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Orthodox Institute 2014

2014 Orthodox Institute for Continuing Education in the Faith
Theosis: Your Life With God

A Weekend of Spiritual Renewal
October 30—November 2, 2014, at Antiochian Village
Contact:, (717) 747-5221
Intro to Event
Event Poster
Course Descriptions: PDF | Word
Course Schedule: PDF | Word
Event Schedule: PDF | Word
Download Registration Form: PDF | Word


Since last year our Orthodox Institute topic was the Church, with "Blessed is the Kingdom," as the theme, it seemed fitting to then address the spirituality and "renewing" of the persons who make up this Kingdom. We welcome you to join us as our presenters help us explore the meaning of Theosis. Through discussion of such topics as the Jesus Prayer and fasting, we will strive to acquire the proper tools to achieve our greatest potential as Christians: Communion with God.

Retrospect: The Orthodox Institute for Continuing Education in the Faith

Carole Buleza, Director of the Department of Christian Education for the Antiochian Archdiocese, reflected on the Orthodox Institute 2013 in the December, 2013 edition of The Word magazine.

Beloved in Christ,

I write these words just after the 2013 Orthodox Institute at Antiochian Village. The fellowship and book-signings were a chance to get to know and speak with some of the prominent people in the Orthodox Church. The presentations were truly educational and inspirational. An eight-panel display of "Art and Symbols of the Catacombs" shed light on the images that were most important to the early Christians. All together it was a memorable and valuable weekend.

Almost a hundred people participated in The Orthodox Institute at Antiochian Village, October 31 – November 3, 2013. The theme was "Blessed is the Kingdom: Acts 2:42 and Today," and the goal was to answer the question, "Can we revive the spirit of giving for which the early church was known?"

2013 Orthodox Institute Coming October 31

Registration is open for this year's Orthodox Institute for Continuing Education in the Faith, convening at Antiochian Village on October 31—November 3. The Institute is co-sponsored by the Antiochian Archdiocese, the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese, the Orthodox Church of America (OCA), and the Orthodox Christian Education Commission (OCEC), and has become the premier conference for Orthodox educators and parents. His Eminence Metropolitan Savas of Pittsburgh is the Keynote Speaker, and the theme is "Blessed is the Kingdom: Acts 2:42 and Today."

Please note that the official registration deadline is October 14th, although registrations will be accepted beyond the due date.

Teacher Training and Church School Director Workshops in Leavittown, NY

Educating Ourselves and Our Children in Godliness

St. John Orthodox Church
80 Water Lane North
Levittown, NY 11756
Saturday, August 10, 2013
8:30am-4:30pm (lunch provided)
Pre-Registration Required by August 4

Download brochure (PDF)
Download Flyer (PDF)

The Orthodox Christian Education Commission (OCEC) and St. John Orthodox Church are proud to present an exciting workshop that will enhance the quality of teaching in our church schools.

Orthodox Institute 2013

Orthodox Institute 2013
“Blessed is the Kingdom: Acts 2:42 and Today”

Keynote Speaker: His Eminence Metropolitan Savas of Pittsburgh
Keynote Address: The Spirit of Giving in the Early Church

October 31 - November 3
Antiochian Village + Ligonier, PA

Download Flyer (PDF)
Visit the 2013 Orthodox Institute Facebook page
Contact: 747-5221

For schedules, course descriptions and registration forms, please see attachments at the bottom of this page.
Please note: the price for room and board listed in the flyer is incorrect; the correct figure is $277.20 based on triple occupancy.


Eucharistic meal - an image from the catacombsEucharistic meal - an image from the catacombsFeatured Presenters:

2013 Creative Arts Festival

by Rosemary Shumski

This year’s Creative Arts Festival theme is “The End of History…The Last Judgment.” The Scripture quotation that accompanies the theme is “I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you welcomed Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.” (Matthew 25:35-36)

Because this is a very tangible theme, there are many ways in which students can express themselves in art, photography, creative writing, and poetry. The most natural way to inspire creative expression relating to this theme would be to get the students involved in service projects in your parish or community. Suggestions for service projects can be found on the Creative Festivals webpage. Another way to inspire students is to use the theme throughout the church school year. Use the logo and symbols on room signs, letterhead and bulletin board displays. The Department of Christian Education also has posters available for downloading that can be displayed in classrooms.

