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Author Topic: Female Altar Servers??  (Read 15952 times) Average Rating: 0
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Mor Ephrem
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« Reply #225 on: September 18, 2013, 11:20:48 AM »

Quite right, while certitude is a necessary component of faith, strong Faith does not preclude or fear the necessity to lay out an argument to prove/explain/justify one's hypothesis. I'm not arguing in favor of a scholastic approach, but rather , as PtA is positing, the need for more than a reflexive,"in your face, I'm right ,you're a fool" approach to Christian apologetics.

If PtA is wrong, seminary could be shortened to a set of flash cards with snappy answers and six months of rubrics.

And I've known plenty of people who think it should be just that, including priests for whom this was the only training and who felt "it worked for me, why not for everyone else?"  I won't dare say that seminary is the only appropriate training for someone preparing to be ordained, but it has its benefits. 

Quote
Users here seem to forget that Orthodox believers make up only a portion of posters and a smaller portion of readers and inquirers. When we resort to playground like arguing or stopping discussion by internet yelling and figurative "fingers in the ear" just what sort of church are we portraying?

Sometimes we accept things because we are told they are so, not necessarily because they are so. It's necessary to know, and be able to explain that distinction without resorting to smug condescension.

With respect to altar girls, we don't have them in ACROD or in most of our parishes across the globe and I don't support the idea. But, if you ever had a daughter who asked you, tears in eyes, "why can't I daddy", you would know more than to huff and puff about it. I understand why we do not and I accept that, but folks, simply saying "because" won't suffice as an answer.



110% agreed.  Excellent post. 
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« Reply #226 on: September 18, 2013, 11:28:10 AM »

But you've never done anything to prove that the Church says no altar girls. It's not enough to merely assert that she does.

If women were meant to be priests, you had better believe that they would still be priests today.  After all, it was the women who stood by Christ's side when the men ran for cover.  It was the women who saw him crucified, and stood watch at his tomb.  It was the women who first met the newly risen Christ, and spread the good news to the men.

Without doubt, women play an important role within the Church, however, with all the brave women around Him, Christ never chose one to be His Apostle.  He never included these faithful followers in his 12-man fold.

While women preached and were responsible for saving thousands of souls, they were never elevated to bishops in the early Church.

.../snip/...

As I've said before, there's plenty of work on the other side of the icon screen that needs to be done.  Women are certainly not left "out"....we just have our roles, as men have theirs.  Men will never be able to give birth, and women will never be priests.

I agree with and support what you've said in the entire post from which I have taken an excerpt to add:
Though not Apostles, there are female saints known as "Equal to an Apostle". St Mary Magdalene and St Nina of Georgia are two who come to mind right away. Women have a valuable role in proclaiming the Gospel to others, perhaps in ways that, in general, men are unable to manage. May they be encouraged to continue their ministries.

If you raise "Equal to the Apostles" as a defense here, you must be prepared to explain what that means in Orthodox terms. Our non Orthodox "progressive" brother's and sisters will throw that right back at you for among the Church's strongest arguments for a male priesthood is the male exclusivity among Jesus' Apostles.
No. Not a defence at all for females serving in liturgical roles that are assigned to men. Precisely the opposite. I'm trying to point out that women have valuable ministries without being in those roles, and that the roles women play deserve to be honoured and recognized for what they are.

Not a defense to allowing women clergy at all. You missed my point.

If you bring "Equal to the Apostles"" up to show and prove our church's high estimation of women, you have to be able to respond to those who would turn it around over woman and orders. It's not enough to point to that and say "See, we esteem women in Orthodoxy." One has to know enough of the underlying theology behind that honoring in order to explain it and why "equal" does not imply the priesthood.
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Mor Ephrem
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« Reply #227 on: September 18, 2013, 11:43:37 AM »

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As you noted in a subsequent post, nuns perform some of these functions in their monastery church(es), whether or not they are also ordained as deaconesses.

These are nuns past a certain age, usually 40, not young girls, and, if I'm not mistaken, are not vested. Quite a difference.

I'm not so sure I see a "difference", just different qualifiers of arguable relevance.  

You are right, the nuns who serve are not vested (at least in my experience), but wearing their habit.  But I've seen men serve at the altar in cassock only (seminarians, monks, minor orders, even unordained males in parishes).  I don't see why we should get hung up on the garment but not on the fact that they are within the altar performing liturgical roles.  

And yes, the serving nuns are typically past "a certain age" and not young girls, but why?  I've always been taught that it had to do with the prohibition on blood within the altar, and that women who have stopped menstruating were allowed to serve because they didn't have the issue (pardon the pun) of flowing blood.  That same prohibition on blood would prevent men with open cuts and unhealed wounds from serving, and it shouldn't prevent non-menstruating women without other blood issues, so it's really not relevant IMO.  In fact, I've seen the same reasoning used to allow girls to serve at the altar until they begin menstruating, but I don't think you'd argue in support of that.  

(As an aside, blood isn't the only thing prohibited in the altar.  There is a prohibition on animal products, for example, which is why we don't have leather-bound Gospels on the altar.  And yet, I don't see EO clerics taking off their shoes when serving, unlike our clerics.)  

If the nuns' age is a factor because of age, then why aren't we prohibiting anyone from serving before they reach a certain age?  The minor orders have canonical ages, nuns serving in altars have a traditional age, why are little boys somehow exempt from this requirement?  Honestly, I don't think there's a legitimate reason, I think it's because people think they're cute, with their nice shirts, ties, and slacks, shiny black or brown shoes (proper little men!), wearing their adorable little brocade robes (just like mini-priests), precariously carrying lit candles while bumbling around the temple.  But it's not because they are always and everywhere reverentially, maturely, effectively, and consistently fulfilling their liturgical role.        
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« Reply #228 on: September 18, 2013, 11:56:25 AM »

Quote
As you noted in a subsequent post, nuns perform some of these functions in their monastery church(es), whether or not they are also ordained as deaconesses.

These are nuns past a certain age, usually 40, not young girls, and, if I'm not mistaken, are not vested. Quite a difference.

I'm not so sure I see a "difference", just different qualifiers of arguable relevance.  

You are right, the nuns who serve are not vested (at least in my experience), but wearing their habit.  But I've seen men serve at the altar in cassock only (seminarians, monks, minor orders, even unordained males in parishes).  I don't see why we should get hung up on the garment but not on the fact that they are within the altar performing liturgical roles.  

And yes, the serving nuns are typically past "a certain age" and not young girls, but why?  I've always been taught that it had to do with the prohibition on blood within the altar, and that women who have stopped menstruating were allowed to serve because they didn't have the issue (pardon the pun) of flowing blood.  That same prohibition on blood would prevent men with open cuts and unhealed wounds from serving, and it shouldn't prevent non-menstruating women without other blood issues, so it's really not relevant IMO.  In fact, I've seen the same reasoning used to allow girls to serve at the altar until they begin menstruating, but I don't think you'd argue in support of that.  

(As an aside, blood isn't the only thing prohibited in the altar.  There is a prohibition on animal products, for example, which is why we don't have leather-bound Gospels on the altar.  And yet, I don't see EO clerics taking off their shoes when serving, unlike our clerics.)  

