OrthodoxChristianity.net
October 23, 2014, 04:44:02 PM *
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 4  All   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: The Russian Orthodox church Not spreading the faith  (Read 7526 times) Average Rating: 0
0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
filipinopilgrim
Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 130


« Reply #135 on: March 15, 2012, 01:24:30 AM »

Quote
Please quote the definitive document concerning Father Nicholas Gruner's final degree of suspension and/or defrocking.

See this: http://www.catholicculture.org/culture/library/view.cfm?recnum=4086

While Catholic Culture is not an official website, it is one of the most widely-read and authoritative in the English-speaking Catholic Internet world. It's old "PetersNet" ratings were practically the standard for orthodoxy in that world.  

The suspension of Fr. Gruner was upheld by the Catholic Church''s highest court, the Apostolic Signatura, which acts in the name of the Holy See. Any bishop who claims to "incardinate" Fr. Gruner is doing so invalidly and illicitly. They also tend to be bishops in remote dioceses in Asia, who most likely don't have any idea what's really going on in Rome. The "imprimatur" that Fr. Gruner brandishes on his works come from bishops in India and Papua New Guinea; since he does his publishing in Canada and the USA, those bishops don't have the competence to give him the imprimatur in the first place. (If you want a proper imprimatur you should get it from your local bishop.)

Quote
Father Nicholas Gruner has admitted that he is under a Catholic Bishop and is not suspended despite the Vatican Bureaucracy's attempt to do so. As long as he is under a recognized Catholic Bishop, there is really nothing that those bureaucrats can do. However, those Vatican bureaucrats have attempted to force other Catholic Bishops not to incardinate Father Gruner, but when this happens, Father has found another bishop who is willing to accommodate him. Politics in church affairs is always ugly.

What awful reasoning. Fr. Gruner is not suspended merely because he says isn't?

Quote
Back on topic:  Dr. Walters, who supports the ministry of Father Nicholas Gruner, has been in contact with the MP as he makes frequent trips to Russia. A lot goes on which is not published in the controlled media.

The Father Gruner's Fatima Crusader ministry and the SSPX are making inroads into Russia where they claim to have converted thousands of Russian Orthodox and Roman Catholics to their position.  Make no doubt about this: the Fatima Crusader ministry in Russia is putting heavy pressure on the MP and other Russians for the Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary since Father Gruner's ministry and the SSPX do not recognize the fraudulent way in which the so-called 1984 consecration was done since Russia was not mentioned by name.

The Fatima Crusader is hardly a heavyweight even in the small Traditional Catholic world, where it is usually ignored. The SSPX also thinks the Consecration hasn't been done, but it has studiously avoided being identified with Gruner, knowing his reputation.

As for the 'claims' of thousands of Russian Orthodox conversions to the SSPX, I haven't seen any such claims, and I assure you that I read a lot of SSPX material every week. The SSPX has exactly one chapel in the Russian Federation, with a monthly Mass:

http://honneurs.free.fr/Wikini/wakka.php?wiki=FederationDeRussie

Chapelle privée
Ulica Kutusovo 1 - MOSCOU
3° dim.: 11.00 h
tél. : 375/172 135 037 en Biélorussie ou 370/37 422 492 en Lituanie
FSSPX


I don't think that this is because they're "hiding" their other chapels: after all, the Greek Catholics in Russia -- who have more reason to fear persecution than Russian Catholics of the Latin Rite -- have no problem with publicly listing who their priests and where their chapels are.

http://www.rkcvo.ru/node/53

And if the SSPX is hiding in Russia then why is the above chapel's existence public knowledge?

Quote
Have you even bothered to read Russian Sunrise? I have, and it does raise concerns.

Yes, I have, and it is absolute rubbish. The way it portrays the Patriarch and much of the Russian hierarchy converting almost instantaneously to Catholicism is pure comedy. One scene there, were the bishops admit that the only reason they don't want to become Catholic is that they're afraid that the Russian Orthodox liturgy would also be reformed in the manner of the Novus Ordo, could have only been whipped up by a complete ignoramus. (If that reasoning is true, then why did Russia not turn Catholic when the Roman liturgy was still reverent and in Latin? It's not as if Russia had no Roman Catholic presence before 1917. Indeed it was much larger then than now!)
« Last Edit: March 15, 2012, 01:40:15 AM by filipinopilgrim » Logged
Maria
Orthodox Christian
Warned
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Posts: 10,238


O most Holy Theotokos, save us.


« Reply #136 on: March 15, 2012, 02:11:21 AM »

Quote
Please quote the definitive document concerning Father Nicholas Gruner's final degree of suspension and/or defrocking.

See this: http://www.catholicculture.org/culture/library/view.cfm?recnum=4086

While Catholic Culture is not an official website, it is one of the most widely-read and authoritative in the English-speaking Catholic Internet world. It's old "PetersNet" ratings were practically the standard for orthodoxy in that world.  

The suspension of Fr. Gruner was upheld by the Catholic Church''s highest court, the Apostolic Signatura, which acts in the name of the Holy See. Any bishop who claims to "incardinate" Fr. Gruner is doing so invalidly and illicitly. They also tend to be bishops in remote dioceses in Asia, who most likely don't have any idea what's really going on in Rome. The "imprimatur" that Fr. Gruner brandishes on his works come from bishops in India and Papua New Guinea; since he does his publishing in Canada and the USA, those bishops don't have the competence to give him the imprimatur in the first place. (If you want a proper imprimatur you should get it from your local bishop.)

Quote
Father Nicholas Gruner has admitted that he is under a Catholic Bishop and is not suspended despite the Vatican Bureaucracy's attempt to do so. As long as he is under a recognized Catholic Bishop, there is really nothing that those bureaucrats can do. However, those Vatican bureaucrats have attempted to force other Catholic Bishops not to incardinate Father Gruner, but when this happens, Father has found another bishop who is willing to accommodate him. Politics in church affairs is always ugly.

What awful reasoning. Fr. Gruner is not suspended merely because he says isn't?

Quote
Back on topic:  Dr. Walters, who supports the ministry of Father Nicholas Gruner, has been in contact with the MP as he makes frequent trips to Russia. A lot goes on which is not published in the controlled media.

The Father Gruner's Fatima Crusader ministry and the SSPX are making inroads into Russia where they claim to have converted thousands of Russian Orthodox and Roman Catholics to their position.  Make no doubt about this: the Fatima Crusader ministry in Russia is putting heavy pressure on the MP and other Russians for the Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary since Father Gruner's ministry and the SSPX do not recognize the fraudulent way in which the so-called 1984 consecration was done since Russia was not mentioned by name.

The Fatima Crusader is hardly a heavyweight even in the small Traditional Catholic world, where it is usually ignored. The SSPX also thinks the Consecration hasn't been done, but it has studiously avoided being identified with Gruner, knowing his reputation.

As for the 'claims' of thousands of Russian Orthodox conversions to the SSPX, I haven't seen any such claims, and I assure you that I read a lot of SSPX material every week. The SSPX has exactly one chapel in the Russian Federation, with a monthly Mass:

http://honneurs.free.fr/Wikini/wakka.php?wiki=FederationDeRussie

Chapelle privée
Ulica Kutusovo 1 - MOSCOU
3° dim.: 11.00 h
tél. : 375/172 135 037 en Biélorussie ou 370/37 422 492 en Lituanie
FSSPX


I don't think that this is because they're "hiding" their other chapels: after all, the Greek Catholics in Russia -- who have more reason to fear persecution than Russian Catholics of the Latin Rite -- have no problem with publicly listing who their priests and where their chapels are.

http://www.rkcvo.ru/node/53

And if the SSPX is hiding in Russia then why is the above chapel's existence public knowledge?

Quote
Have you even bothered to read Russian Sunrise? I have, and it does raise concerns.

Yes, I have, and it is absolute rubbish. The way it portrays the Patriarch and much of the Russian hierarchy converting almost instantaneously to Catholicism is pure comedy. One scene there, were the bishops admit that the only reason they don't want to become Catholic is that they're afraid that the Russian Orthodox liturgy would also be reformed in the manner of the Novus Ordo, could have only been whipped up by a complete ignoramus. (If that reasoning is true, then why did Russia not turn Catholic when the Roman liturgy was still reverent and in Latin? It's not as if Russia had no Roman Catholic presence before 1917. Indeed it was much larger then than now!)

Russian Sunrise is a novel, not fact, or did you miss that point?
What galled me the most in that novel was when the Russian Orthodox Hierarchy accepted the FILIOQUE addition to the Nicene Creed without raising an eyebrow.  Roll Eyes

Is there any more proof that Father Gruner was suspended than that link you provided. After all, as you mentioned, Father Gruner does have his detractors, and I am not so naive as to accept any old website as the Gospel truth, especially in this age of deceit.

Back to the topic on hand:

When the MP continues to make concessions to the Vatican like sending an official representative of the Russian Hierarchy to Assisi 2011, then yes, they are ecumenists of the worst kind.

Logged

Glory to Jesus Christ!
Glory to Him forever!
Νεκτάριος
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Posts: 5,437



« Reply #137 on: March 15, 2012, 02:56:35 AM »


Quoting a polemic source...
« Last Edit: March 15, 2012, 02:57:15 AM by Νεκτάριος » Logged
filipinopilgrim
Member
***
Offline Offline

Posts: 130


« Reply #138 on: March 15, 2012, 06:42:56 AM »

Quote

Yes, I have, and it is absolute rubbish. The way it portrays the Patriarch and much of the Russian hierarchy converting almost instantaneously to Catholicism is pure comedy. One scene there, were the bishops admit that the only reason they don't want to become Catholic is that they're afraid that the Russian Orthodox liturgy would also be reformed in the manner of the Novus Ordo, could have only been whipped up by a complete ignoramus. (If that reasoning is true, then why did Russia not turn Catholic when the Roman liturgy was still reverent and in Latin? It's not as if Russia had no Roman Catholic presence before 1917. Indeed it was much larger then than now!)

Russian Sunrise is a novel, not fact, or did you miss that point?


Yes, it's a novel, and I clearly refer to it as being non-factual in nature. Did you miss something as obvious as that?

Anyway, this is the last time I'll respond to you.

Quote
Is there any more proof that Father Gruner was suspended than that link you provided. After all, as you mentioned, Father Gruner does have his detractors, and I am not so naive as to accept any old website as the Gospel truth, especially in this age of deceit.

And yet you're willing to accept what Gruner -- a fringe character in Catholicism if ever there was one -- says without question, while the webpage I've shown to you comes from a highly credible Catholic website and you dismiss it out of hand.

Sorry, you've just completely lost all credibility.
Logged
Jonathan Gress
Warned
Archon
********
Online Online

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: GOC/HOTCA
Posts: 3,475


« Reply #139 on: March 15, 2012, 08:14:53 AM »


It gives the original source of the "prophecy", which is not a True Orthodox source. That is, if you care to look it up.
Logged
jah777
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Posts: 1,934


« Reply #140 on: March 15, 2012, 10:50:40 AM »

Do you reject the New Calendar Church because Elder Paisios made false prophesies?

Above is the original form of the question, which is quite loaded.  First of all, there is no such thing as “the New Calendar Church”, there is only the Orthodox Church in which you have some local churches who worship on the New Calendar and some who worship on the Old Calendar.  Elder Paisios followed the Old Calendar on Mt. Athos and never spoke of a “New Calendar Church”.   When the New Calendar was introduced, it was adopted by some local churches while others continued to follow the Old Calendar, and communion was not broken between local churches which used different calendars because the calendar issue was understood by all not to be a dogmatic issue.  It was only claimed to be a dogmatic issue by those who have wished to create and justify various schisms.

Now, *IF* Elder Paisios made “false prophecies”, why would that cause someone to reject the Church and join an Old Calendar schism?  In recent times there have been many saints and elders who were part of the Orthodox Church and who spoke out against those who wished to create schisms over the calendar change.  Among them, some followed the Old Calendar but spoke against creating schisms over the calendar issue, and some followed the New Calendar out of obedience to their hierarchs.  Such elders and saints include Elder Joseph the Hesychast, Elder Ephraim of Katounakia, Elder Haralampos of Dionysiou, Elder Gervasios Paraskevopoulos, Elder Cleopa of Sihastria, St. Nicholas Planas, Elder Dimitri Gagastathis, Elder Anthimos of St. Anne’s Skete, Elder Porphyrios, and many others.  Many of these saints received direct revelations from God regarding the error and pernicious path taken by the Old Calendar schismatics, and these revelations are recorded in books about them.  Elder Paisios had nothing to do with the calendar change as he was born the very year the New Calendar was introduced in Greece.  Nobody who has remained in the Church after the introduction of the New Calendar has been referred to as a “Paisiosite” or by any such names, while the various Old Calendar schisms have been referred to by such names as “Florinites”, “Matthewites”, etc.

Now, regarding the “false prophecies” of Elder Paisios, since you put “prophecies” in the plural, perhaps you can start a separate thread where these supposed “prophecies” can be listed.  Regarding Elder Paisios and General Grapsas, the story translated and posted on the website you have referenced does raise a number of questions.  First of all, since General Grapsas is still living, are his exact words regarding the matter quoted anywhere?  Does he agree with the story as portrayed on the link you have provided?  Since the story indicates that there were witnesses to Elder Paisios’ words, do the witnesses agree with the story as the website portrays?  Are there any witnesses that contest this story?  What have Elder Paisios’ closest disciples and spiritual children said regarding this story?  Is it possible that Met Grapsas and/or other misinterpreted the words of Elder Paisios?   

Now, if Elder Paisios did in fact say the words attributed to him, if these words were to be interpreted as presented on the website, and events did not turn out as Elder Paisios said, a whole other series of issues would need to be explored regarding the charism of clairvoyance, how this charism “works”, whether clairvoyance or “prophecy” is inherently conditional, what should we conclude when saints are wrong (Sts. Barsanuphius and John have several comments on this subject), etc. 

Of course, since your group is focused on promoting the cause of your schism and denouncing the Patriarchate of Constantinople and those in communion with him, it is certainly in your interest to try to demonstrate that Elder Paisios, and others who are considered to be saints but who spoke against your schisms, are somehow “false elders” or “false prophets”.  To make such a claim regarding Elder Paisios, or anyone else for that matter, one has to look at their faith, their entire way of life, the fruits of their lives, and testimonies of others.  While we have only your one story regarding a supposed “false prophecy” of Elder Paisios, there are literally thousands of pages of his own written words and counsels; as well as testimonies from others regarding his humility, his meekness, his love of others, the power of his prayers, and the healings and miracles which resulted from his prayers.  From the published testimonies of others, as well as from his words, Elder Paisios seems to be the exact opposite of a charlatan who put on a show or who sought attention and recognition from others.  When he perceived that people came to him looking for a show or a miracle, he often would turn them away, pretend not to be there, or act like a fool in order to humiliate himself and deflect inappropriate attention.  Regarding his clairvoyance, while there is this one story that you have so far provided, many others have been provided testifying to the accuracy of his clairvoyance and his many other gifts.

That being said, saints and elders are not completely infallible and without fault, and mistakes can be made, as Sts. Barsanuphius and John discussed.  In fact, Elder Porphyrios once read something that Elder Paisios wrote concerning the Last Days and the Antichrist, and wrote a letter to him forbidding him to speak of such things.  Elder Porphyrios said that God will enlighten holy bishops to speak of such matters when it becomes necessary, and it was not the place of Elder Paisios to speak of such things. In obedience to Elder Porphyrios, Elder Paisios agreed to refrain from writing about the End Times and the Antichrist.  From this it seems that Elder Porphyrios did not believe that Elder Paisios was enlightened by God concerning these matters, yet Elder Porphyrios nevertheless continued to have great reverence for Elder Paisios and still considered him to be a great saint. 

This letter of Elder Porphyrios to Elder Paisios is preserved in one of the monasteries on Mt. Athos, and the subject is related in an interview of Metropolitan Neophytos of Morphu who personally knew Elder Porphyrios.  For an English translation of this interview, go to:

http://www.pantokrator.info/en/modules.php?name=Downloads&d_op=viewdownload&cid=9

The subject of the letter of Elder Porphyrios to Elder Paisios can be found on the third talk entitled "03 Greek Elders-Evmenios" starting at 22:04. Met Neophytos begins speaking about the subject of the end times around 15:58.

Instead of trying to find small faults with individual saints and elders who spoke against creating schisms over the calendar issue, it would be much more profitable and edifying to start a new thread containing the lives and words of those who belonged to your particular “TOC” group, who are considered to be “saints” by your particular “TOC” group, and who expressed agreement with your official “no grace on the New Calendar” ecclesiology which Met Chrysostom of Florina referred to as “cacadox” and Met Petros of Astoria referred to as “spiritually ill”.  I have searched for such examples, and so far I have not found any.  But, perhaps you will enlighten me in a separate thread devoted to this theme.
Logged
Jonathan Gress
Warned
Archon
********
Online Online

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: GOC/HOTCA
Posts: 3,475


« Reply #141 on: March 15, 2012, 02:13:50 PM »

Do you reject the New Calendar Church because Elder Paisios made false prophesies?

Above is the original form of the question, which is quite loaded.  First of all, there is no such thing as “the New Calendar Church”, there is only the Orthodox Church in which you have some local churches who worship on the New Calendar and some who worship on the Old Calendar.  Elder Paisios followed the Old Calendar on Mt. Athos and never spoke of a “New Calendar Church”.   When the New Calendar was introduced, it was adopted by some local churches while others continued to follow the Old Calendar, and communion was not broken between local churches which used different calendars because the calendar issue was understood by all not to be a dogmatic issue.  It was only claimed to be a dogmatic issue by those who have wished to create and justify various schisms.

Now, *IF* Elder Paisios made “false prophecies”, why would that cause someone to reject the Church and join an Old Calendar schism?  In recent times there have been many saints and elders who were part of the Orthodox Church and who spoke out against those who wished to create schisms over the calendar change.  Among them, some followed the Old Calendar but spoke against creating schisms over the calendar issue, and some followed the New Calendar out of obedience to their hierarchs.  Such elders and saints include Elder Joseph the Hesychast, Elder Ephraim of Katounakia, Elder Haralampos of Dionysiou, Elder Gervasios Paraskevopoulos, Elder Cleopa of Sihastria, St. Nicholas Planas, Elder Dimitri Gagastathis, Elder Anthimos of St. Anne’s Skete, Elder Porphyrios, and many others.  Many of these saints received direct revelations from God regarding the error and pernicious path taken by the Old Calendar schismatics, and these revelations are recorded in books about them.  Elder Paisios had nothing to do with the calendar change as he was born the very year the New Calendar was introduced in Greece.  Nobody who has remained in the Church after the introduction of the New Calendar has been referred to as a “Paisiosite” or by any such names, while the various Old Calendar schisms have been referred to by such names as “Florinites”, “Matthewites”, etc.

Now, regarding the “false prophecies” of Elder Paisios, since you put “prophecies” in the plural, perhaps you can start a separate thread where these supposed “prophecies” can be listed.  Regarding Elder Paisios and General Grapsas, the story translated and posted on the website you have referenced does raise a number of questions.  First of all, since General Grapsas is still living, are his exact words regarding the matter quoted anywhere?  Does he agree with the story as portrayed on the link you have provided?  Since the story indicates that there were witnesses to Elder Paisios’ words, do the witnesses agree with the story as the website portrays?  Are there any witnesses that contest this story?  What have Elder Paisios’ closest disciples and spiritual children said regarding this story?  Is it possible that Met Grapsas and/or other misinterpreted the words of Elder Paisios?   

Now, if Elder Paisios did in fact say the words attributed to him, if these words were to be interpreted as presented on the website, and events did not turn out as Elder Paisios said, a whole other series of issues would need to be explored regarding the charism of clairvoyance, how this charism “works”, whether clairvoyance or “prophecy” is inherently conditional, what should we conclude when saints are wrong (Sts. Barsanuphius and John have several comments on this subject), etc. 

Of course, since your group is focused on promoting the cause of your schism and denouncing the Patriarchate of Constantinople and those in communion with him, it is certainly in your interest to try to demonstrate that Elder Paisios, and others who are considered to be saints but who spoke against your schisms, are somehow “false elders” or “false prophets”.  To make such a claim regarding Elder Paisios, or anyone else for that matter, one has to look at their faith, their entire way of life, the fruits of their lives, and testimonies of others.  While we have only your one story regarding a supposed “false prophecy” of Elder Paisios, there are literally thousands of pages of his own written words and counsels; as well as testimonies from others regarding his humility, his meekness, his love of others, the power of his prayers, and the healings and miracles which resulted from his prayers.  From the published testimonies of others, as well as from his words, Elder Paisios seems to be the exact opposite of a charlatan who put on a show or who sought attention and recognition from others.  When he perceived that people came to him looking for a show or a miracle, he often would turn them away, pretend not to be there, or act like a fool in order to humiliate himself and deflect inappropriate attention.  Regarding his clairvoyance, while there is this one story that you have so far provided, many others have been provided testifying to the accuracy of his clairvoyance and his many other gifts.

