OrthodoxChristianity.net
August 20, 2014, 10:50:34 PM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News: Reminder: No political discussions in the public fora.  If you do not have access to the private Politics Forum, please send a PM to Fr. George.
 
   Home   Help Calendar Contact Treasury Tags Login Register  
Poll
Question: What situation would you approve of for unity among Christians?
1. Heterodox change to Orthodox, EO doesn't change - 108 (81.8%)
2. Heterodox accepted under no conditions - 4 (3%)
3. EO changes and conforms to others - 3 (2.3%)
4. EO and heterodox meet halfway (all change) - 5 (3.8%)
5. No union under any circumstances - 12 (9.1%)
Total Voters: 132

Pages: « 1 2 3 4 »  All   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Ecumenism... Your opinion  (Read 16523 times) Average Rating: 0
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
Irish Hermit
Kibernetski Kaludjer
Warned
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Posts: 10,991


Holy Father Patrick, pray for us


« Reply #45 on: January 23, 2010, 03:32:45 PM »


Irish Hermit- First of all, I apologize for my unfair statement "It is dishonest..." and I do retract it.

Thank you for that, Icondule.  You are a decent person.
Logged
ignatius
Baptacathadox
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Roman Catholic > Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: OCA - Diocese of the South
Posts: 1,690


My Son Aidan... :-)


« Reply #46 on: January 25, 2010, 05:52:33 PM »

I would like to see One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church... someday.

I am largely fine with Orthodoxy as it is but I think there is 'room' for views.
Logged

St Basil the Great (330-379 A.D.): “I think then that the one goal of all who are really and truly serving the Lord ought to be to bring back to union the churches who have at different times and in diverse manners divided from one another.”
Feanor
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Faith: Catholic
Posts: 205



« Reply #47 on: February 04, 2010, 02:29:08 AM »

Can't the Roman Catholics, Eastern Orthodox, and Oriental Orthodox just agree to disagree on certain matters of doctrine, but nonetheless recognise the validity of each other's sacramants as works of the one, holy, catholic and apostolic church? I took communion in a Catholic church for most of my life, and I can assure anyone that the Real Presence is really there. It is there in the Orthodox Church as well. When I was in a Coptic church I could genuinely sense the grace of the Lord. We don't have to become a single ecclesiastical body or sort out all the administrative details and doctrinal issues (yet) - we can just start by acknowledging that each other's sacraments are valid.
Logged
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 31,825


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #48 on: February 04, 2010, 06:27:05 AM »

Can't the Roman Catholics, Eastern Orthodox, and Oriental Orthodox just agree to disagree on certain matters of doctrine, but nonetheless recognise the validity of each other's sacramants as works of the one, holy, catholic and apostolic church? I took communion in a Catholic church for most of my life, and I can assure anyone that the Real Presence is really there. It is there in the Orthodox Church as well. When I was in a Coptic church I could genuinely sense the grace of the Lord. We don't have to become a single ecclesiastical body or sort out all the administrative details and doctrinal issues (yet) - we can just start by acknowledging that each other's sacraments are valid.
If only it were that simple...  Our refusal to affirm the validity or presence of sacramental grace in the sacraments of those Christian bodies outside the Orthodox Church is not based on personal experience, which is actually quite subjective and susceptible to error, if not outright demonic deception, but on our traditional Orthodox teaching that the sacraments are the work of the Church to be experienced within the community of the Church.  According to this model, there can be no grace in those sacraments performed outside of the Church.  Now, there is a more moderate faction within the Orthodox Church that believes that we know where the Church is but cannot know where the Church is not who will not deny the presence of grace in heterodox sacraments, yet we still cannot affirm that they are grace-filled, either.  All we Orthodox can say with certainty is that grace is present in the sacramental mysteries of the Orthodox Church; of the presence or absence of grace in heterodox sacraments we cannot speak with any certainty.

Of course, we've already discussed elsewhere on this forum the subject of whether sacramental grace is present in the non-Orthodox churches, but since I'm about to wrap up my day and go to bed, I'll leave it to you to search for these threads. Wink
Logged
Fr. George
formerly "Cleveland"
Administrator
Stratopedarches
*******
Online Online

Faith: Orthodox (Catholic) Christian
Jurisdiction: GOA - Metropolis of Pittsburgh
Posts: 20,052


May the Lord bless you and keep you always!


« Reply #49 on: February 04, 2010, 09:45:18 AM »

Can't the Roman Catholics, Eastern Orthodox, and Oriental Orthodox just agree to disagree on certain matters of doctrine, but nonetheless recognise the validity of each other's sacramants as works of the one, holy, catholic and apostolic church? I took communion in a Catholic church for most of my life, and I can assure anyone that the Real Presence is really there. It is there in the Orthodox Church as well. When I was in a Coptic church I could genuinely sense the grace of the Lord. We don't have to become a single ecclesiastical body or sort out all the administrative details and doctrinal issues (yet) - we can just start by acknowledging that each other's sacraments are valid.

Well, we do need to work out the administrative and doctrinal issues before recognizing as they are one another's sacraments.  Think of it this way: I can't say that Christ is really present in RC Eucharist if I'm not sure that they believe the same things about Christ that I do; and I certainly can't encourage someone of my parish to receive this communion if I can't - I cannot, because by doing so I unite myself to their bishop and mine, but these bishops are not united because the RC and EO don't believe the same things about ecclesiology.  In the end, acknowledging communion without resolving issues is like putting a dog and a cat in a room together without first training them: they may be nominally in the same place, but we haven't ended the fight, and instead have increased the chances that they will hurt one another.
Logged

"The man who doesn't read good books has no advantage over the one who can't read them." Mark Twain
---------------------
Ordained on 17 & 18-Oct 2009. Please forgive me if earlier posts are poorly worded or incorrect in any way.
Papist
Patriarch of Pontification
Toumarches
************
Offline Offline

Faith: Catholic
Jurisdiction: Byzantine
Posts: 12,182


Praying for the Christians in Iraq


« Reply #50 on: February 04, 2010, 11:15:27 AM »

Can't the Roman Catholics, Eastern Orthodox, and Oriental Orthodox just agree to disagree on certain matters of doctrine, but nonetheless recognise the validity of each other's sacramants as works of the one, holy, catholic and apostolic church? I took communion in a Catholic church for most of my life, and I can assure anyone that the Real Presence is really there. It is there in the Orthodox Church as well. When I was in a Coptic church I could genuinely sense the grace of the Lord. We don't have to become a single ecclesiastical body or sort out all the administrative details and doctrinal issues (yet) - we can just start by acknowledging that each other's sacraments are valid.
If only it were that simple. I know that Christ is present in the Eucharist of all Apostolic Churches, including the EO Church, OO Church, RC Church, but I would never dream of insulting the EO or OO Churches by communing in their parishes. That being said, when I attened an EO Church I adore our Lord present in the Eucharist. I think true Ecumenism is not ignoring our differences, but acknowledging them, respecting one another, and realizing that we are all doing our best to seek the Lord Jesus Christ.
« Last Edit: February 04, 2010, 11:15:51 AM by Papist » Logged

Note Papist's influence from the tyrannical monarchism of traditional papism .
Ikonguru
Jr. Member
**
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian
Jurisdiction: Baptised Anglican -moving toward Orthodoxy
Posts: 73


Lord have Mercy upon me, a Sinner


« Reply #51 on: December 19, 2010, 06:07:10 PM »

And Jesus ordered them, “Watch out! Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and the yeast of Herod!”
-Mark 8:15

Salt is good, but if it loses its saltiness, how can you make it salty again? Have salt in yourselves, and be at peace with each other.”
-Mark 9:50
Logged

It is from a place of exile, where my captors torment me, that I write these lines. Through the grace of our Lord, I may one day be free.
MyMapleStory
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Faith: Approaching Orthodoxy
Jurisdiction: Will probably be Greek
Posts: 181


« Reply #52 on: December 20, 2010, 02:27:58 PM »

Don't think I would be attempting to become orthodox if it were anything else except option 1.
Logged
ialmisry
There's nothing John of Damascus can't answer
Hypatos
*****************
Online Online

Faith: جامعي Arab confesssing the Orthodox Faith of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church
Jurisdiction: Antioch (for now), but my heart belongs to Alexandria
Posts: 37,359



« Reply #53 on: December 20, 2010, 02:45:01 PM »

Can't the Roman Catholics, Eastern Orthodox, and Oriental Orthodox just agree to disagree on certain matters of doctrine, but nonetheless recognise the validity of each other's sacramants as works of the one, holy, catholic and apostolic church? I took communion in a Catholic church for most of my life, and I can assure anyone that the Real Presence is really there. It is there in the Orthodox Church as well. When I was in a Coptic church I could genuinely sense the grace of the Lord. We don't have to become a single ecclesiastical body or sort out all the administrative details and doctrinal issues (yet) - we can just start by acknowledging that each other's sacraments are valid.
To what purpose?
Logged

