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Author Topic: The SSPX and the Orthodox  (Read 6784 times) Average Rating: 0
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JoeZollars
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« on: October 18, 2002, 04:42:32 PM »

I have made this point before, and I say it again.  I can think of only one way to make Rome actually interested in reconciling with the SSPX, SSPV, and other schismatic traditionalist groups.  That is for the SSPX, etc. to become part of Orthodoxy.  Then Rome would be falling all over themselves in the scramble to reconcile with the SSPX.

As one poster pointed out recently, the SSPX are among the last REAl RC's left.  I think Rome is afraid of this.  

For those of you who don't know, the SSPX has one demand that when met the SSPX would come back into Communion with Rome.  That demand is that the Vatican grant all Priests everywhere the ability to decide for himself whether or not to offer the Latin Mass. The SSPX want this decision to be In Perpetuam.  Rome is nervous about granting this because they know that 9/10 of the good RC Priests will jump at the chance to say the Latin Mass and the liberal, modernist priests will be left saying the NO.  When the universal indult is granted, it is my prediction the NO will not last 100 years past the granting of the Universal Indult.  I make this prediction because of the fact that Trads are more dedicated to the Church.  When we Trads are united, nothing will stop us.  Perhaps Rome has not granted the Universal Indult because they are scared that the days of their modernism is coming to an end.

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« Reply #1 on: October 18, 2002, 05:42:23 PM »

Joe,

There's a lot to be said for the SSPX - their stance against the errors of this age. But this is the same group that has its own version of 'Uniates', the Transalpine Redemptorists, and regards the Orthodox as pernicious schismatics.

In short: what you propose never, ever will happen.
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« Reply #2 on: October 18, 2002, 05:46:01 PM »

The SSPX hate the Orthodox.  Why would they want to come in to communion with the Orthodox?  Can you imagine them givine up the filioque?  It ain't gonna happen except in an alternate universe with the bad Captain Kirk.
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« Reply #3 on: October 18, 2002, 05:50:27 PM »

Joe Z,

You are getting so caught away with the externals. Sure, the RC church has stripped away a lot of the externals of it's faith, but that doesn't mean the underlying message is any different.

The message of Christ isn't about how many bells are on your incense censor, or how many prostrations you do, but it IS about loving God, and loving your neighbor.

I suggest instead of getting caught up in all this SSPX hoopla you find some good solid volunteer work in the area to do. (Soup kitchen, habitat for humanity). See what being a Christian is about! Build some humility and character

Remember, on judgement day, Christ isn't going to ask if you said the novus ordo or the tridentine mass, he's going to say:

When I was hungry, did you give me food? When I was thirsty, did you give me drink?



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« Reply #4 on: October 18, 2002, 09:12:05 PM »

Joe Z,

You are getting so caught away with the externals. Sure, the RC church has stripped away a lot of the externals of it's faith, but that doesn't mean the underlying message is any different.

The message of Christ isn't about how many bells are on your incense censor, or how many prostrations you do, but it IS about loving God, and loving your neighbor.

I suggest instead of getting caught up in all this SSPX hoopla you find some good solid volunteer work in the area to do. (Soup kitchen, habitat for humanity). See what being a Christian is about! Build some humility and character

Remember, on judgement day, Christ isn't going to ask if you said the novus ordo or the tridentine mass, he's going to say:

When I was hungry, did you give me food? When I was thirsty, did you give me drink?



Bobby

Bobby -
That was beautiful.  You should be a priest!

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« Reply #5 on: October 19, 2002, 06:00:14 AM »

I did volunteer for the local St. Vincent De Paul society.  I volunteered over 450 hours, not to be bragging this was over a nearly 2 year period.  

They allowed the Mormon Missionaries to fulfill their community service time there.  I was scheduled on the same afternoon.  Of course I had the gaul to attempt to convert these neo-satanists.  I also tried to convert many of the liberals who worked ther as well and even had the audacity to give copies of St. Joseph Daily Missal to all the volunteers one Cristmas just to find most of them in the trashcan that afteernoon.  Then one day the president of the local St. Vincent De Paul society called me and asked me not to continue volunteering.  The reason was and I quote "you are just too Catholic.  There is room for others too."

