I am looking for an Orthodox/ Eastern Church to attend for a school project. A Greek Orthodox Church in Asheville lists “Orthros” at 9:15 and “Liturgy” and 10:30, both are A.M. What does Orthros mean, and which one is the equivalent of the Roman Catholic Mass?

Orthos means Matins.


Ahhh… and the matins is… um… at 9:15, I guess.

I looked up Matins in the dictionary and got “morning office.” Anyone care to elaborate?

Orthos is called in slavonic утреня from word for morning. It is a common divine service which can be celebrated in morning or evening - depending on type of вечерня (evening common service). Orthos is like morning prayer of Church, before Divine Liturgy. Orthos can be regular or daily, festival or Pascal. The order of daily Orthos is Blagoslovenije (Good Word), Psalsm 19, 20, incensing of church, jektenija (litania in Latin), six-Psalms, the great jektenija, tropari, kafizmi, Psalm 50, Kanon the great Slavoslovie (Word Praise) and Our Father. Especially interesting during Pascal Orthos is said the Pascal Word of John Chrysostom which is beautiful every time to hear. (in English below)

Is there anyone who is a devout lover of God?
Let them enjoy this beautiful bright festival!
Is there anyone who is a grateful servant?
Let them rejoice and enter into the joy of their Lord!

Are there any weary with fasting?
Let them now receive their wages!
If any have toiled from the first hour,
let them receive their due reward;
If any have come after the third hour,
let him with gratitude join in the Feast!
And he that arrived after the sixth hour,
let him not doubt; for he too shall sustain no loss.
And if any delayed until the ninth hour,
let him not hesitate; but let him come too.
And he who arrived only at the eleventh hour,
let him not be afraid by reason of his delay.

For the Lord is gracious and receives the last even as the first.
He gives rest to him that comes at the eleventh hour,
as well as to him that toiled from the first.
To this one He gives, and upon another He bestows.
He accepts the works as He greets the endeavor.
The deed He honors and the intention He commends.

Let us all enter into the joy of the Lord!
First and last alike receive your reward;
rich and poor, rejoice together!
Sober and slothful, celebrate the day!

You that have kept the fast, and you that have not,
rejoice today for the Table is richly laden!
Feast royally on it, the calf is a fatted one.
Let no one go away hungry. Partake, all, of the cup of faith.
Enjoy all the riches of His goodness!

Let no one grieve at his poverty,
for the universal kingdom has been revealed.
Let no one mourn that he has fallen again and again;
for forgiveness has risen from the grave.
Let no one fear death, for the Death of our Savior has set us free.
He has destroyed it by enduring it.

He destroyed Hades when He descended into it.
He put it into an uproar even as it tasted of His flesh.
Isaiah foretold this when he said,
“You, O Hell, have been troubled by encountering Him below.”

Hell was in an uproar because it was done away with.
It was in an uproar because it is mocked.
It was in an uproar, for it is destroyed.
It is in an uproar, for it is annihilated.
It is in an uproar, for it is now made captive.
Hell took a body, and discovered God.
It took earth, and encountered Heaven.
It took what it saw, and was overcome by what it did not see.
O death, where is thy sting?
O Hades, where is thy victory?

Christ is Risen, and you, o death, are annihilated!
Christ is Risen, and the evil ones are cast down!
Christ is Risen, and the angels rejoice!
Christ is Risen, and life is liberated!
Christ is Risen, and the tomb is emptied of its dead;
for Christ having risen from the dead,
is become the first-fruits of those who have fallen asleep.

To Him be Glory and Power forever and ever. Amen!

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I don’t really know alot about the Catholic Mass but here is an article on orthodoxwiki that gives the order of matins. :thumbsup:

I don’t know if the other replies answered your question…

In addition to “Mass” Catholics and Orthodox have other prescribed (liturgical) prayers that can be prayed through the day. These prayers have set forms, and include a great deal of scripture, but would not include the Eucharist/communion.

(hehehe, when I was a small child and it was explained to me that some priests and sisters were monks and nuns who went to their chapel several times a day - morning noon & night - I thought that meant they went to Mass three times a day!)

Thank you all for your answers. The “Liturgy” would be like “Mass” in my Church, right. Are there any Greek Orthodox here that can give me a few pointers to attending a Greek service?

Thank you all for your time.

Only three? There are orders that still do the full complement of prayers seven times a day in addition to daily Mass (making EIGHT trips to the chapel!)

This board is for discussion of, by, and about Eastern and Oriental Catholics. The services you mention are shared among all Byzantine Churches and the advice you seek can be answered by any Eastern Christian, Catholic or Orthodox.

For that reason, I am leaving the thread on this board and invite all posters with experience in the Byzantine Churches to respond to your query.

Matins (morning prayer), Vespers (evening prayer), and Compline (night prayer) are the 3 sections of the Divine Office that are commonly used in Byzantine Churches (Catholic and Orthodox) for public worship.

Evening Divine Liturgies are usually (but not always) preceeded by Vespers.