If the nuns' age is a factor because of age, then why aren't we prohibiting anyone from serving before they reach a certain age?  The minor orders have canonical ages, nuns serving in altars have a traditional age, why are little boys somehow exempt from this requirement?  Honestly, I don't think there's a legitimate reason, I think it's because people think they're cute, with their nice shirts, ties, and slacks, shiny black or brown shoes (proper little men!), wearing their adorable little brocade robes (just like mini-priests), precariously carrying lit candles while bumbling around the temple.  But it's not because they are always and everywhere reverentially, maturely, effectively, and consistently fulfilling their liturgical role.        

Naugahyde, perhaps?   Wink
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« Reply #229 on: September 18, 2013, 12:04:12 PM »

I agree with and support what you've said in the entire post from which I have taken an excerpt to add:
Though not Apostles, there are female saints known as "Equal to an Apostle". St Mary Magdalene and St Nina of Georgia are two who come to mind right away. Women have a valuable role in proclaiming the Gospel to others, perhaps in ways that, in general, men are unable to manage. May they be encouraged to continue their ministries.

What about Junia?
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« Reply #230 on: September 18, 2013, 12:06:52 PM »

Quote
As you noted in a subsequent post, nuns perform some of these functions in their monastery church(es), whether or not they are also ordained as deaconesses.

These are nuns past a certain age, usually 40, not young girls, and, if I'm not mistaken, are not vested. Quite a difference.

I'm not so sure I see a "difference", just different qualifiers of arguable relevance.  

You are right, the nuns who serve are not vested (at least in my experience), but wearing their habit.  But I've seen men serve at the altar in cassock only (seminarians, monks, minor orders, even unordained males in parishes).  I don't see why we should get hung up on the garment but not on the fact that they are within the altar performing liturgical roles.  

And yes, the serving nuns are typically past "a certain age" and not young girls, but why?  I've always been taught that it had to do with the prohibition on blood within the altar, and that women who have stopped menstruating were allowed to serve because they didn't have the issue (pardon the pun) of flowing blood.  That same prohibition on blood would prevent men with open cuts and unhealed wounds from serving, and it shouldn't prevent non-menstruating women without other blood issues, so it's really not relevant IMO.  In fact, I've seen the same reasoning used to allow girls to serve at the altar until they begin menstruating, but I don't think you'd argue in support of that.  

(As an aside, blood isn't the only thing prohibited in the altar.  There is a prohibition on animal products, for example, which is why we don't have leather-bound Gospels on the altar.  And yet, I don't see EO clerics taking off their shoes when serving, unlike our clerics.)  

If the nuns' age is a factor because of age, then why aren't we prohibiting anyone from serving before they reach a certain age?  The minor orders have canonical ages, nuns serving in altars have a traditional age, why are little boys somehow exempt from this requirement?  Honestly, I don't think there's a legitimate reason, I think it's because people think they're cute, with their nice shirts, ties, and slacks, shiny black or brown shoes (proper little men!), wearing their adorable little brocade robes (just like mini-priests), precariously carrying lit candles while bumbling around the temple.  But it's not because they are always and everywhere reverentially, maturely, effectively, and consistently fulfilling their liturgical role.        

I'm not so sure that no animal products is true.

First of all we use a sponge in the chalice which the sponge is an animal. In also sure that the smaller sponge for the antimension is from an animal. Then you have the fact that most Priest's robes that went under their phelonion were made of wool.
I was also told the Ethiopians take their shoes off because of Moses and the burning bush. Anyway, the no animal products with shoes can be irrelevant because even our "leather" today is actually artificial.
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« Reply #231 on: September 18, 2013, 12:07:34 PM »

I wonder if hadn't Fathers considered sponge to be a plant.
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« Reply #232 on: September 18, 2013, 12:47:19 PM »

I agree with and support what you've said in the entire post from which I have taken an excerpt to add:
Though not Apostles, there are female saints known as "Equal to an Apostle". St Mary Magdalene and St Nina of Georgia are two who come to mind right away. Women have a valuable role in proclaiming the Gospel to others, perhaps in ways that, in general, men are unable to manage. May they be encouraged to continue their ministries.

What about Junia?

What about her? She never served the Eucharist or did any other Liturgical function.

These typical "Christian Progressive" arguments are tiresome.
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« Reply #233 on: September 18, 2013, 01:17:39 PM »

I agree with and support what you've said in the entire post from which I have taken an excerpt to add:
Though not Apostles, there are female saints known as "Equal to an Apostle". St Mary Magdalene and St Nina of Georgia are two who come to mind right away. Women have a valuable role in proclaiming the Gospel to others, perhaps in ways that, in general, men are unable to manage. May they be encouraged to continue their ministries.

What about Junia?

What about her? She never served the Eucharist or did any other Liturgical function.

These typical "Christian Progressive" arguments are tiresome.

If you, Devin, would cut the righteous indignation long enough to read  what Genesisone and Michal actually posted, and upon which I elaborated, nobody is suggesting or implying any support for ordination of women, which I suppose is what you mean by "Christian progressivism." The point about "equal to the Apostles" was clearly raised here in the traditional Orthodox context.

"Junia is the subject of debate within the academic world concerning the implications of a female apostle leading within the early Church, that it might suggest the ordination of women. In Orthodox tradition, however, the title of apostle does not necessarily confer the kind of position that the Twelve had from Christ. Rather, especially when used in reference to the Seventy, it designates someone who served as a missionary for the Church, especially in its first generation. Apostle (from Greek apostolos) literally refers to one who is "sent out," and its origin is in military usage. Subsequent centuries' saints who significantly spread the Orthodox faith are often referred to as equal to the Apostles, and this title is given without reference to gender." http://orthodoxwiki.org/Apostle_Junia

I am glad some here are not police officers, lest there be an outbreak of "shoot first, ask questions later" incidents.
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« Reply #234 on: September 18, 2013, 01:41:09 PM »

I agree with and support what you've said in the entire post from which I have taken an excerpt to add:
Though not Apostles, there are female saints known as "Equal to an Apostle". St Mary Magdalene and St Nina of Georgia are two who come to mind right away. Women have a valuable role in proclaiming the Gospel to others, perhaps in ways that, in general, men are unable to manage. May they be encouraged to continue their ministries.

What about Junia?

What about her? She never served the Eucharist or did any other Liturgical function.

These typical "Christian Progressive" arguments are tiresome.

If you, Devin, would cut the righteous indignation long enough to read  what Genesisone and Michal actually posted, and upon which I elaborated, nobody is suggesting or implying any support for ordination of women, which I suppose is what you mean by "Christian progressivism." The point about "equal to the Apostles" was clearly raised here in the traditional Orthodox context.

"Junia is the subject of debate within the academic world concerning the implications of a female apostle leading within the early Church, that it might suggest the ordination of women. In Orthodox tradition, however, the title of apostle does not necessarily confer the kind of position that the Twelve had from Christ. Rather, especially when used in reference to the Seventy, it designates someone who served as a missionary for the Church, especially in its first generation. Apostle (from Greek apostolos) literally refers to one who is "sent out," and its origin is in military usage. Subsequent centuries' saints who significantly spread the Orthodox faith are often referred to as equal to the Apostles, and this title is given without reference to gender." http://orthodoxwiki.org/Apostle_Junia

I am glad some here are not police officers, lest there be an outbreak of "shoot first, ask questions later" incidents.

