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Ebenezer Methodist Welcomes You http://www.ebenezermethodist.net/emchistory.html Ebenezer Methodist Welcomes You Welcome to EMC Akwaaba SMC Akwaaba in Pictures NAM EMC History Methodist Church - Gh Weekly Devotional Sermon (Past) Announcement Fare Well Harold External Links Directions Contact Us HISTORY OF EBENEZER METHODIST CHURCH (GHANA CONFERENCE) (1992 – Present) Ebenezer Methodist Church (EMC) is a vibrant church located in Hyattsville, Maryland.
Dear Church, I write, or if the Lord wills read this letter to you with a broken heart and with much love and prayer.
4 Important Covers Your Minneapolis Church Insurance Should Include One very good question is what exactly your Minneapolis Church Insurance cover.
PRESIDENT OF THE SYNOD OF BISHOPS OF THE RUSSIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH OUTSIDE OF RUSSIA 75 EAST 93rd STREET, NEW YORK, N.Y. 10028 Telephone: LEhigh 4‐1601 A SECOND SORROWFUL EPISTLE TO THEIR HOLINESSES AND THEIR BEATITUDES, THE PRIMATES OF THE HOLY ORTHODOX CHURCHES, THE MOST REVEREND METROPOLITANS, ARCHBISHOPS AND BISHOPS. The People of the Lord residing in his Diocese are entrusted to the Bishop, and he will be required to give account of their souls according to the 39th Apostolic Canon. The 34th Apostolic Canon orders that a Bishop may do ʺthose things only which concern his own Diocese and the territories belonging to it.ʺ There are, however, occasions when events are of such a nature that their influence extends beyond the limits of one Diocese, or indeed those of one or more of the local Churches. Events of such a general, global nature can not be ignored by any Orthodox Bishop, who, as a successor of the Apostles, is charged with the protection of his flock from various temptations. The lightening‐like speed with which ideas may be spread in our times make such care all the more imperative now. In particular, our flock, belonging to the free part of the Church of Russia, is spread out all over the world. What has just been stated, therefore, is most pertinent to it. As a result of this, our Bishops, when meeting in their Councils, cannot confine their discussions to the narrow limits of pastoral and administrative problems arising in their respective Dioceses, but must in addition turn their attention to matters of a general importance to the whole Orthodox World, since the affliction of one Church is as ʺan affliction unto them all, eliciting the compassion of them allʺ (Phil. 4:14‐16; Heb. 10:30). And if the Apostle St. Paul was weak with those who were weak and burning with those who were offended, how then can we Bishops of God remain indifferent to the growth of errors which threaten the salvation of the souls of many of our brothers in Christ? It is in the spirit of such a feeling that we have already once addressed all the Bishops of the Holy Orthodox Church with a Sorrowful Epistle. We rejoiced to learn that, in harmony with our appeal, several Metropolitans of the Church of Greece have recently made reports to their Synod calling to its attention the necessity of considering ecumenism a heresy and the advisability of reconsidering the matter of participation in the World Council of Churches. Such healthy reactions against the spreading of ecumenism allow us to hope that the Church of Christ will be spared this new storm which threatens her. Yet, two years have passed since our Sorrowful Epistle was issued, and, alas! although in the Church of Greece we have seen the new statements regarding ecumenism as un‐Orthodox, no Orthodox Church has announced its withdrawal from the World Council of Churches. In the Sorrowful Epistle, we depicted in vivid colors to what extent the organic membership of the Orthodox Church in that Council, based as it is upon purely Protestant principles, is contrary to the very basis of Orthodoxy. In this Epistle, having been authorized by our Council of Bishops, we would further develop and extend our warning, showing that the participants in the ecumenical movement are involved in a profound heresy against the very foundation of the Church. The essence of that movement has been given a clear definition by the statement of the Roman Catholic theologian Ives M. J. Congar. He writes that ʺthis is a movement which prompts the Christian Churches to wish the restoration of the lost unity, and to that end to have a deep understanding of itself and understanding of each other.ʺ He continues, ʺIt is composed of all the feelings, ideas, actions or institutions, meetings or conferences, ceremonies, manifestations and publications which are directed to prepare the reunion in new unity not only of (separate) Christians, but also of the actually existing Churches.ʺ Actually, he continues, ʺthe word ecumenism, which is of Protestant origin, means now a concrete reality: the totality of all the aforementioned upon the basis of a certain attitude and a certain amount of very definite conviction (although not always very clear and certain). It is not a desire or an attempt to unite those who are regarded as separated into one Church which would be regarded as the only true one. It begins at just that point where it is recognized that, at the present state, none of the Christian confessions possesses the fullness of Christianity, but even if one of them is authentic, still, as a confession, it does not contain the whole truth. There are Christian values outside of it belonging not only to Christians who are separated from it in creed, but also to other Churches and other confessions as suchʺ (Chretiens Desunis, Ed. Unam Sanctam, Paris, 1937, pp. XI‐XII). This definition of the ecumenical movement made by a Roman Catholic theologian 35 years ago continues to be quite as exact even now, with the difference that during the intervening years this movement has continued to develop further with a newer and more dangerous scope. In our first Sorrowful Epistle, we wrote in detail on how incompatible with our Ecclesiology was the participation of Orthodox in the World Council of Churches, and presented precisely the nature of the violation against Orthodoxy committed in the participation of our Churches in that council. We demonstrated that the basic principles of that council are incompatible with the Orthodox doctrine of the Church. We, therefore, protested against the acceptance of that resolution at the Geneva Pan‐Orthodox Conference whereby the Orthodox Church was proclaimed an organic member of the World Council of Churches. Alas! These last few years are richly laden with evidence that, in their dialogues with the heterodox, some Orthodox representatives have adopted a purely Protestant ecclesiology which brings in its wake a Protestant approach