Membership within the Coptic Orthodox Church

edited December 1969 in Faith Issues
Hello all!  :)

I would truly appreciate it if some of you could lend your opinion on my situation.  I am greatly interested in the Coptic Orthodox Church and would like to attend my local Coptic Church on a regular basis and begin the inquiry process.  However the closest Coptic Orthodox Church is over an hour away.  While I do not mind the drive, it is very costly to drive such a long way each week due to my family income and gas prices. 

At most, I would only be able to attend liturgy twice a month.  My dilemma is whether or not to only attend the liturgy twice a week and the other Sundays attend a liturgical church closer to my home or wait to try and inquire when I live closer to a Coptic Orthodox Church and can attend on a regular basis?


  • anything is better than nothing.
    and you shouldn't feel bad at all for not attending the other two weeks; at least you desire to be closer to God. 

    as you may/may not know, the COC also has a couple sister churches [Armenian, Syrian, name a few] so if you live  nearer to one, than by all means, take advantage of the proximity.

    lastly, many COC websites offer live streaming of the Holy Liturgy [granted, it's not the same as being there] but it def. won't hurt to wake up to a 'sunday mass at home.' lol 

    God Bless
  • Dear Justin,

    From my own experience I would say that if you have reached a point where you want to become Orthodox then do so as soon as is possible. I was engaged in a process for several years, but as soon as the way forward became clear I became Orthodox.

    It seems to me that it is better to have received the sacraments of baptism and chrismation, and to receive communion even intermittently while seeking to live the Orthodox life - and such a life is entirely enough to fill our weeks and days, even if we are isolated - than to be trying to live a form of the Orthodox life without the necessary benefits of these sacraments.

    If the Eucharist is a spiritual medicine, if the communion is for eternal life and remission of sins, then we need to be in a position to receive such healing and participate in such life as soon as we know that we wish such a relationship with Christ in his Church. St Jacob of Serugh speaks of the Holy Spirit brooding over the eucharistic elements, and says that if we do not participate in the communion then we cannot expect to receive the grace which the Holy Spirit gives.

    Therefore, if your circumstances permit and if it is a step that you are committed to, I would encourage you to become fully and completely a member of the Orthodox Church, since it will make a spiritual difference. It is not a matter of organisaton but of participation in true life. If you are able to attend other Oriental Orthodox Churches which are closer to you then becoming a member of the Coptic Orthodox Church would allow you to receive the same Christ there when you are unable to attend a Coptic Orthodox Church.

    In my own experince I have found that there is a qualitative difference in my life as a committed Christian before becoming Orthodox and afterwards. I am just as committed, and was just as committed, it is not that. But I have found that my life is very much harder now that I am Orthodox - but also is filled with so much more grace. I know what I am trying to attain to, and I have the tools and the spiritual resources to make some progress. May the Lord guide you and make his way straight before you.

    Father Peter
  • in my experience, life became much more clear after joining the coptic church. do it, then God will guide you on how to work out the details such as travel etc. who knows, maybe a church will open nearer to you, or maybe you will see in the future the benefits of travel, such as meeting someone who helps you in life or learning to get used to life 'on the road'.
    trust God and acknowledge Him in all your ways. (proverbs 3)
  • Most definitely go to the hour away Coptic Orthodox Church;

    some people in my church do this (every other week attendence) because they live far away from the church
    and work weekends

    This will be a blessing.

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