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Author Topic: Archimandrite Robert Taft on Ukrainian Catholic Patriarchate  (Read 12592 times) Average Rating: 0
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Deacon Lance
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« on: February 07, 2004, 09:52:37 PM »

Interview with Jesuit Fr. Robert Taft of the Pontifical Oriental Institute
February 4, 2004
By John L. Allen, Jr.
Rome
Cardinal Walter Kasper, president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, is scheduled to travel to Moscow Feb. 16-20, 2004 for a meeting with the Patriarch of Moscow, Alexy II. In anticipation of Kasper's trip, NCR Rome correspondent, John L. Allen Jr. sat down with Jesuit Fr. Robert Taft of the Pontifical Oriental Institute. Taft, a pioneer in Eastern liturgical studies and a veteran of East/West dialogues, is one of the leading experts on Orthodoxy in the Catholic Church. A transcript of the interview follows.

What’s the argument for erecting a patriarchate for the Greek Catholic church in Ukraine?
The argument is that when an Eastern church reaches a certain consistency, unity, size, consolidation and so forth, it’s a normal step. Furthermore, among the Orthodox it’s often been a normal step taken illegally. For example, the Bulgarians were under the Patriarchate of Constantinople, who according to Orthodox practice, imposed upon them a Greek hierarchy, until the Bulgarians had enough and declared their independence, erecting their own patriarchate. Constantinople refused to recognize it, until they finally realized that nothing’s going to change and so they recognized it. Frankly, my advice to the Ukrainians has always been to do the same thing. Just declare the patriarchate and get on with it. Do it, of course, only if you’ve got the bishops unanimously behind it GǪ
Do they?
Yes, I think they do now. The danger is that if there are even two people who say no, then Rome’s going to say that the bishops are divided and we can’t recognize it. I told them, take two steps. First, publicly declare the patriarchate. Second, request Roman recognition, but even if it doesn’t come, refuse all mail that doesn’t come addressed to the patriarchate. Don’t just pretend, but really do it. The Secretary of State sends a letter addressed to the archbishop? We don’t have any archbishop, we’ve got a patriarch. Send it back unopened, “addressee unknown.”
Why erect it in Kiev rather than L’viv, where the Greek Catholics in the Ukraine are traditionally concentrated?
You have to understand, and this is something that anyone who knows any history has to sympathize with, that Kiev, “Kievan Rus” as they call it, is the heartland of all Orthodoxy among the East Slavs - Belorussians, Ukrainians, and the Russians. To ask one of them to renounce Kiev is like asking the Christians to give Jerusalem over to the Jews, to say we really don’t have any interest there anymore. It’s ridiculous. GǪ
Furthermore, there was a time when all of Ukraine west of the Dnepr River was in union with Rome, and the presiding hierarch was in Kiev. It’s not like there’s never been a Ukrainian Catholic bishop of Kiev, a metropolitan of Kiev. But, you know, you don’t resolve this on the basis of history. History is instructive but not normative. GǪ
Kiev in Ukraine is like Paris in France. L’viv, even though it’s a lovely town, is still a backwater. You’re dealing with a church that has spread beyond the old Galician boundaries, in other words the Western Ukrainian boundaries of its existence. In the modern world people spread all over the place. Even though this is still the heartland, there are Ukrainian Greek Catholics not only throughout Eastern Ukraine but also across Russia, Kazakhstan, you name it. These people have a right to be served. Furthermore, one of the ugly secrets that no one talks about is that it’s quite possible that the Ukrainian Greek Catholic church is the largest group of practicing Christians in the country, East or West. I’m talking about those who go to church. You ask the Orthodox in the Ukraine, “How big are you?” and they say, “310 parishes.” But ask them “Who goes to church?” and they say, “We don’t know.” “Eastern” and “statistics” is an oxymoron. One thing that characterizes Ukrainian Catholics is that they go to church, and they practice. Why was the Russian Orthodox church so upset at losing that area back to the Catholic church? That’s where their vocations came from, and that’s where their money came from. Collect a statistic sometime of how many priests who were ordained in the Russian Orthodox church from the end of World War II until the day before yesterday came from Western Ukraine. Certainly it would be an overwhelmingly unbalanced proportion with respect to the size of the Orthodox population.
By the way, almost all the Ukrainian Orthodox today are Catholics who had been forced into the Orthodox Church and for one reason or another remained Orthodox.
Aside from Orthodox sensitivities, is there any argument against erecting a patriarchate in Ukraine?
Oh, good heavens, no. That is, unless you want to ask the question of what right Rome has to erect an Eastern patriarchate anyway. Basically, the scuttlebutt is that the pope said to the Ukrainians, if you can convince Kasper, it’s okay with me. Kasper of course is going to oppose it, and should. Kasper has been given the job of building bridges with the Orthodox, not to dynamite them. I perfectly sympathize. What Kasper’s doing is not following his own personal tastes and needs. He’s doing his job.
But there’s no intra-Catholic reason to object to the patriarchate?
Are you kidding? We’ve got a patriarchate for the Copts whose total membership would fit in this room, for God’s sake. Give me a break. Maybe there shouldn’t be, that’s another question, but there is.
What it is that bothers the Orthodox so much about the idea of a Ukrainian patriarchate?
What bothers them is the very existence of these churches. They look upon all of these people as their property that has been won away, coaxed away, forced away from them. And they’re right. But what they don’t realize is that you just cannot collapse history the way they do. It’s like going on a visit to Greece to the beach because you want to get a suntan, and some jerk points his finger at you as if you fought in the Fourth Crusade. Most Westerners don’t even know what the hell the Fourth Crusade was, and don’t need to know. You’re dealing with people who collapse history as if it happened yesterday. Let me use my classic example of the Anglicans. Does anybody think that Henry VIII took a plebiscite to see if the Catholics in England wanted to separate from Rome? No, they got up one morning and found that they were no longer Catholics. But that’s 500 years ago. It certainly doesn’t mean that the Catholic church could enter England with an army today and force all those people back into the fold. The same thing is true in Ukraine. These people, the Greek Catholics, have been in the Catholic church since 1596, and want to remain there. The Orthodox propose, and it’s hard to even take this seriously, that Eastern Catholics should be given the “free choice” of joining the Orthodox church or joining the Latin church. That’s like telling African-Americans in Georgia that because you’re the descendants of somebody who got dragged there, you can have the “free choice” of living in Albania or Uganda. Maybe they want to stay where they were born, right in the good old USA. To call that a “free choice” is a mockery of language.
The Orthodox say that Union of 1596 was dissolved in 1946.
Everybody knows what a comedy that was. Even the secret police who organized the thing have spilled the beans in print. As everybody knows, all of the bishops of the Catholic church were arrested, so how can you have a synod without bishops? The two or three bishops who were there had been ordained as Orthodox bishops, therefore they were not Catholic bishops, therefore they could not in any canonical way preside over a Catholic synod. Everybody knows this.
So what is the real issue for the Orthodox?
They look upon the whole area of Kievan Rus, which includes what is now Ukraine as well as Muscovy and the area around Novgarod, those are the three historic centers, as their heartland. This would be like for the papacy having somebody come in and take over Italy.
So they’re afraid of a domino effect?
To attempt to apply rational analysis to this is to fail to understand what the East is. Once you get over on this side of the Atlantic Ocean, the further you go South or East from anywhere, the worse everything gets, except the food. Logic gets worse, rationality gets worse, and everything ultimately winds up in hysteria and emotionalism. It’s futile to try and reason about this.
So the Catholic church is never going to persuade the Orthodox to accept the patriarchate?
No, and I don’t think we should even try. To hell with Moscow.
Cardinal Kasper is going to Moscow on Feb. 16, and certainly this issue will be on the agenda. Is it a fool’s errand?
No, because Kasper is a rational man. You’ve got two levels: the level of what appears in public declarations and the press, and then the level of face-to-face contacts with people who can be rational, like Metropolitan Kirill of Smolensk (the number two official in the Russian Orthodox hierarchy). He’s a rational, intelligent human being, and he’s not an enemy of Catholicism. He has to make certain sounds from time to time. You see, you have to realize that much of what the Russian Orthodox hierarchy does is because of their own lunatic fringe. It’s a mistake to think the patriarch and the permanent synod have the kind of control over their hierarchy and their church that the pope does in the Catholic church. The patriarch of Moscow is not a pope.
What realistically can Kasper hope to accomplish?
By talking turkey the way he did in his article in Civilt+á Cattolica when the Orthodox complained about the creation of the dioceses in Russia, which was translated into other languages, he could make some headway. He laid it right out. There are over 300,000 Catholics in European Russia, 65,000 of them in Moscow alone. To say that a church doesn’t have a right to erect a diocese there is absurd, especially when the Orthodox plant metropolitans wherever they want. Let’s take the example of Austria. Vienna has been a Catholic see since the first millennium, yet the Russian Orthodox have a metropolitan, not just “in” Vienna but “of” Vienna GǪ that’s his title. Yet there probably aren’t 5,000 Russian Orthodox in the whole of Austria. Fair is fair. Is Moscow their canonical territory? Yes, but guess whose canonical territory Vienna is. They come up with the argument, we believe in the principle of “one bishop, one city.” Want to guess how many Orthodox bishops there are in New York? I mean, for God’s sake. The problem is, nobody talks to them like that because nobody knows what I know. Catholics hear this stuff and say, “Oh, gee, aren’t we awful.” Give me a break.
So what can Kasper hope for?
What Kasper can hope for is a renewal of the dialogue. What he needs to do is to reassure Moscow once again is that the Catholic church regards the Russian Orthodox church as a sister church, that we are there to take care of Catholics, not to fish in their pond. We’ve said this a million times. Kirill has been making some good noises lately. He’s said the dialogue has never been interrupted, which is true, and that while the official position of both churches is that we shouldn’t be fishing in one another’s waters, but there are clergy on both sides who don’t respect those norms. There are Orthodox clergy who proselytize among Catholics, we know that for a fact. The Russian Orthodox opened up a parish in Palermo! All the Russians in Palermo you could fit into a telephone booth. Who’s the priest? He’s a converted Catholic. When it was opened up, in the journal of the Moscow patriarchate, it stated quite clearly that this is a step toward recovering the Byzantine heritage of Sicily. Furthermore, there’s a Greek monastery in Calabria that’s also proselytizing among the Catholics. There are loose cannons all over the place.
So Kasper is not going to persuade the Orthodox. Is his goal to soften the blow when it comes?
Yes. I think what Kasper needs to do is to tell them that this is probably going to happen sooner or later, and if you get bent out of shape, that reaction is going hurt nobody but yourself. Nobody. Do we need them? Answer, no. Simple as that.
Do you think they know that?
Probably not, because they know that they control the turf in Russia, and they know there are hundreds of thousands of Catholics in Russia. It’s extremely difficult for the Orthodox to face up to their own reality. They don’t really understand the uses of history. For example, there are hundreds of thousands of Catholics today in Siberia. How come? Because the Russians dragged them there in cattle cars, that’s how come. Let’s say it the way it is. Furthermore, before the war, 20 percent of the population of Siberia was Catholic. Were there Catholics dioceses in Russia before the revolution wiped them out? Yes, there were. I mean real dioceses, not just fictitious apostolic administrations. Real dioceses. If there are Catholic bishops now in regions where there weren’t before the revolution, it’s for the reason I just gave - these people were dragged to those regions in cattle cars. The pope didn’t drag them there. Let’s say it the way it is. They’re incapable of facing reality.
There seems to be a predictable pattern of crisis/reconciliation/crisis in Catholic-Orthodox relations. Are we doomed to keep repeating this cycle?
I think so. In part, because we live in a free world and nobody really controls all of their own people. If the Neocatechumenate crowd decides to show up in some Russian city and cause trouble, who’s going to put them under control? Part of the problem is that this papacy hasn’t controlled some of these new movements. Matter of fact, it encourages them. It’s not the Jesuits who are causing trouble in Russia. It’s not the Franciscans. Part of the problem too is that the Russians are always reacting not so much to what we do, as to how their own constituency reacts to whatever we do. Basically, there are three groups in the Russian hierarchy. You’ve got a real wacko kind of right-wing fringe. These are the ones who would agree with calling Rasputin a saint and that kind of garbage. Then you’ve got people like Kirill, who are open and ecumenical and intelligent, because he’s got an education. Then you’ve got kind of a middle group that’s very conservative but not frothing at the mouth. Kirill’s group is a very small minority. The patriarch is a juggler trying to keep all these balls in the air.
The post-Vatican II goal of the ecumenical movement was full structural unity. Is that a pipe dream with the Orthodox?
No, it’s not a pipe dream, but it depends what you mean. The only possible aim for ecumenism is communion. The old notion that the church begins with God, then the pope, and on down in pyramidal fashion, is gone. What we’re dealing with now is sister churches. That’s what we had before the East/West schism. Does anybody think that Rome had anything to say about who became patriarch of Constantinople? Or who became the metropolitan of Nicomedia? Of course not. These guys were bishops there just like we had bishops here, and when they met they’d say, “You’re a bishop? Hey, I’m a bishop too. How’s it going?” They were all in communion. It’s not like Rome was telling them what to do.
How do we get communion?
First, let’s be clear that this is all we’re ever going to get.
When will we get it?
I don’t know. Certainly not in my lifetime. I would suspect that it’s going to take a few more centuries.
Do you agree that the central problem is the papacy?
Of course. What we’ve made out of the papacy is simply ridiculous. There’s no possible justification in the New Testament or anyplace else for what we’ve made out of the papacy. That doesn’t mean that I don’t believe in a Petrine ministry. I believe that Rome has inherited that Petrine ministry. But there’s no reason on God’s earth why the pope should be appointing the bishop of Peoria. None whatsoever. So we really need a devolution, a decentralization. The Catholic church has become so big that we need some kind of a synodal structure in the West the same way you have in the East. The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops ought to be a kind of synod of Catholic bishops in the United States. They ought to be able to elect the bishops. Leave Rome a veto, if you want. By the way, this would be no guarantee of better bishops. The notion that the locals will necessarily pick better people than Rome is obviously false, as anybody who knows the East understands. But at least people will see these guys as their bishops and not Rome’s. Make your own bed and sleep in it. The pope could say: ‘You don’t like the archbishop of New York? Hey, I didn’t name him.’
Given all the hassles, is there a case for simply forgetting about dialogue with the Orthodox?
The Catholic church never calls anybody else a “church” if they don’t have an episcopate. In that strict sense of the term, the Russian Orthodox is the largest church in the world after the Catholic church. To ignore them would be like the United States’ policy on China for so many years. There are a billion people over there, and the U.S. tried to pretend they don’t exist. How stupid can you be? So we’ve got to come to terms with Moscow, but they also have to come to terms with us. Like it or lump it.
So, tough love is your approach?
Absolutely. That was one of the problems of the Secretariat of Christian Unity under Willebrands. When the Orthodox would say something outrageous, they would make remonstrances privately, but never did anything appear in public. You can’t do it that way. That makes them think they’re getting away with it. It’s got to be front page, in your face. We shouldn’t have a Catholic bishop in Moscow? Well, let’s see, there’s a Russian Orthodox metropolitan in Brussels, to say nothing of Paris, of London. Up to a while ago, there were three Orthodox bishops in Oxford. All of the Orthodox in Oxford you could fit into a telephone booth. You’ve got to challenge this sort of nonsense.

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« Reply #1 on: February 07, 2004, 10:06:30 PM »

It seems like Taft is saying all southern and eastern Europeans are a bunch of raving lunatics who are only good for the cuisine. How charitable of him.

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"So they’re afraid of a domino effect?
To attempt to apply rational analysis to this is to fail to understand what the East is. Once you get over on this side of the Atlantic Ocean, the further you go South or East from anywhere, the worse everything gets, except the food. Logic gets worse, rationality gets worse, and everything ultimately winds up in hysteria and emotionalism. It’s futile to try and reason about this."
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« Reply #2 on: February 08, 2004, 12:42:14 AM »

Thanks for this post, Deacon Lance.  If you sourced this from the internet, could you please provide the link? Smiley
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« Reply #3 on: February 08, 2004, 01:32:45 AM »

Does this really come as a suprise to anyone?  It was the next step once the movement of the UGCC headquarters to hundreds of miles from the majority of its people & into the heartland of Ukrainian Orthodoxy was completed.  Once this step is accomplished the next will be for them to go through another one of their constant name changes.  They will soon begin referring to themselves as either 'The Kievan Church' or the 'Church of Kiev'  (only using the NEW spelling for Kiev which I refuse to do).  This will be  done to try and attract the two non-canonical Orthodox jurisdictions  which they already know are based around the same three principles of their own church - nationalism, politics, and ethnic hatred.  

They will utilize the new name to do another rewrite of history by claiming they are the mother church of all the eastern slavs or children of 'Rus'.  Some of them are already claiming this on the 'other' board by insinuating that they are the mother church of those of us who have a Carpatho-Russian (or Rusyn for those who prefer  it) ancestory.

Only problem is we Karpatsko Rus are a little smarter then our Ukie cousins.  We know that our ancestors became Christians under Sts Cyrill and Methodius rather than St Vladimir.  Which means that our ancestors had a culture and were Christians for over a century while our Ukrainian cousins were still bowing down before carved tree trunks!  Unless of course, one of them can prove that a mother can be born 100+ years AFTER her children.

You don't have to be a rocket scientist or have a PHD to figure it all out.

From their own posts they are ready to turn their backs on both Rome and Moscow if need be.  They seem to think it is up to them to decide whom they want to be in communion with and that in itself is enough to make it happen.  Which proves what I have been saying all along -  they don't base their faith on  Canons, doctrines, dogmas,  theology, or  Hierachal obedience.  Just nationalism, politics, and hatred.  And then they cry that they are abused by both Rome and Moscow who both refuse them autocephally.  Never bothering  to ask themselves WHY?  

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« Reply #4 on: February 08, 2004, 01:46:20 AM »

[Thanks for this post, Deacon Lance. If you sourced this from the internet, could you please provide the link? ]

http://natcath.org/mainpage/taft.htm

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« Reply #5 on: February 08, 2004, 03:44:53 AM »

What struck me was these comments:

"Does anybody think that Rome had anything to say about who became patriarch of Constantinople? Or who became the metropolitan of Nicomedia? Of course not. These guys were bishops there just like we had bishops here, and when they met they’d say, “You’re a bishop? Hey, I’m a bishop too. How’s it going?” They were all in communion. It’s not like Rome was telling them what to do."

"What we’ve made out of the papacy is simply ridiculous. There’s no possible justification in the New Testament or anyplace else for what we’ve made out of the papacy. That doesn’t mean that I don’t believe in a Petrine ministry. I believe that Rome has inherited that Petrine ministry. But there’s no reason on God’s earth why the pope should be appointing the bishop of Peoria. None whatsoever. So we really need a devolution, a decentralization."


WOW...at least he's honest about the absolute universal jurisdiction innovation, but doesn't this make him anathema for denying part of the definition of Vatican I about the pope's supreme power of jurisdiction?
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« Reply #6 on: February 08, 2004, 08:38:11 AM »

Just a little 'moral support' in the struggle against Rome's "Divide & Conquer"ism. Sorry to sound polemical, but it's true- Demetri

Greek Catholic Patriarchate May Stop Ecumenical Dialogue, Says Bartholomew I  
02.05.04 (www.RISU.org.ua) - ISTANBUL, Turkey. Orthodox Patriarch Bartholomew I of Constantinople has asked John Paul II not to establish a Greek Catholic patriarchate in Kyiv, Ukraine, warning him of the risk of a break in ecumenical relations.  
The patriarch's request came in a letter, published in Greek in the patriarchate's Web page, which discusses a document presented by Cardinal Walter Kasper, president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, to Alexis II, patriarch of Moscow and All Russia.  
Alexis II sent the document, which alludes to the eventual recognition of a patriarchal title for the Ukrainian Greek Catholics, to Orthodox patriarchs.  
In the letter dated Nov. 29, Bartholomew I rejects Cardinal Kasper's document, labeling it "erroneous, confused, unacceptable, provocative," and after a lengthy refutation of the cardinal's historical-canonical document, warns about the possible negative consequences of an eventual recognition of a patriarchal title for the Greek Catholic Church in Ukraine.  
"[It] will cause strong reactions on the part of all the Orthodox sister churches and will put a stop to attempts to continue the theological dialogue between the Catholic Church and Orthodox churches," the Italian magazine 30 Giorni reported.  
In his letter to the Pope, Bartholomew I said there is a danger "of returning to the climate of hostility that reigned up to a few decades ago."  
"Therefore," the patriarch wrote, "it is necessary that you assure the Ukrainian people and all the Orthodox Churches with persuasive force that you have no intention of initiating the institution of the Greek Catholic Patriarchate in Ukraine as Cardinal Kasper's text alludes."  
Recognition of the primacy of Peter is a key point in the discussion between Eastern-rite Ukrainian Catholics (who number about 5 million) and the Orthodox.  
Recognizing the level of development reached by its church, the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Synod's plenary assembly, held in Kyiv in July 2002, asked the Holy Father to sanction this process by granting it the patriarchal title.  
According to the conciliar decree "Orientalium Ecclesiarum" on the Catholic Eastern Churches, a pope has the faculty to recognize on his own initiative the patriarchal rank of a church without having to submit this recognition to the consensus of other ecclesial authorities.  
The Catholic-Orthodox dialogue has two events planned: Cardinal Kasper is scheduled to meet with Alexis II in two weeks; and Bartholomew I recently said he would visit the Pope on the feast of Sts. Peter and Paul, in June.  
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« Reply #7 on: February 08, 2004, 10:34:50 AM »

[WOW...at least he's honest about the absolute universal jurisdiction innovation, but doesn't this make him anathema for denying part of the definition of Vatican I about the pope's supreme power of jurisdiction?]

