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The Caffeinator
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« Reply #45 on: September 10, 2003, 11:19:10 AM »

It's not the same thing. Protestants for the most part don't think in terms of sacraments. We do. Ours are real, and we can back it up.
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« Reply #46 on: September 10, 2003, 01:46:19 PM »

CW,

The Orthodox teaching comes thusly:

1) The Church is the Body of Christ.
2) The Church is present where the Eucharist (his Body) is.
3) The Eucharist is where the bishop is.
4) The bishop is a bishop if he:
     a) has Orthodox faith
     b) was ordained by Orthodox bishops
     c) was ordained *for an Orthodox community in that community*
     d) maintains communion with other Orthodox bishops (this is not assumign there is a heretical movement tearing apart the Church as in the time of Athanasius)

So if Christ is not divided, how can he be in two Churches at once?

At the same time many Orthodox realize what you say, namely that there is the operation of the Holy Spirit (which is actually operative everywhere) in the Catholic Church.  However, since the apostles and fathers taught us that Christ cannot be divided, hence we take them on their word.  Hence Orthodox do not pronounce officially on sacraments outside of Orthodoxy, because to do so would enter a contradiction into the faith, but at the same time this refusal to pronounce allows for the experience of Christians in other Churches who are experiencing God (albeit not in any way in His fullness).

If you think there is Orthodox confusion here, this dispute rages all the way back to St. Cyprian vs. Pope Stephen; the result was that there was no definitive answer, and each bishop continued to do his own practice, saying he would be accountable to God.

anastasios
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« Reply #47 on: September 10, 2003, 02:13:24 PM »

CW,

The Orthodox teaching comes thusly:

1) The Church is the Body of Christ.
2) The Church is present where the Eucharist (his Body) is.
3) The Eucharist is where the bishop is.
4) The bishop is a bishop if he:
     a) has Orthodox faith
     b) was ordained by Orthodox bishops
     c) was ordained *for an Orthodox community in that community*
     d) maintains communion with other Orthodox bishops (this is not assumign there is a heretical movement tearing apart the Church as in the time of Athanasius)

So if Christ is not divided, how can he be in two Churches at once?

At the same time many Orthodox realize what you say, namely that there is the operation of the Holy Spirit (which is actually operative everywhere) in the Catholic Church.  However, since the apostles and fathers taught us that Christ cannot be divided, hence we take them on their word.  Hence Orthodox do not pronounce officially on sacraments outside of Orthodoxy, because to do so would enter a contradiction into the faith, but at the same time this refusal to pronounce allows for the experience of Christians in other Churches who are experiencing God (albeit not in any way in His fullness).

If you think there is Orthodox confusion here, this dispute rages all the way back to St. Cyprian vs. Pope Stephen; the result was that there was no definitive answer, and each bishop continued to do his own practice, saying he would be accountable to God.

anastasios

Nice and succint way to put it.  I should carry this around on a notecard.
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The Caffeinator
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« Reply #48 on: September 10, 2003, 03:42:05 PM »

Quote
The Orthodox teaching comes thusly:

1) The Church is the Body of Christ.
2) The Church is present where the Eucharist (his Body) is.
3) The Eucharist is where the bishop is.
4) The bishop is a bishop if he:
    a) has Orthodox faith
    b) was ordained by Orthodox bishops
    c) was ordained *for an Orthodox community in that community*
    d) maintains communion with other Orthodox bishops (this is not assumign there is a heretical movement tearing apart the Church as in the time of Athanasius)

So if Christ is not divided, how can he be in two Churches at once?

At the same time many Orthodox realize what you say, namely that there is the operation of the Holy Spirit (which is actually operative everywhere) in the Catholic Church.  However, since the apostles and fathers taught us that Christ cannot be divided, hence we take them on their word.  Hence Orthodox do not pronounce officially on sacraments outside of Orthodoxy, because to do so would enter a contradiction into the faith, but at the same time this refusal to pronounce allows for the experience of Christians in other Churches who are experiencing God (albeit not in any way in His fullness).

