Author Topic: Recommendations for good books/resources on Orthodox view of Papacy  (Read 338 times)

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Offline wjk1979

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Greetings to my Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

  After having been brought up a Baptist, I have felt a strong calling to be part of Christ's 'One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church'. Currently, I am part of a traditional Anglican church, but I've got some pretty major problems with its view of history and ecclesiology. I am really interested in both Catholicism and Orthodoxy, and one of the major, and irreconcilable, differences between the two Churches are their respective views of the papacy.

  I've recently read a book by a Catholic apologist, Stephen K. Ray, titled 'Upon This Rock' (https://books.google.com/books/about/Upon_this_Rock.html?id=RnQiVgUn728C&printsec=frontcover&source=kp_read_button#v=onepage&q&f=false). Ray has a lot of patristic sources that apparently point to a strong belief in a Petrine supreme authority in the early Church.

  My question is: can you all please recommend me some Orthodox books or sources about views in the early Church that would counteract Mr. Ray's book? I am genuinely interested in find out what the early Church actually thought about this, as well as how it played out in the practice of the governance of the Church.  Thanks so much!

  In Christ,

  Josh

Offline Iconodule

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Re: Recommendations for good books/resources on Orthodox view of Papacy
« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2018, 10:10:23 AM »
I haven't read it yet, but Siecienski's book looks like a must-have: https://www.amazon.com/Papacy-Orthodox-Sources-Historical-Theology/dp/0190245255
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Offline ErmyCath

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Re: Recommendations for good books/resources on Orthodox view of Papacy
« Reply #2 on: September 13, 2018, 03:03:34 PM »
The Primacy of Peter, edited by John Meyendorff

Amazon Link: http://a.co/d/ezlxHmh
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Offline Volnutt

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Re: Recommendations for good books/resources on Orthodox view of Papacy
« Reply #3 on: September 13, 2018, 03:17:45 PM »
I've seen His Broken Body by Fr. Laurent Cleenewerck mentioned a few times. Haven't read it, myself.
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Offline platypus

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Re: Recommendations for good books/resources on Orthodox view of Papacy
« Reply #4 on: September 15, 2018, 12:02:49 PM »
I've seen His Broken Body by Fr. Laurent Cleenewerck mentioned a few times. Haven't read it, myself.

His Broken Body is really excellent. Fr. Laurent (the same guy who translated the EOB New Testament) goes into a ton of detail, and presents arguments for and against the papal claims using the Church Fathers. He goes into depth exploring the writing and actions of saints quoted by Catholic and Orthodox Christians to support their claims -it's often the same saints- and examines what they say in the context of when and why they said it. I really like this, because pop apologetics books often just throw Church Father quotes at you, taking them out of context to prove incorrect ideas. Fr. Laurent points out that you can prove anything you want in this manner, and takes a much more in-depth look. He'll cover a Church Father, showing his quotes "for" and "against" the Papal claims, and show how the saint actually acted towards the Bishop of Rome. He also covers the Ecumenical Councils and a great deal of other history in-depth as it relates to the papal claims. He does an excellent job of explaining Eucharistic ecclesiology and how it relates to authority in the Church. It also covers a few other topics that currently preclude Orthodox-Roman Catholic communion. It's a very long but very comprehensive book.

Two Paths  by Michael Whelton is similar in style to Upon This Rock . Lots of Church Father quotes and historical examples to demonstrate his points. It's not the same kind of in-depth study as His Broken Body, but it does have some excellent information.

I should note that I used to be a somewhat agnostic cradle Catholic before becoming Orthodox. I'm intimately familiar with RC pop apologetics, but aside from the two books above I haven't read anything from the Orthodox side about the papal claims. The two books that did the most to convince me of the Orthodox position were The First Seven Ecumenical Councils: Their History and Theology by Fr. Leo Donald Davis (Roman Catholic), and The Seven Ecumenical Councils  by Henry R. Percival (not sure what religion he is). Fr. Leo's book is a history of the councils, and Mr. Percival's book is a collection of their mandates. While the papacy was not the focus of either book, they made the conciliar nature of Church government in the first millennia very obvious.

  I've recently read a book by a Catholic apologist, Stephen K. Ray, titled 'Upon This Rock' (https://books.google.com/books/about/Upon_this_Rock.html?id=RnQiVgUn728C&printsec=frontcover&source=kp_read_button#v=onepage&q&f=false). Ray has a lot of patristic sources that apparently point to a strong belief in a Petrine supreme authority in the early Church.

I think you'll really like His Broken Body. RC apologists like to connect anything said about Rome or Peter or the rock with the Papal claims, in a Peter=Rock=Papacy=Church sort of way. Fr. Laurent explains the patristic perspective on these links in great detail.

May God be with you in your journey! And have a blessed feast of St. Nicetas the Goth.
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Offline CarolS

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Re: Recommendations for good books/resources on Orthodox view of Papacy
« Reply #5 on: September 15, 2018, 09:17:09 PM »
The Papacy by Abbe Guettee

It is available on Amazon, but is also here online:

http://orthodoxinfo.com/inquirers/guettee_thepapacy.pdf
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Offline Rohzek

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Re: Recommendations for good books/resources on Orthodox view of Papacy
« Reply #6 on: September 16, 2018, 11:36:39 AM »
Focusing solely on the papacy without keeping a general grasp of the Orthodox world (by which I mean both Latin West, the Greek East, and the Syriac world) as a whole during the first millennium I would say is insufficient, if you really want to understand the history in an in-depth manner. I would highly recommend the following books to help complement the other excellent books recommended here. By all means, read Siecienski and Cleenewerck first, but these books will enrich your knowledge and help you to contextualize the various theological/historical claims being made in the other books:

Imperial Unity and Christian Divisions: The Church 450-680 A.D. by John Meyendorff

Greek East And Latin West: The Church AD 681-1071 by Andrew Louth

The Christian East and the Rise of the Papacy: The Church 1071-1453 A.D. by Aristeides Papadakis

The Rise of Western Christendom 3rd edition by Peter Brown

The Formation of Christendom by Judith Herrin

Byzantine Matters by Averil Cameron
« Last Edit: September 16, 2018, 11:40:39 AM by Rohzek »
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Offline WPM

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Re: Recommendations for good books/resources on Orthodox view of Papacy
« Reply #7 on: September 16, 2018, 04:31:47 PM »
As Orthodox you have an understanding of the Catholic Pope but not in submission to it.
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Re: Recommendations for good books/resources on Orthodox view of Papacy
« Reply #8 on: September 16, 2018, 05:29:51 PM »
I'll add one not yet mentioned: You Are Peter: An Orthodox Reflection on the Exercise of Papal Primacy, by Olivier Clement.

Offline PorphyriosK

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Re: Recommendations for good books/resources on Orthodox view of Papacy
« Reply #9 on: September 16, 2018, 06:36:09 PM »
His Broken Body[/i] is really excellent.


I agree, it is an excellent book.  Although if I'm not mistaken, it's conclusion seems to be that both sides of the Schism are equally right and wrong.  I came away from it feeling like I had learned a lot, and yet still found myself in no-man's land as to where I belong.