Evangelical Orthodox Church

Evangelical Orthodox Church

The Evangelical Orthodox Church is an Eastern Orthodox Christian movement with its origins in Evangelical Protestantism, particularly in the Campus Crusade for Christ student missionary organization, that came to embrace an Eastern tradition of Christianity.

The Campus Crusade missionary Peter E. Gillquist (1938-) established in 1973 in Chicago a network of house churches throughout the United States, aiming to restore a primitive form of Christianity, which was called the New Covenant Apostolic Order (NCAO).

Researching the historical basis of the Christian faith, Gillquist and his colleagues found sources for this restoration in the writings of the early Church Fathers. This led the group to practice a more liturgical form of worship than in their previous evangelical background. In 1977 initial contact with the ancient Orthodox Church was initiated through Orthodox seminarian and former Berkeley - Christian World Liberation Front member (Karl) John Bartke, who introduced them to Fr. Alexander Schmemann, Dean of St. Vladimir's Orthodox Theological Seminary. In 1979, the Evangelical Orthodox Church (EOC) was organized.

The belief of needing Apostolic Succession led most members of the EOC to join the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America in 1987 after a lengthy and considerable search. The EOC first traveled to Istanbul to meet with the Patriarch of Constantinople but were unable to complete any substantial progress toward their goal. They next reunited with an old friend, Fr. John Bartke, who opened the door for them to meet Ignatius IV of Antioch, the Patriarch of Antioch, during his historic visit to Los Angeles. Fr. Bartke then served for the next year as the primary intermediary with the Antiochian Orthodox Archdiocese and served as host for the initial set of chrismations and ordinations of the EOC at St. Michael's Church in Van Nuys, California. The group of 20 parishes became known as the Antiochian Evangelical Orthodox Mission, lasting until 1995 when it was disbanded and the parishes put under the standard diocesan framework of the Archdiocese. Some parishes which did not join the Antiochians eventually joined the Orthodox Church in America, while a few remain independent and still use the EOC name.

Currently, Bishop Jerold Gliege serves as the presiding bishop of the EOC, which has seven congregations and a monastery spread across the United States (IA, IL, IN), Canada (SK), Sweden, and Rwanda.

ee also

* Fr. Jack Sparks
* Fr. Duane Pederson


* Gillquist, Rev. Peter E. "Becoming Orthodox: A Journey to the Ancient Christian Faith". Ben Lomond, CA: Conciliar Press, 1989. (ISBN 0-9622713-3-0)

External links

* [http://www.evangelicalorthodox.org The Evangelical Orthodox Church] , official Communion homepage
* [http://www.ogreatmystery.com/eoc/ About the Evangelical Orthodox Church] , a site by former members
* [http://www.wheaton.edu/bgc/archives/GUIDES/033.htm The Chicago Call]

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