Author Topic: Purgatory, and the Orthodox and Roman Catholic Views on Sin and Forgiveness  (Read 72805 times)

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Offline elijahmaria

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The Baltimore catechism has been officially approved. Many theologians have not been.

The Baltimore catechism has also been recognized as an insufficient instrument, ....
If an RC does not believe the teaching of the Baltimore Catechism, perhaps that RC can take a look at the RC book Read me or Rue It;
According to the RC Cardinal Patriarch of Lisbon: “We approve and recommend with all our heart the beautiful little book Read Me or Rue It by E. D. M. [These initials used by Fr. O'Sullivan stand for Engant de Marie, that is, "Child of Mary" Ed.]
Although small, it is destined to do great good among Catholics, many of whom are incredibly ignorant of the great doctrine of Purgatory.”
http://www.theworkofgod.org/Library/Purgatry/Readme.htm#PURGATORY
WHAT IS PURGATORY?
It is a prison of fire in which nearly all [saved] souls are plunged after death and in which they suffer the intensest pain. …..
St. Thomas Aquinas, the Prince of Theologians, says that the fire of Purgatory is equal in intensity to the fire of Hell, and that the slightest contact with it is more dreadful than all the possible sufferings of this Earth!
….
The existence of Purgatory is so certain that no Catholic has ever entertained a doubt of it. It was taught from the earliest days of the Church and was accepted with undoubting faith wherever the Gospel was preached.

1. The fire we see on Earth was made by the goodness of God for our comfort and well-being Still, when used as a torment, it is the most dreadful one we can imagine.
2. The fire of Purgatory, on the contrary, was made by the Justice of God to punish and purify us and is, therefore, incomparably more severe


If this is what you want to believe you go right ahead.  I have half a dozen books in my library that tell the most gruesome tales.

I also have saints and doctors of the Church who do not, apparently, have the need to "visualize" purgation as you do and these seers do.

It is not the teaching of Trent and it is not the teaching of the CCC.

So please...enjoy!!  You and Father Ambrose.  You love it.  He hates it.

The Church does not teach it.

M.

Offline Irish Hermit

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/\ 

It is not the teaching of Trent and it is not the teaching of the CCC.

Here is the teaching of Trent.....
Decree on Purgatory by the Council of Trent, 25th session, 1563. 

"The Catholic Church, instructed by the Holy Spirit and in accordance with sacred Scripture and the ancient Tradition of the Fathers, has taught in the holy Councils and most recently in this ecumenical Council that there is a purgatory and that the souls detained there are helped by the acts of intercession (suffragia) of the faithful, and especially by the acceptable sacrifice of the altar."

The Council simply affirms the existence of purgatory and the value of praying for the deceased.

Mary wrote:
Quote
I adhere to the historic teaching of the Catholic Church, not its various and sundry perversions.

In fact Mary does not adhere to the formal teaching of the Catholic Church and the Council of Trent but adds in all manner of other elements and guesswork and a patchwork of favourite ideas which are not taught by the Catholic Church and may be seen as a perversion of its teachings.

For example:
Quote
Mary:
This is the burning punishment of Purgation.  The realization that the Beloved Lord is there but we cannot experience the sweetness and peace of his presence because our souls are not ready to receive him.

This, as with so much other material presented by Mary as the formal teaching of the Church with regard to Purgatory, is not formally taught at all by the Catholic Church.  One could go through message after message and point to her idiosyncratic ideas.


Offline akimel

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Dear Fr Ambrose,

Please stop telling the world what the Catholic Church teaches about purgatory.  You possess neither the  authority nor the theological background to speak on Catholic teaching on purgatory.  Your knowledge of the subject is limited and distorted by polemic intent.  

The definitive and formal teaching of the Catholic Church on purgatory is quite minimal, as Mary has accurately stated.  Beyond that, there exists a fairly wide and legitimate diversity of opinion, just as there exists a fairly wide and legitimate diversity of Orthodox opinion on the intermediate state.   Mary's presentation of purgatory is hardly idiosyncratic, as is easily confirmed by reading Popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI; nor is it novel, as is easily confirmed by reading St Catherine of Genoa and the Venerable John Henry Newman.    

Perhaps you find it disturbing that the Catholic Church in fact allows a diversity of views on purgatory.  Inter-Catholic debate on purgatory can be vigorous and controverted.  But do not be too gleeful.  Given the absence of authoritative and irreformable Orthodox teaching on the intermediate state, and given the diversity of positions that I know to exist within Orthodoxy, I would suggest that those who live within ecclesial glass houses should not throw stones.  

Restrict yourself to interpreting Orthodox theology, and allow Catholics to interpret and present the teaching of the Catholic Church.  

I am reminded of an Orthodox priest who responded to an Orthodox layman who was quoting the canons of the Church against his parochial teaching:  "Who gave you permission to read the canons and who gave you the authority to quote them against your bishops and priests?"  And so I say to you, "Who gave you permission to read the dogmas of the Catholic Church and who gave you authority to quote them against Catholics?"   The principle here is basic:  those who speak fluently the language of a community are those who are best equipped to understand and interpret the teachings of their community.  You live outside the Catholic Church and understand neither its theology nor praxis.  Catholicism is a foreign language to you.  You have neither the right nor competence nor sympathy to correct Mary or any other Catholic on their apprehension of the teachings of their Church.  

I have repeatedly addressed the subject of purgatory on this forum and find it beyond frustrating that you continue to present yourself as an infallible spokesman for the Catholic Church, especially when your interpretation of Catholic teaching is so often off-base.  

Fr Alvin Kimel  

« Last Edit: August 08, 2010, 01:25:14 AM by akimel »

Offline Irish Hermit

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Please stop telling the world what the Catholic Church teaches about purgatory.  You possess neither the  authority nor the theological background to speak on Catholic teaching on purgatory.  Your knowledge of the subject is limited and distorted by polemic intent.

Or perhaps from too long an immersion in the world and teachings of the pre-Vatican II Church?   I realise you are a new convert to Catholicism and perhaps you are aware of the former teaching and do not want to pay it any heed, or perhaops you simply do not know.

The changes in the teaching which have taken place are not insignficant. 

Is it really worth the bother to examine the modern Roman Catholic interpretation?  The doctrine is so unstable at this point in time.  It may well change again. It may well have a fresh revamping with the next generation of Catholics who may choose to return to the traditional Roman Catholic belief about Purgatory or to continue down the path of transmogrifying the new teaching into something different again.

Pope Paul VI issued his "Apostolic Constitution on Indulgences" Indulgentiarum Doctrina in 1967.  This traditional understanding of Purgatory was proclaimed by Peter a mere 43 years ago.   But now, less then 50 years later, speculative theologians are presenting a reconstructed understanding which differs radically from the Pope's.  Purgatory Lite.

Now this theological instability is something of a worry for Orthodoxy.   On the one hand there is no doubt that the modern teaching of Purgatory as Fr Kimel proposes in line with contemporary progressive theologians is a welcome change to Orthodoxy since it represents a revamping of the older and unacceptable traditional version of the Popes and Western Saints and it is deconstructing Purgatory in a manner quite acceptable to the Orthodox.  With the passage of time we may hope that the conscious belief in Purgatory may become as vitiated in the Catholic West as Limbo is becoming and, in many areas, has already become.

On the other hand we have concerns about the reconstruction theology which is at work within Catholicism because of the bizarre attempt to make out that this reconstruction is not taking place and that the modern theology is the same as the traditional theology.  This problem is spoken of here

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,13820.msg421044.html#msg421044


Offline Irish Hermit

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Perhaps you find it disturbing that the Catholic Church in fact allows a diversity of views on purgatory.  Inter-Catholic debate on purgatory can be vigorous and controverted.  But do not be too gleeful.  Given the absence of authoritative and irreformable Orthodox teaching on the intermediate state, and given the diversity of positions that I know to exist within Orthodoxy, I would suggest that those who live within ecclesial glass houses should not throw stones.
 


