Communiqué Of The Holy Eparchial Synod of the Holy Archdiocese of America

The Holy Eparchial Synod of the Holy Archdiocese of America convened in its regular fall Session in the Synodal Chamber of the Holy Archdiocese in New York on October 1-2, 2008. His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios of America presided. Present were the following Synodal Hierarchs: Their Eminences Metropolitans Iakovos of Chicago, Maximos of Pittsburgh, Methodios of Boston, Isaiah of Denver, Alexios of Atlanta, Nicholas of Detroit, Gerasimos of San Francisco and Evangelos of New Jersey. Present also was the Chief Secretary of the Synod, the V. Rev. Archimandrite Sebastian Skordallos.

The Holy Eparchial Synod deliberated on issues pertaining to the life of the Church. The following issues were discussed:

1. Liturgical Issues. The Holy Eparchial Synod took action for the drafting of liturgical and ceremonial guidelines and texts and approved the text on Procedures of the burial of priests.

2. Canonical Issues. The Holy Eparchial Synod a) discussed cases of canonical issues relative to Inter-orthodox relations in the United States, b) made relevant decisions on pending cases of disciplinary nature, and c) advanced the process for the drafting of regulations for the Holy Eparchial Synod.

3. Educational Issues.

a. Greek Education. There was extensive discussion about the Archdiocese Parochial Schools, the need for the establishment of more schools and the financial and staffing difficulties that they face. The Synod also discussed the Greek Afternoon Schools and how they can be strengthened and expanded in all parishes.

b. The Special Educational Program for the Diaconate. The Holy Eparchial Synod discussed this program which began this year at Holy Cross Theological School under its supervision.

c. Youth. The Synod also discussed the issue of the Youth and the connection of the young people to the Church. A survey of the Youth Department of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese, approved by the Synod, is underway to identify several issues facing our Youth and ways to best apply the theme of the last Clergy Laity Congress "Bring my people to my Home."

The application of the Clergy Laity theme to our Church in general will be the subject of a special committee which will be created for this purpose.

After the conclusion of the Sessions of the Holy Eparchial Synod, her members had the opportunity to participate in the subsequent session of the Executive Committee of the Archdiocesan Council.

From the Office of the Holy Eparchial Synod