Of course it does.  What he is saying in essence is that his church is knowingly and willing in communion with, and  has placed itself under, a Patriarch whose authority they question and who professes doctrines they neither uphold as valid or believe in (Papal Supremacy & Infallibility).  In other words, they are knowingly and willingly currently under a heretical bishop!  But he also alludes to the fact that they will remain as such AS LONG AS HE GIVES THEM WHAT THEY WANT.  If he doesn't, they threaten to turn their backs on him.  Hence, doctrines, Canons, dogmas, and Hierachal obedience mean nothing to them.  

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« Reply #8 on: February 08, 2004, 12:54:38 PM »

Father Taft isn't a member of the Ukrainian Catholic Church.

In Christ,
Anthony

[WOW...at least he's honest about the absolute universal jurisdiction innovation, but doesn't this make him anathema for denying part of the definition of Vatican I about the pope's supreme power of jurisdiction?]

Of course it does.  What he is saying in essence is that his church is knowingly and willing in communion with, and  has placed itself under, a Patriarch whose authority they question and who professes doctrines they neither uphold as valid or believe in (Papal Supremacy & Infallibility).  In other words, they are knowingly and willingly currently under a heretical bishop!  But he also alludes to the fact that they will remain as such AS LONG AS HE GIVES THEM WHAT THEY WANT.  If he doesn't, they threaten to turn their backs on him.  Hence, doctrines, Canons, dogmas, and Hierachal obedience mean nothing to them.  

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« Reply #9 on: February 08, 2004, 01:55:42 PM »

Father Taft isn't a member of the Ukrainian Catholic Church.

In Christ,
Anthony

========

According to his biography which can be found at -

http://www.ichistory.org/pages/guests/guests25.html

He most certainly is.  He is an Eastern Catholic who accepts Papal authority (or at least when it suits him) from his remarks in the interview.  In which he certainly makes it clear he is speaking on behalf of the UGCC.  

From the above mentioned website that contains his autobiography -

In 1998 he was elevated to Mitred Archimandrite by Archbishop Sulyk (UGCC) in recognition for his services to Eastern Churches.

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« Reply #10 on: February 08, 2004, 07:52:57 PM »

It seems like Taft is saying all southern and eastern Europeans are a bunch of raving lunatics who are only good for the cuisine. How charitable of him.

In Christ,
Anthony

"So they’re afraid of a domino effect?
To attempt to apply rational analysis to this is to fail to understand what the East is. Once you get over on this side of the Atlantic Ocean, the further you go South or East from anywhere, the worse everything gets, except the food. Logic gets worse, rationality gets worse, and everything ultimately winds up in hysteria and emotionalism. It’s futile to try and reason about this."


Orthodox Christians, both convert and cradle, living in Eastern Europe or the West, have said far worse things about Western Civilization, Western Culture and religion, and the United States. Its pretty obvious to me that the East has been hysterical at times-the Christological controversies pretty much define fanaticism.
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« Reply #11 on: February 08, 2004, 07:59:52 PM »

Orthodoc,

But he still isn't a Ukrainian Catholic, he is a Russian Catholic directly under Latin obedience.

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« Reply #12 on: February 08, 2004, 08:49:54 PM »

Orthodoc,

The UGCC has always been the UGCC, your thinking of us Byzantine Catholics who use to be Greek Catholics.

I also find it odd that a person who is constantly deriding the autonomy of Eastern Catholic Churches, gets upset when one starts acting autonomous indeed autocephalous.  In fact they are not acting any different than the Bulgarian Orthodox who declared themselves autocephalous and waited for everyone else to get used to it.  The Serbs, Romanians, and Albanians, and Estonians had to fight for their autocephaly/autonomy as the Ukrainian Orthodox are doing now.

Archimandrite Robert raises some interesting points that I had not thought of the first being that the UGCC might have the most practicing members of any of the Churches in Ukraine.  If this is so I can understand why the MP fears the UGCC and maybe it should.  Maybe the MP will find itself with even emptier churches if the UGCC has a patriarchate.  All in all I don't see what the fuss is.  The UGCC is a patriarchate in all but name anyways.  This is like the stink they put up about the Latins formalizing dioceses in Russia.  What changed?  Oh yeah the MP started bribing politicians to deny visas to and deport non-Russians clergy.  Too bad the MP won't be able to use that angle in Ukraine.

By the way, Archimandrite Robert was also given the rare award of a second pectoral cross from the Ecumenical Patriarch but he isn't Orthodox.  As Anastasios said, Archimandrite Robert is a Russian Catholic and a Jesuit.  However, the general of the Jesuits is an Armenian Catholic so he is  directly under Armenian obediance.Wink

Fr. Deacon Lance

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« Reply #13 on: February 08, 2004, 11:41:42 PM »

Deacon Lance writes:

[I also find it odd that a person who is constantly deriding the autonomy of Eastern Catholic Churches, gets upset when one starts acting autonomous indeed autocephalous. In fact they are not acting any different than the Bulgarian Orthodox who declared themselves autocephalous and waited for everyone else to get used to it. The Serbs, Romanians, and Albanians, and Estonians had to fight for their autocephaly/autonomy as the Ukrainian Orthodox are doing now.]

Tell you what I find odd.  And thats the fact that you bring up Orthodox precedents to try and justify a Patriarchate for the UGCC.  Especially since this same church turned its back on Orthodoxy in 1596 including its canons, doctrines, and administrative  regulations in favor of the canons, doctrines, and administrative regulations of the RCC  when they agreed to accept  Papal authority.

Thats like me, an natural born American, immigrating to Canada and becoming a Canadian citizen.  And, after awhile deciding to become the Canadian Premier and quoting, instead of Canadian laws or precendents,  American laws and precedents to justify my claim.  American law and regulations I  turned my back on when I received Canadian citizenship.

The fact of the matter is that when the UGCC accepted Papal authority it also accepted all that goes with it.  Including the 'Code of Canons Of The Eastern Churches' formulated for them by Rome.

If I may quote from these Code of Canons for all the Eastern Catholics under Romes authority

Title IV:  The Patriarchal Churches -

Canon 57:  The erection, restoration, modification and suppression of patriarchal Churches ARE RESERVED TO THE SUPREME AUTHORITY OF THE CHURCH.

What any Orthodox Church did to proclaim or declare itself as autocephallous has no bearing on the subject of autocephally for any of the Eastern Catholic Churches under the authority of Rome.  We Orthodox are governed by  a different set of rules and regulations.  Rules and regulations that you all rejected starting in 1596.

Orthodoc

P.S.  Those those of you who may be Canadian do not be offended.  I'm just using this as an example.  You can substitute any country you like in the analogy.  I will always be indebted to our Canadian neighbors for what they did for our American hostages in Iran.  I will remember them with respect & gratitude forever for this act courage!

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« Reply #14 on: February 09, 2004, 01:13:37 AM »

Orthodoc,

I love your straighforward answers, man!

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« Reply #15 on: February 09, 2004, 01:15:03 AM »

Dear Fr Lance,

To expound on my last post: Orthodoc has a very valid point which is Rome could wake up tomorrow and declare that there is no Melkite patriarchate.  Sure it might cause all sorts of problems but they could.  In the 1950's Pope Pius XII *appointed* the Maronite patriarch when the election was troubled.  What's up with that?!

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« Reply #16 on: February 09, 2004, 01:21:59 AM »

Orthodoc,

I don't need to justify a UGCC Patriarchate.  The facts speak for themselves.  The UGCC is the largest and best organized EC Church and possibly has the most practicing members of any Church in Ukraine.  The only thing that has prevented them from being recognized as a patriarchate is Rome's desire to maintain good terms with the MP and through them the rest of Orthodoxy.  The UGCC is tired of waiting and being snubbed by Rome, knowing the MP is never going to be happy.  The Vatican is starting to realize the same.

Your anology fails, because we are not talking about politics although that is certainly how the MP plays it.  I concede that without Papal recognition the legitimacy of the title will be contested.  But if the UGCC appropriates the title, Rome will eventually concede it.  However, in the end, how is it going to matter?  Is the MP going to be worse to us?  The MP, and now it looks like the EP too, will blame Rome for not keeping the UGCC in line and use it as an excuse for breaking off dialog or trying to get Catholicism outlawed in Russia or whatever response the MP will issue.  I think Archimandrite Robert's feelings are those of most in the Catholic Church.  

Fr. Deacon Lance
   
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« Reply #17 on: February 09, 2004, 01:35:25 AM »

Anastasios,

Or the Pope could wake up tomorrow and suppress the Fransican Order.  The point is neither are going to happen.  Nor would the Pope's say so make the Melkite 's accept it.  Just as the Pope's consent doesn't make the Ukrainian Patriarchate materialize out of thin air.  Something has to exist for the Pope to recognize.  The UGCC is a patriarchate in everything but name.  It is time to stop playing ecumencial games to keep the MP happy and do what is right for the UGCC.

Also one either believes in the Petrine Ministry or one does not.  The Pope choosing a Patriarch is not without precedent and in the case of the Maronites at the time it was needed and aan exercise of this ministry.  On the otherhand the Pope recently chose not to exercise this perogative with the Chaldeans when they failed to elect a patriarch and brought them to Rome to vote agian.  The Papacy has evolved, and for the better I think, although it has a way to go.

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« Reply #18 on: February 09, 2004, 01:41:42 AM »

Fr Lance,

One could believe in the papal ministry without buying into immediate universal jurisdiction.

And the pope did supress the Jesuits...what's to stop him from supressing something else? Or changing things around? Just because JP2 is in now doesn't mean his successor will be the same...

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« Reply #19 on: February 09, 2004, 08:15:10 AM »

I really don't understand all the furor over this one.  The formation of the UGCC Patriarchate, if recognized by Rome, would be simply another church in communion with Rome that the Easter Orthodox are NOT in communion with.  The number of bodies in church would not change.  

OTOH, if the UGCC persists with its declaraction and Rome reacts negatively, then the UGCC would effectively isolate itself from both Churches, which doesn't seem to bother them.

I agree with Orthodoc's observations.  We agree the UGCC cannot legitimately claim autocephaly, but what if they did?  I believe the  Orthodox and Catholic world scoff.   The UGCC needs to remember where their roots are, and come back to Holy Orthodoxy, which is where they belong.   Trust me.  I'm formerly UGC.
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« Reply #20 on: February 09, 2004, 10:27:12 AM »

[I agree with Orthodoc's observations. We agree the UGCC cannot legitimately claim autocephaly, but what if they did? I believe the Orthodox and Catholic world scoff. The UGCC needs to remember where their roots are, and come back to Holy Orthodoxy, which is where they belong. Trust me. I'm formerly UGC.]

I agree with what you say.  Because its apparent  that their loyality to Rome is not that strong.  And that their union with Rome is not based on any doctrinal, dogmatic, or theological beliefs or committments.

However, after reading some of their posts both here and elsewhere, the question becomes - Are they really ready for autocephally?  They don't seem to have a clear view of just what the church is and how its organization stucture operates on both the Orthodox Catholic and Roman Catholic side.

I think this can be perceived as a certain degreee of ummaturity by both Rome & the Orthodox Catholic world.
Their whole attitude seems to be -"To hell with them all.  We'll just do what we want and  eventually they will all have to accept it.  

Personally, with an attitude like that, one is not ready for either automony or autocephally!    Of this both Rome and Moscow seem to agree.

Orthodoc


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« Reply #21 on: February 09, 2004, 11:41:45 AM »

[The UGCC is the largest and best organized EC Church and possibly has the most practicing members of any Church in Ukraine.]

That statement is HIGHLY DEBATABLE Father Deacon.  Sounds like you are beginning to believe your own propaganda!  The insinuation that only Greek Catholics go to church or pratice their faith on a regular basis is really pushing it.

[But if the UGCC appropriates the title, Rome will eventually concede it.]

Only time will tell.  However, if and when it does, it will be telling the world that its Hierachal structure and obedience is no longer effective or working as it was intended.  And, if it is true to its own canons, it will be forced to break communion with what would now have  become a disobedient and therefore schismatic church.  Similiar to what it has done with other groups that have either reacted to Vatican II or Papal claims in the past.

Besides, if the UGCC is the already the best organized of the Eastern Catholic Churches under Romes authority, then why the need for a title change?

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« Reply #22 on: February 09, 2004, 12:48:40 PM »

Orthodoc,

"That statement is HIGHLY DEBATABLE Father Deacon.  Sounds like you are beginning to believe your own propaganda!  The insinuation that only Greek Catholics go to church or pratice their faith on a regular basis is really pushing it."

It is debatable for certain.  I did qualify that statement with possibly.  However,  Archimandrite Robert is a straight shooter.  If he estimates the UGCC has the most practicing members I belive him, because when the info doesn't favor the Catholics he states that too.  The insinuation is not that Greek Catholics are the only ones practicing, only that they have proportionaly the most practicing members of the churches in Ukraine, which I don't find hard to believe.

"Only time will tell.  However, if and when it does, it will be telling the world that its Hierachal structure and obedience is no longer effective or working as it was intended.  And, if it is true to its own canons, it will be forced to break communion with what would now have  become a disobedient and therefore schismatic church.  Similiar to what it has done with other groups that have either reacted to Vatican II or Papal claims in the past."

Well that has been happening for a while and not just with Eastern Catholics.  The Vatican is regularly ignored on an ongoing basis on a variety of subjects.  However, the UGCC claiming the title of Patriarchate is hardly one worth breaking communion over.  And truly the proof will be in the next election.  If the UGCC Synod enthrones the next hierarch without waiting for confirmation from Rome and Rome doesn't break communion with them they have a Patriarchate de facto.  The only difference in the CCEO between a major archepiscopate and a patriarchate is that the former must have its archbishop confirmed by Rome before enthronemewnt and Rome could decline and demand another election.  A patriarchate's synod elects and enthrones its patriarch who then requests communion with Rome.  This could be denied but once enthroned the patriarch is patriarch.  A slight but significant difference.

"Besides, if the UGCC is the already the best organized of the Eastern Catholic Churches under Romes authority, then why the need for a title change?"

Why did the Muscovite Church imprison the EP until he made them a patriarchate?  Why did the Bulagrians risk isolation form the rest of Orthodoxy to claim the title?  Shouldn't all sees other then Rome, Constantinople, Alexandria, Antioch, and Jerusalem be only Archeparchies like Greece or Cyprus?  I guess it is a prestige thing.  It is an acknowledgement that a Church has reached full maturity.  As Archimandrite Robert points out there are Catholic patriarchates with less membership and organization and who have suffered less.  For goodness sake their are three Latin archbishops (Venice, Lisbon, Goa) parading around with the title even though they are nothing more than Metropolitans.  It is about respect and recognition of what the UGCC has been through and accomplished.  If it is just a title, why does the MP care so much?

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« Reply #23 on: February 09, 2004, 12:52:05 PM »


I agree with what you say.  Because its apparent  that their loyality to Rome is not that strong.  And that their union with Rome is not based on any doctrinal, dogmatic, or theological beliefs or committments.

Hello!  They are Catholic, not Orthodox.  If they don't hold to the doctrines/dogmas of the Catholic Church then they are not Catholic by definition.  If this were the case they may not necessarily be Orthodox but they would not be Catholic either.  Oh I opine that they believe the Catholic Church's doctrines which makes them Catholic, not that they would deny having some issues with Rome over polity and ecumenical relations with the Orthodox.  I don't perceive that they want to be Orthodox either given the history of the liquidation of EC eparchies in Western Ukraine (Transcarpathia) and Galicia during the decades of Communist domination.

Quote
However, after reading some of their posts both here and elsewhere, the question becomes - Are they really ready for autocephally?  They don't seem to have a clear view of just what the church is and how its organization stucture operates on both the Orthodox Catholic and Roman Catholic side.

I doubt that the Eastern Catholic and Roman Catholic Churches understand "autocephaly" as the Orthodox do.  Different Church polities.  Oh I think that the EC Churches understand Rome quite well in their good and not so good dealings with Rome over the centuries

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« Reply #24 on: February 09, 2004, 02:20:25 PM »

[It is debatable for certain.  I did qualify that statement with possibly.]

Then why even state it in the first place?

[If he estimates the UGCC has the most practicing members I belive him, because when the info doesn't favor the Catholics he states that too.]

So now you are stating that what you classify as debatable and a possibility in the above sentence is now  believed to be true based on the comments of one man who seems to be speaking on behalf of the UGCC but is not part of the UGCC or living in Ukraine?

[The insinuation is not that Greek Catholics are the only ones practicing, only that they have proportionaly the most practicing members of the churches in Ukraine, which I don't find hard to believe.]

So then why is the largest newly built Church in Ukraine Orthodox and part of the UOC-MP?  I find the above statement an offense to all Orthodox Catholics within Ukraine.  You might want to  access the OCA website for  pictures of Metropolitans visits to Ukraine to see the crowds of devout Orthodox  people everywhere he goes.

[If it is just a title, why does the MP care so much?]

Because we Orthodox are fully aware of the agenda and the way it will be used to prey on the fierce nationalism and religious ignorance of the people to sheep steal.  History has already taught us that the old Roman Catholic belief that stated - "As long as everything looks the same, and sounds the same, a religiously uneducated people will believe it is the same!"  It was used to very succesfully in the past by your ancestors to attract millions away from true Orthodoxy into Uniatism. You have already readopted the old title of 'Orthodox In Communion With Rome' to back it up.  History does repeat itself, doesn't it?

[Shouldn't all sees other then Rome, Constantinople, Alexandria, Antioch, and Jerusalem be only Archeparchies like Greece or Cyprus?  I guess it is a prestige thing.]

You guys should have thought of that when you went runnng back to Rome after the fall of communism and once again bowed down before the Pope and  pledged your loyality to him.  And by doing so agreed to all the implications that go with it.  Now you still want a relationship with him BUT ON YOUR TERMS.  Will be interesting to see what happens.  I now understand what a RC priest friend means when he says that the Ukrainians  are nothing more than a thorn Romes side and they would be better off without them.

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« Reply #25 on: February 09, 2004, 02:27:02 PM »

[If they don't hold to the doctrines/dogmas of the Catholic Church then they are not Catholic by definition. If this were the case they may not necessarily be Orthodox but they would not be Catholic either.]

Yep!  That about describes them.

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« Reply #26 on: February 09, 2004, 03:03:04 PM »

Orthodoc,

"Then why even state it in the first place?"

Because I believe it is probably correct.

"So now you are stating that what you classify as debatable and a possibility in the above sentence is now  believed to be true based on the comments of one man who seems to be speaking on behalf of the UGCC but is not part of the UGCC or living in Ukraine?"

Yep.  I suppose a poll or census is in order but until that happens I'll trust Archimnadrite Robert for the reasons already stated.

"So then why is the largest newly built Church in Ukraine Orthodox and part of the UOC-MP?"

Because the UGCC Patriarchal Sobor isn't completed yet.

"You might want to  access the OCA website for  pictures of Metropolitans visits to Ukraine to see the crowds of devout Orthodox  people everywhere he goes."

I saw them, very nice.  You will notice that Archimandrite Robert reference is primarily to Eastern Ukraine and I notice the Metopolitan didn't go there, but confined his visit to Kyiv and Western Ukraine.  Perhaps becasue there were no crowds to be had in the East?  The Pope also  had crowds of faithfulwhen he went to Ukraine.

"History does repeat itself, doesn't it?"

Do you hear that noise?  It is the wind of change.  If the Spirit is moving, nothing the MP can do can stop it.  The MP should stop crying and pouting and start evangelizing.  If they are "true" Orthodoxy then they shouldn't have any problem with us "Uniates".   On the other hand, if they are not perhaps they should be worried.


"Now you still want a relationship with him BUT ON YOUR TERMS."

What's wrong with negotiating about jurisdcitional/disciplinary matters?  The Orthodox do it all the time.  Look at the American Greek and Antiochian Archdiocese.

Fr. Deacon Lance








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« Reply #27 on: February 09, 2004, 03:48:55 PM »

[I saw them, very nice.  You will notice that Archimandrite Robert reference is primarily to Eastern Ukraine and I notice the Metopolitan didn't go there, but confined his visit to Kyiv and Western Ukraine. ]

Last time I checked Kiev was considered as part of Eastern Ukraine.

