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Author Topic: Why write to Rome?  (Read 6609 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: March 19, 2007, 08:36:18 PM »

Hello,

If there was nothing special about the Petrine ministry, then why did the Early Church Fathers constantly write to the Pope to resolve theological disputes? Time after time, the Pope was called upon to settle differences in fundamental belief - why do this if he was just another bishop. Why not just go to another neighboring bishop? Why spend months trying to get a single piece of correspondence through if there was nothing special about it?
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« Reply #1 on: March 19, 2007, 08:47:25 PM »

Hello,

If there was nothing special about the Petrine ministry, then why did the Early Church Fathers constantly write to the Pope to resolve theological disputes? Time after time, the Pope was called upon to settle differences in fundamental belief - why do this if he was just another bishop. Why not just go to another neighboring bishop? Why spend months trying to get a single piece of correspondence through if there was nothing special about it?

I don't understand your question.  Many bishops can be consulted.  Many times, Alexandria was consulted for their expertise on being the origin of a famous school that teaches most of her heirarchs in the world.

And if the Pope was consulted on certain ecclesiastical matters that requires the attention of the ecume, it was sent not because he was St. Peter's successor, but because it was Rome, the capital of the world.

God bless.
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« Reply #2 on: March 19, 2007, 09:02:39 PM »

Hello,

If there was nothing special about the Petrine ministry, then why did the Early Church Fathers constantly write to the Pope to resolve theological disputes? Time after time, the Pope was called upon to settle differences in fundamental belief - why do this if he was just another bishop. Why not just go to another neighboring bishop? Why spend months trying to get a single piece of correspondence through if there was nothing special about it?

No one ever seems to mention how people used to write to a lot of other bishops of important sees as well. I don't recall seeing a book addressing this subject per se but noticed it reading various patristic collections. Time and time again people appealed to Constantinople, Alexandria, etc.

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« Reply #3 on: March 20, 2007, 10:53:57 AM »

Hello,

If there was nothing special about the Petrine ministry, then why did the Early Church Fathers constantly write to the Pope to resolve theological disputes? Time after time, the Pope was called upon to settle differences in fundamental belief - why do this if he was just another bishop. Why not just go to another neighboring bishop? Why spend months trying to get a single piece of correspondence through if there was nothing special about it?
Write to Rome because the Pope is just such a popular guy. Vive il Papa.  Wink
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« Reply #4 on: March 20, 2007, 11:14:24 AM »

He's the Pontifex Maximus---the Great Bridge Builder. The Servus Servorum Dei---the Servant of the Servants of God. Great guy to write to in church disputes, the Holy Father.
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« Reply #5 on: March 20, 2007, 11:27:41 AM »

And if the Pope was consulted on certain ecclesiastical matters that requires the attention of the ecume, it was sent not because he was St. Peter's successor, but because it was Rome, the capital of the world.

The Peter's successor and the keys bit was later.  The two primary reasons were the prestige associated with the city for two reasons

A. It was the place of the martyrdom of the apostles Peter and Paul
B. It was the seat of the Roman Empire

People have appealed all over the place to sort out their problems.  The Popes went to Emperors and later Kings to sort out their problems, including sorting out who exactly was Pope when there were multiple ones at the same time.
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« Reply #6 on: March 20, 2007, 01:43:59 PM »

Whatever happened to being 'led by the Spirit'?  Undecided

But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him. - 1 John 2:27

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« Reply #7 on: March 20, 2007, 02:11:45 PM »

We're down with that.
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« Reply #8 on: March 20, 2007, 02:36:10 PM »

Athanasios,

Quote
then why did the Early Church Fathers constantly write to the Pope to resolve theological disputes? Time after time, the Pope was called upon to settle differences in fundamental belief - why do this if he was just another bishop. Why not just go to another neighboring bishop? Why spend months trying to get a single piece of correspondence through if there was nothing special about it?

