Author Topic: God is not present in the Roman church the way He is in the Orthodox Church?  (Read 20304 times)

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Offline deusveritasest

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What about those Orthodox bishops who have allowed an eastern Catholic to receive sacraments in an Orthodox parish currently and still remain Catholic, for the good of their soul?    Father Ambrose has corroborated that it does happen so I don't think I need do more than refer to it.

I think that they are in error. I don't think it's ever appropriate for the Orthodox to give Communion to those who have not been initiated into their faith tradition.
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Offline Peter J

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Is there something inherently flawed or absent from RC sacraments that people feel inclined to disrespect our Church's teaching? If you all believe you have true sacraments, receive them in your own churches. Don't profane ours.

I have to admit I'm not really sure what to make of that either.

I recall, several years ago, I and a fellow Catholic attended the Easter Vigil at an Episcopal parish. I was a little surprised, as you may well imagine, when my friend received communion.
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The disrespectful attitude from RCs such as Mary and J Michael toward Holy Orthodoxy show me that I don't want to share from the Chalice with people who will have such a disregard for our Mysteries.

For the record, J Michael isn't Catholic. According to his own statements, he left the Catholic Church to join to Orthodox Church (but still receives communion in the Catholic Church).

Yup.  But I haven't actually received communion in a Catholic Church for over 4 years.  I have, however, confessed to a Catholic priest and received from him absolution.  The reception of communion issue *may* change, though.  It might also be worth noting that when I was received into Orthodoxy my thinking about the equality or lack thereof of Orthodox and Catholic sacraments was not what it is now.  Close, but not quite the same.

And, while I realize that most here think I'm wrong about this, I consider myself Orthodox and Catholic.  But we've been through this already, I think.
« Last Edit: April 20, 2011, 05:24:59 PM by J Michael »
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Offline deusveritasest

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Indeed.

The question was very much for Andrew. Your answer I could very easily have guessed. Andrew's answer I am truly curious about.

And more than that I know there are Orthodox believers from the greatest lay man or women to the lowliest bishop who think the same thing...

I know. It's awful. They are deluded and most likely heretical too.
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Offline Irish Hermit

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What about those Orthodox bishops who have allowed an eastern Catholic to receive sacraments in an Orthodox parish currently and still remain Catholic, for the good of their soul?    Father Ambrose has corroborated that it does happen so I don't think I need do more than refer to it.

Well, I mentioned only one instance in an earlier post - of a Melkite woman whom a Catholic bishop sexually abused and she was then granted permission to commune in the Antiochian Church.

Offline ialmisry

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then perhaps, deusveritasest is correct in saying that God is not present in the Roman church as He is in Orthodoxy.

Perhaps? Why do you need to wonder at all? Do you actually think the Roman church has the very Pentecostal indwelling of the Holy Spirit received in Orthodox Chrismation?

Indeed.  And more than that I know there are Orthodox believers from the greatest lay man or women to the lowliest bishop who think the same thing...praise God!!

 :)
LOL. Praising God for error. That's novel.
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Offline akimel

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Life in the kingdom of God is ever so much more complicated than allowed for by either canon law or simplistic ecclesiology.  This should not come as a surprise.  The Spirit blows where he wills.

The ecclesiology of St Cyprian was clear-cut: the Church is defined by her canonical boundaries; there are no sacraments outside the Catholic Church.  This is an easy, nonambiguous, uncomplicated ecclesiology.  Yet it is also an ecclesiology that the Church has never felt comfortable fully embracing. It was immediately contested by Pope Stephen I, who insisted that Cyprian's position was an innovation and departure from apostolic practice!  Even Cyprian's fellow African, St Augustine, did not feel quite comfortable with it.  It is sometimes asserted, especially in internet forums, that Orthodoxy has unequivocally embraced Cyprianic ecclesiology; but this is clearly not the case.  I have already cited the opinion of Archpriest Alexander Lebedeff (ROCOR), who believes that the traditional Russian practice of receiving Catholic laymen by chrismation and Catholic priests by vesting is grounded in the conviction that the Catholic Church has "valid Mysteries and true apostolic succession, and that in no way should Baptism and Chrismation, or ordination of them be performed again."  Whether Fr Alexander is correct in his assessment I cannot judge, though I did contact Fr John Erickson, retired professor from St Vladimir's Seminary, who confirmed Fr Alexander's interpretation of the Russian practice.  Other parts of Orthodoxy disagree with the Russian practice or at least disagree with Fr Alexander's interpretation of it.  The Bulgarian Diocese of the U.S., Canada, and Australia, for example, requires that all converts be (re)baptized, without exceptions.  No doubt many of the monks on Mt Athos would agree with this policy.  Other parts of Orthodoxy receive Catholic and perhaps Protestant converts through chrismation on the grounds of economy.  But the appeal to economy at this point is by no means uncontroversial.  As Fr Georges Florovsky argued many years ago in his essay "The Limits of the Church, "One can scarcely ascribe to the Church the power and the right, as it were, to convert the ‘has-not-been’ into the ‘has-been’, to change the meaningless into the valid ... ‘in the order of economy.’"  Economy cannot be employed to justify the the substitution of Chrismation for Holy Baptism.  If the Church is rigorously defined by her canonical boundaries, then ritual baptism performed outside the Church, even if it mimics the Orthodox sacrament in every way, is not a sacrament of the Church, and no subsequent sacramental action by the Church can make it into an authentic sacrament.  No doubt some Orthodox theologians, particularly in the Greek tradition, will dissent from Florovsky's argument; but let's at least admit that Orthodoxy does not speak with one voice on this matter.  Several months ago I raised this question with Fr Patrick Reardon of the Antiochian Church.  He acknowledged that present Orthodox diversity and disagreement on this question of the validity of heterodox baptism replicates the diversity that existed within the Church in the fifth century, and in the absence of a centralized authority or a binding decision by an Ecumenical Council this diversity would no doubt continue within Orthodoxy until the return of Christ ... but the Church muddles through.

