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Timon
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« on: December 09, 2011, 01:33:40 PM »

Can anyone help me better understand the differences in how the two churches celebrate?  What are some of the feast days the Protestants got rid of?  Are there any other key differences out there?

Thanks!
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« Reply #1 on: December 09, 2011, 02:04:38 PM »

Can anyone help me better understand the differences in how the two churches celebrate?  What are some of the feast days the Protestants got rid of?  Are there any other key differences out there?

Thanks!

Well, there are tons of ethnic/cultural customs that one will run into that are all pretty neat and fun. Sounds like you're asking more about church calendar/official church celebration type stuff, though, which is also sad to miss out on!

Of course, there's the St. Philip's Fast (or the Nativity Fast. Sometimes named for St. Philip because it starts on his feast day) that runs for 40 days before Christmas. It's a "fun" fast, very much not like Lent. It's anticipatory, rather than penitential. It's considerably more lenient and relaxed more often. For example, each weekend is a fish/wine/oil day, and every Tues./Thurs. a wine/oil up until the last week or two, then it gets more strict. Some jurisdictions allow fish on all days but Wed./Fri., right up until the feast, and no xerophagy (i.e., "dry eating"). Many days relax the fast as well, such as the Nativity of the Theotokos (which is one of the 12 Great Feasts), St. Nicholas' Day, (in the OCA) St. Herman's Day, etc. to fish/wine/oil.

Also, the large amount of important commemorations (like the days I just listed) exist and bring a festive feeling to the fasting period. St. Nicholas' Day is always really fun. Vespers and a Liturgy are served for him, and many parishes have a "visit" from St. Nicholas for the kids, and so they learn stories and songs about him and receive a gift basket of treats and trinkets. My church also usually has a lenten pancake breakfast in the parish hall after the morning Liturgy.

The couple Sundays immediately before Christmas are also special. The next to last commemorates the "Forefathers of our Lord" and remembers all of those who came before Christ proclaiming His advent. The Sunday before commemorates the "Ancestors of our Lord" and remembers those in the biological lineage of Christ. Also, many prophets have feast days that fall during St. Philip's Fast, even if they have a main commemoration another time in the year. All of this is anticipatory for the Christmas.

The liturgical celebration of Christmas is itself also a beautiful thing. The Royal Hours of Christmas are done on the morning of the Eve, and a Vesperal Liturgy is served on the Eve, as well. This type of Liturgy is very special, and only (supposed) to be served a few times a year for a very good reason. Mixing Vespers and a Liturgy breaks time, since the Vespers are served first and are for the following day (in this case, they're the Vepsers for Christmas) but the Liturgy is being served for the current day (Christmas Eve). Also, since only the first part of Vespers is served and only the last part of Liturgy, the troparion (main hymn of the feast) is NEVER sung. All of this adds to the anticipation of the Feast, which we've come right up to but haven't started celebrating QUITE YET, but it's palpable in the air.

The Vigil for the feast is also special, if your parish serves Vigil (mine follows the Russian practice, so we do). The Vigil is actually a combination of Great Compline and Matins, since Vespers has already been served (at the Vesperal Liturgy). Great Compline is a beautiful service, and builds to the great announcement by the deacon of "God is with us!", and while the people sing, "God is with us, understand all ye nations and submit yourselves, for God is with us!" the deacon reads the prophecy of Isaiah, "And he shall be called..." over them. It's very beautiful and my favorite part of the Great Compline service. Matins is then served and we've truly entered into the fullness of Christmas.

Liturgy is served the next morning, and we sing "As many as have been baptized..." instead of the Trisagion before the Epistle reading, which is only done three times a year (the other two being Theophany and Pascha) and for the next 12 days Orthodox Christians traditionally greet each other with the exchange, "Christ is born!" "Glorify Him!" Some parishes will also celebrate the Christmas Liturgy at midnight.

