Faith Based Environmental Initiatives in Canada

Joanne Moyer: The King's University 

Archdiocese of Canada of the Orthodox Church in America

About:  The Orthodox Church is a family of churches in sacramental community. The Greek Metropolis of Toronto is the largest jurisdiction in Canada and the Archdiocese of Canada of the Orthodox Church in America (OCA) is descended from a mission established by the Russian Empire in North America. 


Research Note: I conducted an interview with a member of the OCA and gathered information about other Orthodox communities from the internet.


Environmental Activities:

  • Globally, the Patriarch Demetrios I (1972-1991) began working on environmental issues. Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople (1991-present) continued this work and is known as the “Green Patriarch.” Much of the environmental work was and is catalyzed by theologian John Chryssvagis, a consultant to Patriarch Bartholomew.
  • The Orthodox Church in America is a member of the Canadian Council of Churches’ Biotechnology Reference Group.
  • Various Orthodox bodies have signed environmental statements:
    • “The Canadian Interfaith Call for Leadership and Action on Climate Change” (2011): Greek Orthodox Church in Canada; Orthodox Church in America
    • “The United Nations Climate Change Conference statement” (2012): Orthodox Church in America
    • “On Promoting Climate Justice and Ending Poverty in Canada Faith Communities in Canada Speak Out” (2015): Ethiopian Orthodox Church of Canada; Orthodox Church in America; Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Canada
    • “Common Declaration of Canadian Churches on Climate Change “‘Creating a Climate of Hope’” (Green Churches Network, 2015): Holy Trinity Parish Orthodox Church of America 
  • Saint Aiden Orthodox Church in Cranbrook, BC, hosted a Healing the Earth conference in 2016.




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Archdiocese of Canada of the Orthodox Church in America