One of the strengths of Orthodoxy is its refusal to be limited by canon law.  Cyprianic Purists insist that no one may receive communion in the Orthodox Church who is not a canonical member of an Orthodox diocese.  Internet forums are filled with ecclesiastical ideologues.  Yet on the parochial ground matters are so much more complicated.  I know of one Armenian theologian who partakes of the Orthodox Eucharist, with permission of both his Armenian bishop and the Orthodox bishop.  In some places of the world, Melkite Christians receive Holy Communion in Orthodox Churches and Orthodox Christians receive Holy Communion in Melkite Churches.  Canon law says that they shouldn't; but life in the Church, which is precisely life in the Spirit, will not be constrained by canon law.  Wise pastors understand this.  "For where the Church is," St Irenaeus exclaims, "there is the Spirit of God; and where the Spirit of God is, there is the Church and every kind of grace."  The work and presence of the Spirit is not limited by canon law.

And this brings us to J Michael's practice of inter-communion.  Despite what I have written above, I do not approve of his practice, and if I were his confessor or pastor, I would urge him, and indeed require him, to be faithful to the canons of his Church.  J. Michael, even if you are correct in your ecclesiological evaluation, even if both communions enjoy "direct and unbroken apostolic succession" and therefore valid sacraments, even if you will ultimately be judged by God by your relationship with Jesus Christ and not by your ecclesial affiliation, this does not authorize you to break the laws of your Church.  You are not living in an emergency situation; the Kingdom has not yet fully arrived; the divisions within the Church have not yet been overcome.  Despite the unity that exists between Catholicism and Orthodoxy--and I agree with you that at the deepest theological and spiritual levels this unity does exist--you are not permitted by your Church to partake in the Holy Eucharist of the Catholic Church.  We all live under obedience.  Without such obedience, life in community is impossible.  Until theological unity is achieved, we must continue to suffer the wounds of disunity.  There are no easy short-cuts around this suffering.   

Of course, if one advocates a pure Cyprianic ecclesiology, such suffering does not exist.  There is the visible Orthodox Church, and there is the grace-less wasteland.  Until a few decades ago, Catholics also advocated a similar ecclesiology.  My wife remembers her father telling her stories about how he and his fellow Catholics were instructed to avoid Protestants.  He wasn't even allowed to play basketball in the local non-Catholic high school.  I personally find such a black-and-white ecclesiology implausible, as well as spiritually dangerous.  It is blind to the work and presence of the Holy Spirit.  It is one thing to affirm the Orthodox Church as embodying the fullness of catholic faith; it is quite another thing to deny the possibility of ecclesial reality outside the canonical bounds of the Orthodox Church.  The Spirit blows where he wills.  The gospel is proclaimed.  Believers suffer and die in the name of Jesus.  Saints are created by God.  A proper ecclesiology must address and deal with these realities.     

Fr Alvin Kimel   

Offline Peter J

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That was a great post.
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Offline Peter J

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Also, some Orthodox have historically recognized traditional Anglicans and Old Catholics as closer to us.

It seems to me that the traditional Anglicans and traditional Old Catholics (I believe the second qualifier is necessary, because a lot of Old Catholics have gone pretty liberal, from what I hear) are in many ways a "compromise" between Catholicism and Orthodoxy.

So sure, you can say "They're closer to us than the Catholics are" if you want. But of course, we can likewise say "They're closer to us than the Orthodox are".
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Offline Wyatt

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Amen, Fr. Alvin. That post was quite edifying! Thank you for that.

Offline WetCatechumen

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I believe He is present in all these churches (they are Apostolic).

I wonder if it would help at all to know that the Orthodox Church actually does not regard God as being present in the Roman church in the same way that He is present within herself (Pentecostal indwelling) and actually does not view it as "Apostolic" in the same sense either?

Do the Orthodox believe that the Catholic Church has a real Eucharist? (because I do).

The Orthodox Church does not believe nor teach that the Vatican can "confect the Eucharist"


The Russian Orthodox Church disagrees.

Please see message 57
at
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,35132.msg555625.html#msg555625

I don't know too many Antiochian priests but the ones I know recognise Catholic sacraments.

The bottom line is that there is no consensus on this among the Orthodox.

I find this happens very, very, often, on a whole host of issues - especially the ones separating our churches. It gives me a headache.

Although mayiritsa is a great. Can we agree on that?
« Last Edit: April 24, 2011, 10:49:32 PM by WetCatechumen »
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Offline Peter J

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Neither hierarchs nor priests nor laity may commune from non-Orthodox altars, Catholic or Pre-Chalcedonian, Anglican or Utrecht.

