Nick Mavrick served on the OCN Board of Directors. The OCN Board consists of volunteers, who are also donors, and are passionate about giving back to the Orthodox Church. We welcome other volunteers to join us.
As we honor Jesus Christ on this Palm Sunday, the “Entry of the Lord into Jerusalem” and celebrate one of the “twelve great feasts of the liturgical year”, we have many to thank for being Guardians of the Tomb and original teachings of Christ.
Among many, our thanks should be expressed to the Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate and the Order of St. Andrew the Apostle. Archons are sworn defenders of the Faith and support our Ecumenical Patriarchate, with their focus being on “Religious Freedom”.
“It is by the grace of God that the Archon has been able to offer his good works and deeds of faith. Further, it is the sworn oath of the Archon to defend and promote the Orthodox Christian faith and tradition. His special concern and interest is to serve as a bulwark to protect and promote the Sacred See of St. Andrew the Apostle and its mission. He is also concerned with the human race’s inalienable rights wherever and whenever they are violated – and the well-being and general welfare of the Christian Church.” (source: archon.org)
By example, today in 2014, the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople, is closer to extinction than at any other time in its almost 2000 year history. In Turkey, despite 1500 years of use the government refuses to recognize the “Ecumenical” status of the Holy See. Moreover, there is a concerted effort by Turkey to interfere in Apostolic Succession in an abject attempt to separate us from Jesus Christ and Apostolicity of Orthodoxy.
Notable efforts by the Archons in protecting religious freedom include:
- Successfully initiated and passed 52 Religious Freedom Resolutions in 42 States.
- Held two International Conferences on Religious Freedom. The most recent being held in Berlin, Germany, Dec 2013 “Tearing Down the Walls.” Notably, 35 speakers were present from many different countries with the focus being on Religious Freedom issues affecting minorities in Turkey.
- Annually, the Archon Banquet is hosted in New York which is one of fundraising events at which time the Archons present The Athenagoras Human Rights Award.
Archons by the Numbers
As of 2013, there were 770 Archons in the United States, 206 in Greece, 84 in Great Britain, 30 in Canada, 15 in Turkey, 12 in Switzerland, 10 in France, 9 in New Zealand, 7 in Argentina, 6 in Australia and 3 in Germany.
Learn about St. Andrew the Apostle
Andrew was one of the twelve Apostles and is known as the “Protocletus” (the First Called) because he was the first Apostle to be summoned by Jesus into His service. Andrew and his brother Peter made their living as fishermen on the Sea of Galilee. Both men became Apostles, and while Peter symbolically came to represent the Church of the West, Andrew likewise represents the Church of the East. (source: archons.org).
History of the Order of St. Andrew
The Order of Saint Andrew, comprising the Archons living in America, was founded in 1966 under Patriarch Athenagoras, when Archbishop Iakovos conferred the honor upon thirty members of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America. The Order’s first Grand Commander was Pierre De Mets. The current Grand Commander is Anthony J. Limberakis, MD who has led the Order to secure religious freedom for the Ecumenical Patriarchate. Upon induction into the “Order of St. Andrew”, as the Archons of America are styled as a group, the honoree swears an oath “to defend and promote the Greek Orthodox faith and tradition”. (source: Wikipedia)
To learn about the Order of St. Andrew the Apostle and the Archons of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, please visit archons.org.
About First Annual National Christian Rights & Freedom Symposium
On Saturday, March 14, 2015, St. Katherine Greek Orthodox Church in Naples Florida and the South Florida Archons hosted its first annual National Christian Rights and Freedom Symposium – ‘Uplifting Christ and Witnessing for our Faith in the Face of Radical Extremism.
A large number of Archons were present in the audience, having travelled to the Symposium from all parts of South Florida and the United States including Dr. Anthony Limberakis, National Commander of the Order of St. Andrew the Apostle, and Archon of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople, John Scurtis, Regional Commander and Archon, and Harry Demas, Archon.
The First Annual National Christian Rights & Freedom Symposium featured several prominent speakers including Dr. Anthony Limberakis, National Commander and Archon of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, Rev. Father Fouad Saba, Dean of the St. George Antiochian Orthodox Cathedral (Coral Gables, FL), Father Philemon Patitsas, Presiding Priest of the St. Katherine Greek orthodox Church (Naples, FL), John Scurtis, Regional Commander and Archon, Harry Demas, Archon, and Dr. Harry Dimopoulos, Chairman of the Christian Rights and Freedom Ministry
To watch video highlights of the First Annual National Christian Rights and Freedom Symposium, visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SnDiwtAs52o.
To learn more about the First Annual National Christian Rights & Freedom Symposium visit http://stkatherine.net.
By Nick Mavrick
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