Sunday liturgy

Is not going to church on Sundays a sin?

  • Is it a mortal sin not going church on Sundays?

    Votes: 1 50.0%
  • Is it a mortal sin not to going church on Sundays?

    Votes: 1 50.0%

  • Total voters
    2

Seekingtrue

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Hello I'm new to this site I'm Christian Orthodox from Greece and I would like to ask not going to church some sundays is that a sin?if yes is it mortal sin?my spiritual father says its a sin not going to the church on sundays
 

TheTrisagion

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Refusing to go to church when you are able is a sin. Obviously, if you are sick or out of town or something, that is different, but if you just decide to skip church so you can play video games or watch TV, then yes, that would be a sin.

Any sin that we refuse to repent of is mortal.
 

elephant

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Dear Seeking,

Sin is something that separates us from God.
Does skipping Church leads you away from God or closer to God?  

A person might miss Church for many reasons.  Sickness would be a reason to miss Church.  Caring for someone in need might mean we miss Church.  Work might interfere.   Bad weather.  Lack of transportation.  

Or a person might miss Church because they stayed up all night drinking, or were angry at another person in the parish.  

We need to consider why we are missing Church.  Then we can deal with the underlying reason.  If it is fatigue, we may need to get more sleep.  If we are angry, we may need to forgive.  If we are too busy, we may need to drop some of our activities to make time. 


Love, elephant  

 

LizaSymonenko

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I agree.  If you are able to go, then you need to go.

It's only 3-4 hours out of your entire week.  We can hopefully spare that much time for God.

 

Porter ODoran

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Wouldn't it be wholesome to look at such things as, What will save and divinize me? as opposed to the calculation, What might get me damned?
 

Porter ODoran

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(By the way, I read your two poll options as identical except for the poor grammar of the second. You probably want to fix that.)
 

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Well if you want to follow the canons of the Church it says something along the lines of, if you miss church three times for no good reason you can be excommunicated.
 

Seekingtrue

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Peacemaker said:
Well if you want to follow the canons of the Church it says something along the lines of, if you miss church three times for no good reason you can be excommunicated.
ok this is another canon '48. If any layman who has divorced his wife takes another, or one divorced by another man, let him be excommunicated'I don't see the church follow this canon among others so I m not sure.
 

Porter ODoran

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"Woe unto you, lawyers! for ye have taken away the key of knowledge: ye entered not in yourselves, and them that were entering in ye hindered." ;)
 

LBK

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Canons are like medication: they should never be self-administered by untrained folks, but are intended to be wisely dispensed by those who have the education and experience to do so - the bishops.
 

hecma925

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LBK said:
Canons are like medication: they should never be self-administered by untrained folks, but are intended to be wisely dispensed by those who have the education and experience to do so - the bishops.
I never saw so many people desiring to overdose on the canons until I got on OC.net.
 

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hecma925 said:
LBK said:
Canons are like medication: they should never be self-administered by untrained folks, but are intended to be wisely dispensed by those who have the education and experience to do so - the bishops.
I never saw so many people desiring to overdose on the canons until I got on OC.net.
then you are not aware of the falling nature of man.Is nt the battle about overcoming this nature?For me it's not easy so the canons and furthermore I don't have 'church' as a role model as I see the church doesn't follow a lot of the canons and I m talking about church in Greece
 

hecma925

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Seekingtrue said:
hecma925 said:
LBK said:
Canons are like medication: they should never be self-administered by untrained folks, but are intended to be wisely dispensed by those who have the education and experience to do so - the bishops.
I never saw so many people desiring to overdose on the canons until I got on OC.net.
then you are not aware of the falling nature of man.Is nt the battle about overcoming this nature?For me it's not easy so the canons and furthermore I don't have 'church' as a role model as I see the church doesn't follow a lot of the canons and I m talking about church in Greece
I am very much aware of my fallen nature.

Overdosing and overcoming are two different things.
 

