An Advent Message: Invite Someone New to Church

Episcopalian Diocese of NJ

Invite a friend to attend Church with you in this Season of Preparation for Christmas and the Epiphany.  Source: Episcopalian Diocese of New Jersey  Look, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and you shall name him Emmanuel which means "God with us." (Matthew 1:23) Advent is upon us. What does this mean to you? In a wonderful volume of seasonal reflections titled Watch for the Light: Readings for Advent and Christmas (Farmington, PA: The Plough Publishing House of the Bruderhof … [Read more...]

A Call for the Rejuvenation of the Ministry of the Ordained Deaconess

St Catherine

Source: St. Catherine's Vision “A Call for the Rejuvenation of the Ministry of the Ordained Deaconess” has been published by St. Catherine’s Vision, an international, Pan-Orthodox fellowship of Orthodox women theologians and other lay servant-leaders. The document is addressed to Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew and the Secretariat of the Great and Holy Council. It is being widely distributed for prayerful reflection by hierarchs, clergy and laity. “A Call for the Rejuvenation of the … [Read more...]

Christians in Jaffa Mark Beginning of Christmas Season

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Source: The Algemeiner JNS.org – Israeli Arab Christians in Jaffa marked the beginning of the Christmas season in the Holy Land with an annual Christmas tree lighting celebration earlier this week. At the gathering in the ancient port city adjacent to Tel Aviv, men dressed up as Santa Claus met children, sang Christmas carols and lit fireworks. Orthodox Christian leaders also addressed the crowd of Jewish, Muslim and Christian onlookers, using the occasion to promote unity between the … [Read more...]

St. Photios Shrine to bless animals on Saturday, December 6

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Source: The St. Augustine Record The second annual Blessing of the Animals will be from 2 to 4 p.m. Saturday at St. Photios Greek Orthodox National Shrine, 41 St. George St. It is the conviction of the Orthodox Christian faith that all creation is holy. His All Holiness, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople, said, “Everything that lives and breathes is sacred and beautiful in the eyes of God.” The Greek Orthodox Church believes it is the responsibility of human beings to … [Read more...]

IOCC Joins Largest U.S. Disaster Response Network

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Source: IOCC Baltimore, MD (IOCC) — From comforting survivors of the 9/11 attacks in 2001, to helping Midwest families clean out their homes after last summer's devastating floods, International Orthodox Christian Charities (IOCC) has been responding to the needs of disaster victims across the US for more than a decade through the IOCC Emergency Response Network, or Frontline, as well as the support of local Orthodox Christian parishes in outreach to disaster-affected communities. IOCC's track … [Read more...]

New Kremlin-Vatican axis emerges as Europe falters

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Source: The National by Alan Philps When Pope Francis gave his first speech to the European Parliament on Tuesday, the members were aware that he was not going to restrict himself to praise in the manner of John Paul II, who had called the European Union a “beacon of civilisation”. But still many were surprised at his harsh tone. The EU had lost its way and replaced its ideals with “bureaucratic technicalities”. Europe was a haggard old grandmother, no longer “fertile and vibrant”, and had … [Read more...]

Choo-Choo Church: Train Brings God to Siberia

NBC news

Source: NBC News An Orthodox priest rings a set of bells after baptizing a baby on board a train carriage that operates as a mobile church, bringing religion to remote parts of Russia. The Doctor Voino-Yasenetsky Saint Luka train travels annually to distant settlements in the Krasnoyarsk and Khakassia regions of Siberia. Alongside the mobile church, the train also transports medical personnel and equipment, offering free consultations to about 200 patients a day in places where hospitals and … [Read more...]

Support St Vladimir’s Seminary on Giving Tuesday

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Source: St Vladimir's Orthodox Theological Seminary On Tuesday, December 2, 2014, you can help us launch a new tradition by joining the national movement that celebrates generosity called #GivingTuesday. We're excited to participate in #GivingTuesday. After all, giving is at the very foundation of St. Vladimir's mission. Our professors give their hearts to teach the Gospel of Christ. Our students give their time to prepare for service in the Church. Our graduates give their lives to … [Read more...]

Seeds of Hope – Orthodox Christian Healing and Counseling

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OCL advisory board member assists in establishing a new ministry within the life of the Orthodox Church orthodoxchristianhealing.com What We Do Seeds of Hope – Orthodox Christian Healing and Counseling – hopes to change how things were done in the past. All too often the ecclesiastical harm inflicted by clergy to their fellow Orthodox sisters, and brothers (and children), was proverbially "swept under the rug." This led to a massive erosion of trust, to widespread cynicism, to … [Read more...]

Interfaith America: ‘Being both’ is a rising trend in the US

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Source: Christian Science Monitor Interfaith marriages that remain with mixed-faith partners has shot up to 40 percent, from 20 percent in the 1960s. And raising interfaith families is increasingly common and supported by a growing number of grass-roots organizations. By Stephanie Hanes, Correspondent KENSINGTON, MD. — Jean Tutt was a freshman at Harper College in Palatine, Ill., when she met Brian Saucier. He was not at all her type, she recalls – but not because of their different … [Read more...]