OrthodoxChristianity.net
April 16, 2014, 12:51:55 AM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News: The Rules page has been updated.  Please familiarize yourself with its contents!
 
   Home   Help Calendar Contact Treasury Tags CHAT Login Register  
Pages: 1   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: First Time Visiting an Orthodox Church  (Read 2851 times) Average Rating: 0
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
Chelsea
Jr. Member
**
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian
Posts: 28



« on: May 17, 2010, 05:46:21 PM »

Hello again,
(I thank you for your prayers and guidance when I posted asking for help on prayer.  I am still uncertain of the condition of my health and I am praying and hoping for the best.)

I have found an Orthodox church in my town.  I would like to attend a service, but I don't know what to expect.  (The church is Antiochian.)  Should I attend a Sunday Liturgy or Saturday Vespers?  Should I cover my head?  (I am a woman.)  Is there anything I should not do?  Is it likely that they'll be bothered by a woman attending alone?  (I am single.)  Will the service be in English?

I have ordered books on the Orthodox faith, but is it OK to attend a service before I read them?
Chelsea
Logged
Heorhij
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: GOA, for now, but my heart belongs to the Ukrainian Orthodox Church
Posts: 8,576



WWW
« Reply #1 on: May 17, 2010, 05:49:56 PM »

Chelsea, - maybe you will find this useful: http://www.frederica.com/12-things/
Logged

Love never fails.
That person
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Catechumen
Jurisdiction: Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America
Posts: 1,155


Long live Commie Superman


« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2010, 07:54:01 PM »

If the parish has a website, it'd probably be best to look at that for info about what they expect, since there can be significant variety among Orthodox. That being said, if it's Antiochian, I can almost garuntee you that the service would be in English. There aren't many Middle-Eastern Americans who are also Orthodox Christian outside of Detroit, so most are very convert-oriented. Because of this, they tend not to get up-tight about lack of experience with the liturgy, since many in the congregation started in the same place. Of course, this could be all wrong, so your best bet would be to go and see what happens. The Frederica link should serve as a good guideline.
Logged

"Some have such command of their bowels, that they can break wind continuously at pleasure, so as to produce the effect of singing."- St. Augustine of Hippo

Movie reviews you can trust.
Iconodule
Uranopolitan
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA (Diocese of Eastern Pennsylvania)
Posts: 6,834


"My god is greater."


« Reply #3 on: May 17, 2010, 08:19:11 PM »

Should I cover my head?  (I am a woman.)

This usually depends on the jurisdiction and maybe the individual parish practice too. Chances are, if it's a Greek or Antiochian parish, you won't need to. If it's ROCOR, then yes. With OCA there might be more variation. Maybe bring a scarf in your pocket just in case.

Quote
Is there anything I should not do?  Is it likely that they'll be bothered by a woman attending alone?  (I am single.) 

I would be very surprised if this were an issue for anyone. I've never heard of that being a problem.

Quote
I have ordered books on the Orthodox faith, but is it OK to attend a service before I read them?

Of course! That's how most people learn start learning about the faith anyway- from the services.
Logged

"A riddle or the cricket's cry
Is to doubt a fit reply." - William Blake

Quote from: Byron
Just ignore iconotools delusions. He is the biggest multiculturalist globalist there is due to his unfortunate background.
Chelsea
Jr. Member
**
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian
Posts: 28



« Reply #4 on: May 17, 2010, 08:26:28 PM »

Thank you for the replies.

Heorhij - Thanks.  I looked at that website and it does look a little intimidating for a newcomer.  Would it be alright to quietly observe for the first few times I go?

That person - I looked at their website and it doesn't offer much specific information about services or what's expected.

Iconodule - I will tuck a scarf in my bag just in case.  Good advice.

