There are three main services that we do every week at St. Herman Church: Vespers, Orthros (Matins), and the Divine Liturgy.
Orthros and Divine Liturgy are served on Sunday morning, starting at 9:00AM.
Vespers is an evening service typically done on Saturdays at 6:00pm.
What to expect at a Vespers service.
The Divine Liturgy starts at 10:00AM and is usually over by 11:30.
Before the Divine Liturgy starts there is a service called Orthros (Matins). There is no break between the end of Matins and the beginning of Liturgy, one flows directly into the other, so when you arrive for Divine Liturgy at, or a little before, 10:00 it may seem like you’re late but you’re not. You’re probably catching the end of the Matins service.
There are service books that will help you to follow along with the Divine Liturgy.
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.
Every week after Liturgy we have a small potluck snack. Please do not plan to bring anything, but please do plan to drink coffee and eat with us. It would be our honor to have you as our guest.
We have our own parking lot at St. Herman Church. We encourage visitors to park as close as they can to the front deck of the church building which has a large cross on top of it.
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 out to the narthex (foyer) or the front deck until 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.