It's also important to note that this season doesn't really "end" for us on the 25th. Really, it more begins there. For Several days after we celebrate the afterfeast of Christmas, and then go immediately into the prefeast for Theophany, commemorating the Baptism of Christ in the Jordan. For Theophany (January 6, Western Epiphany), the same cycle is observed as what I described for Christmas, plus the Great Blessing of the Waters (done outdoors and the largest nearby body of water) then an afterfeast follows. A little less than a month later, Candlemas (or, "the Presentation (of Our Lord in the Temple)" is celebrated on February 2. Vigil is served as usual (the Vespers/Matins combination) the evening before and candles blessed usually before or after Liturgy the morning of the feast.

Hope that kind of answers the question for you. I know it's broad info, but I still hope it's informative! Grin
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« Reply #2 on: December 09, 2011, 02:09:42 PM »

It was very informative! Thanks very much.  Its just amazing (and sad) to see how much has been stripped away for this special time of year.  I feel ripped off that ive been a Christian my whole life, but have been missing out on all of this. Ha!
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« Reply #3 on: December 09, 2011, 02:10:26 PM »

It was very informative! Thanks very much.  Its just amazing (and sad) to see how much has been stripped away for this special time of year.  I feel ripped off that ive been a Christian my whole life, but have been missing out on all of this. Ha!

Oh, I know! Same here. I know I get like a kid again every St. Nicholas' Day, and the Christmas/Theophany cycle of services is always very exciting for me. It's truly a beautiful time of the year. I love walking into the church at the beginning of the fast and seeing all of the red paraments on the analogoi, the red glass votives and poinsettias. Then, when we get about a week off from Christmas itself, we hang the greens. Oh, so beautiful! Then we celebrate for what seems like forever between Christmas and Theophany, then in less than a month, it's Presentation. You almost forget that, by the time you've ended the cycle, Great Lent is right around the corner!
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« Reply #4 on: December 09, 2011, 02:14:23 PM »

This can be a bit of a tricky question to answer, as most celebratory elements of Christmas have more to do with ethnic culture than religion. As an example, while both Italy and France are Catholic, only Italy has Dominic the Christmas Donkey.

On Christmas Eve there is a Vespers service in the evening (some monasteries may have an all night vigil, something not uncommon before a major feast), and then on Christmas Day there is Divine Liturgy in the morning.

For Orthodox Christians in Ukraine, the night before Christmas is known as Sviata Vechera or Holy Supper. On this evening, a 12 dish meatless and dairy free supper will be served. Each dish representing one of Christ's apostles. The meal begins after the first star is seen in the night sky, or after evening Vespers. This represents the three magi who were led by a star.

Wheat will be placed under the tablecloth to remind us that Christ was born in a manger. After dinner, the family will usually sit around the table and sing Christmas carols.

More information can be found here.

As an American Orthodox Christian of Ukrainian descent, like most Americans, my family borrowed traditions from our ancestor's heritage and mixed them with other American traditions. I grew up with a Christmas tree, the myth of Santa Claus, watching "Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer," and singing American Christmas carols. Due to the fact that my family's parish is "Old Calendar," December 25th was reserved for Santa and Presents, and January 7th was when we focused on Christ's Nativity, went to Church, and had a traditional Ukrainian meal.

A few years ago, my sister, who lives several hours away from the rest of the family, could not come home for Christmas because she was on-call for work. (She works as a Cardiac Ultra Sound Technician at a hospital.) My parents and I traveled to be with her, so she wouldn't be alone for Christmas. The parish she was attending was a New Calendar Greek Orthodox parish, and celebrated on Dec. 25th. When we went to Liturgy Christmas morning, we were surprised to see most of the pews were empty. The majority of the parishioners had come the night before for vespers, and were spending Christmas morning opening presents with their family.

Now, is this how all Greek parishes are? I don't know, I can only share with you my experience.