More questions:  Can I wear pants?  What is the difference between liturgy and vespers?  Is one of them more appropriate for a newcomer?
Logged
Radost
Jr. Member
**
Offline Offline

Faith: seeking
Posts: 27


« Reply #5 on: May 17, 2010, 10:02:52 PM »

Hello Chelsea.  I'm new too at going to Orthodox Church.   Smiley The place I go to speaks mostly Russian and they do their services all in Slavonic.  We cover our heads in a Russian Orthodox Church.  I don't know if it would be different in the place you are going to. 
Logged
bogdan
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Posts: 1,615



« Reply #6 on: May 17, 2010, 10:43:38 PM »

For your first visit, I might recommend going to Saturday Vespers. It's a shorter service than Divine Liturgy (at my parish, around 45 minutes), and typically not as many people go. If a larger Sunday crowd is intimidating, going to Vespers is a good option. You may also have a better shot at speaking with the priest after Vespers, if you are inclined to introduce yourself (since after Liturgy he will be busy with his post-liturgy prayers and talking to parishioners).

That said, my first visit was a Divine Liturgy, and it was amazing. Go with whatever you feel most comfortable with. But most important: go. Smiley

Don't worry about participating or doing the wrong thing. I was worried at first too, but remember: if someone is watching you, they are not praying. That is their problem, not yours. Smiley
« Last Edit: May 17, 2010, 10:44:52 PM by bogdan » Logged
Radost
Jr. Member
**
Offline Offline

Faith: seeking
Posts: 27


« Reply #7 on: May 17, 2010, 10:49:48 PM »

Oh I love that!  It's so true what you said.  If someone is too focused on watching, they aren't praying.  Yes I agree.  Go there because of your love for God. What matters is that God and His Saints welcome you.  Those are the Ones you want to welcome you.  If you go for Them alone, you'll see that things with people around you will automatically work out.   Wink
Logged
LBK
Warned
Merarches
***********
Online Online

Faith: Orthodox
Posts: 9,093


Holy Father Patrick, pray for us!


« Reply #8 on: May 17, 2010, 11:13:16 PM »

For your first visit, I might recommend going to Saturday Vespers. It's a shorter service than Divine Liturgy (at my parish, around 45 minutes), and typically not as many people go.

Greek and Antiochian churches typically conduct Vespers only on the eves of feasts or on Saturday nights, as they do a quite shortened form of Matins before the Divine Liturgy on Sunday morning. The Russian/Slavic custom is to combine Vespers and Matins, as I described earlier.
Logged
Thankful
Elder
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Antiochian
Posts: 263



« Reply #9 on: May 17, 2010, 11:33:45 PM »


I have found an Orthodox church in my town.  I would like to attend a service, but I don't know what to expect.  (The church is Antiochian.)  Should I attend a Sunday Liturgy or Saturday Vespers?  Should I cover my head?  (I am a woman.)  Is there anything I should not do?  Is it likely that they'll be bothered by a woman attending alone?  (I am single.)  Will the service be in English?

Chelsea, we attend an Antiochian Orthodox church and it is a custom for the women to wear head coverings; greater than 90% do on a Sunday morning -- you'll have to check out the one close to you as I hear that our priest is very traditional in this and that this may not be common in the Antiochian jurisdiction. 

Enjoy your visit to the Orthodox church!  It's become such a rich treasure in our lives.  We began attending about 14 months ago and are so, so thankful for the gift God has given. 
Logged

Feanor
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Faith: Catholic
Posts: 205



« Reply #10 on: May 18, 2010, 02:06:33 AM »

In the Antiochian parish I attend, only a few women wear headscarfs, no one minds if they do or do not. Single women are just as welcome as everyone else. I don't think wearing pants would be a problem either. The Antiochians are more relaxed than the Russians about such things, I think.
Logged
Chelsea
Jr. Member
**
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian
Posts: 28



« Reply #11 on: May 18, 2010, 03:47:00 PM »

Thank you.  Saturday Vespers with a scarf in my bag it is.
Logged
Thankful
Elder
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Antiochian
Posts: 263



« Reply #12 on: May 18, 2010, 07:27:14 PM »

Thank you.  Saturday Vespers with a scarf in my bag it is.

Please come back and tell us what you thought!  Smiley
Logged

EmptyBe
Jr. Member
**
Offline Offline

Faith: Converting to Orthodox Christianity
Jurisdiction: Antiochian
Posts: 25



« Reply #13 on: May 18, 2010, 10:01:20 PM »

http://www.theophany.org/orthodoxFaith_etiquette.htm

This was helpful to me when I started going!

Logged

ICXC NIKA,
Matthew
Tags:
Pages: 1   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.18 | SMF © 2013, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!
Page created in 0.06 seconds with 42 queries.