New York, May 8, 2008
The Holy Eparchial Synod of the Holy Archdiocese of America convened in its regular Spring Session in the Synodal Chamber of the Holy Archdiocese in New York on May 7 and 8.
His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios presided. Present were the following Synodal Hierarchs: Their Eminences Metropolitans Iakovos of Chicago, Maximos of Pittsburgh, Methodios of Boston, Isaiah of Denver, Alexios of Atlanta, Nicholas of Detroit, Gerasimos of San Francisco and Evangelos of New Jersey. Present also was the Chief Secretary of the Synod, the V. Rev. Archimandrite Sebastian Skordallos.
The Holy Eparchial Synod deliberated on issues pertaining to the life of the Church. Among them, the following were discussed:
1. Liturgical Issues. A discussion took place and a decision was made regarding the submission of the text of the Divine Liturgy along with Liturgical Guidelines for their approval by the Holy and Sacred Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate. Said text will be translated into English following its approval. Additionally, the Synod assigned to the Synodal Committee in charge of Liturgical Issues the responsibility to prepare similar texts for Sacred Services, Orthros and Vespers Services.
2. Canonical Issues. The Holy Eparchial Synod discussed canonical issues pertaining to the clergy and made relevant decisions with regard to issues of pastoral and disciplinary nature. Moreover, it discussed the text regarding Regulations of the Holy Eparchial Synod that is in the making, as well as issues of Inter-Orthodox relations and Ecclesiastical presences in America.
3. Educational Issues.
a. Greek Education. There was a discussion with positive comments expressed, in regard to the new instruction manual for the Greek language designed for kindergarten children, which was published recently by the Department of Greek Education of the Holy Archdiocese. The Hierarchs were briefed and exchanged ideas with respect to the new instruction manuals for the Greek language that are in preparatory stages by the relevant Committee with the collaboration of the well known linguist Professor George Babiniotis. It was also announced that the number of teachers who will attend the 15 day educational seminars in Cyprus in July of this year increased from twenty to thirty compared to last year.
b. Religious Education. A new type of reference book planned by the Department of Religious Education of the Holy Archdiocese was presented. During the subsequent exchange of views, the importance of this new type of reference book was emphasized, based on the first published sample with the title Journey Through Holy Week.
4. Clergy-Laity Congress. In reference to the upcoming Clergy-Laity Congress in Washington DC in July of this year, the importance of its theme Gather My People to My Home was underscored, as well as the need for a wider participation of Parishes. A more direct involvement of the members of the Holy Eparchial Synod in the analysis and application of the theme of the Clergy-Laity Congress was planned by means of special meeting to be convened at its commencement.
5. In addition to the above, there was discussion and decisions were taken with regard to issues pertaining to Youth, Care for the Clergy, Retired clergymen, SCOBA, Leadership 100 and the Special Educational Program for Deacons.
After the conclusion of the Sessions of the Holy Eparchial Synod, her members had the opportunity to participate in the subsequent session of the Executive Committee of the Archdioces For the rest of this News Release, visit the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America website
Encyclical of Archbishop Demetrios of America for AHEPA Sunday
May 8, 2008
Come Receive the Light Schedule of Programs for May 2008
May 18, 2008
To the Most Reverend Hierarchs, the Reverend Priests and Deacons, the Monks and Nuns, the Presidents and Members of the Parish Councils of the Greek Orthodox Communities, the Distinguished Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, the Day, Afternoon, and Church Schools, the Philoptochos Sisterhoods, the Youth, the Hellenic Organizations, and the entire Greek Orthodox Family in America
Beloved Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
Christ is Risen!
It is in the joy of the Risen Lord and the light of His glorious Resurrection that I greet you for our annual observance of AHEPA Sunday and the recognition of the good work and efforts of the members of the American Hellenic Educational Progressive Association. This prominent organization has promoted education, civic responsibility and philanthropy since its founding in 1922, and it is fitting that we show our honor and support for the AHEPA on this day in our liturgical calendar, the Sunday of the Paralytic.
