Question Number 39:
What is the Old Testament canon of the Orthodox Church? Is the Apocrypha recognized as canonical?
ANSWER:The Orthodox Old Testament includes both canonical (or protocanonical) books and supplemental books which are not considered canonical (i.e. protocanonical) but deuterocanonical or in Greek Anaginoskomena ("to be read").
Deuterocanonical is used here in a sense that is different than the Roman Catholic sense. In Roman Catholic terminology, "deuterocanonical" means approved later but with the same canonical authority. In the Orthodox use, "deuterocanonical" means having secondary authority, but useful and part of the Biblical library (no Orthodox Bible would not contain them). The Scriptures testify to Jesus Christ and since neither Protestants nor Jews recognize these Scriptures, their power to serve as witness is inferior. However, they are read in the Orthodox churches and have great value.
This view is faithful to the position of the earliest Christians (i.e. Justin, Origen) as well as the distinction connected with Athanasius and other important Fathers.