You are comparing apples and oranges and wish to criticize us (the apples) because we do not act like oranges.

We have been told uncountable times on this forum that the only genuine Catholic teaching is found in magisterial definitions.  Outside of that we are only looking at theological dubia.  It is for this reason that the opinion about Limbo is so easily dismissed from the Catholic Catechism, no matter how many hundreds of years it has formed part of the living faith and tradition of the bishops, the clergy and the faithful.  The concept of "magisterial teaching" is absent from Orthodoxy and hence the apples and oranges of your comparison.

All through this discussion on Purgatory Elijahmaria has stepped outside the magisterial teaching and has offered us her own opinions, not marking them as being merely opinions but claiming them as the teaching of the Roman Catholic Church.

So I criticize her and hold her to account within the context of your own Church's teaching and the apprehension of the way authority is given to that teaching.  You may do the same with orthodox teaching if you wish, but we must be aware of the difference between the two approaches and judge each by its own criteria.


Offline Irish Hermit

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I am reminded of an Orthodox priest who responded to an Orthodox layman who was quoting the canons of the Church against his parochial teaching:  "Who gave you permission to read the canons and who gave you the authority to quote them against your bishops and priests?"

Yikes. I do not know why a priest would say such a stupid and unorthodox thing, unless maybe he had been driven to the edge of exasperation by an annoying individual.

The Orthodox faithful are taught their responsibility for maintaining and transmitting the faith and its praxis.  Having a knowledge of the Ecumenical Councils and their sacred canons is an imperative if the Orthodox are to fulfill their Spirit-led obligation to guard holy Orthodoxy.

Removing the study of the Ecumenical Councils and the canons to the preserve of clergy only is so far removed from the authentic spirit of Orthodoxy!  A very disturbing thought!  I can only surmise that this priest was truly ignorant of what Orthodoxy expects of the entire Church including the faithful.  Either that or he was, as I say, simply at the end of his tether with a pesky parishioner.


Offline Dave in McKinney

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To me its sad what we've let this thread come down to polemics and personal attacks.  There are many lost folks, like me, who are hoping there's a loving yet conservative place to rest our spiritual souls.  This thread has been insightful at times... can we get back on track?  Better yet maybe that all that needs to be said has alreayd been said...

Offline Irish Hermit

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To me its sad what we've let this thread come down to polemics and personal attacks.  There are many lost folks, like me, who are hoping there's a loving yet conservative place to rest our spiritual souls.  This thread has been insightful at times... can we get back on track?  Better yet maybe that all that needs to be said has alreayd been said...

Dave,

You may be right, but there's no denying that Purgatory is one of the hot subjects which pops up time and again in Catholic-Orthodox discussion groups.  If you click the tag "Purgatory" at the bottom of the messages it will take you to some of the numerous threads which have also been tagged with "Purgatory".

It's also a hot topic in Catholic discussion groups where you will find the Catholics taught the older understanding battling with the younger Catholics in an effort to understand one another.

Offline elijahmaria

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To me its sad what we've let this thread come down to polemics and personal attacks.  There are many lost folks, like me, who are hoping there's a loving yet conservative place to rest our spiritual souls.  This thread has been insightful at times... can we get back on track?  Better yet maybe that all that needs to be said has alreayd been said...

Dave,

You may be right, but there's no denying that Purgatory is one of the hot subjects which pops up time and again in Catholic-Orthodox discussion groups.  If you click the tag "Purgatory" at the bottom of the messages it will take you to some of the numerous threads which have also been tagged with "Purgatory".

It's also a hot topic in Catholic discussion groups where you will find the Catholics taught the older understanding battling with the younger Catholics in an effort to understand one another.

You skip the part where I AM one of those Catholics taught under the basic question and answer format of the Baltimore Catechism.

I've read all of the lurid books on purgatory reprinted by TAN and other traditional book printers and sellers. 

But as Father Kimel says one turns to the saints and doctors of the Church, and the formal teaching texts of the Church which have achieved universal status...when seeking the formal teaching of the Church and not the wild piety of those who find fear to be the most expedient teacher.

To Father Kimel's list I would add Teresa of Avila's works for a strong spiritual synthesis of the Church's doctrinal body, including the here and the hereafter, and the realized but unrecognized Eschaton... :laugh:

Father Kimel's letter is quite kind and balanced and should mean something since, as you were so quick to say earlier in this thread, Father and I do not always agree in perspective.

Mary


Offline elijahmaria

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To me its sad what we've let this thread come down to polemics and personal attacks.  There are many lost folks, like me, who are hoping there's a loving yet conservative place to rest our spiritual souls.  This thread has been insightful at times... can we get back on track?  Better yet maybe that all that needs to be said has alreayd been said...

Dear Dave,

In some ways all of the basic Catholic truths concerning purgation have been laid out here. 

What is your experience as a Catholic with these teachings and with spiritual teachings of the saints in general? 

Mary


Offline elijahmaria

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Please stop telling the world what the Catholic Church teaches about purgatory.  You possess neither the  authority nor the theological background to speak on Catholic teaching on purgatory.  Your knowledge of the subject is limited and distorted by polemic intent.

Or perhaps from too long an immersion in the world and teachings of the pre-Vatican II Church?   I realise you are a new convert to Catholicism and perhaps you are aware of the former teaching and do not want to pay it any heed, or perhaops you simply do not know.

The changes in the teaching which have taken place are not insignficant. 

Is it really worth the bother to examine the modern Roman Catholic interpretation?  The doctrine is so unstable at this point in time.  It may well change again. It may well have a fresh revamping with the next generation of Catholics who may choose to return to the traditional Roman Catholic belief about Purgatory or to continue down the path of transmogrifying the new teaching into something different again.

Pope Paul VI issued his "Apostolic Constitution on Indulgences" Indulgentiarum Doctrina in 1967.  This traditional understanding of Purgatory was proclaimed by Peter a mere 43 years ago.   But now, less then 50 years later, speculative theologians are presenting a reconstructed understanding which differs radically from the Pope's.  Purgatory Lite.

Now this theological instability is something of a worry for Orthodoxy.   On the one hand there is no doubt that the modern teaching of Purgatory as Fr Kimel proposes in line with contemporary progressive theologians is a welcome change to Orthodoxy since it represents a revamping of the older and unacceptable traditional version of the Popes and Western Saints and it is deconstructing Purgatory in a manner quite acceptable to the Orthodox.  With the passage of time we may hope that the conscious belief in Purgatory may become as vitiated in the Catholic West as Limbo is becoming and, in many areas, has already become.

On the other hand we have concerns about the reconstruction theology which is at work within Catholicism because of the bizarre attempt to make out that this reconstruction is not taking place and that the modern theology is the same as the traditional theology.  This problem is spoken of here

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,13820.msg421044.html#msg421044



Dear Father Ambrose,

When you have at least one Catholic saint and doctor of the Church some 500 years ago now teaching a deeply integrated apophatic spirituality that expresses this New Theology that you are claiming has occurred in the Catholic Church over the past 50 years, you are certainly going to loose your credibility among well formed and well educated Catholics with active spiritual lives.  They will simply smile politely and move on, much they way they do with people on the street handing out Chick Tracts.

And the reformed saints of Carmel are not the only ones in their life times.  So there others from that time and then those who lived considerably longer than 500 years ago.

The only people where you are going to find currency with your well practiced polemics are wavering Catholics who have not been well formed and in some cases have been deformed through no fault of their own, and other sympathetic Orthodox believers and reformed groups or protestants.

There is no stopping you but I know without a doubt that what you are doing is done with full knowledge and there is a price to be paid for knowingly telling half-truths even if it is, as you believe, for a good cause.   You might some day, before you pass on over, give that some serious consideration.

