Author Topic: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?  (Read 2206 times)

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Offline Antonious Nikolas

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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #45 on: November 11, 2014, 08:55:06 PM »
Based on the statue they just built in front of the Rangos Building, Mor looks something like this...



That's Rachel Weisz down there clinging to his robust calves and Sol, Nikolaos, and his other webforum enemies scattered in a broken heap about his feet.
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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #46 on: November 11, 2014, 08:57:00 PM »
Based on the statue they just built in front of the Rangos Building, Mor looks something like this...



That's Rachel Weisz down there clinging to his robust calves and Sol, Nikolaos, and his other webforum enemies scattered in a broken heap about his feet.

Yes, I haven't yet eaten them. 
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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #47 on: November 11, 2014, 09:06:15 PM »
Based on the statue they just built in front of the Rangos Building, Mor looks something like this...

< image deleted >

That's Rachel Weisz down there clinging to his robust calves and Sol, Nikolaos, and his other webforum enemies scattered in a broken heap about his feet.

Yes, I haven't yet eaten them. 

Whatever.   ::)  :o  ::)

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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #48 on: November 11, 2014, 09:10:31 PM »
Okay...back on topic.  And no ad hominems please, especially you Nikolaostheservant.  I'm letting you off with a warning.

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« Last Edit: November 11, 2014, 09:12:00 PM by minasoliman »
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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #49 on: November 11, 2014, 10:25:51 PM »
I was hoping for this thread to derail into the endless abyss of absurdity and illogicality but looks like the Mods came right in time before it's too late. Anyhow back in College I did participated in a number of "Ecumenical dialogues" between Protestants and Catholics. The first "dialogue" I took part in focuses upon the differences between Catholicism and Protestantism. I was part of the audience but seeing that the Catholic speaker isn't doing well regarding Papal Infallibility, I stepped in equipped with the sword of wisdom forged by Karl Keating and his band of crusading apologists in the furnace of Catholic Answers alongside some Medieval geopolitics and some game of twister to make it look like Papal Infallibility is a very difficult power to activate and unleash upon the billions of Faithful Catholics worldwide. During the same discussion, I brought in the Eastern Orthodox Church though I.....ermm...misrepresented their beliefs and aligned them to Rome's(I was a Catholic that time, I feel like an idiot whenever I remembered that).

During the second Catholic-Protestant ecumenical discussion, the tone was more informal which means it's just curious Protestants questioning me about Catholic doctrine(eg, Purgatory and Faith+Works) during my College's Christian Fellowship Camp. Not unlike the discussion here, it evolved into a dialogue and debate of "Who's the most hottest girl at Camp" which lasted for the whole night. I could never forget that night of....erm... 'Fellowship' where we talked about the hottest girls at the Camp which degenerated into a talk about masturbation. One guy said that Masturbation is mentioned in Scripture and spent the next 30 minutes digging his way through the thinned Masoretic Protestant translation of his Bible only to turn up empty handed. The discussion then ended up being about everyone talking about girlfriends and stuff which abruptly came to a halt when someone announced that his girlfriend just broke up with him. The 'Ecumenical dialogue' ended at this point.

Another dialogue I had was with a Reformed friend of mine regarding Free Will during a Bible study session which he kindly invited me to. After the session ended, I raised some concerns regarding his Calvinistic interpretation of Scriptures which I brought up the issue of Free Will. This must be one of the most rigorous discussions that I had engaged in since it's me vs a group of Calvinists. It was chaotic but my Reformed friend never asked me to join him in his Bible Study sessions after that fateful day. This is the first dialogue in which I used the Eastern understanding of Original Sin and Predestination in its true light which served as the starting point of my journey into the East which would inevitably lead towards Orthodoxy.

Other Ecumenical dialogues at this point involved me siding with all the Evangelicals involved since it's basically Christian vs Atheist debates. I was however more of an observer I would say. It made me realized just how the Calvinistic god cannot possibly be the true god since none of the top apologists in my college could offer satisfactory answers to the Atheist's Problem of Evil. They all assumed it from a Calvinistic and Augustinian framework. After the debate, I checked out Robert Ararkaki's blog which unveiled to me the Irenaean Theodicy which I willingly swallowed since it made much more sense then the Calvinistic solution to the Problem of Evil.

So in the end, I guess Ecumenical Dialogues do have their benefits. If it wasn't for them, I wouldn't be wasting my time on this Forum typing this down and dying to seek the fullness of Orthodoxy. In my experience at least, such dialogues serve as means to spread our Faith and bring in new viewpoints into the curious and sometimes ignorant masses of Evangelical Protestants which means more converts received into the Arms of the Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. However it definitely cannot be like the Catholic-Orthodox dialogues such as that between the Pope and the Ecumenical Patriarch. It must be more doctrinal in nature meaning we get together on a table and discuss each other's viewpoints.
« Last Edit: November 11, 2014, 10:31:17 PM by sakura95 »
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Offline Nikolaostheservant

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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #50 on: November 11, 2014, 10:48:23 PM »
yea ok, but what realy i think is in ppls minds is: as Orthodox are we now going to join the Caholics and as Catholics are we going to now be orthodox. or are we going to make a new CathOrtho religion. and what about all the, we dont pray with other religions and what about the concept of all religions are good and they in the end all realy worship the one god (except the hindus ;D). for some orthodox people it puts fear in there hearts. cause as Orhodox we value the unchanging church since Jesus times (ok we know it has change some), shoot some us are Orthodox because its the original church unchanging...ergo we dont want it to change! so eccumenisim is seen as a threat to what we value most. so when i said in my first post and was so rudly interupted was "so nothing much has changed" re: all the eccumenical dialogs othere then to bring fear to ppl abt what possibly could change. nothing realy has changed.

