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Author Topic: Use of Formal Titles On This Board  (Read 831 times) Average Rating: 0
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Justin Kissel
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« on: December 01, 2010, 02:40:15 AM »

It was suggested that perhaps rather than posting a complaint elsewhere, I should have started a new thread on this subject. So here's the thread. Smiley I consider this board to be among the best on the internet at striking a balance regarding free speech. Yes, some posters may say that they aren't as free as they'd like, e.g. perhaps some Catholics wish they could be more free to express their opinions on the Faith Issues subforum. And on the other side of the fence, some Orthodox have expressed concern that the evil atheists are too easily able to express their opinions and lead multitudes astray. However, in general I think that most would agree that this forum is great at promoting intelligent discussion, being fair and not imposing silly rules.

However, there is one rule that I think is silly, and that is the insistence that people use formal titles on this board. When St. Vladimir's Seminary Press has a book by "John Anthony McGuckin" rather than "Fr. John Anthony McGuckin," or Holy Trinity Monastery publishes a book by "Ignatius Brianchaninov" rather than "St. Ignatius Brianchaninov," does anyone think that they are trying to undermine the authority of these authors? When I read in a book an Orthodox person say "according to Chrysostom..." or "Justinian then said...", I don't get in a huff because they didn't use the proper titles every single time they mention the person.

I am not arguing this case in order to have my slap on the wrist reversed. Whatever I may think of the policy at issue, I fully acknowledge that I knew it to be the policy in place when I was warned, and I knowingly disobeyed forum protocols by publically challenging the warning. I am not asking for my moderated status to be removed. What I am asking is some leniency in applying this requirement about using titles. If someone is plainly trying to be derogatory, that is one thing. But if someone just forgets, or perhaps thinks that it's simply not necessary to use someones title all the time, then what harm is there in this? Fr. Anastasios has spoken about how he'd like the level of discourse to be higher on this forum. Is it not typical among higher levels of discourse, even in Orthodox literature, to sometimes omit titles?
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PeterTheAleut
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« Reply #1 on: December 01, 2010, 03:42:56 AM »

Would you extend this also to present clergy who have not authored well-known academic works, such as our forum admins and one of our global moderators, or are you speaking merely of how we cite the works of authors who happen to be Orthodox clergy? I can assure you that there's no way we're going to lift the rule that we give our bishops, priests, and deacons the respect that is due their sacramental office in the Church, but I can understand your point as it relates to academic works that often don't even cite the author's own clerical title. I'm not saying I necessarily agree with your point, but I understand it.
« Last Edit: December 01, 2010, 03:52:11 AM by PeterTheAleut » Logged
Justin Kissel
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« Reply #2 on: December 01, 2010, 11:27:17 AM »

I hadn't really thought about who/when as it relates to members of the forum. I guess I would say that generally using proper titles when speaking of a poster would be, if nothing else, the polite thing to do. On the other hand, one could argue that it'd be the polite thing to use such titles for everyone. But perhaps it's of less significance if we are talking about someone like St. John Chrysostom or Fr. Georges Florovsky, in which case you are not addressing someone on the forum or speaking of them in their presence, but are just saying such-and-such said this or did that. I can understand wanting to maintain a certain level of respect regarding clergy and saints. I guess I just find it to be unfortunate that you get a slap on the wrist just because you forget a title, especially when there was no obvious intention at being derogatory or malicious. Rather than editing someone's posts and giving them a formal warning, what about simply giving them a text (colored) reminder about forum policy? And if they apologize or recognize the problem, then isn't all well and good?
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« Reply #3 on: December 01, 2010, 12:45:03 PM »

How does this apply to a Catholic who may not see certain EO saints as true saints? For example, I have often referenced "Gregory Palamas" without "St." in front of his name and no one has ever really asked about it. Further, I can see in a scholastic discussion, some one simply saying "Plamas says..." even if such a person is Eastern Orthodox.
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« Reply #4 on: December 01, 2010, 02:28:15 PM »

How does this apply to a Catholic who may not see certain EO saints as true saints? For example, I have often referenced "Gregory Palamas" without "St." in front of his name and no one has ever really asked about it. Further, I can see in a scholastic discussion, some one simply saying "Plamas says..." even if such a person is Eastern Orthodox.
In general, we don't require that you refer to saints as "St. so-and-so", since that may create a number of difficulties for those of other traditions who don't consider St. Francis of Asisi or St. Dioscoros or St. Gregory Palamas a saint. We just expect that at least the EO and OO saints not be called heretics outside of the Private Forum.
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« Reply #5 on: December 01, 2010, 08:58:18 PM »

How does this apply to a Catholic who may not see certain EO saints as true saints? For example, I have often referenced "Gregory Palamas" without "St." in front of his name and no one has ever really asked about it. Further, I can see in a scholastic discussion, some one simply saying "Plamas says..." even if such a person is Eastern Orthodox.

Sorry, I can't help myself, and I don't want to open a can of worms, but the modern-day Byzantine Catholic Typicon commemorates St. Gregory of Palamas on the second Sunday of Lent as does the Orthodox calendar. I didn't know that Catholics could 'pick and choose' Saints - although I must admit that the veneration of St. Gregory by Greek Catholics has always confused me. Perhaps it is because he was recognized as a Saint of the Orthodox Church prior to the Unia?
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« Reply #6 on: December 01, 2010, 10:40:10 PM »

How does this apply to a Catholic who may not see certain EO saints as true saints? For example, I have often referenced "Gregory Palamas" without "St." in front of his name and no one has ever really asked about it. Further, I can see in a scholastic discussion, some one simply saying "Plamas says..." even if such a person is Eastern Orthodox.

Sorry, I can't help myself, and I don't want to open a can of worms, but the modern-day Byzantine Catholic Typicon commemorates St. Gregory of Palamas on the second Sunday of Lent as does the Orthodox calendar. I didn't know that Catholics could 'pick and choose' Saints - although I must admit that the veneration of St. Gregory by Greek Catholics has always confused me. Perhaps it is because he was recognized as a Saint of the Orthodox Church prior to the Unia?
I hate to hash this out again. A couple of years ago I argued about this topic here on OC.net and I behaved rather poorly. Sad
Let's just say that not all Catholics are bound to venerate Palamas, since he has never gone through the modern Catholic process of cannonization. However, Byzanites do venerate him Liturgically.
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FrChris
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« Reply #7 on: December 01, 2010, 11:29:44 PM »

How does this apply to a Catholic who may not see certain EO saints as true saints? For example, I have often referenced "Gregory Palamas" without "St." in front of his name and no one has ever really asked about it. Further, I can see in a scholastic discussion, some one simply saying "Plamas says..." even if such a person is Eastern Orthodox.

Sorry, I can't help myself, and I don't want to open a can of worms, but the modern-day Byzantine Catholic Typicon commemorates St. Gregory of Palamas on the second Sunday of Lent as does the Orthodox calendar. I didn't know that Catholics could 'pick and choose' Saints - although I must admit that the veneration of St. Gregory by Greek Catholics has always confused me. Perhaps it is because he was recognized as a Saint of the Orthodox Church prior to the Unia?
I hate to hash this out again. A couple of years ago I argued about this topic here on OC.net and I behaved rather poorly. Sad
Let's just say that not all Catholics are bound to venerate Palamas, since he has never gone through the modern Catholic process of cannonization. However, Byzanites do venerate him Liturgically.

So, the answer is that some members of the ecclesial organization bound to Rome do feel themselves free to 'pick and choose' those recognized as saints by their own far flung communion. Thank you for the clear response.
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