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Author Topic: Possibly going to my first liturgy  (Read 1808 times) Average Rating: 0
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Cyrillic
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« on: December 01, 2012, 04:47:55 AM »

Hello all,

Since my parents are out of town (out of the country in fact) I might be able to sneak out tomorrow, take the train to The Hague, walk to the parish for 23 minutes or so (I do hope Google Maps made a mistake in its calculation of the travel time!) and make it on time for the divine liturgy.

If I go through with my plan and ever find the parish the liturgy will be in Church Slavonic or Bulgarian. I don't really speak either of them, so any advice there? I've never been to a divine liturgy before.

I don't know whether many of the parishioners can speak Dutch. How will they see me as a newcomer? What (if anything) will they say ?



« Last Edit: December 01, 2012, 04:48:24 AM by Cyrillic » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: December 01, 2012, 05:34:38 AM »

If I go through with my plan and ever find the parish the liturgy will be in Church Slavonic or Bulgarian.

They will sound the same for you.
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« Reply #2 on: December 01, 2012, 06:52:15 AM »

Most likely the liturgy would be a mixture between Church Slavonic (all the troparia, antiphons and other hymns) and Bulgarian (Epistle and Gospel readings, Homily, the Creed); Our Father would probably be in Bulgarian, if it is recited by the whole parish or in Church Slavonic, if it is sung by a choir; the Litanies would be either in Church Slavonic or in Bulgarian. Generally the Bulgarians (in Bulgaria) commune rarely, so there might be few or even no communicants. Even if many of the parishioners don't speak Dutch, I guess they would speak English. Although the Orthodox Churches in Western Europe tend to be more enthic, I think newcomers are welcome.

The liturgy for tomorrow is scheduled at 10:30 - www.bgorthodoxekerk.nl
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« Reply #3 on: December 01, 2012, 07:20:56 AM »

You could try to memorize or write down the basic order of the service so that you won't feel so lost. The basic structure is actually quite simple but it might be a little overwhelming is one is not used to the Byzantine rite services.
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Cyrillic
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« Reply #4 on: December 01, 2012, 07:57:51 AM »

If the liturgy starts at 10:30 how early should I be there?
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« Reply #5 on: December 01, 2012, 08:08:20 AM »

10.20 would be enough.
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Cyrillic
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« Reply #6 on: December 01, 2012, 08:18:43 AM »

You could try to memorize or write down the basic order of the service so that you won't feel so lost. The basic structure is actually quite simple but it might be a little overwhelming is one is not used to the Byzantine rite services.

Please elaborate. Anything I could read?

Oh, and is there some sort of dress code?
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« Reply #7 on: December 01, 2012, 08:50:44 AM »

You could try to memorize or write down the basic order of the service so that you won't feel so lost. The basic structure is actually quite simple but it might be a little overwhelming is one is not used to the Byzantine rite services.

Please elaborate. Anything I could read?

When I first attended a Byzantine rite service I was completely lost since everything seemed to happen behind the iconostasis, echo blurred the choir's singing and some fancily dressed bearded people seemed to just randomly pop out to visit the congregation from the altar without any logic. That wasn't quite as heavenly that some people seem to experience while visiting an Orthodox church for first time. I was thinking that if you knew in what order everything (litanies, antiphons, readings etc.) happens you might avoid that kind of feelings.

The Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom can be found here. I don't think you need to bring the whole text of the service with you though but you might want to familiarize yourself with the basic structure of the service.
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« Reply #8 on: December 01, 2012, 09:00:28 AM »

Oh, and is there some sort of dress code?

You have two options:

1) Dress in nice, fairly conservative clothes. Doesn't have to be a suit, though it can be. Nice pants, shoes and a long sleeve shirt also work. I'm a rebel so I sometimes wore a tshirt.

2) Wear a robe!
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« Reply #9 on: December 01, 2012, 10:59:41 AM »

Is there a good instuctional video of the Divine Liturgy out there?
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« Reply #10 on: December 01, 2012, 11:27:53 AM »

12 Things I Wish I’d Known…
First Visit to an Orthodox Church
http://www.frederica.com/12-things/
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« Reply #11 on: December 01, 2012, 11:40:47 AM »

What to do when they say: "All ye catechumens, depart! Depart, ye catechumens! All ye that are catechumens, depart! Let no catechumens remain! But let us who are of the faithful, again and again, in peace pray to the Lord."?
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« Reply #12 on: December 01, 2012, 11:59:35 AM »

What to do when they say: "All ye catechumens, depart! Depart, ye catechumens! All ye that are catechumens, depart! Let no catechumens remain! But let us who are of the faithful, again and again, in peace pray to the Lord."?