to questions of the life of the Church, and from which springs forth the now‐ popular modernism. Modernism consists in that bringing‐down, that re‐aligning of the life of the Church according to the principles of current life and human weaknesses. We saw it in the Renovation Movement and in the Living Church in Russia in the twenties. At the first meeting of the founders of the Living Church on May 29, 1922, its aims were determined as a ʺrevision and change of all facets of Church life which are required by the demands of current lifeʺ (The New Church, Prof. B. V. Titlinov, Petrograd‐Moscow, 1923, p. 11). The Living Church was an attempt at a reformation adjusted to the requirements of the conditions of a communist state. Modernism places that compliance with the weaknesses of human nature above the moral and even doctrinal requirements of the Church. In that measure that the world is abandoning Christian principles, modernism debases the level of religious life more and more. Within the Western confessions we see that there has come about an abolition of fasting, a radical shortening and vulgarization of religious services, and, finally, full spiritual devastation, even to the point of exhibiting an indulgent and permissive attitude toward unnatural vices of which St. Paul said it was shameful even to speak. It was just modernism which was the basis of the Pan‐Orthodox Conference of sad memory in Constantinople in 1923, evidently not without some influence of the renovation experiment in Russia. Subsequent to that conference, some Churches, while not adopting all the reforms which were there introduced, adopted the Western calendar, and even, in some cases, the Western Paschalia. This, then, was the first step onto the path of modernism of the Orthodox Church, whereby Her way of life was changed in order to bring it closer to the way of life of heretical communities. In this respect, therefore, the adoption of the Western Calendar was a violation of a principle consistent in the Holy Canons, whereby there is a tendency to spiritually isolate the Faithful from those who teach contrary to the Orthodox Church, and not to encourage closeness with such in our prayer‐life (Titus 3:10; 10th, 45th, and 65th Apostolic Canons; 32nd, 33rd, and 37th Canons of Laodicea, etc.). The unhappy fruit of that reform was the violation of the unity of the life in prayer of Orthodox Christians in various countries. While some of them were celebrating Christmas together with heretics, others still fasted. Sometimes such a division occurred in the same local Church, and sometimes Easter [Pascha] was celebrated according to the Western Paschal reckoning. For the sake, therefore, of being nearer to the heretics, that principle, set forth by the First Ecumenical Council that all Orthodox Christians should simultaneously, with one mouth and one heart, rejoice and glorify the Resurrection of Christ all over the world, is violated. This tendency to introduce reforms, regardless of previous general decisions and practice of the whole Church in violation of the Second Canon of the VI Ecumenical Council, creates only confusion. His Holiness, the Patriarch of Serbia, Gabriel, of blessed memory, expressed this feeling eloquently at the Church Conference held in Moscow in 1948. ʺIn the last decades,ʺ he said, ʺvarious tendencies have appeared in the Orthodox Church which evoke reasonable apprehension for the purity of Her doctrines and for Her dogmatical and canonical Unity. ʺThe convening by the Ecumenical Patriarch of the Pan‐Orthodox Conference and the Conference at Vatopedi, which had as their principal aim the preparing of the Prosynod, violated the unity and cooperation of the Orthodox Churches. On the one hand, the absence of the Church of Russia at these meetings, and, on the other, the hasty and unilateral actions of some of the local Churches and the hasty actions of their representatives have introduced chaos and anomalies into the life of the Eastern Orthodox Church. ʺThe unilateral introduction of the Gregorian Calendar by some of the local Churches while the Old Calendar was kept yet by others, shook the unity of the Church and incited serious dissension within those of them who so lightly introduced the New Calendarʺ (Acts of the Conferences of the Heads and Representatives of the Autocephalic Orthodox Churches, Moscow, 1949, Vol. II, pp. 447‐448). Recently, Prof. Theodorou, one of the representatives of the Church of Greece at the Conference in Chambesy in 1968, noted that the calendar reform in Greece was hasty and noted further that the Church there suffers even now from the schism it caused (Journal of the Moscow Patriarchate, 1969, No. 1, p. 51). It could not escape the sensitive consciences of many sons of the Church that within the calendar reform, the foundation is already laid for a revision of the entire order of Orthodox Church life which has been blessed by the Tradition of many centuries and confirmed by the decisions of the Ecumenical Councils. Already at that Pan‐Orthodox Conference of 1923 at Constantinople, the questions of the second marriage of clergy as well as other matters were raised. And recently, the Greek Archbishop of North and South America, Iakovos, made a statement in favor of a married episcopate (The Hellenic Chronicle, December 23, 1971). The strength of Orthodoxy has always lain in Her maintaining the principles of Church Tradition. Despite this, there are those who are attempting to include in the agenda of a future Great Council not a discussion of the best ways to safeguard those principles, but, on the contrary, ways to bring about a radical revision of the entire way of life in the Church, beginning with the abolition of fasts, second marriages of the clergy, etc., so that Her way of life would be closer to that of the heretical communities. In our first Sorrowful Epistle we have shown in detail the extent to which the principles of the World Council of Churches are contrary to the doctrines of the Orthodox Church, and we protested against the decision taken in Geneva at the Pan‐Orthodox Conference declaring the Orthodox Church to be an organic member of that council. Then we reminded all that, ʺthe poison of heresy is not too dangerous when it is preached outside the Church. Many times more perilous is that poison which is gradually introduced into the organism in larger and larger doses by those who, in virtue of their position, should not be poisoners but spiritual physicians.ʺ Alas! Of late we see the symptoms of such a great development of ecumenism with the participation of the Orthodox, that it has become a serious threat, leading to the utter annihilation of the Orthodox Church by dissolving Her in an ocean of heretical communities.