Seekingtrue

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hecma925 said:
Seekingtrue said:
hecma925 said:
LBK said:
Canons are like medication: they should never be self-administered by untrained folks, but are intended to be wisely dispensed by those who have the education and experience to do so - the bishops.
I never saw so many people desiring to overdose on the canons until I got on OC.net.
then you are not aware of the falling nature of man.Is nt the battle about overcoming this nature?For me it's not easy so the canons and furthermore I don't have 'church' as a role model as I see the church doesn't follow a lot of the canons and I m talking about church in Greece
I am very much aware of my fallen nature.

Overdosing and overcoming are two different things.
could you share how you define overdosing?
 

Porter ODoran

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Seekingtrue said:
hecma925 said:
LBK said:
Canons are like medication: they should never be self-administered by untrained folks, but are intended to be wisely dispensed by those who have the education and experience to do so - the bishops.
I never saw so many people desiring to overdose on the canons until I got on OC.net.
then you are not aware of the falling nature of man.Is nt the battle about overcoming this nature?For me it's not easy so the canons and furthermore I don't have 'church' as a role model as I see the church doesn't follow a lot of the canons and I m talking about church in Greece
Lord, have mercy.
 

podkarpatska

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Couple of points need to be stressed, and for answers about specific canons, I'd suggest you ask  a priest, a bishop, a seminary graduate ,a monk etc.....for the answers.

There are 'canons' and there are 'canons.'  Merely reading them and picking snippets of text to prove this or that is futile. Look at it this way, you have to have a contextual basis to fully grasp and interpret them. Just as there is a reason why we don't simply put Joe , Mary and Mike on the United States Supreme Court or any Appellate Court in Anglo-American jurisprudence - you need higher education, training and experience to interpret the law..And even then courts can get it wrong either by misunderstanding the context in which a law or statute was enacted or by misreading the intent - or interpreting a law according to one's personal bias.  The same applies to the canons of the Church.

If you start reading them and trying to 'live by them' without guidance and training you will surely fall into a rabbit hole so deep you will never get out without considerable help from God and others.

A fairly comprehensive list of the Canons of the Eastern Orthodox Church may be found here with this caveat from the compilers: "Most of the texts you are going to read here are compared to several sources, nevertheless they are to be used very carefully because they represent a working research tool for understanding of ideas and ecclesiastical decisions from a past time which  precedes our days with more than eleven centuries and that is why the comprehension of canonical contents is difficult. The reason for this roots mostly in specific hronotopical and cultural context.  "  https://sites.google.com/site/canonsoc/

I think a better guide to how to live your life can be found in Scripture, particularly in the words of Jesus himself with a bit of help from St. Paul. When you are stumped - see your priest.



 

biro

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I've been told it's a sin to deliberately miss church. It is not a sin, however, if you are very sick, or injured, or something on that order.
 

LenInSebastopol

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I voted YES, it is a sin to miss Sunday Divine Liturgy, if you are able to go. If you are dead or some other misfortune, then NO, it is not a sin.

BUT

Why go to church if not receiving The Lamb?
There is no point to anything in the universe without The Lamb.
Therefore, if not receiving, then is it a sin to miss church?
If you are able to receive and do not go, is that a mortal sin?
Yes, is that answer, for me.
 

DeniseDenise

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LenInSebastopol said:
If you are dead or some other misfortune, then NO, it is not a sin.
If you are dead, being at church is the least of the issues facing you.
 

Seekingtrue

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podkarpatska said:
Couple of points need to be stressed, and for answers about specific canons, I'd suggest you ask  a priest, a bishop, a seminary graduate ,a monk etc.....for the answers.

There are 'canons' and there are 'canons.'  Merely reading them and picking snippets of text to prove this or that is futile. Look at it this way, you have to have a contextual basis to fully grasp and interpret them. Just as there is a reason why we don't simply put Joe , Mary and Mike on the United States Supreme Court or any Appellate Court in Anglo-American jurisprudence - you need higher education, training and experience to interpret the law..And even then courts can get it wrong either by misunderstanding the context in which a law or statute was enacted or by misreading the intent - or interpreting a law according to one's personal bias.  The same applies to the canons of the Church.