[Perhaps because there were no crowds to be had in the East?  The Pope also  had crowds of faithful when he went to Ukraine. ]

Yes and how many of them were imported from Poland, Lithuania, Western Europe,  North & South America. Australia, etc. rather than from Ukraine?  Wasn't there an edict sent out that all the Ukrainian Catholic Bishops worldwide along with the clergy & faithful were to go try and go to the 'Motherland' to greet the 'Vicar of Christ'?

[The MP should stop crying and pouting and start evangelizing.  If they are "true" Orthodoxy then they shouldn't have any problem with us "Uniates".   On the other hand, if they are not perhaps they should be worried.]

Ah!  So finally the true intentions surface!  True Orthodoxy will win.  Of that you can be sure.

[What's wrong with negotiating about jurisdcitional/disciplinary matters?  The Orthodox do it all the time.  Look at the American Greek and Antiochian Archdiocese.]

Whats wrong with it is it is not the way the Catholic Church under Rome's authority which you are part of is structured.  What's wrong with it is that you are trying to fit a square peg in a round hole and it won't fit.  Which is the whole fallacy of the Unia in the first place!  

What's wrong with it is, that by your pledge of loyality to the Pope and his professed Supremacy & Infallibility, you don't get to call the shots....HE DOES!  There is no room for negiotation within the Roman Catholic Hierachal structure!  You can request, but you can't bargain with the infallible 'Vicar of Christ' since he calls all the shots and you are required to accept them.   Once again, these are the rules you agreed to abide by when you ran back to him.

Within the Orthodox Catholic structure no Patriarch is considered infallible or supreme OVER the others [well there is one who thinks he is, but we all know he's fighting for his very existence, so we just shrug him off when we read his press releases] .  Big difference when it comes to administrative issues and negiotations.  You once again use Orthodox precedents which are no longer applicable to your Church to try and prove a point.

[Because the UGCC Patriarchal Sobor isn't completed yet. ]

Is this the one in Kiev that is being financed by the 'Knights of Columbus'?  Any statistics that show it will be the largest Cathedral in Ukraine?

Orthodoc

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« Reply #28 on: February 09, 2004, 04:24:53 PM »

Orthodoc,

"Last time I checked Kiev was considered as part of Eastern Ukraine."

It is? Last time I checked a map it was dead center.  It also wasn't so far east that it wasn't part of the original Union of Brest.

"Yes and how many of them were imported from Poland, Lithuania, Western Europe,  North & South America. Australia, etc. rather than from Ukraine?  Wasn't there an edict sent out that all the Ukrainian Catholic Bishops worldwide along with the clergy & faithful were to go try and go to the 'Motherland' to greet the 'Vicar of Christ'?"

Don't know but I wouldn't imagine a significant number and I never heard of any "edict"?  Were the Ukrainian faithful invited for this historic occasion? Certainly.

"Ah!  So finally the true intentions surface!  True Orthodoxy will win.  Of that you can be sure."

Then quit complaining and mind your own business.  The Catholic Church has a mandate to spread the Gospel as she understands.  It would be a sin not too.  The Orthodox Church feels the same way.

"Whats wrong with it is it is not the way the Catholic Church under Rome's authority which you are part of is structured."

Says you.  You have no comprehension of how the Catholic Church works although you obviously consider yourself an expert.  How do you think a Church gets elevated in status from Eparchy to Metropolitan to Patriarchate.  They request recognition and negotiate with Rome on why it is the right thing.  The Catholic Church does have and believe in synodality along with the Petrine perogatives.  Your caricatures of the Catholic Church fail in every way.

"Is this the one in Kiev that is being financed by the 'Knights of Columbus'?  Any statistics that show it will be the largest Cathedral in Ukraine?"

Don't know but I wouldn't be surprised if the K of C gave a generous donation.  No, I don't have statistics, it was meant tongue in cheek.  DOes it really matter who has the biggest building?  A big building can still be empty.

Fr. Deacon Lance




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« Reply #29 on: February 09, 2004, 05:05:57 PM »

[Do you hear that noise? It is the wind of change.]

Nah!  Thats the sound of all your Cossack ancestors who died for 'True' Orthodoxy (rather than the Polish version)  under the sword of the Pole turning in their graves as your Bishops were bowing down before the Polish Pope.

Their souls had just gotten over the shock when  last year the the chief Hetman of all the Ukrainian Cossack tribes [who also happens to be a retired colonel in KGB intelligence]  travelled all the way to Rome to make the Polish Pope an honorary Cossack!  Wonder how 'his holiness' was able to keep a straight face!  It will take awhile before the sound is quiet over those two acts.

[Then quit complaining and mind your own business.]

You started this thread and asked for feedback.  Not me.

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« Reply #30 on: February 09, 2004, 05:31:44 PM »

I have noticed a number of "differences" in the UGCC over the last few years.   Winnipeg has one of the largest Ukrainian populations within the diaspora, and has no less than sixteen churches in Winnipeg proper, and 115 other parishes scattered throughout Manitoba.  I, too, was raised UGC, and converted to EO at the age of 34.

The church I knew when I was younger had "youth masses" with guitar/violin/piano bands near the altar.  When it wasn't a "youth" mass, my family usually attended the "low mass," because it was all spoken and could sometimes be finished in less than an hour.  

It had large protestant-style quilted banners plastered all about.  It had a statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and another of Jesus Christ with his heart exposed.  Icons?  What were those?  Oh, yeah...those weird-looking religious pictures.  They certainly didn't look very realistic, like the images posted around the church interior, displaying the "Way of the Cross."  

But, here I was taught all I needed to know about my faith - God was at the front of the church (in the case of my church, that would be to the south, where the altar was) so don't look behind yourself during mass,  be good or you'll go to HE**, and DON'T ASK QUESTIONS!!!!

What I have seen over the last couple of years is a desire to recapture elements of Orthodoxy and Orthodox Mysticism that have disappeared from the faith.  My old church now has a small ICONOSTAS!  It has a large mosiac of the Resurrection on the back wall!  "Progress," the official publication of the Ukrainian Catholic Archeparchy of Winnipeg, has published articles by Fr. Alexander Schmemman and other contemporary Orthodox theologians!  (However, the articles in question have carefully edited out references to the "Eastern Orthodox Church!").  

"Progress" has also published articles on how the UGC church must attract and retain more parishioners.  The solution?  To be more Orthodox!!!!  (I am NOT making this up!)

Spoken masses?  A thing of the past.  Organs and guitars?  Believe they're all gone too.  And now the Patriarchate?!?!  And, check out the website!  Orthodox?  They are even using the three-bar cross!  http://www.archeparchy.ca/

There is something that strikes me as being very dishonest here.  A church which purports to be Orthodox, appears Orthodox in its "trappings," and is entirely Roman with regard to doctrine and theology.  I think the UGCC has to **** or get off the pot:  decide who you are, and then STICK WITH IT.  No more apologies.  As Nike would say...JUST DO IT.
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« Reply #31 on: February 09, 2004, 05:34:43 PM »

[Do you hear that noise?  It is the wind of change. ]

Nah!  Thats the sound of all your Cossack ancestors who died for 'True' Orthodoxy (rather than the Polish version)  under the sword of the Pole turning in their graves as your Bishops were bowing down before the Polish Pope.

Their souls had just gotten over the shock when  last year the the chief Hetman of all the Ukrainian Cossack tribes [who also happens to be a retired colonel in KGB intelligence]  travelled all the way to Rome to make the Polish Pope an honorary Cossack!  Wonder how 'his holiness' was able to keep a straight face!  It will take awhile before the sound is quiet over those two acts.

[Then quit complaining and mind your own business. ]

You started this thread and asked for feedback.  Not me.

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« Reply #32 on: February 09, 2004, 05:37:27 PM »

I have noticed a number of "differences" in the UGCC over the last few years.   Winnipeg has one of the largest Ukrainian populations within the diaspora, and has no less than sixteen churches in Winnipeg proper, and 115 other parishes scattered throughout Manitoba.

BTW, to clarify, those churches listed above are all UGCC.
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« Reply #33 on: February 09, 2004, 05:44:23 PM »

FYI, the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Canada has six churches in Winnipeg and 51 scattered throughout Manitoba.  (Statistics for comparison sake.)  Interesting side note:  the UOCC was started by disgruntled UGCs, and was taken under the wing of the Ecumenical Patriarch in 1996?
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« Reply #34 on: February 09, 2004, 08:23:19 PM »

Orthodox,

Well since I don't have any Ukrainian blood I don't think any of my ancestors are turning over in their graves.  My Slavic blood is Slovak Greek Catholic.  

So in your view a person who is Polish can neither be holy, nor deserve respect due them as a hierarch, or a national award recognizing his Ukrainian/Rusyn heritage and his work against the Communists?  Now who is guilty of politics and ethnic hatred?  

And while I did post the article, I don't remember asking for feedback.  I did expect some though.  However, I was hoping for more than the tiresome "faultless Orthodox, evil Catholics" rote you have become so famous for.

Fr. Deacon Lance
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« Reply #35 on: February 10, 2004, 01:44:44 AM »

[So in your view a person who is Polish can neither be holy, nor deserve respect due them as a hierarch, or a national award recognizing his Ukrainian/Rusyn heritage and his work against the Communists? Now who is guilty of politics and ethnic hatred?]

First of all I'm part Polish.  My paternal grandmother was Polish.  There are many awards or honors that could have been given the Pope to honor him rather than make him an honorary Cossack.  I don't deny the Pope any award.  Just this one.

Considering the history behind the Cossacks, especially the Zaporozhe, to make the head of the Roman Catholic Church, and a Pole at that, an honorary Cossack shows a complete ignorance of history and is a slap in the face to the memories of all those who died defending the Orthodox faith  against Polish  aggression.  The Cossacks were the defenders of the faith against both the Moslem Tartars and the Roman Catholic  Poles who turned their people into serfs and took away their basic human rights because of the faith they held so dear.

[ However, I was hoping for more than the tiresome "faultless Orthodox, evil Catholics" rote you have become so famous for.]

Speaking of 'faultless' and 'evil', isn't that what the article you posted by Father Taft was all about with the exception who was being branded as 'faultless' and 'evil'?

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« Reply #36 on: February 10, 2004, 09:50:11 AM »

Orthodoc,

"Considering the history behind the Cossacks, especially the Zaporozhe, to make the head of the Roman Catholic Church, and a Pole at that, an honorary Cossack shows a complete ignorance of history and is a slap in the face to the memories of all those who died defending the Orthodox faith  against Polish  aggression.  The Cossacks were the defenders of the faith against both the Moslem Tartars and the Roman Catholic  Poles who turned their people into serfs and took away their basic human rights because of the faith they held so dear."

You keep forgetting that Pole is half Ukrainian.  Also while we are talking about people who took away human rights becasue of faith what about the Russian Communists and those who collaborated with them?  Some how I don't think you would be complaining if a Russian bishop was being made an honorary Cossack.  I think they understand history completely and recognized one of their own who has done much to free them from Communism.

"Speaking of 'faultless' and 'evil', isn't that what the article you posted by Father Taft was all about with the exception who was being branded as 'faultless' and 'evil'?"

No it is not, I think you need to reread it.  The article is about the MP being irrational about the effect of the UGCC being elevated to a patriarchate and the foolishness of Rome worrying about placating them and approval for the UGCC declaring themselves a patriarchate.  You see Archimandrite Robert and myself are able to distinguish the Russain Orthodox Church and People from its lunatic fringe and the administration of the MP.  We also distinguish the Pope and Latin Catholic Church from its lunatic fringe and the Curia.  Neither Archimandrite Robert, myself or the Pope for that matter have presented the Catholic Church, as an institution, as above wrong doing.  Nor have we ever presented the Orthodox Church as evil.  As institutions the Russian, Romanian, and Slovak Orthodox Churches did wrong in collaborating with the Communists to suppress and liquidate the Greek Catholic Churches.

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« Reply #37 on: February 10, 2004, 11:22:40 AM »

 [Also while we are talking about people who took away human rights because of faith what about the Russian Communists and those who collaborated with them? ]

The important words in that sentence is Communists!  The same people who had also taken away the basic human rights of the Russian Orthodox believers.  Only they had  started in 1917 rather than in the mid 1940's  when the supression of the UGCC occurred.  A church that  already had suffered persecution and suppression for  29 years  before the suppression of the UGCC began.  You seem to forget that there was also a Ukrainian Communist party with a very sizable membership that was very active in the suppression of its own people and their faith.

[Some how I don't think you would be complaining if a Russian bishop was being made an honorary Cossack.  I think they understand history completely and recognized one of their own who has done much to free them from Communism. ]

Why should I?  It wasn't the Russian Bishops who the Cossacks were defending the Orthodox faith  against!  And if you, as well as THEY, understood that part of  history and WHY the Cossacks were originally formed you wouldn't make the statements you just did.  You as well as THEY seem only to want to go back that far in history to try and prove your point.  Case in point is your complaint about the COMMUNIST suppression of the UGCC.  Go back in history and read the CREATION of the UGCC and tell me how that is any different than its suppression in the mid 40's!

[As institutions the Russian, Romanian, and Slovak Orthodox Churches did wrong in collaborating with the Communists to suppress and liquidate the Greek Catholic Churches.]

Once again, read how & why  their counterparts within the Church of Rome were created and tell me how it is any different or better than what you are in here crying about and criticizing!  If the creation of these fake copies of Orthodoxy wasn't as volatile as it was, we wouldn't be having this conversation in the first place.  

When one reads about aggression and suppression of one  Christian faith over another, it all starts in Rome.  Not Moscow or Constantinople.  History backs me up on that if you are willing to go back and read more than the last chapter.

You came in here by posting a very insulting tirade by an Eastern Catholic priest in union with Rome and then complain about the response you get.  Why?  Because you don't like the other side of the coin?  And then you criticize me for defending my Orthodox faith!

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« Reply #38 on: February 10, 2004, 12:14:51 PM »

Orthodoc,

"You seem to forget that there was also a Ukrainian Communist party with a very sizable membership that was very active in the suppression of its own people and their faith."

No, I have not.  You complain that a Polish Latin Catholic is made an honorary Cossack, even though he played a role in ending  Communist and Russian oppression of Ukraine.  You then state you will not complain if an Orthodox bishop who collaborated with the Communist and Russian oppresion would be given the same.  Which is more desreving of an honor that stands for Ukrainian freedom and self-determination?  You confuse the antagonism between Poles and Russians and Ukrainians and want to make it about religion when it is primarily about ethnicity.  Poles didn't like Russians or Ukrainians any more because they were Greek Catholic.

"You as well as THEY seem only to want to go back that far in history to try and prove your point.  Once again, read how & why  their counterparts within the Church of Rome were created and tell me how it is any different or better than what you are in here crying about and criticizing!"

I was wondering when this arguement would come out.  The difference is 400+ years and those involved in the unias are dead and have received their reward or punishment from Our Lord.  In the case of the Communist suppression many of the persecutors and persecuted are still alive and both deserve temporal justice while it can be had.  

The various unias, while not without epsiodes of violence and wrong doing on both sides, cannot be compared with the suppression of the Greek Catholic Churches in Ukraine, Romania, and Slovakia.

"When one reads about aggression and suppression of one  Christian faith over another, it all starts in Rome.  Not Moscow or Constantinople."

You might want to ask the Old Riters, Georgian Orthodox or Armenians about that.

"You came in here by posting a very insulting tirade by an Eastern Catholic priest in union with Rome and then complain about the response you get.  Why?  Because you don't like the other side of the coin?  And then you criticize me for defending my Orthodox faith!"

I fail to see how Archimandrite Robert's interview is a tirade or insulting.  I am a little disappointed the only remarks are you usual irrational tirade.  I can deal with the otherside of the coin, when have claimed the Catholic Church has done no wrong as you constantly do for the Orthodox?  I do not criticize you for defending the Orthodox faith, but for defending the sins commited by its members.  There is a difference.

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« Reply #39 on: February 10, 2004, 12:21:45 PM »

Speaking of the Armenians, they have  Patriarchates in Constantiople and Jerusalem.  Why no outrage over these?  Why no call to abolish them like the Orthodox did for the Latin titular patriarch of Constantinople or do for the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem?  Why all this fuss over the UGCC Patriarchate and not a word about these?  Is there a double standard?

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« Reply #40 on: February 10, 2004, 01:34:57 PM »

[The difference is 400+ years and those involved in the unias are dead and have received their reward or punishment from Our Lord. ]

Oh so now it is a time element that washes away past sins!  Last time I checked Stalin and his croonies are also dead.  What goes around, comes around my friend.  And time doesn't wash away anyone's sins.

[In the case of the Communist suppression many of the persecutors and persecuted are still alive and both deserve temporal justice while it can be had.]

If you base it on that, then perhaps we can also include persecution of the Serbian Orthodox by the Roman Catholic Croats  during the same time period? Just about as many of them are still alive.   Also the persecution of the Lemkos by the Poles during the same time period.  Or, are we just going to concentrate on the communists  who started to supress the Orthodox long before the UGCC's?  

Why aren't you in here complaining about the supression of not only the Greek Catholic but Orthodox churches taken over by the Poles when they ethnically cleansed whole villages of Lemkos and resettled them with Poles, confiscated their churches & turned them into RC ones?  Including my grandmothers.  Or what went on in concentration camps like Jansovic and  Talerhof by supressive RC governments and in many cases with RC priests participation.

[The various unias, while not without epsiodes of violence and wrong doing on both sides, cannot be compared with the suppression of the Greek Catholic Churches in Ukraine, Romania, and Slovakia.]

Give me a break!  Did you ever read about the creation of the UGCC?  I doubt it.  If you did you would know it was much more deceptive and violent than what went on in 1946 -

------

Try  'The Orthodox Church In The History of Russia' by Dimitry Pospielovsky

Page 92-93 regarding the union -

{Note:  This section deals with a second memorandum sent to the Pope on their conditions for submission to the Pope.  The first memorandum which consists of ten conditions was rejected by the pope.  Rome ignored all these conditions, promising only that the metropolitan of Kiev would have full contol over the ancient Kiev Monastery of the Caves.  The bishops responded by  by drafting a "Concilliar Address" to the pope, consisting of twenty six articles, which were delivered by the two bishops sent to Rome, Ipati-Potii of Vladimir-Volynsk, and Krill (Terletsky of Lutsk.  The articles included  both a confession of faith and a number of requests -

1.  The Holy spirit proceds from the Father THROUGH the Son
2.  All orthodox liturgies and other rites should remain unchanged
3.  The Eurcharist is to continue to be distributed under both species, according to Orthodox tradition
4.  No objection to purgatory, "but we want to be true to the teachings of the Church."  The new calendar can be accepted but the Paschal cycle should remain untouched, as well as those Orthodox feasts which are absent from the Roman Church, e.g., Epiphany
6.  The rentention of married clergy
7.  That only Russians or Greeks may be consecrated bishops (This reflects the fear that Poles might try and infiltrate the Church and gradually latinize and polonize it).
8 & 9:  (Identical to the 8 &9  in the previous memo whic dealt with equal rights & privleges with the Latin Rite Bishops ).
11.  No Greek bishops to be allowed in the commonwealth's territory, and none of their bans are to be valid in the Commonwealth.
12 & 20:  Defections to the Roman rite and transformation of Eastern churches ito Latin-rite ones is forbidden
21.  Colleges and brotherhoods, should they join the Unia, are to be subject to the bishops.
26.  "Some of ours" have gone to Greece to report [on us] in order to be appointed to posts "superior to ours".  Let the King of Poland prevent their re-entry into his domains.


[Caps are mine]

UGCC historians have claimed that this document had a theological character.  But the only theology here relates to the FILIOQUE and Purgatory, and on both issues the Bishops meekly agree to accept whatever the pope decides.  Yet even this petition did not receive a proper response from the Vatican.  After vainly waiting for it in Rome, the bishops were simply brought before the pope, were handed the Latin texts of the Latin episcopal oath, which they were made to pronounce WHILE KNEELING BEFORE THE POPE.
Then, after receiting the Creed WITH THE FILIOQUE, they were reconsecrated by the pope AS ROMAN CATHOLIC BISHOPS pure and simple.  The confession of faith included in the oath AFFIRMED THAT ONLY THE ROMAN CHURCH POSSESSED THE FULLNESS OF TRUTH, AND THAT THEY ACCEPT ALL THE TRADITIONS, RITES, AND SACRAMENTS OF THE ROMAN CHURCH.  Only a month later, in January 1596, the pope magnanimously handed the bishops a short statute for the UGCC Church,  permitting it to retain those of their traditions and rites WHICH DID NOT CONTRADICT THE TEACHINGS OF THE ROMAN CATHOLIC CHURCH.  ALL THE OTHER DEMANDS MADE IN THE TWO MEMORANDA - SUCH AS AUTOMONY, THE ELECTION OF BISHOPS, ETC. - WERE TOTALLY IGNORED BY THE POPE.  Ipati and Krill then returned to the Commonwealth as bishops of the eastern rite, but with no guarantee that that rite  would be respected or retained.