That being said, saints and elders are not completely infallible and without fault, and mistakes can be made, as Sts. Barsanuphius and John discussed.  In fact, Elder Porphyrios once read something that Elder Paisios wrote concerning the Last Days and the Antichrist, and wrote a letter to him forbidding him to speak of such things.  Elder Porphyrios said that God will enlighten holy bishops to speak of such matters when it becomes necessary, and it was not the place of Elder Paisios to speak of such things. In obedience to Elder Porphyrios, Elder Paisios agreed to refrain from writing about the End Times and the Antichrist.  From this it seems that Elder Porphyrios did not believe that Elder Paisios was enlightened by God concerning these matters, yet Elder Porphyrios nevertheless continued to have great reverence for Elder Paisios and still considered him to be a great saint. 

This letter of Elder Porphyrios to Elder Paisios is preserved in one of the monasteries on Mt. Athos, and the subject is related in an interview of Metropolitan Neophytos of Morphu who personally knew Elder Porphyrios.  For an English translation of this interview, go to:

http://www.pantokrator.info/en/modules.php?name=Downloads&d_op=viewdownload&cid=9

The subject of the letter of Elder Porphyrios to Elder Paisios can be found on the third talk entitled "03 Greek Elders-Evmenios" starting at 22:04. Met Neophytos begins speaking about the subject of the end times around 15:58.

Instead of trying to find small faults with individual saints and elders who spoke against creating schisms over the calendar issue, it would be much more profitable and edifying to start a new thread containing the lives and words of those who belonged to your particular “TOC” group, who are considered to be “saints” by your particular “TOC” group, and who expressed agreement with your official “no grace on the New Calendar” ecclesiology which Met Chrysostom of Florina referred to as “cacadox” and Met Petros of Astoria referred to as “spiritually ill”.  I have searched for such examples, and so far I have not found any.  But, perhaps you will enlighten me in a separate thread devoted to this theme.


Uh-huh. So I suppose you accept without question that all those "saints" received "direct revelations from God" about us "schismatics"?

Read the life of Elder Ieronymos of Aegina.
Logged
Maria
Orthodox Christian
Warned
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Posts: 10,238


O most Holy Theotokos, save us.


« Reply #142 on: March 15, 2012, 02:26:48 PM »

Quote

Yes, I have, and it is absolute rubbish. The way it portrays the Patriarch and much of the Russian hierarchy converting almost instantaneously to Catholicism is pure comedy. One scene there, were the bishops admit that the only reason they don't want to become Catholic is that they're afraid that the Russian Orthodox liturgy would also be reformed in the manner of the Novus Ordo, could have only been whipped up by a complete ignoramus. (If that reasoning is true, then why did Russia not turn Catholic when the Roman liturgy was still reverent and in Latin? It's not as if Russia had no Roman Catholic presence before 1917. Indeed it was much larger then than now!)

Russian Sunrise is a novel, not fact, or did you miss that point?


Yes, it's a novel, and I clearly refer to it as being non-factual in nature. Did you miss something as obvious as that?

Anyway, this is the last time I'll respond to you.

Quote
Is there any more proof that Father Gruner was suspended than that link you provided. After all, as you mentioned, Father Gruner does have his detractors, and I am not so naive as to accept any old website as the Gospel truth, especially in this age of deceit.

And yet you're willing to accept what Gruner -- a fringe character in Catholicism if ever there was one -- says without question, while the webpage I've shown to you comes from a highly credible Catholic website and you dismiss it out of hand.

Sorry, you've just completely lost all credibility.

Sorry, since most Catholic websites are tainted with their heretical beliefs in the filioque, papal supremacy and papal infallibility, they have lost all credibility in my eyes too. However, I do pray for Catholics. In fact, we all need prayers for we all have sinned.

Likewise, I pray for the MP and the EP, that they may repent of their errors of ecumenism, which is preventing the spread of the Gospel as ecumenism runs contrary to the teachings of the Holy Orthodox Church. Furthermore, ecumenism and syncretism promote confusion in the faithful and in those who are inquiring into the church. This should not be so.

p.s. I could list a lot of defrocked Catholic priests who were beyond the fringes; priests who committed pedophilia, murder, gun running, and engaged in drugs, and who are now serving prison sentences if they have not committed suicide first. Which of those sins did Father Gruner commit? Why are you so intent on slandering him? Lord have mercy.
« Last Edit: March 15, 2012, 02:31:40 PM by Maria » Logged

Glory to Jesus Christ!
Glory to Him forever!
Schultz
Christian. Guitarist. Zymurgist. Librarian.
Taxiarches
**********
Online Online

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 6,481


Scion of the McKeesport Becks.


WWW
« Reply #143 on: March 15, 2012, 02:46:07 PM »

Quote
Please quote the definitive document concerning Father Nicholas Gruner's final degree of suspension and/or defrocking.

See this: http://www.catholicculture.org/culture/library/view.cfm?recnum=4086

While Catholic Culture is not an official website, it is one of the most widely-read and authoritative in the English-speaking Catholic Internet world. It's old "PetersNet" ratings were practically the standard for orthodoxy in that world.  

The suspension of Fr. Gruner was upheld by the Catholic Church''s highest court, the Apostolic Signatura, which acts in the name of the Holy See. Any bishop who claims to "incardinate" Fr. Gruner is doing so invalidly and illicitly. They also tend to be bishops in remote dioceses in Asia, who most likely don't have any idea what's really going on in Rome. The "imprimatur" that Fr. Gruner brandishes on his works come from bishops in India and Papua New Guinea; since he does his publishing in Canada and the USA, those bishops don't have the competence to give him the imprimatur in the first place. (If you want a proper imprimatur you should get it from your local bishop.)

Quote
Father Nicholas Gruner has admitted that he is under a Catholic Bishop and is not suspended despite the Vatican Bureaucracy's attempt to do so. As long as he is under a recognized Catholic Bishop, there is really nothing that those bureaucrats can do. However, those Vatican bureaucrats have attempted to force other Catholic Bishops not to incardinate Father Gruner, but when this happens, Father has found another bishop who is willing to accommodate him. Politics in church affairs is always ugly.

What awful reasoning. Fr. Gruner is not suspended merely because he says isn't?

Quote
Back on topic:  Dr. Walters, who supports the ministry of Father Nicholas Gruner, has been in contact with the MP as he makes frequent trips to Russia. A lot goes on which is not published in the controlled media.

The Father Gruner's Fatima Crusader ministry and the SSPX are making inroads into Russia where they claim to have converted thousands of Russian Orthodox and Roman Catholics to their position.  Make no doubt about this: the Fatima Crusader ministry in Russia is putting heavy pressure on the MP and other Russians for the Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary since Father Gruner's ministry and the SSPX do not recognize the fraudulent way in which the so-called 1984 consecration was done since Russia was not mentioned by name.

The Fatima Crusader is hardly a heavyweight even in the small Traditional Catholic world, where it is usually ignored. The SSPX also thinks the Consecration hasn't been done, but it has studiously avoided being identified with Gruner, knowing his reputation.

As for the 'claims' of thousands of Russian Orthodox conversions to the SSPX, I haven't seen any such claims, and I assure you that I read a lot of SSPX material every week. The SSPX has exactly one chapel in the Russian Federation, with a monthly Mass:

http://honneurs.free.fr/Wikini/wakka.php?wiki=FederationDeRussie

Chapelle privée
Ulica Kutusovo 1 - MOSCOU
3° dim.: 11.00 h
tél. : 375/172 135 037 en Biélorussie ou 370/37 422 492 en Lituanie
FSSPX


I don't think that this is because they're "hiding" their other chapels: after all, the Greek Catholics in Russia -- who have more reason to fear persecution than Russian Catholics of the Latin Rite -- have no problem with publicly listing who their priests and where their chapels are.

http://www.rkcvo.ru/node/53

And if the SSPX is hiding in Russia then why is the above chapel's existence public knowledge?

Quote
Have you even bothered to read Russian Sunrise? I have, and it does raise concerns.

Yes, I have, and it is absolute rubbish. The way it portrays the Patriarch and much of the Russian hierarchy converting almost instantaneously to Catholicism is pure comedy. One scene there, were the bishops admit that the only reason they don't want to become Catholic is that they're afraid that the Russian Orthodox liturgy would also be reformed in the manner of the Novus Ordo, could have only been whipped up by a complete ignoramus. (If that reasoning is true, then why did Russia not turn Catholic when the Roman liturgy was still reverent and in Latin? It's not as if Russia had no Roman Catholic presence before 1917. Indeed it was much larger then than now!)

Russian Sunrise is a novel, not fact, or did you miss that point?
What galled me the most in that novel was when the Russian Orthodox Hierarchy accepted the FILIOQUE addition to the Nicene Creed without raising an eyebrow.  Roll Eyes

Is there any more proof that Father Gruner was suspended than that link you provided. After all, as you mentioned, Father Gruner does have his detractors, and I am not so naive as to accept any old website as the Gospel truth, especially in this age of deceit.



9/13/2001 edition of L'Osservatore Romano.  I'm sure you can obtain it via interlibrary loan or email lormail@catholicreview.org (which publishes the English edition in the US) for a copy of the communique from Cardinal Hoyos.
Logged

"Hearing a nun's confession is like being stoned to death with popcorn." --Abp. Fulton Sheen
Maria
Orthodox Christian
Warned
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Posts: 10,238


O most Holy Theotokos, save us.


« Reply #144 on: March 15, 2012, 03:10:42 PM »

Quote
Please quote the definitive document concerning Father Nicholas Gruner's final degree of suspension and/or defrocking.

See this: http://www.catholicculture.org/culture/library/view.cfm?recnum=4086

While Catholic Culture is not an official website, it is one of the most widely-read and authoritative in the English-speaking Catholic Internet world. It's old "PetersNet" ratings were practically the standard for orthodoxy in that world.  

The suspension of Fr. Gruner was upheld by the Catholic Church''s highest court, the Apostolic Signatura, which acts in the name of the Holy See. Any bishop who claims to "incardinate" Fr. Gruner is doing so invalidly and illicitly. They also tend to be bishops in remote dioceses in Asia, who most likely don't have any idea what's really going on in Rome. The "imprimatur" that Fr. Gruner brandishes on his works come from bishops in India and Papua New Guinea; since he does his publishing in Canada and the USA, those bishops don't have the competence to give him the imprimatur in the first place. (If you want a proper imprimatur you should get it from your local bishop.)

Quote
Father Nicholas Gruner has admitted that he is under a Catholic Bishop and is not suspended despite the Vatican Bureaucracy's attempt to do so. As long as he is under a recognized Catholic Bishop, there is really nothing that those bureaucrats can do. However, those Vatican bureaucrats have attempted to force other Catholic Bishops not to incardinate Father Gruner, but when this happens, Father has found another bishop who is willing to accommodate him. Politics in church affairs is always ugly.

What awful reasoning. Fr. Gruner is not suspended merely because he says isn't?

Quote
Back on topic:  Dr. Walters, who supports the ministry of Father Nicholas Gruner, has been in contact with the MP as he makes frequent trips to Russia. A lot goes on which is not published in the controlled media.

The Father Gruner's Fatima Crusader ministry and the SSPX are making inroads into Russia where they claim to have converted thousands of Russian Orthodox and Roman Catholics to their position.  Make no doubt about this: the Fatima Crusader ministry in Russia is putting heavy pressure on the MP and other Russians for the Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary since Father Gruner's ministry and the SSPX do not recognize the fraudulent way in which the so-called 1984 consecration was done since Russia was not mentioned by name.

The Fatima Crusader is hardly a heavyweight even in the small Traditional Catholic world, where it is usually ignored. The SSPX also thinks the Consecration hasn't been done, but it has studiously avoided being identified with Gruner, knowing his reputation.

As for the 'claims' of thousands of Russian Orthodox conversions to the SSPX, I haven't seen any such claims, and I assure you that I read a lot of SSPX material every week. The SSPX has exactly one chapel in the Russian Federation, with a monthly Mass:

http://honneurs.free.fr/Wikini/wakka.php?wiki=FederationDeRussie

Chapelle privée
Ulica Kutusovo 1 - MOSCOU
3° dim.: 11.00 h
tél. : 375/172 135 037 en Biélorussie ou 370/37 422 492 en Lituanie
FSSPX


I don't think that this is because they're "hiding" their other chapels: after all, the Greek Catholics in Russia -- who have more reason to fear persecution than Russian Catholics of the Latin Rite -- have no problem with publicly listing who their priests and where their chapels are.

http://www.rkcvo.ru/node/53

And if the SSPX is hiding in Russia then why is the above chapel's existence public knowledge?

Quote
Have you even bothered to read Russian Sunrise? I have, and it does raise concerns.

Yes, I have, and it is absolute rubbish. The way it portrays the Patriarch and much of the Russian hierarchy converting almost instantaneously to Catholicism is pure comedy. One scene there, were the bishops admit that the only reason they don't want to become Catholic is that they're afraid that the Russian Orthodox liturgy would also be reformed in the manner of the Novus Ordo, could have only been whipped up by a complete ignoramus. (If that reasoning is true, then why did Russia not turn Catholic when the Roman liturgy was still reverent and in Latin? It's not as if Russia had no Roman Catholic presence before 1917. Indeed it was much larger then than now!)

Russian Sunrise is a novel, not fact, or did you miss that point?
What galled me the most in that novel was when the Russian Orthodox Hierarchy accepted the FILIOQUE addition to the Nicene Creed without raising an eyebrow.  Roll Eyes

Is there any more proof that Father Gruner was suspended than that link you provided. After all, as you mentioned, Father Gruner does have his detractors, and I am not so naive as to accept any old website as the Gospel truth, especially in this age of deceit.



9/13/2001 edition of L'Osservatore Romano.  I'm sure you can obtain it via interlibrary loan or email lormail@catholicreview.org (which publishes the English edition in the US) for a copy of the communique from Cardinal Hoyos.

I read a copy of the suspension which Father Gruner and his detractors published, and it dealt with Father Gruner's not being incardinated under his former bishop. However, Father Gruner is currently incardinated under another Catholic bishop from India, so wouldn't this suspension now be lifted? And if not, why not?

Again, what crime has Father Gruner committed that would warrant his suspension?

Is it the same threatened suspension that faces the Catholic Priest, Father Pavone and has forced him to be grounded? Sheesh.

~~~~~

Honestly, from what I have read, it appears that the real reason behind Father Gruner's suspension is the fact that he is disrupting and interfering with the Vatican-Russian rapport due to his repeated requests for the Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, and his claim that said consecration has not been properly executed. Thus both the Catholic and the Russian Orthodox Church supposedly feel harassed by Father Gruner, and his questionable suspension is one sure way to silence him, or so the Vatican bureaucrats thought.

Am I a supporter of Father Gruner? No.
However, this whole scenario smells fishy.

Back on topic:

Father Gruner's Fatima Crusade and the SSPX have both gone on record as opposing the Ecumenical Assisi gatherings sponsored by the Vatican, yet the MP has continued to send official Russian Orthodox Hierarchs to said events.

This scandalous ecumenical prayer meeting has scandalized many Orthodox and non-Orthodox.

Again, if the MP were to cease participating in these heretical prayer meetings sponsored by the Vatican and the WCC, and repent of their sins of ecumenism, then Orthodoxy would spread.

Once again, I pray for the MP and the EP, that they may repent of their errors of ecumenism, which is preventing the spread of the Gospel as ecumenism runs contrary to the teachings of the Holy Orthodox Church. Furthermore, ecumenism and syncretism promote confusion in the faithful and in those who are inquiring into the church. This should not be so.
« Last Edit: March 15, 2012, 03:13:07 PM by Maria » Logged

Glory to Jesus Christ!
Glory to Him forever!
Schultz
Christian. Guitarist. Zymurgist. Librarian.
Taxiarches
**********
Online Online

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 6,481


Scion of the McKeesport Becks.


WWW
« Reply #145 on: March 15, 2012, 03:28:32 PM »

Quote
Please quote the definitive document concerning Father Nicholas Gruner's final degree of suspension and/or defrocking.

See this: http://www.catholicculture.org/culture/library/view.cfm?recnum=4086

While Catholic Culture is not an official website, it is one of the most widely-read and authoritative in the English-speaking Catholic Internet world. It's old "PetersNet" ratings were practically the standard for orthodoxy in that world.  

The suspension of Fr. Gruner was upheld by the Catholic Church''s highest court, the Apostolic Signatura, which acts in the name of the Holy See. Any bishop who claims to "incardinate" Fr. Gruner is doing so invalidly and illicitly. They also tend to be bishops in remote dioceses in Asia, who most likely don't have any idea what's really going on in Rome. The "imprimatur" that Fr. Gruner brandishes on his works come from bishops in India and Papua New Guinea; since he does his publishing in Canada and the USA, those bishops don't have the competence to give him the imprimatur in the first place. (If you want a proper imprimatur you should get it from your local bishop.)

Quote
Father Nicholas Gruner has admitted that he is under a Catholic Bishop and is not suspended despite the Vatican Bureaucracy's attempt to do so. As long as he is under a recognized Catholic Bishop, there is really nothing that those bureaucrats can do. However, those Vatican bureaucrats have attempted to force other Catholic Bishops not to incardinate Father Gruner, but when this happens, Father has found another bishop who is willing to accommodate him. Politics in church affairs is always ugly.

What awful reasoning. Fr. Gruner is not suspended merely because he says isn't?

Quote
Back on topic:  Dr. Walters, who supports the ministry of Father Nicholas Gruner, has been in contact with the MP as he makes frequent trips to Russia. A lot goes on which is not published in the controlled media.

The Father Gruner's Fatima Crusader ministry and the SSPX are making inroads into Russia where they claim to have converted thousands of Russian Orthodox and Roman Catholics to their position.  Make no doubt about this: the Fatima Crusader ministry in Russia is putting heavy pressure on the MP and other Russians for the Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary since Father Gruner's ministry and the SSPX do not recognize the fraudulent way in which the so-called 1984 consecration was done since Russia was not mentioned by name.

The Fatima Crusader is hardly a heavyweight even in the small Traditional Catholic world, where it is usually ignored. The SSPX also thinks the Consecration hasn't been done, but it has studiously avoided being identified with Gruner, knowing his reputation.

As for the 'claims' of thousands of Russian Orthodox conversions to the SSPX, I haven't seen any such claims, and I assure you that I read a lot of SSPX material every week. The SSPX has exactly one chapel in the Russian Federation, with a monthly Mass:

http://honneurs.free.fr/Wikini/wakka.php?wiki=FederationDeRussie

Chapelle privée
Ulica Kutusovo 1 - MOSCOU
3° dim.: 11.00 h
tél. : 375/172 135 037 en Biélorussie ou 370/37 422 492 en Lituanie
FSSPX


I don't think that this is because they're "hiding" their other chapels: after all, the Greek Catholics in Russia -- who have more reason to fear persecution than Russian Catholics of the Latin Rite -- have no problem with publicly listing who their priests and where their chapels are.

http://www.rkcvo.ru/node/53

And if the SSPX is hiding in Russia then why is the above chapel's existence public knowledge?

Quote
Have you even bothered to read Russian Sunrise? I have, and it does raise concerns.

Yes, I have, and it is absolute rubbish. The way it portrays the Patriarch and much of the Russian hierarchy converting almost instantaneously to Catholicism is pure comedy. One scene there, were the bishops admit that the only reason they don't want to become Catholic is that they're afraid that the Russian Orthodox liturgy would also be reformed in the manner of the Novus Ordo, could have only been whipped up by a complete ignoramus. (If that reasoning is true, then why did Russia not turn Catholic when the Roman liturgy was still reverent and in Latin? It's not as if Russia had no Roman Catholic presence before 1917. Indeed it was much larger then than now!)

Russian Sunrise is a novel, not fact, or did you miss that point?
What galled me the most in that novel was when the Russian Orthodox Hierarchy accepted the FILIOQUE addition to the Nicene Creed without raising an eyebrow.  Roll Eyes

Is there any more proof that Father Gruner was suspended than that link you provided. After all, as you mentioned, Father Gruner does have his detractors, and I am not so naive as to accept any old website as the Gospel truth, especially in this age of deceit.



9/13/2001 edition of L'Osservatore Romano.  I'm sure you can obtain it via interlibrary loan or email lormail@catholicreview.org (which publishes the English edition in the US) for a copy of the communique from Cardinal Hoyos.

I read a copy of the suspension which Father Gruner and his detractors published, and it dealt with Father Gruner's not being incardinated under his former bishop. However, Father Gruner is currently incardinated under another Catholic bishop from India, so wouldn't this suspension now be lifted? And if not, why not?

Again, what crime has Father Gruner committed that would warrant his suspension?

Is it the same threatened suspension that faces the Catholic Priest, Father Pavone and has forced him to be grounded? Sheesh.

