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Author Topic: A little help and advice in regargs to thanksgiving  (Read 14268 times) Average Rating: 0
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« Reply #90 on: November 04, 2011, 09:56:20 AM »

I know a wide variety of people and can't think of a one that would be offended if I took mashed potatoes, roasted vegies, jello, cranberries, bread and apple pie, but no turkey.

FWIW, Jello is an animal product. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gelatin#Production

I agree with your post though. There is usually a lot of food you can eat without going for meat.
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« Reply #91 on: November 04, 2011, 11:25:43 AM »

I do not think there is a one size fits all rule about this. Fasting is a personal activity. True, we do it in the communion of the Church, but we do it for ourselves. As in the readings we have right before Great lent, we may not want to do anything that may cause our “brothers” to “stumble”, we also do not want to be hypocritical.    

When we choose to break the fast on a National Holiday, a feast based on gathering together with our family and friends, to thank God for all He has done for us, and to partake in what He has given us, we  should think about why we would choose to break our fast.

I my case, the Thanksgiving Day meal have always been a “big” family tradition.  (Family reunion big) Of course, in the old days, the fast did not start until after Thanksgiving. We look forward all year to this annual family get together.  The only other day that gathers us together like this is Pascha.  But Thanksgiving dose not find us up all night in different parishes, it is a more relaxing get together.  

The day, for us, is not just about the food, it is about a Joyous Family Tradition, a tradition that conflicts with the calendar of the Church and the choice is not trivial. But the Church does give this advice:
Quote
At all times, however, it is essential to bear in mind that you are not under law but under grace (Rom. 6:14), and that the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life (2 Cor. 3:6). The fasting rules, while they do need to be taken seriously, are not to be interpreted with the strict legalism of the Pharisees of Holy Scripture, for the kingdom of God is not food and drink, but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit (Rom.14:17).
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« Reply #92 on: November 04, 2011, 01:55:08 PM »

I do not think there is a one size fits all rule about this. Fasting is a personal activity. True, we do it in the communion of the Church, but we do it for ourselves. As in the readings we have right before Great lent, we may not want to do anything that may cause our “brothers” to “stumble”, we also do not want to be hypocritical.    

When we choose to break the fast on a National Holiday, a feast based on gathering together with our family and friends, to thank God for all He has done for us, and to partake in what He has given us, we  should think about why we would choose to break our fast.


Granted, but there are several jurisdictions and Hierarchs, as well as parish priests, who have offered guidance on this issue, and have given the blessing to observe Thanksgiving. So it is not just a personal choice or idiosyncracy.

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« Reply #93 on: November 04, 2011, 02:14:08 PM »

I do not think there is a one size fits all rule about this. Fasting is a personal activity. True, we do it in the communion of the Church, but we do it for ourselves. As in the readings we have right before Great lent, we may not want to do anything that may cause our “brothers” to “stumble”, we also do not want to be hypocritical.    

When we choose to break the fast on a National Holiday, a feast based on gathering together with our family and friends, to thank God for all He has done for us, and to partake in what He has given us, we  should think about why we would choose to break our fast.


Granted, but there are several jurisdictions and Hierarchs, as well as parish priests, who have offered guidance on this issue, and have given the blessing to observe Thanksgiving. So it is not just a personal choice or idiosyncracy.



Do you, or anyone, know of a Hierarch who instructed his flock not to observe Thanksgiving? (I'm asking about any new calendar Diocese).


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« Reply #94 on: November 04, 2011, 02:56:20 PM »

I wonder why given what I read in the other post I linked I  haven't been able to find any mention of this on the Antioochian Orthodox Church in America website?

Granted that thread was a couple years old, but then some posters above suggested the same. Hmm...

 But then again another suggested oppisite. Hmmm...
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« Reply #95 on: November 04, 2011, 05:30:07 PM »

I am the original poster. Wow! I wrote that when my 4 year old was still a baby!

