Saturday, 17 Mar 2018
Books by Patriarch Kirill to be Presented in Paris
12 hours ago
On March 18, 2018, a presentation of books by His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia, published by the Moscow Patriarchate Publishers, will take place at the amphitheatre of the Russian Orthodox Spiritual and Cultural Center in Paris. During the event, which will be held with a blessing of Bishop Nestor of Korsun, […]
The post Books by Patriarch Kirill to be Presented in Paris appeared first on A Russian Orthodox Church Website.
Friday, 16 Mar 2018
Healthy Minds, Healthy Souls: Just Be
13 hours ago
Let your children take that long shower!!! Parents, it will come as no surprise to you when I say that children are under an enormous amount of pressure in today’s world. Making the choice to not rush your children through everything they are doing probably feels like the dreaded, “but things just won’t get done” […]
Georgian Patriarchate States a New Wave of Church Defamation
16 Mar 2018 at 12:00am
The urgent statement claims that the discrediting campaign is backed by certain forces, who find the high authority and rating of the Church and Catholicos-Patriarch Ilia II unacceptable. According to the Georgian Patriarchate, these forces attempt to involve the Church in their political games. «It is unacceptable for them that the Church protects the sanctity […]
The post Georgian Patriarchate States a New Wave of Church Defamation appeared first on A Russian Orthodox Church Website.
OCP Media Network
Saturday, 17 Mar 2018
Ethiopian Orthodox Quest for Unity
11 hours ago
Solomon Kibriye (Editor- Ethiopian Affairs) – OCP News Service – 17/3/18
This week, his Holiness Patriarch Abune Matthias I, Patriarch of Ethiopia, Echege of of the See of St. Tekle Haimanot and Archbishop of Aksum, celebrated the 5th anniversary of his enthronement in the midst of unprecedented civil unrest throughout the country. His Holiness released a statement that clergy at every rank have failed in their duty to protect and to mediate for peace between the population and those in authority and must share in the responsibility for the loss of life, peace, and property. Ideally, one would have expected that the institution that leads the largest number of Ethiopian faithful would have played a much larger role in trying to resolve the issues that have arisen between between the political interests that are shaking civil society to it’s core and demanding fundamental change. One of the major factors that has prevented this is the disunity that has shaken the hierarchy and the faithful on several levels.
One of the major factors in the weakening of the role of the church was the circumstances surrounding its disestablishment as the religion of state in 1974 when the monarchy was abolished. From the 4th Century proclamation of Christianity as the faith of the state by the Axumite brother co-Emperors Abreha and Atsbeha (Esana and Sezana), until Emperor Haile Selassie was deposed on September 12, 1974, every single Ethiopian monarch received anointing and coronation from the Ethiopian Orthodox Church. Oaths were taken on the Holy Bible, and a fully equipped traveling tent church accompanied kings and warlords on military campaigns. Church fasts were observed by all, clergy occupied senior posts in the palace, military action was frowned on during Lent (unless invaded by a foreign force), and during Holy Week music was not played on the radio.
Monarchs attended church services in churches amongst their people and displayed their piety, and presided at great feasts, like Mesqel (Finding of the Holy Cross) and Timkat (Theophany). In return for the subjugation of the monarch to the church, and the upholding of piety, the church in turn recognized the monarch as its temporal head, who ensured not only the public adherence to it’s rules and strictures among the faithful public, but also it’s internal discipline. The deposition of Emperor Haile Selassie and the disestablishment of the Church as the faith of state ended all that of course.
The Marxist Derg regime that deposed the Emperor proclaimed “equality of faiths” which actually translated to oppression of all faiths. While the Patriarch and the Head of the Islamic Council of Ethiopia flanked the new head of state at public functions, the role of religion was deliberately attacked and belittled in a very public way. However, while the church lost all ability to influence the state, the state continued to treat the church as if it had inherited the Emperor’s role and directly involved itself in church affairs. Nothing illustrated this more than the imprisonment of Patriarch Abune Theophilos and his subsequent execution at the hands of the Communist regime. The government had nationalized the considerable properties of the church, and made it dependent on its largess. The government extended its authority into every church organ and retained a veto power over all church actions. Two Patriarchs were successively enthroned by the Ethiopian Orthodox Church during this time, and both were enthroned with the approval of the officially atheist regime.
