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By Abed Alloush Source: Greek Reporter The Holy Synod of the Greek Orthodox Church addressed a call to the Greek people to preserve the cohesion of the family by following Christian principles. In a recent proclamation, the Holy Synod has made it clear that it considers modern types of family – single parents, civil weddings, cohabitation agreements and so-called same-sex couples – as “diverging” from the holy institution of marriage. In the proclamation, they underline that “with the cohabitation agreement, the institution of marriage is degraded, as the family is no longer a holy task for all Christians. Moreover, the cohabitation agreement…

Source: Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America Protocol Number 187/13 December 25, 2013 The Nativity of Christ For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given…. (Isaiah 9:6) To the Most Reverend Hierarchs, the Reverend Priests and Deacons, the Monks and Nuns, the Presidents and Members of the Parish Councils of the Greek Orthodox Communities, the Distinguished Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, the Day, Afternoon, and Church Schools, the Philoptochos Sisterhoods, the Youth, the Hellenic Organizations, and the entire Greek Orthodox Family in America Beloved Brothers and Sisters in Christ, In the culmination of this blessed season with…

Source: Vatican Radio (Vatican Radio) Pope Franics has sent a Message to the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople, His Holiness, Bartholomew I, to mark the feast of the Patron of the Church at Constantinople, St. Andrew the Apostle. Common concern for the plight of Christians in many parts of the world, and especially in the Middle East, was a central focus of the Holy Father’s reflections. Below, please find the official English text of the Message. ****************************************** To His Holiness Bartholomaios I Archbishop of Constantinople Ecumenical Patriarch “Peace be to the brothers, and love with faith, from God the Father and…

Source: Orthodox Church in America SYOSSET, NY [OCA] At their Fall 2013 meeting, members of the Holy Synod of Bishops of the Orthodox Church in America approved and issued a revised Policy, Standards, and Procedures on Sexual Misconductwith the goal of providing a safe and healthy environment for all of the faithful. A new page featuring detailed information and resources is now available on the OCA web site athttp://oca.org/about/sexual-misconduct.  Among the accessible resources are Policies, Standards, and Procedures of the Orthodox Church in America on Sexual Misconduct, a Summary and checklist of responsibilities and procedures, and Annual Parish Compliance Report forms. The site also offers…

by Alan Rummel Farrell is a small town in western Pennsylvania which once thrived as a steel town and supported five very active Orthodox parishes.  Today, the steel mills are gone and the parishes are struggling.  This is a story of how they have made a beginning to work together so as to survive. It all started during a general assembly meeting of Annunciation (Evangelismos) Greek Orthodox Church. Our membership is now down to 28 families, and we needed some help from other parishes to pull off another festival. It was suggested at the meeting to ask the assistance of other Orthodox…

Source: OCP Media Network November 2013 The working session of the Holy Synod of the Romanian Orthodox Church was held in the Synodal Hall of the Patriarchal Residence, under the chairmanship of His Beatitude Patriarch Daniel during the last week of October 2013. We mention some of the decisions adopted: Approval of the text of the Pastoral letter of the Holy Synod at the end of the Solemn Year of Saints Emperors Constantine and Helen and of “Dumitru Staniloae” Commemorative Year, which will be read in all the churches and monasteries of the Romanian Patriarchate on the first Sunday of…

Source: Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of North and Central America Nearly 300 clergy and laity attended a pan-Orthodox forum on Sunday, October 27 to learn about the Assembly of Bishops, pose questions, and comment on the progress of Orthodox unity in America. Metropolitan Savas of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America and Bishop Peter of the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia served as panelists, together with Protodeacon Peter Danilchick, member of the Assembly’s Secretariat. The event, which was held at Holy Trinity Orthodox Church in suburban Cleveland, Ohio, began with Vespers and a presentation by Protodeacon Danilchick, who…

Source: The National Herald To the Editor: A report of an interview given by Pope Francis to an Italian journalist was recently published in the International Herald Tribune. Although the pope was speaking of the Roman Curia and the Catholic Church, his comments accurately described the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America (GOA). In the interview, the Pope called the church “overly clerical and insular, interested in temporal power”. He pointed out that the “heads of the church have often been narcissists, flattered and thrilled by their courtiers.” As for the Roman Curia he said: “The court is the leprosy of…

Source: First Things by Ivan Plis October was not a month of especial cooperation in the global Eastern Orthodox communion. Protesting the appointment in March of an archbishop for Qatar by the Church of Jerusalem, the Church of Antioch withdrew its participation from “all the Assemblies of Canonical Orthodox Bishops abroad.” The Antiochian Patriarchate claims sole authority over the small Gulf state though at present it has no parishes of its own there. The assemblies affected by this decision include the canonical episcopal council in North America, which counts several Antiochian bishops among its officers. Meanwhile, following a visit to Indonesia by Serbia’s Patriarch Irinej,…

Mandate The Assembly has been established in accordance with the Decision of the 4th Pre-Conciliar Pan-Orthodox Conference, convoked in Chambésy, Switzerland, June 6-12, 2009, at which met representatives from all the universally-recognized autocephalous Orthodox churches. These representatives recognized substantial canonical “anomalies” in the organization and life of the Church in these regions, and realized that, though these anomalies had arisen from specific historical circumstances and pastoral needs, they nonetheless present a number of serious problems for the faithful; moreover, they give an appearance of disunity in the one holy Church. As such, these representatives unanimously agreed to the formation of…

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