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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #51 on: November 11, 2014, 11:12:28 PM »
yea ok, but what realy i think is in ppls minds is: as Orthodox are we now going to join the Caholics and as Catholics are we going to now be orthodox. or are we going to make a new CathOrtho religion. and what about all the, we dont pray with other religions and what about the concept of all religions are good and they in the end all realy worship the one god (except the hindus ;D). for some orthodox people it puts fear in there hearts. cause as Orhodox we value the unchanging church since Jesus times (ok we know it has change some), shoot some us are Orthodox because its the original church unchanging...ergo we dont want it to change! so eccumenisim is seen as a threat to what we value most. so when i said in my first post and was so rudly interupted was "so nothing much has changed" re: all the eccumenical dialogs othere then to bring fear to ppl abt what possibly could change. nothing realy has changed.

I'm waiting for the CathOrtho religion to form but that would mean that our best friend Pope Francis would have to humble towards us and renounce all the additions to doctrine and atrocities against the East the Catholic Church had done over the centuries. That is most likely the last thing he would want to do which means the CathOrtho religion will never be formed to join together to fend off the forces of Protestantism. One thing's for sure, we cannot have Ecumenical dialogues as in friendly meetings between Popes, Cardinals and the Patriarchs. It would simply reinforce the delusion that we want to submit to Rome. This is why we cannot appear too friendly with the Catholic Church just as the Ecumenical Patriarch had done. However, that doesn't mean the best theologians from both sides cannot meet and discuss disagreements and express each other's viewpoints. It is through this that we can have a respectful dialogue with the precondition that Rome does not try to get us all under her rule. This is what we must guard against in discussions with the Catholics. If they decide to be stubborn as the Lutherans that wrote to the Patriarch Jeremias, then we will respond as he does as well which means, ignoring the boy that cried wolf.   
« Last Edit: November 11, 2014, 11:13:06 PM by sakura95 »
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Offline Mor Ephrem

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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #52 on: November 12, 2014, 12:04:32 AM »
I was hoping for this thread to derail into the endless abyss of absurdity and illogicality but...

You certainly stepped up to the plate.
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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #53 on: November 12, 2014, 12:05:27 AM »
I was hoping for this thread to derail into the endless abyss of absurdity and illogicality but...

You certainly stepped up to the plate.

As did you.  ::)
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Offline Gunnarr

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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #54 on: November 12, 2014, 07:26:15 AM »
I was hoping for this thread to derail into the endless abyss of absurdity and illogicality but looks like the Mods came right in time before it's too late. Anyhow back in College I did participated in a number of "Ecumenical dialogues" between Protestants and Catholics. The first "dialogue" I took part in focuses upon the differences between Catholicism and Protestantism. I was part of the audience but seeing that the Catholic speaker isn't doing well regarding Papal Infallibility, I stepped in equipped with the sword of wisdom forged by Karl Keating and his band of crusading apologists in the furnace of Catholic Answers alongside some Medieval geopolitics and some game of twister to make it look like Papal Infallibility is a very difficult power to activate and unleash upon the billions of Faithful Catholics worldwide. During the same discussion, I brought in the Eastern Orthodox Church though I.....ermm...misrepresented their beliefs and aligned them to Rome's(I was a Catholic that time, I feel like an idiot whenever I remembered that).

During the second Catholic-Protestant ecumenical discussion, the tone was more informal which means it's just curious Protestants questioning me about Catholic doctrine(eg, Purgatory and Faith+Works) during my College's Christian Fellowship Camp. Not unlike the discussion here, it evolved into a dialogue and debate of "Who's the most hottest girl at Camp" which lasted for the whole night. I could never forget that night of....erm... 'Fellowship' where we talked about the hottest girls at the Camp which degenerated into a talk about masturbation. One guy said that Masturbation is mentioned in Scripture and spent the next 30 minutes digging his way through the thinned Masoretic Protestant translation of his Bible only to turn up empty handed. The discussion then ended up being about everyone talking about girlfriends and stuff which abruptly came to a halt when someone announced that his girlfriend just broke up with him. The 'Ecumenical dialogue' ended at this point.

Another dialogue I had was with a Reformed friend of mine regarding Free Will during a Bible study session which he kindly invited me to. After the session ended, I raised some concerns regarding his Calvinistic interpretation of Scriptures which I brought up the issue of Free Will. This must be one of the most rigorous discussions that I had engaged in since it's me vs a group of Calvinists. It was chaotic but my Reformed friend never asked me to join him in his Bible Study sessions after that fateful day. This is the first dialogue in which I used the Eastern understanding of Original Sin and Predestination in its true light which served as the starting point of my journey into the East which would inevitably lead towards Orthodoxy.

Other Ecumenical dialogues at this point involved me siding with all the Evangelicals involved since it's basically Christian vs Atheist debates. I was however more of an observer I would say. It made me realized just how the Calvinistic god cannot possibly be the true god since none of the top apologists in my college could offer satisfactory answers to the Atheist's Problem of Evil. They all assumed it from a Calvinistic and Augustinian framework. After the debate, I checked out Robert Ararkaki's blog which unveiled to me the Irenaean Theodicy which I willingly swallowed since it made much more sense then the Calvinistic solution to the Problem of Evil.

So in the end, I guess Ecumenical Dialogues do have their benefits. If it wasn't for them, I wouldn't be wasting my time on this Forum typing this down and dying to seek the fullness of Orthodoxy. In my experience at least, such dialogues serve as means to spread our Faith and bring in new viewpoints into the curious and sometimes ignorant masses of Evangelical Protestants which means more converts received into the Arms of the Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. However it definitely cannot be like the Catholic-Orthodox dialogues such as that between the Pope and the Ecumenical Patriarch. It must be more doctrinal in nature meaning we get together on a table and discuss each other's viewpoints.

The Christian fellowship camp seemed to have many blessed fruit in the progress of ecumenism! Lol...

