Meet our Parishes
The Bulgarian Diocese of Toledo is an ethnically diverse Orthodox Community. Although, our Diocese started with immigrants of Bulgarian decent. we now embrace people of all backgrounds and ethnicity. Our 15 parishes and one Monastery span from Washington, DC to California but are primarily concentrated in the Midwest states. Each parish is blessed to hold Divine Services and "Rightly Divide the Word of His Truth" under Our Right Reverend Archbishop Alexander: Bishop of Toledo and the Bulgarian Diocese.
Holy Cross Orthodox Monastery - Castro Valley, CA
Holy Ghost Orthodox Church - Youngstown, OH
Holy Transfiguration Mission - Ames, IA
SS. Cyril & Methodius - Lorain, OH
SS. Cyril & Methody- Granite City, IL
St. Andrew the Apostle Mission - North Hollywood, CA
St. Elia the Prophet - Akron, OH
St. George Cathedral -Rossford, OH
St. George - Washington D.C.
St. John of Rila -Washington D.C.
St. John the Baptist - Los Angeles, CA
St. Kliment of Orchrid - Los Angeles, CA
St. Mary Magdalene -Fenton, MI
St. Nicholas - Burton, MI
St. Nicholas - Ft. Wayne, IN
St. Nikolai Mission - Alliance/Louisville, OH
‘When we journeyed among the Bulgars, we beheld how they worship in their temple, called a mosque, while they stand ungirt. The Bulgar bows, sits down, looks hither and thither like one possessed, and there is no happiness among them, but instead only sorrow and a dreadful stench. Their religion is not good. Then we went among the Germans, and saw them performing many ceremonies in their temples; but we beheld no glory there. Then we went to Greece, and the Greeks (including the Emperor himself) led us to the edifices where they worship their God, and we knew not whether we were in heaven or on earth. For on earth there is no such splendor or such beauty, and we are at a loss how to describe it. We only know that God dwells there among men, and their service is fairer than the ceremonies of other nations. For we cannot forget that beauty.’ - St. Vladimir
Orthodox Life Style
What We Believe
"The final goal of man is communion with God. The path to this communion has been precisely defined: faith, and walking in the Commandments with the help of God's grace" - St. Theophan the Recluse
Orthodoxy is not just a Christian denomination it is pre-denominational and a lifestyle. In today's society focusing your whole life in Christ is no longer the norm, in Orthodoxy we strive to be with God in every moment of everyday in our words and deeds and thoughts. We seek our innate desire as humans for a holiness and union with God. An Orthodox Christian practices their faith daily, and use the teaching and traditions of the Church to draw closer to God.
To draw closer to God we attend Worship Services, regularly take part in the Sacraments or Holy Mysteries, have a fasting rule, maintain a prayer rule and are the light of Christ in the world. Orthodox is not just a name you call yourself it is the life you choose to live.
The Orthodox Church was founded at the Holy Feast of Pentecost in 33AD with the decent of the Holy Spirit. It is the Ancient Christian Church
"Orthodoxy" means "Straight Teaching" or "Straight Worship" and comes from the Greek words 'Orthos' meaning straight and 'doxa' meaning teaching or worship.
As we loudly proclaim on the Sunday of Orthodoxy:
“As the prophets beheld, as the Apostles have taught,... as the Church has received... as the teachers have dogmatized,... as the Universe has agreed,... as Grace has shown forth,... as Truth has revealed,... as falsehood has been dissolved,... as Wisdom has presented,... as Christ Awarded,... thus we declare,... thus we assert,... thus we preach Christ our true God, and honor as Saints in words, in writings, in thoughts, in sacrifices, in churches, in Holy Icons; on the one hand worshipping and reverencing Christ as God and Lord; and on the other hand honoring as true servants of the same Lord of all and accordingly offering them veneration.This is the Faith of the Apostles, this is the Faith of the Fathers, this is the Faith of the Orthodox, this is the Faith which has established the Universe."
-- Confession of faith of the Day of Orthodoxy
"O Come, let us Worship and bow down before our King and God.
O Come, let us worship and bow down before Christ, our King and God.
O Come, let us worship and bow down to Christ Himself, our King and God."
These prayers begin an Orthodox Christian's prayers each and every day. Our only purpose as humans is to worship God. We do this in our words, deed, thoughts and of course within the worship services. This is fundamental to living an Eastern Orthodox life.
Orthodox worship services excite all of the senses. Touch, smell, taste, vision and hearing. It is truly an experience for the whole human being.
The secondary purpose of worship is to teach the faith. Orthodox Christians believe what we pray and pray what we believe and follow the ancient Christian worship of the Apostles.
The pinnacle of Orthodox Worship is the Divine Liturgy in which we partake in the Eucharist, the Body and Blood of Christ, and give thanksgiving to God.
The best way to know Ancient Christian Worship is to come and see!