~~~~~

Honestly, from what I have read, it appears that the real reason behind Father Gruner's suspension is the fact that he is disrupting and interfering with the Vatican-Russian rapport due to his repeated requests for the Consecration of Russia to the Immaculate Heart of Mary, and his claim that said consecration has not been properly executed. Thus both the Catholic and the Russian Orthodox Church supposedly feel harassed by Father Gruner, and his questionable suspension is one sure way to silence him, or so the Vatican bureaucrats thought.

Am I a supporter of Father Gruner? No.
However, this whole scenario smells fishy.

Back on topic:

Father Gruner's Fatima Crusade and the SSPX have both gone on record as opposing the Ecumenical Assisi gatherings sponsored by the Vatican, yet the MP has continued to send official Russian Orthodox Hierarchs to said events.

This scandalous ecumenical prayer meeting has scandalized many Orthodox and non-Orthodox.

Again, if the MP were to cease participating in these heretical prayer meetings sponsored by the Vatican and the WCC, and repent of their sins of ecumenism, then Orthodoxy would spread.

Once again, I pray for the MP and the EP, that they may repent of their errors of ecumenism, which is preventing the spread of the Gospel as ecumenism runs contrary to the teachings of the Holy Orthodox Church. Furthermore, ecumenism and syncretism promote confusion in the faithful and in those who are inquiring into the church. This should not be so.

I cannot answer all those questions.  I can only tell you where notice of his suspension was published by an official organ of the Roman Catholic Church.

Logged

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

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: AOCA-DWMA
Posts: 5,392



« Reply #146 on: March 15, 2012, 03:37:30 PM »

official organ?

Logged
Schultz
Christian. Guitarist. Zymurgist. Librarian.
Taxiarches
**********
Online Online

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 6,481


Scion of the McKeesport Becks.


WWW
« Reply #147 on: March 15, 2012, 03:41:07 PM »

The picture is missing the Phantom... Wink
Logged

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

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: Antiochian
Posts: 7,973


Holy Trinity Church of Gergeti, Georgia


« Reply #148 on: March 15, 2012, 04:51:03 PM »

Do you reject the New Calendar Church because Elder Paisios made false prophesies?

Above is the original form of the question, which is quite loaded.  First of all, there is no such thing as “the New Calendar Church”, there is only the Orthodox Church in which you have some local churches who worship on the New Calendar and some who worship on the Old Calendar.  Elder Paisios followed the Old Calendar on Mt. Athos and never spoke of a “New Calendar Church”.   When the New Calendar was introduced, it was adopted by some local churches while others continued to follow the Old Calendar, and communion was not broken between local churches which used different calendars because the calendar issue was understood by all not to be a dogmatic issue.  It was only claimed to be a dogmatic issue by those who have wished to create and justify various schisms.

Now, *IF* Elder Paisios made “false prophecies”, why would that cause someone to reject the Church and join an Old Calendar schism?  In recent times there have been many saints and elders who were part of the Orthodox Church and who spoke out against those who wished to create schisms over the calendar change.  Among them, some followed the Old Calendar but spoke against creating schisms over the calendar issue, and some followed the New Calendar out of obedience to their hierarchs.  Such elders and saints include Elder Joseph the Hesychast, Elder Ephraim of Katounakia, Elder Haralampos of Dionysiou, Elder Gervasios Paraskevopoulos, Elder Cleopa of Sihastria, St. Nicholas Planas, Elder Dimitri Gagastathis, Elder Anthimos of St. Anne’s Skete, Elder Porphyrios, and many others.  Many of these saints received direct revelations from God regarding the error and pernicious path taken by the Old Calendar schismatics, and these revelations are recorded in books about them.  Elder Paisios had nothing to do with the calendar change as he was born the very year the New Calendar was introduced in Greece.  Nobody who has remained in the Church after the introduction of the New Calendar has been referred to as a “Paisiosite” or by any such names, while the various Old Calendar schisms have been referred to by such names as “Florinites”, “Matthewites”, etc.

Now, regarding the “false prophecies” of Elder Paisios, since you put “prophecies” in the plural, perhaps you can start a separate thread where these supposed “prophecies” can be listed.  Regarding Elder Paisios and General Grapsas, the story translated and posted on the website you have referenced does raise a number of questions.  First of all, since General Grapsas is still living, are his exact words regarding the matter quoted anywhere?  Does he agree with the story as portrayed on the link you have provided?  Since the story indicates that there were witnesses to Elder Paisios’ words, do the witnesses agree with the story as the website portrays?  Are there any witnesses that contest this story?  What have Elder Paisios’ closest disciples and spiritual children said regarding this story?  Is it possible that Met Grapsas and/or other misinterpreted the words of Elder Paisios?   

Now, if Elder Paisios did in fact say the words attributed to him, if these words were to be interpreted as presented on the website, and events did not turn out as Elder Paisios said, a whole other series of issues would need to be explored regarding the charism of clairvoyance, how this charism “works”, whether clairvoyance or “prophecy” is inherently conditional, what should we conclude when saints are wrong (Sts. Barsanuphius and John have several comments on this subject), etc. 

Of course, since your group is focused on promoting the cause of your schism and denouncing the Patriarchate of Constantinople and those in communion with him, it is certainly in your interest to try to demonstrate that Elder Paisios, and others who are considered to be saints but who spoke against your schisms, are somehow “false elders” or “false prophets”.  To make such a claim regarding Elder Paisios, or anyone else for that matter, one has to look at their faith, their entire way of life, the fruits of their lives, and testimonies of others.  While we have only your one story regarding a supposed “false prophecy” of Elder Paisios, there are literally thousands of pages of his own written words and counsels; as well as testimonies from others regarding his humility, his meekness, his love of others, the power of his prayers, and the healings and miracles which resulted from his prayers.  From the published testimonies of others, as well as from his words, Elder Paisios seems to be the exact opposite of a charlatan who put on a show or who sought attention and recognition from others.  When he perceived that people came to him looking for a show or a miracle, he often would turn them away, pretend not to be there, or act like a fool in order to humiliate himself and deflect inappropriate attention.  Regarding his clairvoyance, while there is this one story that you have so far provided, many others have been provided testifying to the accuracy of his clairvoyance and his many other gifts.

That being said, saints and elders are not completely infallible and without fault, and mistakes can be made, as Sts. Barsanuphius and John discussed.  In fact, Elder Porphyrios once read something that Elder Paisios wrote concerning the Last Days and the Antichrist, and wrote a letter to him forbidding him to speak of such things.  Elder Porphyrios said that God will enlighten holy bishops to speak of such matters when it becomes necessary, and it was not the place of Elder Paisios to speak of such things. In obedience to Elder Porphyrios, Elder Paisios agreed to refrain from writing about the End Times and the Antichrist.  From this it seems that Elder Porphyrios did not believe that Elder Paisios was enlightened by God concerning these matters, yet Elder Porphyrios nevertheless continued to have great reverence for Elder Paisios and still considered him to be a great saint. 

This letter of Elder Porphyrios to Elder Paisios is preserved in one of the monasteries on Mt. Athos, and the subject is related in an interview of Metropolitan Neophytos of Morphu who personally knew Elder Porphyrios.  For an English translation of this interview, go to:

http://www.pantokrator.info/en/modules.php?name=Downloads&d_op=viewdownload&cid=9

The subject of the letter of Elder Porphyrios to Elder Paisios can be found on the third talk entitled "03 Greek Elders-Evmenios" starting at 22:04. Met Neophytos begins speaking about the subject of the end times around 15:58.

Instead of trying to find small faults with individual saints and elders who spoke against creating schisms over the calendar issue, it would be much more profitable and edifying to start a new thread containing the lives and words of those who belonged to your particular “TOC” group, who are considered to be “saints” by your particular “TOC” group, and who expressed agreement with your official “no grace on the New Calendar” ecclesiology which Met Chrysostom of Florina referred to as “cacadox” and Met Petros of Astoria referred to as “spiritually ill”.  I have searched for such examples, and so far I have not found any.  But, perhaps you will enlighten me in a separate thread devoted to this theme.


Uh-huh. So I suppose you accept without question that all those "saints" received "direct revelations from God" about us "schismatics"?

Read the life of Elder Ieronymos of Aegina.

St. Ieronymos did not counsel people to go into schism.
Logged

Quote from: GabrieltheCelt
If you spend long enough on this forum, you'll come away with all sorts of weird, untrue ideas of Orthodox Christianity.
Quote from: orthonorm
I would suggest most persons in general avoid any question beginning with why.
Jonathan Gress
Warned
Archon
********
Online Online

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: GOC/HOTCA
Posts: 3,475


« Reply #149 on: March 15, 2012, 05:10:25 PM »

He counseled his spiritual children to remain faithful to tradition. For him, that meant ultimately leaving the State Church. He died in communion with Abp Auxentios of Athens, who served his funeral. His spiritual children were given over to the care of Fr Niphon Astyfides, the brother of Met Petros of Astoria. You should ask Fr Anastasios for more details about that.
Logged
Shanghaiski
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: Antiochian
Posts: 7,973


Holy Trinity Church of Gergeti, Georgia


« Reply #150 on: March 15, 2012, 05:19:19 PM »

He counseled his spiritual children to remain faithful to tradition. For him, that meant ultimately leaving the State Church. He died in communion with Abp Auxentios of Athens, who served his funeral. His spiritual children were given over to the care of Fr Niphon Astyfides, the brother of Met Petros of Astoria. You should ask Fr Anastasios for more details about that.

As I understand it, he, like Elder Pilotheos Zervakos, had spiritual children following both calendars, in the state church and not.
Logged

Quote from: GabrieltheCelt
If you spend long enough on this forum, you'll come away with all sorts of weird, untrue ideas of Orthodox Christianity.
Quote from: orthonorm
I would suggest most persons in general avoid any question beginning with why.
Maria
Orthodox Christian
Warned
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Posts: 10,238


O most Holy Theotokos, save us.


« Reply #151 on: March 15, 2012, 05:22:34 PM »


I cannot answer all those questions.  I can only tell you where notice of his suspension was published by an official organ of the Roman Catholic Church.


Frankly, why should we be concerned with the schismatic and heretical pontifications of the Roman Catholic Church ?

Catholic converts to Orthodoxy are ipso facto excommunicated from the Catholic Church.
Does that affect our salvation, No.

However, we should be concerned with the MP's ecumenical overtures to the Vatican by sending representatives to the Assisi Ecumenical prayer meetings. This rapport with the Vatican greatly disturbs the Orthodox Faith and confuses the Orthodox faithful.
« Last Edit: March 15, 2012, 05:24:34 PM by Maria » Logged

Glory to Jesus Christ!
Glory to Him forever!
Jonathan Gress
Warned
Archon
********
Online Online

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: GOC/HOTCA
Posts: 3,475


« Reply #152 on: March 15, 2012, 05:28:33 PM »

He counseled his spiritual children to remain faithful to tradition. For him, that meant ultimately leaving the State Church. He died in communion with Abp Auxentios of Athens, who served his funeral. His spiritual children were given over to the care of Fr Niphon Astyfides, the brother of Met Petros of Astoria. You should ask Fr Anastasios for more details about that.

As I understand it, he, like Elder Pilotheos Zervakos, had spiritual children following both calendars, in the state church and not.

Perhaps. If that is true, that would at least suggest that he and Elder Philotheos did not consider the old calendarists schismatics. I know that it's a little unclear in which jurisdiction Elder Philotheos reposed, but I am certain Elder Ieronymos reposed in the Old Calendar Church.
Logged
Shanghaiski
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: Antiochian
Posts: 7,973


Holy Trinity Church of Gergeti, Georgia


« Reply #153 on: March 15, 2012, 06:27:42 PM »

He counseled his spiritual children to remain faithful to tradition. For him, that meant ultimately leaving the State Church. He died in communion with Abp Auxentios of Athens, who served his funeral. His spiritual children were given over to the care of Fr Niphon Astyfides, the brother of Met Petros of Astoria. You should ask Fr Anastasios for more details about that.

As I understand it, he, like Elder Pilotheos Zervakos, had spiritual children following both calendars, in the state church and not.

Perhaps. If that is true, that would at least suggest that he and Elder Philotheos did not consider the old calendarists schismatics. I know that it's a little unclear in which jurisdiction Elder Philotheos reposed, but I am certain Elder Ieronymos reposed in the Old Calendar Church.

Which one? The one with grace or the others without?
Logged

Quote from: GabrieltheCelt
If you spend long enough on this forum, you'll come away with all sorts of weird, untrue ideas of Orthodox Christianity.
Quote from: orthonorm
I would suggest most persons in general avoid any question beginning with why.
JamesRottnek
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Faith: Anglican
Jurisdiction: Episcopal Diocese of Arizona
Posts: 5,121


I am Bibleman; putting 'the' back in the Ukraine


« Reply #154 on: March 15, 2012, 07:39:57 PM »


I cannot answer all those questions.  I can only tell you where notice of his suspension was published by an official organ of the Roman Catholic Church.


Frankly, why should we be concerned with the schismatic and heretical pontifications of the Roman Catholic Church ?

What a hilarious statement to read from a schismatic.  Schism is schism is schism.  You are as much outside the Church as any Catholic, just ask St. Cyril.
Logged

I know a secret about a former Supreme Court Justice.  Can you guess what it is?

The greatest tragedy in the world is when a cigarette ends.

American Spirits - the eco-friendly cigarette.

Preston Robert Kinney (September 8th, 1997-August 14, 2011
jah777
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Posts: 1,934


« Reply #155 on: March 15, 2012, 10:42:31 PM »

Uh-huh. So I suppose you accept without question that all those "saints" received "direct revelations from God" about us "schismatics"?

Read the life of Elder Ieronymos of Aegina.

Yes, I do accept the stories regarding the visions and revelations from God which these saints received when they were in great anguish concerning the calendar issue and passed much time in fasting, in tears, and in prayer, humbly seeking from God the resolution to the calendar issue.  Elder Joseph the Hesychast was a "Matthewite" Old Calendarist, and later joined the "Florinites", but he could not find peace with this arrangement and was in constant anguish until it was revealed to him that the “the Church is found in the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Constantinople".  After this was revealed to him, he experience a great deal of peace from above.  He then left the Old Calendarists, returned to the Church, and experienced much grace there. 

Elder Ephraim of Katounakia was himself a "Matthewite" Old Calendarist for many years and lived with a "Matthewite" elder on Mt. Athos for decades, but he was also in anguish regarding this schismatic position until it was revealed to him by God that the Church is with the Patriarch and not to be found in schism.  His Life relates that when he returned to the Church he always saw the Divine Grace consecrating the gifts into the Body and Blood of Christ, whereas when he was with the Old Calendarist it was as if there was a veil over his eyes and he could not clearly see Divine Grace during the consecration of the gifts. 

Elder Haralampos of Dionysiou was with the “Florinites” but also became convinced that this was a false path, and so he too returned to the Church and achieved great sanctity.

Elder Ephraim of Philotheou and Arizona was born in Volos and raised in an Old Calendarist church.  I believe Elder Joseph was still with the Old Calendarists when Elder Ephraim joined him on the Holy Mountain, but of course he too returned to the Church along with Elder Joseph. 

Why did these holy men all renounce their affiliation with the Old Calendarists and return to the Church and to communion with the Patriarch of Constantinople?  They were all holy men, men of prayer, who reached great sanctity after their departure from schism.  I have no reason to think that such stories are made up or in any way false regarding the visions and revelations from God which led to their return to the Church.

Regarding Elder Ieronymos, while serving as a priest in the Church of Greece in 1923 (before the calendar change), the consecrated Body and Blood of Christ appeared to him in the form of actual flesh and blood.  This frightened him greatly, and he never served the Divine Liturgy again after this.  It is true that he continued to follow the Old Calendar after the introduction of the New Calendar in Greece, but his Life clearly says that he never spoke out about the calendar change or encouraged people to leave the Church or join schisms over the calendar issue.  He served those who came to him regardless of whether they followed the New or Old Calendars.  His Life does not describe any revelations or visions that he had regarding the calendar issue, and indicates that he simply followed the Old out of preference but without condemning those on those on the New Calendar or promoting fanaticism.

Elder Philotheos (Zervakos) spoke out against the New Calendar and also against the fanatical Old Calendarists.  He struggled, prayed, and labored for the return of the Church of Greece to the Old Calendar and was very grieved that such a return was not accomplished during his life.  Wishing to repose on the Old Calendar, but not in schism from the Church, he invited Archimandrite Dionysios of Simonopetra on Mt. Athos to hear his confession and conduct his funeral on the Old Calendar.  Archimandrite Dionysios (spiritual son of both Elder Philotheos and Elder Aemilianos, and spiritual father of the nuns of the Entry of the Theotokos Monastery in Maryland under ROCOR) was and is in communion with the Orthodox Church. 
Logged
Maria
Orthodox Christian
Warned
Merarches
***********
Offline Offline

Posts: 10,238


O most Holy Theotokos, save us.


« Reply #156 on: March 15, 2012, 11:34:01 PM »


I cannot answer all those questions.  I can only tell you where notice of his suspension was published by an official organ of the Roman Catholic Church.


Frankly, why should we be concerned with the schismatic and heretical pontifications of the Roman Catholic Church ?

What a hilarious statement to read from a schismatic.  Schism is schism is schism.  You are as much outside the Church as any Catholic, just ask St. Cyril.

How do you not know that you are in schism and we of the Old Calendar are not in schism?

The insidious thing about Ecumenism and Syncretism is that it silently creeps upon one in the guise of doing good and of being charitable to those who are in heresy and in error.

I know because I used to attend those ecumenical prayer services with my Greek Orthodox Priest as I sang in the choir.
I slowly began to realize, however, that it was wrong to be listening to an Episcopalian or Methodist female priest who refused to say any politically incorrect terms like Father, Son, King, and Lord in the prayers that were given to her. And here she was praying on the Solea next to the Orthodox Priest. Her words caused a turbulent storm within my soul. And I realized that I had left Catholicism for what? Here I was praying with Catholics and Protestants. Why did I go through that painful catechumenate where I had to renounce the errors of Catholicism and then I found myself praying with them as if they had no errors? How ridiculous. How insane.

And this is what the MP is also doing when he sent his representatives to Assisi 2011. He is causing much turmoil in the minds and hearts of the Orthodox Faithful who are told that Catholics are in error, but that it is okay to attend services with then. Again, how ridiculous. How insane.

And this is why we are not growing. If only the faith of Worldwide Orthodoxy were more consistent with that of the ancient Orthodox faith.
« Last Edit: March 15, 2012, 11:35:39 PM by Maria » Logged

Glory to Jesus Christ!
Glory to Him forever!
PeterTheAleut
The Right Blowhard Peter the Furtive of Yetts O'Muckhart
Section Moderator
Protospatharios
*****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 32,662


Lord, have mercy on the Christians in Mosul!


« Reply #157 on: March 16, 2012, 01:33:00 AM »


I cannot answer all those questions.  I can only tell you where notice of his suspension was published by an official organ of the Roman Catholic Church.


Frankly, why should we be concerned with the schismatic and heretical pontifications of the Roman Catholic Church ?
So when a Roman Catholic tells you that the sky is blue, would you still conclude that he must be lying?
Logged
GabrieltheCelt
Hillbilly Extraordinaire
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Eastern Orthodox Christian
Jurisdiction: OCA
Posts: 6,988


Chasin' down a Hoodoo...


« Reply #158 on: March 16, 2012, 01:54:31 AM »

Friends, brothers and sisters,

 There seems to be some animosity on this thread.  Don't mean to sound preachy, but let's please just focus on our journey through Great Lent and continue to pray for one another.   
Logged

"The Scots-Irish; Brewed in Scotland, bottled in Ireland, uncorked in America."  ~Scots-Irish saying
JamesRottnek
Protokentarchos
*********
Offline Offline

Faith: Anglican
Jurisdiction: Episcopal Diocese of Arizona
Posts: 5,121


I am Bibleman; putting 'the' back in the Ukraine


« Reply #159 on: March 16, 2012, 05:49:17 AM »


I cannot answer all those questions.  I can only tell you where notice of his suspension was published by an official organ of the Roman Catholic Church.


Frankly, why should we be concerned with the schismatic and heretical pontifications of the Roman Catholic Church ?

What a hilarious statement to read from a schismatic.  Schism is schism is schism.  You are as much outside the Church as any Catholic, just ask St. Cyril.

How do you not know that you are in schism and we of the Old Calendar are not in schism?

The insidious thing about Ecumenism and Syncretism is that it silently creeps upon one in the guise of doing good and of being charitable to those who are in heresy and in error.