Ok, so let's say that there's a theological dispute that has arisen in Backwater, Gaul, c. 367CE. What happens? 1) They discuss it in Backwater. They can't come to an agreement. So, 2) they contact the bishop that they are under, located in Podunk. He can't resolve the issue satisfactorily either. So, 3) they convene a council of local bishops. They can't come to a resolution. So, 4) they convene a council of bishops that also include people from outside their immediate region. Still no solution. So, 5) they finally appeal to Rome to give some type of solution.

This is not to say that these five steps are always taken, or always in that order, but it's a scenario that could have happened if a dispute arose. Rome is seen as a Supreme Court, of sorts--as Constantinople later would be according to some Eastern canons. But the idea of checks and balances is certainly not an American invention--thus Cyprian of Carthage was perfectly willing to accept Rome's decision when he agreed with it, but challenged Rome's decision when he didn't agree with it. As far as communicating goes... if you read the letters of Jerome, or Gregory Nazianzus, or any of the great saints, you'll see others asking them for advice or assistance.

Chris,

Quote
Whatever happened to being 'led by the Spirit'?

I'm not aware of any situation in human history which meets that description. It's actually a pretty good evidence against the validity of Christianity: the New Testament writers talk often of concepts like believers having "one mind in Christ," but there is absolutely no evidence for this type of thing.
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« Reply #9 on: March 20, 2007, 02:41:23 PM »

Asteriktos and chrisb, if you guys want to argue that tanget, that's fine.  It's probably not the right place to do so in this thread though.
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« Reply #10 on: March 20, 2007, 03:34:17 PM »

Asteriktos and chrisb, if you guys want to argue that tanget, that's fine.  It's probably not the right place to do so in this thread though.

No Problem Welkodox. I have no time for cynics (i.e. atheists).

At least not on someone elses forum... Wink

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« Reply #11 on: March 20, 2007, 06:10:42 PM »

Whatever happened to being 'led by the Spirit'?  Undecided

But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him. - 1 John 2:27


You say this like some buzz word or sound bite.  So what happens if multiple people think they're 'led by the Spirit' and happen to disagree or come to different conclusions?  I honestly want your response to this.
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« Reply #12 on: March 20, 2007, 06:50:09 PM »

There are plenty of times that St. Augustine of Hippo was consulted by churchmen of all ranks for his opinions on various theological matters which he had no direct intearction with in Africa (e.g. Pelagianism).  Just read the beginning of his tractates and he addresses the persons who asked for Augustine's response.  These are persons from locations all over the Roman Empire.  The Pope was never the "only" person to be consulted. 

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« Reply #13 on: March 22, 2007, 10:06:58 AM »

Hello,

And if the Pope was consulted on certain ecclesiastical matters that requires the attention of the ecume, it was sent not because he was St. Peter's successor, but because it was Rome, the capital of the world.
This was certainly not the case by about the time of the First Ecumenical Council of Nicea. By that time the center of the Roman Empire moved to Constantinople.
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« Reply #14 on: March 22, 2007, 10:10:18 AM »

Hello,

There are plenty of times that St. Augustine of Hippo was consulted by churchmen of all ranks for his opinions on various theological matters which he had no direct intearction with in Africa (e.g. Pelagianism).  Just read the beginning of his tractates and he addresses the persons who asked for Augustine's response.  These are persons from locations all over the Roman Empire.  The Pope was never the "only" person to be consulted. 

Scamandrius
This certainly was the case, and not just in Augustine's corner of North Africa but throughout Christendom. But when disputes couldn't be settled on the local or even regional level, there was an appeal to Rome. As Saint Augustine wrote: Rome has spoken, the case is over.
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« Reply #15 on: March 22, 2007, 10:32:28 AM »

Yet St Cyprian a hundred years earlier told off St Stephen and ignored what he said.
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« Reply #16 on: March 22, 2007, 10:34:16 AM »

Athanasios

Quote
This was certainly not the case by about the time of the First Ecumenical Council of Nicea. By that time the center of the Roman Empire moved to Constantinople.

