Glossary of Terms

Antipope.  “A false claimant of the Holy See in opposition to a pontiff canonically elected. At various times in the history of the Church illegal pretenders to the Papal Chair have arisen, and frequently exercised pontifical functions in defiance of the true occupant.”Catholic Enyclopedia.  This blog refers to Francis and his three predecessors (Benedict XVI, John Paul II, and John Paul I) and the Paul VI impostor (Alessandro Falchi) as antipopes, since the rightful and canonically elected pope is still Paul VI, whose papacy commenced in 1963 and has not yet ended.

Rassaphore.  An early degree in the rankings of Eastern Orthodox monasticism.  A rassaphore is one level above a novice.  “(Slavonic: рясофор), lit. ‘robe-bearer.’  If the novice continues on to become a monk, he is clothed in the first degree of monasticism at a service at which he receives the tonsure.  Although there are no formal vows made at this point, the candidate is normally required to affirm his commitment to persevere in the monastic life.  The abbot will then perform the tonsure, cutting a small amount of hair from four spots on the head, forming a cross.  He is then given the outer cassock (Greek: rasson, exorasson, or mandorrason; Slavonic: riassa), an outer robe with wide sleeves, from which the name of Rassaphore is derived.  He is also given a kamilavkion, a cylindrical brimless hat, which is covered with a veil called an epanokamelavkion.  (These are separate items in the Greek tradition, but in the Russian tradition the two are stitched together and the combination is called a klobuk.)  If he has not previously received it, a leather belt is fastened around his waist.  His habit is usually black, signifying that he is now dead to the world, and he receives a new name.  The vows of the rassaphore are ‘implicit’ rather than ‘explicit.’  Such vows (chastity, poverty, obedience, perseverance, stability) are inferred by the rite traditionally used in the tonsuring.  Some will remain rassaphores permanently without going on to the higher degrees.Orthodox Wiki.


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