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The Roman Catholic Church, with 980 million followers, is the largest Christian church in the world.
Methodist Church Ghana rejects gay marriage | Religion 2015-10-22 10/30/15, 7:04 PM Religion of Thursday, 22 October 2015 Source:
Historical Contact of the Eastern Orthodox and Anglican Churches A review of the relations between the Orthodox Church of the East and the Anglican Church since the time of Theodore of Tarsus By William Chauncey Emhardt Department of Missions and Church Extension of the Episcopal Church New York 1920 EARLY RELATIONS The creation of a department for Church Work among Foreign‐born Americans and their Children under the Presiding Bishop and Council, calls for a careful consideration of the Orthodox Church. It seems most desirable first of all to review briefly the historical contact which has existed between the Church of England and the Orthodox Eastern Church from almost the very beginning. There are, of course, many traditions, unsupported however by historical documents, which indicate that the English Church was of Grecian origin, and that contact between Greece and the British Isles prior to the time of Saint Augustine (A. D. 597) was continuous. The attendance of bishops of the British Church at the Council of Nicea (A.D. 325), the first historical reference toʹ the Church in England, proves that there was some contact. In 680 A.D., a Greek, Theodore of Tarsus, was consecrated Archbishop of Canterbury, thus bringing the Greek Church to the Metropolitan See itself. Theodore left deep imprint upon both the civil and the ecclesiastical life of England, unifying the several kingdoms and organizing into a compact body the disjointed churches of the land. To him, more [1/2] than to any other source, we should trace the spirit of national unity and independence in national and religious ambitions that has since characterized the English nation. It is worthy of note that under Theodore the famous Council of Hatfield was held, at which the doctrine of the double procession of the Holy Ghost was accepted by the English Church, long before this doctrine was officially recognized in either Spain or Rome. It seems strange that theologians, of either side of the controversy which has grown around this doctrine, have never turned to Theodore as the justifier of the doctrine and as an historical evidence that the British Church, by its acceptance, never intended to depart from the teachings of the East. RELATIONS IN SEVENTEENTH CENTURY Many centuries must be passed over before we again find Grecian contact in English ecclesiastical life. In 1617, Metrophanes Critopoulos of Veria was sent by the martyr‐patriarch Cyril Lucar to continue his studies at Oxford. Three years later Nicodemus Metaxas of Cephalonia established the first Greek printing press in England. This he later took to Constantinople, where it was immediately destroyed by the Turks. In the year 1653 we find Isaac Basire, a religious exile, trying to establish good feeling among the Greeks toward the suffering Church of England, delighting in spreading among the Greeks at Zante information concerning the Catholic doctrine of our Church. In the same year we find him writing: ʺAt Jerusalem I received much honor, both from the Greeks and Latins. The Greek Patriarch (the better to express his desire of communion with our old Church of England by mee declared unto him) gave mee his bull or patriarchal seal in a blanke (which is their way of credence) besides many [2/3] other respects. As for the Latins they received mee most courteously into their own convent, though I did openly profess myself a priest of the Church of England. After some velitations about the validity of our ordination, they procured mee entrance into the Temple of the Sepulchre, at the rate of a priest, that is, that is half in half less than the lay‐menʹs rate; and at my departure from Jerusalem the popeʹs own vicar (called Commissarius Apostolicus Generalis) gave me his diploma in parchment under his own hand and publick seal, in it stiling mee Sacerdotum Ecclasiae Anglicanae and S.S. Theologiae Doctorem; at which title many marvelled, especilly the Freench Ambassador here (Pera). . . Meanwhile, as I have not been unmindful of our Church, with the true patriarch here, whose usurper noe for a while doth interpose, so will I not be wanting to to embrace all opportunities of propagating the doctrine and repute thereof, stylo veteri; Especilly if I should about it receive commands or instructions from the King (Charles II) (whom God save) only in ordine as Ecclesiastica do I speak this; as for instance, proposall of communion with the Greek Church (salva conscientia et honore) a church very considerable in all those parts. And to such a communion, together with a convenient reformation of some grosser errours, it hath been my constant design to dispose and incline them.ʺ In 1670, the chaplain of the English Embassy at Constantinople at the request of Drs. Pearson, Sancroft and Gunning, made special inquiry concerning the alleged teaching of the doctrine of transubstantiation by the Greeks and recorded his impressions in a publication called Some Account of the Present Greek Churches, published in 1722. His successor, Edward Browne, made a number of official reports concerning the affairs of the Greek Church. In 1669 occurred the noted semi‐official visit of Papas Jeremias Germanus to Oxford. A more important visit was undertaken [3/4] by Joseph Georgirenes, Metropolitan of Samos, who solicited funds for the building of a Greek church, which was erected in the Soho quarter of London in 1677. Over the door there was an inscription recording its setting up in the reign of King Charles the Second, while Dr. Henry Compton was Bishop of London. The cost was borne by the king, the Duke of York, the Bishop of London, and other bishops and nobles. The Greeks do not seem to have kept it long; and after some changes of ownership it was consecrated for Anglican worship in the middle of the nineteenth century under the title and in honor of Saint Mary the Virgin. It was taken down as unsafe at the end of that century and a new building was set up on the site. The Bishop of London, who seemed to be a special patron of the Greeks at this time, undertook the establishment of a Greek College for Greek students, who probably came from Smyrna. An unsigned letter to Archbishop Sancroft seems to indicate that in 1680 twelve Greek students were sent to Oxford. In addition to the Bishop of London, the chief promoter of this movement was Dr. Woodroof, Canon of Christ Church, who succeeded in getting Gloucester Hall, now Worcester College, assigned to the Greeks. There exists in the Archbishopʹs library at Lambeth a printed paper describing the ʺModel of a College to be settled in the university for the education of some youths of the Greek Church.