Personal Musings on the Holy and Great Council

Source: Orthodox Christian Laity I had prepared myself to go to Chania, Crete and see, as a reporter, the events and hear the commentary and behind-the-scenes events that would be part of the excitement and surroundings of this monumental historical event, the Holy and Great Council of the Orthodox Church.    I sent in the information that was necessary to be approved as an observer.  The approval came.  I was excited about going.  I have been an advocate for the Council for 28 years.  In … [Read more...]

Clergy Laity Congresses: Greek Orthodox Archdiocese, Philadelphia 2000-2014 – THE FAMILY IS THE SOLUTION

Source: Orthodox Christian Laity The theme of the 42nd Clergy Laity Congress, “The Orthodox Christian Family: A Dwelling of Christ and A Witness of His Gospel,” is very appropriate for us in this time of transition.   For it is truly within the home that the Orthodox faith will be learned, survive and grow by the example and actions of each of us.  However, for many, parish life and archdiocesan settings are an antithesis to the theme of the 42nd Congress.  HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVE On … [Read more...]

Blueprint for a Unified Orthodox Christian Church in the United States: Where are We? A Layperson’s Overview

Source: Orthodox Christian Laity by George E. Matsoukas In 2008, a Meeting of Patriarchs of the Autocephalous Orthodox Churches convened in Switzerland under the auspices of Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople, and charged the Bishops, in the lands outside of the traditional Roman Empire, to meet together in Assemblies of Bishops.  The purpose of these meetings of Assemblies of Bishops is to develop blueprints to establish canonical order within their geographic areas.   The Churches … [Read more...]

Accountable Church Leadership – Where?

 “After this I will pour out my spirit on all humanity….Your old men will have dreams, and your young men will see visions.”  Joel 2:28 Since the imposition of a Charter on the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America without the input and approval of the Clergy and Laity within that particular Orthodox grouping in the United States, the consequences have been chaotic.  There is no accountability within the Archdiocese.  The Metropolitans each report directly to the Patriarch in Istanbul. They see … [Read more...]

Moving Ahead in Unity

Pentecost  2013 As we take leave of the Paschal Liturgical Cycle of Lent through Pentecost,  I want to take this opportunity to reflect upon a book I re-read during this period:  Christ in Our Midst by Father Theodore Stylianopoulos.  The book was written in 1980, and I was familiar with it when I was putting together the Chapter on “Spiritual Renewal” in the OCL publication “Project for Orthodox Renewal”.  You can read this work online on our website. The discussion and insights … [Read more...]

A Reflection: Orthodox Christian Unity is Proper Response for Global and Fragmented World

by George Matsoukas, Executive Director of Orthodox Christian Laity The Orthodox Christian Church is in the Paschal Season.  Having attended the many services of preparation for the Resurrection of Christ and as we await Pentecost, we know that the Holy Spirit is present everywhere and that brothers and sisters must dwell together in unity, which is the Christian norm.   During this season, we must continue to pray that the Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops finds the humility to move … [Read more...]

Glory Be to Jesus Christ! Glory Forever! Looking at the Orthodox Church in America

Source: The National Herald For the last two decades the Orthodox Church in America (OCA) and other Orthodox Christian groupings have been tested by internal and external forces. The OCA has been humbled by its testing. It remains to be seen if it will be able to rise up with wisdom. The OCA’s internal problems have been presented impartially by Dr. Andrew Walsh in the Spring 2012 issue of Religion in the News. Vol. 14, No. 1. Dr. Walsh asks an important question: “Does or should anyone … [Read more...]

The Clergy Laity Congress Has Ignored the Patriarch’s Directive to Achieve Unity

Source: The National Herald | George Matsoukas, Executive Director of Orthodox Christian Laity Having looked over the information concerning the recently completed National Assembly of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese, which took place in Phoenix, AZ and having talked to some members of my local community in Southeast Florida who attended, I conclude that there were no workshops, discussions, or information presented on the work of the Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of North and Central … [Read more...]

Orthodox Christian Laity Advocates for United Church

Source: The National Herald WEST PALM BEACH, FL – Since 1987, Orthodox Christian Laity (OCL) has been the independent voice advocating for a unified Orthodox Christian Community in the United States. That there exist 14 ethnic Orthodox Christian groupings in the United States is incomprehensible to even Orthodox and causes greater confusion for others. Orthodox Christianity is seen as fragmented and in a state of disunity, when in fact no sacramental disunity exists within the liturgical life … [Read more...]

George Matsoukas: Report on the Orthodox Christian Laity 2012 Winter Board Meeting

By George Matsoukas The Orthodox Christian Laity Winter Board Meeting took place in Columbus, Georgia the last week of February 2012 at the Hilton Gardens Inn. Advisory Board member and former mayor of Columbus, retired Colonel Robert S. Poydasheff, was the host of the productive meeting. President Bill Souvall from Salt Lake City, UT presided. The Orthodox Christian Laity Winter Board Meeting took place in Columbus, Georgia the last week of February 2012 at the Hilton Gardens Inn. … [Read more...]