Orthodox Christianity is one of the main Christian faiths – more than 300 million people, in different parts of the world, follow an Orthodox tradition. Orthodoxy is regarded by its faithful as the original Christian church, directly traceable back to the Apostles of Christ. The word 'Orthodox' takes its meaning from the Greek words orthos ('right') and doxa ('belief'). Hence the word Orthodox means correct belief or right thinking.
In its widest scope, Orthodox Christianity embraces two groupings of churches known respectively as Eastern Orthodox Christianity and Oriental Orthodox Christianity. These groupings are made up of a number of self-governing Churches which are either 'autocephalous' (meaning having their own head) or 'autonomous' (meaning self-governing). All the Churches embraced by Orthodoxy are Trinitarian (believing in the existence of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit), however, particular differences of belief in the relationship between the three members of the Holy Trinity mean that not all Orthodox Churches are in Communion. Nevertheless, in most cases, there is a mutual respect and sense of kinship between the Orthodox, extending to those with whom formal communion is not shared.
The possibility of attending a non ’home’ Orthodox church, and perhaps joining the parish, becomes especially important for émigré Orthodox wishing to attend church services once they have moved abroad to new countries. For example, Serbian Orthodox people may not have a Serbian Orthodox church close enough to where they reside in the UK for them to be able to attend regular services. In such cases they may choose to attend say a Greek Orthodox or Russian Orthodox church in proximity. University students coming to Britain from abroad may well find themselves in such circumstances. The Oasis Faith and Spiritual Centre at the University of Central Lancashire provides a point of contact for students of all Orthodox Christian backgrounds. It can also provide a starting point for non-Orthodox students interested to learn about Orthodox Christianity.
The nearest Orthodox Christian Church to the University of Central Lancashire, Preston Campus, is the Orthodox Church of ‘the Protecting Veil of the Mother of God and Saint Silouan the Athonite’ (Romanian Orthodox) on Harewood Rd.
The Orthodox Church of the Holy Apostles (Greek Orthodox), Leyland Lane, Leyland, holds all service
es in English and has a particularly diverse congregation made up of people across the range of Orthodox backgrounds, as well as British converts to Orthodox Christianity.
The associate (lay) chaplain for Orthodox Christianity at the University is Professor John (Jovan) Hughson. Please feel free to send him an email: firstname.lastname@example.org