OrthodoxChristianity.net
September 17, 2014, 07:45:44 AM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News: Reminder: No political discussions in the public fora.  If you do not have access to the private Politics Forum, please send a PM to Fr. George.
 
   Home   Help Calendar Contact Treasury Tags Login Register  
Pages: « 1 2 3 »  All   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: OCA vs. ROCOR  (Read 11541 times) Average Rating: 0
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
Punch
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian
Jurisdiction: Body of Christ
Posts: 5,382



« Reply #45 on: October 25, 2010, 09:30:14 AM »

I must say, I am quite attracted to that custom of confessing before every communion.
Why?
I find that every week (except the week after I confess), I approach the chalice with a little bit of guilt over small sins....mostly thoughts.
You don't think the prayers of general confession right before Communion address those sins?

I would think that the prayers for preparation are a form of confession.  However, if one really believes that what they are praying is true, would they not want the absolution from the Priest?  When it comes to Confession, my repentance and tears came before I confessed to the Priest.  It is the sacramental absolution that I believe to be important for being prepared for communion.
Logged

I would be happy to agree with you, but then both of us would be wrong.
Punch
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian
Jurisdiction: Body of Christ
Posts: 5,382



« Reply #46 on: October 25, 2010, 09:33:38 AM »

I saw that some people on this thread implied that they like the "one confession = one communion" rule.

That's fine, do what your priest says and all that, but perhaps caution should be exercised here.  This rule, I think, tends to reduce confession to a "magic pass" that makes us "worthy" of communion.  This is an issue in many churches, especially those of a predominantly ethnic composition (whether Russian or Arab); I think that a healthier approach would be to certainly confess on a regular basis as needed, but not to necessarily make confession a "ticket" we must purchase before going to communion each Sunday.

Just my 2 cents, take it for what you will.

In Christ,

Dn. Michael

So, you can go through a week without sinning?  I'm impressed.

I would think most have a problem going from Vespers Saturday night to communion Sunday morning without sinning.

Exactly.  That is why I believe that the Absolution is so important.  I would think many, like Dn. Michael (if I am permitted to judge in the positive) probably confess their sins to God daily, or possibly more.  Needing the Spiritual guidance of the Priest may not be required every week.  However, there are two parts to confession, and the important second part is missed when the first is missed.
Logged

I would be happy to agree with you, but then both of us would be wrong.
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,167


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #47 on: October 25, 2010, 10:39:41 AM »

I saw that some people on this thread implied that they like the "one confession = one communion" rule.

That's fine, do what your priest says and all that, but perhaps caution should be exercised here.  This rule, I think, tends to reduce confession to a "magic pass" that makes us "worthy" of communion.  This is an issue in many churches, especially those of a predominantly ethnic composition (whether Russian or Arab); I think that a healthier approach would be to certainly confess on a regular basis as needed, but not to necessarily make confession a "ticket" we must purchase before going to communion each Sunday.
Dn. Michael

There is no "magic pass", Father Michael.  I would think that the "magic pass' is given to those in the Churches who may freely approach communion without confession.  That is the real "magic pass."

We have seen the results in modern Orthodoxy of no link between confession and communion - the virtual disappearance of the use of the Mystery of Confession in some Orthodox Churches. (The same has happened in the Roman Catholic Church after Vatican II but the disappearance of confession there has several factors.)   

For example, the Orthodox Church of Antioch uses our Russian parish church since they have none of their own at the moment.  I was quite shocked when their priest told me that he has not heard a Confession - EVER!  He has been a priest 6 years.  I asked him how this could come about because a large proportion of his people are rather recent immigrants from Lebanon and Egypt and surely they are formed in the tradition of their home countries.  He replied that they are not familiar with confession and actually see it as a Roman Catholic thing.

So on the basis of "by their fruits ye shall know them" I postulate that the practice of the Slav Churches is preferable.    In the Churches which maintain the link between Confession and Communion, Confession is a regular Sacrament and it is also used outside of the Communion link too - when a person believes he needs to come and confess some serious sin.
Yet, until recently, the Slavic practice was also based on people receiving Communion infrequently, so that even those who confessed before receiving Communion often didn't confess but once or twice per year. No real change in confession frequency there.
Logged
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,167


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #48 on: October 25, 2010, 10:40:38 AM »

I must say, I am quite attracted to that custom of confessing before every communion.
Why?
I find that every week (except the week after I confess), I approach the chalice with a little bit of guilt over small sins....mostly thoughts.
You don't think the prayers of general confession right before Communion address those sins?

I would think that the prayers for preparation are a form of confession.  However, if one really believes that what they are praying is true, would they not want the absolution from the Priest?  When it comes to Confession, my repentance and tears came before I confessed to the Priest.  It is the sacramental absolution that I believe to be important for being prepared for communion.

Why?
« Last Edit: October 25, 2010, 10:42:08 AM by PeterTheAleut » Logged
Carl Kraeff (Second Chance)
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 6,780



« Reply #49 on: October 25, 2010, 11:06:18 AM »

I must say, I am quite attracted to that custom of confessing before every communion.
Why?
I find that every week (except the week after I confess), I approach the chalice with a little bit of guilt over small sins....mostly thoughts.
You don't think the prayers of general confession right before Communion address those sins?

I would think that the prayers for preparation are a form of confession.  However, if one really believes that what they are praying is true, would they not want the absolution from the Priest?  When it comes to Confession, my repentance and tears came before I confessed to the Priest.  It is the sacramental absolution that I believe to be important for being prepared for communion.


Can we for a moment consider the Priest himself? He does not have recourse to private confession every week and yet he undoubtedly sins between communions. You might think that a priest is somehow different and I will agree with you. I will say that his "job," his vocation, gives him the opportunity, as a practical matter, to pray more, self-audit more, confess and correct more. But, he is equal to anyone before the chalice and thus is accountable to the Lord for his relationship with Him, to include being prepared properly for communion. Please note that the key is proper preparation. We all know what that means and the Church does help us to stay on course--whatever several variations may be. So, all these differing approaches to preparation are one thing, and the severe difference between the laity and the clergy is another thing.

I think that the practice of confession/absolution/communion cycle is actually the easier way for the lay person. It takes away the personal responsibility to pray, self-audit, confess and correct--just like a priest. After all, you can mess up as much as you can, it does not make a difference because just before taking communion you can go to the priest, confess and receive absolution! And, the only thing that you would have to do is to keep your act clean until communion! And, suppose that you do not keep yourself completely sinless until communion. Why, you can have recourse to the prayers before communion, which are said most conveniently just before communion.

I know that these words will grate on some folks' nerves. I have purposely used sarcasm to make my point that our main task is to have a relationship with the Holy Trinity. Put another way, it is most important to act like a fully formed Christian and not as a lamb that must be directed by the shepherd and his dogs (I know that this is a most unfortunate imagery but I was thinking of a NOVA show on dogs where it showed how utterly impossible it would be raise sheep in Scotland without the dogs). In any case, this posting is proof positive why I am such a poor communicator in these matters.

Father Alexander Schmemann of blessed memory looked at our Holy Mystery of Penance/Communion and saw something in it that most folks kind of overlook. To Father Alexander it was a scandal that (a) when he had confessed an entire congregation, not one of them actually confessed a sin to him, and (b) only the priest took communion. He knew that in the the early Church everybody took communion, as attested to by the Church Fathers. He also knew that this Holy Mystery was used primarily as a Sacrament of Reconciliation for those Christians who had lost their relationship with the Lord and His Body for serious sins/shortcomings. After all, everybody sins and yet for most, preeminently the priests and bishops, the pre-communion preparations (of course starting earlier than the pre-communion prayers just before communion) were sufficient; most folks did not confess to a priest and receive absolution from him prior to communion--just like the priest himself!

