THE TIME FOR ORTHODOX UNITY IS NOW!

Source: Orthodox Christian Laity June 28, 2017 His All Holiness Bartholomew, Archbishop of Constantinople and Ecumenical Patriarch, Members of the Holy Synod; His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios, Primate of the Greek Orthodox Church in America and Chairman of the Holy Eparchial Synod; Members of the Holy Eparchial Synod; Members of the Archdiocesan Council of the Archdiocese of America,  Your All Holiness, Your Eminences and beloved sisters and brothers in Christ:  The recently “widowed” see of the Metropolis of Chicago requires those who are responsible for its future to come to grips with the reality that they are confronting a Church in…

Source: Pravoslavie.ru and other sources Post-Conciliar News – Metropolitan Kallistos Reflects on Orthodox Council – OSV Newsweekly – Athonite Fathers Call for Rejection of Cretan Council and Cessation of Commemoration of the Patriarch of Constantinope – Orthodox Ethos – Historic Orthodox Council Meets Despite Absence of Four Churches – AMERICA – The National Catholic Review -Metropolitan Amfilohije of Montenegro and Litoral did not sign controversial document at Crete -Interview with Metropolitan Hierotheos of Nafpaktos on the Holy and Great Synod (video) -Metropolitan Jeremiah of Gortys: “When and where did the Holy Fathers call heresies and schisms ‘Churches?’” -Union of Orthodox Clergy…

Source: Pravoslavie MESSAGE OF THE HOLY AND GREAT COUNCIL OF THE ORTHODOX CHURCH To the Orthodox people and to all people of good will To God, “the Father of mercies and all comfort,” we address a hymn of thanksgiving and praise for having enabled us to gather during the week of Pentecost (18-26 June 2016) on Crete, where the Apostle Paul and his disciple Titus preached the Gospel in the early years of the life of the Church. We give thanks to the Triune God who was well pleased that in one accord we should bring to a conclusion the…

Source: Orthodox Christian Laity From the Editor – excerpt from complete, excellent essay which follows:   The Role of the Laity and women.  The final point I wish to touch upon is the issue of the Role of the Laity in the Church. I am fully aware of the distinction between the clergy and the laity (έχοντες ούν υμείς χαρίσματα κατά την χάριν την δοθείσαν υμίν διάφορα) but  Ι have not seen the role of the laity given approriate weight in the Orthodox Church (in fact, I have seen more involvement of lay persons in the liturgical life of the…

Source: Orthodox Christian Laity Lent is coming to an end.  We are preparing for Holy Week and Pascha.  The liturgical cycle will turn toward Pentecost.    This Pentecost, June 19, will be different from other celebrations.  We are praying and looking forward to the opening sessions of the Holy and Great Council.  This meeting has been 1200 years in waiting, and its agenda has taken 80 years to prepare. This council is a turning point in world Orthodox Christianity and indeed the entire Christian world.  Bringing the bishops to Chania, Crete has not been an easy task.  The Patriarchs, autocephalous and…

Source: The Wall Street Journal By JAMES MARTIN When was the last time you felt stressed out by Easter? So much Easter shopping to do, so many Easter cards to write, so many Easter gatherings to attend. Not to mention the endless stream of Easter commercials on television and online, the nearly unavoidable Easter-themed movies and all those tacky Easter sweaters that you’re forced to wear every spring. And don’t forget the travails of setting up the annual Easter tree and stringing Easter lights on your house. Every year you lament how overly commercialized Easter has become. Can the holiday get…

Source: Orthodox Christian Laity The year 2016 is a momentous, historic time for Orthodox Christianity throughout the world.  After 1,200 years, Orthodox Christianity is on the verge of a seminal event, a meeting of the Holy and Great Council of the Orthodox Church, to be held in Crete, Greece, during the week of Pentecost this June. This event will provide a pivotal opportunity for hierarchs to officially recognize a unified American Orthodox Church which selects its own hierarchs. It is an idea whose time has come.  Moreover, it is properly based on the canonical precedents of the Church. Indeed, it…

Source: Orthodox Christian Laity Originally posted by St. Andrew House on May 21, 2011 in Orthodox Unity Hierarchs. This is a place where we can really be transfigured…in this place, Your Eminence, your place.  We can be transfigured from parochial to truly Orthodox Christian people. We can be transfigured from separate jurisdictions to one jurisdiction.  We can be transfigured from many ethnic groups to one group headed and dominated by Christ, our Savior and our Lord.”      Archbishop Iakovos, Ligonier 1994  The First Ecumenical Conference of American Orthodox Bishops  November, 1994 STANDING CONFERENCE OF CANONICAL ORTHODOX BISHOPS IN THE AMERICAS…

Source: Orthodox Christian Laity A PRAYER FOR ORTHODOX UNITY (OCL Pamphlet on Unity and Self Governance, 2000) O All Holy Trinity, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, we your faithful children beseech you to forgive us the sin of divisiveness, which is rooted in our hearts, our dioceses and land. Implant in our lives the holy vine of unity which only you can bestow on those who have come together in your name. Enlighten us with your grace, so that we may come to the knowledge of your truth and move our hearts to respond with trust and total obedience to…