Perhaps it would be more accurate to say that it was the center of the empire by the time of the Second Ecumenical Council, considering that the city didn't begin to be seriously built up (and didn't become the official capital) until five years after the 1st Ecumenical?
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« Reply #17 on: March 22, 2007, 10:38:21 AM »

Quote
As Saint Augustine wrote: Rome has spoken, the case is over.

So when Pope Innocent excluded Hebrews from his Bible canon in the 5th century, that meant that people in the Church shouldn't have used Hebrews? And you can't apply the modern ideas about papal infallibility, first because that doctrine developed and it'd be anachronistic to apply it to 1,600 years ago, and second because your point (and Augustine's quote, as given by you) was that whatever Rome said was law. Of course, no one (not even Augustine, despite his quote) followed such a belief (unless worldly powers forced the view of Rome on them).
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« Reply #18 on: March 22, 2007, 03:16:27 PM »

As Saint Augustine wrote: Rome has spoken, the case is over.
Please provide a citation for this quote.
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« Reply #19 on: March 22, 2007, 04:08:04 PM »

Athanasios,

The problem I have with Papism is that it almost deifies the pope into some sort of god.  For example, I recently heard from a friend (a Catholic) that there is a new vision that occured to some people that because of all the confusion in the Catholic Church right now that the only person that can be followed is the pope.  What this sets the Catholics up for is that they will follow the pope regardless of what he teaches because he supposedly is the only one who knows what he is doing.  If people were to listen to such a vision, the pope could do anything and people would follow him, and as we know from history, bishops are not perfect and can't always be followed.
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« Reply #20 on: March 22, 2007, 05:18:59 PM »

Please provide a citation for this quote.


Actually Augustine never said that "Roma locuta, Causa finita est."

He said, "jam enim de hac causa duo concilia missa sunt ad sedem apostolicam; inde etiam rescripta venerunt; causa finita est" which is from his 131st Sermon. 
It is somewhat ironic that this came up as it ties in with my earlier question about St John Cassian and semi-Pelagianism.  Also, the ironic thing about this document and the councils it the reference to the councils and Rome's approval.  As originally, Rome did give its approval in a succesful counterappeal by Pelagius.  However the new condemnation of Pelagius afterwards and which, Agustin was refering to was ordered by the Western Roman Emperor Honorius from Ravena.  Again, as others have been saying the issue of appealing to Rome is not as clear cut and Rome often had a higher authority over her, and I am not refering to a divine figure.
My sources, The Cambridge Dictionary of Philosophy, the Second Edition and second volume of the Encyclopedia of Early Christianity, and also the confrences in Oxford which are in Studia Patristica in 1991, primarily in the 3rd volume.
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« Reply #21 on: March 23, 2007, 12:33:44 PM »

I think it would be fair to say that, in the early church, there were conflicting views about the level of authority of the Bishop of Rome.  The more I read from the early church fathers, the more strongly I come to that conclusion.  This isn't a debate that began with the Great Schism, or even just in the centuries leading up to it, it was a recurring thread of contention in the united church for most of it's existence, with sometimes even great Saints and Patriarchs even taking both sides at different times in their ecclesiastical careers!  And, of course, the more strongly Rome began to assert that it had jurisdiction in terms of actually making rulings and such it expected to be followed, the more fierce the debate became.

Thus, I am not entirely sure it's accurate to say that either Rome or Constantinople has left the faith of their predecessors so much as that the two camps which had always existed have been formally divided into two bodies.  Which one is the real church and which one is heretical, or indeed whether the two together compromise one church (Perhaps with some other bodies, perhaps not) in the eyes of God, is open to interpretation.  That's just my read on the subject, though, I am sure there are many more learned than I who would come to different conclusions.
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« Reply #22 on: March 23, 2007, 02:59:17 PM »

I think it would be fair to say that, in the early church, there were conflicting views about the level of authority of the Bishop of Rome.  The more I read from the early church fathers, the more strongly I come to that conclusion.  This isn't a debate that began with the Great Schism, or even just in the centuries leading up to it, it was a recurring thread of contention in the united church for most of it's existence, with sometimes even great Saints and Patriarchs even taking both sides at different times in their ecclesiastical careers!  And, of course, the more strongly Rome began to assert that it had jurisdiction in terms of actually making rulings and such it expected to be followed, the more fierce the debate became.

