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Chairs or benches on the side walls are usually reserved for the elderly and infirm.

In North America, we have tended to build our churches with pews, and since we have them, we need to figure out when we may sit and when we should stand.

When we kiss the hand of the bishop or priest, we are not showing respect to the person of the priest but to his sacred office.

The priest as priest represents Christ, and is therefore a living icon of Christ.

Orthodox typically light candles when coming into the church - and that is usually the best time to light them, but there are times when candles should not be lit.

It is not proper to light candles during the Epistle or Gospel readings, during the Little or Great Entrances, the sermon, and most of the times when the faithful are standing.

In the Orthodox Church, there are a lot of customs and traditions that are important parts of our worship. In the Orthodox "old countries", there are usually no pews in the churches.

From time-to-time, we need to address some of these various etiquette issues to inform our communities how we can best understand each other and work together to worship the all-holy Trinity. Sitting The traditional posture for prayer and worship in the Orthodox Church has been to stand.

We westerners are deprived of many good customs which help to form the person properly.

First of all, it is fully acceptable (even preferable) to stand for the entire service.

If you prefer this, it would be better to find a place closer to the back or side of the church so as not to stand out or block someone's view. Always during the Gospel reading, the Little and Great Entrances, the Anaphora, the distribution of Holy Communion, whenever the priest gives a blessing, and the Dismissal.

There is the true story of a priest pulling away his hand in order to prevent Czar Nicholas II from kissing his hand.

The Emperor ordered him to extend it, saying “I am not kissing your hand, but the hand of Christ”.

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If in doubt, check with one of the ushers to see if it is a good time to seat yourself.

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