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Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America

1,801 bytes added, 01:04, November 22, 2005
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music=[[Byzantine Chant]], [[Russian Chant]]|
calendar=[[Revised Julian Calendar|Revised Julian]]|
population=8451,000 to 380,000|
website=[ Antiochian Archdiocese]
With the signing of the Articles of Reunification by Metropolitan [[Philip (Saliba) of New York|Philip (Saliba)]] and Metropolitan [[Michael (Shaheen) of Toledo|Michael (Shaheen)]] in 1975, the two Antiochian Orthodox archdioceses were united as one Archdiocese of North America (now with its headquarters in Englewood, New Jersey). Metropolitan Philip became the primate of the newly reunified archdiocese, and Metropolitan Michael became an auxiliary archbishop. Since then the Archdiocese has experienced rapid and significant growth through the conversion of a number of Evangelical Protestants—both individually and as congregations, especially with the reception of the majority of the [[Evangelical Orthodox Church]] in the 1980s—and also through ongoing evangelization and the immigration of Orthodox Arabs from the Middle East.
== The Archdiocese Today today ==
Its current primate is Metropolitan [[Philip (Saliba) of New York|Philip (Saliba)]], who has six other diocesan [[bishop]]s assisting him in caring for the nine [[diocese]]s of the growing Archdiocese, which is the third largest Orthodox Christian [[jurisdiction]] in North America, having about 250 parishes and missions. Estimates of the number of faithful range from about 84,000[] to 380,000[] depending on the report and the counting method being used. The number of new Antiochian parishes in the decade between 1990 and 2000 rose by approximately 33%, and the primary membership growth in the Archdiocese has been from American converts.[] The Archdiocese also includes the [[Western Rite Vicariate]], a group of about 20 [[parish]]es which worship according to the [[Western Rite]].
[[Image:Antiochian bishops.jpg|left|thumb|250px|'''New bishops with the patriarch'''<br>Left to Right: Bp. [[Mark (Maymon) of Toledo|Mark]], Patr. [[Ignatius IV (Hazim) of Antioch|Ignatius IV]], Bp. [[Thomas (Joseph) of Oakland|Thomas]], Bp. [[Alexander (Mufarrij) of Ottawa|Alexander]]]]
On [[October 9]], 2003 , the [[Holy Synod]] of the [[Church of Antioch]] granted the Archdiocese's request to be granted self-rule (as distinct from [[autonomy]], and though the words have the same literal meaning in English, they are distinct in Arabic) to allow it to better govern itself, improve and increase its outreach efforts, internally organize itself into several dioceses, and progress further on the road to the administrative unity of the Orthodox Church in the Americas. Three new [[bishop]]s were consecrated in December of 2004 to assist in the governance of the reorganized Archdiocese.
The Archdiocese also includes one [[monasticism|monastic]] community, [[St. Paul Skete (Grand Junction, Tennessee)]], a community for women. It does not run any of its own seminaries, but sends its seminarians to theological schools run by other [[jurisdiction]]s or overseas. The Archdiocese does run various non-seminary educational programs, however, including the [[St. Stephen's Course in Orthodox Theology]].
The Antiochian Archdiocese is also a member of [[SCOBA]] and was formerly a member of the [[National Council of Churches]] (NCC), but on [[July 28]], 2005, its Archdiocesan Convention voted unanimously to withdraw fully from that organization, thus making it the first of the major Orthodox jurisdictions in the US to do so.
===Membership figures===
According to the November 2005 issue of the ''Word'' magazine (p. 5), the following membership figures were reported at the 2005 Archdiocesan Convention:
{| border="1" class="toccolours" cellpadding="4" cellspacing="0" style="clear:right; margin: 0 0 1em 1em; font-size:95%; text-align:left; border-collapse: collapse;"
| colspan="4" style="text-align:center; font-size:150%;" | Archdiocese membership figures (2005)
|- style="vertical-align: top;"
| '''Diocese'''
| '''Parishes'''
| '''Baptized souls'''
|- style="vertical-align: top;"
| [[Diocese of New York (Antiochian)|Archdiocesan District]]
| 13
| 4407
|- style="vertical-align: top;"
| [[Diocese of Ottawa (Antiochian)|Ottawa]]
| 19
| 6029
|- style="vertical-align: top;"
| [[Diocese of Oakland and the East (Antiochian)|Oakland (PA)]]
| 26
| 5757
|- style="vertical-align: top;"
| [[Diocese of Wichita and Mid-America (Antiochian)|Wichita]]
| 40
| 6434
|- style="vertical-align: top;"
| [[Diocese of Toledo and the Midwest (Antiochian)|Toledo]]
| 41
| 10231
|- style="vertical-align: top;"
| [[Diocese of Eagle River and the Northwest (Antiochian)|Eagle River]]
| 18
| 1994
|- style="vertical-align: top;"
| [[Diocese of Worcester and New England (Antiochian)|Worcester]]
| 11
| 4452
|- style="vertical-align: top;"
| [[Diocese of Miami and the Southeast (Antiochian)|Miami]]
| 34
| 3841
|- style="vertical-align: top;"
| [[Diocese of Los Angeles and the West (Antiochian)|Los Angeles]]
| 34
| 8175
|- style="vertical-align: top;"
| '''Total'''
| '''236'''
| '''51320'''
'''''Note:''' The figures for the [[Diocese of Wichita and Mid-America (Antiochian)|Diocese of Wichita and Mid-America]] were omitted from the ''Word'' magazine but computed backward from the totals for this article.''
== The Episcopacy ==
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