Friday, April 17, 2009

Eavesdropping the church

Stood outside the St. Peter & St. Paul Russian Orthodox Church around the corner, listening to the Good Friday liturgy. I've seen the inside of the church, never been by there during a service with a view up the center aisle to the altar. It was call & response, in English, someone chanting (I suppose it was the priest, I couldn't see his lips), & two or three women & one man out of my line of sight singing the simple harmonized, short cadences, mostly "Lord have mercy" while I was there. All the parishioners were standing, hard to tell how many. A woman in the vestibule saw me loitering, I thought she would frown, but she smiled & waved for me to come through the door. It was a solemn occasion, I had a backpack of groceries & could feel the Dunkin' Donuts coffee starting to work it's way through me, so I listened a little longer outside & went home. I think these special services are quite lengthy. An Eastern Orthodox joke is that when they sing the part about the service is ending, you know there's an hour to go.

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