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Author Topic: Old vs. New Calendar?  (Read 207021 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: November 18, 2003, 02:34:35 PM »

CONTEXT NOTE:  Seeing that the Great Calendar Controversy comes up so often in Faith Issues discussions, I have merged all the previous recurrences of this debate into this one master sticky thread in an effort to consolidate all past and future dialogues on this dispute.  Please keep this thread focused on the substance of the Calendar Controversy in and of itself and discuss such connected but separate issues as relations between the Old Calendarist churches and the rest of the Orthodox world on other threads.  Thank you.

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« Reply #1 on: November 18, 2003, 02:41:01 PM »

Old. ROCOR!
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« Reply #2 on: November 18, 2003, 02:48:55 PM »

Mayan!
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« Reply #3 on: November 18, 2003, 02:49:45 PM »

BTW, not all heterodox are new calendar: Ukrainian Catholics in Ukraine and parts of Canada are all Old Calendar! :-)
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« Reply #4 on: November 18, 2003, 02:52:16 PM »

BTW, not all heterodox are new calendar: Ukrainian Catholics in Ukraine and parts of Canada are all Old Calendar! :-)

OOPS!  You're right.  Forgive my omission.

Anyway, mostly concerned about Orthodox jurisdictions.
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« Reply #5 on: November 18, 2003, 03:14:06 PM »

Ukies in the UK are Old Calendar  but in France are New  - weird Smiley
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« Reply #6 on: November 18, 2003, 03:27:27 PM »

Gregorian.  All the Orthodox in India have been on the Gregorian calendar since 1953.
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« Reply #7 on: November 18, 2003, 03:34:30 PM »

Old, as are most of the world's Orthodox Christians. Wink
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« Reply #8 on: November 18, 2003, 05:24:33 PM »

New calendar, but would prefer it on the Old.
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« Reply #9 on: November 18, 2003, 06:02:36 PM »

Funny how you guys call us heterodox. :smiley6:
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« Reply #10 on: November 18, 2003, 06:11:46 PM »

Funny how you guys call us heterodox. :smiley6:

Well, that's because you are.  You believe differently - what the word means.
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« Reply #11 on: November 18, 2003, 06:44:25 PM »

[Funny how you guys call us heterodox. ]

I like the little smiley shaking it's finger.  Yes Latin Trad in the East's eyes we are heterodox.  But we are very good at it. Smiley

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« Reply #12 on: November 19, 2003, 11:52:46 AM »

New and not hung up on it!

JoeS

Sorry, my vote was in error, I meant to vote Gregorian.

  :-";"xx
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« Reply #13 on: November 19, 2003, 07:57:05 PM »

New calendar, but would prefer it on the Old.


Exactly.  My reason for wanting old calendar is that it would help get away from the commercialism of the holiday.  I love the fact that Pascha rarely matches up with western Easter.  Especially when they are weeks apart and you can celebrate without all the distraction.
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« Reply #14 on: November 19, 2003, 09:16:24 PM »

Just a note on my "Julian" vote.
A.C.R.O.D. is split "about 50/50 in Julian/Revised. Older parishes are on Julian with a one-time option to change to the 'New'. Newer parishes are all on 'Revised'.
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« Reply #15 on: November 21, 2003, 04:23:55 AM »

I went to vigil last night for the Entrance of the Virgin Mary at the church of the Holy Trinity here in Thessaloniki. Obviously this is New Calendar. The reason I went to this particular church and not my own (we had vigil there too) was that a number of monks from Mount Athos were leading the service (two of whom I know). They are Old Calendar and will be celebrating the same vigil in another 13 days on Mount Athos.

Just thought you might appreciate this.

John.

P.S. I didn't stay until it finished at 4:30am but left at 1:30am as I had to come to work today. Falling asleep on my keyboard is frowned upon, especially when the buffer fills up and the computer starts beeping
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« Reply #16 on: July 15, 2004, 03:40:40 PM »

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7) That whoever does not follow the customs of the Church as the Seven Holy Ecumenical Councils decreed, and Holy Pascha, and the Menologion with which they did well in making it a law that we should follow it, and wishes to follow the newly-invented Paschalion and the New Menologion of the atheist astronomers of the Pope, and opposes all those things and wishes to overthrow and destroy the dogmas and customs of the Church which have been handed down by our fathers, let him suffer anathema and be put out of the Church of Christ and out of the Congregation of the Faithful.

