Antiochian perspective on the “Holy and Great Council”: Harbinger of Storm or Passage to Calm?

Source: Ancient Faith Radio Archpriest Patrick B. O'Grady offers an Antiochian perspective on the "Holy and Great Council" currently taking place in Crete. Fr. Patrick is the pastor of St Peter the Apostle Antiochian Orthodox Church in Pomona, California, and Associate Fellow of The Antiochian Orthodox Institute, La Verne, California. Listen Here (Audio courtesy of Ancient Faith Radio)     Transcript Harbinger of Storm or Passage to Calm? by … [Read more...]

Orthodox Christian leaders make last-minute appeal for unity

Source: The National Herald By Associated Press Orthodox Christian leaders meeting for a historic council aimed at promoting unity have made a last-minute appeal to the Russian Orthodox Church and three others to attend the first such gathering in more than a millennium. A spokesman for Istanbul-based Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I says the leaders of 10 out of the 14 Orthodox churches that were supposed to convene on the Greek island of Crete will seek to resolve the issues that … [Read more...]

Synaxis: Primates Acknowledge Pain in Absence of Missing Churches

Source: Press Office of the Holy and Great Council CRETE — Following a doxology and morning prayer service, His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew convened the Synaxis (gathering) of the Primates of the local autocephalous Orthodox Churches. This meeting was scheduled in January 2016 to provide the Primates the opportunity to review a draft of the Council’s Message, review the Council’s agenda, and address outstanding matters. During their deliberations, the Primates acknowledged … [Read more...]

Livestreaming of Holy and Great Council Events

Source: Press Office of the Holy and Great Council Several events of the Holy and Great Council, an historic gathering for the Orthodox Christian Churches and the first of its kind in 1200 years, are available to the public via livestreaming. The following events will be available at https://www.holycouncil.org/live at the listed times in local Crete (UTC +3): Sunday, June 19, 8:00 -- Orthros and Divine Liturgy of Holy Pentecost Monday, June 20, 11:00-14:00 -- Opening Session of the … [Read more...]

Greek foreign minister hosts welcome dinner for Primates

Source: Press Office of the Holy and Great Council His All-Holiness the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew highlighted the importance of the Holy and Great Council at an official dinner hosted 16 June by Nikos Kotzias, minister of foreign affairs for the Hellenic Republic, for the Primates of the Orthodox Church who are presently in Crete.  His All Holiness emphasized that the “world is turning its attention with great expectations to the Orthodox Church, the ark of the pure Christian … [Read more...]

The Orthodox Church Stays in the Dark Ages

Source: Bloomberg View By Leonid Bershidsky Pope Francis' enormous popularity -- his Twitter accounts in different languages have a total of about 30 million followers, about as many as Bill Gates and more than Adele -- is a consequence of his openness to diversity and a softer approach to dogma. He represents a modernized Catholic Church. By contrast, the world's second biggest Christian denomination is proving so resistant to modernization that its plans to adopt some timid changes … [Read more...]

Primates continue to arrive, voice support for Holy and Great Council

Source: Press Office of the Holy and Great Council On 16 June, leaders of the Orthodox Churches continued to arrive in Crete for the Holy and Great Council. His Beatitude Archbishop of Athens and All Greece, Ieronymos, stated this afternoon at the airport of Chania, Crete, that His Beatitude Patriarch of Jerusalem Theofilos, His Beatitude Patriarch of Serbia Irinej, and His Beatitude Archbishop of Albania, Anastasios, have all arrived, in order to participate in the Holy and Great Council, … [Read more...]

Orthodox Synod to Take Place Despite New Pullout, by Russia

Source: The National Herald By Associated Press ATHENS, Greece (AP) — The spiritual leader of the world’s Orthodox Christians on Wednesday said a historic meeting of church leaders — the first in more than a millennium — will take place despite a pullout by Russia, the fourth Orthodox church to say it won’t attend the June gathering in Crete. Istanbul-based Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, who ranks as “the first among equals,” said he hopes the Russian church and three others who … [Read more...]

Orthodox Churches’ Council, Centuries in Making, Falters as Russia Exits

Source: New York Times By ANDREW HIGGINS MOSCOW — After 55 years of preparation, a landmark effort to promote unity among the world’s 300 million Orthodox Christians turned into a showcase of disarray on Tuesday after the Russian church, the biggest of 14 Orthodox jurisdictions, announced that it would not take part in a historic conclave of church leaders scheduled to start this weekend. The gathering, known both as the Holy and Great Council and as the Pan-Orthodox Council, is scheduled … [Read more...]

Hope – Apprehension as Great Council Approaches

Source: The National Herald By TNH Staff / Dennis Menos Amid all the speculation in the media concerning the upcoming Holy and Great Orthodox Council, and of the many opportunities and challenges that it will confront, it is only natural for Orthodox faithful to be hopeful but also apprehensive. Will the Council, is a question often heard, turn out to be Orthodoxy’s greatest moment in the modern era? What about the key issues that confront the Church? Will the Council be successful in … [Read more...]