Author Topic: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts  (Read 14363 times)

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Offline mike

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #45 on: July 26, 2016, 01:27:24 PM »
Having read a fair amount of Abbot Tryphon statements over the years, I do feel that the frequent contact with the public has an overall harmful effect, in that it creates an image of monasticism as a factory for inspirational quotes and cat pictures. As celebrity status is approached, a given monastic might feel emboldened to pronounce on matters far beyond his experience or knowledge and say some embarrassing things. I'm not saying the abbot should completely cut himself off from the public, but a severe curtailment is in order. At a certain point, a monk who is constantly in the public eye and interacting with "the world" is a monk in name only. 

Regarding the present statement, I find nothing objectionable about it, but maybe that's part of the problem. It's a generic, moral anti-racism that even the average Trump fanatic can nod his head to. It doesn't address the more pervasive expressions of racism in our society. It would be a lot bolder and better for him to say, "Black lives matter" (without the further qualification "all lives matter" or such rot). Can you imagine the howls that would elicit from all the right people? Instead of the tepid "likes" and "shares" this statement doubtless garnered from the same people who are happy to say "no race but the human race" while continuing to embrace police brutality targeted at blacks.
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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #46 on: September 07, 2016, 02:33:13 PM »
Saying that homosexual desire is a sin seems very harsh.

I'm not sure where you see the teaching that they are damned from birth.

The general teaching is that it is the act, not the desire, which is sinful. I think Orthodox pastors are generally awakening to the understanding that it is not something to be switched on or off. We don't pick all our temptations, but we can choose how to respond to them. In this scenario, the Church is called to accept these people lovingly and aid them in their spiritual struggle, counseling them to celibacy. I think such an attitude is workable without the virulent homophobia that singles this sin out as the downfall of civilization. I myself have taken and struggled with this conception.

However, as I witness the pain and exclusion which this teaching- however gently expressed- has brought to gay people trying to navigate their way into and in the Church, and when I see the good fruits that can be borne of these relationships, I am  beginning to think this position too is untenable. I cannot, in good conscience, stand before friends and acquaintances in such loving relationships and inflict my understanding of a few historically hazy precepts on them, convincing myself that I am somehow speaking the truth in love.
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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #48 on: October 11, 2016, 06:10:36 PM »
Quote from: Pope Francis
Thank God he said I was a politician because Aristotle defined the human person as 'Animal politicus.' So at least I am a human person.

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #49 on: October 25, 2016, 01:10:57 AM »
Christianity does not claim to have the answer to this question. It starts from the position that there is inexcusable evil in the world, ultimately unjustified by any cosmic system. Rather we ask, given that evil, what can we do? Christ has given an answer, to identify with those suffering from that evil and kill a measure of that evil in our own deaths and thus open a door to something more. In fact Christ's death rejects theodicy in the sense that it rejects a justification for evil and death and demands vindication.
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Offline Porter ODoran

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #50 on: November 02, 2016, 12:37:49 PM »
The Bishop is a monk.  He should return to a monastic way of life.

Not necessarily.


well that's what we are discussing...so clearly anything here is opinion...since none of us (thank God) is a hierarch.


My point was that Porter is wrong in his assessment of 'only two extremes' are being argued for....

I should've been more clear.  My comment had to do with this particular bishop's status as a monk.  Is he a monk who was chosen from a monastery to which he could return?  Or is he a monk who was made so perfunctorily as a step toward episcopal ordination but who would have no idea how to adjust to a life he has never really lived?  Is he even a monk?

"Only two extremes" is wrong, though I think Porter does raise an important point in suggesting "forgiveness" as a possible middle ground.  As people, as "church people", we have a big problem with forgiveness.  It's true that forgiveness doesn't necessarily require allowing someone to continue in a certain role, but we seem to have made that such an unshakable rule that we'd never accept today the kinds of people we accepted in the past and whose icons/relics we venerate. 

Maybe Bp Demetri should not be allowed to serve in the role he was just assigned (I certainly don't see what good could come of it), but more generally, we are a people who do not forgive, who perpetually identify certain people with their especially-egregious-to-us past sins even after repentance, who behave as if those sins necessarily flow from an unchangeable condition which will inevitably lead to more incidents ("once a _____, always a _____") unless we isolate them from the population, and so on. 

It's easy to re-retire a bishop.  It's not easy to become a forgiving people, which is why, for all the hype about "the Church is a hospital", we only act that way toward the people whose sins we are able to tolerate.  Other patients are just sent into quarantine to wait for death.     
"Love ... is an abyss of illumination, a mountain of fire ... . It is the condition of angels, the progress of eternity" (Climacus).

Yes we who are far from sainthood we can recognize a living saint and I'm talking from personal experience.Yes they are gentle soo gentle it can not be described it is like gentleness and humility in one and also they have this light this energy it's beyond words...and when you are

Offline Porter ODoran

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #51 on: November 05, 2016, 10:33:35 PM »
Quote
I like the gospel of Luke, and I like that you're using Scripture to buffet your valued opinion, do you have any more?

