Orthodox Christianity 101

History of Orthodoxy

Whether you're new to the faith or seeking to deepen your understanding, this page serves as your gateway to the rich tapestry of Orthodox beliefs, practices, and traditions. From ancient doctrines affirmed in the early ecumenical councils to the vibrant spiritual life of contemporary Orthodox communities, we invite you to explore the timeless wisdom, profound spirituality, and enduring legacy of Orthodoxy. Dive into a journey spanning centuries of history, theology, and devotion as we illuminate the beauty and depth of the Orthodox Christian faith.

Orthodox Monastery
Orthodox Christian Painting
1st Century AD

Birth of Jesus Christ & Founding of the Church

Jesus Christ is born in Bethlehem, inaugurating his ministry of teaching, healing, and proclaiming the Kingdom of God. Jesus establishes the Christian Church through his teachings, selection of apostles, and commissioning of disciples to spread the Gospel.

4th Century AD

Edict of Milan (313 AD) & First Ecumenical Council (325 AD)

Emperor Constantine the Great issues the Edict of Milan, granting tolerance to Christianity and ending persecution. The Council of Nicaea is convened to address the Arian controversy and affirm the Nicene Creed, defining the divinity of Christ.

Orthodox Christian Painting
Orthodox Christian Painting
5th Century AD

Council of Ephesus (431 AD) & Council of Chalcedon (451 AD)

The Council condemns Nestorianism and affirms Mary as Theotokos (Mother of God). The Council defines the doctrine of the hypostatic union, affirming Christ as both fully divine and fully human.

8th Century AD

Iconoclasm Controversy

The Byzantine Empire experiences a period of iconoclasm, during which the veneration of icons is prohibited and fiercely debated within the Church.

Orthodox Christian Painting
Orthodox Christian Painting
9th Century AD

Restoration of Icons & Great Schism (1054 AD)

The Second Council of Nicaea (787 AD) declares the veneration of icons as legitimate, ending the iconoclastic controversy. The rift between the Eastern and Western Churches deepens, culminating in the mutual excommunications.

15th Century AD

Fall of Constantinople (1453 AD)

The Ottoman Turks capture Constantinople, leading to the end of Byzantine rule and the decline of the Byzantine Empire.

Orthodox Christian Painting
Orthodox Christian Painting
17th-19th Century AD

Ottoman Rule

The Ottoman Empire consolidates its control over former Byzantine territories, leading to the suppression of Orthodox Christianity in many regions.

20th Century AD

Modern Era

Orthodox Christianity experiences significant growth and expansion worldwide, with diaspora communities established in various countries outside traditional Orthodox homelands.

Orthodox Christian Wedding
Orthodox Christian Church
21st Century AD

Global Orthodoxy

Orthodoxy continues to thrive as a global faith, with vibrant communities in diverse cultural contexts and ongoing efforts at interfaith dialogue and cooperation.

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