A question often asked, especially in an historically Evangelical Protestant state such as Missouri, is, “What is the Orthodox approach to mission and evangelization?” The question has been answered in many ways, coming from multiple angles, but this weekend I had forwarded to me this talk on the Orthodox approach to mission, given by Fr. Irenei Steenburg, and it’s one of the best I’ve heard.
Here are a few highlights:
(Around 06:20) “Can it be that our mission is to create more Orthodox Christians, to cause more people to convert? As tempting as this might be, the answer of the Church is unequivocally “no”… Our mission must not be defined what the world expects, but what the world needs and what God offers into that need…”
(Around 09:40) “Our aim is not to help the people around us find a more fulfilling life, a better form of worship, etc. Our mission is to help them find and attain the kingdom of God.”
(Around 28:45) “We are participants in the spiritual transformation that the Church offers the world.”
Many thanks to the Eastern American Diocese of ROCOR for their work to create quality publications like these.