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Author Topic: POPE AGAIN PROPOSES ONE EASTER DATE FOR ALL CHRISTIANS  (Read 9445 times) Average Rating: 0
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« Reply #45 on: April 14, 2004, 10:01:19 AM »

good point Brendan.

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« Reply #46 on: April 14, 2004, 11:32:44 AM »

I don't think that a break in communion requires an ecumenical council.  Even in the time of the councils, breaks in communion happened on a more local or regional level without the "sanction" of an ecumenical council.

But, even so, aren't all Orthodox anathematized by the terms of the declaration of the First Vatican Council?

Brendan
I don't remember reading that.  Could you reference me to that part?
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« Reply #47 on: April 14, 2004, 11:38:57 AM »

I don't remember reading that.  Could you reference me to that part?

Surely.

"Therefore,
faithfully adhering to the tradition received from the beginning of the christian faith,
to the glory of God our saviour,
for the exaltation of the catholic religion and
for the salvation of the christian people,
with the approval of the sacred council,
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

we teach and define as a divinely revealed dogma that

when the Roman pontiff speaks EX CATHEDRA,
that is, when,
in the exercise of his office as shepherd and teacher of all Christians,
in virtue of his supreme apostolic authority,
he defines a doctrine concerning faith or morals to be held by the whole church,
he possesses,
by the divine assistance promised to him in blessed Peter,
that infallibility which the divine Redeemer willed his church to enjoy in defining doctrine concerning faith or morals.
Therefore, such definitions of the Roman pontiff are of themselves, and not by the consent of the church, irreformable.


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

So then, should anyone, which God forbid, have the temerity to reject this definition of ours: let him be anathema. "

Well, we Orthodox reject that definition of theirs, and so we are anathema.  I know that it doesn't specifically refer to the Orthodox, but we are surely covered by the reference to anyone who does not accept the definition.

Brendan

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« Reply #48 on: April 14, 2004, 12:33:22 PM »

I don't think that a break in communion requires an ecumenical council.  Even in the time of the councils, breaks in communion happened on a more local or regional level without the "sanction" of an ecumenical council.

But, even so, aren't all Orthodox anathematized by the terms of the declaration of the First Vatican Council?

Brendan

On second thought, do you mean that those who didn't agree with the terms of Vatican I were anathematized?  I suspect you're probably right there, though I haven't looked at Vatican I in awhile.

But the eastern churches wouldn't call Vatican I an ecumenical council, would they?  I know we in the western churches do, because we use that term for every council that involves all bishops in communion with the Pope.  Regardless, no one was excommunicated at Vatican I.  Accomplishing that would have required a specific act.

Now, what I am proposing here is that excommunications of bishops must follow the procedure set forth in the Gospel According to Matthew:

"If your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault, between you and him alone.  If he listens to you, you have gained your brother.  But if he does not listen, take one or two others along with you, that every word may be confirmed by the evidence of two or three witnesses.  If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.  Truly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven." (Matthew 18:15-18)

Jesus is talking to the twelve, here, which is what Matthew means by "disciples."  Hence, this applies to their successors, the bishops.  It appears, then, that the way that Jesus authorized the excommunication of bishops was by a decision of the whole Church, which requires a conference of all the bishops in apostolic succession.  To the extent that individual bishops have tried to excommunicate other bishops by themselves, it doesn't pass muster with the procedure that Jesus, who should have something to say about it, laid down.

Now it is true that the passage I just quoted is followed by this:

"Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven.  For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I in the midst of them."  (Matthew 18:19-20)

But it is clear that Jesus is moved on to heavenly ratification of prayer requests of the apostles and their successors, and that this last passage has nothing to do with letting someone be to the Church "as a Gentile and a tax collector."

Brendan, the past is fixed, and we can do nothing to change it.  We can only move forward.  If unification is a desirable goal, we must posture ourselves in this way.  If we fixate on the rancor of the past, we will never get past it.
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« Reply #49 on: April 14, 2004, 12:35:50 PM »

Surely.