But this discussion is about ordination, or at least liturgical functions. This is about altar girls, a liturgical function that isn't allowed in the Orthodox Church. Bringing up St. Junia simply implies that she is an example of why we shouldn't be absolutely opposed to altar girls. Yet, she isn't that kind of example, she's a perfect example of the role of women in the Church that does not, and will not ever include liturgical functions unless they are chaste, monastic (or widowed) women of older age, serving as deacons. Other than that, there is no practical role they can serve within a Liturgy (other than as all laypeople serve).
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« Reply #235 on: September 18, 2013, 01:46:32 PM »

I agree with and support what you've said in the entire post from which I have taken an excerpt to add:
Though not Apostles, there are female saints known as "Equal to an Apostle". St Mary Magdalene and St Nina of Georgia are two who come to mind right away. Women have a valuable role in proclaiming the Gospel to others, perhaps in ways that, in general, men are unable to manage. May they be encouraged to continue their ministries.

What about Junia?

What about her? She never served the Eucharist or did any other Liturgical function.

These typical "Christian Progressive" arguments are tiresome.

If you, Devin, would cut the righteous indignation long enough to read  what Genesisone and Michal actually posted, and upon which I elaborated, nobody is suggesting or implying any support for ordination of women, which I suppose is what you mean by "Christian progressivism." The point about "equal to the Apostles" was clearly raised here in the traditional Orthodox context.

"Junia is the subject of debate within the academic world concerning the implications of a female apostle leading within the early Church, that it might suggest the ordination of women. In Orthodox tradition, however, the title of apostle does not necessarily confer the kind of position that the Twelve had from Christ. Rather, especially when used in reference to the Seventy, it designates someone who served as a missionary for the Church, especially in its first generation. Apostle (from Greek apostolos) literally refers to one who is "sent out," and its origin is in military usage. Subsequent centuries' saints who significantly spread the Orthodox faith are often referred to as equal to the Apostles, and this title is given without reference to gender." http://orthodoxwiki.org/Apostle_Junia

I am glad some here are not police officers, lest there be an outbreak of "shoot first, ask questions later" incidents.

But this discussion is about ordination, or at least liturgical functions. This is about altar girls, a liturgical function that isn't allowed in the Orthodox Church. Bringing up St. Junia simply implies that she is an example of why we shouldn't be absolutely opposed to altar girls. Yet, she isn't that kind of example, she's a perfect example of the role of women in the Church that does not, and will not ever include liturgical functions unless they are chaste, monastic (or widowed) women of older age, serving as deacons. Other than that, there is no practical role they can serve within a Liturgy (other than as all laypeople serve).
You infer quite a lot from just three little words. Do you know why Mike asked about Junia? If so, how, especially considering that Mike hasn't yet answered your question of him? If you really don't know why Mike asked about Junia, why do you presume to know?
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« Reply #236 on: September 18, 2013, 01:49:32 PM »

I'm not so sure that no animal products is true.

First of all we use a sponge in the chalice which the sponge is an animal. In also sure that the smaller sponge for the antimension is from an animal. Then you have the fact that most Priest's robes that went under their phelonion were made of wool.
I was also told the Ethiopians take their shoes off because of Moses and the burning bush. Anyway, the no animal products with shoes can be irrelevant because even our "leather" today is actually artificial.

I suggest you expand your research interests because this is a pretty standard rule in the East.  The altar is the place of the bloodless sacrifice.  Any hint of blood or animal sacrifice was and is prohibited.   Wool and beeswax may be allowed because they don't require the death of an animal.  You can't say that about leather.  

I don't know how EO tradition justifies using an actual sponge (I never thought to ask that in Rubrics).  Perhaps, as Michal noted, it was considered to be a plant and not an animal, and so was considered useful.  At any rate, sponges are not used outside EO tradition for cleansing vessels AFAIK, so it's very much a local tradition.  

Ethiopians, like the majority of the OO, take their shoes off in church because the church is a holy place: we have something greater than the burning bush, so why wouldn't we follow God's command to Moses?  But I suspect that in northern climates the cold was more of a consideration in keeping one's shoes on during prayer, which might explain why the EO keep their shoes on.  I think Armenians also keep their shoes on when standing in the nave but never at the altar (there are slippers made of non-animal material for use at the altar, and even these will get taken off at certain points).  I find the EO use of one's regular shoes even at the altar to be rather scandalous, but that's a story for another day.
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Apolytikion, Tone 1, by Antonis

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« Reply #237 on: September 18, 2013, 01:51:56 PM »

But this discussion is about ordination, or at least liturgical functions. This is about altar girls, a liturgical function that isn't allowed in the Orthodox Church.

Neither is "altar boy". 
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« Reply #238 on: September 18, 2013, 01:59:56 PM »

I'm not so sure that no animal products is true.

First of all we use a sponge in the chalice which the sponge is an animal. In also sure that the smaller sponge for the antimension is from an animal. Then you have the fact that most Priest's robes that went under their phelonion were made of wool.
I was also told the Ethiopians take their shoes off because of Moses and the burning bush. Anyway, the no animal products with shoes can be irrelevant because even our "leather" today is actually artificial.

I suggest you expand your research interests because this is a pretty standard rule in the East.  The altar is the place of the bloodless sacrifice.  Any hint of blood or animal sacrifice was and is prohibited.   Wool and beeswax may be allowed because they don't require the death of an animal.  You can't say that about leather.  

I don't know how EO tradition justifies using an actual sponge (I never thought to ask that in Rubrics).  Perhaps, as Michal noted, it was considered to be a plant and not an animal, and so was considered useful.  At any rate, sponges are not used outside EO tradition for cleansing vessels AFAIK, so it's very much a local tradition.  

Ethiopians, like the majority of the OO, take their shoes off in church because the church is a holy place: we have something greater than the burning bush, so why wouldn't we follow God's command to Moses?  But I suspect that in northern climates the cold was more of a consideration in keeping one's shoes on during prayer, which might explain why the EO keep their shoes on.  I think Armenians also keep their shoes on when standing in the nave but never at the altar (there are slippers made of non-animal material for use at the altar, and even these will get taken off at certain points).  I find the EO use of one's regular shoes even at the altar to be rather scandalous, but that's a story for another day.

To be honest, my research only goes so far as Eastern Orthodoxy. OO & Roman Catholicism are mere curiosities to me because they don't impact my worship. OO is most like ours, even sharing St. Basil's Liturgy with us, but other than that, I have no concern for learning their practices unless they become one with our Church.

Also, as for wearing "leather" shoes. As I pointed out, I seriously doubt you will find someone in this day and age, especially Priests, at least in the US, wearing real, pure leather shoes. They are just too expensive. You also won't get "dress" shoes today without them being some kind of leather, unless you want to pay a lot for some fancy shoe that has no leather.

But this discussion is about ordination, or at least liturgical functions. This is about altar girls, a liturgical function that isn't allowed in the Orthodox Church.

Neither is "altar boy". 


Altar boy isn't a fuction that isn't allowed in our church. It's a function that is permitted based on the assumption that the boys will go on to become readers, subdeacons, deacons, priests and maybe even bishops.

Maybe you should spend less time judging the Eastern Orthodox and our practices, and focus on your own tradition.
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« Reply #239 on: September 18, 2013, 02:02:04 PM »

I'm not so sure that no animal products is true.

