What is your Sunday Schedule?
- 9:15 AM – Lauds
- 10:00 AM – Mass
- 11:15 AM – Refreshments & Fellowship
- 11:30 AM – Sunday School (educational classes for all ages from Labor Day to Memorial Day)
We begin our Sunday morning worship with a chanted (sung) prayer service called Lauds. Lauds is largely made up of the Psalms. Immediately after Lauds, we have the primary worship service of the day called “Mass.”
Will I be able to follow along?
When you arrive, our Greeters will offer to seat you with one of our friendly members, our hosts. The host will answer your questions and help you through the service. We also provide a booklet of the service which is yours to keep that includes commentary.
What activities do you have for my children?
At St. Paul, 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 ask that if your child begins crying loudly please take them outside until they calm down, and then return to the service. In the hallway is a Nursery for nursing mothers and little children who need a short break. You will see this happen throughout the service with other families. It is perfectly OK. In the nursery, we are live-streaming the service so that mothers do not have to miss any of the worship.
The important thing is to participate in the service as a family and to know that we are glad you are with us.
Are there clothing expectations?
We believe the church is on holy ground. Therefore, we ask people to dress in a way that shows respect. Showing respect is different in each culture, so we trust our visitors in how that translates for them.
Where should I park?
We have one parking area that is directly in front of our church. The main entrance faces Katy Gap Road. We also have a green and white sign over our breezeway pointing the way to the main entrance.
What is the Mass?
For almost 2,0000 years Christians have attended this service. The Russians are known for calling this service the Liturgy of St. Peter. This is how our western saints such as Patrick, Columba, and Brigid worshipped.
An Orthodox service can be overwhelming on your first visit. Vibrant images of biblical events and saints are present. 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, bowing, or genuflecting. It may seem strange at first, but these are ancient beautiful worship traditions of Christianity.
What is coffee hour?
Every week after Mass, we eat together during coffee hour. Please plan on joining us in the hall next to the church, and please do not plan to bring any food. It is our honor to serve you as our guest.
Coffee hour is also a great time to get your questions answered. Don’t be afraid to ask any questions. We will not be offended. You will find that many people have asked the same questions as you have.
What is Sunday School?
Sunday School is an educational opportunity for everyone present. Around 11:30 AM, a bell rings that signifies the beginning of Sunday School. Our Sunday School Director will help all of the children find their room. Adults stay in the main hall for their class.
Our Sunday School is so popular with children that many of them stay in the room after it has officially ended for the day. We try to facilitate an immersive experience with accessible theology in our classrooms. Feel free to walk your child to class so that you can see what they will be experiencing.
What is Family Night
On Saturdays from during the school year, we offer Family Night. Family starts at 4 PM with games and activities for all ages. Sometimes we are soccer outside while other days there are games in the hall. At 5 PM we have Vespers, where usually one of the parents attends with the older children. Vespers is similar to Lauds as a chanted prayer service that lasts about 30 minutes. We encourage the younger children to attend for as long as possible, even if it’s only five minutes. As they grow, they will find more patience and inspiration from Vepers. After Vespers, dinner is provided usually in the form of pizza.
What do you believe?
We prefer to answer this question with a statement called the “Niceno-Constantinopolitan Creed.” This creed is established in 381 by a Christian council.
“I believe in one God, the Father almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible. And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God. Begotten of his Father before all worlds. God of God, Light of Light, very God of very God. Begotten, not made, being of one substance with the Father: by whom all things were made. Who for us men and for our salvation, came down from heaven. And was incarnate by the Holy Ghost of the Virgin Mary: and was made man. And was crucified also for us: under Pontius Pilate he suffered and was buried. And the third day he rose again according to the Scriptures. And ascended into heaven: and sitteth on the right hand of the Father. And he shall come again with glory, to judge both the quick and the dead: whose kingdom shall have no end. And I believe in the Holy Ghost, the Lord and Giver of life: who proceedeth from the Father. Who with the Father and the Son together is worshipped and glorified: who spake by the prophets. And I believe one holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. I acknowledge one Baptism for the remission of sins. And I look for the resurrection of the dead. And the life of the world to come.”
We believe the Bible plays an important role in the life of a Christian. Most of the text for our worship services comes directly from the Bible. The translation and edition we prefer is “The Orthodox Study Bible,” available on Amazon. This translation comes with helpful commentary to help understand the traditional interpretation of each passage.
As described in the Bible, we are a hierarchical church. We have bishops, priests, and deacons. We also believe in the “royal priesthood” of all baptized Christians.