Source: Orthodox Christian Laity How will we move forward to renew the Orthodox Church in the USA? Now that the hierarchy has demonstrated that it cannot move ahead in consensus, it is time for the spiritually mature laity and clergy to cooperate together and see how we can be a critical mass to move ahead as the Apostolic missionary church that is the Orthodox way. Where do we begin to make our Church in the USA canonical? A good place to start is to reread or read for the first time the Project for Orthodox Renewal. You can read the chapters online…

Source: Orthodox Christian Laity Countdown to the 6th Meeting of the Assembly of Bishops – Chicago Area High School and College Students will meet with Bishops We are called to move beyond what is “mine” and what is “yours” to what is “ours.” From now on, this is how we should conceive and conduct all of our ministries and resources, all of our departments and initiatives. Otherwise, we do not practice what we preach. It is really up to us to accept the challenge or to refuse the call.” Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew’s Video Address at the Dallas Assembly 2014   During…

Editor’s note: The Orthodox Christian Church in the United States is in Crisis. What actions will the Assembly of Bishops take? Stonewalling and ignoring the facts only contributes to the decline of Orthodoxy in the USA.  By a Layperson in the New Jersey Metropolis of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese An extensive, highly-cited study of religious trends and affiliation of Americans [America’s Changing Religious Landscape] published on May 12 by the well-regarded Pew Research Center found that the Christian share of the U.S. religious population is declining, while the number of U.S. adults who do not identify with any organized religion…

Source: Fordham University Co-sponsored by the Orthodox Theological Society in America (OTSA) and the Orthodox Christian Studies Center Friday, June 26 – Saturday, June 27, 2015 Fordham School of Law | 150 W. 62nd St. (between Columbus and Amsterdam Avenues)│ New York, N.Y. In 2016, the leaders of the autocephalous Orthodox Churches from around the world will gather at the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Constantinople/Istanbul for a much discussed and anticipated Council. This conference is a series of papers, panel discussions, and a research poster competition addressing several themes from the Agenda for the Great and Holy Council: Autocephaly and Diaspora The Canonical…

Source: Greek Orthodox Christian Clergy and Laity We, Greek Orthodox Christians of the Metropolis of Chicago, will no longer accept what we believe is the continual financial and spiritual abuse of both clergy and laity, by the current Hierarchs of the Metropolis of Chicago. With this goal, a group of dedicated and committed individuals began a campaign to inform the church / laity of serious aberrations in our Greek Orthodox community, and to correct some of the financial and spiritual abuses rampant in the Chicago Metropolis, that is spreading to other jurisdictions. The success of this website to inform the…

Source: Orthodox Church in America SYOSSET, NY [OCA]  In a document dated March 15, 2015, the members of the Holy Synod of Bishops of the Orthodox Church in America offered a response to the Chairman and Secretary of the Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of the United States of America with regard to the “Common Starting Point” for Canonical and Regional Planning. The text of the six-page document is available here. As noted in the document’s introduction, the response is “an expansion of the Preliminary Response which was offered by our Synod on September 17, 2014, during Assembly V in Dallas,”…

Source: Orthodox Christian Laity A Great and Holy Council of all the Orthodox Churches is scheduled in 2016 to consider, among other issues, how to unite the Church in the United States of America.  Now is the time to prepare for this awesome event.  You can be a part of the process!  Local advocates are needed.  Are you interested in being the Orthodox Christian Unity advocate in your parish community? If you are committed to the canonical order of an autocephalous, unified Orthodox Church in the USA, you can help this become a reality by: Becoming the “go-to person” in…

Source: Orthodox Christian Laity Orthodox Christian Laity (OCL) is hosting an Open Forum for interested clergy and laity in the Jacksonville/St Augustine, Florida area on the progress of the Assembly of Bishops as they finalize a blueprint for Orthodox Unity in the USA.  A plan will be discussed by the Assembly in March, 2015 in a special meeting.  The work toward unity is the responsibility of all – including clergy and laity.  At least we can be informed. Please see the event flier below:

Source: Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of the USA To All Clergy and Laity Interested in the Subject of “Orthodox Christians and Giving to the Church.” A national study “Exploring Orthodox Generosity: Giving in US Orthodox Parishes” has been launched by the Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of the USA. We need and invite as many participants as possible. Both Orthodox clergy and laity are invited to take part in this unique project. The following are examples of the questions that the study will explore: Why do people give or don’t give to their parishes? Are Church members satisfied with…

Source:  The National Herald Theodore Kalmoukos BOSTON – The Holy Eparchial Synod of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America defied the Synodical decision of the Ecumenical Patriarchate to revise the List of Candidates for the elevation to Episcopacy. Instead in a unprecedented move they decided that the Archbishop with a representation of hierarchs travel to Constantinople to try to convince Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew to reverse the initial Synodical decision that canceled the election of Bishop Sevastianos of Zela as Metropolitan of Chicago. The decision was taken on Thursday July 20 in a special session of the Eparchial Synod convened…

