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David L. Cooper
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I am writing this open Pastoral letter to introduce myself and our ministry to you.
I am David Leon Cooper, Archbishop of the Order of the Missionaries of Mercy in Northridge, California.
The Order of the Missionaries of Mercy is a Religious Order under the auspices of the SOC/Ecumenical Apostolic Chaplain Service. This organization was founded as an Orthodox Order of hospital chaplains. That is our primary work. We operate a hospital chaplain service.
We are open minded, receptive and ecumenically oriented in our work. We accept individuals with love and compassion - as they are.
We provide various services for the community upon request. Many of our services are provided "in the field" at locations that accommodate the needs of couples, individuals and families. Not only is this true with respect to our counseling services, but it is also the case with regards to weddings and baptisms. We will provide these services almost anywhere, in order to reach out to individuals, couples and families.
With regards to weddings and baptisms, I have officiated at over 1,000 weddings and hundreds of baptisms in hundreds of locations. 99% of the couples that I have provided weddings and baptisms for profile with one or both parties indicating that they are Roman Catholic in Faith. The couples that come to me want a valid priest to officiate, yet for one reason or another do not feel that they are being adequately served by their local parish. They submit to my Jurisdiction and I do not turn them away as is my prerogative as a bishop. I try to help everyone that I can.
We provide priests throughout the United States.
We are assisting individuals with special needs, such as Interfaith couples and those with previous marriages. As a bishop I can grant the necessary dispensations in these situations. My annulment process requires only about 5% of the time and effort that is typical of the local Roman Catholic Tribunal process.
Thank you for visiting us - I hope to hear from you.
God Bless You
Metropolitan Archbishop David Leon Cooper, OMM, MS, KTG
In Papal utterances regarding the Orthodox, we are called ". . . Orthodox brothers of the Catholic faith which by God's grace we share."
Pope John Paul refers to the Orthodox churches as ". . . sister Catholic churches . . ."