Orthodox Theologian Sees “Big Step Forward” with Francis Visit to Istanbul

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Source: Alteteia "Now we see it is not in any way true" that the Pope wants to subjugate the Orthodox Churches. by JOHN BURGER A leading Orthodox theologian has said that Pope Francis’s words while visiting Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I in Istanbul “represent a big step forward.” While speaking at the Patriarchal Church of St. George in Istanbul’s Phanar district Nov. 30, Pope Francis said that in the context of the efforts being made to achieve full communion with the Orthodox … [Read more...]

Russian group abandons ‘evil’ Eye of Sauron installation after Orthodox Church warning

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Source: Toronto Star A church spokesman told Moscow radio a project to place the Lord of the Rings’ flaming eye atop a skyscraper would symbolize the “triumph of evil … rising up over the city.” By: Dan Peleschuk Globalpost MOSCOW— Russian fans of the writer J. R. R. Tolkien were disappointed Wednesday after a local art group abandoned plans to install a flaming eye from his The Lord of the Rings series atop a Moscow skyscraper. The group, Svechenie, said it would not re-create … [Read more...]

Archbishop Demetrios Speaks Out and Touches Hearts

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Source: Greek Reporter by Catherine Tsounis “The Power of the Saints and Martyrs have saved Christianity,” said His Eminence, Archbishop Demetrios, Primate of the Greek Orthodox Church of America, in his historic speech before more than five hundred people on Friday evening, December 5, 2014, at the Feast Day Vespers of St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church of Flushing, New York. “During the WWII Occupation of Greece, people believed in the Virgin Mary and the saints. Cyprus is living a … [Read more...]

‘Ecumenical Patriarchate title would elevate Turkey’s reputation’

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Source: The Hurriyet Daily News by Cansu Çamlıbel ISTANBUL The Turkish government can ‘only benefit from recognizing the ecumenical status of the Patriarchate’ a senior official from the Fener Orthodox Patriarchate says in an exclusive interview Stopping resistance to the title “Ecumenical Patriarchate” and reopening the Halki Seminary can only elevate the reputation of Turkey as a democratic nation, according to a senior official from the Fener Orthodox Patriarchate. “The ‘ecumenical’ … [Read more...]

Remembering We’re Not in Charge – On Surrender

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Source: Commonweal by John Garvey I have served as a priest in the Orthodox Church in America for twenty-two years. The parishes where I’ve served have been varied. For ten years I was the pastor of an Albanian Orthodox church in Queens, during the period when Communism fell in Albania. The parish population doubled, with an influx of immigrants who were eager to be part of the church after having been denied any opportunity to worship by the world’s most fiercely atheistic regime. My … [Read more...]

An Advent Message: Invite Someone New to Church

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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

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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...]