I agree with your final paragraph
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Offline sakura95

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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #55 on: November 12, 2014, 10:02:31 AM »
I was hoping for this thread to derail into the endless abyss of absurdity and illogicality but looks like the Mods came right in time before it's too late. Anyhow back in College I did participated in a number of "Ecumenical dialogues" between Protestants and Catholics. The first "dialogue" I took part in focuses upon the differences between Catholicism and Protestantism. I was part of the audience but seeing that the Catholic speaker isn't doing well regarding Papal Infallibility, I stepped in equipped with the sword of wisdom forged by Karl Keating and his band of crusading apologists in the furnace of Catholic Answers alongside some Medieval geopolitics and some game of twister to make it look like Papal Infallibility is a very difficult power to activate and unleash upon the billions of Faithful Catholics worldwide. During the same discussion, I brought in the Eastern Orthodox Church though I.....ermm...misrepresented their beliefs and aligned them to Rome's(I was a Catholic that time, I feel like an idiot whenever I remembered that).

During the second Catholic-Protestant ecumenical discussion, the tone was more informal which means it's just curious Protestants questioning me about Catholic doctrine(eg, Purgatory and Faith+Works) during my College's Christian Fellowship Camp. Not unlike the discussion here, it evolved into a dialogue and debate of "Who's the most hottest girl at Camp" which lasted for the whole night. I could never forget that night of....erm... 'Fellowship' where we talked about the hottest girls at the Camp which degenerated into a talk about masturbation. One guy said that Masturbation is mentioned in Scripture and spent the next 30 minutes digging his way through the thinned Masoretic Protestant translation of his Bible only to turn up empty handed. The discussion then ended up being about everyone talking about girlfriends and stuff which abruptly came to a halt when someone announced that his girlfriend just broke up with him. The 'Ecumenical dialogue' ended at this point.

Another dialogue I had was with a Reformed friend of mine regarding Free Will during a Bible study session which he kindly invited me to. After the session ended, I raised some concerns regarding his Calvinistic interpretation of Scriptures which I brought up the issue of Free Will. This must be one of the most rigorous discussions that I had engaged in since it's me vs a group of Calvinists. It was chaotic but my Reformed friend never asked me to join him in his Bible Study sessions after that fateful day. This is the first dialogue in which I used the Eastern understanding of Original Sin and Predestination in its true light which served as the starting point of my journey into the East which would inevitably lead towards Orthodoxy.

Other Ecumenical dialogues at this point involved me siding with all the Evangelicals involved since it's basically Christian vs Atheist debates. I was however more of an observer I would say. It made me realized just how the Calvinistic god cannot possibly be the true god since none of the top apologists in my college could offer satisfactory answers to the Atheist's Problem of Evil. They all assumed it from a Calvinistic and Augustinian framework. After the debate, I checked out Robert Ararkaki's blog which unveiled to me the Irenaean Theodicy which I willingly swallowed since it made much more sense then the Calvinistic solution to the Problem of Evil.

So in the end, I guess Ecumenical Dialogues do have their benefits. If it wasn't for them, I wouldn't be wasting my time on this Forum typing this down and dying to seek the fullness of Orthodoxy. In my experience at least, such dialogues serve as means to spread our Faith and bring in new viewpoints into the curious and sometimes ignorant masses of Evangelical Protestants which means more converts received into the Arms of the Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. However it definitely cannot be like the Catholic-Orthodox dialogues such as that between the Pope and the Ecumenical Patriarch. It must be more doctrinal in nature meaning we get together on a table and discuss each other's viewpoints.

The Christian fellowship camp seemed to have many blessed fruit in the progress of ecumenism! Lol...

I agree with your final paragraph

It certainly is though I can't say for sure about that discussion on Free Will I had. One of my lecturers actually outwardly rejected it in front of many which was disturbing to me given that he is rejecting the Icon of God within himself and appealing to others to do so. The urge to lurch back was strong but my desire to not piss off the lecturers and make them fail me in tests and exams were even stronger at the time.
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Offline sakura95

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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #56 on: November 12, 2014, 10:07:03 AM »
I was hoping for this thread to derail into the endless abyss of absurdity and illogicality but...

You certainly stepped up to the plate.

Yes, just like that pic of you stomping in triumph over the corpses of legions of web forum foes, mostly the Crusaders and Templars of CAF I assume. Rachel must have been traumatized by all the blood, screams and torment of the poor CAF posters that attempted to purify and purge the threat to Catholicism, the Great Mor Ephrem.
« Last Edit: November 12, 2014, 10:16:46 AM by sakura95 »
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Offline LizaSymonenko

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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #57 on: November 12, 2014, 10:39:28 AM »

What do you think ecumenism is?

We are called to "preach to all nations".

We are to teach.  We are not to morph ourselves to fit in with them, but, we are to reach out to them, as the Apostles did and try our best to educate them.

Ecumenism is not bad, if done correctly.
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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #58 on: November 12, 2014, 12:28:06 PM »
Rachel must have been traumatized by all the blood, screams and torment of the poor CAF posters that attempted to purify and purge the threat to Catholicism, the Great Mor Ephrem.

I have ways to console her. 
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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #59 on: November 12, 2014, 12:41:02 PM »
Rachel must have been traumatized by all the blood, screams and torment of the poor CAF posters that attempted to purify and purge the threat to Catholicism, the Great Mor Ephrem.

I have ways to console her. 

Only after crushing the enemies, seeing them driven before you and hearing the lamentations of their women. :P
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Offline sakura95

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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #60 on: November 12, 2014, 12:43:54 PM »
Rachel must have been traumatized by all the blood, screams and torment of the poor CAF posters that attempted to purify and purge the threat to Catholicism, the Great Mor Ephrem.

I have ways to console her. 

