The Orthodox Faith
Audio available for download
Daily Icons Gallery Jan - Jun
Photo Gallery
A Dictionary of Orthodox Terminology
Frequently Asked Questions
Orthodox Spirituality
Orthodox "Myth Busters"
Tradition in the Orthodox Church
Dogma and authority in the Church
The Bible and the Church
The Ever-Virginity of the Mother of God
Jesus Christ in the Orthodox Church
The Holy Trinity
House of God
Holy Icons
The Divine Liturgy
The True Nature of Fasting
From Evangelical to Orthodox
The Funeral Service
A Love Story
The Feast of Epiphany
Christmas - the Nativity of Christ
The Great & Holy Feast of Pascha
Great Lent
Holy Week
Seeing and Believing: The Thomas Incident
The Da Vinci Code
Articles by His Eminence Archbishop Stylianos
Laws, Regulations and Documentation required for an Orthodox wedding
Personal Relationship with God
Noah and His Flood: History or Fantasy?
Prosphoro - Holy Bread
The New Acropolis Museum - Raising the bar on cultural morality
Feast of Holy Pentecost
Sermons given by Father Steven Scoutas
Why Are Priests Called ‘Father’ In our Church?
Prayer
Communing with God in Prayer
The Lord's Prayer
The Symbol of Faith
Morning Prayers
Evening Prayers
The Jesus Prayer
Prayers at mealtime
A prayer of repentance
In time of trouble
In time of sickness
Prayers before Holy Communion
Trisagion Memorial Prayer
Baptism
Chrismation
Holy Communion
Holy Unction
Confession
Marriage
Ordination
Saints
The Saints of the Orthodox Church
St Spyridon - our Patron Saint
The Virgin Mary
The Mystery of the Virgin Mary
The Twelve Apostles
The Apostle and Evangelist John the Theologian
Mary Magdalene
Sts Joachim and Anna, parents of Blessed Mary (Theotokos)
Holy Protomartyr and Equal-to-the-Apostles Thekla
The Prophet Elijah (Elias)
Feast Days in September
   
   
  

The Orthodox Faith
Audio available for download
Daily Icons Gallery Jan - Jun
Photo Gallery
A Dictionary of Orthodox Terminology
Frequently Asked Questions
Orthodox Spirituality
Orthodox "Myth Busters"
Tradition in the Orthodox Church
Dogma and authority in the Church
The Bible and the Church
The Ever-Virginity of the Mother of God
Jesus Christ in the Orthodox Church
The Holy Trinity
House of God
Holy Icons
The Divine Liturgy
The True Nature of Fasting
From Evangelical to Orthodox
The Funeral Service
A Love Story
The Feast of Epiphany
Christmas - the Nativity of Christ
The Great & Holy Feast of Pascha
Great Lent
Holy Week
Seeing and Believing: The Thomas Incident
The Da Vinci Code
Articles by His Eminence Archbishop Stylianos
Laws, Regulations and Documentation required for an Orthodox wedding
Personal Relationship with God
Noah and His Flood: History or Fantasy?
Prosphoro - Holy Bread
The New Acropolis Museum - Raising the bar on cultural morality
Feast of Holy Pentecost
Sermons given by Father Steven Scoutas
Why Are Priests Called ‘Father’ In our Church?
 
 


 
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The Orthodox Faith






Orthodoxy holds that the eternal truths of God's saving revelation in Jesus Christ are preserved in the living Tradition of the Church under the guidance and inspiration of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Scriptures are at the heart of the Tradition and the touchstone of the faith. While the Bible is the written testimony of God's revelation, Holy Tradition is the all-encompassing experience of the Church under the abiding guidance and direction of the Holy Spirit. Essentially, Orthodox Christians consider that their beliefs are very similar to those of other Christian traditions, but that the balance and integrity of the entire Apostolic faith once delivered to the Saints has been preserved inviolate.

We believe that God is One in substance and Triune in persons. We worship One God in Trinity, and Trinity in Unity, neither confusing the persons nor dividing the substance. Creation is the work in time of the Blessed Trinity. The world is not self-created, neither has it existed from eternity, but it is the product of the wisdom, the power, and the will of the One God in Trinity. God the Father is the prime cause of creation and God the Son and God the Holy Spirit took part in creation, God the Son perfecting creation and God the Holy Spirit vivifying creation.

We believe that Our Lord Jesus Christ is truly God. He is Jesus, that is, the Savior and Christ, the Lord's Anointed, a Son not created of another substance, as is the case with us, but a Son begotten of the very substance of the Father before all time, and thus consubstantial with the Father. He is also truly man, like us in every respect, except sin. The denial either of His divinity or of His humanity constitutes a denial of His incarnation and of our salvation. The Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father. The faith of the Church about the procession of the Holy Spirit was confirmed by the Second Ecumenical Council, which added to the Creed the following clause: "And I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the Giver of life, who proceedeth from the Father." The Church is the holy institution founded by our Lord Jesus Christ for the salvation of men, bearing his holy sanction and authority, and composed of men having one and the same faith, and partaking of the same sacraments. It is divided into the clergy and laity. The clergy trace their descent by uninterrupted succession from the Apostles and through them from our Lord Jesus Christ. The Church is ONE because our Lord Jesus Christ founded not many, but only one Church; HOLY because her aim, the sanctification and salvation of her members through the sacraments, is holy; CATHOLIC because she is above local limitations; and APOSTOLIC because she was "built upon the foundation of the Apostles, Jesus Christ Himself being the cornerstone" (Eph. 2:20). The Head of the Church is our Lord, Jesus Christ.

We recognize seven sacraments: Baptism, Chrism or Confirmation, Holy Eucharist, Confession, Ordination, Marriage and Holy Unction. Baptism is the door through which one enters into the Church. Confirmation is the completion of Baptism. In the sacrament of the Holy Eucharist, with the bread and wine, we partake of the very Body and the very Blood of our Lord Jesus Christ for remission of sins and eternal life. Both the New Testament and Sacred Tradition bear witness to the real Presence of our Lord in the Holy Eucharist. In the sacrament of Confession Jesus Christ, the founder of the sacrament, through the confessor, forgives the sins committed after Baptism by the person who confesses his sins and sincerely repents of them. In the sacrament of Ordination through prayer and the laying-on of hands by a bishop, divine grace comes down on the ordained enabling him to be a worthy minister of the Church. Apostolic succession is fundamental to the Church. Without it there can be no continuity of the Church. In the sacrament of Marriage, divine grace sanctifies the union of husband and wife. In the sacrament of Holy Unction the sick person is anointed with sanctified oil and divine grace heals his bodily and spiritual ills.

At death man's body goes to the earth from which it was taken, and the soul, being immortal, goes to God, who gave it. The souls of men, being conscious and exercising all their faculties immediately after death, are judged by God. This judgment following man's death we call the Particular Judgment. The final reward of men, however, we believe will take place at the time of the General Judgment. During the time between the Particular and the General Judgment, which is called the Intermediate State, the souls of men have foretaste of their blessing or punishment. Further, we venerate and honor the saints and we ask their intercession with God, but we adore and worship God the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Of all saints, we honor exceedingly the Mother of our Lord because of the supreme grace and the call which she received from God. Though she was not exempt from original sin, from which she was cleansed at the time of the Annunciation, we believe that by the grace of God she did not commit any actual sin. We venerate the sacred icons and relics. Yet this veneration, according to the decisions and canons of the Seventh Ecumenical Council, relates not to the sacred images as such, but to their prototypes, or to the persons whom they represent.

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