Mary


Offline Wyatt

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Dear Fr Ambrose,

Please stop telling the world what the Catholic Church teaches about purgatory.  You possess neither the  authority nor the theological background to speak on Catholic teaching on purgatory.  Your knowledge of the subject is limited and distorted by polemic intent.  

The definitive and formal teaching of the Catholic Church on purgatory is quite minimal, as Mary has accurately stated.  Beyond that, there exists a fairly wide and legitimate diversity of opinion, just as there exists a fairly wide and legitimate diversity of Orthodox opinion on the intermediate state.   Mary's presentation of purgatory is hardly idiosyncratic, as is easily confirmed by reading Popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI; nor is it novel, as is easily confirmed by reading St Catherine of Genoa and the Venerable John Henry Newman.    

Perhaps you find it disturbing that the Catholic Church in fact allows a diversity of views on purgatory.  Inter-Catholic debate on purgatory can be vigorous and controverted.  But do not be too gleeful.  Given the absence of authoritative and irreformable Orthodox teaching on the intermediate state, and given the diversity of positions that I know to exist within Orthodoxy, I would suggest that those who live within ecclesial glass houses should not throw stones.  

Restrict yourself to interpreting Orthodox theology, and allow Catholics to interpret and present the teaching of the Catholic Church.  

I am reminded of an Orthodox priest who responded to an Orthodox layman who was quoting the canons of the Church against his parochial teaching:  "Who gave you permission to read the canons and who gave you the authority to quote them against your bishops and priests?"  And so I say to you, "Who gave you permission to read the dogmas of the Catholic Church and who gave you authority to quote them against Catholics?"   The principle here is basic:  those who speak fluently the language of a community are those who are best equipped to understand and interpret the teachings of their community.  You live outside the Catholic Church and understand neither its theology nor praxis.  Catholicism is a foreign language to you.  You have neither the right nor competence nor sympathy to correct Mary or any other Catholic on their apprehension of the teachings of their Church.  

I have repeatedly addressed the subject of purgatory on this forum and find it beyond frustrating that you continue to present yourself as an infallible spokesman for the Catholic Church, especially when your interpretation of Catholic teaching is so often off-base.  

Fr Alvin Kimel  
Post of the month right here. Can I get an "Amen"?  ;D

Offline Irish Hermit

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There is no stopping you but I know without a doubt that what you are doing is done with full knowledge and there is a price to be paid for knowingly telling half-truths...


Mary, Mary, you measure me with your measure and speak untruths against me. I would rather admit to ignorance than confess to half truths.  I do not deal in half truths.  I most certainly do NOT use half truths in any evangelising work, whether among Catholics or atheists or Buddhists.

"Is de réir an tomhais lena dtomhaiseann sibh a thomhaisfear chugaibh"
Mark 4:24

Offline Irish Hermit

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Please stop telling the world what the Catholic Church teaches about purgatory.  You possess neither the  authority nor the theological background to speak on Catholic teaching on purgatory.  Your knowledge of the subject is limited and distorted by polemic intent.

Certainly what the Orthodox have felt when a certain Ruthenian Catholic lady has been expounding on her limited knowledge of Orthodoxy and abortion.   :laugh:  But we still love her and devote prayer time for her.

« Last Edit: August 08, 2010, 12:18:39 PM by Irish Hermit »

Offline elijahmaria

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There is no stopping you but I know without a doubt that what you are doing is done with full knowledge and there is a price to be paid for knowingly telling half-truths...


Mary, Mary, you measure me with your measure and speak untruths against me. I would rather admit to ignorance than confess to half truths.  I do not deal in half truths.  I most certainly do NOT use half truths in any evangelising work, whether among Catholics or atheists or Buddhists.

"Is de réir an tomhais lena dtomhaiseann sibh a thomhaisfear chugaibh"
Mark 4:24

You cannot duck this one. 

You have too much formal Catholic training and experience to duck this one.

Mary

Offline theistgal

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Mary, wouldn't you agree that part of the reason RC teaching is somewhat confusing is that all those "wild books" published by TAN that you referred to earlier received the same approval from the Church - the 'nihil obstats' and 'imprimaturs' indicating the Church's approval - as the undeniably more reliable saints and doctors of the church you yourself tend to agree with more?  And even some of those fear-mongering books you quite rightly dislike were authored by saints.  How would the average Catholic in the pews know that what they were told was "approved Catholic teaching" might not be after all?
"Sometimes, you just gotta say, 'OK, I still have nine live, two-headed animals' and move on.'' (owner of Coney Island freak show, upon learning he'd been outbid on a 5-legged puppy)

Offline elijahmaria

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Mary, wouldn't you agree that part of the reason RC teaching is somewhat confusing is that all those "wild books" published by TAN that you referred to earlier received the same approval from the Church - the 'nihil obstats' and 'imprimaturs' indicating the Church's approval - as the undeniably more reliable saints and doctors of the church you yourself tend to agree with more?  And even some of those fear-mongering books you quite rightly dislike were authored by saints.  How would the average Catholic in the pews know that what they were told was "approved Catholic teaching" might not be after all?

They don't know.  They can't know and that has been a very serious problem in the Catholic Church for a while but not really more than four or five generations passed.

So the circumstances that you decry and rightly so are not old in the Church relatively speaking, and it did not begin really until well after the decline in western monasticism in England and Europe.  The pain and punishment of purgation as taught to the people by monastics was nothing more than a continuation of the difficulties in the spiritual life begun here.  The burning desire for God that was a punishment in itself when it could not be slaked by his presence and grace...and so on.

That is part of it but as monastic life declined one saw an increase in various places...southern France...Ireland...in particular.  Places where Jansenist tendencies arose in response to circumstance, be it the Albigensian heresies or the attitude of some Benedictines which said that the laity really could never achieve sanctity in this life or union with God, divinization or theosis, however you call it...only monastics could achieve such spiritual heights.

Once that began, the only thing left to keep the flock in line was fear.  

Caritas had been removed from them...the Way of Perfection no longer guided many faithful who were caught up in areas of virulent heresy or where the protestants destroyed the organic development of healthy asceticism over generations for the laity as well as for the monk.

It is a complicated history and I am telling it in short choppy bursts but I only intend to point to particular circumstances that led to some of the more rigid pieties of the 17 and 18 hundreds...and into the 20th century when the renewal of monastic life began to reverse some of these trends.

Mary
« Last Edit: August 08, 2010, 08:26:29 PM by elijahmaria »

Offline theistgal

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And yet the nihil obstats and imprimaturs on those books, which continue to be reprinted and sold by TAN and other Catholic publishing houses, have never been revoked.  I see these books all the time in Catholic bookstores and gift shops.  So Catholics today are still learning these "rigid" teachings which you say are mistaken and not current Catholic doctrine.

Since the Magisterium has found the time to condemn the likes of Charles Curran, Hans Kung, et al (and rightly so), why don't they occasionally aim their guns at some of these popular books which will undoubtedly be read by FAR more Catholic laity than those more scholarly works?

For example, just take a look at these books published by TAN at a site called "Marianland" - the very first one is by St. Alphonsus Liguori!

http://www.marianland.com/hell010.html
« Last Edit: August 08, 2010, 08:36:28 PM by theistgal »
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Offline elijahmaria

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And yet the nihil obstats and imprimaturs on those books, which continue to be reprinted and sold by TAN and other Catholic publishing houses, have never been revoked.  I see these books all the time in Catholic bookstores and gift shops.  So Catholics today are still learning these "rigid" teachings which you say are mistaken and not current Catholic doctrine.

Since the Magisterium has found the time to condemn the likes of Charles Curran, Hans Kung, et al (and rightly so), why don't they occasionally aim their guns at some of these popular books which will undoubtedly be read by FAR more Catholic laity than those more scholarly works?

For example, just take a look at these books published by TAN at a site called "Marianland" - the very first one is by St. Alphonsus Liguori!

http://www.marianland.com/hell010.html

Charles Curran's and Hans Kung's teachings are explicitly heterodox and now and then they are heretical. 