At home, the Ukrainian Orthodox parish I attend is generally light in attendance for Vespers, but a full house on Christmas morning.

You also ask which feast days the Protestants god rid of, to which I answer, which group of Protestants? Remember, not all Protestant groups are the same.

The Anglicans have a full Liturgical calender, and celebrate a different saint or feast every day. (Just as the Orthodox Church does.) The Lutherans also have a liturgical tradition, but I'm not familiar with the details of their feast calendar.

It's also important to remember that the Protestant Reformation was a rejection of the Roman Catholic Church, so any feast days they disposed of would have been from Rome's calendar, not ours. Although there are feasts that the Orthodox share in common with Rome, not all are the same, nor do all fall on the same dates.

For the Anglicans and Roman Catholics, the 12 days of Christmas known as Christmastide start on December 25th with the birth of Christ, and end on January 6th with the Feast of the Arrival of the Magi.

In the Orthodox Church, Christmastide begins with the Nativity of Christ, but ends with the Feast of Holy Theophany, when Christ was baptized in the Jordan and the Trinity was revealed. In fact, at one time these feasts were celebrated together, and the second feast is seen as more significant than the first. (However both are important.)

Now, in between the Nativity of Christ and Theophany, you also have the Synaxis of the Theotokos (which is when we honor Mary for her role in the Incarnation), the remembrance of St. Stephan the Protomartyr, the remembrance of the Holy Innocents (when we remember the children who were killed by Herod's sword), the Circumcision of Our Lord (which also falls on St. Basil's day), and the Synaxis of the Holy Apostles. The week after Christmas is also a fast-free week. (It's amazing how much joy people receive from being able to eat a hamburger on a Wednesday! lol)

You can learn more about the feasts of the Church by spending some time in the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America's Online Chapel. There you can read about all of the feasts and fasts of the Church, and their meaning.
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« Reply #5 on: December 09, 2011, 02:23:16 PM »

Quote
For the Anglicans and Roman Catholics, the 12 days of Christmas known as Christmastide start on December 25th with the birth of Christ, and end on January 6th with the Feast of the Arrival of the Magi.

In the Orthodox Church, Christmastide begins with the Nativity of Christ, but ends with the Feast of Holy Theophany, when Christ was baptized in the Jordan and the Trinity was revealed. In fact, at one time these feasts were celebrated together, and the second feast is seen as more significant than the first. (However both are important.)

Dont these events in these different churches still happen on the same days?  I guess it depends whether you are old or new calendar, but I thought they still lined up the same.  Im assuming that Nativity of Christ = Christmas Day (Dec 25th) and Holy Theophany = Epiphany (Jan 6th)

Am I wrong about this?  I have familiarized myself with the Anglican tradition over the last few years, so it does get a little confusing when things start changing on me! (And I know it wasnt the Orthodox who changed!)
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« Reply #6 on: December 09, 2011, 02:32:10 PM »

Quote
For the Anglicans and Roman Catholics, the 12 days of Christmas known as Christmastide start on December 25th with the birth of Christ, and end on January 6th with the Feast of the Arrival of the Magi.

In the Orthodox Church, Christmastide begins with the Nativity of Christ, but ends with the Feast of Holy Theophany, when Christ was baptized in the Jordan and the Trinity was revealed. In fact, at one time these feasts were celebrated together, and the second feast is seen as more significant than the first. (However both are important.)

Dont these events in these different churches still happen on the same days?  I guess it depends whether you are old or new calendar, but I thought they still lined up the same.  Im assuming that Nativity of Christ = Christmas Day (Dec 25th) and Holy Theophany = Epiphany (Jan 6th)

Am I wrong about this?  I have familiarized myself with the Anglican tradition over the last few years, so it does get a little confusing when things start changing on me! (And I know it wasnt the Orthodox who changed!)

Yes, the dates are the same, December 25th and January 6th. However the feasts on Jan 6th are different for the East and West, and have a different "feel" to them.

