The Orthodox Church as a whole is the unity of what are called local autocephalous or autonomous churches. These words mean simply that these churches govern themselves, electing their own bishops and organizing their own lives. Each of these churches has exactly the same doctrine, discipline and spiritual practices.
They use the same Bible, follow the same canon laws, confess the authority of the same Church Councils and worship by what is essentially the same liturgy.
It is nothing other than this communion in faith and practice which unites all Orthodox Churches together into one world-wide body. In this sense, there is no one dominating authority in the Orthodox Church, no particular bishop or see or document which hasy over the churches.
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