By Metropolitan Ierotheos Vlahos. Orthodox spirituality differs distinctly from any other “spirituality” of an eastern or western type. There can be no confusion among the various spiritualities, because Orthodox spirituality is God-centered, whereas all others are man-centered.
By Fr. John Romanides. If one is to vigorously and consistently maintain that Jesus Christ is the unique Savior Who has brought salvation to a world in need of salvation, one obviously must know what is the nature of the need which provoked this salvation.
What are the characteristics of the Church? Do all groups, in fact, comprise the Church? If so, why are there so many differences, even contradictions between them? What is ultimately the relationship between Orthodoxy and the other religious groups?
To be a Christian does not mean simply holding a certain set of beliefs; it means belonging to the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church.
Orthodoxy is not a particular Christian confession, but has a general and trans-temporal character. Orthodoxy was not created by abstractions and divisions, but is the single and unified truth. It is the truth of the Church, the truth of the body of Christ, which is shared and not divided, which is distributed and unifies.
The Orthodox Church is the Church founded by Christ, the New Testament Church continued through the ages. She fully identifies herself with the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. Since ancient times she calls herself Orthodox, which means “right-believing”, in order to separate herself from the heretical churches (Arian, Nestorian, Monophysite, etc.). The Church came to be called Orthodox especially after the iconoclastic period.
Salvation is no longer the privilege of the few: “God our Savior wants all human beings to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (1 Tim. 2:4).
Dear Father: I have been reading quite a bit lately, in several Orthodox periodicals and books, about evangelism. I have been Orthodox all my life and have always thought that “evangelist,” “evangelism,” etc. were Protestant terms. Why is the Orthodox Church in this country using these terms all of a sudden?
We, the Orthodox bishops of North America … have reflected together on the missionary task of the Orthodox Church in North America. We wish to express the following convictions and commitments regarding mission and evangelism in North America…
Scientists are hard to work with on a committee, an academic friend once told me, because they often change their minds when they see new evidence. I was reminded of this a few months ago when I saw a survey in the journal Nature. It revealed that 40 percent of American physicists, biologists, and mathematicians believe in God — and not just some metaphysical abstraction, but a deity who takes an active interest and hears our prayers: the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.