Author Topic: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish  (Read 9244 times)

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Offline Elpidophoros

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Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« on: December 06, 2008, 12:30:22 PM »
I found this clip:
http://hk.youtube.com/watch?v=SmZkZF9Wio0
There are some interesting aspects which differ from the mainstream practise(or the practise which is more  familiar to me).
1, The formula of baptism wihout "the name"("In the Father...."rather than "In the name of the Father...").
2,Answer "amen" once in the end of the formula (no amen for each hypostasis )
3,People be baptized in a resupine position
4,Anoint by hand
5,For the formula of chrismation ,people answer "seal"(not 'amen' as usual).

Ok ,I know all of those are not serious problems(even not problems at all),and I'm delight with the neophytes.I just be curious:are they special tradition of antiochian church?
« Last Edit: December 06, 2008, 12:31:10 PM by Elpidophoros »

Offline wynd

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #1 on: December 06, 2008, 12:55:36 PM »
Must be. For #5, when I was chrismated the only man saying "Seal" was from an Antiochian background.

Offline Lily

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #2 on: December 06, 2008, 04:17:52 PM »
Huh?  Other jurisdictions DON'T say "Seal" during Chrismation?

Offline Veniamin

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #3 on: December 06, 2008, 04:26:12 PM »
Huh?  Other jurisdictions DON'T say "Seal" during Chrismation?

That's what we do in my OCA parish.
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Offline VirSpeluncaeOrthodoxae

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #4 on: December 06, 2008, 07:16:35 PM »
It's "Sealed."
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Offline Quinault

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #5 on: December 06, 2008, 07:18:32 PM »
I go to an Antiochian parish and only the 5th one is true for us.
« Last Edit: December 06, 2008, 07:22:26 PM by Quinault »

Offline Quinault

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #6 on: December 06, 2008, 07:21:49 PM »
He used the phrase "in the name of.." with other people, just not the first.

Offline Fr. George

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #7 on: December 06, 2008, 09:32:49 PM »
Huh?  Other jurisdictions DON'T say "Seal" during Chrismation?

Not in my experience.   We do in my GOA parish, but most "Greek-influenced" parishes (i.e. Greece, Churches under the Ecumenical Patriarchate) don't (it's a bit long in Greek), and I've really never seen anything older than the last 50 years that directs us (us in general, not just the GOA) to say it; it's not a bad practice, but I think Amen is both more beautiful and appropriate.
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Offline BasilCan

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #8 on: December 06, 2008, 10:42:25 PM »
I tend to be critical of Antiochian practices ('cause that is the parish I normally attend). This post is being picky. The person was baptized in the name of the Trinity and immersed. What else do you want!

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Offline Alveus Lacuna

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #9 on: December 06, 2008, 10:54:41 PM »
I thought all jurisdictions required women to cover their heads when receiving Holy Communion.  Is this not true?

Offline BasilCan

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #10 on: December 06, 2008, 11:40:51 PM »
No.

Offline Elisha

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #11 on: December 07, 2008, 03:25:58 AM »
It's "Sealed."

Uh, No.  It is indeed "Seal" in Antiochian parishes in America.  No big deal - just different.

Offline Elpidophoros

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #12 on: December 07, 2008, 03:08:00 PM »
Quote
This post is being picky. The person was baptized in the name of the Trinity and immersed. What else do you want!
I have no any intention to be picky,nor to criticize. :-X
Just be curious....or better to say be interested in diversification of liturgical practise in various jurisdictions or local churches. ;D

Offline ialmisry

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #13 on: December 07, 2008, 04:35:23 PM »
Quote
This post is being picky. The person was baptized in the name of the Trinity and immersed. What else do you want!
I have no any intention to be picky,nor to criticize. :-X
Just be curious....or better to say be interested in diversification of liturgical practise in various jurisdictions or local churches. ;D


Resupine.  My, my.  Don't we use big words.  Had to look that one up: not common, I scored 98% on the GRE.

I believe I've seen all of the above in other jurisdictions, but since they are so small I'm not sure I noticed.
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Offline CRCulver

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #14 on: December 08, 2008, 11:05:35 AM »
I thought all jurisdictions required women to cover their heads when receiving Holy Communion.  Is this not true?