In the reading of the Holy Gospel of this Sunday, we hear the story of a man who had been ill for thirty-eight years. When our Lord saw him, He had compassion upon him and immediately responded to his infirmity, offering him healing and salvation. It is in this spirit of compassion for the needs of others and of respect for life and wellbeing that AHEPA continues its work in so many critical areas. From scholarships and awards for excellence, to the promotion of Hellenic ideals in modern society, to raising funds and implementing programs for disaster relief, preservation projects, and medical needs, the members and organizations of the AHEPA Family are committed to the example of Christ and His divine mandate, "you shall love your neighbor as yourself" (Matthew 19:19), and apply it in practical ways.
Therefore, in recognition of the work of the AHEPA, we designate Sunday, May 18, 2008, as this year’s AHEPA Sunday. I kindly ask that you offer your prayers and your support for the local chapters of the AHEPA in your communities, and for the national organization. Together may we emulate our Risen Lord and His ministry to those in need, and may our love for God and for one another bring salvation and life to all.
With paternal love in the Risen Christ,
Archbishop of America
May 6, 2008
Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew Recognized by Time Magazine Among World's Most Influential People
May 9, 2008
Topic: Prayer to the Saints & for the Dead
Guest: Dr. David C. Ford
Ever wonder why Orthodox Christians ask the Saints for their intercessions? Or why we pray for the forgiveness and salvation of those who have already passed away? On this week's program, Dr. David C. Ford, a professor at St. Tikhon's Orthodox Theological Seminary, explains why these practices are Biblical and fully part of the ancient Christian faith.
May 16, 2008
Topic: Understanding the Fall
Guest: Dr. Justin Jackson
What is the Orthodox Church's understanding of the Fall and "Original Sin"? How did the Early Christians understand Adam and Eve? And what do the hymns of the Orthodox Church tell us about this topic? Tune in to this week's episode for an engaging discussion on how these questions inform our understanding of ourselves and our current relationship with God.
May 23, 2008
Topic: Anchoring Your Child in Christ and the Church
Guests: A Panel of Orthodox Youth Directors
Given the realities of today's world, how can parents raise their children to be faithful Orthodox Christians? What resources is the Church already providing? What else still needs to be done? Tune in to this week's episode to hear from a large panel that includes most of the priests and lay youth ministers who are currently serving as members of the Department of Youth and Young Adult Ministries in the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese.
May 30, 2008
Topic: The Story of Creation: How the Fathers Understood Genesis
Guests: Dr. Peter C. Bouteneff
Today, many Christians disagree on how best to interpret the Book of Genesis. Some even disagree on how modern scientific theories like evolution should influence theology. But this debate is nothing new. Dr. Peter Bouteneff, a professor at St Vladimir's Orthodox Theological Seminary, has studied and written about how the Early Christians addressed and resolved many of these issues. Tune in to find out about the intersection of scripture, science, creation, the ancient Christian faith -- and how it all applies to today's debates.
Come Receive the Light, the only nationally syndicated Orthodox Christian radio broadcast, is a weekly program that features interviews with noted Orthodox Christian clergy, theologians, and lay leaders on theological, spiritual, pastoral, and modern social issues. Heard on the radio in more than 100 cities in the United States and the Bahamas, this unique weekly broadcast offers the ancient, Christ-centered message of Orthodox Christianity to the modern world. You can listen to past programs on demand and find many other online resources to deepen your faith at www.MyOCN.net.
May 2, 2008
His All Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, spiritual leader of 250 million Orthodox Christians worldwide, has been recognized by Time Magazine as one of the world’s most influential people. This is the fifth annual list compiled by the magazine.
Archbishop Demetrios Leads Hierarchs at 25th Anniversary of Metropolitan Nicholas of Amissos
In an article included with the selection and written by the Archbishop of Canterbury and head of the Anglican Church, Rowan Williams, Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew is honored for his clear moral and spiritual vision and for his concern for the environment.