Now I realize that Jesus is not going to ask NO or Tridentine, but Jesus is gonna ask every Priest "Did you offer Me up to the Eternal Father with reverence and devotion? Did you truly Pray the Mass?" and of every layman and woman  "Did you assist at Mass with devotion?  Did you recieve me with Reverence?  Did you truly pray, to the extent of your position, the Holy Liturgy and other Sacraments?"  When this comes, I feel that most Priests who offered the indult Mass will say "Yes Lord.  Every day as I said the Introib ab Altare Deo I realized the great sacrifice I was about to offer to the Divine and Eternal Father and that Sacrifice was Your Sacrifice on Calvary."  and most NO Priests will unfortunately say "Naw, Lord those externals ain't important.  Instead of wasting time with these I got the whole congregation involved and truly incultured the current culture."  Most indult Laypeople will say "Yes Lord every Sunday Morning I got up at 3 am just to drive 200 miles to attend a Mass offered according to the way the Roman Church has always done it, and as often as deamed appropriate by my confessor, I approached the Holy Rail to recieve You upon my tongue and then I went back to the pew and made a thanksgiving for having the great privelage of recieving You o Lord."  Many NO Laypeople will say "Naw Lord, those things are too oldfashioned.  But we did have great Guitar Masses, Luturgical Dancing, and syrupy sermons.  And Lord, who needs reverence for the Eucharist when we can just reach out and grab you in one hand while talking on the cell with the other."

Now I have seen the NO done in a beutiful and reverent way, but I have never seen it done according to the rubrics.  Even EWTN deviates from the Rubrics on several key points (facing the people, no crucifix on the altar, and using "for all" on the rare occasion they use english during the Canon).  I have even seen the Tridentine done badly, but this is very rare.  

Yes the SSPX are wonderful, but they are wrong.  You cannot be RC and not under Rome.  That's just how it is.  I hope they do come back.  The fact they have Traditional Bishops is the only hope for the continuance of the Tridentine Movement.  

I stick by my earlier point that with the Universal Indult the Tridentine Mass will truly be universal again.  Interestingly the Universal Indult is already granted in the Papal Bull Quo Primum which says that no Bishop can refuse a Priest the right to say the Tridentine Mass.  Another proclamation would simply be a reaffirmation of this indult.

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« Reply #6 on: October 19, 2002, 08:50:41 AM »

Well then Joe,

I suggest you do volunteer work with a group that isn't as polemical. You need not convert everyone by your words, distribution of missals, etc. but instead by your actions. Remember the adage, "actions speak louder than words". It comes in handy, because its ultimately true.

It is obvious to me that you are truly in love with your Roman Catholic tradition and culture. Because of this, I think you should find a nice indult parish(since that seems to be where your interests are), start attending, become an active part of the community, altar serve, etc.

Once you get the ball rolling with that, I am sure that you will find yourself with like minded people with whom you can share your frustrations, and together by prayer and faith, do something about them.

Also keep in mind the saying 'The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence". Groups like the SSPX et al are not as great as they seem. Last time I checked, there was a few big scandals involving SSPX priests, and I hear they are very poorly trained in theology. A search on google might turn up more.

Also Joe, remember that this is an Orthodox forum, and the topic of the SSPX/indult/tridentine/trad catholicism really is off topic.


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« Reply #7 on: October 19, 2002, 11:01:39 AM »

Dear Joe,

I sympathise with you in your struggles.  Like Bobby said, it is obvious that you are in love with all things Roman, as you should be...that's great.  

But perhaps you come on too strong?

When I was in high school, I was rather zealous.  I would always ask people about their practice of their faith, about Christianity, etc.  I could often be found in the library praying the office or the Rosary or something during some free time.  I was the weirdo, and I didn't care, and my friends were OK with it.  One time one of my friends came to me and told me she was interested in returning to the Church, and I was thrilled.  I figured all my zeal finally paid off, and I became even more zealous (more on that later).  

But after I graduated and went off to college, I learned many things about how they perceived me.  I found out that many of them found me "unapproachable".  They didn't feel they could come to me with certain problems (even though I was their friend) because they were worried, knowing my religious zeal, that I'd get scandalised, or I'd think ill of them, or something like that.  Sure, we could hang out and have fun, but I found out later that I often wasn't asked out to do things that I honestly would not have minded very much, because they felt I would not want to be involved with things like that (they thought a smoky pool hall might have sparked some religious wrath or something in me).  The girl I spoke of earlier lost interest, and became more and more worldly because religion didn't seem exciting (I wasn't much of a good example).  And when I went to college, I met all sorts of different people, and my approach definitely would've turned them off.    

I learned that I had to change but not compromise.  It is not about how many Bibles I can give out, or how many times I can tell people about the Gospel, although all these things and more are great.  I have to live the life.  Praying the office during my free time in the library was a good thing.  But how good was it that my friends didn't feel they could come to me for help because they felt I would condemn them?  I had to be like Christ...I had to pray and fast and do all the things I'd been doing, but I also had to be loving, kind, sincere, patient, etc. with those around me.  I had to love God, and love my neighbour.  Instead, often I was merely preaching at them.  

