Quinisext Council, Canon 66.previous | next
The faithful are required to spend the time in a state of leisure without fail in the holy churches from the holy days of resurrected Christ our God to New Sunday in psalms and hymns, and in spiritual songs called odes, while taking cheer in Christ and celebrating, and paying close attention to the reading of the divine Scriptures, and delighting themselves to their heart’s content in the Holy Mysteries. For thus shall we be jointly resurrected and jointly exalted with Christ. Therefore during the days in question let no horse races or other popular spectacle be held at all.
Inasmuch as all of Novation week is reckoned as a single day devoted to the name of the Lord, therefore does the present Canon decree that all Christians during this week ought to remain in the churches, taking cheer and celebrating the Resurrection of the Lord with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, paying attention to the words of the divine Scriptures and partaking of the divine Mysteries. For in this sort of way we shall be resurrected and exalted jointly together with Christ. Hence on these days horse racing must not be indulged in, nor must any other popular spectacle, disorderly game, that is to say, or dances, or wrestling matches, and any other such amusement. See also Ap. c. IX and c. XXIV of this 6th.
 Let Christians of these days learn from the present Canon what sort of holy life was led by those persons on these holy days of the Resurrection, and what sort of disorderly life, or of irregular life, they themselves are now living on the other hand, and let them correct themselves by refraining from amusements, dances, games, songs, and other such absurdities, as they [do] in Moscow, I am told. There Christians go from one church to another on every day in this week and hold litanies, lest they find time to engage in some other impropriety. That is what ought to be done also in the case of our own Christians, to prevent them from deviating into disorders and improprieties. Another very holy custom is known to many which prevails in Moscow, to wit, that wherein the more reverent husbands refrain from sleeping with their wives throughout Novational Week, and by consequence no weddings are held during that period either. Really a most holy custom in truth which our own Christians ought to imitate. For, as we have said, this entire week is counted as a single day of Easter devoted to the name of the Lord. See also c. IV of St. Nicephorus which is in the preface.
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