Of course, there are good reasons for somebody to require the confession/absolution/communion cycle. For some folks, it may be impossible or very hard to observe a daily rule of prayer, go to services during the week, to attend the services of Sunday (starting with Vespers or Vigil, than to go the Matins or Hours just before the Divine Liturgy), self-audit constantly, and confess and correct constantly. BTW, I have just described what I have figured that that I need to keep on a somewhat even keel. I must confess however that I go through some difficult periods. In any case, I do go the confession at least once every six to eight weeks as prescribed by my priest but I do go to confession as soon as I can after I fall short in those areas that my Priest has specified and those that I think are serious enough to warrant reconciliation. In any case, in an ordinary Sunday I do approach the chalice, as unworthy as I am, after putting my heart and mind into preparing myself ahead of time. For me at least, going to Vespers on Saturday, going through my weekly self-audit wrap up, and attending the Hours lead to the Divine Liturgy that in my experience has been one continuous conversation/prayer with the Holy Trinity. I tell the Lord many times, and particularly during the pre-communion prayers that the clergy as well as we say, that I am sorry, that I will do better, that I pray that He will help me do that. Lest anyone think that I am any good, I must tell you that I am such a big sinner that I need all of this.

So, we come down to what happens during the Mystery of Confession/Penance/Reconciliation. If anyone has been paying attention, we confess our sins, shortcomings to the Lord, who then absolves us, all the while the Priest acting only in the role of spiritual father, witness, representative of the Church. The main interaction is between the penitent and the Lord; how is this materially different from what we are supposed to be doing every day of our lives?

« Last Edit: October 25, 2010, 11:10:32 AM by Second Chance » Logged

Michal: "SC, love you in this thread."
Schultz
Christian. Guitarist. Zymurgist. Librarian.
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 6,469


Scion of the McKeesport Becks.


WWW
« Reply #50 on: October 25, 2010, 11:25:17 AM »


For example, the Orthodox Church of Antioch uses our Russian parish church since they have none of their own at the moment.  I was quite shocked when their priest told me that he has not heard a Confession - EVER!  He has been a priest 6 years.  I asked him how this could come about because a large proportion of his people are rather recent immigrants from Lebanon and Egypt and surely they are formed in the tradition of their home countries.  He replied that they are not familiar with confession and actually see it as a Roman Catholic thing.



Father Ambrose,

I have to ask, what has that priest done to educate his flock on the importance of confession, tied to communion or not? 
Logged

"Hearing a nun's confession is like being stoned to death with popcorn." --Abp. Fulton Sheen
Iconodule
Uranopolitan
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA (Diocese of Eastern Pennsylvania)
Posts: 7,006


"My god is greater."


« Reply #51 on: October 25, 2010, 11:26:58 AM »

I have to object to any suggestion that a parish that does not practice "one confession= one communion" is on a slippery slope to no confessions at all.
Logged

"A riddle or the cricket's cry
Is to doubt a fit reply." - William Blake
SakranMM
Elder
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Eastern Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: Antiochian
Posts: 327

Most Holy Theotokos, save us!


« Reply #52 on: October 25, 2010, 11:31:06 AM »

@ Punch:  Yes, I do sin.  But I don't obsess over every transgression (not saying those who practice weekly confession do); I simply confess as needed, which is different with each person.  But again, the priest's discipline will play a part.

@ Irish Hermit:  I think both things you mentioned are extremes; those going to communion without at least a recent confession need to be taught and counseled; likewise, those equating one confession = 1 communion need to realize that, while this is practiced usually in Slavic churches, this is not necessarily the universal tradition of the Church.  These extremes tend to engender two possibilities:  either approaching communion so casually as to not correctly prepare oneself, or holding the Eucharist to such a point that we hardly every approaching the chalice.  I believe that, while it may be helpful to some extent, itemizing and categorizing our sins each and every week can also lead to psychological problems, b/c we're focusing more on the sin than on the preparation to receive our Lord and Savior.  It tends to make confession a legal requirement rather than specifically a healing sacrament.  How did we do it in the early Church?  People confessed and joined the order of penitents when they committed one of the "big" sins - apostasy, murder, adultery, etc... There was no such thing as privatized confession until much later; true, confessional practices have evolved, and this must be respected, but we need to be aware of the roots of the sacrament as well as far as history is concerned.  

Communion requires preparation, to be sure.  That includes confession of some sort of regularity, fasting, prayer, charitible works, etc...  However, it would be demonic to see these things as making us "worthy" of communion.  We prepare ourselves as best as we can, but to rely on it is not exactly spiritually healthy.

Let me pose an example; say a person confesses every Saturday night in order to approach communion on Sunday morning.  Now, say that person, for whatever reason, could not come to church on Saturday, and had no opportunity to confess during the week due to work or whatever.  Say they prepared themselves in ever other way - fasted, said the prayers, did their best to avoid sin, confessed to God in their prayers when they did fall.  I would have an issue with any pastor who would bar this person from communion simply b/c they did not fulfill the legal obligation of confession.

I know people will continue to do what their parish practices, and that's fine; but we need to be aware of other points of view as well, and be open to at least considering them.
« Last Edit: October 25, 2010, 11:33:21 AM by SakranMM » Logged

"And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us..."
username!
Section Moderator
Protokentarchos
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Ukrainian Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Pennsylvaniadoxy
Posts: 5,064



« Reply #53 on: October 25, 2010, 01:41:43 PM »

OCA liturgics are ROCOR Litugics lite.  There has to be something said for ROCOR Liturgics, the word thorough comes to mind.  
« Last Edit: October 25, 2010, 01:44:10 PM by username! » Logged

Punch
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian
Jurisdiction: Body of Christ
Posts: 5,382



« Reply #54 on: October 25, 2010, 02:30:42 PM »


Let me pose an example; say a person confesses every Saturday night in order to approach communion on Sunday morning.  Now, say that person, for whatever reason, could not come to church on Saturday, and had no opportunity to confess during the week due to work or whatever.  Say they prepared themselves in ever other way - fasted, said the prayers, did their best to avoid sin, confessed to God in their prayers when they did fall.  I would have an issue with any pastor who would bar this person from communion simply b/c they did not fulfill the legal obligation of confession.

 

In the situation above, the Priests that I have known will give him a blessing to commune, or hear his confession in the morning (if the individual so desired).  Where there is a will, there is a way.  I have yet to read a good reason not to confess, just excuses for why people do not.  I guess the question that I have is this: if a person truly has repented for his sins, and has indeed gone through the prayers and canon prior to communion, why would they not desire the sacrament of confession and absolution?  There is a difference between can’t (as in your example above), and won’t. 
Logged

I would be happy to agree with you, but then both of us would be wrong.
jah777
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Posts: 1,858


« Reply #55 on: October 25, 2010, 02:45:02 PM »

Funny, my second meeting with my spiritual father, after expressing my desire to convert, walked me over to the parish bookstore, grabbed a Jordanville prayer book and said, "Ok, here is your prayer rule."  Smiley 

Wow, your prayer rule is to read the entire Jordanville prayer book every day!  I'm very impressed.   Wink
« Last Edit: October 25, 2010, 02:45:30 PM by jah777 » Logged
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,167


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #56 on: October 25, 2010, 03:55:48 PM »


Let me pose an example; say a person confesses every Saturday night in order to approach communion on Sunday morning.  Now, say that person, for whatever reason, could not come to church on Saturday, and had no opportunity to confess during the week due to work or whatever.  Say they prepared themselves in ever other way - fasted, said the prayers, did their best to avoid sin, confessed to God in their prayers when they did fall.  I would have an issue with any pastor who would bar this person from communion simply b/c they did not fulfill the legal obligation of confession.

 

In the situation above, the Priests that I have known will give him a blessing to commune, or hear his confession in the morning (if the individual so desired).  Where there is a will, there is a way.  I have yet to read a good reason not to confess, just excuses for why people do not.  I guess the question that I have is this: if a person truly has repented for his sins, and has indeed gone through the prayers and canon prior to communion, why would they not desire the sacrament of confession and absolution?
But why do you see absolution as necessary before receiving Communion? Does it somehow make us "worthy" to receive the Holy Mysteries? Aren't the Holy Mysteries given to us "for the remission of his/her sins and unto life everlasting", precisely with the knowledge that we are sinners unworthy to receive them? So why is absolution a necessary prerequisite for receiving Holy Communion?
Logged
Punch
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian
Jurisdiction: Body of Christ
Posts: 5,382



« Reply #57 on: October 25, 2010, 05:14:52 PM »

But why do you see absolution as necessary before receiving Communion? Does it somehow make us "worthy" to receive the Holy Mysteries? Aren't the Holy Mysteries given to us "for the remission of his/her sins and unto life everlasting", precisely with the knowledge that we are sinners unworthy to receive them? So why is absolution a necessary prerequisite for receiving Holy Communion?

