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Source: Orthodox Studies Institute Originally published November 2023 by Matthew Namee “For at least the past quarter-century, Orthodox jurisdictions in America have been discussing the ‘priest shortage’ problem. The OCA addressed this at its All-American Council in 1999 and again in 2005, when it observed that 400 priests would soon retire and 100 new missions were expected to open over the next decade, with only 20-25 priests per year being ordained. The same year, 2005, the Greek Archdiocese also addressed the priest shortage problem. Then in 2020, the OCA website reported that 30% of active OCA were aged 65 or…

Christ is risen! I just saw all these emails!  Roula and I appreciate all of your prayers and good wishes. We love all of you.  OCL’s mission is inevitable. It is what God wants. A single Autocephalous Orthodox Church in America. It is up to us to make it happen.  Do not give up!  — Love, George (May 31, 2024)  This is the message that George Karcazes sent from his hospital room a few days before he fell asleep in the Lord on June 6, 2024.   For the last 37 years, he devoted himself to the mission of Orthodox Christian Laity…

Source: N.H. Scott & Hanekamp Funeral Home (August 11, 1938 – June 6, 2024) George Demetrios Karcazes fell asleep in the Lord on June 6, 2024, in the presence of his wife and children, and surrounded by their love, devotion, admiration, and their great comfort in knowing that their husband and father had lived a life of consequence, courage, and commitment to his ideals. George’s life was marked with the achievements of a clear-eyed idealist, in his roles as a longtime Chicago attorney, bank builder, community and church leader, and indefatigable volunteer for a host of endeavors in which he…

Source: Orthodox History by Matthew Namee In 1894, Pope Leo XIII issued a papal encyclical on the “Eastern Rites” — that is, the Uniates, those groups who use ancient Orthodox liturgical rites but submit themselves to the Pope of Rome. In 1898, St Raphael Hawaweeny, then an archimandrite in New York, published a response in a periodical called Faith and Reason, and […] Click here to read the article

Source: St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary On October 27-28, 2023, St Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary (SVOTS) student Mihailo Vlajkovic (M.A. ‘24) represented the Seminary at a conference hosted by the Berkeley Divinity School at Yale University. The two-day conference, titled “The Apostolic Ministry”: History, Theology, and Ecumenism, offered an exploration of “the ways in which churches claim ‘apostolicity,’ and what this ideal means for broader questions of ecumenism and inter-communion.” Eighteen presenters from the US, Canada, and Kenya joined the conference, representing a range of professions and viewpoints, including “theologians, historians, ordained ministers, canon lawyers, ecclesiologists, ecumenists, and students and seminarians.” Mihailo learned…

Source: U.S. Religion Census The book, “U.S. Religion Census: Religious Congregations & Adherents,” is now available for download free of charge at: https://www.usreligioncensus.org/sites/default/files/2023-10/2020_US_Religion_Census.pdf This unique publication offers national, state, and county-level information and statistics on congregations and membership for 372 religious groups, including fourteen Eastern Orthodox and nine Oriental Orthodox Churches. The book’s ten chapters examine various aspects of church life in America and can also be downloaded individually at: https://www.usreligioncensus.org/node/1638 These chapters include: Quick Answers to Important Questions from the U.S. Religion Census Historical Efforts to Collect U.S. Data on Religious Congregations Trends in Adherents Data: 2010-2020 Patterns of Historical and Organizational Events and Conflict…

Source: The National Herald By Nikolaos Piperis When our forefathers immigrated here near the turn of the 20th century, they generally desired to maintain their Hellenism in America. Like people everywhere, Greeks hold fast to their inherited traditions, having protected them through centuries of inordinate persecutions in the Ottoman Empire. Understandably, these immigrants intended to perpetuate their culture and religion in their new country and accordingly established, in nearly every locality they stepped foot, local societies devoted to that task. These societies, which sponsored Greek schools, community centers, and churches, later transformed themselves into parishes, creating the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese…

Source: Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of the USA On September 14th, Foreign Affairs, the influential magazine of the Council on Foreign Relations, published an article entitled, “Putin’s Useful Priests.” The Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of the United States of America hereby expresses its objection and concern with the inaccurate manner with which Orthodox Christians in the United States are stereotyped by the authors. First, the article contains significant factual errors that are surprising for the renowned Foreign Affairs and disrespectful to a vital Christian community whose roots in America date over three centuries. Orthodox Christians in America – representing a plethora…

Source: Orthodox History by MATTHEW NAMEE The following remarkable letter appeared in the Brooklyn Daily Eagle on March 18, 1915. It offers a well-informed but obviously partisan perspective on the Orthodox reality in America and globally in 1915 — in the midst of World War I. There’s so much happening in this letter, so many layers. It has to be one of the most fascinating historical records I’ve ever stumbled upon. I only wish I knew the identity of the author — all we can tell here is that he’s a Greek-American who knows a great deal about the entire Orthodox world. Read…

Source: Public Orthodoxy by Very Rev. Dr. John Jillions Visiting Professor at the Institute for Orthodox Christian Studies (Cambridge, UK) When the New York Times recently asked readers to tell them why they had left their religion behind some 7,000 readers responded (“Why Do People Lose Their Religion?” June 7, 2023). Clearly there is a lot of painful pent-up feeling about this. But an equally intriguing question is, “Why do people keep their religion?” This is a question that percolated throughout a course on religion in American history I was teaching this past Spring at Fordham University (“American Religious Texts and Traditions”). The class…

Source: The National Herald By Theodore Kalmoukos BOSTON – The National Herald publishes here the fourth and final part of the confidential report from the meeting of hierarchs of the Eparchial Synod of the Archdiocese of  America with Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew on Wednesday, April 5, 2023. This article features what Metropolitan of Chalcedon Emmanuel and Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew said. The report contains the following: “Next, Metropolitan Chalcedon took the floor, emphasizing the need to build a spirit of mutual trust between the Archbishop of America and the members of the Eparchial Synod, and in no case should [people] be given…

Source: Orthodox Christian Laity Orthodox Christian Laity successfully completed its first in-person annual board meeting and conference, since the beginning of the pandemic, in the Atlanta metropolitan area on October 14-15, 2022. This 35th Annual Conference brought together board members, presenters and participants from New Jersey, Texas, Utah, Illinois, Florida, Virginia, Michigan, Ohio, California and Georgia. Thursday, October 13 Board members arrived in Atlanta on Thursday evening, October 13, and enjoyed an evening dinner together prior to the annual program. With the blessing of His Eminence, Archbishop Nathaniel, an OCL Advisory Board Member, the Sts. Constantine & Helen Romanian Orthodox…

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