1. Sure. Consider that later in that same chapter of the Gospel of St. Luke we see John the Baptist - among the very greatest of the Prophets according to the Word of Our Lord - leaps for joy in his mother's womb, "When Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit" (Lk 1:41) when Mother Mary carrying Christ comes to visit St. Elizabeth. The evangelist tells us St. Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit at this greeting and said "How is this given to me, that the Mother of my Lord should come to visit me?" (Lk 1:43) which shows us the devotion, veneration and love the Saints have for the Mother of God. Even the Angelic promise that John the Baptist would, by a special grace, be annointed and filled with the Holy Spirit from the womb was fulfilled at the greeting of Mary, who was the the Ark carrying Christ Jesus Our Lord to that place. So St. Luke, after showing us the reverence the Prophets, the Saints, the Angels have for the Mother of God, instructs us about Mary being the Ark who gives grace to those who come to Christ through Her.

As you may know, patristic exegesis of the Gospels and the Scriptures show us the Holy Virgin Mary is the Ark of the New Covenant. There is a parallel here with David leaping for joy and asking "How can the Ark of the Lord come to me"? (2 Sam 6:9-13) the annointed man dancing for joy before it, "the Ark of the LORD continued in the house of Obed-edom the Gittite three months: and the LORD blessed Obed-edom, and all his household" like Mother Mary in the house of St. Elizabeth for 3 months brought the Lord God's blessings there. Recall that the Israelites had the highest reverence for the Ark in the old testament as the very Glory of God was held to have overshadowed it, the Ark housed the Presence of God and they carried it even into battle, they mourned if it was not found. In the New Testament, St. John the Apostle says the Ark of the Covenant is now in Heaven "Then God's temple in heaven was opened, and within his temple was seen the Ark of his covenant"

2. This immediately precedes his description of the Woman clothed with the Sun, with the Moon under Her feet, a Crown of 12 Stars upon Her royal head (Rev 11:19-12:1). St. John, the same beloved Apostle to whom Christ Our Lord gave His Mother at the foot of the Cross saying, "Woman, behold your son", shows us subsequently that this Woman who dwells in the very light of God's glory and is clothed with the splendor of the sun is the Mother of God (Rev 12:5) and of all Christians (12:17).

St. Athanasius, invincible champion of the Holy Trinity against Arianism, bears witness to the understanding of the early Church, "O noble Virgin, truly you are greater than any other greatness. For who is your equal in greatness, O dwelling place of God the Word? To whom among all creatures shall I compare you, O Virgin? You are greater than them all O Covenant, clothed with purity instead of gold! You are the Ark in which is found the golden vessel containing the true manna, that is, the flesh in which divinity resides."
"Love ... is an abyss of illumination, a mountain of fire ... . It is the condition of angels, the progress of eternity" (Climacus).

Yes we who are far from sainthood we can recognize a living saint and I'm talking from personal experience.Yes they are gentle soo gentle it can not be described it is like gentleness and humility in one and also they have this light this energy it's beyond words...and when you are

Offline Porter ODoran

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #52 on: November 07, 2016, 07:55:13 PM »
Essence is a complicated term, but the Scriptures have many names for the essence of God: indescribable, unapproachable light, glory, fullness, power, everlasting/eternal, love.  Perhaps one of the best way to describe "essence" is the name of God.  What is God's name? "I Am" or "YHWH" or "Ego Eimi".  When we worship the Father in the NAME of Jesus, we are saying that the NAME of Jesus is the same and equal essence of the Father.

Can I worship God in the name of a prophet or angel? No I cannot.  I challenge you to find me any reference in the Old Testament concerning worshipping in any other name other than "in the name of God".  No where in the Old Testament was anyone allowed to pray other than in the name of God.  Now St. Paul teaches us to worship "in the name of Jesus", at whose name "every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth" (Philippians 2:10).

Therefore, the Bible teaches us the name of the Lord who we praise (psalm 138:2; 148:13) and honor (psalm 86:9).  It says in Exodus 34:14, that you shall not worship anyone but God, whose name is Jealous.  This very name Jesus has, for we worship God in that name. Therefore Jesus and God are one.  The Scriptures are clear.  We are to love the name of God (Psalm 119:132) and fear the name of God (Psalm 102:15).  "Our Father who are in heaven, holy is Your name" (Matthew 6:9).  "There is no one holy like you o Lord" (1 Samuel 2:2).  Indeed if God is most holy, and His name is holy, and we worship God in the name of Jesus, then the name of Jesus is the name of God.

So if Jesus owns the name of God, then truly as Christ testifies of Himself, "Before Abraham was, I AM!"  He made Himself equal to God because He is of one name with God.

So if you praise, honor, fear, and worship the name of God, you praise, honor, fear, and worship the name (also known as essence) of Jesus.
"Love ... is an abyss of illumination, a mountain of fire ... . It is the condition of angels, the progress of eternity" (Climacus).

Yes we who are far from sainthood we can recognize a living saint and I'm talking from personal experience.Yes they are gentle soo gentle it can not be described it is like gentleness and humility in one and also they have this light this energy it's beyond words...and when you are

Offline Mor Ephrem

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #53 on: December 22, 2016, 12:36:09 PM »
The Church's bridegroom was never the Byzantine Empire.
How can you be so incarnationally constipated?

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Offline biro

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #54 on: December 22, 2016, 12:58:38 PM »
Mina's response to andrewlya:

Quote

"Latreia" means "serve".  "Proskene" means "bow down".  Both words can be translated into "worship", but the word "worship" has lost its ancient English meaning and has been "Protestantized" to mean something only given to God. 

So here's a shocker, the word "worship" as is understood today seems to have never existed in ancient Christianity.  Every word to describe what we do for God is ABSOLUTE, while the SAME WORDS can be used towards creation in RELATIVE terms.  Let me explain.

