Author Topic: Picking a parish  (Read 903 times)

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Offline Anastasia1

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Picking a parish
« on: September 09, 2012, 06:11:49 PM »
How does one pick a parish?  Obviously better music or something is not a good reason for one over another. What are good reasons for one over another?  What should a single adult convert consider?
« Last Edit: September 09, 2012, 06:12:20 PM by Anastasia1 »
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Offline mike

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Re: Picking a parish
« Reply #1 on: September 09, 2012, 06:33:12 PM »
Length of services, commuting, service language, friends or foes of yours that attend it, pretty representatives of the opposite sex, quality of sermons, the way the choir sing / priest reads, other elements (ie whether there is a coffee hour afterwards), number of people attending, size of the parish - these are mine.
« Last Edit: September 09, 2012, 06:37:42 PM by Michał Kalina »

Offline Justin Kissel

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Re: Picking a parish
« Reply #2 on: September 09, 2012, 06:49:28 PM »
What you want is a good priest that you trust the advice of, and feel comfortable asking advice of. Some priests are not to be trusted.
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Offline Alpo

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Re: Picking a parish
« Reply #3 on: September 09, 2012, 08:09:23 PM »
How does one pick a parish?

By attending the closest Orthodox church.

Offline Punch

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Re: Picking a parish
« Reply #4 on: September 09, 2012, 09:15:24 PM »
How does one pick a parish?

By attending the closest Orthodox church.

Not always.  I pass by one 1.5 miles away from my house to attend one 14 miles away.  I guess I could attend the closest one if nothing was important to me.  MK gave a bunch of reasons, and many of them are good ones.
I would be happy to agree with you, but then both of us would be wrong.

Offline Alpo

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Re: Picking a parish
« Reply #5 on: September 10, 2012, 03:27:39 AM »
How does one pick a parish?

By attending the closest Orthodox church.

Not always.  I pass by one 1.5 miles away from my house to attend one 14 miles away.  I guess I could attend the closest one if nothing was important to me.  MK gave a bunch of reasons, and many of them are good ones.

While I understand that point of view it leads into catastrophic situation which can be seen in all of the Western European and American countries.

Offline celticfan1888

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Re: Picking a parish
« Reply #6 on: September 10, 2012, 04:08:50 AM »
How does one pick a parish?  Obviously better music or something is not a good reason for one over another. What are good reasons for one over another?  What should a single adult convert consider?

1) Location

2) People you know who attend said parish

3) Language

4) Tradition (Antiochian, OCA, Greek, etc)
« Last Edit: September 10, 2012, 04:09:32 AM by celticfan1888 »
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Offline Punch

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Re: Picking a parish
« Reply #7 on: September 10, 2012, 09:01:57 AM »
You have your cause and effect reversed.  Bypassing a close parish for a far parish does not lead to the situation that we have.  The situation that we have leads to the sometimes necessary act of bypassing one parish for one further away.  If both parishes followed the same calendar, venerated the same Saints, were under the same Bishop and the like, it would not be necessary (nor would it probably be allowed) to drive passed the one to get to the other. 

How does one pick a parish?

By attending the closest Orthodox church.

Not always.  I pass by one 1.5 miles away from my house to attend one 14 miles away.  I guess I could attend the closest one if nothing was important to me.  MK gave a bunch of reasons, and many of them are good ones.

While I understand that point of view it leads into catastrophic situation which can be seen in all of the Western European and American countries.
I would be happy to agree with you, but then both of us would be wrong.

Offline Anastasia1

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Re: Picking a parish
« Reply #8 on: September 11, 2012, 01:40:23 AM »
You have your cause and effect reversed.  Bypassing a close parish for a far parish does not lead to the situation that we have.  The situation that we have leads to the sometimes necessary act of bypassing one parish for one further away.  If both parishes followed the same calendar, venerated the same Saints, were under the same Bishop and the like, it would not be necessary (nor would it probably be allowed) to drive passed the one to get to the other. 
You mean people would be forced to attend one parish or not attend at all?
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Offline Justin Kissel

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Re: Picking a parish
« Reply #9 on: September 11, 2012, 01:41:55 AM »
Don't listen to these people, Anastasia1. Ask your priest!
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Offline Alpo

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Re: Picking a parish
« Reply #10 on: September 11, 2012, 01:57:02 AM »
You have your cause and effect reversed.  Bypassing a close parish for a far parish does not lead to the situation that we have.  The situation that we have leads to the sometimes necessary act of bypassing one parish for one further away.  If both parishes followed the same calendar, venerated the same Saints, were under the same Bishop and the like, it would not be necessary (nor would it probably be allowed) to drive passed the one to get to the other. 

