Come and See…
The Holy Orthodox Church
We are honored to have you join us in our worship of the Blessed Trinity. It is our desire that this experience will deepen your understanding of and love for God. If you have never been to an Orthodox Church before, or, if you have never been to a parish worshipping in the Western tradition of holy Orthodoxy, there are some things we want to share with you that will help you better understand what is going on.
Our Church has deep and lasting roots in Christian antiquity and is steeped in a rich biblical tradition. It is within the context of this worship that the saints in every age have worshiped Almighty God as they sought to live a Christ-like life in this world.
The Divine Eucharist
Though you can learn a lot about Orthodox Christianity by hearing it described, it really must be seen and experienced in order to be fully understood. The main Sunday morning worship service of an Orthodox Church is referred to as the Divine Eucharist. “Divine” refers to the participation of Almighty God in our midst; and “Eucharist”, which means “great thanksgiving,” is the right and proper expression of mankind toward God. The appropriate response of mankind to God for all that He has done, continues to do, and has promised to do for us, is the sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving.
The life of this Christian community centers on our communion with God as well as the teaching, preaching, prayers, and spiritual disciplines that have been integral to Christianity for over 2,000 years.
At St. Peter we take our place among the great cloud of witnesses who, like us, participate by grace in the life of Christ. In the Eucharist, you will see the whole congregation active in worship, even the children. Participation is a vital aspect of Christian worship. We thereby come to know Christ in us, the hope of glory as we experience the God who is with us.
The Timeless Worship of God
Since the times of the New Testament, Christians have believed that as we worship the Lord our God we truly enter into timeless praise and adoration lifted up by those both in heaven and on earth . In Orthodox worship, we can step out of the pandemonium of time into the peace of eternity. Therefore everything in our worship has heaven as its point of reference. For it is as our Lord Jesus Christ has taught us to pray, “Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”
Orthodox Christian worship calls for the sacrificial action of the whole person to God as a response to His love for us. It engages not only the mind, the emotions, and the will, but also of the body with all its senses. So, as the Scriptures describe, in worship there are things to see, hear, touch, taste, and smell. Our whole being is to participate actively in worship.