Certainly not true in the Finnish Orthodox Church, where it's fairly rare for women to cover their heads at all (you can often guess a woman is a Russian immigrant if she covers her head).

Offline ytterbiumanalyst

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #15 on: December 08, 2008, 12:45:50 PM »
It's "Sealed."

Uh, No.  It is indeed "Seal" in Antiochian parishes in America.  No big deal - just different.
In my OCA parish, the priest says, "The Seal of the Holy Spirit." We answer, "The Seal." It's pretty cool.
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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #16 on: December 08, 2008, 01:38:52 PM »
I want to be picky!!!  *clears throat*  So um, like, where are their white robes while they were getting baptized?  I can think of possible answers however I wanted to be picky.  It's not often I get to be picky and trite but guess what, I just was!!

Offline ialmisry

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #17 on: December 08, 2008, 04:33:34 PM »
I want to be picky!!!  *clears throat*  So um, like, where are their white robes while they were getting baptized?  I can think of possible answers however I wanted to be picky.  It's not often I get to be picky and trite but guess what, I just was!!

I thought you didn't wear a robe when you were baptized. :o
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Offline username!

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #18 on: December 08, 2008, 06:29:26 PM »
I want to be picky!!!  *clears throat*  So um, like, where are their white robes while they were getting baptized?  I can think of possible answers however I wanted to be picky.  It's not often I get to be picky and trite but guess what, I just was!!

I thought you didn't wear a robe when you were baptized. :o

Indeed you do. Think sticharion.

Offline Fr. George

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #19 on: December 08, 2008, 06:39:21 PM »
Indeed you do. Think sticharion.

Well, if you want to be picky...

I want to be picky!!!

... you are baptized naked, and receive your garment after your baptism. 

Blessing of the Water -> Blessing of the Oil -> Anointing of the person (naked) -> Baptism -> Chrismation -> Bestowal of the Baptismal Garment -> Washing -> Tonsure -> Dismissal.
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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #20 on: December 09, 2008, 12:58:44 AM »
Indeed you do. Think sticharion.

Well, if you want to be picky...

I want to be picky!!!

... you are baptized naked, and receive your garment after your baptism. 

Blessing of the Water -> Blessing of the Oil -> Anointing of the person (naked) -> Baptism -> Chrismation -> Bestowal of the Baptismal Garment -> Washing -> Tonsure -> Dismissal.

OH YEAH! Minus a letter grade for me knowing that and posting the opposite. We had an infant baptism not too long ago but the one parish near me baptizes people in the sticharion.  Should have thought more recent baptism and not the ones where they baptize in the sticharion.

Offline Fr. George

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #21 on: December 11, 2008, 11:00:15 AM »
OH YEAH! Minus a letter grade for me knowing that and posting the opposite. We had an infant baptism not too long ago but the one parish near me baptizes people in the sticharion.  Should have thought more recent baptism and not the ones where they baptize in the sticharion.

I think baptizing in the sticharion is a good modern practice considering people's discomfort with the human form.
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Offline VirSpeluncaeOrthodoxae

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #22 on: December 11, 2008, 04:37:10 PM »
There's being picky, then there's picking fights. There was also a time when only deaconesses baptized women. St. Genesius was baptized by his fellow pagan actors while they were all mocking it. Guess what? Christ accepted it and converted him right there on stage and Gensius was martyred that day.

No I'm not advocating either nun baptisms or actor baptisms.
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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #23 on: December 11, 2008, 05:46:11 PM »
I read an account of St Gennesius online and it seemed his martyrdom was his baptism, not any mock ritual performed by pagans (one cannot be baptized by people who are not themselves baptized).  The differing versions of his life don't even agree on whether the mock baptism was completed it seems.

I don't think that takes away from your point though.
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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #24 on: December 11, 2008, 05:50:55 PM »
OH YEAH! Minus a letter grade for me knowing that and posting the opposite. We had an infant baptism not too long ago but the one parish near me baptizes people in the sticharion.  Should have thought more recent baptism and not the ones where they baptize in the sticharion.

I think baptizing in the sticharion is a good modern practice considering people's discomfort with the human form.

