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Source: Hellenic News of America July 8, 2016 (Baltimore, MD)  — As torrential rain pummeled parts of West Virginia and threatened a new round of flooding, International Orthodox Christian Charities (IOCC) remains on the ground providing emotional and spiritual care and deploying IOCC volunteer clean-up crews to the hard hit towns of Clendenin and Rainelle. His Grace Bishop Thomas of the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Diocese of Charleston, Oakland and the Mid-Atlantic visited the affected area to offer encouragement to parishioners impacted by the floods and called upon the Orthodox faithful to extend a helping hand to their neighbors in need…

Source: Ancient-Origine World’s first illustrated Christian bible discovered at Ethiopian monastery The world’s earliest illustrated Christian book has been saved by a British charity which located it at a remote Ethiopian monastery. The incredible Garima Gospels are named after a monk who arrived in the African country in the fifth century and is said to have copied them out in just one day. Beautifully illustrated, the colours are still vivid and thanks to the Ethiopian Heritage Fund have been conserved. Abba Garima arrived from Constantinople in 494 AD and legend has it that he was able to copy the gospels…

Source: Pravoslavie.ru Buenos Aires, June 24, 2016 An open letter from METROPOLITAN PAUL of ALEPPO addressed to all the Hierarchs of the Orthodox Church on the Feast of the Holy Spirit My chains, the bond of our unity Short time or long—I pray to God that not only you… may become what I am, except for these chains (Acts 26:29) Your Holinesses, Your Beatitudes, Your Eminences and Your Graces, Hierarchs of the Orthodox Church, My Fathers and brothers in the grace of the episcopate, “Apostles of Christ” and “Servants” of the people of God in all the oikoumene, This year,…

Source: Manoramaonline Qamishli, Syria: Patriarch Ignatius Aphrem II, head of the Syrian Orthodox church, had a close shave on Sunday when a suicide bomber detonated himself at a commemoration attended by him. Three people were killed in northeast Syria when the bomber attacked an event commemorating the massacre of Christians more than a century ago, state media and a security source said. Patriarch Ignatius Aphrem II was leading the commemoration and security sources said he was the target of the bomber. He escaped without any injuries. Patriarch Ignatius Aphrem II is the supreme leader of Syrian churches including the Jacobite church…

Source: The National Herald By Associated Press ATHENS, Greece (AP) — The spiritual leader of the world’s Orthodox Christians on Wednesday said a historic meeting of church leaders — the first in more than a millennium — will take place despite a pullout by Russia, the fourth Orthodox church to say it won’t attend the June gathering in Crete. Istanbul-based Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, who ranks as “the first among equals,” said he hopes the Russian church and three others who have chosen not to come will change their minds. The weeklong Holy and Great Council, which is to begin…

Source: Holy Cross Bookstore The revised edition of the widely popular “Atlas of American Orthodox Christian Monasteries” has been released by the Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of the USA. The Atlas has been updated to include an information on two newly-formed monastic communities. The Atlas can be purchased directly from the publisher, Holy Cross Orthodox Press, or on Amazon.com. Please share this news with your fellow parishioners, clergy and friends via Facebook, Twitter, your parish’s mailing list, and other social media. Drawing on extensive research, as well as fascinating stories and “insider” anecdotes, the Atlas offers to readers: An introduction into traditions…

Source: The National Herald By Associated Press NICOSIA — The best man slapped the groom on the back, which is an old Cypriot wedding custom. The priest punching the best man would be an innovation. But Cyprus police said Monday they are investigating an allegation that this happened at a wedding over the weekend. Police say the victim —the groom’s 22-year-old brother — was taken to a hospital but wasn’t seriously hurt and that his family filed a complaint. A family member — speaking on condition of anonymity because the investigation is continuing — said the priest had initially gestured…

Source: Orthodox Church in America SYOSSET, NY [OCA]  On Monday, June 13, 2016, His Beatitude, Metropolitan Tikhon issued anArchpastoral Letter to the hierarchs, clergy, monastics and faithful of the Orthodox Church in America and a Public Statement in the wake of the tragic shootings that occurred in Orlando, FL on Sunday, June 12. The complete texts of the Archpastoral Letter and Statement are available in PDF format and appear below. Archpastoral Letter of His Beatitude, Metropolitan Tikhon on the Orlando Shootings June 13, 2016 To the Venerable Hierarchs, Reverend Clergy, Monastics, and faithful of the Orthodox Church in America, The…

Source: St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary On June 13, 2016, the Very Reverend Dr. John Behr, dean of St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary, together with the Reverend Mardiros Chevian, dean of St. Nersess Armenian Seminary, departed for Armenia at the invitation of His Holiness Karekin II, supreme patriarch and catholicos of All Armenians. Fathers John and Mardiros will be visiting the seat of the worldwide Armenian Apostolic Church, the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin, to discuss the possibilities of inter-seminary collaboration between Gevorgyan Theological, St. Nersess, and St. Vladimir’s seminaries. “I am very excited to visit Armenia, Holy Etchmiadzin, and…

Source: Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America NEW YORK – The Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America expresses its deepest regret for the unexpected and continuing daily reading of the Koran in Hagia Sophia. The United States, as well as Germany and Greece have already officially expressed very clear protests which emphasize verbatim: “We would encourage Turkey to preserve Hagia Sophia in a way that respects its tradition and also its complex history” and also stress that “Hagia Sophia is a World Heritage Site designated by UNESCO, and we wish Hagia Sophia be used in a way that does not alter its…

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