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Learn about Lenten Traditions in Russia!

Thu, Mar 27, 2014

News, Russia, Uncategorized

Rev. Alexander Furs recently shared with us this information about Lenten practices in Russia. Rev. Furs is the Assistant Pastor of St. John’s Lutheran Church, Saratov, Russia. This is a congregation of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod’s (LCMS) partner church, The Evangelical Lutheran Church of Ingria in Russia (ELCIR). Rev. Furs also oversees communication for the entire ELCIR. The LCMS supports projects with this partner church.

Rev. Alexander Furs (at the Lectern) and Rev. Olav Panchu (seated) preside over a Lenten service on Sunday, March 24, 2014.

Rev. Alexander Furs (at the Lectern) and Rev. Olav Panchu (seated) preside over a Lenten service on Sunday, March 24, 2014.

The Lent before Easter is the most important time in the Church Year in Russia; usually we call this time “The Great Lent”. We have special Lenten services every Sunday, and also we practice the Litanies every week. In smaller congregations, the litany is prayed once or twice a week. At St. John’s Lutheran in Saratov, Russia, it is prayed on Wednesdays and Thursdays during Lent. In larger congregations and Cathedrals, pastors preside over worship services and litanies every day.

After the service, the congregation also took the time to recognize Rev. Panchu's birthday.

After the service, the congregation also took the time to recognize Rev. Panchu’s birthday.

The parament colors for Lent are purple. Usually people try to have private confession during Lent, as well. The busiest time for us is the last week of Lent—the Passion week. During this time we have the everyday litanies and other services (such as Maundy Thursday and Good Friday).

The Sunday School children make cards for Rev. Panchu.

The Sunday School children make cards for Rev. Panchu.

On Holy Saturday, we have the last Litany, and after that we take away all the covers from the Altar and bless the food (cakes, egg curd, etc.) for the members of the church before the Easter Celebration. One item of interest is that this year, churches of the Eastern Rite, such as the Russian Orthodox Church, and churches of the Western Rite, such as Lutherans, will celebrate Easter on the same Sunday. This is not always the case due to differing calendars.

  • Please pray for Rev. Furs, Rev. Panchu, and the members of St. John’s Saratov.
  • Pray that the work of Rev. Furs, Rev. Panchu and the ELCIR would continue to call believers and non-believers to repentance and faith in Christ.
  • Read more about Rev. Furs.
  • Read last week’s story about Lenten traditions in Lithuania.

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