Why?  Because that is the Tradition of my Church, and was also the Tradition of the Church that I was raised in.  I guess that I look for ways to follow the Church’s Traditions, not ways to escape them.  The Scriptures state:

--Whoever eats this bread or drinks this cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. 

Absolution allows me to approach the Body and Blood of Christ in a prepared, and if you want to use the word, “worthy” manner.  I approach with the knowledge that my sins have been forgiven, and this forgiveness is sealed by the partaking of the Body and Blood of Christ shed for those sins.  If you don’t feel this is necessary, then by all means ignore it and do whatever you want (or are allowed to get away with).. 
Logged

I would be happy to agree with you, but then both of us would be wrong.
Marc1152
Toumarches
************
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: Rocor
Posts: 12,798


Probiotic .. Antibiotic


« Reply #58 on: October 25, 2010, 05:43:22 PM »

I must say, I am quite attracted to that custom of confessing before every communion.
Why?
I find that every week (except the week after I confess), I approach the chalice with a little bit of guilt over small sins....mostly thoughts.
You don't think the prayers of general confession right before Communion address those sins?

I would think that the prayers for preparation are a form of confession.  However, if one really believes that what they are praying is true, would they not want the absolution from the Priest?  When it comes to Confession, my repentance and tears came before I confessed to the Priest.  It is the sacramental absolution that I believe to be important for being prepared for communion.


Can we for a moment consider the Priest himself? He does not have recourse to private confession every week and yet he undoubtedly sins between communions. You might think that a priest is somehow different and I will agree with you. I will say that his "job," his vocation, gives him the opportunity, as a practical matter, to pray more, self-audit more, confess and correct more. But, he is equal to anyone before the chalice and thus is accountable to the Lord for his relationship with Him, to include being prepared properly for communion. Please note that the key is proper preparation. We all know what that means and the Church does help us to stay on course--whatever several variations may be. So, all these differing approaches to preparation are one thing, and the severe difference between the laity and the clergy is another thing.

I think that the practice of confession/absolution/communion cycle is actually the easier way for the lay person. It takes away the personal responsibility to pray, self-audit, confess and correct--just like a priest. After all, you can mess up as much as you can, it does not make a difference because just before taking communion you can go to the priest, confess and receive absolution! And, the only thing that you would have to do is to keep your act clean until communion! And, suppose that you do not keep yourself completely sinless until communion. Why, you can have recourse to the prayers before communion, which are said most conveniently just before communion.

I know that these words will grate on some folks' nerves. I have purposely used sarcasm to make my point that our main task is to have a relationship with the Holy Trinity. Put another way, it is most important to act like a fully formed Christian and not as a lamb that must be directed by the shepherd and his dogs (I know that this is a most unfortunate imagery but I was thinking of a NOVA show on dogs where it showed how utterly impossible it would be raise sheep in Scotland without the dogs). In any case, this posting is proof positive why I am such a poor communicator in these matters.

Father Alexander Schmemann of blessed memory looked at our Holy Mystery of Penance/Communion and saw something in it that most folks kind of overlook. To Father Alexander it was a scandal that (a) when he had confessed an entire congregation, not one of them actually confessed a sin to him, and (b) only the priest took communion. He knew that in the the early Church everybody took communion, as attested to by the Church Fathers. He also knew that this Holy Mystery was used primarily as a Sacrament of Reconciliation for those Christians who had lost their relationship with the Lord and His Body for serious sins/shortcomings. After all, everybody sins and yet for most, preeminently the priests and bishops, the pre-communion preparations (of course starting earlier than the pre-communion prayers just before communion) were sufficient; most folks did not confess to a priest and receive absolution from him prior to communion--just like the priest himself!

Of course, there are good reasons for somebody to require the confession/absolution/communion cycle. For some folks, it may be impossible or very hard to observe a daily rule of prayer, go to services during the week, to attend the services of Sunday (starting with Vespers or Vigil, than to go the Matins or Hours just before the Divine Liturgy), self-audit constantly, and confess and correct constantly. BTW, I have just described what I have figured that that I need to keep on a somewhat even keel. I must confess however that I go through some difficult periods. In any case, I do go the confession at least once every six to eight weeks as prescribed by my priest but I do go to confession as soon as I can after I fall short in those areas that my Priest has specified and those that I think are serious enough to warrant reconciliation. In any case, in an ordinary Sunday I do approach the chalice, as unworthy as I am, after putting my heart and mind into preparing myself ahead of time. For me at least, going to Vespers on Saturday, going through my weekly self-audit wrap up, and attending the Hours lead to the Divine Liturgy that in my experience has been one continuous conversation/prayer with the Holy Trinity. I tell the Lord many times, and particularly during the pre-communion prayers that the clergy as well as we say, that I am sorry, that I will do better, that I pray that He will help me do that. Lest anyone think that I am any good, I must tell you that I am such a big sinner that I need all of this.

So, we come down to what happens during the Mystery of Confession/Penance/Reconciliation. If anyone has been paying attention, we confess our sins, shortcomings to the Lord, who then absolves us, all the while the Priest acting only in the role of spiritual father, witness, representative of the Church. The main interaction is between the penitent and the Lord; how is this materially different from what we are supposed to be doing every day of our lives?



Actually Priests at least in Rocor will instruct you not to receive communion that week or until the matter is cleared up. So you really cant mess up all you want.
Logged

Your idea has been debunked 1000 times already.. Maybe 1001 will be the charm
Carl Kraeff (Second Chance)
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 6,780



« Reply #59 on: October 25, 2010, 05:56:06 PM »

I must say, I am quite attracted to that custom of confessing before every communion.
Why?
I find that every week (except the week after I confess), I approach the chalice with a little bit of guilt over small sins....mostly thoughts.
You don't think the prayers of general confession right before Communion address those sins?

I would think that the prayers for preparation are a form of confession.  However, if one really believes that what they are praying is true, would they not want the absolution from the Priest?  When it comes to Confession, my repentance and tears came before I confessed to the Priest.  It is the sacramental absolution that I believe to be important for being prepared for communion.


Can we for a moment consider the Priest himself? He does not have recourse to private confession every week and yet he undoubtedly sins between communions. You might think that a priest is somehow different and I will agree with you. I will say that his "job," his vocation, gives him the opportunity, as a practical matter, to pray more, self-audit more, confess and correct more. But, he is equal to anyone before the chalice and thus is accountable to the Lord for his relationship with Him, to include being prepared properly for communion. Please note that the key is proper preparation. We all know what that means and the Church does help us to stay on course--whatever several variations may be. So, all these differing approaches to preparation are one thing, and the severe difference between the laity and the clergy is another thing.

I think that the practice of confession/absolution/communion cycle is actually the easier way for the lay person. It takes away the personal responsibility to pray, self-audit, confess and correct--just like a priest. After all, you can mess up as much as you can, it does not make a difference because just before taking communion you can go to the priest, confess and receive absolution! And, the only thing that you would have to do is to keep your act clean until communion! And, suppose that you do not keep yourself completely sinless until communion. Why, you can have recourse to the prayers before communion, which are said most conveniently just before communion.

I know that these words will grate on some folks' nerves. I have purposely used sarcasm to make my point that our main task is to have a relationship with the Holy Trinity. Put another way, it is most important to act like a fully formed Christian and not as a lamb that must be directed by the shepherd and his dogs (I know that this is a most unfortunate imagery but I was thinking of a NOVA show on dogs where it showed how utterly impossible it would be raise sheep in Scotland without the dogs). In any case, this posting is proof positive why I am such a poor communicator in these matters.