Prior to having the students create their entries, the theme should be discussed in depth. Lesson plans are provided for various grade levels on the Creative Festivals webpage. After the lesson is taught, it’s usually helpful to have a brainstorming session in which the students explore various ways they might interpret the theme.

Orthodox Institute 2012 Convenes at Antiochian Village

Orthodox Institute speakers, 2012Orthodox Institute speakers, 2012Despite the appearance of Hurricane Sandy on the eastern seaboard days earlier, the Orthodox Institute 2012, themed "Culture, Morality, Spirituality," successfully convened at Antiochian Village from November 1-4, 2012. The Institute, a project of the Archdiocese Department of Christian Education, focused on surveying current cultural viewpoints, beliefs of the Church, and the moral challenges facing today's youth.

One hundred people attended the conference, which hosted eleven courses related to the theme. Dr. Peter Bouteneff, associate professor of Systematic Theology at St. Vladimir's Seminary, offered the keynote address, "Postmodernism," in which he emphasized that modern man is touched and changed by beauty, rather than by polemics. "It was a a great introduction to postmodernism and religious relativism," noted one attendee. "I feel like I can explain these now."

Register Now for Orthodox Institute 2012

Registrations will be accepted until October 30, but PLEASE HELP US OUT BY REGISTERING TODAY!
Please download and send in your form so we can make class handouts. See you soon!

Now is the time to register for the Orthodox Institute 2012: Culture. Morality. Spirituality. Held at Antiochian Village, Ligonier, PA, on November 1–4, this year's conference will survey current cultural views, beliefs of the church, and the challenges facing young people. Registration is open until October 14. Keynote Speaker Dr. Peter Bouteneff of St. Vladimir's Seminary will be joined by Featured Presenters Dr. Vigen Guroian (University of Virginia) and Dr. Philip Mamalakis (Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology). The conference offers panel discussions, lectures, and fellowship for Orthodox educators, parents and clergy.

Changes for the Creative Festivals!

We invite church school directors, teachers, and parents to read over the new information for this year's Creative Festivals. There are many improvements, so be sure to browse through the entire Creative Festivals site!

"An Event Like No Other:" 2011 Institute is a Pan-Orthodox Success

Fr. Thomas Speaks to Institute ParticipantsFr. Thomas Speaks to Institute ParticipantsReport and Photos by Shelley Pituch

View Photo Gallery

The 2011 Orthodox Institute, held at Antiochian Village, near Ligonier, PA, over the weekend of November 3 – 6, was advertised as “an event like no other” and it proved to live up to its claim in more than one way. The theme was “Scripture through the Lens of the Holy Land” and this was the first time that the Orthodox Institute was a multi-jurisdictional collaboration between the host of the event, the Antiochian Department of Christian Education, and the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese, the Orthodox Church in America Department of Christian Education, and the Orthodox Christian Education Commission.

Registration Open for Orthodox Institute 2011: "Scripture through the Lens of the Holy Land"

A new brochure and updated registration form are now available for the 2011 Orthodox Institute: "Scripture through the Lens of the Holy Land." For further information and to download brochures and forms, please visit

An Event Like No Other! “Scripture through the Lens of the Holy Land”

Everyone I have spoken to about the 2011 Orthodox Institute at Antiochian Village is very excited about this “event like no other!” Mark your calendars now for November 3-6, 2011 at Antiochian Village, outside of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. NOW is the time to approach your parish council about setting aside funds.

More information

Download Brochure (PDF)

Download Flyer (PDF)

Download Registration Form (PDF, Revised 9.3.11)

Download Complete Description of Course Schedule and Events


Here are some highlights:

Tenth Orthodox Institute Season Concludes

Orthodox Institute SessionOrthodox Institute SessionA successful season for the Orthodox Institute, an innovative and highly regarded Christian Education training program pioneered by Antiochian Christian Education Director Carole Buleza, concluded with a three day Institute at Antiochian Village in November. Institutes took place in cities both in Canada and the U.S. St. Michael's Church in Van Nuys, California was the site for the first Institute on September 18; subsequent Institutes were hosted in Edmonton on October 2, then Harrisburg on October 9, Ontario on October 23, and finally at Antiochian Village on November 4-7. Noted iconographers and speakers taught sessions that fit into one of three tracks: Church School Director, Teacher Training, or Orthodoxy. Participants came from all regions and jurisdictions.