I know a lot of my Italian friends would exchange presents on January 6th (Three Kings) instead of December 25th, and it was a day of merriment. While Theophany is certainly a joyous feast day, there are no presents involved.

In Ukraine, presents are usually exchanged on St. Nicholas's feast day.
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« Reply #7 on: December 09, 2011, 02:34:14 PM »

In fact, at one time these feasts were celebrated together, and the second feast is seen as more significant than the first. (However both are important.)

Now, in between the Nativity of Christ and Theophany, you also have the Synaxis of the Theotokos (which is when we honor Mary for her role in the Incarnation), the remembrance of St. Stephan the Protomartyr, the remembrance of the Holy Innocents (when we remember the children who were killed by Herod's sword), the Circumcision of Our Lord (which also falls on St. Basil's day), and the Synaxis of the Holy Apostles. The week after Christmas is also a fast-free week. (It's amazing how much joy people receive from being able to eat a hamburger on a Wednesday! lol)

Quite important, yes! In the East, Theophany has always been considered the more important feast, in the West, Christmas was more beloved.

And, thank you! How could I forget to mention all those feasts that come in-between Christmas and Theophany! A very special time indeed. Oh, and a great deal of pleasure is derived from enjoying a big, juicy cheeseburger on a Friday evening! Grin


Quote
For the Anglicans and Roman Catholics, the 12 days of Christmas known as Christmastide start on December 25th with the birth of Christ, and end on January 6th with the Feast of the Arrival of the Magi.

In the Orthodox Church, Christmastide begins with the Nativity of Christ, but ends with the Feast of Holy Theophany, when Christ was baptized in the Jordan and the Trinity was revealed. In fact, at one time these feasts were celebrated together, and the second feast is seen as more significant than the first. (However both are important.)

Dont these events in these different churches still happen on the same days?  I guess it depends whether you are old or new calendar, but I thought they still lined up the same.  Im assuming that Nativity of Christ = Christmas Day (Dec 25th) and Holy Theophany = Epiphany (Jan 6th)

Am I wrong about this?  I have familiarized myself with the Anglican tradition over the last few years, so it does get a little confusing when things start changing on me! (And I know it wasnt the Orthodox who changed!)

No, your assumption is correct. The New Calendar celebrates Nativity on Dec. 25, and Theophany on Jan. 6. The big difference here is that, in the West, Epiphany celebrates the arrival of the Magi whereas in the East, Theophany celebrates the Baptism of Christ in the Jordan. It gives the feast day a very different tenor, as we're no longer adoring the baby Jesus, but rather rejoicing at the revelation of the Trinity and the beginning of Christ's public ministry. It is a very theological feast.
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« Reply #8 on: December 09, 2011, 02:49:22 PM »

I really appreciate your responses! Both of you have been helpful.  Im just trying to participate more in the church, so I wanted to know more about the differences.  The Orthodox discussion has been coming up more often with friends lately, so I like to try to make sure i know what im talking about.
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« Reply #9 on: December 09, 2011, 03:16:19 PM »

I really appreciate your responses! Both of you have been helpful.  Im just trying to participate more in the church, so I wanted to know more about the differences.  The Orthodox discussion has been coming up more often with friends lately, so I like to try to make sure i know what im talking about.

No problem. I know you've been hearing it a lot lately, but it's really hard to understand these issues until you begin experiencing life in a parish setting. Particularly with feasts such as Christmas, where traditions (outside of vespers and liturgy) are not universal.

It's also part of the "American experience" that the way we celebrate things are effected by region and our multi-cultural society.

I remember when I was a kid that it was a big deal when the priest allowed us to put up a Christmas tree in the nave. Now to you, you may be thinking "What's the big deal, it's a Christmas tree."

Christmas trees originated in Germany, were brought over by the Georgians to England, and eventually to America. They were not part of our Ukrainian ancestors experience.

