Orthodox Christianity is an important and vital contributor to the Christian presence in Chicago. The Archdiocese of Chicago has enjoyed a close relationship with Orthodox Christians in Chicago, particularly with the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago, the Armenian Orthodox Church – Diocese of Armenian Church of America (Eastern), and the Assyrian Church of the East. As Pope John Paul II expressed in his Encyclical Ut Unum Sint (1995, par 54), we long for the day when the Church can breathe together with its two lungs, based in the ancient Eastern and Western Christian traditions. We commit ourselves to work and pray with our Orthodox brothers and sisters in Chicago to bring about that day as soon as God’s will allows.
Ecumenical Vespers for the Environment
On Aug 31, 2015, Holy Name Cathedral invited our Greek Orthodox brothers and sisters for the inaugural Service of Great Vespers for the Care of the Environment. In 2016, SS. Peter and Paul Greek Orthodox Church in Glenview reciprocated by inviting the Archdiocese to join them for the Service of Great Vespers for the Feast of Indiction and Protection of the Environment. It included Greek Orthodox and Roman Catholic parishioners, as well as Greek Orthodox Bishop Demetrios of Mokissos, Roman Catholic Bishop George Rassas and Consul General of Greece in Chicago, Polyxeni Petropoulou.
The service was composed by the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople. Following the very first service, a presentation, “Stewardship of the Environment” was given by Dr. Gayle Wokoschak, a professor of radiation oncology at Northwestern University in Chicago and an adjunct professor of religion and science at Lutheran School of Theology Chicago, and at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary.
7th Annual Vespers for the Care of Creation
Tuesday, August 31, 2021, 7 – 9 p.m.
Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish
1775 Grove Street
Glenview, Illinois 60025
You are invited to join the Catholic and Greek Orthodox communities of greater Chicagoland for the 7th annual Vespers for the Care of Creation. Those gathered will give thanks for God’s gift of Creation and highlight the conservation efforts of the local Christian community.
His Eminence Cardinal Blase Cupich, archbishop of Chicago, will preside at this special prayer service and His Grace Bishop Timothy of Hexamilion, Chancellor of the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago will represent the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago. Evening prayer will be followed by a lecture from Chicago-based architect Doug Farr, entitled “The Role of Architecture in Caring for Our Common Home.”
A flyer for this event can be found here.
The Most Rev. Mark Bartosic, Auxiliary Bishop of Chicago, the Very Rev. Thomas A. Baima, Vicar for Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs and other Catholics joined His Eminence, Metropolitan Nathanael of the Greek Orthodox Metropolis of Chicago and other Greek Orthodox faithful for an ecumenical celebration of the World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation on Monday, August 31, 2020. This 6th annual vespers service took place at Saints Peter and Paul Greek Orthodox Church in Glenview.
Click here to read Bishop Bartosic’s remarks
Click here to read Metropolitan Nathanael’s welcome remarks