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Yoo Genealogy
                                                
Jae SA Yoo Family Traditions

The Jae Sa 祭祀 (Ancestral Memorial Service) Traditions

There are several kinds of ancestor rituals such as Gi Jesa (기제사, 忌祭祀), charye (차례, 茶禮), seongmyo (성묘, 省墓), myosa (묘사, 墓祀). Gijesa is a memorial service which is held on the day of the ancestor's death every year. Gi Jesa is performed until upwards of five generations of ancestors in the eldest descendant's house. Memorial services that are performed on Chuseok or New Year's Day are called "charye," On April 5 and before Chuseok, Koreans visit the tombs of their ancestors and trim the grass off the tombs. Then, they offer food, fruits, and wine, and finally make bows in front of the tombs. Memorial services that are performed in front of tombs are called "seongmyo" Finally Myosa are performed at the tomb site in the lunar month of October to conduct in memory of old ancestors. Ancestral rites are typically divided into 3 categories:

1.Charye (차례, 茶禮) - tea rites held 4 times a year on major holidays (Korean New Year, Chuseok)
2.Gije (
기제, 忌祭, also called gijesa) - household rites held the night before or morning of an ancestor's death anniversary (기일, 忌日).
3.Sije (
시제, 時祭; also called 사시제 or 四時祭) - seasonal rites held for ancestors who are 5 or more generations removed (typically performed annually on the tenth lunar month)

To perform ancestor rituals, the family at the eldest son's house prepare many kinds of food such as wine, taro soup, beef, fish, three different colored vegetables, many kinds of fruits, and rice cake or songpyon, particularly those that were favored by the deceased.[2] The shinwi (신위, 神位) or memorial tablet, which symbolizes the spiritual presence of the ancestor, is placed at the center of the table. In modern days, the daughter or younger son of the family may perform these rites. After midnight or in the evening before an ancestor's death anniversary, the descendants set the shrine, with a paper screen facing north and food laid out on a lacquer table as follows: rice, meat, and white fruits on the west, soup, fish, and red fruits on the east, with fruits on the first row, meat and fish on the second, vegetables on the third, and cooked rice and soup on the last. The rice bowls and individual offerings to the male ancestors are placed to the west, and those of females to the east (고서비동, 考西妣東). Two candles are also laid on both ends of the table, and an incense holder is placed in the middle. In front of the shrine, they set up written prayer, if the family does not own a memorial tablet (신위).
Our Yoo family Jesa rite is generally performed as follows;

 Step 1 : Kang Sin Re (Invite the Ancestor)

          1)    The ritual master sits down with his knees in front of the incense plate.

2)    The ritual master burns the incense three times.

3)    The ritual master bows twice.

4)    The ritual master moves a step behind.

5)    The right-side ritual assistant stands right side of the ritual master, holding the wine bottle.

6)    The left-side ritual assistant sands left side of the ritual master, holding an wine cup.

7)    The ritual master sits down with his knees.

8)    The left-side ritual assistant gives his wine cup to the ritual master with his knees down.

9)    The ritual master receives the wine cup from the left-side ritual assistant.

10)     The right-side ritual assistant pours wine in the cup.

11)     The ritual master receives the cup from the right-side ritual master and pours in the empty bowl on the ritual table three times.

12)     The left-side ritual assistant receives the empty  cup from the ritual master and puts the cup on the table.

13)     The ritual master bows twice.

14)     The ritual master sits back in his original seat.

  Step 2 : Cham Sin Re (Salute to the Ancestor)

        1)    All members of the family including the ritual master bow twice.

 Step 3 : Jan (Pass the wine cup to the ancestor)

          1)     The ritual master sits down in front of the ritual table.

2)     The right-side ritual assistant stands right side of the ritual master.

3)     The ritual master stands in front of Father looking westward, holding a wine cup.

4)     The right-side ritual assistant pours wine in the cup, looking westward.

5)     The ritual master receives the cup from the right-side ritual master and puts the cup on the original location.

6)     The ritual master stands in front of Mother looking eastward, holding a wine cup.

7)     The left-side ritual assistant pours wine in the cup, looking westward.

8)      The ritual master receives the cup from the left-side ritual master and puts the cup on the original location.

9)      The ritual master sits down with the knees.

10)      The right-side and left-side ritual assistants sits down with the knees, holding each cup for Father and Mother.

11)      The ritual master receives the Father cup from the right-side ritual assistant, pours wine in the Fatherís empty bowl a little, and gives the cup to the right-side ritual assistant.

12)       The right-side ritual assistant receives the cup from the ritual master and puts on the original location.

13)      The ritual master receives the Mother cup from the left-side ritual assistant, pours wine in the Motherís empty bowl a little, and gives the cup to the left-side ritual assistant.

14)      The left-side ritual assistant receives the cup from the ritual master and puts on the original location.

15)      The ritual master stands behind with a little bowed posture.

16)      The right-side ritual assistant opens the lid of rice bowl.

17)      The left-side ritual assistant pokes the rice with a spoon and puts the chopstick on the table.

18)       The ritual master bows twice and sits back. 

Step 4 : Sa Si Re (Farewell to the ancestor)

           1)     The right-side and left-side ritual assistants put away the spoons and chopsticks and covers the rice bowl lid.

2)     All members of the family including the ritual master bow twice.

3)     The ritual master burns the Ji Bang (Father/Mothrís Images on the rice paper) and puts the ashes in the water bowl and spreads the water outside.

                 

 

 

                            

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