If you start reading them and trying to 'live by them' without guidance and training you will surely fall into a rabbit hole so deep you will never get out without considerable help from God and others.

A fairly comprehensive list of the Canons of the Eastern Orthodox Church may be found here with this caveat from the compilers: "Most of the texts you are going to read here are compared to several sources, nevertheless they are to be used very carefully because they represent a working research tool for understanding of ideas and ecclesiastical decisions from a past time which  precedes our days with more than eleven centuries and that is why the comprehension of canonical contents is difficult. The reason for this roots mostly in specific hronotopical and cultural context.  "  https://sites.google.com/site/canonsoc/

I think a better guide to how to live your life can be found in Scripture, particularly in the words of Jesus himself with a bit of help from St. Paul. When you are stumped - see your priest                                        thank you for guiding God bless you
 

Seekingtrue

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Seekingtrue said:
podkarpatska said:
Couple of points need to be stressed, and for answers about specific canons, I'd suggest you ask  a priest, a bishop, a seminary graduate ,a monk etc.....for the answers.

There are 'canons' and there are 'canons.'  Merely reading them and picking snippets of text to prove this or that is futile. Look at it this way, you have to have a contextual basis to fully grasp and interpret them. Just as there is a reason why we don't simply put Joe , Mary and Mike on the United States Supreme Court or any Appellate Court in Anglo-American jurisprudence - you need higher education, training and experience to interpret the law..And even then courts can get it wrong either by misunderstanding the context in which a law or statute was enacted or by misreading the intent - or interpreting a law according to one's personal bias.  The same applies to the canons of the Church.

If you start reading them and trying to 'live by them' without guidance and training you will surely fall into a rabbit hole so deep you will never get out without considerable help from God and others.

A fairly comprehensive list of the Canons of the Eastern Orthodox Church may be found here with this caveat from the compilers: "Most of the texts you are going to read here are compared to several sources, nevertheless they are to be used very carefully because they represent a working research tool for understanding of ideas and ecclesiastical decisions from a past time which  precedes our days with more than eleven centuries and that is why the comprehension of canonical contents is difficult. The reason for this roots mostly in specific hronotopical and cultural context.  "  https://sites.google.com/site/canonsoc/

I think a better guide to how to live your life can be found in Scripture, particularly in the words of Jesus himself with a bit of help from St. Paul. When you are stumped - see your priest                                         
thank you for guiding God bless you
 

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DeniseDenise said:
LenInSebastopol said:
If you are dead or some other misfortune, then NO, it is not a sin.
If you are dead, being at church is the least of the issues facing you.
in fact, if you are dead, you need to go to church too, for your funeral.
try to arrive on time.

(just came back from a funeral)
(not my own)
 

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LenInSebastopol said:
I voted YES, it is a sin to miss Sunday Divine Liturgy, if you are able to go. If you are dead or some other misfortune, then NO, it is not a sin.

BUT

Why go to church if not receiving The Lamb?
There is no point to anything in the universe without The Lamb.
Therefore, if not receiving, then is it a sin to miss church?
If you are able to receive and do not go, is that a mortal sin?
Yes, is that answer, for me.
I'm hoping there's some misunderstanding here. By "receiving The Lamb" do you mean receiving Communion? If so, we likely have a difference of opinion. Should we not be going to Church in order to worship God? There are times that we are privileged to receive Communion as part of that worship. And I don't question that a faithful Orthodox Christian will make every effort to attend the Divine Liturgy as frequently as possible. But what about all of the other services apart from the Divine Liturgy? Do we have any obligation to attend those, or are they there just for liturgigeeks?
 

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Peacemaker said:
Well if you want to follow the canons of the Church it says something along the lines of, if you miss church three times for no good reason you can be excommunicated.
What if it's a fair-to-middlin' reason?
 

