What to Expect at a Vespers Service
There are two main services that we do at Holy Ascension. Vespers and Divine Liturgy.
Vespers is served typically on Saturday evenings. Divine Liturgy is served on Sunday morning.
Vespers usually lasts about 1 hour. It starts at 4:00 PM.
When you arrive you will likely see people sitting quietly praying and the room will be dimly lit by candlelight.
Please grab a service book and find a seat. When the service begins, everyone will stand up. It is the custom of Orthodox Christians to stand at attention during worship.
An Orthodox service can be overwhelming on your first visit. Vibrant images of biblical events and saints cover the walls. You will see people lighting candles and venerating icons. The smell of incense fills the air. People will not only be using their voices to worship, but also their bodies. They will be crossing themselves and bowing or prostrating.
It may seem strange at first, but this is how Christians have worshiped God for 2,000 years.
There is plenty of free parking on Electra & Pasco Streets. Please leave the car park free for the parishioners of the Uniting Church.
If you are used to going to other churches, you may expect there to be a Sunday School for the children while adults attend the main service.
In the Orthodox Church, children are full-fledged members of the Church and attend services along with adults. This may be challenging for parents if it is their first time visiting. A little noise and a little movement from children is not a problem. It is to be expected. We would only ask that if your child begins crying loudly to please take them outside till they calm down, and then return to the service. You will see this happen throughout the service with other families. It is perfectly OK.
The important thing is to participate in the service as a family and to know that we are glad you are with us.