A little clarity; Thanksgiving isn't entirely a "holiday" for our family for a variety of reasons. Thanksgiving is up there with Columbus Day for us. We talk about the day as seen thru modern eyes, then talk about the day as seen thru native eyes. It is and always will be more of a somber day for us than anything. We focus on being thankful, but the historical aspect isn't entirely happy for us.

We don't observe the fast for Thanksgiving. When I wrote the original post I was breast feeding. Now I am pregnant. So I have been forbidden to fast by our priest. Our Khouria is a midwife, if she found out a pregnant or nursing woman was fasting she would NOT be happy! LOL

Three of the four kids, and my husband can't fast for various health reasons as well. Fasting won't be possible for our family for awhile at this point.
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« Reply #96 on: November 05, 2011, 08:44:29 PM »



This shall be somewhat of the same spread that will be placed upon my table on Thanksgiving Day. 
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« Reply #97 on: November 05, 2011, 09:09:57 PM »


That looks wonderful!

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« Reply #98 on: November 05, 2011, 10:16:44 PM »



[/quote]

Do you, or anyone, know of a Hierarch who instructed his flock not to observe Thanksgiving? (I'm asking about any new calendar Diocese).



[/quote]

Yes.  A friend in WA has a priest who is only allowing fish for that day.  They are Antiochian.  
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« Reply #99 on: November 05, 2011, 10:30:01 PM »

Now seriously, back home none of the priests that I remember ever told us what we could eat and when. And that wasn't because people were just fasting anyways. 'cause most probably weren't. Can't help but roll my eyes or laugh (depending on my disposition) reading things like "our parish priest/spiritual father/clairvoyant protosyncellus gave us the blessing to eat turkey this day but we can't have the leftovers". LOL
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« Reply #100 on: November 05, 2011, 10:31:23 PM »

Now seriously, back home none of the priests that I remember ever told us what we could eat and when. And that wasn't because people were just fasting anyways. Can't help but roll my eyes or laugh (depending on my disposition) reading things like "our parish priest/spiritual father/clairvoyant protosyncellus gave us the blessing to eat turkey this day but we can't have the leftovers". LOL

Yeah, ok, we get it. Orthodoxy has lots of nominalism.
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« Reply #101 on: November 08, 2011, 12:56:31 AM »


Quote

Do you, or anyone, know of a Hierarch who instructed his flock not to observe Thanksgiving? (I'm asking about any new calendar Diocese).


Yes.  A friend in WA has a priest who is only allowing fish for that day.  They are Antiochian.  

That would be me.  We are Antiochian, in the diocese of the PNW and Eagle River, and our bishop, AFAIK, does not grant a break from the fast except maybe for fish.  I believe we can have fish that day just like when there's a feast day during/on another otherwise strict fast day (i.e., if our patronal feast day was on a Wednesday, we'd have fish). 
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« Reply #102 on: November 08, 2011, 02:56:57 AM »


Quote

Do you, or anyone, know of a Hierarch who instructed his flock not to observe Thanksgiving? (I'm asking about any new calendar Diocese).


Yes.  A friend in WA has a priest who is only allowing fish for that day.  They are Antiochian.  

That would be me.  We are Antiochian, in the diocese of the PNW and Eagle River, and our bishop, AFAIK, does not grant a break from the fast except maybe for fish.  I believe we can have fish that day just like when there's a feast day during/on another otherwise strict fast day (i.e., if our patronal feast day was on a Wednesday, we'd have fish). 