Williams states, “In a way that is profoundly loyal to the traditions of worship and reflection in the Eastern Orthodox Church, he has insisted that ecological questions are essentially spiritual ones. He has stressed that a world in which God the Creator uses the material stuff of the universe to communicate who he is and what he wants is one that demands reverence from human beings. Probably more than any other religious leader from any faith, Patriarch Bartholomew, 68, has kept open this spiritual dimension of environmentalism…. The title Ecumenical Patriarch historically refers to the Patriarch's pastoral responsibility for ‘the whole inhabited world.’ This brave and visionary pastor has given a completely new sense to the ancient honorific; his work puts squarely on our agenda the question of how we express spiritual responsibility for the world we live in.”
Time Magazine’s complete list of the 100 most influential people appears in the May 12 issue, and the article on Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew can be viewed online via the Archdiocese web site at www.goarch.org.
Contact: Department of Communications
Tel: (212) 570-3588
May 2, 2008
On the Friday of Bright Week, Archbishop Demetrios led seven Hierarchs of the Orthodox Church, including Metropolitans Maximos of Pittsburgh and Isaiah of Denver; Bishop Philotheos of Meloa; Metropolitan Constantine, Archbishop Antony, and Bishop Andrej of the Ukrainian Church; Bishop Thomas of Charleston, Oakland and the Mid-Atlantic (Antiochian Archdiocese); and prominent Roman and Eastern Catholic Hierarchs at the Jubilee for the 25th Anniversary of Ordination to the Episcopacy of His Eminence Metropolitan Nicholas of Amissos, who is the Primate of the American Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Diocese of the USA (of the Ecumenical Patriarchate). The inclusion of Bishop Philotheos in the celebration was particularly meaningful, as Bishop Philotheos was the last remaining Co-Consecrator of Metropolitan Nicholas.
Archbishop Demetrios Receives Isaiah Award from the American Jewish Committee
The celebrations took place at the Headquarters of the Carpatho-Russian Diocese, Johnstown, PA, and were marked by a Divine Liturgy, a Banquet and celebratory breakfast. Over 50 priests of the Carpatho-Russian Church were in attendance, together with hundreds of faithful. The Cathedral of Christ the Savior was filled to capacity.
At the banquet in the evening, Archbishop Demetrios highlighted the lengthy and spiritually prosperous ministry of Metropolitan Nicholas, noting his intense devotion to the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople and the person of His All Holiness. Among the many Hierarchs who spoke, Bishop Philotheos was especially warmly greeted by the crowds at the Banquet, when he took to the podium to add his own message of congratulations and remembrance of the day of the Episcopal Ordination.
Contact: Nikki Stephanopoulos
April 30, 2008
At the 102nd Annual Meeting of the American Jewish Committee in Washington, DC, Archbishop Demetrios of America joined the ranks of a select few, including Billy Graham and Edward Cardinal Cassidy, by being the recipient of the ISAIAH AWARD for interreligious understanding. This award follows close on the Archbishop’s reception of the inaugural “Damaskinos Award” that was bestowed by the American Sephardi Federation and the American Friends of the Jewish Museum of Greece.
Schedule of events for His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios of America for April 29-May 10, 2008
The citation on the Award reads, in full: Through your ceaseless efforts as a champion of interreligious understanding and human rights, outspoken opposition to bigotry and anti-Semitism, and unwavering defense of mankind’s most noble values, you have raised high the sacredness and dignity of faith.
The Archbishop was presented to the assembly by Rabbi David Rosen, International Director of Interreligious Affairs of the AJC. In his introduction, which was followed by a standing ovation in honor of the Archbishop, Rabbi Rosen said:
It is an honor and a privilege to present the American Jewish Committee's prestigious Isaiah Award to His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios, Primate of the Greek Orthodox Church of America for his great achievements in Interreligious Leadership.
Archbishop Demetrios has been a good friend of the Jewish People since his childhood in Thessaloniki before the Second World War when the local Jewish community was thriving and played a major part in the life of the city. In an event held by the American Sephardi Federation and the American Friends of the Jewish Museum of Greece last December, Archbishop Demetrios of America received the inaugural “Damaskinos Award” for “his important work in constructive interfaith endeavors.”
In his unscripted remarks, Archbishop Demetrios spoke of the humbling nature of such an award, named after the Holy Prophet Isaiah. He thanked the assembly and shared with them, both in Hebrew and in English, verses from the Prophet Isaiah that speak to the contemporary human condition of suffering and injustice, yet always tinged with hope for “waters in the desert.”
