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Coronavirus: Are there ANY churches in America still having mass?

Psaltos

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Or even the world? Isn't this bad that that everyone will be without communion for so long.
 

Ainnir

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I think it's deeply unfortunate.  My parish is still having services; it's just that almost none of us are there.
 

rakovsky

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I think alot of ROCOR churches might still be having services.
It's a guess.
I know that one priest announced that he is going to have services as long as he is capable of it because God heals people and the liturgy is for healing.
 

Psaltos

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Wow! That's great news! I'm so glad to hear some people are celebrating.
 

Bob2

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rakovsky said:
I think alot of ROCOR churches might still be having services.
It's a guess.
I know that one priest announced that he is going to have services as long as he is capable of it because God heals people and the liturgy is for healing.
Most churches are still having services, they just aren't open to the public, we had our last open to public service yesterday. Now we are going to a "skeleton crew" of not more than 10, just clergy, servers, readers and singers.
 

Alveus Lacuna

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We were doing skeleton crew the last few weeks, and now there's no services at all in the OCA midwest diocese.

The bishop's just trying to make the right call.
 

Bob2

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Alveus Lacuna said:
We were doing skeleton crew the last few weeks, and now there's no services at all in the OCA midwest diocese.

The bishop's just trying to make the right call.
:'(
 

Ainnir

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I watched a stream tonight, and the priest didn't actually serve communion.  The whole DL was as normal, except he just skipped the distribution of the Eucharist.  Are others doing this?  I guess he has to consume it all himself?
 

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Ainnir said:
I watched a stream tonight, and the priest didn't actually serve communion.  The whole DL was as normal, except he just skipped the distribution of the Eucharist.  Are others doing this?  I guess he has to consume it all himself?
My priest still serves the Eucharist to those present, anout 3 or 4 people.  If a priest is not serving it, then he will consume the gifts.
 

LizaSymonenko

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The Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the USA is broadcasting daily Morning (7:30 am) and Evening (9 PM) Prayers from the seminary via the St. Sophia Ukrainian Orthodox Theological Seminary Facebook page.

The Church livestreamed Liturgy last Sunday, as well.

This Friday the Facebook Page of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the USA will livestream Liturgy of Presanctified Gifts at 6 PM.

...and each Sunday thereafter... (if Facebook survives.  Last night's prayers were not broadcast because Facebook was crashing due to high traffic.)

 

Ainnir

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Dominika

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I see in Bulgaria churches are still open. There are less people, but there are still services in which people can participate and take Holy Eucharist. Thanks God, hope it won't change.
 

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Psaltos said:
Or even the world? Isn't this bad that that everyone will be without communion for so long.
1. Most Orthodox Churches that I've seen are still having services, even if the public is not permitted to attend.

2. Being without communion for a long time, while not ideal (and certainly against the revival of frequent communion of the last 100 years), isn't unprecedented.  We do what we can with what we have, and pray that His grace will make up for what is lacking.
 

jobin219

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A number of Syriac Orthodox Churches have liturgies, wherever not prohibited by government.
 

Ainnir

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I saw one streamed, but it seemed like there were very few people there.  Same as my parish.  I guess where the parish is makes a difference, too. 
 

Kmon23

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Bulgarian Diocese still has services, but follows local guidelines of # people attending. So it's basically not open to the public and requires a sign up sheet online.
 

JTLoganville

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Rob Morris, a Lutheran Pastor in Connecticut writes:

I am concerned how many times I have seen pastors and church leaders write or say "Of course, if local officials tell churches not to meet, then that's what we'll do."

My beef isn't with the choice itself, but with the "Of course". Local officials have told churches not to meet in various places and at various times all around the world and throughout history. Sometimes those motives are good, right, and salutary. Sometimes not so much. Sometimes love demands we comply. Sometimes not so much. My concern is that the primary hinge for this decision not be one solely of risk/health. When churches meet illegally (think the early church facing Roman persecution, or Shusaku Endo's Silence and the persecution in 17th-century Japan) - pastors are asking their members to risk their lives and perhaps even the lives of their whole village to gather. No one could say it is the healthy choice to gather, and you could argue they are unlovingly risking others' lives as well. Should they simply cease to meet because of love or risk? Given that I believe Health is one of our largest 21st century idols, I am concerned how quickly churches have closed as soon as Health is invoked. I could go on at length on that topic, but no one signed up for that. :)

I am not impugning or second-guessing anyone else's decisions. It may be the right choice not to meet... but I hope that decision always and fully remains with the church, not the state. And I hope that decision never becomes a matter "of course".
 

SolEX01

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^ Churches have to obey and respect local authorities (check out Romans 13).  Plus, with the advent of technology, churches can stream services to the faithful.  If someone wants Holy Communion bad enough, the priest can visit that person; however, I'd be concerned about the priest who doesn't want to visit his flock for fear of contracting Covid-19.

People in my community have my priest's cell phone number; except I haven't verified if the phone number is included on the church's answering machine.  With the church office closed due to the pandemic, I wouldn't post my request for a clergy visit on my priest's social media timeline unless I was really desperate.

Plus, the faithful were sheltering in place as there were about 50 people at liturgy on March 15, before local government limited gatherings to 10 people.

EDIT - when the church was being persecuted, the faithful were willing to die for their beliefs.  Today, people are comfortable in their secular lifestyle and there is no fear of dying for their beliefs.  I admire the courage of megachurch pastors who continue to provide services; however, worship in defiance of local laws would test local government's ability to enforce the law limiting social gatherings.
 

JTLoganville

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"Watch by live stream" has become the byword of the month.

Clergy are reporting that the Internet is buckling under the sudden surge of demand driven by those stuck at home.

"Watch by live stream" may not be an even partially satisfactory option.

And there are some of us who, although only three miles from an Interstate highway exit, are a half a mile from the end of the Comcast line, too deep into the valley for the Infrared signal, and too many miles from the dial tone for FIOS.

"Watch by live stream" does not exist for us.

It is easy for those in the infested cities (many of which are home to the Chancery offices) with broadband access and T-1 lines to say "watch the live stream". 
 

rakovsky

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Try Satellite internet, Watch EWTN services on TV, Find a ROCOR or MP Church still holding open services, or do Reader Services on your own (plus with God and family).
You could also check if one of the smaller traditional heterodox Churches (eg. LCMS) near you is still holding services. I don't know the answer to that.
 

Jude1:3

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What's the point of watching "live streams" if we can't even partake of The Holy Eucharist ?
 

Ainnir

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Jude1:3 said:
What's the point of watching "live streams" if we can't even partake of The Holy Eucharist ?
To pray with the people on the other side of the screen and to follow along with the service.  What was the point of going to Liturgy before we were received?  It's not the same experience, and I'm not equating a stream to actually being at the DL, but as far as not partaking goes, it's the same -- you aren't.  And don't just watch; participate.  Set it up next to your icon corner and stand, cross yourself, prostrate, etc.  It's still not the same, but it helps a little.  We've set it up in a different room than the icon corner, and that didn't feel right; even my supposedly disinterested kid said, "We're just bowing to a screen."  This is 100% not the way Church was meant to be done.

I've stumbled my way through Reader Compline a couple of times and will do the Akathist tonight.  Sundays we'll stream the DL, "visiting" different jurisdictions.  We'll see if I break down and attempt the Typika before it's all said and done.

Forgive me rakovsky, but I feel strongly that going to heterodox services isn't the answer.  I think if we can't stream, then we find the solution in adding to our personal and family prayer routines in whatever way we're able.
 