If I may be so bold, your position seems a little extreme -- I notice that you include "Pre-Chalcedonian" (Oriental Orthodox) in your list.

Extreme?  I would accept your criticism, Peter, if you name me the Orthodox bishops and priests who commune at Catholic altars, or Non-Chalcedonian ones, Anglican or Utrecht.

I think my words are reflective of the truth of what does not happen.

Mary gives the impression that she is aware of large numbers of Orthodox laity receiving Catholic communion.   But we note that no Orthodox bishops and priests are doing that;  they are too wise to endanger their souls.  The laity Mary speaks about should look to their bishops and be as wise as them.

Regarding Pre-Chalcedonian, I would refer you to http://www.antiochian.net/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=657&Itemid=63

Doesn't that count?
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Offline Hermogenes

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If "unity exists between Catholicism and Orthodoxy ... at the deepest theological and spiritual levels," as some are asserting here, then what is the reason for continuing divisions between us? I, for one, do not believe that unity exists. I believe we may resemble one another in many things, but those resemblances are superficial. I also think statements like the above are dangerous, because they suggest a Catholic Mass may be in all essentials as valid as an Orthodox Liturgy. If that's the case, why aren't we communicating with each other now?

Personally, I can't see any reason why I would accept the Catholic Eucharist, even in an "emergency." I've been told by my church that it is without validity, so what would be the point? Just a bit of bread and a sip of wine. I'd almost do better reverently to share a meal with my family, as they did in the earliest days of the Church.

Offline elijahmaria

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If "unity exists between Catholicism and Orthodoxy ... at the deepest theological and spiritual levels," as some are asserting here, then what is the reason for continuing divisions between us? I, for one, do not believe that unity exists. I believe we may resemble one another in many things, but those resemblances are superficial. I also think statements like the above are dangerous, because they suggest a Catholic Mass may be in all essentials as valid as an Orthodox Liturgy. If that's the case, why aren't we communicating with each other now?

Personally, I can't see any reason why I would accept the Catholic Eucharist, even in an "emergency." I've been told by my church that it is without validity, so what would be the point? Just a bit of bread and a sip of wine. I'd almost do better reverently to share a meal with my family, as they did in the earliest days of the Church.

Apparently not all Orthodox feel the same way that you do.

Personally, I think that is a good thing.

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If "unity exists between Catholicism and Orthodoxy ... at the deepest theological and spiritual levels," as some are asserting here, then what is the reason for continuing divisions between us? I, for one, do not believe that unity exists. I believe we may resemble one another in many things, but those resemblances are superficial. I also think statements like the above are dangerous, because they suggest a Catholic Mass may be in all essentials as valid as an Orthodox Liturgy. If that's the case, why aren't we communicating with each other now?

Personally, I can't see any reason why I would accept the Catholic Eucharist, even in an "emergency." I've been told by my church that it is without validity, so what would be the point? Just a bit of bread and a sip of wine. I'd almost do better reverently to share a meal with my family, as they did in the earliest days of the Church.

When you say "my church", do you mean by that the OCA?  Or, all of Orthodoxy?  If it's the former, and you are saying that the OCA denies the validity of Catholic sacraments, this is not what I have been told by several OCA priests.  Also, if that is the position of the OCA why do they not then require re-baptism of all previously baptized converts, along with a full, life-time confession of all sins previously confessed to and absolved by Catholic priests?

If the latter, i.e. all of Orthodoxy, how do you account for such enormous lack of unity about the subject, with some jurisdictions/churches recognizing the validity of Catholic sacraments and some not?  Even within the same jurisdiction/church are there not even some priests or bishops who say "yea" while others say "nay".  I find the lack of consistency about this issue rather troubling.

And, finally, you mention the Holy Eucharist specifically.  If you are referring to that only and none of the other sacraments, how could it be that one sacrament is not valid while another may be?
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Offline deusveritasest

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If "unity exists between Catholicism and Orthodoxy ... at the deepest theological and spiritual levels," as some are asserting here, then what is the reason for continuing divisions between us? I, for one, do not believe that unity exists. I believe we may resemble one another in many things, but those resemblances are superficial. I also think statements like the above are dangerous, because they suggest a Catholic Mass may be in all essentials as valid as an Orthodox Liturgy. If that's the case, why aren't we communicating with each other now?

Personally, I can't see any reason why I would accept the Catholic Eucharist, even in an "emergency." I've been told by my church that it is without validity, so what would be the point? Just a bit of bread and a sip of wine. I'd almost do better reverently to share a meal with my family, as they did in the earliest days of the Church.

Hear hear!
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Offline Papist

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If "unity exists between Catholicism and Orthodoxy ... at the deepest theological and spiritual levels," as some are asserting here, then what is the reason for continuing divisions between us? I, for one, do not believe that unity exists. I believe we may resemble one another in many things, but those resemblances are superficial. I also think statements like the above are dangerous, because they suggest a Catholic Mass may be in all essentials as valid as an Orthodox Liturgy. If that's the case, why aren't we communicating with each other now?

Personally, I can't see any reason why I would accept the Catholic Eucharist, even in an "emergency." I've been told by my church that it is without validity, so what would be the point? Just a bit of bread and a sip of wine. I'd almost do better reverently to share a meal with my family, as they did in the earliest days of the Church.

Apparently not all Orthodox feel the same way that you do.