In fact, the laity, the parish clergy, and particularly the brotherhoods refused to accept the union with Rome.  The protest movement developed and spread quickly,  joined at first by a single bishop, Gideon (Boloban) of Livov.  The King gave in to these pressures and authorized the convening of a local council OF THOSE BISHOPS, CLERGY, AND LAITY OF THE ROMAN AND GREEK CHURCH WHO ACCEPTED THE PAPACY - i.e., THOSE WHO DID NOT ACCEPT THE COUNCIL WERE NOT INVITED.

The council met in the city of Brest on October 6, 1596.  In order to prevent a parallel Orthodox council in any of the numerious Orthodox churches in the city, THE METROPOLITAN OF KIEV SEALED ALL ORTHODOX CHURCHES ON THE DAY BEFORE THE COUNCIL WAS TO BEGIN, EXCEPT FOR THE CATHEDRAL WHERE THE COUNCIL WAS TO TAKE PLACE.  The Orthodox, nevertheless, converged on Brest as well, with Prince Ostrozhskii and his private army at the head.  Failing to find an open church, and after waiting in vain for an invitation from the UGC's, they accepted an offer of a Protestant church school hall for a separate Orthodox Council.  The UGC Council passed a resolution excommunicating all the Orthodox clergy and laity participating in the Orthodox Council.  The Orthodox in turn suspended all the clergy and lay participants in the UGC Council and addressed a petition to the King, asking him to deprive  "the traitors" of their dioceses and parishes.  But the King decided otherwise:  his edict of October 15 legalized only those Byzantine-rite Christians  who joined the Unia; IT DECREED THE ORTHODOX CHURCH NULL AND VOID AND ALL IT'S CLERGY EXCOMMUNCATED; WHILE CONTINUING MEMBERSHIP IN THE ORTHODOX CHURCH WAS DECLARED TO BE AN ACT OF TREASON AGAINST THE STATE.

---------

Now I ask you how is that any different than what happened in 1946?  Oh yes, I forgot, everybody is dead!  In order to solve a problem you have to completely understand what created it in the first place.  And this is what created the problem in the first place.

As far as 1946, I have gone over it too many times  already with you all, and you have yet to explain to me how the UGCC would be better of than it is today if the ROC,  who had already suffered 29 years of the most severe persecution of Christian history,  and under threat of increased persecution, would have turned their backs on the UGCC and allowed Stalin to disband it.  How many of the current UGC priests were trained in Orthodox seminaries whose education was paid for by Orthodox money?

Now, since we seem to be getting off the original subject matter into  more volatile areas,  and since I have already gone over this more than once in the 'other' forum,  I will only continue this particular area of discussion if the moderator approves.  But it seems to me I have already discussed it in this Orthodox discussion group awhile back.

I will honor the moderators decision.

Orthodoc


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« Reply #41 on: February 10, 2004, 01:44:51 PM »

[Why all this fuss over the UGCC Patriarchate and not a word about these? Is there a double standard?]

You are comparing apples and oranges.  Both these centers are in predominately Moselm countries.  The  number of Christians is insignificant.  And all are fighting for their very existence.
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« Reply #42 on: February 10, 2004, 04:24:51 PM »

Speaking of the Armenians, they have  Patriarchates in Constantiople and Jerusalem.  Why no outrage over these?  Why no call to abolish them like the Orthodox did for the Latin titular patriarch of Constantinople or do for the Latin Patriarchate of Jerusalem?  Why all this fuss over the UGCC Patriarchate and not a word about these?  Is there a double standard?

Fr. Deacon Lance

Also, there is the possibility that when those Patriarchates were established, there were many more Christians living in Constantinople/Ottoman Empire and the Levant than there are now. Constantinople may have been ruled by Muslims since 1453, but until the 20th century there were still plenty of Christians there.
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« Reply #43 on: February 10, 2004, 04:36:22 PM »

Orthodoc,

"Oh so now it is a time element that washes away past sins!  Last time I checked Stalin and his croonies are also dead.  What goes around, comes around my friend.  And time doesn't wash away anyone's sins."

No it is Our Lord that washes away sin. Again those from the unia are dead and have been judged and can make no temporal satisfaction for their wrongdoing.  Those who are still around from the Communist persecution can, i.e give back stolen property.

"Give me a break!  Did you ever read about the creation of the UGCC?  I doubt it.  If you did you would know it was much more deceptive and violent than what went on in 1946"

Indeed I have, and from several viewpoints, so I disagree with your statement

"If you base it on that, then perhaps we can also include persecution of the Serbian Orthodox by the Roman Catholic Croats  during the same time period? Just about as many of them are still alive.  Also the persecution of the Lemkos by the Poles during the same time period.  Or, are we just going to concentrate on the communists  who started to supress the Orthodox long before the UGCC's  Why aren't you in here complaining about the supression of not only the Greek Catholic but Orthodox churches taken over by the Poles when they ethnically cleansed whole villages of Lemkos and resettled them with Poles, confiscated their churches & turned them into RC ones?  Including my grandmothers.  Or what went on in concentration camps like Jansovic and  Talerhof by supressive RC governments and in many cases with RC priests participation."

It has not been brought up, but certainly all should do penance and make restitution where possible.  However, it was the Orthodox who demanded that current pastoral need be taken into account when deciding what to do with church buildings regardless of historical ownership.  In Romania, where the Greek Catholics live by the agreement, they have gotten very few churches returned.  In fact the Romanian Orthodox have taken to bulldozing churches rather than return them.  The Ukrainians walked away from the agreement Moscow and Rome made because they knew it meant the same thing.  It does not justify any violence that occurred but does give it a context.

"As far as 1946, I have gone over it too many times  already with you all, and you have yet to explain to me how the UGCC would be better of than it is today if the ROC,  who had already suffered 29 years of the most severe persecution of Christian history,  and under threat of increased persecution, would have turned their backs on the UGCC and allowed Stalin to disband it."
 
It wouldn't have been worse off and perhaps relations would be better as suffering in solidarity builds bonds.  

"How many of the current UGC priests were trained in Orthodox seminaries whose education was paid for by Orthodox money?"

I don't know.  Maybe the same number of Orthodox prietss who studied in Rome whose education was paid for by Catholic money.  

Fr. Deacon Lance


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« Reply #44 on: February 10, 2004, 04:42:44 PM »

I find it interesting to read the viewpoint of Fr. Taft and what his view and suggestions are for the UGCs.
He's a Jesuit who has "gone east" so to say.  This is not unusual, as the Jesuits have, since their founding, gone off around the world and inserted themselves into situations where it suited their interests.  This gives a western order, the Jesuits, influence over the affairs of an eastern church.  An example of this is the founding of the Melkite Church under the influence of French Jesuits who interfered in the affairs of the Antiochian Church back in the 1700s, when they actively promoted a schism and then lead the schismatics to Rome with promises of aid against the Turks.  This merely further fragmented and weakened Christianity as a whole in the Middle East.

The question therefore becomes, what's Fr. Taft's agenda?

Fr. Taft's last remarks are particularly revealing in seeing what his personal agenda in all of this is.  To quote:
"Do you agree that the central problem is the papacy?
Of course. What we’ve made out of the papacy is simply ridiculous. There’s no possible justification in the New Testament or anyplace else for what we’ve made out of the papacy. That doesn’t mean that I don’t believe in a Petrine ministry. I believe that Rome has inherited that Petrine ministry. But there’s no reason on God’s earth why the pope should be appointing the bishop of Peoria. None whatsoever. So we really need a devolution, a decentralization. The Catholic church has become so big that we need some kind of a synodal structure in the West the same way you have in the East. The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops ought to be a kind of synod of Catholic bishops in the United States. They ought to be able to elect the bishops. Leave Rome a veto, if you want. By the way, this would be no guarantee of better bishops. The notion that the locals will necessarily pick better people than Rome is obviously false, as anybody who knows the East understands. But at least people will see these guys as their bishops and not Rome’s. Make your own bed and sleep in it. The pope could say: ‘You don’t like the archbishop of New York? Hey, I didn’t name him.’ "

I believe that he sees the Eastern Ritual Churches as allies in order to gain influence over and change the Latin Rite Church.  His agenda would devolve power from the Pope to "local" churches such as the USCCB.  The US Conf. of Catholic Bishops has traditionally  taken very liberal positions on a whole host of issues which has put it at odds with Rome.  This devolution from papal power would cut the CDF (under Card. Ratzinger) from the equation, and allow them to implement many practices which the current Pope rejects unchecked.  It would be a "reformers" paradise.

This is why he finds the current setup of the papacy and curia "ridiculous".  Helping the UGCC gain greater autonomy and independence in defiance of Papal wishes is part of his agenda of limiting the Pope's role throughout the rest of the Roman Catholic Church so that "reforms" can be implemented without hindrance from Rome.  While this could lead to some positive developments such as married clergy, the potential for abuse seems high, and the Roman Church could end up in a situation much like the Anglicans.
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« Reply #45 on: February 10, 2004, 04:42:46 PM »

Boswell,

Well there are plenty of UGC's in Ukraine!  Why complain about the Catholics but not the Armenians?  At the very least one would think they would be asked to reduce the Constantiople jurisdiction to an archeparchy/eparchy.

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« Reply #46 on: February 10, 2004, 06:02:43 PM »

[Those who are still around from the Communist persecution can, i.e give back stolen property.]

Depends on how one defines 'stolen property'.  At the union of Brest the Orthodox property came under control of the newly created  UGCC  by an act of an agreement signed under duress between the Orthodox and Rome.  In 1946 the UGC property  again came under the control of the Orthodox by an act of an agreement once again signed under duress between the Orthodox and the UGCC.  So, whats the difference except the roles were reversed?  Why is it considered as stolen property in 1946 but not in 1596?  

I do know one thing and that is.... in certain cases a  court ruling is based on a 'precedence' that has already been set.  So, in this case, it seems to me that the precedence was set in 1596 when no one considered the property that changed hands between the Orthodox and the newly created appendage of the  RCC as 'stolen'.  Even though the agreement was signed under the same circumstances as it was in 1946.

Now you see why it is important to read the ENTIRE history, the ENTIRE novel,  to get the complete picture of any situation!  And, as I stated before, a problem or situation can only be resolved when the ENTIRE situation is taken into consideration.
There is no time limit where history is concerned.

Orthodoc


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« Reply #47 on: February 10, 2004, 07:50:53 PM »

[Those who are still around from the Communist persecution can, i.e give back stolen property.]

Depends on how one defines 'stolen property'.  At the union of Brest the Orthodox property came under control of the newly created  UGCC  by an act of an agreement signed under duress between the Orthodox and Rome.  In 1946 the UGC property  again came under the control of the Orthodox by an act of an agreement once again signed under duress between the Orthodox and the UGCC.  So, whats the difference except the roles were reversed?  Why is it considered as stolen property in 1946 but not in 1596?  

I do know one thing and that is.... in certain cases a  court ruling is based on a 'precedence' that has already been set.  So, in this case, it seems to me that the precedence was set in 1596 when no one considered the property that changed hands between the Orthodox and the newly created appendage of the  RCC as 'stolen'.  Even though the agreement was signed under the same circumstances as it was in 1946.

Now you see why it is important to read the ENTIRE history, the ENTIRE novel,  to get the complete picture of any situation!  And, as I stated before, a problem or situation can only be resolved when the ENTIRE situation is taken into consideration.
There is no time limit where history is concerned.

Orthodoc




This is an unbelievable and eggregious statement!  I have been following the direction of this thread and just have to comment.  Are you suggesting that the Churches built and property acquired by Ruthenian and Ukranian EC's after the Unions of Brest-Litovsk and Uzhorod respectively also belong to the Orthodox?  The seizures of Catholic property in 1946 and the liquidation of the EC eparchies were originated in decisions of the local communist-dominated government.  Notwithstanding the historic Orthodox-Catholic animosities arising from the Unia of the late 1500's to mid 1600's, your post has essentially equated these events with communist dominated events of the late 1940's.  I really don't think that you want to do this.

What I find so irritating about your reply is that the alleged agreement made under coercion in 1946 was between apostate Catholic priests subsequently consecrated as Orthodox bishops and suddenly "acting" for the Unia with Orthodox bishops under communist suzerainty and not IMHO acting as true Orthodox prelates.  I use the term "apostate" intentionally.  I don't normally consider a conversion from Catholicism to Orthodoxy or vice versa to be the act of an apostate.  Perhaps you do, at least going from Orthodox to Catholic.  Yet I don't consider the Orthodox side of the house in this utterly contemptuous historical event (i.e., the 1946 agreements) to be truly Orthodox in praxis.  I have read that some Orthodox prelates were NKVD agents.  Those willing parties to this ersatz-agreement that  liquidated the Catholic eparchies were communist stooges and not truly Orthodox IMHO.   These were coerced and forced conversions made under a not so subtle threat of annihilation.  The Catholic priests who refused to go along with this atrocity were in most cases incarcerated with many either dying in jail or murdered before being incarcerated.  Those surviving their prison terms or released early due to poor health were exiled internally from their native land in many cases.   And God only knows what happened to their families.

Your post, perhaps unintentionally, unites the actions of supposed Orthodox prelates claiming to operate in the name of Orthodoxy with the agenda of the Communist-dominated government of the Ukraine.   I personally find this even more objectionable than your obvious bitterness to all things Catholic because the communist depredations and persecution of Orthodoxy are so well known and equally execrable, not to mention Uncle Joe's engineered mass starvation of Ukranians in the 1930's.  If I were Orthodox, I wouldn't want my Church and Faith even remotely identified with the communists who so horribly persecuted it.

I realize that the pastoral situation regarding what Church property belongs to what jurisdiction in Transcarpathia and the Ukraine is very complicated.  And I recognize that there is extreme bitterness on both sides.  Furthermore, I haven't the slightest clue how the issue of Church property will be resolved or if it ever will be resolved.   Will negotiation and accommodation provide a means of handling this?  Or will an improved economy in the region allow for building or rebuilding Churches, schools, rectories, monasteries, etc., both Orthodox or Catholic?  I don't personally forsee any option working except the economic option.

Nevertheless, your post which seemingly adds an aura of Orthodox authority to the "Reverse Unia" of 1946 through its supposed cancellation of the agreements of the 16th and 17th Centuries ought to make most Orthodox faithful cringe in great discomfort because this was a communist inspired, dominated, and executed agreement.

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« Reply #48 on: February 11, 2004, 02:31:39 AM »

[Are you suggesting that the Churches built and property acquired by Ruthenian and Ukranian EC's after the Unions of Brest-Litovsk and Uzhorod respectively also belong to the Orthodox?]

Read what I wrote.  What I said was that those churches that were turned over to the newly created UGCC by a stroke of a pen in 1596 , were originally built as Orthodox  Churches and remained as such, many for centuries,  until they became the property of the UGCC when the union with Rome was signed under very similiar circumstances as those in 1946.   Namely that both transfer of properties were accomplished under government duress and pressure and whose ownership was also transferred through a signed agreement.

Where is that any different than Greek Catholics churches becoming Orthodox through a signed agreement in 1946?

Are you trying to insinuate that after the union was signed the newly created UGCC built new churches for itself and its people?  The Orthodox faith was outlawed and anyone who remained Orthodox (including the clergy)  was considered as a traitor to the state by the Polish King.  Didn't you read what I posted?  Churches changed ownership by the stroke of a pen in both cases (both in 1596 & 1946).  

====
From what I posted previously regarding the creation of the UGCC -

 But the King decided otherwise: his edict of October 15 legalized only those Byzantine-rite Christians who joined the Unia; IT DECREED THE ORTHODOX CHURCH NULL AND VOID AND ALL IT'S CLERGY EXCOMMUNCATED; WHILE CONTINUING MEMBERSHIP IN THE ORTHODOX CHURCH WAS DECLARED TO BE AN ACT OF TREASON AGAINST THE STATE.
====

[Notwithstanding the historic Orthodox-Catholic animosities arising from the Unia of the late 1500's to mid 1600's, your post has essentially equated these events with communist dominated events of the late 1940's. I really don't think that you want to do this.]

Why not?  What's the difference except in 1596 it was initiated by a Polish Roman Catholic government  and in 1946 the reverse was iniated by a communist dominated government.  Why should WHO or what type of government  initiated it make any difference?  The actions of both were almost parallel.  I find it utterly amazing that you think that because it was done by communists in one instance and not the other, only one can be considered  as wrong.  

[What I find so irritating about your reply is that the alleged agreement made under coercion in 1946 was between apostate Catholic priests subsequently consecrated as Orthodox bishops and suddenly "acting" for the Unia with Orthodox bishops under communist suzerainty and not IMHO acting as true Orthodox prelates.]

And, once again how is that different than what happened in 1596?  The former Orthodox Bishops that signed the union in 1596 were all hand picked and got their positions through the Polish Roman Catholic government.  How does this differ from the what you claim about  what you call the 'apostate Catholic priests' in 1946?

Don't forget it was the government that paid the clergy salaries and provided financial support for the education of the religious institutions.  The first thing the new Polish RC goverment did was to try and undermine the Orthodox Church by witholding funds for the proper maintaince of the religious institutions (*Read article 17 below).  Why do you think they included articles like the following in the 'Union of Brest' which they wanted guarantees on before they would sign the union?

======

Treaty of Brest -1596

10.  That the metropolitanate, the episcopate, and other ecclesiastical
dignities shall be conferred on no one except the Rus' people or Greeks, who must be of our religion.  And since our Canons require that the Metropolitain, the Bishops, and so on, first elected by the clergy, must be worthy people, we ask the King's Grace THAT THE ELECTION BE FREE, LEAVING INTACT THE AUTHORITY OF THE KING'S GRACE TO APPOINT THE ONE WHOM HE PLEASES.  This means that as soon as someone has died we would elect four candidates, AND THE KING'S GRACE WILL FREELY CHOSE WHOM HE WISHES FROM AMONG THE FOUR.   This is necessary, especially so that the persons named to such positions will be worthy and educated, for the King's Grace, who not of the same religion, cannot know who is worthy of this, AND THUS IT HAS HAPPENED IN THE PAST THAT SUCH UNINSTRUCTED PEOPLE WERE APPOINTED THAT THEY WERE SCARCELY LITERATE.  If the King's Grace should wish to appoint a layman to these spiritual posts, the appointee must receive Holy Orders within no more than three months under pain of losing appointment, according to the Constitution of the Parliament of Grondo and the Articles of King Sigmund Augustus of blessed memory, approved by the present King's Grace, FOR AT THE MOMENT THERE ARE SOME WHO HOLD CERTAIN SPIRITUAL APPOINTMENTS IN THEIR HANDS BUT DO NOT RECEIVE HOLY ORDERS EVEN FOR YEARS, justifying themselves with some sort of royal "exemptions".  We ask that in future this should not be.

[Note:  They were only asking for THE RIGHT to choose three candidates for election which they didn't have under Polish rule.]

12.  So that our authority would be greater and we should govern our
faithful with greater respect, we ask seats in the Senate of the King's Grace for the Metropolitain and the bishops.  We ask this for many reasons for we have the same office and hierarchal dignity as the Roman Bishops.

-------------------------------------------------------------------

17. INASMUCH AS WE HAVE LOST POSSESSION OF MANY ECCLESIASTICAL PROPERTIES, SOME OF WHICH OUR PREDECESSORS ALIENATED BY RIGHTS OTHER THAN FREE ADMINISTRATION OF THESE GOODS DURING THEIR PERSONAL LIVES, SO THAT WE FIND OURSELVES IN SUCH WANT AND POVERTY THAT WE CANNOT PROVIDE SATISFACTORY FOR THE NEEDS OF THE CHURCHES, AND INDEED WE OURSELVES SCARCELY HAVE THE MEANS OF SUBSISTANCE, WE REQUIRE THAT THESE PROPERTIES BE RETURNED TO OUR CHURCHES.  If anyone has legitimately aquired the lifetime unsufruct of any ecclesiastical benefice, let him be obliged to pay an annual rent to the Church, and upon his death let the benefice revert to the Church.  Such a benefice shalll not be granted to anyone without the consent of the bishop and his chapter.  Every benefice to which the Church presently has title is to be recorded in the Gospel Books, even if the Church does not exercise any control over some benefices.  In that way they will at least belong indisputable to the Church.  With this accomplished, the Church can then undertake to regain those benefices which have been alienated at an earlier time.

27.  That WE SHALL BE FREE TO HAVE SCHOOLS AND SEMINARIES in the Greek and
Church-Slavonic languages in the localities where it is most convenient, and that our printing-presses SHALL BE FREE (of course under the supervision of the Metropolitain and bishops, so that no heresies be propagated and nothing be printed without the knowledge and consent of the Metropolitain and bishops.

