A delegation representing Holy Resurrection Serbian Orthodox Cathedral in Chicago attended a dinner supporting the work of the Orthodox Christian Mission Center at St. John the Baptist Greek Orthodox Church on Thursday, February 28th. The guest speaker and honoree at this year's OCMC dinner was His Eminence Metropolitan AMBROSIOS of the Orthodox Metropolis of Korea - Ecumenical Patriarchate.
Metropolitan Ambrosios gave a very inspiring and authentic presentation drawing on his vast missionary experience, and concluded his presentation by giving concrete proposals as to what the Orthodox Church should do in order to continue, expand and stimulate missionary work, including:
- Establishing missionary educational programs in seminaries in order to train future priests, theologians and laity.
- Establishing missionary centers in the Orthodox homelands, in which to produce various print, audio and video materials.
- Introducing more sermons, lectures and teaching on missionary work.
- In order to learn the local language the Church should offer more grants to young men and women for intensive language training. In his particular case (Korea) they should study a philosophy of the Far East as well. Many people in the USA already study both (languages and philosophy) of the Far East for business purposes.
- The administration of the church should increase annual budgets for missionary work. They should leave aside nationalistic interests and take to the high grounds of the Orthodox faith.
It is interesting and noteworthy to mention that the annual budget of the OCMC since its inception in the 1990s grew from $150,000 to $3,000.000 this year. However, Metropolitan Ambrosios emphasized that much more can and should be done, since there are single Protestant congregations that have a three million dollar missionary budget alone.
"We are honored to support the work of the OCMC and be a part of their great missionary effort and narrative, although in a small way" said Fr. Darko Spasojevic, Cathedral Dean.
Representatives of the Cathedral community also in attendance include Fr. Vasilije Vranic, and Executive Board membera Mira Djordjevic, Zora Voynovich and Goran Davidovac, as well as Nina Djordjevic and Ivan Milutinovic, as guests.
The OCMC is the official international missionary organization of the Assembly of Orthodox Bishops in the United States and is charged with organizing and dispatching missions to support nascent Orthodox Christian communities across the globe.