Visiting the Orthodox Churches as a non-Orthodox

As they say – “Do as the Romans do!” Especially in Moscow, appropriately and prominently called as “the Third Rome” in the Christendom…
This article will prompt the foreign visitors to act in an Orthodox church a lot like locals, the Orthodox faithful. Its guidelines will allow visitors to show their respect of the local traditions and customs and learn about the Orthodox culture.
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First Steps: Interior Layout of the Orthodox Church

Translated and edited from: Pravoslavie.ru
The architecture of the Orthodox church differs from any other buildings. More often than not, the foundation for a church building is laid out in the form of a cross, since it is through the Savior’s Cross that we were freed from the tenets of devil. It is quite common to see it made in the shape of a ship symbolizing the fact that the Church, akin to the ship, and similar to Noah’s Ark, leads us along the sea of life towards the quiet harbor of the Kingdom of Heaven. Occasionally, it has a circle in its foundation, as a sign of eternity, or a Star of Bethlehem, a reminder that the Church, like a guiding star, shines brightly in this world.
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The Orthodox World-View by Father Seraphim Rose of Platina

Source: orthodoxinfo.com
This talk by a renowned American-born convert, a Russian Orthodox scholar, writer and a modern-day Orthodox theologian, hieromonk Seraphim (Rose) was published the whopping 36 “eons” (years) ago, but it is just as on point for us today as it was for him and his listeners then. He pays a lot of attention to challenges of child-rearing in the ‘me’-focused world, yet it stays ever so vividly instructive to the rest of us, the grown-ups, focused on finding our own paths to be with God in the shrinking normalcy of our lives.
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Egeria’s Travels – first known account of pilgrimage to Jerusalem, 4th century

Source: Diane Severance, PH.D.
Have you ever visited the Holy Land? If so perhaps you, like so many others, count it among the greatest experiences of your life. Believers have been going there to retrace the steps of Jesus for a long time. Now over two million people travel to the Holy Land every year to visit places important in Bible history.
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