Byzantine Catholics appear weird to other Catholics. They call the Mass the “Liturgy”, they have a different calendar, their churches are filled with icons, and they have all sorts of interesting customs that make little sense to non-Byzantines. Here are ten of the craziest Byzantine customs that you never would have believed were real:
- On Fridays, Byzantines Must Walk Only Numbers of Steps That Are Multiples of 40 to commemorate Israel’s wanderings in the wilderness.
- Eggs must be cracked at a 33° angle to their semimajor axis. This commemorates the 33 years of Christ’s life and how He is the major axis of all things, as St. Paul says, “In Him we live and move and have our being.”
- On Easter morning, all Byzantines must break a clay pot in the Church courtyard. This commemorates the breaking open of the tomb and Christ’s breaking the bonds of death.
- All meals must end with eight sips of blessed Holy Water.
- Coffee must be drunk before long vigil services to ensure that the Christian is able, unlike Peter, James, and John, to stay and keep vigil with the Lord, for these services are obviously far longer than one hour.
- As we are embodied creatures, calisthenics are customarily performed during the liturgical services.
- No transactions priced at 30 units of the local currency are allowed on Wednesdays. If you know why you’re Byzantine.
- Each liturgical hour you attend grants you one anathema for private use. Example: Fr. David once anathematized a printer that broke on him and this printer has never been seen present at any services since.
- Tuesdays and Thursdays, 1-4 pm.
- Shoes must be taken off before entering the Chapel. (Oh no, this is not actually a real custom.)
If you didn’t know about any of these, are you even Byzantine?