Make sure you don't block the entrance since most Orthodox people arrive round about that time  Smiley

If you're not at a monastery or the priest happens to be very conservative, no one will expect you to leave.
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« Reply #13 on: December 01, 2012, 12:05:49 PM »

What to do when they say: "All ye catechumens, depart! Depart, ye catechumens! All ye that are catechumens, depart! Let no catechumens remain! But let us who are of the faithful, again and again, in peace pray to the Lord."?

Make sure you don't block the entrance since most Orthodox people arrive round about that time  Smiley

If you're not at a monastery or the priest happens to be very conservative, no one will expect you to leave.

Thanks.

Would I have to call the parish in advance or can I just walk in?
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« Reply #14 on: December 01, 2012, 12:10:55 PM »

Would I have to call the parish in advance or can I just walk in?

If you want to chat to the priest afterwards, it might be a good idea to call ahead so he's expecting you, but there's no need.
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« Reply #15 on: December 01, 2012, 12:15:07 PM »

If the liturgy starts at 10:30 how early should I be there?

If it's a Slavic parish, they'll probably read the 3rd and 6th Hours beforehand. They take about 20mins typically.

If it's a Greek/Arab parish, they'll have Orthros before, which normally lasts 1-1.5 hours. Since the length of Matins will vary slightly depending on the Tone of the week, the length of the hymns, etc. the start time of the Divine Liturgy is often 10-15mins earlier or later than the advertised time.
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« Reply #16 on: December 01, 2012, 12:15:41 PM »

1. What will other people ask/say to me? It's a very ethnic Bulgarian parish AFAIK. I'm very shy irl.

2. If anyone has any advice. PLEASE say it.
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« Reply #17 on: December 01, 2012, 12:24:15 PM »

1. What will other people ask/say to me?

Don't be surprised when no one approaches you.

2. If anyone has any advice. PLEASE say it.

Calm down.
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« Reply #18 on: December 01, 2012, 12:28:53 PM »

I'm shy irl too. It will be awkward but don't get discouraged. At the very least introduce yourself to the priest.
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« Reply #19 on: December 01, 2012, 12:41:56 PM »

Calm down.

I'll try

I'm shy irl too. It will be awkward but don't get discouraged. At the very least introduce yourself to the priest.

How did you do that?
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« Reply #20 on: December 01, 2012, 12:52:50 PM »

I emailed him beforehand.
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« Reply #21 on: December 01, 2012, 01:33:54 PM »

Well, I think I'm going. If everything goes according to plan I should arrive around 10:00.
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« Reply #22 on: December 01, 2012, 01:40:31 PM »

What to do when they say: "All ye catechumens, depart! Depart, ye catechumens! All ye that are catechumens, depart! Let no catechumens remain! But let us who are of the faithful, again and again, in peace pray to the Lord."?

In the Bulgarian practice this part (the Litany of the catechumens) is most likely to be omitted, although it might be said aloud or silently.
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« Reply #23 on: December 01, 2012, 01:44:08 PM »

Oh, and is there some sort of dress code?

It seems that there is no dress code. Some photos of the parish.

https://picasaweb.google.com/106460519431330512964/201003?noredirect=1

https://picasaweb.google.com/106460519431330512964/20091115?noredirect=1

https://picasaweb.google.com/106460519431330512964/201004?noredirect=1
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« Reply #24 on: December 01, 2012, 01:44:14 PM »

If it is in The Hauge, then i would assume(being in the same country and all) that you would be able to find a Dutch speaker.

I would personally recommend looking over the liturgy beforehand, and like Alpo said, become familiar with it. However, personally, I would recommend against using a service book, rather, just let yourself be fully immersed into the Liturgy.

I'm quite a loner, personally, so i just stood by myself to begin with, and then let myself slowly be immersed into the life of the parish as time went by.

Here is the Liturgy in Dutch, http://krisbiesbroeck.skynetblogs.be/archive/2009/02/04/goddelijke-liturgie-van-de-heilige-johannes-chrysostomos-vol.html ,

EDIT: wear comfortable shoes.
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« Reply #25 on: December 01, 2012, 01:54:42 PM »

If the liturgy starts at 10:30 how early should I be there?