----------------------------

[The above articles show how the Poles began to undermine the Orthodox church as soon as they conquered the territority.  Orthodox no longer had basic human rights in their own lands as long as they remained part of the Orthodox Church.  Churches and church property was confiscated, and financial support withdrawn.]

[ I have read that some Orthodox prelates were NKVD agents.]

And all the Ukrainian priests and Bishops were saints and martyrs?  There was also a KGB unit within the Ukrainian Communist party.  And, are you trying to tell me all the communists are gone from the present Ukrainian government including Kutchma?

[The Catholic priests who refused to go along with this atrocity were in most cases incarcerated with many either dying in jail or murdered before being incarcerated.]


And in 1596 the Orthodox priests who refused that union were excommunicated and were accused of committing acts of treason and hung or imprisioned for it.  What's the difference?

And, let me give you some statistics right from the KGB files on what happened to the Orthodox.  If your going to cry, then cry for ALL WHO  suffered under communism, not just the Ukrainians or the Eastern Catholics who were under Rome.

=====

MOSCOW [RNS} - Some 200,000 clergy, many crucified, scalped, and otherwise

tortured, were killed during the communist era in the former Soviet Union, a

Russian commission reported here on November 27, 1995.  Another 500,000

believers were martyred and millions exiled.  There were 40,000 churches destroyed between 1922 and1980, the report said.



"Clergymen were crucified on churches' Holy Gates, shot scalped, and

strangled.," said Alexander Yakovlev, head of the Commission for the

Rehabilitation of the Victims of Political Repression which prepared the

report for Russian president Boris Yeltsin.  "I was especially shocked by

accounts of priests turned into columns of ice in winter, "Yakovlev

continued, adding that the commission unearthed documents showing that as

early as 1918, Vladimr Lenin had odered a campagn of "merciless terror

against priests.

=====

 [I personally find this even more objectionable than your obvious bitterness to all things Catholic because the communist depredations and persecution of Orthodoxy are so well known and equally execrable, not to mention Uncle Joe's engineered mass starvation of Ukranians in the 1930's. If I were Orthodox, I wouldn't want my Church and Faith even remotely identified with the communists who so horribly persecuted it.]

Oh yes, Uncle Joe.  Wasn't he a Georgian rather than Russian?  And wasn't he excommunicated from the Orthodox Church?  And WHO cared out his edict?   Could it be the members of the Ukrainian Communist Party who carried out the mass starvation?

 [Will negotiation and accommodation provide a means of handling this?]

There was a 'Quadripartite Ageement' set up regarding this where each of the Churches in question would decide BY VOTE  whether they wanted to remain in the Orthodox Church or return to the UGCC.  But after only six weeks the UGCC turned their backs on it and started to use force -

---------

STATEMENT:  by the Holy Synod of the Moscow Patriarchate in Connection with the Leaving by the Catholics of the Eastern Rite of the Quadripartite Commission for Normalizing Relations Between the Orthodox and the Catholics of the Eastern Rite in the Western Regions of the Ukraine and Concerning the Decision Adopted by the Lvov City Soviet of the People's Deputies on April 6, 1990



[NOTE:  This statement was made on April 6, 1990 just 27 days before the demise of Patrairch Pimen.  Patriarch Alexy had not been elected yet.

Also note the sentences I have capitalized which indicate that, what the Pope was telling the Russian Orthodox was in direct contradiction to what the Eastern Rite Ukrainian Bishops were claiming.]



In August 1989, the Russian Orthodox Church, acting through fraternal contacts with the Primate of the Roman Catholic Church, Pope John Paul II, and his representatives, and prompted by pastoral concern, displayed initiative on the settlement of te position of the Catholics of the Eastern Rite in the Western Ukraine.

In accordance with the plans for settling the said problems, approved by both sides, a quadripartie Commission, consisting of representatives of the Holy See, the Moscow Patriarchate, the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, and the Catholics of the Eastern Rite, was working in Lvov on March 8-13, 1990.

As a result of the work, carried out by the Commission, involving trips, on-the-spot inspection of churches by its members and meetings with believers, the Commission unanimously adopted a number of practical decisions:  churches in the towns of Nestrov, Zoochev, Nikolaev, Yavorov, Stryj, and Borislav were distributed between the Orthodox and the Uniates.

On the last  day of the Commissions work, Archbishop Vladimir Sternyuk, one of the representatives of the Catholics of the Eastern Rite, suddenly left the commission, BUT THE CATHOLIC SIDE THE DECLARED THAT WORK COULD BE CONTINUED, SINCE THEIR OTHER REPRESENTATIVE WAS PRESENT, AND THE PRINCIPLE OF REPRESENTATION BY THE FOUR SIDES WAS THUS OBSERVED.

On March 13th, the Commission approved the statement on the results of the first meeting, stressing that this was only the beginning of the process of settlement, after which representatives of the Churches would go over to considering other outstanding questions.  To prevent acts of extremism, Commission members, acting on behalf of their respective churches, PLEDGED TO EXCLUDE ANY POSSIBILITY OF FORCIBLE SEIZURES OF CHURCHES.

The Holy Synod of the Moscow Patriarchate approved the results of the Commissions work and declared that our Church is ready to continue her efforts to settle this problem.

However, on Mrach 22nd, the Lvov newspaper, Leninska molodj, published a  "Statement of the Episcopate of the Greek Catholic Church in the Ukraine Concerning the Talks of the Quadripartite Commission on Relations Between the Orthodox and the Catholics", announcing the invalidity of the documents issued by the Commission in the process of these talks,  "including all documents on the transfer of churches.  MOREOVER, THE SAME STATEMENT SAYS THAT EVERYTHING PRESENTED BY VLADYKAS FROM THE UKRAINE HAS BEEN AGREED  UPON WITH POPE JOHN PAUL II.

Following this statement, the seizures of Orthodox churches, involving acts of violence and lawlessness, became frequent.  Uniate leaders call for banishing the Orthodox Church from the territory of the Western Ukraine.  It is noteworthy that in its Statement the episcopate of the Ukrainian Catholics declares that 'THE UKRAINIAN GREEK CATHOLIC CHURCH IS THE ONLY CHURCH IN THE UKRAINE."

In many towns and villages the Orthodox are compelled to pray right in the street.  The life of the Orthodox people in Galicia is clouded by tears and suffering.

Instead of observing the law and ensuring their citizens' security, the local authorities take a one sided anti-Orthodox stand  The most striking illustration of this is the recent decision of the Lvov City Soviet to take St Yur Cathedral and the bishops residence away from the Orthodox believers and turn them over to the Catholics of the Eastern Rite.  On the eve of the feast of  Holy Pascha the Orthodox may find themselves in the street!

Lawlessness has reached the limit in the Western Ukraine, and the inimical tension in relations to believers of the two communities is fraught with unpredictable complications.  While it is not to late, the Holy Synod once again calls for an end to the brother-hating relations and for finding, in the spirit of Christ's love, a just and legitimate way of settling the problem.

We believe that the Ukrainian consanguineous brothers and sisters and their religious pastors are capable of reaching agreements restoring conditions for a peaceful and quiet life in ther native land.

The Holy Synod hopes that the Holy See will pay attention to the complicated situation with regard to the settlement of the problems of the Catholics of the Eastern Rite in the Western Ukraine and will not allow these events to affect the developement of the Orthodox-Catholic dialogue.  IN THIS CONNECTION WE CALL IN QUESTION THE TRUSTWORTHINESS OF THE UNIATE EPISCOPATE'S  ALLEGATION THAT THEIR PRONOUNCEMENTS HAVE BEEN AGREED UPON  WITH POPE JOHN PAUL II, BECAUSE THIS ALLEGATION IS  AT VARIANCE WITH THE VATICAN'S OFFICIAL STATEMENT, WHICH SAYS:  "THE HOLY SEE IS HIGHLY SATISFIED WITH THE AGREEMENT REACHED BY ITS ENVOYS IN COOPERATION WITH ORTHODOX REPRESENTATIVES."

The Church calls upon all  her faithful children to pray for the persecuted and suffering brothers and sisters in Galicia, to raise their voice in their defense and to give them all possible assistance.

We ask for the personal interference of President of the Soviet Union M. Gorbachev  and the highest authorities of the Ukrainian SSR in order to establish law and order, pu an end to violence, annul the Lvov City Soviets's decision concerning St Yur Cathedral and the bishop's residence in Livov  return the forcibly seized churches, ensure a normal church life and help overcome the difficult problems inherited from the past.

Resolutely protesting against the stand taken by the local authorities in the Western Ukraine, particulary in Lvov, the Holy Synod declares that the path they have chosen further aggravates the inter-religious situation and enmity  amidst the Ukrainian people rather than promotes the settlement of conflicts.

We pray to God, Who vanquished all evil forces on earth by His Ressurection, also to resurrect our souls for love, fraternity, and peace!

----------

Orthodoc


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« Reply #49 on: February 11, 2004, 11:01:45 AM »

Orthodox,

"Where is that any different than Greek Catholics churches becoming Orthodox through a signed agreement in 1946?"

The difference is that the Unia, as much as you wish otherwise, was initiated by hierarchs and supported by the clergy and people, at least a sizable portion of them.  You don't want to believe it but the unias wouldn't have survived without popular suppport.  And you can save the poor, ignorant , deceived serf speech for somebody that is going to believe it.

"Are you trying to insinuate that after the union was signed the newly created UGCC built new churches for itself and its people? "

You don't think that in the 300+ years from 1596 to 1946 the Greek Catholics built any new churches?  Or that the Orthodox built repalcemnts for those they lost in the Unia?

"Why should WHO or what type of government  initiated it make any difference?"

It doesn't.  The difference is that in 1596 a sizable portion of the clergy and people wanted union, nor did the Orthodox Church cease to exist in the Polish Kingdom or Austrian-Hungarian Empire.  In 1946 an entire Church was exterminated against the will of all of its members.  The MP collaborated. If they were such friends to the Greek Catholics as you say why didn't they give their churches back when Communism collapsed?

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« Reply #50 on: February 11, 2004, 12:24:31 PM »


Comments re Orthodoc’s last post:

Your prolix post notwithstanding, I still assert that it is an eggregious insult to true Orthodoxy for someone to associate the liquidation of EC eparchies in Galicia, Transcarpathia, and other Catholic areas of Western Ukraine with Orthodoxy when it was largely an NKVD effort with Stalin's approval even if the MP was supposedly involved.  This still leaves lots of room to argue, disagree with, or otherwise be disenchanted with what has happened between the Orthodox and the Unia post 1987.

Your recitation of the abominable treatment of Orthodox by the Communist in the entire Soviet Union was unnecessary.  I acknowledged that without all the detail in my original post regarding my statement about Communist depredations in the Ukraine including the engineered famine.  You are preaching to the choir.

Comments re Fr. Deacon Lance’s last post:

Quote
"Why should WHO or what type of government  initiated it make any difference?"

It doesn't.  The difference is that in 1596 a sizable portion of the clergy and people wanted union, nor did the Orthodox Church cease to exist in the Polish Kingdom or Austrian-Hungarian Empire.  In 1946 an entire Church was exterminated against the will of all of its members.  The MP collaborated. If they were such friends to the Greek Catholics as you say why didn't they give their churches back when Communism collapsed?

I would desire to nuance Father’s last sentence—these are my words and my opinion, not necessarily his—by saying that the issue of return of Church properties to the EC’s is enormously complicated.  I don’t sign on to violent behavior of EC’s in reclaiming their property or in Orthodox bulldozing properties rather than letting them fall into the hands of EC’s (OK, this latter thing happened in Rumania; I’m not necessarily saying it happened in the Galicia or Transcarpathia).  As I indicated in my previous post, I’m not sure that this can be resolved to anybody's satisfaction.

I am sure, however, that the right of EC’s to their own religious life is a First Amendment issue, the same right that belongs to the Orthodox anywhere in the world including Orthodox rights in Galicia and Transcarpathia.  The First Amendment regarding free exercise of religion is a human right embodied even in the phony constitution of the Soviet Union, the compacts of other sovereign nations, and in the official declarations and agreements of international associations.

If you, Orthodoc, want to assert that the 1946 Synod that cancelled Brest-Litovsk is just and due payback for the Brest-Litovsk and Uzhorod agreements, then have at it if it makes you happy.  I just don’t think that it is in Orthodoxy’s best interests to be associated with this “event.”

This thread ought to be shut down.  I think that we are just beating a dead horse with continued polemics.
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« Reply #51 on: February 11, 2004, 01:25:50 PM »

[The difference is that the Unia, as much as you wish otherwise, was initiated by hierarchs and supported by the clergy and people, at least a sizable portion of them.]

Well Father Deacon Lance you can go on believing the revisionist history put out by the Vatican and the UGCC.  But, if the above is as true as you claim it is, perhaps you can answer the following questions for me -

1)  Why, after the union was accomplished was the Pope's name only commerated in the main Cathedral while only the local Bishop's name was commerated in all the villages and towns throughtout the land?

2)  Why, when those who heard the Popes name being commerated, were told it was because he had joined the Orthodox Church when they questioned it?

3)  Why was the word 'Pravoslavny (Orthodox)' retained in the Liturgy rather than either the word 'Catholic' or more precise 'Roman Catholic' ?

4)  Why was it necessary to request 33 articles of quarantees, many asking for what we would consider bask humans rights, before the union could be established?  

5)  Why, up until this day, is it considered an insult to identify  you with titles  that in any way, shape, or form identifies you as loyal members of the Roman Pope and part of his loyal subjects?

6)  Why would the Bishops who signed the union include such statements as this in the 'Union of Brest'  if the union was the will of the majority the people and clergy and based on theological issues as you claim?

[Article  13:  And if in time the Lord shall grant that the rest of the brethren of our
people and of the Greek Religion shall come to this same holy unity, it shall not be held against us or begrudged to us that we have proceeded them in this unity, FOR WE HAVE TO DO THIS FOR DEFINITE, SERIOUS REASONS, FOR HARMONY IN THE CHRISTIAN REPUBLIC  [POLAND] TO AVOID FURTHER CONFUSION AND DISCORD.

Article 31:  And when the Lord God by His will and holy grace shall permit the rest
of our brothers of the Eastern Church of the Greek tradidtion to come to the holy unity with the Western Church, and later in this common union and by the permission of the Universal Church  THERE SHOULD BE ANY CHANGE IN THE CEREMONIES AND TYPICON OF THE GREEK CHURCH, WE SHALL SHARE ALL THIS AS PEOPLE OF THE SAME RELIGION.

Article 32:  We have heard that some have departed for Greece to procure
ecclesiastical powers and return here to advise and influence the clergy and extend their jurisdiction over us.  WE, THEREFORE, REQUEST THE KING'S GRACE TO ORDER PRECAUTIONS TO BE TAKEN ON THE STATE BORDERS SO THAT ANYONE BEARING SUCH JURISDICTIONS AND EXCOMMUNICATIONS BE BARRED FROM ENTERING THE KINGDOM.  OTHERWISE, GRAVE MISUNDERSTANDINGS COULD ARISE BETWEEN THE  PASTORS AND THE FLOCKS OF THEIR CHURCH.]

Additional questions regarding this -

a)  If this was the will of the majority of the people and clergy as you claim, why would they be asking for the borders to be closed to bar any  Orthodox Bishops, Monks, or Clergy from entering?

b)  What grave misunderstandings would occur between the Pastors and their people  if the borders were not closed and the Orthodox  were allowed to enter, if the people had knowledge of and supported the Union?

7)  Can you explain to me why the following articles were included in the 'Union' if the people were free and already had these  basic human rights and privileges as Orthodox Christians?

Article 22:  That the Romans should not forbid us to ring bells in our churches on
Good Friday, both in the cities and everywhere else.

Article 23: That we should not be forbidden to visit the sick with the Most Holy
Mysteries, publicly, with the lights and vestments, according to our rubrics.

Article 24:  That without any interference we might be free to hold processions, as many as are required, on holdy days, according to our custom.

Article 25:  That our Rus' monasteries and churches should not be changed into Roman Catholic churches.  And if any Roman Catholic has damaged or destroyed one of our churches or monasteries, in his territory, he shall be obliged to repair it or build a new one for the exclusive use of the Rus' people.

Perhaps if you can answer the above questions  you might be able to convince us this union was a result of a love fest between the Ukrainian people and Rome as you claim.

Orthodoc
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« Reply #52 on: February 11, 2004, 04:55:16 PM »

Orthodoc,

1)  Why, after the union was accomplished was the Pope's name only commerated in the main Cathedral while only the local Bishop's name was commerated in all the villages and towns throughtout the land?

- Becasue the ancient Liturgical practice was for the Bishops to commemorate the Patriarch/Pope and the local priest to commemorate the Bishop.

2)  Why, when those who heard the Popes name being commerated, were told it was because he had joined the Orthodox Church when they questioned it?

-Unsubstantiated

3)  Why was the word 'Pravoslavny (Orthodox)' retained in the Liturgy rather than either the word 'Catholic' or more precise 'Roman Catholic' ?

-Because they did not consider tehmselves to have become not Pravoslavny only united to Rome

4)  Why was it necessary to request 33 articles of quarantees, many asking for what we would consider bask humans rights, before the union could be established?

-Because basic human rights didn't exist and to protect themselves form Latinization and Polonization after teh union.

5)  Why, up until this day, is it considered an insult to identify  you with titles  that in any way, shape, or form identifies you as loyal members of the Roman Pope and part of his loyal subjects?

-Byzantine/Greek Catholic does identify us as such.  Empress Maria Teresa came up with term.  Terms like Eastern Rite Roman Catholic, besides being inaccurate, imply we have no right to our Eastern heritage, that we are foreigners who are pretending to be something we are not.  We are in communion with Rome, we do accept (or are supposed to) some theology the Orthodox do not-Papal Infallibility, but we are not of the Latin/Roman tradition.  We do not relate to Christ through that system.  We are Eastern and Catholic.  I do not deny Orthodox the term Catholic.

6)  Why would the Bishops who signed the union include such statements as this in the 'Union of Brest'  if the union was the will of the majority the people and clergy and based on theological issues as you claim?

-Becasue it was not unanimous.  I never said all agreed.  But a sizable portion did or we wouldn't be here today.  Obviously the bishops would want to prevent foreign Greek bishops from usurping their jurisdiction.  

7)  Can you explain to me why the following articles were included in the 'Union' if the people were free and already had these  basic human rights and privileges as Orthodox Christians?

-I did not say they did.  I said they were not completely forced underground as happened in 1946.  All their churches were not taken, all their bishops were not killed or imprisoned.

Fr. Deacon Lance
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« Reply #53 on: February 11, 2004, 05:09:13 PM »

Where did you get this from? The only other times I heard this claim was from Alex Roman long before you made it. He repeated it a few times, but  has never backed it up with a source. Did you get it from reading one of his infinite posts?

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Anthony

"2)  Why, when those who heard the Popes name being commerated, were told it was because he had joined the Orthodox Church when they questioned it?"
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« Reply #54 on: February 11, 2004, 07:13:25 PM »

[Did you get it from reading one of his infinite posts?]

I've read those posts on the 'other forum' but Alex isn't the only source.  I've also read it and heard it from the Parish Baba's (who came here as Greek Catholics) when I was a kid.

Have a church committee meeting tonight and tomorrow will be making 'holupki' all day at the Church so I won't have time to look up my sources for a day or two.  Will try and get back with further sources.

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« Reply #55 on: February 12, 2004, 09:35:19 PM »

1) Why, after the union was accomplished was the Pope's name only commerated in the main Cathedral while only the local Bishop's name was commerated in all the villages and towns throughtout the land?

-
Fr Deacon replies:   Becasue the ancient Liturgical practice was for the Bishops to commemorate the Patriarch/Pope and the local priest to commemorate the Bishop.

Orthodox responds:  Every Liturgy I have ever attended commerates both the chief Hierach and the local Bishop.  But, since I can neither confirm or deny what you say, I will leave it as a possibility even though I am not thoroughly convinced.  Perhaps someone can either confirm or deny this reply from Father Deacon Lance and give references?

2) Why, when those who heard the Popes name being commerated, were told it was because he had joined the Orthodox Church when they questioned it?

Fr Deacon replies:  -Unsubstantiated

Orthodoc responds: I have read this but can't remember where.  I have also heard it as a child from some of the older people in both my childhood parish and my present parish who came here as Greek Catholics.  Also,  Dr Alex Roman PhD who  is a Ukrainian Catholic has substantiated this on the Byzantine Forum.  Either search the archives or ask him yourself if you don't believe me.  Perhaps he can provide references if he was indeed serious when he wrote the statementes in the 'other' forum.

3) Why was the word 'Pravoslavny (Orthodox)' retained in the Liturgy rather than either the word 'Catholic' or more precise 'Roman Catholic' ?

Fr Deacon replies:  Because they did not consider tehmselves to have become not Pravoslavny only united to Rome

Orthodoc responds:  When one turns their backs on the canons, doctrines, & dogmas, of the Orthodox Catholic Church, and accepts  Papal authority,  one  ceases to be Orthodox and becomes a part of the Roman Catholic Church.  You may not like it but they are the facts.