Question a friend, perhaps he did not do it; but if he did anything so that he may do it no more.
A hasty quarrel kindles fire,
and urgent strife sheds blood.
If you blow on a spark, it will glow;
if you spit on it, it will be put out;
                           and both come out of your mouth
Shanghaiski
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: Antiochian
Posts: 7,969


Holy Trinity Church of Gergeti, Georgia


« Reply #54 on: December 20, 2010, 03:12:03 PM »

The Orthodox Christian faith, the true faith, is not the possession of Orthodox Christians which they can change as they please for their purposes. It is the gift of God to mankind for salvation. It is God's revelation of Himself. He is the One who owns the message. There have been many attempts at change and compromise in the past and they have all failed. God is jealous, as He says, of His Church and faith. Heresies come and go. But the Orthodox Church and her faith remain as they have been since the time of Christ and His Apostles, and will remain unchanged until the Second Coming, regardless of human efforts to change them. If individuals or whole groups of people who are not Orthodox come to the conclusion that Orthodoxy is the truth, than, by all means, they will be received into the Church. But faith is necessary for conversion because of free will. No one will wake up surprised one day to find that he is a member of the Church due to hierarchical maneuverings. On the other hand, he may wake up one day to find that his (former) bishop, due to maneuverings, has wrecked havoc through a false union and created schism and confusion.
Logged

Quote from: GabrieltheCelt
If you spend long enough on this forum, you'll come away with all sorts of weird, untrue ideas of Orthodox Christianity.
Quote from: orthonorm
I would suggest most persons in general avoid any question beginning with why.
Shiranui117
Formerly known as "Wandering Sheep"
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox (Inquirer)
Jurisdiction: ACROD/OCA
Posts: 150


PUDDI PUDDI!


« Reply #55 on: December 21, 2010, 05:48:18 PM »

To be honest, even though I'm still Catholic at this point, I voted option 1. I see the Pope trying somewhat passively to humble himself and nuance the Papal Infallibility and Papal Supremacy doctrines to make those two ideas more palatable and more in-line with Orthodox teaching. I'm noticing a lot more give on the RC side, and I think it's going to be the increasing give on our side that will lead to reunion. Another part that will need to happen is letting go of bad blood and old feuds that happened throughout the schism.
Logged
vasily
Moderated
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Orthodox church in america
Posts: 189



« Reply #56 on: February 26, 2011, 02:53:54 PM »

 Glory to Jesus Christ,

 Union with all the Orthodox Churches should come first, so that peace and love will exist amongst the Eastern Orthodox Churches. Let's clean up our own back yard. Seriously take on missionary work, and properly confront the jurisdictional chaos that exists in North America, Western Europe, and else where. Then let's contemplate union with the other confessions, and only if they sincerely desire to embrace Orthodox Dogmas and Traditions. Are we to accept the "common ground" philosophy with the heterodox. or stress the richness in Orthodox Theology? On the other hand we compromise the traditions, water things down, attempt to "fit' in, and persist in dialogue with the heterodox. If we claim that we, the Orthodox, represent the true faith, then what message are we sending to our youth and to those who desire to become converts?

 The Traditions of the Church and the examples of the Holy Fathers teach us that the Church holds no dialogue with those who have separated themselves from Orthodoxy. A true dialogue implies an exchange of views with a possibility of persuading the participant to attain an agreement. Any compromise is foreign to the Church. That being said, why does the Orthodox persist in this dialogue with the Catholics, which has been going on for years, with absolutely no results? Papism is a heresy and the source of many heresies that trouble the world today. Can one seriously think that the Vatican will change? When will the Vatican positively rectify the Eastern Rite dilemma?
 
Logged
vasily
Moderated
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Orthodox church in america
Posts: 189



« Reply #57 on: March 01, 2011, 09:22:39 AM »

Glory to Jesus Christ,

 A topic related to this is from a website:orthodoxengland.org.uk. Titled "The Repentance of the Vatican Needed". There are other articles of interest on this site.
Logged
yeshuaisiam
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox, Anabaptist, Other Early Christianity kind of jumbled together
Posts: 4,153


A pulling horse cannot kick.


« Reply #58 on: March 06, 2011, 10:42:31 PM »

I believe that there is no unity period.

Eastern Orthodoxy IS the church. 

There is no need for unity.  Unity is a "union" or to make one.

There is no other church than Eastern Orthodoxy and no need to unionize.
Logged

I learned how to be more frugal and save money at http://www.livingpress.com
OtherguyLB
Member
***
Offline Offline

Faith: Agnostic, but lover of Theology and Church History.
Jurisdiction: Under Myself
Posts: 87


« Reply #59 on: March 09, 2011, 07:21:40 PM »

Imho, ecumenism was never tolerated in church, which is - union with people who have different dogmas, rather than traditions...

In II(or III, don't remember), St. Cyprian argued with pope about baptism of heretics, who baptized in the name of Christ only, but their baptism was considered Orthodox... Later, liturgy with leavened or unleavened bread - is also part of different traditions(formed against heretics)...

But, regarding dogmas, church was never ecumenical... Although I strongly reject the position that friendship with heretics is wrong...

And sad reality is that, church was never democratic either - they just expelled, and used violence upon heretics all the time...
« Last Edit: March 09, 2011, 07:22:29 PM by OtherguyLB » Logged
Peter J
Formerly PJ
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Melkite
Posts: 6,104



« Reply #60 on: March 16, 2011, 08:53:29 PM »

Hi vasily,

That being said, why does the Orthodox persist in this dialogue with the Catholics, which has been going on for years, with absolutely no results?

 Huh In view of this statement earlier in the same paragraph:

The Traditions of the Church and the examples of the Holy Fathers teach us that the Church holds no dialogue with those who have separated themselves from Orthodoxy.

it would seem that the logical question would be, not "why does the Orthodox persist in this dialogue with the Catholics?", but "why does the Orthodox engage in dialogue with Catholics, period?"

Am I missing something?
Logged

- Peter Jericho (a CAF poster)
ativan
Elder
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Georgian Orthodox Church
Posts: 274


Fr. Gabrieli Of Mtskheta


« Reply #61 on: March 25, 2011, 12:54:56 AM »

So much for ecumenism and unity! How on the earth is this ecumenism to unite different religions when it has been already creating deadly division within Orthodoxy itself? Just a rhetoric question...

Ecumenism is heresy of all heresies, super heresy, pan-heresy and it is pity that even Orthodox faithful can't realize this trap of Satan.

Here's nice video from a good servant of God.

Here's what one of the holy men of God, blessed elder Father Paisios the Athonite, has to say about ecumenism (accent is specifically union with Rome and Pope).
« Last Edit: March 25, 2011, 12:55:41 AM by ativan » Logged
Peter J
Formerly PJ
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Melkite
Posts: 6,104



« Reply #62 on: March 25, 2011, 10:31:57 AM »

Ecumenism is heresy of all heresies, super heresy, pan-heresy

So we heretical Roman Catholics aren't as bad as the Orthodox who participate in ecumenism? I'm flattered.
Logged

- Peter Jericho (a CAF poster)
rakovsky
Warned
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Orthodox Church in America
Posts: 4,206



WWW
« Reply #63 on: March 25, 2011, 11:16:27 AM »

Personally, from what I've understood, to most Orthodox, the first condition is the one that is more Orthodox.
Nah.  Not the more Orthodox view; rather, the ONLY Orthodox view. Wink

Both change seems to me acceptable, if the Orthodox changes were simply a change in Western practices that they tolerate. For example, the Orthodox have changed to toleration of veils and the Western Calendar. It's true that the Orthodox themselves changed in this way, and that these weren't changes i doctrine. I just think that no change at all is too absolute a statement, since there could be a change in what Orthodox tolerate.

One example of a change in my view is a change in allowing unleavened bread, which the Westerners and some Orientals have. I am aware of the Orthodox position and I accept the leavened bread, and I haven't investigated it enough to have a serious opinion that the OO position is acceptable. It's just conceivable for me that the EO could change its position on the issue of unleavened bread.

It's confusing to say that Orthodoxy should change something important, because if you believe that it should, then you believe that the Orthodox position is wrong on an important question. For cultural issues like veils, it makes more sense. But with doctrine, it's hard- logically speaking- to say that, because then you wouldn't be Orthodox because it would mean that you thought the Orthodox position was wrong, in which case you wouldn't be Orthodox.