If you think there is Orthodox confusion here, this dispute rages all the way back to St. Cyprian vs. Pope Stephen; the result was that there was no definitive answer, and each bishop continued to do his own practice, saying he would be accountable to God.

anastasios

But isn't such an opinion just that, an opinion? Surely it is as subjective as my own?
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« Reply #49 on: September 10, 2003, 05:05:27 PM »

Quote
The Orthodox teaching comes thusly:

1) The Church is the Body of Christ.
2) The Church is present where the Eucharist (his Body) is.
3) The Eucharist is where the bishop is.
4) The bishop is a bishop if he:
    a) has Orthodox faith
    b) was ordained by Orthodox bishops
    c) was ordained *for an Orthodox community in that community*
    d) maintains communion with other Orthodox bishops (this is not assumign there is a heretical movement tearing apart the Church as in the time of Athanasius)

So if Christ is not divided, how can he be in two Churches at once?

At the same time many Orthodox realize what you say, namely that there is the operation of the Holy Spirit (which is actually operative everywhere) in the Catholic Church.  However, since the apostles and fathers taught us that Christ cannot be divided, hence we take them on their word.  Hence Orthodox do not pronounce officially on sacraments outside of Orthodoxy, because to do so would enter a contradiction into the faith, but at the same time this refusal to pronounce allows for the experience of Christians in other Churches who are experiencing God (albeit not in any way in His fullness).

If you think there is Orthodox confusion here, this dispute rages all the way back to St. Cyprian vs. Pope Stephen; the result was that there was no definitive answer, and each bishop continued to do his own practice, saying he would be accountable to God.

anastasios

But isn't such an opinion just that, an opinion? Surely it is as subjective as my own?

So...what are YOU saying?  Anastasios just summed up the EO position/beliefs.  The EO maintain that the RCC is not part of the Church (see above).  The RCC seems to be saying the the EO are part of the Church, an "eastern Lung" but "lost bretheren" or something to that effect.  The EO say, thanks, that's nice of you, but we don't believe that.
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« Reply #50 on: September 10, 2003, 05:08:42 PM »

Catholicism does not teach that validity of sacraments is dependent upon the orthodoxy of its priests. "You are a priest forever, after the order of Melchesidech."
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« Reply #51 on: September 10, 2003, 05:24:34 PM »

Catholicism does not teach that validity of sacraments is dependent upon the orthodoxy of its priests. "You are a priest forever, after the order of Melchesidech."

I believe that quote is referring to Jesus Himself.  Other priests are falliable and can fall away from the faith.
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« Reply #52 on: September 10, 2003, 05:58:20 PM »

Catholicism does not teach that validity of sacraments is dependent upon the orthodoxy of its priests. "You are a priest forever, after the order of Melchesidech."

You sure about that?  A priest can be defrocked by his bishop.  Why would their sacraments then still be valid?
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« Reply #53 on: September 10, 2003, 06:17:43 PM »

Elisha,

     I think I can explain your question. In Roman Catholicism, a defrocked priest has valid sacraments since Holy Orders is considered an "indellible mark." If a priest or bishop is defrocked/deposed, then he cannot celebrate sacraments licitly, but he can still perform them illicitly because of his ordination. However, the priest will suffer the consequences with the Church and on Judgement Day for celebrating the sacraments ilicitly, while the faithful who unknowlingly participate are not harmed.

Matt
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« Reply #54 on: September 12, 2003, 07:33:59 AM »


So if Christ is not divided, how can he be in two Churches at once?


How can God be three and yet one?
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« Reply #55 on: September 12, 2003, 08:01:51 AM »


So if Christ is not divided, how can he be in two Churches at once?


How can God be three and yet one?


Christ has only one body (but then you know that already. Are you just playing devil's advocate?)

John.
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« Reply #56 on: September 12, 2003, 08:34:08 AM »

In Roman Catholicism, a defrocked priest has valid sacraments since Holy Orders is considered an "indellible mark."

Which is why in RC a priest can rape young boys and still be a "Man of God"?

RC is so blinded by the evil one that it is beyond redemption.
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« Reply #57 on: September 12, 2003, 08:41:21 AM »

How can  Christ be in two Churches at once?

