His Beatitude, Metropolitan Tikhon, opened the Fall 2018 Session of the Holy Synod of Bishops of the Orthodox Church in America at the Chancery here on Tuesday, October 23, 2018.
Metropolitan Tikhon began the day by celebrating the Divine Liturgy in the Chancery’s Saint Sergius of Radonezh Chapel, after which he and the Holy Synod honored the Church’s officers—Archpriest John Jillions, Chancellor; Archpriest Eric G. Tosi, Secretary; and Melanie Ringa, Treasurer—in recognition of their many years of devoted service to the Orthodox Church in America. Each officer was presented with a gramota, while Father John and Melanie also were awarded the Order of Saint Innocent, Silver Class. [Father Eric was previously awarded the Order of Saint Innocent, Silver Class.]
Metropolitan Tikhon welcomed the members of the Holy Synod and delivered his address at the opening session. Throughout the week, reports from the officers and the OCA’s Legal Counsel will be heard. The recent meeting of the Metropolitan Council also will be reviewed, specifically with regard to a number of documents and issues brought forth at the recent 19th All-American Council [AAC]. Protopresbyter Leonid Kishkovsky, Director of External Affairs, will review current issues in world Orthodoxy. For the first time, the members of the Holy Synod will meet with the diocesan chancellors and treasurers, who customarily gather annually to discuss finances, budgets and related matters.
A key item on the agenda will be the current restructuring of the Chancery and the status of the OCA’s various departments, boards and commissions. Specific plans regarding the Department of Youth, Young Adult and Campus Ministry, in light of the initiative to engage a youth director presented at the 19th AAC, also will be reviewed in detail.
The Fall Session will conclude on Friday, October 26.
The Holy Synod of Bishops is the supreme canonical authority in the Orthodox Church in America. Chaired by the Metropolitan, the Synod includes as voting members all diocesan bishops.