Signed by:

Jeremiah of Constantinople
Silvester of Alexandria
Sophronius of Jerusalem

In the presence of the rest of the prelates at the Council.

How do New Calendar Orthodox respond to this encyclical?

Greg

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« Reply #17 on: July 15, 2004, 06:37:53 PM »

By placing faith in the intelligence and discernment of our bishop, his Eminence Arbp. Dmitri; our metropolitan, his Beatitude Herman; and all the Orthodox patriarchs, none of whom (including those who have retained the Julian calendar) have excommunicated those who have adopted the Revised Julian (or whatever you want to call it) calendar.  In short, by not overreaching, and making myself out to be fit to stand in judgment over men much holier than myself, with much greater spiritual responsibility than me.
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« Reply #18 on: July 15, 2004, 06:49:13 PM »

"Atheist Astronomers"?!?  

Ambrosemzv, Your post is a breath of fresh air.  Thank you.

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« Reply #19 on: July 16, 2004, 01:39:33 AM »

I agree with Ebor - very well said Ambrosemzv!

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« Reply #20 on: July 16, 2004, 02:08:46 AM »

Yeah, let's throw out the fathers when they are inconvient!
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« Reply #21 on: July 16, 2004, 08:06:17 AM »

Yeah, let's throw out the fathers when they are inconvient!

Well, I'm certainly willing to throw out the opinions of those who engage in cheap slurs such as "the Pope's atheist astronomers". I don't notice the fathers throwing out Ptolemy, when it comes to that.
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« Reply #22 on: July 16, 2004, 08:36:36 AM »

BTW, I am on the New Calendar (OCA).

Quote
By placing faith in the intelligence and discernment of our bishop...

Okay, but how do they respond to this?

Quote
Well, I'm certainly willing to throw out the opinions of those who engage in cheap slurs such as "the Pope's atheist astronomers". I don't notice the fathers throwing out Ptolemy, when it comes to that.

But can this be so easily dismissed because you do not like the language used? Keble, you seem to always make it a point to hold fast to the church you are in, to accept the teaching of one's bishop, elders, etc. As an Anglican, I am sure your bishops have said, perhaps not "cheap slurs", but things very questionable concerning the Faith. Are you now willing to throw out their opinions?

I believe my initial question in this thread is perfectly vaild, regardless of the language used by Jeremiah of Constantinople.

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« Reply #23 on: July 16, 2004, 11:10:54 AM »

Sometimes the language a person uses can show that he/she does not understand what they are talking about.  And that's what "atheist astronomers" might seem to indicate.  Working from real astronomical observations is somehow dedicated to destroying dogmas?  

Ebor
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« Reply #24 on: July 16, 2004, 11:29:06 AM »

Well, I have to agree with Greg, that one cannot "throw out" the opinions of the fathers, just because they happen to have used intemperate language.  St. Jerome was notorious for it, but I doubt either Keble or Ebor are prepared to dismiss him, in general.  On the other hand, his opinions expressed in highly intemperate language, when they involves, e.g., rabid anti-semitism, are widely ignored even by faithful Orthodox theologians.

But, Greg, not being Protestants, don't we have to recognize that those chiefly responsible for interpreting the Fathers and applying them to the modern circumstances of the Church, are the bishops, to whom we owe obedience?  Certainly, we need to read the Fathers, too, but, if my interpretation of the Fathers does not reach the same conclusion as my Bishop's, don't I still need to give him the benefit of the doubt?  Especially, when that opinion (i.e., that the following of the Revised Julian calendar need not, at least, render one excommunicate) is shared by all the current patriarchs of the Orthodox Church nd the vast majority of her other bishops?
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« Reply #25 on: July 16, 2004, 12:21:09 PM »

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But, Greg, not being Protestants, don't we have to recognize that those chiefly responsible for interpreting the Fathers and applying them to the modern circumstances of the Church, are the bishops, to whom we owe obedience?

Yes.

Quote
Certainly, we need to read the Fathers, too, but, if my interpretation of the Fathers does not reach the same conclusion as my Bishop's, don't I still need to give him the benefit of the doubt?

Yes and no. Yes, in the sense that we ought not to assume that we as individuals are the final discerners of truth. On the other hand, sometimes bishops are wrong and we need to recognize this. What would a Roman Catholic's response be to this? In other words, he is trusting in his bishops, yet we as Orthodox know that their teaching is not correct.