These others are not. 

The expectation is that the well informed Catholic, these days, should be able to distinguish between the a punishing experience and God inflicting punishments in a way that would render God the purveyor of evil.

Not all pain is evil, ect., etc.

The expectation is that there are clergy and monastics out here teaching the flock AND that the flock will seek out the teaching if the pastors are lax.

Most of what you and Father Ambrose are complaining about is a matter of not making distinctions and understanding meaning in proper context.  The rest is popular pieties that may or may not be useful to all but are not, in themselves, heresy or heterodoxy when rightly understood.

Mary

Offline stanley123

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Restrict yourself to interpreting Orthodox theology, and allow Catholics to interpret and present the teaching of the Catholic Church.
I don't think that this is such a good idea. If the RCC is serious about union with the EO Church, I would think that it would be  important and necessary for Catholics to know how the EO see and interpret RC teaching.

Offline Wyatt

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Restrict yourself to interpreting Orthodox theology, and allow Catholics to interpret and present the teaching of the Catholic Church.
I don't think that this is such a good idea. If the RCC is serious about union with the EO Church, I would think that it would be  important and necessary for Catholics to know how the EO see and interpret RC teaching.
Dialog is completely pointless if every time we try to explain ourselves, the Orthodox point to an Encyclical, an excerpt from our Catechism, or a quote from one of our Ecumenical Councils and say "No, you are wrong, THIS is what you really believe." It's as pompous as Protestants who quote the Bible to us to attempt to disprove Catholicism. I often wonder if such Protestants know they are quoting Catholic literature to try to disprove the Catholic Church. I would think the very Church who produced such teachings would have the correct interpretation of them. Outsiders quoting our own texts to try to explain to US what WE believe is ridiculous, not to mention arrogant.

Offline stanley123

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Restrict yourself to interpreting Orthodox theology, and allow Catholics to interpret and present the teaching of the Catholic Church.
I don't think that this is such a good idea. If the RCC is serious about union with the EO Church, I would think that it would be  important and necessary for Catholics to know how the EO see and interpret RC teaching.
Dialog is completely pointless if every time we try to explain ourselves, the Orthodox point to an Encyclical, an excerpt from our Catechism, or a quote from one of our Ecumenical Councils and say "No, you are wrong, THIS is what you really believe." It's as pompous as Protestants who quote the Bible to us to attempt to disprove Catholicism. I often wonder if such Protestants know they are quoting Catholic literature to try to disprove the Catholic Church. I would think the very Church who produced such teachings would have the correct interpretation of them. Outsiders quoting our own texts to try to explain to US what WE believe is ridiculous, not to mention arrogant.
Not really. No, I would not agree. I think it is important to discuss these previous RC encyclicals and teachings and see how they compare with the post Vatican II teachings and further how they would fit in with the RC EO dialog. After all, according to RC belief, teachings never change essentially, isn't it true?

Offline Wyatt

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Not really. No, I would not agree. I think it is important to discuss these previous RC encyclicals and teachings and see how they compare with the post Vatican II teachings and further how they would fit in with the RC EO dialog. After all, according to RC belief, teachings never change essentially, isn't it true?
What I disagree with is hearing Orthodox quoting our Catechism, Councils, Encyclicals, etc., arriving at their own interpretation of them, and then when we tell them "no, that is not what that means," then they simply keep quoting the same thing over and over again to attempt to reassert their own erroneous understanding of our doctrine. To me, that does nothing to advance dialog, that just keeps misconceptions about the Catholic Church alive. Bishop Fulton Sheen said it best when he said "there are not more than 100 people in the world who truly hate the Catholic Church, but there are millions who hate what they perceive to be the Catholic Church." As long as people wish to be stubborn and hold on to their own prejudices against the Catholic Church instead of taking the time to find out what the Church actually believes, there will be no progress in the discussion. It will continue to be a lot of talking in circles as has already happened in this thread.

As far as teachings, teachings can never change outright, but our understanding of them can and does change over time as the Holy Spirit leads us into a fuller understanding of the Truth. If this were not so then there would be no need for any Ecumenical Councils throughout the history of the Church since the faith once received would have needed no clarification or definition.

Offline akimel

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Not really. No, I would not agree. I think it is important to discuss these previous RC encyclicals and teachings and see how they compare with the post Vatican II teachings and further how they would fit in with the RC EO dialog. After all, according to RC belief, teachings never change essentially, isn't it true?

The question of doctrinal continuity is an interesting question, but it is not what is being addressed here and probably cannot be addressed here, because the Catholic understanding of magisterial authority and the hermeneutics of dogmatic statements is not easily grasped by non-Catholics--heck, it's not easily grasped by Catholics.  Catholics vigorously debate among themselves the continuity of specific magisterial teachings--usury and religious freedom immediately come to mind.  

What is at issue here in this thread is the impropriety and arrogance of someone outside the Catholic Church telling Catholics what their dogmas mean.  Just as it would be improper for a Catholic, Lutheran, or Baptist to tell the Orthodox what their Church authoritatively teaches, so it is improper for Orthodox to tell Catholics what their Church authoritatively teaches.  Churches are living communities and their beliefs cannot be reduced to dead formulae.  The members of a given community are the best, and indeed only, interpreters of the beliefs of that community.  

I can understand how a non-Catholic might say to a Catholic, "On the basis of the Baltimore Catechism, Catholics appear to believe that purgatory is a place where people must first be punished by God before they are admitted into his presence" (or something like that).  But if the Catholic replies, "No, that is now what we believe.  We believe ____," then the non-Catholic should accept, if only out of politeness and charity, the Catholic's interpretation of his Church's teaching.   Of course, it might well be the case that regarding the doctrinal question being discussed Catholics might disagree among themselves, and such disagreement may and should be noted; however, the non-Catholic has no right to enter into the inter-Catholic debate and take sides, as it were.  The only folk who are competent to tell non-Catholics what Catholics believe are Catholics themselves.  

If we assume that both parties in a conversation are committed to truth and mutual understanding, then it seems to me that both parties will go out of their way to ensure that they are not misrepresenting, distorting, and caricaturing the views of the other.  Otherwise, what's the point of the conversation?    
    


Offline Wyatt

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The question of doctrinal continuity is an interesting question, but it is not what is being addressed here and probably cannot be addressed here, because the Catholic understanding of magisterial authority and the hermeneutics of dogmatic statements is not easily grasped by non-Catholics--heck, it's not easily grasped by Catholics.  Catholics vigorously debate among themselves the continuity of specific magisterial teachings--usury and religious freedom immediately come to mind.  

What is at issue here in this thread is the impropriety and arrogance of someone outside the Catholic Church telling Catholics what their dogmas mean.  Just as it would be improper for a Catholic, Lutheran, or Baptist to tell the Orthodox what their Church authoritatively teaches, so it is improper for Orthodox to tell Catholics what their Church authoritatively teaches.  Churches are living communities and their beliefs cannot be reduced to dead formulae.  The members of a given community are the best, and indeed only, interpreters of the beliefs of that community.  

I can understand how a non-Catholic might say to a Catholic, "On the basis of the Baltimore Catechism, Catholics appear to believe that purgatory is a place where people must first be punished by God before they are admitted into his presence" (or something like that).  But if the Catholic replies, "No, that is now what we believe.  We believe ____," then the non-Catholic should accept, if only out of politeness and charity, the Catholic's interpretation of his Church's teaching.   Of course, it might well be the case that regarding the doctrinal question being discussed Catholics might disagree among themselves, and such disagreement may and should be noted; however, the non-Catholic has no right to enter into the inter-Catholic debate and take sides, as it were.  The only folk who are competent to tell non-Catholics what Catholics believe are Catholics themselves.  

