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Moderated Forums => Faith Issues => Topic started by: jlerms on June 12, 2005, 12:23:28 PM

Title: communion question
Post by: jlerms on June 12, 2005, 12:23:28 PM
I am currently a catachemen.  God willing, my two daughters and I will be received formally into the EO church.  However my husband is not a christian.  Obviously we were not married in the church.  I have been told that after I am baptised and chrismated, I will then be able to receive communion.  However, after that I will only be able to have communion a couple of times a year....because of my non-Orthodox marriage.  I am saddend by this  because  I have longed to receive  this blessed sacrament.  Does anyone know the reason for this penalization and where can find the references to this in church tradition??
God bless you all,    Juliana
Title: Re: communion question
Post by: TomS on June 12, 2005, 08:45:03 PM
However, after that I will only be able to have communion a couple of times a year....because of my non-Orthodox marriage. [/color]

Take communion as often as you feel you need it. Pay no attention to stupid rules.
Title: Re: communion question
Post by: macrina on June 12, 2005, 09:02:49 PM
my friend brooke is orthodox, but her huband isn't...she receives communion whenever she is able. our priest hasn't limited it because of her non-orthodox marriage.

who told you? was it your spiritual father? your bishop?
Title: Re: communion question
Post by: Jennifer on June 12, 2005, 09:05:54 PM
Take communion as often as you feel you need it. Pay no attention to stupid rules.

You should be obedient to your spiritual father but there's nothing preventing you from checking with other priests to see if what you were told is 'orthodox.' 

BTW, we don't receive communion because we "feel" we "need" it.  As it says in the liturgy, the "awesome mysteries of Christ."  It's a very serious sin to approach unworthily. 

Title: Re: communion question
Post by: ozgeorge on June 12, 2005, 09:12:18 PM
This seems really strange to me also.
My brother married a non-Orthodox and recieves Communion regularly. And why limit it to a few times a year? If there is a sin which excudes you from Holy Communion, surely this would exclude you period until the sin is repented and the epitomia completed?

On the other hand, as Jennifer says, if this been imposed as a kanon ("prayer rule") by your Spiritual Father, you should obey.
Title: Re: communion question
Post by: Anastasios on June 12, 2005, 09:15:45 PM
This seems really strange to me also.
My brother married a non-Orthodox and recieves Communion regularly. And why limit it to a few times a year? If there is a sin which excudes you from Holy Communion, surely this would exclude you period until the sin is repented and the epitomia completed?

On the other hand, as Jennifer says, if this been imposed as a kanon ("prayer rule") by your Spiritual Father, you should obey.

The fact that your brother was allowed to marry a Non-Orthodox is in and of itself a novelty in the Greek Church. The Russians had a more lenient approach, but that is only since the time of Peter the Not-so-Great.

As far as what is going on in this woman's situation, I think I understand what is happening but I don't think this is the kind of stuff we should discuss online.

Anastasios
Title: Re: communion question
Post by: Elisha on June 12, 2005, 09:55:11 PM
The fact that your brother was allowed to marry a Non-Orthodox is in and of itself a novelty in the Greek Church. The Russians had a more lenient approach, but that is only since the time of Peter the Not-so-Great.

As far as what is going on in this woman's situation, I think I understand what is happening but I don't think this is the kind of stuff we should discuss online.

Anastasios

We have a parishoner whose wife is an Atheist.  I don't exactly monitor him, but he seems to commune rather frequently - not just "a few times a year".  Of course, I think he was advised to not marry this woman because of the difficulty in living and Orthodox life and diid anyway.  So, it wasn't a case of being "allowed".
Title: Re: communion question
Post by: TomS on June 12, 2005, 09:55:33 PM
It's a very serious sin to approach unworthily.ÂÂ

Bunk!

If you feel you are being called to take communion, then it is not a sin. We have a forgiving and loving God.
Title: Re: communion question
Post by: Anastasios on June 12, 2005, 10:07:34 PM
Bunk!

If you feel you are being called to take communion, then it is not a sin. We have a forgiving and loving God.

St Paul told the Corinthians that the reason some of them were dying was because they partook unworthily.  Was St Paul wrong?

Anastasios
Title: Re: communion question
Post by: Nacho on June 12, 2005, 10:10:25 PM
Isn't not approaching communion because of so called *sin* a western notion? I have heard my priest say this on many occasions. He said people that have issues with sin should go to confession if something needs to be resolved and try to not hold out on communion.
Title: Re: communion question
Post by: jlerms on June 12, 2005, 10:33:04 PM
Dear Everyone,   I  don't want to cause any problems here.  I need to learn to be more patient and not so free with my speech.  I do indeed have a spiritual father (he is the one who told me about my communion).  He is a priest monk and I am sure he has good reason for his advice to me.  I will be seeing him soon to ask him personally why this is so...I was stunned and inwardly upset when he first told me...so I didn't ask him why.  Maybe it is a prayer rule ( like someone else mentioned)??  Please forgive me for asking everybody an inappropriate question.  Lord have mercy on me a sinner.
God bless you all,  Juliana 
Title: Re: communion question
Post by: Kizzy on June 12, 2005, 11:30:30 PM
This seems really strange to me also.
My brother married a non-Orthodox and recieves Communion regularly. And why limit it to a few times a year? If there is a sin which excudes you from Holy Communion, surely this would exclude you period until the sin is repented and the epitomia completed?