The practice in my baptism was to baptize in the garment and then put on regular white clothes.  This makes practical sense because:

--> baptizing adults naked or half naked is not proper in mixed company
--> no adult should be made to wear a baptismal garment to Church for 3/8 days/communions subsequent to the baptism in a church that does not have a lot of adult conversions; it would be rather uncomfortable to be singled out like that

While baptizing in one white robe and then giving a second baptismal garment might make sense, again, I don't see adults in majority ethnic communities wearing a baptismal robe to church for a few times to commune.

All of this is secondary stuff.
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Offline Elisha

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #25 on: December 11, 2008, 05:57:49 PM »
OH YEAH! Minus a letter grade for me knowing that and posting the opposite. We had an infant baptism not too long ago but the one parish near me baptizes people in the sticharion.  Should have thought more recent baptism and not the ones where they baptize in the sticharion.

I think baptizing in the sticharion is a good modern practice considering people's discomfort with the human form.

What's wrong with (adults) men and women just wearing swimsuits?  Then they can dry off and put the baptismal robe on.  That is what we do for adult baptisms (naked for the babies of course).

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #26 on: December 11, 2008, 06:21:34 PM »
What's wrong with (adults) men and women just wearing swimsuits?  Then they can dry off and put the baptismal robe on.  That is what we do for adult baptisms (naked for the babies of course).

Why not? Never said there was anything wrong with it - I was just responding directly to username!'s comment.  Get baptized in a swimsuit - like any other garment in the font (or towel used to dry afterward), make sure it gets washed properly afterward, but there shouldn't be any issue. My "discomfort with the human form" comment was made in the context of our back-and-forth - which was discussing naked baptism.
« Last Edit: December 11, 2008, 06:22:20 PM by cleveland »
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Offline Fr. George

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #27 on: December 11, 2008, 06:24:15 PM »
I think baptizing in the sticharion is a good modern practice considering people's discomfort with the human form.

The practice in my baptism was to baptize in the garment and then put on regular white clothes.  This makes practical sense because:

--> baptizing adults naked or half naked is not proper in mixed company
--> no adult should be made to wear a baptismal garment to Church for 3/8 days/communions subsequent to the baptism in a church that does not have a lot of adult conversions; it would be rather uncomfortable to be singled out like that

While baptizing in one white robe and then giving a second baptismal garment might make sense, again, I don't see adults in majority ethnic communities wearing a baptismal robe to church for a few times to commune.

All of this is secondary stuff.

The preceding discussion was all academic - my jab at username!'s desire to "be picky."  I've never seen an adult wear a baptismal garment in Church after their baptism; heck, half the time the parents don't put the baby back in theirs before they use it.
"O Cross of Christ, all-holy, thrice-blessed, and life-giving, instrument of the mystical rites of Zion, the holy Altar for the service of our Great Archpriest, the blessing - the weapon - the strength of priests, our pride, our consolation, the light in our hearts, our mind, and our steps"
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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #28 on: December 11, 2008, 09:38:48 PM »
My "discomfort with the human form" comment was made in the context of our back-and-forth - which was discussing naked baptism.
This is why we need to bring back female deacons so us men don't have to deal with discomfort with seeing the naked female form and instead just feel really weird in front of naked men.
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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #29 on: December 11, 2008, 10:20:15 PM »
OH YEAH! Minus a letter grade for me knowing that and posting the opposite. We had an infant baptism not too long ago but the one parish near me baptizes people in the sticharion.  Should have thought more recent baptism and not the ones where they baptize in the sticharion.

I think baptizing in the sticharion is a good modern practice considering people's discomfort with the human form.

What's wrong with (adults) men and women just wearing swimsuits?  Then they can dry off and put the baptismal robe on.  That is what we do for adult baptisms (naked for the babies of course).

Some women would have been uncomfortable in that situation.
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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #30 on: December 11, 2008, 10:21:49 PM »


The preceding discussion was all academic - my jab at username!'s desire to "be picky."  I've never seen an adult wear a baptismal garment in Church after their baptism; heck, half the time the parents don't put the baby back in theirs before they use it.

