Author Topic: Old Believers...  (Read 2152 times)

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Offline ignatius

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Old Believers...
« on: February 03, 2009, 02:09:18 PM »
Do Old Believers have Bishops and an ordained Priesthood?
« Last Edit: February 03, 2009, 02:48:56 PM by Fr. Anastasios »
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.”

Offline Schultz

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Re: Old Believers...
« Reply #1 on: February 03, 2009, 02:26:02 PM »
It depends.  There are different kinds of Old Believers, starting with the Priested and Priestless ones.  Obviously the Priestless ones don't have bishops or priests.  There are some Priested OB's that are in communion with mainstream Orthodoxy (notably (for the US) the Church of the Nativity in Erie, PA), but most are not, IIRC.
« Last Edit: February 03, 2009, 02:49:06 PM by Fr. Anastasios »
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Offline Anastasios

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Re: Old Believers...
« Reply #2 on: February 03, 2009, 02:49:42 PM »
I modified the above to fix the grammatical error only.
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Offline Hopeful Faithful

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Re: Old Believer's...
« Reply #3 on: February 03, 2009, 02:58:48 PM »
Do Old Believer's have Bishops and an ordained Priesthood?

A relative few "unionist" Old Believers have accepted New-Rite bishops. In so doing they lost any claim of being Old Believers. The more strict Old Believers clearly explain that Christ is their Heavenly Archpriest now and forever. Most Old Believers are more strict than the unionists and accept Prophet Daniel's fulfilling words of the "desolate sanctuary" and accept likeminded Church Fathers as Chrysostom who said that in the end there will be no earthly presiding bishops. Honestly, the term "priestless" is a misnomer created by those outside the Old Faith in order to make Old Believers falsely appear protestant, as most protestants reject the idea of priests. Strict Old Believers would never reject good priests, but evil priests they do reject. The people of the Old Faith are the keepers of anceint Orthodoxy and are not at all protestant. As Daniel foretold, we have been and are now at the end of years.

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« Last Edit: February 03, 2009, 03:31:16 PM by Hopeful Faithful »
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Offline ialmisry

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Re: Old Believer's...
« Reply #4 on: February 03, 2009, 03:08:56 PM »
Do Old Believer's have Bishops and an ordained Priesthood?

A relative few "unionist" Old Believers have accepted New-Rite bishops. In so doing they lost any claim of being Old Believers. The more strict Old Believers say that Christ is their Heavenly Archpriest.

Yeah, all Protestants say that.

Quote
Most Old Believers are more strict than unionists and accept Prophet Daniel's fulfilling words of the "desolate sanctuary" and accept likeminded Church Fathers as Chrysostom who said that in the end there will be no earthly presiding bishops.
Some quotes please.

Quote
Honestly, the term "priestless" is a misnomer created by those outside the Old Faith.
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Offline Bogoliubtsy

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Re: Old Believer's...
« Reply #5 on: February 03, 2009, 03:11:37 PM »
Do Old Believer's have Bishops and an ordained Priesthood?

A relative few "unionist" Old Believers have accepted New-Rite bishops. In so doing they lost any claim of being Old Believers. The more strict Old Believers say that Christ is their Heavenly Archpriest. Most Old Believers are more strict than the unionists and accept Prophet Daniel's fulfilling words of the "desolate sanctuary" and accept likeminded Church Fathers as Chrysostom who said that in the end there will be no earthly presiding bishops. Honestly, the term "priestless" is a misnomer created by those outside the Old Faith.

So the end came about 350 years ago, huh?  ;)
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Offline PeterTheAleut

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Re: Old Believer's...
« Reply #6 on: February 03, 2009, 03:25:09 PM »
Honestly, the term "priestless" is a misnomer created by those outside the Old Faith in order to make Old Believers falsely appear protestant, as most protestants reject the idea of priests.
But you don't have any priests, do you?  Doesn't this by definition make you "priestless"?
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Offline ignatius

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Re: Old Believers...
« Reply #7 on: February 03, 2009, 06:25:52 PM »
Sorry everyone I didn't understand the replies... am I to understand that they have Priests but they are more like Protestant Pastors?
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Offline Hopeful Faithful

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Re: Old Believers...
« Reply #8 on: February 03, 2009, 06:37:00 PM »
Sorry everyone I didn't understand the replies... am I to understand that they have Priests but they are more like Protestant Pastors?