When my parish first put the trees up, they were allowed lights, but no ornaments.

These days, we have lights and ornaments.

Same thing with evergreens, holly, and ivy being hung on the iconostas. That is an American tradition that has been borrowed from England.

These traditions, and the extent that they are used varies from parish to parish, and in many cases, family to family.
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« Reply #10 on: December 10, 2011, 02:05:35 AM »

Another difference is that, whereas Western heterodox will go Christmas caroling before Christmas, we Eastern Orthodox won't go Christmas caroling until AFTER Christmas.
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« Reply #11 on: December 10, 2011, 03:14:26 AM »

Another difference is that, whereas Western heterodox will go Christmas caroling before Christmas, we Eastern Orthodox won't go Christmas caroling until AFTER Christmas.

I can't agree. Among Poland Eastern Slavs carol singing starts on the Presentation.
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« Reply #12 on: December 10, 2011, 01:08:42 PM »

Another difference is that, whereas Western heterodox will go Christmas caroling before Christmas, we Eastern Orthodox won't go Christmas caroling until AFTER Christmas.

I can't agree. Among Poland Eastern Slavs carol singing starts on the Presentation.
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« Reply #13 on: December 10, 2011, 07:50:48 PM »

We are going to have our Christmas liturgy this year starting at 10:30pm Christmas Eve and going into Christmas morning.  We don't have a priest right now, so the bishop is coming to serve the Christmas services.  We will have the Royal Hours on Friday night, a vesperal liturgy at 10 on Saturday morning, and then have to be back at 10:30pm for the Christmas liturgy.  I've been used to having liturgy on Christmas morning at 10am, though I believe that some other priests that served at my parish may have done what my bishop is doing this year.  I am just going to have to be careful not to sleep for very long after the liturgy so that I can get a good night's sleep so that I can work the 7am-3pm shift on Monday morning.
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« Reply #14 on: December 11, 2011, 12:18:52 AM »

We are going to have our Christmas liturgy this year starting at 10:30pm Christmas Eve and going into Christmas morning.  We don't have a priest right now, so the bishop is coming to serve the Christmas services.  We will have the Royal Hours on Friday night, a vesperal liturgy at 10 on Saturday morning, and then have to be back at 10:30pm for the Christmas liturgy.  I've been used to having liturgy on Christmas morning at 10am, though I believe that some other priests that served at my parish may have done what my bishop is doing this year.  I am just going to have to be careful not to sleep for very long after the liturgy so that I can get a good night's sleep so that I can work the 7am-3pm shift on Monday morning.
Vesperal Liturgy on Saturday morning? I'm kinda surprised by that, since the Typikon as I understand it forbids a Vesperal Liturgy on all Saturdays but Holy Saturday. Is your church Greek or Antiochian? That could be the difference, since my parish is OCA.
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« Reply #15 on: December 11, 2011, 12:43:57 AM »

If I remember correctly, our priest said we are having Vespers Saturday and the Christmas liturgy Sunday morning, because Christmas is on a Sunday this year. I'll check the bulletin tomorrow.
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« Reply #16 on: December 11, 2011, 12:49:26 AM »

We are going to have our Christmas liturgy this year starting at 10:30pm Christmas Eve and going into Christmas morning.  We don't have a priest right now, so the bishop is coming to serve the Christmas services.  We will have the Royal Hours on Friday night, a vesperal liturgy at 10 on Saturday morning, and then have to be back at 10:30pm for the Christmas liturgy.  I've been used to having liturgy on Christmas morning at 10am, though I believe that some other priests that served at my parish may have done what my bishop is doing this year.  I am just going to have to be careful not to sleep for very long after the liturgy so that I can get a good night's sleep so that I can work the 7am-3pm shift on Monday morning.
Vesperal Liturgy on Saturday morning? I'm kinda surprised by that, since the Typikon as I understand it forbids a Vesperal Liturgy on all Saturdays but Holy Saturday. Is your church Greek or Antiochian? That could be the difference, since my parish is OCA.

