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  1. According to the Eastern Orthodox tradition the history of the Eastern Orthodox Church is traced back to Jesus Christ and the Apostles. The Apostles appointed successors, known as bishops, and they in turn appointed other bishops in a process known as Apostolic succession.

    History of the Eastern Orthodox Church - Wikipedia
    • History of Orthodox Christianity - Beginnings (1 of 3)
    • History of Eastern (Greek) Orthodox Church
    • Eastern Orthodox Icon History- 1/7
    • Orthodox Christianity: What is "Byzantine"? Where is the Early Church
  2. History of the Eastern Orthodox Church - Wikipedia

    According to the Eastern Orthodox tradition the history of the Eastern Orthodox Church is traced back to Jesus Christ and the Apostles. The Apostles appointed successors, known as bishops, and they in turn appointed other bishops in a process known as Apostolic succession.

  3. Eastern Orthodox Church History - Origin and Founders

    Mar 05, 2019 · Origin of Eastern Orthodoxy All Christian denominations are rooted in the life and ministry of Jesus Christ and share the same origins. Early believers were part of one body, one church. However, during the ten centuries following the resurrection, the church experienced many disagreements and fractions.

  4. Eastern Orthodoxy | Definition, Origin, History, & Facts ...

    Eastern Orthodoxy, official name Orthodox Catholic Church, one of the three major doctrinal and jurisdictional groups of Christianity. It is characterized by its continuity with the apostolic church, its liturgy, and its territorial churches. Its adherents live mainly in the Balkans, the Middle East, and former Soviet countries.

  5. Eastern Orthodoxy - History | Britannica

    The Church of the Holy Wisdom, or Hagia Sophia, built by Justinian in the 6th century, was the centre of religious life in the Eastern Orthodox world. It was by far the largest and most splendid religious edifice in all of Christendom.

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  7. History of the Eastern Orthodox Church | Religion-wiki | Fandom
    • Apostolic Era
    • Medieval Period
    • The Pentarchy
    • The Eastern Monastic Or Ascetic Tradition
    • Ecumenical Councils
    • The Crusades Against The Eastern Orthodox
    • Byzantine Empire
    • Establishment of The Roman Catholic Eastern Empire
    • Ottoman Empire
    • Republic of Turkey

    Christianity first spread in the predominantly Greek-speaking eastern half of the Roman Empire. Paul and the Apostles traveled extensively throughout the Empire, establishing communities in major cities and regions, with the first communities appearing in Antioch, Alexandria, Jerusalem, and then the two political centers of Rome and Greece and Byzantium which became Constantinople. Orthodoxy believes in the Apostolic Succession that was established by the Apostles in the New Testament; this played a key role in the communities' view of itself as the preserver of the original Christian tradition. Historically the word church did not mean building or housing structure (which would actually be the word Basilica) but meant community or gathering of like peoples (see Ecclesia). The original church or community of the East before the schisms, is the Greek communities founded by Saint Paul and later Asia Minor (Byzantine) churches or communities, the Coptic (or Egyptian) churches founded b...

    Systematic Roman persecution of Christians stopped for a time in 313 when Emperor Constantine the Great proclaimed the Edict of Milan. Systematic persecutions under Roman Paganism did however resurface later, though temporarily, under Emperor Julian the Apostate. Legalization included the calling of the Ecumenical Councils to resolve disputes and establish church dogma on which the entire church would agree. Thus defining what it means to be a Christian in a universal or broad sense of the word the Greek word for universal being katholikós or catholic. These councils being also the continuation of the church council tradition that predated legalization (see Synod). According to Joseph Raya, "Byzantine culture and Orthodoxyare one and the same.". Sometimes Patriarchs (often of Constantinople) were deposed by the emperor; at one point emperors sided with the iconoclastsin the eighth and ninth centuries. In the 530s the second Church of the Holy Wisdom (Hagia Sophia) was built in Const...

    By the fifth century, the ecclesiastical had evolved a hierarchical "pentarchy" or system of five sees (patriarchates), with a settled order of precedence. Rome, as the ancient center and largest city of the empire, was understandably given the presidency or primacy of honor within the pentarchy into which Christendomwas now divided. Plainly, this system of patriarchs and metropolitans was exclusively the result of ecclesiastical legislation; there was nothing inherently divine in its origin. None of the five sees, in short, possessed its authority by divine right. Though it was and still held that the patriarch of Rome was the first among equals. The original Pentarchy of the ancient Roman Empire: East and West. 1. Rome (Sts. Peter and Paul), i.e. the Pope, the only Pentarch in the Western Roman Empire. 2. Constantinople (St. Andrew), currently in Turkey 3. Alexandria (St. Mark), currently in Egypt 4. Antioch (St. Peter), currently in Turkey 5. Jerusalem (St. James), currently in I...

