What Is IOTA?

Founded in 2017, the International Orthodox Theological Association is a community of scholars and professionals dedicated to the worldwide exchange of knowledge within the context of the Orthodox Tradition. IOTA organizes international conferences and facilitates group research projects; the association contributes to the growth and renewal of the Orthodox Church by supporting pan-Orthodox unity and conciliarity. As a pan-Orthodox nonprofit organization, IOTA does not belong to any one local Church and strives to maintain constructive relations with the leaders of all Orthodox Churches.

IOTA Board of Directors’ Statement on Academic Freedom

As a scholarly society serving the Church, the International Orthodox Theological Association (IOTA) champions academic freedom. IOTA also promotes the healing of divisions within the Church and stands against the spirit of alienation.

On September 25, 2023, the Patriarch of Moscow suspended Archimandrite Cyril Hovorun from his priestly duties. The reason cited for this disciplinary action was Hovorun’s co-serving with the hierarchs and clergy of the Ecumenical Patriarchate with which the Moscow Patriarchate unilaterally broke communion in December 2018. The unilateral breaking of communion runs against the spirit of Orthodox unity. When the communion is broken without serious theological reasons, the whole church suffers.  

Moreover, the cited reason – Hovorun’s intercommunion with the Ecumenical Patriarchate’s clergy – appears to be only a pretext for this disciplinary action. The main reason is Fr. Cyril’s academic work, in which he has criticized the Moscow Patriarchate’s involvement in the Russian war against Ukraine. This disciplinary action is an attempt to silence Hovorun. It is also an attempt to intimidate other courageous Orthodox leaders, especially those currently residing in Russia, who dare to speak out against the war. Such a repressive action is a blow to academic freedom and the freedom of conscience. The violation of these freedoms anywhere is a threat to freedoms everywhere. The IOTA Board of Directors supports these freedoms and calls upon all Orthodox Christian leaders to refrain from and oppose repressive actions within the church.

IOTA Talks 

IOTA Talks™ feature Orthodox scholars from around the globe, sharing an idea they are passionate about with the broader lay-Christian community. Some talks are primarily intended for inquirers wishing to learn more about the Christian faith. Other talks are more suitable for those engaged in Christian education, from Sunday School teachers to clergy. IOTA Talks will engage the fundamental questions of Christian faith and contemporary issues.

New Volume from IOTA Publications: Divine Energies and Divine Action by David Bradshaw

Although the essence-energies distinction is central to Eastern Orthodox theology, it has long been a source of puzzlement and confusion. Through a careful study of its classical, biblical, and patristic sources, David Bradshaw clarifies its meaning and shows how it remains foundational for a properly Christian understanding of the relationship of God to the world. Among the topics covered are:

  • How the distinction emerged from the synthesis of ancient Greek philosophy and biblical thought
  • The relationship of the divine energies to other important patristic concepts such as the divine logoi, the divine processions, and the “things around God”
  • How the distinction enables a new approach to issues relating to divine action and divine-human synergy
  • Why the concept of the divine energies has been neglected or misunderstood in the West

How IOTA Works

IOTA consists of over twenty-five groups, each representing a distinct knowledge domain pertinent to Orthodox Christian Studies. The groups are led by internationally respected Orthodox scholars.

Why Become an IOTA member?

With IOTA membership, you become a part of a vibrant international community of over 1,000 scholars, church leaders, and professionals steeped in the Orthodox tradition. Your membership provides for IOTA’s core services: conference organization, IOTA Publications, IOTA Forum, and the production of educational video and audio resources. Different membership categories are available.