Personally, I think that is a good thing.
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Offline Peter J

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I also think statements like the above are dangerous, because they suggest a Catholic Mass may be in all essentials as valid as an Orthodox Liturgy. If that's the case, why aren't we communicating with each other now?

Just a few years ago, the ROCOR and ROC didn't share the Eucharist. Why didn't they, if both had a valid Eucharist?
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Offline deusveritasest

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Apparently not all Orthodox feel the same way that you do.

Obviously. We already know that. Not all Orthodox actually fully hold to authentic Orthodox teaching. So what?
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Offline Hermogenes

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If "unity exists between Catholicism and Orthodoxy ... at the deepest theological and spiritual levels," as some are asserting here, then what is the reason for continuing divisions between us? I, for one, do not believe that unity exists. I believe we may resemble one another in many things, but those resemblances are superficial. I also think statements like the above are dangerous, because they suggest a Catholic Mass may be in all essentials as valid as an Orthodox Liturgy. If that's the case, why aren't we communicating with each other now?

Personally, I can't see any reason why I would accept the Catholic Eucharist, even in an "emergency." I've been told by my church that it is without validity, so what would be the point? Just a bit of bread and a sip of wine. I'd almost do better reverently to share a meal with my family, as they did in the earliest days of the Church.

When you say "my church", do you mean by that the OCA?  Or, all of Orthodoxy?  If it's the former, and you are saying that the OCA denies the validity of Catholic sacraments, this is not what I have been told by several OCA priests.  Also, if that is the position of the OCA why do they not then require re-baptism of all previously baptized converts, along with a full, life-time confession of all sins previously confessed to and absolved by Catholic priests?

If the latter, i.e. all of Orthodoxy, how do you account for such enormous lack of unity about the subject, with some jurisdictions/churches recognizing the validity of Catholic sacraments and some not?  Even within the same jurisdiction/church are there not even some priests or bishops who say "yea" while others say "nay".  I find the lack of consistency about this issue rather troubling.

And, finally, you mention the Holy Eucharist specifically.  If you are referring to that only and none of the other sacraments, how could it be that one sacrament is not valid while another may be?

I always forget how one's words get picked apart on this site. LOL I mean all sacraments, and I am not aware that any Orthodox jurisdiction would view with equanimity its adherents receiving the sacraments at the hands of a Roman Catholic (or even Byzantine Catholic) priest. If this is incorrect, perhaps someone could list in detail which jurisdictions do accept such "crossover" participation. Then, perhaps they could explain why Orthodox and the church of Rome are not in full communion with one another, if they regard one another's sacraments as valid.

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Personally, I don't really see what the big deal is. The Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church both have rules that prevent their members from receiving the Eucharist from a non-Catholic, resp. non-Orthodox, minister in ordinary circumstances.
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Offline Hermogenes

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Personally, I don't really see what the big deal is. The Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church both have rules that prevent their members from receiving the Eucharist from a non-Catholic, resp. non-Orthodox, minister in ordinary circumstances.

IF we regard each other's sacraments as valid, why aren't we in full communion? But IF we do not regard them as equally valid, why would we receive them under any circumstances--even emergencies? It would be futile. To make an invalid confession or receive an invalid Eucharist--what would be the point? And if it's no "big deal," why would Catholics bother to convert at all?

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Personally, I don't really see what the big deal is. The Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church both have rules that prevent their members from receiving the Eucharist from a non-Catholic, resp. non-Orthodox, minister in ordinary circumstances.

IF we regard each other's sacraments as valid, why aren't we in full communion? But IF we do not regard them as equally valid, why would we receive them under any circumstances--even emergencies? It would be futile. To make an invalid confession or receive an invalid Eucharist--what would be the point? And if it's no "big deal," why would Catholics bother to convert at all?

Perhaps it's the attitude of the other party that is disconcerting? The Western Church, in the past, was extremely opinionated concerning the need of 'all Christians' having to be in communion with the Pope. Since Vatican II, this attitude has softened but it's still dogmatically taught by the Western Church and so can't be ignored by the Eastern Church. As I've journeyed through the Roman Church toward Holy Orthodoxy I have come to recognize how great 'historically' the papacy was taught in the Western Church and have come to understand how the Orthodox find it so challenging to embrace the Western Church with these continued teachings within them not to mention that fact that many Catholics are very nominal in their reverence of Holy Tradition.
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Offline Hermogenes

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Personally, I don't really see what the big deal is. The Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church both have rules that prevent their members from receiving the Eucharist from a non-Catholic, resp. non-Orthodox, minister in ordinary circumstances.

IF we regard each other's sacraments as valid, why aren't we in full communion? But IF we do not regard them as equally valid, why would we receive them under any circumstances--even emergencies? It would be futile. To make an invalid confession or receive an invalid Eucharist--what would be the point? And if it's no "big deal," why would Catholics bother to convert at all?

Perhaps it's the attitude of the other party that is disconcerting? The Western Church, in the past, was extremely opinionated concerning the need of 'all Christians' having to be in communion with the Pope. Since Vatican II, this attitude has softened but it's still dogmatically taught by the Western Church and so can't be ignored by the Eastern Church. As I've journeyed through the Roman Church toward Holy Orthodoxy I have come to recognize how great 'historically' the papacy was taught in the Western Church and have come to understand how the Orthodox find it so challenging to embrace the Western Church with these continued teachings within them not to mention that fact that many Catholics are very nominal in their reverence of Holy Tradition.