Father Alexander Schmemann of blessed memory looked at our Holy Mystery of Penance/Communion and saw something in it that most folks kind of overlook. To Father Alexander it was a scandal that (a) when he had confessed an entire congregation, not one of them actually confessed a sin to him, and (b) only the priest took communion. He knew that in the the early Church everybody took communion, as attested to by the Church Fathers. He also knew that this Holy Mystery was used primarily as a Sacrament of Reconciliation for those Christians who had lost their relationship with the Lord and His Body for serious sins/shortcomings. After all, everybody sins and yet for most, preeminently the priests and bishops, the pre-communion preparations (of course starting earlier than the pre-communion prayers just before communion) were sufficient; most folks did not confess to a priest and receive absolution from him prior to communion--just like the priest himself!

Of course, there are good reasons for somebody to require the confession/absolution/communion cycle. For some folks, it may be impossible or very hard to observe a daily rule of prayer, go to services during the week, to attend the services of Sunday (starting with Vespers or Vigil, than to go the Matins or Hours just before the Divine Liturgy), self-audit constantly, and confess and correct constantly. BTW, I have just described what I have figured that that I need to keep on a somewhat even keel. I must confess however that I go through some difficult periods. In any case, I do go the confession at least once every six to eight weeks as prescribed by my priest but I do go to confession as soon as I can after I fall short in those areas that my Priest has specified and those that I think are serious enough to warrant reconciliation. In any case, in an ordinary Sunday I do approach the chalice, as unworthy as I am, after putting my heart and mind into preparing myself ahead of time. For me at least, going to Vespers on Saturday, going through my weekly self-audit wrap up, and attending the Hours lead to the Divine Liturgy that in my experience has been one continuous conversation/prayer with the Holy Trinity. I tell the Lord many times, and particularly during the pre-communion prayers that the clergy as well as we say, that I am sorry, that I will do better, that I pray that He will help me do that. Lest anyone think that I am any good, I must tell you that I am such a big sinner that I need all of this.

So, we come down to what happens during the Mystery of Confession/Penance/Reconciliation. If anyone has been paying attention, we confess our sins, shortcomings to the Lord, who then absolves us, all the while the Priest acting only in the role of spiritual father, witness, representative of the Church. The main interaction is between the penitent and the Lord; how is this materially different from what we are supposed to be doing every day of our lives?



Actually Priests at least in Rocor will instruct you not to receive communion that week or until the matter is cleared up. So you really cant mess up all you want.

Yes and this would happen at each jurisdiction. That was not what I was trying to say. First, I was being sarcastic. Second, I was not talking at that point about priests but about any one of us who can "game" this thing without the priest ever knowing about it. Unless, one of the charisma that he receives at his ordination is to know everything that his parishioners think and do.
Logged

Michal: "SC, love you in this thread."
Punch
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian
Jurisdiction: Body of Christ
Posts: 5,382



« Reply #60 on: October 25, 2010, 09:31:54 PM »

Mark wrote:

Actually Priests at least in Rocor will instruct you not to receive communion that week or until the matter is cleared up. So you really cant mess up all you want.

Second Chance wrote:

Yes and this would happen at each jurisdiction. That was not what I was trying to say. First, I was being sarcastic. Second, I was not talking at that point about priests but about any one of us who can "game" this thing without the priest ever knowing about it. Unless, one of the charisma that he receives at his ordination is to know everything that his parishioners think and do.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

And exactly how would this happen in the jurisdictions where confession is only required once per year, or even once per quarter?  Talk about a license to do whatever you want to do!  No chance for the Priest to guide you.  No chance to impose a penance.  As to the person "gaming" the system, they are not fooling God.  If they want to play with fire, they will get burnt.  I don't believe that there is a sin upon a Priest who communes someone to that person's own destruction when they have lied to the Priest, or "gamed" the system.  I worry about the priest who communes someone to their own destruction because he never properly instructed them, or did not enforce Church discipline.   
Logged

I would be happy to agree with you, but then both of us would be wrong.
Irish Hermit
Kibernetski Kaludjer
Warned
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Posts: 10,991


Holy Father Patrick, pray for us


« Reply #61 on: October 25, 2010, 11:27:03 PM »

I saw that some people on this thread implied that they like the "one confession = one communion" rule.

That's fine, do what your priest says and all that, but perhaps caution should be exercised here.  This rule, I think, tends to reduce confession to a "magic pass" that makes us "worthy" of communion.  This is an issue in many churches, especially those of a predominantly ethnic composition (whether Russian or Arab); I think that a healthier approach would be to certainly confess on a regular basis as needed, but not to necessarily make confession a "ticket" we must purchase before going to communion each Sunday.
Dn. Michael

There is no "magic pass", Father Michael.  I would think that the "magic pass' is given to those in the Churches who may freely approach communion without confession.  That is the real "magic pass."

We have seen the results in modern Orthodoxy of no link between confession and communion - the virtual disappearance of the use of the Mystery of Confession in some Orthodox Churches. (The same has happened in the Roman Catholic Church after Vatican II but the disappearance of confession there has several factors.)   

For example, the Orthodox Church of Antioch uses our Russian parish church since they have none of their own at the moment.  I was quite shocked when their priest told me that he has not heard a Confession - EVER!  He has been a priest 6 years.  I asked him how this could come about because a large proportion of his people are rather recent immigrants from Lebanon and Egypt and surely they are formed in the tradition of their home countries.  He replied that they are not familiar with confession and actually see it as a Roman Catholic thing.

So on the basis of "by their fruits ye shall know them" I postulate that the practice of the Slav Churches is preferable.    In the Churches which maintain the link between Confession and Communion, Confession is a regular Sacrament and it is also used outside of the Communion link too - when a person believes he needs to come and confess some serious sin.
Yet, until recently, the Slavic practice was also based on people receiving Communion infrequently, so that even those who confessed before receiving Communion often didn't confess but once or twice per year. No real change in confession frequency there.

This is a bit of muddled thinking. The assumption seems to be that the Slav faithful do not go to confession unless they are/were preparing for communion.  That is not so.  For example (and forgive the crudity of this example) teenagers and young people are strongly advised to go to confession whenever they have a lapse in sexual purity.  This is  not connected with whether or not they are preparing for communion.    And of course it is not just sexual sins for which the faithful seek confession.  It could be theft, violence, drunkenness, envy, lying, etc.
Logged
Irish Hermit
Kibernetski Kaludjer
Warned
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Posts: 10,991


Holy Father Patrick, pray for us


« Reply #62 on: October 25, 2010, 11:30:58 PM »


For example, the Orthodox Church of Antioch uses our Russian parish church since they have none of their own at the moment.  I was quite shocked when their priest told me that he has not heard a Confession - EVER!  He has been a priest 6 years.  I asked him how this could come about because a large proportion of his people are rather recent immigrants from Lebanon and Egypt and surely they are formed in the tradition of their home countries.  He replied that they are not familiar with confession and actually see it as a Roman Catholic thing.



Father Ambrose,

I have to ask, what has that priest done to educate his flock on the importance of confession, tied to communion or not? 

He took counsel from his bishop as to how to handle the situation.
Logged
Irish Hermit
Kibernetski Kaludjer
Warned
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Posts: 10,991


Holy Father Patrick, pray for us


« Reply #63 on: October 25, 2010, 11:41:01 PM »

I have to object to any suggestion that a parish that does not practice "one confession= one communion" is on a slippery slope to no confessions at all.

You can imagine how objectionable I find it that some people think I am handing out "magic passes" for communion.    Embarrassed
Logged
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,167


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #64 on: October 26, 2010, 01:18:52 AM »

But why do you see absolution as necessary before receiving Communion? Does it somehow make us "worthy" to receive the Holy Mysteries? Aren't the Holy Mysteries given to us "for the remission of his/her sins and unto life everlasting", precisely with the knowledge that we are sinners unworthy to receive them? So why is absolution a necessary prerequisite for receiving Holy Communion?

