Ecclesiastical Implements




The Communion Cup:

Prior to Consecration it symbolizes the vessel of the Passion in which they had put sour wine mingled with gall and "filled a sponge [with] vinigar..." for Jesus Christ to drink when he cried "I thirst." For this reason there is always kept a sponge inside the holy cup when it is kept in the sanctuary. After the Consecration of the Holy Gifts, the Holy Cup represents the cup in which the night of the Mystical supper the Lord offered the all-holy and life-saving Mystery of he Holy Eucharist.


The Paten or Diskos

This is where the Holy Bread is placed for the Communion offering as well preparation. It represents heaven and that is why it is round. It carries the Master and Lord and Creator of heaven.


The Asterisk

The Asterisk in a cross formation is placed on the top of the paten to prevent the Cover touching the paten’s surface. It represents the stars in the sky, particularly the star that "went before" the three Wise Men guiding them to Bethlehem and "came and stood over where the young child was, with Mary his mother" (Mat 2, 9 & 11).


The Lance

This is used by the Priest to cut the Holy Bread. With the spear we make exactly the same symbolic movement with that of the soldier who pierced the side of Christ's Holy Body on the Cross, we say: "one of the soldiers with a spear pierced His side, and forthwith came blood and water", as we pour wine and water into the Holy Cup.


The Spoon

The spoon is used for the offering of the Holy Communion. It represents the hand of the seraphim from the Angelic order which held a burning coal and touched Prophet Isaiah's mouth and said: "This has touched thy lips, and will take away thine iniquities, and will purge off thy sins." ( Is 6,7)


It is called Lavida which means a pair of tongs because in past times tongs were used. Christians would put their right hand over the left and the priest would place the Body of the Lord to receive it. The use of the spoon came about for the sake of good order so the fire of the Divinity would not come in close contact with the hands which in turn get dirty and infected easily.


The Two Veils

The veils that cover the gifts are called Kalimata. They represent either the firmament of the sky or the swaddling clothes used to bound the Holy infant.


The Aer

This covers both the Holy Gifts. It is placed on the deacon or priest's back during the Great Entrance. It is the symbol of the bright cloud of Mount Tabor. The priest lifts it with both hands and gently waves it over the Holy Gifts when we recite the Symbol of Faith, the Creed, and symbolizes the triumph of Resurrection and of faith.


The Red Cloth

The cloth we use to wipe our mouths when we receive Holy Communion is called Maktro. It represents the scarlet robe which Christ was clothed by the soldiers in the Praetorium, and which is also steeped with His MOst Holy Blood streaming down His Body that had undergone sever shipping.


You can see in the photo below that the paten contains pieces of bread that have been cut from a larger loaf of bread. This bread is especially prepared by a member of the congregation and offered as a gift. (See Proskomide)