Converting to Orthodoxy

Persons wishing to become Orthodox of their own free volition, without any direct or indirect pressure from anyone, should firstly meet with a Priest of the Church. You can make an appointment to talk to our parish priest Fr Athanasios by contacting him at (03) 9387 7693.

Conversion to the Orthodox Church from another Christian denomination, or from a non-Christian Faith or from a background of no religious practice is a very serious matter both for the Orthodox Church and for the person seeking to convert to Orthodoxy. It is, essentially, a lifetime mutual commitment.

Consequently, the matter should never be taken lightly. Changing one’s faith is the most crucial choice in life. Converting to the Orthodox Faith is not a routine and mechanical procedure conducted like a ‘production line’.

Therefore, the Priest will want to discuss the matter carefully to explore the reasons for Conversion with the non-Orthodox candidate. He will also communicate the Church’s love for the candidate.

The Procedure

Having firstly spoken to the local Parish Priest, those seeking to become Orthodox may write to their local Bishop stating clearly the reasons why they wish to convert to Orthodoxy.

When writing to the Bishop he should be addressed by the candidate as ‘Your Grace’ before commencing the letter of application.

The Bishop will then respond in writing advising the candidate as to which Priest will be responsible for his or her preparation towards becoming Orthodox.

Conversion to the Orthodox Church entails a compulsory period of six months instruction in the Faith, including attendance at a 10-week series of talks on the Orthodox Church by both partners.

Being Received in the Orthodox Church

Non-Orthodox Christians wishing to enter the Orthodox Church are received by the Sacrament of Holy Chrismation (Confirmation by Anointing) if they have previously been baptised in the Name of the Holy Trinity and in an acceptable denomination.

If they have not been baptised in a Christian denomination whose Baptism is accepted by the Orthodox Church, or if they are coming from a non-Christian background, then they must be baptised through complete immersion in water.