Thus, I am not entirely sure it's accurate to say that either Rome or Constantinople has left the faith of their predecessors so much as that the two camps which had always existed have been formally divided into two bodies.  Which one is the real church and which one is heretical, or indeed whether the two together compromise one church (Perhaps with some other bodies, perhaps not) in the eyes of God, is open to interpretation.  That's just my read on the subject, though, I am sure there are many more learned than I who would come to different conclusions.

Fish and Bread,
Welcome to the forum!  I hope that we shall see more of you here.
But to go off your post, and to get a little off topic are you then suggesting the branch theory or something more along the lines of JPII's lung theory?
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« Reply #23 on: March 23, 2007, 03:28:13 PM »

Välkommen Fish and Bread!

I would agree with his first portion.

The second part is not just an issue of the divide between Roman Catholics and Orthodox, but a more general query of what exactly makes the church.
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« Reply #24 on: March 23, 2007, 05:24:27 PM »

Athanasios,

The problem I have with Papism is that it almost deifies the pope into some sort of god.  For example, I recently heard from a friend (a Catholic) that there is a new vision that occured to some people that because of all the confusion in the Catholic Church right now that the only person that can be followed is the pope.  What this sets the Catholics up for is that they will follow the pope regardless of what he teaches because he supposedly is the only one who knows what he is doing.  If people were to listen to such a vision, the pope could do anything and people would follow him, and as we know from history, bishops are not perfect and can't always be followed.

Drewmeister, any orthodox Catholic who is correctly informed about Catholic teaching will agree with you. Popes are not infallible---in certain strictly limited cases they are prevented by the charism of infallibility to openly and formally contradict the fundamental teachings of the faith, but they can make mistakes.  None of the recently departed pope's encyclicals or apostolic constitutions are necessarily free from all error.

I know the element you are referring to, and it's certainly understandable that they feel that way, in the face of the confusion of the past forty years. We certainly have had popes worthy of great devotion of late. But the word of the pope in all matters cannot be automatically taken as the word of God.

Of course, the pope is still owed obedience by virtue of his apostolic office.
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« Reply #25 on: March 23, 2007, 05:38:14 PM »

Excellent thoughts, Fish and Bread.

I myself am an adherent to the "two-lung" theory more or less. I am with the Holy Father's view that the Orthodox churches are imbued with sacramental grace, including a true Eucharist. I think they have suffered from their lack of full communion with Rome, but God in his great mercy has preserved intact the fundamentals of the Catholic faith in them.
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« Reply #26 on: March 23, 2007, 05:43:20 PM »

Fish and Bread,
Welcome to the forum!  I hope that we shall see more of you here.

Thank you!  And thank you to all who have extended greetings.

Quote
But to go off your post, and to get a little off topic are you then suggesting the branch theory or something more along the lines of JPII's lung theory?

Either is possible.  My main point is that I tend to feel that the tendency for people to argue back and forth that either all Christians in the early church believed the Pope to have universal authority and jurisdiction or that none at all believed such may be misguided.  The various writings I've read give me the impression that there were some Christians in each camp for the entirety of church history.  The question of who was correct may be a legitimate point to argue, but I don't see the evidence that there was a period of time with monolithic belief on the subject that we have objective evidence of.  It is not as if everyone believed "x" until some started to believe "y" -- this division has existed for as long as we have records of, as best I can tell.  Of course, I could be mistaken as I am sure there are many who are better read than I on these subjects.
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« Reply #27 on: March 23, 2007, 08:43:34 PM »

I don't want to get off the wrong foot but I kinda feel like the point is mute since the Roman Catholic Church deviated so far from Holy Orthodoxy in the last several hundred years. At this point I really don't see the solving of this particular issue being a catalyst for unity in doctrine. The Romans are simply way too far off base at this point as much I lament that fact.  :'(
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« Reply #28 on: March 23, 2007, 09:02:41 PM »

I don't want to get off the wrong foot but I kinda feel like the point is mute since the Roman Catholic Church deviated so far from Holy Orthodoxy in the last several hundred years.

