His Eminence, Archbishop Demetrios of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America opened the second day of the Episcopal Assembly of Canonical Orthodox Hierarchs of North and Central America at the Helmsley Park Lane Hotel here on Thursday morning, May 27, 2010.
A highlight of the morning session was the Address of His Eminence, Archbishop Nicolae of the Romanian Orthodox Archdiocese in the Americas, in which he offered a comprehensive account of the five-decade legacy of the Standing Conference of Canonical Orthodox Bishops in the Americas.
“Among the most important issues we will need to decide in these days is how to absorb the great work of SCOBA,” said Archbishop Nicolae after recounting SCOBA’s history and recognizing the accomplishments on behalf of
all Orthodox Christians of its various agencies, including the Orthodox Christian Education Commission, International Orthodox Christian Charities, the Orthodox Christian Mission Center, and others. “The many ministries of SCOBA over fifty years have truly been a blessing for the entire Church.
These ministries have strengthened our unity in Christ Our Lord. The ministries of SCOBA have provided a fruitful witness for Orthodox
Christianity throughout these lands. The ministries of SCOBA have contributed to advancement our Church throughout the world. This is truly a precious inheritance that provides us with a firm foundation for our future work. I urge us to not only endorse it, but to embrace what is being offered to us as precious inheritance.”
[The complete text of Archbishop Nicolae’s address may be found on the web site of the Romanian Archdiocese at http://www.romarch.org/news.php?id=2253.]
Among the 60-some hierarchs participating in the Assembly are His Beatitude, Metropolitan Jonah, and all of the diocesan and auxiliary bishops of the Orthodox Church in America.
The Assembly will conclude on Friday, May 28, on which the Divine Liturgy will be celebrated at Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Archdiocesan Cathedral.
[A gallery of photos appears on the web site of the Greek Archdiocese.]
Prayer/Petition During The Episcopal Assembly
O All Merciful God! Grant our Hierarchs gathered in Episcopal Assembly to grow in wisdom and strength, through the guidance of the Holy Spirit, and to increase in love for each other, deepening Christian fellowship so that conciliar decisions may build up a canonically united Orthodox Christian Church of the Americas. May their work be guided by the grace of the Holy Spirit, and may the Spirit of unity and love, of compassion and mutual respect, inspire each to contribute toward the building up of the Body of Christ for the glory of Thy name, for Thou hast ordered us to do all things for Thy glory. Bless Thy people, uniting them for the building up of Thy Holy Orthodox Church of the Americas. O generous Creator; hear us and have mercy. For Thou art a merciful God, and unto Thee we ascribe glory: to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and unto ages of ages. Amen.