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Typica…

It’s on my calendar, as are most of the services offered each day at my church. I somehow was able to link my iCal account with Google one day, really, by chance because most of the time I’m a little hopeless with things like that.

Google is kind enough to send me nice little reminders about the services, unfortunately they come at odd moments and usually I’m driving or parenting or panicking, which is always I guess. The reminder for Typica comes about 10 minutes before the actual service is meant to begin. I had to look it up the first time it hit my desktop. At moments like that I’m reminded that I still have a great deal to learn about being a pilgrim on this ancient road.

In Eastern Orthodox Church, Typica is a liturgical service that is to be served whenever the Liturgy is not celebrated. It’s not as common in the Greek church outside of a monastic setting. The Slavic churches seem to dig it, however. My church is rooted more in a Russian tradition of Orthodoxy and my priest, I’m convinced, has a strong monastic bent so Typica is offered every day where appropriate.

The name, Typica, refers mainly to the readings of Psalm 102, Psalm 145, and the Beatitudes. In essence, Typica is the first half of the traditional Liturgy we celebrate on Sunday mornings as Orthodox christians, also called the Liturgy of the Catechumens. In early times, when this liturgy came to a close, those who were not baptized and chrismated into the tradition were required to leave. It was a matter of trust, safety and security. Times were dangerous. The Holy Mysteries were secret, protected and revered. The catechumen was always working toward that moment, reaching for that readiness to accept the body and blood, the healing and the mystery.

I never seem to hit those reminders in enough time to make it to Typica and check it out. I do not make time for it and then I justify that to myself and it’s easily justifiable in this modern life. But it’s a mistake for me to act as though my schedule is an overseer, a prison warden making rules for me. I am not a prisoner to my daily grind.

In some ways perhaps I am looking at Typica in the same errant thinking I seem to apply to exercise or reading or bill paying. I believe on some level that if I’m not going to get 30 full minutes on the treadmill or through an entire chapter in a book or a large block of time to get through all the accounting that it’s not worth starting at all. I look for large chunks of time to do things that are quotidian in nature. These are not extraordinary tasks, they are routine, normal…typical. And there’s something to be said for that- making time for the typical, the quotidian, the daily.

I keep telling myself that one day I’ll make it to church for Typica if for no other reason than to know what the words on my desktop reminder mean in some concrete way, to know it as more than just a part of the whole I experience on Sunday mornings. I keep thinking that one day my daily life of parenting and laundry and first world problems will allow for an opening on that level, like the Red Sea parting to show the dry river bed below, showing the way to the promised land but that’s unlikely. It’s better for me to remember that I am the Red Sea here.

#parenting #laundry #typica #time #redsea #orthodox

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©2021 by Angela Doll Carlson