My dear Clevaki, of course I know that you were approaching it academically :)

I just wanted to make the caveat so people didn't think that my opinion was yet another dogmatic pronouncement of the "hate filled schismatic zealots" ;)
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Offline Fr. David

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #31 on: December 11, 2008, 11:32:11 PM »
^^Well, thanks, hate-filled, schismatic zealot Father.  ;D  Sure cleared things up for me.

At my OCA parish, we say, "Amen" when someone's chrismated.  Surprised, Veniamin, that y'all say "Seal" down at St. Anthony's.

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Offline LBK

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #32 on: December 11, 2008, 11:52:38 PM »
Oh, c'mon, already! What's with the "clothed or unclothed" controversy? Sure, babies and toddlers are routinely baptised in the altogether. No problem. But older children and adults (of both sexes) are a different matter. I am a Godparent of several converts (including adults of the opposite sex to mine), and present at several more adult baptisms, not to mention many little ones, and I find the discussion/controversy as to what they should wear when or after they're dunked quite ridiculous.

The nakedness or otherwise of the illumined is of no consequence. What is far more important is the canonicity and form of the baptism and chrismation. It is a longstanding custom that the newly-illumined wears "new, white" garments following his baptism. This is easiest to fulfil with babies and toddlers, less so with older people. But I ask in all sincerity: What is more important? Is it the nudity of the baptismal candidate while he or she is baptised, the type and colour of the garment that the newly-baptised wears, or the baptismal mystery itself which confirms that person's reception into the Orthodox faith and communion?
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Offline BrotherAidan

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #33 on: December 12, 2008, 01:00:56 AM »
it would be nice if there was a discreet way for a person to disrobe, be baptized unclothed and put a rob on, dry off partially and then wear some sort of white garment. Baptist churches (at least the one I interned in while attending a protestant seminary back in the 70's) usually have a tank of some sort with running water and a drain. Also a discreet way of entering/exiting (they baptized people in a robe) without soaking the carpet in the church.

It is not really practical in our parishes, however because we are not converting than many people and the cost vs. use just isn't there. Most converts are from other Christian communions who only get chrismated. We aren't really reaching the secular people of our culture.

The baptism vessels we use for the most part are for those we baptize for the most part - our babies and grandchildren.

I hate to introduce a bummer into the conversation, but our retention rate of those baptized babies ain't all that great. Protestant converts are not going to make Orthdoxy grow long term. They will only stem the tide of attrition. And eventually, in the second or third or 4th convert generations the retention rate will decline as well.

We need to get serious about evangelism. A real discussion about evangelism (not by us armchair theologians on OC.net, but by hierarchs and theologians) needs to take place to figure out just what IS Orthodox evangelism - in light of Holy Tradition, in light of the Apostles, in light of the early practice of the Church, in light of missionaries (eg. Sts. Cyril andMethodius) throughout history, in light of the recent traumas of Orthodoxy in communist and muslim lands, in light of various forms of protestant evangelism (noting the good, avoiding the bad, taking some aspects in simply as information - neither copying or rejecting outright), in light of the current social and religious situation in North America and the Western world in general (whom most of the posters here live in, even if some of you are on the other side of the world in the Pacific) and coming up with a strategy that is common and can be shared by all jurisidictions.

Someone said that the Church is always one generation from extinction (when the last living believers die and no new converts come in and the next generation leaves).

We shouldn't just say "back at ya" to God and quote that the gates of hell shall not prevail against the Church and God will always preserve his Church. WE are the ONES who proclaim synergy in salvation - God and man working together in faith and love and actions. Yet we sit back and leave it up to God to preserve His Church like we are some kind of crypto-Calvinists! How dare we!

Unfortunately, "come and see" evangelism is code for NO EVANGELISM.

I hope to see the day when evangelism demands that we have to have baptist style baptistries because we are regularly baptising real converts from secular, non-Christian backgrounds (and not just chrismating us former protestants - which isn't conversion so much as fulfilling our prior faith commitments in the true Church).

And WOW! Wouldn't a bunch of new, totally un-learned, un-taught, blank slate secular people and pagans converted do wonders for our chatechising. We would have to take it seriously and really teach the stuff to them. We might actually have to REALLY believe it and live it ourselves instead of taking it for granted and ho-hum we do this and believe that. It would light a fire in our own faith and practice to suddenly be responsible for such true babes in Christ.

