What is Church of the Genuine Orthodox
Christians of Greece?
History of the Orthodox Church
The Orthodox Church is the True Apostolic Church of Our Lord and God and Saviour Jesus Christ, who founded His Church through His Apostles. 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 Greece
The Genuine Orthodox Christians of Greece is comprised of the faithful confessors of Christian truth who have rejected the heresy of Ecumenism and it traces its spiritual lineage from the first bishops that departed the innovating State Church of Greece in 1935 to lead the Old Calendar movement.
His Eminence, the Most Reverend Auxentios of Etna and Portland.
The jurisdiction of the Diocese of Etna and Portland (DEP) extends over its extant parishes and monastic communities in the states of California, Oregon, Washington, and Arizona and the province of Alberta, as well as future parishes or monastic communities in these same states and province, in addition to the states of Idaho, Alaska, Nevada, Utah, and Hawaii and the province of British Columbia.
His Eminence is a member of the Synod of Bishops of the Church of the Genuine (Old Calendar) Orthodox Christians of Greece (CGOCG), under the presidency of His Beatitude, Archbishop Kallinikos of Athens and All Greece (see the Holy Synod’s website, in Greek), and of the Church’s Eparchical Synod in America, under His Eminence, Metropolitan Demetrios (see the Eparchical Synod’s website here). The Eparchical Synod of Bishops administers the Holy Synod’s parishes and monastic communities in the U.S. and Canada, distributed in four administrative units: The Metropolis of America, the Metropolis of Toronto, the Diocese of Boston, and the Diocese of Etna and Portland. The CGOCG and the DEP follow the “Old” or “Julian” Festal Calendar of the Orthodox Church and maintain its traditional forms of worship and spiritual practice and observance (Orthopraxis). See a statistical profile of the CGOCG and its communities and Sister Churches worldwide here
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.