Yes, most of us would always stumble over the issue of the papacy. But getting back to the sacraments, I'm thinking how easy to assume since we appear to be doing the same thing, that we really are. Take confession, for example. Even though a person is speaking with a priest, who at the end makes the sign of the cross over the "confessee's" head, the sacrament is really very different. I don't know enough theology to say whether those differences qualify as theological differences, but emotionally, intellectually, and spiritually the two processes are quite different experiences--at least, according to converts I've talked to.

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Personally, I don't really see what the big deal is. The Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church both have rules that prevent their members from receiving the Eucharist from a non-Catholic, resp. non-Orthodox, minister in ordinary circumstances.

IF we regard each other's sacraments as valid, why aren't we in full communion? But IF we do not regard them as equally valid, why would we receive them under any circumstances--even emergencies? It would be futile. To make an invalid confession or receive an invalid Eucharist--what would be the point? And if it's no "big deal," why would Catholics bother to convert at all?

Perhaps it's the attitude of the other party that is disconcerting? The Western Church, in the past, was extremely opinionated concerning the need of 'all Christians' having to be in communion with the Pope. Since Vatican II, this attitude has softened but it's still dogmatically taught by the Western Church and so can't be ignored by the Eastern Church. As I've journeyed through the Roman Church toward Holy Orthodoxy I have come to recognize how great 'historically' the papacy was taught in the Western Church and have come to understand how the Orthodox find it so challenging to embrace the Western Church with these continued teachings within them not to mention that fact that many Catholics are very nominal in their reverence of Holy Tradition.

Yes, most of us would always stumble over the issue of the papacy. But getting back to the sacraments, I'm thinking how easy to assume since we appear to be doing the same thing, that we really are. Take confession, for example. Even though a person is speaking with a priest, who at the end makes the sign of the cross over the "confessee's" head, the sacrament is really very different. I don't know enough theology to say whether those differences qualify as theological differences, but emotionally, intellectually, and spiritually the two processes are quite different experiences--at least, according to converts I've talked to.

I guess the most appropriate questions to ask here, are:

a) What is it that confers grace to a sacrament?;

b)  What makes a sacrament "valid"?;

c) How are Orthodox sacraments "valid" and Catholic ones not, or Catholic sacraments "valid" and Orthodox ones not?; 

d)  If either Orthodox or Catholic sacraments were once "valid" and are not any longer, at what point, and how, did they lose validity?;

e)  What makes a sacrament "invalid"?

If this is inappropriate for this thread, I'd be happy to start a new one.  Someone just let me know, okay?  ;)  Thanks!
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Offline Papist

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many Catholics are very nominal in their reverence of Holy Tradition.
If you think that that is not a problem in the Eastern Orthodox Church, I think you are sadly mistaken.
My posts no longer forum here.

Offline Peter J

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IF we regard each other's sacraments as valid, why aren't we in full communion?

See my earlier post:
Just a few years ago, the ROCOR and ROC didn't share the Eucharist. Why didn't they, if both had a valid Eucharist?

But IF we do not regard them as equally valid, why would we receive them under any circumstances--even emergencies? It would be futile. To make an invalid confession or receive an invalid Eucharist--what would be the point?

I completely agree with your logic here. In fact, the rules for Catholics are that we may only request the sacraments from a non-Catholic minister if these conditions are met:

Quote
   a. necessity or genuine spiritual advantage
    b. when the danger of error or indifferentism is avoided
    c. it is physically or morally impossible to approach a Catholic minister
   d. a church which has valid sacraments

Condition (d) is extremely significant as a matter of principle, and extremely significant in practice because there are only a few non-Catholic groups that we recognize as having valid sacraments, such as the Orthodox, the PNCC, and the Assyrian Church of the East.

This goes back to what I said before, about our respective policies not being all that different:

Personally, I don't really see what the big deal is. The Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church both have rules that prevent their members from receiving the Eucharist from a non-Catholic, resp. non-Orthodox, minister in ordinary circumstances.

And if it's no "big deal," why would Catholics bother to convert at all?

I absolutely agree with your logic there.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2011, 11:13:31 AM by Peter J »
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Offline elijahmaria

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many Catholics are very nominal in their reverence of Holy Tradition.
If you think that that is not a problem in the Eastern Orthodox Church, I think you are sadly mistaken.

In fact I am finding that among some Orthodox believers there is outright hostility to some of the more unpopular teachings of the Holy Father, patristic and desert, not to mention hostility toward those Orthodox believers who seek to renew the messages of the Fathers into the present life of the various particular Churches in Orthodoxy.

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P.S. Hermogenes, you may have seen this on the other thread, but in case you didn't ...

I recommend reading this:

Intercommunion: why Catholics need not 'apologise'

It should (among other things) give you an idea of how much heat the Catholic Church takes for its "hardline" (in the eyes of many) stance concerning intercommunion.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2011, 11:43:16 AM by Peter J »
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Offline Hermogenes

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Personally, I don't really see what the big deal is. The Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church both have rules that prevent their members from receiving the Eucharist from a non-Catholic, resp. non-Orthodox, minister in ordinary circumstances.

