• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Orthodox Christianity: Church, Practices, and Worship

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Zena Z. Merculief Orthodox Christianity: Church, Practices, and Worship "Since even the best description of life is only a reflection of the experience itself, the best advice to anyone wishing to get acquainted with Orthodoxy would be the same as that given by Philip to Nathaniel: 'Come and see!' (Jn 1:46)" (Paul 12). In St. Paul, Alaska, the small Aleut village I grew up in, Russian Orthodoxy was a prevalent part of our adapted culture and a major part of my family's life. I never paid much notice to how large a part of my life my religion had become. It had just always been there. Not until my sophomore year of high school had I realized how little I knew of my faith. I would go to other churches with my friends, testing the water so to speak, and it was after that I realized no matter what, I am truly Orthodox at heart and shall always remain so. I am an Eastern Orthodox and a Russian Orthodox person. My own misconceptions, mixed with that of my many-aged friends and acquaintances, urged the furtherance of my knowledge of Orthodox Christianity's Church, practices, and worship. It all began as one. One Church; church means belonging to the Lord, and thus the gathering of those who belong to the lord. ...read more.

Middle

This does not mean, however, that every service is the same. There are different sermons and variables differing in each community - for instance, language and culture. "They may differ from each other in form, but not in spirit" (Paul 16). Also practiced in Church service is Divine Liturgy. "Liturgy is a rite or body of rites prescribed for public worship; an established formula for public worship, or the entire ritual for public worship in a church which uses prescribed forms; a formulary for public prayer or devotion" (Houghton Mifflin). Liturgy is the service in which the Holy Eucharist is performed - those who are baptized Orthodox and have had a recent confession are able to partake of the Body and Blood of Christ as in the Last Supper. Each person individually is given the opportunity of salvation through the church by confession and communion (the offering of the Holy Eucharist). Partaking in the Holy Eucharist, or communion, happens normally in the Sunday morning Church service. This service begins on Saturday night and takes place from 6:30pm to 7 or 7:30pm and is called a Vespers service. The Church service is then continued on Sunday morning. This part of the service is called Divine Liturgy. This individual opportunity is a reflection of the gift of free will given to man through the Eucharist. ...read more.

Conclusion

The sign of the cross is a wordless confession of faith: three fingers equal the Trinity and the two against the palm of the hand show that we believe the Savior was both God and man. Kneeling and prostration are also features of Orthodox worship, performed as an expression of the thoughts and feelings in the worshipper's heart. It is also believed that kneeling and prostration aid a person who may be weaker in prayer in entering more fully into the common prayer of the Church. Furthermore, the people of the church bow to receive the blessing given by the priest with his hand or with the cross, and the smoke of the incense used in the priests censor symbolizes the common prayer of the Church rising before the face of God. The candles you will see inside the Church are those that worshippers place in front of the icons express fervent prayer, either for dear loved ones or personal battles they may be struggling with. It is believed that the Church and its characteristic features and traditions of apostolic priesthood inherited from the first Apostles and first Church, the Eucharist, and other sacraments (baptism, confession, prayer, marriage, etc.) and the common experience of the Church (life), aside from its susceptibility to errors, weaknesses, and failings through its human side, will hold strong in more people learning more and furthering their knowledge of Orthodox Christianity's Church, practices, and worship. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Places of Worship section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Places of Worship essays

  1. Describe the main features of a church.

    They can get involved in them and do all the duties expected within the role. To argue this case in response I could say God may be everywhere but a Church is the community where Christians carry on the work of Jesus.

  2. The Church, A Christian Place of Worship.

    If you think of it like the role of a shepherd, the sheep (the parishioners), have respect for you and will follow you. It is the shepherd's responsibility to care for the sheep; to accommodate their feelings, to be concerned about the spiritual needs of the flock and offer love to those in need.

  1. ''Luther, more than anyone, was to blame for the schism.''

    This should be expected though, as the book was not written recently but 12 years ago, in 1991. WJEC Document Pack No. 4: This is Albrecht's Instructio, which accompanied and explained an indulgence. It shows us the differing nature of indulgences over the years leading up to the Reformation.

  2. Places and Forms Of Worship

    at the church. Knowle Paris Church-Section A The font is a stone basin placed at the entrance of the church on the left, as you walk in. It is octagon shaped and there are crosses carved around it. The font has been there from when the church was first built, but it has had repairs done to it.

  1. examine and outline the claim that luther's overriding concern was with his own salvation

    others, and more importantly calling for reform in the Church: "No longer are we dealing with a desk bound academic, but with a charismatic popular reformer" McGrath The two major scholars which provide differing views are McGrath and Chadwick. Whilst McGrath does argue for both sides of the argument, he claims: "It was personal to Luther.

  2. Knowledge and Understanding of belief and practise The Sacrament of Holy Communion Forms Part ...

    The Anglican Service starts of with the preparation in which the gifts and the alter, usually placed at the back of the church, are prepared. Once this is done a hymn in Excelia is sung by the whole of the communion, then the ministry of the word is read out.

  1. Discussion on why Christianity failed to gain popularity in modern Japan?

    "Japanese churches often look suspiciously at the outside world, fearful of Japan's new pluralism and apprehensive that any modifications in church life would compromise its integrity.

  2. Freedom to Worship: An Analysis of Freedom of Religion in the United States and ...

    "Is its primary effect to either inhibit religion or to further it?" (3) "Does the law excessively entangle the government with religion?" If the answer to any of the above questions is a resounding "yes" then if so, the law is in question is immediately rejected.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work