I know because I used to attend those ecumenical prayer services with my Greek Orthodox Priest as I sang in the choir.
I slowly began to realize, however, that it was wrong to be listening to an Episcopalian or Methodist female priest who refused to say any politically incorrect terms like Father, Son, King, and Lord in the prayers that were given to her. And here she was praying on the Solea next to the Orthodox Priest. Her words caused a turbulent storm within my soul. And I realized that I had left Catholicism for what? Here I was praying with Catholics and Protestants. Why did I go through that painful catechumenate where I had to renounce the errors of Catholicism and then I found myself praying with them as if they had no errors? How ridiculous. How insane.

And this is what the MP is also doing when he sent his representatives to Assisi 2011. He is causing much turmoil in the minds and hearts of the Orthodox Faithful who are told that Catholics are in error, but that it is okay to attend services with then. Again, how ridiculous. How insane.

And this is why we are not growing. If only the faith of Worldwide Orthodoxy were more consistent with that of the ancient Orthodox faith.

"World Orthodoxy" is causing turbulence?  Have you seen the number of schism amongst you old calendarists?  Have you seen how almost no old calendarist body is in communion with any other?  Do you think that the existence of priests, and even bishops, who are acting out of line is enough to warrant schism?  Is this Orthodoxy?  Certainly not!  In True Orthodoxy - not Old Calendarism - the Bishops are accountable to Synods, to their brother bishops.  You Old Calendarists instead prefer to just declare everyone anathema who does not meet your leaders personal preferences.  It is YOUR "church" that causes turbulence and tumult.
Logged

I know a secret about a former Supreme Court Justice.  Can you guess what it is?

The greatest tragedy in the world is when a cigarette ends.

American Spirits - the eco-friendly cigarette.

Preston Robert Kinney (September 8th, 1997-August 14, 2011
searn77
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Old Calendarist
Jurisdiction: Autonomous Orthodox Metropolia of the Americas & the British Isles
Posts: 240


St. Philaret (Voznesensky) of New York


« Reply #160 on: March 16, 2012, 09:16:24 AM »


I cannot answer all those questions.  I can only tell you where notice of his suspension was published by an official organ of the Roman Catholic Church.


Frankly, why should we be concerned with the schismatic and heretical pontifications of the Roman Catholic Church ?

What a hilarious statement to read from a schismatic.  Schism is schism is schism.  You are as much outside the Church as any Catholic, just ask St. Cyril.

How do you not know that you are in schism and we of the Old Calendar are not in schism?

The insidious thing about Ecumenism and Syncretism is that it silently creeps upon one in the guise of doing good and of being charitable to those who are in heresy and in error.

I know because I used to attend those ecumenical prayer services with my Greek Orthodox Priest as I sang in the choir.
I slowly began to realize, however, that it was wrong to be listening to an Episcopalian or Methodist female priest who refused to say any politically incorrect terms like Father, Son, King, and Lord in the prayers that were given to her. And here she was praying on the Solea next to the Orthodox Priest. Her words caused a turbulent storm within my soul. And I realized that I had left Catholicism for what? Here I was praying with Catholics and Protestants. Why did I go through that painful catechumenate where I had to renounce the errors of Catholicism and then I found myself praying with them as if they had no errors? How ridiculous. How insane.

And this is what the MP is also doing when he sent his representatives to Assisi 2011. He is causing much turmoil in the minds and hearts of the Orthodox Faithful who are told that Catholics are in error, but that it is okay to attend services with then. Again, how ridiculous. How insane.

And this is why we are not growing. If only the faith of Worldwide Orthodoxy were more consistent with that of the ancient Orthodox faith.

"World Orthodoxy" is causing turbulence?  Have you seen the number of schism amongst you old calendarists?  Have you seen how almost no old calendarist body is in communion with any other?  Do you think that the existence of priests, and even bishops, who are acting out of line is enough to warrant schism?  Is this Orthodoxy?  Certainly not!  In True Orthodoxy - not Old Calendarism - the Bishops are accountable to Synods, to their brother bishops.  You Old Calendarists instead prefer to just declare everyone anathema who does not meet your leaders personal preferences.  It is YOUR "church" that causes turbulence and tumult.

While it's unfortunate that there is division among us Old Calendarists, we still refuse to enter into communion with a body that openly preaches heresy. When St. Maximus the Confessor was asked by the Monothelites, ""To which Church do you belong: to that of Byzantium, Rome, Antioch, Alexandria, or Jerusalem? All these churches and the provinces under them are in concord. If you belong to the Catholic Church, you must enter into communion with us at once, lest you forge a new and strange pathway and fall into unexpected disaster." The man of God wisely replied, "Christ the Lord acknowledges as Catholic that Church which maintains the true and saving confession of faith. But tell me: on what basis have all the churches, as you say, entered into communion? If it is on a foundation of truth, I do not wish to be separated from them."
St. Demetrius of Rostov, The Great Collection of the Lives of the Saints, vol. 5, p. 366

Even though not everybody in World Orthodoxy accepts or teaches the heresy of Ecumenism, the fact that it is a heresy and is openly taught and practiced by a numerous amount of clergy without any kind of punishment by fellow bishops is enough to warrant us to cease communion with World Orthodoxy, which is an Orthodox practice, not schism. Hopefully there comes a time that all of the Old Calendarists will recognize that we all share the same faith, as today we recognize both the synods in 4th century Antioch eventually had the same faith even though they were out of communion with each other, and can unite on that.

Although you obviously disagree with our position, hopefully you can understand where we're coming from.
Logged

Let us the faithful now come together to praise our father, protector and teacher the pillar of the Orthodox faith and firm defender of piety even the wondrous hierarch Philaret and let us glorify our Saviour Who has granted us his incorrupt relics as a manifest sign of his sanctity.
Cavaradossi
法網恢恢,疏而不漏
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Chalcedonian Automaton Serial No. 5Aj4bx9
Jurisdiction: Chalcedonian Automaton Factory 5
Posts: 1,620



« Reply #161 on: March 16, 2012, 09:48:01 AM »


I cannot answer all those questions.  I can only tell you where notice of his suspension was published by an official organ of the Roman Catholic Church.


Frankly, why should we be concerned with the schismatic and heretical pontifications of the Roman Catholic Church ?

What a hilarious statement to read from a schismatic.  Schism is schism is schism.  You are as much outside the Church as any Catholic, just ask St. Cyril.

How do you not know that you are in schism and we of the Old Calendar are not in schism?

The insidious thing about Ecumenism and Syncretism is that it silently creeps upon one in the guise of doing good and of being charitable to those who are in heresy and in error.

I know because I used to attend those ecumenical prayer services with my Greek Orthodox Priest as I sang in the choir.
I slowly began to realize, however, that it was wrong to be listening to an Episcopalian or Methodist female priest who refused to say any politically incorrect terms like Father, Son, King, and Lord in the prayers that were given to her. And here she was praying on the Solea next to the Orthodox Priest. Her words caused a turbulent storm within my soul. And I realized that I had left Catholicism for what? Here I was praying with Catholics and Protestants. Why did I go through that painful catechumenate where I had to renounce the errors of Catholicism and then I found myself praying with them as if they had no errors? How ridiculous. How insane.

And this is what the MP is also doing when he sent his representatives to Assisi 2011. He is causing much turmoil in the minds and hearts of the Orthodox Faithful who are told that Catholics are in error, but that it is okay to attend services with then. Again, how ridiculous. How insane.

And this is why we are not growing. If only the faith of Worldwide Orthodoxy were more consistent with that of the ancient Orthodox faith.

"World Orthodoxy" is causing turbulence?  Have you seen the number of schism amongst you old calendarists?  Have you seen how almost no old calendarist body is in communion with any other?  Do you think that the existence of priests, and even bishops, who are acting out of line is enough to warrant schism?  Is this Orthodoxy?  Certainly not!  In True Orthodoxy - not Old Calendarism - the Bishops are accountable to Synods, to their brother bishops.  You Old Calendarists instead prefer to just declare everyone anathema who does not meet your leaders personal preferences.  It is YOUR "church" that causes turbulence and tumult.

While it's unfortunate that there is division among us Old Calendarists, we still refuse to enter into communion with a body that openly preaches heresy. When St. Maximus the Confessor was asked by the Monothelites, ""To which Church do you belong: to that of Byzantium, Rome, Antioch, Alexandria, or Jerusalem? All these churches and the provinces under them are in concord. If you belong to the Catholic Church, you must enter into communion with us at once, lest you forge a new and strange pathway and fall into unexpected disaster." The man of God wisely replied, "Christ the Lord acknowledges as Catholic that Church which maintains the true and saving confession of faith. But tell me: on what basis have all the churches, as you say, entered into communion? If it is on a foundation of truth, I do not wish to be separated from them."
St. Demetrius of Rostov, The Great Collection of the Lives of the Saints, vol. 5, p. 366

Even though not everybody in World Orthodoxy accepts or teaches the heresy of Ecumenism, the fact that it is a heresy and is openly taught and practiced by a numerous amount of clergy without any kind of punishment by fellow bishops is enough to warrant us to cease communion with World Orthodoxy, which is an Orthodox practice, not schism. Hopefully there comes a time that all of the Old Calendarists will recognize that we all share the same faith, as today we recognize both the synods in 4th century Antioch eventually had the same faith even though they were out of communion with each other, and can unite on that.

Although you obviously disagree with our position, hopefully you can understand where we're coming from.

So you believe that the body of Christ is fractured amongst many different Old Calendarist groups which are not in communion (that is, in schism) with each other? Where in the fathers may I read of this ecclesiological concept that the body of Christ may be many, and that the succession of the Apostles may be many, so that there are many rocks upon which the Church is built? Is this not the very ecumenist heresy which the Old Calendarists use to justify their existence?
Logged

Be comforted, and have faith, O Israel, for your God is infinitely simple and one, composed of no parts.
searn77
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Old Calendarist
Jurisdiction: Autonomous Orthodox Metropolia of the Americas & the British Isles
Posts: 240


St. Philaret (Voznesensky) of New York


« Reply #162 on: March 16, 2012, 11:50:04 AM »


I cannot answer all those questions.  I can only tell you where notice of his suspension was published by an official organ of the Roman Catholic Church.


Frankly, why should we be concerned with the schismatic and heretical pontifications of the Roman Catholic Church ?

What a hilarious statement to read from a schismatic.  Schism is schism is schism.  You are as much outside the Church as any Catholic, just ask St. Cyril.

How do you not know that you are in schism and we of the Old Calendar are not in schism?

The insidious thing about Ecumenism and Syncretism is that it silently creeps upon one in the guise of doing good and of being charitable to those who are in heresy and in error.

I know because I used to attend those ecumenical prayer services with my Greek Orthodox Priest as I sang in the choir.
I slowly began to realize, however, that it was wrong to be listening to an Episcopalian or Methodist female priest who refused to say any politically incorrect terms like Father, Son, King, and Lord in the prayers that were given to her. And here she was praying on the Solea next to the Orthodox Priest. Her words caused a turbulent storm within my soul. And I realized that I had left Catholicism for what? Here I was praying with Catholics and Protestants. Why did I go through that painful catechumenate where I had to renounce the errors of Catholicism and then I found myself praying with them as if they had no errors? How ridiculous. How insane.

And this is what the MP is also doing when he sent his representatives to Assisi 2011. He is causing much turmoil in the minds and hearts of the Orthodox Faithful who are told that Catholics are in error, but that it is okay to attend services with then. Again, how ridiculous. How insane.

And this is why we are not growing. If only the faith of Worldwide Orthodoxy were more consistent with that of the ancient Orthodox faith.

"World Orthodoxy" is causing turbulence?  Have you seen the number of schism amongst you old calendarists?  Have you seen how almost no old calendarist body is in communion with any other?  Do you think that the existence of priests, and even bishops, who are acting out of line is enough to warrant schism?  Is this Orthodoxy?  Certainly not!  In True Orthodoxy - not Old Calendarism - the Bishops are accountable to Synods, to their brother bishops.  You Old Calendarists instead prefer to just declare everyone anathema who does not meet your leaders personal preferences.  It is YOUR "church" that causes turbulence and tumult.

While it's unfortunate that there is division among us Old Calendarists, we still refuse to enter into communion with a body that openly preaches heresy. When St. Maximus the Confessor was asked by the Monothelites, ""To which Church do you belong: to that of Byzantium, Rome, Antioch, Alexandria, or Jerusalem? All these churches and the provinces under them are in concord. If you belong to the Catholic Church, you must enter into communion with us at once, lest you forge a new and strange pathway and fall into unexpected disaster." The man of God wisely replied, "Christ the Lord acknowledges as Catholic that Church which maintains the true and saving confession of faith. But tell me: on what basis have all the churches, as you say, entered into communion? If it is on a foundation of truth, I do not wish to be separated from them."
St. Demetrius of Rostov, The Great Collection of the Lives of the Saints, vol. 5, p. 366

Even though not everybody in World Orthodoxy accepts or teaches the heresy of Ecumenism, the fact that it is a heresy and is openly taught and practiced by a numerous amount of clergy without any kind of punishment by fellow bishops is enough to warrant us to cease communion with World Orthodoxy, which is an Orthodox practice, not schism. Hopefully there comes a time that all of the Old Calendarists will recognize that we all share the same faith, as today we recognize both the synods in 4th century Antioch eventually had the same faith even though they were out of communion with each other, and can unite on that.

Although you obviously disagree with our position, hopefully you can understand where we're coming from.

So you believe that the body of Christ is fractured amongst many different Old Calendarist groups which are not in communion (that is, in schism) with each other? Where in the fathers may I read of this ecclesiological concept that the body of Christ may be many, and that the succession of the Apostles may be many, so that there are many rocks upon which the Church is built? Is this not the very ecumenist heresy which the Old Calendarists use to justify their existence?

Well in 4th century Antioch there were two synods not in communion with each other but today we recognize saints on both sides. More recently, ROCOR was not in communion with World Orthodoxy & yet today your Church considers them to have always been Orthodox. The ecumenical heresy teaches that those who are not Orthodox are still somehow, although maybe
 imperfectly, a part of the Church. So no, there is only one rock, not many, that the one Church is built upon.
Logged

Let us the faithful now come together to praise our father, protector and teacher the pillar of the Orthodox faith and firm defender of piety even the wondrous hierarch Philaret and let us glorify our Saviour Who has granted us his incorrupt relics as a manifest sign of his sanctity.
Jonathan Gress
Warned
Archon
********
Online Online

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: GOC/HOTCA
Posts: 3,475


« Reply #163 on: March 16, 2012, 11:51:56 AM »

Uh-huh. So I suppose you accept without question that all those "saints" received "direct revelations from God" about us "schismatics"?

Read the life of Elder Ieronymos of Aegina.

Yes, I do accept the stories regarding the visions and revelations from God which these saints received when they were in great anguish concerning the calendar issue and passed much time in fasting, in tears, and in prayer, humbly seeking from God the resolution to the calendar issue.  Elder Joseph the Hesychast was a "Matthewite" Old Calendarist, and later joined the "Florinites", but he could not find peace with this arrangement and was in constant anguish until it was revealed to him that the “the Church is found in the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Constantinople".  After this was revealed to him, he experience a great deal of peace from above.  He then left the Old Calendarists, returned to the Church, and experienced much grace there. 

Elder Ephraim of Katounakia was himself a "Matthewite" Old Calendarist for many years and lived with a "Matthewite" elder on Mt. Athos for decades, but he was also in anguish regarding this schismatic position until it was revealed to him by God that the Church is with the Patriarch and not to be found in schism.  His Life relates that when he returned to the Church he always saw the Divine Grace consecrating the gifts into the Body and Blood of Christ, whereas when he was with the Old Calendarist it was as if there was a veil over his eyes and he could not clearly see Divine Grace during the consecration of the gifts. 

Elder Haralampos of Dionysiou was with the “Florinites” but also became convinced that this was a false path, and so he too returned to the Church and achieved great sanctity.

Elder Ephraim of Philotheou and Arizona was born in Volos and raised in an Old Calendarist church.  I believe Elder Joseph was still with the Old Calendarists when Elder Ephraim joined him on the Holy Mountain, but of course he too returned to the Church along with Elder Joseph. 

Why did these holy men all renounce their affiliation with the Old Calendarists and return to the Church and to communion with the Patriarch of Constantinople?  They were all holy men, men of prayer, who reached great sanctity after their departure from schism.  I have no reason to think that such stories are made up or in any way false regarding the visions and revelations from God which led to their return to the Church.

Regarding Elder Ieronymos, while serving as a priest in the Church of Greece in 1923 (before the calendar change), the consecrated Body and Blood of Christ appeared to him in the form of actual flesh and blood.  This frightened him greatly, and he never served the Divine Liturgy again after this.  It is true that he continued to follow the Old Calendar after the introduction of the New Calendar in Greece, but his Life clearly says that he never spoke out about the calendar change or encouraged people to leave the Church or join schisms over the calendar issue.  He served those who came to him regardless of whether they followed the New or Old Calendars.  His Life does not describe any revelations or visions that he had regarding the calendar issue, and indicates that he simply followed the Old out of preference but without condemning those on those on the New Calendar or promoting fanaticism.

Elder Philotheos (Zervakos) spoke out against the New Calendar and also against the fanatical Old Calendarists.  He struggled, prayed, and labored for the return of the Church of Greece to the Old Calendar and was very grieved that such a return was not accomplished during his life.  Wishing to repose on the Old Calendar, but not in schism from the Church, he invited Archimandrite Dionysios of Simonopetra on Mt. Athos to hear his confession and conduct his funeral on the Old Calendar.  Archimandrite Dionysios (spiritual son of both Elder Philotheos and Elder Aemilianos, and spiritual father of the nuns of the Entry of the Theotokos Monastery in Maryland under ROCOR) was and is in communion with the Orthodox Church. 


If you read the introduction to the edition of his published by HTM, you will find that in fact he did leave the State Church, which according to you is a schismatic act. That would make him a schismatic, too.
Logged
jah777
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Posts: 1,934


« Reply #164 on: March 16, 2012, 04:57:42 PM »

While it's unfortunate that there is division among us Old Calendarists, we still refuse to enter into communion with a body that openly preaches heresy. When St. Maximus the Confessor was asked by the Monothelites, ""To which Church do you belong: to that of Byzantium, Rome, Antioch, Alexandria, or Jerusalem? All these churches and the provinces under them are in concord. If you belong to the Catholic Church, you must enter into communion with us at once, lest you forge a new and strange pathway and fall into unexpected disaster." The man of God wisely replied, "Christ the Lord acknowledges as Catholic that Church which maintains the true and saving confession of faith. But tell me: on what basis have all the churches, as you say, entered into communion? If it is on a foundation of truth, I do not wish to be separated from them."
St. Demetrius of Rostov, The Great Collection of the Lives of the Saints, vol. 5, p. 366

Even though not everybody in World Orthodoxy accepts or teaches the heresy of Ecumenism, the fact that it is a heresy and is openly taught and practiced by a numerous amount of clergy without any kind of punishment by fellow bishops is enough to warrant us to cease communion with World Orthodoxy, which is an Orthodox practice, not schism. Hopefully there comes a time that all of the Old Calendarists will recognize that we all share the same faith, as today we recognize both the synods in 4th century Antioch eventually had the same faith even though they were out of communion with each other, and can unite on that.

Orthodox participation in the Ecumenical Movement has sadly been a source of much confusion and disagreement in the Orthodox Church and has done great violence to the ecclesiological, dogmatic, and canonical conscience and phronema of the Church.  I greatly sympathize with the Old Calendarist disdain for Ecumenism and innovation in general.  The Old Calendarists are right to have such disdain.  However, as St. Gregory Palamas and so many Fathers said, “nothing can be good unless it is done in a good way.”  It is right to reject syncretistic and heretical Ecumenism, but it must be rejected in the right way or else one ends up just as far from God as those whose actions one is opposing. 

The Old Calendar schism occurred in 1935 when three bishops left the Church of Greece and announced that the Church of Greece was in schism and without grace, even while the entire rest of the Church (even local churches who were still on the Old Calendar) recognized the Church of Greece as a grace-filled part of the body of Christ.  All three bishops came to regret this decision later.  Met Chrysostom of Zakynthos quickly repented and returned to the Church of Greece.  Met Germanos of Demetrias petitioned to be received back into the Church of Greece years later and was eventually buried by the Church of Greece.  Met Chrysostom of Florina made several unsuccessful attempts to be received back into the Church of Greece, and before his repose he pledged to the Church of Greece that he would not consecrate any other bishops and had no intention of starting a “rival Synod”. 