Bishop Joseph? Are you sure?
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« Reply #103 on: November 08, 2011, 03:04:29 AM »

Now seriously, back home none of the priests that I remember ever told us what we could eat and when. And that wasn't because people were just fasting anyways. 'cause most probably weren't. Can't help but roll my eyes or laugh (depending on my disposition) reading things like "our parish priest/spiritual father/clairvoyant protosyncellus gave us the blessing to eat turkey this day but we can't have the leftovers". LOL

Yeah, that is how it should be and that is how it is in my parish, no priest tells us what we could eat and when.  Fasting is to be done silently and without other people knowing.  And I'm sure people will say, "well that's not orthodox to have priests not tell you what to eat and when" but indeed, it is.  It's Pharisee-law stricken and hypocritical and cult like to tell your people what they can eat and when carte-blanche as a general announcement to the faithful, cults control how you live and focus on externals to gain the eternals, or like gnostics, the secrets are revealed to those who are more involved and perform the duties of the cult in order to obtain said secrets to obtain "heaven" or much like pagans who have good and bad and must sanctify themselves to be good again.
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« Reply #104 on: November 08, 2011, 03:10:29 AM »


Quote

Do you, or anyone, know of a Hierarch who instructed his flock not to observe Thanksgiving? (I'm asking about any new calendar Diocese).


Yes.  A friend in WA has a priest who is only allowing fish for that day.  They are Antiochian. 

That would be me.  We are Antiochian, in the diocese of the PNW and Eagle River, and our bishop, AFAIK, does not grant a break from the fast except maybe for fish.  I believe we can have fish that day just like when there's a feast day during/on another otherwise strict fast day (i.e., if our patronal feast day was on a Wednesday, we'd have fish). 

Nope, our priest is the archpriest for the area (Fr. A James Bernstein) and he told us that we are allowed to break the fast for Thanksgiving.
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« Reply #105 on: November 08, 2011, 03:12:31 AM »


Quote

Do you, or anyone, know of a Hierarch who instructed his flock not to observe Thanksgiving? (I'm asking about any new calendar Diocese).


Yes.  A friend in WA has a priest who is only allowing fish for that day.  They are Antiochian.  

That would be me.  We are Antiochian, in the diocese of the PNW and Eagle River, and our bishop, AFAIK, does not grant a break from the fast except maybe for fish.  I believe we can have fish that day just like when there's a feast day during/on another otherwise strict fast day (i.e., if our patronal feast day was on a Wednesday, we'd have fish).  

Nope, our priest is the archpriest for the area (Fr. A James Bernstein) and he told us that we are allowed to break the fast for Thanksgiving.
Maybe we're actually in the True Genuine Orthodox Butter-and-Bird Pilgrim Synod in Local Resistance Abroad, and we just don't know it.

"our parish priest/spiritual father/clairvoyant protosyncellus gave us the blessing to eat turkey this day but we can't have the leftovers".
Rofl.
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« Reply #106 on: November 08, 2011, 03:15:52 AM »

In fact, some folks I know call margarine "Pharisee Butter."  What's fasting if you talk to everyone about it while you are doing it? What's fasting when you replace a fast forbidden food with a similiar food, like margarine for butter?  
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« Reply #107 on: November 08, 2011, 03:17:24 AM »

In fact, some folks I know call margarine "Pharisee Butter."
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« Reply #108 on: November 08, 2011, 10:51:32 AM »

Yeah, that is how it should be and that is how it is in my parish, no priest tells us what we could eat and when.  Fasting is to be done silently and without other people knowing.  And I'm sure people will say, "well that's not orthodox to have priests not tell you what to eat and when" but indeed, it is.  It's Pharisee-law stricken and hypocritical and cult like to tell your people what they can eat and when carte-blanche as a general announcement to the faithful, cults control how you live and focus on externals to gain the eternals, or like gnostics, the secrets are revealed to those who are more involved and perform the duties of the cult in order to obtain said secrets to obtain "heaven" or much like pagans who have good and bad and must sanctify themselves to be good again.
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« Reply #109 on: November 08, 2011, 12:32:23 PM »

So, what do you do if your priest(s) tell you something different from your Bishop and (supposedly) your Metropolitan?  Please be respectful in your replies, not cocky or sarcastic.  This is a sincere question. 
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« Reply #110 on: November 08, 2011, 12:35:55 PM »

So, what do you do if your priest(s) tell you something different from your Bishop and (supposedly) your Metropolitan?  Please be respectful in your replies, not cocky or sarcastic.  This is a sincere question. 
I'd ask your Priest to clarify his position and that you are confused because he and the Bishop are saying two different things. Maybe it's just a misunderstanding.

