Liturgics Western Rite Orthodoxy

Hermetic Seal

Pelican
Orthodox
Gold Member
Nope. There are two US jurisdictions with the Western Rite: the Antiochian Church, and ROCOR. I've recently visited a ROCOR western rite parish in my area that serves the Restored Gregorian Mass and it's pretty interesting. This is a mission that doesn't have a dedicated worship space so it's fairly stripped down, but quite intriguing. I enjoyed the service and think there's real merit to it. In the ROCOR western rite, they serve communion with unleavened bread and a spoon, exactly the same as in the Byzantine rite.

As the priest explained it to me, they're not trying to recreate the 1950s Roman Catholic service, or an old fashioned Anglican service, but use the ancient Western rite within the ROCOR milieu. It's an interesting approach that seems a bit more genuine and modest in its goals, which I like. The use of the Old Calendar is a plus, and ROCOR is already quite friendly toward the Church's western Saints so this all seems fairly consistent for them.

To be honest, if there was a sizable Western Rite parish nearby that had inherited a picturesque venue from an eviscerated Episcopal congregation and put up a big rood screen, I'd be really tempted to "jump ship" to that. As it is, that seems unlikely to happen around here any time soon, so most likely I'll keep at my (outstanding) Russian parish and occasionally visit the WR when a good opportunity arises.

The biggest question mark for me is the prayer practice. I got the Orthodox Book of Common Prayer and while I love the style of language and the more dynamic nature of the prayer rule, it can feel a bit one-dimensional compared to the prayers in the Jordanville book I usually use, and if I work in a couple psalms from my Psalter during prayer using the latter book, it's a pretty similar effect anyway. My thoughts on this are subject to change as I get more familiar with the BCP. I know there are some others available as well.

[Edit] I neglected to mention that the Gregorian Mass is quite a bit shorter than the Divine Liturgy. Even with Matins before it, it's about an hour and a half from start to finish, sermon included. The extensive pre-communion prayers are also not strictly required. This could make it quite a bit more accessible to inquirers than the Byzantine liturgy in Russian practice, which often runs from 10 AM - 12:30 PM on Sundays at my parish. One of the major reasons I wanted to check it out is because I wondered if it might be easier to handle for my family compared to the Russian rigor (which is fine for me, but can be intimidating to my wife.)
 
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MichaelWitcoff

Hummingbird
Orthodox
Is this through the Patriarchate of Constantinople? I assume it’s in the Eastern Orthodox communion.
It is part of our communion, but not every Patriarchate has a Western Rite and many Byzantine Rite priests do not like the Western Rite. It was an idea founded by Julian Joseph Overbeck, a Catholic priest who converted to Orthodoxy, in the 19th century. He brought the idea to the Russian Church - and they liked it - but the Greeks turned him down. The Mass he promoted is basically the Roman Catholic mass of the 1500s, plus some Eastern additions like the Trisagion Hymn and the Pre-Communion Prayer of St. John Chrysostom. There is a Western Rite monastery in Colorado, which follows the Rule of St. Benedict, but ultimately the WR has a very small representation within the greater Orthodox community in America.
 
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Sol Invictus

Sparrow
Orthodox Catechumen
I'd love to attend a Western Rite parish at some point, but unfortunately there don't appear to be any near me. In fact, there are only a couple in the western part of the US according to the Antiochian Archdiocese of North America, and ROCOR doesn't seem to list which rite is used in their parish directory (which appears a bit out of date anyway). Does anyone know if there's a list out there of Western Rite parishes?
 

Eusebius Erasmus

Ostrich
Orthodox
I'd love to attend a Western Rite parish at some point, but unfortunately there don't appear to be any near me. In fact, there are only a couple in the western part of the US according to the Antiochian Archdiocese of North America, and ROCOR doesn't seem to list which rite is used in their parish directory (which appears a bit out of date anyway). Does anyone know if there's a list out there of Western Rite parishes?
 

Eusebius Erasmus

Ostrich
Orthodox
It is part of our communion, but not every Patriarchate has a Western Rite and many Byzantine Rite priests do not like the Western Rite. It was an idea founded by Julian Joseph Overbeck, a Catholic priest who converted to Orthodoxy, in the 19th century. He brought the idea to the Russian Church - and they liked it - but the Greeks turned him down. The Mass he promoted is basically the Roman Catholic mass of the 1500s, plus some Eastern additions like the Trisagion Hymn and the Pre-Communion Prayer of St. John Chrysostom. There is a Western Rite monastery in Colorado, which follows the Rule of St. Benedict, but ultimately the WR has a very small representation within the greater Orthodox community in America.
I myself prefer the Byzantine rite, perhaps due to my ethnic and cultural heritage. However, the Western rite is lovely when done well.

A danger of the Western rite is that it can lull those who participate in it into a Western mindset, which is not always conducive to Orthodoxy -- especially since the development of Western thought since The Enlightenment prizes the individual as a god.
 

Biscuits_Gravy

Woodpecker
Catholic
Possible inquirer here. I come from a Catholic background and currently attend a TLM (traditional Latin mass) near my home. It is a great, vibrant community with a beautiful liturgy. I don’t necessarily wish to leave it, but the fact is it is in “communion” with Rome and likely to be cancelled. It is subject to a pozzed out diocese and it currently rents the beautiful church from a pozzed out parish with hand sanitizer and Covid signs all over the place. The community feels like it is separate from the Novus Ordo RCC world, but it is not in reality.

That said, I do feel a sense of “Western/Latin roots”. I also have some Polish Blood yet I do not know if a Polish Orthodox Church exists in the US. I did see that there is a Western Rite Orthodox Church (part of ROCOR) near my home. From the website, I gather that it is a very small community. Then there is a Greek Orthodox (GOARCH) church right down the road from me, yet It seems that many have been saying that that part of the Orthodox Church is also becoming very pozzed.

Looking for some advice as pertains to inquiries in general but also to the Western Rite if anyone has any good info. Thanks.
 
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