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Author Topic: My first visit to an Orthodox church to be tonight  (Read 3246 times) Average Rating: 0
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Mister Jim Dude
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« on: May 12, 2010, 03:49:51 AM »

Hi, guys,
Just wanted to let you know that, after years of listening to orthodox podcasts, I have finally decided to visit an orthodox church. This has not been an easy decision because I am a very involved protestant. But I will be going to the Vespers services for Accession.
I'll let you know how it goes.
peace,
Jim
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« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2010, 03:54:07 AM »

I hope you find it spiritually beneficial Smiley
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« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2010, 03:54:33 AM »

Hope all goes well.  Smiley
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« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2010, 07:17:00 AM »

Hope it goes well
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« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2010, 07:56:39 AM »

I pray that the experience blesses you.
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« Reply #5 on: May 12, 2010, 08:26:24 AM »

May the Lord bless you!
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« Reply #6 on: May 12, 2010, 09:56:15 AM »

My prayers and best wishes to you on your first visit.

Thomas
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« Reply #7 on: May 12, 2010, 10:07:18 AM »

The Orthodox Church welcomes you!  enjoy your visit, come back soon!

have a good time, my prayers are with you.
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« Reply #8 on: May 12, 2010, 10:09:35 AM »

I hope it is a good experience
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« Reply #9 on: May 12, 2010, 10:11:26 AM »

Have fun, and get ready for quite an experience, especially coming from the Protestant side.
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« Reply #10 on: May 12, 2010, 11:34:29 AM »

Hi, guys,
Just wanted to let you know that, after years of listening to orthodox podcasts, I have finally decided to visit an orthodox church. This has not been an easy decision because I am a very involved protestant. But I will be going to the Vespers services for Accession.
I'll let you know how it goes.
peace,
Jim

Glory to God! And keep in mind that attending one Vespers service or a service at any other church other than you own doesn't commit you to anything. You are not renouncing your current church by going to a prayer service at another church. Smiley

Go with an open heart, an open mind, and enjoy. Smiley
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« Reply #11 on: May 12, 2010, 12:41:04 PM »

I hope that the experience is beneficial to you in your spiritual life.

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« Reply #12 on: May 12, 2010, 03:40:50 PM »

So, how did it go?

(Better than my first experience, I hope!)
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« Reply #13 on: May 14, 2010, 03:35:03 AM »

thank you to all for your well wishes and prayers! yes, it did go well and I have to tell you that I was blown away! It seems that Orthodox sing everything and it's beautiful. Also, I sensed such a "sense of the holy". I have read on blogs that in the Orthodox Church, 'it's not about you' so while the service wasn't "seeker sensitive" people did talk to me after the service. A reader named John and his wife were especially friendly and they introduced me to the priest. They gave me an icon calendar with all the readings.

I must go back again. I love how in worship the whole body is involved, all the senses.  Smells, bowing, sight (looking at icons as they pray)...it sure is different from singing a few hymns and an hour long sermon!
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« Reply #14 on: May 14, 2010, 03:41:54 AM »

So, how did it go?

(Better than my first experience, I hope!)
how bad was your first experience? What went wrong?
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« Reply #15 on: May 14, 2010, 03:42:11 AM »

Glad things went well! Smiley
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« Reply #16 on: May 14, 2010, 03:47:01 AM »

I have a question about shaking the priests hand...I have heard you are not really supposed to shake the priest's hand, rather kiss it, because of the Eucharist. While I understand that, is it ever appropriate to shake his hand? I did when I was introduced but felt selfconcious about it.
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« Reply #17 on: May 14, 2010, 03:54:27 AM »

I wouldn't worry about it. Smiley In my experience, different priests will react differently, but I don't imagine that any would get offended. I've shaken the hand of the priest at my Antiochian Church, and he's usually the one that extends his hand first. There's nothing wrong with asking a blessing either, if you feel comfortable doing that. Just cup your hands in front of you and ask if the priest would bless you, and he'll bless you and then put his hand in yours, and you can kiss it as a sign of respect. But if that makes you uncomfortable, then it's no big deal. Same thing goes with kissing the priest's hand generally. In some parishes you might kiss the hand of a priest when you venerate the cross after liturgy, in other places you don't. Generally I just do what I see other people doing if I'm not familiar with the priest or parish. For instance, I visited a Serbian parish last Sunday, and none of the other people were kissing the hand of the priest at the end, so I didn't either.
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« Reply #18 on: May 14, 2010, 04:03:13 AM »