ʺ These twelve students seemed to have been but temporary residents, however, because no official account is given of the permanent residence of Greek students until the year 1698. It is significant to find that in the year 1698, in the copy of the Alterations in the Book of Common Prayer, prepared by the World Commissioners for the revision of the liturgy, who were by no means sympathetic with the Greeks, an expression of desire that some explanation of the addition of [4/5] the Filioque, a clause in the Creed, should be given, with the view to ʺmaintaining Catholic Communionʺ as suggested by Dr: Henry Compton. RELATIONS IN EIGHTEENTH CENTURY About 1700, Archbishop Philippopolis was granted honorary degrees in both Oxford and Cambridge and was accorded general courtesies. These free relationships had an abrupt termination when, in a letter dated March 2, 1705, the registrar of the Church of Constantinople wrote as follows to Mr. Stephens: ʺThe irregular life of certain priests and laymen of the Eastern Church, living in London, is a matter of great concern to the Church. Wherefore the Church forbids any to go and study at Oxford be they ever so willing.ʺ In 1706, we find the Archbishop of Gotchan in Armenia, receiving liberal contributions from Queen Anne and the Archbishops of Canterbury and York toward the establishment of a printing press for his people. Soon afterward considerable correspondence was established between the dissenting Nonjurors and the Patriarchs of the East. The Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr. Wake wrote to the Patriarch of Jerusalem explaining that the Nonjurors were separatists from the Church of England. The Archbiship significantly ends his letter: ʺita ut in orationibus atque sacrificiis tuis ad sacra Dei altaria mei reminiscaris impensissime rogo.ʺ In 1735, we find the Society for the Promoting of Christian Knowledge recording a gift of books as a present to the Patriarch Alexander of Constantinople. In 1772, the Reverend Dr. King, chaplain to the British Factory at St. Petersburg, after explaining the necessity of the elaborate worship of the Greek Church, in a report, dedicated by permission to King George III says: ʺThe Greek Church as it is at present established in Russia, may be considered in respect of [5/6] its service as a model of the highest antiquity now extant.ʺ About the same time we find the Latitudinarian Bishop of Llandaff, Dr. Watson, advising a young woman that she should have no scruples in marrying a Russian, ʺon the subject of religion.ʺ We find early in the nineteenth century, Dr. Waddingham, afterward Dean of Durham, publishing a sympathetic account of The Present Condition and Prospects of the Greek Oriental Church. RELATIONS IN NINETEENTH CENTURY Intimate relations were again resumed at the time of the Greek insurrection in 1821, when many Greeks fled to England to escape the vengeance of the Turks. The flourishing churches in London, Lancaster and Liverpool date from this period. The actual resumption of intercourse between the two Churches dates from 1829 when the American Church was first brought into contact with the Church in the East through the mission of Drs. Robertson and Hill. This was purely an expression of a disinterested desire on the part of the American Church to assist the people of Greece in their effort to recover the educational advantages which had been suppressed by the Turk. The educational work of Dr. Hill at Athens became famous throughout the East. Dr. Hill continued as the head of the school for over fifty years. The next approach by the American Church was made by the Reverend Horatio Southgate, who was sent from this country to investigate the missionary opportunities in Turkey and Persia. In order to avoid any suspicions concerning the motive of the American Church, he again returned in 1840 to assure their ecclesiastical authorities that ʺthe American bishops wished most scrupulously to avoid all effusive intrusion within the jurisdiction of their Episcopal brethren their great desire being to commend and promote a friendly intercourse between the two branches of the Catholic and Apostolic Church in the [6/7] hope of mutual advantage.ʺ He returned again in 1844 and although he met with considerable success in his efforts to establish a work for the Church he found that the Church at home was not prepared for such an undertaking and after a few years returned to America. ʺIn the General Convention of 1862, a joint committee was appointed to consider the expediency of opening communication with the Russo‐Greek Church, and to collect authentic information bearing upon the subject. And, in July, 1863, a corresponding committee was appointed in the lower house of the Convocation of Canterbury. Between 1862 and 1867, a number of important pamphlets were issued by the Russo‐Greek committee, under the able editorship of the Reverend Dr. Young, its secretary. After Dr. Young was made Bishop of Florida, the Reverend Charles R. Hale, afterwards Bishop of Cairo, was appointed to succeed him as secretary of the Russo‐Greek committee, and wrote the reports presented to the General Convention of 1871 and 1874. When the Joint Commission on Ecclesiastical Relations replaced with larger powers the Russo‐Greek Committee, he was in 1877 made secretary of the commissions, and wrote the reports up to the year 1895.ʺ The reports of this committee and the pamphlets issued between the years 1862 and 1867 are extremely valuable, showing the care exercised by the Church in those days, in trying to meet a problem that was just beginning to present itself. While negotiations of the American Committee were in process in 1867 an interesting interview was held by Archbishop Alexander Lycurgus of Cyclades, and a number of bishops and clergy of the Church of England. The Archbishop went to England in order to dedicate the orthodox church at
The Church of Pentecost - The Church - History This same jesus, which has been taken from you into heaven, shall come back in like manner as you have seen him go into heaven (Acts 1:11) 5/2/11 11:12 AM Home MISSION STATEMENT The CHURCH OF PENTECOST exists to bring all people everywhere to the saving knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ through the proclamation of the gospel, the planting of churches and the equipping of believers for every God-glorifying >>more If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation;
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Methodist Church Ghana Home The Church 3/10/11 11:36 AM The Church Events / News Projects Downloads Photo Gallery Contact us Archives Beginning of Methodism The Methodist Church was founded through the activities of the Rev’d John Wesley.
