Behind the Closed Curtain
The curtain is closed while the choir or a soloist sings a hymn appropriate to the feast or liturgical season.

At the altar, the priest offers the exquisite prayer of St. Gregory of Narek (d. 1003) to the Holy Spirit, a profound reflection in preparation for receiving Holy Communion: "...Prepare us to be honored dwellings, always ready to partake worthily of the heavenly Lamb, to receive...this manna of life eternal..." [81].

When he has finished this prayer, the faithful have been prepared, the priest receives the Eucharistic bread and wine from the deacon.  The priest prays that they be acceptable to God the Father, "who sent the Lord Jesus Christ, the heavenly bread, the food of the whole world, to be savior and redeemer and benefactor" [10].

While the deacon offers incense, the priest proclaims over the bread and wine the very same words that the angel Gabriel said to Mary when he announced that she would miraculously give birth to the Son of God [10]: "The Holy Spirit will come upon you and the power of the Most High will overshadow you" [Luke 1:35].

While the priest and deacon attend to the preparation of the bread and wine, the other altar servers are busy lighting the altar candles and forming the procession into the church.  The main reason why the curtain is closed at this point in the Liturgy is so that the people will not be distracted from their prayer and reflection by the liturgical housekeeping taking place at the altar.