Cardinal Koch visits Ukraine to deepen Catholic-Orthodox dialogue

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Source: Vatican Radio (Vatican Radio) The head of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, Cardinal Kurt Koch, heads off to Ukraine on Wednesday for a visit aimed at deepening the dialogue between Catholics and Orthodox in the former Soviet state. The Cardinal will spend two days in the capital Kiev, meeting with the small Greek and Latin Catholic communities there. He’ll also hold talks with the Ukrainian Orthodox leader, Metropolitan Volodymyr, of the Moscow … [Read more...]

Orthodox Churches Fight Back As Eastern Europe Pushes To Modernize, Secularize

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Source: Radio Free Europe - Radio Liberty By Robert Coalson Many were shocked on May 17 to see a phalanx of black-robed Orthodox clergy break into a trot and lead an angry mob in an attack on a gay-rights rally in the Georgian capital, Tbilisi. Although the official Orthodox hierarchy in Georgia denounced the violence that left 17 injured, Georgian Patriarch Illia II had called on authorities the day before to ban the rally as an "insult" to Georgian traditions. Across Eastern … [Read more...]

Syria opposition says kidnapped bishops ‘in good health’

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Source: The Daily Star - Lebanon ISTANBUL: Two Orthodox bishops kidnapped in Syria last month are "in good health," though there is no news on their whereabouts, an opposition official told reporters Saturday in Istanbul. "Two or three days ago, a doctor visited the two bishops. They are in good health," said Abdul Ahad Steipho, member of the main opposition's National Coalition and of its committee established to follow up on the kidnappings. Steipho added that his committee's attempts … [Read more...]

Church keeps fingers crossed for funding [Alaska]

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Proposed $230K would fund anti-fire, anti-theft systems Source: Peninsula Clarion By Brian Smith Sitting at his dinner table, looking out his window at the Holy Assumption of the Virgin Mary Russian Orthodox Church, Father Thomas Andrew said he sometimes worries about the church he heads. “Nobody knows if something is going to happen,” he said. Currently, the church is protected from fire only by two fire extinguishers and the priest’s watch. But, a proposed $230,000 from the … [Read more...]

$5m in Federal Budget to shield Adelaide Greek Orthodox church from aircraft noise ‘fair’

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Source: The Australian by JULIAN SWALLOW Is this funding fair? HINDMARSH MP Steve Georganas has defended a $5 million grant to a local Greek Orthodox church affected by aircraft noise. Mr Georganas said the grant to the St Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church in Thebarton to install soundproofing, which was announced in last night's Federal Budget, was not "pork barrelling" ahead of the upcoming federal election. "`This was a program put in place ... by the former Howard government in … [Read more...]

The Historical Development of Holy Week Services In Orthodoxy

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Source: Preachers Institute The Paschal fast of Holy Week1 is the most ancient part of the Great Fast.2 It is already well attested by the second century, in conjunction with the rites of Christian initiation through baptism. At first spanning one or two days, the fast lengthened to four and then to a full six already by the third century. With the conversion of Constantine, the ensuing flood of people desiring to enter the Faith and imperial interest in holy places, the fourth century … [Read more...]

Easter on way for the Orthodox

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Source: Albuquerque Journal By Andrew Estocin / Albuquerque resident on Mon, Apr 15, 2013 Easter is a distant memory for most New Mexicans. Look down the aisle of your local store and one finds only a clearance bin of damaged Easter bunnies mixed in with threads of plastic green grass. Yellow marshmallow Peeps are an endangered species on the candy aisle. Meanwhile, greeting card companies remind us repeatedly that Mother’s Day, graduation and Cinco de Mayo are just around the … [Read more...]

Archbishop Leads Jerusalem’s Sit-In for Prisoners

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Source: FARS News Agency TEHRAN (FNA)- Palestinian residents organized a sit-in in front of the Red Cross encouraging detainees on hunger strike and in solidarity with the loss of detainee Maysara Abu Hamdiyeh. erusalem figures and families of detainees participated in the demonstration. Orthodox Archbishop Atallah Hanna said that "we are in the heart of Jerusalem expressing solidarity with all our detainees, especially our Hebron people who lost detainee Maysara, the Palestinian … [Read more...]

Cyprus church braces for ’100 mn euro’ bailout hit

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Source:  France 24 (AFP) Cyprus's wealthy Orthodox Church stands to lose more than 100 million euros in the bailout deal reached with international creditors early Monday, its leader Archbishop Chrysostomos said. "The capital owned by the Church, which was over 100 million euros, has been lost," the archbishop told reporters. "There will be many difficulties, some will lose their jobs, the hungry will be multiplied and the Church has to take care of people," he added. The church … [Read more...]

An Orthodox Priest Reflects on Pope Francis and Orthodox/Catholic Relations

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By Fr. Johannes L. Jacobse Source:  Catholic Online Pope Francis is faithful to moral tradition and also appears to be courageous (these days there is no faithfulness without courage). He understands the moral crisis in Christendom and appears to be as committed to the restoration of the Christian foundations of culture as his predecessors were. This portends a good future for Orthodox-Catholic relations and will hopefully make more Orthodox aware of the grave crisis facing … [Read more...]