Dear to God, The Proposed Diocesan By-Laws have been on this website since September for your review and input in anticipation of presenting them to the Diocesan Assembly in January 2015. They are substantially based on the Statutes of the Orthodox Church in America as it appears on the OCA website. We were recently informed by the Statutes Revision Committee that there has been at least one amendment and / or clarification to the Statutes at an All American Council several years ago which is not reflected in the online document. His Eminence Archbishop Nathaniel, chair of the Statutes Revision Committee prefers to speak of clarification rather than revision. Nevertheless, as there will be important clarifications made, it seems prudent to postpone approval of the Diocesan By-Laws until after the All American Council in Atlanta, GA, where the Revised Statutes will be presented. The Proposed Diocesan By-Laws will then be reviewed and edited to include Revised Statutes approved in Atlanta in 2015. Please send any feedback and/or suggestions to Bishop MARK. As we know the Statutes of the OCA are the overriding Document and all Parish By-Laws must be in accord with the Statutes and have the Blessing of the Bishop to be valid. Your unworthy father in Christ,
+Mark Bishop of Philadelphia and Eastern Pennsylvania
Freely Receive, Freely Give
The presentation, "Freely Receive, Freely Give" from the 2015 Diocesan Assembly is now online for viewing. It gives a comprehensive look at Christian Stewardship and Proportional Giving. View "Freely Receive, Freely Give" HERE.
Assembly of Bishops launches national study on giving in US parishes
A national study — “Exploring Orthodox Generosity: Giving in US Orthodox Parishes” — is being launched by the Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Bishops of the USA.
“We need and invite as many pariticipants as possible,” said Alexei D. Krindatch, the Assembly’s Research Coordinator. “Both Orthodox clergy and laity are invited to take part in this unique project.” Examples of the questions the study will explore include the following. • Why do people give or not give to their parishes? • Are Church members satisfied with how “money matters” are handled in their parishes? • How do parishioners make decisions on how much, when and why to give? • What causes “boost” people’s generosity and encourage greater giving? The study is being conducted as an on-line survey and may be accessed here.
The 18th All American Council will be held in Atlanta, Georgia from July 20-24, 2015. The theme of the Council is "How to Expand the Mission." More information on this historic event can be found at THIS LINK
2015 FOCA Convention
In 2015 both the AAC and The FOCA's 89th Annual Convention will occur concurrently. For the latest information visit the FOCA Website.
Proposed Parish By-Laws
Christ is in our midst!
Here you will find the "Proposed Template" for parishes desiring to adopt a set of By-Laws where there are none or update them in cases where the old By-Laws are incongruent with the Statutes of the OCA or simply out of date. We welcome feedback on these "Proposed Parish By-Laws." Additionally, we encourage every parish to develop a Mission Statement for their parish and specifically identify ways they intend to fulfill their missionary calling and submit it to the Diocese for approval.
+ Mark, Bishop of Philadelphia and Eastern Pennsylvania
A two-year course of studies now being offered in Philadelphia at St Stephen's Othodox Cathedral for the 2014-2015 Academic Year.
Through serving in the altar, singing in the choir, and studying graduate-level material in Scripture, Church History, Liturgics and Spirituality, St Tikhon's Diaconal Formation program immerses students in the life of the Orthodox Church and prepares them for their future service in their parishes.
Fr. Alexis Trader: Being Christian in a Post-Christian World
The following link will take you to a series of four guest posts from Fr. Alexis Trader, a priestmonk and spiritual father of Karakallou Monastery on the Holy Mountain, and author of In Peace Let Us Pray to the Lord: An Orthodox Interpretation of the Gifts of the Spirit.
Fr. Alexis has recently released a new book and it is about his new book that he now writes. CLICK HERE TO READ
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