It's impossible for you, but I can console her since I know some treatments that can help her get over the sleepless nights of reliving the slaughterfest over and over again  ;)
« Last Edit: November 12, 2014, 12:44:32 PM by sakura95 »
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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #61 on: November 12, 2014, 12:53:54 PM »
Back on topic please!  Thank you.
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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #62 on: November 13, 2014, 01:24:06 AM »
I was hoping for this thread to derail into the endless abyss of absurdity and illogicality but looks like the Mods came right in time before it's too late. Anyhow back in College I did participated in a number of "Ecumenical dialogues" between Protestants and Catholics. The first "dialogue" I took part in focuses upon the differences between Catholicism and Protestantism. I was part of the audience but seeing that the Catholic speaker isn't doing well regarding Papal Infallibility, I stepped in equipped with the sword of wisdom forged by Karl Keating and his band of crusading apologists in the furnace of Catholic Answers alongside some Medieval geopolitics and some game of twister to make it look like Papal Infallibility is a very difficult power to activate and unleash upon the billions of Faithful Catholics worldwide. During the same discussion, I brought in the Eastern Orthodox Church though I.....ermm...misrepresented their beliefs and aligned them to Rome's(I was a Catholic that time, I feel like an idiot whenever I remembered that).

During the second Catholic-Protestant ecumenical discussion, the tone was more informal which means it's just curious Protestants questioning me about Catholic doctrine(eg, Purgatory and Faith+Works) during my College's Christian Fellowship Camp. Not unlike the discussion here, it evolved into a dialogue and debate of "Who's the most hottest girl at Camp" which lasted for the whole night. I could never forget that night of....erm... 'Fellowship' where we talked about the hottest girls at the Camp which degenerated into a talk about masturbation. One guy said that Masturbation is mentioned in Scripture and spent the next 30 minutes digging his way through the thinned Masoretic Protestant translation of his Bible only to turn up empty handed. The discussion then ended up being about everyone talking about girlfriends and stuff which abruptly came to a halt when someone announced that his girlfriend just broke up with him. The 'Ecumenical dialogue' ended at this point.

Another dialogue I had was with a Reformed friend of mine regarding Free Will during a Bible study session which he kindly invited me to. After the session ended, I raised some concerns regarding his Calvinistic interpretation of Scriptures which I brought up the issue of Free Will. This must be one of the most rigorous discussions that I had engaged in since it's me vs a group of Calvinists. It was chaotic but my Reformed friend never asked me to join him in his Bible Study sessions after that fateful day. This is the first dialogue in which I used the Eastern understanding of Original Sin and Predestination in its true light which served as the starting point of my journey into the East which would inevitably lead towards Orthodoxy.

Other Ecumenical dialogues at this point involved me siding with all the Evangelicals involved since it's basically Christian vs Atheist debates. I was however more of an observer I would say. It made me realized just how the Calvinistic god cannot possibly be the true god since none of the top apologists in my college could offer satisfactory answers to the Atheist's Problem of Evil. They all assumed it from a Calvinistic and Augustinian framework. After the debate, I checked out Robert Ararkaki's blog which unveiled to me the Irenaean Theodicy which I willingly swallowed since it made much more sense then the Calvinistic solution to the Problem of Evil.

So in the end, I guess Ecumenical Dialogues do have their benefits. If it wasn't for them, I wouldn't be wasting my time on this Forum typing this down and dying to seek the fullness of Orthodoxy. In my experience at least, such dialogues serve as means to spread our Faith and bring in new viewpoints into the curious and sometimes ignorant masses of Evangelical Protestants which means more converts received into the Arms of the Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. However it definitely cannot be like the Catholic-Orthodox dialogues such as that between the Pope and the Ecumenical Patriarch. It must be more doctrinal in nature meaning we get together on a table and discuss each other's viewpoints.

The Christian fellowship camp seemed to have many blessed fruit in the progress of ecumenism! Lol...

I agree with your final paragraph

It certainly is though I can't say for sure about that discussion on Free Will I had. One of my lecturers actually outwardly rejected it in front of many which was disturbing to me given that he is rejecting the Icon of God within himself and appealing to others to do so. The urge to lurch back was strong but my desire to not piss off the lecturers and make them fail me in tests and exams were even stronger at the time.

Calvinists, particularly newly-converted ones, are notoriously hard to debate whenever the issue of free will is brought up. It's a phenomenon sometimes called the "Cage Stage". They almost take pleasure in proclaiming as loudly as possible that there is no such thing as free will. It's almost like theological trolling; they know it's going to rankle people and that's why they harp on it so much. I wonder if Calvin and the original reformers were motivated by the same thing (I. e., they wanted to get a strong reaction out of people which is why they preached the way they did).  It certainly worked as a strategy for them. The whole Affair Of The Sausages was about as trollish as you can get and it happened in the sixteenth century. The Zwinglians wanted to make a polemical point so they encouraged everyone to eat sausages during Lent as a deliberate act of defiance.

And I know what you mean about not wanting to tick off lecturers. At the officially non-denominational/non-sectarian Christian college I attended, well over half the faculty were professed Calvinists and they didn't exactly take pains to hide it. However, my lecturers were probably more open-minded than yours, since even the most passionately Reformed among them wouldn't go so far as to fail students for questioning Calvinism (although a couple of our guest lecturers weren't nearly as magnanimous). But it's definitely true that for some reason, Calvinists are waaay overrepresented in academia. Note, I'm not bashing my alma mater (it's actually a great school that I would highly recommend, and indeed if it weren't for that school I wouldn't have had the spiritual awakening that led me to where I am today inquiring into Orthodoxy).