Morning Liturgies are usually preceeded by Matins.

Compline is often done as a stand-alone, but I have seen vespers followed by a class and closed with Compline.

The terms used are Latin, which said, since latin is the language of the Catholic Church as a union, are universal terms.

Orthros is the Greek term for Matins.

There are 8 prayers in the daily cycle of the divine office… about every 3 hours… and the long ones take about 30 minutes, while the short ones can be done in 10minutes as a group.

Deacons, priests, and bishops are required to say the divine office every day, either in the form of the 8 prayers, or in a condensed form (usually used as an Oikonomia for married or civilly employed) involving morning, mid-day, and evening prayers. This requirement is bound upon all the Catholic ordained clerics (Deacons, Priests and Bishops) and upon lesser clerics if their bishop imposes it. Monastics generally also are bound to it by either the rule of their order, monastery, or their Abbot/Abbess.

While the specific content of each hourly prayer is subject to the hierarchy of the particular church in question, they are all prayers involving psalms, daily propers (Byzantine Troparia and Kontakia, and Irmosi).

It is advised that those seeking deeper understanding of their faith begin with simplified forms (which many bishops approve of) or common liturgical forms with others; those preparing for monastic or ordained life should be praying them anyway.

The hours are not required to be lead by a cleric, either, but certain parts are omitted when read by a “reader”, and certain others change form when lead by a deacon.

The Ruthenian pewbook has a simplified form of the office of Matins called “Divine Praises” preceeding the Divine Liturgy in the book. It lacks the references for the propers, but is a simplified version approved for all the Ruthenians in the Pittsburgh Metropolia.

Orthodoxwiki has a good discussion on the Byzantine forms (and terms for specific hours). orthodoxwiki.org/Hours Byzantine Catholics are substantially the same, differing in minor ways from years of separation.

I’m Orthodox and I apologize if this link is inappropriate for this forum but I think it could be a big help as these pointers would apply just as much to an Eastern Catholic Church as they do an Orthodox Church.

12 things I wish I’d known before my first visit to an Orthodox church.

OF course… understand I was 6 or 7 when Sr. Anne (2d grade teacher) mentioned how some sisters lived togetehr in a convent they don’t leave and get up very early for church, go back at noon, and go back at night… (About as much explination as a 6 year old needs!)

It just occured to me as a 6 yo that is the only thing you “do in church”… therefore I figured they went to three Masses a day.

What exactly do you mean by “school project?”

You will see how Matins/Orthros will flow right into the Divine Liturgy and the daily lessons all tie themselves together. If you also went to Vespers the night before you would have a very good understanding of how every service is tied together, as in the East our services are also the best way to learn about our faith.

Do you have an Eastern Catholic church around you could go to? The Greek church is likely to be in all Greek. Most Greek Orthodox parishes have organs, full choirs, and pews. I believe many kneel on Sunday. If you find an Eastern Catholic church then you can attend on Sunday and you can receive Communion without worrying about making Mass, too.

As Volodymyr said, Matins has the beginning prayers, a couple litanies, six Psalm readings, a Gospel reading, and some hymns mainly. Here is a copy. If you are going to go out of your way to attend a Church you are completely unfamiliar with, I recommend going to everything they offer.

There is wide variety between Churches, but since you are looking at a Greek Orthodox Church it is likely that Liturgy will be done in 60-75 minutes. They’ll most likely have blessed bread you may receive at the end and you should be careful not to drop crumbs if you take any. Crumbs are dusted into a garden or other place they won’t be trampled.

No, that was very helpful. Thank you.

I mean that I am taking a college course on religion and one of the projects is to attend a service of a religion or denomination other than my own and write a report on it. I was raised protestant and converted to Catholicism when I was 22 (two years ago) and during that time I developed a reverence for the Orthodox Churches. I figured that this would be a good chance to attend a Divine Liturgy.

The Greek Orthodox Church is 1 hour away in Asheville. There is a Byzantine Catholic Church in Knoxville but if I went to it, I would stick around for the Tridentine at St. John Neuman, too. If I go to Asheville, I will probably go to the Basilica of St. Lawrence.

p.s. Is it true what I read about greeting each other with a kiss? I haven’t kissed anyone since I became a Catholic. (lots of protestant girls around here…) I’m not going to get overwhelmed, am I?

The “kiss of greeting” varies somewhat, but is often just a brush of cheeks, to the right, to the left, to the right.

It’s not universal, either.

It’s roughly equivalent to a handshake in some middle eastern cultures.

You are unlikely to be kissed, and could easily go without being touched at all, when visiting a Greek Orthodox parish. I would not worry about that.

If you go on Forgiveness Sunday this week, you could be kissed a lot if they have forgiveness vespers. The Eastern Catholic Church will have already celebrated Forgiveness Sunday since the Orthodox are on a different calendar.

I think you may be a day or 2 early… Forgiveness Sunday for the Orthodox is Sunday, March 9, 2008…:byzsoc:

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