PP
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« Reply #111 on: November 08, 2011, 04:33:53 PM »

Now seriously, back home none of the priests that I remember ever told us what we could eat and when. And that wasn't because people were just fasting anyways. 'cause most probably weren't. Can't help but roll my eyes or laugh (depending on my disposition) reading things like "our parish priest/spiritual father/clairvoyant protosyncellus gave us the blessing to eat turkey this day but we can't have the leftovers". LOL

Yeah, that is how it should be and that is how it is in my parish, no priest tells us what we could eat and when.  Fasting is to be done silently and without other people knowing.  And I'm sure people will say, "well that's not orthodox to have priests not tell you what to eat and when" but indeed, it is.  It's Pharisee-law stricken and hypocritical and cult like to tell your people what they can eat and when carte-blanche as a general announcement to the faithful, cults control how you live and focus on externals to gain the eternals, or like gnostics, the secrets are revealed to those who are more involved and perform the duties of the cult in order to obtain said secrets to obtain "heaven" or much like pagans who have good and bad and must sanctify themselves to be good again.

Seriously? Pharasaical, law-stricken, hypocritical and cult-like for a priest to offer guidance to his flock? Or to communicate the guidance of their Bishop to the Faithful?
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« Reply #112 on: November 08, 2011, 04:38:23 PM »

Your priest should be asking my priest Wink To be fair Thanksgiving is always colored in as being a fast day because it is a fast day. It is just a fasting day where we are allowed to break the food aspect of the fast. The fasting of our spirit isn't to be broken. So it is a fasting day even though we are directed to break the food restrictions.

I think there is a very good chance that you are misunderstanding what your priest means. Yes, the Nativity Fast encompasses Thanksgiving. But it is the height of arrogance and the opposite of fasting to refuse to eat meat etc. at get togethers with friends and family because you are fasting. Our priest has told us that if we are served food during any fast that we are to eat it period . Fasting is about inward discipline, not outward adherence. Fasting from food isn't the most important part of the fast. If you are having a small immediate family Thanksgiving without any visitors you can observe the fast and eat fish if you like. If you are at some one else's house you should eat what it set before you.

I have found many, many church bulletins that mention that Metropolitan Philip has declared Thanksgiving fast free. If your priest really wants you to fast, then you should follow that guideline. I have seen the declaration from Met. PHILIP about thanksgiving before, but I just can't seem to find it at the moment.
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« Reply #113 on: November 08, 2011, 04:55:52 PM »

. But it is the height of arrogance and the opposite of fasting to refuse to eat meat etc. at get togethers with friends and family because you are fasting.

This is why I do nothing but sup' with heathens during any fasting period. //:=)

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« Reply #114 on: November 08, 2011, 10:09:10 PM »

Your priest should be asking my priest Wink To be fair Thanksgiving is always colored in as being a fast day because it is a fast day. It is just a fasting day where we are allowed to break the food aspect of the fast. The fasting of our spirit isn't to be broken. So it is a fasting day even though we are directed to break the food restrictions.

I think there is a very good chance that you are misunderstanding what your priest means. Yes, the Nativity Fast encompasses Thanksgiving. But it is the height of arrogance and the opposite of fasting to refuse to eat meat etc. at get togethers with friends and family because you are fasting. Our priest has told us that if we are served food during any fast that we are to eat it period . Fasting is about inward discipline, not outward adherence. Fasting from food isn't the most important part of the fast. If you are having a small immediate family Thanksgiving without any visitors you can observe the fast and eat fish if you like. If you are at some one else's house you should eat what it set before you.