IF we regard each other's sacraments as valid, why aren't we in full communion? But IF we do not regard them as equally valid, why would we receive them under any circumstances--even emergencies? It would be futile. To make an invalid confession or receive an invalid Eucharist--what would be the point? And if it's no "big deal," why would Catholics bother to convert at all?

Perhaps it's the attitude of the other party that is disconcerting? The Western Church, in the past, was extremely opinionated concerning the need of 'all Christians' having to be in communion with the Pope. Since Vatican II, this attitude has softened but it's still dogmatically taught by the Western Church and so can't be ignored by the Eastern Church. As I've journeyed through the Roman Church toward Holy Orthodoxy I have come to recognize how great 'historically' the papacy was taught in the Western Church and have come to understand how the Orthodox find it so challenging to embrace the Western Church with these continued teachings within them not to mention that fact that many Catholics are very nominal in their reverence of Holy Tradition.

It hasn't softened that much. Acceptance of the supreme and universal authority of the See of Rome by all and sundry is still a non-negotiable condition for full relations, as far as I am aware. The Orthodox church has always accepted the primacy of Peter, but inter pares. Rome doesn't regard this as sufficient. One bishop as THE vicar of Christ on earth, with all authority over all others would never be accepted by Orthodox Christians. If you want an example of how sensitive we are on the subject, look at the wranglings currently going on in the OCA or the furor of the past couple of years in the Antiochian Archdiocese.

Offline ialmisry

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Here is my take on this, fwiw.  Please bear in mind that I am no theologian, no priest, no nuttin'.  Just a poor working schmuck with a bunch of years under his belt, a bunch of reading that's been done, and a little bit of experience.  Heck, I don't even have a college degree!  :o

Anyway....I am a Jew.  As such, I converted to Christianity a number of years ago.  I was baptized into the wonderful Holy Byzantine Catholic Church.  At the same time I was also chrismated, and received Holy Communion.  Sometime later my wife (baptized Byz.Cath, raised RC) and I were received into Orthodoxy (OCA) via chrismation.  Now, I know this may cause some here to become apoplectic ;D, but since our chrismation we have have mainly worshipped and communed in the O.C., but there have been times when (shock, horror, gasp!!!!) we have received communion in the Catholic Church, confessed to and been absolved by Catholic priests.  (Wow---now he's goin' straight to hell in a hand basket!  ::))

Why do I say all this?  Because I believe in ONE God, in ONE Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church..., in ONE baptism..., etc.  And I believe that that ONE Church is manifested (if that's the right word) in both Orthodoxy AND Catholicism.  And I believe that that makes the apostolicity of both, the validity of the sacraments of both EQUAL.  God is really present in the Eucharist of both.  How could He NOT be?  Can anyone *prove* beyond any reasonable doubt that He is not?  I know, I know....someone out there's going to start throwing theology at me after recovering their eyebrows from the ceiling, but it all boils down to this, as I've asked elsewhere on this forum.....when we come before God at the Final Judgment, will He ask if we were Catholic (yes, and if so, which type?), Orthodox (yes, and if so, which jurisdiction?), Baptist, or Jew, or whatever??  Well....will He?  Or will He ask if we have loved Him, if we have loved our neighbor and our enemy;  if we have fed the hungry, clothed the naked, etc.?  Will He ask if we choose Him or if we choose the other?  I mean, really.....come on folks....I know it's fun and interesting and edifying to argue, discuss, and debate these matters, but are they that which is **really** essential to us as God's children, who, hopefully, love Him above all else?

(Now I'm gonna duck  ;D ;))
and fall off the fence and into the fire
Secondly, I have updated my profile to reflect the fact that, having been Orthodox my wife and I have returned to the Church of our baptism, the Catholic Church.  There are many reasons for this and I am not willing to discuss them here.

Thank you for clarifying. I was under the impression that you were Eastern Orthodox.

By the way, when were you received back into the Catholic Church? At Easter?

Oh, and of course welcome.  :)

Thank you.  Feels good to be back home!

Received back, "officially"?  I suppose on Saturday, by way of confession.  By the way, when I "confessed" having been "in schism" to my confessor, he just smiled and said "It's nothing to lose weight over."  ;) ;)
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Offline Peter J

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^^ Good job quoting, ialmisry.

I wonder whether we will hear any "I was thrilled when J Michael broke off communion with the Catholic Church in order to join the Orthodox Church, but now ... " comments from any Orthodox posters.
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Offline Hermogenes

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Quote

For the record, J Michael isn't Catholic. According to his own statements, he left the Catholic Church to join to Orthodox Church (but still receives communion in the Catholic Church).

Quote
Yup.  But I haven't actually received communion in a Catholic Church for over 4 years.  I have, however, confessed to a Catholic priest and received from him absolution.  The reception of communion issue *may* change, though.  It might also be worth noting that when I was received into Orthodoxy my thinking about the equality or lack thereof of Orthodox and Catholic sacraments was not what it is now.  Close, but not quite the same.

And, while I realize that most here think I'm wrong about this, I consider myself Orthodox and Catholic.  But we've been through this already, I think.

I don't understand the point of that. Is it some kind of nostalgia for the Catholic church that keeps you from really letting go? What is the point of continuing to receive invalid sacraments? And if you don't believe they're invalid, what are you doing on an Orthodox church?
« Last Edit: August 01, 2011, 02:46:31 PM by Hermogenes »

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Quote

For the record, J Michael isn't Catholic. According to his own statements, he left the Catholic Church to join to Orthodox Church (but still receives communion in the Catholic Church).