Today, Old Calendarists justify their schism by claiming that the Orthodox patriarchates now formally teach that there is not One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church.  They say that they have broken communion with the Church because of heretical Ecumenism.  Heresy had nothing at all to do with the Old Calendarist schism, however, and so they graft themselves onto an erroneous foundation.  When this schism occurred, it was claimed that 16th century Pan-Orthodox Councils anathematized the New Calendar, but this claim was based on a forgery as even the Old Calendarist “Synod in Resistance” acknowledges.  These past councils condemned the adoption of the Gregorian Paschalian because this alone (and not the Julian Menologion) goes against the decrees of the First Ecumenical Council regarding the dating of Pascha and the importance of all Orthodox celebrating Pascha on the same date.  Sadly, the Old Calendarists based their schism on forgery and a completely erroneous and cacadox ecclesiology (as even Met Chrysostom of Florina came to see).

Today, Old Calendarists claim that Ecumenism began in 1920 with the Patriarchal Encyclical of that date calling for unity amongst Christians, and this encyclical mentioned the need for all Christians to be on the same calendar.  The Old Calendarists today argue that the original Old Calendarists saw the calendar change as the “first step” in forming a false union with Rome.  Yet, where did the first Old Calendarist hierarchs mention anything about ecumenism or the 1920 Encyclical?  It seems that nobody knew anything about the Encyclical until the 1960s or so.  And now we are quickly approaching 100 years since the introduction of the New Calendar and where did this dreaded false union with Rome happen that was supposed to follow the introduction of the New Calendar? 

The first hierarchs of the schismatic Old Calendarists all came to see that their actions in response to the calendar change were unjustifiable.  Yet, the Old Calendarists today claim to follow these first hierarchs and now claim to defend the Church against Ecumenism, yet their approach to Ecumenism and heresy is entirely foreign to the example of the Holy Fathers.  St. Mark of Ephesus, for instance, was surrounded by bishops who were eager to unite with the heretical Pope.  He knew that many bishops with whom he was in communion were fully prepared to commemorate the Pope of Rome in return for military assistance against the Turks.  If he thought as the Old Calendarists do today, he would have broken communion with his fellow bishops and started his own separate Synod long before the Council of Florence, condemning as “without grace” those who he separated from.  But what did he do?  He went to Florence with the unionist bishops, met with the heretical Latin bishops, discussed matters of faith, and only when the other formerly Orthodox bishops formally entered into union with the Pope did he break communion with those who had united themselves with heretics. 

As lamentable as it is that bishops today have called the Roman Catholics a “Sister Church”, even more lamentable is the fact that people lose their faith over such things and join schisms, having no fear of the words of St. Ignatius of Antioch that “no one who follows a man into schism will inherit the kingdom of God.”  The example of St. Mark of Ephesus and the other Fathers teach us to have no communion with heresy, they do not teach us to create schisms out of fear of some future false union with heresy. 

St. Maximus the Confessor is not emulated by today’s Old Calendarists in the least.  In his day, the emperor had established the heresy of monothelitism as an imperial doctrine.  It was obligatory that all Orthodox Christians adopt this heresy, and St. Maximus was tortured precisely for refusing to belief the heresy.  Today in the Orthodox Church, some participants (and certainly not all!) in the Ecumenical movement speak vaguely about the limits of the Church with the hope of winning over the non-Orthodox.  This is shameful indeed, but is not even remotely close to the bishops of the Church establishing a new teaching that Roman Catholics and other non-Orthodox are all part of the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church.  While there have been unfortunate words and gestures, no local Church has fallen into heresy as happened in the time of St. Maximus. 

Furthermore, when monothelitism was introduced and mandated by the emperor, what exactly did St. Maximus do?  Did he immediately break communion with the entire Orthodox world and start his own church, declaring “devoid of grace” all who he separated from?  No, he sought out bishops who would stand with him and gather in council to condemn the heresy.  When the three Old Calendarist bishops broke away from the Church of Greece in 1935, they consulted with no other local churches before making such a perilous decision.  Consequently, nobody supported them and they found themselves isolated and cut off from the entire body of the Church.  When one of the bishops, Met Chrysostom of Florina, went to the Patriarch of Jerusalem in 1936 to elicit support for the Old Calendarists in Greece, the Patriarch received Met Chrysostom as a simple monk rather than a hierarch and chastised him for his completely erroneous ecclesiology and misunderstanding of the canons and their application.  Met Chrysostom changed his views and came to see that only a Pan-Orthodox Council of living bishops has the authority to declare a local Church to be in schism and without grace, but sadly Met Chrysostom never reunited with the Church. 

When Met Chrysostom reposed there were two competing Old Calendarist groups.  Today, there are more than 10.  The reason that the Old Calendarists cannot unite today is the same reason why the Protestants cannot unite.  Only the Holy Spirit can bring such unity, but the Holy Spirit dwells in the Church that they have left.  By condemning the Church as if was deprived of the grace of the Holy Spirit, the Old Calendarist further grieve the Spirit and deprive themselves of the means of salvation. 

Well in 4th century Antioch there were two synods not in communion with each other but today we recognize saints on both sides. More recently, ROCOR was not in communion with World Orthodoxy & yet today your Church considers them to have always been Orthodox. The ecumenical heresy teaches that those who are not Orthodox are still somehow, although maybe
 imperfectly, a part of the Church. So no, there is only one rock, not many, that the one Church is built upon.

Fourth century Antioch is another example of a historical situation that the Old Calendarists use to justify their position, but which has no relation to the reality of their own schism.  It is true that the Meletian schism was very complicated, that there were rival Synods, and that there was a disagreement between other local Orthodox churches and various saints regarding which Patriarch of Antioch was the canonical and Orthodox one.  The Church later resolved the matter in a council.  In the case of the competing Old Calendarist groups, they all cut themselves off from the Church voluntarily a long time ago.  No local Orthodox Church has communion with them or recognizes them as canonical and Orthodox.  There is no confusion or debate on the matter between local Orthodox Synods, and all agree that the many competing Old Calendarist groups are in an unlawful schism.

The Meletian schism lasted 55 yrs in all and occurred at a time when communication and travel was exceedingly difficult.  Communication probably had the most to do with why the confusion and associated schisms lasted as long as they did.  The Old Calendarists have been in schism now for 77 yrs, and have divided now into many individual groups that are isolated and separated from communion with anyone else, and this has happened at such a time when travel and communication has never been faster or easier. 

The situation with ROCOR during Soviet times is also in no way similar to that of the Old Calendarists today.  ROCOR was always recognized as Orthodox by other local Orthodox churches, and had particularly close ties with the Serbian and Jerusalem Patriarchates.  ROCOR did become increasingly isolated from the 1960s, mostly because of very questionable and uncanonical actions of ROCOR on the territories of other Synods, and because of ROCOR’s increasing concerns about Ecumenism.  Communion was never fully broken, however, whereas the Old Calendarists withdrew from communion with the entire Orthodox Church 77 yrs ago. 

Again, many Orthodox participants in the Ecumenical Movement have said and done things which are unacceptable from an ecclesiological and canonical position.  The Orthodox Church has not fallen into heresy, however.  The Old Calendarists were not established because of any claim regarding heresy, but rather on the basis of a cacadox ecclesiology, forged documents, and a complete misunderstanding of the canons and their application.  While I certainly understand and sympathize with the Old Calendarist objections to Ecumenism and the New Calendar, I do not agree with fighting cacadox ecclesiology with an equally cacadox ecclesiology.  Nor do I agree with the falsifications of history and deceptions used by many Old Calendarists to scandalize members of the Orthodox Church and justify their unlawful schisms.   
Logged
searn77
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Old Calendarist
Jurisdiction: Autonomous Orthodox Metropolia of the Americas & the British Isles
Posts: 240


St. Philaret (Voznesensky) of New York


« Reply #165 on: March 17, 2012, 12:56:00 AM »

You make it sound like the Greek traditionalists all of the sudden broke away from the Greek State Church and just all of the sudden proclaimed the State Church to have no grace, but in reality it took about a decade for this "schism" to happen, and it wasn't until after much persecution (and even martyrdom) by the Greek government and Greek New Calendarist clergy, and much consideration and pleading to the Greek State Church to return to the Orthodox calendar, that this happened. In reality, after the calendar change happened in Greece and the traditional Orthodox "Old Calendarist" movement began taking place, there were New Calendarist bishops who helped the Old Calendarists out when they were being persecuted. There were even bishops and other clergy that became Old Calendarists until they began to get persecuted from the government, as in which case they jumped back to the New Calendarist Church. There was in reality a lot of hopping back and forth with clergy and laity during the first decade of the schism. Which is why in my opinion I view it as a good protective measure to state that the Greek State Church had no grace, as it helped put an end to this hopping back and forth between the two Greek Churches and it showed that only where the Orthodox Church is can you be assured of the sacraments. Now no TOC synod, not even the Matthewites, state in their confession of faith's that grace left the Greek Church immediately when the calendar was changed. For a good reading on this issue I would recommend reading HOCNA's confession of faith and Met. Ephraim's letter that follows the HOCNA confession, which can be found on their website.

And yes, the Old Calendarists broke off originally due to a change in the calendar. It wasn't until later that the heresy of ecumenism has been recognized as the reason for this calendar change in the World Orthodox Church and for other other heretically ecumenical events that have taken place. I know that Met. Chrysostom did not consecrate any other bishops after him but to say that he tried to be received back into the Greek State Church I have never heard before. You're right, I do not think he wanted to create a rival synod with the Greek State Church, but in his mind, and in the mind of many Old Calendarists of the time, they thought that the other synods and Patriarchates of the Church would help support their Orthodox cause and bring the Greek Church back to an Orthodox calendar. They thought the Greek State Church would soon realize their mistake and return back to the Orthodox calendar. Sadly the opposite has taken place, with those in the Patriarchates and other synods accepting (or ignoring) what today we recognize as the ecumenical heresy.

The claim that the councils which anathemized the new calendar are "forgeries" is questionable, as there is actually no reliable proof which shows that it was indeed a forgery. And the whole reason why these councils at least anathemized the Gregorian Paschalion (if you believe that the anathema's against the Roman Catholic calendar was a forgery) was to keep intact the unity of the Orthodox Church. So when the whole Orthodox Church had begun using a united calendar, to introduce a foreign calendar into the Church for no good reason at all goes against the spirit of the councils.

I have honestly never heard the claim that today's Old Calendarist's believe that the Old Calendarists of the 20s and 30s thought that the calendar change was the first step towards a false union with Rome. However, since the new calendar was introduced, liturgical services have indeed been served with Orthodox and Catholic clergy together, the lifting of anathemas has taken place (for whatever reasons I do not understand), there has been a sort of semi-unity with the Non-Chalcedonians, and many heretical events taking place.

St. Mark of Ephesus did not have the same situation as the Old Calendarists of the 20s and 30s had. The Old Calendarists were highly persecuted by the government for voicing their belief that the Church should stick with the Julian calendar; they were beaten, arrested, and shaven of their beards. There's even an incident where a New Calendarist Bishop of Boston returned to Greece, went to an Old Calendarist Church, threw the chalice on the ground, ripped out the priest's (Hieromonk Theonas) beard, pushed him to the ground, and began kicking him, causing wounds which Fr. Theonas died from shortly later. So it wasn't as if they could just partake in a council with the New Calendarist bishops and work out this situation like Christians. The situation was too bad for this even to be considered happening at the time. Sure, there were some who thought that this council would take place, but sadly it never did, as it might have brought the Greek State Church back to the Orthodox calendar and save us from the situation we have today.

Regardless though, a council is not needed to declare a heresy. For example, during the 7th Ecumenical Council, the iconoclasts were already considered to be outside the Church even before the council took place. In the Council it states, "For they [the Iconoclasts] have dared to slander the God-befitting beauty of the sacred offerings, being called 'priests,' while in reality they are not." So it was acknowledged that the Iconocasts priests were being called priests from before the 7th Ecumenical Council, and that in reality the Iconoclast priests were not priests at all.

If you also read the 31st Apostolic canon it forbids a Christian from breaking communion with his bishop except when the bishop has offended against "piety and justice," which allows the Old Calendarists of the time to break communion with their synod. But again, they did not think of themselves as breaking off of the Orthodox Church; just severing communion with the Greek State Church until the time that the Greek State Church returns to the Orthodox calendar, which they did not see as taking that long.

And the 32nd Apostolic canon states, "As for those persons…who on account of some heresy condemned by the holy councils or Fathers withdraw themselves from communion with their president who preaches heresy publicly and with a bare head in the Church, such persons are not only not subject to any canonical penalty on account of their having walled themselves off from any and all communion with the one called a bishop before any conciliar or synodical verdict has been rendered, but on the contrary, they shall be deemed worthy to enjoy the honor which befits them among Orthodox Christians. For they have defied not bishops, but pseudo-bishops and pseudo-teachers; and they have not sundered the unity of the Church with any schism, but on the contrary, have been sedulous to rescue the Church from schisms and divisions."

Ecumenism is a hard to define heresy, but HOTCA defines it as "In its weakest form, Ecumenism holds that the Church of Christ is larger than the Orthodox Church, or that other churches posses some real, albeit imperfect, ecclesial status." This heresy goes completely against the fathers and councils of the Orthodox Church, and this heresy is openly preached and practiced by many bishops in World Orthodoxy, so the fact that the Old Calendarists haven't joined the World Orthodox is completely justified. I'm not saying that ecumenism is preached and practiced everywhere in World Orthodoxy as I've been to very traditional World Orthodox parishes, but the fact that these traditional parishes are in communion with others who openly preach this heresy is the reason why the Old Calendarists cannot enter in communion with those in World Orthodoxy who are more traditional. A kind  of "guilty by association" type of situation.

And the reasons not all of the Old Calendarists are not in communion with each other are due to persecutions, misunderstandings, and historical circumstances. Today things have been getting better than they were even a decade ago. Promising talks between synods have taken place, the RTOC and GOC under Met. Kallinikos had some promising talks with each other until some more recent events which took place in Serbia, the synod I am a part of has united with a Russian Catacomb Church, Greek Church, and a Bulgarian Church, so things are looking better than they were a decade ago. I have even heard from a GOC priest that after his church finishes their liturgy and the RTOC church in his area finish their liturgy, they gather together for a common meal. While certainly this is far from perfect, today the situation among the TOC synods are getting better.

I still disagree with you about 4th century Antioch. Sure, from your POV I understand what you have said. But from a TOC POV, the TOC is the true Church, not a schism from the true Church, as we do not view it schismatic to cease communion with a body which has introduced un-Orthodox ideas and practices into the Church. So I believe that while we are all not in communion with each other yet, we are still the true Orthodox Church, as in 4th century Antioch those synods were not in communion with each other but today we recognize saints on both sides.

The ROCOR had specific close ties with the Old Calendarists. In the ROCOR's earlier years, they were hardly in a position to contemplate and concern themselves with the calendar and with Ecumenism, as the Russians were trying to survive and stabilize a Russian Orthodox Church after escaping the persecutions. But when the dust began to settle, Met. St. Philaret issued the anathema against ecumenism and the ROCOR helped out both the Matthewite and Florinite synods and entered into communion with both of them for a time. You can even read what Fr. Seraphims words regarding the Old Calendarists and Ecumenism:
"Many of them follow the bishops of the few Orthodox jurisdicitions that have strong stands against the apostasy of our times: the Catacomb Church of Russia, the Russian Church Outside of Russia, the True Orthodox Christians [Old Calendarists] of Greece. But there are some left in other jurisdictions also, grieving over the ever more evident apostasy of their hierarchs and striving somehow to keep their own Orthodoxy intact;" Orthodoxy and the Religion of the Future. 1983 edition, page 220

But as time went on and certain members of the clergy of the ROCOR starting becoming more ecumenical without being called to repent or repudiating what they thought, going against what ROCOR had stood for, that's when splits from ROCOR began happening and that's when unions with the ROCOR and the Old Calendarists began severing.

The ROCOR had close ties with the Old Calendarists as they recognized the "apostasy of our times." But again, the traditional Old Calendarists of the 20s and 30s did not know that others besides the Greek State Church and Ecumenical Patriarchate would fall into the apostasy of our times. To the contrary, they thought others, the Jerusalem Patriarchate for example, would help bring the Greek State Church back to the Orthodox calendar and restore unity and the Orthodox tradition. They did not have any idea that this heresy of ecumenism would spread throughout the Church. Even if you read their 1935 confession of faith, they only state that grace has left the Greek Church, not mentioning the other Churches. But again, you have to understand that there was a constant back-and-forth thing going in Greece at that time with the clergy and laity between the Old Calendarists and New Calendarists. The Old Calendarist view of the time was that the Greek State Church was in schism, not the Old Calendarists themselves, and according to St. Basil schismatics do not have grace in their sacraments, so it was a legitimate thing for the Old Calendarists to say and it helped clear some confusion and stop the hopping back and forth. But again, I would highly recommend reading Met. Ephraim of HOCNA's letter after their confession listed on their website which helps put this idea of ceasing to have grace into perspective. As again, grace is not like a light switch that just turns on and off. After the calendar change in Greece, the Greek traditional Orthodox fathers did not just suddenly break communion with all of World Orthodoxy and declare everybody as heretics and schismatics. History is not always as black and white as people try to make it out to be.
Logged

Let us the faithful now come together to praise our father, protector and teacher the pillar of the Orthodox faith and firm defender of piety even the wondrous hierarch Philaret and let us glorify our Saviour Who has granted us his incorrupt relics as a manifest sign of his sanctity.
searn77
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Old Calendarist
Jurisdiction: Autonomous Orthodox Metropolia of the Americas & the British Isles
Posts: 240


St. Philaret (Voznesensky) of New York


« Reply #166 on: March 17, 2012, 01:44:06 AM »

And please excuse my typos and bad wording in my last post. It took me some time to write and frankly I was/am tired. After I just read over it I saw quite a few writing mistakes.
Logged

Let us the faithful now come together to praise our father, protector and teacher the pillar of the Orthodox faith and firm defender of piety even the wondrous hierarch Philaret and let us glorify our Saviour Who has granted us his incorrupt relics as a manifest sign of his sanctity.
JamesR
Virginal Chicano Blood
Taxiarches
**********
Offline Offline

Faith: Eastern Orthodox (but doubtful)
Jurisdiction: Orthodox Church *of* America
Posts: 5,744


St. Augustine of Hippo pray for me!


« Reply #167 on: March 17, 2012, 06:10:35 AM »

For what it is worth, very soon I may be switching jurisdictions and attending an ROCOR parish which I discovered is closer to the apartment my family is moving into next month. I assume then that according to these statistics, I will most likely be one of the very few young people in a parish full of older people? I've actually found it easier to socialize with the elderly than with people my age.

EDIT: Are Russians really affected by annoying, American Protestant missionaries? From what I have gathered through my readings, the Russians do not seem like the type of people who are easily swayed by outside influence. I mean, all throughout their history they rejected Roman Catholic missionaries and many did not even want to accept Nikon's unnecessary Greek reforms back in the day. I imagine they would reject Protestantism for the most part as well?
« Last Edit: March 17, 2012, 06:18:29 AM by JamesR » Logged

Quote
You're really on to something here. Tattoo to keep you from masturbating, chew to keep you from fornicating... it's a whole new world where you outsource your crosses. You're like a Christian entrepreneur or something.
Quote
James, you have problemz.
jah777
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Posts: 1,934


« Reply #168 on: March 19, 2012, 08:05:35 AM »

When I refer to the Old Calendarist schism, I am speaking specifically of the event of 1935 when three bishops of the Church of Greece separated from the Church of Greece, declared themselves the bishops of the Old Calendarists, and declared the Church of Greece to be in schism and without grace in its mysteries.  I certainly realize that this took place 11 yrs after the introduction of the New Calendar, but I do not necessarily consider “schismatics” those clergy and faithful who refused to accept the New Calendar after 1924 prior to the formal schism of 1935. 

During the first years after the introduction of the New Calendar, it is true that St. Nikolai of Zica in the Serbian Church, and perhaps other bishops from other local Orthodox churches, provided the Old Calendarists with chrism and supported them when they were without bishops.  St. Nicholas Planas, while still serving privately on the Old Calendar after the introduction of the New, did not agree with separating from or disobeying the bishops who introduced the New, but it is understandable why so many people at first rejected this change and protested against it. 

It is lamentable that those who continued to follow the Old Calendar were persecuted, just as it was lamentable that those who continued to follow the Old Rite after the Nikonian reforms were harshly persecuted.  During the time of this persecution, however, there was complete unity among the Old Calendarists until a separate hierarchy was formed and condemnations of the Church of Greece occurred.  It was only in 1935, when the three bishops joined the Old Calendarists and made such denunciations, that this united movement fell into disunity and lost the favor of other local Orthodox Churches and the grace of God.

There was in reality a lot of hopping back and forth with clergy and laity during the first decade of the schism. Which is why in my opinion I view it as a good protective measure to state that the Greek State Church had no grace, as it helped put an end to this hopping back and forth between the two Greek Churches and it showed that only where the Orthodox Church is can you be assured of the sacraments.

