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It’s Greek to Me, and That’s Fine

  /   Sunday May 14, 2006  

Yesterday, I spent a little time at the Greek Food Festival at the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church in Memphis. I had heard of it before, but I never had a chance to go. Well, here was my chance. The food was great. It was a huge meal for the price. It was only $2 to get in and $10 for the main meal. The people were really nice.

The best part was getting a tour of the Greek Orthodox Church. Although some of the practices were different, nearly everything that the priest said about worship could easily be said in a Catholic Church, and it would apply easily to Catholics. I guess the best way to explain it is that they have preserved their tradition, while we let the moderns run over us with their views on liturgy. We are much the poorer for it. No wonder some Catholics have chosen to go to Eastern Rite liturgies when they were available.

The priest described the Communion of Saints beautifully. He clearly had a great devotion to Mary, Mother of God. They use icons instead of statues in their church, and they knew what they signified. Unlike some Catholics, they were not ashamed of their beautiful artwork. He described the Church as “Mother Church” who not only informs the intellect but engages the senses. They use the narthex as a place of preparation for the “hard work of giving proper worship to God” instead of a place where a “hospitality committee” stands and says “Welcome to _____ Church?”

Why do we not hear Catholic priests describing the Church and what we do in this manner? Our beliefs are identical in most things, but the way things get explained to us is so bland so much of the time. Don’t get me wrong. I will certainly stay Catholic for a number of reasons that I won’t go into here. My point is that I have gained a whole new respect for the Orthodox, and there is no reason why we Catholics can’t explain our faith in such a manner.

Category: Posts imported from Danger! Falling Brainwaves, Uncategorized

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