Does the Orthodox Church Believe in Saints?

does the orthodox church believe in saints

Orthodox Christians venerate saints as role models for their faith. They pray to the Saints and look to their life and example for guidance. The ecumenical Patriarchate has encyclical letters which address the issue of sainthood. Read on to learn more about the process of canonization and who can be declared a saint.

Orthodox church veneration of saints

In the Orthodox Church, veneration of saints is a common practice. They are regarded as the “friends of God” and are praised as pious, sanctified people. After passing into eternal life, they are accepted in the bosom of God and are granted the ability to pray for the living. They are the ultimate role models for Orthodox Christians.

When someone is deemed a saint, the process is formalized through the Rite of Glorification. This process begins with a memorial service dedicated to the person being glorified. Then, during Matins and Vespers, special hymns are chanted. In many cases, icons are also unveiled to mark the day.

Canonization process

The canonization process is the process by which the Orthodox Church recognizes a person’s sanctity. Canonization does not make a person a saint, but recognizes their life as one of holiness and puts it before the faithful as an example.

The canonization process is complex, with several stages and considerations. The primary issue for the Holy See is the theological legitimacy of the canonized person. Thus, the Holy See initiates an inquiry process, resembling a lawsuit between the Pope and the petitioners. This process is intended to determine whether popular veneration and folk hagiographies of a saint are proper.

In the Orthodox Church, the process begins with a request for sainthood. Once a bishop deems a person a saint, a commission studies the candidate’s reputation for sanctity and evidence of miracles. Once the findings are reviewed and ratified by the Congregation for the Causes of Saints, the candidate is beatified and awaits full canonization.

Definition of a saint

In the Orthodox Church, a saint is someone who has reached the perfection of godliness and sanctity, through which he or she has become like God. In other words, a saint has attained theosis, or total unity with God, which is the ultimate aim of a life of virtue. In order to achieve theosis, a saint avoided all unnatural developments of the soul, lived a life in harmony with nature, and cultivated the virtue of always looking to God. Finally, by the power of the Holy Spirit, the saint has become completely united with God.

A saint is recognized and honored in the Orthodox Church by virtue of his or her virtuous life and through miracles. Such people are usually honored by their communities or by their followers, and their names are incorporated into the canon of saints. The process of canonization involves a formal deliberation by a synod of bishops. The Church’s definition of a saint differs from the definition used by the Catholic Church.

Ecumenical Patriarchate’s encyclical letters

The Ecumenical Patriarchate issued an encyclical letter to the Churches of Christ worldwide on 1 January 1920. It was addressed to the leaders of key Christian churches and explains the importance of “loving one another from the heart.” The first words of the encyclical are, “Love one another earnestly.”

The encyclical is four pages and only contains seven hundred words, but it hardly mentions Orthodoxy. The Patriarchate’s ecumenist expediency is manifest in its omission of Orthodoxy in favor of the ecumenical movement. This “encyclical” is therefore a contradiction in terms, and it should be condemned to the highest extent.

The ecumenical Patriarchate has its headquarters in the Church of St George in the Fener district of Istanbul, and it has been largely diminished from its height. However, it still includes much of modern Turkey, including the Dodecanes and Crete. The Ecumenical Patriarchate’s territory once included the whole of the Western hemisphere, Oceania, and Northeast Asia.

relationship between saints and God

The Orthodox Church has a unique way of recognizing the sanctity of saints. It glorifies men and women who lived exemplary lives, reflecting the light of Christ in the world. It also venerates the Holy Scriptures, the Word of God.

Orthodox Christians pray to Mary and other Saints and ask them to intercede for them. They consider the Church a body made up of the faithful on earth and in heaven, where angels stand before the throne of God. Orthodox Christians celebrate the Assumption of the Virgin on August 15.

The Orthodox view of the afterlife is similar to that of many Eastern and Oriental Orthodox churches. They believe that both the elect and the lost enter the presence of God after death.

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