You would either say that Orthodoxy encompasses your idea, that you have a rare view, and that Orthodoxy is wide enough to include it, or that Orthodoxy is wrong on an important doctrine, in which case you wouldn't be Orthodox. So it's kind of a trick question for Orthodox.

For example, if you think Orthodoxy is doing something wrong, then you are actually saying that Orthodoxy is currently doing something wrong, but that true Orthodoxy would do something different. That's because Orthodoxy defines itself as true Christianity. It's a mental paradigm where you can't say Orthodoxy itself should do something different.
Logged
FormerReformer
Convertodox of the convertodox
Site Supporter
Archon
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: I'll take (e) for "all of the above"
Posts: 2,404



WWW
« Reply #64 on: March 25, 2011, 11:25:44 AM »

Ecumenism is heresy of all heresies, super heresy, pan-heresy

So we heretical Roman Catholics aren't as bad as the Orthodox who participate in ecumenism? I'm flattered.

Of course!  An analogy: in the eyes of the anti-ecumenicist the Roman Church is like Russia in the 1950s, the Mainline Protestants are China, and Evangelicals are like Cuba and North Korea.  The Orthodox Church is the freedom loving democracies (or constitutional monarchies) of the world and anti-ecumenicists are Sen.  McCarthy.  Sure, the Soviet Union is the enemy, but even more insidious are those communists hiding right under our very noses!  So, tell us, Patriarch Bartholomew, are you now, or have you ever been a member of the Communist Party?  

As for my own opinion on the subject, I think I've stated this before, but here we go again: It all depends on what you mean by "ecumenicism".  If you mean that "all Christian churches are the same" or in the Anglican Branch theory then yeah, it's wrong and something our leaders shouldn't be participating in.  If you mean any sort of discussion whatsoever with outside churches about what it takes for union, then call me an ecumenicist.  My own conversion to Orthodoxy finally got off the ground (after years of research) with Met. JONAH's speech at the inauguration of the Anglican Church of North America.
Logged

"Funny," said Lancelot, "how the people who can't pray say that prayers are not answered, however much the people who can pray say they are."  TH White

Oh, no: I've succumbed to Hyperdoxy!
Punch
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian
Jurisdiction: Body of Christ
Posts: 5,257



« Reply #65 on: March 25, 2011, 01:41:59 PM »

Ecumenism is heresy of all heresies, super heresy, pan-heresy

So we heretical Roman Catholics aren't as bad as the Orthodox who participate in ecumenism? I'm flattered.

I can buy that.  The Orthodox should know better therefor are more guilty.  I have actually heard this put in exactly these words from the "pulpit".
Logged

Orthodox only because of God and His Russians.
ativan
Elder
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Georgian Orthodox Church
Posts: 274


Fr. Gabrieli Of Mtskheta


« Reply #66 on: March 25, 2011, 03:48:02 PM »

Ecumenism is heresy of all heresies, super heresy, pan-heresy

So we heretical Roman Catholics aren't as bad as the Orthodox who participate in ecumenism? I'm flattered.
I have a different opinion on this. At least even those Orthodox believers who are for ecumenism voice it and do not hide it cunningly - they stay in World Council of Churches. Super pro-ecumenism Catholics (not counting minor number of those who oppose this movement) are not the member of the WCC. Why's that? Smells fishy to me.

As for me, I go by our Saints' faith.
Logged
Peter J
Formerly PJ
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Melkite
Posts: 6,104



« Reply #67 on: March 25, 2011, 05:07:17 PM »

I have a different opinion on this. At least even those Orthodox believers who are for ecumenism voice it and do not hide it cunningly - they stay in World Council of Churches. Super pro-ecumenism Catholics (not counting minor number of those who oppose this movement) are not the member of the WCC. Why's that? Smells fishy to me.

I don't think you're making any sense. If we (Catholics I mean) were in the WCC but were pretending that we weren't, then I could see how you could object to that. But I don't see anything fishy about simply not being in the WCC, but then I suppose just about everything we do smells fishy to somebody.
Logged

- Peter Jericho (a CAF poster)
Justin Kissel
Formerly Asteriktos
Protospatharios
****************
Online Online

Posts: 29,474



« Reply #68 on: March 25, 2011, 05:11:32 PM »

I have a different opinion on this. At least even those Orthodox believers who are for ecumenism voice it and do not hide it cunningly - they stay in World Council of Churches. Super pro-ecumenism Catholics (not counting minor number of those who oppose this movement) are not the member of the WCC. Why's that? Smells fishy to me.

I don't think you're making any sense. If we (Catholics I mean) were in the WCC but were pretending that we weren't, then I could see how you could object to that. But I don't see anything fishy about simply not being in the WCC, but then I suppose just about everything we do smells fishy to somebody.

You guys do eat a disproportionate amount of fish... could that be the reason?  Huh
Logged
Peter J
Formerly PJ
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Melkite
Posts: 6,104



« Reply #69 on: March 25, 2011, 05:20:50 PM »

My own conversion to Orthodoxy finally got off the ground (after years of research) with Met. JONAH's speech at the inauguration of the Anglican Church of North America.

I take it from your name, FormerReformer, that you converted to Orthodoxy, not from Roman Catholicism but rather from Protestantism. Right? I sometimes wonder what I would have done, had I been in the situation of growing up Protestant and then choosing between converting to Orthodoxy or converting to Catholicism.

Granted, that's not really relevant to this thread.
Logged

- Peter Jericho (a CAF poster)
Peter J
Formerly PJ
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Melkite
Posts: 6,104



« Reply #70 on: March 25, 2011, 05:23:11 PM »

You guys do eat a disproportionate amount of fish... could that be the reason?  Huh

How did you know I'm from New England?
Logged

- Peter Jericho (a CAF poster)
FormerReformer
Convertodox of the convertodox
Site Supporter
Archon
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: I'll take (e) for "all of the above"
Posts: 2,404



WWW
« Reply #71 on: March 25, 2011, 09:55:42 PM »

My own conversion to Orthodoxy finally got off the ground (after years of research) with Met. JONAH's speech at the inauguration of the Anglican Church of North America.

I take it from your name, FormerReformer, that you converted to Orthodoxy, not from Roman Catholicism but rather from Protestantism. Right? I sometimes wonder what I would have done, had I been in the situation of growing up Protestant and then choosing between converting to Orthodoxy or converting to Catholicism.

Granted, that's not really relevant to this thread.

Not a problem, I love irrelevance.  Yes, I converted from Protestantism, albeit a more Anglo-Catholic variety (though I did have a Southern Baptist upbringing).  From that position it would have been just as easy to convert to Roman Catholicism, as indeed many an Anglo-Catholic these days is doing.  Had the Reformation happened in a vacuum, with no East-West schism preceding it, that might have been what I would have done.

For many years my main quest as a Christian was figuring out what went wrong with the Roman Catholic and Protestant churches and trying to piece together what a Church would look like that was devoid of the errors of both.  It was a great source of joy to discover that such a Church already existed.

To this day I would love for Rome to return to the Orthodox Church under the right circumstances.  I think it would be the necessary first step to the healing of all the schisms from the "Reformation".
Logged

"Funny," said Lancelot, "how the people who can't pray say that prayers are not answered, however much the people who can pray say they are."  TH White

Oh, no: I've succumbed to Hyperdoxy!
montalban
Now in colour
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Greek
Posts: 1,813



« Reply #72 on: March 26, 2011, 05:03:01 AM »

I would like to see One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church... someday.

I am largely fine with Orthodoxy as it is but I think there is 'room' for views.

A hose of many mansions?
Logged

Fàilte dhut a Mhoire,
tha thu lan de na gràsan;
Tha an Tighearna maille riut.
podkarpatska
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: ACROD
Posts: 8,205


SS Cyril and Methodius Church, Mercer, PA


WWW
« Reply #73 on: March 26, 2011, 11:36:30 AM »

I would like to see One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church... someday.

I am largely fine with Orthodoxy as it is but I think there is 'room' for views.

A hose of many mansions?

I think you mean a 'house of many mansions.'

Logged
jordanz
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Faith: Roman Catholic
Posts: 203


« Reply #74 on: March 28, 2011, 07:11:02 PM »

Is there a 4.5 option?

Catholicism should call it quits with ecumenism for now.  The ("Ordinary") Roman liturgy is out of control scary bad, we have bishops that have committed criminal acts to cover up child rape, the communication between the various Roman offices and the Pope are notoriously bad, and we have priests that openly preach dissent and heresy.  Rome needs a major cleanup job that'll make Three Mile Island look like a chemistry set experiment gone wrong.