"Therefore,
faithfully adhering to the tradition received from the beginning of the christian faith,
to the glory of God our saviour,
for the exaltation of the catholic religion and
for the salvation of the christian people,
with the approval of the sacred council,
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

we teach and define as a divinely revealed dogma that

when the Roman pontiff speaks EX CATHEDRA,
that is, when,
in the exercise of his office as shepherd and teacher of all Christians,
in virtue of his supreme apostolic authority,
he defines a doctrine concerning faith or morals to be held by the whole church,
he possesses,
by the divine assistance promised to him in blessed Peter,
that infallibility which the divine Redeemer willed his church to enjoy in defining doctrine concerning faith or morals.
Therefore, such definitions of the Roman pontiff are of themselves, and not by the consent of the church, irreformable.


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

So then, should anyone, which God forbid, have the temerity to reject this definition of ours: let him be anathema. "

Well, we Orthodox reject that definition of theirs, and so we are anathema.  I know that it doesn't specifically refer to the Orthodox, but we are surely covered by the reference to anyone who does not accept the definition.

Brendan



Thanks, Brendan.  I apologize for making you go through that.  I figured out what you meant before I looked at your response, and replied, above.
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« Reply #50 on: April 14, 2004, 12:46:34 PM »

According to roman theology and the delclerations of Vatican I, the Pope is infallable when speaking in terms of faith or morals.  I think the creed certainly falls within this area.  Also, from the perspective of Roman theology, Papal infallability was always there, and acted upon--it just wasn't proclaimed until Vatican I.  leaving aside the issue of papal infallability, in and of itself a great heresy, one can see that from a Roman perspective, the pope was acting infallably at the council of sophia when he condemned the Filioque (not to mention that Rome holds the councils to be infallable in and of themselves).  

Also, any alteration of the creed is certainly heresy.  Whether or not the filioque clause is true, the heretical and schismatic act comes in altering the creed against the expressed wishes of hte universal Church.

As for the heresies of Rome in general, there is an infinite amount of material out on this (for instance the Vatican Dogma in the texts section of oc.net), and having just recently left Romanism, I do not feel it proper that I address this issue at this time.   Besides others here are much more wise than I.

Joe Zollars

Then please accept a response from the biggest fool of all.  First of all, the Pope is not deemed to be infallible every time he speaks, even on faith and morals.  He has to do it by definitive act.  We're still working on what that all means, but it seems pretty clear that papal infallibility isn't everything its detractors make it out to be.  I'll try to show why it isn't heresy at a later time, in that I have to get working right now.  Also, neither the Council of Nicea or the Council of Constantinople addressed what creed should be recited in the liturgy; they simply stated what is orthodox belief.
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« Reply #51 on: April 14, 2004, 01:15:49 PM »

Jack --

I agree that the past is the past.  I think we agree that any reunion would be grounded in an ecumenical council, at least I know I have thought that way for some time.  In the meantime, however, I think we have to be careful how we characterize the current situation because otherwise the theological bigwigs who are involved start wringing their hands and no progress is made.  I do think that if and when progress is made it will have to be characterizable by both Orthodoxy and Catholicism as not being a compromise, but as being consistent with the faith they always confessed.  I suspect that Catholicism has a bit of an easier go at this because in theory at least Catholicism accepts the development of doctrine.  The challenge for Orthodoxy is to try to be more open-minded (hehe, not our specialty) when approaching a non-Byzantine theological system.

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« Reply #52 on: April 14, 2004, 01:52:39 PM »

Jack --

I agree that the past is the past.  I think we agree that any reunion would be grounded in an ecumenical council, at least I know I have thought that way for some time.  In the meantime, however, I think we have to be careful how we characterize the current situation because otherwise the theological bigwigs who are involved start wringing their hands and no progress is made.  I do think that if and when progress is made it will have to be characterizable by both Orthodoxy and Catholicism as not being a compromise, but as being consistent with the faith they always confessed.  I suspect that Catholicism has a bit of an easier go at this because in theory at least Catholicism accepts the development of doctrine.  The challenge for Orthodoxy is to try to be more open-minded (hehe, not our specialty) when approaching a non-Byzantine theological system.

