All three video programs from the original series are included: Part One - The Beginnings Part Two - Byzantium Part Three - A Hidden Treasure Filmed on location, our journey begins with the founding of the Church, and continues with the spread of Christianity to the "nations" by the Apostles. This is the period of the Gospel, and the institution of the Sacraments. This first, formative, period culminates with the move of the Roman empire to the East, to Constantinople. We follow the stabilization of the Church, after the resolution of major issues in sacramental life, dogma and administration. This is the period of the Nicene Creed, the Patristic Scriptures, the Divine Liturgy and the Icons. The Church realized its apostolic mission, with the spread of the Gospel to the Slavic people in Europe. During this same period, however, we witness the official division of East and West, a conclusion to the gradual rift in matters of faith, dogma, church custom, politics and culture. The fall of Constantinople in 1453 marks an era when the Church becomes the only institution perceived by the Greeks as the preserver of their national identity during 400 years of Turkish rule. By the end of the 19th century, hundreds of thousands of Orthodox immigrants spread throughout the world, to the "new" countries, shifting the center of influence within the Orthodox Churches to the New World. Although still associated with the churches in the countries they left behind, they provide the Orthodox Church with a new, youthful and dynamic perspective. This is the time when our Church becomes involved in the human rights struggle, other major social and philanthropic concerns, and the ecumenical movement, while at the same time helping the Orthodox immigrants become an integral part of mainstream societies.
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