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14. THE ORDER OF Prostration / Kneeling

In the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church practice, the order of prostration is divided into three. These are:

a) Prostration: - Means touching the ground with the forehead.

b) Kneeling: - means touching the ground with the knees.

c) Bowing: - means to stoop the head in homage.

In Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church, the moments of performance of prostration are:

  1. while entering a church (Ps. 28:2)

  2. when commencing prayer

  3. In the middle of prayer when one comes across a word that requires prostration

  4. At the end of prayer (Fetha Negest Article 14:35-37).

In the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo church there are two types of prostration. These are:

a) Prostration/ kneeling / bowing  we offer to God only- which includes believe and worship him as our  God and creator

b) The prostration, kneeling and bowing that we perform for

  1. Our Holy Mother Virgin Mariam

  2. Holy Tabot

b) Holy Angels

C) Saints

c) The righteous and martyrs

d) The cross and icons

are carried out not for worship them as God but to pay homage and give due honour.

During Saturdays and Sundays, 50 days from Resurrection to Pentecost, Major Feast days of Our Lord Eyesus Christos, Our Holy Mother Virgin Mariam, other major holidays and after receiving Holy Communion except kneeling and bowing, prostration is not allowed (Fetha Negest 14:5-37).

On the 12th day of every month (Saint Michael Day), on the 21st of every month (Our Holy Mother Virgin Mariam Day) on the 29th of every month (God the Son day) except kneeling and bowing prostration is not allowed.

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