There is no one good except God.  But God is said to have created all things "good".  Is there a contradiction?  No!  There's a difference in emphasis.  God ALONE is good by His nature.  He is ABSOLUTELY GOOD.  We are good relatively speaking.

Let's use the word "existence".  God alone is the existent one, but we also exist.  Once again, God is ABSOLUTE EXISTENCE, but our existence is relative.

The word "father".  Call no man father, not even your biological father is "true father".  Only God is ABSOLUTE FATHER.  Your biological and spiritual fathers are relative fathers.

The word "light".  Only God is TRUE and ABSOLUTE LIGHT.  We are only the mirrors to reflect that absolute light into something relative with us.

Only God is TRUE.  All men are false, but we can be relatively true with God's grace.

There are many words you ABSOLUTELY USE for "worship":  service, honor/reverence, bowing down.  It is to God and God ALONE these are ABSOLUTELY done (read John chapter 4, where only to the Father there is "true proskene").  But relatively speaking, you can also serve, honor, and bow down to others, but not in the same absolute sense as you do to God.  Even the word "worship" was used differently before Protestants came along.  It was very common to say that one can worship his own biological father, because worship meant "honor", and the fifth commandment also commanded us to "worship our father and mother".  Yes, WORSHIP.  It was practically no different than reverence or honor.

Another word:  FRIEND.  We have no TRUE OR ABSOLUTE FRIENDS except God Himself.  All others who call themselves friends are relatively so, but not PERFECTLY SO in the same way God is.  Therefore, it can also be said, "call no man or woman friend.  Only God is FRIEND".

THEREFORE...anytime Christ is said to be worshipped or honored or bowed down to, it was done so not in relative terms, but in ABSOLUTE TERMS, and this lead to the Pharisees to kill Christ because that was "blasphemy", which is no different than what you, Andrew think.  You think just like the Pharisees, but you delude yourself to believing Christ spoke in relative terms.  Once again, the key issue here is the use of the term "name".  Once you speak about yourself to be done in "your name", that is not relative, it is ABSOLUTE.

Do the research my friend.  God bless.
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Offline byhisgrace

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #55 on: December 26, 2016, 01:36:45 PM »
A spiritual father once said to me, "If you slap God in the face, how would you feel bad afterwards?  Do you say nothing, or do you immediately pray 'sorry'?"
« Last Edit: December 26, 2016, 01:38:04 PM by byhisgrace »
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Offline Antonious Nikolas

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #56 on: January 02, 2017, 09:10:09 PM »
I found out recently that the Revised Julian calendar doesn't actually calculate the moveable dates by the Gregorian method, but rather by a much more astronomically precise one. The Old Calendar delays one day in 128 years, the Gregorian one in 3236, the New Calendar in 31250. I'm sure many of you already know it, but it's news to me.

Still, the Old Calendarist schism saddens me truly. There seem to be so many bright people in their churches and synods who could be a voice against much more dangerous stuff than bisexts going on inside the mainstream Church.
And I'm sure you're equally aware that no Church uses the proposed Revised Julian Paschalion. Of course the exact determination of the date of Pascha is more complex than that as it also includes definitions of the equinox and of a full moon. The Revised Julian, as you point out, is the most exact of these choices for determining when March 21 should fall.

It's not really as complex as people make it out to be.  There are three conditions:

1.  First look for when Spring begins (also known as the vernal equinox).  This requires solar accuracy.
2.  Then look for when the first full moon after Spring is.  This requires lunar accuracy.
3.  Finally, after that, look for that first Sunday.  This is Easter.

I think the complexity is simply explaining this, but I try to explain this to my Sunday school class and they seem to "get it".  Why is it complex?  Because we don't dumb it down.  This is essentially how we calculate Easter.  So far, we are using numerical complexities so that we don't have to look at the sky or a telescope all the time.  HOWEVER, that old numerical method (the Julian calendar as was passed down to us by the ancient Church of Alexandria) is admittedly behind by about 13 days today.

However, the problem is we seem to say "let's change the calendar to find solidarity with Catholics and Protestants".  That to me is a huge problem, and it leads many ignorant folks to think "we must be one body with all other Christians".  No joke, there are Copts who when hearing that Pope Tawadros wants to change the dates are saying "oh, now are are united with other churches".  I say thirteen days is not a big deal.  Keep it as it is now and let's strengthen our Orthodoxy.  When we become competent in Orthodoxy, then we can consider astronomical accuracy.

What is amazing is that Coptic proponents to changing the calendar not once mentions any of the sister African churches (or any of the OO sister churches for that matter).  They mention Lutherans, Presbyterians, and Catholics, and then as an afterthought the EOs, as if they follow the same calendar, not realizing there is such a thing as "revised Julian calendar".
Worship is theology, so a church which brings Evangelical and Charismatic "praise & worship" into its corporate life is no longer Orthodox.  It is, by definition, heterodox.  Those "Orthodox" leaders who make theological arguments for the incorporation of heteropraxis into the life of the Church are heretics.

http://returntoorthodoxy.com/

Offline Cyrillic

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #57 on: January 03, 2017, 04:10:57 PM »
Nvm.
« Last Edit: January 03, 2017, 04:11:22 PM by Cyrillic »
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Offline RaphaCam

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #58 on: January 04, 2017, 10:36:47 PM »
From an interesting source:

Do you think David hated absolom ? No but was he saved ? Probably not
Did Jesus hate judas ? No he called him friend
Does Jesus/God hate the devil ? No but he is not saved
Does Michael the archangel hate the devil ? No he did not revile him but said the Lord rebuke you
"Now therefore, when thou didst pray, and Sara thy daughter in law, I did bring the remembrance of your prayers before the Holy One: and when thou didst bury the dead, I was with thee likewise." (Righteous Tobit 12:12)

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Offline Antonious Nikolas

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #59 on: January 19, 2017, 03:21:47 PM »
I think the period of the Acacian schism deserves a bit more attention. Four out of five patriarchates accepted the henotikon and were effectively aligned with the anti-Chalcedonian movement. For those who view the OO's as heterodox in some way, and who have some light-switch notion of ecclesial grace, which flips off with heresy, it presents quite a problem as the period lasted a few decades.
Worship is theology, so a church which brings Evangelical and Charismatic "praise & worship" into its corporate life is no longer Orthodox.  It is, by definition, heterodox.  Those "Orthodox" leaders who make theological arguments for the incorporation of heteropraxis into the life of the Church are heretics.

http://returntoorthodoxy.com/

Offline Antonious Nikolas

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #60 on: January 24, 2017, 12:54:49 PM »
In answer to a question on whether or not the term terrorist could rightly be applied to Saul of Tarsus prior to his conversion.

I can see a usefulness in applying this label to St Paul.  On the one hand, it highlights the greatness of God's mercy, which can take someone like Saul, who was blinded by a "love" for God which led him to commit so much evil, and transform him into a "chosen vessel" whose love for God was purified and illumined and subsequently led him to do so much good.  On the other hand, it leads us to question our own mercy.  For instance, if Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi had a change of heart, repented, was baptised Orthodox (ordained, even), and began to teach and evangelise and claim a sort of divine authority for his ministry, would we accept him the way the first Christians accepted Paul?  Probably not, because we are not a forgiving, loving people who believe in God's ability to transform.  We'd rather remember past sins and deride those who once committed them in order to make them disappear from our sight so we can imagine ourselves a holy and righteous people.
Worship is theology, so a church which brings Evangelical and Charismatic "praise & worship" into its corporate life is no longer Orthodox.  It is, by definition, heterodox.  Those "Orthodox" leaders who make theological arguments for the incorporation of heteropraxis into the life of the Church are heretics.

http://returntoorthodoxy.com/

Offline Antonious Nikolas

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #61 on: February 07, 2017, 01:20:01 PM »
I think predestination seems unfare but who am I to question God? To me predestination seems like the truth and I sometimes fear the horrible doctrine of Calvin is true but I don't Think so. But it is almost the conclusion you have to make if God is all-knowing AND all-powerful...

He is all-knowing and all-powerful but He doesn't will in our stead. We choose to love Him or not.

If predestination is true, then I will start to do whatever I want such as being an adulterer, thief, murderer, exploiter etc... Why then did He came and took flesh to teach us not to do these things and to love one each other?

"I am the Way, the Truth and the Life, no ones cometh to the Father, but by Me" John 14:6

If predestination is true then the Gospel is void. He would have not bother to come and He would have spoke through one of His prophet and told us to "not bother and that we will see at the end, since that everything is already set."

The Gospel itself through His Incarnation is completely denying the doctrine of predestination in my opinion.
Worship is theology, so a church which brings Evangelical and Charismatic "praise & worship" into its corporate life is no longer Orthodox.  It is, by definition, heterodox.  Those "Orthodox" leaders who make theological arguments for the incorporation of heteropraxis into the life of the Church are heretics.

http://returntoorthodoxy.com/

Offline benjohn146

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #62 on: February 07, 2017, 01:34:01 PM »
I think predestination seems unfare but who am I to question God? To me predestination seems like the truth and I sometimes fear the horrible doctrine of Calvin is true but I don't Think so. But it is almost the conclusion you have to make if God is all-knowing AND all-powerful...

He is all-knowing and all-powerful but He doesn't will in our stead. We choose to love Him or not.

If predestination is true, then I will start to do whatever I want such as being an adulterer, thief, murderer, exploiter etc... Why then did He came and took flesh to teach us not to do these things and to love one each other?

"I am the Way, the Truth and the Life, no ones cometh to the Father, but by Me" John 14:6

If predestination is true then the Gospel is void. He would have not bother to come and He would have spoke through one of His prophet and told us to "not bother and that we will see at the end, since that everything is already set."

The Gospel itself through His Incarnation is completely denying the doctrine of predestination in my opinion.

Is it a good thing that I have been quoted?
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Offline Antonious Nikolas

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #63 on: February 07, 2017, 02:03:44 PM »
Yes.  It means that I found your post edifying and instructive.

To my mind, it was a succinct statement of the orthodox teaching on the subject

Calvin was a monster, and this fact cannot be mitigated by the consideration of nuance or the times in which he lived.  Whenever I read about his life and his personal views, the way he expressed himself, his personal conduct and behavior, and most especially his loathsome, repulsive theology, I am sickened to my stomach.  Likewise, the god he created for himself in his own image was also a monster which thankfully existed only in his hateful and vile imagination.  It's a great shame that people continue to write fan fiction about this repulsive character to this day, and I thank you for doing your part to counter such odious ponderings with the light of truth.  :)
Worship is theology, so a church which brings Evangelical and Charismatic "praise & worship" into its corporate life is no longer Orthodox.  It is, by definition, heterodox.  Those "Orthodox" leaders who make theological arguments for the incorporation of heteropraxis into the life of the Church are heretics.

http://returntoorthodoxy.com/

Offline benjohn146

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #64 on: February 07, 2017, 02:06:23 PM »
Yes.  It means that I found your post edifying and instructive.