Brendan

And the challenge for the Catholics will be to move our cumbersome bureaucracy.

Your right, I think.  What I'm afraid will be necessary is a lay movement.  That part will be harder for us Catholics, since many of our prelates seem to think that the Holy Spirit doesn't talk to laypeople.

What I want to say to the bishops is this: "We respect your apostolic authority, and will submit to whatever you tell us.  But we Orthodox and Catholic laypeople are bearing the brunt of something that isn't our fault.  We can't make any of the decisions that cause us to be at one another's throats, and yet we find ourselves unable to take communion together because of arguments that you are having with one another.  The argument about who is the greatest is as old as the original Twelve, and apparently still hasn't been resolved, even though Jesus said that he who would be greatest among you must be your servant.  We'll be the servants, and let you be the greatest, if only you will stop this now.  Even though we are without authority, we feel the pain caused by this wound in the Body of Christ.  Please let the wound be healed, so that the Church can present the Gospel to the world in its full splendour.  Indeed, consider how the many without Christ are suffering due to our divisions!"

Wanna start a movement?
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« Reply #53 on: April 14, 2004, 03:36:29 PM »

Heterodox just means non-Orthodox. It's a neutral term
anastasios

To your mind "Heterodox" is a neutral term.  To others it may be a label that says "wrong thinking" or some other negative connotation.  "Non-Orthodox" I would call more "neutral".  

Ebor
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« Reply #54 on: April 14, 2004, 03:57:04 PM »


To your mind "Heterodox" is a neutral term.  To others it may be a label that says "wrong thinking" or some other negative connotation.  "Non-Orthodox" I would call more "neutral".  

Ebor

Christ Is Risen!  Indeed He Has Risen!

Just got back from Dallas, Texas where I celebrated Pascha with a friend along with Archbishop Demitri and the wonderful people a St Seraphims Cathedral.  It is always a wonderful experience for me to go there.

Although I agree with Ebor, Anastasios is not completely wrong either.  From "The Complete Book Of orthodoxy" -

Heterodoxy - different: alien, falso belief or teaching.

I think it is a much better term to use when discussing non-Orthodox than 'heretic' which is a term I dislike immensely no matter what faith is being discussed.

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« Reply #55 on: April 14, 2004, 04:07:50 PM »

Thanks, Orthodoc.
Your post preceeded mine which was going to point out that "+¦-ä+¦-ü++" merely means 'different' or 'other''.

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« Reply #56 on: April 14, 2004, 04:31:13 PM »

I'm not offended by being called heterodox, or even a heretic.  I'm only offended if you call me late for dinner.  It's just that I don't agree that I am heterodox or a heretic.  And I feel quite confident about it.
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« Reply #57 on: April 14, 2004, 05:36:14 PM »

Christ Is Risen!  Indeed He Has Risen!

Although I agree with Ebor, Anastasios is not completely wrong either.  From "The Complete Book Of orthodoxy" -

Heterodoxy - different: alien, falso belief or teaching.

I think it is a much better term to use when discussing non-Orthodox than 'heretic' which is a term I dislike immensely no matter what faith is being discussed.

Orthodoc

Thank you for your courtesy and consideration, Orthodoc.  

Ebor

Ebor
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« Reply #58 on: April 14, 2004, 05:36:59 PM »

I have no problem with being labeled a "heterodox", if fact I thought it was a cookie that resembled a Oreo !

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« Reply #59 on: April 14, 2004, 05:49:48 PM »

I generally don't like the term because although it means no offence, it causes much offence, so I prefer the term "non-Orthodox",  bit less elegant linguistically but totally inoffensive to those so labelled.
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« Reply #60 on: April 15, 2004, 08:48:50 AM »

Jack,

Quote
First of all, the Pope is not deemed to be infallible every time he speaks, even on faith and morals.

