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Taking A Tour of The Orthodox Church

Whether you already belong to the Orthodox faith or are converting to the faith, "Taking a tour Through an Orthodox Church" will serve as a wonderful guide to learning more about Orthodoxy!

What Is the Orthodox Church?

The Church is the mystical body of Christ. Jesus Christ is the head, and the members of the body are those who have accepted the Orthodox Christian faith, and participate regularly in the Holy Mysteries. A hierarchy exists in the Church: the Bishop, who represents the presence of Christ on earth; the Priest; the Deacon, and the faithful. Together they make up the Church, the mystical body of Christ. "Christ is the head of the Church, His body, and is Himself its saviour" (Ephesians 5:23), says St. Paul. He also says that "you are the body of Christ, and individually members of it”, (I Corinthians 12:27) and that "we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another" (Romans 12:5). Jesus Christ, the Son of God born of a Virgin, founded His Holy Church (Matthew 16:18). Since the time of the Apostles, the Church has laboured for the salvation of man. The Apostles spread the Church with her teachings far and wide; they founded many communities all united in faith, worship, and the partaking of the Mysteries (known by many as the Sacraments) of the Holy Church.

Understanding the Orthodox Christian Faith

"Understanding the Orthodox Faith" is an introductory guide to learning the basics about the Orthodox faith. Ellinas Multimedia has combined interviews with Orthodox Priests along with beautiful photography inside Orthodox churches to teach you about the following:

When did the Orthodox faith begin?
Who was the founder of the Orthodox faith?
What is meant by Apostolic Succession?
What does Holy Tradition mean?
Why are there icons in Orthodox churches?
Are Orthodox Christians "saved?"
How does the Orthodox faith view the Virgin Mary?
Are Orthodox Christians "born again?"
Why is the Orthodox faith considered "the best kept secret?"

Source: Ellinas Multimedia

The Patriarchates

There are ancient Patriarchates founded by the Apostles themselves: Constantinople, Alexandria, Antioch, Jerusalem, and Rome. The Church at Constantinople was founded by St. Andrew, the Church at Alexandria by St. Mark, the Church at Antioch by St. Paul, the Church at Jerusalem by Ss. Peter and James, and the Church at Rome by Ss. Peter and Paul. Those founded in later years through missionary were the Churches of Sinai, Russia, Greece, Serbia, Bulgaria, Romania, and others. 

Each of these churches is autocephalous (independent in administration). With the exception of the Church of Rome, which separated from the others in the year 1054, all are united in the Apostolic tradition: faith, doctrine, mysteries, and worship. Together they all constitute the Orthodox Church.

The Holy Eucharist

Eucharist means thanksgiving and has become a synonym for Holy Communion. The Eucharist is the central action of worship in the Orthodox Church. Because Jesus said of the bread and wine at the Mystical (Last) Supper, "This is my body", and “This is my blood", (Luke 22: 19,20), His followers follow His commandment. In the Eucharist, the faithful partake mystically of Christ's Body and Blood, which grants life and healing of both soul and body. By the grace that is imparted through the Holy Eucharist the faithful are united with Christ.

The Divine Liturgy of the Greek Orthodox Church in English

The Divine Liturgy of Saint John Chrysostom chanted in English by the Mount Lebanon Choir of Byzantine Music.

Source: Mount Lebanon Choir of Byzantine Music