Oriental Orthodox and pews

edited May 16 in Faith Issues
Hey everyone,

I was wondering since the Holy fathers say that prayer without prostrations are unpleasant to God why do all the Oriental Orthodox Churches have them? (In America at least)

In Christ,
Justice

Comments

  • Because a majority of Coptic church building in the U.S. are purchased from Protestant denominations. I recall that is a problem in the Eastern Orthodox churches as well. I know they are in Egypt as well, but I believe that's because of the Protestant influences there. Not all have them. The church we are currently building in Ohio does have pews.
  • edited May 16
    Do you think we should stand for the enitre service then?

    In Christ,
    Justice
  • I am not sure if I can blame this phenomenon on Protestant denominations. In Egypt, many big church brought pews to keep order in church considering the increase in numbers of the believers with the year of St. Habib Girgis and those years of rebirth for the church. In many monasteries, there are still churches that don't have chairs or pews. 
  • Thank you, again I'm asking because I was originally looking into the old calendarists who don't use pews.

    In Christ,
    Justice
  • Ekhrestos anesty
    Dear @Justice
    Yes I do believe that the strictly correct practice is to stand during the whole of the liturgy. And as @minatasgeel says that is why there is a number of monasteries that do not have them in the first place. Certainly it is not an acceptable practice to sit down whilst the Word of God is being prayed! Or the recent innovation where people don't stand up whilst singing the Gospel response! Shocked emoticon.. hehe..
    Oujai khan ebshois
  • edited May 17
    Whenever I prostrate, if possible I either veer off the pews or just kneel. I remember a Subdeacon (who's now a priest) once told me never to sit down when we are told to worship or bow our heads.
  • Ekhrestos anesty
    Exactly as @minasoliman puts it.. Very well said..
    Oujai khan ebshois
  • edited May 18
    What about when the Priest is giving a sermon, is it ok to sit down then (at a church with pews?)

    In Christ,
    Justice
  • I sit and listen when abouna gives the sermon. Also when in prostration, I cross my thumbs over my forefingers to make the sign of the cross.
  • Yea that's fine...you can sit on the pews during the sermon and non-gospel readings.
  • I went into a church in Melbourne Australia and everything had coptic artistry in it, even the pews. So beautiful that I wish more churches were like that. I didn't see any more. But the fine detail was stunning.
  • Ekhrestos anesty
    Dear @Justice
    You may be surprised to hear that there was nothing called priest's talk during the liturgy until at least the tenth century onwards if not even later. Even then the talk was only restricted to Sundays of the Lent and Kiahk so there was no dire need for them. Contrary to what @minasoliman said I do not think that the congregation sat down during any Bible readings whatsoever, including prophesies, but bad practice rules..
    Oujai khan ebshois
  • edited May 19
    I don't think his question was what did the ancient people do. I think he asked what should I do.

    Ophadeece, do you stand up in your parish during the epistles and acts and the sermon?
  • Ekhrestos anesty
    Dear @minasoliman
    No I don't. I will take this point from you though from now on. During abouna's talk there is no need to stand up anyway..
    Oujai khan ebshois
  • in romania there are many beautiful old orthodox churches.
    they nearly all have a few seats around the sides, fixed to the wall, for old people and disabled people and then 80 - 90% people stand during the service.
    the old people come early to the church, so they all find a seat.

    if there is an extra long service, or a long talk, some people sit on the floor.
    but it is certainly easier to prostrate without pews, and i wish we did not have them in our churches in uk.
    we just need a some chairs down the side for old people.
  • Mabsoota,

    Agreed I think that would be the most appropriate thing to do.

    In Christ,
    Justice
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