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Source: Orthodox Church in America SYOSSET, NY [OCA]  In a letter dated Tuesday, June 19, 2018, His Beatitude, Metropolitan Tikhon, appealed to US President Donald Trump for compassion with regard to children who, as widely reported, are being separated from their families at the US border. Metropolitan Tikhon’s letter reads as follows and is available in PDF format. Letter of His Beatitude, Metropolitan Tikhon to US President Donald Trump Concerning the Separation of Families June 19, 2018 The President The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W. Washington, DC 20500 Dear Mr. President, I write to you asking compassion for the children…

Source: Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America NEW YORK – In recent days, the words of St. Paul in the 13th chapter of his Epistle to the Romans have been circulating in the news.  We are concerned and alarmed at the use of this biblical quote being used out of context to justify the strict application of a policy occurring at our southern border, which is detrimental to family life. The numerous challenges of today’s world weaken the already strained bonds of every modern family.  Family—a divine institution (cf. Ephesians 3:14)—is something that we as Orthodox Christians cherish and hold as sacred. …

Source: Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops in the USA The first ever, national study on evangelization and outreach in Orthodox parishes in the United States has been released by the Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of the USA. Download the report in various formats: Executive Summary (pdf) Full Report (pdf) The report “Go and Make Disciples: Evangelization and Outreach in US Orthodox Parishes” explores the practices and strategies developed by some Orthodox parishes that can be viewed as “exemplary” in their missionary and outreach efforts. Examples of what the readers will find in the report include: The “secrets” of being…

Source: Orthodox Christian Laity Being an Assembly of Bishops in a geographic area (USA)  where the Church is administratively managed in a state of canonical disorder, allowing parallel jurisdictions and more than one bishop in one city; and, since the Council held in Crete in June 2016 did not address these issues;   how will the Assembly proceed?  Will it address the real issues that bring about canonical order?  Will it establish clear rules of procedure and parliamentary order?  Who will replace Bishop Basil of Wichita as Chair of the Secretariat?   How will the dissenting Georgian, Russian, Antiochian and…

Source: Orthodox Christian Laity This forum is a place to post thoughts, papers and documents that show the need for an autocephalous, independent, self-governing Orthodox Church in the USA in which the Synod is composed of the bishops of all jurisdictions who meet to elect their own head, approve work of their committees and include the laity and the input of laypeople in the administration of the Church.  The Church is governed to meet the spiritual needs of all Orthodox faithful in the geographic area of the USA and is a Mission Church welcoming all seekers and faithful who want to…

Source: Orthodox England The Inter-Orthodox Council, with a token number of bishops from each of the fourteen Local Churches and supposed to take place in May 2016 to discuss administrative issues, is looking increasingly troubled. First, there is the schism between the Patriarchates of Jerusalem and Antioch. Then there were rumours after contacts with top US officials that the US State Department was trying to set the agenda, specifically regarding homosexuality. Then there was news from the Russian Orthodox Church that delegates from several Local Churches, notably the Russian, the Romanian (the second biggest) and the Georgian, had failed to…

Source: Orthodox Christian Laity Overview on the Chronology and Work of the Assembly of Bishops Presented on Friday, November 5, 2015 Open Forum at the OCL Annual Meeting held at St John of Damascus Orthodox Church, Poway CA: ORTHODOX WORKING TOGETHER – George Matsoukas, presenter Will the Orthodox Christian Church in the USA remain as separate colonies of the fourteen Old World Patriarchates and autocephalous churches, or will it finally be a mission Church to the faithful in their own country?  This is the question for the Hierarchs of the Church to solve in their deliberations as the Assembly…

Source: Orthodox Christian Laity BE INFORMED – Orthodox Christian Unity in the USA A STUDY GUIDE to HELP YOU UNDERSTAND THE CONTEXT AND WORK OF THE ASSEMBLY OF CANONICAL ORTHODOX BISHOPS IN THE UNITED STATES. IT IS TIME FOR THE LAITY TO ACT! The Assembly of Bishops of the Orthodox Church in the USA is a work in progress. The Assembly has concluded its 6th Meeting held on September 15-17, 2015. The bishops could not reach a consensus and move ahead to develop a blueprint for a unified Orthodox Christian Church in the USA. Many see the Church as a…

Source: Orthodox Christian Laity The argument presented to me by the Antiochian Archdiocese leadership is that Archbishop Demetrios cannot preside over the Assembly of Bishops of the USA, because he is an Exarch.  (See a reasonable explanation to the contrary below by Very Rev. Dr. Alexander Rentel, Assistant Professor of Canon Law and Byzantine Studies at St. Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary).    The games must stop!  The bishops have the responsibility to make canonical the Churches outside the boundaries of the former Roman Empire.  Orthodox Christianity as presently organized in the so-called Orthodox Diaspora is uncanonical.  The Assembly of Bishops of the…

Source: Ukrainian Weekly UOC-U.S.A. reaches out to refugees from Donetsk and Luhansk KYIV – “I raise my eyes to heaven, praying for peace; I stretch my hands towards heaven, begging for stability and peace…” These were the words of a 13-year-old Mariana, a refugee child from Donetsk region of eastern Ukraine, as she greeted Bishop Daniel, ruling hierarch of the Western Eparchy and president of the Consistory of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the U.S.A. (UOC-U.S.A) on May 7 at LOGOS Orthodox Christian Center outside of Ukraine’s capital Kyiv. Bishop Daniel was joined by the Very Rev. Bazyl Zawierucha, pastor…

Source: Hartford Institute for Religion Research February 2002 The quick answer:  Far less than usually reported. The longer answer:  According to a recent study of Orthodoxy in the United States, the real membership (number of adult adherents and their children) in all Eastern Christian Churches in the USA can be estimated atabout 1,200,000 persons.  This figure is considerably less than the commonly accepted estimations, which range as high as over four million. The greatest disproportions between “claimed” and actual memberships were found in the two largest Orthodox jurisdictions: Greek Orthodox Archdiocese (typically claimed 1,954,500* members versus 440,000 actual adherents) Orthodox Church in…

Source: Orthodox Christian Laity Sunday of Orthodoxy, March 1, 2015  “… move beyond words to actions… putting our theology into practice… moving beyond what is mine and yours, to what is ours.” This important message was conveyed by His All Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew to the Assembly of Orthodox Bishops at their fifth official meeting which was held in Dallas, Texas on September 15-19, 2014.  Unfortunately, the various proposals that were presented by the bishops defer the establishment of an autocephalous Orthodox Christian Church in the United States of America for at least another ten years. The Orthodox Christian Laity…