Quote
Yup.  But I haven't actually received communion in a Catholic Church for over 4 years.  I have, however, confessed to a Catholic priest and received from him absolution.  The reception of communion issue *may* change, though.  It might also be worth noting that when I was received into Orthodoxy my thinking about the equality or lack thereof of Orthodox and Catholic sacraments was not what it is now.  Close, but not quite the same.

And, while I realize that most here think I'm wrong about this, I consider myself Orthodox and Catholic.  But we've been through this already, I think.

I don't understand the point of that. Is it some kind of nostalgia for the Catholic church that keeps you from really letting go? What is the point of continuing to receive invalid sacraments? And if you don't believe they're invalid, what are you doing on an Orthodox church?

Hermogenes, I think you missed the part where he said:

my wife and I have returned to the Church of our baptism, the Catholic Church
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I don't think Cyprianistic ecclesiology is as simplistic as "visible Church" vs. "graceless wasteland."

I believe in a visible Church with clear canonical boundaries, but I don't believe in a graceless wasteland outside the Church. It seems to me it is a matter of fullness versus partiality. Some have explained at as purity versus poison, and this may be true in some respects, but a small amount of poison isn't deadly.
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Offline Hermogenes

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Quote

For the record, J Michael isn't Catholic. According to his own statements, he left the Catholic Church to join to Orthodox Church (but still receives communion in the Catholic Church).

Quote
Yup.  But I haven't actually received communion in a Catholic Church for over 4 years.  I have, however, confessed to a Catholic priest and received from him absolution.  The reception of communion issue *may* change, though.  It might also be worth noting that when I was received into Orthodoxy my thinking about the equality or lack thereof of Orthodox and Catholic sacraments was not what it is now.  Close, but not quite the same.

And, while I realize that most here think I'm wrong about this, I consider myself Orthodox and Catholic.  But we've been through this already, I think.

I don't understand the point of that. Is it some kind of nostalgia for the Catholic church that keeps you from really letting go? What is the point of continuing to receive invalid sacraments? And if you don't believe they're invalid, what are you doing on an Orthodox church?

Hermogenes, I think you missed the part where he said:

my wife and I have returned to the Church of our baptism, the Catholic Church

Sorry, yes. I did overlook that. Sounds like maybe the best solution for them.

Offline theistgal

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I believe both RC and Orthodox sacraments are valid.

However,  I also know that we are NOT in communion ... so I can't fathom the chutzpah of a Catholic just blithely walking up to an Orthodox priest and demanding the Eucharist.  To me it just seems rude.
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Offline Shiny

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I don't believe the RCC has valid sacarments due to falling away into heresy and schism. If they were valid, I'd probably be RC.
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I believe both RC and Orthodox sacraments are valid.

However,  I also know that we are NOT in communion ... so I can't fathom the chutzpah of a Catholic just blithely walking up to an Orthodox priest and demanding the Eucharist.  To me it just seems rude.

Maybe because that Catholic is a Jew (referring, of course, to myself!)  ;D

And, if you *were* referring to me, please take my word (though you have no reason to) that there was nothing "blithe" or "demanding" about it.  Far, far more complicated than it might appear to be here.  Perhaps if you pm me, when I have a moment or two I might elaborate for you.  I've had enough, however, of being slammed and bashed publicly on this forum, although it's probably my own fault for speaking frankly.

Besides, as I've mentioned before, large numbers of my wife's family and their friends and relatives, some Orthodox, some Catholic (Latin and Byzantine), frequently attend Mass/DL at churches of the other faith, receiving the Eucharist (*not* demanding) and other sacraments as appropriate, all with full knowledge of the celebrant, and even a bishop or two.
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Offline elijahmaria

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I believe both RC and Orthodox sacraments are valid.

However,  I also know that we are NOT in communion ... so I can't fathom the chutzpah of a Catholic just blithely walking up to an Orthodox priest and demanding the Eucharist.  To me it just seems rude.

Maybe because that Catholic is a Jew (referring, of course, to myself!)  ;D

And, if you *were* referring to me, please take my word (though you have no reason to) that there was nothing "blithe" or "demanding" about it.  Far, far more complicated than it might appear to be here.  Perhaps if you pm me, when I have a moment or two I might elaborate for you.  I've had enough, however, of being slammed and bashed publicly on this forum, although it's probably my own fault for speaking frankly.

Besides, as I've mentioned before, large numbers of my wife's family and their friends and relatives, some Orthodox, some Catholic (Latin and Byzantine), frequently attend Mass/DL at churches of the other faith, receiving the Eucharist (*not* demanding) and other sacraments as appropriate, all with full knowledge of the celebrant, and even a bishop or two.

Fact.  And not an unhappy one.  Communion is the seedbed for communion.

Online J Michael

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I believe both RC and Orthodox sacraments are valid.

However,  I also know that we are NOT in communion ... so I can't fathom the chutzpah of a Catholic just blithely walking up to an Orthodox priest and demanding the Eucharist.  To me it just seems rude.