First of all we use a sponge in the chalice which the sponge is an animal. In also sure that the smaller sponge for the antimension is from an animal. Then you have the fact that most Priest's robes that went under their phelonion were made of wool.
I was also told the Ethiopians take their shoes off because of Moses and the burning bush. Anyway, the no animal products with shoes can be irrelevant because even our "leather" today is actually artificial.

I suggest you expand your research interests because this is a pretty standard rule in the East.  The altar is the place of the bloodless sacrifice.  Any hint of blood or animal sacrifice was and is prohibited.   Wool and beeswax may be allowed because they don't require the death of an animal.  You can't say that about leather.  

I don't know how EO tradition justifies using an actual sponge (I never thought to ask that in Rubrics).  Perhaps, as Michal noted, it was considered to be a plant and not an animal, and so was considered useful.  At any rate, sponges are not used outside EO tradition for cleansing vessels AFAIK, so it's very much a local tradition.  

Ethiopians, like the majority of the OO, take their shoes off in church because the church is a holy place: we have something greater than the burning bush, so why wouldn't we follow God's command to Moses?  But I suspect that in northern climates the cold was more of a consideration in keeping one's shoes on during prayer, which might explain why the EO keep their shoes on.  I think Armenians also keep their shoes on when standing in the nave but never at the altar (there are slippers made of non-animal material for use at the altar, and even these will get taken off at certain points).  I find the EO use of one's regular shoes even at the altar to be rather scandalous, but that's a story for another day.

To be honest, my research only goes so far as Eastern Orthodoxy. OO & Roman Catholicism are mere curiosities to me because they don't impact my worship. OO is most like ours, even sharing St. Basil's Liturgy with us, but other than that, I have no concern for learning their practices unless they become one with our Church.

Also, as for wearing "leather" shoes. As I pointed out, I seriously doubt you will find someone in this day and age, especially Priests, at least in the US, wearing real, pure leather shoes. They are just too expensive. You also won't get "dress" shoes today without them being some kind of leather, unless you want to pay a lot for some fancy shoe that has no leather.

But this discussion is about ordination, or at least liturgical functions. This is about altar girls, a liturgical function that isn't allowed in the Orthodox Church.

Neither is "altar boy". 


Altar boy isn't a fuction that isn't allowed in our church. It's a function that is permitted based on the assumption that the boys will go on to become readers, subdeacons, deacons, priests and maybe even bishops.

Maybe you should spend less time judging the Eastern Orthodox and our practices, and focus on your own tradition.
Have you ever taken the time to think that maybe Mor Ephrem's problem is NOT with the Eastern Orthodox and our practices, that his problem is merely with you?
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« Reply #240 on: September 18, 2013, 02:07:43 PM »

I am wearing real leather shoes right now.  They cost me $40.

Many men's dress shoes are made of real leather or at least have a portion of them as real leather.
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« Reply #241 on: September 18, 2013, 02:14:08 PM »

I'm not so sure that no animal products is true.

First of all we use a sponge in the chalice which the sponge is an animal. In also sure that the smaller sponge for the antimension is from an animal. Then you have the fact that most Priest's robes that went under their phelonion were made of wool.
I was also told the Ethiopians take their shoes off because of Moses and the burning bush. Anyway, the no animal products with shoes can be irrelevant because even our "leather" today is actually artificial.

I suggest you expand your research interests because this is a pretty standard rule in the East.  The altar is the place of the bloodless sacrifice.  Any hint of blood or animal sacrifice was and is prohibited.   Wool and beeswax may be allowed because they don't require the death of an animal.  You can't say that about leather.  

I don't know how EO tradition justifies using an actual sponge (I never thought to ask that in Rubrics).  Perhaps, as Michal noted, it was considered to be a plant and not an animal, and so was considered useful.  At any rate, sponges are not used outside EO tradition for cleansing vessels AFAIK, so it's very much a local tradition.  

Ethiopians, like the majority of the OO, take their shoes off in church because the church is a holy place: we have something greater than the burning bush, so why wouldn't we follow God's command to Moses?  But I suspect that in northern climates the cold was more of a consideration in keeping one's shoes on during prayer, which might explain why the EO keep their shoes on.  I think Armenians also keep their shoes on when standing in the nave but never at the altar (there are slippers made of non-animal material for use at the altar, and even these will get taken off at certain points).  I find the EO use of one's regular shoes even at the altar to be rather scandalous, but that's a story for another day.

To be honest, my research only goes so far as Eastern Orthodoxy. OO & Roman Catholicism are mere curiosities to me because they don't impact my worship. OO is most like ours, even sharing St. Basil's Liturgy with us, but other than that, I have no concern for learning their practices unless they become one with our Church.

Also, as for wearing "leather" shoes. As I pointed out, I seriously doubt you will find someone in this day and age, especially Priests, at least in the US, wearing real, pure leather shoes. They are just too expensive. You also won't get "dress" shoes today without them being some kind of leather, unless you want to pay a lot for some fancy shoe that has no leather.

But this discussion is about ordination, or at least liturgical functions. This is about altar girls, a liturgical function that isn't allowed in the Orthodox Church.

Neither is "altar boy". 


Altar boy isn't a fuction that isn't allowed in our church. It's a function that is permitted based on the assumption that the boys will go on to become readers, subdeacons, deacons, priests and maybe even bishops.

Maybe you should spend less time judging the Eastern Orthodox and our practices, and focus on your own tradition.
Have you ever taken the time to think that maybe Mor Ephrem's problem is NOT with the Eastern Orthodox and our practices, that his problem is merely with you?

No, Peter, you are always the one who has come after me no matter what I say. I merely say the position I've been taught by my Priests and by all the available Orthodox media out there. Yet this website continually allows its members to promote opposition to even the most basic Orthodox teachings. You argue it is I who is the problem, and that I am not the Church and I cannot speak for the Church. Yet your posts have shown time and time again, that your and Michal's personal problems with me clearly trumps your Orthodox faith.

You act towards me with absolute distain and disgust, as if something I'm saying isn't Orthodox, when in fact, if you talk to any Priest, or listen to most real, Orthodox speakers on the subject (who aren't laypeople), they will agree with me. The difference is that they've taken the time to understand the issues, and I don't care about doing so. Just because I don't have a desire to look up the meaning and essence of everything our church teaches doesn't mean that my arguments automatically fall flat on their face. I accept things the Church says at face value and I don't question them. I have no reason to defend the Church's views against you, against other devil's advocates, or against the arguments of either Michal or Mor Ephrem.

It's amazing to me, that no matter what I say, it always gets contested on this website. Yet in the Orthodox communities I've been in, no one but the catechuments and inquirers question these things, the faithful Orthodox Christians who regularly attend services typically all accept them as they are. The only Orthodox who don't accept them that I've encountered are ones who don't attend regularly, or who merely see Orthodoxy as one religion amongst many, and their adherence to it as merely part of their ethnicity.

Maybe I need to just shut up and step back and allow the members of OCnet to promote their own un-Orthodox views without question.

I am wearing real leather shoes right now.  They cost me $40.

Many men's dress shoes are made of real leather or at least have a portion of them as real leather.

Why would you spend $40 on a pair of shoes you only wear once a week (unless you have to wear them to work)? I'd rather spend $60 on a pair of tennis shoes and $15-20 on cheap dress shoes I will only wear once a week.
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« Reply #242 on: September 18, 2013, 02:32:30 PM »


Maybe you should spend less time judging the Eastern Orthodox and our practices, and focus on your own tradition.

