greek orthodox

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The Greek Orthodox Church is one of the three major branches of Christianity, which "stands in today's society as one of the communities created by the apostles of Jesus in the region of the eastern Mediterranean, and which spread by missionary activity throughout Eastern Europe" .The word orthodox comes from Greek, this means right-believing. Currently, the orthodox religion has more than 174 million followers throughout the world. The Greek Orthodox church is autocephalous, which means governed by its own head bishop. The head bishops of this autocephalous church may be called patriarch, metropolitan, or archbishop. These clergymen are much like the Pope; they decide church doctrine and generally make important decisions on controversial topics. In its doctrine statements, "the Greek Orthodox church strongly affirms that it holds the original Christian faith, which was common to East and West during the first millennium of Christian history" (Meyendorff 18). More particularly, it recognizes the authority of the ecumenical councils at which East and West were represented together. These were the councils of Nicaea I (325), Constantinople (381), Ephesus(431), Chalcedon(451), Constantinople II (553), Constantinople III (680), and Nicaea II (787) (Encarta 1996). The power of teaching and guiding the community is bestowed on certain ministries, particularly that of the bishop of each diocese or is directed through certain institutions, such as councils...
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