I have found many, many church bulletins that mention that Metropolitan Philip has declared Thanksgiving fast free. If your priest really wants you to fast, then you should follow that guideline. I have seen the declaration from Met. PHILIP about thanksgiving before, but I just can't seem to find it at the moment.
Thanks Quinault, I was kinda wondering how those two seemingly different messages could be reconciled.   Smiley
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« Reply #115 on: November 09, 2011, 12:48:51 AM »

So, what do you do if your priest(s) tell you something different from your Bishop and (supposedly) your Metropolitan?  Please be respectful in your replies, not cocky or sarcastic.  This is a sincere question.  

Depends on what exactly he's telling you. Is your priest telling you, "OK, this is what the bishop says, but here's what I'm telling you, and why."

I used to know a priest who NEVER told his people what the traditional Orthodox fasting discipline was (convert parish). He'd just tell them "no meat, no dairy" and fish was OK on any fasting day. However, if you read a bit, you often found out what the traditional fasting discipline was. I once had a visitor, a catechumen from a stricter Orthodox tradition ask me what we did about oil. I started to explain to her, but the priest was nearby, heard both her question and me beginning to answer, and he shut me down so quickly that it made my head spin. He snarled that he never, ever wanted to hear me talking about oil again.

But this was also the same parish that if the bishop visited during a fasting period, you can be sure not a bit of fish was to be seen, unless the calendar indicated it was a fish day. Roll Eyes
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« Reply #116 on: November 09, 2011, 12:50:07 AM »

Your priest should be asking my priest Wink To be fair Thanksgiving is always colored in as being a fast day because it is a fast day. It is just a fasting day where we are allowed to break the food aspect of the fast. The fasting of our spirit isn't to be broken. So it is a fasting day even though we are directed to break the food restrictions.

I think there is a very good chance that you are misunderstanding what your priest means. Yes, the Nativity Fast encompasses Thanksgiving. But it is the height of arrogance and the opposite of fasting to refuse to eat meat etc. at get togethers with friends and family because you are fasting. Our priest has told us that if we are served food during any fast that we are to eat it period . Fasting is about inward discipline, not outward adherence. Fasting from food isn't the most important part of the fast. If you are having a small immediate family Thanksgiving without any visitors you can observe the fast and eat fish if you like. If you are at some one else's house you should eat what it set before you.

I have found many, many church bulletins that mention that Metropolitan Philip has declared Thanksgiving fast free. If your priest really wants you to fast, then you should follow that guideline. I have seen the declaration from Met. PHILIP about thanksgiving before, but I just can't seem to find it at the moment.
Thanks Quinault, I was kinda wondering how those two seemingly different messages could be reconciled.   Smiley

As I said above, Quinault also has the desert fathers on her side in this one.

It is not right to refuse a gift of food during a fast.
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« Reply #117 on: November 09, 2011, 01:14:46 AM »

Your priest should be asking my priest Wink

Our priests know each other quite well already.  I'm actually talking about two priests, by the way, in this line of questioning: the one that led us into the church and baptized us two years ago (and who hears my confession), and our new mission parish priest who arrived in the Spring (the first is the confessor/spiritual father of the second).  


Quote
I think there is a very good chance that you are misunderstanding what your priest means.

I don't think so. He (the first one) is quite clear.  The ideal is to not break the fast.  If you do (and yes, he has commented on eating what's put before you), don't receive the Eucharist that weekend.  I think this is where I get frustrated.  Yes, we maybe we can have fish or even break the fast if we choose to do so -- but we can't receive the Eucharist in that situation.  It's a hard choice to make, you know?  Does anyone else have this as part of breaking the fast?  (No Eucharist that coming weekend.) I love our priest dearly, and appreciate the love he's shown for me/us.  I respect him but do get confused, I admit.  Lord have mercy.  

Quote
I have found many, many church bulletins that mention that Metropolitan Philip has declared Thanksgiving fast free. If your priest really wants you to fast, then you should follow that guideline. I have seen the declaration from Met. PHILIP about thanksgiving before, but I just can't seem to find it at the moment.