And in the end THAT is what baptism is existentially about in the life of the parish. Bringing in the new Christian and the older Christians taking responsibility and haveing their own baptism re-ignited and made real. Then these newbies growing and experiencing the same rejuvenation as they see new converts baptized into the true Church.
« Last Edit: December 12, 2008, 01:18:21 AM by BrotherAidan »

Offline Elisha

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #34 on: December 12, 2008, 01:49:25 AM »

Some women would have been uncomfortable in that situation.

I'm talking more like a one piece - not a bikini.  I've seen a woman baptized wearing some long, flowing robe before (long sleeves, maybe made of cotton).  It sure absorbed a lot of water.

Offline Fr. George

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #35 on: December 13, 2008, 01:40:03 AM »
This is why we need to bring back female deacons so us men don't have to deal with discomfort with seeing the naked female form and instead just feel really weird in front of naked men.

*claps to hokey pokey music*

That's what it's all about.

Oh, c'mon, already! What's with the "clothed or unclothed" controversy? Sure, babies and toddlers are routinely baptised in the altogether. No problem. But older children and adults (of both sexes) are a different matter. I am a Godparent of several converts (including adults of the opposite sex to mine), and present at several more adult baptisms, not to mention many little ones, and I find the discussion/controversy as to what they should wear when or after they're dunked quite ridiculous.

The nakedness or otherwise of the illumined is of no consequence. What is far more important is the canonicity and form of the baptism and chrismation. It is a longstanding custom that the newly-illumined wears "new, white" garments following his baptism. This is easiest to fulfil with babies and toddlers, less so with older people. But I ask in all sincerity: What is more important? Is it the nudity of the baptismal candidate while he or she is baptised, the type and colour of the garment that the newly-baptised wears, or the baptismal mystery itself which confirms that person's reception into the Orthodox faith and communion? 

Haven't you been paying attention? 

The preceding discussion was all academic - my jab at username!'s desire to "be picky."

There is no controversy, unless you want there to be some.  I've got the time, but I don't think the mod of this section really wants some sort of "naked vs. clothed" debate raging in his section - it might nudge him over the sanity ledge that the "Pews or no Pews" debate has pushed him to...
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Offline ialmisry

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #36 on: December 13, 2008, 09:42:31 AM »
it would be nice if there was a discreet way for a person to disrobe, be baptized unclothed and put a rob on, dry off partially and then wear some sort of white garment. Baptist churches (at least the one I interned in while attending a protestant seminary back in the 70's) usually have a tank of some sort with running water and a drain. Also a discreet way of entering/exiting (they baptized people in a robe) without soaking the carpet in the church.

It is not really practical in our parishes, however because we are not converting than many people and the cost vs. use just isn't there. Most converts are from other Christian communions who only get chrismated. We aren't really reaching the secular people of our culture.

The baptism vessels we use for the most part are for those we baptize for the most part - our babies and grandchildren.

I hate to introduce a bummer into the conversation, but our retention rate of those baptized babies ain't all that great. Protestant converts are not going to make Orthdoxy grow long term. They will only stem the tide of attrition. And eventually, in the second or third or 4th convert generations the retention rate will decline as well.

We need to get serious about evangelism. A real discussion about evangelism (not by us armchair theologians on OC.net, but by hierarchs and theologians) needs to take place to figure out just what IS Orthodox evangelism - in light of Holy Tradition, in light of the Apostles, in light of the early practice of the Church, in light of missionaries (eg. Sts. Cyril andMethodius) throughout history, in light of the recent traumas of Orthodoxy in communist and muslim lands, in light of various forms of protestant evangelism (noting the good, avoiding the bad, taking some aspects in simply as information - neither copying or rejecting outright), in light of the current social and religious situation in North America and the Western world in general (whom most of the posters here live in, even if some of you are on the other side of the world in the Pacific) and coming up with a strategy that is common and can be shared by all jurisidictions.

Someone said that the Church is always one generation from extinction (when the last living believers die and no new converts come in and the next generation leaves).

We shouldn't just say "back at ya" to God and quote that the gates of hell shall not prevail against the Church and God will always preserve his Church. WE are the ONES who proclaim synergy in salvation - God and man working together in faith and love and actions. Yet we sit back and leave it up to God to preserve His Church like we are some kind of crypto-Calvinists! How dare we!