On the other hand, if the Patriarch of Moscow desires to cooperate with Pope Benedict on major issues facing Christianity today, great!  Cooperation can take place outside of ecumenism.  Let's leave it that way for now.
Logged
CBGardner
Site Supporter
High Elder
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 618


Ask w/ tears, seek w/ obedience, knock w/ patience


« Reply #75 on: March 28, 2011, 09:29:22 PM »

My opinion is that Orthodoxy does little in regards to evangelism here in the US. The Catholic church does some evangelism, mostly in the form of public services. And protestant organizations like the Salvation Army, Campus Crusade for Christ and the like "win them to Christ" (their phrase not mine) but don't really know what to do with them once they get them. In that regard Orthodoxy could learn how to evangelize better. Converts from other Christian denominations are fine and dandy, but to have converts from atheism is really cool. There was a young lady at our parish that was an avowed atheist her entire life that was baptized, Chrismated and married in a month! Of course she started on the course to do that over a year earlier, but it was really cool!

Yes but it is hard to beat groups that cater to everyone. Orthodoxy says this is what we are, you'll need to change, but join us. Protestants say be whatever you decide is right, put Christ's name on it, and join us. Catholics, that's a hard sell haha jk. But they do it well too somehow.
Logged

Authentic zeal is not directed towards anything but union in Christ, or against anything but our own fallenness.

"Beardliness is next to Godliness."- Asteriktos
copticyouth93
Jr. Member
**
Offline Offline

Faith: Coptic Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Coptic Orthodox Archdiocese of North America
Posts: 61



« Reply #76 on: March 28, 2011, 10:51:52 PM »

I am firmly against what I see today; this "movement" ....'called' "ecumenism".

I completely ignor it.

I am for true relations with all who are willing to hear and accept the teachings and salvation of the Lord Jesus Christ, willing to live life as Christ commands His true faithful and follow the apostolic tradition which is the basis of the orthodox faith. That is not to say EO or OO.....but 'Orthodox'.

Orthodoxy must speak with one voice and communion worldwide before we can AGAIN be the true 'example' of the ONE UNIversal Church of God.

WE are making head-way.

Most of our problems are not Chalcedon and the "anathemas"; but stone hard loyalists who are eager to not have any resolve be realised within orthodoxy. These people are trying their hardest to hold the "door" to unity and peace closed. But based on current developments within orthodox the "door" is all but busted down to the ground. People are little by little are starting to walk in and and get equainted with each other again. This and other forums like this are helping thanks be to Gods grace and mercy.

It is a blessing.

Sorry man, but this is against us too. We are also among those considered Satanist and Heretic, worthy of death. Sad.

Pray for me,
Copticyouth93
Logged
Peter J
Formerly PJ
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Melkite
Posts: 6,104



« Reply #77 on: March 29, 2011, 12:00:58 PM »

Catholicism should call it quits with ecumenism for now. 

I disagree. In fact, I would say that ecumenism is one of the best things we (Catholics I mean) have going right now.
Logged

- Peter Jericho (a CAF poster)
Conservative Rebel
Jr. Member
**
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: Russian Orthodox Church
Posts: 35


« Reply #78 on: March 30, 2011, 08:16:49 AM »

I subscribe to the view that there can be no intercommunion with heterodox communities. And we should 'import' nothing from heterodox religious teachings. If we do not preserve the holy Orthodox faith intact, we are not worthy of it.

Having said that, I think we should try to have friendly relations with our heterodox neighbours. It is also perfectly OK to take part in joint Christian initiatives in charity work, fighting against abortions, gay propaganda and things of the sort, as long as no compromise on faith is required.
Logged
Peter J
Formerly PJ
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Melkite
Posts: 6,104



« Reply #79 on: March 30, 2011, 09:36:39 AM »

I subscribe to the view that there can be no intercommunion with heterodox communities.

What about praying together?
Logged

- Peter Jericho (a CAF poster)
Conservative Rebel
Jr. Member
**
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: Russian Orthodox Church
Posts: 35


« Reply #80 on: March 31, 2011, 02:14:08 AM »

I subscribe to the view that there can be no intercommunion with heterodox communities.

What about praying together?

As far as I understand, joint prayer with heterodox believers is considered impossible by the Orthodox Church. Personally, I find it hard to believe that it would be a sin to pray, say, before a meal, together with your heterodox guests (I did that a few times). But I would not participate in a heterodox church service. Not just because I am afraid that this might be soul-harming, but also because I find Protestant and even Roman Catholic church services uninspiring.

On the whole, I have no firm personal convictions on the matter, but rather submit to the discipline and traditions of the Holy Orthodox Church. In my lifetime, I have found that this is the best approach - whenever I had doubts that the Church is right on this or that issue, I always found out later that the Church had been right all along!
Logged
ativan
Elder
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Georgian Orthodox Church
Posts: 274


Fr. Gabrieli Of Mtskheta


« Reply #81 on: March 31, 2011, 04:10:59 AM »

I subscribe to the view that there can be no intercommunion with heterodox communities.

What about praying together?

As far as I understand, joint prayer with heterodox believers is considered impossible by the Orthodox Church. Personally, I find it hard to believe that it would be a sin to pray, say, before a meal, together with your heterodox guests (I did that a few times). But I would not participate in a heterodox church service. Not just because I am afraid that this might be soul-harming, but also because I find Protestant and even Roman Catholic church services uninspiring.

On the whole, I have no firm personal convictions on the matter, but rather submit to the discipline and traditions of the Holy Orthodox Church. In my lifetime, I have found that this is the best approach - whenever I had doubts that the Church is right on this or that issue, I always found out later that the Church had been right all along!
The 85 Canons of Apostles

Quote
10. If anyone pray in company with one who has been excommunicated, he shall be excommunicated himself.

Quote
45. Let any Bishop, or Presbyter, or Deacon that merely joins in prayer with heretics be suspended, but if he has permitted them to perform any service as Clergymen, let him be deposed (sc.from office).

Quote
65. If any Clergyman, or Layman, enter a synagogue of Jews, or of heretics, to pray, let him be both deposed and excommunicated.

Logged
Contarini
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian, belonging to the Anglican Communion, adhering to the teachings of the Seven Councils
Jurisdiction: The Episcopal Church
Posts: 14


« Reply #82 on: April 01, 2011, 02:35:36 PM »

I subscribe to the view that there can be no intercommunion with heterodox communities.

What about praying together?

As far as I understand, joint prayer with heterodox believers is considered impossible by the Orthodox Church. Personally, I find it hard to believe that it would be a sin to pray, say, before a meal, together with your heterodox guests (I did that a few times). But I would not participate in a heterodox church service. Not just because I am afraid that this might be soul-harming, but also because I find Protestant and even Roman Catholic church services uninspiring.

I think that the Orthodox are wrong to apply canons developed with regard to Arians, Gnostics, etc., to Western Christians. Particularly when so many Orthodox today are willing to see Oriental Orthodox as orthodox. But we Westerners--anathema simus!

This is my major problem with Orthodoxy. I can't accept the exclusive claims--they make nonsense of my entire experience as a Christian so far. The RCC, post-Vatican-II at least, takes a much more defensible stance, I believe.

The East-West split was not exactly like the earlier heresies--more of a gradual cultural estrangement than a deliberate rejection of Orthodoxy. And as a result, the various Western churches are largely confused and ignorant about the historic dogmas of the Faith. If you would see us as muddled brothers and sisters instead of heretics, you could be of great service to us.

M-word removed - Michał Kalina.
« Last Edit: April 01, 2011, 05:33:03 PM by Michał Kalina » Logged
Punch
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian
Jurisdiction: Body of Christ
Posts: 5,257



« Reply #83 on: April 01, 2011, 03:03:30 PM »

If you would see us as muddled brothers and sisters instead of heretics, you could be of great service to us.

Very true, we would be of great service to you.  However, to see you as anything other than heretics would be a denial of the Truth that we hold.  We are here to serve God, not you.
Logged

Orthodox only because of God and His Russians.
FormerReformer
Convertodox of the convertodox
Site Supporter
Archon
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: I'll take (e) for "all of the above"
Posts: 2,404



WWW
« Reply #84 on: April 01, 2011, 03:27:19 PM »

I subscribe to the view that there can be no intercommunion with heterodox communities.

What about praying together?

As far as I understand, joint prayer with heterodox believers is considered impossible by the Orthodox Church. Personally, I find it hard to believe that it would be a sin to pray, say, before a meal, together with your heterodox guests (I did that a few times). But I would not participate in a heterodox church service. Not just because I am afraid that this might be soul-harming, but also because I find Protestant and even Roman Catholic church services uninspiring.

I think that the Orthodox are wrong to apply canons developed with regard to Arians, Gnostics, etc., to Western Christians. Particularly when so many Orthodox today are willing to see Oriental Orthodox as orthodox. But we Westerners--anathema simus!