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The Church of Serbia Permitted Anglicans to Commune in 1865 (The below article is taken from an Anglican source) ORTHODOX PRECEDENT Orthodox precedent for the admission of non‐Orthodox in destitution exists as far back as the twelfth century, and was justified by the Orthodox canonist Balsamon, but no precedent exists, so far as is known, for the public admission for non‐Orthodox not in destitution. Neither the Patriarch nor the Serbian Church is committed to any repetition of the action, nor is the Orthodox Church as a whole, nor is the Anglican Church committed in any way. But it has nevertheless no small importance. Evidently some of the Orthodox in Belgrade were not very happy about it, fearing it might be premature. The Politika said: ʺAlthough the manifestation of the relationship made so beautifully among us at the cathedral was both touching and praiseworthy, some people did not approve the action of the Patriarch because the Anglicans are not in formal communion with us.ʺ Frank Steel, an attaché of the British legation, who was one of the eight communicants, writes a letter to the Church Times of which I give some extracts: ʺAs there is no English church or chaplain in Belgrade, a letter was sent to the Patriarch, asking if he would permit us to make our communion at the cathedral on Christmas Day. The Patriarch replied expressing his approval, and personally administered the Sacrament to four Americans and four English people, of whom I was one.ʺ ʺI understand that no patriarch has ever officiated in this capacity before, but His Holiness insisted on administering the Sacrament himself. I hear that a large number of Orthodox priests have expressed their disapproval of His Holinessʹ action, and the newspapers have given diverse views on the matter.ʺ It would be indeed interesting if Mr. Steel would give us some more details of what must evidently have been a very wonderful experience. A WAR PRECEDENT Another letter has also been printed in the same journal from an English country parson who was communicated by a Serb priest during the war: ʺIt may be of interest to know that during the war, while I was stationed at Salonika, I was admitted to the Sacrament of Holy Communion by the express consent and with the utmost goodwill of the Serbian ecclesiastical authorities. There could be no question of destitution in this case, for English chaplains and services were well to the fore. I took it to be a grateful acknowledgement of the kindly feelings between me and the Serbians under my command, and who asked that I might communicate with them. I was not a chaplain.ʺ This is indeed a remarkable letter. The sum total of the matter seems to be, whatever the theological issues involved may be, that the Serbs like the Americans and English and wish to share their religious experiences and privileges with them. INTERCOMMUNION SIXTY YEARS AGO I am supposed to chronicle news in these letters, but perhaps I may be pardoned for once if I delve down into the files of the Church Times as far back as August, 1865, to find an occasion when a similar thing seems to have happened in Belgrade. The following is quoted from a correspondent signed W[illiam]. D[enton]. ʺWhen I mentioned in my former letter that I received communion in the Serbian Church at the hands of the Archimandrite of Studenitza, I forgot at the same time to point out the full significance of the act. The Archimandrite was one of the ecclesiastics consulted by the Archbishop of Belgrade as to my request for communion on Whitsunday, so that the administration was not the act of an individual, however prominent his position, but was the synodical act of the prelates and inferior clergy of Servia. I arrived at the monastery of Studenitza on Monday. I left it on Wednesday, and on Thursday I had another pleasant meeting with the Bishop of Tschatchat. I found that he knew all about the proposed administration to me by the Archimandrite. Leaving him, I had a few daysʹ travel in the interior of the country and met all the leading ecclesiastics. Among others I had pleasure in meeting the Archpriest of Jagodina, whose acquaintance I had made while he was a resident of the monastery of Ruscavitza. I found on all sides the greatest satisfaction at my communion, and I heard the strongest desire expressed for closer intercourse with the English Church on the ground of its orthodoxy and the prominent position given to scriptural teaching in its formularies. ʺI had the pleasure of staying with the Bishop of Schabatz and the opportunity of discussing with that able and large‐minded prelate the question of intercommunion of the Churches of England and Servia. Referring to my communion at Studenitza he hailed me as a member of the Orthodox Church. But he did more than this. I was accompanied by an English layman who intends to make a stay in Servia of at least two monthsʹ duration after my leaving. I mentioned that as he was accustomed to communicate in the English Church he was unwilling to be deprived of the same blessing whilst in a strange land. The bishop at once declared that there was no hindrance to his communicating in Servia, and at my request gave him a letter addressed to all the clergy of his diocese, directing them to administer communion to him, a member of the Church of England, if he desired to receive the sacred mysteries. ʺThere now remained the general question of the right of all members of the English Church to communicate simply as members of the English Church, and without any test beond that of their loyal membership in their own branch of the Church Catholic: and your readers will be glad to know that on the production of a simple certificate of real and living membership, settled by the bishop and indicated to me, all such persons will from this time forth be received as communicants of the Orthodox Church of Servia. And intercommunion of one portion of the Orthodox Church cannot long precede formal intercommunion with the whole Eastern Church. Here is real intercommunion on the true Catholic basis, the beginning I trust of wider communion. There is no doubt much to labor for, much to pray for, much need of ʹpatience and confidenceʹ, but here surely is the darn and promise; in part also to past prayers for unity, but especially may we, I trust, without presumption, see an answer to His effectual prayer, who, in the night of His betrayal, prayed ʹthat they all may [541/542] be one.