CWN - The Romanian Orthodox Church has taken a stand in favor of preserving unity among the world’s Orthodox churches in the wake of the Pan-Orthodox Council that was held in Crete in June.

The Pan-Orthodox Council was intended as an expression of unity in the Orthodox world, but because some of the autocephalous churches did not participate in the meeting in Crete, critics have argued that the statements approved at that meeting cannot be considered definitive. The Patriarchate of Moscow has downplayed the importance of the Crete meeting, while the Patriarchate of Constantinople has supported the authority of the meeting’s statements. That disagreement threatens to fuel the rivalry between Moscow and Constantinople.

The Synod of the Romanian Orthodox Church, taking a stand that might serve as a compromise, said that the Crete meeting did not define any new doctrines or canonical norms for the Orthodox world. However, the Romanian Synod went on to say that the statement from Crete could be further developed by a future “Holy and Great Council”—provided that all of the Orthodox churches were included in the deliberations.

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Teachings of Christ

“If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and the gospel's will save it. For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul? For what can a man give in return for his soul?" (Mark 8:34-37 ESV)

Christ is Born!

Your Nativity, O Christ our God, * has dawned upon the world the light of knowledge. * for through it, those who served the stars * were taught by a star to worship You, the Sun of Righteousness * and to know You, the Dawn from on high. * Glory to You, O Lord! (Troparion, Tone 4)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever and to the ages of ages. Amen.

Today the Virgin gives birth to the Transcendent One, * and the earth offers a cave to the Unapproachable One. * Angels and shepherds sing His glory; * Wise Men journey with a star * for there is born for us an infant Child, the God Who is before all ages. (Kontakion, Tone 3)

Random Proverb

"My son, do not forget my teaching, but let your heart keep my commandments, for length of days and years of life and peace they will add to you." (Proverbs 3:1,2 ESV)

Pray Without Ceasing

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

BROTHER: What is purity of soul?

OLD MAN: Remoteness from anger and from the error of the remembrance of evil things, and being weaned from the bitter nature, and reconciliation with our enemies, and peace which is beyond troubling, and simplicity of love which is above this world; with these things is the inner man cleansed, and he puts on Christ and is redeemed.


E. A. Wallis Budge, "The Paradise of the Holy Fathers"