This is my major problem with Orthodoxy. I can't accept the exclusive claims--they make nonsense of my entire experience as a Christian so far. The RCC, post-Vatican-II at least, takes a much more defensible stance, I believe.

The East-West split was not exactly like the earlier heresies--more of a gradual cultural estrangement than a deliberate rejection of Orthodoxy. And as a result, the various Western churches are largely confused and ignorant about the historic dogmas of the Faith. If you would see us as muddled brothers and sisters instead of heretics, you could be of great service to us.

M-word removed - Michał Kalina.

For the most part, Orthodox claims to exclusivity relate to being the Church; that is the One Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church spoken of in the Creed.  We are exclusive in that we can truly claim to have kept the fullness of the faith, with no additions or subtractions.  As to the position of Christians outside of the Orthodox Church the large consensus of the Saints since the time of the Great Schism and Protestant Reformation has been one of agnosticism: We know where the Church is; we do not know where it is not.

Are there some Orthodox Christians who believe that anyone not in the Orthodox Church is a graceless and hellbound heretic?  Perhaps, but you will find such in nearly any other denomination (including hardline Roman Catholics).  Some of us prefer the term "heterodox" which pretty much amounts to "muddled brothers and sisters".  One theory posits that heresy must be a choice, that one must choose to reject Orthodoxy, a choice that not many Western Christians have been in a position to make.

This does not mean that there are not heresies to be found in other communions, Calvinism would be an example, Papal Supremacy and the filioque another, and iconoclasm still another.  And it is a sad fact that many Protestant denominations are indeed sliding into outright heresy in this present time, and losing any form of doctrine that would define them as "Christian".

Terminology aside there are a few things that must be taken into account: We cannot commune you because we do not know you.  Our priests guard the Chalice because we believe that this is indeed the Body and Blood of Christ, and to commune unworthily would do great damage to your soul.  You must profess the Orthodox faith and receive the Sacrament of Confession (how often one does this in relation to communion varies across jurisdiction and parish lines) from an Orthodox priest.  We cannot pray with you because it would lend legitimacy to your belief that you are indeed Orthodox.

Oh, and there is no nonsense in any experience that draws you closer to Christ.  When I became Orthodox I did not have to reject that my Baptist upbringing and Episcopalian attendance taught me love for Christ, I had to reject any teachings from that experience that conflicted with the teachings of the Church.

Welcome to the Forum!

(PS a piece of advice: "monophysite" is a frowned upon word on this Forum.  "Oriental Orthodox" and miaphysite are acceptable.)
« Last Edit: April 01, 2011, 05:34:08 PM by Michał Kalina » Logged

"Funny," said Lancelot, "how the people who can't pray say that prayers are not answered, however much the people who can pray say they are."  TH White

Oh, no: I've succumbed to Hyperdoxy!
ativan
Elder
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Georgian Orthodox Church
Posts: 274


Fr. Gabrieli Of Mtskheta


« Reply #85 on: April 01, 2011, 05:39:21 PM »

If you would see us as muddled brothers and sisters instead of heretics, you could be of great service to us.

Very true, we would be of great service to you.  However, to see you as anything other than heretics would be a denial of the Truth that we hold.  We are here to serve God, not you.
Very true my brother. I was going to say exactly same thing: We are here to serve God, not men.

Glory to God
Logged
Punch
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian
Jurisdiction: Body of Christ
Posts: 5,257



« Reply #86 on: April 01, 2011, 06:14:01 PM »


Oh, and there is no nonsense in any experience that draws you closer to Christ.  When I became Orthodox I did not have to reject that my Baptist upbringing and Episcopalian attendance taught me love for Christ, I had to reject any teachings from that experience that conflicted with the teachings of the Church.


How true!
Logged

Orthodox only because of God and His Russians.
Contarini
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian, belonging to the Anglican Communion, adhering to the teachings of the Seven Councils
Jurisdiction: The Episcopal Church
Posts: 14


« Reply #87 on: April 04, 2011, 10:56:35 AM »



I think that the Orthodox are wrong to apply canons developed with regard to Arians, Gnostics, etc., to Western Christians. Particularly when so many Orthodox today are willing to see Oriental Orthodox as orthodox. But we Westerners--anathema simus!

This is my major problem with Orthodoxy. I can't accept the exclusive claims--they make nonsense of my entire experience as a Christian so far. The RCC, post-Vatican-II at least, takes a much more defensible stance, I believe.

The East-West split was not exactly like the earlier heresies--more of a gradual cultural estrangement than a deliberate rejection of Orthodoxy. And as a result, the various Western churches are largely confused and ignorant about the historic dogmas of the Faith. If you would see us as muddled brothers and sisters instead of heretics, you could be of great service to us.

M-word removed - Michał Kalina.

For the most part, Orthodox claims to exclusivity relate to being the Church; that is the One Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church spoken of in the Creed.  We are exclusive in that we can truly claim to have kept the fullness of the faith, with no additions or subtractions.[/QUOTE]

And I'm strongly inclined to accept that claim. However, I think there are some problems with defining the Church solely in terms of doctrine--this is a point where I find the Roman Communion preferable with their emphasis on communion with Rome. (The problem is that I can't accept as dogma those same teachings of theirs that you reject. So I remain Anglican for the time being.) In other words, I see the Orthodox as correct, but I am working within the framework of a Protestant ecclesiology (such as that of Richard Hooker) in which one can fail to belong to the "sounder part" of the Church and still be part of the Church in a visible, definitive manner. I see the Orthodox as the "sounder part" of the Church rather than as _the Church_.

And yes, the obvious objection to this is that the ecclesiology I have problems with is itself one of the Orthodox dogmas that I claim to accept. Hence my historical argument about the way the West came to differ from the East, which I argue is quite different from the outright rejection of Orthodoxy found in the ancient heresies.

Quote
 As to the position of Christians outside of the Orthodox Church the large consensus of the Saints since the time of the Great Schism and Protestant Reformation has been one of agnosticism: We know where the Church is; we do not know where it is not.

I know that. However, that's still within the framework of a "Cyprianic" ecclesiology in which the unity of the Church defines baptism rather than the other way round. If I'm not mistaken, even the "agnostic" Orthodox would take the view that the acceptance of non-Orthodox baptism is purely by "economia." In the RCC, at least since Vatican II, Protestants (and obviously still more Orthodox) are accepted as part of the Church in a definable, visible manner, although imperfectly so (just barely imperfectly in the case of the Orthodox, much more seriously so in our case). And this position, as Fr. Stanley Jaki has argued, is a development of the position articulated by Pope Stephen in the third century and further elaborated by Augustine in the anti-Donatist controversy. When I speak of Orthodox "exclusivism," I'm speaking of the lack of such an understanding of the imperfect but objectively real ways in which other Christians are united to the Church which (you claim) is most fully embodied in Orthodoxy.

Quote
 Some of us prefer the term "heterodox" which pretty much amounts to "muddled brothers and sisters".  One theory posits that heresy must be a choice, that one must choose to reject Orthodoxy, a choice that not many Western Christians have been in a position to make.

Yes, but the assumption in earlier posts on this forum has still been that  the canons about heretics apply to us. I would say that not only did modern Western Christians not reject Orthodoxy, but no Western Christian body as a whole ever rejected Orthodoxy. The Western Catholic Church never rejected the dogmas accepted before the Schism. Rather, Western Catholics, working within their particular cultural framework, came to see certain dogmas and practices as expressions of the ancient Orthodox dogmas, and when the Orthodox became aware of them they (the Orthodox) rejected those dogmas and practices as heterodox. There are two possibilities:

1. As the RCs claim, these dogmas and practices were correct and needed elaborations of the ancient dogmas of the Church, or at least legitimate applications of them in a Western cultural context; or

2. As you claim, these dogmas and practices were misinterpretations of the ancient dogmas owing to the cultural isolation of the West. (I am strongly inclined to think that in many cases this position is the correct one, and I am certain that where the first position is correct, it is so only in its second and weaker form--in other words, some Western distinctives are wrong and some are legitimate cultural variants, but none are necessary parts of the Faith.)

But either way, the Western distinctives were not originally rejections of the ancient Faith. The Filioque is an excellent case in point. It was added in the context of Western Trinitarian heresy, and Western Christians were genuinely surprised to find that it wasn't used in the East.
Quote
And it is a sad fact that many Protestant denominations are indeed sliding into outright heresy in this present time, and losing any form of doctrine that would define them as "Christian".

