Orthodox Evangelism and Mission Planting

Drawing from his experience as a missionary in South Africa and Orthodox mission planter in the United States, St. Vladimir’s Seminary President Fr. Chad Hatfield discusses Orthodox evangelism and offers practical advice for new parishes.

Listen below to Fr. Chad’s two lectures, which were delivered in Bergen, Norway last winter, titled, “Mission and Evangelism today: An Orthodox Perspective” and "Starting and Growing an Orthodox Parish: Lessons from America." The first talk took place on December 5, 2019 at NLA University College; the second on December 6, 2019 at Holy Theophany Russian Orthodox Church

“The first evangelical words [of Scripture] are found in the beginning of Genesis,” Fr. Chad explained during his talk at NLA. “Adam and Eve are hiding, because they now know who they are—their nakedness has been exposed—and it is God, Himself, who calls out, 'Where are you?’

“Ours is a God who comes seeking you and me."

Seminary Alumnus Fr. Theodor Svane traveling by skis to do his mission work in Norway!Seminary Alumnus Fr. Theodor Svane traveling by skis to do his mission work in Norway!

Father Chad’s trip to Norway was arranged by St. Vladimir’s Seminary Alumnus Fr. Theodor Svane (’15) and the parish Fr. Theodor serves, Annunciation of the Holy Virgin Mary Orthodox Mission Parish (in Norwegian, Hellige Jomfru Marias Bebudelse Ortodokse Menighet). The parish hosted Fr. Chad’s visit and worked with the university and Holy Theophany parish for the two talks. During the trip, Fr. Chad also delivered a Nativity Retreat at Fr. Theodor’s parish.

In addition to serving at Annunciation, Fr. Theodor is the first Orthodox Christian to serve as military chaplain in the Norwegian Armed Forces.