Dear Teen Logo,
It seems to me that our Orthodox clergy have more colourful vestments than many of our EC clergy up here - don't know why exactly that is.
It could be that some parishes find artificial ways to be separate from the Orthodox.
When it comes to traditions like kissing a priest's hand, a number of our modern priests just don't like that.
(I'm often asked, when I kiss a priest's hand, if I was born in Eastern Europe etc.).
In some parish circles up here there is a kind of "fear" that if one approaches the Orthodox traditions too closely, then one will get "infected with schism."
I'm NOT making that term up, I"ve heard it used many times over the years by those who should know better.
The Ukrainian religious writer, Eugene Ivankiw from Hal's Chicago parish of Sts. Volodymyr and Olha used to poke fun at that idea.
For example, he reviewed the translation or "remake" of the liturgical books published by the Basilians and noted how "and the Son" was added here and there . . .
He said, "it is obvious the compilers don't want the faithful who will be using those books to get 'infected with schism.'"
This was also why we now commemorate the Pope of Rome no less than four times during the Liturgy and once more for the "Many Years" commemorations.
The Melkites just do it once, the way it really should be done ( and was done after the Union of Brest).
Eventually, it was felt that monstrances, statues et al. were not enough to keep the EC's with Rome (given the sporadic reunifications with Orthodoxy at various times e.g. under the formerly EC Met. Josef Siemashko who brought 3 million EC's over to Orthodoxy) - more frequent papal commemorations were added.
It is only now that most parish priests here are wearing pectoral Crosses, for example.
The Basilians and Redemptorists refuse to do this still and continue to maintain their Western cassocks etc.