That is rude and presumptuous on your part. Please apologize.
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« Reply #243 on: September 18, 2013, 02:39:02 PM »

You know, I find arguments against the idea that we should not question Orthodox teaching purporting that it only drives people away from the Church and discourages them from converting to Orthodoxy are just fluff. From what I've seen, at least in this particular community, people who were already Orthodox, have left the official Orthodox Church for some of the other groups like Old Calendarist groups, and that shouldn't be surprising given how many liberal or Christian progressive views are given legitimacy and even defended on here, while traditional viewpoints are attacked.
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« Reply #244 on: September 18, 2013, 02:39:02 PM »


Maybe you should spend less time judging the Eastern Orthodox and our practices, and focus on your own tradition.

That is rude and presumptuous on your part. Please apologize.

Quote
I find the EO use of one's regular shoes even at the altar to be rather scandalous

Why? In that very sentence, he judges our tradition's practices as scandalous.
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« Reply #245 on: September 18, 2013, 02:40:06 PM »

Why? In that very sentence, he judges our tradition's practices as scandalous.

You do that for the tradition of the Antiochian Patriarchate. The only one difference Mor is not a jerk about that.
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« Reply #246 on: September 18, 2013, 02:41:45 PM »

To be honest, my research only goes so far as Eastern Orthodoxy. OO & Roman Catholicism are mere curiosities to me because they don't impact my worship. OO is most like ours, even sharing St. Basil's Liturgy with us, but other than that, I have no concern for learning their practices unless they become one with our Church.

If you studied liturgy, you wouldn't say that.  Eastern Orthodox liturgy didn't drop out of the sky as the ascending Christ's last gift before clouds took him out of our sight.  It didn't develop in a vacuum.  You don't have to care about the practices of those outside your Church as if caring legitimised them as equal to your own, but you should care because they provide clues and insight into how your own liturgy took form and became what you have received.  

Study liturgy.  Don't simply focus on the intricacies of various types of Typikon as if that's enough.  You won't understand the latter without the former.

Quote
Also, as for wearing "leather" shoes. As I pointed out, I seriously doubt you will find someone in this day and age, especially Priests, at least in the US, wearing real, pure leather shoes. They are just too expensive. You also won't get "dress" shoes today without them being some kind of leather, unless you want to pay a lot for some fancy shoe that has no leather.

Traditional ecclesiastical practice prohibits animal products from being used at the altar.  Leather is one of those products.  

You can talk about how people may use imitation leather nowadays, but exactly how far back does that go?  Back in the day, different Churches came up with different solutions for this problem, and outside of EO tradition, they almost always involved some form of "vegetable" material being used for shoes/slippers.  Most of us continue that practice.  

Or you can talk about how it's impossible to buy appropriate shoes without any leather in them, and so it's pointless to insist on this tradition (as if it is impossible to take off your shoes).  You can try to justify it all you want, but that only goes to show that, for you, it's an inconvenient truth: your Church routinely disregards a universally acknowledged liturgical practice when it comes to shoes, even if it upholds that practice when it comes to such things as leather-bound Gospels.    

Quote
Altar boy isn't a fuction that isn't allowed in our church. It's a function that is permitted based on the assumption that the boys will go on to become readers, subdeacons, deacons, priests and maybe even bishops.

Maybe you should spend less time judging the Eastern Orthodox and our practices, and focus on your own tradition.

LOL.  I'm not judging anything other than your willful ignorance, but I hope saying that gave you a much needed ego boost.    

"Altar boys" are allowed, you claim, based on the assumption that they will go on at least to the minor orders.  Very well, but how many actually go on to this?  It's by no means guaranteed that even half will do so, is it?  Why they can't be set aside as members of these minor orders from the very start of their service?  In my Church, our minor orders are chanter, reader, and subdeacon.  We don't have "candle-bearer", because tending to the lamps, candles, and doors of the church and altar is the responsibility of the subdiaconate (our subdeacon is candle-bearer, porter, and sacristan all in one, and is technically the first rank that actually gets to serve within the altar as opposed to the kliros).  But your tradition does have "candle-bearer", in addition to chanter, reader, and subdeacon.  If all EO altar boys are ordained candle-bearers, then I have no issue with it, and I think the argument changes significantly.  

But as it is currently AFAIK, "altar boys" are just boys who ask or are asked to put on a robe and perform functions that are traditionally reserved for the ordained.  Why?  If there's a shortage of ordained ministers, the solution is not to allow kids to play dress-up.  Find a responsible way, within the limits of ecclesiastical tradition, to ensure having sufficient ministers.  That may involve training half the qualified men in your church, or it may involve adjusting certain standards (e.g., marriage requirements for subdeacons) to increase economically the pool of the qualified, but how on earth do you justify absolutely unordained "altar boys" but not "altar girls" without in some way implying that male genitals are necessary in order to stand behind the iconostasis?

Just admit that there is a contradiction and it is not easily resolved because we have allowed a certain practice to attain "antiquity" based on weak or faulty logic, when all we had to do was follow the canonical traditions we had received and which we still practice.  But the attempt to justify altar boys as "tradition" while condemning altar girls as part and parcel of the gay agenda or Anglicanesque progressivism is ridiculous and literally nonsensical, hardly worthy of a Church that claims to be God's one and only.                
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« Reply #247 on: September 18, 2013, 02:44:03 PM »

Quote
Why would you spend $40 on a pair of shoes you only wear once a week (unless you have to wear them to work)? I'd rather spend $60 on a pair of tennis shoes and $15-20 on cheap dress shoes I will only wear once a week.
Well, as it is Wednesday and I am wearing them, it can be deduced that I wear them every day to work.  If I could get by wearing tennis shoes to work, I totally would.  As a side note, by tennis shoes are also genuine leather.  I can't wear shoes made from artificial products as the material generally does not "breathe" enough and then my feet stink.  
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« Reply #248 on: September 18, 2013, 02:50:02 PM »

Devin,

Have you ever purchased shoes for yourself ever? Seriously? You show your true colors when you make outrageous statements like these. Let me guess your mom still does all your laundry too right?
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« Reply #249 on: September 18, 2013, 02:52:00 PM »


Maybe you should spend less time judging the Eastern Orthodox and our practices, and focus on your own tradition.

That is rude and presumptuous on your part. Please apologize.

Quote
I find the EO use of one's regular shoes even at the altar to be rather scandalous

Why? In that very sentence, he judges our tradition's practices as scandalous.

I don't judge your tradition's practices as wholly scandalous.  I find, as I've said elsewhere on this forum, that this particular one troubles me.  It doesn't trouble me the way that a moth in my face does, it isn't a source of irritation.  It bothers me in a way that I can only describe as scandalous in the sense of an obstacle or stumbling block.  It doesn't prevent me from worshiping with you, regarding you as Orthodox, etc.  And I don't even think it's a "practice of EO tradition", I think it something no one really thinks about while they're doing it, and I admitted that other considerations may be behind it.  Nevertheless, I find it scandalous.  

God commanded Moses to take his shoes off at the Burning Bush because he stood on holy ground.  To this day, at St Katherine's on Mount Sinai, visitors to the chapel of the Burning Bush are directed to take their shoes off out of respect for that command.  But every Orthodox altar is more sacred than the Burning Bush, because it is the reality of which the Bush was a type.  Why wouldn't you take your shoes off?  Or if shoes were somehow required, why not have separate shoes?  If we can justify all the other vestments our clergy wear, why not separate shoes, if not bare feet?  The tradition re: no animal products is another reason why I find this disparity of practice troublesome.  