Greg
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« Reply #26 on: July 16, 2004, 01:56:16 PM »

But can this be so easily dismissed because you do not like the language used? Keble, you seem to always make it a point to hold fast to the church you are in, to accept the teaching of one's bishop, elders, etc. As an Anglican, I am sure your bishops have said, perhaps not "cheap slurs", but things very questionable concerning the Faith. Are you now willing to throw out their opinions?

Well, for an Anglican layman, the question is very easy. The calendar is a matter of discipline, not of faith. Nobody in the west has a calendar issue at the moment, except for the East/West descrepancy. If the Aleppo solution or some other ecumenical resolution is adopted in the west, all will adopt it, I expect. If not, well, I go to church as the current calendar dictates.

Anglicans are not bound to agree with every fool thing their bishops say. Whether or not this is too loose is another matter.
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« Reply #27 on: July 16, 2004, 02:20:26 PM »

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Well, for an Anglican layman, the question is very easy. The calendar is a matter of discipline, not of faith.

Fair enough for you and the West. But for the East the Calendar is much more bound up with the Faith (if this is a good thing is another question, but for the time being...).

Quote
Anglicans are not bound to agree with every fool thing their bishops say.

Again, aside from the language used, what are your thoughts concerning the anathama of the Sigillon?

Greg

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« Reply #28 on: July 16, 2004, 03:03:45 PM »

Yeah, let's throw out the fathers when they are inconvient!

Or, better yet, let's individually seek to apply woodenly everything said at any point in time to today's situations!  That's much better!   Roll Eyes

Okay, but how do they [the bishops] respond to this?

My understanding is that they have kept the Julian Paschalion in order to keep the Feast of Feasts with the rest of the Church.  As for the rest of the year, the point of a Church's calendar, as has been noted before now, is to redeem the civil one with which it is supposed to correspond.  My guess, Anastasios (to bunny trail a bit), is that, were the seven-day week or some other calendar issue to arise, the Church would wait it out to see if it were a permanent change, rather than one merely associated with a revolution, as were these short-lived upheavals.  

      This "Gregorian" calendar is now universally accepted (AFAIK) and used; the logic is, therefore, that we "redeem the time" in a way that will be relevant to all living in the area where the calendar is used, both the faithful and those outside the Church.

If I read the encyclical correctly, it seems that a major part of the problem with the Gregorian change was that it arbitrarily changed the date of Pascha without regard to the Eastern practice, which, granted, was adherence to the traditional (albeit, less astronomically correct) calendar.  The date of Pascha was the main reason for establishing a calendar; as the New C-ists keep Pascha with the date of the Church, it would seem as if we do not fall under its anathema as some would so eagerly claim.

Just my thoughts.

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« Reply #29 on: July 16, 2004, 03:16:33 PM »

Fair enough for you and the West. But for the East the Calendar is much more bound up with the Faith (if this is a good thing is another question, but for the time being...).

Well, to me it seems that it isn't a faith issue, but that it is being claimed to be a faith issue because it helps justify the East/West separation.

Quote
Again, aside from the language used, what are your thoughts concerning the anathama of the Sigillon?

How can you separate it from its language?
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« Reply #30 on: July 16, 2004, 06:07:34 PM »

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How can you separate it from its language?

How can you understand it when it was written in a language that (I pressume) you are not overly faimilar with?  From my guess at the wording of this "ungodly" would be a better translation that athiest.  But why a couple of prots so ardently defend a calendar that has done nothing but bring schisms into the Church, is intersting.

Quote
As for the rest of the year, the point of a Church's calendar, as has been noted before now, is to redeem the civil one with which it is supposed to correspond.

But the Church has never stricly followed the secular calendar.  Midnight (i.e the start of the new day) begins at sundown and thus the new day opposed to starting at 12:00 AM secular time.  The first day of the new year in the Church is September 1st - the frist day of the secular year is January 1st.  And the fact remains that even in our modern society the vast majority of Orthodox Christians still use the Church Calendar, not the secular one for the dating of feasts.
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« Reply #31 on: July 16, 2004, 06:15:23 PM »

Broken record time:  Could we please not use "prots"?


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« Reply #32 on: July 16, 2004, 06:45:28 PM »

Well, I have to agree with Greg, that one cannot "throw out" the opinions of the fathers, just because they happen to have used intemperate language.  St. Jerome was notorious for it, but I doubt either Keble or Ebor are prepared to dismiss him, in general.  On the other hand, his opinions expressed in highly intemperate language, when they involves, e.g., rabid anti-semitism, are widely ignored even by faithful Orthodox theologians.