But I had to learn the hard way that that doesn't work.  I had to learn to keep practicing my faith, but I had to live it rather than simply talk about it or do only certain things and not others.  So I prayed and fasted and did those things.  But I also became more friendly with my friends.  I hung out with them, we did fun things, and I showed them that one could be religious and devoted to God and still have a great time.  People began to feel they could come to me (one person even told me that in the time I'd "blossomed" so, I seemed "more human").  They told me of their joys and hopes, of their sorrows and fears.  And I just kept on trying to be a good witness to the Lord by being a normal man, by being zealous but not coming on too strong, by loving others...and it paid off.  Two of my friends have returned to the Church.  Others haven't, but are more sensitive to such things, and I guess are "on the way".  And my other friends, once atheists or agnostics, now at least recognise that there is a God, even though their beliefs are more or less along the lines of "Yeah, he set the ball rolling, but then he left us alone."  Each person has developed more, in their own way.  God is working in them.  I just have to keep on keepin' on.

I'm not accusing you of doing anything wrong, but it is possible that, in your love of and zeal for God, you seem "out there", and so God looks like He's "out there" as well.  If this is so, I've been there.  Keep the love.  Keep the zeal.  But you've also got to reach people where they're at.  You've got to start where they are, and gradually work up.  And most importantly, you've got to live the life, and be joyful about it.  They'll come around in God's time, you just do your part.

With all of that said, I take issue with your paragraph starting with Now I realize that Jesus is not going to ask NO or Tridentine.  I wonder how you can be so sure of the intentions of the priests and the people.  You yourself admit that you've seen the Tridentine Mass celebrated poorly.  Does such a priest still respond the same way that you have other "Tridentine" priests respond at their judgement?  Or what about the devout, but NO priest?  Does he automatically answer the same as the others?  The people?  Only God knows.  It's not for us to assume and make judgements like that.  It is for us to live the Christian life as faithfully as we can.  

Now I've got some questions which, if you want to not drag this thread more off topic, I invite you to answer privately.  How does a "universal indult" for priests to choose which rite they will celebrate work?  If a parish has seven priests (there is a local Latin parish with this many resident priests), and it's the noon Mass on a Tuesday, and the regular Massgoers are used to the NO from the other six priests, and then they see the priest who prefers the Tridentine rite come out for Mass, then what?  Or what if the priests in a certain vicariate who only use the Tridentine rite, and so that's all the people know, but their bishop is a hardcore Novus Ordo prelate?  When he comes to the parish to visit and offer Mass, then what?  What message does it send when, in a given diocese, the same liturgical rite is not being used by all?  Should not one prevail?  Would an indult giving bishops the power to mandate the use of one rite or the other in their dioceses be better or worse?
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« Reply #8 on: October 19, 2002, 11:14:24 AM »

Well put, Mor Ephrem! I went through very similar experiences at the same age and was wrongly accused of being heavyhanded like, in all charity, Joe Z was at the Society of St Vincent de Paul, when I had done nothing of the kind - it was simply prejudice against 'religious people' cos as anybody who watches TV knows, and we know TV is ex cathedra infallible Smiley, religious people are all unbalanced, uncharitable, judgemental idiots. (Sorry, which country is this again - US or USSR? I get them mixed up.)

Joe, you mean well. But evangelism requires maturity, wisdom and discretion, and preaching at people on the job (including volunteer work) and giving them missals they didn't ask for won't do the job. It comes across as rude and pushy - maybe it's not your place to do that and God wants you to occupy yourself doing something else for His sake. If I were in your shoes I'd look for a good orthodox RC confessor (hint: he doesn't have to be Tridentine either to help you) and submit every such idea or plan of yours along those lines to him for his approval before you do anything. Obey him like a monk obeys his abbot. Just like the Orthodox with their spiritual fathers. If he says no, don't do it, however edifying that pious work may seem to you.
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« Reply #9 on: October 20, 2002, 06:47:11 PM »

In our case, our late history shows that the only method of evangelization that we common folk knew about and could use was that of example, and dare I say, in some cases, martyrdom.

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« Reply #10 on: October 21, 2002, 12:20:42 PM »

Dear JoeZ:


I am equally amazed at you pre-occupation with the SSPX.
 
St. Vincent de Paul Church in Kansas City, MO, is, indeed, an SSPX chapel. The city is the site of the schismatic group's U.S. District Headquarters.

But have you checked out these Tridentine parishes around your area?