I wouldn't worry about it. Smiley In my experience, different priests will react differently, but I don't imagine that any would get offended. I've shaken the hand of the priest at my Antiochian Church, and he's usually the one that extends his hand first. There's nothing wrong with asking a blessing either, if you feel comfortable doing that. Just cup your hands in front of you and ask if the priest would bless you, and he'll bless you and then put his hand in yours, and you can kiss it as a sign of respect. But if that makes you uncomfortable, then it's no big deal. Same thing goes with kissing the priest's hand generally. In some parishes you might kiss the hand of a priest when you venerate the cross after liturgy, in other places you don't. Generally I just do what I see other people doing if I'm not familiar with the priest or parish. For instance, I visited a Serbian parish last Sunday, and none of the other people were kissing the hand of the priest at the end, so I didn't either.
thanks!
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« Reply #19 on: May 14, 2010, 06:18:02 AM »

Glad to hear it went well!

Yes, everything in the Orthodox Church is either sung in the form of a hymn or chanted. This is to prevent anyone from putting their own personal emphasis on any of the prayers or readings. For just as much as the service "isn't about you," it isn't about the priest or anyone else either. It's about God, and worshiping Him.

Are you going to go back for Divine Liturgy on Sunday?
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« Reply #20 on: May 15, 2010, 02:57:31 AM »

I will, God willing, eventually, go to Divine Liturgy, but I am very involved in my protestant church and, more to the point, so is my family. I envision myself as eventually converting to Orthodoxy but I want my family to be on board with that so I want to make the transition slowly. I intend to go to a lot of Vespers, then invite my family to go with me. I know eventually I will have to make the break but I feel like I have to- I just want my family along as well. Keep me in your prayers, please.
Glad to hear it went well!

Yes, everything in the Orthodox Church is either sung in the form of a hymn or chanted. This is to prevent anyone from putting their own personal emphasis on any of the prayers or readings. For just as much as the service "isn't about you," it isn't about the priest or anyone else either. It's about God, and worshiping Him.

Are you going to go back for Divine Liturgy on Sunday?
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« Reply #21 on: May 15, 2010, 10:34:32 AM »

I will, God willing, eventually, go to Divine Liturgy, but I am very involved in my protestant church and, more to the point, so is my family. I envision myself as eventually converting to Orthodoxy but I want my family to be on board with that so I want to make the transition slowly. I intend to go to a lot of Vespers, then invite my family to go with me. I know eventually I will have to make the break but I feel like I have to- I just want my family along as well. Keep me in your prayers, please.
I understand your difficulty. That's where I was a few years ago. Then the local mission, because of realities of finding a space to rent, began holding services Sunday afternoon. We've since been able to change to Sunday mornings. Dare I suggest you check around to see if there's a mission parish nearby that may hold a Divine Liturgy on a Saturday, or perhaps on a Sunday afternoon? Don't forget there are also feast days. Larger churches will almost certainly have a Liturgy in connection with the feasts, and even smaller ones will do what they can.
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« Reply #22 on: May 15, 2010, 12:22:31 PM »

I will, God willing, eventually, go to Divine Liturgy, but I am very involved in my protestant church and, more to the point, so is my family. I envision myself as eventually converting to Orthodoxy but I want my family to be on board with that so I want to make the transition slowly. I intend to go to a lot of Vespers, then invite my family to go with me. I know eventually I will have to make the break but I feel like I have to- I just want my family along as well. Keep me in your prayers, please.
Glad to hear it went well!

Yes, everything in the Orthodox Church is either sung in the form of a hymn or chanted. This is to prevent anyone from putting their own personal emphasis on any of the prayers or readings. For just as much as the service "isn't about you," it isn't about the priest or anyone else either. It's about God, and worshiping Him.

Are you going to go back for Divine Liturgy on Sunday?