In 1991, the Derg regime fell and the new government of the EPRDF came to power. However the attitude of the State towards the Church as an entity it needed to control did not end. The church had some property returned, but other than that the government continued to exert influence at every level. Patriarch Abune Merkorios abdicated under circumstances that remain under dispute. His followers say he did so under duress while his opponents say he did so of his own free will after his position became untenable having been discredited by his association with the fallen government. Whether his leaving his throne was voluntary or not, and if he was legitimate to begin with consumes many an argument that continue to rage. A new Patriarch, Abune Paulos was enthroned, and Abune Merkorios fled the country and an exile synod was set up by bishops who followed him into exile in 1993 in the United States. The split in the synod took on increasingly serious features as the two groups excommunicated each other following the consecration of new bishops by the exile synod in subsequent years. Sadly, opposition political groupings in exile have tried to exert influence on the exile synod and its churches (mostly through the individual church boards) in the same manner that the government does on the synod in Addis Ababa. This can be seen in the multiple disputes one hears about between the exile synods and recalcitrant boards who act as if the church should be subject to “popular rule”. It shows that there is an alarming trend among the entire political class of regarding the church as a powerful political tool rather than an institution that is entitled to respect. Indeed it shows that all sides in Ethiopia’s political sphere treat the church with a lack of respect.
The influence of pro and anti government politicians and authorities in both synods and churches has served to entrench the split in the church and made reconciliation increasingly difficult. A previous effort at reconciliation came tantalizingly close when heirarchs of both synods joined together to celebrate liturgy in the Washington DC area in 2012. However, Patriarch Abune Paulos died in August of that same year and there were those who advocated allowing Abune Merkorios to resume the Patriarchal throne. The exile synod made it clear that was what it considered the only solution that it would accept. Instead the Addis Ababa synod elected Abune Matthias as Patriarch, and reconciliation efforts ended.
Now Ethiopia is witnessing public unrest at a level it has never seen previously and confrontations between the two sides is increasingly tense. There have been repeated incidents of loss of life. The church ideally should have been the great neutral body that would have stepped in to mediate between the parties and helped to resolve the confrontation. Instead it is split and thus weakened, and because of the influence of politicians over its hierarchy both inside and outside the country, the hierarchy is prevented from exerting the influence that it should have been able to deploy. It shows without a doubt how much the authority of the church has been severely damaged by the fact that it has not been allowed to operate as an independent entity above all political interests.
Additionally a new threat has emerged inside the church in the form of the “Tehadiso” (Renewal) movement which has made efforts to introduce Protestant practices and teachings into the church by way of “modernizing” and “reinterpreting mistaken teachings” etc. When clamped down on in Addis Ababa, many of this movement’s devotees have fled abroad and taken refuge among the exile synod by denouncing the actions of the Ethiopian government and the Addis Ababa synod as its surrogate. However their teachings and practices have caused considerable dispute and conflict among the exile synod itself, and there is a dawning realization that this movement could seriously compromise its doctrinal position. The exile synod had to take the unprecedented step last year, of declaring that it remained fully within the canons and dogma of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo church and that in matters of faith there is no difference between it and the synod in Addis Ababa. However there is alarm in both groups that if Tehadiso becomes entrenched in the churches under the exile synod, reconciliation might become impossible.
The need for reconciliation has thus become increasingly urgent. In recognition of this need, a group of the faithful living outside of Ethiopia formed a committee of reconciliation that approached both the exiles and the Addis Ababa synod to appoint delegates to re-start the reconciliation process. This week, while they were assembled in Addis Ababa to celebrate Patriarch Abune Matthias’ enthronement anniversary, the Holy Synod approved three archbishops to lead the delegation that will meet with the exiled fathers and restart the process. They are Abune Qwestos Archbishop of Eastern Shewa, Archbishop Abune Gorgorios, and Abune Abraham Archbishop of Bahir Dar and Eastern Gojjam. The exiled Synod is expected to name its delegates shortly.