Nearby is a Roman Catholic Parish Church, "Our Lady of Sorrows Church," which celebrates a licit Tridentine Mass every Sunday at 9:15 a.m, in addition to the usual NO Masses.

In Kansas, the Archdiocese of Kansas City itself has 3 parishes celebrating Tridentine Masses:

Kansas City "Blessed Sacrament Church"
Sundays, 10:45 a.m.

Rossville "Church of St. Stanislaus"
Sundays, 8:30 a.m.

Topeka "St. Joseph Church"
Sundays, 12:00 noon

In the Diocese of Wichita, "St. Anthony's Church" celebrates the Tridentine Mass on the 2nd and 4th Sundays of the month.

All in all, I think there are now thousands of parishes in the world and hundreds in 120 dioceses throughout the U.S. which have been granted an indult to celebrate the Tridentine Mass.

The SSPX group was and still is disobedient to the Holy See. Now, it is DEFIANT! They are still in schism, the negotiations for their return to communion with the Roman Catholic Church having been stalled.


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« Reply #11 on: October 21, 2002, 01:07:40 PM »

Dear friends:

My purpose in posting this was to learn the Orthodox views of the SSPX, the TLM movement, and the Tridentine Mass.  I have certainly learned a few things by this thread.

Thank you,
Joe Zollars
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« Reply #12 on: October 21, 2002, 01:14:59 PM »

"I am equally amazed at you pre-occupation with the SSPX."

One post equals preocupation?  if you had read my other posts regarding the SSPX you would know I highly recomend against anyone attending an SSPX Chapel.

"But have you checked out these Tridentine parishes around your area?"  As an indult Catholic, I have.  But I live in podunk Kansas where the nearest Indult parish is over 200 miles away.  

"In the Diocese of Wichita, "St. Anthony's Church" celebrates the Tridentine Mass on the 2nd and 4th Sundays of the month."  

Yes.  This is where I assist at the Most Holy Sacrifice, when I have the oportunity.  

"All in all, I think there are now thousands of parishes in 120 dioceses throughout the U.S. which have been granted an indult to celebrate the Tridentine Mass."

Hundreds, maybe, but not thousands.  

"The SSPX group was and still is disobedient to the Holy See. Now, it is DEFIANT! They are still in schism, the negotiations for their return to communion with the Roman Catholic Church having been stalled."

Yes the SSPX is still in schism.  but what one must realize is that they want the gaurantee from Rome that they will be able to continue offering the Tridentine Mass free from modernist inovations.  The problem is Rome refuses to grant this gauruntee.  When the SSPX went to Rome during the Holy Year, the Pope allowed them to offer Holy Mass in St. Peter's Basilica.  

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« Reply #13 on: October 21, 2002, 01:21:00 PM »

Joe,

Quote
My purpose in posting this was to learn the Orthodox views of the SSPX, the TLM movement, and the Tridentine Mass.  I have certainly learned a few things by this thread.

Now that you put it that way...

Orthodoxy as such really doesn't care about non-Orthodox churches.

As for opinions of Orthodox people, they range from 'nothing non-Orthodox has grace so who cares?' to 'it's better than what they do now' to 'oh, that's beautiful - so close to us'.
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« Reply #14 on: October 21, 2002, 11:29:57 PM »

 i will never forget a dear Babushka who greeted me with "Oh you are Catholic!  So Close! So Close!"  

     Preferred that much more then the ex-Episcopalian convert who kept spouting "Uniate" at me with no knowledge whatsoever of the Byzantine Catholics except through prejudice.

    I will take the Babushkas EVERY time! Smiley


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« Reply #15 on: October 22, 2002, 07:23:17 AM »

Brian, we actually agree on something.
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« Reply #16 on: October 22, 2002, 10:49:01 AM »



     Oh No!!!  Serge!  I am SHOCKED and Appalled!   Grin

                   Yours in the Babushki,

                             Brian
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« Reply #17 on: October 26, 2002, 11:34:49 PM »

Mor Ephrem,

Quote
Now I've got some questions which, if you want to not drag this thread more off topic, I invite you to answer privately.  How does a "universal indult" for priests to choose which rite they will celebrate work?  If a parish has seven priests (there is a local Latin parish with this many resident priests), and it's the noon Mass on a Tuesday, and the regular Massgoers are used to the NO from the other six priests, and then they see the priest who prefers the Tridentine rite come out for Mass, then what?  Or what if the priests in a certain vicariate who only use the Tridentine rite, and so that's all the people know, but their bishop is a hardcore Novus Ordo prelate?  When he comes to the parish to visit and offer Mass, then what?  What message does it send when, in a given diocese, the same liturgical rite is not being used by all?  Should not one prevail?  Would an indult giving bishops the power to mandate the use of one rite or the other in their dioceses be better or worse?