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Ainnir said:
Jude1:3 said:
What's the point of watching "live streams" if we can't even partake of The Holy Eucharist ?
To pray with the people on the other side of the screen and to follow along with the service.  What was the point of going to Liturgy before we were received?  It's not the same experience, and I'm not equating a stream to actually being at the DL, but as far as not partaking goes, it's the same -- you aren't.  And don't just watch; participate.  Set it up next to your icon corner and stand, cross yourself, prostrate, etc.  It's still not the same, but it helps a little.  We've set it up in a different room than the icon corner, and that didn't feel right; even my supposedly disinterested kid said, "We're just bowing to a screen."  This is 100% not the way Church was meant to be done.

I've stumbled my way through Reader Compline a couple of times and will do the Akathist tonight.  Sundays we'll stream the DL, "visiting" different jurisdictions.  We'll see if I break down and attempt the Typika before it's all said and done.

Forgive me rakovsky, but I feel strongly that going to heterodox services isn't the answer.  I think if we can't stream, then we find the solution in adding to our personal and family prayer routines in whatever way we're able.
Agree 100%

Our parish is now doing "skeleton crew" services, keeping to a bare minimum of people. I could to listen to Matins/Hours/Typica/Presanctified this morning, they had 1 singer, an English reader, a Slavonic reader and the priest.  I've been blessed to be the choir for Soul Saturday Matins this evening and Liturgy/Panikhida tomorrow. But I don't have blessing for Vigil tomorrow or Liturgy Sunday. I'm disappointed I can't be at more services, but feel a tremendous weight knowing I have more access than most, including my wife and children. I pray that I can get through the services smoothly so as not to be a distraction to those praying at home.
 

biro

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I'm sure the first Christians were sometimes deprived of the Eucharist.

Think of someone in the Navy, on a submarine. They have to wait months to receive.

Say prayers at home. One day, we'll be able to receive again.
 

Mor Ephrem

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https://publicorthodoxy.org/2020/03/27/church-without-eucharist/

I rarely recommend Public Orthodoxy, but this is worth a read.
 

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Ainnir said:
Jude1:3 said:
What's the point of watching "live streams" if we can't even partake of The Holy Eucharist ?
To pray with the people on the other side of the screen and to follow along with the service.  What was the point of going to Liturgy before we were received?  It's not the same experience, and I'm not equating a stream to actually being at the DL, but as far as not partaking goes, it's the same -- you aren't.  And don't just watch; participate.  Set it up next to your icon corner and stand, cross yourself, prostrate, etc.  It's still not the same, but it helps a little.  We've set it up in a different room than the icon corner, and that didn't feel right; even my supposedly disinterested kid said, "We're just bowing to a screen."  This is 100% not the way Church was meant to be done.

I've stumbled my way through Reader Compline a couple of times and will do the Akathist tonight.  Sundays we'll stream the DL, "visiting" different jurisdictions.  We'll see if I break down and attempt the Typika before it's all said and done.

Forgive me rakovsky, but I feel strongly that going to heterodox services isn't the answer.  I think if we can't stream, then we find the solution in adding to our personal and family prayer routines in whatever way we're able.
Good post.

I understand.
 

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Our Bishop has now blessed us to serve Presanctified Liturgy on all weekdays, not just Wednesday and Friday, so though our services are no longer open to the public, we are actually adding divine services to our schedule.
 

Dominika

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Bob2 said:
Our Bishop has now blessed us to serve Presanctified Liturgy on all weekdays, not just Wednesday and Friday, so though our services are no longer open to the public, we are actually adding divine services to our schedule.
I know it's exactly the same, new decision for parishes of Orthodox diocese of Białystok and Gdańsk in Poland. But in Białystok there are 12 Orthodox parishes, some of them have 5000 or even more parishioners, and since the new restricitons from 25th March allow only 5 people at church (plus priests and liturgical assitants) it's not helpful.. I know tomorrow in Supraśl - it's a town with famous Orthodox monastery that serves as a parish too - there will be 5 Liturgies - in main monastery church, in addiitonal monastery church, in domestic chapel and two cemetary chapels but still...
In one of Białystok parishes, one of the biggest ones, after the first Liturgy priests will be wait for 2 hours to give Communion for groups of 5 people (one groups comes, then the next one, then the third one and so on) if they watched a broadcast and read readings of the day..

