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Source: Public Orthodoxy Chris Durante Associate Professor, Theology Department, Saint Peter’s University As Orthodox Christians prepare for Easter by partaking in fasting this Lenten season, we ought to pause to reflect on the ways in which this practice, in addition to being a source of spiritual renewal, can serve as a source of social transformation and ecological restoration. In order to ameliorate the ecological crises we currently face, that which Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I of Constantinople, long known as the “Green Patriarch,” asks “of us is not greater technological skill but deeper repentance, metanoia, in the literal sense of the Greek word,…

Source: Peter Anderson, Seattle USA There is the very sad news that Patriarch Neophyte died on the evening of March 13 at the age of 78 after a long illness.  https://bg-patriarshia.bg/news/saobshtenie-po-povod-konchinata-na-negovo-sveteyshestvo-balg  He had been patriarch for 11 years.  The funeral service will begin at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, March 16 at the Alexander Nevsky Cathedral in Sofia.  https://bg-patriarshia.bg/news/sv-sinod-na-bpts-bp-opredeli-datite-za-poklonenieto-opeloto  Patriarch Neophyte seems to have been highly regarded by everyone, and his condolences have poured in.  On the morning of March 14, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew conducted a Trisagion service for the repose of the soul of Patriarch Neophyte.  https://orthodoxtimes.com/patriarchal-trisagion-for-the-late-patriarch-of-bulgaria-and-bishop-of-efkarpia/  The following are the condolences sent…

Source: Suprasl Dear Friends, With a very successful Word Day of Orthodox Youth behind us we now turn our attention to our summer projects, the third annual World Gathering of Orthodox Youth and our joint project with the Diocese of the Midwest (OCA), “Orthodoxy Unleashed: Faith in Action”  which will take place in Chicago this June. We are also very excited for two new spiritual ecology projects we will be announcing in the coming weeks which will take place this summer. Stay tuned. As always we are grateful for the support of you, our friends. We ask you to pray for our work, and…

Source: Orthodox Reality A variety of maps showing the geographic distribution of Orthodox Christian Churches in the United States is available free of charge at: https://orthodoxreality.org/maps For each Orthodox Church (including both Eastern and Oriental Orthodox Churches), state and county-level maps show: Number of parishes in each state or county Number of adherents (most inclusive category of church membership) in each state or county Number of adherents as a percentage of the total population in each state or county The state-level maps are accompanied by a short description (history, etc.) of the various Orthodox Churches. In addition: Two county-level aggregate maps…

Source: Christian Persecution Pakistan For information about the Orthodox Mission in Pakistan, see here. For previous ChristianPersecution.com coverage of the persecution of Christians in Pakistan, see here. “Economic Discrimination Against Poor Christian Students,” International Christian Concern, February 27, 2024: 02/27/2024 Pakistan (International Christian Concern) – A private school in Peshawar, Pakistan, has reportedly expelled poor Christian students who are unable to pay their school fees. This discriminatory action is in direct violation of the principles of inclusivity and equal education opportunities for minorities in Pakistan. ICC firmly believes that education should be a fundamental right, irrespective of one’s social and religious background. Expelling…

Source: Public Orthodoxy Inga Leonova Editor-in-Chief at The Wheel Journal On Friday, February 16, 2024, Russian Penitentiary Service (FSIN) that is responsible for the thriving GULAG system informed the world that Russia’s “Prisoner no. 1,” Alexey Navalny, collapsed during the daily walk in the camp and died shortly thereafter. While everyone who cared about Navalny had feared for his life every day since January 17, 2021, when he returned to Russia after recovering in Germany from an assassination attempt by the Kremlin, the news still came as a gut-punching shock. Despite three years of imprisonment in inhuman, torturous conditions, despite…

Source: The National Herald By Matthew Namee* For a while now, I’ve been documenting the close relationship between the U.S. government and Ecumenical Patriarch Athenagoras in the early years of the Cold War. It was thanks in large part to American influence that Athenagoras attained the throne in Constantinople, and he relished the idea that he was an agent of Americanism, the West’s counterweight to the ascendant Soviet-backed Moscow Patriarchate. Things began to shift in the mid-1950s, as Greek Cypriots revolted against British rule in Cyprus, leading to tensions between the Greeks and Turks of the island. Turkey began to…

Source: Public Orthodoxy Rev. Dr. John Chryssavgis Director of the Huffington Ecumenical Institute at HCHC One of the temptations invariably plaguing priests and preachers as they proffer declarations and proclamations is the tendency to offer solutions to non-existent dilemmas, providing answers to questions nobody is asking or addressing the wrong audience. Which is why it is hardly surprising that various Orthodox hierarchs and circles feel the need to express disproportionate fervor and excessive alarm on the current debate around the same-sex marriage bill that just passed in the Greek parliament. With the legalization of same-sex marriage, Greece becomes the first…

Source: St. Phoebe Center for the Deaconess The St. Phoebe Center for the Deaconess expresses its appreciation for the work that went into the preparation and production of the recent AFR presentation aired on January 30, 2024, “The Orthodox Deaconess: Examining the Call for Restoration,” with special thanks to John Maddex. Securing a number of scholars and other faithful Orthodox Christians from across the spectrum of perspectives about the female diaconate, gathering hours of primary interviews, and offering a serious look at a controversial topic was a monumental task, and we appreciate being asked to participate. While the presentation had…

Source: Ancient Faith Ministries January 30, 2024 Length: 1:42:22 Have there ever been female deacons in the Orthodox Church? The answer is yes but several centuries ago. In the last decade or so, there have been calls to restore the office of Deaconess today which is a rather touchy subject in the Orthodox world. As part of our mission to Educate, Edify, and Evangelize, Ancient Faith Radio presents an in-depth audio documentary examining the call to restore Deaconesses in the Orthodox Church today. We talk with both proponents and opponents as well as those in the nuanced middle. We do not…

Source: Orthodox History by SAMUEL NOBLE The following is a translation from Asad Rustum’s History, vol. 3 pp. 357-362. It is not only interesting in terms of the description of the ceremony, but also because the conversion seems to have occurred through the Syriac bishop’s contact with Russian pilgrims. Recalling this moment of hope for Christian unity in Syria– just 112 years […] Read the complete article here

Source: Ekathimerini.com Dora Antoniou The recent unanimous rejection by the influential Greek Church’s governing Holy Synod of government plans to legalize same-sex marriage is perceived as a success for Archbishop Ieronymos in navigating the perennial antagonism between the more modernizing and conservative, at times obscurantist, factions within the Hierarchy. Opposition to the bill among senior clerics was a given, even before Tuesday’s meeting. Pressure on Ieronymos was restricted to the timing and manner of protests. However, his control over the majority of bishops and the increasing presence in recent years of younger clerics with a more educated and moderate profile…

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