Years from now, if I continue my education to the master's degree level I might want to go back and join their faculty. Then they'd have the token Orthodox staff member they really, really need.  ;D
« Last Edit: November 13, 2014, 01:27:16 AM by Minnesotan »

Offline sakura95

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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #63 on: November 14, 2014, 09:09:46 AM »
I was hoping for this thread to derail into the endless abyss of absurdity and illogicality but looks like the Mods came right in time before it's too late. Anyhow back in College I did participated in a number of "Ecumenical dialogues" between Protestants and Catholics. The first "dialogue" I took part in focuses upon the differences between Catholicism and Protestantism. I was part of the audience but seeing that the Catholic speaker isn't doing well regarding Papal Infallibility, I stepped in equipped with the sword of wisdom forged by Karl Keating and his band of crusading apologists in the furnace of Catholic Answers alongside some Medieval geopolitics and some game of twister to make it look like Papal Infallibility is a very difficult power to activate and unleash upon the billions of Faithful Catholics worldwide. During the same discussion, I brought in the Eastern Orthodox Church though I.....ermm...misrepresented their beliefs and aligned them to Rome's(I was a Catholic that time, I feel like an idiot whenever I remembered that).

During the second Catholic-Protestant ecumenical discussion, the tone was more informal which means it's just curious Protestants questioning me about Catholic doctrine(eg, Purgatory and Faith+Works) during my College's Christian Fellowship Camp. Not unlike the discussion here, it evolved into a dialogue and debate of "Who's the most hottest girl at Camp" which lasted for the whole night. I could never forget that night of....erm... 'Fellowship' where we talked about the hottest girls at the Camp which degenerated into a talk about masturbation. One guy said that Masturbation is mentioned in Scripture and spent the next 30 minutes digging his way through the thinned Masoretic Protestant translation of his Bible only to turn up empty handed. The discussion then ended up being about everyone talking about girlfriends and stuff which abruptly came to a halt when someone announced that his girlfriend just broke up with him. The 'Ecumenical dialogue' ended at this point.

Another dialogue I had was with a Reformed friend of mine regarding Free Will during a Bible study session which he kindly invited me to. After the session ended, I raised some concerns regarding his Calvinistic interpretation of Scriptures which I brought up the issue of Free Will. This must be one of the most rigorous discussions that I had engaged in since it's me vs a group of Calvinists. It was chaotic but my Reformed friend never asked me to join him in his Bible Study sessions after that fateful day. This is the first dialogue in which I used the Eastern understanding of Original Sin and Predestination in its true light which served as the starting point of my journey into the East which would inevitably lead towards Orthodoxy.

Other Ecumenical dialogues at this point involved me siding with all the Evangelicals involved since it's basically Christian vs Atheist debates. I was however more of an observer I would say. It made me realized just how the Calvinistic god cannot possibly be the true god since none of the top apologists in my college could offer satisfactory answers to the Atheist's Problem of Evil. They all assumed it from a Calvinistic and Augustinian framework. After the debate, I checked out Robert Ararkaki's blog which unveiled to me the Irenaean Theodicy which I willingly swallowed since it made much more sense then the Calvinistic solution to the Problem of Evil.

So in the end, I guess Ecumenical Dialogues do have their benefits. If it wasn't for them, I wouldn't be wasting my time on this Forum typing this down and dying to seek the fullness of Orthodoxy. In my experience at least, such dialogues serve as means to spread our Faith and bring in new viewpoints into the curious and sometimes ignorant masses of Evangelical Protestants which means more converts received into the Arms of the Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church. However it definitely cannot be like the Catholic-Orthodox dialogues such as that between the Pope and the Ecumenical Patriarch. It must be more doctrinal in nature meaning we get together on a table and discuss each other's viewpoints.

The Christian fellowship camp seemed to have many blessed fruit in the progress of ecumenism! Lol...

I agree with your final paragraph

It certainly is though I can't say for sure about that discussion on Free Will I had. One of my lecturers actually outwardly rejected it in front of many which was disturbing to me given that he is rejecting the Icon of God within himself and appealing to others to do so. The urge to lurch back was strong but my desire to not piss off the lecturers and make them fail me in tests and exams were even stronger at the time.

Calvinists, particularly newly-converted ones, are notoriously hard to debate whenever the issue of free will is brought up. It's a phenomenon sometimes called the "Cage Stage". They almost take pleasure in proclaiming as loudly as possible that there is no such thing as free will. It's almost like theological trolling; they know it's going to rankle people and that's why they harp on it so much. I wonder if Calvin and the original reformers were motivated by the same thing (I. e., they wanted to get a strong reaction out of people which is why they preached the way they did).  It certainly worked as a strategy for them. The whole Affair Of The Sausages was about as trollish as you can get and it happened in the sixteenth century. The Zwinglians wanted to make a polemical point so they encouraged everyone to eat sausages during Lent as a deliberate act of defiance.

And I know what you mean about not wanting to tick off lecturers. At the officially non-denominational/non-sectarian Christian college I attended, well over half the faculty were professed Calvinists and they didn't exactly take pains to hide it. However, my lecturers were probably more open-minded than yours, since even the most passionately Reformed among them wouldn't go so far as to fail students for questioning Calvinism (although a couple of our guest lecturers weren't nearly as magnanimous). But it's definitely true that for some reason, Calvinists are waaay overrepresented in academia. Note, I'm not bashing my alma mater (it's actually a great school that I would highly recommend, and indeed if it weren't for that school I wouldn't have had the spiritual awakening that led me to where I am today inquiring into Orthodoxy).

Years from now, if I continue my education to the master's degree level I might want to go back and join their faculty. Then they'd have the token Orthodox staff member they really, really need.  ;D

The College I attended is also quite recognized and ironically Methodist. I don't even know how the a vast majority of the Christian Fellowship lecturers can be Calvinists. They went on so far as to proclaim that Free Will doesn't exist and nobody bothered to question them. I can't because of my grades so I just took it in. Though in that particular debate about Free Will, the Calvinists went in the opposite direction and claim that there's Free Will which they redefined into something else that is the Compatabilistic model of Free Will which means doing what one wants. I reminded them quite a number of times that Free Will is simply the ability to make a choice and "not doing what one wants" which fallen on deaf ears. At this point, I brought up the Eastern Orthodox stance on this issue and cited St John of Damascus to show how their position is an innovation. They simply closed their ears and told me that I see the Church Fathers as infallible and then suddenly cited St Augustine whom I argued also believed in Free Will as Grace allows the individual to choose. They brushed this aside though and the debate ended as one of the Calvinists had to go.

