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Domestic Church

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Within the Orthodox Christian faith, each Christian family is considered a '''Domestic Church''', being the smallest unit of Christian community, faith, and practice. It is in the Christian home that one lives out the Orthodox faith. The [[Gospel of Matthew ]] records Jesus as saying "For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them." (18.:20 NAB) What is the Christian home if not two or more gathered in the Name name of Christ? Each family, being part of the Church, is charged with much the same ministry as the parish church; namely worship, Christian fellowship, charity, education in the faith, growth in virtue, evangelism, hospitality and works of mercy. The "religious life" is not limited to those who have taken [[monasticism|monastic ]] or priestly [[priest]]ly vows. Rather, ''all'' Christians are called to religious life. As St. [[Benedict of Nursia|Benedict]] said of his monastery, the Christian home, too, is to be "a school for the Lord's service."
==Worship in the Domestic Church==
Worship in the traditional Orthodox home general centers around the [[Icon corner]] (sometimes called a "home altar"), which is typically placed in a prominent location in the living room or dining room of the home. This customarily consists of one or more icons and often a shelf or table on which are placed various devotional items.
==Fellowship in the Domestic Church==
==Education in the Domestic Church==
In the mind of many of today's Christians, religious education has become the task of the parish church, the Sunday school or the youth group. However, this has not always been the case. One of the foremost obligations (and privileges) of Christian parenting, is seeing that their children are brought up in the knowledge, love, and fear of the Lord. The Sunday School, which began as a Protestant movement, was designed originally for the religious education of the children of ''un''-believers. It was expected that children of believers would be trained by their parents.
==Outreach in the Domestic Church==
"If your heart overflows with faith and love for God, you will find a thousand and two ways to pass on these feelings to your child." - [[Bishop]] [[Irenaeus of Lyons]]
"Marriage is more than human. It is a 'microbasileia,' a miniature kingdom which is the little house of the Lord." - St. [[Clement of Alexandria]]
"Preserve marriages in peace and harmony; nurture the infants; instruct the youth; strengthen the aged; give courage to the faint-hearted, reunite those separated; bring back those in error; defend the widows; protect the orphans; liberate the captives; heal the sick." - The [[Eucharist|Divine Liturgy]] of Saint [[Basilthe Great]]
"Fathers and mothers: Go and lead your child by the hand into the Church." - St. [[John Chrysostom]]
"With us everything should be secondary compared to our concern with children, and their upbringing in the instruction and teaching of the Lord." - St. [[John Chrysostom]]
==See Alsoalso== 
*[[Icon corner]]
==External Linkslinks== 
*[ Building the Domestic Church] by Presbytera Pearl Veronis
*[ The Icon Corner: A How To] by Dr. Alexander Roman
*[ Icon Corners] by Dr. Alexander Roman
*[ In our Family and Home], by [[Melkite ]] Catholic priest Fr. Romanos Russo
*[ Marriage and the Christian Home] by Fr. Michael B. Henning
*[ Prayer Life in an Orthodox Home] by Archpriest Roman Lukianov
*[ When No Priest is Available: Reading the Service Books While Traveling or at Home] by Archpriest Sergei Shukin
*[ Quotations on Christian Hospitality]
 * [[Anthony M. Coniaris|Coniaris, Fr. Anthony]]. ''Making God Real in the Orthodox Christian Home'' (ASIN B0006COYQS)
* D'Avila-Latourrette, Brother Victor-Antoine, ''Blessings of the Table: Mealtime Prayers Throughout the Year'' (ISBN 0764809830) ([[Eastern Rite Catholic|Byzantine Catholic]])
* Fournier, Catherine and Peter, ''Advent, Christmas and Epiphany in the Domestic Church'' (ISBN 0898708591) ([[Roman Catholic Church|Catholic]])
* Robinson, David. ''The Family Cloister: Benedictine Wisdom for the Home'' (ISBN 0824518276)
* ''A Table Prayer Guide'' (Center for Family Care,
 {{stub}}* Diocese of Newton ''A Guide for the Domestic Church'' (Conciliar Press)
[[Category:Church Life]]

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