The problem is, the scandal of "different liturgical usages" already exists within the RCC.  I'm sure you're familiar with the phenomenon of people "shopping for a parish", often not going to their parish church (or even leaving the city to find a church) because they find the way the liturgy is celebrated there to be too "trendy" or irreverent (or too loose with the rubrics.)

I think the desire by RC traditionalists for an open ended, universal "indult" is meant as a challenge to the "Novus Ordo establishment" (which is largely fueled by idealists in Rome who still will not admit that the "new springtime" has failed, and miserably) to see what will "draw" and nourish people when offered on equal footing (or where the best of Rome's young clergy will go if they felt they had a choice.)  I'm quite sure that practically no good natured, fairly "orthodox" (in Roman terms) young priest would chose the "New Mass" and it's trappings over the old Tridentine rite and sacramentary.

Unfortunately, I don't think such a generous indult will happen, at least not with this Pope (who is a full believer in the "new springtime of Vatican II".)  Also, JP II is afraid of an open schism (which many recognize as already unofficially existing in many parts of western Europe and North America), which I know was close to happening in Germany (this is why, it is said, he gave the Cardinal's colours to the now Cardinal Kaspar, who is viewed by many conservative RC's as being a heretic; even his fellow German, Ratzinger, was scandalized by this move).  It's already very well known that the hardcore liberals in the RC heirarchy, the ideologues, are very angry with what allowances have been made for "traditionalism" in the RCC; they don't want to "lose the gains" they feel they've made since Vatican II (what these truly are of course is hard to say.)

Thus, as far as confusion is concerened, a sweeping indult will not change much; for the confusion already exists.  Personally, I'd be happy to see this as I think on the whole, the liturgical reform of the RCC since Vatican II has been a tragedy, causing most of what was left of "orthopraxis" and "orthodoxy" in the RCC to go down the drain.  Though there are things about the "Tridentine Missal" which would bother most Orthodox, on the whole it is fundamentally the Gregorian-Carolingian Missal of the pre-schism Latin Church.  Though it does not reflect the Byzantine/East-Roman mentality and approach, it certainly was the bread and butter of a whole host of capital "O" Orthodox Saints of the west.

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« Reply #18 on: October 26, 2002, 11:57:01 PM »

Quote
I am equally amazed at you pre-occupation with the SSPX.

I think for many fed up Roman Catholics, they represent a heroic struggle against a tidal wave of ecclesiastical insanity.  If one takes medieval RC ecclessiology seriously, the SSPX position (for those who hold to it) is problematic; but I pity those who go to these chapels, since in the end I think their biggest fault is not their "infidelity" to Rome, but their failure to recognize that it's bogus claims of infallibility and indefectibility should hold sway over them, no matter what (since the SSPX'ers still confess the validity of Vatican I).

I think the struggle of Latin "traditionalists" (whether they are SSPX, follow the Indult, sedevecantists, etc.) is justified in one sense, but has it's legs cut from beneath it by their adherance to those very peculiarities which separate Catholicism from Orthodox Christianity.

Quote
St. Vincent de Paul Church in Kansas City, MO, is, indeed, an SSPX chapel. The city is the site of the schismatic group's U.S. District Headquarters.

I'm curious, do you view us Orthodox as being "schismatic"?

Quote
The SSPX group was and still is disobedient to the Holy See. Now, it is DEFIANT! They are still in schism, the negotiations for their return to communion with the Roman Catholic Church having been stalled.

This is one thing about the "Lefebvre-schism" that I've never understood; according to Vatican II ecclessiology, the Orthodox Churches are "proper churches" (because they have apostolic succession and "valid" sacraments), and apparently can even confer grace as the RCC does (to the point that the '83 code of canon law allows for RC's, under fairly generous allowances, to approach Orthodox clergy for Holy Communion, Confession, and Anointing).  Yet we emphatically reject any number of Latin doctrines, and certainly do not view ourselves as subjects of the Pope.

Yet your own traditionalists, whose main crime seems to be not getting "hip" to silly nuns plucking guitars and half protestant temples with half protestant services (and many other far worse things)...basically the crime of not changing into a new creature, have been treated like lepers - even though these people do subscribe to Latin peculiarities (like the Immaculate Conception and Papal Infallibility/Supremecy).

You do see how odd this situation is, don't you?  It almost strikes me as being a case of the Vatican not being interested in truth or ideas at all, but simple political dominance over whatever one can call "Christendom"; and since the "Lefevrists" do not have a "get along" attitude (and even seem to have principles, even if very often wrong ones from an Orthodox p.o.v.), they are inconvienient.