I too plan to work as a part time lecturer in my College as an Economics or Business Studies lecturer if I can pursue a Master Degree just to mess around with the Calvinists there and introduce the severely neglected Doctrines of Holy Orthodoxy which would not be brushed off as heresy I hope.
« Last Edit: November 14, 2014, 09:11:48 AM by sakura95 »
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Offline Fabio Leite

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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #64 on: November 14, 2014, 11:19:37 AM »


Declared Ecumenist EndsCheck?


Avert religious extremist violence? No.


Bring people into Orthodoxy?No.


Improve understanding of Orthodoxy?Partially. Full understanding would imply conversion.


Create cooperation in areas like charity,
and having a common public voice for
traditional Christian morality?
No.


« Last Edit: November 14, 2014, 11:28:46 AM by Fabio Leite »
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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #65 on: November 14, 2014, 12:41:12 PM »


Declared Ends of the ChurchCheck?


Avert sinfulness? No.


Bring people into Orthodoxy?No.


Improve understanding of Orthodoxy?Partially. Full understanding would imply conversion.


Create cooperation in areas like charity,
and having a common public voice for
traditional Christian morality?
No.


"Do not tempt the Mor thy Mod."

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Offline Minnesotan

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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #66 on: November 14, 2014, 02:25:16 PM »
At this point, I brought up the Eastern Orthodox stance on this issue and cited St John of Damascus to show how their position is an innovation. They simply closed their ears and told me that I see the Church Fathers as infallible and then suddenly cited St Augustine

Calvinists, and not only Calvinists, frequently go so far as to claim that the Protestant Reformers were guided by the Holy Spirit (for instance, in selecting which books were the "real" Bible, or in determining how to interpret Scripture, etc). That's pretty much the only way you can interpret the events of the Reformation if you're a monergist. Since the Reformers, in this view, were guided by the Spirit, their decisions and the Confessions (even if not everything the individual reformers wrote) are therefore infallible, or at least as close to infallible as you can get aside from the Scriptures themselves.

That line of reasoning is severely flawed, though. If the Reformers were guided by the Spirit, then the Church Fathers cannot have been, since frequently the two are at odds (for instance, when Calvin threw the Church Fathers under the bus, or when Knox did the same by claiming the men of Calvin's Geneva were the most righteous Christians since the Apostles themselves).

Why would the Holy Spirit leave the church in the 2nd, 4th, or 8th century and then suddenly swoop back in to "reform" in it in the 16th? That doesn't make much sense, unless you claim it was to "fulfill prophecy" (historicists would say exactly that). But it's still a problematic assertion because the Jesus said he would send the Paraclete (Spirit) to guide the Church, but didn't say anything about it ever leaving.

So really, the dispute is over who the "real" Fathers of the church are. Are they the men who lived in the first few centuries, many of whom personally knew the apostles, were part of churches they founded, and/or lived in the same cultural environment as them? Or are they a bunch of 16th century Northern Europeans who had a bone to pick with the Renaissance Popes, and who thought they knew better?

Offline Minnesotan

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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #67 on: November 14, 2014, 02:28:08 PM »


Declared Ecumenist EndsCheck?


Create cooperation in areas like charity,
and having a common public voice for
traditional Christian morality?
No.



Are you sure? What about ECT?

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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #68 on: November 14, 2014, 02:45:35 PM »


Declared Ecumenist EndsCheck?


Create cooperation in areas like charity,
and having a common public voice for
traditional Christian morality?
No.



Are you sure? What about ECT?

Which effective actions issued from that and which impact did it cause in society?

One of the great spiritual dellusions of ecumenism is that having meetings and signing documents accomplishes something. People get together sign a document saying that war is a vey ugly and smelly thing and go back to their beds thinking they did something to prevent it while, most of the time, their callings for "peace" just helped to prevent those who could do something about it from taking decisive action not to be accused of "warmongers".
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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #69 on: November 14, 2014, 06:49:27 PM »
At this point, I brought up the Eastern Orthodox stance on this issue and cited St John of Damascus to show how their position is an innovation. They simply closed their ears and told me that I see the Church Fathers as infallible and then suddenly cited St Augustine

Calvinists, and not only Calvinists, frequently go so far as to claim that the Protestant Reformers were guided by the Holy Spirit (for instance, in selecting which books were the "real" Bible, or in determining how to interpret Scripture, etc). That's pretty much the only way you can interpret the events of the Reformation if you're a monergist. Since the Reformers, in this view, were guided by the Spirit, their decisions and the Confessions (even if not everything the individual reformers wrote) are therefore infallible, or at least as close to infallible as you can get aside from the Scriptures themselves.

That line of reasoning is severely flawed, though. If the Reformers were guided by the Spirit, then the Church Fathers cannot have been, since frequently the two are at odds (for instance, when Calvin threw the Church Fathers under the bus, or when Knox did the same by claiming the men of Calvin's Geneva were the most righteous Christians since the Apostles themselves).

Why would the Holy Spirit leave the church in the 2nd, 4th, or 8th century and then suddenly swoop back in to "reform" in it in the 16th? That doesn't make much sense, unless you claim it was to "fulfill prophecy" (historicists would say exactly that). But it's still a problematic assertion because the Jesus said he would send the Paraclete (Spirit) to guide the Church, but didn't say anything about it ever leaving.