If it's a Slavic parish, they'll probably read the 3rd and 6th Hours beforehand. They take about 20mins typically.

If it's a Greek/Arab parish, they'll have Orthros before, which normally lasts 1-1.5 hours. Since the length of Matins will vary slightly depending on the Tone of the week, the length of the hymns, etc. the start time of the Divine Liturgy is often 10-15mins earlier or later than the advertised time.

Bulgarians don't fit in either category, they are some mixture between the two traditions.

On the parish website the services scheduled for tomorrow are Sunday Orthros and Divine Liturgy. The reading for the Liturgy tomorrow are exactly the same as given here - http://goarch.org/chapel/main_view?D=12%2F02%2F2012 - Ephesians 5:8-19 and Luke 18:35-43, while the readings on the OCA site are Ephesians 5:9-19 and Luke 18:18-27. In the calendar of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church Luke 18:18-27 was given for the previous Sunday, as it is on the GOARCH website.
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« Reply #26 on: December 01, 2012, 01:56:33 PM »


Awesome pictures!

The parish looks very traditional. No pews to be seen. I like that.
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« Reply #27 on: December 01, 2012, 02:05:09 PM »

If the liturgy starts at 10:30 how early should I be there?

If it's a Slavic parish, they'll probably read the 3rd and 6th Hours beforehand. They take about 20mins typically.

If it's a Greek/Arab parish, they'll have Orthros before, which normally lasts 1-1.5 hours. Since the length of Matins will vary slightly depending on the Tone of the week, the length of the hymns, etc. the start time of the Divine Liturgy is often 10-15mins earlier or later than the advertised time.

Bulgarians don't fit in either category, they are some mixture between the two traditions.

On the parish website the services scheduled for tomorrow are Sunday Orthros and Divine Liturgy. The reading for the Liturgy tomorrow are exactly the same as given here - http://goarch.org/chapel/main_view?D=12%2F02%2F2012 - Ephesians 5:8-19 and Luke 18:35-43, while the readings on the OCA site are Ephesians 5:9-19 and Luke 18:18-27. In the calendar of the Bulgarian Orthodox Church Luke 18:18-27 was given for the previous Sunday, as it is on the GOARCH website.

I can't read Bulgarian but I'll translate a bit from the Dutch site:

Quote
Metten (=Orthros) and Divine Liturgy 10:30

The service both in Slavic and Dutch.

So what does this mean? Does Orthros start at 10:30 or the Divine Liturgy? Is the DL in Dutch? I read that it was in Slavonic/Bulgarian only.
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« Reply #28 on: December 01, 2012, 02:20:52 PM »

I can't read Bulgarian but I'll translate a bit from the Dutch site:

Quote
Metten (=Orthros) and Divine Liturgy 10:30

The service both in Slavic and Dutch.

So what does this mean? Does Orthros start at 10:30 or the Divine Liturgy? Is the DL in Dutch? I read that it was in Slavonic/Bulgarian only.

It is not clear from the information provided in Bulgarian. It just states: "10:30 - Sunday Orthros and Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom. The church is opened from 10:30 until 15:00."

Towards the bottom of the page it states that "В храма се черкуват Православни християни от различни националности - българи, руснаци, украинци, грузинци, холандци, сърби, румънци, гърци", which means that the services are attended by Orthodox Christians of different nationalities - Bulgarians, Russians, Ukrainians, Dutch, Serbs, Romanians, Greeks. If it is true, the parish may not be so ethnic, as I assumed earlier.
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« Reply #29 on: December 01, 2012, 02:29:13 PM »

I'll just be there at 10:30 then.
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« Reply #30 on: December 01, 2012, 02:45:37 PM »

Hello all,

Since my parents are out of town (out of the country in fact) I might be able to sneak out tomorrow, take the train to The Hague, walk to the parish for 23 minutes or so (I do hope Google Maps made a mistake in its calculation of the travel time!) and make it on time for the divine liturgy.

If I go through with my plan and ever find the parish the liturgy will be in Church Slavonic or Bulgarian. I don't really speak either of them, so any advice there? I've never been to a divine liturgy before.

I don't know whether many of the parishioners can speak Dutch. How will they see me as a newcomer? What (if anything) will they say ?




Btw, are you Dutch, or just living in the Netherlands?
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« Reply #31 on: December 01, 2012, 02:46:41 PM »

Hello all,

Since my parents are out of town (out of the country in fact) I might be able to sneak out tomorrow, take the train to The Hague, walk to the parish for 23 minutes or so (I do hope Google Maps made a mistake in its calculation of the travel time!) and make it on time for the divine liturgy.