Unfortunately, "come and see" evangelism is code for NO EVANGELISM.

I hope to see the day when evangelism demands that we have to have baptist style baptistries because we are regularly baptising real converts from secular, non-Christian backgrounds (and not just chrismating us former protestants - which isn't conversion so much as fulfilling our prior faith commitments in the true Church).

And WOW! Wouldn't a bunch of new, totally un-learned, un-taught, blank slate secular people and pagans converted do wonders for our chatechising. We would have to take it seriously and really teach the stuff to them. We might actually have to REALLY believe it and live it ourselves instead of taking it for granted and ho-hum we do this and believe that. It would light a fire in our own faith and practice to suddenly be responsible for such true babes in Christ.

And in the end THAT is what baptism is existentially about in the life of the parish. Bringing in the new Christian and the older Christians taking responsibility and haveing their own baptism re-ignited and made real. Then these newbies growing and experiencing the same rejuvenation as they see new converts baptized into the true Church.

I have to agree with all of the above.

The Church is "One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic."

Apostolic means "sent."  Sent for what?  The Great Commission.  A Church not engaged in missions is not the Church.
Catholic means "universal."  A Church that sees itself in "diapora" and worries only about "its own" is not Catholic.
Ethnic ghettoes and culture clubs disguised as parishes are not holy.
A church that is just fine with 5 bishops in one city, and parishes of ethnicity X which knows all about what's going on in the "home country" but nothing on parish of ethnicity Y down the block, are not one.  Hasn't the Vatican beat us over the head for this, with some justification?  It is a real stumbling block that should be removed.
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Offline Quinault

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #37 on: December 13, 2008, 06:00:39 PM »
Baptizing in a bathing suit is a bad idea. I would never be comfortable with that. We don't want women wearing short skirts, sleeveless shirts and the like in church. Why would we have them were next to nothing for a baptism? Unless you look for gender specifically, babies are nearly asexual in appearance. There isn't (shouldn't be) fear of sexual temptation when seeing a child baptized nude or nearly nude. The same can not be said for adults.

Offline Veniamin

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #38 on: December 13, 2008, 06:17:06 PM »
it would be nice if there was a discreet way for a person to disrobe, be baptized unclothed and put a rob on, dry off partially and then wear some sort of white garment. Baptist churches (at least the one I interned in while attending a protestant seminary back in the 70's) usually have a tank of some sort with running water and a drain. Also a discreet way of entering/exiting (they baptized people in a robe) without soaking the carpet in the church.

It is not really practical in our parishes, however because we are not converting than many people and the cost vs. use just isn't there. Most converts are from other Christian communions who only get chrismated. We aren't really reaching the secular people of our culture.

The baptism vessels we use for the most part are for those we baptize for the most part - our babies and grandchildren.

I hate to introduce a bummer into the conversation, but our retention rate of those baptized babies ain't all that great. Protestant converts are not going to make Orthdoxy grow long term. They will only stem the tide of attrition. And eventually, in the second or third or 4th convert generations the retention rate will decline as well.

We need to get serious about evangelism. A real discussion about evangelism (not by us armchair theologians on OC.net, but by hierarchs and theologians) needs to take place to figure out just what IS Orthodox evangelism - in light of Holy Tradition, in light of the Apostles, in light of the early practice of the Church, in light of missionaries (eg. Sts. Cyril andMethodius) throughout history, in light of the recent traumas of Orthodoxy in communist and muslim lands, in light of various forms of protestant evangelism (noting the good, avoiding the bad, taking some aspects in simply as information - neither copying or rejecting outright), in light of the current social and religious situation in North America and the Western world in general (whom most of the posters here live in, even if some of you are on the other side of the world in the Pacific) and coming up with a strategy that is common and can be shared by all jurisidictions.

Someone said that the Church is always one generation from extinction (when the last living believers die and no new converts come in and the next generation leaves).

We shouldn't just say "back at ya" to God and quote that the gates of hell shall not prevail against the Church and God will always preserve his Church. WE are the ONES who proclaim synergy in salvation - God and man working together in faith and love and actions. Yet we sit back and leave it up to God to preserve His Church like we are some kind of crypto-Calvinists! How dare we!

