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THE ORTHODOX FAITH
Orthodoxy holds that the eternal truths of God's saving revelation in Jesus Christ are preserved in the living Tradition of the church under the guidance and inspiration of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Scriptures are at the heart of the Tradition and the touchstone of the faith. While the Bible is the written testimony of God's revelation, Holy Tradition is the all-encompassing experience of the Church under the abiding guidance and direction of the Holy Spirit. Essentially, Orthodox Christians consider that their beliefs are very similar to those of other Christian traditions, but that the balance and integrity of the entire Apostolic faith once delivered to the Saints has been preserved inviolate.
The Creed is recognized as the authoritative expression of the fundamental beliefs of the Orthodox Church in its briefest form and is often referred to as the "Symbol of Faith." This description indicates that the Creed is not an analytical statement, but that it points to a reality greater than itself and to which it bears witness. . . .
In the latter part of the 10th century, Vladimir (Prince of Kiev) sent envoys to various Christian centers to study their form of worship. These are the words they spoke when they returned from the celebration of the Eucharist in the Great Church of Holy Wisdom in Constantinople:
We knew not whether we were in heaven or on earth, for surely there is no such splendor or beauty anywhere on earth. We cannot describe it to you; we only know that God dwells there among men and that their Service surpasses the worship of all other places.
The Greek word commonly used for Gospel is evanghelion. In the New Testament it means the glad news of salvation, first brought to earth by the Son of God, our Lord Jesus Christ, and afterward delivered by the Apostles by word of mouth to the world. Toward the end of the first century or the beginning of the second, the word was applied to the books containing "the glad news," and their authors were called "evangelists." The word Gospel is from the Anglo-Saxon godspel, an abbreviated form of good-spell, which means "good tidings."
The eastern or Greek orthodox Church is one of the original Churches of Christianity, which was founded on the Day of the Pentecost in Jerusalem in 33 A. D. Ten days after Jesus Christ ascended to Heaven, He sent His Holy Spirit on the Heads of His Disciples, which according to the description at the Acts of the Apostles, stood like burning tongues. Since that Day the Orthodox Church has kept unbroken the Holy Tradition of the Church given by Jesus Christ and His Disciples. Later he accepted the Decrees of the Seven Ecumenical Synods, which were convened by the Church in order to solve religious, dogmatical questions. The decrees of the Seven Ecumenical Synods are infallible. . . .
Individuals who attend church only infrequently sorely deprives themselves. Those parents who do not see to it that their children go to church commit a terrible sin. Remember the words of the Saviour: Where two or three are gathered together in My name, there am I in the midst of them (Matt. 18:20).
HOLY WEEK AND EASTER IN THE ORTHODOX CHURCH AND TRADITIONS THAT COME WITH THE HOLY DAYS
Easter in the Orthodox Ecclesiology and church tradition is the most important feast of all the feasts. Even Saint John of Damascus at his famous hymn that we sing on Easter morning calls it: "Feast of feasts and festival of festivals". Other Holy fathers of the Church stresses the importance of the Holy Week and Easter at their homilies. The reason is that through the Crucifixion and the tomb of Christ Resurrection was promised to all his children and the kingdom of death was destroyed with His descent to the Hades. With His Holy Resurrection the New Life started and the gates of paradise were opened.
At the center of the life of the Church is the Holy Eucharist, which is the principal celebration of our faith and the means through which we participate in the very life of the Holy Trinity. Learn more»