Indeed, why not just as zealously go after the notorious liberals that are officially "on good terms" with Rome?

It almost reminds me of how Rome has dealt with those Orthodox who are traditional, and who stress caution in dealings with Rome; for example, Vatican moutpieces telling us who speaks for Orthodoxy and who does not (ex. the marginizalization of the late Fr.John Romanides, or under the table requests that the official Greek Orthodox Church get a handle on it's own "zealots" who want nothing to do with the Papacy, or the "rabble rousers" on Mt.Athos, let alone those "fanatical" Old Calendarists).

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« Reply #19 on: October 27, 2002, 08:02:01 AM »

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I think for many fed up Roman Catholics, they represent a heroic struggle against a tidal wave of ecclesiastical insanity.

Of course.

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If one takes medieval RC ecclesiology seriously, the SSPX position (for those who hold to it) is problematic

Yes, because technically they are schismatic. They believe in the Catholic Church yet are not the Catholic Church.

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but I pity those who go to these chapels, since in the end I think their biggest fault is not their "infidelity" to Rome, but their failure to recognize that its bogus claims of infallibility and indefectibility should hold sway over them, no matter what (since the SSPX'ers still confess the validity of Vatican I).

Well, to be fair, Orthodoxy also believes in an infallible Church. These people do too, and they believe Rome is the Church, ergo...

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I think the struggle of Latin "traditionalists" (whether they are SSPX, follow the Indult, sedevecantists, etc.) is justified in one sense, but has its legs cut from beneath it by their adherance to those very peculiarities which separate Catholicism from Orthodox Christianity.

Seems simplistic to me but can't articulate why. To most people, a Pope with an infallible teaching office and modernity are diametrically opposed. (American culture was and is very anti-Catholic partly because of this.) Yet Vatican II and its aftermath happened. That is the official Catholic Church in practice and the SSPX are not. And there is always the witness of Alexis Khomiakov and Fr Seraphim (Rose), both of whom I've read - why the Renaissance, 'Reformation', 'Enlightenment' and today's secular humanism? And why from and in the West?

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I'm curious, do you view us Orthodox as being "schismatic"?

I don't presume to speak for Mr Zollars but Catholicism sees the Orthodox Churches as 'in schism' but not personally 'schismatic'. Because the SSPX were Catholic to begin with, they are seen as schismatics. Dominus Iesus seems to be a definitive Catholic statement: the Catholic Church (as in one true Church) has no sisters but particular Churches, be they the Ukrainian Catholic Church or the local Roman diocese (same thing to them?) can and do. And the Orthodox Churches are seen as such sisters - real Churches - by virtue of their being apostolic but also somehow less than the papal ones. If you believe Rome is IT it makes perfect sense.

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This is one thing about the "Lefebvre-schism" that I've never understood; according to Vatican II ecclessiology, the Orthodox Churches are "proper churches" (because they have apostolic succession and "valid" sacraments), and apparently can even confer grace as the RCC does (to the point that the '83 code of canon law allows for RC's, under fairly generous allowances, to approach Orthodox clergy for Holy Communion, Confession, and Anointing).  Yet we emphatically reject any number of Latin doctrines, and certainly do not view ourselves as subjects of the Pope.

Yet your own traditionalists, whose main crime seems to be not getting "hip" to silly nuns plucking guitars and half protestant temples with half protestant services (and many other far worse things)...basically the crime of not changing into a new creature, have been treated like lepers - even though these people do subscribe to Latin peculiarities (like the Immaculate Conception and papal infallibility/supremecy).

They definitely got the short end of the stick. The difference between the treatment of the SSPX and the treatment of born (and ex-Protestant, and ex-unchurched) Orthodox is simple and logical. The latter aren't judged because they personally never were big-C Catholic (subjects of the Pope); the former are because they are/were. That and postschism Orthodoxy never has dogmatized against the postschism Latin definitions of dogma so in Catholic eyes, such are not heretics.

I don't think Catholicism says Catholics may ask the Orthodox for the sacraments at any time. Nothing really changed in 1983. They may when there is no church or priest of theirs available. And of course, because of Orthodox ecclesiology and sacramentology (is there such a word), the Orthodox according to the rules will say no. The mysteries of the Church are part of life in the Church; to give them outside the Church is nonsensical. (In practice, however, Melkite Catholic and Greek Orthodox laity in Lebanon and Syria intercommune all the time.) I think an Orthodox priest can counsel a non-Orthodox, even 'hear his confession', and give a blessing, but not actually give Absolution (the Sacrament of Confession).

