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Preparing the Holy Myrrh at the Phanar

Preparing the Holy Myrrh at the Phanar

Preparations for the Sanctification of the Holy Myrrh, a ceremony which takes place approximately every 10 years, commenced Monday at the Phanar in Istanbul, following the blessing by Ecumenical Patriarch Vartholomaios. The Holy Myrrh, also called chrism, a mixture of 57 medicinal plants and aromatic substances found in Greece as well as from several Asian and African countries, will be prepared by nine scientist volunteers and two aides over three days before it is sent to all Orthodox churches to be used in the anointing mystery. Vartholomaios presided over the ceremony for a fourth time, placing the materials in boilers and lighting up the fire.