4) Why was it necessary to request 33 articles of quarantees, many asking for what we would consider bask humans rights, before the union could be established?

Fr Deacon replies: -Because basic human rights didn't exist and to protect themselves form Latinization and Polonization after teh union.

Orthodoc responds:  Why would they have to protect themselves if the union was a result  their recognizing the validity and superioty of the Papal Church?  Many of the rights they were asking for are considered as Sacraments in the Orthodox Church. And, are you trying to convince me they never had any of those basic rights prior to the Polish take over?  Rights such as religious processions, administering to the sick at home, & ringing the church bells?  If you are, you can't really be serious?  Sacraments such as Confession, Communion, and Holy Unction, which would be given to the sick, are now, and have always been an important aspect of Holy Orthodoxy.  To say they were also denied prior to the Polish take over is illogical.

5) Why, up until this day, is it considered an insult to identify you with titles that in any way, shape, or form identifies you as loyal members of the Roman Pope and part of his loyal subjects?

Fr Deacon replies:  -Byzantine/Greek Catholic does identify us as such. Empress Maria Teresa came up with term. Terms like Eastern Rite Roman Catholic, besides being inaccurate, imply we have no right to our Eastern heritage, that we are foreigners who are pretending to be something we are not.

Orthodoc responds:  But that's exactly what you are doing.  Pretending to be something you no longer are - Orthodox.

And, how does a term like EASTERN RITE Roman Catholic  imply you have no right to your EASTERN heritage?

Fr Deacon replies:  We are in communion with Rome, we do accept (or are supposed to) some theology the Orthodox do not-Papal Infallibility, but we are not of the Latin/Roman tradition.

Orthodoc responds:  So you are in communion with,  pledge allegiance to, and accept as the highest authority in your church, a Bishop who holds doctrines such as Papal Infallibility and makes claims you reject?  Can you show me where it states you are not required to believe in Papal Infallibility which wasn't even believed when the union was signed?  Can you show me where or what Canon in the 'Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches' where you are exonerated from belief in Papal Infallibility or any other the doctrine the Pope may come up with now or in the future?

When your church came under the authority of Rome,  it pledged both its obedience and loyality to the Pope and the doctrines, dogmas, and canons he upholds and  professes. That's the way the Roman Catholic church is structered Father Deacon.  Its one of the main reasons the schism occurred in the first place.  

Getting to pick and choose what beliefs you accept and/or reject is a Protestant belief.  It is neither Orthodox Catholic or Roman Catholic.

What I find amazing is when I have lurked in your discussion groups, is the fact that even when Roman Catholics try and  explain what I have just done, you reject what they have to say.

And, ones religion or religious identity is not based on ones traditions but  ones  beliefs (contained in its doctrines, dogmas, and canons)

Fr Deacon further replies:  We do not relate to Christ through that system. We are Eastern and Catholic. I do not deny Orthodox the term Catholic.  

Orthodox responds: Nor could you, since you would have to prove we left that One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church we profess belief in when we recite the Creed in its original form.

And, are you telling me that ones religious identity is a matter of negiotation rather than what beliefs one confesses?  If I agree to your 'catholicity'  you should agree to my 'Orthodoxy'?  That, in itself,  shows how far your churches ideas have gone from Orthodox praxis.

6) Why would the Bishops who signed the union include such statements as this in the 'Union of Brest' if the union was the will of the majority the people and clergy and based on theological issues as you claim?

Fr Deacon replies:  -Becasue it was not unanimous. I never said all agreed. But a sizable portion did or we wouldn't be here today. Obviously the bishops would want to prevent foreign Greek bishops from usurping their jurisdiction.

Orthodoc responds:  You are here today because you had a Polish Roman Catholic government that protected you and literally outlawed the Orthodox Church in the lands it conquered.

7) Can you explain to me why the following articles were included in the 'Union' if the people were free and already had these basic human rights and privileges as Orthodox Christians?

Fr Deacon replies: -I did not say they did. I said they were not completely forced underground as happened in 1946. All their churches were not taken, all their bishops were not killed or imprisoned.

Orthodoc responds:  They weren't?  Once again, after the Union was signed those  clergy that remained loyal to Orthodoxy were excommunicated and many were arrested for treason imprisioned or killed.  Sound familiar?  After the signing of the 'Union of Brest'  the government was restricted from closing certain Orthodox Churches which were the only ones that could remain open because of the Magdebug Law it had signed previously and had to uphold.

=======
"The Orthodox Church In The History Of Russia"  - Dimitry Pospielovsky

Page 93-94:

The  new Polish government could not legally shut down those churches which belonged to the self governing  brotherhoods, which enjoyed immunity under the Magdebug Law.  Nor could the King, close a Church built on a private estate; and a minority of the  landed gentry, such as Prince Ostrozhskii for instance, were still Orthodox and had Orthodox Churches built on their estates.  But the safest areas for the Orthodox were the territories controlled by the Cossacks, i.e., the lower Dnieper area, including Kiev.
===========

Many other estates were turned over to jewish landlords and the Orthodox were forced to pay have any services including Liturgy, Vespers, Matins, Funerals, Marriages, and Baptisms.

In another one of your posts you comment -

 "And you can save the poor, ignorant , deceived serf speech for somebody that is going to believe it. "

Orthodoc responds:  So are you going to try and covince us that the vast majority of Ukrainians (who were serfs) were literate and could read and write in the 15th and 16th century while the majority of people in western europe were still undeducated & therefore illerate?  Can you substantiate that with some book references?

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« Reply #56 on: February 12, 2004, 11:07:22 PM »

Orthodoc!..
Good Stuff. Smiley

Hard to follow, but still good stuff.
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« Reply #57 on: February 13, 2004, 09:41:05 AM »

Orthodox,

You contradicted yourself.  On one hand you state the people were told the Pope became Orthodox and then you question why Pravoslavny continued to be used in the Liturgy.

"Why would they have to protect themselves if the union was a result  their recognizing the validity and superioty of the Papal Church?  And, are you trying to convince me they never had any of those basic rights prior to the Polish take over?"

Guarantees usually aren't sought unless some for of discrimination/harassment has or is happening.

"So you are in communion with,  pledge allegiance to, and accept as the highest authority in your church, a Bishop who holds doctrines such as Papal Infallibility and makes claims you reject?"

I have never stated I reject any dogma of the Catholic Church.  One is free to object to the way in which the Petrine ministry is exercised, just not the ministry itself.  I do reject Ultramontane claims that the only valid theological tradition is their own.

"And, are you telling me that ones religious identity is a matter of negiotation rather than what beliefs one confesses?  If I agree to your 'catholicity'  you should agree to my 'Orthodoxy'?"

Not at all.  I am refering to the common courtesy of refering to a person or Church by the name they go buy not one invented by another.  I do not refer to Oriental Orthodox as Monophysites, or Assyrians as Nestorians, or Eastern Orthodox as Greek Schismatics, or Polish National Catholics as Polish Dissidents.  I expect my Church to be called Byzantine or Greek Catholic not some name invented  by another and intended to be derogatory.

"You are here today because you had a Polish Roman Catholic government that protected you and literally outlawed the Orthodox Church in the lands it conquered."

And yet after those lands passed back to Russia we coniued to exist despite Tsarist and Soviet oppression and harrasment by the MP.

"The  new Polish government could not legally shut down those churches which belonged to the self governing  brotherhoods, which enjoyed immunity under the Magdebug Law.  Nor could the King, close a Church built on a private estate; and a minority of the  landed gentry, such as Prince Ostrozhskii for instance, were still Orthodox and had Orthodox Churches built on their estates."

You prove my point.  Not ALL the churches were conficated.  After 1946, not one church remained in Greek Catholic hands.  Every one of our bishops was imprisoned or martyred.

"Many other estates were turned over to jewish landlords and the Orthodox were forced to pay have any services including Liturgy, Vespers, Matins, Funerals, Marriages, and Baptisms."

Greek Catholic were forced to have their services in the woods under fear of discovery and imprisonment.

"So are you going to try and covince us that the vast majority of Ukrainians (who were serfs) were literate and could read and write in the 15th and 16th century while the majority of people in western europe were still undeducated & therefore illerate?  Can you substantiate that with some book references?"

When did I mention literacy?  I am refering to plain common sense and intelligence.  I do not believe that becasue the people were peasants they ignorant dupes who didn't understand what was going on around them.

Fr. Deacon Lance

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« Reply #58 on: February 13, 2004, 09:43:12 AM »

There are signs of hope.


Orthodox (UOC-MP) Community in Transcarpathia Gives Greek Catholics Old Church

02.10.04 (RISU.org.ua) - The community of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church-Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP) in the village of Osii, Irshava district, in southwestern Ukraine’s Transcarpathia region, has given its old church to the local Greek Catholic community. This news was reported by the information agency “Obozrevatel” on 8 February 2004.

The Orthodox community has an almost completed church building in the village center and decided to return its old church to the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, which used to own it before 1949. On the occasion of this transfer, Bishop Milan Sasik, apostolic administrator for the Greek Catholic eparchy of Mukachevo in Ukraine's Transcarpathia region, celebrated a liturgy for the faithful of the two communities.

Bishop Sasik called upon the faithful to help the Orthodox community finish the construction of its new church. He also added that the Orthodox communities in four other villages of the Transcarpathia region, namely Velyki Lazy, Benedykivtsi, Zarichchia and Sasiv will follow this example and alleviate tension over churches between Orthodox and Greek Catholic faithful. So far, all attempts to solve conflicts peacefully have failed.

According to Vasyl Mandziuk, deputy head of the Committee on Religious Matters in the Transcarpathia region, in 36 towns of the region communities take turns conducting services and in 13 towns interdenominational conflicts are officially registered. Mandziak stressed such conflicts will last until people decide what their denomination is.

Before the liquidation of the Greek Catholic Church in the Transcarpathia region in 1949, there had been 280 Greek Catholic communities with more than 400,000 faithful. The Orthodox Church had 155 communities and 142,000 faithful.
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« Reply #59 on: February 13, 2004, 11:39:45 AM »

There are signs of hope.


Orthodox (UOC-MP) Community in Transcarpathia Gives Greek Catholics Old Church

02.10.04 (RISU.org.ua) - The community of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church-Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP) in the village of Osii, Irshava district, in southwestern Ukraine’s Transcarpathia region, has given its old church to the local Greek Catholic community. This news was reported by the information agency “Obozrevatel” on 8 February 2004.

The Orthodox community has an almost completed church building in the village center and decided to return its old church to the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, which used to own it before 1949. On the occasion of this transfer, Bishop Milan Sasik, apostolic administrator for the Greek Catholic eparchy of Mukachevo in Ukraine's Transcarpathia region, celebrated a liturgy for the faithful of the two communities.

Bishop Sasik called upon the faithful to help the Orthodox community finish the construction of its new church. He also added that the Orthodox communities in four other villages of the Transcarpathia region, namely Velyki Lazy, Benedykivtsi, Zarichchia and Sasiv will follow this example and alleviate tension over churches between Orthodox and Greek Catholic faithful. So far, all attempts to solve conflicts peacefully have failed.

According to Vasyl Mandziuk, deputy head of the Committee on Religious Matters in the Transcarpathia region, in 36 towns of the region communities take turns conducting services and in 13 towns interdenominational conflicts are officially registered. Mandziak stressed such conflicts will last until people decide what their denomination is.

Before the liquidation of the Greek Catholic Church in the Transcarpathia region in 1949, there had been 280 Greek Catholic communities with more than 400,000 faithful. The Orthodox Church had 155 communities and 142,000 faithful.

I would love to see "Aid for the Church in Need" or other some such organization or organizations contribute funds for the building, re-building, renovation, etc., of Orthodox and Greek Catholic  Churches and associated religious structures (other denominations too in charity and justice) in Galicia, Transcarpathia, and other regions of the Western Ukraine . . . also in Kosovo where the moslems have torched many Orthodox Churches/monasteries, etc., in supposed revenge for Milosevic and company's depredations.
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« Reply #60 on: February 13, 2004, 12:00:13 PM »

[You contradicted yourself.  On one hand you state the people were told the Pope became Orthodox and then you question why Pravoslavny continued to be used in the Liturgy.]

How is that a contradiction?  The point is that after the Union was signed nothing changed except the commemoration of the Pope was only done in the Cathedrals.  The concept of the 'Unia' was that the Roman Catholics knew that the Ukrianians had a fierce loyality to Orthodoxy and would never agree to become Roman Catholics.  However, they also knew the vast majority could neither read nor write.  Because of this,  your average Ukrainian based things on what they saw and heard.  So, as long as everything stayed the same and sounded the same, how would they ever know what had occurred?  How would they know that they had now become part of the Roman Catholic Church?  They didn't take the word 'Pravoslavny' out of the Liturgy and the local Bishops name in most cases remained the same.  

In the Cathedral where the Popes name was now commemorated, and the people questioned it, they were told that the Pope had become Orthodox.  So where have I contradicted myself?  I think I made it all very clear.

[Guarantees usually aren't sought unless some for of discrimination/harassment has or is happening.]

And that is exactly the point I've been trying to make all along!  But you don't seem to know or understand WHEN that discrimination/harassment began.  Which was AFTER the Polish takeover, not before.

[I have never stated I reject any dogma of the Catholic Church.  One is free to object to the way in which the Petrine ministry is exercised, just not the ministry itself. ]

Now who is contradicting oneself?  Papal Infallibility is a dogma of the Roman Catholic Church.

DOGMA:  The truth of faith and morals which is reveled by God AND AFFIRMED BY THE CHURCH.  THE FAITHFUL ARE REQUIRED TO BELIEVE THE DOGMA PROCLAIMED BY THE CHURCH COUNCILS AND THE FATHERS OF THE CHURCH.

From the New Advent Catholic Encylopedia

EXPLANATION OF PAPAL INFALLIBILITY

The Vatican Council has defined as "a divinely revealed dogma" that "the Roman Pontiff, when he speaks ex cathedra -- that is, when in the exercise of his office as pastor and teacher of all Christians he defines, by virtue of his supreme Apostolic authority, a doctrine of faith or morals to be held by the whole Church -- is, by reason of the Divine assistance promised to him in blessed Peter, possessed of that infallibility with which the Divine Redeemer wished His Church to be endowed in defining doctrines of faith and morals; and consequently that such definitions of the Roman Pontiff are irreformable of their own nature (ex sese) and not by reason of the Church's consent"

[Not at all.  I am refering to the common courtesy of refering to a person or Church by the name they go buy not one invented by another.   I expect my Church to be called Byzantine or Greek Catholic not some name invented  by another and intended to be derogatory.]

Didn't you proclaim in another post that your  identity originated with an Empress Maria?  The Mormon Church proclaims they are Christians but they profess beliefs that are contrary to Christianity.  They believe that every individual member can become a God and they accept modern scripures that are not condusive to Christianity.  Does that mean we are to use 'common courtesy'  and agree to identify them as something they are not?  And, may I remind you this is an Orthodox discussion group.

[And yet after those lands passed back to Russia we coniued to exist despite Tsarist and Soviet oppression and harrasment by the MP.]

Yes but at a much, much reduced membership because most areas returned to Orthodoxy.  This return  was iniated in 1621 when the Cossacks presentated an ultimatum to the Polish Crown, stating that unless all pescution of the Orthodox Church ceased, they would refuse to fight the Turks along with the Poles.  

[You prove my point.  Not ALL the churches were conficated.  After 1946, not one church remained in Greek Catholic hands.  Every one of our bishops was imprisoned or martyred.]

But many of them remained open and were supported by Orthodox money and the Sacraments continued to be administered to the faithful.  Are you honestly in here trying to convince us had the ROC refused to take them under their wing Stalin would have reneged on his edict to close them and destroy them?  What would you have preferred?  Closed and destroyed  Churches; or opened ones where the Sacraments necessary for your salvation where still provided by Orthodox priests?  

What you are insinuating is that a destroyed faith is preferrable to a faith passing into Orthodox hands!

[Greek Catholic were forced to have their services in the woods under fear of discovery and imprisonment.]

And how is that any better or worse than  having to pay a non Christian for any service you wanted to have?  Or that to remain Orthodox was considered as treason punishable by imprisionment or death?

[When did I mention literacy?  I am refering to plain common sense and intelligence.  I do not believe that becasue the people were peasants they ignorant dupes who didn't understand what was going on around them.]

Reread my first reply.  And then explain to me how people who could neither read nor write could discern there were indeed any changes when everything stayed the same.
Once again, the whole premise of the Unia was based on deception that as long as everything remained the same the people would not know the difference.  The latinizations would be gradual over the future generations.  This is why you are in the prcess of delatinization today.

Orthodoc
 

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« Reply #61 on: February 13, 2004, 02:16:23 PM »

"So where have I contradicted myself?  I think I made it all very clear."

You were not at all clear.  However, now that I understand you, I still disagree with you.

"But you don't seem to know or understand WHEN that discrimination/harassment began.  Which was AFTER the Polish takeover, not before."

I do understand that.  Again you were unclear.

"Now who is contradicting oneself?  Papal Infallibility is a dogma of the Roman Catholic Church."

Not me, I accept the dogma of Papl Infallibility.  I do have the right to object to the way the Petrine ministry is exercised, especially as concerns the Curia.  The Pope himself has asked the Orthodox to discuss this very thing.

"Didn't you proclaim in another post that your  identity originated with an Empress Maria?"

I said she coined the name Greek Catholic.  Our identity orignated with SS. Cyril and Methodius.

"Does that mean we are to use 'common courtesy'  and agree to identify them as something they are not?  And, may I remind you this is an Orthodox discussion group."

You need not remind me.  I have not asked you to call us Orthodox.  I have asked you to call us what we are:  Byzantine or Greek Catholic.

"What would you have preferred?"

That the MP din't collaborate with Soviets and celebrated Liturgy in the woods with us.  Most of our people did not go to the Orthodox for the sacraments, but risked their freedom to receive from their own priests in the woods.

"explain to me how people who could neither read nor write could discern there were indeed any changes when everything stayed the same."

Well according to you those that didn't accept the unia were thrown in prison or harrassed.  Our people didn't see this and know why?  They didn't realize that Polish Latin priests were invited to processions and other services?  That's why I don't buy the "they told us the Pope became Orthodox" story.  It is insulting to the intelligence of our people.  It looks like a later fabrication created during the court battles in the US when St. Alexis Toth coverted Greek Catholic parishes to the Russian Metropolia.  

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« Reply #62 on: February 13, 2004, 05:48:23 PM »

Orthodoc writes:  "Now who is contradicting oneself?  Papal Infallibility is a dogma of the Roman Catholic Church."

Fr Deacon replies:  Not me, I accept the dogma of Papal Infallibility.  I do have the right to object to the way the Petrine ministry is exercised, especially as concerns the Curia.  The Pope himself has asked the Orthodox to discuss this very thing.

Orthodoc responds:  If you accept the dogma of Papal Infallibility then you must also accept all that an infallible Pope proclaims, upholds, and protects?  Otherwise you would be contradicting yourself.  Which you certainly do  in your next sentence when you say..."I do have the right to object to the way the Petrine ministry is exercised, especially as concerns the Curia.  How can you object to the way the Petrine ministry is exercised if you believe it is run by an infallible human being?

Orthodoc writes:  "Didn't you proclaim in another post that your  identity originated with an Empress Maria?"

Fr Deacon replies:  I said she coined the name Greek Catholic.  Our identity orignated with SS. Cyril and Methodius.

Orthodoc responds:  We both seem to be mixing apples and oranges here.  This thread started out  when you posted an article  by Father Taft concerning the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church and a Patriarchate.

Since you and I seem to come from the same ethnic background.  And both of us  recognize our ancestors  became Christians through the missionary efforts of Sts Cyril and Methodius,  we can both agree that they were christians over a century before the Ukrainians.  So maybe we should either stick to the Ukrainian Catholic Church and you can open up another thread called "What's in a Name"  and we can discuss the fact that while you profess belief in, and loyality to,  PAPAL SUPREMACY, PAPAL INFALLIBILITY, PAPAL DOCTRINES, DOGMA, AND CANONS  you get so insulted whenever anyone identifies you as  part of this particular church.  I think thats a separate issue in itself.

Orthodoc writes:  "What would you have preferred?"

Father Deacon replies:  That the MP din't collaborate with Soviets and celebrated Liturgy in the woods with us.  Most of our people did not go to the Orthodox for the sacraments, but risked their freedom to receive from their own priests in the woods.

Orthodoc responds:  HUH?  In your first sentence you state that you would have perferred that the MP would have celebrated Liturgy in the woods with you.  Then you state that most of the UGC's  perferred going to the woods rather than go to the Orthodox for the Sacraments [which I consider as a MASS EXAGGERATION and don't believe for a minute].

If the majority of Ukrainian Greek Catholics perferred the woods to worshipping in a building with Orthodox present and an Orthodox priest officiating,  why would you prefer these same people in the woods standing next to you?  Their suffering had been already going on for 29 years.