I think you are wise in how you are handling the situation. May the Lord bless you on your journey!
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« Reply #23 on: May 23, 2010, 05:52:59 AM »

I went to a second Orthodox service...I have decided to blog all my visits as a record of my entry into Orthdoxy...take a look if you like
http://orthodoxyorbust.blogspot.com/

thanks for everyone's encouraging words.
jim
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« Reply #24 on: May 23, 2010, 03:04:09 PM »

I went to a second Orthodox service...I have decided to blog all my visits as a record of my entry into Orthdoxy...take a look if you like
http://orthodoxyorbust.blogspot.com/

thanks for everyone's encouraging words.
jim


I'm glad you're doing that.  I'll trying to follow along as I can.
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« Reply #25 on: May 31, 2010, 03:41:44 PM »

Excellent idea, Mister Jim Dude (may we call you Jim?). I will follow your blog, as well as keep your spiritual journey in my prayers.

God bless!
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« Reply #26 on: June 04, 2010, 04:53:07 AM »

Excellent idea, Mister Jim Dude (may we call you Jim?). I will follow your blog, as well as keep your spiritual journey in my prayers.

God bless!

Thanks for the prayers!  and, yes, by all means, call me Jim
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« Reply #27 on: June 06, 2010, 06:01:24 AM »

updated my blog with a short entry...http://orthodoxyorbust.blogspot.com/
check it out!
jim
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« Reply #28 on: August 14, 2010, 03:22:17 AM »

...just thought I'd let you know, I am up to my seventh visit...read all about it on my blog...

.http://orthodoxyorbust.blogspot.com/2010/08/seventh-visit-joining-in.html
thanks,
Jim
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« Reply #29 on: August 14, 2010, 04:53:52 PM »

Awesome!
Welcome to the forum, and i'll go read your blog.
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« Reply #30 on: August 14, 2010, 06:08:56 PM »

Hope you enjoy it, I still have a sort of Mutual feeling after visiting mine.
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« Reply #31 on: August 14, 2010, 06:13:50 PM »

I love your blog!  I do believe you are hooked!  I was chrismated on 3/27/10, and have never looked back.  I love looking forward to the next service instead of thinking of it as just an obligation!  Good luck! 
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« Reply #32 on: August 15, 2010, 04:54:39 AM »

Awesome!
Welcome to the forum, and i'll go read your blog.

Thanks for the welcome...hope you enjoy the blog.
jim
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« Reply #33 on: August 15, 2010, 04:57:54 AM »

Hope you enjoy it, I still have a sort of Mutual feeling after visiting mine.

thanks
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« Reply #34 on: August 15, 2010, 05:01:12 AM »

I love your blog!  I do believe you are hooked!  I was chrismated on 3/27/10, and have never looked back.  I love looking forward to the next service instead of thinking of it as just an obligation!  Good luck! 
congrats on being chrismated! I have only been to services seven times and each time, just like you, I don't see it as an obligation but as something I really want to go to. In fact, when I miss going (which happens more than I like due to family obligations and the fact that I am still committed to a protestant church), I really miss it.
Jim
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« Reply #35 on: August 16, 2010, 09:08:35 AM »

I love your blog!  I do believe you are hooked!  I was chrismated on 3/27/10, and have never looked back.  I love looking forward to the next service instead of thinking of it as just an obligation!  Good luck! 

Welcome to the Convert issues Forum Gunnie! Congratulations on your recent Chruismation---God grant you many years!

I hope that you will find the Convert Issues forum to be place where you as a new convert may ask your questions about the Orthodox Faith in a safe and supportive forum.  WE try to provide an understanding of the basic teachings and practices of the Orthodox churches. WE try to keep our answers direct and simple with sources if possible,

For those who are converts, this forum is a safe place to discuss issues that arise after one converts in a safe and supportive forum without retribution or recrimination. WE try to avoid jurisdiction debates and you may find a the topic that will be split and sent the appropriate OC.Net forum to continue the discussion or debate if it strays from the guidelines of our Forum Purpose.

Again I want to welcome you warmly to the Convert Issues Forum and hope you will enjoy your time as a member here.

In Christ,
Thomas
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