I really feel like I can ask the second priest mentioned above (our new mission priest) about this, although the first priest is still my confessor at this point.
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« Reply #118 on: November 09, 2011, 01:29:35 AM »

Are both priests Antiochian? If they aren't, then that could be part of the issue. Fr. James doesn't require people that don't adhere to the Nativity fast on Thanksgiving to abstain from communion. Now, if you eat after midnight the night before communion and you aren't exempt from the fast then you do have to abstain from the fast.

I personally couldn't have adhered to the fast for the last decade. I have been nursing and or pregnant since Jan 2001. (4, soon to be 5 children born since 2001 that all nursed for an extended period of time) If our Khouria found out I even TRIED to fast she would be VERY upset and instruct me not to fast.

The abstaining from certain foods during "a fast" isn't the same as abstaining from food/drink before communing.
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« Reply #119 on: November 09, 2011, 02:02:10 AM »

Are both priests Antiochian?

Yes, both are long-time Antiochian priests.  I know the first would have us abstain from communion, I don't know about the second.  It can be pretty confusing to have a parish priest and a different confessor/spiritual father.  This situation will rectify itself over time (long term goal is to come under the parish priest), but for now the first priest is helping me through some issues (plus two of our children would like to continue confessing with him). 
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« Reply #120 on: November 09, 2011, 10:19:30 AM »

One of the difficulties (and one of the best things about Orthodoxy, I think) is that the response to questions is often pastoral in nature, taking into account the individual situation and what is best for that particular person (or even group) spiritually. Thus you can have situations where on the surface it seems as if priests are contradicting one another.
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« Reply #121 on: November 09, 2011, 11:11:24 AM »

What does "Khouria" mean?
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« Reply #122 on: November 09, 2011, 11:20:05 AM »

What does "Khouria" mean?
Priest's wife.

It is synonymous with the Russian Matushka  and the Greek Presbytera.
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« Reply #123 on: November 09, 2011, 11:53:53 AM »

What does "Khouria" mean?
Priest's wife.

It is synonymous with the Russian Matushka  and the Greek Presbytera.
Is this version specific to the Antiochian Church then? Also if I may how is it pronounced?
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« Reply #124 on: November 09, 2011, 02:57:56 PM »

Khouria= sounds like core-ree-ah

I believe it is a title exclusively used by the Antiochians.
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« Reply #125 on: November 09, 2011, 08:01:46 PM »

Khouria= sounds like core-ree-ah

I believe it is a title exclusively used by the Antiochians.

Yes, because it's root is khoury (koor-ee), which is priest in Arabic.
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« Reply #126 on: November 09, 2011, 08:37:47 PM »

Isn't it pronounced "choureya", beginning with خ in arabic?
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« Reply #127 on: November 09, 2011, 08:48:05 PM »

Isn't it pronounced "choureya", beginning with خ in arabic?
yes.
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« Reply #128 on: November 09, 2011, 10:41:18 PM »

I don't think so. He (the first one) is quite clear.  The ideal is to not break the fast.  If you do (and yes, he has commented on eating what's put before you), don't receive the Eucharist that weekend.  I think this is where I get frustrated.  Yes, we maybe we can have fish or even break the fast if we choose to do so -- but we can't receive the Eucharist in that situation.  It's a hard choice to make, you know?  Does anyone else have this as part of breaking the fast?  (No Eucharist that coming weekend.) I love our priest dearly, and appreciate the love he's shown for me/us.  I respect him but do get confused, I admit.  Lord have mercy.  
I can't speak for everyone, but no. Frankly, I don't understand a pastor withholding the Mysteries because someone's grandmother served them mac-and-cheese, and they -- like decent people -- ate what they were given.

But I don't have a say in the situation, and I am not in such a one. Follow your conscience, I guess.
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