Well surely that depends on whether we are using Church in the absolute and unknowable sense of the Body of Christ - the limits of which are drawn by Christ and not men, or whether we are talking of transitory and provisional human organisations.

If, for instance, the See of Antioch broke communion with the See of Alexandria - as happened many times but I am thinking just now of the period during the patriarchates of St Cyril the Great and John of Antioch - where there two Churches or one? And if there were one then the issue of communion does not damage the ontological unity of the Church, and if there were two then the fact that both could come into communion with each other shows that St Cyril did not consider that a breach in communion invalidated the presence of Christ in both communions.

The number of schisms which occurred between East and West and within the West and within the East which were resolved, often after generations, without the requirement for the baptism/chrismation/ordination/consecration of members of either party show that patristrically speaking it was considered that Christ could be in two 'Churches' at once, since neither perfectly reflect the reality of the Church, the mystical Bride of Christ.

What matters is that the Orthodox faith is professed. If the faith is professed then arguments and schisms and breaches of communion and walling off from heresy are all resolvable. If the faith is shown to be irremediably different then we are not dealing with churches but a church and a fellowship of heterodox.

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« Reply #58 on: September 12, 2003, 08:52:39 AM »

The number of schisms which occurred between East and West and within the West and within the East which were resolved, often after generations, without the requirement for the baptism/chrismation/ordination/consecration of members of either party show that patristrically speaking it was considered that Christ could be in two 'Churches' at once, since neither perfectly reflect the reality of the Church, the mystical Bride of Christ.

What matters is that the Orthodox faith is professed. If the faith is professed then arguments and schisms and breaches of communion and walling off from heresy are all resolvable. If the faith is shown to be irremediably different then we are not dealing with churches but a church and a fellowship of heterodox.

Peter Theodore

Good points.  That helps answer some questions I've been having in my own mind about the Church and schisms, etc.
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« Reply #59 on: September 12, 2003, 08:58:00 AM »


So if Christ is not divided, how can he be in two Churches at once?


How can God be three and yet one?


Christ has only one body (but then you know that already. Are you just playing devil's advocate?)


Now wait a minute. In your eagerness to refute me you are willing to deny what scripture itself is saying. Scripture speaks directly of two things being the body of Christ, and alludes to a third. This last is, of course the "stick your had in my side" body, the Jesus whom the disciples see in the 40 days. Then of course there is the bread of the Eucharist. Finally there is the Church, but this latter is also spoken of in other terms.

The point here is that under all these various unities, the fundamental unity is mystical, just as the unity of the Trinity is mystical. If you must demand that the unity of The Church must be simple and visible and ordinary, then you are establishing a principle which you must violate elsewhere. This isn't a good enough argument for the institutional unity of the church, because to remain Orthodox you must deny that principle in other contexts.
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« Reply #60 on: September 12, 2003, 09:12:43 AM »

In Roman Catholicism, a defrocked priest has valid sacraments since Holy Orders is considered an "indellible mark."

Which is why in RC a priest can rape young boys and still be a "Man of God"?

RC is so blinded by the evil one that it is beyond redemption.

Not that I'm defending those Roman Catholic priests who have done these unspeakable abominations, but the RC teaching on the indelible mark left on the souls of those who receive certain sacraments has nothing to do with the crimes of a few priests.  For that matter, no matter what sin you commit, you are still a child of God, made in His image and likeness.  That's Orthodox teaching.  What now?  Is the Orthodox Church blinded by the evil one so much that it is beyond redemption?  

No offence, but while I agree with you that the sexual abuse of young people perpetrated by Roman Catholic priests is horrible beyond words, I don't think your remarks here are very fair.  One thing doesn't have to do with the other.
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« Reply #61 on: September 12, 2003, 09:17:17 AM »

The way the statement is worded implies that "once a Priest, always a Priest", and "once you have been elevated over the common man with Holy Orders, you ALWAYS have that Grace"

I reject that. It is dangerous and against scripture.
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« Reply #62 on: September 12, 2003, 09:22:36 AM »

I tend to agree with you there.
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« Reply #63 on: September 12, 2003, 11:31:37 AM »

<surface>

OK, I can't let this one go by.

