Ecumenical Inauguration of the Aedicule of the Holy Sepulchre

The Aedicule of the Holy Sepulchre was solemnly inaugurated on 22 March 2017 after a year of restoration by an ecumenical ceremony attended by representatives of the Orthodox,  Armenian and Roman Catholic Churches. It was presided by the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, in the presence of Patriarch Theophilos III of Jerusalem, the Armenian Apostolic Patriarch Nourhan Manougian and other Christian religious leaders, as well as diplomats and political leaders like Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras and the representatives of the Kingdom of Jordan, the State of Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

Under the current status quo, only the Orthodox, Armenian and Roman-Catholic Churches can celebrate services in the Holy Sepulchre basilica. The restoration work on the Tomb of Christ began less than a year ago in May 2016 to preserve the Tomb in the event of a powerful earthquake, like the one that struck the country in 1927 that weakened the Aedicule.  The last work of consolidation of the Anastasis dates back to those devised by the British in 1947, who had been unable to complete the restoration because there was no agreement between the three Christian communities: Orthodox, Armenians and Franciscans who share custody of the Basilica. For the first time since the status quo of 1857, an agreement was finally reached between the three Christian communities, which was essential to commence the restoration work last year.  This delicate project, which presented both technical and ecumenical challenges, was finally completed successfully. Continue reading

The Orthodox Center of Chambésy to celebrate its 50th anniversary

The Orthodox Center of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Chambésy is going to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the election of His All-Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, as well as the 50th anniversary of its foundation and the 20th anniversary of the opening of its Institute of Postgraduate Studies, on 22-24 April 2017.

The Orthodox Center of the Ecumenical Patriarchate was founded in June 1966. Its aims, as written in its Patriarchal and Synodic founding Tome, are:
– to inform the Christian world of the West, and especially of Western Europe, about the Orthodox worship and the Orthodox teaching, tradition and Theology;
– to study the theology and spiritual life of other Christian Churches and Confessions;
– to assist the communication between the local Orthodox Churches, and thus to promote orthodox unity;
– to promote the ecumenical spirit through the cultivation of relationships between Orthodoxy and other Christian Churches and Confessions aiming to promote the inter-christian unity. Continue reading

The leadership of the WCC Central Committee met in Geneva

The leadership of the World Council of Churches (WCC) Central Committee met in Geneva on 14-15 March 2017 to prepare for the Executive committee meeting to be held in June in Geneva. The WCC continues to focus on its pilgrimage of justice and peace, preparations for the 11th Assembly in 2021 as well its upcoming 70th anniversary. The WCC was formed in October 1948 in Amsterdam. During 2018, the WCC fellowship will not only celebrate significant milestones in the history of the WCC but also continue to address modern injustices and the ongoing struggle for a just peace. Continue reading