So really, the dispute is over who the "real" Fathers of the church are. Are they the men who lived in the first few centuries, many of whom personally knew the apostles, were part of churches they founded, and/or lived in the same cultural environment as them? Or are they a bunch of 16th century Northern Europeans who had a bone to pick with the Renaissance Popes, and who thought they knew better?

I can confirm what you said since I personally experienced this before in a discussion I had with a Baptist Pastor. Each time Calvin's Institutes is mentioned he would almost always proclaim that it is "Inspired by the Holy Spirit". I told him about all the other Church Fathers that disagreed with him and the pastor just dissed them all just as Calvin dissed the Fathers(except St Augustine). Since I am technically defending Catholicism in this discussion, he kept on bringing up how Catholicism claims to follow St Augustine but failed to do so despite me pointing out that Catholicism takes Patristical Consensus rather than the writings of a single Father. Unfortunately, there isn't much time during this dialogue I had so we had to stop going back and forth after about 45 minutes. If there was time, I would've pointed what you laid out which are critical and important to the discussion.
« Last Edit: November 14, 2014, 06:51:28 PM by sakura95 »
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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #70 on: November 14, 2014, 07:48:51 PM »
Avert sinfulness?  How could you know or measure this?

Bring people into Orthodoxy?  New Skete, Fr Gabriel Bunge, Fr George Maloney, Fr David Kirk and many others.

Create cooperation in charity?  Aid to the Church in Need has built several churches for the Russian Orthodox Church.  CNEWA provides service to Catholics and Orthodox alike.
« Last Edit: November 14, 2014, 07:50:50 PM by Deacon Lance »
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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #71 on: November 14, 2014, 07:52:12 PM »
Avert sinfulness?  How could you know or measure this?

Bring people into Orthodoxy?  New Skete, Fr Gabriel Bunge, Fr George Maloney, Fr David Kirk and many others.

Create cooperation in charity?  Aid to the Church in Need has built several churches for the Russian Orthodox Church.  CNEWA provides service to Catholics and Orthodox alike.

I was spoofing Fabio's post.  Such diagrams only really prove what you want them to prove before you create them.
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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #72 on: November 14, 2014, 08:01:45 PM »
Avert sinfulness?  How could you know or measure this?

Bring people into Orthodoxy?  New Skete, Fr Gabriel Bunge, Fr George Maloney, Fr David Kirk and many others.

Create cooperation in charity?  Aid to the Church in Need has built several churches for the Russian Orthodox Church.  CNEWA provides service to Catholics and Orthodox alike.

I was spoofing Fabio's post.  Such diagrams only really prove what you want them to prove before you create them.

I know.  I was responding to his but quoted you by accident.  Whoops.
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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #73 on: November 14, 2014, 10:05:20 PM »
Quote
Bring people into Orthodoxy? New Skete,

Really?
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Offline Mor Ephrem

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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #74 on: November 15, 2014, 02:07:00 AM »
Quote
Bring people into Orthodoxy? New Skete,

Really?

Well, they're not in communion with Pope Francis, but they are in communion with you.  ;)
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Offline Mor Ephrem

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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #75 on: November 15, 2014, 02:07:38 AM »
Avert sinfulness?  How could you know or measure this?

Bring people into Orthodoxy?  New Skete, Fr Gabriel Bunge, Fr George Maloney, Fr David Kirk and many others.

Create cooperation in charity?  Aid to the Church in Need has built several churches for the Russian Orthodox Church.  CNEWA provides service to Catholics and Orthodox alike.

I was spoofing Fabio's post.  Such diagrams only really prove what you want them to prove before you create them.

I know.  I was responding to his but quoted you by accident.  Whoops.

I was hoping it was that.  :)
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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #76 on: November 15, 2014, 02:23:21 AM »
Quote
Bring people into Orthodoxy? New Skete,

Really?

Well, they're not in communion with Pope Francis, but they are in communion with you.  ;)

Their heterodox liturgical venerations are not my venerations, nor are they of the various Orthodox jurisdictions I have been associated with in my time in the Church. Their liturgical, monastic and iconographic anomalies are just that - anomalies, which should never have been allowed.
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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #77 on: November 15, 2014, 02:31:02 AM »
Quote
Bring people into Orthodoxy? New Skete,

Really?

Well, they're not in communion with Pope Francis, but they are in communion with you.  ;)

Their heterodox liturgical venerations are not my venerations, nor are they of the various Orthodox jurisdictions I have been associated with in my time in the Church. Their liturgical, monastic and iconographic anomalies are just that - anomalies, which should never have been allowed.

Anomalies abound, and so do sinners, but is your bishop in communion with Metropolitan Tikhon of the OCA? 
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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #78 on: November 15, 2014, 02:35:37 AM »
Quote
Bring people into Orthodoxy? New Skete,

Really?

Well, they're not in communion with Pope Francis, but they are in communion with you.  ;)

Their heterodox liturgical venerations are not my venerations, nor are they of the various Orthodox jurisdictions I have been associated with in my time in the Church. Their liturgical, monastic and iconographic anomalies are just that - anomalies, which should never have been allowed.

Anomalies abound, and so do sinners, but is your bishop in communion with Metropolitan Tikhon of the OCA?  

On the matters of which I speak, I know serious errors have been made by the episcopate of the OCA in allowing the continuation of heterodox practices at New Skete. I am by no means the only layman or cleric who holds this position. The sooner these errors at New Skete are corrected, the better, for both the OCA and for Orthodoxy as a whole.
« Last Edit: November 15, 2014, 02:36:16 AM by LBK »
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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #79 on: November 15, 2014, 11:40:20 AM »
So what's going on in New Skete?
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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #80 on: November 15, 2014, 01:14:44 PM »
Quote
Bring people into Orthodoxy? New Skete,

Really?