We cannot blaspheme the Holy Spirit to promote church attendance.  Three bishops in a Synod have no authority to declare an entire local Church to be schismatic and without grace.  A bishop can be declared deposed and in schism by the Synod to whom he is accountable, but an entire local Church can only be declared in schism and outside of the Church by the rest of the Church to which that local Church is accountable.  That is why only a Pan-Orthodox Council was competent to judge the matter of the Church of Greece after the adoption of the New Calendar.  After the introduction of the New Calendar in Greece, every other local Orthodox Church considered the Church of Greece to be part of the body of Christ and to have true mysteries.  For the Old Calendarist hierarchs in 1935 to declare true mysteries graceless when the whole Church recognizes their mysteries is blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, and nothing justifies such blasphemy.         

Now no TOC synod, not even the Matthewites, state in their confession of faith's that grace left the Greek Church immediately when the calendar was changed. For a good reading on this issue I would recommend reading HOCNA's confession of faith and Met. Ephraim's letter that follows the HOCNA confession, which can be found on their website.

In 1935, the three bishops who broke away from the Church of Greece declared the Church of Greece to be without grace.  Likewise, Abp Auxentius (who HOCNA joined in 1986 when they fled ROCOR to avoid facing spiritual court) in 1974 stated:
Quote
”The celebration of a Mystery and the giving of Holy Communion to new calendarists was forbidden from the time that the schism created by the State Church began. Therefore, it is necessary that you uphold this position without deviation, in obedience to the understanding of all that has been transmitted unto us by our God-bearing Fathers, and that they renounce and condemn every heresy and innovation, among which is the new calendar in the Greek Church, which became schismatic from its acceptance thereof in 1924 until the present, according to the very confession of the innovator, Archbishop Chrysostom Papadopoulos, and, as a consequence, its mysteries are deprived of sanctifying grace.”

I am very well aware of HOCNA’s position on “grace” and schism, but their position is pretty irrelevant.  Even before Holy Transfiguration Monastery fled ROCOR and hastily joined Abp Auxentius, they were critical of the Old Calendarist position on “grace” and the implications of the calendar change.  In 2003, HOCNA made an official statement on the subject of grace and essentially rejected the 1935 Confession that was at the foundation of the Old Calendarist schism, as well as the 1974 Confession of the very Archbishop that they joined!  They said,

Quote
”We believe and affirm that, as the Holy Fathers and Holy Canons teach us, according to
strictness there is no grace in the mysteries of those in heresy or schism. However, as we discern
from the incidents cited in the letter above, we see that we cannot speak of the precise moment
when God, in His wisdom and economia, withdraws His uncreated power and grace from the
mysteries of those who are being led astray.”

HOCNA here declares that they do not agree with those who they joined, for the Old Calendarists whom they joined clearly declared from 1935 on that the Church of Greece was indeed without grace in its mysteries by virtue of introducing the New Calendar.  Today, HOCNA is becoming increasingly irrelevant even in the Old Calendarist movement as they now consist of only 2 ruling bishops and 1 auxiliary bishop, all of whom received their formation in the same monastery (hardly a model for “catholicity”).  Recently, as you know, HOCNA lost 2 bishops and several parishes and clergy to those Old Calendarists who do indeed uphold the cacadox ecclesiology that the Church of Greece became schismatic and deprived of grace in its mysteries when the calendar was changed.

I know that Met. Chrysostom did not consecrate any other bishops after him but to say that he tried to be received back into the Greek State Church I have never heard before.

After declaring in 1935 that the Church of Greece was without grace, Met Chrysostom of Florina came to see that such a decision was entirely cacadox and erroneous.  In 1943, Met Germanus of Demetrias and Met Chrysostom of Florina (2 of the original 3 original Old Calendarist bishops – the third returned to the Church of Greece already) both petitioned the Church of Greece to be received back into communion. Their petition, however, was rejected. Met Chrysostom then petitioned the Patriarchate of Jerusalem. But because the Patriarchate of Jerusalem was in communion with the Church of Greece, and since the latter church had deposed Metropolitan Chrysostom in 1935 and reduced him to the rank of a monk, the Jerusalem Patriarchate informed Metropolitan Chrysostom that he could only be received in the rank of monk. 

This episode is referred to in a letter from the Old Calendarist Bishop Matthew of Bresthena to Met Chrysostom of Florina in a 1944 Encyclical.  By this time, Met Chrysostom had repented of the cacadox ecclesiology and affirmed that the grace of the Holy Spirit resides in the Church and those whom the entire (catholic or universal) Church recognizes as its bishops and clergy.  By breaking off from the entire universal Church, the Old Calendarist bishops cut themselves off of divine grace which resides in the Church.  Met Chrysostom himself stated this on June 1, 1944:

Quote
“... it is the whole Church, as the Treasury of grace, that establishes the Churches and endows them with the Mysteries and the grace of the All-holy Spirit, and not a certain number of individual laity and clergy who, owing to a disagreement on some ecclesiastical issue that is capable of being resolved [such as that of the calendar], have broken away from a recognized Orthodox Church, one that has not been stripped of its ecclesiastical validity or of the grace of the All-holy Spirit following a trial and sentence pronounced by the entire Church...”

“... The parasynagogue Bishops, who have a different opinion on this matter, fall into the heresy of Protestantism, and in celebrating the Mysteries in the name of a non-existent Church, or, to put the point better, of their personal Church, they are deprived of all grace, of which the Treasurer is the entire recognized Orthodox Church...”

-SNIP-

“This, you see, is why the parasynagogue Bishops of Bresthena and the Cyclades cannot have the grace of Orthodoxy or the right to impart this grace to those who follow them on this ecclesiastical downward slope of theirs, because they do not belong to the canonical Church, the sole Treasury of grace in an Orthodox sense.”

On December 11, 1950, in the national newspaper, “Bradyne,” and in his official periodical “Voice of Orthodoxy,” for the month of December, 1950, Met Chrysostom of Florina wrote:

Quote
"...The (state) hierarchy, for the sake of the authority and prestige of the Church, should suggest for one Metropolitan (of the state church) to pretend to be an old calendarist, and to become the head of the old calendarists, while controlling the struggle from within the canonical boundaries (of the state Church).”

Here, Met Chrysostom (who had declared the Church of Greece to be without grace in 1935) stated that the Old Calendarists are in schism from the Church, and to bring the Old Calendarist schismatics back into communion with the Church, the Church of Greece should have one of its bishops serve as the bishop for those who wished to continue serving on the Old Calendar.  He believed that the Old Calendar should be followed, but that schism from the Church of Greece because of the calendar change was impermissible.

Met Chrysostom had been in negotiations with Abp Spyridon of the Church of Greece regarding this matter, and in March of 1951 the “National Herald” published a statement from the Greek Minister of Internal Affairs regarding these negotiations:

Quote
“The negotiations… are going well and have reached the point that the former Bishop of Florina has completely recognized his error… The official Church has exceeded all limits in the concessions it has made. In time it would have rehabilitated the Old Calendar bishops, and ordained their priests… and recognized the sacraments accomplished by them as valid, and churches would have been offered for those who would want to celebrate according to the old calendar. Both the former Bishop of Florina and the other bishops (Germanus of the Cyclades, Christopher of Megara and Polycarp of Diaulia) agreed with all this, and, according to our information, their representatives, distinguished lawyers, had to formulate a corresponding act… Unfortunately, at the last moment irresponsible activists from the lay estate interfered… and influenced the weak character of the former Bishop of Florina, who rejected all that he had said earlier…”

So, in the end Met Chrysostom of Florina wished to join the Church of Greece and bring all of the Old Calendarists back into communion with the Church, but the Old Calendarists who were with him did not all support him in this decision.  The Old Calendarist bishops Christopher and Polycarp who were with him then, returned to the Church of Greece in 1954 without him, and Met Chrysostom himself reposed alone, outside of the Church, and without any fellow bishops around him.  He was encouraged by the Old Calendarist clergy to consecrate more bishops before his repose, but he refused, instructing them to return to the Church of Greece as Bishops Christopher and Polycarp had done.  He encouraged those with him to work with the other Old Calendarists under Bp Matthew of Bresthena toward reuniting with the Church and ending the schism.

You're right, I do not think he wanted to create a rival synod with the Greek State Church, but in his mind, and in the mind of many Old Calendarists of the time, they thought that the other synods and Patriarchates of the Church would help support their Orthodox cause and bring the Greek Church back to an Orthodox calendar.

It is true that when the three bishops in 1935 declared the Church of Greece to be without grace and in schism, that they believed the other local Orthodox churches would agree with them.  They were wrong, and today it is still they who are in schism and without grace. 

The claim that the councils which anathemized the new calendar are "forgeries" is questionable, as there is actually no reliable proof which shows that it was indeed a forgery.

There is not much on the subject in English, but this summary by the “Synod in Resistance” is perhaps the most detailed and informative:

http://www.synodinresistance.org/pdfs/2011/07/04/20110704aSigillion/20110704aSigillion.pdf

Why would an Old Calendarist group make this up if it wasn’t true?  The “Synod in Resistance” are not the only ones to make this claim, but their position is certainly significant since they themselves are Old Calendarists (though not as fanatical as the rest).

I have honestly never heard the claim that today's Old Calendarist's believe that the Old Calendarists of the 20s and 30s thought that the calendar change was the first step towards a false union with Rome.

In the problematic paper entitled “Why the True Orthodox are Truly Orthodox”, Fr. Maximos (Maretta) states:

Quote
”… it was in large measure because the calendar change was the first step in the union with the Papists and Anglicans that the [Old Calendarists] rejected it.”

Similar statements are found in practically every polemical work aimed at promoting Old Calendar schisms.

However, since the new calendar was introduced, liturgical services have indeed been served with Orthodox and Catholic clergy together, the lifting of anathemas has taken place (for whatever reasons I do not understand), there has been a sort of semi-unity with the Non-Chalcedonians, and many heretical events taking place.

The “lifting of the anathemas” was a very unfortunate but completely meaningless event.  Nobody outside of the Patriarchate of Constantinople ascribes any meaning to this act.  As it is claimed, the anathemas that were “lifted” by Patriarch Athenagoras were those made against Rome in 1054 in response the Bull of excommunication given to Constantinople by the Papal legates.  However, the Filioque was anathematized at the 8th Ecumenical Council under Patriarch Photios, which was affirmed by the entire Church (including the Pope of Rome at that time).  The Patriarchal Encyclical of 1848 acknowledged this fact that the Filioque was anathematized at this Council, and the Patriarchal Encyclical of 1848 was signed by the Patriarchates of Alexandria, Antioch, and Jerusalem.  Patriarch Athenagoras was not an “Eastern Pope” and had no authority to “lift” anathemas against the Filioque or any other heresy that was anathematized by the entire Orthodox Church.  So, this act is void and is only a shameful gesture that has no meaning for the rest of the Church.  The rest of the Church was not consulted prior to this empty gesture, nor has the rest of the Church rallied behind it.

Regarding joint services and the rest, this is all very shameful and unfortunate, but in no way connected to the change of the calendar.  Today the Church of Greece, who was the first local church to adopt the New Calendar, is perhaps the most vocal in opposition to compromise within the Ecumenical Movement.  But, again, Ecumenism is an entirely separate issue that is not in any way connected to the calendar change. 

St. Mark of Ephesus did not have the same situation as the Old Calendarists of the 20s and 30s had. The Old Calendarists were highly persecuted by the government for voicing their belief that the Church should stick with the Julian calendar; they were beaten, arrested, and shaven of their beards. There's even an incident where a New Calendarist Bishop of Boston returned to Greece, went to an Old Calendarist Church, threw the chalice on the ground, ripped out the priest's (Hieromonk Theonas) beard, pushed him to the ground, and began kicking him, causing wounds which Fr. Theonas died from shortly later. So it wasn't as if they could just partake in a council with the New Calendarist bishops and work out this situation like Christians. The situation was too bad for this even to be considered happening at the time. Sure, there were some who thought that this council would take place, but sadly it never did, as it might have brought the Greek State Church back to the Orthodox calendar and save us from the situation we have today.

Again, the way the Old Calendarists were treated was shameful, as was also the case with those who wanted to continue serving on the Old Rite after the Nikonian reforms in Russia centuries before.  I do not think, however, that it was impossible for the three bishops who left the Church of Greece in 1935 to lead the Old Calendarists, to have first consulted with other local Orthodox Churches regarding the patristic and canonical way to respond to what was occurring in Greece.  Before declaring that the Church of Greece was automatically in schism from the rest of the Church and without grace by virtue of adopting the New Calendar, these bishops should have first determined if other local churches actually agreed with them on this critical claim.  I certainly understand the difficulty of successfully convening a Pan-Orthodox Council at that time (particularly during Communism), but they could and should have consulted with other local church informally.   

It should be pointed out that other local churches had been consulted regarding the implications of adopting the New Calendar, and the other local churches agreed that such a change is not of dogmatic nature, would not contradict the canons as long as the original Paschalian was preserved, and would create no obstacle to communion.  These are the responses that Patriarch Meletios received when he wrote to the other local churches concerning the question prior to the 1923 “Pan-Orthodox” Congress, and this is what was also stated by the representatives of those local churches who did participate in the Congress. 

There is much regarding the 1923 Congress that the Old Calendarists twist for purposes of propaganda, and much could be said about this, but what I want to point out here is that the Church of Greece adopted the New Calendar only after consulting with the other local Orthodox Churches.  It is true that the 1923 Congress envisioned that all Orthodox churches would agree on whether to adopt the New or stay on the Old, and it is unfortunate that the Church of Greece adopted the New when other local churches decided to stay on the Old, but nevertheless they did consult with the other churches unlike the Old Calendarist bishops who created their schism in 1935 and declared the Church of Greece to be schismatic completely on the basis of their own self-declared authority. 

Regardless though, a council is not needed to declare a heresy. For example, during the 7th Ecumenical Council, the iconoclasts were already considered to be outside the Church even before the council took place. In the Council it states, "For they [the Iconoclasts] have dared to slander the God-befitting beauty of the sacred offerings, being called 'priests,' while in reality they are not." So it was acknowledged that the Iconocasts priests were being called priests from before the 7th Ecumenical Council, and that in reality the Iconoclast priests were not priests at all.

So you are saying that the adoption of the New Calendar is a heresy, and one comparable to Iconoclasm? 

In any case, we have to handle such phrases as “being called ‘priests,’ while in reality they were not” with great care.  There have been many instances in history where a saint will refer to a bishop as a “false bishop” or a bishop “in name only” while that bishop is formally recognized as a bishop by the universal Church.  A bishop can be a heretic or very immoral, and yet as long as the Church recognizes him as a bishop of the Church he serves grace-filled mysteries.  As a “false bishop” (by virtue of heresy or immorality), that bishop may very well be condemned by God at the Judgment, but only when and if that “false bishop” is anathematized and/or deposed by the Synod to which he belongs do the mysteries he serves become actually devoid of grace. 

Another way that a bishop, or synod of bishops, becomes deprived of grace in their sacraments is by actually going into schism; by actually breaking off from the universal Church wherein sacramental grace resides.  The three bishops in 1935 went into schism from the Church of Greece, and the whole universal Church recognized the Church of Greece as having grace-filled mysteries and not the Old Calendarists who departed into schism. 

If you also read the 31st Apostolic canon it forbids a Christian from breaking communion with his bishop except when the bishop has offended against "piety and justice," which allows the Old Calendarists of the time to break communion with their synod. But again, they did not think of themselves as breaking off of the Orthodox Church; just severing communion with the Greek State Church until the time that the Greek State Church returns to the Orthodox calendar, which they did not see as taking that long.

And the 32nd Apostolic canon states, "As for those persons…who on account of some heresy condemned by the holy councils or Fathers withdraw themselves from communion with their president who preaches heresy publicly and with a bare head in the Church, such persons are not only not subject to any canonical penalty on account of their having walled themselves off from any and all communion with the one called a bishop before any conciliar or synodical verdict has been rendered, but on the contrary, they shall be deemed worthy to enjoy the honor which befits them among Orthodox Christians. For they have defied not bishops, but pseudo-bishops and pseudo-teachers; and they have not sundered the unity of the Church with any schism, but on the contrary, have been sedulous to rescue the Church from schisms and divisions."

By “32nd Apostolic canon”, I believe you are referring to the 15th canon of the First-Second Council.  To apply this to the Old Calendarists, then you have to claim that the adoption of the New Calendar constitutes “preaching heresy”, which even the three bishops in 1935 did not claim.  In the 1935 Encyclical they condemned the Church of Greece for supposedly being “schismatic”, while acknowledging that they “have not erred in doctrines.”  Following Apostolic canon 31 was perhaps applicable to the Old Calendarists between 1924 and 1935, but does not justify the path taken by the Old Calendarists from 1935 on, nor does it justify their position today.  Withdrawing from one’s own bishop while awaiting justice is not the same as breaking communion with the entire Orthodox Church as the Old Calendarists have done.  There is absolutely NO canonical or patristic basis for the Old Calendarist schism as it actually took place in 1935 and as it exists at the present time. 

Ecumenism is a hard to define heresy, but HOTCA defines it as "In its weakest form, Ecumenism holds that the Church of Christ is larger than the Orthodox Church, or that other churches posses some real, albeit imperfect, ecclesial status." This heresy goes completely against the fathers and councils of the Orthodox Church, and this heresy is openly preached and practiced by many bishops in World Orthodoxy, so the fact that the Old Calendarists haven't joined the World Orthodox is completely justified. I'm not saying that ecumenism is preached and practiced everywhere in World Orthodoxy as I've been to very traditional World Orthodox parishes, but the fact that these traditional parishes are in communion with others who openly preach this heresy is the reason why the Old Calendarists cannot enter in communion with those in World Orthodoxy who are more traditional. A kind of "guilty by association" type of situation.

The Ecumenism that is protested by the Old Calendarists only began to develop in the 1960s.  What justification to the Old Calendarists have for being completely out of communion with the entire Church for the thirty to forty years prior to questionable participation in Ecumenism by various Orthodox churches? 

And the reasons not all of the Old Calendarists are not in communion with each other are due to persecutions, misunderstandings, and historical circumstances. Today things have been getting better than they were even a decade ago. Promising talks between synods have taken place, the RTOC and GOC under Met. Kallinikos had some promising talks with each other until some more recent events which took place in Serbia, the synod I am a part of has united with a Russian Catacomb Church, Greek Church, and a Bulgarian Church, so things are looking better than they were a decade ago. I have even heard from a GOC priest that after his church finishes their liturgy and the RTOC church in his area finish their liturgy, they gather together for a common meal. While certainly this is far from perfect, today the situation among the TOC synods are getting better.

I do not see the situation as you do.  The Synod that you belong to just fell apart.  The Synod you belong to entered into communion with two bishops who were in schism from another Old Calendarist group that was in schism from another Old Calendarist group, and the madness simply propagates.  RTOC was in dialogue with the “GOC-Kallinkos” but this dialogue disintegrated.  “GOC-Kallinikos” was in dialogue with HOCNA, then a couple bishops just left HOCNA to join “GOC-Kallinkos” and now these two groups that were very warm toward each other are now against each other (or rather what is left of HOCNA has turned even further away from “GOC-Kallinikos” than they were before).  When you look at the history of the various “True Greek” and “True Russian” groups, you just see exponential multiplication.  This is because the very foundation of these movements is sectarian, and they do not have the Holy Spirit.  The Holy Spirit did not guide the three bishops in 1935 to condemn the Church of Greece in papal fashion, and neither has the Spirit been guiding the movement which is built upon this rotten foundation.

I still disagree with you about 4th century Antioch. Sure, from your POV I understand what you have said. But from a TOC POV, the TOC is the true Church, not a schism from the true Church, as we do not view it schismatic to cease communion with a body which has introduced un-Orthodox ideas and practices into the Church. So I believe that while we are all not in communion with each other yet, we are still the true Orthodox Church, as in 4th century Antioch those synods were not in communion with each other but today we recognize saints on both sides.

Again, the situation in Antioch in no way relates to the self-proclaimed “True Orthodox”.  In the Meletian schism, there were competing synods in one local area and other local Orthodox churches could not agree on which was the right canonical and Orthodox Synod.  While the competing synods were not in direct communion with each other, the different Synods remained in communion with the Church.  What is of critical importance here is that these competing synods in Antioch recognized the authority of the Church over them.  As long as the competing Synods recognized an ecclesiastical authority greater than their own local synods, the situation was able to be resolved, as indeed it was. 

In the case of the Old Calendarists, the Old Calendarist bishops who created the formal schism in 1935 acknowledged in their writings the authority of the other local churches (Patriarchates of Jerusalem, Antioch, etc.).  However, once it was realized that none of these churches agreed with their schism, the Old Calendarists no longer acknowledged the authority of any other local Church and began to divide amongst themselves.  Today there is a situation where numerous small, competing Synods have developed, and none of them acknowledge an ecclesiastical authority greater than themselves.  All of these groups have established churches in the territory of other local churches to demonstrate that they only recognize themselves as the Church.  With this kind of Protestant mentality, what kind of Pan-Orthodox Council or decision would they acknowledge?  None!  If all of the local Orthodox Churches and all of the Patriarchates throughout the world made a decision regarding them, they would not acknowledge such a decision because for them, only they have the truth and only they are being guided by the Holy Spirit.

