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Source: Orthodox Church in America Sanctity of Life Sunday 2015 Archpastoral Message of His Beatitude, Metropolitan Tikhon To the Venerable Hierarchs, Reverend Clergy, Monastics, and Faithful of the Orthodox Church in America: Dearly beloved, Today has been designated by the Orthodox Church in America as “Sanctity of Life Sunday,” a day on which we re-affirm our faithfulness to the eternal value of human life and re-commit ourselves to the defense of the lives of the unborn, the infirm, the terminally ill and the condemned. Our proclamation of life is offered in the context of a world in dismay at the…

Source: The National Nadine Marroushi Foreign Correspondent CAIRO // Ramy Iskander, a 38-year-old Evangelical Christian, spent most of his thirties going from one court to the next, looking to get a divorce. His now ex-wife was the one to ask for the separation nearly nine years ago, and Mr Iskander agreed, but Egypt’s strict laws on civil matters meant that getting the legal approval was no easy task. “I was born a free human being, and so I should be free to choose who I marry and divorce based on civil laws, not on the interpretations of a religious text…

Source: Ma’an News Agency By Alex Shams BETHLEHEM (Ma’an) — Christmas is a time for holiday cheer in Bethlehem, as thousands from across Palestine and around the world converge to celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ in the hilltop West Bank city. Onlookers at the Orthodox Christmas parade on Jan. 6 this year, however, were surprised to find protesters awaiting the traditional visit of the Patriarch to Nativity Church, and six youths were even arrested after chanting slogans against him in Manger Square. For those participating in the rally, it was the visit of Jerusalem Patriarch Theophilos III — not…

Source: Kuwait News Agency (KUNA) KUWAIT, Jan 14 (KUNA) — Primate of the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch Patriarch John X Yazigi congratulated His Highness the Amir Sheikh Sabah Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah for naming him a “Humanitarian Leader” and Kuwait as a “Humanitarian Center” by the UN. The visiting Patriarch made this remark to the press, Wednesday, after his meeting with His Highness the Amir. In the meeting, the Patriarch expressed his appreciation to all the philanthropic work that has been done by His Highness the Amir that helped to alleviate the sufferings of both Muslims and Christians across the…

Source: Salon Even as they profess to spread his word, fundamentalists are forgetting Jesus’ most important message FRANK SCHAEFFER, ALTERNET This article originally appeared on AlterNet. Jesus never could have been the pastor of a contemporary evangelical church nor a conservative Roman Catholic bishop. Evangelicals and conservative Roman Catholics thrive on drawing distinctions between their “truth” and other people’s failings. Jesus by contrast, set off an empathy time bomb that obliterates difference. Jesus’ empathy bomb explodes every time a former evangelical puts love ahead of what the “Bible says.” It goes off every time Pope Francis puts inclusion ahead of dogma.…

Source: Full of Grace and Truth The Greek Religious News Site Romfea.gr posts that Elder Paisios of the Holy Mountain (+1994) has been canonized by the Ecumenical Patriarchate. The official announcement from the Patriarchate is available here. God is wondrous among His Saints! May we have his blessing! Selected hymns to St. Paisios of the Holy Mountain*** Apolytikion in the First Tone The offspring of Farasa, and the adornment of Athos, and the imitator of the former righteous, equal in honor, O Paisios let us honor O faithful, the vessel full of graces, who hastens speedily to those who cry…

Source: Father Prime Just after Christmas I had the pleasure of worshipping at this beautiful little church, St. Athanasius Russian Orthodox Church in Nicholasville, KY.  When a plan to sub for one of my Episcopal colleagues fell through, I decided to attend this beautiful church; one of my students at the University of Kentucky is Orthodox and had invited me to attend anytime I wanted.  (That’s called evangelism, folks!) As I stood for the Divine Liturgy—there is no sitting during Orthodox worship—I was moved, both by the chants of the priest and choir, as well as the devotion and care…

Source: Orthodox Church in America LOUISVILLE, KY [OCA]  Saint Michael Antiochian Orthodox Church here will once again sponsor the annual Climacus Conference Friday and Saturday, February 13-14, 2015.  This year’s theme will explore beauty and aesthetics. “In its fifth year, the conference is a pan-Orthodox intellectual and spiritual event featuring scholars and voices across the fields of theology, philosophy, patristics, classical education, literature, and culture and politics,” said David Wright, the conference’s founder and director.  “It is unique in that it provides an opportunity for people to be enriched by thinking well across disciplines through scholarly engagement with the classic…

Source: Orthodox Church in America SYOSSET, NY [OCA] Thursday, January 22, 2015 marks the 42nd Anniversary of the Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion in the United States.  Orthodox Christians from across the country will travel to the US Capital for the annual March for Life or participate in similar regional events. His Beatitude, Metropolitan Tikhon, and His Grace, Bishop Michael of New York, will be among the Orthodox Christian hierarchs, clergy, seminarians and faithful participating in the annual March for Life in the US Capital on January 22.  The rally on the DC Mall will begin at noon.  Orthodox…

Source: World Bulletin Visit to strengthen ties between the churches of the two countries. Ethiopia and Egypt are in the middle of diplomatic rapprochement following tension over the building of a multi-billion dollar hydroelectric project Addis Ababa is building on the Nile. Patriarch of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church Abune Mathias is set to leave for Cairo on Saturday on a visit to Egypt. “The visit will further strengthen existing relation between the churches of the two countries and enhance people-to-people ties,” Ethiopian ambassador to Egypt Mohamoud Dirir told The Anadolu Agency by phone. “The two churches have an ancient history and…

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