For those who haven’t been following this blog, let me introduce it a little. I am currently blogging my 21st novel that has the working title Daemon. The novel is about Aksinya, a sorceress, who, to save her family from the Bolsheviks, called and contracted the demon, Asmodeus. Her family was murdered anyway, and she fled with the demon from Russia to Austria.
Father Dobrushin and Aksinya have decided to marry so that they can be rid of the demon. We are continuing with the Orthodox marriage ceremony. Father Makar continues with the readings appointed for marriage...
Dobrushin spoke, “Let us attend.”
Father Makar read from the Psalms, “May the Lord answer you in the day of trouble! May the name of the God of Jacob protect you! May he send you help from the sanctuary and give you support from
! May he remember all your offerings and regard with favor your burnt sacrifices! May he grant you your heart's desire and fulfill all your plans! May we shout for joy over your salvation, and in the name of our God set up our banners! May the Lord fulfill all your petitions! Now I know that the Lord saves his anointed; he will answer him from his holy heaven with the saving might of his right hand. Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God. They collapse and fall, but we rise and stand upright. O Lord, save the king! May he answer us when we call. You have placed upon their head crowns of precious stones. They have asked you for life, and you have given them length of days.” Zion
Father Makar stated, “The Reading is from the Epistle of Paul to the Ephesians.”
Dobrushin, “Let us attend.”
Father Makar read, “Brethren, give thanks at all times for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, making yourselves subject to one another in the fear of Christ. Wives be subject to your own husbands as to the Lord, because the husband is head of the wife, as Christ too is head of the Church, and he is the Savior of the body. But as the Church is subject to Christ, so wives must be also to their own husbands in everything. Husbands love your own wives, as Christ loved the Church and gave himself for her, that he might sanctify her, having purified her with the washing of water with a word, that he might present the Church to himself glorious, without spot or wrinkle or anything similar, but that she might be holy and unblemished. Thus husbands must love their own wives like their own bodies. One who loves his own wife loves himself, for no one hates their own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, as the Lord does the Church, because we are members of his body, from his flesh and from his bones. ‘For this reason a man will abandon his father and mother and be attached to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.’ This is a great mystery, I mean concerning Christ and the Church. However let each one of you love his wife as himself, and let the wife respect her husband.”
Dobrushin, “Peace to you.”
We are still slogging through the wedding ceremony. I do hope this is entertaining to you. I realize it isn't as exciting as the main plot. I could have cut it to a single sentence or a paragraph--I've done that in some of my novels, but in the case of this novel, this detail is necessary. Unless you are Orthodox, you might never have attended or participated in a wedding like this. The details are important and especially how they fit into the theme of the overall novel.
These are the readings from the Psalms and from Paul's Letter to the Ephesians. Do you remember, Aksinya was memorizing Paul's letters? Listen carefully to them and see if they don't fit the concepts of this novel. See if they don't have very important meaning to Aksinya. Even if you don't agree with the points of the readings, you shouldn't miss this point: "...One who loves his own wife loves himself, for no one hates their own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, as the Lord does the Church, because we are members of his body, from his flesh and from his bones. ‘For this reason a man will abandon his father and mother and be attached to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.’ This is a great mystery, I mean concerning Christ and the Church...”
This is the ultimate point after all--the mystery of Christ, the church, and marriage. The semi-allegory of the Book of Tobit rests on Tobias, Sara, marriage, and the demon. The demon sought to interfere with the marriage of Tobias and Sara. Marriage is an example of the mystery of Christ and the Church. Do you remember the demon's work in splitting harming elements of the Catholic Church in Wien. Likewise, we know the demon has caused a great rift in the Orthodox Church there too. The problems between Father Makar and Dobrushin represent this split. They are split because Makar can't see a spiritual battle--a battle Dobrushin has enlisted in. Tomorrow, the Gospel.