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A protosyncellus or protosynkellos (Greek : πρωτοσύγκελλος) is the principal deputy of the bishop of an eparchy for the exercise of administrative authority in an Eastern Orthodox or Eastern Catholic church. The equivalent position in the Western Christian churches is vicar general.
Greek is an independent branch of the Indo-European family of languages, native to Greece, Cyprus and other parts of the Eastern Mediterranean and the Black Sea. It has the longest documented history of any living Indo-European language, spanning more than 3000 years of written records. Its writing system has been the Greek alphabet for the major part of its history; other systems, such as Linear B and the Cypriot syllabary, were used previously. The alphabet arose from the Phoenician script and was in turn the basis of the Latin, Cyrillic, Armenian, Coptic, Gothic, and many other writing systems.
A bishop is an ordained, consecrated, or appointed member of the Christian clergy who is generally entrusted with a position of authority and oversight.
Eparchy is an anglicized Greek word (ἐπαρχία), authentically Latinized as eparchia, which can be loosely translated as the rule or jurisdiction over something, such as a province, prefecture, or territory. It has specific meanings both in politics, history and in the hierarchy of the Eastern Christian churches.
The protosyncellus is normally a senior priest, archimandrite, chorbishop or auxiliary bishop selected to assist the bishop with his administrative responsibilities. In this capacity the protosyncellus exercises the bishop's executive power over the entire eparchy.
A priest or priestess is a religious leader authorized to perform the sacred rituals of a religion, especially as a mediatory agent between humans and one or more deities. They also have the authority or power to administer religious rites; in particular, rites of sacrifice to, and propitiation of, a deity or deities. Their office or position is the priesthood, a term which also may apply to such persons collectively.
The title archimandrite, primarily used in the Eastern Orthodox and the Eastern Catholic churches, originally referred to a superior abbot (hegumenos) whom a bishop appointed to supervise several 'ordinary' abbots and monasteries, or to the abbot of some especially great and important monastery.
A chorbishop is a rank of Christian clergy below bishop. The name chorepiscope or chorepiscopus is taken from the Greek Χωρεπίσκοπος and means "rural bishop". In fact, a chorbishop is an honorary prelate, or archpriest, in several of the Eastern Christian Churches, and it should not be confused with the sacramental Order of Bishop.
The title derives from the Greek term syncellus (σύγκελλος), from syn, "with", and kellion, "cell" (Latin: cella). Synkellos was a term used in the early Church for those monks or clerics who lived in the same cell with their bishops and whose duty it was to be witnesses to the purity of their lives or to perform the daily spiritual exercises in common with them.
A monk is a person who practices religious asceticism by monastic living, either alone or with any number of other monks. A monk may be a person who decides to dedicate his life to serving all other living beings, or to be an ascetic who voluntarily chooses to leave mainstream society and live his or her life in prayer and contemplation. The concept is ancient and can be seen in many religions and in philosophy.
In the Eastern Church, they became the councillors and confessors of the patriarchs and bishops and were much trusted by them. They held the first place after their masters and had a seat and vote in the councils of the Church. In the course of time the patriarchs took two or more syncelli, the most distinguished of whom was called protosynkellos, Latinized as protosyncellus.
Eastern Christianity comprises church families that developed outside the Occident, with major bodies including the Eastern Orthodox Church, the Oriental Orthodox churches, the Eastern Catholic Churches, and the denominations descended from the Church of the East. The Ukrainian Lutheran Church is also an Eastern Christian church that uses the Byzantine Rite. The term is used in contrast with Western Christianity, although its scope has been one of continual discussion. Eastern Christianity consists of the Christian traditions and churches that developed distinctively over several centuries in the Middle East, Africa, Eastern Europe, Asia Minor, the Malabar coast of South India, and parts of the Far East. The term does not describe a single communion or religious denomination. Some Eastern churches have more in common historically and theologically with Western Christianity than with one another. The various Eastern churches do not normally refer to themselves as "Eastern", with the exception of the Assyrian Church of the East and the Ancient Church of the East.