Unfortunately, "come and see" evangelism is code for NO EVANGELISM.

I hope to see the day when evangelism demands that we have to have baptist style baptistries because we are regularly baptising real converts from secular, non-Christian backgrounds (and not just chrismating us former protestants - which isn't conversion so much as fulfilling our prior faith commitments in the true Church).

And WOW! Wouldn't a bunch of new, totally un-learned, un-taught, blank slate secular people and pagans converted do wonders for our chatechising. We would have to take it seriously and really teach the stuff to them. We might actually have to REALLY believe it and live it ourselves instead of taking it for granted and ho-hum we do this and believe that. It would light a fire in our own faith and practice to suddenly be responsible for such true babes in Christ.

And in the end THAT is what baptism is existentially about in the life of the parish. Bringing in the new Christian and the older Christians taking responsibility and haveing their own baptism re-ignited and made real. Then these newbies growing and experiencing the same rejuvenation as they see new converts baptized into the true Church.

PoM nominee!
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Offline ozgeorge

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #39 on: December 13, 2008, 06:22:43 PM »
Baptizing in a bathing suit is a bad idea. I would never be comfortable with that.

If you're living a happy life as a Christian, you're doing something wrong.

Offline Quinault

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #40 on: December 13, 2008, 06:29:10 PM »
Who is there in the icon? Certainly not an entire parish in the 21st century.

Nudity is different in different social circles and time periods. My tribe was nude year round. It is actually warmer in this type of climate to be nude. We don't plan are starting that back up, even though it would be "recapturing our culture." If one is raised around nudity and hasn't been indoctrinated to see nudity as sexual then it would be fine. But if I can't breast feed my child without being given a hard time, I doubt being baptized in a bathing suit would be acceptable.

Offline ozgeorge

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #41 on: December 13, 2008, 06:32:25 PM »
Who is there in the icon? Certainly not an entire parish in the 21st century.
"Then all the land of Judea, and those from Jerusalem, went out to him and were all baptized by him in the Jordan River, confessing their sins." (Mark 1:5)


Nudity is different in different social circles and time periods.
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« Last Edit: December 13, 2008, 06:36:14 PM by ozgeorge »
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Offline Justin Kissel

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #42 on: December 13, 2008, 06:42:00 PM »
Quote
Baptizing in a bathing suit is a bad idea. I would never be comfortable with that. We don't want women wearing short skirts, sleeveless shirts and the like in church. Why would we have them were next to nothing for a baptism? Unless you look for gender specifically, babies are nearly asexual in appearance. There isn't (shouldn't be) fear of sexual temptation when seeing a child baptized nude or nearly nude. The same can not be said for adults.

With this I'd definitely agree.
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Offline ozgeorge

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #43 on: December 13, 2008, 06:43:13 PM »
And at any rate, we still display icons showing the undressed human form even in our 21st century parishes.
Orthodoxy has less neurosis about this than our neurotic societies.


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Offline Elisha

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Re: Liturgical practise of antiochian parish
« Reply #44 on: December 13, 2008, 06:49:23 PM »
Quote
Baptizing in a bathing suit is a bad idea. I would never be comfortable with that. We don't want women wearing short skirts, sleeveless shirts and the like in church. Why would we have them were next to nothing for a baptism? Unless you look for gender specifically, babies are nearly asexual in appearance. There isn't (shouldn't be) fear of sexual temptation when seeing a child baptized nude or nearly nude. The same can not be said for adults.

With this I'd definitely agree.

I don't.  Again, I did't say a bikini, but a one-piece - covers a lot more flesh.  Besides, the person is only "undressed" (as in, in the suit) for a couple of minutes.  Usually it is under their normal clothes, which are taken off just before getting dunked.  This fear of being in a bathing suit mystifies me.  Fine, then were more clothes if you are uncomfortable.  The congregation will think you're a little paranoid, but it is more up to the baptizee.  If a woman can wear shorts and a jog bra in public, then how is wearing a one-piece swimsuit for <5 min just before getting baptized scandalous?  This it utter nonesense.  As ozgeorge just referenced, look at the icon.