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THE ORTHODOX FAITH:
What's Orthodoxy?
Who started it?
Is it 2000 year old,
before catholicism
and protestantism?

BYZANTINE HYMNS:
Athos Monks[play]
Meteora[play]
Th. Vassilikos[play]
EXTERNAL LINKS:
Orthodox Prayer Ropes
The Jesus Prayer & the Orthodox Prayer Rope (resources)

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Concerning the Church

I believe that the Church of Jesus Christ is One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic, and that It was instituted by God through the power of the Holy Spirit and by revelation. I reject the idea that the Church is a form of piety which is the fruit of a philosophical or historical evolution, or the fruit of human reason and ingenuity. The Church is instituted by God and is a tree which is rooted in the Heavens. We receive nourishment of its fruits, although the planting remains supernatural. I believe that no other Name under heaven has been given us by which we can be saved, besides that of Jesus Christ. I believe that one can not dissociate Jesus Christ from His Church, which is His Body. I believe with St. Cyprian of Carthage that the man who does not have the Church for his Mother cannot have God as his Father, and that outside the Church there is no salvation.

I believe that neither ignorance, nor lack of awareness, or even the best intentions, can excuse one and justify him or her for salvation; for if even in the true Church, "the righteous will scarcely be saved" (I Peter 4:18) as the Scriptures say, how can one conclude that ignorance or error ó even if it be inherited ó can excuse one or that good intentions can lead us with certainty into the Kingdom of Heaven? According to His boundless mercy and righteousness God deals with those who are outside the Church, and the Apostle forbids us to concern ourselves with the judgements of God concerning such people. God did not institute schismatic and heretical assemblies that they might work in parallel with the Church for the salvation of men. For this reason, schismatic and heretical assemblies ("churches") are not workshops of salvation; rather, they are obstacles created by the devil, wherein error and truth are mingled in different proportions so that the true Church may not be recognized. Therefore, with the Holy Fathers I confess that: "The martyrdom of heretics is suicide and the virginity of heretics is fornication." Outside of the Church there is no true Baptism, nor any other Mystery. Hence, the Apostolic Canons and the canons of the Ecumenical Councils forbid us to pray with schismatics and heretics, be it in private or in Church, as they forbid us, under the penalty of defrockment and excommunication, to permit them to function as clergymen.

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