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Welcome to Holy Resurrection!

 

A personal welcome…

Welcome to Holy Resurrection Orthodox Church, Tacoma Washington. We pray that your visit will be a source of blessing for you. Though our manner of Christian worship is centuries old, most Americans find it a bit different at first — but watch and listen, and the timeless beauty of heavenly, eternal worship will begin to reveal itself to you.  Please, when you visit, don't worry about "doing the right thing;" we count it a sin to judge others while we pray (Luke 18:10-14). As you will see, we do like to stand in the presence of God, but if you need to sit, please do so! While the worship of the Holy Trinity is the very heart and foundation of our community and faith, we also find encouragement in fellowship with one another through our various parish activities. You will find that we simply enjoy being with each other!

 

We are one of the oldest Orthodox Christian communities in the United States, and the first to use English exclusively in Washington. Having outgrown historic Holy Trinity church in Wilkeson, we have moved into our new home southeast of Tacoma city limits. Here, amidst ten beautiful acres of field and forest, we have built and have had to enlarge preliminary buildings as we grow and welcome more people to our faith. There is no hiding the fact that we are very excited to be a part of one of the fastest-growing faiths in North America, while at the same time a part of the oldest Christian Church in the world. Most of us were new visitors once, and most of us are converts to Orthodox Christianity!

 

Whether you spend a morning, an evening or a lifetime, you will at least have come away with the experience of how, for centuries, countless millions of Christians have worshiped the Most Holy Trinity throughout Eastern Europe and lands around the eastern Mediterranean. It is a way shaped by the churches of Jerusalem, Antioch and Constantinople, a way inspired by Kiev and Moscow: now it is our turn in Pierce County, Washington, and we would be blessed to have you be a part of it!

 

God bless you! 

The Clergy and Faithful of Holy Resurrection Orthodox Church

 

Parish Newletter

April & May newsletter.


The Week at a Glance
Wednesday, May 31st
Bible Study
potluck
9:30 AM
Vespers 6:30 PM
Friday, June 2nd
General Panikhida
(Memorial Service)
6:30 PM
Saturday, June 3rd
Pletz Baptism
12:00 Noon
In Wilkeson:
Vigil 4:00 PM
(No Tacoma Service)
Sunday, June 4th
PENTECOST
Hours 9:15 AM
Liturgy 9:30 AM
Vespers with
Kneeling Prayers
Potluck
Mon. meal prep
Monthly Calendar >
His Eminence, Archbishop Benjamin, to Visit

We look forward to welcoming His Eminence, Archbishop Benjamin of San Francisco and the West, as he visits our parish the weekend of June 10th & 11th.

His Eminence will join us for Vespers on Saturday at 6:30 p.m. On Sunday, June 11, we will greet His Eminence at the doors of the temple at 9:30 a.m. with the traditional bread and salt. God willing, Steven Hille will be tonsured a Reader for our parish. Archbishop Benjamin will then preside at the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy, a beautiful celebration of the Holy Eucharist originating in ancient Byzantium. His Eminence will be assisted by our own clergy, as well as visiting clergy from our deanery. Unless otherwise noted, all services at Holy Resurrection are chanted in English. A reception will follow Sunday's Liturgy.

A biography of Archbishop Benjamin may be found here.

In and Around Our Parish
Inquirer's Class

An introduction to the Orthodox faith is taught most Saturday afternoons at 5:00 p.m. Please check our calendar, and see what is being taught on the class syllabus, here.

 

 

Holy Pentecost
Holy Pentecost, the Descent of the Holy Spirit

In the Old Testament Pentecost was the feast which occurred fifty days after Passover. As the passover feast celebrated the exodus of the Israelites from the slavery of Egypt, so Pentecost celebrated God’s gift of the ten commandments to Moses on Mount Sinai.

In the new covenant of the Messiah, the passover event takes on its new meaning as the celebration of Christ’s death and resurrection, the “exodus” of men from this sinful world to the Kingdom of God. And in the New Testament as well, the pentecostal feast is fulfilled and made new by the coming of the “new law,” the descent of the Holy Spirit upon the disciples of Christ.

When the day of Pentecost had come they were all together in one place. And suddenly a sound came from heaven like the rush of a mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared to them tongues as of fire, distributed as resting upon each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit . . . (Acts 2.1–4).

The Holy Spirit that Christ had promised to his disciples came on the day of Pentecost (Jn 14.26, 15.26; Lk 24.49; Acts 1.5). The apostles received “the power from on high,” and they began to preach and bear witness to Jesus as the risen Christ, the King and the Lord. This moment has traditionally been called the birthday of the Church.

In the liturgical services of the feast of Pentecost, the coming of the Holy Spirit is celebrated together with the full revelation of the divine Trinity: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The fullness of the Godhead is manifested with the Spirit’s coming to man, and the Church hymns celebrate this manifestation as the final act of God’s self-disclosure and self-donation to the world of His creation. For this reason Pentecost Sunday is also called Trinity Day in the Orthodox tradition. Often on this day the icon of the Holy Trinity—particularly that of the three angelic figures who appeared to Abraham, the forefather of the Christian faith—is placed in the center of the church. This icon is used with the traditional pentecostal icon which shows the tongues of fire hovering over Mary and the Twelve Apostles, the original prototype of the Church, who are themselves sitting in unity surrounding a symbolic image of “cosmos,” the world.

