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The following videos were recorded at the National Missions & Evangelism Conference Feb. 3-5, 2020 in Columbus, OH at the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral. Presenters offered spoke under the guiding theme of 'Leading Change Toward A Healthier Parish.' What is a healthy parish? How do we evaluate where our parish is today? What changes do we make? What type of leadership is necessary to enact change? These questions are explored and answered by a group of distinguished presenters.
The conference offered insights, tools and strategies for parish leaders to fully engage active parishioners, re-engage those distantly connected and to share the Holy Orthodox Christian Faith with those searching for a spiritual home. It also provided opportunities for sharing ideas and experiences among parish leadership and was open to clergy and laity alike. Attendance was limited to 200 participants, ensuring that discussion would be plentiful and productive. Each Metropolis was offered two complimentary registrations in an effort to guarantee participation across the Archdiocese
“This conference, like the one held in Portland, Oregon in 2016, informed, prepared and inspired parish leaders to return home with useful tools and strategies for meaningful change toward parish health and growth,” said Fr. Jim Kordaris, Director of the Department of Stewardship, Outreach & Evangelism. “We are convening a panel of experienced parish leaders, trained in the concepts and strategies needed to implement positive change.”
Fr. James Kordaris talks about the great products and services of the Department of Stewardship, Outreach, & Evangelism of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America. The Ministry Updates series of videos highlights the work of the Metropolises and the Archdiocesan Ministries.
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The Mission of Outreach & Evangelism Ministries is to renew and share the Orthodox Christian Faith in America by nurturing a deeper commitment to our Lord Jesus Christ within His Church, by reaching out to inactive Orthodox Christians and to the unchurched, by meeting the needs of those inquiring about the Orthodox faith, and offering each community the tools for parish renewal and for the establishment of new parishes. As Archbishop Demetrios has said, "It is the Parish, it is the local community which has been, is, and will forever be the central, indispensable agent for offering our Orthodox faith to contemporary America."
As the presence of the Universal Church, the parish is called to witness to those within and those outside the community of believers. If we believe that in Orthodoxy we have the fullness of the Truth, then we have the great responsibility - the Great Commission - to share it with all people. All aspects of the parish may be seen as apostolic, and the Orthodox faithful are called to incorporate Christian mission in all aspects of life. When Christ said, "Go therefore and make disciples of all nations..." he commissioned us to transform the parish into an agency of Christian outreach.
The American culture offers us great opportunities to conduct successful parish renewal, outreach and evangelism. It is time for a new beginning and a renewed effort to inspire creativity and revival in Orthodox Christianity in the United States. It is our duty and obligation not to hide our light under the bushel, but to let it shine before all people - to regain the missionary model that established the early Church. We must let our light so shine - because unless people see in us the light and the love of Christ, they will not believe.
The role of the Parish Outreach & Evangelism Coordinator is to promote and facilitate programs, projects and initiatives in the local parish and community in keeping with the mission of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese Department of Outreach & Evangelism under the guidance of the presiding priest of the parish.