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Antonis
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« on: August 31, 2010, 01:49:00 AM »

Hello everyone! Smiley

A quick summary of my background:
I am 15, my family stopped attending church starting with my grandfather(I am Greek by heritage). Around 10/11 I became deeply interested in my roots, which expanded to history, which expanded to religion by 12/13.

My mother is agnostic and my parents are divorced Undecided. I was baptized Methodist, my father is remarried, and my mother is remarrying soon. My stepmother was raised Methodist, and at my father's side of the family it was always a "it doesn't matter what church you go to, so long as you're Christian" kind of thing. I started pushing to go to the Greek church at 11, just because it was our culture, then at 13 I really began studying the history and beliefs of the church, pushing me to Orthodoxy. I would tell my parents about Orthodoxy and the history of the church, which prompted them to study. We tried out the three Greek churches in our area, settling on one that we adored.

After a year(I think it was in May of this year), my stepmom, my half-sister, and I were chrismated. My faith weakened at several points before and after chrismation, but in early July I had the most influential day of my life, and I haven't doubted my faith in any major way since.

Now to my question:
This Saturday I will be going to St Anthony's Monastery and I'm not very learned in the ways of protocol for meeting monks, clergy, etc. I'm terrified I'll run into the Elder Ephraim and not know what to do. Tongue Although I've read some things online, I'm still afraid I'll mess up and not do something right. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Smiley

Asking for your prayers,
Anthony
« Last Edit: August 31, 2010, 01:50:00 AM by Antonis » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: August 31, 2010, 02:07:45 AM »

From what I've been told, the younger monks at the monastery will promptly let you know when you've done anything "not right".

But don't worry.  Especially being a young man, these men should understand and direct you should you do anything reprehensible...  although perhaps in a stronger hand than you're used to.

You seem very conscious of yourself, especially when I compare your brief story to myself at the same age!  As long as you go in with this humble frame of mind, ready to be ministered to, you will be alright.

My godfather told me about being scolded by a man half his age for folding his hands behind his back instead of in front.  "You never hold your hands behind your back in a Greek monastery."  So maybe fold your hands in front of you.

May your pilgrimage be blessed
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« Reply #2 on: August 31, 2010, 02:12:52 AM »

From what I've been told, the younger monks at the monastery will promptly let you know when you've done anything "not right".

But don't worry.  Especially being a young man, these men should understand and direct you should you do anything reprehensible...  although perhaps in a stronger hand than you're used to.

You seem very conscious of yourself, especially when I compare your brief story to myself at the same age!  As long as you go in with this humble frame of mind, ready to be ministered to, you will be alright.

My godfather told me about being scolded by a man half his age for folding his hands behind his back instead of in front.  "You never hold your hands behind your back in a Greek monastery."  So maybe fold your hands in front of you.

May your pilgrimage be blessed

I was scolded  for having my hands in my pockets at the St.Sava Serbian Orthodox Monastery Church in Libertyville Ill.., and for tailking to loud with the Fr.Monk by a seminary Student..Even though there wasn't any services at the time..... Grin
« Last Edit: August 31, 2010, 02:23:14 AM by stashko » Logged

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« Reply #3 on: August 31, 2010, 11:49:28 PM »

Now to my question:
This Saturday I will be going to St Anthony's Monastery and I'm not very learned in the ways of protocol for meeting monks, clergy, etc. I'm terrified I'll run into the Elder Ephraim and not know what to do. Tongue Although I've read some things online, I'm still afraid I'll mess up and not do something right. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Smiley

Asking for your prayers,
Anthony

Be Yourself.   Smiley
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Antonis
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« Reply #4 on: September 01, 2010, 02:51:42 AM »

Thanks! Smiley

I understand that for the most part the monks go along their own way, but say for some reason we speak to one, or perhaps, although unlikely, I meet the Elder etc... Is it the same procedure as it would be with a priest? Asking for his blessing then kissing his hand?
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Awed by the beauty of your virginity
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Gabriel stood amazed, and cried to you, O Mother of God:
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Antonis
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« Reply #5 on: September 02, 2010, 10:36:14 PM »

Anyone?  Smiley
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« Reply #6 on: September 03, 2010, 12:38:15 AM »


Yes.  The same.

He is a priest.  It is always best to ask the priest for a blessing and kiss his hand.

Please...don't worry too much....or you will miss the forest for the trees.

I know when I first visited a monastery I was so nervous not to do anything wrong...that I hardly remember the experience.

Don't worry.  They know you are not a monk and they will understand and be tolerant.

Just do your best...but, please relax!

You are there to be with God, not the monks so much. 

Enjoy your time...and may it be of great benefit to your soul.

You WILL be fine.

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Antonis
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« Reply #7 on: September 04, 2010, 07:40:03 PM »

I had a great time, thank you everyone for your help!

Turned out greeting wasn't too big of an issue, we both seemed content to a slight head bow from me and a little wave and smile.



Just a picture out of the many I took. Smiley
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Awed by the beauty of your virginity
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Gabriel stood amazed, and cried to you, O Mother of God:
"What praise may I offer you
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« Reply #8 on: September 04, 2010, 08:16:57 PM »

Antonis, that is beautiful!  If you don't mind, I'd like to hear your experience.  If you have time and are able, it would be nice if you could type out something for us to share.  Anyway, I am glad you had a great time and you weren't anxious the entire time!
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Antonis
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« Reply #9 on: September 05, 2010, 02:17:48 AM »

It's a little late in the evening now unfortunately, but, yes, I will definitely share. I'm blessed that the monastery is less than an hour away. One of the monks invited us to come back and spend a night some time, which I would love.



« Last Edit: September 05, 2010, 02:20:05 AM by Antonis » Logged

Awed by the beauty of your virginity
and the exceeding radiance of your purity,
Gabriel stood amazed, and cried to you, O Mother of God:
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« Reply #10 on: September 06, 2010, 09:05:37 PM »

I had a great time, thank you everyone for your help!

Turned out greeting wasn't too big of an issue, we both seemed content to a slight head bow from me and a little wave and smile.



Just a picture out of the many I took. Smiley
why would a Greek monastery have Russian crosses?
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"It is true that I am not always faithful, but I never lose courage, I leave myself in the Arms of Our Lord." - St. Thérèse of Lisieux
Antonis
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« Reply #11 on: September 07, 2010, 09:57:41 AM »

As far as I know all manner of crosses are used by both Greeks and Russians. Russians use the equal bars, Greeks use the three bars, and vice versa regardless of the name. I have both a Russian and Greek cross that I wear around my neck, etc.

There was some Russian looking architecture there, actually:

(St Demetrios Church)


There was also an outdoor chapel dedicated to St Seraphim of Sarov.
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Awed by the beauty of your virginity
and the exceeding radiance of your purity,
Gabriel stood amazed, and cried to you, O Mother of God:
"What praise may I offer you
that is worthy of your beauty?"
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