If we assume that both parties in a conversation are committed to truth and mutual understanding, then it seems to me that both parties will go out of their way to ensure that they are not misrepresenting, distorting, and caricaturing the views of the other.  Otherwise, what's the point of the conversation?    
Exactly. I would never think of explaining to an Orthodox Christian what they believe. I would never presume to know what they believe better than they do. That is the epitome of arrogance. What I would do is ask them to please clarify their beliefs so that I can better understand their faith. That is the proper way to approach dialog. As I have said before and I will say again, this accusatory attitude smacks of Protestantism. Protestants always believe they are experts on what the Catholic Church believes, and they are always the ones who are most wrong about what we actually believe. I think of such comments as "Why do you Catholics worship Mary?" which a friend of mine's grandfather actually asked. This is not the correct approach. What he should have asked is "Do Catholics worship Mary," to which the answer is absolutely not. The way he phrased it, however, indicates that he absolutely believes he has the correct understanding of Catholic teaching (which he doesn't) and he disagrees with it (which of course is justified especially since WE DO NOT TEACH NOR PRACTICE SUCH THINGS).

So, for the Orthodox on here, I am curious, do you actually disagree with the doctrine of Purgatory as taught by the Catholic Church herseli? It's obvious that you disagree with the anti-Catholic caricature of our teachings that is perpetuated by you, but what about the actual teachings themselves?

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Not really. No, I would not agree. I think it is important to discuss these previous RC encyclicals and teachings and see how they compare with the post Vatican II teachings and further how they would fit in with the RC EO dialog. After all, according to RC belief, teachings never change essentially, isn't it true?

The question of doctrinal continuity is an interesting question, but it is not what is being addressed here and probably cannot be addressed here, because the Catholic understanding of magisterial authority and the hermeneutics of dogmatic statements is not easily grasped by non-Catholics--heck, it's not easily grasped by Catholics.  Catholics vigorously debate among themselves the continuity of specific magisterial teachings--usury and religious freedom immediately come to mind.  

What is at issue here in this thread is the impropriety and arrogance of someone outside the Catholic Church telling Catholics what their dogmas mean.  Just as it would be improper for a Catholic, Lutheran, or Baptist to tell the Orthodox what their Church authoritatively teaches, so it is improper for Orthodox to tell Catholics what their Church authoritatively teaches.  Churches are living communities and their beliefs cannot be reduced to dead formulae.  The members of a given community are the best, and indeed only, interpreters of the beliefs of that community.  

I can understand how a non-Catholic might say to a Catholic, "On the basis of the Baltimore Catechism, Catholics appear to believe that purgatory is a place where people must first be punished by God before they are admitted into his presence" (or something like that).  But if the Catholic replies, "No, that is now what we believe.  We believe ____," then the non-Catholic should accept, if only out of politeness and charity, the Catholic's interpretation of his Church's teaching.   Of course, it might well be the case that regarding the doctrinal question being discussed Catholics might disagree among themselves, and such disagreement may and should be noted; however, the non-Catholic has no right to enter into the inter-Catholic debate and take sides, as it were.  The only folk who are competent to tell non-Catholics what Catholics believe are Catholics themselves.  

If we assume that both parties in a conversation are committed to truth and mutual understanding, then it seems to me that both parties will go out of their way to ensure that they are not misrepresenting, distorting, and caricaturing the views of the other.  Otherwise, what's the point of the conversation?    
    


I would have to disagree simply because Catholics need to know what the Orthodox people believe about Catholicism and how they see it to be.  Just as Catholics go around discussing toll houses, so too, the Orthodox should let Catholics know about some of the papal encyclicals and serious and long-lived officially approved catechetical instruction that might present a problem for them.
One possible problem might be the changes in Catholic teachings since Vatican II, and the disagreement among Catholics on some of these changes.  If you surf to some of the Traditional Catholic blogs or to some of the more liberal Catholic blogs, you would know what I mean.

Offline elijahmaria

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Not really. No, I would not agree. I think it is important to discuss these previous RC encyclicals and teachings and see how they compare with the post Vatican II teachings and further how they would fit in with the RC EO dialog. After all, according to RC belief, teachings never change essentially, isn't it true?

The question of doctrinal continuity is an interesting question, but it is not what is being addressed here and probably cannot be addressed here, because the Catholic understanding of magisterial authority and the hermeneutics of dogmatic statements is not easily grasped by non-Catholics--heck, it's not easily grasped by Catholics.  Catholics vigorously debate among themselves the continuity of specific magisterial teachings--usury and religious freedom immediately come to mind.  

What is at issue here in this thread is the impropriety and arrogance of someone outside the Catholic Church telling Catholics what their dogmas mean.  Just as it would be improper for a Catholic, Lutheran, or Baptist to tell the Orthodox what their Church authoritatively teaches, so it is improper for Orthodox to tell Catholics what their Church authoritatively teaches.  Churches are living communities and their beliefs cannot be reduced to dead formulae.  The members of a given community are the best, and indeed only, interpreters of the beliefs of that community.  

I can understand how a non-Catholic might say to a Catholic, "On the basis of the Baltimore Catechism, Catholics appear to believe that purgatory is a place where people must first be punished by God before they are admitted into his presence" (or something like that).  But if the Catholic replies, "No, that is now what we believe.  We believe ____," then the non-Catholic should accept, if only out of politeness and charity, the Catholic's interpretation of his Church's teaching.   Of course, it might well be the case that regarding the doctrinal question being discussed Catholics might disagree among themselves, and such disagreement may and should be noted; however, the non-Catholic has no right to enter into the inter-Catholic debate and take sides, as it were.  The only folk who are competent to tell non-Catholics what Catholics believe are Catholics themselves.  

If we assume that both parties in a conversation are committed to truth and mutual understanding, then it seems to me that both parties will go out of their way to ensure that they are not misrepresenting, distorting, and caricaturing the views of the other.  Otherwise, what's the point of the conversation?    
    


I would have to disagree simply because Catholics need to know what the Orthodox people believe about Catholicism and how they see it to be.  Just as Catholics go around discussing toll houses, so too, the Orthodox should let Catholics know about some of the papal encyclicals and serious and long-lived officially approved catechetical instruction that might present a problem for them.
One possible problem might be the changes in Catholic teachings since Vatican II, and the disagreement among Catholics on some of these changes.  If you surf to some of the Traditional Catholic blogs or to some of the more liberal Catholic blogs, you would know what I mean.

Have you read much from the 16th century Spanish spiritual writers of the Catholic Church?  Have you read much of Venerable Louis of Granada, O.P. or of the contemporary Dominican, Father Jordan Aumann?

Now there are works that are classical in their Catholicism and by reading Father Jordan's little historical commentaries and Fray Louis' texts on the Christian Life it certainly helps to put some of those seemingly contested texts into perspective.  Father Jordan Aumann's works are actually available on-line if you're interested.

Have you ever thought about lay formation in a religious order even just to spend a year or two in Carmelite or Dominican formation.  I suggest those two because they are the two orders that have formal study for the formation of their lay members.  I have four years of formation as a Carmelite secular during which time I read all of the translated works of SS. John of the Cross, Teresa of Avila and Edith Stein/Theresa Benedicta of the Cross, among others.  It has been very helpful to me as well as the prayer discipline that I began with them so many years ago.

I would think that in a mobile world like ours one would not need an especially privileged life to explore some of the world outside of contentious Catholic blogdom.

Mary
« Last Edit: August 09, 2010, 07:15:13 PM by elijahmaria »

Offline Irish Hermit

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Exactly. I would never think of explaining to an Orthodox Christian what they believe.


The most prominent Catholic on the forum is without question Mary whom we love.   She is forever explaining to the Orthodox what we believe whether it be in the area of our sacramental theology or, the most recent example, what we believe about abortion.

Another factor to take under consideration is that not a few Orthodox here are former Roman Catholics or Byzantine Catholics and are as well educated in the tenets of Catholicism as any Catholic on the forum.