The Romans are simply way too far off base at this point

It's as simple as that, eh? Forgive me, but I must be a dunderheaded fool for not seeing something so obvious and immediately departing across the Tiber with the wind at my back.
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« Reply #29 on: March 23, 2007, 09:24:06 PM »

It's as simple as that, eh? Forgive me, but I must be a dunderheaded fool for not seeing something so obvious and immediately departing across the Tiber with the wind at my back.

Please take no offense lubeltri but as a departing Roman Catholic I feel that I can offer criticism. The Church has radically departed Holy Tradition since Vatican II. I honestly don't see any way around it my Latin Brother.  :'(

I am not trying to upset you but being Catholic or ex-Catholic I know you have been struggling with the state of the Church also or you wouldn't be here in dialogue with Orthodox Christians.

Maybe we need to start a new topic but I'm very curious... What is keeping you in the Roman Catholic Church at the moment? Have you given any thought to perhaps entering the Orthodox Church? Seriously... Let's talk 'heart to heart' Brother.
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« Reply #30 on: March 23, 2007, 11:02:55 PM »

I am not trying to upset you but being Catholic or ex-Catholic I know you have been struggling with the state of the Church also or you wouldn't be here in dialogue with Orthodox Christians.
Never assume.
I contribute to a few non-Orthodox Christian forums, but that doesn't mean I'm considering becoming Protestant or Roman Catholic.
People should be free to come here no matter what their convictions or creed without the assumption that they may be seeking to convert. The only requirement is that we respect one another and the fact that this is an Orthodox Forum.
Personally, I'm grateful for the presence of people of other confessions here, because it helps dispell some of the misconceptions that Orthodox posters may have about other confessions....Kind of like what I tend to try to do on non-Orthodox Forums.
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« Reply #31 on: March 24, 2007, 01:38:31 PM »


I am not trying to upset you but being Catholic or ex-Catholic I know you have been struggling with the state of the Church also or you wouldn't be here in dialogue with Orthodox Christians.

Maybe we need to start a new topic but I'm very curious... What is keeping you in the Roman Catholic Church at the moment? Have you given any thought to perhaps entering the Orthodox Church? Seriously... Let's talk 'heart to heart' Brother.

So I have to be "struggling with the state of the Church" in order to be in dialogue with Orthodox Christians? Hardly. Was John Paul II (the  author of Orientale Lumen) or is Benedict XVI also struggling with the state of the Church? They love the Eastern traditions and respect the Orthodox churches as true churches with valid sacraments as do I.

What is keeping me in the Catholic Church is my conviction of the fullness of truth it proclaims, regardless of the chaos seen in the wake of the Second Vatican Council (which I do not blame for the chaos). I would have done the same after Chalcedon or during any of the other dark periods of Church history. Another Ignatius, that of Loyola, also found himself is a very dark period of Church history, and instead of backing away, he played a large part in its glorious renewal. Parts of the ship may have sprung large leaks, but I have it on faith and Christ's promise that it will not sink. It's an awfully big ship and has weathered worse storms.

As for your question about whether I've considered joining the Orthodox Church, I had the opportunity to do it. I was baptized Catholic, but I had only intermittent contact with the Church after my father became a Baptist when I was 3---I only found myself at mass when my many family members had weddings, funerals, First Communions, and Confirmations.