Contact: Nikki Stephanopoulos
April 29, 2008
Good Friday & Resurrection Services to be Broadcast LIVE - NEWS BROADCAST FEEDS AVAILABLE
For information contact number listed or 212-570-3530.
Capitol Hilton Hotel, Washington, DC
The American Jewish Committee will honor Archbishop Demetrios with the Isaiah Award for Interreligious Understanding.
25th Anniversary of Elevation to the Episcopacy of Metropolitan Nicholas of Amissos of the American Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Diocese in the U.S.A.
Church of the Holy Resurrection, Brookville, NY
Feast Day Celebration
Archbishop Demetrios will welcome Congressman Robert Wexler (D-FL,) House Europe Subcommittee Chairman
Holy Eparchial Synod
New York Hilton Hotel
Archdiocesan Council Executive Committee Meeting
New York Hilton Hotel
Archdiocesan Council Meeting
Archdiocesan Cathedral Center, NYC
Dinner in honor of Direct Archdiocesan District Greek American Schools’ principals and teachers
Contact: Nikki Stephanopoulos
April 24, 2008
Patriarchal Proclamation of Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew for Holy Pascha 2008
ORTHODOX CHRISTIANS WORLDWIDE TO OBSERVE EASTER APRIL 27
GOOD FRIDAY & RESURRECTION SERVICES TO BE BROADCAST LIVE
** NEWS BROADCAST FEED AVAILABLE **
FOR BROADCAST NEWS PACKAGES OR LIVE CUT IN
Not for rebroadcast or airing in its entirety
New York, NY – PASCHA (Easter) will be celebrated on April 27 this year by over 250 million Orthodox Christians throughout the world. Archbishop Demetrios of America, spiritual leader of over 1.5 million Greek Orthodox Christians in America, will officiate at the Good Friday Service, April 25, beginning at 8:00 p.m. and Resurrection Service, April 26, beginning at 11:00 p.m. Both Services will be broadcast LIVE on Television and Internet from the Archdiocesan Cathedral of the Holy Trinity (319 E. 74th St., NYC).
LIVE FEED FOR GOOD FRIDAY AND RESURRECTION SERVICE AVAILABLE TO NEWS ORGANIZATIONS
GOOD FRIDAY EVENING: April 25
20:00 to 22:00 eastern time
Horizons 2 K15 G-9
Symbol rate: 6.6665
RESURRECTION SERVICE: April 26
*Highlight at 12 midnight -
11:00 p.m-1:00 a.m. eastern time
23:00 to 01:00
Horizons 2 K15 G-9
Symbol rate: 6.6665
* For additional information or for feed information call Interface Productions truck line 718.757.5352
For background information on the Pascha Easter Service www.goarch.org/en/news/NewsDetail.asp?id=1964
Both services will be LIVE streamed in their entirety on the Cathedral and Archdiocese websites
April 17, 2008
ON THE HOLY PASCHA
Protocol Number 477
+ B A R T H O L O M E W
BY THE MERCY OF GOD
ARCHBISHOP OF CONSTANTINOPLE - NEW ROME
AND ECUMENICAL PATRIARCH
TO THE PLENITUDE OF THE CHURCH
GRACE, PEACE AND MERCY
FROM OUR GLORIOUSLY RISEN SAVIOR CHRIST
Dearly beloved Brethren and Children in the Lord,
“Behold, the winter has passed!” (1) “Arisen is the spring” of salvation; “flowers appear across the land, the sound of the turtle-dove is heard, … the vines are in bloom and give forth their fragrance”. (2) A sacred Pascha -- great and holy -- has arisen; and it warms, lights and makes radiant the world. “Now all things are filled with light, both heaven and earth and the nethermost regions of the earth.” (3)
CHRIST IS RISEN!
