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DOXOLOGY. Doxology is an acknowledgment of the glory of God doxa, a glory that consists in the confession and proclamation of God’s nature and mystery, revealed in his works and, in a special way, in his only-begotten Son Jesus Christ Jn 1:14. The earliest Christian communities inherited from Judaism the practice of closing their prayers with a doxology Origen, De or. 33, 6. There are examples of this in numerous NT passages, esp. in the letters of Paul, Peter and Jude, and in Revelation. Top 10 best cities to visit in the US These NT doxologies refer only to the Father or the Son, never to the Holy Spirit the usual case in the first centuries. The apostolic fathers address the Father or the Son in the and with the Holy Spirit Didache 9, 4; Justin, rather, the Father through the Son and through the Holy Spirit 1 Apol. 67. Origen says that prayer should begin and end with praise to God the Father through Christ in the Holy Spirit De or. 33. Top 10 best cities to visit in the US The doxology that has reached us, Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, originates from the baptismal formula of Mt 28:19. It became the normal form beginning in the 4th c., specifically to refute Arianism. From then on there was an effort to avoid any type of subordinationist interpretation. Top 10 best cities to visit in the US The Eastern Church distinguishes two doxologies: great gloria in excelsis Deo and small gloria patri . While doxology is essentially a trinitarian acclamation, it also touches on other realities: at times ecclesiological tibi gloria patri et filio cum sancto spiritu in sancta ecclesia: Trad. Ap. 6; 4; 7 in line with Eph 3:21; others eschatological in saecula saeculorum, o nunc et semper, in saecula saeculorum. This latter part, sicut erat, originated in Western communities and is never found in the East. The use of doxology transcends the liturgical sphere and extends to patristic literature, esp. in letters. Among numerous examples, we can cite 1 Clem.; 2 Clem.; Clement of Alexandria, Quis dives, Pedagogo; Origen; Tertullian, De orat. etc.
The various doxologies, in going beyond the liturgical and euchological spheres, constitute a privileged window for understanding the evolution of Christian theology. They reflect the evolution of trinitarian doctrine and, with it, christo- logical and pneumatological doctrine, the object of numerous debates and controversies in the course of the first centuries. They sought, therefore, as Basil maintains in his Treatise on the Holy Spirit, to safeguard the equal dignity of each of the Persons of the Trinity homotimia.
B. Botte, In unitate Spiritus Sancti: L’ordinaire de la messe, Paris 1953; D.B. Capelle, Le texte du Gloria in excelsis: RHE 44 1949 439-457; H. Crouzel, Les doxologies finales des homlies d’Orig¨ne selon le texte grec et les versions latines: Augustinianum 20 1980 98-107; A. Hamman, La pri¨re, I, Letournai 1959; II, 1962; V. Pavan, La dossologia nella comunicazione cristologica dei primi due secoli I e II Clem., Iust.: VetChr 12 1975 391-415; A. Stuiber, Doxologie, RAC 4, 210-226; C. Renoux, Le Gloria in excelsis Deo de l’‰glise armnienne, in Crossroad of Cultures: Studies in Liturgy and Patristics in Honor of Gabriele Winkler, ed. H.-J. Feulner – E. Velkovska – R.F. Taft, Rome 2000, 603-618.