A Pan-Orthodox Council to resolve the matter concerning the calendar would only have been possible if those who continued serving on the Old Calendar in Greece after the introduction of the New, believed in the catholicity of the Church and acknowledged in the universal Church an authority greater than themselves.  This hope was dashed in 1935, and the situation is now hopeless because the Old Calendarists today have at their foundation the 1935 Protestant and cacadox confession.

But as time went on and certain members of the clergy of the ROCOR starting becoming more ecumenical without being called to repent or repudiating what they thought, going against what ROCOR had stood for, that's when splits from ROCOR began happening and that's when unions with the ROCOR and the Old Calendarists began severing.

ROCOR’s relationship with the Old Calendarists was mistaken from the very beginning.  ROCOR did try to unite the two (at that time there were only two) Old Calendarist groups but without first understanding the ecclesiology that was at the foundation of the Old Calendarist schism.  The reason that Communion did not ever occur between ROCOR and the traditional Old Calendarists to any real extent is that once ROCOR came to understand the cacadox ecclesiology that was at the very foundation of these groups they could not agree with it.  ROCOR also came to see that the Old Calendarists were hopelessly sectarian and incapable of unity amongst themselves because of the ecclesiology on which they were established.  Of course, ROCOR did later enter into communion with the “Synod in Resistance” whose canonical foundation is the most problematic of all Old Calendarist groups, because their ecclesiology is much more Orthodox that the others.  Since ROCOR reunited with the MP, this Old Calendarist group also became cut off from ROCOR and the entire Orthodox Church.

Of course, we can only feel true sorrow for the state of the sectarians and their separation from the Church which is the Ark of Salvation.  We do live in very difficult times when the conciliarity and dogmatic conscience of the Church is struggling to recover from the blows inflicted upon the universal Church during the Soviet era.  Many prayers need to be said for the hierarchs guiding the Church at such a difficult time, and we must look to the recent saints and God-bearing elders for guidance on how to save our souls at such a perilous time.  It is true that we must resist the temptations to grow lax in our faith and in our struggle against the passions, but we must not leave wide open to the devil the other temptation to fanaticism and condemnation of others which is rooted in pride and spiritual delusion.  As the Fathers say, schism is worse than heresy and not even the blood of martyrdom can wash away the sin of an unjustified schism. 

The Old Calendarists did not break off from the Church because of heresy, but because they have separated from the grace of the Holy Spirit on account of the calendar, they do not have the ability to understand and properly respond to the issue of Ecumenism or any other challenge that the Church today faces.  Not having any connection with the Church, they are also completely powerless to help the Church at such a difficult time.  By their unjustified schism, they rather bring greater shame to Orthodoxy and allow our spotless Faith to be further blasphemed. 
« Last Edit: March 19, 2012, 08:35:58 AM by jah777 » Logged
Jonathan Gress
Warned
Archon
********
Online Online

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: GOC/HOTCA
Posts: 3,475


« Reply #169 on: March 19, 2012, 10:24:17 AM »

Strictly speaking, the True Orthodox bishops in 1935 didn't condemn a whole Local Church. Rather, they condemned the innovating bishops in the name of the Church of Greece. The Local Church in question remained uncondemned, insofar as there remained bishops in that Church who upheld the doctrines and traditions of the Fathers.
« Last Edit: March 19, 2012, 10:27:22 AM by Jonathan Gress » Logged
jah777
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Posts: 1,934


« Reply #170 on: March 19, 2012, 11:04:16 AM »

Strictly speaking, the True Orthodox bishops in 1935 didn't condemn a whole Local Church. Rather, they condemned the innovating bishops in the name of the Church of Greece. The Local Church in question remained uncondemned, insofar as there remained bishops in that Church who upheld the doctrines and traditions of the Fathers.

It is the Old Calendarist position that in 1935 the entire Synod of the Church of Greece consisted of the 3 bishops (1 of whom, Met Chrysostom, had already retired) who rejected the New Calendar, while the 80 or so other bishops who adopted the New Calendar were "in schism".  Of course, the rest of the Church did not recognize these 3 bishops as the Church of Greece, so the claim has to be relegated to the spheres of fantasy and delusion.  Even Met Chrysostom and Met Germanus of Demetrias came to recognize their former claims as ridiculous and sought to reunite with the New Calendar hierarchy, so it is very bizarre for those who claim to follow them to maintain such ridiculous assertions.

In the 1935 Encyclical, the three Old Calendarist bishops stated:

Quote
"Thus, the current administrators of the Church of Greece, by their unilateral, uncanonical, and irresponsible introduction of the Gregorian calendar, tore themselves off from the entire body of Orthodoxy, and declared themselves in essence schismatics compared to the other Orthodox Churches, which stand upon the ground of the Seven Ecumenical Councils and the Orthodox institutions and traditions, and upon the Churches of Jerusalem, Antioch, Serbia, Poland, the Holy Mountain [of Athos], the God‐trodden Mt. Sinai, etc."

According to the rest of the Orthodox Church, however, it was the Old Calendarists who in actual fact “tore themselves off from the entire body of Orthodoxy”.  Nothing else can be concluded.

I admit that it is very strange that the three Old Calendarist bishops speak of the introduction of the “Gregorian calendar”.  If you read anything written by the Church of Greece or the 1923 “Pan-Orthodox” Congress regarding the New Calendar, it is very clear that the Gregorian Calendar was not adopted but rather the Julian was shifted 13 days.  Everyone who attended the 1923 Congress agreed that the Gregorian calendar should not be adopted because doing so would be exploited by Rome to further their “Easter Rite Catholic” (to comply with forum rules) agenda.  It is surprising that these hierarchs would not be aware of this simple fact.
Logged
Jonathan Gress
Warned
Archon
********
Online Online

Faith: Orthodox
Jurisdiction: GOC/HOTCA
Posts: 3,475


« Reply #171 on: March 19, 2012, 11:23:03 AM »

Strictly speaking, the True Orthodox bishops in 1935 didn't condemn a whole Local Church. Rather, they condemned the innovating bishops in the name of the Church of Greece. The Local Church in question remained uncondemned, insofar as there remained bishops in that Church who upheld the doctrines and traditions of the Fathers.

It is the Old Calendarist position that in 1935 the entire Synod of the Church of Greece consisted of the 3 bishops (1 of whom, Met Chrysostom, had already retired) who rejected the New Calendar, while the 80 or so other bishops who adopted the New Calendar were "in schism".  Of course, the rest of the Church did not recognize these 3 bishops as the Church of Greece, so the claim has to be relegated to the spheres of fantasy and delusion.  Even Met Chrysostom and Met Germanus of Demetrias came to recognize their former claims as ridiculous and sought to reunite with the New Calendar hierarchy, so it is very bizarre for those who claim to follow them to maintain such ridiculous assertions.

In the 1935 Encyclical, the three Old Calendarist bishops stated:

Quote
"Thus, the current administrators of the Church of Greece, by their unilateral, uncanonical, and irresponsible introduction of the Gregorian calendar, tore themselves off from the entire body of Orthodoxy, and declared themselves in essence schismatics compared to the other Orthodox Churches, which stand upon the ground of the Seven Ecumenical Councils and the Orthodox institutions and traditions, and upon the Churches of Jerusalem, Antioch, Serbia, Poland, the Holy Mountain [of Athos], the God‐trodden Mt. Sinai, etc."

According to the rest of the Orthodox Church, however, it was the Old Calendarists who in actual fact “tore themselves off from the entire body of Orthodoxy”.  Nothing else can be concluded.

I admit that it is very strange that the three Old Calendarist bishops speak of the introduction of the “Gregorian calendar”.  If you read anything written by the Church of Greece or the 1923 “Pan-Orthodox” Congress regarding the New Calendar, it is very clear that the Gregorian Calendar was not adopted but rather the Julian was shifted 13 days.  Everyone who attended the 1923 Congress agreed that the Gregorian calendar should not be adopted because doing so would be exploited by Rome to further their “Easter Rite Catholic” (to comply with forum rules) agenda.  It is surprising that these hierarchs would not be aware of this simple fact.

I don't believe the claim that the Julian calendar was shifted 13 days, for reasons given above, namely that the epoch of the so-called "revised Julian" is in fact identical to the epoch of the Gregorian, not the traditional Julian. Clearly, the bishops of the True Orthodox Church of Greece didn't believe this claim, either. The idea that the new calendar is simply a variation of the old is false, pure and simple.

Obviously, the "current administrators" being referred to consist of the innovators (including the first hierarch, Abp Chrysostomos), not those bishops, such as Met Chrysostomos and Met Germanos, who remained faithful to tradition. And the idea that the claim of schism was newfangled doesn't hold water, since that was precisely the conclusion Abp Chrysostomos of Athens had come to earlier, back in 1919, when he was commissioned to study the canonical consequences of a unilateral change of calendar. If one Local Church unilaterally changed the calendar, he rightly concluded that Church would fall into schism by that very act.

You never addressed my point that Elder Ieronymus, who you believe to be a saint, in fact died in schism, according to your own ecclesiology. Not that the validity of the True Orthodox Church rests on the ecclesiological status of this or that pious individual (cf Galatians 1:8), but you do seem to put a disproportionate amount of emphasis on the existence or not of "holy elders" in the various jurisdictions, so I would have thought you would want to consider this.
« Last Edit: March 19, 2012, 11:23:55 AM by Jonathan Gress » Logged
jah777
OC.net guru
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Christian
Posts: 1,934


« Reply #172 on: March 19, 2012, 12:34:18 PM »

I don't believe the claim that the Julian calendar was shifted 13 days, for reasons given above, namely that the epoch of the so-called "revised Julian" is in fact identical to the epoch of the Gregorian, not the traditional Julian. Clearly, the bishops of the True Orthodox Church of Greece didn't believe this claim, either. The idea that the new calendar is simply a variation of the old is false, pure and simple.

I would recommend reading the following regarding the difference between the New Calendar and the Gregorian:

http://www.johnsanidopoulos.com/2010/01/old-calendar-new-calendar-facts.html

The Acts and Decisions of the 1923 Congress are also available in English, and from this it is very clear that the Julian calendar was shifted 13 days and the idea of adopting the Gregorian was rejected.

And the idea that the claim of schism was newfangled doesn't hold water, since that was precisely the conclusion Abp Chrysostomos of Athens had come to earlier, back in 1919, when he was commissioned to study the canonical consequences of a unilateral change of calendar. If one Local Church unilaterally changed the calendar, he rightly concluded that Church would fall into schism by that very act.

You are completely distorting the words of Abp Chrysostomos of Athens.  In January of 1923, Abp Chrysostom said,

Quote
”No Orthodox Autocephalous Church can separate itself from the rest and accept the new calendar without becoming schismatic in the eyes of the others."

The Old Calendarists, including you, distort this to imply that adopting the new calendar makes one automatically schismatic.  Abp Chrysostomos, however, was expressing only the fear or concern that the Church of Greece would be considered schismatic by the rest of the Church if they adopted the New Calendar unilaterally.

It is important to realize that this statement occurred before the Church of Greece attended the 1923 Congress wherein it was confirmed by the other local churches that adopting the new calendar would not be an obstacle to communion between the churches as long as the Paschalian was maintained.  When the Old Calendarists went into schism because of the adoption of the New Calendar, it was they who actually became schismatic “in the eyes of the others”.  

The use of these words by Abp Chrysostomos to support the Old Calendarist position is another example of gross distortions used by them to justify the unjustifiable.  Meanwhile, they reject the words of the Fathers such as St. Nikodemos of the Holy Mountain who stated in a footnote to the 7th Apostolic Canon:

Quote
“To celebrate Easter after the 21st of March as we Greeks do, or after the 11th of March as the Latins do, is not a crime. But to split the Church asunder, is an unforgivable sin."

St. Nikodemos did not even consider the changing of the date of Pascha to be a justifiable basis for schism when the dating of Pascha was established by an Ecumenical Council, but today’s Old Calendarists believe themselves justified for creating a schism over the shifting of the Julian even when the Paschalian is untouched!

You never addressed my point that Elder Ieronymus, who you believe to be a saint, in fact died in schism, according to your own ecclesiology. Not that the validity of the True Orthodox Church rests on the ecclesiological status of this or that pious individual (cf Galatians 1:8 ), but you do seem to put a disproportionate amount of emphasis on the existence or not of "holy elders" in the various jurisdictions, so I would have thought you would want to consider this.

The true Church should continue to produce true saints – I do not think that this is an erroneous position.  In every age where there have been conflicts, schisms, and heresies in the Church, people have sought counsel from those who were renowned for their holiness and adherence to the truth.  For instance, the guidance of St. Anthony the Great was sought when Arianism was afflicting the Church, St. Symeon the Stylite during the Monosphysite controversy, etc.

Peter Botsis, the author of the Life of Elder Ieronymos that was translated by Holy Transfiguration Monastery, relates that Elder Ieronymos ceased serving as a priest before the introduction of the New Calendar because of the vision he had while serving the Divine Liturgy.  It was the Old Calendarist translators who claimed that his funeral was served by clergy under the Old Calendarist Abp Auxentius.  Whether or not this was the case, it is clear from his Life that he did not condemn the New Calendar Church of Greece, nor did he counsel those belonging to the Church of Greece to become Old Calendarists, nor did he express allegiance to any Old Calendarist group.  

According to Mother Nectaria (McLees), in the book “Evlogeite! A Pilgrim's Guide to Greece”  (pp.72-76):
Quote
[Elder Ieronymos] spoke frequently about the coming of Antichrist, and also warned that the planned change to the civil calendar would open the door to other untraditional changes in the Church. After the civil calendar was installed, he didn't join one of the old calendar groups, but stayed with the main body of the Greek Church although he always quietly celebrated the old Julian calendar dates.

The question I posed to you in a past message was whether you could share any information about any saint who was in communion with your bishops and held to the “no grace on the new calendar” ecclesiology that is confessed by your Synod.  IF Elder Ieronymos joined an Old Calendarist group (and I have never heard such a thing other than HTM’s claim that Old Calendarist clergy served at his funeral), then he certainly didn’t seem to believe your Synod’s ecclesiology.  He made it very clear that he followed the Old Calendar out of personal preference because it was the “right one”.  If he was an Old Calendarist and did not encourage those on the New Calendar to become Old Calendarist, I would think that most Old Calendarists would consider him a “false elder”.

I can provide a long list of contemporary saints who believed that the Old Calendarists were in error, many of whom received a direct revelation from God concerning this matter after much prayer, fasting, and anguish.  Can you really not provide a single example of a saint who was part of your Synod and agreed with your “no grace on the new calendar” or “new calendar = automatic schismatic” cacadoxy?  
« Last Edit: March 19, 2012, 12:34:57 PM by jah777 » Logged
searn77
Sr. Member
****
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox Old Calendarist
Jurisdiction: Autonomous Orthodox Metropolia of the Americas & the British Isles
Posts: 240


St. Philaret (Voznesensky) of New York


« Reply #173 on: March 20, 2012, 03:12:44 PM »

We cannot blaspheme the Holy Spirit to promote church attendance.  Three bishops in a Synod have no authority to declare an entire local Church to be schismatic and without grace.  A bishop can be declared deposed and in schism by the Synod to whom he is accountable, but an entire local Church can only be declared in schism and outside of the Church by the rest of the Church to which that local Church is accountable.  That is why only a Pan-Orthodox Council was competent to judge the matter of the Church of Greece after the adoption of the New Calendar.  After the introduction of the New Calendar in Greece, every other local Orthodox Church considered the Church of Greece to be part of the body of Christ and to have true mysteries.  For the Old Calendarist hierarchs in 1935 to declare true mysteries graceless when the whole Church recognizes their mysteries is blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, and nothing justifies such blasphemy.
   
After a decade of this schism between those who followed the Old Calendar and those who followed the New Calendar took place, the Old Calendarists believed the New Calendarists to have become schismatic, and according to St. Basil schismatics do not have sanctifying grace, so it was a legitimate thing to say. As regards to the other Orthodox Churches and Patriarchates of the time, I'll discuss below.

In 1935, the three bishops who broke away from the Church of Greece declared the Church of Greece to be without grace.  Likewise, Abp Auxentius (who HOCNA joined in 1986 when they fled ROCOR to avoid facing spiritual court) in 1974 stated:
Quote
”The celebration of a Mystery and the giving of Holy Communion to new calendarists was forbidden from the time that the schism created by the State Church began. Therefore, it is necessary that you uphold this position without deviation, in obedience to the understanding of all that has been transmitted unto us by our God-bearing Fathers, and that they renounce and condemn every heresy and innovation, among which is the new calendar in the Greek Church, which became schismatic from its acceptance thereof in 1924 until the present, according to the very confession of the innovator, Archbishop Chrysostom Papadopoulos, and, as a consequence, its mysteries are deprived of sanctifying grace.”

I am very well aware of HOCNA’s position on “grace” and schism, but their position is pretty irrelevant.  Even before Holy Transfiguration Monastery fled ROCOR and hastily joined Abp Auxentius, they were critical of the Old Calendarist position on “grace” and the implications of the calendar change.  In 2003, HOCNA made an official statement on the subject of grace and essentially rejected the 1935 Confession that was at the foundation of the Old Calendarist schism, as well as the 1974 Confession of the very Archbishop that they joined!  They said,

Quote
”We believe and affirm that, as the Holy Fathers and Holy Canons teach us, according to
strictness there is no grace in the mysteries of those in heresy or schism. However, as we discern
from the incidents cited in the letter above, we see that we cannot speak of the precise moment
when God, in His wisdom and economia, withdraws His uncreated power and grace from the
mysteries of those who are being led astray.”

HOCNA here declares that they do not agree with those who they joined, for the Old Calendarists whom they joined clearly declared from 1935 on that the Church of Greece was indeed without grace in its mysteries by virtue of introducing the New Calendar.  Today, HOCNA is becoming increasingly irrelevant even in the Old Calendarist movement as they now consist of only 2 ruling bishops and 1 auxiliary bishop, all of whom received their formation in the same monastery (hardly a model for “catholicity”).  Recently, as you know, HOCNA lost 2 bishops and several parishes and clergy to those Old Calendarists who do indeed uphold the cacadox ecclesiology that the Church of Greece became schismatic and deprived of grace in its mysteries when the calendar was changed.
   
I am not fluent in Greek, but from reading Abp. Auxentios' words from his 1974 encyclical, it doesn't seem to be saying that immediately the Greek State Church lost sanctifying grace in 1924. Only that this schism began in 1924 and as a consequence the Greek State Church has lost its sanctifying grace. He does not say that immediately in 1924 they lost sanctifying grace. Also, HOCNA clearly states that they adhere to the 1935 confession of faith, and they were taken in by Abp. Auxentios' synod, so to say that they reject the 1935 confession of faith (to which they respond by saying they do indeed believe in the 1935 confession of faith, and they declare why and how they believe in this confession) as well as Abp. Auxentios' 1974 encyclical is just false.

HOCNA is relatively small but to say that they don’t have the model for catholicity is false. I have heard arguments from Roman Catholics that they're more "catholic" then the Orthodox because they are bigger and easier to find throughout the world. If catholicity depended on being the most numerous and being found in the most places around the world, then you can proclaim that HOCNA is not catholic. But if being catholic (and in this instance being Orthodox Catholic), means that one has the correct faith, correct worship, and is the faith which pertains to the whole Church, than HOCNA is indeed Catholic.

After declaring in 1935 that the Church of Greece was without grace, Met Chrysostom of Florina came to see that such a decision was entirely cacadox and erroneous.  In 1943, Met Germanus of Demetrias and Met Chrysostom of Florina (2 of the original 3 original Old Calendarist bishops – the third returned to the Church of Greece already) both petitioned the Church of Greece to be received back into communion. Their petition, however, was rejected. Met Chrysostom then petitioned the Patriarchate of Jerusalem. But because the Patriarchate of Jerusalem was in communion with the Church of Greece, and since the latter church had deposed Metropolitan Chrysostom in 1935 and reduced him to the rank of a monk, the Jerusalem Patriarchate informed Metropolitan Chrysostom that he could only be received in the rank of monk. 
Abp. Chrysostom went to the Middle East and sought out the Patriarchs of Antioch and Jerusalem to help garner support in having a Pan-Orthodox council which condemned the new calendar, not to be received into their Church. Sadly this fell through. Met. Chrysostom came to believe that a Pan-Orthodox council was needed to solve this issue but unfortunately this Pan-Orthodox council never came to be. Because he sought out the Patriarchs of Antioch and Jerusalem to which Met. Matthew of Bresthena disagreed with (as he felt that adopting the New Calendar was a schismatic act in and of itself as even did many hierarchs in the Orthodox Church outside of Greece at the time), Met. Matthew broke communion with him and referred to him as former Met. Chrysostom or Monk Chrysostom.