ʹ Who shall despair and say any longer that the unity of all Christian people is a mere dream, when in the person of the English and Servian Churches, the distant East resumes her intercourse with the separated West; and when what to most persons since the Council of Florence has seemed unattainable, has been done without human instruments by Him who in essence and attributes is One.ʺ Church Times OPTIMISTIC This is an extraordinarily optimistic letter almost implying that reunion between the two churches was a fait accompli. But, whatever the rights and wrongs of the facts, very little seems to have arisen from them. The following is a portion of a leading article that appeared in the Church Times on August 26, 1865. ʺThe Servian Church has entered into full communion with the Church of England. This is the step to which we allude. The efforts of the ʹEastern Church Associationʹ and especially the energy, perseverance, and personal popularity in Servia of one of the first originators of that association have induced the ancient Orthodox Church in Servia to admit privately to Holy Communion, and to promise to admit to participation in the sacred mysteries any traveler, whether priest or layman of the Anglican communion, who shall bring with him certain letters commendatory, the form of which will be arranged and agreed upon by the Servian episcopate. Thus we really at the present moment are in communion with the whole Orthodox Church. For the Servian Church is an Orthodox branch of the great Slavonic communion, and is in full connection and communion with Constantinople. But the Servian Church has recognized our baptism, our orders, and our position, and has admitted our members into communion with herself: therefore now at last the Anglican and Eastern Orthodox Church are as one. What shall we say? The heart of every believer must burst into an irrepressible Te Deum at such a truly Christian triumph. ʺThe Servian Church which, perhaps, is little known to our readers as yet except through certain charity‐breathing letters of its prelates, especially of Archbishop Michael, will soon be a household word in our mouths. We are bound to give the Servians the credit which is their due for their freedom of spirit and their intelligent and far‐seeing charity. English Churchmen must reciprocate this mighty act of Christian brotherhood by all the means that lie within their power. The Eastern Church for a century past is a suffering Church. The Church of autonomous Servia has emerged from the fiery trial of persecution into a clear sky and a more peaceful dwelling place. English Churchmen in future will find it impossible to side with the infidel and the Mahometan against those with whom they have broken the Bread of Life and shared the Cup of Immortality. They are and they must vividly realize that they are one Church with them.ʺ C. H. PALMER.
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Dear FBC Pulpit Committee, I have recently had the benefit of reviewing all the Committee and Church member minutes from August 2016 to date.
Translation from the Greek: [Letterhead symbol of double‐headed eagle] [Seal of the Metropolis of Mesogaea] GENUINE ORTHODOX CHURCH OF GREECE HOLY METROPOLIS OF MESOGAEA AND LAUREOTICA EPISCOPAL HOUSE OF ST. CATHERINE, KOROPI, ATTICA 19400 P.O. 54 KOROPI, ATTICA, TEL: 2106020176, TEL+FAX: 2106021467 Protocol No. 518. In Koropi on 19 September 2009 (O.C.) APPOINTMENT OF PRIEST FR. PEDRO AS RECTOR OF THE HOLY CHURCH OF ST. SPYRIDON IN KAREA [ATHENS] We, the Metropolitan of Mesogaea and Laureotica, Kirykos (of the unadulterated Genuine Orthodox Church), taking into account: 1) the event that the Holy Church of St. Spyridon from the year 1974 has been served by the Protopresbyter Fr. Thomas Kontogiannis, and after the schism of the Nicholaitans, due to the petition of the Rector and the Parishioners, is ecclesiastically and administrationally subject to the Holy Metropolis of Mesogaea and Laureotica; 2) the event that the Holy Metropolis of Mesogaea and Laureotica is the only Holy Metropolis of the unadulterated Genuine Orthodox Church, which “unadulteratedly and unchangingly,” according to the phrase of the Seventh Ecumenical Council, the good Confession of Faith, both in the Ecclesiology and other dogmatics, and also in the Apostolic Succession which we received from the Holy Father Matthew, in whose name, together with St. Spyridon and St. Mark Eugenicus, the Church is in honor, from the dedication [of the Church] on 12 October, 2006; 3) the event that the Holy Church of St. Spyridon at Karea is the only Church of the Metropolis of Athens which remained in the Genuine Orthodox Church after the “barbaric invasion” of the Nicholaitans and the abandoning of the Spiritual Centre at Peristeri, and the Shelter for Hospitality of the Clergy, and the remaining Churches, which they placed into the service of Old Calendarist Ecumenism; 4) the event that the new ecclesiastical circumstances which have become apparent after the convening of the Pan‐Orthodox Holy Synod in 2008, require, in the Metropolis of Athens, the existence of a “MISSIONARY ECCLESIASTICAL CENTRE OF THE WORLDWIDE GENUINE ORTHODOX CHURCH” for the better managing of the Missionary work on a Pan‐Orthodox scal; 5) the event that we have already appointed the Priest Fr. Pedro, of Brazilian origin, as the assistant Rector of the Metropolitan Cathedral of St. Demetrius in Acharnae; DECIDE That we appoint the Priest, Fr. Pedro, as the second Rector of the Holy Church of St. Spyridon, since he is well educated and intelligent, and we give him the position of responsibility for the organization of the “MISSIONARY ECCLESIASTICAL CENTRE OF THE WORLDWIDE GENUINE ORTHODOX CHURCH “HOLY FATHERS OF THE SEVEN ECUMENICAL COUNCILS,” to be located near the existing Church. We also declare, by the current [certificate] that Fr. Pedro will serve, depending on our command, at the two above Holy Churches according to the program and depending on the needs, or anywhere else the needs of the Missionary work require. METROPOLITAN OF THE GENUINE ORTHODOX CHURCH OF GREECE [Seal and Signature] + KIRYKOS OF MESOGAEA AND LAUREOTICA
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The presence in this country, one after another, of Eastern prelates of high rank, has afforded an opportunity of arranging a series of services in our London cathedrals, and elsewhere, at which we have been able to see and hear these distinguished representatives of the Orthodox Church.
