Two new books have been published, each sponsored in part by the Archons, a Greek Orthodox Church organization comprised of lay people who support the work and efforts of the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople. Both books have the Patriarch opt Patriarchate as a main topic.
The books Dialogue of Love, Breaking the Silence of Centuries and The Ecumenical Patriarchate Today: Sacred Greek Orthodox Sites of Istanbul were written by the Very Reverend Dr. John Chryssavgis, a prominent Orthodox scholar.
Dialogue of Love: Breaking the Silence of Centuries
Edited by John Chryssavgis
Fordham University Press, 96 pages
In 1964, a little-noticed albeit pioneering encounter in the Holy Land between the heads of the Roman Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church spawned numerous contacts and diverse openings between the two “sister churches,” which had not communicated with each other for centuries. Fifty years later, Pope Francis and Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew meet in Jerusalem to commemorate that historical event and celebrate the close relations that have developed through mutual exchanges of formal visits and an official theological dialogue that began in 1980.
This book contains three unique chapters: The first is a sketch of the behind-the-scenes challenges and negotiations that accompanied the meeting in 1964, detailing the immediate consequences of the event and setting the tone for the volume.
The second is an inspirational account, interwoven with a scholarly evaluation of the work of the North American Standing Council on Orthodox/Catholic relations over the past decades. The third chapter presents a recently discovered reflection on the meeting that took place fifty years ago by one of the most important Orthodox theologians of the twentieth century, expressing cautious optimism about the future of Christian unity.
The Ecumenical Patriarchate today: Sacred Greek Orthodox Sites of Istanbul
by John Chryssavgis
London Editions Turkey (LET), 128 pages
The sites covered in this unique guide include:
•The seat of the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Phanar
•The Church and Shrine of the “Life-giving Spring” at Balikli
•The Church of the Virgin Mary Vlachernitissa at Ayvansaray
•Holy Trinity Church in Taksim Square
•The Shrine of the Virgin Vefa (“First-Day-of-the-Month Church”) in Unkapani
•Holy Trinity Cathedral in Kadikoy
•The Church of St. Euphremia
•Holy Trinity Monastery and Theological School on Heybeliada
•The monastery of St. George Koudouna and the Greek orphanage on Buyukada.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
The Very Reverend Dr. John Chryssavgis is the Archdeacon of the Ecumenical Throne and serves the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America.
Born in Australia in 1958, Fr John matriculated from the Scots College in Sydney in 1975 and received his degree in Theology from the University of Athens in 1980. He completed his doctoral studies in Patristics at the University of Oxford in 1983.
His work and writing have focused primarily on medieval theology, as well as on the history of the Eastern Church. In recent years, Fr John has published a number of books and articles on the topics of religion and ecology and he serves as theological advisor to the Ecumenical Patriarch on environmental issues. A frequent visitor to Istanbul, Fr John currently lives in Maine, USA.