What is a Orthodox Trikeri?
The Trikeri is a special candelabra that holds three candles - three for the Holy Trinity. It is used in the Orthodox Divine Liturgy by an Orthodox Bishop presiding over the Orthodox service to bless the faithful. When blessed with a Trikeri, the faithful bow their heads. It is used during the Trisagion portion of the Orthodox service - which is an abbreviated memorial prayer service performed during a funeral service. It is also used in the longer version of the Trisagion standing service know as “The Parastas” or “Great Panachida”.
The Trikeri is used for a Trisagion service which is celebrated on the eve of an individual’s funeral, on the anniversary of a person’s death (at memorial services), at Pascha Orthodox Easter, and on other occasions. When a Bishop is celebrating the Divine Liturgy the Divine Liturgy is known as a Hierarchal Divine Liturgy (a heirarch is both the President and Chief Celebrant of the Divine Liturgy). If a Heirarchal Divine Liturgy is celebrated, the Trikeri will be used for blessing during the Small Entrance, the Great Entrance, after the Gospel, during ordinations, during Communion and after the Dismissal. The Trikeri is moved to bless three times - once to the West, once to the South, and once to the North. The chant used during this blessing come from Psalms 80:14-19 “God All-Powerful, come back. Look down from heaven and see. Take care of us, your vine.”
Often with use of the Trikeri is the use of the Dikeri. The Dikeri is a candelabra that holds 2 candles. It holds two candles for the two natures of Jesus Christ - his divinity and his humanity. When referring to the Trikeri and Dikeri together, the word “Tridikeri” is sometimes used.