Author Topic: What can converts do?  (Read 1970 times)

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Offline Troldhaugen

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What can converts do?
« on: July 22, 2006, 07:37:43 PM »
Brothers and Sisters In Christ,

This is my first post here and I hope to be able to get to know you all well. My question is, if we have not been chrismated, what can we do at home? I know that we can pray but can we cross ourselves or is that something for after chrismation? Can we begin using our post-christmation name? Can we pray to our 'adopted' Saint? Should we be fasting before we're chrismated? When we enter a Church, should we (in the Russian tradition) cross ourselves three times and make a bow or would that be seen as being a bit pretentious? Can we sign "In Christ" after names? There are a few more questions but they've gone out of my head at the moment!

Thankyou in advance!
"One must have only a little patience-and is it really so difficult? For every day that passes quietly I thank God"

Offline Starlight

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Re: What can converts do?
« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2006, 09:04:54 PM »
While I am not an expert, please let me answer on these things that I know.
I know that we can pray but can we cross ourselves
Yes
Can we pray to our 'adopted' Saint?
You can pray to any Saint, as long as sainthood of that person has been proved. In other words, that person has to be a officially canonized in a Canonical Orthodox Church.
When we enter a Church, should we (in the Russian tradition) cross ourselves three times and make a bow or would that be seen as being a bit pretentious? Can we sign "In Christ" after names?
Yes on all of these, except the fact that I would say, you certainly may, but not should or must cross yourself and make a bow when you enter the church. Different traditions have a different extent of focus on this.

Offline Starlight

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Re: What can converts do?
« Reply #2 on: July 22, 2006, 09:05:59 PM »
And for fasting, I also would say you can do so if you wish.

Offline Troldhaugen

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Re: What can converts do?
« Reply #3 on: July 22, 2006, 09:07:51 PM »
Thankyou Starlight! I always worry that I'll be seen as encroaching when I do certain things but actually, I just want to express my faith the way I see other people expressing theirs if that makes sense.
"One must have only a little patience-and is it really so difficult? For every day that passes quietly I thank God"

Offline Starlight

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Re: What can converts do?
« Reply #4 on: July 22, 2006, 09:15:10 PM »
You are more then welcome. May God bless your journey to Orthodoxy and help you in everything. Excellent that you came to this decision!

Offline Troldhaugen

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Re: What can converts do?
« Reply #5 on: July 22, 2006, 09:34:29 PM »
Thankyou Starlight! God Bless You.
"One must have only a little patience-and is it really so difficult? For every day that passes quietly I thank God"

Offline scamandrius

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Re: What can converts do?
« Reply #6 on: July 23, 2006, 10:55:52 PM »
Brothers and Sisters In Christ,

This is my first post here and I hope to be able to get to know you all well. My question is, if we have not been chrismated, what can we do at home? I know that we can pray but can we cross ourselves or is that something for after chrismation? Can we begin using our post-christmation name? Can we pray to our 'adopted' Saint? Should we be fasting before we're chrismated? When we enter a Church, should we (in the Russian tradition) cross ourselves three times and make a bow or would that be seen as being a bit pretentious? Can we sign "In Christ" after names? There are a few more questions but they've gone out of my head at the moment!

Thankyou in advance!

As the other posts have already said, the answer to your question is an absolute "yes."  The Orthodox do not have a monopoly on crossing themselves or showing humility before God (though I remember once making a metanoia in a Lutheran church and was told after the service that such "garbage" was not needed there).  Do as much as you can and if you are still intent on receiving the seal of the gift of the Holy Spirit, remember that the priest is there as your spiritual father to guide you through the praxis of the Orthodox life.  Teh most difficult thing for me was fasting.  Remember, it's not a legalistic thing, but a fruit of the faith and the spirit.  Good luck in your journey!
I seek the truth by which no man was ever harmed--Marcus Aurelius

Those who do not read  history are doomed to get their facts from Hollywood--Anonymous

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Offline dantxny

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Re: What can converts do?
« Reply #7 on: July 24, 2006, 12:01:08 AM »
Trodhaugen,
Welcome, I hope your journey shall be filled with grace.  Certainly you can do those things.  In fact, I would say that prayers, fasting, etc. should be started as soon as possible.  Just as a player cannot play at his fullest if he sits around during spring training, so too can we not worship as Christians if we just begin suddenly.  We need training.  Now would also be a good time to talk much with your spiritual father/ priest as it is good for y'all to build a repitoire and understanding for your spiritual benefit as soon as possible.
Daniel
"If you give the average Frenchman a choice between a reforming president who would plug the country's huge deficit and a good cheese, he would probably opt for the cheese." - Stephen Clarke
I think the French may be on to something here.

Offline Thomas

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Re: What can converts do?
« Reply #8 on: July 24, 2006, 08:23:59 PM »
As a Catechumen Director in my Parish, I have been advised to have the investigator/catechumen do the following:
a) Attend as many services as possible , but especially the Major Feasts of the Church
b) Practice Fasting and discuss with the pastor any problems that you may be facing as you fast
c) Pray three times a day (from the Didache)
d) Offer Alms to the Poor and funds for the upbuilding of the body of the Church
e) Read spiritual books (we assign books based upon the needs of the inquiror/Catechumen)
f) Read the Bible (we recomend the use of the daily readings as a minimum)

In Christ,
Thomas
Your brother in Christ ,
Thomas

Offline Troldhaugen

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Re: What can converts do?
« Reply #9 on: July 25, 2006, 12:45:10 PM »
Thankyou for all your replies. They have been extremely helpful.

In Christ,
"One must have only a little patience-and is it really so difficult? For every day that passes quietly I thank God"