There is not much on the subject in English, but this summary by the “Synod in Resistance” is perhaps the most detailed and informative:

http://www.synodinresistance.org/pdfs/2011/07/04/20110704aSigillion/20110704aSigillion.pdf

Why would an Old Calendarist group make this up if it wasn’t true?  The “Synod in Resistance” are not the only ones to make this claim, but their position is certainly significant since they themselves are Old Calendarists (though not as fanatical as the rest).
I didn’t say the Synod in Resistance made this up, I said the claim that they are forgeries is questionable, and one that I do not buy into.

I have honestly never heard the claim that today's Old Calendarist's believe that the Old Calendarists of the 20s and 30s thought that the calendar change was the first step towards a false union with Rome.

In the problematic paper entitled “Why the True Orthodox are Truly Orthodox”, Fr. Maximos (Maretta) states:

Quote
”… it was in large measure because the calendar change was the first step in the union with the Papists and Anglicans that the [Old Calendarists] rejected it.”

Similar statements are found in practically every polemical work aimed at promoting Old Calendar schisms.
Okay, now I understand better what you're discussing. Yes, the Old Calendarists of the 20s and 30s viewed the New Calendar with suspicion as the calendar of the Roman Catholics had been condemned by multiple councils. Also, Bp. Meletios Metazakis highly sought union with the Anglicans and even accepted their orders as valid in 1922. And the supposed “Pan-Orthodox” congress of 1923, which discussed changing to the “revised Julian” calendar and stated that "This reform of the Julian calendar is not a stumbling block to further change in the calendar that the other Christian Churches might like to make," actually discussed the possibility of union with the Anglicans and was even attended by a former Anglican bishop. So I can see why they thought that the Old Calendarists of the 20s and 30s viewed the adoption of the new calendar as the first step in union with Rome and the Anglicans. And even according to Met. Chrysostom of Florina, whom you believe to have eventually sought out union with the World Orthodox, claimed that the Polish and Serbian Churches of his time considered those Churches who would adopt the new calendar as “in essence schismatics” and refrained from prayerful communion with them.

However, since the new calendar was introduced, liturgical services have indeed been served with Orthodox and Catholic clergy together, the lifting of anathemas has taken place (for whatever reasons I do not understand), there has been a sort of semi-unity with the Non-Chalcedonians, and many heretical events taking place.

The “lifting of the anathemas” was a very unfortunate but completely meaningless event.  Nobody outside of the Patriarchate of Constantinople ascribes any meaning to this act.  As it is claimed, the anathemas that were “lifted” by Patriarch Athenagoras were those made against Rome in 1054 in response the Bull of excommunication given to Constantinople by the Papal legates.  However, the Filioque was anathematized at the 8th Ecumenical Council under Patriarch Photios, which was affirmed by the entire Church (including the Pope of Rome at that time).  The Patriarchal Encyclical of 1848 acknowledged this fact that the Filioque was anathematized at this Council, and the Patriarchal Encyclical of 1848 was signed by the Patriarchates of Alexandria, Antioch, and Jerusalem.  Patriarch Athenagoras was not an “Eastern Pope” and had no authority to “lift” anathemas against the Filioque or any other heresy that was anathematized by the entire Orthodox Church.  So, this act is void and is only a shameful gesture that has no meaning for the rest of the Church.  The rest of the Church was not consulted prior to this empty gesture, nor has the rest of the Church rallied behind it.

Regarding joint services and the rest, this is all very shameful and unfortunate, but in no way connected to the change of the calendar.  Today the Church of Greece, who was the first local church to adopt the New Calendar, is perhaps the most vocal in opposition to compromise within the Ecumenical Movement.  But, again, Ecumenism is an entirely separate issue that is not in any way connected to the calendar change. 
And again, I disagree, as I believe that the calendar change was indeed caused by Ecumenism. And I don’t believe it’s right to call the lifting of the anathemas a completely meaningless event, as it shows that the World Orthodox hierarchs are willing to disregard the faith and tradition in order to be ecumenically friendly with those who are outside of the Church, which is the major reason why the Old Calendarists remain separate from the World Orthodox Church.

Again, the way the Old Calendarists were treated was shameful, as was also the case with those who wanted to continue serving on the Old Rite after the Nikonian reforms in Russia centuries before.  I do not think, however, that it was impossible for the three bishops who left the Church of Greece in 1935 to lead the Old Calendarists, to have first consulted with other local Orthodox Churches regarding the patristic and canonical way to respond to what was occurring in Greece.  Before declaring that the Church of Greece was automatically in schism from the rest of the Church and without grace by virtue of adopting the New Calendar, these bishops should have first determined if other local churches actually agreed with them on this critical claim.  I certainly understand the difficulty of successfully convening a Pan-Orthodox Council at that time (particularly during Communism), but they could and should have consulted with other local church informally.   

It should be pointed out that other local churches had been consulted regarding the implications of adopting the New Calendar, and the other local churches agreed that such a change is not of dogmatic nature, would not contradict the canons as long as the original Paschalian was preserved, and would create no obstacle to communion.  These are the responses that Patriarch Meletios received when he wrote to the other local churches concerning the question prior to the 1923 “Pan-Orthodox” Congress, and this is what was also stated by the representatives of those local churches who did participate in the Congress. 

There is much regarding the 1923 Congress that the Old Calendarists twist for purposes of propaganda, and much could be said about this, but what I want to point out here is that the Church of Greece adopted the New Calendar only after consulting with the other local Orthodox Churches.  It is true that the 1923 Congress envisioned that all Orthodox churches would agree on whether to adopt the New or stay on the Old, and it is unfortunate that the Church of Greece adopted the New when other local churches decided to stay on the Old, but nevertheless they did consult with the other churches unlike the Old Calendarist bishops who created their schism in 1935 and declared the Church of Greece to be schismatic completely on the basis of their own self-declared authority. 
There is much regarding the 1923 “Pan Orthodox” Congress that the Old Calendarists have no need to twist as one can read about this congress on their own. But this “Pan Orthodox” congress was only scarcely attended by a handful of Orthodox bishops, with the deposed bishop of Greece Pat. Meletios Metazakis who had a very un-Orthodox background spearheading the congress. Alexandria, Antioch, and Jerusalem refused to take part in this council and voiced their opposition after the congress concluded and half of the local Churches were not represented at all. Professor S. Troitsky commented on the congress and stated that the bishops present did not have the right to express their Church’s opinions on the topics that were being discussed as their local Churches had not yet formulated their decisions. The bishops present could only give their personal opinions, or at best the opinions of their synods who haven’t decided on the matters. Regarding this congress, Professor Troitsky stated that it was, “a private meeting of a few people, who had as their agenda the examination of various questions which troubled the Orthodox Church at that time, concerning which, they expressed their opinions.” So as you have stated that the Old Calendarists should have consulted other Orthodox Churches before declaring the state Church as schismatics, why wouldn’t Pat. Meletios have consulted with other Churches and not just a handful of bishops who couldn’t voice their local Church’s decisions on the matters discussed? And why would any Church go ahead and begin using the New Calendar when it would obviously bring disruption and disunity to the Orthodox Church and was rejected by many bishops and patriarchs?

So you are saying that the adoption of the New Calendar is a heresy, and one comparable to Iconoclasm? 
No. I’m saying that one does not need a council in order to cease communion with heretics. Today the Old Calendarists consider Ecumenism to be a heresy which can be found in the World Orthodox Church. So for the Synod in Resistance (who also regard Ecumenism as a heresy) to only consider the World Orthodox as ailing but not heretical (therefore as equal members of the Church) until a unifying Orthodox council takes place which will include both the World Orthodox and the Old Calendarists is simply not true. Heresy is always outside of the Church and never a part of the Church even before a council deems the heresy as such. So for the Synod in Resistance to claim that those who are in communion with heresy or who are heretics to simply be “ailing” members of the Church is not an Orthodox stance, which is why many Old Calendarists have issues with the Synod in Resistance. During the Iconoclast heresy the Orthodox broke communion with the Iconclasts before the 7th Ecumenical Council and then during the Council they stated that the Iconoclasts were already outside of the Church.

Now the Old Calendarists did not originally break communion with the State Church of Greece for reasons of heresy; they broke communion with the State Church because the New Calendarist bishops of the State Church had offended “piety and justice” which is mentioned in the 31st Apostolic Canon in the Rudder. Granted this canon can be twisted to allow for a break in communion for a variety of reasons, but the traditional Orthodox of the 20s and 30s viewed the change in calendar as a sufficient reason, and today we recognize the World Orthodox Church (which had accepted the new calendar) to be involved in the Ecumenical heresy, and as I have shown that one does not need to wait on a council in order to break communion with heresy, the Old Calendarists are justified in their breaking of communion.


In any case, we have to handle such phrases as “being called ‘priests,’ while in reality they were not” with great care.  There have been many instances in history where a saint will refer to a bishop as a “false bishop” or a bishop “in name only” while that bishop is formally recognized as a bishop by the universal Church.  A bishop can be a heretic or very immoral, and yet as long as the Church recognizes him as a bishop of the Church he serves grace-filled mysteries.  As a “false bishop” (by virtue of heresy or immorality), that bishop may very well be condemned by God at the Judgment, but only when and if that “false bishop” is anathematized and/or deposed by the Synod to which he belongs do the mysteries he serves become actually devoid of grace. 
If this was just a case where there was an immoral hierarch, or a hierarch who believed in heresy, I would understand your point. But the Ecumenical Heresy can be found throughout the World Orthodox Church to a greater extent than it just being one or even a few hierarchs.

Another way that a bishop, or synod of bishops, becomes deprived of grace in their sacraments is by actually going into schism; by actually breaking off from the universal Church wherein sacramental grace resides.  The three bishops in 1935 went into schism from the Church of Greece, and the whole universal Church recognized the Church of Greece as having grace-filled mysteries and not the Old Calendarists who departed into schism. 
Again I think this is a case where you’re painting this too black and white when in reality this was not the case.

If you also read the 31st Apostolic canon it forbids a Christian from breaking communion with his bishop except when the bishop has offended against "piety and justice," which allows the Old Calendarists of the time to break communion with their synod. But again, they did not think of themselves as breaking off of the Orthodox Church; just severing communion with the Greek State Church until the time that the Greek State Church returns to the Orthodox calendar, which they did not see as taking that long.

And the 32nd Apostolic canon states, "As for those persons…who on account of some heresy condemned by the holy councils or Fathers withdraw themselves from communion with their president who preaches heresy publicly and with a bare head in the Church, such persons are not only not subject to any canonical penalty on account of their having walled themselves off from any and all communion with the one called a bishop before any conciliar or synodical verdict has been rendered, but on the contrary, they shall be deemed worthy to enjoy the honor which befits them among Orthodox Christians. For they have defied not bishops, but pseudo-bishops and pseudo-teachers; and they have not sundered the unity of the Church with any schism, but on the contrary, have been sedulous to rescue the Church from schisms and divisions."

By “32nd Apostolic canon”, I believe you are referring to the 15th canon of the First-Second Council.  To apply this to the Old Calendarists, then you have to claim that the adoption of the New Calendar constitutes “preaching heresy”, which even the three bishops in 1935 did not claim.  In the 1935 Encyclical they condemned the Church of Greece for supposedly being “schismatic”, while acknowledging that they “have not erred in doctrines.”  Following Apostolic canon 31 was perhaps applicable to the Old Calendarists between 1924 and 1935, but does not justify the path taken by the Old Calendarists from 1935 on, nor does it justify their position today.  Withdrawing from one’s own bishop while awaiting justice is not the same as breaking communion with the entire Orthodox Church as the Old Calendarists have done.  There is absolutely NO canonical or patristic basis for the Old Calendarist schism as it actually took place in 1935 and as it exists at the present time. 
Again, the Old Calendarists of the 1920s and of 1935 broke communion with the Church of Greece in accordance with the 31st (not the 32nd) Apostolic Canon as can be found in the Rudder. Today’s Old Calendarists recognize Ecumenism to be a heresy so in accordance with the 32nd Apostolic Canon we are allowed to remain in our position of being out of communion with all of World Orthodoxy. If you choose to believe that there is no canonical or patristic basis for our breaking of communion with the Church of Greece and eventually all of World Orthodoxy I doubt I’ll convince you and I doubt you’ll convince me. And yes, I realize that you believe the Old Calendarists of 1935 had in reality broke communion with all of World Orthodoxy, but I do not see it that way as I believe in reality that this time period of the Church is not as crystal clear as you believe it to be.
The Ecumenism that is protested by the Old Calendarists only began to develop in the 1960s.  What justification to the Old Calendarists have for being completely out of communion with the entire Church for the thirty to forty years prior to questionable participation in Ecumenism by various Orthodox churches? 
Regardless of whether or not the Old Calendarists of 1935 recognized the Heresy of Ecumenism in the Church of Greece until many years later doesn’t devoid the fact that it was there. But as I have said they only broke communion with the State Church in 1935 in accordance with the 31st Apostolic Canon. You view them as breaking communion with the Orthodox Church when in reality I believe they were still a part of the Orthodox Church.


I do not see the situation as you do.  The Synod that you belong to just fell apart.  The Synod you belong to entered into communion with two bishops who were in schism from another Old Calendarist group that was in schism from another Old Calendarist group, and the madness simply propagates.  RTOC was in dialogue with the “GOC-Kallinkos” but this dialogue disintegrated.  “GOC-Kallinikos” was in dialogue with HOCNA, then a couple bishops just left HOCNA to join “GOC-Kallinkos” and now these two groups that were very warm toward each other are now against each other (or rather what is left of HOCNA has turned even further away from “GOC-Kallinikos” than they were before).  When you look at the history of the various “True Greek” and “True Russian” groups, you just see exponential multiplication.  This is because the very foundation of these movements is sectarian, and they do not have the Holy Spirit.  The Holy Spirit did not guide the three bishops in 1935 to condemn the Church of Greece in papal fashion, and neither has the Spirit been guiding the movement which is built upon this rotten foundation.
The Synod I was a member of (the Milan Synod) has indeed fell as they have embraced the Ecumenical Heresy and have broken communion with the synods who they were in communion with. The Synod that I am currently a member of has not fallen apart at all, as we hold to an Orthodox confession and have remained united with those synods of whom the Milan Synod has broken from. Sure, there are still synodical divisions among the different TOC synods, but again, the situation is better than it was even a decade ago. These divisions are mainly due to persecutions, misunderstandings, and historical circumstances, not a lack of the Holy Spirit. And I pray that the Holy Spirit continues to guide the different TOC synods together. Unity has to be based on Jesus Christ and the faith that He has given us, as any other unity is not a true unity that I would want to be involved in.

Again, the situation in Antioch in no way relates to the self-proclaimed “True Orthodox”.  In the Meletian schism, there were competing synods in one local area and other local Orthodox churches could not agree on which was the right canonical and Orthodox Synod.  While the competing synods were not in direct communion with each other, the different Synods remained in communion with the Church.  What is of critical importance here is that these competing synods in Antioch recognized the authority of the Church over them.  As long as the competing Synods recognized an ecclesiastical authority greater than their own local synods, the situation was able to be resolved, as indeed it was. 

In the case of the Old Calendarists, the Old Calendarist bishops who created the formal schism in 1935 acknowledged in their writings the authority of the other local churches (Patriarchates of Jerusalem, Antioch, etc.).  However, once it was realized that none of these churches agreed with their schism, the Old Calendarists no longer acknowledged the authority of any other local Church and began to divide amongst themselves.  Today there is a situation where numerous small, competing Synods have developed, and none of them acknowledge an ecclesiastical authority greater than themselves.  All of these groups have established churches in the territory of other local churches to demonstrate that they only recognize themselves as the Church.  With this kind of Protestant mentality, what kind of Pan-Orthodox Council or decision would they acknowledge?  None!  If all of the local Orthodox Churches and all of the Patriarchates throughout the world made a decision regarding them, they would not acknowledge such a decision because for them, only they have the truth and only they are being guided by the Holy Spirit.
I have yet to see where all the other local Churches disagreed with the Old Calendarists of 1935. Just because they could not get two of the local Churches to help establish a Pan-Orthodox Council condemning the New Calendar does not mean that they were schismatics in the eyes of the Church. Sadly the Ecumenical Heresy has spread to the other Churches in communion with the Greek State Church and the Ecumenical Patriarchate so now we are not in communion with these Churches as well.

Also, with regards to the Meletian schism, this schism shows that two synods can be out of communion with each other and still be a part of the same Orthodox Church which is the point I was making. I see your point though that the Meletian schism was able to get worked out by the Church. But the Church is not some sort of authority figure over the various synods. In the words of St. Ignatius, “Wherever the bishop shall appear, there let the multitude [of the people] also be; even as, wherever Jesus Christ is, there is the Catholic Church.” The Church does not have some sort of authority over the clergy and people; the Church consists of the clergy and the people. Today’s situation is indeed far worse than it was with the Meletian schism, but with God these synodical divisions among us can get worked out. We do live in a way more confusing time where the authority of the One Church is hard to recognize between the various synods that are all not in communion with each other. But this doesn’t mean that the Church ceases to exist among us. I recognize that you do not believe we are a part of the Church but I’m going to have to agree to disagree with you.

A Pan-Orthodox Council to resolve the matter concerning the calendar would only have been possible if those who continued serving on the Old Calendar in Greece after the introduction of the New, believed in the catholicity of the Church and acknowledged in the universal Church an authority greater than themselves.  This hope was dashed in 1935, and the situation is now hopeless because the Old Calendarists today have at their foundation the 1935 Protestant and cacadox confession.
The World Orthodox Church is not the Pope where those not in communion with her are not members of the Orthodox Catholic Church. Again, in the words of St. Ignatius, “Wherever the bishop shall appear, there let the multitude [of the people] also be; even as, wherever Jesus Christ is, there is the Catholic Church.”

ROCOR’s relationship with the Old Calendarists was mistaken from the very beginning.  ROCOR did try to unite the two (at that time there were only two) Old Calendarist groups but without first understanding the ecclesiology that was at the foundation of the Old Calendarist schism.  The reason that Communion did not ever occur between ROCOR and the traditional Old Calendarists to any real extent is that once ROCOR came to understand the cacadox ecclesiology that was at the very foundation of these groups they could not agree with it.  ROCOR also came to see that the Old Calendarists were hopelessly sectarian and incapable of unity amongst themselves because of the ecclesiology on which they were established.  Of course, ROCOR did later enter into communion with the “Synod in Resistance” whose canonical foundation is the most problematic of all Old Calendarist groups, because their ecclesiology is much more Orthodox that the others.  Since ROCOR reunited with the MP, this Old Calendarist group also became cut off from ROCOR and the entire Orthodox Church.
You are mistaken. ROCOR did not break communion with the Greek Old Calendarists because ROCOR recognized their “cacadox” ecclesiology; the Greek Old Calendarists broke communion with ROCOR because certain hierarchs of ROCOR were performing ecumenical activities which went against ROCOR’s staunch stance and anathema against Ecumenism. Also ROCOR experienced many divisions because of their ecumenical tendencies even after they called anathema to Ecumenism, so that today there a handful of synods who claim to be ROCOR. So it’d be more accurate to state that the Old Calendarists broke communion with ROCOR due to ROCOR falling away from their traditional anti-ecumenical stance.
Logged

Let us the faithful now come together to praise our father, protector and teacher the pillar of the Orthodox faith and firm defender of piety even the wondrous hierarch Philaret and let us glorify our Saviour Who has granted us his incorrupt relics as a manifest sign of his sanctity.
Fr. George
formerly "Cleveland"
Administrator
Stratopedarches
*******
Offline Offline

Faith: Orthodox (Catholic) Christian
Jurisdiction: GOA - Metropolis of Pittsburgh
Posts: 20,093


May the Lord bless you and keep you always!


« Reply #174 on: March 22, 2012, 02:59:07 PM »

No. Do you reject the New Calendar Church because Elder Paisios made false prophesies?

I've come across a great article that discusses the apocalyptic so-called prophecies of the modern elders of Greece.

http://www.johnsanidopoulos.com/2012/03/controversial-end-time-prophecies-by.html

It basically uses the words and writing of Elder Porphyrios to discount the veracity and necessity of the so-called prophecies while still maintaining the proper respect for the elders who wrote them.
Logged

"The man who doesn't read good books has no advantage over the one who can't read them." Mark Twain
---------------------
Ordained on 17 & 18-Oct 2009. Please forgive me if earlier posts are poorly worded or incorrect in any way.
Tags:
Pages: « 1 2 3 4  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 0.363 seconds with 68 queries.