On the other hand, as Jennifer says, if this been imposed as a kanon ("prayer rule") by your Spiritual Father, you should obey.

There are many interfaith/ interChristian marriages in the EO church.  The Orthodox spouse receives communion normally. I think the issue here is that Juliana stated she is married to a non-Christian, which is very different from a different Christian faith.  The EO   recognizes marriages to non-Orthodox provided that the non-Orthodox spouse is Chrisitian and baptized in the name of the Holy Trinity. (see GOA website dedicated to subject of  interfaith marriage) In that case, the Orthodox spouse has full priviledges of the faith.  However, in other cases, where the spouse is non-Christian, the 'Orthodox' spouse cannot receive.  We had one parishioner who had to leave the parish because her husband was Jewish. On the other hand, 90% of everyone else in the parish is in an inter-Christian marriage, and one spouse receives communion, but not the non-Orthodox.

In XC, Kizzy


Title: Re: communion question
Post by: TomS on June 13, 2005, 08:26:04 AM
St Paul told the Corinthians that the reason some of them were dying was because they partook unworthily.ÂÂ  Was St Paul wrong?

Dude, if this were true, half of the congregation would be dropping dead every Sunday. I mean, c'mon! You have to understand that much of religion is manipulation.
Title: Re: communion question
Post by: ania on June 13, 2005, 10:32:03 AM
First of all, you guys are freaking jlerms out.  Stop snapping at each other. 

Juliana, (BTW, welcome, I see your new here), from personal experience of having several friends who have married outside of Orthodoxy, I was rather surprised at your spiritual father saying.  Considering Orthodoxy does allow Orthodox to marry non-Orthodox (there are some rules involving what branch of Christianity they are in, etc, but it is allowed, at least in the Russian church) IN THE CHURCH, in an ORTHODOX CEREMONY, I do not see why you would be forbidden to partake in the Holy Gifts only a few times a year. 
I see however that you wrote that your husband is not Christian.  This is of course a different situation.  However, your marriage to him was before you embraced Orthodoxy, and (strictly on a personal level), I do not believe you should be punished for embracing this faith while your husband does not.  In fact, I think you should be commended, as many people interested in Orthodoxy are held back by what their spouses think, say, do. 
Besides that, think of how many early Christians were married to pagans when they converted, many of them went on to become martyrs or other kinds of saints, and I highly doubt they were forbidden Communion on account of being married to pagans. 
I do know 2 women who are married to non-Christians, 1 is married to an atheist, 1 is married to a Hindu.  Both attend church regularly and receive Communion frequently.
It is a sticky situation, as your spiritual father has already told you what to do, however, I would research it (try early Christian saints, see if there are any modern writings on the subject, I'm sure there's something) before talking to him, and maybe you'll be able to reach a more agreeable situation.

Ok, that's my 2 cents, hope it makes sense.
Title: Re: communion question
Post by: beewolf on June 14, 2005, 03:55:24 AM
The fact that your brother was allowed to marry a Non-Orthodox is in and of itself a novelty in the Greek Church. The Russians had a more lenient approach, but that is only since the time of Peter the Not-so-Great.

As far as what is going on in this woman's situation, I think I understand what is happening but I don't think this is the kind of stuff we should discuss online.

Anastasios

Perhaps the degree of relaxedness varies from place to place. I know that my wife didn't come into the Russian church i am starting to attend because it said on a notice to visitors that women had to wear a skirts not jeans etcÂÂ  -it would be very interesting to see what the priest says because my wife currently has no intention of becoming orthodox and i certainly hope that i won't be limited as to when i can partake of those mysteries.

Pax et Lux
Title: Re: communion question
Post by: sin_vladimirov on June 14, 2005, 04:24:12 AM
Dude, if this were true, half of the congregation would be dropping dead every Sunday. I mean, c'mon! You have to understand that much of religion is manipulation.


Lord have mercy!
Title: Re: communion question
Post by: Augustine on June 14, 2005, 08:42:41 AM
1) I think Anastasios is correct - that there is probably more to the situation being discussed here than has been revealed, and quite likely, it'd be something very personal and highly inappropriate to be discussed openly.

2) There is a significant difference between someone becoming Orthodox and remaining with their non-Orthodox spouse (whatever religion they are), and someone who is already an Orthodox Christian attempting to contract a marriage with a non-Orthodox Christian.  Again, Anastasios is correct that historically the Church did not allow this.  On a practical level, speaking as someone who has a non-Orthodox spouse (married prior to coming to Orthodoxy), I would not recommend someone choose this situation - it can be difficult even in the "best" of situations, and I can only imagine the mischief involved when children arrive.  If you're actually serious about the spiritual life, and think the most precious gift you could give your future children would be the Orthodox Christian faith, then I don't think it's prudent to go this way.  Trust me, it's a very hard situation to be in.