On Pentecost we have the final fulfillment of the mission of Jesus Christ and the first beginning of the messianic age of the Kingdom of God mystically present in this world in the Church of the Messiah. For this reason the fiftieth day stands as the beginning of the era which is beyond the limitations of this world, fifty being that number which stands for eternal and heavenly fulfillment in Jewish and Christian mystical piety: seven times seven, plus one.

Thus, Pentecost is called an apocalyptic day, which means the day of final revelation. It is also called an eschatological day, which means the day of the final and perfect end (in Greek eschaton means the end). For when the Messiah comes and the Lord’s Day is at hand, the “last days” are inaugurated in which “God declares: . . . I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh.”; This is the ancient prophecy to which the Apostle Peter refers in the first sermon of the Christian Church which was preached on the first Sunday of Pentecost (Acts 2: 1 7; Joel 2: 28–32).

Once again it must be noted that the feast of Pentecost is not simply the celebration of an event which took place centuries ago. It is the celebration of what must happen and does happen to us in the Church today. We all have died and risen with the Messiah-King, and we all have received his Most Holy Spirit. We are the “temples of the Holy Spirit.” God’s Spirit dwells in us (Rom 8; 1 Cor 2–3, 12; 2 Cor 3; Gal 5; Eph 2–3). We, by our own membership in the Church, have received “the seal of the gift of the Holy Spirit” in the sacrament of chrismation. Pentecost has happened to us.

The Divine Liturgy of Pentecost recalls our baptism into Christ with the verse from Galatians again replacing the Thrice-Holy Hymn. Special verses from the psalms also replace the usual antiphonal psalms of the liturgy. The epistle and gospel readings tell of the Spirit’s coming to men. The kontakion sings of the reversal of Babel as God unites the nations into the unity of his Spirit. The troparion proclaims the gathering of the whole universe into God’s net through the work of the inspired apostles. The hymns “O Heavenly King” and “We have seen the True Light” are sung for the first time since Easter, calling the Holy Spirit to “come and abide in us,” and proclaiming that “we have received the heavenly Spirit.” The church building is decorated with flowers and the green leaves of the summer to show that God’s divine Breath comes to renew all creation as the “life-creating Spirit.” In Hebrew the word for Spirit, breath and wind is the same word, ruah.

Blessed art Thou, O Christ our God, who hast revealed the fishermen as most wise by sending down upon them the Holy Spirit: through them Thou didst draw the world into Thy net. O Lover of Man, Glory to Thee (Troparion).

When the Most High came down and confused the tongues, he divided the nations. But when he distributed the tongues of fire, he called all to unity. Therefore, with one voice, we glorify the All-Holy Spirit! (Kontakion).

The Great Vespers of Pentecost evening features three long prayers at which the faithful kneel for the first time since Easter. The Monday after Pentecost is the feast of the Holy Spirit in the Orthodox Church, and the Sunday after Pentecost is the feast of All Saints. This is the logical liturgical sequence since the coming of the Holy Spirit is fulfilled in men by their becoming saints, and this is the very purpose of the creation and salvation of the world. “Thus says the Lord: Consecrate yourselves therefore, and be holy, for I your God am holy” (Lev 11.44–45, 1 Pet 1.15–16).

 

 

First Visit to an Orthodox Church?
12 Things I Wish I’d Known - by Kh. Frederica Mathewes-Green

Orthodox worship is different! Some of these differences are apparent, if perplexing, from the first moment you walk in a church. Others become noticeable only over time. Here is some information that may help you feel more at home in Orthodox worship—twelve things I wish I’d known before my first visit to an Orthodox church.

 

1. What’s all this commotion?

During the early part of the service the church may seem to be in a hubbub, with people walking up to the front of the church, praying in front of the iconostasis (the standing icons in front of the altar), kissing things and lighting candles, even though the service is already going on. In fact, when you came in the service was already going on, although the sign outside clearly said “Divine Liturgy, 9:30.” You felt embarrassed to apparently be late, but these people are even later, and they’re walking all around inside the church. What’s going on here? (read more)

 

Recommended Listening

These following podcasts are made available by Ancient Faith Radio. They are just a few of the many podcasters that provide high quality 24-hour internet-based Orthodox radio including live music streaming, teaching, readings,  interviews, lectures, conference recordings, live call-in programs, an extensive list of downloadable Orthodox podcasts and much more at AFR!

 

 

Father Evan Armatas shares bible study lessons with his parish (and us) from Scripture, Tradition, and the Church Fathers in "Transforming Our Lives in Christ", recorded at St. Spyridon Greek Orthodox Church (Loveland, CO)

Enjoy inspirational stories for Children of all ages read by Dr. Chrissi Hart, author of "Tea with the Queen", "The Legend of the Cross", "Under the Grapevine", and "The Hermit, The Icon and The Emperor". "Readings from Under the Grapevine" concentrates on Orthodox Christian books and other classic literature from a variety of sources.

Hosted by Steven Christoforou, "Be the Bee" focuses on the various ways in which God has infused all of creation with goodness and beauty. The title refers to the metaphor of the bee and the flies that was used by Elder Paisios to describe how Christians should approach life. "Be the Bee" is a production of the GOARCH Department of Youth and Young Adult Ministries. Available in video and audio format.

Father John Oliver’s series "Society and the Soul", from his podcast series "Hearts and Minds", is based upon “A Handbook of Spiritual Counsel” by Saint Nicodemus of the Holy Mountain, a work which examines the five human senses: sight, hearing, smell, taste, and touch, and the role that each one plays in acquiring or losing salvation.


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