So I was in many ways a convert---I was confirmed only a year ago at the age of 25. I considered Orthodoxy very seriously---growing up, I probably knew more about Orthodoxy than Catholicism through my love of history and utter fascination with the Byzantines. I was a member of the Orthodox Christian Fellowship at my university and went to Divine Liturgy at the Greek Orthodox church outside town.
(So it makes sense that I would be on this board.)

Ultimately, I fell in love with Catholicism and was convinced of its truth. God convicted me of it, and no storm---even the post-1960s sociocultural revolution in our civilization---can drive me from it. The faith remains intact as taught from Rome, and the liberal heterodox in the West know their moment of triumph was foiled. Have we not heard from Jesus himself that the Church would be hated and persecuted---even by those within it? Still, the Church is evangelizing quite well in many parts of the world. But even were the Church shorn to 1 faithful member, I would remain.

I would also mention that relations with the Orthodox churches are better than they have been in centuries---a source of great joy to me, someone who loves the Eastern churches.
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« Reply #32 on: March 24, 2007, 01:44:42 PM »

Personally, I'm grateful for the presence of people of other confessions here, because it helps dispell some of the misconceptions that Orthodox posters may have about other confessions....Kind of like what I tend to try to do on non-Orthodox Forums.

You are right. I feel so enriched by interacting with serious Christians of other communions. It helps me to appreciate the Church to which  I belong while dispelling any pride I might have for belonging to it. It also helps me to understand other Christians and, I think, goes some way towards fulfilling Jesus's wish that "they may be one." Of course, it also helps me to witness my Catholic faith and dispell those frequent misconceptions.
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« Reply #33 on: March 25, 2007, 10:20:48 PM »

So I have to be "struggling with the state of the Church" in order to be in dialogue with Orthodox Christians? Hardly. Was John Paul II (the  author of Orientale Lumen) or is Benedict XVI also struggling with the state of the Church? They love the Eastern traditions and respect the Orthodox churches as true churches with valid sacraments as do I.

Actually I do believe they 'are'. The rumors coming out of the Vatican concerning the isolation of Benedict XVI by members of the Curia the refusal of Cardinal Sodano to vacate his former Secretary of State offices and apartment, etc. I am very aware of the state of the Church and even though I have 'gone East' my prayers and thoughts continue to be with Benedict XVI.

Quote
What is keeping me in the Catholic Church is my conviction of the fullness of truth it proclaims, regardless of the chaos seen in the wake of the Second Vatican Council (which I do not blame for the chaos). I would have done the same after Chalcedon or during any of the other dark periods of Church history. Another Ignatius, that of Loyola, also found himself is a very dark period of Church history, and instead of backing away, he played a large part in its glorious renewal. Parts of the ship may have sprung large leaks, but I have it on faith and Christ's promise that it will not sink. It's an awfully big ship and has weathered worse storms.

Yes I too once shared such convictions but my encounter with Christ's Church 'here' in Holy Orthodoxy has served to allay any fears of equating abandoning Rome with abandoning Christ.

Quote
As for your question about whether I've considered joining the Orthodox Church, I had the opportunity to do it. I was baptized Catholic, but I had only intermittent contact with the Church after my father became a Baptist when I was 3---I only found myself at mass when my many family members had weddings, funerals, First Communions, and Confirmations.

So I was in many ways a convert---I was confirmed only a year ago at the age of 25. I considered Orthodoxy very seriously---growing up, I probably knew more about Orthodoxy than Catholicism through my love of history and utter fascination with the Byzantines. I was a member of the Orthodox Christian Fellowship at my university and went to Divine Liturgy at the Greek Orthodox church outside town.
(So it makes sense that I would be on this board.)

Ultimately, I fell in love with Catholicism and was convinced of its truth. God convicted me of it, and no storm---even the post-1960s sociocultural revolution in our civilization---can drive me from it. The faith remains intact as taught from Rome, and the liberal heterodox in the West know their moment of triumph was foiled. Have we not heard from Jesus himself that the Church would be hated and persecuted---even by those within it? Still, the Church is evangelizing quite well in many parts of the world. But even were the Church shorn to 1 faithful member, I would remain.