    With the elevation of Christianity to the status of a legal religion within the Roman Empire by Constantine the Great, with the edict of Milan (313), many Orthodox felt a new decline in the ethical life of Christians. In reaction to this decline, many refused to accept any compromises and fled the world or societies of mankind, to become monastics. Monasticism thrived, especially in Egypt, with two important monastic centers, one in the desert of Wadi Natroun, by the Western Bank of the Nile, with Abba Ammoun (d. 356) as its founder, and one in the desert of Skete, south of Nitria, with Saint Makarios of Egypt (d. ca. Egypt 330) as its founder. These monks were anchorites, following the monastic ideal of St. Anthony the Great, Paul of Thebes and Saint Pachomius. They lived by themselves, gathering together for common worship on Saturdays and Sundays only. This is not to say that Monasticism or Orthodox Asceticism was created whole cloth at the time of legalization but rather at the...

    Several doctrinal disputes from the 4th century onwards led to the calling of ecumenical councils which from a traditional perspective, are the culmination and also a continuation of previous church synods. These Pre Ecumenical councils include the Council of Rome 155 AD, Second Council of Rome 193 AD, Council of Ephesus 193 AD, Council of Carthage 251 AD, Council of Iconium 258 AD, Council of Antioch, 264 AD, Councils of Arabia- 246-247 AD, Council of Elvira 306 AD, Council of Carthage 311 AD, Synod of Neo-Caesarea c.314 AD Council of Ancyra 314 AD, Council of Arles 314 AD. The first ecumenical council in part was a continuation of Trinitarian doctrinal issues addressed in pre-legalization of Christianity councils or synods (for examples see Synods of Antioch between 264-269AD and Synod of Elvira). These ecumenical councils with their doctrinal formulations are pivotal in the history of Christianity in general and to the history of the Eastern Orthodox Church in particular. Specifi...

    The final breach between East and West is often considered to have arisen after the capture and sacking of Constantinople by the Fourth Crusade in 1204. Crusades against Christians in the East by Roman Catholic crusaders were not exclusive to this crusade nor the Mediterranean. The sacking of Constantinople and the Church of Holy Wisdom, the destruction of the Monastery of Stoudios, Library of Constantinople and the establishment of the Latin Empire in Constantinople and also throughout West Asia Minor and Greece (see the Kingdom of Thessalonica, Kingdom of Cyprus) are considered definitive though. This is in light of perceived Roman Catholic atrocities not exclusive to the capital city of Constantinople in 1204 starting the period in the East referred to as Frangokratia. The establishment of the Latin Empire in 1204 was intended to supplant the Orthodox Byzantine Empire. This is symbolized by many Orthodox churches being converted into Roman Catholic properties and churches like Ha...

    The establishment of the Eastern Roman Empire

    It was in the establishment of the Eastern Roman Empire by Constantine I that Christianity was legalized. Christianity as Orthodox was not established as the State Religion in the Eastern part of the Roman Empire until Theodosius I convened The First Council of Constantinople or the (second ecumenical council) in 381. This council putting an end to the Arian controversy by establishing the Trinitarian doctrine.

    The Roman-Persian Wars

    Lasting from 92BC to 627AD the conflict between the Persian and Roman Empires was a protracted struggle which was arguably a continuation of the Greco-Persian Wars. The Roman-Persian Wars led to weakening of the neighboring Arab states to the South and East of the Eastern Roman Empire. The conflict so drained both the Persian and Byzantine empires that once the conquests of Muhammad started, neither could mount an effective defense against the onslaught. Persia fell to the Muslims (see conque...

    Byzantine-Arab Wars

    Following the death of Muhammad in 632, there was a vigorous push by the Arab Muslims to conquer Arab tribes of the East such as the mostly Christian Ghassanids. The Byzantine-Muslim Wars were a series of wars between the Arab Muslims Caliphates and the Eastern Orthodox Byzantine Empire. These started during the initial Muslim conquests under the Rashidun and Umayyad caliphs and continued in the form of an enduring border tussle until the beginning of the Crusades. As a result, the Byzantines...

