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Author Topic: Which church would you choose?  (Read 1019 times) Average Rating: 0
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cradleOrthodoxmom
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« on: July 08, 2010, 04:04:43 PM »

Hi! I'm new here and so glad I found this forum.  I'm a cradle Orthodox(Russian) who left the faith for many years to attend various Protestant churches.  My kids were even baptized in the Protestant church.  Well, I'm considering returning permanately.  I've attended an OCA church on several occassions and went to confession at the Russian Orthodox Church so I've been back several times.  My question is this...
My husband is RC background but willing to explore Orthodoxy but hesitantly because he feels like he doesn't understand.  My children, my fault completely, have not embraces the faith like I hope the would  have.  It's hard coming from churches were it's like goingto a rock concert to Orthodox so I understand where they are coming from.  So, the OCA church is more *Americanized*  Most of the people are converts, the service is in English, it's more laid back...but the priest isn't my favorite.  He just doesn't sit right with me and hasn't been super friendly to my family.  On the other hand, the RO priest is AWESOME!  We talked for hours last week on the phone and he called again this week.  I really like him alot.  But, the church has only 1 convert and the service is in Slavonic.  Now, I can't remember anything from my youth(although I may catch on pretty quickly) but I know my kids and husband are going to be lost and I don't want them to feel like they don't belong because they aren't Russian although the priest has assured me that it wouldn't be an issue....what do you think?
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katherineofdixie
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« Reply #1 on: July 08, 2010, 04:44:26 PM »

Which would your kids and husband prefer? Have they been to both?
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cradleOrthodoxmom
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« Reply #2 on: July 11, 2010, 10:16:29 PM »

It's up to me...
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FrChris
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« Reply #3 on: July 11, 2010, 10:27:03 PM »

Speaking as a priest, I'm not sure why your family attending the OCA parish means that you cannot continue to go to the RO priest as your confessor, as well as maintaining a spiritual relationship with him.

When I was in Birmingham, I would routinely hear confessions from Orthodox who were not my parishioners. Of course their own priest knew this, and this should be communicated to the oCA priest. Also, folks move around in this country often. I know some folks who plan annual trips to their favorite priests to have their confessions heard and to maintain the relationships they have had over the years.

But, if you want your husband and children to embrace the faith, they have to understand what is going on. For that is sounds like the OCA parish might be a better fit for your family but you might have a better fit with the priest you've already seen and have a good relationship with.
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Quinault
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« Reply #4 on: July 11, 2010, 10:38:15 PM »

I would take the kids to visit both. You never know, they may like the service in Slavonic and feel more at home there. I would attend both and see how it pans out. The fact that the Russian church is your "home" may make it more appealing to them and could a better fit then the OCA and you wouldn't know it unless you tried it. I would attend the Russian parish first and then go from there. The friendly factor is a pretty big one for kids. My eldest daughter fell in LOVE with the Orthodox church from one visit because a woman (now her godmother) took her under her wing and helped her.
« Last Edit: July 11, 2010, 10:39:25 PM by Quinault » Logged
Gisasargavak
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« Reply #5 on: July 11, 2010, 11:06:20 PM »

Definitely get your family's input. You never know, your kids (being half-Russian I assume) might actually be intrigued by the Slavonic service as it is a part of their heritage. This could be the jump start for them to start attending and getting involved in the RO church.
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rakovsky
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« Reply #6 on: July 11, 2010, 11:10:36 PM »

Sure, visit both with your family. Sorry the OCA priest there doesn't sit right with you. Otherwise, it should be like home for your Catholic husband, because a big percent of OCA is actually grandkids of eastern Catholics who realized about Orthodoxy 100 years ago.

Maybe there are more jurisdictions nearby too.
« Last Edit: July 11, 2010, 11:11:49 PM by rakovsky » Logged
BoredMeeting
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« Reply #7 on: July 12, 2010, 01:29:07 PM »

There's no reason why you can't keep attending both.
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Carl Kraeff (Second Chance)
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« Reply #8 on: July 12, 2010, 02:53:33 PM »

I agree with Father Chris: it is very important for your family to fully participate in the services. This is extremely hard to do if you do not understand what is being said or chanted. This is not to say that one cannot get a sense of the holy at the all-Slavonic ROCOR church. It is simply critically important to understand the prayers, readings and hymns because they are the primary means to catechize believers. In other words, the OCA church is indeed the better church for your family; certainly for your husband and children, but also for you since you have been away for so long.

Above all, please remember that being Orthodox is not anything like being a Catholic or Protestant; it is a way of life. Being Orthodox should be nothing less than total commitment to being a disciple of our Lord. It means to having an active daily prayer life, observing the Church's cycles of fasting and feasting; doing good deeds; being a life-long learner and teacher (when called for); participating the life of the Parish, and trying to attend all available services--not just Sunday Liturgy. On a deeper level, it means constant struggle against infirmities and sins--as the story goes, falling down and getting up again, over and over again. It is growing in Christ. It is serious business that should be based on the right reasons, even if we are attracted to the Church sometimes for sentimental reasons.
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augustin717
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« Reply #9 on: July 12, 2010, 03:12:46 PM »

Quote
Above all, please remember that being Orthodox is not anything like being a Catholic or Protestant;
As if being a Catholic or a Protestant isn't and cannot ever be 'a way of life"... Roll Eyes
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Carl Kraeff (Second Chance)
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« Reply #10 on: July 12, 2010, 04:44:04 PM »

Quote
Above all, please remember that being Orthodox is not anything like being a Catholic or Protestant;
As if being a Catholic or a Protestant isn't and cannot ever be 'a way of life"... Roll Eyes

It can be but it is often reduced to being "religious" just like our nominal Orthodox. Wink
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