New to St. Elias?
Everyone is welcome- especially children! Planning a special trip or visiting from a distance? Contact us so we can introduce ourselves to you and let you know if there are any special events during your visit. Our service schedule rarely (if ever) changes but just in case (especially as we move back into our rebuilt church) it is always a good idea to check before you travel a long distance. Plan to stay after services for fellowship and answers to any questions you may have.
When Are your services?
Regular services are Saturday night at 7pm (Vespers) Sunday morning at 8am (Matins) 10am (Divine Liturgy). Holy Days and special services are announced on the calendar, Facebook or blog)
Do I have to be Ukrainian?
No. In fact, even though many of our parishioners are Ukrainian many are not or are in mixed marriages. We have members that are Portuguese, Korean, Russian, Polish, Irish, Dutch, Vietnamese, Canadian, Scottish and more...
What languages do you use during services?
English Primarily, Ukrainian, some French and Church Slavonic.
What should I wear?
First consider what is appropriate and respectful. To use current dress code vernacular: for men, business or business casual. For Women: business or business casual as well. You will feel most comfortable with shoulders covered, in dresses skirts or pants that are appropriate for a church environment. Most regulars dress up a little for Sunday services. To quote someone: "to dress appropriately is the sincerest form of politeness". What is important is that you are with us- and then you can check out what others do.
Can I bring my children?
YES! please. If you need help or have questions just ask. Because we don't have pews you'll often see small children wandering around. There is a family washroom available and nursing mothers are welcome to feed wherever they feel comfortable.
Can I sit during services?
There are benches on the periphery of the church for those who need to sit during services. You can sit on the floor during the homily if there's no room on the benches. Children can sit on the floor as needed. We are wheelchair accessible.
What should I do during the service?
You can follow the service in the books and handouts participate as you wish
Are you Catholic , Orthodox or something else?
Short answer: Catholic
Long answer: We are Ukrainin Greco- Catholic (sometimes known as Byzantine or Eastern Catholic). We are a Christian Community whose origins are found in Kyivan Ukraine. Our religious tradition is Orthodox, having recieved Christianity from the Greeks in 988. In 1595 the majority of Ukrainian Bishops returned to full communion with the Church of Rome. Those in Western Ukraine came to be called Greco- Catholics. For Ukrainians under Russian rule the reunion was short and the majority are Orthodox. However, the ritual, Liturgy and spirituality are almost identical.
Do you have services on Saturdays or during the week?
Yes, Vespers on Saturday nights and for special holidays during the week.
I'm shy- can I still come and pray quietly?
I'm outgoing- can I participate with the singers?
Yes! Almost all our services are sung- new voices are always welcome.
May I receive communion?
To recieve Holy Communion one must be a Baptized Catholic/Orthodox believer. Regular Holy Confession is expected, although not before every reception of Holy Communion. A Christian way of life is a pre-condition as is the adherance to to The Ten Commandments. Grave sin bars one from Holy Communion.
What activities and ministries do you offer?
We are a small community and something is always going on. We always offer Coffee and fellowship after the regular services. Our Primary activity is worship, all else flows from it. Regular Catechesis, cultural actitivities, community work are just some of the activities both formal and informal.
If you have other questions or would like to know more please feel very comfortable calling the parish office or speaking with clergy after services.