photo of a girl praying in church by Peter Grima, used under the creative commons license.check out more photos at: http://www.flickr.com/photos/wwwpgflickrcom/
This will be the third week in a row that I attended Vespers. In the past, there was usually a two or even three week interval between visits (or, more accurately, attendance, since I am way past just visiting). Now, this has been very helpful, not having such a long gap in between Saturday nights as it pertains to Worship. Usually, when I feel I have been away for some time, it takes some getting used to, "getting back into the swing of things." But, by going every week, I am better able to "enter in" Worship. Now, I know that sounds like the philosophy of a Charismatic, but, there it is.
So it was easier this week, with feelings of less distraction, just to enter into Worship. I was better able to pay attention to the words as they were chanted and say,"Amen" within my heart. Also, last nights homily by Father Gary was about how Wisdom and Righteousness go hand in hand. This worked out well since the readings chanted last night were from Proverbs and the Wisdom of Solomon. Fr Gary tied that into the life of St Sergious of Radonezh who exemplified both Wisdom and Righteousness and whose feast was celebrated that day.
I like Father Gary's Homily's. Now I don't know if they are different on Sunday's but his Saturday night Vesper homilies are short and to the point. This is in great contrast to my protestant experience where the sermon is the center of Worship. Everything builds to that point. Hymns are sung, Scripture is read, all to support the message of the Sermon. Now while that can be a good thing and help people on their spiritual journey, I much prefer the Orthodox emphasis on Sacraments and the time tested lectionary which is older than Protestant churches have even been around.
So I will, hopefully, continue going to Vespers every week.
The next step is to drop out of my protestant church and start going Sunday Mornings.