Once again it's all the way you look at things.  In 1946 Stalin gave the ROC (who had already suffered 29 years of the worst persecution of any religion, two choices which were - 1) Either accept the UGC's into your fold;  or 2) Suffer increased persecution.  If the situation was reversed what do you think the UGCC would have done?  The ROC church made the only sensible option there was.  And that was to accept the UGC's back into her fold and thus save itself from increased persecution and provide a continued sacramental life for the UGC's.  If some UGC's were so full of hatred they preferred to risk their lives in the woods rather than receive the Sacraments from an Orthdox priest that is on them.  

You seem to be telling me that you would have perferred if  the RO Hierachs did the same thing the hand picked UO hierachs did in 1596 and turned their backs on their separated children.

Father Deacon writes:  Well according to you those that didn't accept the unia were thrown in prison or harrassed.  Our people didn't see this and know why?  They didn't realize that Polish Latin priests were invited to processions and other services?

Orthodoc responds:  They initially saw it as persecution of the Orthodox Church.  Thats why the Cossacks united.  Especially  the Zaporozhie which became the defenders of Orthodoxy.  Once the union was signed it didn't take the Jesuits long to come in and establish schools for the gentry.  It was then that the latinization and the creation of the UGC began.  Rent the movie 'Taras Bulba' from the fifties which tells the story quite well.  The movie starts out where the Poles and the Cossacks fight together to defeat the Tatars  in the steepes.  After the Tartars are driven out the Poles turn their swords on the Cossacks and defeat them and take over what is now known as Ukraine.  The Cossacks go back to their villages and remain loyal to the Orthodox Church.  The chief of the Zaporozhe (Yul Brenner has two sons born to him & his wife).  He raises them as young Cossacks.  When they become of school age he decides to send them to one of the Jesuit schools that were now all over the country.  Because, according to him, the only way to defeat the Pole was to pretend to become one of them by attending their schools and pretending to adopt their religion (which by now was the Unia in Ukrainian territory).  Only that way could they learn the strengths and weaknesses enough to defeat them.  However, one son, Tony Curtis, falls in love with the Polish governors daughter.  He turns his back on both his country and faith and accepts the Roman Catholic faith when he marries her.
At this point, Yul Brenner cals all the various Cossack Clans which come from all parts of Ukraine to fight the Poles and their cursed religion out of Ukraine.  Rent the movie for the ending.

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« Reply #63 on: February 13, 2004, 06:54:21 PM »

Orthodoc,

"How can you object to the way the Petrine ministry is exercised if you believe it is run by an infallible human being?"

First the Pope is not an infallible human being anymore than the Fathers of an Ecumenical Council are.  Catholics believe that the Pope can exercise infallibility the same way a Council does, that is inspired by the Holy Spirit.  However, Catholics also believe this charism is limited to Faith and Morals.  Administrative, jurisdictional, even ritual matters (all ,often handled by the Curia) can be objected to, some would even say that disobedience would be allowed if the case were serious enough.

Good example:  The Polish Latin bishops decided they didn't like all the Married Ukrainian priests in Poland and protested to Rome.  The Cardinal Secretary of State said the married priests should return to Ukraine.  However, the priests were Polish not Ukrainian citizens so could not go even if they wanted too, which they did not.  The Ukrainian Metropolitan ignored the order, which was beyond the competence of the Cardinal anyway, and deferred the matter to Lviv.  Patriarch Lubomyr, who was acting administrator, told the Cardinal forget it.  Another Cardianl informed the Pope of what was going on and the Pope called Cardinal Sodano in and reprimanded him.

" Then you state that most of the UGC's  perferred going to the woods rather than go to the Orthodox for the Sacraments [which I consider as a MASS EXAGGERATION and don't believe for a minute]."

To be honest I don't know where you got the idea that the Greek Catholics just went to the Orthodox Church.  I thought it was common knowledge they had secret Liturgies in the woods and in attics and basements as did the UAOC.  See this article:

07/21/2001 LISA HEBERT The Dallas Morning News

St. Sophia Ukrainian Catholic Church may be small in numbers, but it's big in spirit. The 148-member parish opened its doors Aug 3, 2000, and has worked hard ever since.

Its building in The Colony, which once belonged to a Baptist church, had to be renovated. For months, parishioners painted, laid carpet and tile, and created a comfortable living space for their pastor and his family. Age and health factors that might have stopped others didn't stop them.

Even two heart bypass operations were no hindrance to Dr. Theodore Trusevich.

"I climbed up on the roof of the church at 75 years old to paint the cross and the surrounding area," he said. "I had not set foot in a Ukrainian Catholic Church in over 27 years, and I felt exuberant."

These believers are proud of their little church because they remember what it's like not to be able to practice their faith openly. That was their experience in Ukraine during the decades of Communist rule.

In 1946, the Soviet leader Joseph Stalin turned over Ukrainian Catholic property to the Orthodox Church. A later ban on the Ukrainian Catholic Church forced priests and laity underground.

Among them was St. Sophia's pastor, the Rev. Vasyl Savchyn. The 48-year-old priest escaped persecution by following his vocation in secret.

"I worked a government job legally during the day," he said,” but clandestinely at night, we would disguise ourselves as women, and people would take me to their homes to perform weddings and funerals."

Some fellow priests were caught and sent to work camps.

"I corresponded with many of my friends who were sent away to Siberia," he said. "The KGB would often come to my house and turn over mattresses and other possessions to look for any type of religious paraphernalia."

Parishioners have similar stories. Marta Vaughn, who's 41, said that for most of her life she was deprived of freedom to learn about her Catholic faith. "I was not allowed to go to church when I lived in Ukraine," she said. "I was a teacher, and we were supposed to spread Communist ideologies to our students. I would have lost my job."





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« Reply #64 on: February 13, 2004, 09:07:51 PM »


Father Deacon Lance:

I never said, nor do I disbelieve, that there were secret Liturgies said in woods, attics, basements, etc.  But I do doubt that  the VAST MAJORITY of Ukrainian Greek Catholics forsook completely worshipping in Churches that were now under Orthodox control to worship in secret.

I can tell you similiar stories of Orthodox who worshipped in secret  not only in Russia & Ukraine, but Albania, Romania, Belorus,  Poland, Slovakia, etc.

One beautiful story from Albania which was the first completely athiest country.  When the people heard there was to be a Liturgy broadcast over  radio stations like RFE someone would bake the Phrospora.  They would gather together around the radio to listen to the Liturgy where they would place the Phrospora and wine on top of the radio.  When the Liturgy was finished they would partake of the elements which they believed God had consecrated.

How about that?  Albania had no Churches to worship in because the communist government closed them.  Isn't that what Stalin had threatened to do in Ukraine to the Greek Catholic Churches if the ROC wouldn't accept them?

What I do object to, is you, as well as others, who come into Orthodox websites to complain about how much your church suffered and blame it all on the compliance of the Russian Orthodox Church.  If you are going to cry and complain about communist aggression and persecution of the Churches, then cry for ALL THE CHURCHES.  Including the church that suffered from the first day of the revolution and therefore the longest - the Russian Orthodox Church.  

I also object to people who come into Orthodox websites and post articles or complain about what happened in 1946 and try and either justify or condone  what happened in 1596 which created the UGCC in the first place.

The fact of the matter is that the very creation of the UGCC by Rome was as an aggressive move to undermine the Orthodox Church, by using politics,  deceit, dishonesty,  pressure, and every devious method available to try and incorporate  it into the Roman Catholic Church.

I can also post stories about how the Orthodox are being treated in the heart of the UGCC in western Ukraine, while a big new headquarters & Cathedral is being built in Kiev which is the hearland of Orthodoxy in Ukraine.  One story in the New York times comes to mind.  It tells about a group of Orthodox
who have to worship in a railroad car because their church was taken over by force by Ukrainian Greek Catholics.  When the people petitioned for a permit to build a new church they were given a permit to build on a garbage dump because they were told that is the only place an Orthodox Church belongs.

Moral I'm trying to make -

1)  If you complain about happened in 1946 be honest enough to also complain what happened in 1596.

2)  If you are going to complain about what was done to Greek Catholics by the communists, at least acknowledge the same things were being done on a much larger scale and for a longer period of time to the Orthodox Christians.

3)  If you are going to post news releases  regarding agressive actions towards UGC's also post equal horror stories at what has been done to Orthodox by UGC's.

I just find your attitude too one sided.  And my posts have been an attempt to balance things out a bit.

People who are being persecuted will find ways of practicing their faith in secret.  Not only in Ukraine by UGC's but in Russia by devout Orthodox Christians who were able to maintain the faith right under the communists noses.  

Examples:

1) A couple was married in the marriage palace  because it was  the only recognized marriage by the government.  After the ceremony was completed they would give the rings to Baba.  Baba would take the rings to the priest  who would perform the wedding ceremony over the rings, Bless them, and return them to Baba to give back to the couple.  That's how the reconciled a secular ceremony with a religious ceremony.

2)  After a communist funeral, Baba would take a jar of dirt from the grave and take it to the priest who would perform the funeral service and Bless it.  Baba would then take the jar of dirt back to the grave and sprinkle it back over the grave.

They are but just two stories.  

When people like you come in here with a more balanced concept of religious persecution under communism I will cease in giving my two cents worth.

Until then my big mouth and stubby fingers will continue to work overtime defending my faith!

Orthodoc

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« Reply #65 on: February 13, 2004, 10:14:45 PM »

Orthodoc,

I am onesided?  I never claimed the Russian Orthodox Church did not suffer.  In fact my complaint, and have made this clear, is not with the Russian Orthodox Church, but with the administration of the MP who seem unable to accept that the UGCC has a right to exist and evangelize as it sees fit.  

I am not balanced?  In this very thread I posted an article about a kindness done by a Russian Orthodox Church-MP parish.  I do not deny their is goodness and holiness in my Orthodox brethren.  I have yet to see you write or post anything other than derogatory comments and snide remarks about anything Greek Catholic.  I think I have presented a balanced arguement.  But we have done the rounds on this before.  We are never going to agree so I think it best we agree to disagree, bid each other peace and remember each other in our prayers  

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« Reply #66 on: February 13, 2004, 10:15:50 PM »

Orthodoc,

I am onesided?  I never claimed the Russian Orthodox Church did not suffer.  In fact my complaint, and have made this clear, is not with the Russian Orthodox Church, but with the administration of the MP who seem unable to accept that the UGCC has a right to exist and evangelize as it sees fit.  

I am not balanced?  In this very thread I posted an article about a kindness done by a Russian Orthodox Church-MP parish.  I do not deny their is goodness and holiness in my Orthodox brethren.  I have yet to see you write or post anything other than derogatory comments and snide remarks about anything Greek Catholic.  I think I have presented a balanced arguement.  But we have done the rounds on this before.  We are never going to agree so I think it best we agree to disagree, bid each other peace and remember each other in our prayers  

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« Reply #67 on: February 16, 2004, 12:21:16 PM »

Then Evangelize your own unchurched people. Don't go taking Sheep from orthodox Ukraine
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« Reply #68 on: February 16, 2004, 12:27:53 PM »

sdcheung,

With your attitude and logic, the Orthodox should get their collective rear out of the United States and the rest of the Americas, so the Romans can evangelize their "own unchurched people".

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« Reply #69 on: February 16, 2004, 12:42:28 PM »

Oh Gee ...
America is Neutral land my dear.
There is enough sheep here for both.

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« Reply #70 on: February 16, 2004, 12:43:53 PM »

See, that's what I believe, but by your reckoning, there should be no Orthodox in Mexico and the American Southwest, which is as traditionally Roman Catholic as Ukraine is Orthodox.

Yet there are a number of Orthodox churches in these regions.
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« Reply #71 on: February 16, 2004, 12:44:58 PM »

...I'd be happy to see the reach of the Catholic church reduced to the vatican though..hehehehe
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« Reply #72 on: February 16, 2004, 05:52:00 PM »

SD,

Part of the assertation of Archimandrite Robert is that Eastern Ukraine is largely unevangelized despite claims to the contrary.  If this is true, and I have no reason to believe it isn't, the MP isn't doing its job.  If this is the case the UGCC has not only the right but the responsibility to take the gospel to those who don't have it.  It seems the MP would rather Eastern Ukraine have no Gospel at all if it the alternative is that the UGCC is take it there.

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« Reply #73 on: February 17, 2004, 01:36:55 AM »

Fr Deacon Lance writes:

[Part of the assertation of Archimandrite Robert is that Eastern Ukraine is largely unevangelized despite claims to the contrary.  If this is true, and I have no reason to believe it isn't, the MP isn't doing its job.  If this is the case the UGCC has not only the right but the responsibility to take the gospel to those who don't have it. ]

Reply:

So now we have the Vatican propaganda machines working over time now the the UGCC is in the processes of moving its headquarters hundreds of miles from the majority of its people into the heart of Orthodoxy.  To prepare for the proseltyzation of the Orthodox.

We are now expected to believe that the vast majority of religious people are located in western Ukraine and are members of the UGCC.  While in the east, where the vast majority of Orthodox Churches are located,  are empty and devoid of people and need UGC evangelization..  All the new Orthodox Churches being built in those areas, including the largest Church structure in Ukraine, are just show places.

How pathetic when people begin to believe their own propaganda!  But then again, the same group of people who are gullible enough to believe this... are also gullible enough to believe that one can be 'in communion with Rome' and not be either part of the Roman Catholic Church or under its ultimate authority.  Go figure!

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« Reply #74 on: February 17, 2004, 09:15:03 AM »

Orthodoc,

If you knew Archimandrite Robert you would know he is as critical of the Vatican and the Eastern Catholic Churches as he is anyone else.  If ECs are fudging the numbers he calls them on the carpet too.  He is not interested in propaganda but the truth.

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« Reply #75 on: February 17, 2004, 11:16:26 AM »

Fr Deacon Lance writes:  

[If you knew Archimandrite Robert you would know he is as critical of the Vatican and the Eastern Catholic Churches as he is anyone else.  If ECs are fudging the numbers he calls them on the carpet too.  He is not interested in propaganda but the truth.]

Orthodoc replies:

Yeh right!  Then perhaps he can explain the latest religious statistics from RISU  (Religious Information Service of Ukraine)  which happens to be a religious project of the UKRAINIAN CATHOLIC CHURCH!

As of January 2, 2002 -


UOC-MP  statistics -

Communities:  9423 (with 92 more unregistered)
Priests :  7995
Churches:  8305 with 930 under construction
Monasteries:  131
Monks & Nuns:  3727
Missions: 3
Seminaries:  15
Seminarians:  1805  (with 2360 more correspondence part time students)
Sunday Schools:  3076

UOC-KP statistics -

Communities:  3010 (with 40 more unregistered)
Priests:  2443
Churches:  2115 (with 267 under construction)
Monasteries:  28
Monks & Nuns:  131
Missions:  22
Seminaries:  15
Seminarians:  1177 (with 404 more correspondence partime students)
Sunday Schools:  823

UOAOC -

Communities:  1052 (with 3  more unregistered)
Priests:  653
Churches:  697 (97 under construction)
Monasteries:  3
Monks & Nuns:  0
Missions:  6
Seminaries:  8
Seminarians:  205 (with 80 more correspondence parttime students)
Sunday Schools:  244
 
UGCC  statistics -

Communities:  3289 (with 47 more unregistered)
Priests:  1944
Churches:  2665 (with 305 under construction)
Monasteries:  86
Monks & Nuns:  1123
Missions:  9
Seminaries:  13
Seminarians:  1166 (with 40 more crrespondence part timers)
Sunday Schools:  735

=========

Comparisons:

Total Orthodox Communities:  13485  (with 135 more unregistered)
Total UGC Communities:  3289 (with  47 more unregistered)

Total Orthodox Priests:  11091
Total UGC Priests:  1944

Total Orthodox Churches:  11117 (with 256 more under construction)
Total UGC Churches:  2665 (with 305 under construction)

Total Orthodox Monasteries:  162
Total UGC Monasteries:  86

Total  Orthodox Monks & Nuns:  3858
Total UGC Monks & Nuns:  1123

Total Orthodox Missions:  31
Total UGC Missions:  9

Total Orthodox Seminaries:  38
Total UGC Seminaries:  13

Total Orthodox Seminarians:  3187  (with 2844 more in correspondence)
Total UGC Seminarians:  1166 (with 40 more in correspondence)

Total Orthodox Sunday Schools:  4143
Total UGC Sunday Schools:  735


So Father Deacon Lance, in case you are not following me....What I did was go in and use the latest religious statistics complied by YOUR OWN PEOPLE (the Ukrainian Catholic University) to prove Father Taft a liar!  You can access them yourself at - http://www.risu.org.ua/

The Orthodox Catholic church has not only more churches but more priests, monks, nuns, seminaries, seminarians, and sunday schools than the UGC.  In fact the UOC-MP itself has more of the above listings!


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« Reply #76 on: February 17, 2004, 01:05:58 PM »

Orthodoc,

I was following you.  If you were more careful in your research you would see that the statistics reported by RISU were compiled by the Ukrainian Government and that Archimandrite Robert's whole contention is that the statistics are inaccurate and do not reflect the reality of the situation.  Is the Archimandrite, who has been there and seen the situation first hand, to be called a liar because what he reports doesn't match your fantasy or just because he is Catholic?  Over at byzcath others who have traveled to Ukraine have offered the same information so it is not just one person reporting this.

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« Reply #77 on: February 17, 2004, 01:37:30 PM »


Fr Deacon Lance writes:

[If you were more careful in your research you would see that the statistics reported by RISU were compiled by the Ukrainian Government and that Archimandrite Robert's whole contention is that the statistics are inaccurate and do not reflect the reality of the situation.]

If the statistics were compliled by the Ukrainian government and inaccurate as you, and Fr Taft claim, then why even bother to post them on a Ukrianian Catholic University website?

Since both churches and priests etc. have to be registered with the government,  it would seem they would be much more accurate and reliable than a few persons that made a quick drive through Ukraine who only see what they want to see rather than what is actually there.

In one of your previous posts you insinuated if the UOC_MP is unable to bring the Gospel to the Ukrainians then the UGC's would have to.  Yet the statistics reveal that the UOC-MP alone has  3 1/2 times the amount of Sunday Schools  the UGCC has.  Combine the Sunday Schools of the other two Orthodox groups and it becomes  almost 5 1/2 times more.

Compare the amount of students studying religion and you will see that the UOC-MP alone has almost four times the amount of students the UGCC has.  Add the statistics from the other two Orthodox jurisdictions and it comes to five times the amount of students the UGCC has.  And all of them coming from all those EMPTY Orthodox Churches Fr Taft and your ilks on the 'other' board claim they have seen!

Orthodoc

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« Reply #78 on: February 17, 2004, 01:46:15 PM »

Orthodoc,

Again your research is faulty.  The Ukrainian Government no longer requires registration, that holdover from the Soviet Communists.  

I am a government employee and let me share a secret with you, government stats are usually inaccurate either because of incompetence or direct manipulation.  I see the stats and I see the people.  I'll take first hand accounts over government statistics anyday.

If believing those stats make you feel better be my guest, but next time you go to Ukraine stop in a parish in Eastern Ukraine and see if the congregation matches the stats.

Fr. Deacon Lance

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« Reply #79 on: February 17, 2004, 02:00:03 PM »



Fr Deacon Lance:

We will let the people who are reading this judge for themselves.

If they would rather take the statistics you say are compiled by the Ukrainian government (which is no real friend of the UOC-MP) and are printed, of all places, in a Ukrainian Catholic University website.

Or the word of a priest of the  Eastern Rite  with an agenda who resides, not in Ukraine, but the Vatican.  And of course, the comments of a few anti Orthodox  nationalist Ukies who spent a few days in Ukraine last summer or whenever.

By the way you haven't answered my question on where all these Orthodox students are coming from if all the churches are empty.

And, religious communities still have to be registered with the government.  If for nothing else, tax purposes.  Notice all the statistics for 'communities' lists both the registered and unregistered communities.

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« Reply #80 on: February 17, 2004, 03:13:05 PM »

Orthodoc,

The peopel will indeed judge.

Your anti-Catholic bias shows itself again.  Because Archimandrite Robert is Catholic and you don't like what he says he must have an agenda.  The always innocent MP couldn't possibly have an agenda as well could it?

"By the way you haven't answered my question on where all these Orthodox students are coming from if all the churches are empty."

I did answer your question, I think the stats are worthless, I don't believe they have anywhere near any of the stats claimed other than church buildings.

"And, religious communities still have to be registered with the government."

Not according to the site whose statistics you are relying on.

http://www.risu.org.ua/content.php?page_id=101&l=en

"Note 1: The first figure denotes communities whose statutes are fully registered according to legal requirements; the second figure denotes communities which operate without registration, which is allowed according to Ukrainian legislation."