Fr Ambrose o..o~

Offline Irish Hermit

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So, for the Orthodox on here, I am curious, do you actually disagree with the doctrine of Purgatory as taught by the Catholic Church herseli?

The rationale for Purgatory is based on the doctrine that sin incurs two kinds of punishment -- eternal and temporal. 

The eternal punishment was assumed by Christ on the Cross. 

The temporal punishment must be expiated by each individual either on earth or in Purgatory.


The Orthodox do not believe in temporal punishment.

So for the Orthodox the teaching of Purgatory makes no sense.





Offline Irish Hermit

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It's obvious that you disagree with the anti-Catholic caricature of our teachings that is perpetuated by you,

Wyatt,

I am not aware of any Orthodox caricatures of your doctrine of Purgatory.

It would help us for the future, to recognise these caricatures if you would give us a list of what they are.

And those of us who are guilty of the caricatures would be able to avoid them.


Offline elijahmaria

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So, for the Orthodox on here, I am curious, do you actually disagree with the doctrine of Purgatory as taught by the Catholic Church herseli?

The rationale for Purgatory is based on the doctrine that sin incurs two kinds of punishment -- eternal and temporal. 

The eternal punishment was assumed by Christ on the Cross. 

The temporal punishment must be expiated by each individual either on earth or in Purgatory.


The Orthodox do not believe in temporal punishment.

So for the Orthodox the teaching of Purgatory makes no sense.


But many Orthodox do grasp and accept the idea of purgation.   That much I have experienced. 

So that seems to leave open a great deal of leeway for talking about various pieties and whether or not Orthodoxy, universal Orthodoxy, rejects a particular judgment, or a theology of atonement, or whether or not the west can grasp the subtleties of Toll Houses or an origenism with respect to universal salvation that is said not to really be an origenism, and the like.  These things are, as yet, not clear to me.  But there are certainly Orthodox clergy, and laity of course, who have discussed these things at length in front of me over the years.

There are still things to talk about including the meaning of temporal punishment.

Mary

Offline Irish Hermit

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, or whether or not the west can grasp the subtleties of Toll Houses

At best the toll houses are seen as a theory or an "illustrative metaphor" about the way the
partial judgement takes place at death.  At worst they are seen as a heresy which introduces
a serious aberration into sober orthodox soteriology.

We come back to the fact that the bishops of the Russian
Orthodox Church Abroad declined in their 1980 Resolution on the toll houses
to proclaim them as church teaching.

Instead they warned the faithful that conjectures about the afterlife are not
beneficial for our salvation.

Bishop Jerome of Manhattan and Secretary to the Synod of the Russian Church
Abroad has stated as regards the toll house theory that the Russian Church Abroad
cannot promulgate "matters of faith that would differ from what the Orthodox Church,
as a whole, has always held."

Offline Irish Hermit

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Not really. No, I would not agree. I think it is important to discuss these previous RC encyclicals and teachings and see how they compare with the post Vatican II teachings and further how they would fit in with the RC EO dialog. After all, according to RC belief, teachings never change essentially, isn't it true?

The question of doctrinal continuity is an interesting question, but it is not what is being addressed here and probably cannot be addressed here, because the Catholic understanding of magisterial authority and the hermeneutics of dogmatic statements is not easily grasped by non-Catholics--heck, it's not easily grasped by Catholics.  Catholics vigorously debate among themselves the continuity of specific magisterial teachings--usury and religious freedom immediately come to mind.  

What is at issue here in this thread is the impropriety and arrogance of someone outside the Catholic Church telling Catholics what their dogmas mean.  Just as it would be improper for a Catholic, Lutheran, or Baptist to tell the Orthodox what their Church authoritatively teaches, so it is improper for Orthodox to tell Catholics what their Church authoritatively teaches.  Churches are living communities and their beliefs cannot be reduced to dead formulae.  The members of a given community are the best, and indeed only, interpreters of the beliefs of that community.  

I can understand how a non-Catholic might say to a Catholic, "On the basis of the Baltimore Catechism, Catholics appear to believe that purgatory is a place where people must first be punished by God before they are admitted into his presence" (or something like that).  But if the Catholic replies, "No, that is now what we believe.  We believe ____," then the non-Catholic should accept, if only out of politeness and charity, the Catholic's interpretation of his Church's teaching.   Of course, it might well be the case that regarding the doctrinal question being discussed Catholics might disagree among themselves, and such disagreement may and should be noted; however, the non-Catholic has no right to enter into the inter-Catholic debate and take sides, as it were.  The only folk who are competent to tell non-Catholics what Catholics believe are Catholics themselves.  

If we assume that both parties in a conversation are committed to truth and mutual understanding, then it seems to me that both parties will go out of their way to ensure that they are not misrepresenting, distorting, and caricaturing the views of the other.  Otherwise, what's the point of the conversation?    
    

Re the above...

Dear Father Kimel,

You have been a Roman Catholic for, I believe, 3 years.

Prior to that you were a priest of the Episcopalian Church for 25 years.

Now, if you wanted to speak about Anglicanism I would listen to you because of your knowledge and experience which extends over 25 years and no doubt longer than that.  I would not think that just because you converted to Roman Catholicism that 25 years of Anglican study, life and experience were expunged from your cranium.

I would expect you to be able to expound on Anglicanism.  You must be well acquainted with its doctrines and able to compare them to Roman Catholicism.

Well, you're not the only one to make such changes in life and some of the ex-Catholics on the forum are in the same situation with regard to their former faith.

Offline Wyatt

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You have been a Roman Catholic for, I believe, 3 years.
HA. That is how long I have been Catholic as well. I must be stupid since I have only been Catholic for three years and was Protestant before that. I must have one day, for whatever reason, just concluded that all the Protestant lies about Catholicism were false without actually doing any research of my own. I can assure you, sir, that sadly I know more in my three years of being a Catholic Christian than life long Catholics do about their faith. I am not proud about that, especially since that is a pretty shameful fact and doesn't say much about cradle Catholics, but unfortunately in my experience it proves true. I came to Catholicism on my own as an 18 year old. No teaching that I have heard from actual Catholic sources has rubbed me the wrong way, not even Papal Infallibility since, when you actually study it with an open mind, you will realize that A. it is quite limited and only applies in a very select few situations, and B. Protestants often put as much if not more (usually more) faith into what their individual pastors say , or even into themselves (i.e. MY interpretation of Scripture is correct, nevermind the 1,500 years of Christendom before the beginning of my heretical movement). Everyone in Protestantism is their own Pope.

Well, you're not the only one to make such changes in life and some of the ex-Catholics on the forum are in the same situation with regard to their former faith.
Their conversion was based on falsehood. Lord have mercy!
« Last Edit: August 09, 2010, 11:20:37 PM by Wyatt »

Offline Irish Hermit

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not even Papal Infallibility since, when you actually study it with an open mind, you will realize that A. it is quite limited and only applies in a very select few situations,

Problem is that nobody actually knows when those few select situations apply.   The number of infallible teachings is one of the mysteries held in the bosom of the Catholic Church.  Not even the Popes know.

The Roman apologist Scott Hahn says there are only TWO.

Tim Staples says there are  FOUR, and maybe more.

The famous Roman Catholic priest and broadcaster Fr Leslie Rumble says there are EIGHTEEN (although he is not quite sure about four of them.)

The even more famous Ludwig Ott says there are SIXTY.

So what is infallible for the Catholic Church is a bit of a guess work.

Offline stashko

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Dear Fr Ambrose,

Please stop telling the world what the Catholic Church teaches about purgatory.  You possess neither the  authority nor the theological background to speak on Catholic teaching on purgatory.  Your knowledge of the subject is limited and distorted by polemic intent.  