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Project Canterbury The Episcopal and Greek Churches Report of an Unofficial Conference on Unity Between Members of the Episcopal Church in America and His Grace, Meletios Metaxakis, Metropolitan of Athens, And His Advisers. October 26, 1918. New York: Department of Missions, 1920 PREFACE THE desire for closer communion between the Eastern Orthodox Church and the various branches of the Anglican Church is by no means confined to the Anglican Communion. Many interesting efforts have been made during the past two centuries, a resume of which may be found in the recent publication of the Department of Missions of the Episcopal Church entitled Historical Contact Between the Anglican and Eastern Orthodox Churches. The most significant approaches of recent times have been those between the Anglican and the Russian and the Greek Churches; and of late the Syrian Church of India which claims foundation by the Apostle Saint Thomas. Evdokim, the last Archbishop sent to America by the Holy Governing Synod of Russia in the year 1915, brought with him instructions that he should work for a closer understanding with the Episcopal Church in America. As a result, a series of conferences were held in the Spring of 1916. At these conferences the question of Anglican Orders, the Apostolical Canons and the Seventh Oecumenical Council were discussed. The Russians were willing to accept the conclusions of Professor Sokoloff, as set forth in his thesis for the degree of Doctor of Divinity, approved by the Holy Governing Synod of Russia. In this thesis he proved the historical continuity of Anglican Orders, and the intention to conform to the practice of the ancient Church. He expressed some suspicion concerning the belief of part of the Anglican Church in the nature of the sacraments, but maintained that this could not be of sufficient magnitude to prevent the free operation of the Holy Spirit. The Russian members of the conference, while accepting this conclusion, pointed out that further steps toward inter‐communion could only be made by an oecumenical council. The following is quoted from the above‐mentioned publication: The Apostolical Canons were considered one by one. With explanations on both sides, the two Churches were found to be in substantial agreement. In connection with canon forty‐six, the Archbishop stated that the Russian Church would accept any Anglican Baptism or any other Catholic Baptism. Difficulties concerning the frequent so‐called ʺperiods of fastingʺ were removed by rendering the word ʺfastingʺ as ʺabstinence.ʺ Both Anglicans and Russians agreed that only two fast‐days were enjoined on their members‐‐ Ash‐Wednesday and Good Friday. The Seventh Oecumenical Council was fully discussed. Satisfactory explanations were given by both sides, but no final decision was reached. Before the conference could be reconvened, the Archbishop was summoned to a General Conference of the Orthodox Church at Moscow. During the past year the Syrian Church and the Anglican Church in India have been giving very full and careful consideration to the question of Reunion and it is hoped that some working basis may be speedily established. As a preliminary to this present conference, the writer addressed, with the approval of the members of the conference representing the Episcopal Church, a letter to the Metropolitan which became the basis of discussion. This letter has been published as one of the pamphlets of this series under the title, An Anglican Programme for Reunion. These conferences were followed by a series of other conferences in England which took up the thoughts contained in the American programme, as is shown in the following quotation from the preface to the above‐mentioned letter: At the first conference the American position was reviewed and it was mutually agreed that the present aim of such conference was not for union in the sense of ʺcorporate solidarityʺ based on the restoration of intercommunion, but through clear understanding of each otherʹs position. The general understanding was that there was no real bar to communion between the two Churches and it was desirable that it should be permitted, but that such permission could only be given through the action of a General Council. The third of these series of conferences was held at Oxford. About forty representatives of the Anglican Church attended. The questions of Baptism and Confirmation were considered by this conference. It was shown that, until the eighteenth century, re‐baptism of non‐Orthodox was never practiced. It was then introduced as a protest against the custom in the Latin Church of baptizing, not only living Orthodox, but in many cases, even the dead. Under order of Patriarch Joachim III, it has become the Greek custom not to re‐baptize Anglicans who have been baptized by English priests. In the matter of Confirmation it was shown that in the cases of the Orthodox, the custom of anointing with oil, called Holy Chrism, differs to some extent from our Confirmation. It is regarded as a seal of orthodoxy and should not be viewed as repetition of Confirmation. Even in the Orthodox Church lapsed communicants must receive Chrism again before restoration. The fourth conference was held in the Jerusalem Chapel of Westminster Abbey, under the presidency of the Bishop of Winchester. This discussion was confined to the consideration of the Seventh Oecumenical Council. It is not felt by the Greeks that the number of differences on this point touch doctrinal or even disciplinary principles. The Metropolitan stated that there was no difficulty tin the subject. From what he had seen of Anglican Churches, he was assured as to our practice. He further stated that he was strongly opposed to the practice of ascribing certain virtues and power to particular icons, and that he himself had written strongly against this practice, and that the Holy Synod of Greece had issued directions against it.