Some Old Believers have lost their identity by accepting New-Rite bishops. The strict Old Believers believe the prophecy of Daniel saying there will be a "desolate sanctuary" is presnet now at the end of years. So the strict Old Believers have Christ as their Heavenly Archpriest now. The good strict Old Believers are Old Orthodox and are not in any way Protestant. They never have rejected any good clergy, but they do reject evil clergy.

Forgive, brother John
« Last Edit: February 03, 2009, 06:43:16 PM by Hopeful Faithful »
HIS Judgment Cometh, And That Right Soon! Mark 13:35

If any man be ignorant, let him alone be ignorant (at his own peril). 1 Cor. 14:38

Let us all hope to be found a faithful, loving bond-slave of Christ on the soon approaching Last Day.

Offline antiderivative

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Re: Old Believers...
« Reply #9 on: February 03, 2009, 06:41:02 PM »
They reject priests because they believe the order became invalid after the Schism. They do recognize the priesthood before the the Schism. Protestants reject priesthood both past and present and for entirely different reasons.
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Offline PeterTheAleut

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Re: Old Believers...
« Reply #10 on: February 03, 2009, 07:01:19 PM »
They reject priests because they believe the order became invalid after the Schism. They do recognize the priesthood before the the Schism. Protestants reject priesthood both past and present and for entirely different reasons.
In this case, the Schism being the Old Believer Schism of 17th Century Russia.
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Offline ignatius

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Re: Old Believers...
« Reply #11 on: February 04, 2009, 10:01:05 AM »
Grace and Peace,

I'm not here to make any judgments towards anyone. I'm just curious and want to ask questions. Thank you for everyone offering answers.

How many Old Believer's were there at it's height. Are there any groups like this outside of Russia? Is there a history of abuse towards them?

Am I to understand that Hopeful Faithful is an Old Believer?
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.”

Offline PeterTheAleut

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Re: Old Believers...
« Reply #12 on: February 04, 2009, 05:40:26 PM »
Are there any groups like this outside of Russia?
Yes.  You'll find large colonies of Old Believers in Alaska and in the Willamette Valley of northwestern Oregon.

Is there a history of abuse towards them?
Old Believers were very much persecuted by the Tsars--I believe with the blessing of the Patriarch--following the Old Believer Schism.  This is, in fact, much of the reason reconciliation between the Old Believers and the "Nikonian" Russian Orthodox Church has become virtually impossible--too much resentment.

Am I to understand that Hopeful Faithful is an Old Believer?
He has identified himself as such.
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Offline Rosehip

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Re: Old Believers...
« Reply #13 on: February 04, 2009, 07:42:53 PM »
Do Old Believers do any evangelistic work of any sort? Do they welcome and gain new converts? What is their policy on this?
+ Our dear sister Martha (Rosehip) passed away on Dec 20, 2010.  May her memory be eternal! +

Offline antiderivative

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Re: Old Believers...
« Reply #14 on: February 04, 2009, 11:55:32 PM »
Quote
Do Old Believers do any evangelistic work of any sort? Do they welcome and gain new converts? What is their policy on this?

I wouldn't be surprised if they did. Of course, there are many different Old Believer sects, and most tend to be very reclusive and some live like the Amish. In fact, here is a youtube video where the photographer claims to be the first person to visit this village of Old Believers since the fall of the czar. In other words, these people, in the 21st century, were living in Russia, and never knew of the Soviet Union, and thought the czar was still in power.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=DS2w1ICj2Zw
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Offline Alveus Lacuna

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Re: Old Believers...
« Reply #15 on: February 05, 2009, 12:39:13 AM »
In fact, here is a youtube video where the photographer claims to be the first person to visit this village of Old Believers since the fall of the czar. In other words, these people, in the 21st century, were living in Russia, and never knew of the Soviet Union, and thought the czar was still in power.

If the photos were actually of Old Believers then I would have expected at least one photograph of a church or something religious in content.  The claim that they had not heard of the revolution seems totally bogus to me.
« Last Edit: February 05, 2009, 12:40:12 AM by Alveus Lacuna »

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Re: Old Believers...
« Reply #16 on: February 05, 2009, 12:17:42 PM »
Am I to understand that Hopeful Faithful is an Old Believer?