To my mind, it was a succinct statement of the orthodox teaching on the subject

Calvin was a monster, and this fact cannot be mitigated by the consideration of nuance or the times in which he lived.  Whenever I read about his life and his personal views, the way he expressed himself, his personal conduct and behavior, and most especially his loathsome, repulsive theology, I am sickened to my stomach.  Likewise, the god he created for himself in his own image was also a monster which thankfully existed only in his hateful and vile imagination.  It's a great shame that people continue to write fan fiction about this repulsive character to this day, and I thank you for doing your part to counter such odious ponderings with the light of truth.  :)

Thanks! It means a lot for me! As a convert I had to dis-learn and learn the good theology, it is starting to get in I guess!!!

Thank you and I agree with you on Calvin!
 :D
St Makarios, pray for us.

Offline Antonious Nikolas

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #65 on: February 07, 2017, 02:16:17 PM »
it is starting to get in I guess!!!

Apparently so.  :D
Worship is theology, so a church which brings Evangelical and Charismatic "praise & worship" into its corporate life is no longer Orthodox.  It is, by definition, heterodox.  Those "Orthodox" leaders who make theological arguments for the incorporation of heteropraxis into the life of the Church are heretics.

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Offline minasoliman

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #66 on: February 11, 2017, 04:37:37 PM »
It seems there is some Schadenfreude .
What good will it do the East, if the West's going down the drain, I wonder.
 >:(

I derive no pleasure from observing what the Roman Catholics are going through; I believe it is an inevitable consequence of their theological system (whether or not the current controversy is more or less serious than previous controversies). 

Roman Catholics believe that the Popes are heads of the Church on earth, that they have universal, immediate, ordinary, personal jurisdiction over all Catholics, that they are infallible when speaking ex cathedra, that even when not speaking so their teachings and rulings are to be given pious assent by the faithful, etc.  Yet, when a Pope teaches something, the people squirm according to their own predilections. 

So, for example, when Pope John Paul II authoritatively taught that women couldn't be ordained to the priesthood, those who supported the prohibition of women's ordination loved and supported the exercise of papal authority, while those who didn't went on about how it was not (clearly) an infallible definition so perhaps another Pope could rule differently, that it only spoke of priests and not deacons, etc. 

A similar thing is happening with AL.  Those who support the proposal to admit divorced and remarried people to Communion are happy to refer to AL as a magisterial document, highlight the Pope's authority and jurisdiction, begin to implement it, and punish those who do not.  Those who oppose the proposal claim that AL is not magisterial, is not a teaching, that Popes are not always infallible, that some should be opposed and formally corrected, etc.  Often, those who are ultramontane on one issue are left-of-Anglican on others. 

Roman Catholics have a love/hate relationship with the Christian East, and which is at play depends on whether our position is agreeable to them.  So, for example, the same crowd that invokes us as an example of liturgical conservatism/traditionalism in order to combat the myriad insanities found in RC churches on any given day will also self-servingly attack us on our "teaching" on divorce and remarriage (which even their own Cardinals do not really understand because they insist on interpreting it through their own theological system rather than learning ours) because it makes them feel good to believe they have not "sold out".   

I don't see "laetitia" in any of this.  What I see is a lot of confusion among people who are united by a belief in the Pope's authority but only put it into practice when the Pope agrees with them.  And then their apologists wish to impose their theological system on us as an element of apostolic faith by pointing to our alleged confusion, lack of authority, doctrinal deviations, etc. because we don't have that belief.

On the one hand, I am sad for them.  On the other hand, they seem to prefer their system as is and wish for us to submit to it: while I wish them well, we could never do such a thing because then we, like them, would be abandoning the Church of Christ and its divinely-revealed faith for a religion of mere man, by mere man, for mere man, as mere man.   
Vain existence can never exist, for "unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain." (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.

Offline minasoliman

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #67 on: February 23, 2017, 11:39:12 AM »
Isn't it that the Ecumenical Patriarch is the one who is allowed to call a council? So what is this about?

Historically speaking, the "Ecumenical Councils" were largely imperial affairs, many called by Roman Emperors, and all bearing the approval of the emperor of the time.

Since there isn't really an 'ecumene' (i.e. 'household' of the Empire), we really can't speak of anything we do these days as being an 'Ecumenical Council.'  And, since there aren't any 'laws' pertaining to how councils are called, there's no real 'right answer' to who can or can't call a council.  There are local councils which are now universally recognized as having the weight of the Church in their contents, while others which are called "Robber Councils" or are not generally accepted.

Councils are a difficult subject, which we often simplify for the sake of adult catechism.


Especially the last sentence!
Vain existence can never exist, for "unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain." (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.

Offline benjohn146

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #68 on: March 01, 2017, 11:20:21 AM »

Again, everything is sin in Orthodoxy.

Richmond, I am sorry you are going through such a difficult time in your life.

First, everything is not a sin in Orthodoxy.  A sin is something which takes you from God, or harms you physical or spiritual self.