LenInSebastopol

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genesisone said:
LenInSebastopol said:
I voted YES, it is a sin to miss Sunday Divine Liturgy, if you are able to go. If you are dead or some other misfortune, then NO, it is not a sin.
BUT
Why go to church if not receiving The Lamb?
There is no point to anything in the universe without The Lamb.
Therefore, if not receiving, then is it a sin to miss church?
If you are able to receive and do not go, is that a mortal sin?
Yes, is that answer, for me.
I'm hoping there's some misunderstanding here. By "receiving The Lamb" do you mean receiving Communion? If so, we likely have a difference of opinion. Should we not be going to Church in order to worship God? There are times that we are privileged to receive Communion as part of that worship. And I don't question that a faithful Orthodox Christian will make every effort to attend the Divine Liturgy as frequently as possible. But what about all of the other services apart from the Divine Liturgy? Do we have any obligation to attend those, or are they there just for liturgigeeks?
The Lamb is Communion, and I think we are in agreement, it is just an emphasis I made to that poster-person.
I have more questions though, as a newbie: can we worship God while not in Church? Alone? Or must it be done in community? And of course, what is worship?or constitutes worship?

I like "liturgeeks" and no we are not under obligation to attend other services, AFAIK, and in MNSHO, we should attend all services that bring God and/or joy unto us. My idea of "obligation" is that mandatory, sour-puss, pejorative thingy, instead of the other. The 'God and/or joy' phrase means we need not always be 'happy' to go to a service, but rather we know that going does bring God unto us, and that is enough.
 

LenInSebastopol

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Agabus said:
Peacemaker said:
Well if you want to follow the canons of the Church it says something along the lines of, if you miss church three times for no good reason you can be excommunicated.
What if it's a fair-to-middlin' reason?
Who's to judge if it is? ;D
 

hecma925

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mabsoota said:
DeniseDenise said:
LenInSebastopol said:
If you are dead or some other misfortune, then NO, it is not a sin.
If you are dead, being at church is the least of the issues facing you.
in fact, if you are dead, you need to go to church too, for your funeral.
try to arrive on time.

(just came back from a funeral)
(not my own)
Impossible to be late to one's own funeral.  It's the whole reason why everyone's there!

(Glad you're not dead)
(It'd be spooky if you were and still posting)
 

LenInSebastopol

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hecma925 said:
mabsoota said:
in fact, if you are dead, you need to go to church too, for your funeral.
try to arrive on time.

(just came back from a funeral)
(not my own)
Impossible to be late to one's own funeral.  It's the whole reason why everyone's there!
Still young, eh?
 

LBK

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LenInSebastopol said:
hecma925 said:
mabsoota said:
in fact, if you are dead, you need to go to church too, for your funeral.
try to arrive on time.

(just came back from a funeral)
(not my own)
Impossible to be late to one's own funeral.  It's the whole reason why everyone's there!
Still young, eh?
Death can come at any age. It's not just for the old.
 

LenInSebastopol

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LBK said:
LenInSebastopol said:
hecma925 said:
mabsoota said:
in fact, if you are dead, you need to go to church too, for your funeral.
try to arrive on time.

(just came back from a funeral)
(not my own)
Impossible to be late to one's own funeral.  It's the whole reason why everyone's there!
Still young, eh?
Death can come at any age. It's not just for the old.
True.
Seems more of my friends are dying more often at my age then they were 50 years ago when I was a bit younger.
 

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LenInSebastopol said:
genesisone said:
LenInSebastopol said:
I voted YES, it is a sin to miss Sunday Divine Liturgy, if you are able to go. If you are dead or some other misfortune, then NO, it is not a sin.
BUT
Why go to church if not receiving The Lamb?
There is no point to anything in the universe without The Lamb.
Therefore, if not receiving, then is it a sin to miss church?
If you are able to receive and do not go, is that a mortal sin?
Yes, is that answer, for me.
I'm hoping there's some misunderstanding here. By "receiving The Lamb" do you mean receiving Communion? If so, we likely have a difference of opinion. Should we not be going to Church in order to worship God? There are times that we are privileged to receive Communion as part of that worship. And I don't question that a faithful Orthodox Christian will make every effort to attend the Divine Liturgy as frequently as possible. But what about all of the other services apart from the Divine Liturgy? Do we have any obligation to attend those, or are they there just for liturgigeeks?
The Lamb is Communion, and I think we are in agreement, it is just an emphasis I made to that poster-person.
I have more questions though, as a newbie: can we worship God while not in Church? Alone? Or must it be done in community? And of course, what is worship?or constitutes worship?