Mmm...yes and no.  Yes, given the wording of the definition of Vatican I.  In practice however, the Pope may as well be "infallible" in all he says.  According to works like Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma and other compendiums of RC doctrine I've read, one is not free to dissent from the teachings of a Pope, even if they are not delivered with his full "infallible" authority.  The only exception would be very carefully qualified, respectful disagreement on the part of theological or canonical experts (in other words, very few people), and even this would ultimatly require docile submission on their part if the matter were pressed to no avail.

So either the Pope is (almost?) always correct, or people are bound to obey him no matter what (even if he's wrong.)  Add to this the reality that a Pope cannot be judged according to RC doctrine, you have a situation where one might as well say he's infallible in all he says and does.

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« Reply #61 on: April 15, 2004, 08:52:39 AM »

Suggestions that we all move towards a common calendar (an idea that has been acted upon by past Orthodox heirarchs, causing much mischief and heartache) strike me as coming from the sentimental "let's hold hands and it'll all work itself out" line of thinking.  I'd think that ironic out liturgical matters like the calendar, would be one of the final steps, after doctrinal issues have been ironed out.  Obviously, that has not happened, so proposing this calendar change is very premature.

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« Reply #62 on: April 15, 2004, 04:54:27 PM »

CHRIST IS RISEN!

Without sounding like a triumphalist, the solution should be simple---Have the Pope determine the  date for Easter follows the current Orthodox Calendar---the protestants will follow that and the result is all those who claim to be Christians celebrate the Feast on the Same date---scandal ended.

As the Orthodox will not follow any declaration of the Patriarch of Rome because of past declarations of infallibility, it is only logical that the Orthodox date should be used.  Roman Catholics will follow the Pope in his decision and if the Gregorian Calendar is any indication, the protestants will follow the Roman Catholic lead in the date for Easter. Once this is done there will be one less scandal to the christian witness in the world. It is only logical.

The problem is the Pope wants a world meeting to assign a new formula to determining the date to Easter/Pascha rather than taking the simple and logical approach.

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« Reply #63 on: April 15, 2004, 05:25:58 PM »

This table indicates the respective dates of Easter/Pascha/Passover as determined by the current methods, from 2001 through 2025:

http://www.wcc-coe.org/wcc/what/faith/easter.html#table

Which is simple (and more accurate) and which is silly, again?


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« Reply #64 on: April 15, 2004, 05:47:47 PM »

Well, there's a pattern of "violations" in almost every combination here, possibly because the one formula that isn't shown in the table is "Easter is the first Sunday after the first day of Passover."

BTW, if you want to read about the Aleppo solution, look on the upper part of the referenced page.
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« Reply #65 on: April 15, 2004, 08:22:03 PM »

Jack,Mmm...yes and no.  Yes, given the wording of the definition of Vatican I.  In practice however, the Pope may as well be "infallible" in all he says.  According to works like Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma and other compendiums of RC doctrine I've read, one is not free to dissent from the teachings of a Pope, even if they are not delivered with his full "infallible" authority.  The only exception would be very carefully qualified, respectful disagreement on the part of theological or canonical experts (in other words, very few people), and even this would ultimatly require docile submission on their part if the matter were pressed to no avail.

So either the Pope is (almost?) always correct, or people are bound to obey him no matter what (even if he's wrong.)  Add to this the reality that a Pope cannot be judged according to RC doctrine, you have a situation where one might as well say he's infallible in all he says and does.

Seraphim


Seraphim, I had a detailed response for you, then the whole thing deleted itself.  I couldn't start again because I had to get back to work.  So I'll give you the short version.  You can't just look at the literal wording of Vatican I and interpret it in isolation.  You have to also see how it has played out in the life of the Church.  Let's put it this way: there are those who are called conservative Catholics who complain that Rome doesn't lower the boom more than it does.  What I mean to point out is that, in practice, Papal primacy doesn't work out to be as authoritarian as would be justified by your reading of Vatican I.  The bishops are not just district managers for Rome.

