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Author Topic: What is required to start an Orthodox Mission in your area?  (Read 7837 times) Average Rating: 0
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Shiloah
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« on: May 02, 2004, 10:01:31 PM »

 Does anybody on this forum know what it takes to get an Orthodox mission started in an area? America needs the Orthodox Church, don't you think? Grin



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« Reply #1 on: May 02, 2004, 10:15:04 PM »

You have to contact the bishop and there has to be a certain number of like-minded people in the area interested in the same goal.
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« Reply #2 on: May 02, 2004, 10:52:23 PM »

Both the OCA and ROCOR have ell english missions, so try writting to both of them and see what they say.  Also the JP is worth considering although they are new to the American scene.
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« Reply #3 on: May 02, 2004, 10:59:22 PM »

what is required is your Bishops approval.  He will make sure you ahve everything in order before aproving it.  Start by talking to the nearest Orthodox Priest or the Priest at the parish where you attend.

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« Reply #4 on: May 02, 2004, 11:01:47 PM »

Here is how most OCA missions have been established in our diocese for the last twenty years or so.

1. Secure a core group to explore starting a mission (usually 2-5 families/individuals) that are Orthodox
2. Contact your bishop, letting him know of your desire to start a mission in your area.  
3. If the bishop approves, he will give you permission to start holding reader's services.  Perhaps one or more of the starting members will be tonsured a reader if a member in good standing at their last parish.
4. Once you have secured a place to meet and have had reader's services for a month or two, the local dean and/or bishop will arrange to have supply priests hold a liturgy at the mission at least once a month.  At this point the mission usually receives it's name.
5. After showing enough growth that demonstrates that the community has the potential to evangelise their local area and support a priest and his family either a priest will be assigned to the mission or one of the mission families will go to seminary.

If you're seriously interested, I'm sure we can put you in touch with members of your jurisdiction who can help.  If you are OCA, I have several people who would be willing to help.  We also have several ROCOR and a few AOA members here who can help as well.  

May God bless your endeavor.
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« Reply #5 on: May 03, 2004, 12:52:20 AM »

Both the OCA and ROCOR have ell english missions, so try writting to both of them and see what they say.  Also the JP is worth considering although they are new to the American scene.

I would strike that last part about the JP.  Nothing against them - just another jurisdiction that doesn't need to be hear.  They need to be helped at home (their home) much more.  I'm not Antiochian, but I agree in principle.
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« Reply #6 on: May 03, 2004, 07:48:00 AM »

What is JP?

Thank y'all for all the answers.  I will keep the subject on the back burner of my heart until the right time comes. It seems easy enough though, to start a mission.  Is there some information about how many missions get started each year in the US?

Certainly not enough, but we can all pray for more missions each year per state. And where can I get pricey  material like brochures and icon/prayer pictures and little prayer booklets/

Aahh, not my will but yours, Lord!
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« Reply #7 on: May 03, 2004, 08:41:19 AM »

The "JP" is the Jerusalem Patriarchate (the Patriarch of Jerusalem).

The really good thing about the JP is the fact that it is conservative and not given to so much of the rather liberal, ecumenist stuff to which some of the other churches are so prone.

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« Reply #8 on: May 03, 2004, 09:36:17 AM »

Yes this is very true with regards to the JP.  But come on, how many jurisdictions do we really need in this country?!  Canonically speakig we should all be under the Russian Church.

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« Reply #9 on: May 03, 2004, 09:52:46 AM »

Shiloah,
In your area already are:
1 OCA parish
3 Greek parishes (one of which is English speaking)
1 Antiochian parish
1 ROCOR parish

Do you want another jurisdiction down there or another Antiochian mission?

Demetri
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« Reply #10 on: May 03, 2004, 10:02:04 AM »

:The really good thing about the JP is the fact that it is conservative and not given to so much of the rather liberal, ecumenist stuff to which some of the other churches are so prone.:

And this "liberal, ecumenist stuff" is really worse than fomenting schism by multiplying bishops in one locality in explicit contradiction to both the letter and spirit of the entire teaching of the Fathers?