May God Almighty grant these church fathers the wisdom and patience to achieve the unity of the Holy Church, and restore our faith to it’s place of greatness in the face of great trials and tribulations. Only then can the church assume its proper place in society and play the role it was meant to.
“MOVING IN THE SPIRIT” FROM ΑΝ ORTHODOX PERSPECTIVE – 2018 WORLD MISSION CONF...
12 hours ago
Prof .Petros Vassiliadis (President – CEMES)- OCP News Service – 17/3/18
The World Council of Churches Conference on Mission and Evangelism in Arusha, Tanzania (8-13 of March, 2018) was the first Global Christian event after the Holy and Great Council of the (Eastern) Orthodox Church in Crete, Greece (19-26 of June, 2016). And it is a significant event that has not only fostered Christian relations, since it gathered in the Holy Spirit all Christian families (Orthodox, Catholic, Mainstream Protestant, Evangelical and Pentecostal, and their respective Mission agencies and African Churches), but also Inter-Orthodox, Eastern and Oriental ones. In what follows I will attempt to provide my personal assessment for both these relations, being aware that God’s providence sometimes works in unexpected and unimaginable ways. This is after all what our Bible tells us: “The Spirit blows wherever s/he wills” (Jn 3:8).
This famous saying is reported in the Gospel of John in the context of Jesus’ discussion with Nicodemus and his discourse on the need of a spiritual birth of us all. This birth by the Spirit, unlike natural birth, is the work of God that no one can control, just as so happens to the wind. “The Spirit blows wherever s/he wills (and here the evangelist moves from the meaning of the Holy Spirit to that of the wind, since the Greek pneuma can have both meanings). We hear its sound but we do not know from where it comes or where it goes. “Thus it is, the saying continues, with everyone who is born of the Spirit” (3:8). And it is for this reason that the proper worship of the community, as the Gospel of John underlines in Jesus’ discussion with the Samaritan woman, has to be “in spirit and in truth” (4:24).
The Gospel of John presupposes the synoptic tradition, but moves beyond its logic, as well as beyond some of the earlier (Pauline) theological views. Theologically it approaches the enduring problems of history, of human destiny, and consequently of our responsibility for the world, in other words our mission, starting not from anthropology, but rather from Christology. Christology, however, cannot to be understood in John, except through Pneumatology; since “the Paraclete” (14:26), the Holy Spirit according to John’s terminology, is characterized as the “alter ego” of Christ (“and I will ask my father and he will give you another Paraclete, so that he might remain with you always” 14:16). This other Paraclete, who “will teach us all things” (14:26) is “the Spirit of truth” (Jn 14:17; 15:26; 16:13). And in the final analysis the Paraclete is one that will “guide us into all the truth” (Jn 16:12). Consequently human beings are in communion with “the way, the truth and the life,” (Jn 14:6) who is Christ, only through the Holy Spirit, whom he bestows upon the world as a gift of God the Father.
These views have tremendous consequences for missiology. In John, as in the early Christian tradition, the Christian community is not perceived as a mere institution, as an organization with a logically defined set of doctrines, and/or a specific order, or even simply by going forth just verbally proclaiming the good news, but rather in terms of communion with Christ, when we keep his word and believe in him who had sent him, just as Christ is in communion with the Father (10:30; 17:21f). We are “of the truth,” when we hear his voice, just as the sheep hear the voice of the good shepherd (10:1ff), and follow his radical commands. All these happen, when we change our lives, i.e. when we are born from above (3:3), by the Spirit (3:5f).
This Pneumatological, and consequently Trinitarian, and therefore relational dimension of Christian mission, which was originally articulated some decades ago by Christian missiologists in the ecumenical movement, and described as a missio dei, took its final form in the World Council of Churches’ World Mission Conference of Arusha, on the theme: “Moving in the Spirit: called to Transforming Discipleship.” In Arusha more than one thousand participants were gathered, who are engaged in mission and evangelism, missiologists and missionaries, from different Christian traditions and from every part of the world. They joyfully celebrated the life-giving movement of the Holy Spirit in our time, drawing particular inspiration from the African context.
