The Elevation of the Cross, celebrated on September 14th, commemorates the fourth-century discovery of the miracle-working Cross of Christ by Saint Helen.
The Elevation of the Cross, celebrated on September 14th, commemorates the fourth-century discovery of the miracle-working Cross of Christ by Saint Helen, the mother of the Emperor Constantine. It also commemorates the recovery of the Cross from the Persians by the emperor Heraclius in the seventh century. At that time, it was “elevated” in the Church of the Resurrection in Jerusalem, which Saint Helen had built in its honor. To this day, bishops and priests in the Orthodox Church raise up the Cross on the feast day as the faithful continually chant “Lord have mercy” (Track 19). The Cross is raised as our symbol of victory over death, strength and healing for the faithful, and our reminder that we find eternal life through self-denial in this life.
This disc includes all the variable hymnography for the feast, and features many special melodies from various chant traditions, as well as some newer compositions. Settings range from Byzantine melody with ison and unison Znamenny chants to rich choral harmony. Many pieces are sung by various smaller ensembles within the St Lawrence Orthodox Chorale, a fifteen-voice group of select singers from St. Lawrence Orthodox Christian Church in Felton, CA.