My parish instead of normal "rekolekcje" (spiritual talks and confessions in time of Advent and of Great Lent) will organise duties of priests - every day another one as we have a few of them - and they will receive parishioners individually and also in family groups, ofc. maximum 5. It will be time for spriutal talk, confession, lit the candles, molebien, panichida or any other service plus the instrucitons about receiivng the Holy Eucharist should be given.

All of this is craziness, as in shopping malls and buses are allowed more people..
Plus the Holy Week is in big danger in the whole world..
It's really crazines..
 

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I have seen some Catholics perform mass outdoors.
 

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Bob2 said:
Our Bishop has now blessed us to serve Presanctified Liturgy on all weekdays, not just Wednesday and Friday, so though our services are no longer open to the public, we are actually adding divine services to our schedule.
Glory to Our God.
 

Dominika

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Female monastery Dudovica in Serbia, police entered during Divine Liturgy: https://www.facebook.com/bratislav.cvetanovic.1/videos/2830315420350160/
 

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Dominika said:
Female monastery Dudovica in Serbia, police entered during Divine Liturgy: https://www.facebook.com/bratislav.cvetanovic.1/videos/2830315420350160/
Fortunately they didn't stop the service.
 

Dominika

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An activitist of LGBT entering Orthodox church in Łódź (Poland), than two Roman Catholic churches, seeing if there are really 5 believers and making a quarrel with Orthodox priest because there are 7 people (edit: after 8:20 he comes back to the Orthodox church and bishop Athanasios intervenes):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3glZYkvneiw
 

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It’s nothing new, as late as in the early 19th century when the plague was still a problem, there were often periods when the faithful were, by the secular and church authorities’ decree, forbidden to take communion for months.
In 1829 iirc when Grigorie Dascalu was the metropolitan of Ungrovlachia he forbade people to commune for the months of May and June for instance .
 

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augustin717 said:
It’s nothing new, as late as in the early 19th century when the plague was still a problem, there were often periods when the faithful were, by the secular and church authorities’ decree, forbidden to take communion for months.
In 1829 iirc when Grigorie Dascalu was the metropolitan of Ungrovlachia he forbade people to commune for the months of May and June for instance .
Maybe so. 

There is also ample historical evidence of clergy providing Sacraments despite decrees to the contrary.

The greatest danger is that people will allow  temporary measures to be extended and extended until they become permanent--and to begin to consider these gross abnormalities to be a "new normal".
 

Dominika

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JTLoganville said:
There is also ample historical evidence of clergy providing Sacraments despite decrees to the contrary.

The greatest danger is that people will allow  temporary measures to be extended and extended until they become permanent--and to begin to consider these gross abnormalities to be a "new normal".

This. And what scaries me, now it happens in the whole world, not just one region or country.
 

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Know any good catacombs?
 
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augustin717 said:
It’s nothing new, as late as in the early 19th century when the plague was still a problem, there were often periods when the faithful were, by the secular and church authorities’ decree, forbidden to take communion for months.
In 1829 iirc when Grigorie Dascalu was the metropolitan of Ungrovlachia he forbade people to commune for the months of May and June for instance .
Maybe so, yet there still is the slippery slope, especially with secular leaders who keep extending "emergency measures" where this lasts forever, I mean look it a scary world lots of Terrorism, new viruses , anarchists , etc. this is a slippery slope for the authorities to extend emergencies forever. It already happened in the third world, where leaders use emergencies to be "president for life" and impose restrictions.
 
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Did anyone see the police arresting little ole ladies going to Church in Romania, and apparently the secular news is attacking the church there for offering communion.
 
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