You want to focus on my use of the word "scandalous"?  Very well.  But, as usual, you're missing the forest for the trees.        

Edit:  Any time I've visited an Eastern Orthodox church and been invited by the rector to enter the altar to have a look around and/or to pray inside during a Divine Liturgy or other service, I have always removed my shoes, and the priests have all commented on how that is a praiseworthy practice that they wish was more common in their own Church, even after letting me know that I could keep my shoes on if I wanted to.  Among the jurisdictions where I've had this experience are OCA (archimandrite), MP (archpriest), ROCOR (archpriest), and GOA (Athonite hieromonk). 
« Last Edit: September 18, 2013, 02:57:33 PM by Mor Ephrem » Logged

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« Reply #250 on: September 18, 2013, 02:52:34 PM »

I'm not so sure that no animal products is true.

First of all we use a sponge in the chalice which the sponge is an animal. In also sure that the smaller sponge for the antimension is from an animal. Then you have the fact that most Priest's robes that went under their phelonion were made of wool.
I was also told the Ethiopians take their shoes off because of Moses and the burning bush. Anyway, the no animal products with shoes can be irrelevant because even our "leather" today is actually artificial.

I suggest you expand your research interests because this is a pretty standard rule in the East.  The altar is the place of the bloodless sacrifice.  Any hint of blood or animal sacrifice was and is prohibited.   Wool and beeswax may be allowed because they don't require the death of an animal.  You can't say that about leather.  

I don't know how EO tradition justifies using an actual sponge (I never thought to ask that in Rubrics).  Perhaps, as Michal noted, it was considered to be a plant and not an animal, and so was considered useful.  At any rate, sponges are not used outside EO tradition for cleansing vessels AFAIK, so it's very much a local tradition.  

Ethiopians, like the majority of the OO, take their shoes off in church because the church is a holy place: we have something greater than the burning bush, so why wouldn't we follow God's command to Moses?  But I suspect that in northern climates the cold was more of a consideration in keeping one's shoes on during prayer, which might explain why the EO keep their shoes on.  I think Armenians also keep their shoes on when standing in the nave but never at the altar (there are slippers made of non-animal material for use at the altar, and even these will get taken off at certain points).  I find the EO use of one's regular shoes even at the altar to be rather scandalous, but that's a story for another day.

To be honest, my research only goes so far as Eastern Orthodoxy. OO & Roman Catholicism are mere curiosities to me because they don't impact my worship. OO is most like ours, even sharing St. Basil's Liturgy with us, but other than that, I have no concern for learning their practices unless they become one with our Church.

Also, as for wearing "leather" shoes. As I pointed out, I seriously doubt you will find someone in this day and age, especially Priests, at least in the US, wearing real, pure leather shoes. They are just too expensive. You also won't get "dress" shoes today without them being some kind of leather, unless you want to pay a lot for some fancy shoe that has no leather.

But this discussion is about ordination, or at least liturgical functions. This is about altar girls, a liturgical function that isn't allowed in the Orthodox Church.

Neither is "altar boy". 


Altar boy isn't a fuction that isn't allowed in our church. It's a function that is permitted based on the assumption that the boys will go on to become readers, subdeacons, deacons, priests and maybe even bishops.

Maybe you should spend less time judging the Eastern Orthodox and our practices, and focus on your own tradition.
Have you ever taken the time to think that maybe Mor Ephrem's problem is NOT with the Eastern Orthodox and our practices, that his problem is merely with you?

No, Peter, you are always the one who has come after me no matter what I say. I merely say the position I've been taught by my Priests and by all the available Orthodox media out there. Yet this website continually allows its members to promote opposition to even the most basic Orthodox teachings. You argue it is I who is the problem, and that I am not the Church and I cannot speak for the Church.
No, I argue that you have given me no reason to believe that your words actually speak for the Church.

Yet your posts have shown time and time again, that your and Michal's personal problems with me clearly trumps your Orthodox faith.
Would you care to clarify what you mean by that?

You act towards me with absolute distain and disgust,
Have you seen the absolute disdain and disgust you show toward those who disagree with you, and the number of other posters such as podkarpatska who call you out for it?

as if something I'm saying isn't Orthodox, when in fact, if you talk to any Priest, or listen to most real, Orthodox speakers on the subject (who aren't laypeople), they will agree with me.
It's not that anything you say isn't Orthodox. It's that when I or someone else questions you for proof that what you say is Orthodox, you invariably reply with "it is, and that's all you need to know". Do you not understand how frustrating that is?

The difference is that they've taken the time to understand the issues, and I don't care about doing so.
It shows. Roll Eyes Thank you for identifying the problem I have with you. You're so quick to tell us that we need to either embrace without question what the Orthodox Faith teaches us or leave the Church. Yet when others ask you for a more articulate defense of why you believe your position to be Orthodox, you balk. Now you state that it's because you're just too damned lazy to study the issues.

Just because I don't have a desire to look up the meaning and essence of everything our church teaches doesn't mean that my arguments automatically fall flat on their face.
Yes, it does. It means that you willingly enter a debate with an empty weapon.

I accept things the Church says at face value and I don't question them.
Good for you! That mentality doesn't work for us Thomases, though.

I have no reason to defend the Church's views against you, against other devil's advocates, or against the arguments of either Michal or Mor Ephrem.
Actually, you have very good reason to do so. It's called common courtesy. It's called being always prepared to make a defense to anyone who calls you to account.

It's amazing to me, that no matter what I say, it always gets contested on this website.
Have you ever taken the time to listen to and learn from the feedback others have given you?

Yet in the Orthodox communities I've been in, no one but the catechuments and inquirers question these things, the faithful Orthodox Christians who regularly attend services typically all accept them as they are. The only Orthodox who don't accept them that I've encountered are ones who don't attend regularly, or who merely see Orthodoxy as one religion amongst many, and their adherence to it as merely part of their ethnicity.
You've met a different breed of Orthodox on this site, then. You've met those who have no tolerance for dogmatic BS, who wish to test the spirits and not just accept without question that what you say is the Faith of the Church. You've met those who actively engage your arguments and aren't afraid to challenge you to articulate a defense of your beliefs and prove to us that what you say is truly Orthodox. You've met those who don't question what we know without doubt to be the doctrine and praxis of the Church but at the same time haven't seen any reason to trust without question that you are a witness of the Church. What I say is true: The Church I trust; I don't trust you.

Maybe I need to just shut up and step back and allow the members of OCnet to promote their own un-Orthodox views without question.
No, maybe you just need to take the time to actually read and listen to what others say so you can understand their points of view before you judge them.
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« Reply #251 on: September 18, 2013, 02:54:14 PM »

Why? In that very sentence, he judges our tradition's practices as scandalous.

You do that for the tradition of the Antiochian Patriarchate. The only one difference Mor is not a jerk about that.

It isn't a tradition Michal, it's an abomination. Women are banned from the altar area except women deacons. That is how it is universally in our church, accept it.