I think this statement is a bit hyperbolic--my own denomination is one of the worst offenders, and yet taken as a whole we are clearly and unambiguously Christian, affirming the Trinity, Incarnation, etc. But it's certainly true that Protestants have a lot of problems with the whole idea of orthodoxy and doctrinal authority. That is part of what I meant in my earlier post when I said that you can be of "use" to us. A lot of our debates about doctrine are muddled because what we take to be the "orthodox" doctrines (penal substitution, total depravity, etc.) are themselves distorted Western ideas in the first place. (And as an aside, I take the point that the Church is here to worship God, but surely you would not dispute that love of neighbor is an important part of what it means to be a Christian, and that Jesus calls us to imitate Him precisely in the fact that he came not to be served but to serve.)

I do not object to your practice of closed communion. I respect even the RC practice, but I find yours much more defensible because as you say it's based on a more personal understanding of the relationship between the communicant and the local church/priest, whereas in the RCC you can just show up at a Mass with vast hordes of anonymous people and receive the Eucharist.

Quote
 We cannot pray with you because it would lend legitimacy to your belief that you are indeed Orthodox.

No, it would lend legitimacy to our belief that we are indeed _Christians_. And that's the point I'm making.

Quote
Oh, and there is no nonsense in any experience that draws you closer to Christ.  When I became Orthodox I did not have to reject that my Baptist upbringing and Episcopalian attendance taught me love for Christ, I had to reject any teachings from that experience that conflicted with the teachings of the Church.

Indeed. And yet you see no conflict between that and your earlier statement about not praying with the non-Orthodox. That's the point I'm pressing. There's a gap in Orthodoxy between the generously "agnostic" statements made by many Orthodox and the extreme nervousness felt by most Orthodox about anything that might look like an official recognition that Christianity exists under other forms.

Quote
Welcome to the Forum!

(PS a piece of advice: "monophysite" is a frowned upon word on this Forum.  "Oriental Orthodox" and miaphysite are acceptable.)

Thanks for your welcome and the notification. I apologize for my slip--it is less pardonable than you suppose, since I have been lurking here for a while. (I thought I had posted here a bit some years ago, but the username I generally use was not recognized, and I have a new email address since then, so I just went ahead and registered--I may have never done more than lurk.) I ought to have known better than to use the "M" word, but I'm rather glad I did. I meant no disrespect to the Oriental Orthodox, but the reaction to my use of that word makes my point better than i could have done on my own.

Your (indeed mine as well) ancestors in the Faith had no problem using the forbidden word and condemning the OOs as heretics. Indeed, some of the canons about praying with heretics may well have had the early OOs in mind. And yet it seems widely accepted on this forum that the OOs are in fact basically Orthodox--that the ancient condemnations, while correct in their doctrinal affirmations, may have been mistaken in their assumptions about what their targets actually believed. It seems relatively uncontroversial (though I know some here object to it) to say that cultural differences played a large role in the schism, even though the earliest defenders of the miaphysite position wrote in Greek.

Yet suggest anything like this with regard to Western Christians, and there are indignant posts about the "pan-heresy of Ecumenism" and the literal applicability of the ancient canons against heresy.

Is it entirely unreasonable to suggest that cultural prejudice may be playing a role here--that the OOs get a pass because they are "Eastern," while the people associated with the Fourth Crusade and modern Western European cultural domination and the troubled religious pasts of many converts to Orthodoxy are considered unworthy of the same consideration?

I'm not objecting to the generosity shown to the OOs--I applaud it. I'd just like to see this ecumenical approach more broadly applied by the Orthodox.

In Christ,

Edwin
Logged
FormerReformer
Convertodox of the convertodox
Site Supporter
Archon
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Eastern Orthodox
Jurisdiction: I'll take (e) for "all of the above"
Posts: 2,404



WWW
« Reply #88 on: April 04, 2011, 12:59:46 PM »


And I'm strongly inclined to accept that claim. However, I think there are some problems with defining the Church solely in terms of doctrine--this is a point where I find the Roman Communion preferable with their emphasis on communion with Rome. (The problem is that I can't accept as dogma those same teachings of theirs that you reject. So I remain Anglican for the time being.) In other words, I see the Orthodox as correct, but I am working within the framework of a Protestant ecclesiology (such as that of Richard Hooker) in which one can fail to belong to the "sounder part" of the Church and still be part of the Church in a visible, definitive manner. I see the Orthodox as the "sounder part" of the Church rather than as _the Church_.

And yes, the obvious objection to this is that the ecclesiology I have problems with is itself one of the Orthodox dogmas that I claim to accept. Hence my historical argument about the way the West came to differ from the East, which I argue is quite different from the outright rejection of Orthodoxy found in the ancient heresies.

I understand your objections entirely.  I was myself in near exactly the same position about two years ago, being a broad-high church Episcopalian with a strong foundation in Hooker.  The exclusivity claims were at the time my strongest objection to becoming Orthodox.  It's hard to explain how exactly I overcame these objections, as there were a number of personal and spiritual factors in getting from point (A) to point (B) that quite overshadowed the rational objections.  I suspect being in a strong liberal Episcopalian diocese with absolutely no dissenting parishes contributed a little.


Quote
.... that's still within the framework of a "Cyprianic" ecclesiology in which the unity of the Church defines baptism rather than the other way round. If I'm not mistaken, even the "agnostic" Orthodox would take the view that the acceptance of non-Orthodox baptism is purely by "economia." In the RCC, at least since Vatican II, Protestants (and obviously still more Orthodox) are accepted as part of the Church in a definable, visible manner, although imperfectly so (just barely imperfectly in the case of the Orthodox, much more seriously so in our case). And this position, as Fr. Stanley Jaki has argued, is a development of the position articulated by Pope Stephen in the third century and further elaborated by Augustine in the anti-Donatist controversy. When I speak of Orthodox "exclusivism," I'm speaking of the lack of such an understanding of the imperfect but objectively real ways in which other Christians are united to the Church which (you claim) is most fully embodied in Orthodoxy.

The problem here is that the Roman ecclesiology you speak of is indeed post Vatican II.  I would have to suspect pretty much any teaching coming from this council (more so than I already suspect Roman councils) given the fruits that VII has shown so far.  I can only reiterate that agnosticism is actually a sensible position regarding other Christians, we can only know that Grace operates within our Church and in our Sacraments.  How God's grace extends to other Christians (and perhaps even non-Christians) we cannot know.  To speak authoritatively one way or the other would be to go beyond the bounds of what has been revealed to us.


Quote
Yes, but the assumption in earlier posts on this forum has still been that  the canons about heretics apply to us. I would say that not only did modern Western Christians not reject Orthodoxy, but no Western Christian body as a whole ever rejected Orthodoxy. The Western Catholic Church never rejected the dogmas accepted before the Schism. Rather, Western Catholics, working within their particular cultural framework, came to see certain dogmas and practices as expressions of the ancient Orthodox dogmas, and when the Orthodox became aware of them they (the Orthodox) rejected those dogmas and practices as heterodox. There are two possibilities:

1. As the RCs claim, these dogmas and practices were correct and needed elaborations of the ancient dogmas of the Church, or at least legitimate applications of them in a Western cultural context; or

2. As you claim, these dogmas and practices were misinterpretations of the ancient dogmas owing to the cultural isolation of the West. (I am strongly inclined to think that in many cases this position is the correct one, and I am certain that where the first position is correct, it is so only in its second and weaker form--in other words, some Western distinctives are wrong and some are legitimate cultural variants, but none are necessary parts of the Faith.)

But either way, the Western distinctives were not originally rejections of the ancient Faith. The Filioque is an excellent case in point. It was added in the context of Western Trinitarian heresy, and Western Christians were genuinely surprised to find that it wasn't used in the East.

The filioque is not quite so excellent a point.  The East and West lived alongside each other for several centuries with the understanding that the filioque was merely a "local practice", and that the official creed was still that of Nicene-Constantinople.  The Pope even went so far as to put the Creed on display outside his own church in Greek and Latin without the filioque.  When things finally came to a head in 1054 it was the Papal Legates that excommunicated the East for not having it.  The issue between East and West has always been more about Papal Supremacy than the Filioque, the latter being but a symptom of the infection of the former.

Quote

I think this statement is a bit hyperbolic--my own denomination is one of the worst offenders, and yet taken as a whole we are clearly and unambiguously Christian, affirming the Trinity, Incarnation, etc. But it's certainly true that Protestants have a lot of problems with the whole idea of orthodoxy and doctrinal authority. That is part of what I meant in my earlier post when I said that you can be of "use" to us. A lot of our debates about doctrine are muddled because what we take to be the "orthodox" doctrines (penal substitution, total depravity, etc.) are themselves distorted Western ideas in the first place. (And as an aside, I take the point that the Church is here to worship God, but surely you would not dispute that love of neighbor is an important part of what it means to be a Christian, and that Jesus calls us to imitate Him precisely in the fact that he came not to be served but to serve.)