You are quite correct in this, Ambrosemzv.  It seems to me that not ever word written by, say, St. Jerome, is utterly to be followed and on a par with the Scriptures, your example being a case in point.  One does not dismiss all of a person's works because of language, but that doesn't mean that everthing is swallowed wholesale either.  

Nektarios, since this portion was posted in English, how are we to know what it is in another language?  You guess that the word is more like "ungodly" but you do not state this as a fact.  And why would "ungodly" be better?  What is ungodly about an astronomer making observations and finding out real true data about astronomical phenomenon?  It reads like the writer(s) didn't know much about astronomy and calendar shifts and were throwing invective.

I think the Gregorian Calendar has done more then "bring schisms to the Church". ymmv. And it would seem that Ambrosemzv and Pedro and Arystarcus can also discuss and see other sides of the question, not just Keble and me.

Ebor
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« Reply #33 on: July 17, 2004, 01:17:46 AM »

But the Church has never stricly followed the secular calendar.  Midnight (i.e the start of the new day) begins at sundown and thus the new day opposed to starting at 12:00 AM secular time.

Correction: The Church never followed modern-day reckonings of "days."  This evening-starting-the-new-day was the common way of seeing the ends and beginnings of days in much of the ancient world, both religious and secular (if such a division can be made in the world at that time).  The problem is that we've been attached to one culture's reckoning of time for so long that we've made it inseperable from our idea of "God's manufacturing" it.  Not that I'm advocating we change Vespers to 11 PM every night so we can welcome in the new day, but let's get some bearings on where this came from, humanly speaking, at least.

Quote
The first day of the new year in the Church is September 1st - the frist day of the secular year is January 1st.  And the fact remains that even in our modern society the vast majority of Orthodox Christians still use the Church Calendar, not the secular one for the dating of feasts.

I have no problem with the Church seeing September first as the beginning of the liturgical year while the world outside the Church commemorates January first.  The two have little to do with each other.  What I do find a bit odd (and tedious) is having to explain to someone that their New Year's Day -- what they call January first -- is "in reality" December 20th!  Or that "September first" -- what they would suppose would be our liturgical New Year's -- is actually "August 20th."  The commemoration of different things for different purposes on different days is fine.  But let's at least get our days straight!  Let's call September first "September first" and not some other day because we're stubbornly clinging to a "day" that, in reality, has long since shifted out of sync and today lies in an entirely different revolution of the Earth's yearly cycle.
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« Reply #34 on: July 19, 2004, 03:23:45 AM »

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Nektarios, since this portion was posted in English, how are we to know what it is in another language?

My point is that it is very imprecise and mere guess work to attack the wording of something when all you are working with is a translation. Also the style of modern English speech is precision that is light on the "extras."  In an official type statement like this though from that era bombast and extra adjectives were just norm.

The science of astronomy is not ungodly and no one has called it that.  The point of the canons in matter is that replacing what the church was already using for the sake of astronomy is not right.  Also the history of the calendar change in the West is very intersting and thre were some parts of it that indeed were ungodly.  In the end though it is largely an issue of church order - the typikon and other such stuff is wreaked havoc upon by the new calendar.  

Quote
The two have little to do with each other.  What I do find a bit odd (and tedious) is having to explain to someone that their New Year's Day -- what they call January first -- is "in reality" December 20th!  Or that "September first" -- what they would suppose would be our liturgical New Year's -- is actually "August 20th."

It really is not that tricky to add and subtract 13.  I don't get where the confussion really lies.  The gregorian calendar is not absolute, like you are treating it to be.  All I can do is recomend the book Anastasios has already recomended on the entire calendar issue.
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« Reply #35 on: July 19, 2004, 08:27:56 AM »

How can you understand it when it was written in a language that (I pressume) you are not overly faimilar with?  From my guess at the wording of this "ungodly" would be a better translation that athiest.

You know, Nectarios, when you are reduced to having to pick at the details of the translation, you've conceded my point about the language. Whatever word they originally used, the intent was a slur upon the religion of those astronomers. But you know, that's a false standard. Astronomy is a science, and as a science is indifferent to the morals and religion of its practitioners when done properly. The use of such language is an indication that those who use it aren't entitled to opinions about astronomy.

Quote
But why a couple of prots so ardently defend a calendar that has done nothing but bring schisms into the Church, is intersting.

The point behind the point is that it's Orthodoxy's own fault. The west uses a single calendar, and the west is willing to change to an even more accurate paschalion in order to resolve all the various schisms. The schism problem is strictly an Eastern problem.