If you can fast during Lent, bravo....if you are not able and the attempt is causing you strife and distress...then don't fast from foods, but, try to fast from anger and stress.  Pray more.  Do things that she won't see or complain about.  You can nurture a beautiful and bright inner self, which she has no power or influence over.

We are taught that if we are given meat to eat during a fasting period, it is better to eat the steak, than insult the person who provided you the meal.  Therefore, do not worry so much about what you eat...more about what you say, do and feel.

As for divorce, the Church does not encourage it, nor does it forbid it.  There are situations that for the safety or sanity of one or the other partner, divorce is permitted.  You aren't fooling around, nor are you thinking of leaving this wife, because you've found a better, younger, thinner version.  You are contemplating leaving her in order to bring some normalcy to your life.  Divorce is not to be taken lightly....but, God does not wish you locked in misery for the rest of your life, especially if the marriage is pulling you away from salvation.

We are saved as a Church...this is not always true.  Just because we are baptized, and even are regular church goers, does not mean we will be automatically saved.  We each must work out our own individual salvation.

I can tell from your posts that you are struggling greatly.  You have no peace and there's little joy in your life. 

Do you love this woman?  Do you wish to save the marriage?  Perhaps try a trial separation? 

If nothing else works, and there are no children involved you can always wish her well, and walk away.  There's always hope.

As for being Orthodox...my friend, it is the only thing that is worth anything in this world.

What you see as hardships imposed by Orthodoxy are in fact joys.  It is all how you look at it.

The extra services during Great Lent....they are so peaceful and retrospective.  Praying, or even just being, in the darkened church, with night falling around you, the candles twinkling, the halos glowing on the icons, the chants, the softness and peaceful nature of the service....it transforms all present...  It is a joy to participate.

Nonetheless, many many many people for various reasons do not.  It's not just you.  People have to work late, have family responsibilities, little kids, competitions for older kids, etc.  If you can do it, it is a plus for you personally.  If you cannot, then you simply cannot.  It's not a punishment if you don't go....it is a joyous experience if you can go.

Fasting.  Fasting has been scientifically proven to be a healthy lifestyle.  Doctors have found that fasting twice a week (W, F) is actually very good for our systems...and they recommend that a month long fast would reset our bodies.  In other words, everything which God has prescribed, is in fact scientifically proven today, to be good for us physically.

But, it's not all about our bodies.  By fasting we not only "show" God, but, we can show ourselves that we are capable of some self-control.  We are not robots, nor slaves to our addictions...and our addictions are many - food (hotdogs, chips, steak, chocolate, ...whatever), TV, drinking, gossiping, gaming, etc.  All of these addictions, because that is truly what they are....stress us.  We are dependent upon them for our joy.  We crave them. 

During this time of Lent...we stop the craving.  We break free.  We are liberated.  It is not a punishment, even though sometimes it is difficult, especially in the first few days, as we suffer withdrawal.

Praying more....well, prayer is just a conversation with God.  If reading prescribed prayers is difficult, then just talk.  Talk to God.  Tell Him how you feel.  Tell Him your worries.  Ask Him for guidance....and realize that you depend on Him alone.

Socializing during Lent.  The Church holds no weddings, etc. during this time period.  While we are not to "look" sad, nor are we to rejoice.  That will make our celebration of the Resurrection all the more joyful.  There are no big parties.  In my house the TV doesn't come on at all (no politics to stress over), the radio is turned off.  We read more, pray more, learn more.  We also clean more.  I am hoping my home will be in order by the time Pascha arrives...although while I always make plans....I forget that there are more services throughout the week, and fewer evenings available to do the cleaning.  :)

Orthodoxy is the best!  I would never contemplate leaving the Church. I know it to be the true way to Christ.  I only wish I were a better Orthodox Christian.

Hang in there.  You will be in all our prayers.

Wishing you peace, God's guidance, and resolve to do what needs to be done.
St Makarios, pray for us.

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #69 on: March 30, 2017, 06:02:42 PM »
Further, the mental image people have of an individual if you say the word "rapist" is almost exclusively male. Women can and in fact do rape men. It is tramuatizing for these men, but even amongst men it is something of a joke. Even men don't take the concept of a female raping a man seriously, and make jokes about how enjoyable it would be.

The problem isn't language, the problem is societal attitudes. In truth I don't think society has much respect for men or women.
How can you be so incarnationally constipated?

Don't forget about oc.net's women ;)

Can we have one thread where it doesn't devolve into how many people are hot for Mor?

Offline Mor Ephrem

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #70 on: April 02, 2017, 07:03:02 PM »
True story:

A very faithful woman at our parish stopped coming to church about six months ago.  Some bad things happened in her personal life, and I think she became depressed and was even questioning her faith.  Many people reached out to her, but to no avail.
 
About a week and a half ago, she was sent one of the cross mantillas pictured above, along with a card in the mail.  Something about the mantilla touched her, and today she showed up at church for the first time in months, wearing it.  She said getting the mantilla in the mail made the difference for her.  Everyone rejoiced.  This woman is such a precious person, church just wasn't the same without her.  And now she's back.   :)

So for those who think veils, mantillas, and scarves are just an old relic of the past, or that they are irrelevant, or that they don't matter, or that they are stupid, or that they are dowdy, or that they shouldn't be worn in church for whatever reason, or blah, blah, blah...


How can you be so incarnationally constipated?

