The Orthodox Church was founded by Our Lord, God, and Savior, Jesus Christ in Jerusalem in 33 A.D. Since the day of Pentecost, it is the Bride of Christ sojourning on earth. It is the bulwark of eternal Truth as well as the ark of salvation and sanctification for all mankind. Empowered by the Holy Spirit, it is the living presence, continuation and extension of Christ’s prophetic, priestly, and kingly power in communion with our heavenly God and Father.
The Orthodox Church's faith, discipline, and worship are based on the person and teachings of Jesus Christ as revealed in the Old and New Testament Scriptures. The Holy Tradition, the decisions of the Seven Ecumenical Councils (held between 325 A.D and 787 A.D.), and the theological writings of the Christian theologians generally referred to as “Holy Fathers” who lived during this same historical period, constitute the basis of Orthodox Christianity as manifested throughout the world from apostolic times to the present.
The Orthodox Church has always been hierarchical in form and function. It presently includes four of the five most ancient Patriarchates of Christianity as well as a well-ordered presence in eleven other regions throughout the world. While the fifteen local Orthodox Churches are administratively independent of each other, the task of all Orthodox bishops and the administrative structures found in each region is to support and propagate the doctrine, liturgical and spiritual discipline that all Orthodox Christians hold in common. Bishops are appointed to guide, rule, and teach their flocks. Priests and deacons assist in this ministry. While each bishop is the divinely appointed teacher of the Apostolic Faith in a given time and place, all Orthodox Christians—bishops, priests, deacons, and laity—are the guardians of the Apostolic Faith.
The dynamic, spiritual and sacramental life of Orthodoxy continues to manifest the presence, power and love of God for all of His Creation. As members of His Church and sojourners on earth, we enjoy a foretaste of things to come as He embraces and encourages us to become faithful citizens of His Kingdom and partakers of His divine nature.
Orthodox Christianity in North America was first established in Kodiak, Alaska, in 1794. For more than two hundred years, Orthodox Christians in the United States, Canada, and Mexico have attempted to live the fullness of this sacramental and sacrificial tradition. Worshipping and witnessing to the Gospel of Jesus Christ is our heritage and our challenge.