No, it's you who has cause and effect reversed! :police: Picking and choosing is the thing that caused the change of calendar and other problems in the first place and is causing bybassing close parishes today. While I agree with you on the calendar etc issues simply attending outwardly more correct parish doesn't make the issue go away. The bybassed parish still uses the wrong calendar so a problem within the Church remains.

Offline Anastasia1

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Re: Picking a parish
« Reply #11 on: September 11, 2012, 02:08:27 AM »
Don't listen to these people, Anastasia1. Ask your priest!
I did yesterday.  He said there are no perfect parishes, and you should go to the one that best fits your needs.
« Last Edit: September 11, 2012, 02:19:44 AM by Anastasia1 »
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Offline sheenj

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Re: Picking a parish
« Reply #12 on: September 11, 2012, 09:07:37 AM »
Don't listen to these people, Anastasia1. Ask your priest!
I did yesterday.  He said there are no perfect parishes, and you should go to the one that best fits your needs.
Sounds like your priest knows what he is doing :)

Offline Punch

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Re: Picking a parish
« Reply #13 on: September 11, 2012, 10:33:24 AM »
You have your cause and effect reversed.  Bypassing a close parish for a far parish does not lead to the situation that we have.  The situation that we have leads to the sometimes necessary act of bypassing one parish for one further away.  If both parishes followed the same calendar, venerated the same Saints, were under the same Bishop and the like, it would not be necessary (nor would it probably be allowed) to drive passed the one to get to the other. 
You mean people would be forced to attend one parish or not attend at all?

Encouraged would be a better word.
I would be happy to agree with you, but then both of us would be wrong.

Offline Punch

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Re: Picking a parish
« Reply #14 on: September 11, 2012, 10:34:23 AM »
I am sorry, but you are wrong.  You probably need to brush up a bit more on cause and effect.  I do it for a living.

You have your cause and effect reversed.  Bypassing a close parish for a far parish does not lead to the situation that we have.  The situation that we have leads to the sometimes necessary act of bypassing one parish for one further away.  If both parishes followed the same calendar, venerated the same Saints, were under the same Bishop and the like, it would not be necessary (nor would it probably be allowed) to drive passed the one to get to the other. 

No, it's you who has cause and effect reversed! :police: Picking and choosing is the thing that caused the change of calendar and other problems in the first place and is causing bybassing close parishes today. While I agree with you on the calendar etc issues simply attending outwardly more correct parish doesn't make the issue go away. The bybassed parish still uses the wrong calendar so a problem within the Church remains.
I would be happy to agree with you, but then both of us would be wrong.

Offline Schultz

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Re: Picking a parish
« Reply #15 on: September 11, 2012, 10:54:08 AM »
Don't listen to these people, Anastasia1. Ask your priest!
I did yesterday.  He said there are no perfect parishes, and you should go to the one that best fits your needs.

I'm in the lucky situation to have five Orthodox parishes pretty close to my house.  One is Greek.  One is ROCOR.  One is UOC-USA.  One is Moscow Patriarch.  One is OCA. 

I bypass the Greek one (actually the closest to my house) for one reason: the music.  Byzantine chant does nothing for me.  If this was the only church in town, I'd go to it, but it's not, so I don't have to.

The ROCOR church is very ethnic: services in Slavonic (which I don't mind) and sermon in Russian.  It's a very Russian parish.  THE UOC-USA parish is similarly very ethnic, only Ukrainian.  Both cater to their respective immigrant communities.

The MP church is just a bit further away than the OCA one.  They do things about half Slavonic/half English.  There's a good mix of immigrants and American-born parishoners (both cradles and converts).  I really like the priest and the deacon. 

I settled on the OCA parish because it's all in English (with a smattering of Slavonic here and there), it's literally five minutes past the Greek church, the people are nice and welcoming, and, of course, the music.  They do a mix of obikhoid and prostopinije tones, the latter of which I have a love affair with, so to speak. 

As your priest noted, if you have the luxury of multiple parishes, find the one that suits your needs best.  If you don't have the luxury, or you find that all things are generally equal, go to the closest one.
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Offline pensateomnia

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Re: Picking a parish
« Reply #16 on: September 11, 2012, 11:16:41 AM »
The reasons my family goes where it goes:

1. Music (Byzantine)
2. Language of services (About 50/50 Greek and English; wouldn't want to lose either) 
3. Priest (Pious and good homilist)
4. Kids (Tons of them, with solid weekday programs)
5. Strong communal sense of direction and mission (Yes, please)
6. People (The kind you want to hang out with at your own or their home)

Presently, we've got all six.
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