I would also mention that relations with the Orthodox churches are better than they have been in centuries---a source of great joy to me, someone who loves the Eastern churches.

Well, I hope all the best for you my Latin Brother but Holy Orthodoxy 'is' the Truth but you have my sympathy and admiration.

Be Well.
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« Reply #34 on: March 26, 2007, 10:44:25 AM »

Actually I do believe they 'are'. The rumors coming out of the Vatican concerning the isolation of Benedict XVI by members of the Curia the refusal of Cardinal Sodano to vacate his former Secretary of State offices and apartment, etc. I am very aware of the state of the Church and even though I have 'gone East' my prayers and thoughts continue to be with Benedict XVI.

They are not struggling with the truth of the Church, only with the sinfulness or unfaithfulness of some of its members. No church is immune from that, I can assure you. If I wanted a "pure" church, I would have to kick myself out too. I would not jump ship because I found some (or many) undesirable people on it, especially when the skipper is Jesus and his first mate is the Holy Father.

And rumors are just that---rumors.

God bless. I'm sad to see you go, but I pray that you have done so with a clear conscience and that the true Orthodox sacraments will be efficacious to you.
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« Reply #35 on: March 26, 2007, 11:29:31 AM »

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« Reply #36 on: March 26, 2007, 02:43:35 PM »

They are not struggling with the truth of the Church, only with the sinfulness or unfaithfulness of some of its members. No church is immune from that, I can assure you. If I wanted a "pure" church, I would have to kick myself out too. I would not jump ship because I found some (or many) undesirable people on it, especially when the skipper is Jesus and his first mate is the Holy Father.

I don't think it is an issue of wanting a 'pure' Church as much as wanting the 'one' Church which is truly found in Holy Orthodoxy.

Quote
And rumors are just that---rumors.

True but Cardinal Sodano is a very interesting one and one that we can substantiate.

Quote
God bless. I'm sad to see you go, but I pray that you have done so with a clear conscience and that the true Orthodox sacraments will be efficacious to you.

We go where we are fed.

Be Well.
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« Reply #37 on: March 26, 2007, 03:08:15 PM »

I don't think it is an issue of wanting a 'pure' Church as much as wanting the 'one' Church which is truly found in Holy Orthodoxy.

You told me first that you "know" I have been "struggling with the state of the Church" because I am dialoguing with Orthodox Christians, at which point I brought up John Paul and Benedict, who you claimed were also struggling with the state of the Church. You first seemed to mean it in terms of its truth claims, but then your "proof" for the two popes were rumors of disobedience by Vatican prelates. Those examples have to do with "purity" in the Church, or the sins of its members, and have nothing to do with its truth claims. I kindly pointed that out, at which point you pretty much repeated what I said, with the comment about "Holy Orthodoxy" being the true Church tacked on.

I am very much confused. Am I supposed to respond to this or ask you to "prove" it to me and Benedict and John Paul? We also have sought the "one" Church and found it in Catholicism. That's how it goes, I guess. But I just don't see the value of trumpeting your belief to others who believe differently as if we will suddenly see it your way. It's a conversation non-starter---"We're obviously the true Church." "No, we are." "No, we are." "No, we are." . . .
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« Reply #38 on: March 26, 2007, 03:13:24 PM »


I am very much confused. Am I supposed to respond to this or ask you to "prove" it to me and Benedict and John Paul? We also have sought the "one" Church and found it in Catholicism. That's how it goes, I guess. But I just don't see the value of trumpeting your belief to others who believe differently as if we will suddenly see it your way. It's a conversation non-starter---"We're obviously the true Church." "No, we are." "No, we are." "No, we are." . . .