A Councillor is a member of a local government council.
Confessor is a title used within Christianity in several ways.
Protosyncellus is also the title for the ordinary of an Eastern Catholic Patriarchal Dependency, a missionary pre-diocesan jurisdiction, even if held by or vested in the eparch of an eparchy (full bishopric).
The Eastern Orthodox Church, like the Catholic Church, claims to be the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church.
The highest-ranking bishops in Eastern Orthodoxy, Oriental Orthodoxy, the Catholic Church, and the Church of the East are termed patriarchs.
The Eastern Catholic Churches or Oriental Catholic Churches, also called the Eastern-rite Catholic Churches, and in some historical cases Uniate Churches, are twenty-three Eastern Christian particular churches sui iuris in full communion with the Pope in Rome, as part of the worldwide Catholic Church. Headed by patriarchs, metropolitans, and major archbishops, the Eastern Catholic Churches are governed in accordance with the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches, although each church also has its own canons and laws on top of this, and the preservation of their own traditions is explicitly encouraged. The total membership of the various churches accounts for about 18 million, according to the Annuario Pontificio, thus making up about 1.5 percent of the Catholic Church, with the rest of its more than 1.2 billion members belonging to the Latin Church, also known as the Western Church or the Roman Catholic Church.
The Syriac Catholic Church, also known as Syriac Catholic Patriarchate of Antioch, is an Eastern Catholic Christian Church in the Levant that uses the West Syriac Rite liturgy and has many practices and rites in common with the Syriac Orthodox Church. Being one of the twenty-three Eastern Catholic Churches, the Syriac Catholic Church has full autonomy and is a self-governed sui iuris Church while it is in full communion with the Holy See of Rome. The Syriac Catholic Church traces its history to the earliest days of Christianity. After the Calcedonian Schism the Church of Antioch became part of Oriental Orthodoxy, and was known as the Syriac Orthodox Church, while a new Antiochian Patriarchate was established to fill its place by the churches which accepted the Council of Calcedon. The Syriac Orthodox Church came into full communion with the Holy See and the modern Syriac Orthodox Church is a result of those that did not want to join the Catholic Church. Therefore the Syriac Catholic Church is the continuation of the original Church of Antioch.
The term exarch comes from the Ancient Greek ἔξαρχος, exarchos, and designates holders of various historical offices, some of them being political or military and others being ecclesiastical.
The Orthodox Church of the Czech Lands and Slovakia is a self-governing body of the Eastern Orthodox Church that territorially covers the countries of the Czech Republic and Slovakia. Archbishop Rastislav of Prešov was elected by the Extraordinary Synod held on January 11, 2014, as the new primate. On December 9, 2013, the Synod removed Archbishop Simeon of Olomouc and Brno from his position as Locum Tenens, and appointed Archbishop Rastislav in his place, an action against which Archbishop Simeon protested and which was deplored by Patriarch Bartholomew I of Constantinople.
The Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church is a Byzantine Rite Eastern Catholic Church in full communion with the Holy See. It is the second-largest particular church in the Catholic Church.
The Syro-Malankara Catholic Church also known as the Malankara Syrian Catholic Church is an Eastern Catholic sui iuris particular church in full communion with the Pope and the worldwide Catholic Church, with self-governance under the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches. The Church is headed by Major Archbishop Cardinal Moran Mor Baselios Cleemis Catholicos of the Major Archdiocese of Trivandrum based in Kerala, India. The Church follows the West Syriac Rite liturgy of Saint James, which is also used in the Maronite Church, the Syriac Catholic Church, the Syriac Orthodox Church, and the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church. The Church traces its origins to the evangelistic activity of Thomas the Apostle in the 1st century. It is one of the two Eastern Catholic Churches from India, the other one being the Syro-Malabar Catholic Church which uses the East Syriac Rite liturgy.