I like "liturgeeks" and no we are not under obligation to attend other services, AFAIK, and in MNSHO, we should attend all services that bring God and/or joy unto us. My idea of "obligation" is that mandatory, sour-puss, pejorative thingy, instead of the other. The 'God and/or joy' phrase means we need not always be 'happy' to go to a service, but rather we know that going does bring God unto us, and that is enough.
Thanks for clearing that up.

And I do agree that we should go to worship even when we are not happy about it. In fact, I suppose one could make the argument that those are the times we really ought to be going  :).
 

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Seekingtrue said:
Peacemaker said:
Well if you want to follow the canons of the Church it says something along the lines of, if you miss church three times for no good reason you can be excommunicated.
ok this is another canon '48. If any layman who has divorced his wife takes another, or one divorced by another man, let him be excommunicated'I don't see the church follow this canon among others so I m not sure.
In a previous post, podkarpatska gave you superb advice. I will just add that it is very tempting but wrong to fight a canon by another like you just did above.

If you come across a canon, it is important to think of the underlying principle; when the canon says that you excommunicate yourself by missing church three Sundays in a row, it is merely giving a rough guidance to consider when one needs to reconcile himself with the Church--that is, confess, repent and be reconciled through the Mystery of Penance. There is no question that God expects each one of us to be in church to participate in the Divine Liturgy, unless we have a good reason for not being able to. This is no mystery; the very word 'liturgy' means common work and from the very beginning the entire community of believers participated. Not attending without a good reason is falling short, that is a sin, and could compel a Christian to present himself at the next confession opportunity. The canon does not say that it is not a sin to miss one or two Sundays in a row; it just says that at the third time you have managed to excommunicate yourself and that the Church is taking note of it.
 

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Carl Kraeff (Second Chance) said:
Seekingtrue said:
Peacemaker said:
Well if you want to follow the canons of the Church it says something along the lines of, if you miss church three times for no good reason you can be excommunicated.
ok this is another canon '48. If any layman who has divorced his wife takes another, or one divorced by another man, let him be excommunicated'I don't see the church follow this canon among others so I m not sure.
In a previous post, podkarpatska gave you superb advice. I will just add that it is very tempting but wrong to fight a canon by another like you just did above.

If you come across a canon, it is important to think of the underlying principle; when the canon says that you excommunicate yourself by missing church three Sundays in a row, it is merely giving a rough guidance to consider when one needs to reconcile himself with the Church--that is, confess, repent and be reconciled through the Mystery of Penance. There is no question that God expects each one of us to be in church to participate in the Divine Liturgy, unless we have a good reason for not being able to. This is no mystery; the very word 'liturgy' means common work and from the very beginning the entire community of believers participated. Not attending without a good reason is falling short, that is a sin, and could compel a Christian to present himself at the next confession opportunity. The canon does not say that it is not a sin to miss one or two Sundays in a row; it just says that at the third time you have managed to excommunicate yourself and that the Church is taking note of it.
I agree with both of you but church and father confessors along with the canons have 'oikonomia tou Theou'
 

Second Chance

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Seekingtrue said:
Carl Kraeff (Second Chance) said:
Seekingtrue said:
Peacemaker said:
Well if you want to follow the canons of the Church it says something along the lines of, if you miss church three times for no good reason you can be excommunicated.
ok this is another canon '48. If any layman who has divorced his wife takes another, or one divorced by another man, let him be excommunicated'I don't see the church follow this canon among others so I m not sure.
In a previous post, podkarpatska gave you superb advice. I will just add that it is very tempting but wrong to fight a canon by another like you just did above.