I agree, arguments like this tend to be fruitless, at the same time, this is an Orthodox forum, and Orthodoxy does teach and know that She is the One True Faith, whether those outside of Her agree with Her or not.  I think this can be distinguished between the faiths that may teach that their faith is a good faith but not the only right faith, as Orthodoxy does not teach this. 
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« Reply #39 on: March 26, 2007, 03:19:21 PM »

I don't think I need to be reminded of something so obvious.
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« Reply #40 on: March 26, 2007, 03:23:06 PM »

Well, that's why we have an "Orthodox-Catholic" discussion.  So that Catholics are free to discuss issues with Orthodox without the Orthodox suffering from some "haughtydox" syndrome to shut down these discussions by saying "this is an Orthodox forum" and "you're so lost."

The discussion is about Rome, not about how Catholics should be Orthodox.

God bless.
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« Reply #41 on: March 26, 2007, 03:27:42 PM »

Forgive me, maybe the post was unnecessary.
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« Reply #42 on: March 26, 2007, 03:30:10 PM »

Well, that's why we have an "Orthodox-Catholic" discussion.  So that Catholics are free to discuss issues with Orthodox without the Orthodox suffering from some "haughtydox" syndrome to shut down these discussions by saying "this is an Orthodox forum" and "you're so lost."

The discussion is about Rome, not about how Catholics should be Orthodox.

God bless.

Thanks for expressing what I was trying to convey but so miserably failed to do.
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« Reply #43 on: March 26, 2007, 07:48:38 PM »

Hello,

No, I don't think that dialogue with another Church means that you are considering conversion. I am not considering converting from Catholicism to Orthodoxy. I want to understand Orthodoxy and help Orthodoxy understand Catholicism so that there are no misunderstandings between our two Churches - these misunderstandings are in my opinion a great part of our division. I pray that we may be one!

I have no doubt that you believe that Holy Orthodoxy is the Truth. You must understand, though, that I believe that the Catholic Church is the Truth - the one, holy, catholic, and apostolic Church. This is not meant to sleight Orthodox, but if I didn't acknowledge that I would be denying what I truly believe - and no one should do that. If I didn't believe in this with all my heart, I would be something else (possibly Orthodox).
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« Reply #44 on: March 26, 2007, 07:58:07 PM »

Hello,

I cannot find the exact quote of Augustine. Here are a couple of other patristic texts that I have found:

Pope Julius I

"[The] judgment [concerning Athanasius] ought to have been made, not as it was, but according to the ecclesiastical canon. It behooved all of you to write us so that the justice of it might be seen as emanating from all. ... Are you ignorant that the custom has been to write first to us and then for a just decision to be passed from this place [Rome]? If, then, any such suspicion rested upon the bishop there [Athanasius of Alexandria], notice of it ought to have been written to the church here. But now, after having done as they pleased, they want to obtain our concurrence, although we never condemned him. Not thus are the constitutions of Paul, not thus the traditions of the Fathers. This is another form of procedure, and a novel practice. ... What I write about this is for the common good. For what we have heard from the blessed apostle Peter, these things I signify to you" (Letter on Behalf of Athanasius [A.D. 341], in Athanasius, Apology Against the Arians 20–35).


Council of Sardica

And this case likewise is to be provided for, that if in any province a bishop has some matter against his brother and fellow-bishop, neither of the two should call in as arbiters bishops from another province.

But if perchance sentence be given against a bishop in any matter and he supposes his case to be not unsound but good, in order that the question may be reopened, let us, if it seem good to your charity, honour the memory of Peter the Apostle, and let those who gave judgment write to Julius, the bishop of Rome, so that, if necessary, the case may be retried by the bishops of the neighbouring provinces and let him appoint arbiters; but if it cannot be shown that his case is of such a sort as to need a new trial, let the judgment once given not be annulled, but stand good as before. (Canon 3)

If it seems good to you, it is necessary to add to this decision full of sincere charity which thou hast pronounced, that if any bishop be deposed by the sentence of these neighbouring bishops, and assert that he has fresh matter in defence, a new bishop be not settled in his see, unless the bishop of Rome judge and render a decision as to this. (Canon 4)
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