The definitive and formal teaching of the Catholic Church on purgatory is quite minimal, as Mary has accurately stated.  Beyond that, there exists a fairly wide and legitimate diversity of opinion, just as there exists a fairly wide and legitimate diversity of Orthodox opinion on the intermediate state.   Mary's presentation of purgatory is hardly idiosyncratic, as is easily confirmed by reading Popes John Paul II and Benedict XVI; nor is it novel, as is easily confirmed by reading St Catherine of Genoa and the Venerable John Henry Newman.    

Perhaps you find it disturbing that the Catholic Church in fact allows a diversity of views on purgatory.  Inter-Catholic debate on purgatory can be vigorous and controverted.  But do not be too gleeful.  Given the absence of authoritative and irreformable Orthodox teaching on the intermediate state, and given the diversity of positions that I know to exist within Orthodoxy, I would suggest that those who live within ecclesial glass houses should not throw stones.  

Restrict yourself to interpreting Orthodox theology, and allow Catholics to interpret and present the teaching of the Catholic Church.  

I am reminded of an Orthodox priest who responded to an Orthodox layman who was quoting the canons of the Church against his parochial teaching:  "Who gave you permission to read the canons and who gave you the authority to quote them against your bishops and priests?"  And so I say to you, "Who gave you permission to read the dogmas of the Catholic Church and who gave you authority to quote them against Catholics?"   The principle here is basic:  those who speak fluently the language of a community are those who are best equipped to understand and interpret the teachings of their community.  You live outside the Catholic Church and understand neither its theology nor praxis.  Catholicism is a foreign language to you.  You have neither the right nor competence nor sympathy to correct Mary or any other Catholic on their apprehension of the teachings of their Church.  

I have repeatedly addressed the subject of purgatory on this forum and find it beyond frustrating that you continue to present yourself as an infallible spokesman for the Catholic Church, especially when your interpretation of Catholic teaching is so often off-base.  

Fr Alvin Kimel  
Post of the month right here. Can I get an "Amen"?  ;D


You won't from Me ...Fr.Ambrose Probably forgot more than what this Catholic Priest thinks he Knows, Fr. was a Former Catholic Before He was Drawn to the true Light Of Holy Orthodoxy and converted from confusion to clarity..... ;D Even Catholics Are confused in what they believe,read a catholic forum  and see.. ;D
ГОСПОДЕ ГОСПОДЕ ,ПОГЛЕДАЈ СА НЕБА ,ДОЂИ И ПОСЕТИ ТВОЈ ВИНОГРАД ТВОЈА ДЕСНИЦА ПОСАДИЛА АМИН АМИН.

Offline Wyatt

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Problem is that nobody actually knows when those few select situations apply.   The number of infallible teachings is one of the mysteries held in the bosom of the Catholic Church.  Not even the Popes know.

The Roman apologist Scott Hahn says there are only TWO.

Tim Staples says there are  FOUR, and maybe more.

The famous Roman Catholic priest and broadcaster Fr Leslie Rumble says there are EIGHTEEN (although he is not quite sure about four of them.)

The even more famous Ludwig Ott says there are SIXTY.

So what is infallible for the Catholic Church is a bit of a guess work.
Sources?

You won't from Me ...Fr.Ambrose Probably forgot more than what this Catholic Priest thinks he Knows, Fr. was a Former Catholic Before He was Drawn to the true Light Of Holy Orthodoxy and converted from confusion to clarity..... ;D Even Catholics Are confused in what they believe,read a catholic forum  and see.. ;D
I belong to a Catholic forum and I have never seen any confusion. I have seen more confusion on this forum than anywhere else because there is no official "Eastern Orthodox" teaching. It is a bunch of opinions. The Orthodox cannot even tell me with a unified voice what the status of the Roman Catholic Church is. Orthodox may like to claim they are unified, but they are not. There is no unified teaching in Orthodoxy. If the Holy Spirit is truly guiding Orthodoxy, then why do some believe that Catholics have the Holy Eucharist in our Churches and some do not? Why do some believe contraception is wrong and some do not? If the Holy Spirit is with you then why is there so much factionalism within Orthodoxy? If you are truly the True Church founded by Jesus Christ, wouldn't He want you to know these things since these are things which are crucial to Salvation?
« Last Edit: August 10, 2010, 12:23:45 AM by Wyatt »

Offline Irish Hermit

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Problem is that nobody actually knows when those few select situations apply.   The number of infallible teachings is one of the mysteries held in the bosom of the Catholic Church.  Not even the Popes know.

The Roman apologist Scott Hahn says there are only TWO.

Tim Staples says there are  FOUR, and maybe more.

The famous Roman Catholic priest and broadcaster Fr Leslie Rumble says there are EIGHTEEN (although he is not quite sure about four of them.)

The even more famous Ludwig Ott says there are SIXTY.

So what is infallible for the Catholic Church is a bit of a guess work.

Sources?


The Internet.  I pulled these figures together when I was on CAF a few years ago.  But a search won't bring up the message.  CAF deleted thousands of Orthodox messages at the time they booted most of us off there.  They had complaints that too many Catholics were converting to Orthodoxy.

I remember that Karl Keating, the head of CAF, had his own figure for infallible statements, but I cannot remember what it was.  Lots of confusion in trhe Catholic world.  What is infallible to one Catholic is not infallible to the next.

So may I put the question to you.  You say you have learnt more in 3 years as a Catholic than any cradle Catholic -  What have you been taught?  How many infallible statements are there?   And even more important, *what* are they?

Offline stashko

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I belong to a Catholic forum and I have never seen any confusion. I have seen more confusion on this forum than anywhere else because there is no official "Eastern Orthodox" teaching. It is a bunch of opinions. The Orthodox cannot even tell me with a unified voice what the status of the Roman Catholic Church is. Orthodox may like to claim they are unified, but they are not. There is no unified teaching in Orthodoxy. If the Holy Spirit is truly guiding Orthodoxy, then why do some believe that Catholics have the Holy Eucharist in our Churches and some do not? Why do some believe contraception is wrong and some do not? If the Holy Spirit is with you then why is there so much factionalism within Orthodoxy? If you are truly the True Church founded by Jesus Christ, wouldn't He want you to know these things since these are things which are crucial to Salvation?
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If catholics don't believe the same thing as Father Ambrose  was taught , when he was catholic ,and they argue with him like this Catholic Priest did It Proves what Fr.Ambrose has said that what was then and isn't  now, but something entirely different the catholic church  is in a state of flux.... ;D
ГОСПОДЕ ГОСПОДЕ ,ПОГЛЕДАЈ СА НЕБА ,ДОЂИ И ПОСЕТИ ТВОЈ ВИНОГРАД ТВОЈА ДЕСНИЦА ПОСАДИЛА АМИН АМИН.

Offline elijahmaria

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Problem is that nobody actually knows when those few select situations apply.   The number of infallible teachings is one of the mysteries held in the bosom of the Catholic Church.  Not even the Popes know.

The Roman apologist Scott Hahn says there are only TWO.

Tim Staples says there are  FOUR, and maybe more.

The famous Roman Catholic priest and broadcaster Fr Leslie Rumble says there are EIGHTEEN (although he is not quite sure about four of them.)

The even more famous Ludwig Ott says there are SIXTY.

So what is infallible for the Catholic Church is a bit of a guess work.

Sources?


The Internet.  I pulled these figures together when I was on CAF a few years ago.  But a search won't bring up the message.  CAF deleted thousands of Orthodox messages at the time they booted most of us off there.  They had complaints that too many Catholics were converting to Orthodoxy.

I remember that Karl Keating, the head of CAF, had his own figure for infallible statements, but I cannot remember what it was.  Lots of confusion in trhe Catholic world.  What is infallible to one Catholic is not infallible to the next.

So may I put the question to you.  You say you have learnt more in 3 years as a Catholic than any cradle Catholic -  What have you been taught?  How many infallible statements are there?   And even more important, *what* are they?

There are actually CDF documents that address what is to be believed  by Catholics.  All this other business is inconsequential, except for Ott who is still a tried and true systematics text.