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It almost strikes me as being a case of the Vatican not being interested in truth or ideas at all, but simple political dominance over whatever one can call "Christendom"; and since the "Lefebvrists" do not have a "get along" attitude (and even seem to have principles, even if very often wrong ones from an Orthodox p.o.v.), they are inconvenient.

On the one hand there is a clear set of beliefs Catholics must accept, but OTOH I recently read an article in RISU (a Catholic-run news service from Ukraine - you can look it up and see the article) on ecumenism that fuels such a fear - basically it said all that matters is being under the Pope.

Even though they accept Vatican I, Lefebvrists and other traditionalists actually have a more holistic view of the faith, more historical and like medieval Catholics and the Orthodox, referring to the entire history and corpus of belief and practice, than the conservative Novus Ordo types, who sometimes treat the faith as if it were the personal cult of the Pope. The down side of some traditionalists is they seem stuck on one historical period or culture as the sole form of the faith (an example: fifities-ism).

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Indeed, why not just as zealously go after the notorious liberals that are officially "on good terms" with Rome?

Why not indeed. In practice, with 'insult Masses' and Women's Ordination Conference members 'in communion' in the same dioceses, they seem as contradictory as Mr Frank Griswold and the Episcopal Church/Anglican Communion with their 'pluriform truth' smorgasbord (pseudo-Tridentines and Matthew Fox under one big tent).
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« Reply #20 on: October 27, 2002, 04:06:18 PM »

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Yes, because technically they are schismatic. They believe in the Catholic Church yet are not the Catholic Church.

From an Orthodox p.o.v., technically the whole RCC (including it's dissidents) are "schismatic."  In the end, that is all that matters, for us at least.

However, from the RC p.o.v., the matter is not as straight forward.  I know at least just after the "Lefebvre consecrations" in the summer of '88, there were a few canonists in the RCC who were willing to stick their necks out on behalf of the SSPX, drawing a distinction between their "disobedience" and actual schism.

From a nitty gritty, realist Orthodox p.o.v., this seems to be a difference that makes no difference - for while the SSPX does commemorate JP II in their Masses and liturgical services, the truth is that they have not only a different spiritual world view than the Pope of Rome, but they also do not commune with the same sacraments (as a principle, no one affiliated with the SSPX or similar traditionalist groups will, under any circumstances, celebrate or actively participate in the New Mass or new sacramental rites of the '69 missal).  If a party will not do such, they do not view such rites as simply being "unfortunate" or "inferior in asthetic qualities", but obviously as being somehow heterodox (and there is a great deal of material published by the SSPX to this effect.)

That to me sounds like a real break.  Now, who is to blame in that situation is something ultimatly for the RC's to figure out.  Unfortunately, RC ecclessiology doesn't allow much opportunity for principled dissent from an erring Pope (since as time marched forward, the claims of Rome became more and more grandiose.)  It's to the point now that you have RC neo-cons extend Papal authority to the point of rendering the Pope an unerring oracle.

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They believe in the Catholic Church yet are not the Catholic Church.

Well, I think in this regard the "sedevecantists" are a little more consistant.  According to some RC authorities (like Robert Bellarmine), it is possible for a Pope to apostatize, and thus lose his office (since a non-Catholic cannot "occupy the Chair of Peter").  There is some latent/cautious/speculative sedevecantism within the SSPX (at least the feeling that it's possible a future Ecumenical Council will declare the Popes from Paul VI onward to be heretics and annul their acts), but officially they recognize JP II.

In either case, they could argue (with some wiggle room at least in pre-Vatican I papism) that the current Pope is either an apostate or is headed in that direction, without ignoring the idea of papal infallibility.  Of course, this begs the question (in the Orthodox mind) of just what good this doctrine is anyway (since it doesn't apply it seems if the Pope is a heretic, which is the only case he'd "define" a wrong doctrine to begin with!).

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Well, to be fair, Orthodoxy also believes in an infallible Church. These people do too, and they believe Rome is the Church, ergo...

Of course it's an entirely different situation though, and precisely because we do not identify "the Church" with an individual (which of course makes no sense since the very word "ekklessia" demands a plurality of persons, the assembly of those called out of this world for the purpose of salvation).  It is the very personalization (as a rule, and not simply as a prophetic charism) of this kind of "God's mouthpiece" status which has caused Roman Catholicism to become more and more errant with time.

