Thomas E. FitzGerald
The Orthodox Church Denominations in America
ContentsPREFACE ACKNOWLEDGMENTS 1. THE ORTHODOX CHURCH: AN INTRODUCTION EASTERN AND WESTERN CHRISTIANITY DIVISIONS AMONG CHRISTIANS A TIME OF RENEWAL AND DIALOGUE ORTHODOX SPIRITUALITY The Triune God Salvation The Eucharist 2. THE ALASKAN MISSION EXPLORERS AND MERCHANTS THE FIRST MISSIONARIES FATHER HERMAN BISHOP INNOCENT THE DECLINE OF THE ALASKAN MISSION 3. EARLY PARISH DEVELOPMENTS THE EARLY PARISHES THE GREEK IMMIGRANTS AND THEIR PARISHES THE CARPATHO-RUSSIAN IMMIGRANTS AND THEIR PARISHES ARCHBISHOP TIKHON OTHER ORTHODOX IMMIGRANTS 4. EARLY DIOCESAN DEVELOPMENTS THE FOUNDING OF THE GREEK ORTHODOX ARCHDIOCESE POLITICS AND SCHISM THE IMPACT OF THE RUSSIAN REVOLUTION THE ESTABLISHMENT OF THE INDEPENDENT METROPOLIS THE ANTIOCHIAN ORTHODOX ARCHDIOCESE OTHER PARALLEL DIOCESES 5. PROPOSALS FOR JURISDICTIONAL COOPERATION THE SEMINARY PROPOSAL THE COUNCIL OF BISHOPS PROPOSAL THE MAGAZINE PROPOSAL THE FEDERATION 6. THE CHALLENGE OF THE OLD WORLD THE RUSSIAN ORTHODOX DIOCESES THE ROMANIAN ORTHODOX DIOCESES THE BULGARIAN ORTHODOX DIOCESES THE SERBIAN ORTHODOX DIOCESES THE ALBANIAN ORTHODOX DIOCESES UKRAINIAN ORTHODOX DIOCESES 7. THE CHALLENGE OF THE NEW WORLD A CHANGING MEMBERSHIP RELIGIOUS EDUCATION AND YOUTH MINISTRY EARLY ECUMENICAL WITNESS 8. TOWARD GREATER UNITY AND WITNESS THE ESTABLISHMENT OF SCOBA ECUMENICAL WITNESS AND DIALOGUE AN OPPOSING PERSPECTIVE PROPOSALS FOR A PROVINCIAL SYNOD 9. AN ERA OF TRANSITIONS THE AUTOCEPHALY QUESTION THE PAN-ORTHODOX CRISIS THE LANGUAGE QUESTION THE CHALLENGE TO SCOBA THE NATURE OF THE CHURCH A PAN-ORTHODOX RESPONSE 10. HERITAGE AND VISION THE VISIT OF THE ECUMENICAL PATRIARCH DIOCESAN LIFE PARISH LIFE LITURGICAL AND SPIRITUAL RENEWAL WOMEN IN CHURCH SERVICE THEOLOGICAL EDUCATION ECUMENICAL WITNESS MONASTICISM SOCIAL CONCERN AND MISSION IDENTIFICATION AND SHARING Appendix I. CHRONOLOGY Appendix II. THE AUTOCEPHALOUS AND AUTONOMOUS ORTHODOX CHURCHES Appendix III. THE STANDING CONFERENCE OF CANONICAL ORTHODOX BISHOPS IN AMERICA BIBLIOGRAPHIC ESSAY About the Author
THE ORTHODOX CHURCH: A HISTORY
To Kyriaki with love
Orthodoxy cannot be maintained simply by inertia. No tradition can survive unless it is continued through creative effort. The message of Christ is eternal and always the same, but it must be reinterpreted again and again so as to become a challenge to every new generation, to be a message which may appeal to man in his concrete situation. We have not simply to keep the legacy of the past, but must first realize what we have inherited and do everything we can to present it to others as a living thing.
Father Georges Florovsky
The Responsibility of Orthodox Believers in America
The Praeger series of denominational studies follows a distinguished precedent. These current volumes improve on earlier works by including more churches than before and by looking at all of them in a wider cultural context. The prototype for this series appeared almost a century ago. Between 1893 and 1897, twenty-four scholars collaborated in publishing thirteen volumes known popularly as the American Church History Series. These scholars found twenty religious groups to be worthy of separate treatment, either as major sections of a volume or as whole books in themselves. Scholars in this current series have found that outline to be unrealistic, with regional subgroups no longer warranting separate status and others having declined to marginality. Twenty organizations in the earlier series survive as nine in this collection, and two churches and an interdenominational bureau have been omitted. The old series also excluded some important churches of that time; others have gained great strength since then. So today, a new list of denominations, rectifying imbalance and recognizing modern significance, features many groups not included a century ago. The solid core of the old series remains in this new one, and in the present case a wider range of topics makes the study of denominational life in America more inclusive.
Some recent denominational histories have improved with greater attention to primary sources and more rigorous scholarly standards. But they have too frequently pursued themes for internal consumption alone. Volumes in the Praeger series strive to surmount such parochialism while remaining grounded in the specific materials of concrete ecclesiastical traditions. They avoid placing a single denomination above others in its distinctive truth claims, ethical norms, and liturgical patterns. Instead, they set the history of each church in the larger religious and social context that shaped the emergence of notable denominational features. In this way the authors in this series help us understand the interaction that has occurred between different churches and the broader aspects of American culture.
Each of the historical studies in this current series has a strong biographical focus, using the real-life experiences of men and women in church life to highlight significant elements of an unfolding sequence. Every volume singles out important watershed issues that affected a denomination's outlook and discusses the roles of those who influenced the flow of events. This format enables authors to emphasize the distinctive features of their chosen subject and at the same time recognize the sharp particularities of individual attributes in the cumulative richness that their denomination possesses.
The author of this volume has produced a remarkable study, despite almost overwhelming difficulties. Various forms of Eastern Orthodoxy stem from the beginnings of Christianity itself, and they acquired different emphases while spreading into disparate cultures. Their many versions were ancient when the Western Hemisphere was new to Europeans. This sense of longevity gave Eastern Orthodox churches a special reverence for tradition, which they brought with them to America. As representatives of Greek, Russian, Syrian, Ukrainian, and other Orthodox groups immigrated here, they resisted any alteration of their imported confessions and liturgies vis-a-vis the rest of American spirituality. Indeed, they usually refused to pool their resources or to cooperate more closely with each other, even when such marginality reduced their influence. This spirit of isolated integrity has perpetuated separate institutions, ethnic identities, hierarchies, and theological priorities in an American context where neither geography nor politics any longer justifies them. FitzGerald is at his best in accounting for the complex reasons behind the continuance of numerous Orthodox entities. He is also cogent and persuasive in analyzing the cultural and ecumenical factors that slowly move these groups toward closer interaction. As professor of religious studies and history at Hellenic College, Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology, he is fortuitously placed to comprehend this ecclesiastical spectrum. His balanced perspective and sympathetic treatment of these communions mark a notable advance in our effort to understand what these churches mean to each other and what future role all American denominations might play in national life.
HENRY WARNER BOWDEN