Well, I don't want to bring specific denominations into this, the Episcopalians might be one of the more noticeable but certainly not the worst.  Certain American segments of the Presbyterians, Lutherans (ELCA, I'm looking at you!), Methodists, and even Baptists are just as bad in the type of heretical teachings the Episcopalians have fallen to.  Going in the complete opposite direction you have pretty much every other denomination falling to Montanism and Donatism.  

As to your denomination specifically, the Episcopalians have reached a point where finding anything remotely "Christian" is becoming more and more difficult every day.  I can point to one or two dioceses which remain (and yet there are even parishes in those dioceses that have fallen) where inter-faith gatherings, gender-neutral "Our Father"s, and rewriting of the Creed to absolutely no recognizable form aren't common place occurrences.   If you wish to remain Anglican, flee, flee I say, to the ACNA (because at this point not being recognized by Canterbury is a good thing.  The African Primates are good company)!  

We cannot pray with you because it would lend legitimacy to your belief that you are indeed Orthodox.

No, it would lend legitimacy to our belief that we are indeed _Christians_. And that's the point I'm making.

Would that were true.  Unfortunately, every time the Orthodox Church allows some leniency in this regard you have band of non-Orthodox more than willing to take it the wrong way.  Not to pick on the Episcopalians, but St Raphael (Haweeny) looked into the possibility of Orthodox Christians who had no nearby parish to attend Episcopalian services and next thing you know there were Episcopalian priests announcing to one and all that the Orthodox and Anglicans were in full communion and telling Orthodox Christians there was no need to travel that extra mile to their Orthodox parish because the Episcopal Church was just as good, Bishop Raphael said so.

This doesn't even take into account those Christians who don't regard sacraments as anything special but see a prayer service as having all the Grace the Church needs.  Orthodoxy needs to witness to Orthodox belief part of which is the Sacramentality and the Unity of the Church.  An Evangelical might be a Christian, but he's a starving and emaciated Christian.

Quote
Indeed. And yet you see no conflict between that and your earlier statement about not praying with the non-Orthodox. That's the point I'm pressing. There's a gap in Orthodoxy between the generously "agnostic" statements made by many Orthodox and the extreme nervousness felt by most Orthodox about anything that might look like an official recognition that Christianity exists under other forms.

When Sts Priscilla and Aquila came across St Apollos preaching the Christian faith in Ephesus they did not rebuke him for it.  They took him aside and instructed him in the fullness of the faith, and he accepted the teachings.  When St Paul came across a few of Apollos' earlier converts he baptized them into the Church (though they had already had the Baptism of St John the Forerunner) and instructed them about the Holy Spirit.  In neither case did the saints come across someone and say "Oh, well, all is fine.  Continue as you did before."  This is the position of the Orthodox Church.


Quote
Thanks for your welcome and the notification. I apologize for my slip--it is less pardonable than you suppose, since I have been lurking here for a while. (I thought I had posted here a bit some years ago, but the username I generally use was not recognized, and I have a new email address since then, so I just went ahead and registered--I may have never done more than lurk.) I ought to have known better than to use the "M" word, but I'm rather glad I did. I meant no disrespect to the Oriental Orthodox, but the reaction to my use of that word makes my point better than i could have done on my own.

Your (indeed mine as well) ancestors in the Faith had no problem using the forbidden word and condemning the OOs as heretics. Indeed, some of the canons about praying with heretics may well have had the early OOs in mind. And yet it seems widely accepted on this forum that the OOs are in fact basically Orthodox--that the ancient condemnations, while correct in their doctrinal affirmations, may have been mistaken in their assumptions about what their targets actually believed. It seems relatively uncontroversial (though I know some here object to it) to say that cultural differences played a large role in the schism, even though the earliest defenders of the miaphysite position wrote in Greek.

Yet suggest anything like this with regard to Western Christians, and there are indignant posts about the "pan-heresy of Ecumenism" and the literal applicability of the ancient canons against heresy.

Is it entirely unreasonable to suggest that cultural prejudice may be playing a role here--that the OOs get a pass because they are "Eastern," while the people associated with the Fourth Crusade and modern Western European cultural domination and the troubled religious pasts of many converts to Orthodoxy are considered unworthy of the same consideration?

I'm not objecting to the generosity shown to the OOs--I applaud it. I'd just like to see this ecumenical approach more broadly applied by the Orthodox.

In Christ,

Edwin


Please, don't confuse forum policy as any sort of official teaching by the Eastern or Oriental Orthodox Churches.  The fact is this board was founded by both Eastern and Oriental Orthodox Christians and the policy reflects this fact.  Our two communions might perhaps be closer to each other now than ever, due to meetings which have taken place which have established that there might have been some misunderstandings due to translations of terms from one language to another, but we are not in communion yet.  Go trawling the EO-OO discussion board and you might come across some language regarding the meetings or even the opposing Church stronger than anything regarding Western and Eastern Christian ecumenism and coming from both sides!

As for taking a similar approach to Western Christians, the administrators and mods here do a fairly good job at keeping offensive terminology out of the discussions.  There is a word which begins with "U" that must NEVER be used in regard to Byzantine Catholics, there is a word which begins with "P" that must NEVER be used in regard to Roman Catholics (a single Roman Catholic member's username is the rare exception), and were any of our Protestant members to complain about certain terms used in regard to them I'm sure such words would be banned as well (not that I know any words which might fit the above criteria).  We can call each other heretics all day but never, ever use the "m", "u", or "p" words.
« Last Edit: April 04, 2011, 01:00:28 PM by FormerReformer » Logged

"Funny," said Lancelot, "how the people who can't pray say that prayers are not answered, however much the people who can pray say they are."  TH White

Oh, no: I've succumbed to Hyperdoxy!
Contarini
Newbie
*
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian, belonging to the Anglican Communion, adhering to the teachings of the Seven Councils
Jurisdiction: The Episcopal Church
Posts: 14


« Reply #89 on: April 05, 2011, 10:04:19 AM »



I understand your objections entirely.  I was myself in near exactly the same position about two years ago, being a broad-high church Episcopalian with a strong foundation in Hooker.  The exclusivity claims were at the time my strongest objection to becoming Orthodox.  It's hard to explain how exactly I overcame these objections, as there were a number of personal and spiritual factors in getting from point (A) to point (B) that quite overshadowed the rational objections.  I suspect being in a strong liberal Episcopalian diocese with absolutely no dissenting parishes contributed a little.

Yes. The last time I seriously looked into Orthodoxy was in about 2004 when living in New Jersey. I also, of course, thought seriously about the RCC during those years, as I had done for a long time previously. Since moving to Northern Indiana I find remaining Episcopalian much easier, although I remain concerned about the big picture.


Quote

The problem here is that the Roman ecclesiology you speak of is indeed post Vatican II.

In its developed form, yes. But as I said, it is rooted in the ancient affirmation of the validity of schismatic baptisms. That is not a modern position, and it is one I would like to see the Orthodox affirm unequivocally. If there is one doctrinal issue between East and West on which I think the West really is correct, it would be this one.

Quote
  I would have to suspect pretty much any teaching coming from this council (more so than I already suspect Roman councils) given the fruits that VII has shown so far.

Why are you so sure that Vatican II itself is to blame? Aren't you jumping too quickly to this conclusion? If, as the Orthodox say and as I believe, the West has been dominated for a long time by a rather distorted understanding of what orthodox Christianity is, and if the RCC in particular has tended to overemphasize juridical authority and hierarchical control, then it follows that a loosening of the reins would have the immediate result that people would fall into a lot of deplorable errors. It seems rather hasty to blame Vatican II itself unless you can point to specific teachings of that Council that you believe to be a movement in the wrong direction vis-a-vis previous RC teaching.

This hostile attitude to Vatican II is probably one of the main things that divides me from converts to Orthodoxy, especially ex-Anglicans. I am thoroughly convinced of the basic validity of "ressourcement" Catholicism as found in theologians such as Henri de Lubac, Louis Bouyer, Jean Danielou, etc. (I would put the Orthodox theologian Olivier Clement in essentially the same theological camp--I find Clement's account of the Papacy entirely convincing.) The problem is that in many ways the reality described by these theologians corresponds much better to Orthodoxy than to Latin Catholicism. Post-Vatican-II Catholicism in its most official manifestations--the Catechism of the Catholic Church, for instance--shows the strong influence of Eastern Christianity.

