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Greek Orthodox Priest Job Description, Career as a Greek Orthodox Priest, Salary, Employment

Definition and Nature of the Work, Education and Training Requirements, Getting the Job

Education and Training: Bachelor’s Degree and Specialized Training

Average Salary: $76,141 Annually

Job Outlook: Very Good

Job Description

A Greek orthodox priest works to handle all of the spiritual needs of their parishioners. Though they are similar to other types of clergy, they may play a more involved role in educating their parishioners on the various elements of this detailed religion. Greek orthodox religion brings in many different cultural and religious cues, and therefore it’s important that the priest be well aware and educated on all of them.
Greek orthodox priests work on a weekly basis to hold mass for the people of their parish, and this is a recurring and very important responsibility. They must prepare their words for the mass each week, and then work to portray what the readings mean. They are considered to be subject matter experts on the rules and the readings of the church, and therefore they must be well versed on all of this. A big part of their job involves not only research, but also education as well.
They may work in a direct educational role from time to time. They may work with students who are working to understand the Greek orthodox religion. They may work with parents who are hoping to baptize their children. They may work with couples wishing to get married, or they may work with adults hoping to enter into this religion. They are also working to educate in some capacity, and therefore must be able to answer questions on the religion and its teachings.
Greek orthodox priests carry out weddings, baptisms, funerals, or any other types of special events that happen within the church. Not only are they well versed in the teachings of the church, but they are prepared and adapt at conducting these events that are so important within the church as well. They are looked to for comfort in difficult times and for support and reinforcement in good times. They serve many different roles as a result of this.

Education and Training Requirements

Most Greek orthodox priests tend to have a bachelor’s degree in their background. Though they may enter the seminary after high school directly, most tend to go on and receive a college education first. Though the degree may be somewhat important, it is not the most stringent requirement to become a priest in this capacity. The most important educational requirement is training within a seminary. This is what will help to properly prepare a Greek orthodox priest for their job. They will learn about the religion as a whole, and will help to prepare them to be a good priest. They can expect to receive ongoing training as they go on within their career. They will attend conferences, workshops, and reinforced training that will help them to stay well versed within their religion, new findings, new trends, and of course being a more well suited priest overall.

Getting the Job

There is great demand for Greek orthodox priests as there are for many different types of priests. As there continues to be churches and other facilities that require their services, there isn’t necessarily as many individuals entering the priesthood. Therefore getting the job may be much easier than it once was. Initially education from a seminary may be the most important factor in getting a job as an entry level Greek orthodox priest or one just starting out. As they move forward, then it may become more important that they possess experience. Though priests within this religion may tend to stay within a certain parish for a number of years, their experience may play a factor if they wish to move to another church.

Job Prospects, Employment Outlook, and Career Development

The good news for those interested in a career as a Greek orthodox priest is that there is great demand for this job. As is the case with many types of priests, there is greater demand than there are candidates for the job. Fewer individuals are turning to this as a lifelong career, and therefore there are more open positions than there are individuals to fill them. This can mean great potential for getting hired, and even better opportunities for career advancement.

Working Conditions and Environment

Typically a Greek orthodox priest works within a church directly. Though they may serve in different roles outside of the church, they generally live and work within a church most of the time. They provide religious counsel to their parishioners, and therefore this may become stressful at times. They must be able to deal well with a wide array of different personality types and sometimes stressful circumstances. They must be well versed at answering questions and helping people to clarify their religious issues. They often have time for prayer and meditation when necessary as it is a part of the job.

Salary and Benefits

Though the average salary for a Greek orthodox priest is about $76,141, this may vary quite significantly. As a senior priest working in this capacity can expect to earn upwards of $100,000 and a priest just starting out may earn somewhere around $40,000, you see that experience plays a big role in the salary earned. It may also depend on the size of the church that the priest works for, and the geographical location that they work within. All of these factors and more may cause the salary range to vary quite significantly. Generally Greek orthodox priests are well taken care of, and much of that has to do with the benefits that they receive. They may expect to receive full health benefits, paid vacation and sick time, and a nice retirement so that they are taken care of well beyond the time that they serve in this role.

Where to Go for More Information
Orthodox Unity

Fellowship of Orthodox Christians in America
Administration Office
10 Downs Drive (Plains)
Wilkes-Barre, PA 18705
(570) 825-3158

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