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The Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America (often referred to in North America simply as the Antiochian Archdiocese) is the sole jurisdiction of the Antiochian Orthodox Church in the United Statesmarker and Canadamarker with exclusive jurisdiction over the Antiochian Orthodox faithful in those countries, though these faithful were originally cared for by the Russian Orthodox Church in America (indeed, the first bishop consecrated in North America, St. Raphael Hawaweeny, was consecrated by the Russian Orthodox Church in America to care for the Orthodox Arab faithful in the USA and Canada).

After the Bolshevik Revolution threw the Russian Orthodox Church and its faithful abroad into chaos the Orthodox Arab faithful in North America, simultaneously shaken by the death of their beloved bishop St. Raphael, chose to come under the direct care of the Patriarchate of Antioch. Due to internal conflicts, however, the Antiochian Orthodox faithful in North America were divided between two archdioceses, those of New Yorkmarker and Toledomarker.


In 1975 the two Antiochian Orthodox archdioceses were united as one Archdiocese of North America (now with its headquarters in Englewoodmarker, New Jerseymarker). Since then it has experienced significant growth through ongoing evangelization and the immigration of Orthodox Arabs from the Middle East. Its current primate is Metropolitan Phillip , who has six other diocesan bishops assisting him in caring for the nine dioceses of the growing Archdiocese, which is the third largest Orthodox Christian "jurisdiction" in North America, with an estimated 41,840 full members and 83,700 adherents.[62201]

On October 9, 2003, the Holy Synod of the Antiochian Orthodox Church granted the Archdiocese's request to be granted self-rule/autonomy to allow it to better govern itself, improve and increase its outreach efforts, internally organize itself into several dioceses, and progress further on the road to the administrative unity of the Orthodox Church in the Americas.[62202]

The Archdiocese had formerly been a member of the National Council of Churches (NCC), but its Archdiocesan Convention voted unanimously on July 28, 2005, to withdraw fully from that body, citing increased politicization and a generally fruitless relationship, making it the only major Orthodox jurisdiction in the US to take such a step.[62203][62204]

Many conservative former Anglicans have turned to the Archdiocese as a jurisdiction, some joining and leading Western Rite parishes with liturgy more familiar to Western Christians. The current mission of the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America is to "bring America to Orthodoxy" and has a very active Department on Mission and Evangelism chaired by Fr. Peter Gillquist who led the mass conversion of the Evangelical Orthodox Church to Eastern Orthodoxy.

Diocesan bishops



See also



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