Well, they're not in communion with Pope Francis, but they are in communion with you.  ;)

Their heterodox liturgical venerations are not my venerations, nor are they of the various Orthodox jurisdictions I have been associated with in my time in the Church. Their liturgical, monastic and iconographic anomalies are just that - anomalies, which should never have been allowed.

Anomalies abound, and so do sinners, but is your bishop in communion with Metropolitan Tikhon of the OCA?  

On the matters of which I speak, I know serious errors have been made by the episcopate of the OCA in allowing the continuation of heterodox practices at New Skete. I am by no means the only layman or cleric who holds this position. The sooner these errors at New Skete are corrected, the better, for both the OCA and for Orthodoxy as a whole.

That's not the point.  Whether or not you approve of every little thing that goes on at New Skete or within the OCA (you don't--we get it :)), New Skete is an example of non-Orthodox becoming Orthodox, which is all Fr Lance said.

Now, you are alleging that the Holy Synod of the Orthodox Church in America knowingly allows one of its monasteries to maintain heterodox practices.  That's a rather serious accusation you're making against a synod of bishops with which you and your bishops are in communion.  Unless you can substantiate that accusation, you might be better off simply indicating your disapproval or distaste for such things, or your reasons for believing why they are wrong.  But there's no point in telling people to ask their priests about various issues if their synods of bishops cannot be trusted.       
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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #81 on: November 17, 2014, 03:51:28 PM »
So what's going on in New Skete?
LOL!

Oh mina, you can't just blurt out a question like that, you have to ease your way in and then wait for the 42 pages of complaints to ensue.
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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #82 on: November 17, 2014, 06:42:42 PM »
Quote
Bring people into Orthodoxy? New Skete,

Really?

Well, they're not in communion with Pope Francis, but they are in communion with you.  ;)

Their heterodox liturgical venerations are not my venerations, nor are they of the various Orthodox jurisdictions I have been associated with in my time in the Church. Their liturgical, monastic and iconographic anomalies are just that - anomalies, which should never have been allowed.

Anomalies abound, and so do sinners, but is your bishop in communion with Metropolitan Tikhon of the OCA?  

On the matters of which I speak, I know serious errors have been made by the episcopate of the OCA in allowing the continuation of heterodox practices at New Skete. I am by no means the only layman or cleric who holds this position. The sooner these errors at New Skete are corrected, the better, for both the OCA and for Orthodoxy as a whole.

That's not the point.  Whether or not you approve of every little thing that goes on at New Skete or within the OCA (you don't--we get it :)), New Skete is an example of non-Orthodox becoming Orthodox, which is all Fr Lance said.

Now, you are alleging that the Holy Synod of the Orthodox Church in America knowingly allows one of its monasteries to maintain heterodox practices.  That's a rather serious accusation you're making against a synod of bishops with which you and your bishops are in communion.  Unless you can substantiate that accusation, you might be better off simply indicating your disapproval or distaste for such things, or your reasons for believing why they are wrong.  But there's no point in telling people to ask their priests about various issues if their synods of bishops cannot be trusted.       

I have posted about the practices of New Skete elsewhere, particularly about its "iconography" and its liturgical commemoration of saints who are not recognized as such by the Orthodox Church. A look at their websites and other readily-available material clearly confirms what I have said. I am not making any of it up, nor is what I have posted hearsay or gossip.

No longer posting here. Anyone is welcome to PM me or email me at the address in my profile.

Offline Mor Ephrem

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Re: Any good fruits of ecumenism/inter-religious dialogue?
« Reply #83 on: November 17, 2014, 06:53:20 PM »
Quote
Bring people into Orthodoxy? New Skete,

Really?

Well, they're not in communion with Pope Francis, but they are in communion with you.  ;)

Their heterodox liturgical venerations are not my venerations, nor are they of the various Orthodox jurisdictions I have been associated with in my time in the Church. Their liturgical, monastic and iconographic anomalies are just that - anomalies, which should never have been allowed.

Anomalies abound, and so do sinners, but is your bishop in communion with Metropolitan Tikhon of the OCA?  

On the matters of which I speak, I know serious errors have been made by the episcopate of the OCA in allowing the continuation of heterodox practices at New Skete. I am by no means the only layman or cleric who holds this position. The sooner these errors at New Skete are corrected, the better, for both the OCA and for Orthodoxy as a whole.

That's not the point.  Whether or not you approve of every little thing that goes on at New Skete or within the OCA (you don't--we get it :)), New Skete is an example of non-Orthodox becoming Orthodox, which is all Fr Lance said.

Now, you are alleging that the Holy Synod of the Orthodox Church in America knowingly allows one of its monasteries to maintain heterodox practices.  That's a rather serious accusation you're making against a synod of bishops with which you and your bishops are in communion.  Unless you can substantiate that accusation, you might be better off simply indicating your disapproval or distaste for such things, or your reasons for believing why they are wrong.  But there's no point in telling people to ask their priests about various issues if their synods of bishops cannot be trusted.       

I have posted about the practices of New Skete elsewhere, particularly about its "iconography" and its liturgical commemoration of saints who are not recognized as such by the Orthodox Church. A look at their websites and other readily-available material clearly confirms what I have said. I am not making any of it up, nor is what I have posted hearsay or gossip.



And when you contacted the Primate of the Orthodox Church in America to express your concerns about New Skete (a stavropegial monastery), providing them copies of your writings on their heterodox practices and your evidence for them, how did His Beatitude's office respond?
"Do not tempt the Mor thy Mod."

Mor no longer posts on OCNet.  He follows threads, posts his responses daily, occasionally starts threads, and responds to private messages when and as he wants.  But he really isn't around anymore.


Offline Antonious Nikolas

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“Never confuse the person formed in the image of God, with the evil that is in him; because evil is but a chance misfortune, an illness, a devilish reverie. But the very essence of the person is the image of God, and this remains in him despite every disfigurement.”

St. John of Kronstadt