Michal, your views have shown it again and again, why don't you just openly admit being a "progressive Christian"?
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« Reply #252 on: September 18, 2013, 02:54:14 PM »

To be honest, my research only goes so far as Eastern Orthodoxy. OO & Roman Catholicism are mere curiosities to me because they don't impact my worship. OO is most like ours, even sharing St. Basil's Liturgy with us, but other than that, I have no concern for learning their practices unless they become one with our Church.

If you studied liturgy, you wouldn't say that.  Eastern Orthodox liturgy didn't drop out of the sky as the ascending Christ's last gift before clouds took him out of our sight.  It didn't develop in a vacuum.  You don't have to care about the practices of those outside your Church as if caring legitimised them as equal to your own, but you should care because they provide clues and insight into how your own liturgy took form and became what you have received.  

Study liturgy.  Don't simply focus on the intricacies of various types of Typikon as if that's enough.  You won't understand the latter without the former.

Quote
Also, as for wearing "leather" shoes. As I pointed out, I seriously doubt you will find someone in this day and age, especially Priests, at least in the US, wearing real, pure leather shoes. They are just too expensive. You also won't get "dress" shoes today without them being some kind of leather, unless you want to pay a lot for some fancy shoe that has no leather.

Traditional ecclesiastical practice prohibits animal products from being used at the altar.  Leather is one of those products.  

You can talk about how people may use imitation leather nowadays, but exactly how far back does that go?  Back in the day, different Churches came up with different solutions for this problem, and outside of EO tradition, they almost always involved some form of "vegetable" material being used for shoes/slippers.  Most of us continue that practice.  

Or you can talk about how it's impossible to buy appropriate shoes without any leather in them, and so it's pointless to insist on this tradition (as if it is impossible to take off your shoes).  You can try to justify it all you want, but that only goes to show that, for you, it's an inconvenient truth: your Church routinely disregards a universally acknowledged liturgical practice when it comes to shoes, even if it upholds that practice when it comes to such things as leather-bound Gospels.    

Quote
Altar boy isn't a fuction that isn't allowed in our church. It's a function that is permitted based on the assumption that the boys will go on to become readers, subdeacons, deacons, priests and maybe even bishops.

Maybe you should spend less time judging the Eastern Orthodox and our practices, and focus on your own tradition.

LOL.  I'm not judging anything other than your willful ignorance, but I hope saying that gave you a much needed ego boost.    

"Altar boys" are allowed, you claim, based on the assumption that they will go on at least to the minor orders.  Very well, but how many actually go on to this?  It's by no means guaranteed that even half will do so, is it?  Why they can't be set aside as members of these minor orders from the very start of their service?  In my Church, our minor orders are chanter, reader, and subdeacon.  We don't have "candle-bearer", because tending to the lamps, candles, and doors of the church and altar is the responsibility of the subdiaconate (our subdeacon is candle-bearer, porter, and sacristan all in one, and is technically the first rank that actually gets to serve within the altar as opposed to the kliros).  But your tradition does have "candle-bearer", in addition to chanter, reader, and subdeacon.  If all EO altar boys are ordained candle-bearers, then I have no issue with it, and I think the argument changes significantly.  

But as it is currently AFAIK, "altar boys" are just boys who ask or are asked to put on a robe and perform functions that are traditionally reserved for the ordained.  Why?  If there's a shortage of ordained ministers, the solution is not to allow kids to play dress-up.  Find a responsible way, within the limits of ecclesiastical tradition, to ensure having sufficient ministers.  That may involve training half the qualified men in your church, or it may involve adjusting certain standards (e.g., marriage requirements for subdeacons) to increase economically the pool of the qualified, but how on earth do you justify absolutely unordained "altar boys" but not "altar girls" without in some way implying that male genitals are necessary in order to stand behind the iconostasis?

Just admit that there is a contradiction and it is not easily resolved because we have allowed a certain practice to attain "antiquity" based on weak or faulty logic, when all we had to do was follow the canonical traditions we had received and which we still practice.  But the attempt to justify altar boys as "tradition" while condemning altar girls as part and parcel of the gay agenda or Anglicanesque progressivism is ridiculous and literally nonsensical, hardly worthy of a Church that claims to be God's one and only.                

My point is proven, you are doing nothing but judging the Eastern Orthodox position, and you have absolutely no right to do so as an Oriental Orthodox Christian.
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« Reply #253 on: September 18, 2013, 02:55:47 PM »

My point is proven, you are doing nothing but judging the Eastern Orthodox position, and you have absolutely no right to do so as an Oriental Orthodox Christian.

But graduating an EO seminary and the like...
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« Reply #254 on: September 18, 2013, 02:57:57 PM »

Why?  If there's a shortage of ordained ministers, the solution is not to allow kids to play dress-up.  Find a responsible way, within the limits of ecclesiastical tradition, to ensure having sufficient ministers.  That may involve training half the qualified men in your church, or it may involve adjusting certain standards (e.g., marriage requirements for subdeacons) to increase economically the pool of the qualified,

Except for tiny mission parishes (and convents, hence the exception of nuns going in the altar), there really is no excuse why every parish can't find at least a couple of devout, married men who could be ordained to the subdeaconate.

Quote
but how on earth do you justify absolutely unordained "altar boys" but not "altar girls" without in some way implying that male genitals are necessary in order to stand behind the iconostasis?               

It can't be justified. It's basically the same argument Michael is making ("it's done, therefore it's okay"), just with respect to something that's more widely accepted.

My point is proven, you are doing nothing but judging the Eastern Orthodox position, and you have absolutely no right to do so as an Oriental Orthodox Christian.

Judging an incorrect practice within the Eastern Orthodox Church - and there are many such practices which have become normative for various reasons, some good, some neutral, others bad - is not the same as judging "the Eastern Orthodox position."
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« Reply #255 on: September 18, 2013, 02:59:23 PM »

My point is proven, you are doing nothing but judging the Eastern Orthodox position, and you have absolutely no right to do so as an Oriental Orthodox Christian.

But graduating an EO seminary and the like...

Details, details...
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« Reply #256 on: September 18, 2013, 02:59:43 PM »

My point is proven, you are doing nothing but judging the Eastern Orthodox position, and you have absolutely no right to do so as an Oriental Orthodox Christian.

Isn't that what 60% of the posts are on this forum?*  People from the different jurisdictions and Churches judging what is and is not appropriate about other Churches?  It is certainly not some new novel thing that has recently penetrated the forum.  I daresay I could probably find some of your own posts that would demonstrate you judging OO or RC positions.

*The other 40% being fun, silly nonsense.
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« Reply #257 on: September 18, 2013, 03:00:53 PM »

Why?  If there's a shortage of ordained ministers, the solution is not to allow kids to play dress-up.  Find a responsible way, within the limits of ecclesiastical tradition, to ensure having sufficient ministers.  That may involve training half the qualified men in your church, or it may involve adjusting certain standards (e.g., marriage requirements for subdeacons) to increase economically the pool of the qualified,

Except for tiny mission parishes (and convents, hence the exception of nuns going in the altar), there really is no excuse why every parish can't find at least a couple of devout, married men who could be ordained to the subdeaconate.

Except having regular subdeacons in non-cathedral EO churches is an American phenomenon not seen anywhere else and not really having any purpose.
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« Reply #258 on: September 18, 2013, 03:01:16 PM »

Devin,

Have you ever purchased shoes for yourself ever? Seriously? You show your true colors when you make outrageous statements like these. Let me guess your mom still does all your laundry too right?