Pope John Paul II has invited Christians throughout the world to present suggestions for a new way to look at the primacy.  That should probably be done if the eastern and western churches are going to stop this ridiculous bickering and get back to the business of transforming humanity into Christ's image.

I think what I'll do is start a new string where I promote this thesis, since it's clearly off the topic of whether we should all have the same date for Easter.  Hopefully, on that string, everyone will be more considerate than I have been, and stay on topic.
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« Reply #66 on: April 16, 2004, 08:21:58 AM »

I also noticed that Gregorian Pascha never falls before Passover.
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« Reply #67 on: April 16, 2004, 09:17:48 AM »

look closer.  2005 specifically.

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« Reply #68 on: April 16, 2004, 09:49:38 AM »

There are points for all existing or proposed calculations where Easter precedes Passover. The problem is the current Passover calculation, whose pattern of "double Adars" is out of sync with the actual lunar cycle.
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« Reply #69 on: April 16, 2004, 10:24:35 AM »

I also noticed that Gregorian Pascha never falls before Passover.

Then perhaps you can explain the following dates to us -

How about -
 
1989
 
Gregorian Easter -  March 26
Passover -              April 20
 
1986
 
Gregorian Easter -  March 30
Passover -              April 24
 
1978
 
Gregorian Easter -  March 26
Passover -              April 22
 
1970
 
Gregorian Easter -  March 29
Passover -              April 21
 
1967
 
Gregorian Easter -  March 26
Passover -              April 25
 
1959
 
Gregorian Easter -  March 29
Passover -              April 23
 
And I could go on but I think my point has been made.
 
Orthodoc
 


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« Reply #70 on: April 16, 2004, 10:27:48 AM »

not to mention those dates in the coming years when this will occur.

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« Reply #71 on: April 16, 2004, 10:48:46 AM »

not to mention those dates in the coming years when this will occur.

Joe Zollars

========

Well for starters........For the future how about -

2005

Gregorian Easter -  March 27
Passover -              April 24


2008

Gregorian Easter -  March 23
Passover -              April 20

2016

Gregorian Easter -  March 27
Passover -              April  23

2024

Gregorian Easter -  March 31
Passover -              April 23

2027

Gregorian Easter -  March 28
Passover -              April 22


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« Reply #72 on: April 16, 2004, 10:51:36 AM »

Joe,

Woops, missed 2005! Thanks.

Orthodoc,

I was only referencing the Chart on the WCC site.
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« Reply #73 on: April 16, 2004, 11:05:38 AM »

Orthodoc,

I was only referencing the Chart on the WCC site.

========

Better place to bring up the comaprison calculations is -

http://www.phys.uu.nl/~vgent/easter/easter_text2a.htm

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« Reply #74 on: April 16, 2004, 11:23:27 AM »

I think the point of this exercise is to have a "more accurate" standard for reckoning a date for the synchronized celebration of Easter and Pascha.

As Keble noted earlier, the Jewish method of reckoning the Passover is out-of-whack because of the erratic swings of the Jewish calendrical calculation necessitating the addition of  Adar II, the 13th month in the Jewish lunar year.

Therefore, basing our own calculation of Easter/Pascha on the Jewish Passover appears to be a "double jeopardy."

If we can agree that science has made critical advances in the ensuing years after Nicea, then the astronomical reckoning of Easter/Pascha should be an acceptable
standard.

On this score, the Gregorian reckoning, which is based on a solar year, fits snugly into the astronomical reckoning, except for the year 2019 in the referenced table.

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« Reply #75 on: April 16, 2004, 12:30:51 PM »

the way I see it, Pascha is the one date that all Orthodox can agree on be they Old or New Calander (and by extension those feasts and fasts based upon it).  Thus the unity of the Orthodox Faith is demonstrated in the unity of the Paschal celebration.