You may be interested in this ruling from the Tucson Court…. a case where a US Court upholds the well settled doctrine: “So long as a court does not cross into ecclesiastical matters, it is appropriate to apply neutral legal principles, including those based in contract, in resolving a dispute involving a religious organization.” If the New York courts had followed this doctrine in the Declaratory Judgment action filed challenging the imposition of the 2003 Charter by the EP without the approval of the Clergy-Laity Congress in accordance with the revision provisions of the previous Charter the GOA would not…

Source: Orthodox Christian Laity by George Matsoukas It is difficult to discern the Holy Spirit-Spirit of Truth in the process of selecting the hierarchs in the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of the United States. The Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America [GOA] is headed for another wrenching crisis!  What happened to the post conciliar spirit of Orthodoxy one year after Holy and Great Council?  Are we experiencing the consequences of the imposed 2003 Charter?  We have a clash of cultures in our understanding rules and regulations.  The voices of the hierarchy, clergy and laity living in America are being ignored in the…

Source: The National Herald To the Editor, I read again and again the open letter that Elaine Jaharis wrote to “All” and published in the National Herald on July 1. And I read it many times because this is not just a “letter.” This is a homily, this is a sermon, this is a wake-up κήρυγμα that should be read from the pulpit, from the amvona to all the parishioners every Sunday from every priest and every hierarch. The Ephraimite teachings are not the Orthodox Monasticism as we know it, it is not even Christian. It is a devious medieval…

Source: Orthodox Christian Laity The Orthodox Christian Laity calls upon the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople [EP] to ratify the selection of His Grace Bishop. Sevastianos  of Zela as the Metropolitan of Chicago. The process by which the Eparchial Synod of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America [GOA] under Archbishop Demetrios selected him to lead the recently widowed see of Chicago was agreed upon by all parties before the repose of Metropolitan Iakovos, of blessed memory. The Eparchial Synod followed all the procedures approved by the EP including receiving input from the clergy and laity of the Church in America. It…

by Yianni Pappas I have stood by and supported the Patriarch and the Ecumenical Holy Synod time and again, but if the Ecumenical Patriarch and the Ecumenical Holy Synod can flippantly “change their mind” and go back on their word, then Orthodox Christianity worldwide has another major crisis of integrity. I have stood by and supported the Patriarch and the Ecumenical Holy Synod time and again against the fundamentalist Ephraimites who are more concerned with the outward form rather than content of substance. They have accused the Ecumenical Patriarch of betraying the faith because he said “all people under God are…

Source: Egypt Independent by Taha Sakr Egypt’s main Coptic Church decided on Thursday to suspend holding any conferences and organizing the church-sponsored trips to monasteries, Coptic Orthodox Church Head Bolus Hailm said. Halim told Egypt Independent that the decision came following consultations with the Interior Ministry, which recommended the suspension of the aforementioned activities until the end of the month of July. “Due to security concerns raised among churches’ officials against any gatherings of Copts in Egypt, the churches affiliated to the Coptic Orthodox Church consulted the main church to coordinate with the Interior Ministry to undertake any action,” he explained. He further asserted…

Source: The National Herald Theodoros Kalmoukos  NEW YORK – The election of Bishop Sevastianos of Zela as the new Metropolitan of Chicago was canceled by the Holy Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate. The election was scheduled to take place on Thursday, July 13 at the Phanar. The National Herald has learned that the unexpected turn of events is due to the List of Candidates which was considered problematic and incomplete. The List, however, had been approved by the Ecumenical Patriarchate last March. Bishop Sevastianos of Zela had gathered 7 votes out of 8 who voted for the triprosopon during the…

Source: The National Herald June 24-30, 2017 Edition – Page 12 By Peter Marudas Once again, The National Herald has demonstrated its unique role in stimulating dialogue and the open exchange of ideas concerning important matters facing our community. Its most recent contribution was reflected in two informative items appearing in the May 6 edition regarding the status of the Greek-American political presence in Washington. First, a Herald editorial titled “Emerging Greek-American Leaders” is a serious and thoughtful review of our past and present-emerging leadership in Washington. The other, an article by Washington insiders, Andy and Mike Manatos, suggests that…

Source: National Geographic The manuscript was unearthed by the monastery’s monks who were conducting restorations in the centuries-old library. By Sarah Gibbens PUBLISHED JULY 11, 2017 There’s perhaps no doctor in history more famous than Hippocrates. Many medical students today still swear the ancient doctor’s oath to adhere to ethical medical principles. While the details of his life are murky (it’s even debated whether he wrote the oath or some of the other manuscripts that bear his name), Hippocrates is widely regarded as the “father of Western medicine.” Archaeologists now believe they may have found one of the ancient doctor’s medical recipes…

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