ʺ Those brought in contact with the Metropolitan of Athens, and those who followed the work of the Commission on Faith and Order can testify to the evident desire of the authorities of the East for closer union with the Anglican Church as soon as conditions permit. This report is submitted because there is much loose thinking and careless utterance on every side concerning the position of the Orthodox Church and the relation of the Episcopal Church to her sister Churches of the East. It seems not merely wise, but necessary, to place before Church people a document showing how the minds of leading thinkers of both Episcopal and Orthodox Churches are approaching this most momentous problem of Intercommunion and Church Unity. THE CONFERENCE BY common agreement, representatives of the Greek Orthodox Church and delegates from the American Branch of the Anglican and Eastern Association and of the Christian Unity Foundation of the Episcopal Church, met in the Bible Room of the Library of the General Theological Seminary, Saturday, October 26, 1918, at ten oʹclock. There were present as representing the Greek Orthodox Church: His Grace, the Most Reverend Meletios Metaxakis, Metropolitan of Greece; the Very Reverend Chrysostomos Papadopoulos, D.D., Professor of the University of Athens and Director of the Theological Seminary ʺRizariosʺ; Hamilcar Alivisatos, D.D., Director of the Ecclesiastical Department of the Ministry of Religion and Education, Athens, and Mr. Tsolainos, who acted as interpreter. The Episcopal Church was represented by the Right Reverend Frederick Courtney; the Right Reverend Frederick J. Kinsman, Bishop of Delaware; the Right Reverend James H. Darlington, D.D., Bishop of Harrisburg; the Very Reverend Hughell Fosbroke, Dean of the General Theological Seminary; the Reverend Francis J. Hall, D.D., Professor of Dogmatic Theology in the General Theological Seminary; the Reverend Rockland T. Homans, the Reverend William Chauncey Emhardt, Secretary of the American Branch of the Anglican and Eastern Association and of the Christian Unity Foundation; Robert H. Gardiner, Esquire, Secretary of the Commission for a World Conference on Faith and Order; and Seraphim G. Canoutas, Esquire. The Right Reverend Edward M. Parker, D.D., Bishop of New Hampshire, telegraphed his inability to be present. His Grace the Metropolitan presided over the Greek delegation and Dr. Alivisatos acted as secretary. The Right Reverend Frederick Courtney presided over the American delegation and the Reverend W. C. Emhardt acted as secretary. Bishop Courtney opened the conference with prayer and made the following remarks: ʺOur brethren of the Greek Church, as well as the Anglican, have received copies of the letter to His Grace which our secretary has drawn up; and which lies before us this morning. It is clear to all those who have taken active part in efforts to draw together, that it is of no use any longer to congratulate each other upon points on which we agree, so long as we hold back those things on which we differ. The points on which we agree are not those which have caused the separation, but the things concerning which we differ. So long as we assume that the conditions which separate us now are the same as those which have held us apart, we are in line for removing those things which separate us. We are making the valleys to be filled and the mountains to be brought low and making possible a revival of the spirit of unity. It is in the hope of effecting this that we are gathered together. Doctrinal differences underlie the things that differentiate us from each other. The proper way to begin this conference would be to ask the Greeks what they think of some of the propositions laid down in the letter, beginning first with the question of the Validity of Anglican Orders, and then proceeding to the ʺFilioque Clauseʺ in the Creed and other topics suggested. ʺWill His Grace kindly state what is his view concerning the Validity of Anglican Orders?ʺ The Metropolitan: ʺI am greatly moved indeed, and it is with feelings of great emotion that I come to this conference around the table with such learned theologians of the Episcopal Church. Because it is the first time I have been given the opportunity to express, not only my personal desire, but the desire of my Church, that we may all be one. I understand that this conference is unofficial. Neither our Episcopal brethren, nor the Orthodox, officially represent their Churches. The fact, however, that we have come together in the spirit of prayer and love to discuss these questions, is a clear and eloquent proof that we are on the desired road to unity. I would wish, that in discussing these questions of ecclesiastical importance in the presence of such theological experts, that I were as well equipped for the undertaking as you are. Unfortunately, however, from the day that I graduated from the Theological Seminary at Jerusalem, I have been absorbed in the great question of the day, which has been the salvation of Christians from the sword of the invader of the Orient. ʺUnfortunately, because we have been confronted in the Near East with this problem of paramount importance, we leaders have not had the opportunity to think of these equally important questions. The occupants of three of the ancient thrones of Christendom, the Patriarch of Constantinople, the Patriarch of Antioch and the Patriarch of Jerusalem, have been constantly confronted with the question of how to save their own fold from extermination. These patriarchates represent a great number of Orthodox and their influence would be of prime importance in any deliberation. But they have not had time to send their bishops to a round‐table conference to deliberate on the questions of doctrine. A general synod, such as is so profitably held in your Church when you come together every three years, would have the same result, if we could hold the same sort of synod in the Near East. A conference similar to the one held by your Church was planned by the Patriarch of Constantinople in September, 1911, but he did not take place, owing to command of the Sultan that the bishops who attended would be subject to penalty of death. ʺIn 1906, when the Olympic games took place in Athens, the Metropolitan of Drama, now of Smyrna, passed through Athens. That was sufficient to cause an imperative demand of the Patriarch of Constantinople that the Metropolitan be punished, and in consequence he was transferred from Drama to Smyrna. From these facts you can see under what conditions the evolution of the Greek Church has been taking place. ʺAs I have stated in former conversations with my brethren of the Episcopal Church, we hope that, by the Grace of God, freedom and liberty will come to our race, and our bishops will be free to attend such conferences as we desire. I assure you that a great spirit of revival will be inaugurated and give proof of the revival of Grecian life of former times. ʺThe question of the freedom of the territory to be occupied in the Near East is not merely a question of the liberty of the people and the individual, but also