Our God, Who is beyond all suffering and is Immortal, Who is the comely Bridegroom of the Church, our Lord Jesus Christ, Who is our Firstborn Brother and Dearest Friend -- “He is risen from the dead, having trampled down death by death” -- three days after He cried out from the crest of the Cross: “It is consummated!” (4) “Hades was embittered when it encountered” Him (5), because Christ destroyed his lordship. As God, He rightly emptied out his chambers of darkness, freely bestowing life on those He found in the tombs. But not only this; to all those who believe in Him from then until the consummation of the age -- indeed to all those who live in Him and hold fast their faith and confession in Him until the end, the Lord grants everlasting life and a sure resurrection. Christ, “Who has girded His loins with righteousness and clothed his sides with truth,” (6) is Risen from the Tomb. “As the One Who loves mankind, He has raised up Adam, the father of us all.” (7)
Behold then, dearly beloved brethren and children, the crown of our Great Feast and the atmosphere of springtime; in the midst of its first bloom the Church announces the Good News to the Universe. The heavy winter of death has passed away! The icy tyranny of the devil and his domination have been overcome. The frightful reign of darkness and perdition has been undone. “The Lord is King, He has girded Himself with majesty!” (8)
We behold Jesus Who, of His own free will, out of His unconditional love, suffered on the Cross, died and was buried for our sake and for our salvation. We have just now worshipped Him Risen from the dead, and together with the Apostles and the Myrrh-Bearers we have heard from His holy mouth the words: “Peace be unto you!” (9) and “Rejoice!” (10) -- and our hearts are filled with joy. Indeed, “no one will take our joy from us,” (11) because more than even our own, the personal death of every single human being has been mightily abolished. This is why we, who have crucified the carnal mindset of the old person “together with the passions and lusts,” (12) and “who have died with Christ: this is the reason we believe that we [shall] live with Him.” (13) For as “we have been buried” with Christ “through Baptism,” (14) we have become “planted with Him,” that is, we have become partakers of His Resurrection. (15)
St. Gregory the Theologian trumpets this truth with the highest rhetorical skill when he says: “Yesterday I was crucified with You, O Christ; today I abound with glory. Yesterday I died with You; today I am filled with life. Yesterday I was buried with You; today I arise with You.” (16) That which has plagued us from ages past has once and for all been resolved by the Risen Lord. Our agony is over. “Christ is Risen, and life can truly be lived!” (1 For the rest of this News Release, visit the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America website
Washington Young Adults Prepare for National Conference – July 10-13, 2008
April 16, 2008
Young adults from the Washington-Baltimore Metropolitan area are working diligently to prepare for the 2008 Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America National Young Adult Conference, July 10-13, 2008 in Washington DC. This year’s conference will be held in conjunction with the 39th Biennial Clergy-Laity Congress at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel. “Doers of the Word” will be the theme for the weekend, with Rev. Dn. John Chryssavgis, noted author and theologian, as the featured keynote speaker.
Throughout the weekend, young adults will have the opportunity to grow in their faith through fellowship, worship, workshops, and service. A “hands-on” outreach project at the L.B. Johnson Memorial Grove National Park on Saturday will give participants a chance to actively become “Doers of the Word.” Workshops will be offered by noted Orthodox theologians and clergy from throughout our Archdiocese and will include the following titles: Your Role in the Church as a Young Adult: How To Be Doers of the Word; Bringing the Millennial Generation On-Line: Technology as a Tool in the Church; Ecology and the Parish: A YAL Ministry?
His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios will lead an open forum with young adults on Friday, as well as a Memorial Service on Saturday for our fallen heroes at Arlington National Cemetery. On Sunday afternoon, participants will also have the opportunity to sightsee in the culturally and historically rich city of Washington DC. Evening activities include a Chesapeake Bay Crab feast, a social night in exciting Northwest D.C., and a semi-formal Greek night, concluding with a Sunday night farewell cruise on the Potomac River.
Online registration, conference schedule, and additional information will be available soon at www.yal2008.org, or by contacting the Department of Youth and Young Adult Ministries at 646-519-6180. Register by May 11, 2008 to take advantage of the $99 Early Bird Rate which includes admission to all weekend events. See you in Washington DC for an unforgettable weekend in our Nation’s capital! The Young Adult League is a ministry for young adults in our church ages 18 to 35.
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