Maybe because that Catholic is a Jew (referring, of course, to myself!)  ;D

And, if you *were* referring to me, please take my word (though you have no reason to) that there was nothing "blithe" or "demanding" about it.  Far, far more complicated than it might appear to be here.  Perhaps if you pm me, when I have a moment or two I might elaborate for you.  I've had enough, however, of being slammed and bashed publicly on this forum, although it's probably my own fault for speaking frankly.

Besides, as I've mentioned before, large numbers of my wife's family and their friends and relatives, some Orthodox, some Catholic (Latin and Byzantine), frequently attend Mass/DL at churches of the other faith, receiving the Eucharist (*not* demanding) and other sacraments as appropriate, all with full knowledge of the celebrant, and even a bishop or two.

Fact.  And not an unhappy one.  Communion is the seedbed for communion.

This is a truth that may make some here apoplectic  ;).  But I guess we've already been through all of that  ;).  (I'm having dejavu all over again!)
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Offline ialmisry

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I believe both RC and Orthodox sacraments are valid.

However,  I also know that we are NOT in communion ... so I can't fathom the chutzpah of a Catholic just blithely walking up to an Orthodox priest and demanding the Eucharist.  To me it just seems rude.

Maybe because that Catholic is a Jew (referring, of course, to myself!)  ;D

And, if you *were* referring to me, please take my word (though you have no reason to) that there was nothing "blithe" or "demanding" about it.  Far, far more complicated than it might appear to be here.  Perhaps if you pm me, when I have a moment or two I might elaborate for you.  I've had enough, however, of being slammed and bashed publicly on this forum, although it's probably my own fault for speaking frankly.

Besides, as I've mentioned before, large numbers of my wife's family and their friends and relatives, some Orthodox, some Catholic (Latin and Byzantine), frequently attend Mass/DL at churches of the other faith, receiving the Eucharist (*not* demanding) and other sacraments as appropriate, all with full knowledge of the celebrant, and even a bishop or two.

Fact.  And not an unhappy one.  Communion is the seedbed for communion.
and communion with heretics harvests hellfire.

Quite unhappy.  Unless you are happy with heresy and hell.
« Last Edit: August 06, 2011, 02:45:42 PM by ialmisry »
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Offline elijahmaria

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I believe both RC and Orthodox sacraments are valid.

However,  I also know that we are NOT in communion ... so I can't fathom the chutzpah of a Catholic just blithely walking up to an Orthodox priest and demanding the Eucharist.  To me it just seems rude.

Maybe because that Catholic is a Jew (referring, of course, to myself!)  ;D

And, if you *were* referring to me, please take my word (though you have no reason to) that there was nothing "blithe" or "demanding" about it.  Far, far more complicated than it might appear to be here.  Perhaps if you pm me, when I have a moment or two I might elaborate for you.  I've had enough, however, of being slammed and bashed publicly on this forum, although it's probably my own fault for speaking frankly.

Besides, as I've mentioned before, large numbers of my wife's family and their friends and relatives, some Orthodox, some Catholic (Latin and Byzantine), frequently attend Mass/DL at churches of the other faith, receiving the Eucharist (*not* demanding) and other sacraments as appropriate, all with full knowledge of the celebrant, and even a bishop or two.

Fact.  And not an unhappy one.  Communion is the seedbed for communion.
and communion with heretics harvests hellfire.

Quite unhappy.  Unless you are happy with heresy and hell.

We understand that not all Orthodox believers see eye to eye with you, or even one another,  concerning what constitutes heresy and what does not.

Offline Wyatt

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I believe both RC and Orthodox sacraments are valid.

However,  I also know that we are NOT in communion ... so I can't fathom the chutzpah of a Catholic just blithely walking up to an Orthodox priest and demanding the Eucharist.  To me it just seems rude.

Maybe because that Catholic is a Jew (referring, of course, to myself!)  ;D

And, if you *were* referring to me, please take my word (though you have no reason to) that there was nothing "blithe" or "demanding" about it.  Far, far more complicated than it might appear to be here.  Perhaps if you pm me, when I have a moment or two I might elaborate for you.  I've had enough, however, of being slammed and bashed publicly on this forum, although it's probably my own fault for speaking frankly.

Besides, as I've mentioned before, large numbers of my wife's family and their friends and relatives, some Orthodox, some Catholic (Latin and Byzantine), frequently attend Mass/DL at churches of the other faith, receiving the Eucharist (*not* demanding) and other sacraments as appropriate, all with full knowledge of the celebrant, and even a bishop or two.

Fact.  And not an unhappy one.  Communion is the seedbed for communion.
and communion with heretics harvests hellfire.

Quite unhappy.  Unless you are happy with heresy and hell.

We understand that not all Orthodox believers see eye to eye with you, or even one another,  concerning what constitutes heresy and what does not.

And at least one potential Eastern Orthodox Christian is no longer considering being Eastern Orthodox because if him. I wonder if he feels bad for being responsible for, in his eyes, sending someone to hell?

Offline elijahmaria

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And at least one potential Eastern Orthodox Christian is no longer considering being Eastern Orthodox because if him. I wonder if he feels bad for being responsible for, in his eyes, sending someone to hell?

I would be exceptionally cautious about this kind of gloating.  In the first place there is no conversion that is real that is based upon the actions of others so strongly so as to make them definitive.  IF that is the case then the conversion is not real.   There's more but since I seem to always be grousing at you about something I will leave it for you to ponder a bit on your own.

M.