If I go through with my plan and ever find the parish the liturgy will be in Church Slavonic or Bulgarian. I don't really speak either of them, so any advice there? I've never been to a divine liturgy before.

I don't know whether many of the parishioners can speak Dutch. How will they see me as a newcomer? What (if anything) will they say ?




Btw, are you Dutch, or just living in the Netherlands?

Dutch and living in the Netherlands.
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« Reply #32 on: December 01, 2012, 02:54:30 PM »

It is not clear from the information provided in Bulgarian. It just states: "10:30 - Sunday Orthros and Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom. The church is opened from 10:30 until 15:00."

Since there are Matins, the DL will propably around 11.40. Quite lately.

Another one useful text:
http://theoniondome.com/2011/01/24/twitter-feed-from-an-orthodox-n00b/
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« Reply #33 on: December 01, 2012, 05:27:34 PM »

According to the planning I made I should arrive at 9:56. If I would get lost I would have half an hour to find it  Smiley

I'm mildly excited.
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« Reply #34 on: December 01, 2012, 05:36:28 PM »

Take some pics noob.
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« Reply #35 on: December 01, 2012, 05:38:37 PM »

Take some pics noob.

What of?
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« Reply #36 on: December 01, 2012, 05:50:32 PM »

I can understand wanting to get there on time, but just keep reminding yourself that it is not the end of the world if you are a bit late. This is Orthodoxy. Many people will walk through the doors as though they're still suffering jet-lag from the journey to America from the old country.
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« Reply #37 on: December 01, 2012, 06:02:10 PM »

I can understand wanting to get there on time, but just keep reminding yourself that it is not the end of the world if you are a bit late. This is Orthodoxy. Many people will walk through the doors as though they're still suffering jet-lag from the journey to America from the old country.

I can understand they're late if they're in America  Wink

But if I would take the next train I'd be 10 or 20 minutes late.
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« Reply #38 on: December 01, 2012, 06:09:59 PM »

Hahahaha. I'd correct it, but that's too funny. I'm such a dolt. Sorry, friend...two and a half hours of sleep (end of term final exam/paper crunch time) means I probably should not be posting here today at all. At any rate, enjoy your first liturgy. I was an hour late to mine (car trouble + the person I was traveling with wanted to stop at the store to buy a cake for someone's birthday; Egyptians love cake), but they didn't seem to mind all that much. Someone called to ask where we were, as I had been planning for the day for weeks in conjunction with the community liaison, but once we got there, it was alright. Smiley
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« Reply #39 on: December 01, 2012, 08:16:43 PM »

hey, enjoy it, brother!
just speak to one or two people at the end.
if everyone is shy, then take a coffee after the liturgy and sit down at the same table with some other people.
make eye contact and smile a few times.
after half an hour, the curiosity will overcome them and someone will then actually speak to you!
(tip from my experience at an armenian coffee hour. don't think they had many non armenian visitors.
they improved since and now host several wider orthodox events!)

i am sure someone will speak dutch, or if not then maybe english. just hang around until they warm to you.
(some shy people are like little kids. to get to know little kids, i interact with them for a long time from a safe distance,
and then after i get to play with them.)
praying for you  Smiley
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« Reply #40 on: December 01, 2012, 08:20:21 PM »

if everyone is shy, then take a coffee after the liturgy and sit down at the same table with some other people.
make eye contact and smile a few times.
after half an hour, the curiosity will overcome them and someone will then actually speak to you!

Unless there aren't any coffee hours.
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« Reply #41 on: December 01, 2012, 08:29:19 PM »

Thank you mabsoota.

I hope the machine that sells train tickets accepts coins or this will end in failure.
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« Reply #42 on: December 01, 2012, 09:49:24 PM »

I can't go tomorrow. I won't be able to find the parish and I am out of coins, only paper money left Sad

I'll have to go another week. That means I'll have to figure out how to go there by bike. Thanks for participating
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"Claret is the liquor for boys; port for men; but he who aspires to be a hero must drink brandy."
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mabsoota
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Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: Coptic
Posts: 2,643


Kyrie eleison


« Reply #43 on: December 03, 2012, 03:28:50 AM »

 Sad
sorry to hear it.
God will guide u, may He also give u patience while u wait.
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