All I know is in our parish (OCA) it is Sunday morning.
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« Reply #17 on: December 11, 2011, 11:23:43 AM »

My parish is OCA, and since I started attending this parish in 2006, we've always had the liturgy on Christmas morning.  However, +Bishop BENJAMIN is doing it this way.  I'm just happy that we can have the services, since we don't have a priest right now.  If +Bishop BENJAMIN wasn't coming to make sure we had the services, we'd be having typica services instead. 
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« Reply #18 on: December 11, 2011, 11:47:10 AM »

My parish is OCA, and since I started attending this parish in 2006, we've always had the liturgy on Christmas morning.  However, +Bishop BENJAMIN is doing it this way.  I'm just happy that we can have the services, since we don't have a priest right now.  If +Bishop BENJAMIN wasn't coming to make sure we had the services, we'd be having typica services instead.  
But Christmas EVE morning (the morning of December 24)? Huh My church is in Bishop Benjamin's diocese, and I'm still not aware of any rubric that permits a Vesperal Divine Liturgy on Saturdays.
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« Reply #19 on: December 11, 2011, 12:18:36 PM »

But this is how he is doing it.  I believe that he has the right to make the call, and he has made it.
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« Reply #20 on: December 11, 2011, 09:12:58 PM »

Another difference is that, whereas Western heterodox will go Christmas caroling before Christmas, we Eastern Orthodox won't go Christmas caroling until AFTER Christmas.

I can't agree. Among Poland Eastern Slavs carol singing starts on the Presentation.

Same.  We're going caroling -- our priest and deacons included -- this Friday night, at a residential home for mentally disabled adults. 
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« Reply #21 on: December 12, 2011, 01:50:46 AM »

The Christmas Hours service is going to be on Thursday at my church. It should be good, I don't think I went to that one last year.
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« Reply #22 on: December 12, 2011, 07:27:38 AM »

Bishop Benjamin's practice given above is interesting, since to my knowledge the rubric information PtA is giving is correct. My parish (OCA - Diocese of the South) will be serving Royal Hours Friday morning and Vespers that evening. Then, Divine Liturgy for the Eve of Nativity on Saturday morning, Vespers for Nativity later that morning, and the Compline+Matins Vigil that evening. Christmas Liturgy will be served Sunday morning. Bp. Benjamin changing the rubric, as I know it, seems strange because of the Diocese of the West is known for its conservatism (it's hard to distinguish a DoW parish from a ROCOR parish in many ways, so I'm told), so it's interesting he wouldn't follow the traditional rubrics.

Of course, this also isn't just some priest serving...he's the bishop. He gets to do things like this!
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« Reply #23 on: December 13, 2011, 02:58:38 PM »

Many of our Greek parishes have a Vesperal Liturgy for Christmas eve on years when Christmas is not on a Sunday.  Our particular parish is actually having two Divine liturgies this year- one Saturday night served by the Bishop and our parish priests, the other Sunday morning served by a retired bishop from our area and another priest.  Our bishop has made an exception in this case and is allowing two liturgies in one liturgical day (two different antimnesia, different celebrants) because he feels that it better suits the needs of our very large parish (about 1000 families).  The bishops are always free to make exceptions like this.  It is their prerogative.
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« Reply #24 on: December 13, 2011, 09:59:08 PM »

Many of our Greek parishes have a Vesperal Liturgy for Christmas eve on years when Christmas is not on a Sunday.

Yes, this is the Slavic practice as well.

Our particular parish is actually having two Divine liturgies this year- one Saturday night served by the Bishop and our parish priests, the other Sunday morning served by a retired bishop from our area and another priest.  Our bishop has made an exception in this case and is allowing two liturgies in one liturgical day (two different antimnesia, different celebrants) because he feels that it better suits the needs of our very large parish (about 1000 families).  The bishops are always free to make exceptions like this.  It is their prerogative.