Besides racking up the miles, Director Carole Buleza also met with many teachers across the country, and she commented on the spirit of pan-Orthodox cooperation present this year, enabling her to reflect afterwards that this year's Institute "was a decisive event for Orthodox Christian Education." (See an Institute photo gallery here.)

Attendees offered these retrospectives:

This past November the halls, meeting rooms and dining hall at the Antiochian Village were alive with the language of iconography. At this year’s Orthodox Institute, the 10th anniversary, the theme was icononography; the history of icons; the stories they tell; praying with icons and using them as a tool for teaching. The three-day institute began with a keynote address by Frederica Mathewes-Green, who spoke of her personal experience with icons and her journey to Orthodoxy; this was followed by two days of workshops on icons, which included presentations by the well-known iconographer/illustrator, Niko Chochelli, iconographer, Cheryl Pituch and authors, Anton Vram and Chrissie Hart and the staff of the Antiochian Orthodox Department of Christian Education.

Orthodox Institute for Christian Education 2010



Update: Oct. 5, 2010

November 4-7, 2010
Antiochian Village

Download Brochure (PDF)
Download Flyer (PDF)
Download Registration Form (PDF)
Registration Deadline: October 8
Please note: We will accept registrations beyond the deadline date

The Orthodox Institute welcomes all Christians who love icons to join us the first weekend in November. The event offers 15 courses for teachers, directors and those interested in the faith in an enjoyable atmosphere of fellowship and learning. The Institute is held at the Antiochian Village Conference Center which sits nestled in the beautiful Laurel Mountain region, near Ligonier, Pennsylvania, an hour from Pittsburgh. Plan to arrive before 5:00 for dinner on Thursday evening. The first program will be the keynote address at 7:00 that evening. The keynote address is by Frederica Mathewes-Green, based on her book, The Open Door, Entering the Sanctuary of Icons and Prayer. The event ends Sunday afternoon, around 1:00, after the brunch that follows Divine Liturgy.

We are pleased to offer a spectacular event for our 10th Anniversary Institute: “Icons: Windows to Heaven,” with iconographers Niko Chocheli and Cheryl Ann Pituch. Read interviews with both iconographers here. We are also pleased that Dr. Anton Vrame, Director of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese Department of Religious Education, will be with us to present a course on his work, The Educating Icon. The books noted above will be available at the Conference Center bookstore. Book-signings will be scheduled during the weekend. The schedule allows you to take three classes on Friday, and three on Saturday. The courses marked with an asterisk will be offered both days. The course listing is as follows:

Coming Soon to a Parish Near You: Training Institutes!

Ontario Training InstituteOntario Training InstituteDon't miss these training events this fall:

October 2, 2010, at St. Philip Church, 15804 – 98 Street, Edmonton, AB. Contact Nellie Salloum at 

     Go HERE for the Priest's Letter; Go HERE for the flyer; Registration information and details HERE.

October 9, 2010, Christ the Saviour Church, 5501 Old Locust Lane, Harrisburg, PA 17109. Contact Myra Kovalak,

     Go HERE for the flyer; Registration information and details HERE.

October 23, 2010 at the “Orthodox Institute Ontario,” St. George Church, Richmond Hill. Contact

     Go HERE for the flyer; Registration information and details HERE.

Ontario Training InstituteOntario Training InstituteDon't miss these training events this fall:

October 2, 2010, at St. Philip Church, 15804 – 98 Street, Edmonton, AB. Contact Nellie Salloum at 

     Go HERE for the Priest's Letter; Go HERE for the flyer; Registration information and details HERE.

St. Emmelia Orthodox Homeschool Conference

Mark your calendars for next year's Conference: March 31-April 3, 2011.

Icon used by permission of

"Of all the holy works, the education of children is the most holy." - St Theophan the Recluse

Policy on Training Expenses

Policy on Training Expenses
In parishes of the Antiochian Archdiocese:

1. Fees for the Teacher Training Workshop are required and should be used to cover costs of hosting the workshop. Average fees are around $20 per person.