Why?  Because that is the Tradition of my Church, and was also the Tradition of the Church that I was raised in.  I guess that I look for ways to follow the Church’s Traditions, not ways to escape them.
You do realize that the traditions your church inherited regarding the Confession=Communion link are more likely local or regional traditions than Catholic Tradition? Especially considering that the practice developed within the Russian Orthodox Church and really never took hold to anywhere near as widespread a degree in other jurisdictions? I therefore don't think particularly fair your insinuation that those who don't follow your church's local traditions are looking for ways to escape them. You might do better, then, to merely explain why you feel it so important to seek absolution from sins via Confession before you receive Communion and save your smug accusations for another day.

The Scriptures state:

--Whoever eats this bread or drinks this cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord.
Yes, I'm aware of this Scripture, but I'm not sure your interpretation is the only legitimate way to read this passage. One certainly does need to be prepared to receive Communion in a worthy manner, a manner that discerns in the Holy Eucharist Christ's Body and Blood and our unworthiness to receive Him. I just don't see how the absolution of Confession is so necessary to this preparation that we must receive it every time we intend to receive Communion.

Absolution allows me to approach the Body and Blood of Christ in a prepared, and if you want to use the word, “worthy” manner.  I approach with the knowledge that my sins have been forgiven, and this forgiveness is sealed by the partaking of the Body and Blood of Christ shed for those sins.  If you don’t feel this is necessary, then by all means ignore it and do whatever you want (or are allowed to get away with)..
Could you explain why, and without the self-righteous, accusatory tone you so often throw at those who appear to disagree with you? I'm just curious to know your point of view.
Logged
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,167


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #65 on: October 26, 2010, 01:24:39 AM »

I saw that some people on this thread implied that they like the "one confession = one communion" rule.

That's fine, do what your priest says and all that, but perhaps caution should be exercised here.  This rule, I think, tends to reduce confession to a "magic pass" that makes us "worthy" of communion.  This is an issue in many churches, especially those of a predominantly ethnic composition (whether Russian or Arab); I think that a healthier approach would be to certainly confess on a regular basis as needed, but not to necessarily make confession a "ticket" we must purchase before going to communion each Sunday.
Dn. Michael

There is no "magic pass", Father Michael.  I would think that the "magic pass' is given to those in the Churches who may freely approach communion without confession.  That is the real "magic pass."

We have seen the results in modern Orthodoxy of no link between confession and communion - the virtual disappearance of the use of the Mystery of Confession in some Orthodox Churches. (The same has happened in the Roman Catholic Church after Vatican II but the disappearance of confession there has several factors.)  

For example, the Orthodox Church of Antioch uses our Russian parish church since they have none of their own at the moment.  I was quite shocked when their priest told me that he has not heard a Confession - EVER!  He has been a priest 6 years.  I asked him how this could come about because a large proportion of his people are rather recent immigrants from Lebanon and Egypt and surely they are formed in the tradition of their home countries.  He replied that they are not familiar with confession and actually see it as a Roman Catholic thing.

So on the basis of "by their fruits ye shall know them" I postulate that the practice of the Slav Churches is preferable.    In the Churches which maintain the link between Confession and Communion, Confession is a regular Sacrament and it is also used outside of the Communion link too - when a person believes he needs to come and confess some serious sin.
Yet, until recently, the Slavic practice was also based on people receiving Communion infrequently, so that even those who confessed before receiving Communion often didn't confess but once or twice per year. No real change in confession frequency there.

This is a bit of muddled thinking. The assumption seems to be that the Slav faithful do not go to confession unless they are/were preparing for communion.  That is not so.  For example (and forgive the crudity of this example) teenagers and young people are strongly advised to go to confession whenever they have a lapse in sexual purity.  This is  not connected with whether or not they are preparing for communion.    And of course it is not just sexual sins for which the faithful seek confession.  It could be theft, violence, drunkenness, envy, lying, etc.
But you're speaking from your limited experience, which I'm not here to discount. I'm speaking from my understanding of how the practice of the hard link between Confession and Communion developed within Christian history. Limited as it may be, this perspective still appears to capture a much broader spectrum of understanding than your own personal experience. That, and I never assumed that the Slav faithful do not go to Confession unless they're preparing for Communion. My statement was that those who did receive Communion only twice a year and sought to confess only as part of their preparation for Communion would only confess twice per year.
« Last Edit: October 26, 2010, 01:38:57 AM by PeterTheAleut » Logged
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,167


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #66 on: October 26, 2010, 01:27:55 AM »

A thread I think may shed some light on the discussion occurring here:

Confession before Communion
Logged
Irish Hermit
Kibernetski Kaludjer
Warned
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Posts: 10,991


Holy Father Patrick, pray for us


« Reply #67 on: October 26, 2010, 01:57:54 AM »

[
But you're speaking from your limited experience,

How do you define 'limited experience' in my regard? What constitutes "expansive experience"?

I notice you write that you are only "mildly familiar" with these matters.


PtA:  "I'm mildly familiar with the arguments on both sides of the issue of whether Orthodox should be required to go to Confession before receiving every Communion."

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,8590.0.html
« Last Edit: October 26, 2010, 02:01:11 AM by Irish Hermit » Logged
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,167


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #68 on: October 26, 2010, 03:49:05 AM »

[
But you're speaking from your limited experience,

How do you define 'limited experience' in my regard? What constitutes "expansive experience"?
According to the arguments you put forward to support your pov on this subject, you only have the experience of the situations you've dealt with personally. I think a study of history will give a perspective that covers much more ground in terms of both territory and time. The maxim of St. Vincent of Lerins comes to mind here: everywhere at all times by all the faithful. Regardless of what your personal experience may tell you, I'm not sure it's capable of telling you whether the rule requiring Confession before every Communion was enforced by all Orthodox churches around the world through all time. A historical survey of the practice will show instead that it was developed in Russia during the 17th-19th centuries and that it was largely unknown outside of Russia or before the 17th century.

I notice you write that you are only "mildly familiar" with these matters.
Also note that I said that a few years ago. Things may have changed since then. I also didn't define what I meant by "mildly"; it's you who's making that statement out to mean that I'm mostly ignorant of the subject, for I never said that.
« Last Edit: October 26, 2010, 03:52:07 AM by PeterTheAleut » Logged
Irish Hermit
Kibernetski Kaludjer
Warned
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Posts: 10,991


Holy Father Patrick, pray for us


« Reply #69 on: October 26, 2010, 03:56:47 AM »


According to the arguments you put forward to support your pov on this subject, you only have the experience of the situations you've dealt with personally.


And you know this how?  Because I don't believe it is a good thing to go back to the first centuries and give each Sunday parishioner enough of the consecrated bread to take away and commune themselves at home on the intervening weekdays without a confession in sight whether public or private?
Logged
Irish Hermit
Kibernetski Kaludjer
Warned
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Posts: 10,991


Holy Father Patrick, pray for us


« Reply #70 on: October 26, 2010, 04:07:02 AM »

The vast majority of Orthodox Christians live with a requirement for Confession before Communion - Russians, Serbs, Romanians, Bulgarians.... We also practice a period of fasting before Communion, which can vary from 2 days to 6 days.  We also have extra prayers to read the evenings before Communion.

My question is, WHY are there Orthodox people out there (the minority who don't want this connection between Confession and Communion) for whom this is such a hot button.  They seem to have no idea of "live and let live."  Instead they are quite vehement in attacking those of us who adhere to the majority practice.   What inspires them to belittle our traditional ways?  Is it just the link with Confession which they wish to break or is it also the link with fasting and prayer?  What kind of preparation are they suggesting for Holy Communion?
Logged
Irish Hermit
Kibernetski Kaludjer
Warned
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Posts: 10,991


Holy Father Patrick, pray for us


« Reply #71 on: October 26, 2010, 04:14:57 AM »


According to the arguments you put forward to support your pov on this subject, you only have the experience of the situations you've dealt with personally. I think a study of history will give a perspective that covers much more ground in terms of both territory and time.

A year or two back we had a similar discussion and I have this message in my archives (cannot find it by a forum search.)