I understand that much of the objection to post-Vatican-II Catholicism focuses on liturgy. But there again, the problem goes back arguably to the sixth century when the traditional Roman Rite took shape. According to Aidan Nichols (in _Rome and the Eastern Churches_), the Latin Rite was from the beginning written in a classicizing Latin largely inaccessible to the common people--it reflected the takeover of the Western Church by the Roman aristocracy. The Byzantine Rite, from the other hand, developed organically out of a liturgy that was deeply participatory. Thus, while the traditional Latin Mass may superficially seem very similar to the Byzantine liturgy, in my experience the two are radically different. (Admittedly, not having lived before Vatican II, I'm basing my judgment of the TLM on two Low Masses I've attended, one SSPX and one indult. I'm sure a High Mass would be somewhat different--but again, the very existence of the "Low Mass" is a Western distinctive.)


 
Quote
I can only reiterate that agnosticism is actually a sensible position regarding other Christians, we can only know that Grace operates within our Church and in our Sacraments.

If Rome was right against Cyprian about the unrepeatability of schismatic baptism, then given what orthodox Christians have always believed about baptism we may have grounds to know a good deal more than that.

I've never quite understood why this wasn't an issue in the early Church, given that Rome clearly differed with Cyprian on this point in the 3rd century, and it's the sort of thing you'd think someone would have made a fight about on one side or the other if the East similarly differed from Rome that early on something this important. I have to wonder whether the "Cyprianic" position of the Eastern Church is genuinely ancient--but I'd have to do further research on the subject.


Quote

But either way, the Western distinctives were not originally rejections of the ancient Faith. The Filioque is an excellent case in point. It was added in the context of Western Trinitarian heresy, and Western Christians were genuinely surprised to find that it wasn't used in the East.

The filioque is not quite so excellent a point.  The East and West lived alongside each other for several centuries with the understanding that the filioque was merely a "local practice", and that the official creed was still that of Nicene-Constantinople.  The Pope even went so far as to put the Creed on display outside his own church in Greek and Latin without the filioque.  When things finally came to a head in 1054 it was the Papal Legates that excommunicated the East for not having it.[/QUOTE]

Indeed. And that's my point. The West genuinely thought that this was the ancient position of the Church. The problem was cultural estrangement.

Quote
  The issue between East and West has always been more about Papal Supremacy than the Filioque, the latter being but a symptom of the infection of the former.

That makes absolutely no sense. The Filioque originated in Spain and was resisted by the Papacy.

"Papal Supremacy" is a complicated issue. I agree with the Orthodox that the way the Papacy has been exercised in the past millennium is disordered, and that many of the standard RC apologetic claims against the Orthodox betray a juridical approach to ecclesiology that is at odds with the Tradition. However, at the same time it has to be noted that there is no dogma called "Papal Supremacy"--that's a polemical catch-all term used by the Orthodox (and many Anglicans). The closest one could come to it is the concept of "plenitudo potestatis," which is unfortunately reaffirmed in the CCC, and/or the claim of "ordinary, direct jurisdiction" made at Vatican I.

The problem I have is that the choice in practice is between a disordered Papacy and no papacy at all. And I'm just as certain that the Petrine ministry of Rome is an integral part of the right ordering of the Church as I am that the way Rome has exercised this ministry has become deeply disordered. Insofar as I have an excuse for remaining Anglican, that is it!

Quote

Well, I don't want to bring specific denominations into this, the Episcopalians might be one of the more noticeable but certainly not the worst.

I said "one of the worst."

John Shelby Spong is about as bad as you get. . . .

Quote
  Going in the complete opposite direction you have pretty much every other denomination falling to Montanism and Donatism.

I don't think the choices are that stark at all. Most evangelicals recognize the problems with Donatism, though in practice they often wind up practicing a kind of Donatism because of their weak ecclesiology and the realities of American Protestantism. I frankly find your injunction to "flee to the ACNA" to be a form of Donatism. . . .

 
Quote
As to your denomination specifically, the Episcopalians have reached a point where finding anything remotely "Christian" is becoming more and more difficult every day.

I have never found it difficult, even when I lived in New Jersey.

Either your experience is radically different from mine, or you are working with a much more draconian definition of "remotely Christian" than I am.

Even one of the more radical churches near me in the Diocese of Newark (I lived practically on the diiocesan border, and attended church in the Diocese of New Jersey, which is more middle-of-the-road by Episcopalian standards), which did not use the Nicene Creed, replaced it with a statement saying "Jesus is Lord and we are God's people." That's vague and implicitly unorthodox (inasmuch as this substituted for the Creed), but certainly more than "remotely" Christian!

Quote
  I can point to one or two dioceses which remain (and yet there are even parishes in those dioceses that have fallen) where inter-faith gatherings, gender-neutral "Our Father"s, and rewriting of the Creed to absolutely no recognizable form aren't common place occurrences.

I am not sure what you mean by "absolutely no recognizable form." I haven't experienced this myself. A gender-neutral Our Father is certainly at least remotely Christian! And "interfaith gatherings" can mean a lot of things. It seems to me that a lot of conservative ex-Anglicans use the phrase "not remotely Christian" to mean what I'd call "clearly Christian but of dubious orthodoxy at best."

Quote
  If you wish to remain Anglican, flee, flee I say, to the ACNA (because at this point not being recognized by Canterbury is a good thing.

I find that to be very odd advice, though unfortunately I've heard it before. The reason I remain Anglican is that I do not wish to go into schism from the body of Christians with whom I am presently associated. Why on earth would I or anyone else leave that body to join yet another sect of Protestant schismatics, which is essentially what the ACNA are at this point (well, minus the three or four dioceses that came over from the Episcopal Church as geographical entities--if I lived in those parts of the country, I'd happily be ACNA)?

I don't care about being Anglican per se. I care about the unity of the Church defined as the whole company of the baptized. And that is my basic point of difference with Orthodoxy. This conversation over the past few days has clarified that point for me.



Quote

Would that were true.  Unfortunately, every time the Orthodox Church allows some leniency in this regard you have band of non-Orthodox more than willing to take it the wrong way.  Not to pick on the Episcopalians, but St Raphael (Haweeny) looked into the possibility of Orthodox Christians who had no nearby parish to attend Episcopalian services and next thing you know there were Episcopalian priests announcing to one and all that the Orthodox and Anglicans were in full communion and telling Orthodox Christians there was no need to travel that extra mile to their Orthodox parish because the Episcopal Church was just as good, Bishop Raphael said so.

That's a valid point. "I'm-as-good-as-you" is the worm in the apple of Anglo-Catholicism. . . . if Anglo-Catholicism had been willing from the beginning to take a humble and penitential attitude to churches of more undoubted orthodoxy and apostolicity, the story might have been very different. Unfortunately, Anglo-Catholics have from the beginning played a shell game of trying to persuade RCs and Orthodox (mostly Orthodox because RCs knew better) that they (the Anglo-Catholics) spoke for Anglicans as a whole. And non-Anglo-Catholic Anglicans, who don't actually accept the teachings of the "undivided Church," have been happy to piggyback on those claims of Catholicity. Never mind the fact that many folks (including very conservative ones) claim to be Anglo-Catholic while in fact rejecting basic parts of the "undivided Church" package. (The wife of one "Continuing Anglican" archbishop told me confidently that her particular jurisdiction rejected the practice of asking for the prayers of the Theotokos--and this group has the word "Catholic" in its name!) I've been guilty of this too--I've used Anglicanism as a place to work out my remaining issues with pre-Reformation Christianity, while claiming basically to adhere to it.



Quote

When Sts Priscilla and Aquila came across St Apollos preaching the Christian faith in Ephesus they did not rebuke him for it.  They took him aside and instructed him in the fullness of the faith, and he accepted the teachings.  When St Paul came across a few of Apollos' earlier converts he baptized them into the Church (though they had already had the Baptism of St John the Forerunner) and instructed them about the Holy Spirit.  In neither case did the saints come across someone and say "Oh, well, all is fine.  Continue as you did before."  This is the position of the Orthodox Church.

I have no problem with what you say here. I think Metropolitan Jonah's address to the ACNA convention was marvelous--it was an excellent example of what I meant when I said earlier that the Orthodox can be "of great use to us."


Quote
Please, don't confuse forum policy as any sort of official teaching by the Eastern or Oriental Orthodox Churches.  The fact is this board was founded by both Eastern and Oriental Orthodox Christians and the policy reflects this fact. 

I can see that. I imagine that if Orthodox and Eastern Catholics were to found a board together, the tone might be rather different toward the Roman Communion.

So are you denying altogether that the majority of Orthodox take a much more lenient view toward the OOs than toward Western Christians?

Edwin
« Last Edit: April 05, 2011, 10:06:51 AM by Contarini » Logged
Tags: ecumenism unity 
Pages: « 1 2 3 4 »  All   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.18 | SMF © 2013, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!
Page created in 0.2 seconds with 73 queries.