If you come across a canon, it is important to think of the underlying principle; when the canon says that you excommunicate yourself by missing church three Sundays in a row, it is merely giving a rough guidance to consider when one needs to reconcile himself with the Church--that is, confess, repent and be reconciled through the Mystery of Penance. There is no question that God expects each one of us to be in church to participate in the Divine Liturgy, unless we have a good reason for not being able to. This is no mystery; the very word 'liturgy' means common work and from the very beginning the entire community of believers participated. Not attending without a good reason is falling short, that is a sin, and could compel a Christian to present himself at the next confession opportunity. The canon does not say that it is not a sin to miss one or two Sundays in a row; it just says that at the third time you have managed to excommunicate yourself and that the Church is taking note of it.
I agree with both of you but church and father confessors along with the canons have 'oikonomia tou Theou'
The church has used "oikonomia" in order to prevent sinners from being or feeling abandoned. The most famous example of this is the permission to remarry up to a total of three marriages. Another example may be the canon on "three-strikes and you are out" approach to missing Sunday Divine Liturgy. In some jurisdictions, this canon is completely overlooked, replaced by an absolute requirement to have communion four times or even once a year. I submit to you that you are primarily responsible for your beliefs and conduct, unless you are a child or mentally diminished. Once you know what Christ wants you to do, you should try to do that. Don't try to rationalize not doing what He expects and wants you to do with examples of canons, priests, bishops or churches not doing it. Now, I am counseling that you approach this with humility and diligence; by all means consult the Bible, books by the Fathers, catechisms, your priest, bishop, etc... Just don't stop when you are given an excuse to stop by any seeming conflict in your readings or instances of "oikonomia" that you witness. What will a priest do if you go up for communion every Sunday if that is not the practice of the parish? Turn you down, or walk out and right back in at "with fear and love draw near"? I hardly think so. If you miss church and nobody tells you that you were missed, may be there is something wrong with that church, may be a lack of zeal; but you could light it up with being there every Sunday, start to finish.
 

Seekingtrue

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elephant said:
Dear Seeking,

Sin is something that separates us from God.
Does skipping Church leads you away from God or closer to God?  

A person might miss Church for many reasons.  Sickness would be a reason to miss Church.  Caring for someone in need might mean we miss Church.  Work might interfere.   Bad weather.  Lack of transportation.  

Or a person might miss Church because they stayed up all night drinking, or were angry at another person in the parish.  

We need to consider why we are missing Church.  Then we can deal with the underlying reason.  If it is fatigue, we may need to get more sleep.  If we are angry, we may need to forgive.  If we are too busy, we may need to drop some of our activities to make time. 


Love, elephant  
Does skipping Church leads you away from God or closer to God?Thats a very good question..As far as concern me skipping Church some Sunday doesn't lead me away from God.When father Tadej was asked where is the best place to worship God he said God is a spirit he can be worshipped anywhere
 

TheTrisagion

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Since the Holy Mysteries are the very Body and Blood of Christ, I can't imagine going elsewhere on a Sunday morning is going to lead you any closer to God than that.
 

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TheTrisagion said:
Since the Holy Mysteries are the very Body and Blood of Christ, I can't imagine going elsewhere on a Sunday morning is going to lead you any closer to God than that.
I assume you have never missed a Sunday,you could pray for me  :)
 

TheTrisagion

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Seekingtrue said:
TheTrisagion said:
Since the Holy Mysteries are the very Body and Blood of Christ, I can't imagine going elsewhere on a Sunday morning is going to lead you any closer to God than that.
I assume you have never missed a Sunday,you could pray for me  :)
I have missed Sundays due to illness or being out of town, but I don't miss just because I don't feel like it. Attending the Divine Liturgy is one thing that I look forward to throughout the week. It is the wonderful opportunity that we have to block out the troubles of this world and commune with the Almighty God in a way that we cannot do on our own. We are given the privilege to work with common effort of those with the same faith to the glory of our Creator!

We all sin, we all have times where we feel unworthy to attend or ashamed of our own actions, but those are the times that we ought to be most persistent in our attendance because that is when we most need the light of God to illumine our paths and warm our hearts. We all have our struggles. The things you struggle with are not the things I struggle with and likewise, the things I stumble and fail on are things that you probably are able to be strong against. Lord, Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me a sinner.
 
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