Don't forget about oc.net's women ;)

Can we have one thread where it doesn't devolve into how many people are hot for Mor?

Offline Iconodule

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #71 on: April 05, 2017, 10:14:01 AM »
Take off your conscience, Holy Bible, Holy Fathers' commentaries and reason; and put on your hard hat, body armor, life jacket, and insensitivity to illogical insults and defamations; so that you will be prepared for the Noah's flood deluge of ignorance, hypocrisy, duplicity, feminism, and freudianism that is the crux of the currently united gender and family theology of all of the main line EO, OO, RC, WCCC, and Protestant, except ROCOR, so-called christian churches of the West.
Quote
But it had not been in Tess's power - nor is it in anybody's power - to feel the whole truth of golden opinions while it is possible to profit by them. She - and how many more - might have ironically said to God with Saint Augustine, "Thou hast counselled a better course than thou hast permitted."
Thomas Hardy, Tess of the D'Urbervilles

Offline Porter ODoran

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #72 on: April 05, 2017, 11:45:15 PM »
Take off your conscience, Holy Bible, Holy Fathers' commentaries and reason; and put on your hard hat, body armor, life jacket, and insensitivity to illogical insults and defamations; so that you will be prepared for the Noah's flood deluge of ignorance, hypocrisy, duplicity, feminism, and freudianism that is the crux of the currently united gender and family theology of all of the main line EO, OO, RC, WCCC, and Protestant, except ROCOR, so-called christian churches of the West.

I can't agree that this belongs here.
"Love ... is an abyss of illumination, a mountain of fire ... . It is the condition of angels, the progress of eternity" (Climacus).

Yes we who are far from sainthood we can recognize a living saint and I'm talking from personal experience.Yes they are gentle soo gentle it can not be described it is like gentleness and humility in one and also they have this light this energy it's beyond words...and when you are

Offline minasoliman

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #73 on: April 06, 2017, 03:31:35 PM »
Look, I used to be a convinced Calvinist. I even kept a blog that Doug Wilson had on his blog roll in the sidebar, so I am well acquainted with the argumentation used to promote it as a viewpoint and the nuances of belief. Yes, viewed objectively, it isn't a very nice belief system, and it took me some time to be convinced it was true because of my natural revulsion to it. I was enormously grateful to discover Orthodox thinking and find that there was something consistent with the Faith that didn't involve the more objectionable parts of the out working of the Doctrines of Grace.

But it bears saying that those of my acquaintance who hold to the Doctrines of Grace do so because they are convinced that they show the love and Grace of God to best effect, consistent with their reading of Scripture. While I am no longer a Calvinist, you'll go a long way to find a preacher who called people to the love of Christ as effectively as Spurgeon, who was as Calvinist as they come. I think he was in error, but his heart for the lost comes through his sermons very clearly.

And it's also worth noting that while I find Calvinism objectionable now, my focus is not on debunking what I used to believe, but rather on the wonderful truths of a God who truly loves and rescues us from the clutches of Death. I only have so much time in my life, in all the senses of that phrase, and I don't want to waste it railing against what is not true when I can be spending my time gazing at the real beauty of God.
Vain existence can never exist, for "unless the LORD builds the house, the builders labor in vain." (Psalm 127)

If the faith is unchanged and rock solid, then the gates of Hades never prevailed in the end.

Offline Fr. George

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #74 on: April 06, 2017, 04:44:26 PM »
Look, I used to be a convinced Calvinist. I even kept a blog that Doug Wilson had on his blog roll in the sidebar, so I am well acquainted with the argumentation used to promote it as a viewpoint and the nuances of belief. Yes, viewed objectively, it isn't a very nice belief system, and it took me some time to be convinced it was true because of my natural revulsion to it. I was enormously grateful to discover Orthodox thinking and find that there was something consistent with the Faith that didn't involve the more objectionable parts of the out working of the Doctrines of Grace.

But it bears saying that those of my acquaintance who hold to the Doctrines of Grace do so because they are convinced that they show the love and Grace of God to best effect, consistent with their reading of Scripture. While I am no longer a Calvinist, you'll go a long way to find a preacher who called people to the love of Christ as effectively as Spurgeon, who was as Calvinist as they come. I think he was in error, but his heart for the lost comes through his sermons very clearly.

And it's also worth noting that while I find Calvinism objectionable now, my focus is not on debunking what I used to believe, but rather on the wonderful truths of a God who truly loves and rescues us from the clutches of Death. I only have so much time in my life, in all the senses of that phrase, and I don't want to waste it railing against what is not true when I can be spending my time gazing at the real beauty of God.

+1.  Especially: "my focus is not on debunking what I used to believe, but rather on the wonderful truths of a God who truly loves and rescues us from the clutches of Death. I only have so much time in my life, in all the senses of that phrase, and I don't want to waste it railing against what is not true when I can be spending my time gazing at the real beauty of God."
I don't typically presume to speak for Mor
You can presume to speak for Mor.   

Offline Porter ODoran

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #75 on: April 26, 2017, 10:18:04 AM »
I'm in the USA, and I attend a Ukrainian parish...and we are NOT segregated. 

We used to be, with women standing on the left as you enter, and men on the right.

However, over the years many young families have joined, and the parents wish to tend to their young children together.

Today, we stand wherever we like.

I am witnessing this transition occurring in an Indian parish and it makes me sad.

I can think up possible reasons, but rather than presume... why do you feel that way?