Interesting. True...different antimensia and different celebrants...I don't see a problem with that! Again, very interesting solution!
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« Reply #25 on: December 13, 2011, 10:43:13 PM »

Benjamin the Red, I don't know if you intend to, but your comments after each post seem to be coming off as if we need your stamp of approval as to what our Christmas traditions are. GreekChef is a Presbytera, and katherine 2001 is following the schedule set forth by her Bishop.

Your comments after my post seemed to affirm that I was correct, and that you gave me your approval. Please don't take this the wrong way, but this isn't my first rodeo.

I apologize if I am misinterpreting your comments, but that is the tone that seems to be coming across.
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« Reply #26 on: December 14, 2011, 04:26:09 AM »

Benjamin the Red, I don't know if you intend to, but your comments after each post seem to be coming off as if we need your stamp of approval as to what our Christmas traditions are. GreekChef is a Presbytera, and katherine 2001 is following the schedule set forth by her Bishop.

Your comments after my post seemed to affirm that I was correct, and that you gave me your approval. Please don't take this the wrong way, but this isn't my first rodeo.

I apologize if I am misinterpreting your comments, but that is the tone that seems to be coming across.

Many apologies if I've come off that way! Not my place to give out stamps of approval, I was simply commenting on what has been put forth and comparing it to what I've known. I've actually not once stated "disapproval" of anything. I didn't intend for my statements of "approval" to be taken as if I felt I had to give them, I just didn't want my comments to seem as if I were criticizing the practices and so wanted to emphasize that I didn't take issue with them, just found them interesting differences to what I've experienced in my own very limited time in the Church.

Again, many apologies if I've sounded like I brought a "high horse" to the thread. Not my intention at all.
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« Reply #27 on: December 14, 2011, 06:33:27 AM »

Our particular parish is actually having two Divine liturgies this year- one Saturday night served by the Bishop and our parish priests, the other Sunday morning served by a retired bishop from our area and another priest.  Our bishop has made an exception in this case and is allowing two liturgies in one liturgical day (two different antimnesia, different celebrants) because he feels that it better suits the needs of our very large parish (about 1000 families).  The bishops are always free to make exceptions like this.  It is their prerogative.

Interesting. True...different antimensia and different celebrants...I don't see a problem with that! Again, very interesting solution!

In many parishes in Poland it's a rule, not an exception. A table instead of the altar is used too.
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« Reply #28 on: December 14, 2011, 08:10:40 AM »

Benjamin the Red, I don't know if you intend to, but your comments after each post seem to be coming off as if we need your stamp of approval as to what our Christmas traditions are. GreekChef is a Presbytera, and katherine 2001 is following the schedule set forth by her Bishop.

Your comments after my post seemed to affirm that I was correct, and that you gave me your approval. Please don't take this the wrong way, but this isn't my first rodeo.

I apologize if I am misinterpreting your comments, but that is the tone that seems to be coming across.

Many apologies if I've come off that way! Not my place to give out stamps of approval, I was simply commenting on what has been put forth and comparing it to what I've known. I've actually not once stated "disapproval" of anything. I didn't intend for my statements of "approval" to be taken as if I felt I had to give them, I just didn't want my comments to seem as if I were criticizing the practices and so wanted to emphasize that I didn't take issue with them, just found them interesting differences to what I've experienced in my own very limited time in the Church.

Again, many apologies if I've sounded like I brought a "high horse" to the thread. Not my intention at all.

Thank you for clarifying.
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« Reply #29 on: December 14, 2011, 10:45:39 AM »

Man, I really feel like Im missing out now!

I am attending a Christmas eve service at a RC church. Anyone know what to expect there?  Will it be like a regular mass?
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« Reply #30 on: December 15, 2011, 05:04:43 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

To address the OP:



stay blessed,
habte selassie
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