Father Michael Pallad

Pastor's Page

Narrative Divine Liturgy

Sunday services differ from church to church: the Orthodox Liturgy, the Catholic Mass, Morning Prayers, and many forms of contemporary Praise and Worship services. If you have family members from different Christian traditions, or out of curiosity, you’ve likely been to some of these services. All of them have a history and tradition behind them, including the Divine Liturgy.

If you’ve seen televised worship services or have been to Sunday services in other Christian churches, you know that the liturgy is really quite different. Most noticeable, perhaps, is that in place of an altar there is a stage. Why? Because every liturgy is a commemoration of The Sacrifice of our Lord Jesus Christ, and throughout the Old Testament, religious sacrifices took place at an altar. If there is no commemoration of Jesus’ sacrifice, there is no need for an altar. Although important, the presence of the altar is just the tip of the iceberg when talking about the meaning of the liturgy.

Why is there just one Divine Liturgy on Sundays? What is the meaning of the many symbols, processions and rituals? Has the liturgy changed over time?

To help answer these and other questions, a special Narrative Divine Liturgy will be offered on Sunday, Jan. 28, beginning at 10 am. The liturgy will be stopped at various times with commentary on the history and meaning of Christianity’s oldest continuous form of worship.

When Orthodox Christianity first came to this country, the Sunday morning services were the same as they are today here at Saint Haralambos Church, and at Orthodox parishes throughout the country. There hasn’t been a revolutionary movement to change, to update or to improve upon what our Church has handed down to us from generations passed.

So let’s do a little digging below the surface, and listen to some explanations to help us understand why the liturgy is the way it is, and why the Orthodox continue to celebrate only the Divine Liturgy every Sunday of the year.

Friends are welcome! There will be time for Question and Answers afterwards.

St. Haralambos Greek Orthodox Church | Peoria, Arizona