One of the main issues discussed in Arusha, as in almost all previous (13 or 14 – depending on whether one counts the previous centenary celebration in Edinburgh 2010, which marked the 100 hundred years of common Christian witness, if not actual at least attempted to be such), was how Christian mission and evangelism must be authentically and “in Christ’s way” conducted.
Some conference participants, not only Orthodox, did not feel comfortable with such a strongly political rhetoric, and preferred a rather neutral stance on social issues, a less material and more spiritual direction in the next decades’ mission. But such concerns were not possible to be satisfied, especially after the Papal encyclical Evangelii Gaudium (The Joy of the Gospel), the New Mission Statement of the WCC, Together Towards Life, the (Eastern) Orthodox conciliar document adopted by the long awaited Holy and Great Council of the Orthodox Church, even The 2010 Cape Town Commitment of the Lausanne Evangelical Movement.
Gleaning only from the Orthodox declarations, and especially only from the Orthodox Mission statement, entitled “The Mission of the Orthodox Church in Today’s World,” we are reminded in Ch.6 par. 4-5: “The gap between rich and poor is dramatically exacerbated due to the financial crisis, which normally results from the unbridled profiteering by some representatives of financial circles, the concentration of wealth in the hands of the few, and perverted business practices devoid of justice and humanitarian sensitivity, which ultimately do not serve humanity’s true needs. A sustainable economy is that which combines efficiency with justice and social solidarity (par. 4). In light of such tragic circumstances, the Church’s great responsibility is perceived in terms of overcoming hunger and all other forms of deprivation in the world. One such phenomenon in our time – whereby nations operate within a globalized economic system – points to the world’s serious identity crisis, for hunger not only threatens the divine gift of life of whole peoples, but also offends the lofty dignity and sacredness of the human person, while simultaneously offending God. Therefore, if concern over our own sustenance is a material issue, then concern over feeding our neighbor is a spiritual issue (Jm 2:14-18). Consequently, it is the mission of all Orthodox Churches to exhibit solidarity and administer assistance effectively to those in need” (par. 5).
The Arousha Message, following the second part of the general theme: “Called to a transforming discipleship,” includes a number of callings, in the sense of tasks all committed Christians must accomplish, and ends with the following prayer:
Obviously the main focus of the Arusha Mission Conference was transformation, both for ourselves, most evident in the prayer, but also in the preamble: “The Holy Spirit continues to move in our time, and urgently calls us as Christian communities to respond with personal and communal conversion”, and mainly of the world, most evident in the final Message’s callings, which analytically underlined and explained what a “transforming discipleship” is all about. In other words the Message underlines both the personal conversion and a transformative character of the authentic Christian discipleship.
What will definitely please all the Orthodox is a reference to the Eastern Christian theology of Theosis: “Discipleship is both a gift and a calling, to be active collaborators with God for the transforming of the world. In what the church’s early theologians called ‘theosis’ or deification, we share God’s grace by sharing God’s mission. This journey of discipleship leads us to share and live out God’s love in Jesus Christ by seeking justice and peace in ways that are different from the world (John 14:27). Thus, we are responding to Jesus’ call to follow him from the margins of our world.”
