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Ordination

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{{spirituality}}
'''Ordination''' is the [[Holy Mysteries|sacrament]] (or Holy Mystery) of [[holy orders]]. The Greek word words used for ordination are '''''cheirotonia''''' and '''''cheirothesia''''', both of which mean "the laying on of hands." Members of the [[major orders]] of the [[clergy]]—[[bishop]], [[priest]], and [[deacon]]—are ordained during the [[Divine Liturgy]] by the bishop, who is usually assisted by several priests. According to Orthodox teaching, the process of ordination begins with the local [[congregation]]; but the bishop alone, who acts in the name of the universal Church, can complete the action.
Those who are placed into the [[minor orders]] ([[subdeacon]], [[reader]], and in some traditions, [[cantor]]) are done so by '''''cheirothesia''''', which also means "laying on of hands," but has come to be a technically distinct term from '''''cheirotonia''''', which is used only for the major orders. According to the ''DEC'', ''cheirothesia'' is not regarded as part of the Holy Mystery of ordination (p. 117).
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