St. Anthony’s was the first Pan-Orthodox parish in the Antiochian Archdiocese, chartered in 1956, and the second in North America. As a Pan-Orthodox church it is our faith, rather than our many cultural backgrounds, that bring us together.
As a Pan-Orthodox church, our services are in English. Sure, you will hear some “Lord have Mercies” in another language, but English is our primary language (Visit).
St. Anthony’s is a mix of nationalities, old and young, converts, as well as inter-faith marriages. Parishioners come from about 30 towns in the New York – New Jersey metropolitan area. Our church, parish hall and grounds are located at the crossroads of three Bergen County towns: Bergenfield, Englewood and Tenafly.
We are called Saint Anthony because he is the patron saint of the parish. Saint Anthony the Great is a leader among the Desert Fathers for the entire Christian World, both East and West. He was born @ 250AD in Egypt. When the parish was chartered, in 1956, it was hoped that the missionary zeal of St. Anthony’s would galvanize and bond together the parish’s various cultures as it embraced pan-Orthodoxy and all who would look for the truth of Orthodox Christianity.
As a member of the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese the Book of Acts, tells us that followers of Jesus “were first called Christians“ in Antioch (11:26). Our Patriarch is John X of Antioch. Our Metropolitan is SABA who also serves as our local Bishop. In the United States, the Orthodox Church is administered as individual jurisdictions. Each jurisdiction is in communion with one another. The Assembly of Bishops has representatives from all jurisdictions.
At St. Anthony’s we strive to celebrate the best of Orthodox traditions, and a little bit more! Our International Festival features food from our many ethnic traditions. Craving a Slavic pierogi and a Greek gyro for dinner, with a Middle Eastern date mamool for dessert? You can enjoy it at our Festival! You’ll also find traditional music and dancing and activities for the kids. Plus, you can get a jump start on your holiday shopping.
Throughout the year, we’ve got plenty to offer too. Our Church School provides the basis for spiritual education from Preschool through the Elementary grades. Society of Orthodox Youth Organizations (SOYO) is our Teen Ministry. It combines religious education created specifically for middle and high school students with a full schedule of social activities and community service projects. St. Anthony’s Women’s Guild organizes fundraising drives for a number of causes and hosts a variety of parish activities. Our Fellowship plans and carries out many social activities including our Lenten Communion Breakfast, Pre-Lent Mardi-Gras, Summer Golf Outing and Parish Picnic. Our Young at Heart, for ages over 55, is a vibrant organization with monthly educational and social programs. For more, see Parish Info.
Twice a year, a series of religious educational programs, most often for adults, are presented on a range of topics, sometimes to include guest speakers.
We’re also proud to have one of the highest percentages of parishioners of the Archdiocese who are members of The Order of St. Ignatius of Antioch, which supports the Archdiocese in many of its endeavors.
Over our more than sixty years, St. Anthony’s has been blessed with the presence of many seminarians who, while studying Orthodox theology at nearby St. Vladimir’s Theological Seminary, have gained practical and pastoral practice at our parish. In fact, many have been ordained here and currently serve as priest sand pastors throughout the Archdiocese. Two of those seminarians have advanced to the Office of the Hierarchy, Bishop Basil (Diocese of Wichita and Mid-America) and Bishop Alexander (Diocese of Ottawa, Eastern Canada and Upstate New York).