|Alright, I was at Church Sunday!|
It is a different feeling on a Sunday morning as opposed to a Saturday night. More activity in the Nave on Sunday morning. I walked into the Narthex five minutes before and Orthros was being prayed. A bunch of us were standing around in the Narthex waiting for it to end. When it did, we all took our places in the Nave. I, of course, made the rounds around the Icons first, along with everyone else, and then stood in the back. Mark, a friend from the Facebook group, Ask an Orthodox Hipster, was there after I made the rounds. He looked happy to see me and shook my hand.
I looked around, waiting for the DL to start and I noticed an older lady who had a walker. With great difficulty, she moved herself up to the Icons so that she, too, could venerate them. I was impressed by her tenacity. Nothing was going to stop her from saying hello to the Saints. The service was great, of course, I was afraid that I would be bored because my attention span usually only lasts as long as a Vespers Service but, by God's Grace, I wasn't too antsy. I admit that I don't particularly like the setting of the music for the Cherubic Hymn, mostly because it seems to drone on. I understand that this is done so as to give Fr Gary time to do what he has to do in the Altar to prepare the Gifts. However, it wasn't too bad for me. God forgive me for judging the Service that way but I guess it just shows my own state as a spiritual beginner.
At the end of the service, before the dismissal, a lady in a foot cast came to the center of the Nave (by pre-arrangement, no doubt) and Father Gary said a prayer of healing for her and blessed her with some holy water. He also prayed for traveling mercies for a young man that I believe was his son. These two acts reminded me that parish life is made up of all kinds of people going through different things in their lives. Yet, they all seek God's blessing. That is what the People of God are supposed to do! They join together, different yet united in Christ.
Coffee hour was really edifying. I met a man named Greg ( or was it George, sorry I forgot) who is a 21 year army veteran and was all excited about an pan-Orthodox Rugby team. He was very interesting to talk with. I also spoke with Tami and John and spent a lot of time talking to Father Deacon Alexander. I learned how he was only been a Deacon for about five years. He is great to talk to because, not only is he out going but he is full of excitement for the Faith. He told me his schedule and wants to meet with me sometime. I told him sure. We had talked about doing that some time back but it never seemed to work out.
I left Church Sunday feeling like I had worshiped God and had good fellowship with His people. It was a very fulfilling feeling. God willing, I will be back again soon!