I find this really odd. You hardline Orthodox types are quite willing to apply everything the Fathers said about Gnostics or Arians to Trinitarian non-Orthodox Christians (hence your hatred of ecumenism, even in the very modest form practiced by mainstream Orthodoxy), but you apparently don't think what the Fathers said about one bishop per town applies at all. What gives?

In Christ,

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« Reply #11 on: May 03, 2004, 10:09:06 AM »

Quote
I find this really odd. You hardline Orthodox types are quite willing to apply everything the Fathers said about Gnostics or Arians to Trinitarian non-Orthodox Christians (hence your hatred of ecumenism, even in the very modest form practiced by mainstream Orthodoxy), but you apparently don't think what the Fathers said about one bishop per town applies at all. What gives?

1. You're right, Edwin.

2. Easy: they're arrogant.
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« Reply #12 on: May 03, 2004, 10:10:02 AM »

Good questions, Edwin, good questions all.

Demetri
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« Reply #13 on: May 03, 2004, 10:30:24 AM »

if you wish to be in a more conservative, non-ecumenist, old calander jurisdiction, go with ROCOR.  It is already established in this country and so is not pushing the uncanonical plurification of juris in this country.  Really one should be under the Russian church* period (and everyone was up until the Bolshevik Revolution) as it was the first to evangelize this country.

*whether by this you mean OCA or the ROCOR is a factor of discussion.

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« Reply #14 on: May 03, 2004, 10:32:02 AM »

:The really good thing about the JP is the fact that it is conservative and not given to so much of the rather liberal, ecumenist stuff to which some of the other churches are so prone.:

And this "liberal, ecumenist stuff" is really worse than fomenting schism by multiplying bishops in one locality in explicit contradiction to both the letter and spirit of the entire teaching of the Fathers?

I find this really odd. You hardline Orthodox types are quite willing to apply everything the Fathers said about Gnostics or Arians to Trinitarian non-Orthodox Christians (hence your hatred of ecumenism, even in the very modest form practiced by mainstream Orthodoxy), but you apparently don't think what the Fathers said about one bishop per town applies at all. What gives?

In Christ,

Edwin

very good point Edwin.

Joe Zollars
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« Reply #15 on: May 03, 2004, 10:34:33 AM »

Is JP growing in this country because of the Palestinian Christians who are getting away from the fighting?

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« Reply #16 on: May 03, 2004, 10:43:58 AM »

Is JP growing in this country because of the Palestinian Christians who are getting away from the fighting?

Matt

Hmmm...I had not thought of that, Frobie.
However, would not the existing Antiochian Archdiocese be a natural home for the newly arrived Arabs?

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« Reply #17 on: May 03, 2004, 10:46:42 AM »

Or any other Orthodox Church for that matter, after all the JP is in communion wiht just about everyone in this country either directly or indirectly.

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« Reply #18 on: May 03, 2004, 11:14:56 AM »

So, Brothers, where does that put the OCA in all this?

Woudn't it be wonderful to have a mission in walking distance even/ Or I'd rather drive 5 miles only than 50 or more. So how about one bishop for each state of the US at least? Nobody seems to object to have a Baptist or Methodist church on every corner?

As for the ecumenical part, I think it would be best to stay as close as possible to the original, but we also must get along with others without compromising the faith of the Apostles. God does not like mixture, as far as I remember from the Scriptures.

Ari,  I liked the Russian rite better than the Antiochian. They had all kinds of anglican and what have you tunes in their melodies and I could not at all follow along.

Shiloah, just dreaming along ...
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« Reply #19 on: May 03, 2004, 11:31:27 AM »


Ari,  I liked the Russian rite better than the Antiochian. They had all kinds of anglican and what have you tunes in their melodies and I could not at all follow along.