Asteriktos,

I keep forgetting about this thread because of where it's located.  Apologies. 

I prefer the original arrangement ("gender segregated", to use the terms of the OP) for a few reasons which I'll throw out there in no particular order with the disclaimer that I haven't really thought about them so thoroughly as to write about them more cogently. 

One reason is simply "tradition".  Until very recently in Christian history, all Christians arranged themselves in this way during communal worship and did so from as far back as we have records.  This tradition transcended language, culture, geography, denominational boundaries, and just about any other dividing factor we can think of.  Because of the high regard we have for received traditions, this is enough of a reason to keep it. 

Segregated arrangements are less distracting.  No matter how much we try to focus on our own response to distractions rather than the things/people we find distracting, it is helpful to limit distractions as much as we can.  Most people will read that and think I'm talking about men gawking at women and vice versa, and that's part of it, but it's not by any means all of it (and anyway, if you, like my cousin once upon a time, are determined to gawk, you'll find a way to stand through a three hour Liturgy with your head peering over one or the other shoulder and not care that dozens of fathers-of-daughters can see you). 

I think the segregated arrangement is a sign that speaks more loudly than any sermon could of our creation in God's image and likeness as male and female, about the inherent goodness of sexual difference and the dignity of men and women as men and women, about how we approach God and are saved and sanctified precisely as men and women, etc., and it seems to me that we need to bear witness to that teaching today more than ever.   

Related to this, I think it's helpful in modeling the faith for future generations.  Young men and boys standing on the men's side of a church are surrounded by and observe older men while they pray and worship, are perhaps even guided by these men in how to conduct themselves during the services, etc.  They learn how to be Christian men by spending time with Christian men.  The same can be said for young women and girls worshiping in the midst of older women. 

It seems to me that women have an easier time forming community among themselves than men do, but it's important for men as well, and I think segregation helps both men and women do that.  A non-segregated church typically arranges itself along (nuclear) family lines first and then perhaps in proximity to other friends or friend-families.  In a segregated church, it's just a bunch of men on one side and a bunch of women on the other.  It's more difficult to see the relationships that have brought everyone to the same place (e.g., blood, marriage) and you are less limited by them, so you are free to forge new bonds.  The church becomes "family" more radically than in mixed congregations. 

When I wrote of my sadness at watching the transition from segregation to mixture in a particular Indian parish, it's primarily because the members who are most enthusiastic about the transition seem to view the things I've just described as outdated, irrelevant, obsolete, even perhaps bad.  They seem to want a more personalised parish experience into which their family unit can plug in as a family unit, preferring to maintain the independence of the nuclear family from the larger community.  They'd probably view the appeal to tradition as a form of antiquarianism, and while they probably accept the traditional teaching on creation and sex, I wouldn't be surprised if there was a hearty "Yes, but..." lurking beneath the surface.  Because this tradition has been lost even among many (most?) Orthodox in this country, it's easy to understand if our priests go along with their parishioners' request to implement mixed seating/standing and choose something else to fight for, but in doing so I think we will have lost something of great value.     

I'm not saying that segregation is a panacea.  Segregated parishes have all sorts of problems.  But ultimately I think it is a more catholic way of standing together before God than the non-segregated arrangement, which seems to me to be more focused on family, tribe, and/or the individual.
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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #76 on: May 21, 2017, 09:38:31 PM »
If there were no resurrection, there would be no eternal good. If there were no eternal good, I guarantee you there would be no temporal good and life would be nothing but misery for all creatures, if there could be life, which there couldn't. Pointless answer to your pointless questions. Although I should admit that St. Paul saw fit to engage a similar question and give it a practical answer, viz., "But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen: And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain. Yea, and we are found false witnesses of God; because we have testified of God that he raised up Christ: whom he raised not up, if so be that the dead rise not. For if the dead rise not, then is not Christ raised: And if Christ be not raised, your faith is vain; ye are yet in your sins. Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished. If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable."
The ocean, impassable by men, and the world beyond it are directed by the same ordinances of the Master. ~ I Clement 20

Offline Porter ODoran

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Re: OC.net Notable/Edifying Posts
« Reply #77 on: May 23, 2017, 11:13:32 PM »
Quote
... And yet though not observing it, they were none the less at peace with those who came to them from the parishes in which it was observed; although this observance was more opposed to those who did not observe it.

But none were ever cast out on account of this form; but the presbyters before you who did not observe it, sent the eucharist to those of other parishes who observed it.

And when the blessed Polycarp was at Rome in the time of Anicetus, and they disagreed a little about certain other things, they immediately made peace with one another, not caring to quarrel over this matter. For neither could Anicetus persuade Polycarp not to observe what he had always observed with John the disciple of our Lord, and the other apostles with whom he had associated; neither could Polycarp persuade Anicetus to observe it as he said that he ought to follow the customs of the presbyters that had preceded him.

But though matters were in this shape, they communed together, and Anicetus conceded the administration of the eucharist in the church to Polycarp, manifestly as a mark of respect. And they parted from each other in peace, both those who observed, and those who did not, maintaining the peace of the whole church. ...
"Love ... is an abyss of illumination, a mountain of fire ... . It is the condition of angels, the progress of eternity" (Climacus).

Yes we who are far from sainthood we can recognize a living saint and I'm talking from personal experience.Yes they are gentle soo gentle it can not be described it is like gentleness and humility in one and also they have this light this energy it's beyond words...and when you are