When physical church participation is not possible, the faithful in addition to the daily cycle of prayer, are encouraged to participate in live-streamed church services from their own homes.
Participating in church services at home may pose challenges. Here are some simple tips to get you started:
Find a part of the home with limited distractions and set up the following items:
- A vigil lamp
- An incense burner
- An icon/s
- A prayer rope
- Flowers and/or adornments
- Books to follow the service
- A chair if necessary
Complete tasks and prayers you usually would before attending church.
This includes all your preparatory pre-communion prayers if you will be viewing a Divine Liturgy. Remember, the clergy are offering the liturgy on your behalf, even though you are not physically present.
Dress respectfully, be clothed as if you have a visitor in your home.
Tell family and members of the household that the service will be starting.
Get the technology ready. Close apps, or notifications that may interrupt viewing.
Decide on which church livestream you will be tuning into. Switching between churches opens you up to distractions.
Stand when possible, as you would if you were in church.
Listen and follow the words of the clergy and chanters. You may find meanings as you pray in the context.
Direct your prayer to God that he may liberate us from the threat of this pandemic and for those who are afflicted by it.
If the technology fails, do not become impatient or angry. Resort to books and prayer.
Give thanks to God that you have been given this means to worship him in these times. Give thanks for the priests who are able to offer divine services on your behalf.
After a Divine Liturgy, complete post-communion prayers.
You may want to contact family or friends. In these circumstances, it is valuable to have verbal interactions and to encourage and give strength to one another. Greet and interact as you usually would after a service.
This handy and helpful ‘Holy Week Home Tool Kit’ guides you through preparations step by step during the most important weeks on the religious calendar.
- Fr Michael in South Australia
- Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of Australia
- Holy Week Tool Kit courtesy of https://www.instagram.com/walkwithyes/