The Union of Brest, or Union of Brześć, was the 1595-96 decision of the Ruthenian Orthodox Church eparchies (dioceses) in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth to break relations with the Eastern Orthodox Church and to enter into communion with, and place itself under the authority of the Pope of Rome. The Eparchy of Mukachevo that was located in the Kingdom of Hungary was left out of the process.
The Romanian Greek Catholic Church or Romanian Church United with Rome, Greek-Catholic is a sui iuris Eastern Catholic Church, in full union with the Roman Catholic Church. It has the rank of a Major Archiepiscopal Church and it uses the Byzantine liturgical rite in the Romanian language.
Sui iuris, also spelled as sui juris, is a Latin phrase that literally means "of one's own right". It is used in both civil law and canon law by the Catholic Church. The term church sui iuris is used in the Catholic Code of Canons of the Oriental Churches (CCEO) to denote the autonomous churches in Catholic communion:
A church sui iuris is "a community of the Christian faithful, which is joined together by a hierarchy according to the norm of law and which is expressly or tacitly recognized as sui iuris by the supreme authority of the Church" (CCEO.27). The term sui iuris is an innovation of the CCEO, and it denotes the relative autonomy of the oriental Catholic Churches. This canonical term, pregnant with many juridical nuances, indicates the God-given mission of the Oriental Catholic Churches to keep up their patrimonial autonomous nature. And the autonomy of these churches is relative in the sense that it is under the supreme authority of the Roman Pontiff.
The Melkite Greek Catholic Church is an Eastern Catholic Church in full communion with the Holy See as part of the worldwide Catholic Church. It is headed by Patriarch Youssef Absi, S.M.S.P., headquartered in Cathedral of Our Lady of the Dormition, Damascus, Syria. The Melkites, Byzantine Rite Catholics, trace their history to the early Christians of Antioch, formerly part of Syria and now in Turkey, of the 1st century AD, where Christianity was introduced by Saint Peter.
The hierarchy of the Catholic Church consists of its bishops, priests, and deacons. In the ecclesiological sense of the term, "hierarchy" strictly means the "holy ordering" of the Church, the Body of Christ, so to respect the diversity of gifts and ministries necessary for genuine unity.
The Maronite Church is an Eastern Catholic sui iuris particular church in full communion with the Pope and the worldwide Catholic Church, with self-governance under the Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches. It is headed by Patriarch Bechara Boutros al-Rahi since 2011. Officially known as the Syriac Maronite Church of Antioch, it is part of Syriac Christianity by liturgy and heritage.
Melkite Greek Catholic Eparchy of Newton is an eparchy of the Melkite Greek Catholic Church, an Eastern Catholic church in communion with the Holy See and therefore part of the worldwide Catholic Church. The eparchy encompasses the entire United States.
Nicholas James Samra is the eparch of the Melkite Catholic Eparchy of Newton in the United States, elected in 2011. He is also Apostolic Administrator of the Melkite Greek Catholic Eparchy of Nuestra Señora del Paraíso in Mexico City since 2015. Bishop Samra has written extensively on the subject of ecumenism and the Eastern Catholic Churches.
The Ukrainian Orthodox Greek Catholic Church (UOGCC) is an unregistered Eastern Catholic Christian religious movement that was established by Basilian priests predominantly from Slovakia declared the creation of the new "church" in 2009 based in Pidhirtsi, Ukraine.
The Armenian Catholic Eparchy of Qamishli is a suffragan eparchy of the Armenian Catholic Church sui iuris in the Patriarch's own ecclesiastical province 'of Cilicia', serving part of Syria.
Synkellos, latinized as syncellus, is an ecclesiastical office in the Eastern Rite churches. In the Byzantine Empire, the synkellos of the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople was a position of major importance in the state, and often was regarded as the successor-designate to the reigning patriarch.
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