    After the Sack of Constantinople in 1204 AD by Roman Catholic Crusaders as part of the fourth crusade, much of Asia Minor was brought under Roman Catholic rule and the Latin Empire of the East was established. As the conquest by the European crusaders was not exclusive to the fourth crusade many various kingdoms of European rule where established. After the fall of Constantinople to the Latin West the Empire of Nicaeawas established which was later to be origin of the Greek monarchy that defeated the Latin forces of Europe and re-established Orthodox Monarchy in Constantiople and Asia Minor.

    In 1453AD, the city of Constantinople the last stronghold of the Byzantine Empire fell to the Ottoman Empire. By this time Egypt had been under Muslim control for some seven centuries. Jerusalem had been conquered by the Umayyad Muslims in 638, won back by Rome in 1099 under the First Crusadeand then finally reconquered by the Ottoman Muslims in 1517. Orthodoxy however was very strong in Russia which had recently acquired an autocephalous status; and thus Moscow called itself the Third Rome, as the cultural heir of Constantinople. Under Ottoman rule, the Greek Orthodox Church acquired power as an autonomous millet. The ecumenical patriarch was the religious and administrative ruler of the entire "Greek Orthodox nation" (Ottoman administrative unit), which encompassed all the Eastern Orthodox subjects of the Empire. The Ottoman Empire was marked by periods of limited tolerance and periods of often bloody repression of non-Muslims. One of the worst such episodes occurred under Yavuz S...

    During the Lausanne Conference in 1923, the Turkish and Greek sides after some discussions accepted the proposal of a population exchange. Muslims in Greece (save the ones in Eastern Thrace) were expelled to Turkey, and Greek Orthodox people in Turkey (save the ones in Istanbul) were expelled to Greece. In September 1955, a pogrom was directed primarily at Istanbul's 100,000-strong Greek minority. In 1971, the Halki seminaryin Istanbul was closed along with other private higher education institutions in Turkey. The modern Turkish state requires the Patriarch of Constantinople to be a Turkish citizen but allows the Synod of Constantinopleto elect him.

    • The Time of Persecution
    • The Time of Growth
    • The Great Schism
    • Time of Struggle
    • Time of Renewal and Reconciliation

    The earliest Church, which is described in the Epistles and the Acts of the Apostles, did not confine itself to the land of Judea. She took very seriously the command of Our Lord to go into the whole world and preach the Gospel. The words of Christ and the event of His saving Death and Resurrection were destined not only for the people of the first century and the Mediterranean world of which they were a part, but also for persons in all places and in every age. Within only a few years after...

    The beginning of the fourth century marked a new stage in the development of the Church. After centuries of vicious persecution at the direction of the Roman Emperors, an Emperor of Rome became a Christian. This was Constantine the Great, who in the year 313 granted Christians freedom of worship. The Edict was a recognition that the Church not only had survived the persecutions but also had become a significant force in the Empire. From that time onward, the Church and the Empire began a very...

    The Great Schism is the title given to separation between the Western Church (the Roman Catholic) and the Eastern Church, (the Orthodox), which took place in the eleventh century. Relations between the two great traditions of the East and the West had often been strained since the fourth century. Yet, unity and harmony was maintained in spite of differences in theological expression, liturgical practices, and views of authority. By the ninth century, however, legitimate differences were inten...

    In the year 1453, the City of Constantinople fell to the invading Muslims. With its capital, the Byzantine Empire came to an end; and the vast lands of Asia Minor fell subject to non-Christians. The great ecclesiastical cities of Alexandria, Antioch, and Jerusalem, which had come under the political control of Islam centuries earlier, were now joined by Constantinople. Throughout the Ottoman Empire, Christians came to be treated as second-class citizens who paid heavy taxes and wore distincti...

    Throughout the past two hundred years the Orthodox Church in the Western Hemisphere has been developing as a valuable presence and distinctive witness. For example, in the United States, Orthodoxy has been recognized as one of the four major faiths. She has more than five million members, who are grouped into more than a dozen ecclesiastical jurisdictions. The Greek Orthodox Archdiocese, which is the largest, has about 500 parishes and operates church schools, parochial schools, an orphanage,...