As disciples of Jesus Christ, both individually and collectively: “We are called by our baptism to transforming discipleship: a Christ-connected way of life in a world where many face despair, rejection, and worthlessness. We are called to worship the one Triune God, the God of justice, love, and grace at a time where many worship the false god of the market system. We are called to proclaim the good news of Jesus Christ – the fullness of life, the repentance and forgiveness of sin, and the promise of eternal life – in word and deed, in a violent world in which many are sacrificed to the idols of death and many have not yet heard the gospel. We are called to joyfully engage in the ways of the Holy Spirit, who empowers people from the margins with agency in their search for dignity, justice, and fullness of life. We are called to discern the word of God in a world that communicates many contradictory, false, and confusing messages. We are called to care for God’s creation and be in solidarity with nations severely affected by climate change in the face of ruthless human-centered exploitation of the environment for greed and consumerism. We are called as disciples to belong together in a just and inclusive community, in our quest for unity and on our ecumenical journey, in a world that is based upon marginalization and exclusion. We are called to be faithful witnesses of God’s transforming love in dialogue with people of other faiths in a world where politicization of religious identities often cause conflict. We are called to be formed as servant leaders who demonstrate the way of Christ in a world that privileges power, wealth, and the culture of money. We are called to break down walls and seek justice with people who are dispossessed and displaced from their lands, including migrants, refugees and asylum seekers, and to resist new frontiers and borders that separate and kill. We are called to follow the way of the cross, which challenges elitism, privilege, personal and structural power. We are called to live in the light of the resurrection, which offers hope-filled possibilities for transformation.”
But what happened and God’s providence worked “in unexpected and unimaginable ways,” as I said above (synergeia tou Agiou Pneumatos), to our “Orthodox” family (Eastern and Oriental), as it is traditionally viewed in ecumenical circles, especially within the World Council of Churches?
However, the most significant and symbolic gesture was the invitation by the presiding Metropolitan to the Armenian Metropolitan Vicente of the (Oriental) Etchmiadzin Armenian Apostolic Church to come up in the synthronon, next to him.
The presence, in addition, of another high ranking Oriental Orthodox Hierarch, His Holiness Moran Mor Ignatius Aphrem II, the Patriarch of Antioch and all the East and the supreme head of the Universal Syriac Orthodox Church, gave a further opportunity to strengthen inter-Orthodox relations. Arriving on Sunday afternoon, after the Orthodox liturgy, Ignatius Aphrem II became the first Orthodox Patriarch to be physically present at a World Mission Conference, at least in my memory, and speak on the last plenary (March 13, 2018). Of course, His All-Holiness, the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew was the first ecclesiastical dignitary to address the Arusha conference in a recorded video at the opening plenary, before His Holiness Pope Francis’ Message to the Mission Conference participants was read by Bishop Brian Farrell, Secretary of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity.
It was that gesture, which gave me the opportunity to remind the gathering of the importance of pressing the ecclesiastical leadership, as well as the scientific theological resources of both our families, to bring to an end the prayerful and God-pleasing official theological dialogue between the Easter and Oriental Orthodox Churches, which has long ago been successfully completed its mandated issuing few minor commonly agreed final recommendations to both families. Regretfully, fundamentalist reactions on both sides have prevented so far our Churches to come to a final official agreement, which will eventually pave the way to a sacramental union. And we are talking about two Christian traditions that despite 15 centuries of complete isolation have amazingly retained so similar spirituality.
Both for myself and for His Holiness Patriarch Ignatius Aphrem the first ecumenical experience was at another World Mission Conference of WCC, three decades ago (1989) at San Antonio, USA. The world Christianity was reflecting at that conference on “Mission in Christ’s Way,” and the event is still remembered for the bold initiative of a young Serbian Orthodox priest leading a normal procession of the conference holding the Bible, in the way the Holy Gospel is carried during the Little Entrance in the Eastern (and Oriental) Orthodox Eucharistic Liturgy, and the influential contribution of a great Orthodox theologian, ecumenist and missiologist, His Beatitude Archbishop Anastasios of Albania.
Will the Holy Spirit blow in an unexpected and unimaginable way to our Churches now? Are we ready to be “Moving in the Spirit”? Can we become “Transforming disciples” and bear martyria/witness, or do “Mission in Christ’s Way”? We pray. And we pray, as in the previous World Mission Conference in Athens – the first in a predominantly Orthodox country – “Come Holy Spirit, heal and reconcile”.
Friday, 16 Mar 2018
Oriental Orthodox Studies Seminar at Fordham University – 10th April, 2018
16 Mar 2018 at 4:37am
Fordham University – 16/3/18
The first ‘Oriental Orthodox Studies’ Seminar will be held at Fordham University on 10th April Tuesday, 2018.