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But the Church has never strictly followed the secular calendar.

What is the Julian calendar, if not a secular calendar? The Dionysian paschalion was specifically arranged to fit the secular calendar of its day.

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The first day of the new year in the Church is September 1st - the first day of the secular year is January 1st.

Well, no-- the first day of the church year is 1 Advent. And the first day of the calendar year has moved around quite a bit.
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« Reply #36 on: July 19, 2004, 10:04:24 AM »

Stepping in for a sec.

Excellent points, Keble, but:

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Well, no-- the first day of the church year is 1 Advent. And the first day of the calendar year has moved around quite a bit.

In the Byzantine Rite it begins the 1st September.

Stepping back out.
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« Reply #37 on: July 19, 2004, 10:27:35 AM »

Broken record time:  Could we please not use "prots"?


Ebor

Sorry I didn't catch that, Ebor.  I agree, do NOT use that term.  First of all it is rude. Second of all all my family and half of Mor Ephrem's family is Protestant and we would be highly embarassed if one of them signed onto this site and saw that term and thought we approved of it.

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« Reply #38 on: July 19, 2004, 11:08:53 AM »

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You know, Nectarios, when you are reduced to having to pick at the details of the translation, you've conceded my point about the language. Whatever word they originally used, the intent was a slur upon the religion of those astronomers. But you know, that's a false standard. Astronomy is a science, and as a science is indifferent to the morals and religion of its practitioners when done properly. The use of such language is an indication that those who use it aren't entitled to opinions about astronomy.

No, the issue is placing astronomy over already established church practice.   That is what is ungodly.  

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What is the Julian calendar, if not a secular calendar? The Dionysian paschalion was specifically arranged to fit the secular calendar of its day.

The Church does not strictly follow the Julian calendar.  The Church calendar is basicly the same, but as has already been mentioned the Church borrowed it and made it its own with slight adaptations and modifications.  

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Well, no-- the first day of the church year is 1 Advent. And the first day of the calendar year has moved around quite a bit.

It might just be better to admit you have no idea what you are talking about than to continue making a fool of yourself.  The Menaia begin at September 1st in Orthodoxy.  

I'm curious if anyone has read the book Anastasios suggested, that would be a good starting point for a real discussion on the calendar.
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« Reply #39 on: July 19, 2004, 11:31:15 AM »

There are different ways of getting one's point across or letting someone know something that they didn't before, that may contribute to communicating, without the use of insults.  Perhaps, Nektarios, you didn't notice that Serge had already provided the information.

"In the Byzantine Rite it begins the 1st September."

is quite different from

"It might just be better to admit you have no idea what you are talking about than to continue making a fool of yourself"

Not having knowledge of everything is not the same as "no idea" or "making a fool".  In the Western Church the Liturgical year begins with Advent; in the East in September.   Now the knowledge is shared.

Ebor
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« Reply #40 on: July 19, 2004, 11:34:26 AM »

As a side question:  Wasn't the church using Astronomical observations to set the date of Easter anyway?  Were they used for Julian reckoning?  

Ebor
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« Reply #41 on: July 19, 2004, 11:35:54 AM »

Sorry I didn't catch that, Ebor.  I agree, do NOT use that term.  First of all it is rude. Second of all all my family and half of Mor Ephrem's family is Protestant and we would be highly embarassed if one of them signed onto this site and saw that term and thought we approved of it.

anastasios

Thank you, Anastasios.  I appreciate it.  Sorry to harp, though.

Ebor
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« Reply #42 on: July 19, 2004, 11:40:13 AM »

I said something without polemics or rudeness - that the church year starts at Sept. 1st.  then Keble responded with a very arrogant tone and was even incorect.  So he thus got my response.  If he can dish it out (which he readily does here) he better be able to take it.
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« Reply #43 on: July 19, 2004, 11:59:28 AM »

It might just be better to admit you have no idea what you are talking about than to continue making a fool of yourself.  The Menaia begin at September 1st in Orthodoxy.  

It begins September 1st in the East. And I already knew that, actually. I'm sorry I'm getting a bit cranky about this, but it's about time for the admission that the fixed part of the church calendar has never been uniform. The east and west have diverged on the observance of All Saints Day since, um, pretty much forever. (The current western date was fixed in the 800s.)
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« Reply #44 on: July 19, 2004, 12:06:50 PM »

CAT FIGHT!!!!!!  Grin Grin Grin Grin Grin Grin Grin Grin

(Time in a Bottle) HA!
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