  8. What is the Orthodox Church? History and Beliefs of Orthodoxy
    • Orthodox Definition and Meaning
    • History of The Orthodox Church
    • Beliefs and Worship of The Orthodox Church
    • Orthodox Easter

    Orthodox: (of a person or their views, especially religious or political ones, or other beliefs or practices) conforming to what is generally or traditionally accepted as right or true; established and approved. Orthodoxy is belief or adherence to traditional or affirmed creeds, notably in religion. In the Christian sense, the term means, "conforming to the Christian faith as represented in the creeds of the early Church." The first seven ecumenical councils were between the years of 325 and 787 A.D. with the purpose of establishing accepted doctrines. In historic Christian use, the word orthodox relates to the collection of doctrines which were accepted by the early Christians. Several ecumenical councils were gathered over a period of several centuries in an attempt to establish these doctrines. The most notable of these historic declarations was that between the Homoousian doctrine, which became Trinitarianism, and the Heteroousian doctrine, called Arianism. The Homoousian doctri...

    Although originally the Eastern and Western Christians shared the same faith, the two sides began to separate after the seventh Ecumenical Council in 787 A.D. and is generally considered to have ultimately divided over the dispute with Rome in the so-called Great Schismin 1054. Particularly, this occurred over the papal claim to supreme authority and the doctrine of the Holy Spirit. The split became definitive with the failure of the Council of Florence in the 15th century. Yet, in the determinations of majority Orthodox, a crucial significance was the conquering of Constantinople in 1204 during the (Western Christian) Fourth Crusade. The sacking of Constantinople by the Crusaders eventually led to the loss of this Byzantine capital to the Muslim Ottomans in 1453. Following the 1054 Great Schism, both the Western Church and Eastern Church continued to consider themselves uniquely orthodox and catholic. Augustine wrote in On True Religion: “Religion is to be sought ... only among tho...

    Eastern Christianity emphasizes a way of life and belief that is manifested especially through worship. By preserving the conventional method of worshipping God, passed on from the very beginnings of Christianity. Eastern Christians maintain that they acknowledge the true doctrine of God in the right (orthodox) way. The Bibleof the Orthodox Church is that of most Western Churches, except that its Old Testament is based not on the Hebrew, but on the ancient Jewish translation into Greek called the Septuagint. The wisdom of the Fathers of the Church is fundamental to the Orthodox way of life as today's successors of the "true faith and Church" passed on in its most authentic form. By maintaining the virtue of the received teachings of the apostles, followers are more conscious of the inspiration of the Holy Spirit being present both in history and in the modern-day. Fastingand prayer represent an essential part of the Orthodox Christian life. Orthodox believe that fasting can be the "...

    Easteris the most meaningful and holy season of the Orthodox Church calendar. Orthodox Easter primarily commemorates the resurrection of Jesus Christ with a series of celebrations or movable feasts. In Eastern Orthodox Christianity, the spiritual preparations begin with Great Lent, 40 days of introspection and fasting (including Sundays), which starts on Clean Monday and finishes on Lazarus Saturday. According to, Clean Monday falls seven weeks before Easter Sunday. The term "Clean Monday" refers to cleansing from sinful behavior through the Lenten fast. Lazarus Saturday occurs eight days before Easter Sunday and signifies the end of Great Lent. Next comes Palm Sunday, one week before Easter, commemorating the triumphal entry of Jesus Christ into Jerusalem, followed by Holy Week, which ends on Easter Sunday, or Pascha. Fasting continues throughout Holy Week. Many Orthodox churches observe a Paschal Vigil which ends just before midnight on Holy Saturday (or Great S...

  9. What is Eastern Orthodoxy Anyway? | Christian History ...

    The Eastern Orthodox faith is at the center of many of the millennial celebrations, but to many of our readers—specially the Western Protestants—it may be a mysterious, unknown quantity.

    • Alexander Melnyk
  10. Eastern Orthodox Church - ReligionFacts

    History of Orthodox Christianity Eastern Orthodoxy arose as a distinct branch of Christianity after the 11th-century "Great Schism" between Eastern and Western Christendom. The separation was not sudden. For centuries there had been significant religious, cultural, and political differences between the Eastern and Western churches.

  11. History of the Eastern Orthodox Church under the Ottoman ...

    History of the Eastern Orthodox Church under the Ottoman Empire In AD 1453, the city of Constantinople, the capital and last stronghold of the Byzantine Empire, fell to the Ottoman Empire. By this time Egypt had been under Muslim control for some seven centuries.

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