In other posts, Hopeful Faithful has said that he is working on becoming an Old Believer, but he has not joined them or moved to where they have a settlement or taken other steps.


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Offline Rosehip

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Re: Old Believers...
« Reply #17 on: February 05, 2009, 12:22:03 PM »
Quote
Do Old Believers do any evangelistic work of any sort? Do they welcome and gain new converts? What is their policy on this?

I wouldn't be surprised if they did. Of course, there are many different Old Believer sects, and most tend to be very reclusive and some live like the Amish. In fact, here is a youtube video where the photographer claims to be the first person to visit this village of Old Believers since the fall of the czar. In other words, these people, in the 21st century, were living in Russia, and never knew of the Soviet Union, and thought the czar was still in power.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=DS2w1ICj2Zw

So how is living in such a reclusive, Amish-like manner helpful to the outside world?  It seems to me rather more selfish than anything else. What do you all think?
+ Our dear sister Martha (Rosehip) passed away on Dec 20, 2010.  May her memory be eternal! +

Offline ozgeorge

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Re: Old Believers...
« Reply #18 on: February 05, 2009, 12:25:07 PM »
So how is living in such a reclusive, Amish-like manner helpful to the outside world?  It seems to me rather more selfish than anything else. What do you all think?
You mean, like in a monastery?
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Offline Rosehip

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Re: Old Believers...
« Reply #19 on: February 05, 2009, 12:30:39 PM »
Well, Ozgeorge, I didn't think most OBs were monastics. They have large families, from what I can see. I'm not trying to judge, I'm just wondering what you all think about living a non-monastic life in such a state of reclusion from the outside world. Is it a good thing or a bad thing? Should we as christians be trying to live redemptively in the world-should we be light and salt or should we be covering our light by going into hiding? I'm just trying to understand what the Orthodox approach is to this.
+ Our dear sister Martha (Rosehip) passed away on Dec 20, 2010.  May her memory be eternal! +

Offline ozgeorge

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Re: Old Believers...
« Reply #20 on: February 05, 2009, 12:39:39 PM »
I guess what I'm saying is that the line between "monastic" and "non-monastic" may not be so clear.
When I go to see my Spiritual Father, I am always amazed at the other laity who go to see him. Some are married, some widowed, others single, yet they live ordinary lives in extraordinary ways. Some live in communities together, others live alone. But ultimately, whether married, single, celebate or in community, each one of us is on our own in a very real way before God.
I've always understood that in Orthodoxy, service to the poor is just as important as praying in secret for the world. "Contemplation" and "Ministry" are both "work" in Orthodoxy.
Also I think we all need to accept differences. I don't think there is one way for Orthodox laity to live. There are many different types of plants in God's Garden; and a garden full of nothing but roses would be quite tedious.
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Re: Old Believers...
« Reply #21 on: February 05, 2009, 01:06:25 PM »
Very beautifully put, George, especially the garden analogy!

I think the most important thing is what works for the individual person's road to salvation.  For some people, that is indeed living apart from the world at large is relatively isolated communities; for others, it may be living in the middle of a big city.  Each person is unique and different and the Church has given us so many lanes, as it were, on the road to salvation.  Just as there is room in the Church for the Desert Fathers and St. Theodore of the Studion, there is room for the metropolitan, socially active and the simple, rural laity.
« Last Edit: February 05, 2009, 01:07:24 PM by Schultz »
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Offline Rosehip

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Re: Old Believers...
« Reply #22 on: February 05, 2009, 01:10:00 PM »
Thanks Ozgeorge and Shultz, for the excellent, and yes, beautiful explanations! So very helpful!
+ Our dear sister Martha (Rosehip) passed away on Dec 20, 2010.  May her memory be eternal! +

Offline PeterTheAleut

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Re: Old Believers...
« Reply #23 on: February 05, 2009, 04:13:12 PM »
And what of the Amish community who suffered through the anguish of seeing their children massacred by a deranged gunman a few years ago?  When the camera finally shone on these somewhat reclusive people, did they not give a very beautiful witness to Christ in how they showed nothing but forgiveness to the man who murdered their children?
« Last Edit: February 05, 2009, 04:13:37 PM by PeterTheAleut »
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