Bishop Kyrillos from the Coptic Church, Archbishop Vahan Hovhanessian Primate of the Armenian Church in France, and Archbishop Dionysius Yuhannon of the Syriac Church will take part in the conference. The Conference is open for public.
Orthodox Christianity - Pravoslavie.ru/english
Православие.Ru — Orthodox Christianity
Православие.Ru — русский православный информационный ресурс.
Saturday, 17 Mar 2018
Enemies of Church try to entangle it in political games—Georgian Patriarchate
8 hours ago
The Georgian Orthodox Church has come out with a statement about attempts to use the Church in political games, emphasizing that it is expecting a new wave of attacks from those who cannot accept the authority and popularity of the Church and of His Holiness Patriarch-Catholicos Ilia II and their traditional stances.
Songs of Light and Revelation
10 hours ago
But these hymns do more than simply summarize the content of the Gospel readings and offer a kind of musical prйcis. They also reveal that Christianity is a mystery religion, in which the risen Christ reveals Himself to the initiated.
A Shortage of Righteous People
10 hours ago
Indeed all the canonized righteous people make up only one percent of the total number of saints at most. And it is not because the righteous are few in number.
Orthodox Church in America
Friday, 16 Mar 2018
Register now for 92nd National FOCA Convention July 20-23
23 hours ago
Now is the time to make plans to attend the 92nd National Convention of the Fellowship of Orthodox Christians in America [FOCA] at Saint Louis, MO’s Union Station Hotel July 20-23, 2018.
“This year’s convention will be held in conjunction with the 19th All-American Council [AAC] of the Orthodox Church in America, which opens July 23 and concludes July 27,” says Deacon Peter Ilchuk. “The last national convention was held in Saint Louis 32 years ago, and much has changed since then, providing many reasons to return.”
According to Deacon Peter, the MetroLink Red Line provides regular service from Lambert International Airport to downtown Saint Louis. The Union Station stop is located a few blocks from the hotel. The next station on the MetroLink line stops at the new Busch Stadium, with its spectacular Ballpark Village entertainment and dinining complex and the multi-floor Saint Louis Cardinals’ Baseball Hall of Fame. The line extends to the “must see” landmark Gateway Arch and Lacledes Landing.
Many of the city’s “classic” tourist sites, including the Budweiser Brewery and Biergarten, the Saint Louis Art Museum, and the 90 acre Saint Louis Zoo with its 18,000 animals from 700 species, have been upgraded over the years. Other nearby attractions providing outstanding family experiences include Six Flags Saint Louis, the Missouri Botanical Garden—the oldest in the US—and the City Museum.
Saint Louis loves its sports teams, Deacon Peter adds, as evidenced by the sellout crowds for hockey at the nearby Scottrade Center and Cardinals baseball at Busch Stadium. While the Cardinals will not be home during the convention and AAC, ballpark tours, which include the press box, luxury clubs, field and dugout, are available four times daily. The stadium boasts many interesting statues, including one of Stan Musial.
Other convention tips offered by the FOCA include the following.
Thursday, 15 Mar 2018
Planting Grant Missions: “What first fruit shall I offer Thee?”
15 Mar 2018 at 1:17pm
Fr. John Parker addresses Annunciation faithful on the importance of wise stewardship.
In 2017, the Annunciation of the Virgin Mary Mission, Saint James, MO was one of five recently planted communities to be awarded a Church Planting Grant from the Orthodox Church in America. At the time, Priest Joel Wilson anticipated that the grant “will help our community continue to mature in an organic and Apostolic way by being assisted both spiritually and materially by the larger and already established Body.”
Not only has the community experienced numerical growth during the past few years, but it continues to focus on interior spiritual growth through its worship, ministries and gatherings designed to emphasize the essentials of the Orthodox Christian faith and life.