The vast majority of Old Calandrists that I have met would sooner be Martyrd than give up the Old Calander and will never consent to the celebration of Pascha on a date other than the traditional Julian reckoning.  

Some New Calandrists may be willing to make the concession to the Papists to follow the Gregorian reckoning or some almagamation thereof, but by doing this, they tear at teh fabric of the Visible unity of hte Orthodox Church.  

Thus, the only possible (or indeed charitable to the Orthodox) thing to do if one truly desires a unified calander, is to follow the traditional julian reckoning.

Rome has the authroity to do this.  All it would take is an encyclical from the Pope.  It would take a pan-orthodox Sobor for the Orthdox to do this and as stated above would douptless never succeed.  However Rome does not do this, even though it is the most logical path.  Why? because Rome really doesn't care about the Orthodox.  It just wants to make itself look good.

And as stated earlier in the thread, there is already a unified date for Pascha.  The west has just not jumped on the bandwagon yet.  Actually this is not entirely true, there is a smal group of Traditionalist RCs who are following both the Julian Paschalion and the Julian Menaion.  Also Greek RC's follow the Julian Pascha reckoning--thus prooving it is possible for all of Rome to do this.

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« Reply #76 on: April 16, 2004, 05:02:06 PM »

Joe Z:

Let me put into a "crazy" perspective:

More than a billion Roman Catholics and about 700 million Protestants celebrate Easter based on the Gregorian Calendar!

Approximately 4 billion of the world's population, i.e., almost all nations on earth, based their civilian/secular life on the same calendar.

There must be certain merit to the Gregorian Calendar, better than "real time" calculations based on the Julian or Jewish calendars.

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« Reply #77 on: April 16, 2004, 07:39:57 PM »

the same number of people (4 billion) worship pagan deities and demons in one shape or another.  Thus, by your logic, their must be some merit to their religious beliefs.

It simply does not matter how many follow the Orthodox reckoning of Pascha.  Any attempt at a unified date forcing people to the Gregorian calander will either a: only succeed after a great many Orthodox Christians (possibly all) have been martyred for the faith or b: be on the Orthodox reckoning.

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« Reply #78 on: April 16, 2004, 07:41:52 PM »

I am not denying the merit of the Gregorian calander.  My daily (secular) life is based upon it.  But my spiritual life is not.  It is not neccessary for spiritual holy days to follow the same calander of the secular life.  Look to the muslims, jews, hindus, buddhists, etc. to see that even the pagans can succeed in seperating the two.  Why can't Christians?

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« Reply #79 on: April 16, 2004, 08:57:12 PM »

Thus, the only possible (or indeed charitable to the Orthodox) thing to do if one truly desires a unified calander, is to follow the traditional julian reckoning.

Rome has the authroity to do this.  All it would take is an encyclical from the Pope.  It would take a pan-orthodox Sobor for the Orthdox to do this and as stated above would douptless never succeed.  However Rome does not do this, even though it is the most logical path.  Why? because Rome really doesn't care about the Orthodox.  It just wants to make itself look good.

Paradoxically, the fact that "Rome has the authority to do this..." is something the Orthodox vehemently oppose as a deviation from the "power structures" of the early ("undivided") Church.
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« Reply #80 on: April 16, 2004, 11:23:40 PM »

indeed.

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« Reply #81 on: April 17, 2004, 12:21:01 PM »

Then why don't Catholics adopt the Julian date of Easter as before?

Then it would be the same date no?
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« Reply #82 on: April 17, 2004, 12:57:54 PM »

I'd like to see either all-Julian or all-Gregorian Calendar for both fasts and feasts.  No "Revised Julian Calendar" because all it does is make the typikon go out the window.

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« Reply #83 on: April 22, 2004, 12:53:57 PM »

Bah.
You jigger with Date of Easter.
The Patriarch in Jerusalem will never get the Holy Fire from the Sepulcher.

and You'll give God a Headache of when to send the fire down.
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