Shiloah, just dreaming along ...

Interesting. Not knowing exactly to what you saw or experienced at the Antiochian parish, I can't comment.

I, too, would like an Orthodox parish on any street corner - as long as we fill the temples every week  Cheesy

It's sometimes hard to see the 'jurisdiction' arguments in the USA and then realize that this is one of the few places where we have a choice among 'traditions' and can indulge in preferences.

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« Reply #20 on: May 03, 2004, 11:37:14 AM »

Hmmm...I had not thought of that, Frobie.
However, would not the existing Antiochian Archdiocese be a natural home for the newly arrived Arabs?

Demetri

No.  Many Palestinians have alleged that the Syrians and Lebanese have maltreated them, disprespected them, and generally made them feel unwelcome. This is not totally true as even at SVS we have a Palestinian Arab Antiochian and after all, Bp Demetri of the AOA is Palestinian.

Other things factoring in are that Palestinians are on the Old Calendar and are generally not used to seeing modernist priests in "streewear" and cleanshaven, etc.  Throw it all together and the JP looks pretty good to them.

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« Reply #21 on: May 03, 2004, 11:39:51 AM »

I would strike that last part about the JP.  Nothing against them - just another jurisdiction that doesn't need to be hear.  They need to be helped at home (their home) much more.  I'm not Antiochian, but I agree in principle.

Sorry, one more jurisdiction won't hurt.  And they've been here since the 1930's anyway. Now they are just more visible.

If the Antiochians weren't allegedly causing problems for Palestinians they (the JP) would have not grown so much.

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« Reply #22 on: May 03, 2004, 11:41:15 AM »

Yes this is very true with regards to the JP.  But come on, how many jurisdictions do we really need in this country?!  Canonically speakig we should all be under the Russian Church.

Joe Zollars

I would like to point out that the JP has the blessing of the EP to be here in America. They worked out an agreement to that effect (JP as a Greek church gives some primacy to the EP).

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« Reply #23 on: May 03, 2004, 11:48:48 AM »

Don't forget the whole reason the JP is even here in America is because a group of priest in California that the Antiochians defrocked and excommunicatted decided to have one of their sons ordained a priest and start up a new parish. They went to the JP to get this done because the Antiochian Archdiocese here in America had been very critical of the former Pat of Jeruslem's treatment of non-greek christians in the Holy City.

The JP is also here against a signed agreement that would keep both the Curches of Alexandria and Jerusalem out of America since any members of their churches could either be ministered by the Greek or Antiochian Archdiocese.
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« Reply #24 on: May 03, 2004, 11:53:57 AM »

I understand that Anastasios, but according to the Canons, we should all be under the Church that had the original episcopacy here in the US and that is the Russian Church.  Prior to the revolution, all Orthodox Christians in this country were under the Russian Church but divinded also along ethnic lines within the Church (similar to the Bulgarian and Romanian Dioceses of hte OCA).  Now that communism is ended, its time to get back to this more ideal canonical situation.

Shiloh, there are three groups that can with some legitimacy be considered the Russian Church here in the states.  The three groups are first the ROCOR, second the OCA, and third the few remaining MP parishes that have conceded that the OCA is (in their eyes) the canonical Church here in the US.

I have no problem with ethnic traditions, in fact i think they add to the richness of the faith experience of the Orthodox.  However it is very difficult to explain Orthodoxy to Protestants when we aren't "one"  in this country.

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« Reply #25 on: May 03, 2004, 11:54:37 AM »

Arimethea,

First of all, the agreement was amended by Constantinople and the Jerusalem Patriarchate.  The Jerusalem Patriarchate has Constantinople's blessing to be here.

Secondly, the JP predates the Ben Lomond fiasco.  The JP picked up the Felton congregation and two spin off churches but has *11* other Churches not related to Ben Lomond.

