What is Church of the Genuine Orthodox Christians of Greece?

History of the Orthodox Church

The Orthodox Church is the original Christian Church established by Jesus Christ in A.D. 33. From that time on, the successors to the Apostles, the Bishops, have maintained incorrupt this holy faith.

By the grace of the Holy Spirit received at Pentecost, the Apostles established the Church throughout the ancient world. For a millennium, Orthodox Christendom was undivided, under the leadership of the Bishops of five Apostolic Patriarchates: Rome, Constantinople, Alexandria, Antioch, and Jerusalem.

Over time, however, the Patriarchate of Rome introduced various heresies: changing the Nicene Creed, claiming supremacy of the Pope of Rome over the other Bishops, and promoting the false doctrine of purgatory. These and other innovations, unhistorical and unsupported by either Holy Scripture or Holy Tradition, resulted in the separation of Rome from the historical and true Church of Christ in 1054.

Drifting further from its origins, continuing to introduce innovations, the Western church in the 16th century was shattered into a myriad of sects by the Protestant Reformation. Also in that century, Rome introduced the Gregorian calendar, in direct contradiction to the tradition of the Church, which followed the Julian calendar.

In Greece, Russia, the Balkans, the Middle East, and elsewhere, however, the True Apostolic Church of Christ continued to flourish, preserving the Faith of Christ pure and unchanged.

World Orthodoxy Today

Tragically, the Orthodox world was rent asunder in the 1920s by the innovations of the Patriarch of Constantinople, who, without consulting the other Patriarchs and Bishops, introduced the Gregorian calendar, replacing the Julian calendar. Since that time, as one after another of the historic Patriarchates adopted the Gregorian calendar, the pan-heresy of ecumenism has spread throughout the Church, aided by the superficial unity created by the use of the Gregorian calendar.

Ecumenism, in which all churches and organizations calling themselves Christian are said to be equal, each having some "part" of the truth  has been spread by the World Council of Churches and is now following its logical course of expanding to include all non-Christian religions as well. We live in an age in which the path Our Lord and God and Saviour Jesus Christ showed us is said to be just one path to "God" among many paths (i.e., Buddhism, Judaism, Hinduism, Native American shamanism). This inclusiveness is called syncretism. Truth has been not only divided into parts, but is now relative and adaptive. (Truth, like the Church, is indivisible and cannot exist in "parts.")

Another result of the "new" Orthodoxy is that worship services have been shortened, pews and organs have been introduced, fasting is neglected, and many of the canons of the Church, decided upon by Ecumnical Councils many centuries ago, have been abandoned, all in the name of progress, relevance to modern lifestyles, and the goal of a superficial union with other churches and organizations.

The Church of the Genuine Orthodox Christians of America

The Church of the Genuine Orthodox Christians of America, an autonomous eparchy of the Church of the Genuine Orthodox Christians of Greece, under His Beatitude, Archbishop Kallinikos, is made up of two Metropolises (America and Toronto) and two Dioceses (Portland and Boston) subject to the Metropolis of America.

The Church of the Genuine Orthodox Christians in America was established in the 1950's with the arrival of the ever-memorable Archimandrite Petros Astyfides (1915-1997), who later became Metropolitan of Astoria. In 1954 he founded the church of St. Markella in Astoria, NY, which later became his Cathedral. In the Church of the G.O.C. in America there are now 19 parishes and 18 missions, served by 41 priests and 9 deacons throughout 20 states in America, 2 provinces in Canada, and Guatemala.

The ruling hierarch of the Metropolis of America is His Eminence, Metropolitan Pavlos of America, who is assisted by his auxiliary bishop, His Grace, Bishop Christodoulos of Theoupolis. The Metropolis of Toronto, whose ruling hierarch is His Eminence, Metropolitan Moses of Toronto, extends throughout southern Ontario. The Diocese of Portland, whose ruling hierarch is His Grace, Bishop Sergios of Portland, extends throughout the western United States which are in the Pacific and Mountain Time Zones. The Diocese of Boston, whose ruling hierarch is His Grace, Bishop Demetrius of Boston, extends throughout the states of New England.

Our faithful come from a wide variety of ethnic backgrounds. While English is the primary language of worship, some parishes use Church Greek, some in combination with English.

We invite you to visit one of our parishes or to get in contact with us if you have any questions about our Church.



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