Antiochian Orthodox Archdiocese of the British Isles and Ireland

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The Antiochian Orthodox Archdiocese of the British Isles and Ireland is an archdiocese of the Church of Antioch. It was created by the Holy Synod of Antioch, led by Patriarch John, on 17 October 2013. It is currently led by Archpriest Gregory Hallam, awaiting the appointment of a Patriarchal Vicar Bishop.

History

In 1995, the Antiochian Orthodox Deanery of the United Kingdom and Ireland was created to serve over a dozen communities of Orthodox Christians who had recently converted to Orthodoxy, mostly from the Church of England. The first dean was Archpriest Michael Harper. He was succeeded by Fr Gregory Hallam on December 21, 2009 (who was soon elevated to Archpriest on June 19, 2010).

On October 17, 2013, the Holy Synod of Antioch, as part of a greater restructuring of Antiochian parishes in Europe, transformed the Deanery into the Antiochian Orthodox Archdiocese of the British Isles and Ireland. While the current Dean and Deanery Trust will continue for the time being, it is expected that a Patriarchal Vicar Bishop will soon be appointed to oversee the transition to Archdiocese status, with a ruling bishop expected to be appointed in 2014.

The Archdiocese has a cathedral, 14 parishes and 7 mission communities - a list of these can be found on the Archdiocesan website. Though most communities consisted largely of converts from the Church of England, this had changed significantly by 2000 for a much more diverse congregations. All communities of the Archdiocese use English as the liturgical language. The mission of the Archdiocese is to enable the indigenous cultures to rediscover and reaffirm their Orthodox roots whilst at the same time integrating Orthodox of many other backgrounds in a unified ecclesial whole, the hallmark of catholicity.

External link

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