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Seems simplistic to me but can't articulate why. To most people, a Pope with an infallible teaching office and modernity are diametrically opposed. (American culture was and is very anti-Catholic partly because of this.) Yet Vatican II and its aftermath happened. That is the official Catholic Church in practice and the SSPX are not. And there is always the witness of Alexis Khomiakov and Fr Seraphim (Rose), both of whom I've read - why the Renaissance, 'Reformation', 'Enlightenment' and today's secular humanism? And why from and in the West?

I'd speculate that these things happened in part for reasons having nothing to do with what was inherrant to the western psyche, and reasons which very much were a part of the western man's developing "character."

The essential heresy of the west, is it's belief in progress as applied to Divine Revelation.  This, combined with the papist "magisterial church", which became increasingly centered on one man (the Pope), created a religion which believed it "knew better" than either the Fathers or the Holy Apostles for that matter.  Though many blame Cardinal Newman for the error of "development of doctrine", he was only putting his finger on a type of thinking which had long existed in the west, the seeds of which began even before the rise of scholasticism.

It was only a matter of time before those who were not clerics or heirarchs would tap into this "progressive" mindset, and find they had not use for the Church at all.

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I don't presume to speak for Mr Zollars but Catholicism sees the Orthodox Churches as 'in schism' but not personally 'schismatic'. Because the SSPX were Catholic to begin with, they are seen as schismatics.

This is a differntiation which to my thinking, makes no difference.  I for example, have quite deliberatly abandoned Roman Catholicism.  I know many "born and raised" Orthodox, who are not simpletons, and know quite clearly why they are not Roman Catholics.  It seems to me that the speculative/culpability game is played mainly by those papists who simply hate their own traditionalists, but want to play nice (for political reasons, since they have no other way of subjegating the Orthodox to papal supremecy) with the Orthodox because simply put, that is all that will "work" right now.

Indeed, I have a hard time thinking the Patriarch of Jerusalem doesn't have any clue as to what separates him from the RCC.  If anything, the contemporary RC approach is insulting.

One could indeed, just as easily argue that the "Lefebvrists" are where they are, because the average rank and file "SSPX'er" has been terribly scandalized and deeply wounded by the mainstream RCC...unless Rome thinks these are simply a bunch of heathen in Christian drag who do what they do to be trouble makers and willful.  On the contrary, I think it is quite clear that they are "the way they are" precisely because of Rome's imprudence.

Given this, it all strikes me as being very political, and extremely dishonest.

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I don't think Catholicism says Catholics may ask the Orthodox for the sacraments at any time. Nothing really changed in 1983. They may when there is no church or priest of theirs available.

It's not so loosey goosey that people can go to Orthodox clergy at
any time.  However, it does allow for people who see a "spiritual advantage" (not simply dying or what have you) receiving sacraments from Orthodox clergy.

º2 Whenever necessity requires or a genuine spiritual advantage commends it, and provided the danger of error or indifferentism is avoided, Christ's faithful for whom it is physically or morally impossible to approach a catholic minister, may lawfully receive the sacraments of penance, the Eucharist and anointing of the sick from non-Catholic ministers in whose Churches these sacraments are valid.

In other words, not simply necessity, but "spiritual advantage".  It's not the clearest canon, but it seems to not be as narrow as some people interpret it.

What I find curious, is how this jibes with traditional RC teaching regarding "juristiction".  According to Catholicism, the Pope ultimatly is the dispenser of all juristiction - if a Bishop has juristiction (and he in turn can give it to his priests), he receives it from the Pope.  That "juristiction" gives him the authority to preach and teach, and to licitly administer the sacraments.  And more significantly, in some cases, the "validity" of sacraments requires this juristiction.  The two RC sacraments that come to mind right away are "Penance"/"Confession" and Holy Matrimony.  Neither are viewed as being "valid" without this mentioned "juristiction."

Well, if I'm reading that canon correctly, it's saying that confessions in the Orthodox Church are "valid".  Does that mean, as far as the Pope is concerned, he's granting juristiction to the Orthodox world?  That perhaps our heirarchs are already "his", even if they don't realize it?

Whatever the case, what is really odd, is that officially the RCC will not provide these same implicit faculties to their own "traditionalists" (thus why many neo-cons in the RCC froth with giddy delight at informing traditionalist sympathizers that no one can have a "valid" confession with a "Lefebvrist" priest...as if they're happy over something like this).

Once again...more politics.

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« Reply #21 on: October 27, 2002, 04:26:34 PM »

Glory to Jesus Christ!

Dear Seraphim,

     That was a really well thought out post. I never put certain pieces together like you did in your reply. Thank you for doing so. God Bless!
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« Reply #22 on: October 27, 2002, 07:54:31 PM »

I agree, Seraphim.  There was much food for thought in that one post.  I know I will be thinking about these things.  Thanks for posting!
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