September Musing: A Basic Approach to Orthodox Christian Administrative Unity

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Source: Orthodox Christian Laity

Sunday of Orthodoxy,” at the Greek Orthodox Archdiocesan Cathedral of the Holy Trinity, in New York City on March 8, 2020.

“Take the best parts of everyone…and get together!”

Roula Karcazes, wife of Orthodox Christian Laity Executive Board Member and Attorney George Karcazes, made this remark to me the other night when we were casually discussing the history of the work of OCL and its primary mission and focus.

Race toward Unity

Along with the Board and membership of Orthodox Christian Laity and its membership, I look forward to continuing the race that OCL has run since 1987. This race has been toward several, high-level goals: First – the greater cooperation of the hierarchy, clergy and laity of the Church. Second – transparency and accountability in church governance and financial management. Third – continual renewal of our spiritual lives as Orthodox Christians. Fourth – working toward and supporting the administrative unity of the Orthodox Church in North America.

OCL’s Educational Ministry

To this end, I look forward to continuing and expanding OCL’s educational ministry through in-person events, publications, interviews and online presentations. Keep on the lookout for video interviews of Orthodox authors and leaders that we plan to present in the very near future.

Engage

We invite you to engage with us via our website (ocl.org), our Facebook and YouTube pages, or contact us via email by clicking on the Contact menu at ocl.org. Check out upcoming events on the right side of our home page and subscribe to our monthly e-newsletter.

Create a Vision, then take Actions that move the Church toward Administrative Unity

Uniting all the Orthodox Christian jurisdictions in America has been a topic of prayer, discussion and Pan-Orthodox efforts for decades. Let each of us develop a picture, a vision, of what we want that to look like, and with God’s help, our prayers and efforts will be fulfilled. Let’s not let past, limiting paradigms create barriers. How do we do that? A good start is to follow Roula’s simple but profound advice: “Take the best parts of everyone…and get together.”

We Need Your Help

We invite and need your frank comments. Let us know your vision for the Church in America. Tell us who you’d like us to interview. What can we do to unite the best parts of all of our jurisdictions so that we may achieve the administrative unity that matches the spiritual unity we already possess?

David Oancea
Executive Director

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3 Comments

  1. Hi David,
    OCL has been at the unification effort for some thirty odd years now, and the hierarchs show no urgency at all in working towards unity. They will offer some lip service to the cause, but no real action towards resolution. It would appear each jurisdictions has its piece of the American pie and they are satisfied with that. It also seems that they are not too keen on having to compromise with each administratively to achieve unity. I think the Ethnics like things just the way they are.
    One way to put a fire under the hierarchs, would be to use the only leverage the Laity have, which is withholding some or all funds from the operation of the Church. The problem with that solution is, most of the Laity would be unwilling to participate in such an action. The only other solution would be to convince the deep pocket congregants to put pressure on the hierarchs to act on unification, and I don’t think that is likely to happen either. I wish you all the best in your new position, and I pray it works out for all of us.
    In Christ,
    Gary

  2. George Matsoukas on

    Orthodox Christianity as a missionary church, ministering to God’s people, fulfilling the Great Commission of Christ, and in canonical order, is our responsibility. This is why unity matters. We must work in unity in our communities. Our clergy associations need to model unity, and we as faithful people of God need to assist them in doing the work involved. This is God’s will for His Church in the USA. Share your good works, so we too can emulate them.

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