POSTED BY on 7:24 PM under ,
As most of you know, we're a big tent kind of Church. The majority of the English-speakers who are visiting this blog are likely Latin Rite Catholics -- but that's not the only Rite.

A Rite represents an ecclesiastical, or church, tradition about how the sacraments are to be celebrated. Each of the sacraments has at its core an essential nature which must be satisfied for the sacrament to be confected or realized. This essence - of matter, form and intention - derives from the divinely revealed nature of the particular sacrament. It cannot be changed by the Church. Scripture and Sacred Tradition, as interpreted by the Magisterium, tells us what is essential in each of the sacraments (2 Thes. 2:15).

When the apostles brought the Gospel to the major cultural centers of their day the essential elements of religious practice were inculturated into those cultures. This means that the essential elements were clothed in the symbols and trappings of the particular people, so that the rituals conveyed the desired spiritual meaning to that culture. In this way the Church becomes all things to all men that some might be saved (1 Cor. 9:22).

There are three major groupings of Rites based on this initial transmission of the faith, the Roman, the Antiochian (Syria) and the Alexandrian (Egypt). Later on the Byzantine derived as a major Rite from the Antiochian, under the influence of St. Basil and St. John Chrysostom. From these four derive the over 20 liturgical Rites present in the Church today.

For more reading on the various Rites of the Church, here is some further reading.

To listen to a ridiculous amount of audio from The Divine Liturgies of our Holy Fathers John Chrysostom and Basil the Great, Vespers, Matins, Carpatho-Ruthenian Plain Chant (Slavonic), the Book of the Eight Tones, etc., etc., here's the link:

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