Enjoyed a lovely evening of vespers and potluck dinner with Axios, the GLBT Eastern Christian affinity group. Chanting, incense, and this lovely salad made of watermelon, Bermuda onion, and arugula. I highly recommend it.
I also recommend the ethos of the group. Though we were eight, all but two were first-timers: recruited a tthe Pride festival the week before. And we were put to work. Setting up a makeship iconostasis, swining the thurible (I can't recall its Slavonic name) and - this is the part that gets me, and encourages me - the role of reader floated to whomever had a willingness to chant. (It was clear all of us had been exposed to the concept, to a greater or lesser degree.) We found our own key and rhythm as a group, and we moved around as needed.
I think because there wasa common form, and since the action was focused on God, the worship lacked the affect of performance and so went (or reduced) the fear of getting something wrong.
I am very impressed, and will go to vespers next month. All I need to consider is what to bring for dinner.
Note: answering Jim, yes, Axios meets the third Friday of the month (execpt August, I gather, when it moves to fourth Friday) at St. Thomas, Dupont Circle.
Axios Los Angeles