14th All-American Council to open in Toronto July 17

Hundreds of boxes containing reports, workbooks, and other delegate resources were carried into the Toronto Sheraton Centre Hotel by seminarians for the 14th All-American Council, July 17-22.

TORONTO, ONTARIO [OCA Communications] — Dozens of volunteers arrived at the Sheraton Centre hotel here on Friday, July 15, 2005 to undertake a variety of last-minute tasks in preparation for the opening of the Orthodox Church in America’s 14th All-American Council on Sunday, July 17.

Students from Saint Tikhon’s and Saint Vladimir’s seminaries joined Toronto-area volunteers in unloading trucks filled with liturgical items and delegate materials, packing tote bags, and collating reports.

His Beatitude, Metropolitan Herman, arrived at the hotel on Friday evening, greeted by several members of the Holy Synod of Bishops, OCA chancellor Protopresbyter Robert S. Kondratick, Chancery staff members, the All-American Council local committee, and Toronto area faithful.

Nearly 2000 hierarchs, clergy and lay delegates, observers, and youth and young adults from across North America are expected to participate in the week-long gathering, which officially opens on Monday morning, July 18, with the address of Metropolitan Herman during the first plenary session.

On Saturday, July 16, several pre-council workshops will be held, after which Great Vespers will be celebrated at the hotel. On Sunday morning, July 17, Metropolitan Herman will concelebrate the Divine Liturgy with members of the Holy Synod of Bishops. Delegate registration will continue throughout the day.

The council theme, “Our Church and the Future,” will explore a variety of issues affecting the life and growth of the Church in North America, including clergy formation, vision and identity, and finances.