web-seattle-to-sacramentoOur Ministry has developed a working Mission Planting Manual to help guide the process of establishing new parishes in growing metropolitan areas.

Missions tend to experience more success developing into self-sustaining parishes when planted in metropolitan areas where the following elements are present:

  • a group of committed faithful to form a Steering Committee
  • access to clergy to serve regularly until a full-time priest is assigned
  • a dynamic population base with Orthodox Christians, unchurched, and new inquirers
Demographics

When a location for a new parish is identified, the Missions & Evangelism Ministry will conduct a demographic study of the surrounding mission field. This demographic study helps us to understand the community to whom the local parish will be reaching out to share the Gospel. This information will also help us determine if a parish will be viable there, based on our experiences.

Local PanOrthodox Collaboration

Meanwhile, it is important to seek the prayers and wisdom of the surrounding Orthodox community in the establishment of the new parish. The clergy and leadership of parishes within an appropriate radius of a potential new parish can help us understand the challenges and opportunities in the area.

A Full-Time Priest

The early assignment of a priest committed to evangelism greatly improves the mission’s likelihood to grow. The assignment of a full-time priest is dependent upon consistent and sacrificial stewardship. In the Greek Archdiocese the parish must show that it can provide a salary, housing allowance, automobile with insurance and maintenance, phone, and health insurance, before a full-time priest is assigned.

A Place to Worship

Once the mission has received the blessing of the local bishop, an initial task and cost will be rental of an appropriate place for services.

Go Therefore and Make Disciples

Even before a priest is assigned, the local faithful must view themselves as apostles to their community. A sincere commitment to deepening one’s spiritual life is key. First and foremost, people come to Christ when they witness a changed life. The mission’s Steering Committee should devote a portion of their meetings to acting as a Missions & Evangelism Ministry, with guidance from the Metropolis Missions & Evangelism Ministry and sister parishes.

To ask a specific question about Starting a Mission Parish or suggest a viable location, please Contact us.