These were not customs which resulted from the Synodal period in Russia. Russia simply shared the universal customs of the Orthodox Churches.

For example at the time of Peter the Great these Russian customs [of preparing for communion] were also the norm throughout Greece and Mount Athos and the Ecumenical Patriarchate.  I don't know about Jerusalem, Alexandria and Antioch but since they came within the Greek sphere these customs probably applied there too.

The Kollyvades movement coincides roughly with Peter's reign.  Their desire to introduce frequent communion caused uproar and division on the Holy Mountain.  It was so disruptive that several Patriarchs tried to intervene and pour oil on troubled waters.

For example there is this from Patriarch Theodosius II to the Athonite monks
in about 1770:

"He wrote to the monks of Athos saying that the early Christians
received Holy Communion every Sunday, while those of the subsequent
period received it every forty days, after penance; he advised
that whoever felt himself prepared should follow the former, whereas
if he did not he should follow the latter."

http://www.synodinresistance.org/pdfs/2008/11/29/20081129bMannafromAthos.pdf
Logged
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,167


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #72 on: October 26, 2010, 04:24:15 AM »


According to the arguments you put forward to support your pov on this subject, you only have the experience of the situations you've dealt with personally.


And you know this how?
As I said, I'm speaking only in accordance with what I've read on this thread.

Because I don't believe it is a good thing to go back to the first centuries and give each Sunday parishioner enough of the consecrated bread to take away and commune themselves at home on the intervening weekdays without a confession in sight whether public or private?
Why the absurd straw man, Fr. Ambrose? Huh No one here ever mentioned such a practice.
Logged
Irish Hermit
Kibernetski Kaludjer
Warned
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Posts: 10,991


Holy Father Patrick, pray for us


« Reply #73 on: October 26, 2010, 04:29:31 AM »


According to the arguments you put forward to support your pov on this subject, you only have the experience of the situations you've dealt with personally.


And you know this how?
As I said, I'm speaking only in accordance with what I've read on this thread.

Message 71 above should help correct this misapprehension, as also having a look at my contributions in older threads on this topic.
Logged
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,167


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #74 on: October 26, 2010, 04:35:55 AM »

The vast majority of Orthodox Christians live with a requirement for Confession before Communion - Russians, Serbs, Romanians, Bulgarians.... We also practice a period of fasting before Communion, which can vary from 2 days to 6 days.  We also have extra prayers to read the evenings before Communion.
This appeal to the majority is also very deceptive in that the vast majority of Orthodox Christians, because of various circumstances beyond their control, are also of Slavic origin. It ignores the reason why the numbers of Orthodox Christians in what used to be the Byzantine Empire diminished so drastically over the centuries since the fall of the empire in 1453 (such things as Turkish persecution, for instance).

My question is, WHY are there Orthodox people out there (the minority who don't want this connection between Confession and Communion) for whom this is such a hot button.  They seem to have no idea of "live and let live."  Instead they are quite vehement in attacking those of us who adhere to the majority practice.
Who's attacking you, Fr. Ambrose?

What inspires them to belittle our traditional ways?
Maybe because they're not so traditional as you may like to think? And because they're built on a bad theology that perverts the Sacraments?

Majority practice due to the accidents of history and customary practice since about 1600 or later don't make a practice pastorally sound. (Somehow I remember Pravoslavbob arguing this with you.)

Is it just the link with Confession which they wish to break or is it also the link with fasting and prayer?  What kind of preparation are they suggesting for Holy Communion?
Again, why the straw man, Fr. Ambrose?
Logged
Irish Hermit
Kibernetski Kaludjer
Warned
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Posts: 10,991


Holy Father Patrick, pray for us


« Reply #75 on: October 26, 2010, 04:38:05 AM »


According to the arguments you put forward to support your pov on this subject, you only have the experience of the situations you've dealt with personally.


And you know this how?
As I said, I'm speaking only in accordance with what I've read on this thread.

Because I don't believe it is a good thing to go back to the first centuries and give each Sunday parishioner enough of the consecrated bread to take away and commune themselves at home on the intervening weekdays without a confession in sight whether public or private?
Why the absurd straw man, Fr. Ambrose? Huh No one here ever mentioned such a practice.

Which centuries should we in the 21st century now look to as providing the guidelines and norms for our customs in receiving communion?  The 5th or 6th?  the 10th or 15th or 18th?  And which Churches?   I think I have been accused of historical ignorance and I await enlightenment.  Is there historical material from these centuries which describes their practices?
Logged
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,167


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #76 on: October 26, 2010, 04:40:14 AM »


According to the arguments you put forward to support your pov on this subject, you only have the experience of the situations you've dealt with personally.


And you know this how?
As I said, I'm speaking only in accordance with what I've read on this thread.

Message 71 above should help correct this misapprehension, as also having a look at my contributions in older threads on this topic.
Yes, I remember that discussion, and I remember also how Pravoslavbob argued against the implications you hoped to point out in your treatment of this piece of history.
Logged
Irish Hermit
Kibernetski Kaludjer
Warned
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Posts: 10,991


Holy Father Patrick, pray for us


« Reply #77 on: October 26, 2010, 04:41:01 AM »


[My question is, WHY are there Orthodox people out there (the minority who don't want this connection between Confession and Communion) for whom this is such a hot button.  They seem to have no idea of "live and let live."  Instead they are quite vehement in attacking those of us who adhere to the majority practice.
Who's attacking you, Fr. Ambrose?

You cannot have noticed the claim that we use confession as a "magic pass" for holy communion !  I do find that insulting.
« Last Edit: October 26, 2010, 04:42:10 AM by Irish Hermit » Logged
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,167


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #78 on: October 26, 2010, 04:41:47 AM »


According to the arguments you put forward to support your pov on this subject, you only have the experience of the situations you've dealt with personally.


And you know this how?
As I said, I'm speaking only in accordance with what I've read on this thread.

Because I don't believe it is a good thing to go back to the first centuries and give each Sunday parishioner enough of the consecrated bread to take away and commune themselves at home on the intervening weekdays without a confession in sight whether public or private?
Why the absurd straw man, Fr. Ambrose? Huh No one here ever mentioned such a practice.

Which centuries should we in the 21st century now look to as providing the guidelines and norms for our customs in receiving communion?  The 5th or 6th?  the 10th or 15th or 18th?  And which Churches?   I think I have been accused of historical ignorance and I await enlightenment.  Is there historical material from these centuries which describes their practices?
Why should we enforce the rules of 19th century Russian Orthodoxy upon all Orthodox Christians everywhere today?
Logged
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,167


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #79 on: October 26, 2010, 04:42:25 AM »


[My question is, WHY are there Orthodox people out there (the minority who don't want this connection between Confession and Communion) for whom this is such a hot button.  They seem to have no idea of "live and let live."  Instead they are quite vehement in attacking those of us who adhere to the majority practice.
Who's attacking you, Fr. Ambrose?

You cannot have noticed the claim that we use confession as a "magic pass" for holy communion !
To my knowledge, you're the only person who sees that as an actual attack on your person.

This rule, I think, tends to reduce confession to a "magic pass" that makes us "worthy" of communion.  This is an issue in many churches, especially those of a predominantly ethnic composition (whether Russian or Arab); I think that a healthier approach would be to certainly confess on a regular basis as needed, but not to necessarily make confession a "ticket" we must purchase before going to communion each Sunday.
Fr. Dn. Michael made a statement regarding his problems with the rule requiring Confession before every Communion. He did not accuse anyone, especially not you, of using confession as a "magic pass" for Holy Communion. In fact, he did not make any charges against any persons at all. The only attack one could possibly see in his statement is the attack one reads into his statement, for there's simply no personal accusation there whatsoever.
« Last Edit: October 26, 2010, 04:48:58 AM by PeterTheAleut » Logged
Irish Hermit
Kibernetski Kaludjer
Warned
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Posts: 10,991


Holy Father Patrick, pray for us


« Reply #80 on: October 26, 2010, 04:45:09 AM »


According to the arguments you put forward to support your pov on this subject, you only have the experience of the situations you've dealt with personally.


