than similar 'pavement' candles.

Our Place has two of the latter - massive wooden things a good two metres high ( not counting the candles themselves... [Eek!] ). They are never lit, as no-one can be arsed to get out The Holy Stepladder in order to do the job.

I've not heard of the Paschal Candle being used during part of Christmastide, but why not? The Light Of The World, and all that.

IJ

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Dafyd
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Presumably a Pascal candle is cheap so if you light the candle you don't lose anything. Therefore, you might as well light it? Or does its rate of burning vary depending on atmospheric pressure?

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Brenda Clough
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Nothing made out of real beeswax is cheap. We have long ago found it more saving to use liquid-wax candles. The Paschal Candle can thus be refilled and used for ever.

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Bishops Finger
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O! (Swoons)

Is Outrage!

Fresh Paschal Candle Every Year Is Only Pleasing Thing To Baby Jesus And His Blessed Mother!

(Takes large swig of WHISKY to recover.....).

IJ

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Brenda Clough
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Have you seen the price tag on these babies? And it's no use pretending you're going to burn the thing down to the socket; for years we had drawers full of candle stubs. Occasionally someone crafty would melt them all down and recast them into other smaller candles, but that's dangerous and fiddly work. And the amount of work generated by real-wax candles is awful -- the linens that have to be de-waxed, the digging of drippings out of the followers and then cleaning them by pouring boiling water over to melt out the last of the wax.

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Bishops Finger
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Well, Fairy Nuff - but they're less expensive here in Ukland (about £40, I think, depending on length/diameter).

Points noted re the (possible) mess, but that's why we have Madam Sacristan.

[Two face]

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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Amanda B. Reckondwythe

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And the cost is why we take up Special Collections.

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"Stop your noisy songs; I do not want to listen to your praise bands." -- Amos 5:23, Good News Bible (modified)

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Bishops Finger
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We use up the remnant of last year's Paschal Candle by removing the motif etc., sawing it in half, and using the pieces at the Shrine of our Patronal Saint, and also the Shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham. Being Igh Church does elp.

This is not parsimony, but Good Stewardship.
[Razz]

IJ

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Bishops Finger
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That wasn't very clear, was it?

We saw the Candle in two, not the motif, but this means that we generally have several pieces in stock i.e. from previous year's Candles.

Two pieces are used at the Shrine of our Patron, and two more at the Shrine of OLW.

IJ

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Gee D
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We light ours from the fire at the very early service on Easter Morning and it then stays alight until the end of the last service that morning. Eastertide Sundays, Ascension, Pentecost, All Saints, All Souls, Christ the King, Patronal, Christmas, Baptism of Our Lord, Annunciation. Then funerals and baptisms, confirmation and any other episcopal visit. I think that's all, I may have missed one or two somewhere.

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Qoheleth.

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We do pretty much as BF outlines. Moreover, our Paschal Candle stand is cunningly designed to have the same diameter socket as our 'pavement' candlesticks. Thus, as a new PC is blessed at Easter, the previous year's candle is retained In Case of Accidents, whilst the pre-previous candle is cut in two for use in the pavement stands during the summer.

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Brenda Clough
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quote:
Originally posted by Bishops Finger:
That wasn't very clear, was it?

We saw the Candle in two, not the motif, but this means that we generally have several pieces in stock i.e. from previous year's Candles.

Two pieces are used at the Shrine of our Patron, and two more at the Shrine of OLW.

IJ

Hmm. That says to me that parsimony is possible. Buy a -plain- candle next year an stick the motif onto it, transforming it into a Paschal Candle...

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The Scrumpmeister
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quote:
Originally posted by Brenda Clough:
Have you seen the price tag on these babies?

You're being ripped off. There's no way they cost anywhere near that much. Those prices are inflated by 300%-400%.

If that's common for all US suppliers you're probably better off buying one from abroad and paying the international shipping costs.

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Arethosemyfeet
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In the past I've melted down the previous year's paschal candle and used it to make baptismal candles. Both good stewardship and nicely symbolic. I wouldn't have said it was particularly dangerous or fiddly - it's the sort of thing I remember doing as a 10 year old at a church group.
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Brenda Clough
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No, we're on the liquid wax track now and there's no going back. (The savation on washing spilled wax out of the linens is worth it in any case.)

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leo
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quote:
Originally posted by Arethosemyfeet:
lit on Good Friday, and extinguished at 3pm,

How utterly bizarre.

It used to be extinguished during the Ascension Day Gospel.