Title: Re: communion question
Post by: ozgeorge on June 14, 2005, 09:52:56 AM
Dude, if this were true, half of the congregation would be dropping dead every Sunday.

I never realised you had the charism to read souls to see who is and isn't unworthy Tom. Or did you take a poll of the congregation?  ;)

O Lord, you see, we no longer have any need of Thee, since TomS will judge us and recompense each according to his deeds... :D
Title: Re: communion question
Post by: TomS on June 14, 2005, 09:55:21 AM
I never realised you had the charism to read souls to see who is and isn't unworthy Tom. Or did you take a poll of the congregation?ÂÂ  ;)

Nah. Just a simple statistical sampling!  ;)
Title: Re: communion question
Post by: jlerms on June 14, 2005, 12:12:49 PM
Augustine,
  I wanted to thank you for your input on the matter of mixed marriages.  I knew my husband for six years before we were married.  He is a very honorable man who was brought up in the Jewish faith.  Actually, his father is a russian jew and his mother converted (she was italian catholic).  I also was a lapsed roman catholic.  During my college years, I fell away from christianity and explored buddhism and hinduism.  I was confused and searching for something but  then basically gave up.   I put my spiritual life on hold.  Another words, I forgot about God and steeped myself in worldliness.  Looking back, I now see how wretched it was.  Anyway, fastforward to finding my husband, falling in love and bonding in true friendship.  When we decided to have children we briefly discussed what we would do about religion. I realise now that it is very important for spouses to be in alignment on matters of faith.   It wasn't until my oldest daughter at the age of 4 starting asking me questions about who God is and what happens when we die? that something happened.  I think it was that our Lord had mercy on me...heathen that I was...and opened my heart.  I can't explain what happened...but one night lying in bed...I dared to pray...and tears of remorse and repentence pierced me with excruciating pain.  How could I have turned away from our Savior??  My children (the other one was a tiny baby at the time)  deserved to grow up knowing and having the chance to worship in church.  Originally I left the RC church because of certain things (papal infallibility, immaculate conception, stance on original sin, etc) so I was wondering where I would go.  The Holy Spirit guided me.  In the span of a week I met  3 different people who all happened to be Orthodox Christians. I had never heard of Orthodoxy.  With my children, I went to my first Divine Liturgy(at a GOA parish) and that was it...our Lord showed me the One True Church. 
    Needless to say, there were changes in our lives that my husband suddenly had to cope with...and I must commend him for his patience.  It is very difficult at times.  He doesn't like that I have changed and become (in his words "religious").  He liked it better when I seemed to be more carefree and breezy.  He keeps saying that he hopes this is just a phase and we can get back to normal.  But now I  think  he knows that this is a life change for me.  I try not to mention anything about the church so he won't get upset.  I just want to show him and my family LOVE.  I pray and hope that my faith grows.  I want to be able to put my full trust in God.  I am just a beginner.  It is still a struggle to always have the rememberance of God during the day and to remember to always give Him thanks.   I don't want to go back to the world...temptations are always there to make me forget Him.  I am reminded of something someone told me once, "The greatest thing the Devil does is to make one believe that God doesn't exist."   Lord preserve me from forgetting.  May I always praise You!! 
      I apologize for the long post.  I am grateful to have found this forum where I can learn and have support from fellow christians.  God bless you all and please pray for my family.
Love,  Juliana
Title: Re: communion question
Post by: jayson on June 15, 2005, 04:22:36 PM
Well done you! I have such respect for what you're doing. And listen to your spiritual father - I guess he knows the full situation, so has the best advice for you. Keep in mind that you are never told to abstain from Communion as a 'punishment'. There are always reasons behind it - and it would be a far worse thing to take Communion unworthily. Don't hold back with the kids tho - as often as possible.  ;)
Title: Re: communion question
Post by: Monk Vasyl on October 24, 2008, 01:41:03 PM
This seems really strange to me also.
My brother married a non-Orthodox and receives Communion regularly. And why limit it to a few times a year? If there is a sin which excludes you from Holy Communion, surely this would exclude you period until the sin is repented and the epitomia completed?

On the other hand, as Jennifer says, if this been imposed as a kanon ("prayer rule") by your Spiritual Father, you should obey.

I remember a friend was married prior to his chrismation...after his chrismation he was not allowed to receive Holy Communion until his marriage was "regularized" in the Orthodox Church.  His wife refused, so he couldn't receive until he changed jurisdictions.  That was too strange for me to undersatand.
Title: Re: communion question
Post by: SolEX01 on October 24, 2008, 02:27:13 PM
A priest who practices Oikonomia, rather than akriveia, helps tremendously under these circumstances.  Otherwise, would we expect every convert to either make peace with a non-Orthodox spouse or convert he/she to Orthodoxy before receiving Communion?