And you know this how?
As I said, I'm speaking only in accordance with what I've read on this thread.

Because I don't believe it is a good thing to go back to the first centuries and give each Sunday parishioner enough of the consecrated bread to take away and commune themselves at home on the intervening weekdays without a confession in sight whether public or private?
Why the absurd straw man, Fr. Ambrose? Huh No one here ever mentioned such a practice.

Which centuries should we in the 21st century now look to as providing the guidelines and norms for our customs in receiving communion?  The 5th or 6th?  the 10th or 15th or 18th?  And which Churches?   I think I have been accused of historical ignorance and I await enlightenment.  Is there historical material from these centuries which describes their practices?
Why should we enforce the rules of 19th century Russian Orthodoxy upon all Orthodox Christians everywhere today?

Have we seen evidence that Russians and Serbs and Romanians, etc. are making efforts to force our traditions on the rest of the Orthodox world?   It would seem to be the other way around.  We are belittled for maintaining our traditions.
Logged
Irish Hermit
Kibernetski Kaludjer
Warned
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Posts: 10,991


Holy Father Patrick, pray for us


« Reply #81 on: October 26, 2010, 04:47:34 AM »


[My question is, WHY are there Orthodox people out there (the minority who don't want this connection between Confession and Communion) for whom this is such a hot button.  They seem to have no idea of "live and let live."  Instead they are quite vehement in attacking those of us who adhere to the majority practice.
Who's attacking you, Fr. Ambrose?

You cannot have noticed the claim that we use confession as a "magic pass" for holy communion !
To my knowledge, you're the only person who sees that as an actual attack on your person.

Please note my use of the first person pronoun in the plural.  It is being used because the term "magic pass" was not specific to me.
Logged
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,167


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #82 on: October 26, 2010, 04:50:33 AM »


According to the arguments you put forward to support your pov on this subject, you only have the experience of the situations you've dealt with personally.


And you know this how?
As I said, I'm speaking only in accordance with what I've read on this thread.

Because I don't believe it is a good thing to go back to the first centuries and give each Sunday parishioner enough of the consecrated bread to take away and commune themselves at home on the intervening weekdays without a confession in sight whether public or private?
Why the absurd straw man, Fr. Ambrose? Huh No one here ever mentioned such a practice.

Which centuries should we in the 21st century now look to as providing the guidelines and norms for our customs in receiving communion?  The 5th or 6th?  the 10th or 15th or 18th?  And which Churches?   I think I have been accused of historical ignorance and I await enlightenment.  Is there historical material from these centuries which describes their practices?
Why should we enforce the rules of 19th century Russian Orthodoxy upon all Orthodox Christians everywhere today?

Have we seen evidence that Russians and Serbs and Romanians, etc. are making efforts to force our traditions on the rest of the Orthodox world?   It would seem to be the other way around.  We are belittled for maintaining our traditions.
No one's belittling you or your co-religionists, Fr. Ambrose. Yes, we're criticizing the practice of requiring Confession before every Communion, but we're not belittling you or those who practice it.

We discuss our differing perspectives on various Orthodox practices, which will include mutual criticism of each other's others points of view. That's healthy, and that's what this discussion forum is for. There's no reason to feel insulted when someone speaks his mind about a particular practice and says why he feels uncomfortable with it.
« Last Edit: October 26, 2010, 04:54:56 AM by PeterTheAleut » Logged
Irish Hermit
Kibernetski Kaludjer
Warned
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Posts: 10,991


Holy Father Patrick, pray for us


« Reply #83 on: October 26, 2010, 04:59:36 AM »


According to the arguments you put forward to support your pov on this subject, you only have the experience of the situations you've dealt with personally.


And you know this how?
As I said, I'm speaking only in accordance with what I've read on this thread.

Because I don't believe it is a good thing to go back to the first centuries and give each Sunday parishioner enough of the consecrated bread to take away and commune themselves at home on the intervening weekdays without a confession in sight whether public or private?
Why the absurd straw man, Fr. Ambrose? Huh No one here ever mentioned such a practice.

Which centuries should we in the 21st century now look to as providing the guidelines and norms for our customs in receiving communion?  The 5th or 6th?  the 10th or 15th or 18th?  And which Churches?   I think I have been accused of historical ignorance and I await enlightenment.  Is there historical material from these centuries which describes their practices?
Why should we enforce the rules of 19th century Russian Orthodoxy upon all Orthodox Christians everywhere today?

Have we seen evidence that Russians and Serbs and Romanians, etc. are making efforts to force our traditions on the rest of the Orthodox world?   It would seem to be the other way around.  We are belittled for maintaining our traditions.
No one's belittling you or your co-religionists, Fr. Ambrose. Yes, we're criticizing the practice of requiring Confession before every Communion, but we're not belittling you or those who practice it.

You have attempted, it seems to me, to belittle me on one or two occasions by saying that I am historically ignorant of the customs of other centuries in preparing for holy communion.

I am hoping that you will refer us, with substantiating material, to whatever specific centuries and Churches you believe we should be piously following in our days?
Logged
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,167


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #84 on: October 26, 2010, 05:12:40 AM »


According to the arguments you put forward to support your pov on this subject, you only have the experience of the situations you've dealt with personally.


And you know this how?
As I said, I'm speaking only in accordance with what I've read on this thread.

Because I don't believe it is a good thing to go back to the first centuries and give each Sunday parishioner enough of the consecrated bread to take away and commune themselves at home on the intervening weekdays without a confession in sight whether public or private?
Why the absurd straw man, Fr. Ambrose? Huh No one here ever mentioned such a practice.

Which centuries should we in the 21st century now look to as providing the guidelines and norms for our customs in receiving communion?  The 5th or 6th?  the 10th or 15th or 18th?  And which Churches?   I think I have been accused of historical ignorance and I await enlightenment.  Is there historical material from these centuries which describes their practices?
Why should we enforce the rules of 19th century Russian Orthodoxy upon all Orthodox Christians everywhere today?

Have we seen evidence that Russians and Serbs and Romanians, etc. are making efforts to force our traditions on the rest of the Orthodox world?   It would seem to be the other way around.  We are belittled for maintaining our traditions.
No one's belittling you or your co-religionists, Fr. Ambrose. Yes, we're criticizing the practice of requiring Confession before every Communion, but we're not belittling you or those who practice it.

You have attempted, it seems to me, to belittle me on one or two occasions by saying that I am historically ignorant of the customs of other centuries in preparing for holy communion.
I usually don't read a statement of my ignorance as personally belittling; it just means that I don't know something someone else knows. There's nothing humiliating about that. Likewise, I don't intend my implications of someone else's ignorance of a matter to be personally belittling.

I am hoping that you will refer us, with substantiating material, to whatever specific centuries and Churches you believe we should be piously following in our days?
I'm not going to, since you're now putting words into my mouth. I never said there's some specific time or place whose practices we should be following today.
« Last Edit: October 26, 2010, 05:13:11 AM by PeterTheAleut » Logged
Carl Kraeff (Second Chance)
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 6,780



« Reply #85 on: October 26, 2010, 09:32:16 AM »

Mark wrote:

Actually Priests at least in Rocor will instruct you not to receive communion that week or until the matter is cleared up. So you really cant mess up all you want.

Second Chance wrote:

Yes and this would happen at each jurisdiction. That was not what I was trying to say. First, I was being sarcastic. Second, I was not talking at that point about priests but about any one of us who can "game" this thing without the priest ever knowing about it. Unless, one of the charisma that he receives at his ordination is to know everything that his parishioners think and do.

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

And exactly how would this happen in the jurisdictions where confession is only required once per year, or even once per quarter?  Talk about a license to do whatever you want to do!  No chance for the Priest to guide you.  No chance to impose a penance.  As to the person "gaming" the system, they are not fooling God.  If they want to play with fire, they will get burnt.  I don't believe that there is a sin upon a Priest who communes someone to that person's own destruction when they have lied to the Priest, or "gamed" the system.  I worry about the priest who communes someone to their own destruction because he never properly instructed them, or did not enforce Church discipline.   

