I am definitely planning on attending as many Sundays as possible. I would like to say that means every Sunday, but work still has issues managing that.
I went with my grandmother (who is ethnic Ukrainian, cannot read or write the language, just speak it). Service was almost entirely in Ukrainian (with the Epistle reading and a few announcements in English).
I didn't attend the midnight service the night before. To begin with, I was overwhelmed by the interior architecture. I knew it would be beautiful, but certainly unprepared for that degree.
The prayer book provided the liturgy in both languages. So my grandmother listened and pointed out where we were. (Service was just over 2 hours long). The choir was beautiful, although not very much congregational singing-I hear that is normal for Slavic Orthodox Churches.
I tried to follow along to a certain extent (i.e. if we are here and the priest is speaking, then after he is done we are here) but I must admit the stand-sit instructions were really confusing, it seemed that the Liturgy text said Ã¢â‚¬Å“sitÃ¢â‚¬Â and the congregation was still standing and vice versa. I tended to follow the congregation on this.
I didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t manage to identify all the officials in terms of roles. I identified the cathedral dean who officiated the service, my grandmother pointed him out, but as to who the others wereÃ¢â‚¬Â¦.I am fairly clueless.
At the end, the congregation lined up in front of two priests. The priest used what looked like a metal utensil with a ball on the end and made the Sign of the Cross on the personÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s foreheadÃ¢â‚¬Â¦.was this a blessing??