Quote
In Roman Catholicism, a defrocked priest has valid sacraments since Holy Orders is considered an "indelible mark." If a priest or bishop is defrocked/deposed, then he cannot celebrate sacraments licitly, but he can still perform them illicitly because of his ordination. However, the priest will suffer the consequences with the Church and on Judgement Day for celebrating the sacraments ilicitly, while the faithful who unknowlingly participate are not harmed.

This needs a few tweaks. A difference between the Eastern Orthodox and Catholic views is that the Orthodox view of the Church and the apostolic ministry is admirably clear-cut: if a priest is no longer under the omophor of an Orthodox bishop, if he hasn't got an antimins from such, functionally he isn't a priest anymore - he can't serve the Liturgy, hear confessions and pronounce absolution, do anything priestly. The Catholic Church is slightly different: without a bishop, a priest can't hear confessions (unless there is a dire emergency) or officiate at weddings but can still offer Mass, which as you say is considered 'valid but illicit'. If there is a dire emergency, then you're right, a defrocked priest can hear a confession and absolve, but normally it's like in EOxy: his absolution or any weddings he performs would be 'invalid'.

Quote
Which is why in RC a priest can rape young boys and still be a "Man of God"?

RC is so blinded by the evil one that it is beyond redemption.

I'm sure Catholics agree that such a priest personally isn't a 'man of God' but if you are referring to the efficacy of the sacraments, this statement could be construed as Donatist and Protestant.

The apostolic ministry depends on the Church, not the worthiness or not of the minister.

I am fairly sure Eastern Orthodoxy doesn't hold the part of the Donatist heresy that says the grace of a sacrament depends on the worthiness of the minister.

The Donatists held this regarding heretics or apostates who came back, and the Protestants picked it up again using the corruption of the clergy as an excuse to drop apostolic succession (Anglicans and Swedish Lutherans the notable exceptions).

'Indelible character' AFAIK is an open question in Eastern Orthodoxy but as long as a priest is under the omophor of an Orthodox bishop, Orthodoxy agrees with the Catholic Church on this: his sacraments have grace, no matter how horrible he may be personally.

The Culture Warrior is right too - the priest's personal orthodoxy doesn't matter as long as he is under a bishop and is using an orthodox rite, which supplies 'the intention of the Church', no matter what the priest does or doesn't believe in.

</surface>
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« Reply #64 on: September 12, 2003, 12:27:53 PM »

Agreed concerning sacramental graces.

I would add however that as far as I see it, the efficacy of the priest's personal blessing is somehow a consequence of his personal sanctity.  I wouldn't waste my time asking for the blessing of a rat in priest's cloth.

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« Reply #65 on: September 12, 2003, 12:54:59 PM »

I am fairly sure Eastern Orthodoxy doesn't hold the part of the Donatist heresy that says the grace of a sacrament depends on the worthiness of the minister.

Nor am I saying that. I agree that as long as they "wear the cloth" any Sacraments they offer do have grace.

I am saying that the RC Church has a pattern of being aware of the evil of these priests and does not defrock them. Thereby enabling them to continue as priests and offer the Sacraments.

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« Reply #66 on: September 12, 2003, 01:39:54 PM »

In Roman Catholicism, a defrocked priest has valid sacraments since Holy Orders is considered an "indellible mark."

Which is why in RC a priest can rape young boys and still be a "Man of God"?

RC is so blinded by the evil one that it is beyond redemption.


Dear Tom,

Priests or anyone who commits such crimes are not considered to be "a man of God" in the ordinary understanding of the term.

Yet even men of God are sinners. Your post is rather uncharitable. I assume it is because you don't understand the idea of the sacrament leaving an indellible mark on someone. Baptism is also considered to leave an indellible mark, yet thousands upon thousands of vile Evil people committed horrendous crimes even though they were baptised. No one would argue that their baptism can be reversed or nullified would they?
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« Reply #67 on: September 12, 2003, 02:25:41 PM »

.....No one would argue that their baptism can be reversed or nullified would they?

So what are you saying: "Once saved always saved"?

The term "Man of God" in the US is a label specifically for someone who has been ordained. That is why it is in quotes. I was not referring to Laity.