I wonder if we are talking around each other. I wanted to emphasize the importance of the individual to prepare himself for communion. So do you. It seems to me that the only difference that we have is that I think that one can confess directly to God and receive pardon and healing through communion for minor shortcomings, while you feel that it is necessary to go to confess to the priest and receive absolution from him no matter what the immensity of the shortcoming is. I would have no problem with your approach if it is a private rule; I just do not think that it should be standard praxis for all.
Logged

Michal: "SC, love you in this thread."
Punch
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian
Jurisdiction: Body of Christ
Posts: 5,382



« Reply #86 on: October 26, 2010, 09:36:05 AM »


According to the arguments you put forward to support your pov on this subject, you only have the experience of the situations you've dealt with personally.


And you know this how?
As I said, I'm speaking only in accordance with what I've read on this thread.

Because I don't believe it is a good thing to go back to the first centuries and give each Sunday parishioner enough of the consecrated bread to take away and commune themselves at home on the intervening weekdays without a confession in sight whether public or private?
Why the absurd straw man, Fr. Ambrose? Huh No one here ever mentioned such a practice.

Which centuries should we in the 21st century now look to as providing the guidelines and norms for our customs in receiving communion?  The 5th or 6th?  the 10th or 15th or 18th?  And which Churches?   I think I have been accused of historical ignorance and I await enlightenment.  Is there historical material from these centuries which describes their practices?
Why should we enforce the rules of 19th century Russian Orthodoxy upon all Orthodox Christians everywhere today?

Have we seen evidence that Russians and Serbs and Romanians, etc. are making efforts to force our traditions on the rest of the Orthodox world?   It would seem to be the other way around.  We are belittled for maintaining our traditions.

Not to mention that we are self righteous, too. 
Logged

I would be happy to agree with you, but then both of us would be wrong.
podkarpatska
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: ACROD
Posts: 8,329


SS Cyril and Methodius Church, Mercer, PA


WWW
« Reply #87 on: October 26, 2010, 09:46:31 AM »


This discussion is a good example of the future difficulties a unified Church structure in the USA will pose to the faithful.  To me that issue (admin. unity) is grey rather than black and white......It is a tough sell to the rest of Christianity that we Orthodox are 'one' faith when we go on and on amongst ourselves treating regional practice traditions as if they were matters of dogmatic import. Oh well.....
Logged
Punch
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Faith: Christian
Jurisdiction: Body of Christ
Posts: 5,382



« Reply #88 on: October 26, 2010, 09:48:19 AM »

 
But why do you see absolution as necessary before receiving Communion? Does it somehow make us "worthy" to receive the Holy Mysteries? Aren't the Holy Mysteries given to us "for the remission of his/her sins and unto life everlasting", precisely with the knowledge that we are sinners unworthy to receive them? So why is absolution a necessary prerequisite for receiving Holy Communion?

Why?  Because that is the Tradition of my Church, and was also the Tradition of the Church that I was raised in.  I guess that I look for ways to follow the Church’s Traditions, not ways to escape them.
You do realize that the traditions your church inherited regarding the Confession=Communion link are more likely local or regional traditions than Catholic Tradition? Especially considering that the practice developed within the Russian Orthodox Church and really never took hold to anywhere near as widespread a degree in other jurisdictions? I therefore don't think particularly fair your insinuation that those who don't follow your church's local traditions are looking for ways to escape them. You might do better, then, to merely explain why you feel it so important to seek absolution from sins via Confession before you receive Communion and save your smug accusations for another day.

The Scriptures state:

--Whoever eats this bread or drinks this cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord.
Yes, I'm aware of this Scripture, but I'm not sure your interpretation is the only legitimate way to read this passage. One certainly does need to be prepared to receive Communion in a worthy manner, a manner that discerns in the Holy Eucharist Christ's Body and Blood and our unworthiness to receive Him. I just don't see how the absolution of Confession is so necessary to this preparation that we must receive it every time we intend to receive Communion.

Absolution allows me to approach the Body and Blood of Christ in a prepared, and if you want to use the word, “worthy” manner.  I approach with the knowledge that my sins have been forgiven, and this forgiveness is sealed by the partaking of the Body and Blood of Christ shed for those sins.  If you don’t feel this is necessary, then by all means ignore it and do whatever you want (or are allowed to get away with)..
Could you explain why, and without the self-righteous, accusatory tone you so often throw at those who appear to disagree with you? I'm just curious to know your point of view.

I do not intend to discuss this matter further with you.  We are told not to cast our pearls before swine in the Scriptures.  St. Isaac of Syria also tells us not to debate the Faith.  My beliefs come from more than 30 years of study of the Scriptures, the Fathers, parochial schooling, and post secondary education in theology.  I have also spoken extensively with priests and monks of most of the local “jurisdictions” here in the United States, as well as those of some of the “mother” countries.  I don’t have time to go through an academic exercise with you on every matter of conscience and Faith.  It is obvious from reading your posts over the years that you have little regard for Traditional Orthodoxy, and I have none for modernist Orthodoxy.  As such, it is probably best, for both of our Salvation that we refrain from further discussion.

Is that enough “self righteousness” for you?
Logged

I would be happy to agree with you, but then both of us would be wrong.
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,167


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #89 on: October 26, 2010, 02:00:03 PM »

But why do you see absolution as necessary before receiving Communion? Does it somehow make us "worthy" to receive the Holy Mysteries? Aren't the Holy Mysteries given to us "for the remission of his/her sins and unto life everlasting", precisely with the knowledge that we are sinners unworthy to receive them? So why is absolution a necessary prerequisite for receiving Holy Communion?

Why?  Because that is the Tradition of my Church, and was also the Tradition of the Church that I was raised in.  I guess that I look for ways to follow the Church’s Traditions, not ways to escape them.
You do realize that the traditions your church inherited regarding the Confession=Communion link are more likely local or regional traditions than Catholic Tradition? Especially considering that the practice developed within the Russian Orthodox Church and really never took hold to anywhere near as widespread a degree in other jurisdictions? I therefore don't think particularly fair your insinuation that those who don't follow your church's local traditions are looking for ways to escape them. You might do better, then, to merely explain why you feel it so important to seek absolution from sins via Confession before you receive Communion and save your smug accusations for another day.

The Scriptures state:

--Whoever eats this bread or drinks this cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord.
Yes, I'm aware of this Scripture, but I'm not sure your interpretation is the only legitimate way to read this passage. One certainly does need to be prepared to receive Communion in a worthy manner, a manner that discerns in the Holy Eucharist Christ's Body and Blood and our unworthiness to receive Him. I just don't see how the absolution of Confession is so necessary to this preparation that we must receive it every time we intend to receive Communion.

Absolution allows me to approach the Body and Blood of Christ in a prepared, and if you want to use the word, “worthy” manner.  I approach with the knowledge that my sins have been forgiven, and this forgiveness is sealed by the partaking of the Body and Blood of Christ shed for those sins.  If you don’t feel this is necessary, then by all means ignore it and do whatever you want (or are allowed to get away with)..
Could you explain why, and without the self-righteous, accusatory tone you so often throw at those who appear to disagree with you? I'm just curious to know your point of view.

I do not intend to discuss this matter further with you.  We are told not to cast our pearls before swine in the Scriptures.  St. Isaac of Syria also tells us not to debate the Faith.  My beliefs come from more than 30 years of study of the Scriptures, the Fathers, parochial schooling, and post secondary education in theology.  I have also spoken extensively with priests and monks of most of the local “jurisdictions” here in the United States, as well as those of some of the “mother” countries.  I don’t have time to go through an academic exercise with you on every matter of conscience and Faith.  It is obvious from reading your posts over the years that you have little regard for Traditional Orthodoxy, and I have none for modernist Orthodoxy.
It's too bad you see it necessary to frame the discussion of Confession=Communion within the tension between "Traditionalist" and "Modernist" Orthodoxies.
Logged
Tags: confession 
Pages: « 1 2 3 »  All   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.18 | SMF © 2013, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!
Page created in 0.219 seconds with 72 queries.