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fletcher christian

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Tradition here is that it is lit on the Easter Vigil from the paschal fire and remains lit for all services after that until Ascension finishes. After that it is lit for every baptism and funeral, for Advent and then removed altogether for lent.

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daisymay

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It was in the church and bread.

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The Scrumpmeister
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quote:
Originally posted by daisymay:
It was in the church and bread.

[Confused]

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Gee D
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quote:
Originally posted by The Scrumpmeister:
quote:
Originally posted by daisymay:
It was in the church and bread.

[Confused]
I suspect that daisymay intended this for the Prayers of the Faithful thread in All Saints - she went to Crown Court Church of Scotland in London, where there was a communion service and is giving a prayer of thanks for the Grace she received there.

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Evensong
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Thanks all. [Smile]

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Vulpior

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I have seen pictures depicting previous years' paschal candles being used at the Altar of Repose, which I liked.

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churchgeek

Have candles, will pray
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I really love the re-use ideas here.

When I was working at the cathedral in San Francisco, we would use previous years' Paschal Candles, with any date removed, in side chapels. I'm sure having a Paschal candle in every worship space is anathema to some, though, but the huge one that's appropriate for the nave would never have worked in, say the upstairs chapel where the columbarium is (where Committal services are done and so a Paschal candle is definitely needed).

For a while, we were saving all our beeswax candles - though I'm not sure if Paschal candles ever made it into this mix - for a group of folks that melted them down and poured them into molds for Christmas tree ornaments that were sold during Advent as a fundraiser for one of the church's outreach missions. There's another good re-use! And a little less tricky than making new candles out of the old ones, I imagine.

But I really do love the idea of making baptismal candles out of old Paschal candles. Not only is the symbolism wonderful, but the idea that they would be hand-made by members of the community receiving the newly baptized is especially wonderful, and baptismal candles don't all have to be identical or perfect (the way, say, six candles on the retable would have to be to not be a distraction).

My experience is mostly in US Episcopal cathedrals, but I've only ever seen Paschal candles lit from the new fire at Easter Vigil, lit at all services during Easter (including Daily Office), and then at baptisms and funerals the rest of the year, before they're retired and replaced the following Easter Vigil.

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Enoch
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quote:
Originally posted by churchgeek:
... My experience is mostly in US Episcopal cathedrals, but I've only ever seen Paschal candles lit from the new fire at Easter Vigil, lit at all services during Easter (including Daily Office), ...

You mean it doesn't light itself spontaneously. Is Outrage.

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churchgeek

Have candles, will pray
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quote:
Originally posted by Enoch:
quote:
Originally posted by churchgeek:
... My experience is mostly in US Episcopal cathedrals, but I've only ever seen Paschal candles lit from the new fire at Easter Vigil, lit at all services during Easter (including Daily Office), ...

You mean it doesn't light itself spontaneously. Is Outrage.
Oh, no. We're Anglican. Everything must be done by someone with a fancy title (though we don't use "lucifer," which should be the obvious choice for this task). A self-lighting Paschal candle would be too shocking, anyway. There'd probably be a few funerals during Easter Week.

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Arethosemyfeet
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quote:
Originally posted by churchgeek:
quote:
Originally posted by Enoch:
quote:
Originally posted by churchgeek:
... My experience is mostly in US Episcopal cathedrals, but I've only ever seen Paschal candles lit from the new fire at Easter Vigil, lit at all services during Easter (including Daily Office), ...

You mean it doesn't light itself spontaneously. Is Outrage.
Oh, no. We're Anglican. Everything must be done by someone with a fancy title (though we don't use "lucifer," which should be the obvious choice for this task). A self-lighting Paschal candle would be too shocking, anyway. There'd probably be a few funerals during Easter Week.
For shame! We had two lucifers for the Gospel procession when I was in my teens.
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Bishops Finger
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Ooh, you little devils, you......

I hope they were both a good match.

[Snigger]

IJ

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balaam

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What is that sound? 'Tis the baby Jesis crying.

I have seen a Paschal Candle as the centre candle in an Advent Crown/Wreath. This is Outrage™.

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Bishops Finger
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Yes, Would Indeed Be Severe Outrage if the said candle still bore its Easter motifs etc.

OTOH, if it was being used simply as a large white candle, Is Not So Bad.

IJ

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Our words are giants when they do us an injury, and dwarfs when they do us a service. (Wilkie Collins)

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daisymay

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I vida and i was in the church and I did preane

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balaam

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quote:
Originally posted by Bishops Finger:
Yes, Would Indeed Be Severe Outrage if the said candle still bore its Easter motifs etc.

Yes, I am afraid so.

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