Yes, I have purchased shoes for myself. I'm currently wearing about $30-40 tennis shoes I got on sale. I wear the same dress shoes (and dress clothes) I've had for nearly a decade, and as I recall they were no more than $20-30, but I only wear them once a week. I only buy shirts if they are $10 or less, pants if they are $20 or less, and I will wear socks even after they have holes in them. I see no reason to spend too much money on clothing.

Nice ad hominem trying to insult me as if I was a little kid...
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« Reply #259 on: September 18, 2013, 03:01:16 PM »

My point is proven, you are doing nothing but judging the Eastern Orthodox position, and you have absolutely no right to do so as an Oriental Orthodox Christian.

But graduating an EO seminary and the like...

That doesn't matter because he still isn't Eastern Orthodox.
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« Reply #260 on: September 18, 2013, 03:02:07 PM »

My point is proven, you are doing nothing but judging the Eastern Orthodox position, and you have absolutely no right to do so as an Oriental Orthodox Christian.

No, I'm not.  I'm judging this:

The difference is that they've taken the time to understand the issues, and I don't care about doing so.
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« Reply #261 on: September 18, 2013, 03:04:16 PM »

I daresay I could probably find some of your own posts that would demonstrate you judging OO or RC positions.

But that's different, of course, because those communities aren't God's one and only Church, and this fact is clearly, abundantly, and unambiguously clear to all human beings. 
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« Reply #262 on: September 18, 2013, 03:04:40 PM »

My point is proven, you are doing nothing but judging the Eastern Orthodox position, and you have absolutely no right to do so as an Oriental Orthodox Christian.

But graduating an EO seminary and the like...

That doesn't matter because he still isn't Eastern Orthodox.
Technically, the canons only forbid him from leveling formal charges of ecclesiastical misconduct against a bishop of the Eastern Orthodox Church. As an OO Christian, Mor Ephrem has every right to judge the Eastern Orthodox position, and nothing you say to the contrary can ever deprive him of that right.
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« Reply #263 on: September 18, 2013, 03:06:22 PM »

You know, if members on this website other than LBK and Laka are unwilling to defend Orthodox practice, then I'm done, I'm absolutely sick of dealing with so many un-Orthodox points of view on a supposedly Orthodox forum. I won't jump to some Old Calendarist group, because I know what the real Church teaches, but I definitely am not going to listen to heterodox, progressive ideas or consider the opinions of those who contradict the Holy, Pure Orthodox Church.

Either accept what the Church says and has said for 2000 years, or don't, and go somewhere where you'll be happier. I hear the Anglican Church allows altar girls, and even allows them into their Priesthood and Episcopacy! Isn't that wonderful and progressive? /sarcasm
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« Reply #264 on: September 18, 2013, 03:07:26 PM »

I think my priest wears plastic shoes.  I've noticed them before and they look rather odd.  I've not noticed what the deacons wear.
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« Reply #265 on: September 18, 2013, 03:07:33 PM »

That doesn't matter because he still isn't Eastern Orthodox.

I don't need to be Eastern Orthodox to post on this forum and agree or disagree with other posters' contentions based on my study and personal experience.  I can't force you to agree or to listen, but you can't silence me with such foolishness.    
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« Reply #266 on: September 18, 2013, 03:10:09 PM »

You know, if members on this website other than LBK and Laka are unwilling to defend Orthodox practice, then I'm done, I'm absolutely sick of dealing with so many un-Orthodox points of view on a supposedly Orthodox forum. I won't jump to some Old Calendarist group, because I know what the real Church teaches, but I definitely am not going to listen to heterodox, progressive ideas or consider the opinions of those who contradict the Holy, Pure Orthodox Church.

Either accept what the Church says and has said for 2000 years, or don't, and go somewhere where you'll be happier. I hear the Anglican Church allows altar girls, and even allows them into their Priesthood and Episcopacy! Isn't that wonderful and progressive? /sarcasm
I don't think you quite understand what Mor, PtA and Michal are arguing.  They are not promoting women at the altar, they just want you to understand the logic BEHIND the Church's position, not just accepting it carte blanc.  Understanding WHY the Church does what it does is vital to our spiritual health.
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« Reply #267 on: September 18, 2013, 03:14:35 PM »

You know, if members on this website other than LBK and Laka are unwilling to defend Orthodox practice, then I'm done, I'm absolutely sick of dealing with so many un-Orthodox points of view on a supposedly Orthodox forum.
Except that nobody has really ever said that altar girls are okay. Nobody that I'm aware of has ever criticized traditional Orthodox praxis on the subject of altar girls. Even those who have criticized your tactics have tried to make it clear that we still uphold the traditional Orthodox prohibitions against altar girls and the ordination of women. It's you we have a problem with, not the faith of the Church.

I won't jump to some Old Calendarist group, because I know what the real Church teaches, but I definitely am not going to listen to heterodox, progressive ideas or consider the opinions of those who contradict the Holy, Pure Orthodox Church.
Will you at least listen to us long enough to realize that we're not openly advocating ideas that contradict the faith of the Church?

Either accept what the Church says and has said for 2000 years, or don't, and go somewhere where you'll be happier.
Devin, what are you doing to follow the example of Christ's condescension to the doubts of St. Thomas?
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« Reply #268 on: September 18, 2013, 03:15:29 PM »

You know, if members on this website other than LBK and Laka are unwilling to defend Orthodox practice, then I'm done, I'm absolutely sick of dealing with so many un-Orthodox points of view on a supposedly Orthodox forum. I won't jump to some Old Calendarist group, because I know what the real Church teaches, but I definitely am not going to listen to heterodox, progressive ideas or consider the opinions of those who contradict the Holy, Pure Orthodox Church.

Either accept what the Church says and has said for 2000 years, or don't, and go somewhere where you'll be happier. I hear the Anglican Church allows altar girls, and even allows them into their Priesthood and Episcopacy! Isn't that wonderful and progressive? /sarcasm
I don't think you quite understand what Mor, PtA and Michal are arguing.  They are not promoting women at the altar, they just want you to understand the logic BEHIND the Church's position, not just accepting it carte blanc.  Understanding WHY the Church does what it does is vital to our spiritual health.
Thank you! You understand what I'm trying to do here. Grin
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« Reply #269 on: September 18, 2013, 03:18:16 PM »

Except having regular subdeacons in non-cathedral EO churches is an American phenomenon not seen anywhere else and not really having any purpose.

This is the type of dialogue I'd like to have.  Why do we feel that having regular subdeacons in non-cathedral parishes is without any purpose?  How did that line of thinking develop?  Subdeacons are ordained specifically for altar service, but if we see them now as simply the bishop's personal attendants during a specific form of Liturgy, I think that's a move away from the canonical tradition.  There's no reason, IMO, why subdeacons should not be a part of every parish's "staff" in order to serve at Liturgies and other services, but I'd like, if possible, to explore the idea that they have no function outside a very specific context.    

If having regular parish subdeacons in EO parishes is common in America (and I'm not really sure how common it is), then I think it is a combination of several factors: actual need, bishops trying to (re-)establish an ideal, people preparing for seminary or ordination as deacons, and even (sadly) people who want that foot in the door to say that they are among the clergy without having to go to seminary or do real pastoral ministry while retaining the appearance of authority.      
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