Mary

Offline elijahmaria

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Not really. No, I would not agree. I think it is important to discuss these previous RC encyclicals and teachings and see how they compare with the post Vatican II teachings and further how they would fit in with the RC EO dialog. After all, according to RC belief, teachings never change essentially, isn't it true?

The question of doctrinal continuity is an interesting question, but it is not what is being addressed here and probably cannot be addressed here, because the Catholic understanding of magisterial authority and the hermeneutics of dogmatic statements is not easily grasped by non-Catholics--heck, it's not easily grasped by Catholics.  Catholics vigorously debate among themselves the continuity of specific magisterial teachings--usury and religious freedom immediately come to mind.  

What is at issue here in this thread is the impropriety and arrogance of someone outside the Catholic Church telling Catholics what their dogmas mean.  Just as it would be improper for a Catholic, Lutheran, or Baptist to tell the Orthodox what their Church authoritatively teaches, so it is improper for Orthodox to tell Catholics what their Church authoritatively teaches.  Churches are living communities and their beliefs cannot be reduced to dead formulae.  The members of a given community are the best, and indeed only, interpreters of the beliefs of that community.  

I can understand how a non-Catholic might say to a Catholic, "On the basis of the Baltimore Catechism, Catholics appear to believe that purgatory is a place where people must first be punished by God before they are admitted into his presence" (or something like that).  But if the Catholic replies, "No, that is now what we believe.  We believe ____," then the non-Catholic should accept, if only out of politeness and charity, the Catholic's interpretation of his Church's teaching.   Of course, it might well be the case that regarding the doctrinal question being discussed Catholics might disagree among themselves, and such disagreement may and should be noted; however, the non-Catholic has no right to enter into the inter-Catholic debate and take sides, as it were.  The only folk who are competent to tell non-Catholics what Catholics believe are Catholics themselves.  

If we assume that both parties in a conversation are committed to truth and mutual understanding, then it seems to me that both parties will go out of their way to ensure that they are not misrepresenting, distorting, and caricaturing the views of the other.  Otherwise, what's the point of the conversation?    
    

Re the above...

Dear Father Kimel,

You have been a Roman Catholic for, I believe, 3 years.

Prior to that you were a priest of the Episcopalian Church for 25 years.

Now, if you wanted to speak about Anglicanism I would listen to you because of your knowledge and experience which extends over 25 years and no doubt longer than that.  I would not think that just because you converted to Roman Catholicism that 25 years of Anglican study, life and experience were expunged from your cranium.

I would expect you to be able to expound on Anglicanism.  You must be well acquainted with its doctrines and able to compare them to Roman Catholicism.

Well, you're not the only one to make such changes in life and some of the ex-Catholics on the forum are in the same situation with regard to their former faith.

Laff...

Which do you claim more often as your past...Your protestant side or your Catholic side?

M.

Offline elijahmaria

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If catholics don't believe the same thing as Father Ambrose  was taught , when he was catholic ,and they argue with him like this Catholic Priest did It Proves what Fr.Ambrose has said that what was then and isn't  now, but something entirely different the catholic church  is in a state of flux.... ;D

You'd have a bit more credibility if you could speak for yourself, rather than allowing others to speak for you.... ;)

PS: Catholics know what they believe and it is not what Father Ambrose says they believe. 

Catholics look at meaning.  Protestants tend to add meaning.

Father Ambrose grew up with the best of both and now cherry picks depending on his mood  :laugh:

M.
« Last Edit: August 10, 2010, 12:52:42 AM by elijahmaria »

Offline Irish Hermit

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 If you are truly the True Church founded by Jesus Christ, wouldn't He want you to know these things since these are things which are crucial to Salvation?


In the words of Pope Benedict, we are assured that there has been NO doctrinal or theological creep in the last thousand years within Orthodoxy.

This fact alone points to the utter superfluity of both the Papacy and the Magisterium,  We have kept the faith intact without them.   All praise to the Spirit of Truth who indwells the Church.

Pope Benedict himself has acknowledged this:

"While the West may point to the absence of the office of Peter in the East—it
must, nevertheless, admit that, in the Eastern Church, the form and content of
the Church of the Fathers is present in unbroken continuity"


~"Principles of Catholic Theology," Cardinal Ratzinger, Ignatius Press, 1987.

Unwittingly the Pope has proclaimed that the papacy is not necessary for the preservation of faith and morals.

The Orthodox steadfast witness and adherence to the Apostolic faith since Rome parted company is startling proof that neither the Papacy nor the Magisterium (seen as so essential by Rome) are at all necessary for the preservation of the Faith.

Fr Ambrose  o..o~

Offline Irish Hermit

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Wyatt,

Would you have a look at message 209 and tell us what caricatures the Orthodox are guilty of about Purgatory.

Offline Irish Hermit

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Not really. No, I would not agree. I think it is important to discuss these previous RC encyclicals and teachings and see how they compare with the post Vatican II teachings and further how they would fit in with the RC EO dialog. After all, according to RC belief, teachings never change essentially, isn't it true?

The question of doctrinal continuity is an interesting question, but it is not what is being addressed here and probably cannot be addressed here, because the Catholic understanding of magisterial authority and the hermeneutics of dogmatic statements is not easily grasped by non-Catholics--heck, it's not easily grasped by Catholics.  Catholics vigorously debate among themselves the continuity of specific magisterial teachings--usury and religious freedom immediately come to mind. 

What is at issue here in this thread is the impropriety and arrogance of someone outside the Catholic Church telling Catholics what their dogmas mean.  Just as it would be improper for a Catholic, Lutheran, or Baptist to tell the Orthodox what their Church authoritatively teaches, so it is improper for Orthodox to tell Catholics what their Church authoritatively teaches.  Churches are living communities and their beliefs cannot be reduced to dead formulae.  The members of a given community are the best, and indeed only, interpreters of the beliefs of that community. 

I can understand how a non-Catholic might say to a Catholic, "On the basis of the Baltimore Catechism, Catholics appear to believe that purgatory is a place where people must first be punished by God before they are admitted into his presence" (or something like that).  But if the Catholic replies, "No, that is now what we believe.  We believe ____," then the non-Catholic should accept, if only out of politeness and charity, the Catholic's interpretation of his Church's teaching.   Of course, it might well be the case that regarding the doctrinal question being discussed Catholics might disagree among themselves, and such disagreement may and should be noted; however, the non-Catholic has no right to enter into the inter-Catholic debate and take sides, as it were.  The only folk who are competent to tell non-Catholics what Catholics believe are Catholics themselves. 

If we assume that both parties in a conversation are committed to truth and mutual understanding, then it seems to me that both parties will go out of their way to ensure that they are not misrepresenting, distorting, and caricaturing the views of the other.  Otherwise, what's the point of the conversation?   
     

Re the above...

Dear Father Kimel,

You have been a Roman Catholic for, I believe, 3 years.

Prior to that you were a priest of the Episcopalian Church for 25 years.

Now, if you wanted to speak about Anglicanism I would listen to you because of your knowledge and experience which extends over 25 years and no doubt longer than that.  I would not think that just because you converted to Roman Catholicism that 25 years of Anglican study, life and experience were expunged from your cranium.

I would expect you to be able to expound on Anglicanism.  You must be well acquainted with its doctrines and able to compare them to Roman Catholicism.

Well, you're not the only one to make such changes in life and some of the ex-Catholics on the forum are in the same situation with regard to their former faith.

Laff...

Which do you claim more often as your past...Your protestant side or your Catholic side?

M.

I've probably been inside Protestant churches no more than 10 times in my 64 years of life.

You must remember that during my years of Catholic education it was actually forbidden to enter Protestant churches.   If you wanted to go to a relative's wedding or funeral you needed permission from your parish priest.  Baptism - forget it! -you wouldn't get permission.  You youngsters probably find that hard to believe.