Fr. Deacon Lance

 

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« Reply #81 on: February 17, 2004, 03:32:39 PM »

Fr Deacon Lance write:

>"Note 1: The first figure denotes communities whose statutes are fully
>registered according to legal requirements; the second figure denotes communities
>which operate without registration, which is allowed according to Ukrainian
>legislation."


WHAT IS YOUR POINT?  The above backs up what I have been saying all along.  In case you missed it the buss words are ....REGISTERED ACCORDING TO LEGAL REQUIREMENTS.  Are you trying to convince us that the vast majority of UGC churches are unregistered?  

If you believe that there a bridge in Brooklyn I's like to sell you!

Give it up already.  You are strating to look ridiculous.

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« Reply #82 on: February 17, 2004, 03:50:51 PM »

Orthodoc,

You stated that all parishes and priests had to be registered.  The website clearly states:

the second figure denotes communities which operate without registration, which is allowed according to Ukrainian legislation."

Which refutes your contention that ALL parishes are registered.  I never said who was or wasn't registered, simply that your statement that they had to be was false according to the website you are referencing.  Either you are obtuse or are purposely trying to deceive.

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« Reply #83 on: February 17, 2004, 04:05:32 PM »



Father Deacon Lance writes:

[the second figure denotes communities which operate without registration, which is allowed according to Ukrainian legislation."
Which refutes your contention that ALL parishes are registered.]

And, since both registered and unregistered are listed in the statistics....That changes the statistics HOW?  Unless you are claiming that the majority of UGC communities are unregistered and the count of unregistered communities is inaccurate.

Can you substantiate that claim other than 'Because Fr Taft and a few posters from the 'other' Forum said so?'  

We can go around and around on this but the facts remain the same -

1)  The statistics were supposedly compiled by the Ukrainian government.

2)  The statistics were published on a Ukrainian Catholic website as accurate.

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« Reply #84 on: February 17, 2004, 04:22:08 PM »

Orthodoc,

First  I don't care about the statistics and I have made that abundantly clear.  If you want to run around waving a page of statisticss have at it.

The facts are the stats are compiled by the Ukrainian Governement and they are displayed on RISU's site.  For some reason you want to question who compiled the stats by placing supposedly in your sentence and then the next sentence you slip in accurate, when now statement of accuracy was claimed by the site.

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« Reply #85 on: February 18, 2004, 01:04:44 AM »

[For some reason you want to question who compiled the stats by placing supposedly in your sentence and then the next sentence you slip in accurate, when now statement of accuracy was claimed by the site.
Fr. Deacon Lance]

Fr Deacon Lance:  You and I can go round and round on this isuue.  And you can go on nit picking on a word I use to try and discredit my rplies.  But the fact is, and remains, that they were compiled by the Ukrainian government and are posted on a Ukrainian Catholic web site.  If you don't agree with them I would suggest you take it up with the Ukrainan Catholic University that postd them on their web site.  And, if you think they are wrong then give is some more evidence besides 'I don't agree', 'Fr Taft says so',  or someone who visited Ukraine also disagrees with them.  

If you  expect to be taken seriously ya gotta come up with some better replies than nit picking on my use of 'all' and 'supposedly', etc.

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« Reply #86 on: February 18, 2004, 01:46:01 AM »

Orthodoc,

http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/irf/2001/5708.htm

Okay, how about this report from the State Department which states that 40% of Ukrainians describe themselves as atheists and that the practice of religion is strongest in Western Ukraine.

A county of 50 million.  40% atheist is 20 million.  Sounds like a lot of empty Churches in Eastern Ukraine and a lot of people that need to hear the Gospel.

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« Reply #87 on: February 18, 2004, 02:48:41 AM »

Orthodoc,

http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/irf/2001/5708.htm

Okay, how about this report from the State Department which states that 40% of Ukrainians describe themselves as atheists and that the practice of religion is strongest in Western Ukraine.

A county of 50 million.  40% atheist is 20 million.  Sounds like a lot of empty Churches in Eastern Ukraine and a lot of people that need to hear the Gospel.

Fr. Deacon Lance
Fr. Deacon Lance,
With respect, this thread is going from the sublime to the ridiculous. You are attempting to interpolate from this report's conclusions as if these conclusions were 'raw data'. No statistician would do that.
I could just as easily extract from that same report,
Quote
"Legalized in 1989 the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church's 3,317 registered communities serve a majority of believers in western Ukraine, about 10 per cent nationwide, or about 4.5 to 5 million persons. The head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church is Lyubomyr Cardinal Huzar, Major Archbishop of Lviv."
and maintain this rebutts your contention and make 'my' contention look valid. Neither would correctly interpreted, however.

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« Reply #88 on: February 18, 2004, 09:26:36 AM »

Demetri,

I fail to understand your claim.  I presented what the report stated.  My only extrapolation was that 40% of 50 million is 20 million.  Orthodoc asked for substantiation of Archimandrite Robert's claims.  There it is in black and white from our State Department.  

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« Reply #89 on: February 18, 2004, 11:26:23 AM »

Finally Father Deacon Lance comes up with some statistics.  Lets look at, and analyze, what we are reading based on some excerpts from the report itself -

From the report:

Section I. Religious Demography

The country has a total area of 223,089 square miles, and its population is approximately 49.5 million. A June 2001, nationwide survey conducted by the research center Sociological Research (SOCIS) found that over 40 percent of citizens claimed that they were atheists. This statistic highlights the fact that a significant portion of the population who claim a denominational association may be only nominal believers. Religious practice is strongest in the western part of the country. The overwhelming majority (over 90 per cent) of religiously active citizens are Christian, with the majority of these being Orthodox. About 10 per cent of believers are members of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church. Roman Catholics claim 1 million adherents in the country, or about 2 percent of the total population. The country has small but significant populations of Jews and Moslems, as well as growing communities of Baptists, Adventists, evangelical Christians, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (Mormons), and Jehovah's Witnesses.

The Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church is the second largest faith in the country. This Church celebrates a Byzantine liturgy similar to the Orthodox but is in full communion with the Pope. The Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church was forced to reunite with the Orthodox Church after the Second World War but survived in hiding in the country and in diaspora. Legalized in 1989 the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church's 3,317 registered communities serve a majority of believers in western Ukraine, about 10 per cent nationwide, or about 4.5 to 5 million persons. The head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church is Lyubomyr Cardinal Huzar, Major Archbishop of Lviv.

=======

When reading the statistics I find it interesting that they state emphatically that 10% of the believers are UGC and one million are RC's but no further statistics on how many of the remaining believers are Orthodox and how many others belong to other religious institutions.  They just state that 90% of the remaining classify themselves as Christians with the vast majority claiming to be Orthodox.  So, lets go on that premise.

Now, lets breakdown what is stated -

Total Number of Ukrainians = 49,500,000

Based on the 40%  that claim to be athiests we get the following breakdown -

Believers =  29,700,000
Athiests  =  19,800,000
UGC's      =     2,970,000 (based on the 10% specified)
Orthodox & other Christians  =   26,730,000  (based on the 90%  Christians specified. Of which the majority are Orthodox)    


If 10% of the believers are UGC's then that would make 2,970,000 of the believers as members of the UGCC.  Yet further down in the statistical information we read -

 "Legalized in 1989 the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church's 3,317 registered communities serve a majority of believers in western Ukraine, about 10 per cent nationwide, or about 4.5 to 5 million persons. The head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church is Lyubomyr Cardinal Huzar, Major Archbishop of Lviv."

Where does the 4.5 to 5 million UGC's come from?  You can only get that total if you take 10% of the entire population of Ukraine which includes, according to the statistics,  the 40%  of those who claim they are athiests!   Does this mean that 1/3 to almost 1/2 of the people the survey who claim they are UGC's also  classify themselves as athiests?

Also, if the vast majority of believers 29,700,000 are located in western Ukraine as is implied.  And 2,970,000 are members  of the UGCC, then the vast majority of believers in western Ukraine must be Orthodox  (based on the following comment contained in the survey itself  -

[According to information from the Religious Information of Ukraine, most citizens identify themselves as Orthodox Christians of one of three churches. And...According to information from the Religious Information of Ukraine, most citizens identify themselves as Orthodox Christians of one of three churches.]

Or a combination of Orthodox and Christians from 'other' denominations rather than UGC's as what is being claimed..


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« Reply #90 on: February 18, 2004, 12:37:57 PM »

Orthodoc,

The fact remains the report supports Archimandrite Robert's claims and refutes yours.  It looks like the Eastern Ukraine may not be all that Orthodox after all.

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« Reply #91 on: February 18, 2004, 12:54:07 PM »

Orthodoc,

The fact remains the report supports Archimandrite Robert's claims and refutes yours.  It looks like the Eastern Ukraine may not be all that Orthodox after all.

Fr. Deacon Lance


What? 25 to 29 million Orthodox disappeared? What are they, Republicans in Dade Cty, FL?

5 million UC -10% general population- in the 'west' (undefined longitudinally) constitute a majority of believers there, 25 million UOC concentrated in the central and east are a majority of believers there. Either the 'west' is sparsely populated (not likely) or all non-believers live in the central/east (no data to prove that at all) or the non-believers are interspersed evenly (also- no data, but reasonable). In either case, I don't see "empty churches" coming from this.
Deacon Lance, you might have a 'day job', please tell me it's not tax preparation Smiley

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« Reply #92 on: February 18, 2004, 01:14:20 PM »

Demetri,

Yes, I do have a day job, I am a welfare caseworker, so you can rest easy:)

My point in this is: Orthodoc claims Archimandrite Robert and others who have been to Ukraine are liars when they say Eastern Ukraine churches are largely unattended.  I am not a statistical expert but the report supports that claim showing a large percentage of people claim they are atheists and that the believers are concentrated in Western Ukraine, which could be geographical defined as starting at Kyiv (although in the center) and extending to the Western border I believe.  Why that particular anomaly exists I don't know.

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« Reply #93 on: February 18, 2004, 02:24:31 PM »

Father Deacon Lance writes:

[It looks like the Eastern Ukraine may not be all that Orthodox after all.]

It also looks like the vast majority of believers and church goers in western Ukraine are not UGC's as you claim.  But either Orthodox or Orthodox combined with other Christians if you are to believe the statistics you referenced..

As I stated, if you are to believe the number of people who identify themselves as UGC's is between 4.5 to 5 million as claimed,  and compare it with the number of people who  identify themselves as  belivers in these same statistics, then it would mean 1/3 to 1/2 half of those who classify themselves as UGC's also classify themselves as athiests or unbelievers!  I find it amazing that you are only willing to apply the the 40% athiests to the Orthodox.  That's not what the statistics say or even imply.

You go to such extremes to try and justify and validate the planned proseltyzing of the Orthodox by the Unia throughout Ukraine.  Do you honestly think that we Orthodox are as   dumb and naive as to have not that figured out what's up?

I've analyzed statistics from two different sources and the facts stated in both allude that the majority of BELIEVERS in Ukraine are, indeed, Orthodox.

If you can't accept that, than you can continue to live in your own little world which apparently refuses to use basic logic  to anlayze what is presented to you with what an American Jesuit Russian Catholic priest from the Vatican with an agenda puts out or says.

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« Reply #94 on: February 18, 2004, 02:40:26 PM »

Orthodoc,

"I find it amazing that you are only willing to apply the the 40% athiests to the Orthodox."  

Be amazed.  Why should it be surprising that the Church that collaborated with the Communists lost members to the state atheism propogated by the Communists?

And I don't need to justify anything.  Even if the situation were not what it is, the UGCC would have the right to proclaim the Gospel.  What amazes me is that peopel like you feel religious freedom is okay for you and not for others.

And you have yet to apologize for calling Archimandrite Robert a liar, when the facts support his claim.

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« Reply #95 on: February 18, 2004, 02:51:03 PM »

[And you have yet to apologize for calling Archimandrite Robert a liar, when the facts support his claim.]

WHERE do the facts support his claim?  Seems like you are the only one that  is  naive enough  to believe that Father Deacon!

Do you perhaps have a problem with reading comprehension are or you so blinded by the propaganda you read regarding the UGCC that you are either unwilling or unable to use simple logic to analyze it?  I owe no one an apology.  Especially Father Taft!

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« Reply #96 on: February 18, 2004, 02:52:47 PM »

Please pardon my interrupting you both, but are you, Deacon Lance, still maintaining that the western "part" is comprised of only 5 million UCs and that the eastern "part" is comprised of 45 million (25 million Orthodox and 20 million atheists plus "others")?

I am aware that I possess slightly less than Mensa-class abilities, but I am still having trouble following this "logic"  Shocked

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« Reply #97 on: February 18, 2004, 03:25:37 PM »

Demetri

I maintain the West is where the majority of UGCs and Orthodox are.  In the East there are Orthodox, a few UGC, and apparently a lot of atheists.  

As for regional stastistics, Zakarpatska, Ternopil, Ivano-Franskiv are the only regions that are majority UGC and Lviv is about an even split.

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« Reply #98 on: February 18, 2004, 03:37:02 PM »

Orthodoc,

"WHERE do the facts support his claim?"

Well, I thought the fact that 40% of the people claiming atheism combined with the fact that the majority of believers are concentrated in the West did.

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« Reply #99 on: February 18, 2004, 05:21:34 PM »

[Well, I thought the fact that 40% of the people claiming atheism combined with the fact that the majority of believers are concentrated in the West did.]

Thought I already showed you that if the UGCC claims 4.5 to 5 million believers, and the statisics state that 10% of the 29,700,000 believers are UGC's, then at least 1/3 to 1/2 of the UGC's claimed are also listed as athiests.  Do the math yoursekf - 29,700.00 X .10%  = 2,970,000  [not 4.5 to 5 million].  

You can't have it both ways.  As someone else has tried to point out to you, what you and the article are claiming is that the vast majority of Ukrainans live in western Ukraine.  What you are also implying is that its OK for someone in western Ukraine to be counted as a believer and an athiest at the same time.  While its not OK in eastern Ukraine.  Do the math already!

State Department or no state department, the figures don't jive.  Besides, the very fact that they seem to have such precise figures for both UGC's and RC's but not Orthodox, clearly shows where the figures came from.  Next time either the RCC or its graphed UGC appendage put out statistics they better sit down and do the math to check that it balances out to validate the claims being made.  Because it sure  doesn't in this case.


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« Reply #100 on: February 18, 2004, 05:49:25 PM »

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Originally posted by Orthodoc:

Thought I already showed you that if the UGCC claims 4.5 to 5 million believers, and the statisics state that 10% of the 29,700,000 believers are UGC's, then at least 1/3 to 1/2 of the UGC's claimed are also listed as athiests.  Do the math yoursekf - 29,700.00 X .10%  = 2,970,000  [not 4.5 to 5 million].  
----------------------------------------------------------------------------

The 10% figure approximated for the UGCC is based on the TOTAL estimated population of Ukraine, which is the "universe" of the statistical data, and NOT on the number of adherents per classification/jurisdiction.

Fr. Deacon Lance is correct.

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« Reply #101 on: February 18, 2004, 06:37:11 PM »

Please refer to the following site:

Ukranian Archivist news web site:

http://www.uanews.tv/archives/religion/risu/risu035.htm


"RIS--Greek Catholics, Latin Catholics and Orthodox in Ukraine:   Who’s who?"


This is an address given by Prof. Oleh Turiy, Acting Director of the Institute of Church History in Lviv, on September 15, 2000 at a conference held in Freising, Germany.
I realize that the data supplied by this link is 3-4 years old.  Nevertheless, Prof. Turiy's address asserts that there are 4.5 to 6 million UGC's in 7 eparchies in Western Ukraine and in 1 exarchate in Eastern Ukraine.  He also cites 200,000 to 800,000 Roman Catholics in 4 dioceses in unspecified locations within the Ukraine and 1 apostolic administrature (in Transcarpathia).  The RC figure is widespread because of highly uncertain data and is not broken down by nationality.  I understand, however, that many of the RC's are Polish in heritage given the history of the region.

He does not cite population figures for the 3 Urkanian Orthodox groups.  But he does make the following statement regarding Catholic-Orthodox conflict:

Quote
However, the statistics show that the great majority of conflicts regarding church buildings are between Greek Catholic and Autocephalous, rather than Moscow Patriarchate communities or between [sic] different Orthodox jurisdictions.


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« Reply #102 on: February 18, 2004, 06:48:58 PM »

----------------------------------------------------------------------------
Originally posted by Orthodoc:

Thought I already showed you that if the UGCC claims 4.5 to 5 million believers, and the statisics state that 10% of the 29,700,000 believers are UGC's, then at least 1/3 to 1/2 of the UGC's claimed are also listed as athiests.  Do the math yoursekf - 29,700.00 X .10%  = 2,970,000  [not 4.5 to 5 million].  
----------------------------------------------------------------------------

The 10% figure approximated for the UGCC is based on the TOTAL estimated population of Ukraine, which is the "universe" of the statistical data, and NOT on the number of adherents per classification/jurisdiction.

Fr. Deacon Lance is correct.

AmdG

Matters not whether it's 2.9 or 5 million; the figures still don't jive.

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« Reply #103 on: February 18, 2004, 10:29:21 PM »

[Matters not whether it's 2.9 or 5 million; the figures still don't jive.
Demetri]

Thank you Demetri.  I've about exhausted every avenue I can think of to get this very point across.

What we have here is a person who is trying to prove a false claim.  So he finds some statistical data and tunes in on two  statements within those statistics, ignoring the complete set of statistics.   He then tries to build a story around the two that he thinks proves his point.  Namely 40% of Ukrainians claim to be athiests and the vast majority of believers are in western Ukraine.  

He completely ignores the fact that, out of the 90% of the remaining Christians  after you take out the 10% claiming to be UGC's, the majority are identified as being Orthodox.  Which invalidates his claim that the vast majority of regular church goers are  UGC's whie the remaining Orthodox worship in empty churches.

He ignores the statistics I presented that were taken from a Ukrainian Catholic website because it indicates the Orthodox have at least five times the number of Sunday Schools, seminaries, and  seminarians by claiming the Orthodox are failing in bringing the Gospel to the people.  Wonder where they are all coming from if the Orthodox churches are so empty?

I have a headache from trying to explain it.  In the end, he will only believe what he wants to and ignore any feed back which proves him wrong.

Orthodoc


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« Reply #104 on: February 19, 2004, 10:25:29 AM »

Orthodoc,

"State Department or no state department, the figures don't jive.  Besides, the very fact that they seem to have such precise figures for both UGC's and RC's but not Orthodox, clearly shows where the figures came from."

Now the Catholic Church is collecting data and releasing reports  for the US State Department?

"Which invalidates his claim that the vast majority of regular church goers are  UGC's whie the remaining Orthodox worship in empty churches."

Another false statment.  I said propotionally the UGCC may have the most practicing members.  Obviously the UGCC is smaller than the UOC.

Amadeus has pointed out your calculation error.  What does not jive about the stats, other than you don't like them?  According to the stats Ukraine has 50 million people, 20 million are atheist, 23 million are Orthodox, 5 million are UGC, 1 million are RC, 1 million are other.  The atheists have to be somewhere, what is so far fetched that they are concentrated in the East?  People that have been there have said that both UGCC and Orthodox churches in the West are full and that Orthodox churches int the East are largely empty.  You called Archimandrite Robert a liar for stating the same and he has been there.  

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« Reply #105 on: February 19, 2004, 12:10:14 PM »

Let me act as spokesman for the ignorant.

What is it about the Eastern Ukraine that supposedly makes it predominantly atheist?

Jim C.
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« Reply #106 on: February 19, 2004, 12:37:45 PM »

Jim,

It just seems the Communists were more succesful there, I don't mean to imply that there is something intrinsically wrong with Eastern Ukraine.  Obviously the stats themselves don't prove this, but given the large number of atheists stated I accept the corroboration of Archimandrite Robert and the others who have been there.

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« Reply #107 on: February 19, 2004, 12:45:28 PM »

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What is it about the Eastern Ukraine that supposedly makes it predominantly atheist?

Because it basically has been a part of Russia since the 1600s and because of that, like Russia proper, was part of the USSR for all 74 years of the Soviet Union's existence. So, just like many people in Russia proper, I reckon many of these people are completely secular, born that way.

The small, southwestern, Catholic area that's now part of the Ukraine hadn't been politically part of what's now Russia since the 1300s and had been under the antireligious Soviet government only for about 40-50 years, depending on the region (Galicia since 1939, Ruthenia since the late 1940s). Apparently the USSR's militant-atheism campaign didn't take over there.

So in short the reason seems to be the Communists had a 25-year head start on violently secularizing the eastern part of the country.
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« Reply #108 on: February 19, 2004, 12:51:43 PM »

Thanks, Serge, we needed that!

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« Reply #109 on: February 19, 2004, 02:03:27 PM »

Friends,

I think this thread has been productive but is now pretty much devolving into a tit-for-tat between Orthodoc and Dcn Lance.  I will therefore be closing the thread now that it is 8 pages long, and if the participants have any outstanding issues, perhaps they would like to take it to private messaging.

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