And yes, I DO expect a Priest to a maintain a higher standard than myself and the Laity.  And THAT is also expected by the Church who ordained him.
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« Reply #68 on: September 12, 2003, 04:24:45 PM »

.....No one would argue that their baptism can be reversed or nullified would they?

So what are you saying: "Once saved always saved"?

The term "Man of God" in the US is a label specifically for someone who has been ordained. That is why it is in quotes. I was not referring to Laity.


And yes, I Do expect a Priest to a maintain a higher standard than myself and the Laity.  And THAT is also expected by the Church who ordained him.

Tom,
How do you come up with OSAS by my statement? Man of God is customairly used to denote someone with religious authority but some folks don't know that.
Who dosn't expect priests and bishops to maintain the highest standard possible? Certainly all Christians expect that. Jesus warned us that the wheat and the tares must grow togeather till the harvest. So we shouldn't be supprised when we see evil people in the Church. All Christians should be adhearing to the highest standard that they possibly can, not just those who are ordained.
Peace,
Polycarp
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« Reply #69 on: September 12, 2003, 04:30:47 PM »

How do you come up with OSAS by my statement?

Too much sugar?  Grin  Ahhh heck with it! I don't even know what we are debating here.

Besides, there is a Meatloaf song on the radio. Now THAT is TRULY aggravating. Must ....turn.....offfff!!!!
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« Reply #70 on: September 12, 2003, 04:34:07 PM »

How do you come up with OSAS by my statement?

Too much sugar?  Grin

Ahhh heck with it! I don't even know what we are debating here.

LOL
I didn't know we were debating either. For me this kind of forum is a friendly exchange of belief's and information.
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« Reply #71 on: September 12, 2003, 04:39:30 PM »

Right. We got a groovy kind of love
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« Reply #72 on: September 12, 2003, 04:48:26 PM »

Right. We got a groovy kind of love

Oy that may reveal your age or your knowledge of 60's rock. LOL
 Cool
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« Reply #73 on: September 12, 2003, 11:12:53 PM »

Culture Warrior,

You seemed puzzled by the idea that Protestants might think they have experienced grace in the sacraments. This, with all due respect, shows that you are stereotyping all Protestants as low-church fundamentalists. Anglicans (not all of whom think they are Protestants--but _your_ Church thinks we are!), Lutherans, and many Methodists and Presbyterians, would all believe in some form of sacramental grace. And you can find members of more low-church groups who do as well. I myself have resisted becoming Catholic or Orthodox for years largely because I couldn't abandon the belief that Protestant Eucharists convey real grace. I am Episcopalian, but I have experienced--or seemed to experience--sacramental grace in Methodist, Campbellite, and other Protestant churches. Indeed, I first began to believe in sacramental grace from experiencing weekly communion in Plymouth Brethren assemblies in Romania. So don't write Protestant sacramentalism off just because your own experience may have been with fundamentalists.

In Christ,

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« Reply #74 on: September 13, 2003, 02:00:57 PM »

Quote
Culture Warrior,

You seemed puzzled by the idea that Protestants might think they have experienced grace in the sacraments. This, with all due respect, shows that you are stereotyping all Protestants as low-church fundamentalists. Anglicans (not all of whom think they are Protestants--but _your_ Church thinks we are!), Lutherans, and many Methodists and Presbyterians, would all believe in some form of sacramental grace. And you can find members of more low-church groups who do as well. I myself have resisted becoming Catholic or Orthodox for years largely because I couldn't abandon the belief that Protestant Eucharists convey real grace. I am Episcopalian, but I have experienced--or seemed to experience--sacramental grace in Methodist, Campbellite, and other Protestant churches. Indeed, I first began to believe in sacramental grace from experiencing weekly communion in Plymouth Brethren assemblies in Romania. So don't write Protestant sacramentalism off just because your own experience may have been with fundamentalists.

In Christ,

Edwin


If I were in a continuing Anglican church, I very well mght genuflect before the tabernacle.

As I was saying to my EOx friends, there is more than experiential data for RC sacraments. There is scriptural, historical, and patristic data as well.
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