Recently, Priest John Parker, Chair of the OCA’s Department of Evangelization, visited Annunciation Mission, where he offered a wealth of insights into the centrality of stewardship in mission growth. His presentation, titled “First and Finest,” drew upon the the excellent book and resource of the same name by Archpriest Robert Holet of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the USA.
“Every Christian is a student, a servant, a steward, and a sharer, and each of these areas must be cultivated carefully and intentionally in the life of an Orthodox believer,” Father John said in introducing his topic. “The level of the bar set for stewardship in a mission church sets a trajectory for the future growth, stagnation, or decline of a mission or parish. Stewardship modeled on Cain’s offering of ‘a little something’ will lead to stagnation and failure; stewardship modeled on Abel’s first and finest offering will be a foundation of stone.”
Quoting 1 Chronicles 29:14—“All things come of Thee, O Lord, and of Thine own have we given Thee!”—Father John turned his attention to the subject of tithing.
“The biblical tithe is the simple beginning point of our stewardship of thanks and praise to God, to Whom we do not ‘owe’ ten percent, but to Whom our debt of thanks calls for our ‘all,’” Father John explained. “The Church, in the eighth ode of the Matins Canon for the second Thursday of Great Lent, calls that season the ‘Tithe of the Year.’ This is indeed a season during which we ponder, in the very first words of the Great Canon of Saint Andrew, ‘what first fruit shall I offer Thee?’ If in the Great Fast, we strive to give our ‘first and best’ repentance during a tenth of the year, it is also high time to begin giving our first and best ten percent of our financial resources.”
Father John concluded by challenging his audience to take their approach to stewardship seriously, especially during the lenten season.
“If you do not already tithe, why not set aside this ‘Tithe of the Year’—Great Lent—to try it,” Father John said. “Tithe for these six weeks and see how God will visit you, and how your attitude towards your faith grows when you put your treasure there.”
In January 2018, Annunciation Mission began the second year of its grant. Planting Grant missions receive substantial grants that must be matched by the local community to support the full-time ministries and missionary work of their priests.
Visit Annunciation Mission’s website to keep abreast of the community’s ongoing growth.
Wednesday, 14 Mar 2018
Clinical chaplains gather at SVOTS for board meetings
14 Mar 2018 at 7:09am
Over 25 chaplains of different faiths gathered on the campus of Saint Vladimir’s Orthodox Theological Seminary [SVOTS] March 5 and 6, 2018 to assess and certify clinical chaplains serving in hospitals, long-term care, and hospice. The seminary hosted certification meetings for the Board of Chaplaincy Certification Inc. [BCCI], the national certifying body affiliated with the Association of Professional Chaplains [ACPE].
Sarah Byrne-Martelli, a Board Certified Chaplain endorsed by the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America and a Doctor of Ministry student at Saint Vladimir’s, co-chaired the event. Priest Adrian Budica, a Board Certified Chaplain, ACPE Certified Educator, and Director of Field Education at SVOTS, served as a committee member.
“This was a wonderful opportunity for our entire seminary community to learn more about chaplaincy—including the board certification process—and for APC members of various faith traditions to learn about Orthodoxy in general, and about our seminary in particular,” said Father Adrian.
The BCCI Certification Program is designed to elevate professional chaplaincy standards and to designate professional chaplains who demonstrate the competencies essential to the practice of spiritual care. Additional information is available online.
Since 2012, all Master of Divinity students at Saint Vladimir’s have been required to complete one unit of ACPE-accredited Clinical Pastoral Education [CPE]. Under Father Adrian’s directorship, the program was expanded to offer introductory CPE sessions to all students as part of their first-year prison ministry. Saint Vladimir’s Seminary is also in the process of becoming a CPE center for students interested in part-time or full-time ministry and board certification as chaplains.
Last Easter, CBS - 60 Minutes was finally granted a Visa by the monks (after two years of trying) to visit Mount Athos. This fascinating video provides a historical background of Orthodoxy and gives you a breathtaking tour of Mount Athos.
** Please click on the photo of Vatopedi Monastery to begin your tour **
(When it starts double-click on the video for a full screen view)