Monday, April 5, 2010

Christos ist Auferstanden!

Christ is risen from the dead trampling down death by death and upon those in the tombs bestowing life.

Christ is risen!
Indeed He is risen!

Christos ist auferstanden!
Sicherlich ist auferstanden!

Harisutosu fukkatsu!
Jitsu-ni fukkatsu!

This last one is a version from Japanese, while the one previous is German, and I think we all recognize the English. I have some doubts about the common translation flying around for the Japanese, which is often rendered "Harisutosu," a rendering I cannot find in any Japanese dictionary. (It might be a way of transliterating "Christos" from some other language.) Rather, Christ is normally rendered as "Kirisuto" with "fukkatsu" referring to reviving or restoring.

I got our priest to give the Japanese a try as a Paschal greeting this year. He loved the idea. He also wanted to include the German. He said that about 1/4 Americans have some German ancestry. Also, it seems fitting given the number of formerly Lutheran families in the parish. This Saturday our parish received a family of four (now former) Lutherans by Chrismation. (I only learned that they were from a Lutheran background just the other day.)

We spent the entire week in Fort Wayne so we could attend the liturgical services of Holy Week. We purchased the Archdiocese's liturgical book for The Services of Great and Holy Week and Pascha, edited and arranged by V. Rev. Fr. Joseph Rahal. It seems that much of the work for this book was done by Fr. Joseph when he was priest at our parish some years ago - or so I'm told.

Holy Week was wonderful and we didn't want it to come to an end.

One thing was striking last night, after coming back to Defiance tired and happy from such a wonderful week: When the day was drawing to a close I suddenly looked to my Holy Week liturgical book and felt a hollow feeling in my stomach. I had gotten quite used to being able to open that book and review what tomorrow had in store for me. Now the book has to be written as I go.

Christos Anesti!
Alithos Anesti!


orrologion said...

St. Nikolai of Japan was a very successful missionary in the 19th century. It could be this is a holdover translation into a form of Japanese in his day that has since been supplanted by other forms.

i think the Bright Week services are all pretty standard. They are in the Pentecostarion. I believe both the Holy Week and Bright Weeks services "trump" or "outrank" anything in the Menaion or Octoechos, so there isn't a great deal of variation from year to year (a major feast such as Annunciation would likely be an exception to this, which falls during Bright Week this year on the Old Calendar). That is, you might still be able to see what tomorrow brings... I'm not sure how complete Arch. Ephrem Lash's Bright Week texts are, but you can find his texts from the Pentecostarion here:

FWIW, during Bright Week, the Hours of Pascha replace morning and evening prayers, and the prayers before and after communion, as well as the first, third, sixth and ninth hours. It is also a tradition that nothing is simply read or said during Pascha and Bright Week - everything is sung, if you know the tune.

Benjamin Harju said...


Thanks for the information. While I might be able to see what comes in the liturgical rhythm of the Church, we're not at our Church actively engaged in it as we were for Holy Week. :-(

I briefly read about the Japanese Orthodox Church. It is kind of odd in my mind to consider how the Japanese Church is Russian in its heritage. Russian-to-Japanese seems a bit out of place to me, though I don't think I can picture a better or worse missionary influence.

Fr John W Fenton said...


Don't wish to pick, but it appears that you mixed Greek and German in your title. The Holy Week service book put out by the Archdiocese also gets it wrong. Correct is "Christ ist auferstanden." Most correct (as Orthodoxwiki has it, High German) is "Christus ist auferstanden" (although this version is obviously influenced by the Latin).


Benjamin Harju said...

Ugh. A little voice in the back of my head was trying to tell me that, but would I listen, NO. Thank you for pointing that out.

Christus ist auferstanden!

Benjamin Harju said...

Though, Fr. Fenton, I should add, it may be time for the Germans to be influenced also by the Greeks instead of just the Latins, if you catch my drift.

Kissing your right hand...

Dave said...

The reply I've heard both the German and Austrian at my Orthodox parish use is "Wahrhaftig ist Er auferstanden." I too am being picky. Blessings!

Benjamin Harju said...


Thanks for your comment. I've heard that once or twice. Either seems appropriate to me, since Wahrhaftig and Sicherlich both translate the notion of something happening for a fact and in truth.

The English has variances, too. I have heard both "Indeed He is risen" and "Truly He is risen." The variances in German seem to be comparable.

I think in English the word "indeed" indicates more the notion of agreement (I'm with you, it's true He's risen), while "truly" may emphasize the absolute and undeniable fact of His resurrection, which the speaker of course agrees with (He is absolutely risen, and I rejoice in it).

This is what makes language fun, no?

Dave said...

I'm going to pick up a thought from another blog, wherein they discuss the Greek form for this, which is Alithos Anesti. I don't know Greek, but it apparently means "Truly, He is risen". I've always found "Indeed" to sound contrived in modern English. How about "(Yes) He is truly risen". But then I'd be messing with tradition.