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« Reply #26 on: May 03, 2004, 11:56:37 AM »

Joe,

Sorry buddy, but have you ever read through the canons? Have you taken any canon law classes? And you don't cite any canons in your posts.  I am not trying laud knoweldge over you but really,  It's not as black and white as you present the situation. Smiley

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« Reply #27 on: May 03, 2004, 12:10:00 PM »

of course it is not that black and white, or we wouldn't have the situation we have today or similar situations in history (albeit on a much smaller scale), but it would be a lot easier to explain things to converts such as myself if it weren't so confusing.  I mean how Orthodox is it to say to a newly illumined ROCOR member, for instance, "you may commune in ROCOR, JP, and SP parishes, but not in OCA, GOA, AOA, etc."

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« Reply #28 on: May 03, 2004, 12:15:17 PM »

Quote
I mean how Orthodox is it to say to a newly illumined ROCOR member, for instance, "you may commune in ROCOR, JP, and SP parishes, but not in OCA, GOA, AOA, etc."

It's a lousy witness and adding more redundant jurisdictions to the mess only makes it worse.
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« Reply #29 on: May 03, 2004, 12:41:07 PM »

It's a lousy witness and adding more redundant jurisdictions to the mess only makes it worse.
I understand those sentiments, Serge.
Maybe we should just ring up the 5 or 6 churches that aren't here already, invite them in, call a local American council and then see how fast the mother churches call a General Council  Wink

I'd wager we would see some resolution (even if it looks like Major League Baseball revenue-sharing  Embarrassed )

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« Reply #30 on: May 03, 2004, 12:53:06 PM »

Serge, I agree completely.

Demetri, I am still laughing at your post!

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« Reply #31 on: May 03, 2004, 05:52:15 PM »

of course it is not that black and white, or we wouldn't have the situation we have today or similar situations in history (albeit on a much smaller scale), but it would be a lot easier to explain things to converts such as myself if it weren't so confusing.  I mean how Orthodox is it to say to a newly illumined ROCOR member, for instance, "you may commune in ROCOR, JP, and SP parishes, but not in OCA, GOA, AOA, etc."

Joe Zollars

Joe, are you saying that as a "member" of the OCA I would not be able to commune with the ROCOR ?

I pray that one of these days, no matter what 'jurisdiction' some believer is under, we will all be considered 'members' of the Orthodox Church - the one holy catholic as proclaimed and confessed in the Nicene creed - and won't have to worry about the rest, what country etc.

We better be aware that God is not mocked!! Jesus christ has a Body that is entirely HIS, and He is coming for His Bride without spot or wrinkle - or does Orthodox tradition see this different? God will look at the intention of our heart, and we better have our act and our dedication together on that day...

Shiloah,  feeling that the Lord is being insulted by all this  :'(
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« Reply #32 on: May 03, 2004, 06:02:57 PM »

Shiloah:

Some ROCOR priests will comune OCA people, but ROCOR and OCA are not in communion.

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« Reply #33 on: May 03, 2004, 06:06:46 PM »

Shiloah,

The ROCOR vs OCA problem should be worked out soon. The Metropolitan of ROCOR is going to Moscow to talk some more.  All the regular Orthodox Churches are in communion with each other except ROCOR.

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« Reply #34 on: November 07, 2010, 08:34:00 PM »

Wow, did this thread get off topic or what?! Hopefully Shiloah wasn't so bummed out by the "jurisdictional/administrative" bickering that they just said "Aww, heck, I might as well forget about the whole thing!" I'd say a mission under any Orthodox hierarch would be a wonderful addition to The Faith in America  Undecided

In reply to the last response - The formal reunion of ROCOR and the Moscow Patriarchate is a wonderful blessing and a true gift from God!
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« Reply #35 on: January 22, 2011, 12:51:10 AM »

Does anybody on this forum know what it takes to get an Orthodox mission started in an area? America needs the Orthodox Church, don't you think? Grin



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