Dr. Anthony J. Limberakis, National Commander of the Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, has established a new Archon Engagement Committee: Women In Orthodoxy. This much-needed new committee is designed to foster the full inclusion of women in the life of the Church.
Dr. Limberakis explained: “At this point in the life of our Church and Omogeneia, it is imperative that we support the greater participation of women in the life of the Church. The WORD was established by our Lord and Savior and evangelized by the Four Evangelists, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, but the very first Evangelists were the Myrrh-bearing Women. The Myrrh-bearing Women were the very FIRST to witness the empty tomb and were instructed by the risen Lord to bring the joyful news to the Apostles. That voice of the very first Evangelists, transmitted through the millennia, needs to be heard today from the countless Orthodox women who are the backbone of every parish in America. Consonant with the encouragement of the Exarch, His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros of America, and the official policy of the Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, this new Archon Engagement Committee Women in Orthodoxy is designed to foster that greater participation and is open to Archons and non-Archons, women and men.
Chairing the new Engagement Committee will be Archon Cary J. Limberakis, D.M.D. Archon Dr. Cary is Regional Commander of the Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, Greater Philadelphia Region. In March 2019, Archon Dr. Cary spearheaded an Archon Symposium entitled: “Reviving the Female Diaconate in the Orthodox Church: Has the Time Come?” Dr. Cary Limberakis also serves on the Advisory Board to the Saint Phoebe Center for the Deaconess. He was invested as an Archon on October 10, 2004 and conferred with the offikion Aktouarios.
Also serving on the new Engagement Committee as Vice Chair will be Dr. Elizabeth H. Prodromou, who is a Visiting Professor in the International Studies Program at Boston College. A member of the delegation of the Ecumenical Patriarchate at the Holy and Great Council of Crete, Dr. Prodromou also serves on the Advisory Board of the Saint Phoebe Center for the Deaconess, and is an Advisory Board Member of the FoRB Women’s Alliance, a global community of religious freedom and human rights advocates dedicated to advancing freedom of religion for women.
In November 2022, His Eminence Archbishop Elpidophoros of America welcomed Archon Dr. Cary Limberakis, along with Archon George E. Demacopoulos, PhD; Carrie Frederick Frost, PhD; and Kyra P. Limberakis, MTS, to the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese for an illuminating and wide-ranging discussion on expanding the participation of women in the Church. They discussed the theology and historical existence of deaconesses in Orthodoxy, as well as the importance of further developing the role of women and girls in the life of the contemporary Church. His Eminence expressed his hope that educational programming like the Archons’ 2019 symposium on the Female Diaconate would continue across the country. This new Engagement Committee will facilitate such programming.
The Archon Engagement Committee on Women In Orthodoxy is open for Archons and non-Archons, women and men. To join the engagement committee, click here.
The mission of the Archon Engagement Committees, which are now eleven in number, is to provide meaningful opportunities for all Archons to participate in the active and ongoing defense of the Ecumenical Patriarchate across a wide range of fields. Divided into several, subject matter specific subcommittees, the Archon Engagement Committees are designed to encourage participating Archons to develop original initiatives for consideration of inclusion in the national policy of the Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate.