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Author Topic: Purgatory vs Toll Houses  (Read 8082 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: May 24, 2011, 10:08:11 AM »

I'm making this separate from the Toll Houses topic to discuss the actual or perceived differences between the belief in Toll Houses and Purgatory.

Ground Rules, if they can be followed:
-This does not include the doctrine of indulgences when discussing Purgatory.
-Support your claims with references to ECF or Liturgical elements.
-Compare and contrast to show similarity in belief or departures in understanding
-No patronizing or Psycho-analyzing self-help ad homines, please/place/bitte.
-Rhode Island, it's neither a Road, nor an Island.... Discuss.

TOPIC:
The similarities in both belief and perhaps origin of the doctrine/theologoumena of Purgatory and Toll Houses.
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« Reply #1 on: May 24, 2011, 10:37:41 AM »

I see that you wrote this before I posted my latest post in the Toll House thread. However, I believe that the topic I want to discuss is different enough in scope to merit its own thread. I just don't want you to think I am ignoring yours Smiley
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« Reply #2 on: May 24, 2011, 10:41:28 AM »

I see that you wrote this before I posted my latest post in the Toll House thread. However, I believe that the topic I want to discuss is different enough in scope to merit its own thread. I just don't want you to think I am ignoring yours Smiley

I understand, Father.  Smiley 
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« Reply #3 on: May 24, 2011, 10:52:26 AM »

I'm making this separate from the Toll Houses topic to discuss the actual or perceived differences between the belief in Toll Houses and Purgatory.

Ground Rules, if they can be followed:
-This does not include the doctrine of indulgences when discussing Purgatory.
-Support your claims with references to ECF or Liturgical elements.
-Compare and contrast to show similarity in belief or departures in understanding
-No patronizing or Psycho-analyzing self-help ad homines, please/place/bitte.
-Rhode Island, it's neither a Road, nor an Island.... Discuss.

TOPIC:
The similarities in both belief and perhaps origin of the doctrine/theologoumena of Purgatory and Toll Houses.

It seems to me that the very first item that must be considered in any comparison of the underlying truths of purgation, purgatory and toll houses is the teaching concerning the particular judgment, and whether or not that can be claimed as part of Tradition, east and west.

What do you think?
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« Reply #4 on: May 24, 2011, 11:03:43 AM »

The question of the nature of sin. By the same token, doesn't the
toll-house belief teach us to see sin not as "missing the mark" (the
literal translation of the Greek hamartia)--that is, as a misdirection
of energies against Love, as the Fathers taught--but as a series of
legal infractions for which we will be legally accountable? (See
Christos Yannaras's brilliant work The Freedom of Morality for an
exposition of the Orthodoxy of the former understanding and the
heterodoxy of the latter.) And is it not just such juridical legalism
for which Orthodox take Roman Catholics so heavily to task? Yet the
whole problematic realm of Catholic teaching on this subject--merits,
indulgences, expiatory suffering in Purgatory, and so forth--at least
expounds a logic of salvation, however imperfectly conceived; the toll
houses, by contrast, expound a logic of damnation.




So I ask: how can a belief with such all-important
consequences not be regarded as dogma? Why has there not been more of
an effort to have this belief recognized as such? (By contrast, one
must at least do the Roman Church the justice to acknowledge that once
Catholics came to believe in Purgatory, they were right to recognize its
momentous importance and enshrine it as dogma.
)

From
PART 1  ~~  message 84
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,2145.msg300562.html#msg300562
PART 2  ~~  message 86
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,2145.msg300616.html#msg300616
PART 3  ~~  message 91
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,2145.msg300770.html#msg300770
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« Reply #5 on: May 24, 2011, 11:03:53 AM »

It seems to me that the very first item that must be considered in any comparison of the underlying truths of purgation, purgatory and toll houses is the teaching concerning the particular judgment, and whether or not that can be claimed as part of Tradition, east and west.

What do you think?

Sounds like a good start.

Certainly, from an objective point of view, there must be a common origin.
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« Reply #6 on: May 24, 2011, 11:07:44 AM »


It seems to me that the very first item that must be considered in any comparison of the underlying truths of purgation, purgatory and toll houses is the teaching concerning the particular judgment, and whether or not that can be claimed as part of Tradition, east and west.

What do you think?


Agreed.  There is significant difference between the Catholic understanding of the Particular Judgement and the Orthodox understanding of the Partial Judgement.
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« Reply #7 on: May 24, 2011, 11:10:28 AM »


It seems to me that the very first item that must be considered in any comparison of the underlying truths of purgation, purgatory and toll houses is the teaching concerning the particular judgment, and whether or not that can be claimed as part of Tradition, east and west.

What do you think?


Agreed.  There is significant difference between the Catholic understanding of the Particular Judgement and the Orthodox understanding of the Partial Judgement.

You are one of the few Orthodox believers I know who asserts this so by that alone it fails the V-Canon test  Smiley

What are the significant differences?  Where are they itemized in terms of some indicator that they are universal to Orthodoxy for all time?

M.
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« Reply #8 on: May 24, 2011, 11:14:21 AM »

The question of the nature of sin. By the same token, doesn't the toll-house belief teach us to see sin not as "missing the mark" (the literal translation of the Greek hamartia)--that is, as a misdirection of energies against Love, as the Fathers taught--but as a series of legal infractions for which we will be legally accountable? (See Christos Yannaras's brilliant work The Freedom of Morality for an exposition of the Orthodoxy of the former understanding and the heterodoxy of the latter.) And is it not just such juridical legalism for which Orthodox take Roman Catholics so heavily to task? Yet the whole problematic realm of Catholic teaching on this subject--merits, indulgences, expiatory suffering in Purgatory, and so forth--at least expounds a logic of salvation, however imperfectly conceived; the toll houses, by contrast, expound a logic of damnation.

Can there be a concept of Divine Law without degrading into the trap of legalism? That is, a concept that is primarily our relationship with God, but including an acknowledgement that 'missing the mark' is also denying the Divine Truths.

If this is the case, then perhaps 'missing the mark' is something to also be accountable, not just a term for our placement/alignment of our will with God.

So I ask: how can a belief with such all-important consequences not be regarded as dogma? Why has there not been more of an effort to have this belief recognized as such?

You have a point.
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« Reply #9 on: May 24, 2011, 11:16:17 AM »


It seems to me that the very first item that must be considered in any comparison of the underlying truths of purgation, purgatory and toll houses is the teaching concerning the particular judgment, and whether or not that can be claimed as part of Tradition, east and west.

What do you think?


Agreed.  There is significant difference between the Catholic understanding of the Particular Judgement and the Orthodox understanding of the Partial Judgement.

You are one of the few Orthodox believers I know who asserts this so by that alone it fails the V-Canon test  Smiley

What are the significant differences?  Where are they itemized in terms of some indicator that they are universal to Orthodoxy for all time?

M.

? What do you mean 'v canon test.' Sorry.
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« Reply #10 on: May 24, 2011, 11:20:00 AM »


It seems to me that the very first item that must be considered in any comparison of the underlying truths of purgation, purgatory and toll houses is the teaching concerning the particular judgment, and whether or not that can be claimed as part of Tradition, east and west.

What do you think?


Agreed.  There is significant difference between the Catholic understanding of the Particular Judgement and the Orthodox understanding of the Partial Judgement.

You are one of the few Orthodox believers I know who asserts this so by that alone it fails the V-Canon test  Smiley

What are the significant differences?  Where are they itemized in terms of some indicator that they are universal to Orthodoxy for all time?

M.

? What do you mean 'v canon test.' Sorry.

Oh...I was just teasing Father about his liberal use of the Vincentian canon...The Commonitory of Vincent of Lerins.
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« Reply #11 on: May 24, 2011, 11:32:40 AM »


It seems to me that the very first item that must be considered in any comparison of the underlying truths of purgation, purgatory and toll houses is the teaching concerning the particular judgment, and whether or not that can be claimed as part of Tradition, east and west.

What do you think?


Agreed.  There is significant difference between the Catholic understanding of the Particular Judgement and the Orthodox understanding of the Partial Judgement.

Ok.  I found a good example of Orthodox teaching on the partial judgment: I see the disavowal of purgatory but I think that is necessitated by the schism for the time being and I notice there's no substantive refutation beyond simply sweeping it off the table:  I am struck but the fact that the entire teaching is very familiar to me as western Catholic in its meaning.

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php?action=post;quote=575533;topic=36486.0;sesc=9d61bd108797679b47474a4e9c7b64c1

a) Partial judgment - the hour of our death

Our physical death, a consequence of the first man's sin that we still suffer, can be seen in two ways:

   1. negatively, as a kind of catastrophe, especially for those who do not believe in Christ and life everlasting in Him; and
   2. positively, as the end of a maturation process, which leads us to the encounter with our Maker. Christ has destroyed the power of the "last enemy," death (1 Cor. 18:26).

A Christian worthy of the name is not afraid of this physical death insofar as it is not accompanied by a spiritual or eternal (eschatological) death.

A partial judgment is instituted immediately after our physical death, which places us in an intermediate condition of partial blessedness (for the righteous), or partial suffering (for the unrighteous).

Disavowing a belief in the Western "Purgatory," our Church believes that a change is possible during this intermediate state and stage. The Church, militant and triumphant, is still one, which means that we can still influence one another with our prayers and our saintly (or ungodly) life. This is the reason why we pray for our dead. Also, almsgiving on behalf of the dead may be of some help to them, without implying, of course, that those who provide the alms are in some fashion "buying" anybody's salvation.
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« Reply #12 on: May 24, 2011, 11:32:59 AM »


It seems to me that the very first item that must be considered in any comparison of the underlying truths of purgation, purgatory and toll houses is the teaching concerning the particular judgment, and whether or not that can be claimed as part of Tradition, east and west.

What do you think?


Agreed.  There is significant difference between the Catholic understanding of the Particular Judgement and the Orthodox understanding of the Partial Judgement.

You are one of the few Orthodox believers I know who asserts this so by that alone it fails the V-Canon test  Smiley

What are the significant differences?  Where are they itemized in terms of some indicator that they are universal to Orthodoxy for all time?

M.

It is 3am here and I am on the way to rest... so just quickly...

The Catholic Particular Judgement occurs at death and is final, deciding the state of the soul for eternity.   It differs from the Last Judgment in that it is private whereas the Last Judgement will be totally public so that the justice of God may be seen by all.

The Orthodox Partial Judgement also occurs at death and by it a soul comes to know where it will spend the interim period before the Second Coming of Christ as Judge.  Through the Partial Judgement a soul knows its position in a temporary place of either weal or woe.

But the Partial Judgement is NOT the Final Judgement which will occur when Christ comes to judge mankind.  It is "partial" in the sense that it is not fully definitive and between it and the Final Judgment a soul's fate may be altered, even to the extent of being rescued from hell.

As we know salvation from hell was once a part of Western Catholic belief also but it has been discarded.  An echo of the old orthodox belief survives still in the Requiem Mass "Libera animas omnium fidelium defunctorum de poenis inferni et de profundo lacu."

For a little more on that see message 50
at
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,32546.msg514593.html#msg514593
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« Reply #13 on: May 24, 2011, 11:42:27 AM »

Ok.  I found a good example of Orthodox teaching on the partial judgment: I see the disavowal of purgatory but I think that is necessitated by the schism for the time being and I notice there's no substantive refutation beyond simply sweeping it off the table:  I am struck but the fact that the entire teaching is very familiar to me as western Catholic in its meaning.

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php?action=post;quote=575533;topic=36486.0;sesc=9d61bd108797679b47474a4e9c7b64c1
 

This link will not work for me.
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« Reply #14 on: May 24, 2011, 11:45:39 AM »

Grace and Peace,

I can't help but say that I look with hopefulness any theory that gives man one more opportunity for salvation. I'm doing a bang up job throwing mine into ruin here and now.
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« Reply #15 on: May 24, 2011, 12:06:16 PM »

Ok.  I found a good example of Orthodox teaching on the partial judgment: I see the disavowal of purgatory but I think that is necessitated by the schism for the time being and I notice there's no substantive refutation beyond simply sweeping it off the table:  I am struck but the fact that the entire teaching is very familiar to me as western Catholic in its meaning.

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php?action=post;quote=575533;topic=36486.0;sesc=9d61bd108797679b47474a4e9c7b64c1
 

This link will not work for me.

This will!!  Sorry:

http://www.stdemetrios.ca.goarch.org/eschatology.asp
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« Reply #16 on: May 24, 2011, 12:29:15 PM »


It seems to me that the very first item that must be considered in any comparison of the underlying truths of purgation, purgatory and toll houses is the teaching concerning the particular judgment, and whether or not that can be claimed as part of Tradition, east and west.

What do you think?


Agreed.  There is significant difference between the Catholic understanding of the Particular Judgement and the Orthodox understanding of the Partial Judgement.

You are one of the few Orthodox believers I know who asserts this so by that alone it fails the V-Canon test  Smiley

What are the significant differences?  Where are they itemized in terms of some indicator that they are universal to Orthodoxy for all time?

M.


The Catholic Particular Judgement occurs at death and is final, deciding the state of the soul for eternity.   It differs from the Last Judgment in that it is private whereas the Last Judgement will be totally public so that the justice of God may be seen by all.




If this is so, why do Catholics have masses for the intention of the dead? Where does purgatory fit into this and somehow, all of this seems - i.e. toll houses, purgatory etc... -  like a whole lot of speculation on all of our parts?

In the back of my mind, I seem to recall a statement made by the Roman Church a few years back regarding their teaching of 'limbo' (a teaching which caused much torment to many faithful Roman Catholics who lost a child at birth). While the gist of that statement is not germane to this discussion, there was a line which stuck in my head and it stated:  "We emphasize that these are reasons for prayerful hope, rather than grounds for sure knowledge (note: regarding the 'limbo' teaching). There is much that simply has not been revealed to us. We live by faith and hope in the God of mercy and love who has been revealed to us in Christ, and the Spirit moves us to pray in constant thankfulness and joy." (from a 2007 paper of the Roman Church's International Theological Commission entitled "The Hope of Salvation for Infants Who Die without Being Baptized.)

I think that is good theology, regardless of source, and good advice regarding the entirety of the toll house 'debate' and is consistent with Father Hopko's statements and can be reconciled with the position of Father Ambrose.
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« Reply #17 on: May 24, 2011, 12:33:33 PM »

I don't know much about the doctrine of Purgatory, but from my understanding of Toll Houses is that it isn't meant to be taken literally. Orthodox that have taken Toll Houses literally are taking it a bit too far.
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« Reply #18 on: May 24, 2011, 12:41:45 PM »

One of the things that generally goes missing in this kind of discussion is the fact that to render one's self reprobate is to refuse any and all thoughts of repentance and compunction.  There is no sorrowing in the soul in hell.  There is full and final rejection of God's mercy and love.

So that even for those who have chosen the state apart from heaven fully and with firm will, there is always the hope that God's mercy might strike a chord.  On the other hand the story of Lazarus and Dives says that for those like Dives, not even one come back from the dead will deter them from their path.

There's a dual message:  Not just a singular message of damnation.  We still have to deal with the lessons of Scripture as they have been given to us: comfortable or not, they cannot simply be shoved off.


It seems to me that the very first item that must be considered in any comparison of the underlying truths of purgation, purgatory and toll houses is the teaching concerning the particular judgment, and whether or not that can be claimed as part of Tradition, east and west.

What do you think?


Agreed.  There is significant difference between the Catholic understanding of the Particular Judgement and the Orthodox understanding of the Partial Judgement.

You are one of the few Orthodox believers I know who asserts this so by that alone it fails the V-Canon test  Smiley

What are the significant differences?  Where are they itemized in terms of some indicator that they are universal to Orthodoxy for all time?

M.


The Catholic Particular Judgement occurs at death and is final, deciding the state of the soul for eternity.   It differs from the Last Judgment in that it is private whereas the Last Judgement will be totally public so that the justice of God may be seen by all.




If this is so, why do Catholics have masses for the intention of the dead? Where does purgatory fit into this and somehow, all of this seems - i.e. toll houses, purgatory etc... -  like a whole lot of speculation on all of our parts?

In the back of my mind, I seem to recall a statement made by the Roman Church a few years back regarding their teaching of 'limbo' (a teaching which caused much torment to many faithful Roman Catholics who lost a child at birth). While the gist of that statement is not germane to this discussion, there was a line which stuck in my head and it stated:  "We emphasize that these are reasons for prayerful hope, rather than grounds for sure knowledge (note: regarding the 'limbo' teaching). There is much that simply has not been revealed to us. We live by faith and hope in the God of mercy and love who has been revealed to us in Christ, and the Spirit moves us to pray in constant thankfulness and joy." (from a 2007 paper of the Roman Church's International Theological Commission entitled "The Hope of Salvation for Infants Who Die without Being Baptized.)

I think that is good theology, regardless of source, and good advice regarding the entirety of the toll house 'debate' and is consistent with Father Hopko's statements and can be reconciled with the position of Father Ambrose.
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« Reply #19 on: May 24, 2011, 01:25:41 PM »

If this is so, why do Catholics have masses for the intention of the dead? Where does purgatory fit into this and somehow, all of this seems - i.e. toll houses, purgatory etc... -  like a whole lot of speculation on all of our parts?

The RC doctrine denies anyone destine for Hell to be capable of salvation, even after the particular judgement. The prayers for those in Purgatory are beneficial for their purification and process of Divinization(Theosis). This is desired because Purgatory is a temporary Hell. We don't know who is in Purgatory or Hell, so prayer is for all in hopes they are capable of benefit.

In the back of my mind, I seem to recall a statement made by the Roman Church a few years back regarding their teaching of 'limbo' (a teaching which caused much torment to many faithful Roman Catholics who lost a child at birth). While the gist of that statement is not germane to this discussion, there was a line which stuck in my head and it stated:  "We emphasize that these are reasons for prayerful hope, rather than grounds for sure knowledge (note: regarding the 'limbo' teaching). There is much that simply has not been revealed to us. We live by faith and hope in the God of mercy and love who has been revealed to us in Christ, and the Spirit moves us to pray in constant thankfulness and joy." (from a 2007 paper of the Roman Church's International Theological Commission entitled "The Hope of Salvation for Infants Who Die without Being Baptized.)

Limbo was the case in part because Jesus said 'no one may enter the Kingdom of Heaven who has not been born of water'. Unbaptised children have no personal sins, yet they have not been 'reborn in water', therefore they would not be privy to the beatific vision. However, the late assessment states that this may be the case, but we shouldn't remove the possibility of God's mercy, especially for the innocent without chance.


I see your point about not knowing, and certainly we don't, but our practice of faith revolves around our understanding. For example, if we were Protestant and rejected a partial/particular judgement, then we would never pray for the dead. Those of the dead would never benefit from our prayers. Our faith, shapes our belief.
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« Reply #20 on: May 24, 2011, 02:07:04 PM »

If this is so, why do Catholics have masses for the intention of the dead? Where does purgatory fit into this and somehow, all of this seems - i.e. toll houses, purgatory etc... -  like a whole lot of speculation on all of our parts?

The RC doctrine denies anyone destine for Hell to be capable of salvation, even after the particular judgement. The prayers for those in Purgatory are beneficial for their purification and process of Divinization(Theosis). This is desired because Purgatory is a temporary Hell. We don't know who is in Purgatory or Hell, so prayer is for all in hopes they are capable of benefit.

In the back of my mind, I seem to recall a statement made by the Roman Church a few years back regarding their teaching of 'limbo' (a teaching which caused much torment to many faithful Roman Catholics who lost a child at birth). While the gist of that statement is not germane to this discussion, there was a line which stuck in my head and it stated:  "We emphasize that these are reasons for prayerful hope, rather than grounds for sure knowledge (note: regarding the 'limbo' teaching). There is much that simply has not been revealed to us. We live by faith and hope in the God of mercy and love who has been revealed to us in Christ, and the Spirit moves us to pray in constant thankfulness and joy." (from a 2007 paper of the Roman Church's International Theological Commission entitled "The Hope of Salvation for Infants Who Die without Being Baptized.)

Limbo was the case in part because Jesus said 'no one may enter the Kingdom of Heaven who has not been born of water'. Unbaptised children have no personal sins, yet they have not been 'reborn in water', therefore they would not be privy to the beatific vision. However, the late assessment states that this may be the case, but we shouldn't remove the possibility of God's mercy, especially for the innocent without chance.


I see your point about not knowing, and certainly we don't, but our practice of faith revolves around our understanding. For example, if we were Protestant and rejected a partial/particular judgement, then we would never pray for the dead. Those of the dead would never benefit from our prayers. Our faith, shapes our belief.

Indeed it does.

To me, and perhaps it is just me, this entire debate clearly reflects the very different way the West attempts to reach its understanding of the faith than does our way through Orthodoxy. But, if you strip away the forced legalisms from Rome and look to the core of her belief system, I doubt that an unbiased, external observer would find our differences to be as deep or fundamental as we, locked in the 'trenches' so to speak, see them.

Now, to calm down the immediate reaction to what I said, I am NOT minimalizing or 'reasoning' away the very real and fundamental issues that keep us apart. Certainly, without a radical redefining of the role of the Pope on the part of the Western Church there will likely never be true organic unity. Likewise differences in how we perceive and define the role of the sacraments for example have to be reconciled, if that is possible. Lyons and Florence can not be airbrushed away from history, nor can the Crusades.

Frankly many of us born into Orthodoxy, taught the faith by our grandmothers and our beloved priests never felt the need to 'know' the truth in the scholastic sense. We knew to be true what we held to be true and that allowed the faith to endure many crosses over the centuries including, but limited to, the Crusades and sack of Constantinople, the Turkish yoke, the Tatars, the Unia, the Communist repressions and so on. Our faith, the Faith of the Fathers as proclaimed by the Fathers of the seventh great council of the united Church is all that we need.
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« Reply #21 on: May 24, 2011, 07:24:30 PM »



In the back of my mind, I seem to recall a statement made by the Roman Church a few years back regarding their teaching of 'limbo' (a teaching which caused much torment to many faithful Roman Catholics who lost a child at birth). .


The now abolished teaching of Limbo was better and kinder than the current teaching.

In Limbo souls were said to be in a state of happiness and unaware that there were other states and other degrees of happiness.

The current teaching (see the CCC) states the people may now *hope* that unbaptized babies are in heaven but there is also the likelihood that they are in hell.
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« Reply #22 on: May 24, 2011, 08:10:28 PM »



In the back of my mind, I seem to recall a statement made by the Roman Church a few years back regarding their teaching of 'limbo' (a teaching which caused much torment to many faithful Roman Catholics who lost a child at birth). .


The now abolished teaching of Limbo was better and kinder than the current teaching.

In Limbo souls were said to be in a state of happiness and unaware that there were other states and other degrees of happiness.

The current teaching (see the CCC) states the people may now *hope* that unbaptized babies are in heaven but there is also the likelihood that they are in hell.

I don't think you are actually drawing from any formal teaching of the Church in your assessments above.  I have heard you say such things in the past but there's no real evidence for it from any formal sources.

VI. THE NECESSITY OF BAPTISM

1257 The Lord himself affirms that Baptism is necessary for salvation.60 He also commands his disciples to proclaim the Gospel to all nations and to baptize them.61 Baptism is necessary for salvation for those to whom the Gospel has been proclaimed and who have had the possibility of asking for this sacrament.62 The Church does not know of any means other than Baptism that assures entry into eternal beatitude; this is why she takes care not to neglect the mission she has received from the Lord to see that all who can be baptized are "reborn of water and the Spirit." God has bound salvation to the sacrament of Baptism, but he himself is not bound by his sacraments.

1258 The Church has always held the firm conviction that those who suffer death for the sake of the faith without having received Baptism are baptized by their death for and with Christ. This Baptism of blood, like the desire for Baptism, brings about the fruits of Baptism without being a sacrament.

1259 For catechumens who die before their Baptism, their explicit desire to receive it, together with repentance for their sins, and charity, assures them the salvation that they were not able to receive through the sacrament.

1260 "Since Christ died for all, and since all men are in fact called to one and the same destiny, which is divine, we must hold that the Holy Spirit offers to all the possibility of being made partakers, in a way known to God, of the Paschal mystery."63 Every man who is ignorant of the Gospel of Christ and of his Church, but seeks the truth and does the will of God in accordance with his understanding of it, can be saved. It may be supposed that such persons would have desired Baptism explicitly if they had known its necessity.

1261 As regards children who have died without Baptism, the Church can only entrust them to the mercy of God, as she does in her funeral rites for them. Indeed, the great mercy of God who desires that all men should be saved, and Jesus' tenderness toward children which caused him to say: "Let the children come to me, do not hinder them,"64 allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism. All the more urgent is the Church's call not to prevent little children coming to Christ through the gift of holy Baptism.
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« Reply #23 on: May 24, 2011, 08:12:22 PM »

Just to be clear, I wasn't analogizing anything on this thread to 'limbo', although sometimes it seems as if we are out there in it.

I merely thought that the quote was apropos in that we surely agree that there is much that God has chosen NOT to reveal to us and that thinking about such things in too intense a manner may cause more confusion and doubt within us, rather than allowing us to concentrate on the here and now of our theosis. The fact that there are now at least three threads running on toll houses and that there is a lot of passion being expended on the subject from all sides evidences my point.
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« Reply #24 on: May 24, 2011, 08:19:12 PM »

Just to be clear, I wasn't analogizing anything on this thread to 'limbo', although sometimes it seems as if we are out there in it.

I merely thought that the quote was apropos in that we surely agree that there is much that God has chosen NOT to reveal to us and that thinking about such things in too intense a manner may cause more confusion and doubt within us, rather than allowing us to concentrate on the here and now of our theosis. The fact that there are now at least three threads running on toll houses and that there is a lot of passion being expended on the subject from all sides evidences my point.

Truly this is one of the best set of discussions on the topic that I've ever seen on the Internet. 

We all tend to respond differently to pious stimuli...but I do believe we all respond well to Truth, as long as our desire is to become what God desires for us.  I think these things are in evidence in these threads without doubt...but more gently than I have ever seen them.
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« Reply #25 on: May 24, 2011, 08:22:09 PM »


The now abolished teaching of Limbo was better and kinder than the current teaching.

In Limbo souls were said to be in a state of happiness and unaware that there were other states and other degrees of happiness.

The current teaching (see the CCC) states the people may now *hope* that unbaptized babies are in heaven but there is also the likelihood that they are in hell.


Wishful thinking Boss, but no cigar!!


1261 As regards children who have died without Baptism, the Church can only entrust them to the mercy of God, as she does in her funeral rites for them. Indeed, the great mercy of God who desires that all men should be saved, and Jesus' tenderness toward children which caused him to say: "Let the children come to me, do not hinder them,"64 allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism. All the more urgent is the Church's call not to prevent little children coming to Christ through the gift of holy Baptism.


And there is the smoking cigar -allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism.

While Limbo was a guarantee of happiness for unbaptized babies, the new teaching offers only a hope of their salvation.  They could also be in hell. 
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« Reply #26 on: May 24, 2011, 08:29:53 PM »


The now abolished teaching of Limbo was better and kinder than the current teaching.

In Limbo souls were said to be in a state of happiness and unaware that there were other states and other degrees of happiness.

The current teaching (see the CCC) states the people may now *hope* that unbaptized babies are in heaven but there is also the likelihood that they are in hell.


Wishful thinking Boss, but no cigar!!


1261 As regards children who have died without Baptism, the Church can only entrust them to the mercy of God, as she does in her funeral rites for them. Indeed, the great mercy of God who desires that all men should be saved, and Jesus' tenderness toward children which caused him to say: "Let the children come to me, do not hinder them,"64 allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism. All the more urgent is the Church's call not to prevent little children coming to Christ through the gift of holy Baptism.


And there is the smoking cigar -allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism.

While Limbo was a guarantee of happiness for unbaptized babies, the new teaching offers only a hope of their salvation.  They could also be in hell. 

Hope is not a mere wish in the teaching of the papal Church, Father.

Hope is the firm expectation, by the power of the Holy Spirit,  of the evidence of things unseen...

Hope is what helps to make faith a power or virtue rather than a pious belief or set of beliefs.

Hope is what works hand in glove with Faith to move the mountain.

Hope is what drives Faith to seek divine Caritas with the full expectation of finding that for which we seek to find.

Here you treat it as a wish...
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« Reply #27 on: May 24, 2011, 08:30:17 PM »


The now abolished teaching of Limbo was better and kinder than the current teaching.

In Limbo souls were said to be in a state of happiness and unaware that there were other states and other degrees of happiness.

The current teaching (see the CCC) states the people may now *hope* that unbaptized babies are in heaven but there is also the likelihood that they are in hell.


Wishful thinking Boss, but no cigar!!


1261 As regards children who have died without Baptism, the Church can only entrust them to the mercy of God, as she does in her funeral rites for them. Indeed, the great mercy of God who desires that all men should be saved, and Jesus' tenderness toward children which caused him to say: "Let the children come to me, do not hinder them,"64 allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism. All the more urgent is the Church's call not to prevent little children coming to Christ through the gift of holy Baptism.


And there is the smoking cigar -allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism.

While Limbo was a guarantee of happiness for unbaptized babies, the new teaching offers only a hope of their salvation.  They could also be in hell. 

If I recall correctly, Limbo is technically in Hell.

Also, I think the teaching is more apt to saying "we should hope for the unbaptized children, but they might be in Limbo".
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« Reply #28 on: May 24, 2011, 08:39:41 PM »


The now abolished teaching of Limbo was better and kinder than the current teaching.

In Limbo souls were said to be in a state of happiness and unaware that there were other states and other degrees of happiness.

The current teaching (see the CCC) states the people may now *hope* that unbaptized babies are in heaven but there is also the likelihood that they are in hell.


Wishful thinking Boss, but no cigar!!


1261 As regards children who have died without Baptism, the Church can only entrust them to the mercy of God, as she does in her funeral rites for them. Indeed, the great mercy of God who desires that all men should be saved, and Jesus' tenderness toward children which caused him to say: "Let the children come to me, do not hinder them,"64 allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism. All the more urgent is the Church's call not to prevent little children coming to Christ through the gift of holy Baptism.


And there is the smoking cigar -allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism.

While Limbo was a guarantee of happiness for unbaptized babies, the new teaching offers only a hope of their salvation.  They could also be in hell. 

If I recall correctly, Limbo is technically in Hell.

Also, I think the teaching is more apt to saying "we should hope for the unbaptized children, but they might be in Limbo".

The teachings of earlier times were meant to spur parents to bring their children forward for Baptism.

Remember that the Albigensian heresy was very active in large sections of the Catholic world, influenced by the Bogomils imported from the eastern Catholic world.  It was during the incremental rise of these heresies, among other resistant influences in the heart of western Christendom, that the teachings concerning Limbo and purgation solidified and became an active part of popular piety.  A spur to motivate parents to have their children baptized is not necessarily a bad thing.  We seem to have moved past that difficulty to a great degree and can now focus on different aspects of eschatology...

It is quite possible now to tell a parish congregation that we must pray for all unbaptised children, becoming for them a sort of godparent so that they may not languish outside of the loving vision of the Trinity.  It's a different world with different messages.

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« Reply #29 on: May 24, 2011, 08:49:56 PM »

Scripture tells us that God wishes the salvation of every man but the divine desire does not allow us to preach universal salvation.

Hope in the salvation of the unbaptized - likewise.   Catholic parents may hope, but it is not necessarily so.

We too may hope, as I do, that all humans will be saved by God's mercy, but that does not allow me to affirm it as fact.
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« Reply #30 on: May 24, 2011, 09:00:18 PM »


The now abolished teaching of Limbo was better and kinder than the current teaching.

In Limbo souls were said to be in a state of happiness and unaware that there were other states and other degrees of happiness.

The current teaching (see the CCC) states the people may now *hope* that unbaptized babies are in heaven but there is also the likelihood that they are in hell.


Wishful thinking Boss, but no cigar!!


1261 As regards children who have died without Baptism, the Church can only entrust them to the mercy of God, as she does in her funeral rites for them. Indeed, the great mercy of God who desires that all men should be saved, and Jesus' tenderness toward children which caused him to say: "Let the children come to me, do not hinder them,"64 allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism. All the more urgent is the Church's call not to prevent little children coming to Christ through the gift of holy Baptism.


And there is the smoking cigar -allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism.

While Limbo was a guarantee of happiness for unbaptized babies, the new teaching offers only a hope of their salvation.  They could also be in hell. 

If I recall correctly, Limbo is technically in Hell.

Also, I think the teaching is more apt to saying "we should hope for the unbaptized children, but they might be in Limbo".

The teachings of earlier times were meant to spur parents to bring their children forward for Baptism.



The spur behind the teaching is even more pointed today where the choice is no longer either heaven or limbo but heaven or hell.  Please look at the last sentence " All the more urgent is the Church's call not to prevent little children coming to Christ through the gift of holy Baptism"   Why is it urgent?  Because there is the possibility of unbaptized babies going to hell.


1261 As regards children who have died without Baptism, the Church can only entrust them to the mercy of God, as she does in her funeral rites for them. Indeed, the great mercy of God who desires that all men should be saved, and Jesus' tenderness toward children which caused him to say: "Let the children come to me, do not hinder them,"64 allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism. All the more urgent is the Church's call not to prevent little children coming to Christ through the gift of holy Baptism.
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« Reply #31 on: May 24, 2011, 09:03:27 PM »


The now abolished teaching of Limbo was better and kinder than the current teaching.

In Limbo souls were said to be in a state of happiness and unaware that there were other states and other degrees of happiness.

The current teaching (see the CCC) states the people may now *hope* that unbaptized babies are in heaven but there is also the likelihood that they are in hell.


Wishful thinking Boss, but no cigar!!


1261 As regards children who have died without Baptism, the Church can only entrust them to the mercy of God, as she does in her funeral rites for them. Indeed, the great mercy of God who desires that all men should be saved, and Jesus' tenderness toward children which caused him to say: "Let the children come to me, do not hinder them,"64 allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism. All the more urgent is the Church's call not to prevent little children coming to Christ through the gift of holy Baptism.


And there is the smoking cigar -allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism.

While Limbo was a guarantee of happiness for unbaptized babies, the new teaching offers only a hope of their salvation.  They could also be in hell. 

If I recall correctly, Limbo is technically in Hell.

Also, I think the teaching is more apt to saying "we should hope for the unbaptized children, but they might be in Limbo".

The teachings of earlier times were meant to spur parents to bring their children forward for Baptism.



The spur behind the teaching is even more pointed today where the choice is no longer either heaven or limbo but heaven or hell.  Please look at the last sentence " All the more urgent is the Church's call not to prevent little children coming to Christ through the gift of holy Baptism"   Why is it urgent?  Because there is the possibility of unbaptized babies going to hell.


1261 As regards children who have died without Baptism, the Church can only entrust them to the mercy of God, as she does in her funeral rites for them. Indeed, the great mercy of God who desires that all men should be saved, and Jesus' tenderness toward children which caused him to say: "Let the children come to me, do not hinder them,"64 allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism. All the more urgent is the Church's call not to prevent little children coming to Christ through the gift of holy Baptism.


That is your interpretation.  It's not even a pious belief for it has no basis in fact other than what you want to see in the teaching...as an outsider.   That is not how the Church catechizes that teaching.

M.
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« Reply #32 on: May 24, 2011, 09:09:53 PM »


The now abolished teaching of Limbo was better and kinder than the current teaching.

In Limbo souls were said to be in a state of happiness and unaware that there were other states and other degrees of happiness.

The current teaching (see the CCC) states the people may now *hope* that unbaptized babies are in heaven but there is also the likelihood that they are in hell.


Wishful thinking Boss, but no cigar!!


1261 As regards children who have died without Baptism, the Church can only entrust them to the mercy of God, as she does in her funeral rites for them. Indeed, the great mercy of God who desires that all men should be saved, and Jesus' tenderness toward children which caused him to say: "Let the children come to me, do not hinder them,"64 allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism. All the more urgent is the Church's call not to prevent little children coming to Christ through the gift of holy Baptism.


And there is the smoking cigar -allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism.

While Limbo was a guarantee of happiness for unbaptized babies, the new teaching offers only a hope of their salvation.  They could also be in hell.  

Hope is not a mere wish in the teaching of the papal Church, Father.

Hope is the firm expectation, by the power of the Holy Spirit,  of the evidence of things unseen...

Hope is what helps to make faith a power or virtue rather than a pious belief or set of beliefs.

Hope is what works hand in glove with Faith to move the mountain.

Hope is what drives Faith to seek divine Caritas with the full expectation of finding that for which we seek to find.

Here you treat it as a wish...

I have a strong and enduring hope that all humans will be saved, both baptized and unbaptized, babies and children and adults.    Does my hope prevail as fact?  Or is my hope only operative in the case of babies in the womb or a few weeks out of the womb?
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« Reply #33 on: May 24, 2011, 09:16:14 PM »


The now abolished teaching of Limbo was better and kinder than the current teaching.

In Limbo souls were said to be in a state of happiness and unaware that there were other states and other degrees of happiness.

The current teaching (see the CCC) states the people may now *hope* that unbaptized babies are in heaven but there is also the likelihood that they are in hell.


Wishful thinking Boss, but no cigar!!


1261 As regards children who have died without Baptism, the Church can only entrust them to the mercy of God, as she does in her funeral rites for them. Indeed, the great mercy of God who desires that all men should be saved, and Jesus' tenderness toward children which caused him to say: "Let the children come to me, do not hinder them,"64 allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism. All the more urgent is the Church's call not to prevent little children coming to Christ through the gift of holy Baptism.


And there is the smoking cigar -allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism.

While Limbo was a guarantee of happiness for unbaptized babies, the new teaching offers only a hope of their salvation.  They could also be in hell.  

Hope is not a mere wish in the teaching of the papal Church, Father.

Hope is the firm expectation, by the power of the Holy Spirit,  of the evidence of things unseen...

Hope is what helps to make faith a power or virtue rather than a pious belief or set of beliefs.

Hope is what works hand in glove with Faith to move the mountain.

Hope is what drives Faith to seek divine Caritas with the full expectation of finding that for which we seek to find.

Here you treat it as a wish...

I have a strong and enduring hope that all humans will be saved, both baptized and unbaptized, babies and children and adults.    Does my hope prevail as fact?  Or is my hope only operative in the case of babies in the womb or a few weeks out of the womb?

Unlike babes, infants, toddlers and the very young'ns, adults are perfectly capable of the decision to reject God through all eternity. 

There is no irresistible grace in the presence of a will and intellect that are free and capable.

So you figure the odds: and keep on hoping...

M.
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« Reply #34 on: May 24, 2011, 09:22:42 PM »


The now abolished teaching of Limbo was better and kinder than the current teaching.

In Limbo souls were said to be in a state of happiness and unaware that there were other states and other degrees of happiness.

The current teaching (see the CCC) states the people may now *hope* that unbaptized babies are in heaven but there is also the likelihood that they are in hell.


Wishful thinking Boss, but no cigar!!


1261 As regards children who have died without Baptism, the Church can only entrust them to the mercy of God, as she does in her funeral rites for them. Indeed, the great mercy of God who desires that all men should be saved, and Jesus' tenderness toward children which caused him to say: "Let the children come to me, do not hinder them,"64 allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism. All the more urgent is the Church's call not to prevent little children coming to Christ through the gift of holy Baptism.


And there is the smoking cigar -allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism.

While Limbo was a guarantee of happiness for unbaptized babies, the new teaching offers only a hope of their salvation.  They could also be in hell.  

Hope is not a mere wish in the teaching of the papal Church, Father.

Hope is the firm expectation, by the power of the Holy Spirit,  of the evidence of things unseen...

Hope is what helps to make faith a power or virtue rather than a pious belief or set of beliefs.

Hope is what works hand in glove with Faith to move the mountain.

Hope is what drives Faith to seek divine Caritas with the full expectation of finding that for which we seek to find.

Here you treat it as a wish...

I have a strong and enduring hope that all humans will be saved, both baptized and unbaptized, babies and children and adults.    Does my hope prevail as fact?  Or is my hope only operative in the case of babies in the womb or a few weeks out of the womb?

Unlike babes, infants, toddlers and the very young'ns, adults are perfectly capable of the decision to reject God through all eternity.  

There is no irresistible grace in the presence of a will and intellect that are free and capable.

So you figure the odds: and keep on hoping...

M.

At what age does an unbaptized human loose the right (the hope) of guaranteed salvation?   Six or seven years? Older?
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« Reply #35 on: May 24, 2011, 09:28:57 PM »


The now abolished teaching of Limbo was better and kinder than the current teaching.

In Limbo souls were said to be in a state of happiness and unaware that there were other states and other degrees of happiness.

The current teaching (see the CCC) states the people may now *hope* that unbaptized babies are in heaven but there is also the likelihood that they are in hell.


Wishful thinking Boss, but no cigar!!


1261 As regards children who have died without Baptism, the Church can only entrust them to the mercy of God, as she does in her funeral rites for them. Indeed, the great mercy of God who desires that all men should be saved, and Jesus' tenderness toward children which caused him to say: "Let the children come to me, do not hinder them,"64 allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism. All the more urgent is the Church's call not to prevent little children coming to Christ through the gift of holy Baptism.


And there is the smoking cigar -allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism.

While Limbo was a guarantee of happiness for unbaptized babies, the new teaching offers only a hope of their salvation.  They could also be in hell.  

Hope is not a mere wish in the teaching of the papal Church, Father.

Hope is the firm expectation, by the power of the Holy Spirit,  of the evidence of things unseen...

Hope is what helps to make faith a power or virtue rather than a pious belief or set of beliefs.

Hope is what works hand in glove with Faith to move the mountain.

Hope is what drives Faith to seek divine Caritas with the full expectation of finding that for which we seek to find.

Here you treat it as a wish...

I have a strong and enduring hope that all humans will be saved, both baptized and unbaptized, babies and children and adults.    Does my hope prevail as fact?  Or is my hope only operative in the case of babies in the womb or a few weeks out of the womb?

Unlike babes, infants, toddlers and the very young'ns, adults are perfectly capable of the decision to reject God through all eternity. 

There is no irresistible grace in the presence of a will and intellect that are free and capable.

So you figure the odds: and keep on hoping...

M.

At what age does an unbaptized human loose the right (the hope) of guaranteed salavtion?   Six or seven years? Older?

Wrong question.

Real question is: At what stage of our development as sons and daughters of God are we finally capable of freely and knowingly choosing whether or not to reject God.

For those who do so freely and knowing reject God are the only ones who will ever be in Hell for eternity...

Who fits that criteria?  Can we ever know for sure or is that God's alone to know?

Well then...as I said:  Keep right on hoping!!

The only ones who will not fulfill your hope are those who freely choose not to do so.  God will never force them.
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« Reply #36 on: May 24, 2011, 09:39:43 PM »


The now abolished teaching of Limbo was better and kinder than the current teaching.

In Limbo souls were said to be in a state of happiness and unaware that there were other states and other degrees of happiness.

The current teaching (see the CCC) states the people may now *hope* that unbaptized babies are in heaven but there is also the likelihood that they are in hell.


Wishful thinking Boss, but no cigar!!


1261 As regards children who have died without Baptism, the Church can only entrust them to the mercy of God, as she does in her funeral rites for them. Indeed, the great mercy of God who desires that all men should be saved, and Jesus' tenderness toward children which caused him to say: "Let the children come to me, do not hinder them,"64 allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism. All the more urgent is the Church's call not to prevent little children coming to Christ through the gift of holy Baptism.


And there is the smoking cigar -allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism.

While Limbo was a guarantee of happiness for unbaptized babies, the new teaching offers only a hope of their salvation.  They could also be in hell.  

Hope is not a mere wish in the teaching of the papal Church, Father.

Hope is the firm expectation, by the power of the Holy Spirit,  of the evidence of things unseen...

Hope is what helps to make faith a power or virtue rather than a pious belief or set of beliefs.

Hope is what works hand in glove with Faith to move the mountain.

Hope is what drives Faith to seek divine Caritas with the full expectation of finding that for which we seek to find.

Here you treat it as a wish...

I have a strong and enduring hope that all humans will be saved, both baptized and unbaptized, babies and children and adults.    Does my hope prevail as fact?  Or is my hope only operative in the case of babies in the womb or a few weeks out of the womb?

Unlike babes, infants, toddlers and the very young'ns, adults are perfectly capable of the decision to reject God through all eternity. 

There is no irresistible grace in the presence of a will and intellect that are free and capable.

So you figure the odds: and keep on hoping...

M.

At what age does an unbaptized human loose the right (the hope) of guaranteed salavtion?   Six or seven years? Older?

Wrong question.

Real question is: At what stage of our development as sons and daughters of God are we finally capable of freely and knowingly choosing whether or not to reject God.

For those who do so freely and knowing reject God are the only ones who will ever be in Hell for eternity...

Who fits that criteria?  Can we ever know for sure or is that God's alone to know?

Well then...as I said:  Keep right on hoping!!

The only ones who will not fulfill your hope are those who freely choose not to do so.  God will never force them.

I understand that Catholics posit this at around seven years.

The joyous teaching then is that all children who die under the age of seven no matter their religion or lack of any religion are saved.
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« Reply #37 on: May 24, 2011, 10:13:34 PM »

If you ever decide to stop answering your own questions, Father:


Wrong question.

Real question is: At what stage of our development as sons and daughters of God are we finally capable of freely and knowingly choosing whether or not to reject God.

For those who do so freely and knowing reject God are the only ones who will ever be in Hell for eternity...

Who fits that criteria?  Can we ever know for sure or is that God's alone to know?

Well then...as I said:  Keep right on hoping!!

The only ones who will not fulfill your hope are those who freely choose not to do so.  God will never force them.

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« Reply #38 on: May 24, 2011, 11:05:24 PM »

If you ever decide to stop answering your own questions, Father:


OK, I'll answer yours then.


Wrong question.

Real question is: At what stage of our development as sons and daughters of God are we finally capable of freely and knowingly choosing whether or not to reject God.

In Western underestanding when the age of reason arrives at about the age of seven.  Up until then no child or young person is able to sin and consequently whether baptized or not has heaven for their destination if they should die before the age of reason dawns.

For those who do so freely and knowing reject God are the only ones who will ever be in Hell for eternity...

Who fits that criteria? 

The Catholic Church says that those who are in a state of mortal sin fit that criteria.

Can we ever know for sure or is that God's alone to know?

Well then...as I said:  Keep right on hoping!!

The only ones who will not fulfill your hope are those who freely choose not to do so.  God will never force them.

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« Reply #39 on: May 24, 2011, 11:13:31 PM »

Even with those people, public figures, who persist in behaviors and words that are clearly objectively and gravely evil, even when the Church may excommunicate an individual for egregious behaviors and persistent scandal, she NEVER makes any kind of determination about the soul of that individual.

So for all practical purposes, your argument here is empty of any useful spiritual, catechetical or sacramental content...empty words.

If you ever decide to stop answering your own questions, Father:


OK, I'll answer yours then.


Wrong question.

Real question is: At what stage of our development as sons and daughters of God are we finally capable of freely and knowingly choosing whether or not to reject God.

In Western underestanding when the age of reason arrives at about the age of seven.  Up until then no child or young person is able to sin and consequently whether baptized or not has heaven for their destination if they should die before the age of reason dawns.

For those who do so freely and knowing reject God are the only ones who will ever be in Hell for eternity...

Who fits that criteria? 

The Catholic Church says that those who are in a state of mortal sin fit that criteria.

Can we ever know for sure or is that God's alone to know?

Well then...as I said:  Keep right on hoping!!

The only ones who will not fulfill your hope are those who freely choose not to do so.  God will never force them.

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« Reply #40 on: May 24, 2011, 11:19:29 PM »

Even with those people, public figures, who persist in behaviors and words that are clearly objectively and gravely evil, even when the Church may excommunicate an individual for egregious behaviors and persistent scandal, she NEVER makes any kind of determination about the soul of that individual.

So for all practical purposes, your argument here is empty of any useful spiritual, catechetical or sacramental content...empty words.

Never mind.  I don't mind if you disagree.  The Catholic Catechism agrees with me.

1861 "Mortal sin .. causes exclusion from Christ's kingdom and the eternal death of hell..."

If you ever decide to stop answering your own questions, Father:


OK, I'll answer yours then.


Wrong question.

Real question is: At what stage of our development as sons and daughters of God are we finally capable of freely and knowingly choosing whether or not to reject God.

In Western underestanding when the age of reason arrives at about the age of seven.  Up until then no child or young person is able to sin and consequently whether baptized or not has heaven for their destination if they should die before the age of reason dawns.

For those who do so freely and knowing reject God are the only ones who will ever be in Hell for eternity...

Who fits that criteria? 

The Catholic Church says that those who are in a state of mortal sin fit that criteria.

Can we ever know for sure or is that God's alone to know?

Well then...as I said:  Keep right on hoping!!

The only ones who will not fulfill your hope are those who freely choose not to do so.  God will never force them.

[/quote]
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« Reply #41 on: May 25, 2011, 08:39:17 AM »

So, about them thar Toll Houses. Kinda like Purgatory in the Father's description, eh?
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« Reply #42 on: May 25, 2011, 08:55:41 AM »

So, about them thar Toll Houses. Kinda like Purgatory in the Father's description, eh?

1.   Purgatory is for two things; purification and the expiation of the temporal punishment due to sin.

Toll houses are not for purification or expiation but for judgement.


2.   Purgatory can last for millennia or the equivalent of.

Toll houses are over in 3 earth days or 40 earth days.... tollers are not sure on the time frame.


3.   Purgatory is in some way a happy place since you know if you are there you will get to heaven in the end.

Toll houses are awful places since there's no certainty if you will be saved or damned.


5.  There are no demons in Purgatory.

The toll houses are swamped with demons and black Ethiopians.
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« Reply #43 on: May 25, 2011, 09:01:50 AM »

Even with those people, public figures, who persist in behaviors and words that are clearly objectively and gravely evil, even when the Church may excommunicate an individual for egregious behaviors and persistent scandal, she NEVER makes any kind of determination about the soul of that individual.

So for all practical purposes, your argument here is empty of any useful spiritual, catechetical or sacramental content...empty words.

Never mind.  I don't mind if you disagree.  The Catholic Catechism agrees with me.

1861 "Mortal sin .. causes exclusion from Christ's kingdom and the eternal death of hell..."


No.  There are criteria for an objectively mortal sin and you can go back to one of my original posts here, and see what those criteria are.  So you have added nothing here but more words.  No meaning.  Just words.  Teaching the faith requires meaning as well as words.

More than that, although one can identify grave matter, it is quite something else to identify full consent of the will, which also requires clear illumination of the intellect so that one knows what one is willing.

The Church does not discern that person to person.  That is why WE approach Confession.  It is not something that the Church asserts about us.

So as I said above...you are not adding anything here that is illuminating concerning the inhabitants of hell, and how they got there.
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« Reply #44 on: May 25, 2011, 09:04:57 AM »

So, about them thar Toll Houses. Kinda like Purgatory in the Father's description, eh?

1.   Purgatory is for two things; purification and the expiation of the temporal punishment due to sin.


False.  These are not separate "thingies"...They are two different ways of talking about the same thing.
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« Reply #45 on: May 25, 2011, 09:09:52 AM »


2.   Purgatory can last for millennia or the equivalent of.

Toll houses are over in 3 earth days or 40 earth days.... tollers are not sure on the time frame.


Catholic Church teaches that there is no "time" outside of historical time that we can measure.

These "timing" issues are the anthropology of pious beliefs rather than any part of the core teaching of the doctrine of purgation.  They have a source in the case of the eastern death cycle, but they are nonetheless pious practices, not expressions of revealed doctrine...I speak from the western point of view to you here since you are quick to remind me that Orthodoxy has no doctrine or dogma outside of the First Seven General Councils.
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« Reply #46 on: May 25, 2011, 09:11:45 AM »



3.   Purgatory is in some way a happy place since you know if you are there you will get to heaven in the end.

Toll houses are awful places since there's no certainty if you will be saved or damned.


5.  There are no demons in Purgatory.

The toll houses are swamped with demons and black Ethiopians.

4 is missing.

3 is more pious anthropology

5 borders on racism so I'll leave that alone entirely.
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« Reply #47 on: June 06, 2011, 02:25:46 PM »

The idea of toll houses bothers me. It sounds blasphemous to believe that we will be judged by various demons rather than Jesus Christ. They don't have the authority to judge souls. Thank goodness it is just a theological opinion in Eastern Orthodoxy rather than official doctrine or dogma.
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« Reply #48 on: June 06, 2011, 03:00:43 PM »

Starting such a thread the FI was a great idea, just like a plastic kettle. I've moved it here.
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« Reply #49 on: June 06, 2011, 04:29:41 PM »


2.   Purgatory can last for millennia or the equivalent of.

Toll houses are over in 3 earth days or 40 earth days.... tollers are not sure on the time frame.


Catholic Church teaches that there is no "time" outside of historical time that we can measure.

These "timing" issues are the anthropology of pious beliefs rather than any part of the core teaching of the doctrine of purgation.  They have a source in the case of the eastern death cycle, but they are nonetheless pious practices, not expressions of revealed doctrine...I speak from the western point of view to you here since you are quick to remind me that Orthodoxy has no doctrine or dogma outside of the First Seven General Councils.

But I would never ever say such a thing!  The teachings of Orthodoxy are in the Bible, especially the New Testament, the Ecumenical Councils, the patristic writings, the liturgy, etc.   It is completely inaccurate to say that our teachings are found only in the Ecumenical Councils.  If that were the case then a multitude of beliefs such as the Real Presence and the Assumption would be reduced to uncertainties.

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« Reply #50 on: June 06, 2011, 04:41:40 PM »



3.   Purgatory is in some way a happy place since you know if you are there you will get to heaven in the end.

Toll houses are awful places since there's no certainty if you will be saved or damned.


5.  There are no demons in Purgatory.

The toll houses are swamped with demons and black Ethiopians.

4 is missing.

3 is more pious anthropology

5 borders on racism so I'll leave that alone entirely.

Unfortunately (5) is part of the divine revelation given by the Angels and Saint Theodora.   I was surprised in the recent toll house thread that toll house adherents stated that this narrative by Saint Theodora is dogma since it is included in the third volume of Saint Justin Popovic's "Dogmatics of the Orthodox Church.

http://web.archive.org/web/20070205011054/http://essenes.net/theo.html
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« Reply #51 on: June 06, 2011, 06:29:37 PM »


The now abolished teaching of Limbo was better and kinder than the current teaching.

In Limbo souls were said to be in a state of happiness and unaware that there were other states and other degrees of happiness.

The current teaching (see the CCC) states the people may now *hope* that unbaptized babies are in heaven but there is also the likelihood that they are in hell.

That was never an official teaching of the Church. Actually, the Church has never made any official teaching about a place called Limbo.
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« Reply #52 on: June 06, 2011, 06:48:33 PM »


The now abolished teaching of Limbo was better and kinder than the current teaching.

In Limbo souls were said to be in a state of happiness and unaware that there were other states and other degrees of happiness.

The current teaching (see the CCC) states the people may now *hope* that unbaptized babies are in heaven but there is also the likelihood that they are in hell.

That was never an official teaching of the Church. Actually, the Church has never made any official teaching about a place called Limbo.

I've mentioned this before that it appals the Orthodox that Roman Catholics are willing to trash Tradition (what has been believed and taught and handed down by bishops and priests and faithful for hundreds of years.)   In place of a vibrant Tradition the faith is reduced to the level of "official" teaching promulgated by a backroom Magisterium.  At any time any belief, even one hundreds of years old, may be swept away if it has never had an "official" promulgation.   This reduces the role of the laity in safequarding the tradition to zero. 
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« Reply #53 on: June 06, 2011, 08:14:03 PM »


I've mentioned this before that it appals the Orthodox that Roman Catholics are willing to trash Tradition (what has been believed and taught and handed down by bishops and priests and faithful for hundreds of years.)   In place of a vibrant Tradition the faith is reduced to the level of "official" teaching promulgated by a backroom Magisterium.  At any time any belief, even one hundreds of years old, may be swept away if it has never had an "official" promulgation.   This reduces the role of the laity in safequarding the tradition to zero. 


Limbo was never part of Tradition. It was proposed by St. Augustine (the same theologian, btw, who declared that infants in the womb didn't receive souls until 40 days after conception) as a possible answer to the question of unbaptized infants that die. But it was never part of an official teaching, and certainly not part of Tradition.
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« Reply #54 on: June 06, 2011, 08:25:18 PM »


I've mentioned this before that it appals the Orthodox that Roman Catholics are willing to trash Tradition (what has been believed and taught and handed down by bishops and priests and faithful for hundreds of years.)   In place of a vibrant Tradition the faith is reduced to the level of "official" teaching promulgated by a backroom Magisterium.  At any time any belief, even one hundreds of years old, may be swept away if it has never had an "official" promulgation.   This reduces the role of the laity in safequarding the tradition to zero. 


Limbo was never part of Tradition. It was proposed by St. Augustine (the same theologian, btw, who declared that infants in the womb didn't receive souls until 40 days after conception) as a possible answer to the question of unbaptized infants that die. But it was never part of an official teaching, and certainly not part of Tradition.

Sometimes the Catholic way of argumentation is quite destructive of the Faith.  Having seemingly lost faith in the Tradition they now appeal only to those things which have been dogmatized by a Pope or by the Magisterium..

How does that work out?   The belief in the Real Presence was not dogmatized until the Council of Trent in the mid-16th century.  Prior to that no Pope had seen fit to dogmatize it.   So for 1,500 years Catholics were presumably able to accept or to deny the Real Presence. 

I don't think that your appeal to "we don't have to believe it if it is not dogmatized" is going to help Catholics maintain the Faith.
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« Reply #55 on: June 06, 2011, 08:31:45 PM »


The now abolished teaching of Limbo was better and kinder than the current teaching.

In Limbo souls were said to be in a state of happiness and unaware that there were other states and other degrees of happiness.

The current teaching (see the CCC) states the people may now *hope* that unbaptized babies are in heaven but there is also the likelihood that they are in hell.

That was never an official teaching of the Church. Actually, the Church has never made any official teaching about a place called Limbo.

I've mentioned this before that it appals the Orthodox that Roman Catholics are willing to trash Tradition (what has been believed and taught and handed down by bishops and priests and faithful for hundreds of years.)   In place of a vibrant Tradition the faith is reduced to the level of "official" teaching promulgated by a backroom Magisterium.  At any time any belief, even one hundreds of years old, may be swept away if it has never had an "official" promulgation.   This reduces the role of the laity in safequarding the tradition to zero. 
It isn't the job of the laity to safeguard Tradition.
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« Reply #56 on: June 06, 2011, 08:42:06 PM »


The now abolished teaching of Limbo was better and kinder than the current teaching.

In Limbo souls were said to be in a state of happiness and unaware that there were other states and other degrees of happiness.

The current teaching (see the CCC) states the people may now *hope* that unbaptized babies are in heaven but there is also the likelihood that they are in hell.

That was never an official teaching of the Church. Actually, the Church has never made any official teaching about a place called Limbo.

I've mentioned this before that it appals the Orthodox that Roman Catholics are willing to trash Tradition (what has been believed and taught and handed down by bishops and priests and faithful for hundreds of years.)   In place of a vibrant Tradition the faith is reduced to the level of "official" teaching promulgated by a backroom Magisterium.  At any time any belief, even one hundreds of years old, may be swept away if it has never had an "official" promulgation.   This reduces the role of the laity in safequarding the tradition to zero. 
It isn't the job of the laity to safeguard Tradition.

Phew! That's a major plank of orthodox theology, going right back to Saint Paul. 2 Thessalonians 2:15.

Sorting this out will be real fun at the international dialogue.

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« Reply #57 on: June 06, 2011, 09:37:04 PM »


Sometimes the Catholic way of argumentation is quite destructive of the Faith.  Having seemingly lost faith in the Tradition they now appeal only to those things which have been dogmatized by a Pope or by the Magisterium..

How does that work out?   The belief in the Real Presence was not dogmatized until the Council of Trent in the mid-16th century.  Prior to that no Pope had seen fit to dogmatize it.   So for 1,500 years Catholics were presumably able to accept or to deny the Real Presence. 

First of all, that's not true: the Eucharistic presence of Jesus was affirmed in many councils before that (see the Roman Council VI, Council of Lyon, Council of Constance, etc). Even before these councils, the Real Presence went hand-in-hand with the faith as a basic fact of Christianity and was affirmed by scores of Popes, Saints, and Theologians. Limbo, on the other hand, was vaguley proposed by a few scattered people in the vast history of the Church and was NEVER held in such a high regard as the Real Presence.

Quote
I don't think that your appeal to "we don't have to believe it if it is not dogmatized" is going to help Catholics maintain the Faith.

What about the reverse? "We should believe it, even if it's not dogmatized" - Is that, in every situation, better? That's how you get people declaring their own saints (St. Gandhi, anyone?), among much more serious abuses.

To be honest, the lack of dogmatic foundation is one of the main reasons why I left protestantism. Nobody could standardize any dogma (since anyone who disagreed would just found another church), and as a result, everybody believed something different. What a flood of erroneous opinions came into Christianity, when nobody had the power to set any belief in stone!
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« Reply #58 on: June 06, 2011, 11:08:34 PM »

To be honest, the lack of dogmatic foundation is one of the main reasons why I left protestantism. Nobody could standardize any dogma (since anyone who disagreed would just found another church), and as a result, everybody believed something different. What a flood of erroneous opinions came into Christianity, when nobody had the power to set any belief in stone!

Trying to draw parallels between Orthodoxy and Protestantism just doesn't work.

Pope Benedict himself agrees that without the papacy and without the Magisterium we have kept the faith intact.   

Pope Benedict::

"While the West may point to the absence of the office of Peter in the East—it
must, nevertheless, admit that, in the Eastern Church, the form and content of
the Church of the Fathers is present in unbroken continuity"


~"Principles of Catholic Theology," Cardinal Ratzinger, Ignatius Press, 1987.

Unwittingly the Pope has proclaimed that the papacy is not necessary for the preservation of the true faith.

The Orthodox steadfast witness and adherence to the Apostolic faith since Rome parted company with us is startling proof that neither the Papacy nor the Magisterium (seen as so essential by Rome) are at all necessary for the preservation of the Faith.
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« Reply #59 on: June 07, 2011, 02:04:39 AM »

Quote from: David Bentley Hart
"...The Eastern church believes in sanctification after death, and perhaps the doctrine of Purgatory really asserts nothing more than that; but Rome has also traditionally spoken of it as 'temporal punishment', which the pope may in whole or part remit...

[The Orthodox view of salvation/theosis is not] merely a forensic imputation of sinlessness to a sinful creature; it is a real glorification and organic transfiguration of the creature in Christ, one which never violates the integrity of our creatureliness, but which - by causing us to progress from sin to righteousness - really makes us partakers of the divine nature.

Very well then: what then could it mean to remit purgation? Why, if it is sanctification, would one want such remission, and would it not then involve instead the very magical transformation of the creature into something beyond itself that the Orthodox and Catholic Churches both deny? These are not, granted, unanswerable questions, but they are questions as yet unanswered, and there is a genuine need for a serious engagement on what the doctrinal formulation regarding sanctification after death should be, and whether Roman and Orthodox traditions can be reconciled in a more than superficial way on this one issue"
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« Reply #60 on: June 07, 2011, 03:39:09 AM »


....they are questions as yet unanswered, and there is a genuine need for a serious engagement on what the doctrinal formulation regarding sanctification after death should be
 

I believe there is no such need.  We have never needed it in 2000 years of our existence.  We have no church authority,clerical or lay, empowered to formulate new doctrine for the Church.   The Russian bishops have formally stated that we know about the afterlife only the very little revealed by Christ.  Beyond that, they say,  it is only conjecture.
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« Reply #61 on: June 07, 2011, 07:52:27 AM »


The now abolished teaching of Limbo was better and kinder than the current teaching.

In Limbo souls were said to be in a state of happiness and unaware that there were other states and other degrees of happiness.

The current teaching (see the CCC) states the people may now *hope* that unbaptized babies are in heaven but there is also the likelihood that they are in hell.

That was never an official teaching of the Church. Actually, the Church has never made any official teaching about a place called Limbo.

I've mentioned this before that it appals the Orthodox that Roman Catholics are willing to trash Tradition (what has been believed and taught and handed down by bishops and priests and faithful for hundreds of years.)   In place of a vibrant Tradition the faith is reduced to the level of "official" teaching promulgated by a backroom Magisterium.  At any time any belief, even one hundreds of years old, may be swept away if it has never had an "official" promulgation.   This reduces the role of the laity in safequarding the tradition to zero. 
It isn't the job of the laity to safeguard Tradition.

They is not true Wyatt.  It is indeed the role of the laity in the Catholic Church to safeguard and assist the bishops in promulgating Tradition.  However it is not the laity's role to define revealed truth and there certainly is a difference between piety and doctrinal teaching, a not-always-clearly delineated difference between anthropology and theology...or the way we see the truth and the truth itself.  It is the role of our bishops to assist us in coming ever closer to the truth itself, however dim the glass may be.

It can be difficult enough to sort out without Father Ambrose's fingers in the pie, but the bottom line is that the laity, as members of the Body, are certainly charged with safeguarding the truth to the best of their ability.
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« Reply #62 on: June 07, 2011, 08:07:10 AM »


The now abolished teaching of Limbo was better and kinder than the current teaching.

In Limbo souls were said to be in a state of happiness and unaware that there were other states and other degrees of happiness.

The current teaching (see the CCC) states the people may now *hope* that unbaptized babies are in heaven but there is also the likelihood that they are in hell.

That was never an official teaching of the Church. Actually, the Church has never made any official teaching about a place called Limbo.

I've mentioned this before that it appals the Orthodox that Roman Catholics are willing to trash Tradition (what has been believed and taught and handed down by bishops and priests and faithful for hundreds of years.)   In place of a vibrant Tradition the faith is reduced to the level of "official" teaching promulgated by a backroom Magisterium.  At any time any belief, even one hundreds of years old, may be swept away if it has never had an "official" promulgation.   This reduces the role of the laity in safequarding the tradition to zero. 
It isn't the job of the laity to safeguard Tradition.
We must however have in mind that there is a great difference in  the role of the laity, in many respects.

For example, Ecumenical Councils need the affirmation of the faithful in order to received in the Church.

By way of contrast, teachings promulgated by the Pope and the Magisterium and Catholic General Councils are sufficient unto themselves.  The faithful are obliged to give assent of the mind and will.

We see in this an indication of the difference in the work and responsibilities of the laity in the Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church.

-------------------------------
By the way, statements such as "It can be difficult enough to sort out without Father Ambrose's fingers in the pie" are unhelpful and untrue.


They is not true Wyatt.  It is indeed the role of the laity in the Catholic Church to safeguard and assist the bishops in promulgating Tradition.  However it is not the laity's role to define revealed truth and there certainly is a difference between piety and doctrinal teaching, a not-always-clearly delineated difference between anthropology and theology...or the way we see the truth and the truth itself.  It is the role of our bishops to assist us in coming ever closer to the truth itself, however dim the glass may be.

It can be difficult enough to sort out without Father Ambrose's fingers in the pie, but the bottom line is that the laity, as members of the Body, are certainly charged with safeguarding the truth to the best of their ability.

We must however have in mind that there is a great difference in  the role of the laity, in many respects.

For example, Ecumenical Councils need the affirmation of the faithful in order to received in the Church.

By way of contrast, teachings promulgated by the Pope and the Magisterium and Catholic General Councils are sufficient unto themselves.  The faithful are obliged to give assent of the mind and will.

We see in this an indication of the difference in the work and responsibilities of the laity in the Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church.

-------------------------------
By the way, statements such as "It can be difficult enough to sort out without Father Ambrose's fingers in the pie" are unhelpful and untrue.

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« Reply #63 on: June 07, 2011, 08:18:05 AM »


By the way, statements such as "It can be difficult enough to sort out without Father Ambrose's fingers in the pie" are unhelpful and untrue.


We are allowed to disagree...We'll both live long and prosper in any event... Smiley
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« Reply #64 on: June 07, 2011, 08:23:23 AM »


By the way, statements such as "It can be difficult enough to sort out without Father Ambrose's fingers in the pie" are unhelpful and untrue.


We are allowed to disagree...We'll both live long and prosper in any event... Smiley

This little leprechaun should be going home in about two years if the cardiologist is any good with his prognostications.   laugh
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« Reply #65 on: June 07, 2011, 08:27:09 AM »


We must however have in mind that there is a great difference in  the role of the laity, in many respects.

For example, Ecumenical Councils need the affirmation of the faithful in order to received in the Church.

By way of contrast, teachings promulgated by the Pope and the Magisterium and Catholic General Councils are sufficient unto themselves.  The faithful are obliged to give assent of the mind and will.

I am afraid that you've not spent enough...non-selective...time in the documents of the Catholic Church.  There is not quite the "contrast" that you present here.  
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« Reply #66 on: June 07, 2011, 08:29:35 AM »


By the way, statements such as "It can be difficult enough to sort out without Father Ambrose's fingers in the pie" are unhelpful and untrue.


We are allowed to disagree...We'll both live long and prosper in any event... Smiley

This little leprechaun should be going home in about two years if the cardiologist is any good with his prognostications.   laugh

Well that is not a happy thought.  Who will I snort at then?  Who will send me smilies with hearts of many colors?  Is there naught that can be done to prolong your miserable life? 

PS: we were preparing my 80 year old mother for a colon resection last Friday when she fell and broke her hip in multiple places.  So now that heals, she gets on her feet and we then knock her right back down.  She is the other person that I snort at periodically.  I may have to become sainted if all my muses go home before me.
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« Reply #67 on: June 07, 2011, 08:40:14 AM »


We must however have in mind that there is a great difference in  the role of the laity, in many respects.

For example, Ecumenical Councils need the affirmation of the faithful in order to received in the Church.

By way of contrast, teachings promulgated by the Pope and the Magisterium and Catholic General Councils are sufficient unto themselves.  The faithful are obliged to give assent of the mind and will.

I am afraid that you've not spent enough...non-selective...time in the documents of the Catholic Church.  There is not quite the "contrast" that you present here.  

There is simply nobody in our Church to whose teaching the faithful are required to give submission of the mind and will.

But let's look at what is taught by Vatican II and the Pope in Lumen Gentium....

Whether they qualify as technically de fide or not by reason of the "we believe, state, proclaim and define... to the whole Church", papal statements still cannot be denied by Catholics.

There is a requirement to give assent to the teachings of the Pope, even when he is not speaking ex cathedra.  I find that quite interesting. 
 
"This religious submission of mind and will must be shown in a special way to the authentic magisterium of the Roman Pontiff, even when he is not speaking ex cathedra; that is, it must be shown in such a way that his supreme magisterium is acknowledged with reverence, the judgments made by him are sincerely adhered to, according to his manifest mind and will.”
~Dogmatic Constitution on the Church #25

Now Lumen Gentium, the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, is one of the principal documents of the Second Vatican Council. The Constitution was promulgated by Pope Paul VI on November 21, 1964, following approval by the assembled bishops by a vote of 2,151 to 5. 

Whether one posits infallibility in Ecumenical Councils or Popes or both, this document is ungainsayable on all counts, and the Pope was most certainly exercising his magisterial authority.  In other words, Catholics must give assent of mind and will to all papal teachings.
 
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« Reply #68 on: June 07, 2011, 09:12:21 AM »


We must however have in mind that there is a great difference in  the role of the laity, in many respects.

For example, Ecumenical Councils need the affirmation of the faithful in order to received in the Church.

By way of contrast, teachings promulgated by the Pope and the Magisterium and Catholic General Councils are sufficient unto themselves.  The faithful are obliged to give assent of the mind and will.

I am afraid that you've not spent enough...non-selective...time in the documents of the Catholic Church.  There is not quite the "contrast" that you present here.  

There is simply nobody in our Church to whose teaching the faithful are required to give submission of the mind and will.


So when the bishops says "X" you all are free to ignore him and say "X" or "Z" or "Q"
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« Reply #69 on: June 07, 2011, 09:21:53 AM »

But let's look at what is taught by Vatican II and the Pope in Lumen Gentium....

Whether they qualify as technically de fide or not by reason of the "we believe, state, proclaim and define... to the whole Church", papal statements still cannot be denied by Catholics.

There is a requirement to give assent to the teachings of the Pope, even when he is not speaking ex cathedra.  I find that quite interesting. 
 
"This religious submission of mind and will must be shown in a special way to the authentic magisterium of the Roman Pontiff, even when he is not speaking ex cathedra; that is, it must be shown in such a way that his supreme magisterium is acknowledged with reverence, the judgments made by him are sincerely adhered to, according to his manifest mind and will.”
~Dogmatic Constitution on the Church #25

Now Lumen Gentium, the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, is one of the principal documents of the Second Vatican Council. The Constitution was promulgated by Pope Paul VI on November 21, 1964, following approval by the assembled bishops by a vote of 2,151 to 5. 

Whether one posits infallibility in Ecumenical Councils or Popes or both, this document is ungainsayable on all counts, and the Pope was most certainly exercising his magisterial authority.  In other words, Catholics must give assent of mind and will to all papal teachings.

Kind of makes one question the way Vatican II is usually imagined.
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« Reply #70 on: June 07, 2011, 10:39:32 AM »

To be honest, the lack of dogmatic foundation is one of the main reasons why I left protestantism. Nobody could standardize any dogma (since anyone who disagreed would just found another church), and as a result, everybody believed something different. What a flood of erroneous opinions came into Christianity, when nobody had the power to set any belief in stone!

Trying to draw parallels between Orthodoxy and Protestantism just doesn't work.

Pope Benedict himself agrees that without the papacy and without the Magisterium we have kept the faith intact.   

Pope Benedict::

"While the West may point to the absence of the office of Peter in the East—it
must, nevertheless, admit that, in the Eastern Church, the form and content of
the Church of the Fathers is present in unbroken continuity"


~"Principles of Catholic Theology," Cardinal Ratzinger, Ignatius Press, 1987.

Unwittingly the Pope has proclaimed that the papacy is not necessary for the preservation of the true faith.

The Orthodox steadfast witness and adherence to the Apostolic faith since Rome parted company with us is startling proof that neither the Papacy nor the Magisterium (seen as so essential by Rome) are at all necessary for the preservation of the Faith.

Actually, the Pope is a 'smart cookie' as we say and I would not presume to assert that he did so 'unwittingly.'
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« Reply #71 on: June 07, 2011, 10:41:16 AM »


The now abolished teaching of Limbo was better and kinder than the current teaching.

In Limbo souls were said to be in a state of happiness and unaware that there were other states and other degrees of happiness.

The current teaching (see the CCC) states the people may now *hope* that unbaptized babies are in heaven but there is also the likelihood that they are in hell.

That was never an official teaching of the Church. Actually, the Church has never made any official teaching about a place called Limbo.

I've mentioned this before that it appals the Orthodox that Roman Catholics are willing to trash Tradition (what has been believed and taught and handed down by bishops and priests and faithful for hundreds of years.)   In place of a vibrant Tradition the faith is reduced to the level of "official" teaching promulgated by a backroom Magisterium.  At any time any belief, even one hundreds of years old, may be swept away if it has never had an "official" promulgation.   This reduces the role of the laity in safequarding the tradition to zero. 
It isn't the job of the laity to safeguard Tradition.

They is not true Wyatt.  It is indeed the role of the laity in the Catholic Church to safeguard and assist the bishops in promulgating Tradition.  However it is not the laity's role to define revealed truth and there certainly is a difference between piety and doctrinal teaching, a not-always-clearly delineated difference between anthropology and theology...or the way we see the truth and the truth itself.  It is the role of our bishops to assist us in coming ever closer to the truth itself, however dim the glass may be.

It can be difficult enough to sort out without Father Ambrose's fingers in the pie, but the bottom line is that the laity, as members of the Body, are certainly charged with safeguarding the truth to the best of their ability.

Indeed, I think that the issue you identify here is one of the major issues confronting both east and west and has been the case for 1400 years or so.
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« Reply #72 on: June 07, 2011, 01:25:04 PM »


....they are questions as yet unanswered, and there is a genuine need for a serious engagement on what the doctrinal formulation regarding sanctification after death should be
 

I believe there is no such need.  We have never needed it in 2000 years of our existence.  We have no church authority,clerical or lay, empowered to formulate new doctrine for the Church.   The Russian bishops have formally stated that we know about the afterlife only the very little revealed by Christ.  Beyond that, they say,  it is only conjecture.
On that aspect of Hart's comment I do agree with you. I'm personally unsure how the West might effectively "formulate" to erase this disparity unless they de-formulate something in the process Wink

My point of citing the quotation was Hart has his finger on a key disparity (in regards to which no one has yet commented):

"...The Eastern church believes in sanctification after death... but Rome has also traditionally spoken of it as 'temporal punishment', which the pope may in whole or part remit...

[The Orthodox view of salvation/theosis is not] merely a forensic imputation of sinlessness to a sinful creature; it is a real glorification and organic transfiguration of the creature in Christ, one which never violates the integrity of our creatureliness, but which - by causing us to progress from sin to righteousness - really makes us partakers of the divine nature.

Very well then: what then could it mean to remit purgation? Why, if it is sanctification, would one want such remission, and would it not then involve instead the very magical transformation of the creature into something beyond itself that the Orthodox and Catholic Churches both deny?" (D. Hart)
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« Reply #73 on: June 07, 2011, 01:34:48 PM »


....they are questions as yet unanswered, and there is a genuine need for a serious engagement on what the doctrinal formulation regarding sanctification after death should be
 

I believe there is no such need.  We have never needed it in 2000 years of our existence.  We have no church authority,clerical or lay, empowered to formulate new doctrine for the Church.   The Russian bishops have formally stated that we know about the afterlife only the very little revealed by Christ.  Beyond that, they say,  it is only conjecture.
On that aspect of Hart's comment I do agree with you. I'm personally unsure how the West might effectively "formulate" to erase this disparity unless they de-formulate something in the process Wink

My point of citing the quotation was Hart has his finger on a key disparity (in regards to which no one has yet commented):

"...The Eastern church believes in sanctification after death... but Rome has also traditionally spoken of it as 'temporal punishment', which the pope may in whole or part remit...

[The Orthodox view of salvation/theosis is not] merely a forensic imputation of sinlessness to a sinful creature; it is a real glorification and organic transfiguration of the creature in Christ, one which never violates the integrity of our creatureliness, but which - by causing us to progress from sin to righteousness - really makes us partakers of the divine nature.

Very well then: what then could it mean to remit purgation? Why, if it is sanctification, would one want such remission, and would it not then involve instead the very magical transformation of the creature into something beyond itself that the Orthodox and Catholic Churches both deny?" (D. Hart)

I've seen Pugatory and indulgences explained (see Fr. Alvin Kimel's blog) in a way as to maintain the understanding of purification of our souls. In short, purgatory purifies the attachments to sin and relieves us of our broken spirit from the scars our past sins have produced. Indulgences in turn is the church exercising it's ability to give the grace of God to an individual who deliberately seeks it.
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« Reply #74 on: June 07, 2011, 01:50:32 PM »


....they are questions as yet unanswered, and there is a genuine need for a serious engagement on what the doctrinal formulation regarding sanctification after death should be
 

I believe there is no such need.  We have never needed it in 2000 years of our existence.  We have no church authority,clerical or lay, empowered to formulate new doctrine for the Church.   The Russian bishops have formally stated that we know about the afterlife only the very little revealed by Christ.  Beyond that, they say,  it is only conjecture.
On that aspect of Hart's comment I do agree with you. I'm personally unsure how the West might effectively "formulate" to erase this disparity unless they de-formulate something in the process Wink

My point of citing the quotation was Hart has his finger on a key disparity (in regards to which no one has yet commented):

"...The Eastern church believes in sanctification after death... but Rome has also traditionally spoken of it as 'temporal punishment', which the pope may in whole or part remit...

[The Orthodox view of salvation/theosis is not] merely a forensic imputation of sinlessness to a sinful creature; it is a real glorification and organic transfiguration of the creature in Christ, one which never violates the integrity of our creatureliness, but which - by causing us to progress from sin to righteousness - really makes us partakers of the divine nature.

Very well then: what then could it mean to remit purgation? Why, if it is sanctification, would one want such remission, and would it not then involve instead the very magical transformation of the creature into something beyond itself that the Orthodox and Catholic Churches both deny?" (D. Hart)

What are you fellows talking about? 
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« Reply #75 on: June 07, 2011, 10:55:42 PM »


Trying to draw parallels between Orthodoxy and Protestantism just doesn't work.


Comparing them? I never even brought the two into the same sentence. But as long as you mention it, don't you find it a little problematic that two Orthodox priests may give you two completely different answers when you ask them the exact same question? Examples are everywhere over this board - the converts who found priests that required only Chrismation are just one example, the legitimacy of Toll-Houses and use of condoms may be others. As far as gray-area questions go, it seems like the priest has to take on, in his own person, the entirity of what Catholics call the Magisterium - which is exactly what Protestants do, and fail at.

Quote
Pope Benedict himself agrees that without the papacy and without the Magisterium we have kept the faith intact.

In that quote which you provided, he says "form and content" of the Church. That could more easily refer to the style of the liturgy and the practices therein, but he says nothing about "faith" directly.
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« Reply #76 on: June 07, 2011, 11:03:19 PM »


In that quote which you provided, he says "form and content" of the Church. That could more easily refer to the style of the liturgy and the practices therein, but he says nothing about "faith" directly.

Anybody agree with Nero's interpretation of the Pope's words?  I believe the Pope is talking about the faith and not about liturgical practices.

"While the West may point to the absence of the office of Peter in the East—it
must, nevertheless, admit that, in the Eastern Church, the form and content of
the Church of the Fathers is present in unbroken continuity"


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« Reply #77 on: June 07, 2011, 11:04:01 PM »


....they are questions as yet unanswered, and there is a genuine need for a serious engagement on what the doctrinal formulation regarding sanctification after death should be
 

I believe there is no such need.  We have never needed it in 2000 years of our existence.  We have no church authority,clerical or lay, empowered to formulate new doctrine for the Church.   The Russian bishops have formally stated that we know about the afterlife only the very little revealed by Christ.  Beyond that, they say,  it is only conjecture.

Was this often times not the very reason much doctrine was formulated, though? Someone could've very well said in the 4th century, "We don't need to have a council to spell these things out, we've never needed to in the past!"
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« Reply #78 on: June 07, 2011, 11:14:07 PM »


 - the converts who found priests that required only Chrismation are just one example,
 

A priest may even omit Chrismation and receive a person from another Christian Church (such as your own) by a mere Confession of Faith.   However these are not decisions for individual priests;  he has to follow the policy of his bishop
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« Reply #79 on: June 08, 2011, 01:07:14 AM »


....they are questions as yet unanswered, and there is a genuine need for a serious engagement on what the doctrinal formulation regarding sanctification after death should be
 

I believe there is no such need.  We have never needed it in 2000 years of our existence.  We have no church authority,clerical or lay, empowered to formulate new doctrine for the Church.   The Russian bishops have formally stated that we know about the afterlife only the very little revealed by Christ.  Beyond that, they say,  it is only conjecture.

Was this often times not the very reason much doctrine was formulated, though? Someone could've very well said in the 4th century, "We don't need to have a council to spell these things out, we've never needed to in the past!"


.
Councils addressed the aspects of the faith -trinitarian, christological, pneumatological- which were currently in danger from heretical teachings.

Having dealt with the heresy threatening the Church the Councils dissolved.  They are extraordinary irruptions from the other world into the life of the Church, the work of the Spirit, in safeguarding the teaching of Christ and His path to salvation.

For the last 1200 years the Church has had no need to call further Councils.  Heresies which have come along have been localised and have been dealt with by local Synods and local Churches.

So, the teaching authority of the Church -which is the Tradition and the Spirit who flows within it- has flowed on quietly for centuries since the last Great Council in 787.

If we should be faced by a new church-wide heresy, then the Church will probably combat it again by convening an Ecumenical Council.  But in the absence of the need to combat widespread and major heresy threatening the Church it could be counterproductive for the Church to set about formulating doctrine.   In itself that could lead to disruption and schism within the Church.  Well, that's how I see it myself.  And of course there is the question:  where are the holy ascetics and theologians who would speak on this and who have the trust of the universal Church?
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« Reply #80 on: June 08, 2011, 10:11:30 AM »


....they are questions as yet unanswered, and there is a genuine need for a serious engagement on what the doctrinal formulation regarding sanctification after death should be
 

I believe there is no such need.  We have never needed it in 2000 years of our existence.  We have no church authority,clerical or lay, empowered to formulate new doctrine for the Church.   The Russian bishops have formally stated that we know about the afterlife only the very little revealed by Christ.  Beyond that, they say,  it is only conjecture.

Was this often times not the very reason much doctrine was formulated, though? Someone could've very well said in the 4th century, "We don't need to have a council to spell these things out, we've never needed to in the past!"


.
Councils addressed the aspects of the faith -trinitarian, christological, pneumatological- which were currently in danger from heretical teachings.

Having dealt with the heresy threatening the Church the Councils dissolved.  They are extraordinary irruptions from the other world into the life of the Church, the work of the Spirit, in safeguarding the teaching of Christ and His path to salvation.

For the last 1200 years the Church has had no need to call further Councils.  Heresies which have come along have been localised and have been dealt with by local Synods and local Churches.

So, the teaching authority of the Church -which is the Tradition and the Spirit who flows within it- has flowed on quietly for centuries since the last Great Council in 787.

If we should be faced by a new church-wide heresy, then the Church will probably combat it again by convening an Ecumenical Council.  But in the absence of the need to combat widespread and major heresy threatening the Church it could be counterproductive for the Church to set about formulating doctrine.   In itself that could lead to disruption and schism within the Church.  Well, that's how I see it myself.  And of course there is the question:  where are the holy ascetics and theologians who would speak on this and who have the trust of the universal Church?

I am not sure what you mean here by "formulating doctrine"....

So often in my travels I find people who think that until a doctrine is defined it is not real or true.

I see so much talk of doctrine and dogma and what MUST be believed and all that and really very little talk about Truth or Revelation or the Word.

The way I was taught was this: long before any of the Church's doctrines were ever defined they were the truth and the seeds of that truth had been sown by Christ and by his disciples and had been prefigured by the patriarchs. 

So I don't know what this ultra-fascination with "formulation of doctrine" is in fact.
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« Reply #81 on: June 08, 2011, 10:39:13 AM »


....they are questions as yet unanswered, and there is a genuine need for a serious engagement on what the doctrinal formulation regarding sanctification after death should be
 

I believe there is no such need.  We have never needed it in 2000 years of our existence.  We have no church authority,clerical or lay, empowered to formulate new doctrine for the Church.   The Russian bishops have formally stated that we know about the afterlife only the very little revealed by Christ.  Beyond that, they say,  it is only conjecture.

Was this often times not the very reason much doctrine was formulated, though? Someone could've very well said in the 4th century, "We don't need to have a council to spell these things out, we've never needed to in the past!"


.
Councils addressed the aspects of the faith -trinitarian, christological, pneumatological- which were currently in danger from heretical teachings.

Having dealt with the heresy threatening the Church the Councils dissolved.  They are extraordinary irruptions from the other world into the life of the Church, the work of the Spirit, in safeguarding the teaching of Christ and His path to salvation.

For the last 1200 years the Church has had no need to call further Councils.  Heresies which have come along have been localised and have been dealt with by local Synods and local Churches.

So, the teaching authority of the Church -which is the Tradition and the Spirit who flows within it- has flowed on quietly for centuries since the last Great Council in 787.

If we should be faced by a new church-wide heresy, then the Church will probably combat it again by convening an Ecumenical Council.  But in the absence of the need to combat widespread and major heresy threatening the Church it could be counterproductive for the Church to set about formulating doctrine.   In itself that could lead to disruption and schism within the Church.  Well, that's how I see it myself.  And of course there is the question:  where are the holy ascetics and theologians who would speak on this and who have the trust of the universal Church?

I am not sure what you mean here by "formulating doctrine"....

So often in my travels I find people who think that until a doctrine is defined it is not real or true.

I see so much talk of doctrine and dogma and what MUST be believed and all that and really very little talk about Truth or Revelation or the Word.

The way I was taught was this: long before any of the Church's doctrines were ever defined they were the truth and the seeds of that truth had been sown by Christ and by his disciples and had been prefigured by the patriarchs.  

So I don't know what this ultra-fascination with "formulation of doctrine" is in fact.

The formulation of doctrine is a large part of the sacred anthropology of the Roman Catholic Church, enclosing the truth in unceasingly permutating skins to suit each new age.  It seems to fascinate the Pope and the Magisterium enormously. Endless Encyclicals and Apostolic Constitutions and not a few General Councils have been engrossed with it.
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« Reply #82 on: June 08, 2011, 10:45:47 AM »


....they are questions as yet unanswered, and there is a genuine need for a serious engagement on what the doctrinal formulation regarding sanctification after death should be
 

I believe there is no such need.  We have never needed it in 2000 years of our existence.  We have no church authority,clerical or lay, empowered to formulate new doctrine for the Church.   The Russian bishops have formally stated that we know about the afterlife only the very little revealed by Christ.  Beyond that, they say,  it is only conjecture.

Was this often times not the very reason much doctrine was formulated, though? Someone could've very well said in the 4th century, "We don't need to have a council to spell these things out, we've never needed to in the past!"


.
Councils addressed the aspects of the faith -trinitarian, christological, pneumatological- which were currently in danger from heretical teachings.

Having dealt with the heresy threatening the Church the Councils dissolved.  They are extraordinary irruptions from the other world into the life of the Church, the work of the Spirit, in safeguarding the teaching of Christ and His path to salvation.

For the last 1200 years the Church has had no need to call further Councils.  Heresies which have come along have been localised and have been dealt with by local Synods and local Churches.

So, the teaching authority of the Church -which is the Tradition and the Spirit who flows within it- has flowed on quietly for centuries since the last Great Council in 787.

If we should be faced by a new church-wide heresy, then the Church will probably combat it again by convening an Ecumenical Council.  But in the absence of the need to combat widespread and major heresy threatening the Church it could be counterproductive for the Church to set about formulating doctrine.   In itself that could lead to disruption and schism within the Church.  Well, that's how I see it myself.  And of course there is the question:  where are the holy ascetics and theologians who would speak on this and who have the trust of the universal Church?

I am not sure what you mean here by "formulating doctrine"....

So often in my travels I find people who think that until a doctrine is defined it is not real or true.

I see so much talk of doctrine and dogma and what MUST be believed and all that and really very little talk about Truth or Revelation or the Word.

The way I was taught was this: long before any of the Church's doctrines were ever defined they were the truth and the seeds of that truth had been sown by Christ and by his disciples and had been prefigured by the patriarchs.  

So I don't know what this ultra-fascination with "formulation of doctrine" is in fact.

The formulation of doctrine is a large part of the sacred anthropology of the Roman Catholic Church, enclosing the truth in unceasingly permutating skins to suit each new age.  It seems to fascinate the Pope and the Magisterium enormously. Endless Encyclicals and Apostolic Constitutions and not a few General Councils have been engrossed with it.

You are talking about teaching and definition.  Formulation of the Truth is an act of Revelation that ended with the death of the last Apostle.

This is a formal teaching of the Church of your original baptism...I think you were originally baptised a Catholic.  If not my apologies.
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« Reply #83 on: June 08, 2011, 11:00:29 AM »

So, about them thar Toll Houses. Kinda like Purgatory in the Father's description, eh?

1.   Purgatory is for two things; purification and the expiation of the temporal punishment due to sin.


False.  These are not separate "thingies"...They are two different ways of talking about the same thing.

Pope Paul VI teaches that punishment is inflicted by God on souls in Purgatory.

Please refer to his "INDULGENTIARUM DOCTRINA" (Apostolic Constitution On Indulgences) which was solemnly promulgated by His Holiness, on 1st January 1967

http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/paul_vi/apost_constitutions/documents/hf_p-vi_apc_19670101_indulgentiarum-doctrina_en.html

1.2. It is a divinely revealed truth that sins bring punishments inflicted by God's sanctity and justice. These must be expiated either on this earth through the sorrows, miseries and calamities of this life and above all through death, or else in the life beyond through fire and torments or "purifying" punishments.

Would you be able to provide the papal teaching which correlates this to purification and equates them as the same thing?
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« Reply #84 on: June 08, 2011, 11:15:29 AM »


In that quote which you provided, he says "form and content" of the Church. That could more easily refer to the style of the liturgy and the practices therein, but he says nothing about "faith" directly.

Anybody agree with Nero's interpretation of the Pope's words?  I believe the Pope is talking about the faith and not about liturgical practices.

I never really thought about it that way. But if Nero's interpretation is right, it's in keeping with the popular Catholic writer Scott Hanh:

Quote
Further study led me to conclude that Orthodoxy was wonderful for its liturgy and tradition but stagnant in theology.
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« Reply #85 on: June 08, 2011, 11:24:40 AM »

So, about them thar Toll Houses. Kinda like Purgatory in the Father's description, eh?

1.   Purgatory is for two things; purification and the expiation of the temporal punishment due to sin.


False.  These are not separate "thingies"...They are two different ways of talking about the same thing.

Pope Paul VI teaches that punishment is inflicted by God on souls in Purgatory.

Well aware Father.  When you are ready to understand "punishment" as the Catholic Church understands it, then we can talk.  As long as you and Webster are doing the teaching, then there is no common ground.
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« Reply #86 on: June 08, 2011, 12:44:28 PM »

So, about them thar Toll Houses. Kinda like Purgatory in the Father's description, eh?

1.   Purgatory is for two things; purification and the expiation of the temporal punishment due to sin.


False.  These are not separate "thingies"...They are two different ways of talking about the same thing.

Pope Paul VI teaches that punishment is inflicted by God on souls in Purgatory.

Well aware Father.  When you are ready to understand "punishment" as the Catholic Church understands it, then we can talk.  As long as you and Webster are doing the teaching, then there is no common ground.

Who is Webster?

Define the meaning of "punishment" as given in the petrine statement of Pope Paul VI in message 83.  Define it by reference to papal statements, no Maryisms please.
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« Reply #87 on: June 08, 2011, 12:55:05 PM »


the popular Catholic writer Scott Hanh:

Quote
Further study led me to conclude that Orthodoxy was wonderful for its liturgy and tradition but stagnant in theology.

Who is Hanh?  Does he come with an Imprimatur?

What does it mean to be "stagnant in theology"?

Does it mean a refusal to consider a theology of women priests?

Does it mean refusing to entertain such developing theology as "Mary, the Quasi-Incarnation of the Spirit"?

Is this stagnation also a characteristic of the 22 Eastern Catholic Churches?
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« Reply #88 on: June 08, 2011, 01:07:15 PM »

They is not true Wyatt.  It is indeed the role of the laity in the Catholic Church to safeguard and assist the bishops in promulgating Tradition.  However it is not the laity's role to define revealed truth and there certainly is a difference between piety and doctrinal teaching, a not-always-clearly delineated difference between anthropology and theology...or the way we see the truth and the truth itself.  It is the role of our bishops to assist us in coming ever closer to the truth itself, however dim the glass may be.

It can be difficult enough to sort out without Father Ambrose's fingers in the pie, but the bottom line is that the laity, as members of the Body, are certainly charged with safeguarding the truth to the best of their ability.
Why does the laity have to safeguard Tradition? Are you saying that our Church may come to a point where the Magisterium has it completely wrong and the only way that out Church will be saved by apostasy is through an uprising of laypeople?
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« Reply #89 on: June 08, 2011, 01:07:15 PM »

Who is Hanh?  Does he come with an Imprimatur?
He is brilliant, and yes, I am sure that his books do.

What does it mean to be "stagnant in theology"?
Not holding being able to hold an Ecumenical Council for a millennium maybe?

Does it mean a refusal to consider a theology of women priests?
What do the Anglicans have to do with this discussion?

Does it mean refusing to entertain such developing theology as "Mary, the Quasi-Incarnation of the Spirit"?
Huh?

Is this stagnation also a characteristic of the 22 Eastern Catholic Churches?
No.
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« Reply #90 on: June 08, 2011, 01:08:43 PM »

Not holding being able to hold an Ecumenical Council for a millennium maybe?

Ever heard of Arabs, Turks, Tatars, Mongols, Communists, Austro-Hungary?
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« Reply #91 on: June 08, 2011, 01:24:40 PM »

Who would call an Eastern Orthodox Ecumenical Council?
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« Reply #92 on: June 08, 2011, 01:26:15 PM »

What does it mean to be "stagnant in theology"?
Not holding being able to hold an Ecumenical Council for a millennium maybe?

What on earth are you talking about?

The Church never held any Ecumenical Council for the first 300 years if its existence.  Was it stagnating? 

Must have been a ghastly period of stagnation for you.

I really cannot think of any compelling reason why the Church would need to convene Ecumenical Councils after it had addressed the major Trinitarian, Christological and Pneumatological heresies between 325 and 787 - a brief period of 460 years.

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« Reply #93 on: June 08, 2011, 01:40:55 PM »


the popular Catholic writer Scott Hanh:

Quote
Further study led me to conclude that Orthodoxy was wonderful for its liturgy and tradition but stagnant in theology.

Who is Hanh?  Does he come with an Imprimatur?

What does it mean to be "stagnant in theology"?

Does it mean a refusal to consider a theology of women priests?

Does it mean refusing to entertain such developing theology as "Mary, the Quasi-Incarnation of the Spirit"?

Is this stagnation also a characteristic of the 22 Eastern Catholic Churches?

I don't know how much point there would be to going through those question one-by-one. Hahn doesn't necessarily represent Catholicism, notwithstanding my earlier statement that he is "popular". I'm not even sure if he could be said to "represent" neo-conservative Catholics.

The sentence I quoted is from this passage:

Quote
So I started looking into Orthodoxy. I met with Peter Gillquist, an evangelical convert to Antiochian Orthodoxy, to hear why he chose Orthodoxy over Rome. His reasons reinforced my sense that Protestantism was wrong; but I also thought that his defense of Orthodoxy over Catholicism was unsatisfying and superficial. Upon closer examination, I found the various Orthodox churches to be hopelessly divided among themselves, similar to the Protestants, except that the Orthodox were split along the lines of ethnic nationalisms; there were Orthodox bodies that called themselves Greek, Russian, Ruthenian, Rumanian, Bulgarian, Hungarian, Serbian and so on. They have coexisted for centuries, but more like a family of brothers who have lost their father.

Further study led me to conclude that Orthodoxy was wonderful for its liturgy and tradition but stagnant in theology. In addition, I became convinced that it was mistaken in doctrine, having rejected certain teachings of Scripture and the Catholic Church, especially the filioque clause (and the son) that had been added to the Nicene Creed. In addition, their rejection of the Pope as head of the Church seemed to be based on imperial politics, more than on any serious theological grounds. This helped me to understand why, throughout their history, Orthodox Christians have tended to exalt the Emperor and the State over the Bishop and the Church (otherwise known as Caesaropapism). It occurred to me that Russia had been reaping the consequences of this Orthodox outlook throughout the twentieth century.
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« Reply #94 on: June 08, 2011, 01:45:00 PM »

Who would call an Eastern Orthodox Ecumenical Council?

If one were ever needed and God forbid... !   Looking at our recent history, and assuming a new heresy came along and were seriously disturbing the peace of the Church - I imagine it would be a conciliar effort.

In 1998 when the Orthodox were quite disturbed about ecumenism the Church of Russia suggested a Pan-Orthodox Synod.  This was taken up by the other Churches.  The Church of Greece hosted it in Thessalonica (it is called the Thessaloniki Summit) and all the Orthodox Churches attended.

Later in 2005 when there was the crisis in the Jerusalem Patriarchate, the Bishops of the Holy Land turned to the Patriarchate of Constantinople.  He organised a Pan-Orthodox Synod and all the Orthodox Churches attended.


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« Reply #95 on: June 08, 2011, 01:54:03 PM »


the popular Catholic writer Scott Hanh:

Quote
Further study led me to conclude that Orthodoxy was wonderful for its liturgy and tradition but stagnant in theology.

Who is Hanh?  Does he come with an Imprimatur?

What does it mean to be "stagnant in theology"?

Does it mean a refusal to consider a theology of women priests?

Does it mean refusing to entertain such developing theology as "Mary, the Quasi-Incarnation of the Spirit"?

Is this stagnation also a characteristic of the 22 Eastern Catholic Churches?

I don't know how much point there would be to going through those question one-by-one. Hahn doesn't necessarily represent Catholicism, notwithstanding my earlier statement that he is "popular". I'm not even sure if he could be said to "represent" neo-conservative Catholics.

The sentence I quoted is from this passage:

Quote
So I started looking into Orthodoxy. I met with Peter Gillquist, an evangelical convert to Antiochian Orthodoxy, to hear why he chose Orthodoxy over Rome. His reasons reinforced my sense that Protestantism was wrong; but I also thought that his defense of Orthodoxy over Catholicism was unsatisfying and superficial. Upon closer examination, I found the various Orthodox churches to be hopelessly divided among themselves, similar to the Protestants, except that the Orthodox were split along the lines of ethnic nationalisms; there were Orthodox bodies that called themselves Greek, Russian, Ruthenian, Rumanian, Bulgarian, Hungarian, Serbian and so on. They have coexisted for centuries, but more like a family of brothers who have lost their father.

Further study led me to conclude that Orthodoxy was wonderful for its liturgy and tradition but stagnant in theology. In addition, I became convinced that it was mistaken in doctrine, having rejected certain teachings of Scripture and the Catholic Church, especially the filioque clause (and the son) that had been added to the Nicene Creed. In addition, their rejection of the Pope as head of the Church seemed to be based on imperial politics, more than on any serious theological grounds. This helped me to understand why, throughout their history, Orthodox Christians have tended to exalt the Emperor and the State over the Bishop and the Church (otherwise known as Caesaropapism). It occurred to me that Russia had been reaping the consequences of this Orthodox outlook throughout the twentieth century.

Why is Hahn so mealy-mouthed?

I really prefer the resounding words of the nineteenth-century church historian Adolf von Harnack who wrote,

"The Orthodox Church is in her entire structure alien to the gospel and represents a perversion of the Christian religion, its reduction to the level of pagan antiquity."

Now *that* is a statement you can respect !!
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« Reply #96 on: June 08, 2011, 02:05:55 PM »


the popular Catholic writer Scott Hanh:

Quote
Further study led me to conclude that Orthodoxy was wonderful for its liturgy and tradition but stagnant in theology.

Who is Hanh?  Does he come with an Imprimatur?

What does it mean to be "stagnant in theology"?

Does it mean a refusal to consider a theology of women priests?

Does it mean refusing to entertain such developing theology as "Mary, the Quasi-Incarnation of the Spirit"?

Is this stagnation also a characteristic of the 22 Eastern Catholic Churches?

I don't know how much point there would be to going through those question one-by-one. Hahn doesn't necessarily represent Catholicism, notwithstanding my earlier statement that he is "popular". I'm not even sure if he could be said to "represent" neo-conservative Catholics.

The sentence I quoted is from this passage:

Quote
So I started looking into Orthodoxy. I met with Peter Gillquist, an evangelical convert to Antiochian Orthodoxy, to hear why he chose Orthodoxy over Rome. His reasons reinforced my sense that Protestantism was wrong; but I also thought that his defense of Orthodoxy over Catholicism was unsatisfying and superficial. Upon closer examination, I found the various Orthodox churches to be hopelessly divided among themselves, similar to the Protestants, except that the Orthodox were split along the lines of ethnic nationalisms; there were Orthodox bodies that called themselves Greek, Russian, Ruthenian, Rumanian, Bulgarian, Hungarian, Serbian and so on. They have coexisted for centuries, but more like a family of brothers who have lost their father.

Further study led me to conclude that Orthodoxy was wonderful for its liturgy and tradition but stagnant in theology. In addition, I became convinced that it was mistaken in doctrine, having rejected certain teachings of Scripture and the Catholic Church, especially the filioque clause (and the son) that had been added to the Nicene Creed. In addition, their rejection of the Pope as head of the Church seemed to be based on imperial politics, more than on any serious theological grounds. This helped me to understand why, throughout their history, Orthodox Christians have tended to exalt the Emperor and the State over the Bishop and the Church (otherwise known as Caesaropapism). It occurred to me that Russia had been reaping the consequences of this Orthodox outlook throughout the twentieth century.

Why is Hahn so mealy-mouthed?

I really prefer the resounding words of the nineteenth-century church historian Adolf von Harnack who wrote,

"The Orthodox Church is in her entire structure alien to the gospel and represents a perversion of the Christian religion, its reduction to the level of pagan antiquity."

Now *that* is a statement you can respect !!

Grin

Well, you might prefer that, but I suspect that Hahn wouldn't be nearly as popular among Catholics (including a lot of "ecumenical-minded" Catholics) if he said that.
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« Reply #97 on: June 08, 2011, 02:35:07 PM »

Christ is ascended!
Who would call an Eastern Orthodox Ecumenical Council?
You keep on asking that as if a documented answer hasn't been given (and it has, several times).  There have been several Pan Orthodox Synods before and after the Vatican went its way.  Most have been convened by the emperor or the EP, but there have been exceptions, e.g. the Synod of Jerusalem, called by Pat. Dositheus. It's not an impossibility, just the need has not arisen.

The Vatican has invented for itself its canon that only it can call Ecumenical Councils.  No such rule called any of the Seven Ecumenical Councils.
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« Reply #98 on: June 08, 2011, 02:37:07 PM »

Scott Hahn:

It occurred to me that Russia had been reaping the consequences of this Orthodox outlook throughout the twentieth century.


Seriously, the man should take his blinkers off.   THIS is what we have reaped in the 20th century  -- a harvest of 50 million martyrs who stand now before the throne of Jesus Christ and are already preparing the Church for a renewed flourishing of Christian faith and holiness.  To take Russia as an example, in the last 20 years the monasteries have grown from just 4 under Communism to over 400. Monasteries and convents filled with monks and nuns, and fresh accommodation being built at as fast as can be.  So many aspirants that the Holy Synod has asked the abbots to discourage older married couples separating and going into monasteries and to concentrate on taking the younger applicants. The same situation in Serbia.  Everywhere young monks with black beards.

We give glory and praise to God for these holy Martyrs and what their prayers are now bringing about.

"In Memory Of The 50 Million Victims Of The Orthodox Christian Holocaust"

http://www.serfes.org/orthodox/memoryof.htm
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« Reply #99 on: June 08, 2011, 02:38:14 PM »

Christ is ascended!
What does it mean to be "stagnant in theology"?
Not holding being able to hold an Ecumenical Council for a millennium maybe?

What on earth are you talking about?

The Church never held any Ecumenical Council for the first 300 years if its existence.  Was it stagnating?  

Must have been a ghastly period of stagnation for you.

I really cannot think of any compelling reason why the Church would need to convene Ecumenical Councils after it had addressed the major Trinitarian, Christological and Pneumatological heresies between 325 and 787 - a brief period of 460 years.
You have to forgive Wyatt's Vatican, Father, as it continually needs "Ecumenical Councils" to rubber stamp approval of the latest version of its present "truth."  When your life is constantly in flux, you think chasos and change for change  is normal.
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« Reply #100 on: June 08, 2011, 02:45:29 PM »

Christ is ascended!

By the way, statements such as "It can be difficult enough to sort out without Father Ambrose's fingers in the pie" are unhelpful and untrue.


We are allowed to disagree...We'll both live long and prosper in any event... Smiley

This little leprechaun should be going home in about two years if the cardiologist is any good with his prognostications.   laugh
God forbid!
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« Reply #101 on: June 08, 2011, 03:53:15 PM »

Christ is ascended!
Who would call an Eastern Orthodox Ecumenical Council?
You keep on asking that as if a documented answer hasn't been given (and it has, several times).  There have been several Pan Orthodox Synods before and after the Vatican went its way.  Most have been convened by the emperor or the EP, but there have been exceptions, e.g. the Synod of Jerusalem, called by Pat. Dositheus. It's not an impossibility, just the need has not arisen.

The Vatican has invented for itself its canon that only it can call Ecumenical Councils.  No such rule called any of the Seven Ecumenical Councils.
Are "Pan Orthodox Synods" the same as Ecumenical Councils?
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« Reply #102 on: June 08, 2011, 03:53:16 PM »

Christ is ascended!
What does it mean to be "stagnant in theology"?
Not holding being able to hold an Ecumenical Council for a millennium maybe?

What on earth are you talking about?

The Church never held any Ecumenical Council for the first 300 years if its existence.  Was it stagnating? 

Must have been a ghastly period of stagnation for you.

I really cannot think of any compelling reason why the Church would need to convene Ecumenical Councils after it had addressed the major Trinitarian, Christological and Pneumatological heresies between 325 and 787 - a brief period of 460 years.
You have to forgive Wyatt's Vatican, Father, as it continually needs "Ecumenical Councils" to rubber stamp approval of the latest version of its present "truth."
Since when is the Vatican mine? Oh well...that's sweet I guess. If I'm going to possess a plot of land, might as well be holy and venerable land.  angel
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« Reply #103 on: June 08, 2011, 04:06:48 PM »

Not holding being able to hold an Ecumenical Council for a millennium maybe?

Ever heard of Arabs, Turks, Tatars, Mongols, Communists, Austro-Hungary?

Vikings, Nazis, Barbarians, Moors and Muslims, World Wars...
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« Reply #104 on: June 08, 2011, 04:12:21 PM »

Christ is ascended!
Not holding being able to hold an Ecumenical Council for a millennium maybe?

Ever heard of Arabs, Turks, Tatars, Mongols, Communists, Austro-Hungary?

Vikings, Nazis, Barbarians, Moors and Muslims, Visigoths, World Wars...
All of which has nothing to do with it, as all the Ecumenical Councils after Constantinople I had such problems to worry about.  We had Pan Orthodox and Ecumenical Councils despite all that.  Although the East's obstacles (Ottomans etc.) were more substantive problems.
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« Reply #105 on: June 08, 2011, 04:13:52 PM »

Christ is ascended!
Who would call an Eastern Orthodox Ecumenical Council?
You keep on asking that as if a documented answer hasn't been given (and it has, several times).  There have been several Pan Orthodox Synods before and after the Vatican went its way.  Most have been convened by the emperor or the EP, but there have been exceptions, e.g. the Synod of Jerusalem, called by Pat. Dositheus. It's not an impossibility, just the need has not arisen.

The Vatican has invented for itself its canon that only it can call Ecumenical Councils.  No such rule called any of the Seven Ecumenical Councils.
Are "Pan Orthodox Synods" the same as Ecumenical Councils?
Except for not being infallible and irreformable, i.e. of eternal authority and not for the moment, yes.
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« Reply #106 on: June 08, 2011, 04:29:31 PM »

Christ is ascended!
Who would call an Eastern Orthodox Ecumenical Council?
You keep on asking that as if a documented answer hasn't been given (and it has, several times).  There have been several Pan Orthodox Synods before and after the Vatican went its way.  Most have been convened by the emperor or the EP, but there have been exceptions, e.g. the Synod of Jerusalem, called by Pat. Dositheus. It's not an impossibility, just the need has not arisen.

The Vatican has invented for itself its canon that only it can call Ecumenical Councils.  No such rule called any of the Seven Ecumenical Councils.
Are "Pan Orthodox Synods" the same as Ecumenical Councils?

Perhaps the best way for us Catholics to understand the term "Pan Orthodox Synod" is to compare it to the term "General Council" as used by the West.
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« Reply #107 on: June 08, 2011, 04:31:15 PM »

Not holding being able to hold an Ecumenical Council for a millennium maybe?

Ever heard of Arabs, Turks, Tatars, Mongols, Communists, Austro-Hungary?

Vikings, Nazis, Barbarians, Moors and Muslims, World Wars...

I haven't the slightest idea what you two are talking about.
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« Reply #108 on: June 08, 2011, 06:23:19 PM »

Christ is ascended!
They is not true Wyatt.  It is indeed the role of the laity in the Catholic Church to safeguard and assist the bishops in promulgating Tradition.  However it is not the laity's role to define revealed truth and there certainly is a difference between piety and doctrinal teaching, a not-always-clearly delineated difference between anthropology and theology...or the way we see the truth and the truth itself.  It is the role of our bishops to assist us in coming ever closer to the truth itself, however dim the glass may be.

It can be difficult enough to sort out without Father Ambrose's fingers in the pie, but the bottom line is that the laity, as members of the Body, are certainly charged with safeguarding the truth to the best of their ability.
Why does the laity have to safeguard Tradition? Are you saying that our Church may come to a point where the Magisterium has it completely wrong and the only way that out Church will be saved by apostasy is through an uprising of laypeople?
Quote
18. Is there any sure repository of holy tradition?

All true believers united by the holy tradition of the faith, collectively and successively, by the will of God, compose the Church; and she is the sure repository of holy tradition, or, as St. Paul expresses it, The Church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth. 1 Tim. iii. 15.

St. Irenæus writes thus:

We ought not to seek among others the truth, which we may have for asking from the Church; for in her, as in a rich treasure-house, the Apostles have laid up in its fullness all that pertains to the truth, so that whosoever seeketh may receive from her the food of life. She is the door of life. (Adv. Hæres. lib. iii. c. 4.)
http://www.pravoslavieto.com/docs/eng/Orthodox_Catechism_of_Philaret.htm
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« Reply #109 on: June 08, 2011, 06:28:15 PM »

Christ is ascended!
Quote
18. Is there any sure repository of holy tradition?

All true believers united by the holy tradition of the faith, collectively and successively, by the will of God, compose the Church; and she is the sure repository of holy tradition, or, as St. Paul expresses it, The Church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth. 1 Tim. iii. 15.

St. Irenæus writes thus:

We ought not to seek among others the truth, which we may have for asking from the Church; for in her, as in a rich treasure-house, the Apostles have laid up in its fullness all that pertains to the truth, so that whosoever seeketh may receive from her the food of life. She is the door of life. (Adv. Hæres. lib. iii. c. 4.)
http://www.pravoslavieto.com/docs/eng/Orthodox_Catechism_of_Philaret.htm

With the sound of a trumpet!

Thanks for this.  Nicely put.
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« Reply #110 on: June 08, 2011, 08:59:58 PM »

Christ is ascended!
Who would call an Eastern Orthodox Ecumenical Council?
You keep on asking that as if a documented answer hasn't been given (and it has, several times).  There have been several Pan Orthodox Synods before and after the Vatican went its way.  Most have been convened by the emperor or the EP, but there have been exceptions, e.g. the Synod of Jerusalem, called by Pat. Dositheus. It's not an impossibility, just the need has not arisen.

The Vatican has invented for itself its canon that only it can call Ecumenical Councils.  No such rule called any of the Seven Ecumenical Councils.
Are "Pan Orthodox Synods" the same as Ecumenical Councils?
Except for not being infallible and irreformable, i.e. of eternal authority and not for the moment, yes.
So, say the Eastern Orthodox did hold a council that is "infallible and irreformable," how would such a council be called? Would the Ecumenical Patriarch call it? Who decides if the council is ecumenical or not?
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« Reply #111 on: June 09, 2011, 10:58:42 AM »

Christ is ascended!
Christ is ascended!
Who would call an Eastern Orthodox Ecumenical Council?
You keep on asking that as if a documented answer hasn't been given (and it has, several times).  There have been several Pan Orthodox Synods before and after the Vatican went its way.  Most have been convened by the emperor or the EP, but there have been exceptions, e.g. the Synod of Jerusalem, called by Pat. Dositheus. It's not an impossibility, just the need has not arisen.

The Vatican has invented for itself its canon that only it can call Ecumenical Councils.  No such rule called any of the Seven Ecumenical Councils.
Are "Pan Orthodox Synods" the same as Ecumenical Councils?
Except for not being infallible and irreformable, i.e. of eternal authority and not for the moment, yes.
So, say the Eastern Orthodox did hold a council that is "infallible and irreformable," how would such a council be called?
The same way the Pan Orthodox Councils are called, in which case we mean, how have they been called, as we are talking about actual practice, not rarified theory.

They have been called, like all the Ecumenical Councils, by the Emperors, but lesser powers have called them: Prince Vasile Lupu of Moldova convened the Synod of  Iași (called the Council of Jassy in the West) in 1642.  The EP has called them, but so have other hiearchs: Patriarcah Dositheos of Jerusalem called the Synod of Jerusalem in 1672.  Examples called by the EP would be the Synods of Constantinople in 1593 (which elevated Moscow as the Third Rome and Fifth Patriarchate), and of 1723 (which accepted the reorganization of the Patriarchate of Moscow into the Holy Governing Synod).
Would the Ecumenical Patriarch call it?
His All Holiness has, but so have others.  Which is why the present EP is having trouble excluding the OCA from the conciliar talks HAH has called.

Who decides if the council is ecumenical or not?
As the case with the Seven Ecumenical Councils and the Pan Orthodox Councils of that time, the Church decides.
The Church, for instance, decided that the Second Ecumenical Council was Ecumenical, although it was convened as a local Council.
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« Reply #112 on: June 09, 2011, 11:53:00 AM »

Who decides if the council is ecumenical or not?
As the case with the Seven Ecumenical Councils and the Pan Orthodox Councils of that time, the Church decides.

This is a point we can agree on.

Consider for example that, on the Catholic side, eight councils (First Council of the Lateran, Second Council of the Lateran, Third Council of the Lateran, Fourth Council of the Lateran, First Council of Lyon, Second Council of Lyon, Council of Vienne, and Council of Constance) were regarded as "General Councils" until sometime in the 16th century, at which St Robert Bellarmine and others proposed that they should be considered Ecumenical Councils -- a proposal which later came to be widely accepted in the Catholic Church.

Nor would I rule out the possibility that the Orthodox Church might someday come to consider one or more of the "Pan-Orthodox Councils" to be an Ecumenical Council.
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« Reply #113 on: June 10, 2011, 02:33:08 AM »

Christ is ascended!
Not holding being able to hold an Ecumenical Council for a millennium maybe?

Ever heard of Arabs, Turks, Tatars, Mongols, Communists, Austro-Hungary?

Vikings, Nazis, Barbarians, Moors and Muslims, Visigoths, World Wars...
All of which has nothing to do with it, as all the Ecumenical Councils after Constantinople I had such problems to worry about.  We had Pan Orthodox and Ecumenical Councils despite all that.  Although the East's obstacles (Ottomans etc.) were more substantive problems.

So what Ecumenical Councils where convened in the areas were Orthodox Christians were discriminated or openly persecuted by the state? What Councils were convened in the warfare?
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« Reply #114 on: June 10, 2011, 03:13:53 AM »

Christ is ascended!
Not holding being able to hold an Ecumenical Council for a millennium maybe?

Ever heard of Arabs, Turks, Tatars, Mongols, Communists, Austro-Hungary?

Vikings, Nazis, Barbarians, Moors and Muslims, Visigoths, World Wars...
All of which has nothing to do with it, as all the Ecumenical Councils after Constantinople I had such problems to worry about.  We had Pan Orthodox and Ecumenical Councils despite all that.  Although the East's obstacles (Ottomans etc.) were more substantive problems.

So what Ecumenical Councils where convened in the areas were Orthodox Christians were discriminated or openly persecuted by the state? What Councils were convened in the warfare?

Is the presence of mutilated hierarchs, clergy and laity at Ecumenical Councils not well attested to?? I know someone who says that it is scandalous that we would even consider holding a Holy and Great Council without mutilated hierarchs present.
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« Reply #115 on: June 10, 2011, 01:40:10 PM »

Christ is ascended!
Not holding being able to hold an Ecumenical Council for a millennium maybe?

Ever heard of Arabs, Turks, Tatars, Mongols, Communists, Austro-Hungary?

Vikings, Nazis, Barbarians, Moors and Muslims, Visigoths, World Wars...
All of which has nothing to do with it, as all the Ecumenical Councils after Constantinople I had such problems to worry about.  We had Pan Orthodox and Ecumenical Councils despite all that.  Although the East's obstacles (Ottomans etc.) were more substantive problems.

So what Ecumenical Councils where convened in the areas were Orthodox Christians were discriminated or openly persecuted by the state? What Councils were convened in the warfare?
Ecumenical Councils concern the whole Church, not just where they are convened.

The First, Fourth and Seventh Councils were convened in times of peace for the Orthodox, but preceded and followed by strife.

The Fifth was held when Rome had just been liberated from Arian Goths, the Sixth when Alexandria, Antioch and Jerusalem had fallen to the caliphs and Cyprus harrassed, with Rome surrounded by the Arian Lombards; the Seventh when only Constantinople stood free (and even then it was threated by the caliphs, pagan slavs, etc.). 

All this talk is besides the point: if Wyatt had lived in 1111, he would bring this up: at that time, even if you retroactively (as the Vatican did) accept Constantinople IV 869 as an Ecumenical Council, it would be 242 years since one was called, and it would be 12 more years before the Vatican called one. 336 years if you count from Nicea II.  What did the Vatican do all those 254/336 years, almost as long as the c. 275 years between the Council of Jerusalem of the Apostles and the Council of Nicea I?  After 1123 the Vatican did average to call another council every 50 years, but then after Trent it waited three centuries.  If the Vatican could call a council during those three centuries, why didn't it?

If it were as the Ultramontanists allege, and we cannot call an Ecumenical Council after 1054, by that date we have gone without one for nearly three centuries, two centuries if you want to count Constantinople IV.  And yet, even by the Ultramontanists own admission, the Church still managed to exist.
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« Reply #116 on: June 10, 2011, 01:49:27 PM »

It has been discussed that one of the ways that east and west could move beyond the debate over post 1054 'ecumenical councils' held by the west, would be for the west to go back to its pre-17th century nomenclature and determine that they were in fact, 'general councils' or some sort of 'super synod.' However, if that were to happen, the theologians and the pope would have a whole lot of 'splaining to do to the faithful. This is kind of ironic in that one of the Catholic posters recently was quite adament that the laity have nothing to do with the preservation of tradition. If he is right, then there should be 'no problemo' from the Catholic rank and file, but methinks that is not really the case........
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« Reply #117 on: June 10, 2011, 02:07:49 PM »

Christ is ascended!
It has been discussed that one of the ways that east and west could move beyond the debate over post 1054 'ecumenical councils' held by the west, would be for the west to go back to its pre-17th century nomenclature and determine that they were in fact, 'general councils' or some sort of 'super synod.' However, if that were to happen, the theologians and the pope would have a whole lot of 'splaining to do to the faithful. This is kind of ironic in that one of the Catholic posters recently was quite adament that the laity have nothing to do with the preservation of tradition. If he is right, then there should be 'no problemo' from the Catholic rank and file, but methinks that is not really the case........
LOL. Indeed.  Things are not as they are made out to be.
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« Reply #118 on: June 10, 2011, 04:04:59 PM »

Can "good works" serve to "cover" ("atone" in Hebrew) for one's sins?


The Literal Translation

The Jewish Publication Society translation says: “Wherefore, O king, let my counsel be acceptable unto thee, and break off thy sins by righteousness, and thine iniquities by showing mercy to the poor; if it may be a lengthening of thy tranquillity.”

And this translation of "breaking off" matches the Protestant King James Version.

The word-for-word translation of this phrase from Strong's Hebrew dictionary says: "sin by righteousness break your iniquities showing to the poor". (http://biblos.com/daniel/4-27.htm)

In Hebrew, "atonement" means "cover" or "ransom". "Breaking off" is a different word than the one for "atonement/cover/ransom."


The Rabbinical View

Daniel 4:24(Judaica Press Tanakh) says: "Indeed, O king, may my counsel please you, and with charity you will remove your sin and your iniquity by showing mercy to the poor; perhaps your tranquility will last."
At first glance this sounds like the king was bearing some sins and could atone for them with charity.

The Rabbinical view, apparently based in part on this verse, is that good works act as an atonement. Thus, one rabbinical criticism of Christianity is that it wouldn't be necessary for the Messiah to die, since good works would be another way to act as an atonement.


The Roman Catholic View

The Roman Catholic "New American Bible" translates Daniel 4:24 as:
Therefore, O king, take my advice; atone for your sins by good deeds, and for your misdeeds by kindness to the poor; then your prosperity will be long."
Footnote: [24] A classic Scriptural text for the efficacy of good works


Another Catholic website lists Daniel 4:24 among "Biblical Texts which point to the existence of Purgatory"

It sounds like the Roman Catholic view is that "good works" act to "atone" for sins.

Although this matches the Rabbinical view, the Catholic translation is farther off than the Rabbinical translation, since the Rabbinical translation at least doesn't say "atone"


The Protestant View

A Protestant commentary I read (http://www.defendproclaimthefaith.org/jewish_objection_atonement.htm) explains that this verse is Daniel telling Nebuchadnezzar that if he ceased doing his sins by doing righteousness like helping the poor, then he might avoid disaster.
Personally, It seems to me that the passage's words about "breaking off" from sin could be different from the idea of a religious cover or ransom from guilt (asham).


The Protestant view may be influenced by the Protestant idea of Sola Fide. The Protestant view is not that good works and following God aren't "necessary" or aren't part of being a righteous person.

Instead, the Protestant view of "Sola Fide" focuses on the specific way in which the blessings of Christ's atonement are transmitted. Protestantism says that faith is the spiritual instrument or vehicle by which we are "saved", or in "Protestant-speak": receive the blessings of the atonement, have our sins cleansed.
(The Protestant concept of "getting saved" focuses on the Atonement & communion with Jesus, while Orthodox think about "being saved" in terms of a process of following God's example and becoming like Him. However, the narrow Protestant concept is a piece of the broader Orthodox term for Salvation. This is a tangent, because right now I am only focusing on the "Atonement" part of Orthodoxy.)

Still, I am not sure that Protestants would say faith itself acts as an atonement, but simply that it is an instrument or means connecting us to Christ so that we receive the atonement's blessings.


What do you think the Orthodox View is?
I could see the Orthodox view matching the Protestant view and seeing the RC view as an incorrect development of its doctrine about merits and Purgatory that developed in Western Christianity in the Middle Ages. Perhaps the Rabbinical view could also be seen as a way of coping with the fact that atonement sacrifices weren't being performed anymore- although I think maybe some Judaic groups might still perform them.


Side question: Can love and truth serve to Atone?

Another verse says that "[By] Lovingkindness and truth iniquity is purged and [by] the fear of the LORD men depart from evil" (Proverbs 16:6)
The Rabbinical view says that this means love can act to atone for sin, so it can be used instead of ritual sacrifice. However, I find this even less clear, because love is not an act like performing charity. Instead, it makes sense to see love as a motivation or spirit involved in or forwarding the process.

On the other hand, perhaps love does also serve as an atoning agent, that it is something that is involved with spiritually cleansing sins. But that doesn't mean nothing else is involved. For example, paint paints a house, but there is also a paintbrush and a painter involved.

What do you think?
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« Reply #119 on: August 25, 2011, 05:44:00 AM »


But the Partial Judgement is NOT the Final Judgement which will occur when Christ comes to judge mankind.  It is "partial" in the sense that it is not fully definitive and between it and the Final Judgment a soul's fate may be altered, even to the extent of being rescued from hell.

As we know salvation from hell was once a part of Western Catholic belief also but it has been discarded.  An echo of the old orthodox belief survives still in the Requiem Mass "Libera animas omnium fidelium defunctorum de poenis inferni et de profundo lacu."

For a little more on that see message 50
at
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,32546.msg514593.html#msg514593

The true and ancient Irish belief in rescue from hell....

"How Saint Patrick Spent Lent in the Year 439 AD"

White birds come to fly around them singing sweetly, and the Angel
promises Patrick the sea and the land as far as his eye can see.
Patrick asks, "Is there nothing else that He grants me besides this?"
The Angel tells him that he may have seven souls saved from hell on
every Saturday until Doomsday.  Patrick replies that if God is going to
give him anything, let Him give twelve souls.  "Thou shalt have them,
but get thee gone from the reek," says the Angel.


Patrick refuses to go, saying that as he has been tormented he will not
go until he is satisfied, and asks what else God will give him.  The
Angel promises the rescue from Hell of seven souls every Thursday in
addition to the twelve already promised every Saturday, if Patrick will
leave the reek.



Extract ::  "How Saint Patrick Spent Lent in the Year 439 AD"
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/celt-archive/message/2951
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« Reply #120 on: August 25, 2011, 08:51:23 AM »

Ah!  Now I see a clear difference between Orthodoxy and the Catholic Church.

In the Catholic Church man owes God...

In Orthodoxy, God owes man...



But the Partial Judgement is NOT the Final Judgement which will occur when Christ comes to judge mankind.  It is "partial" in the sense that it is not fully definitive and between it and the Final Judgment a soul's fate may be altered, even to the extent of being rescued from hell.

As we know salvation from hell was once a part of Western Catholic belief also but it has been discarded.  An echo of the old orthodox belief survives still in the Requiem Mass "Libera animas omnium fidelium defunctorum de poenis inferni et de profundo lacu."

For a little more on that see message 50
at
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,32546.msg514593.html#msg514593

The true and ancient Irish belief in rescue from hell....

"How Saint Patrick Spent Lent in the Year 439 AD"

White birds come to fly around them singing sweetly, and the Angel
promises Patrick the sea and the land as far as his eye can see.
Patrick asks, "Is there nothing else that He grants me besides this?"
The Angel tells him that he may have seven souls saved from hell on
every Saturday until Doomsday.  Patrick replies that if God is going to
give him anything, let Him give twelve souls.  "Thou shalt have them,
but get thee gone from the reek," says the Angel.


Patrick refuses to go, saying that as he has been tormented he will not
go until he is satisfied, and asks what else God will give him.  The
Angel promises the rescue from Hell of seven souls every Thursday in
addition to the twelve already promised every Saturday, if Patrick will
leave the reek.



Extract ::  "How Saint Patrick Spent Lent in the Year 439 AD"
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/celt-archive/message/2951
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« Reply #121 on: August 25, 2011, 09:01:05 AM »

^ Really? A most erroneous, uncharitable and uncalled for comment, in my opinion.
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« Reply #122 on: August 25, 2011, 09:11:26 AM »

\

^ Really? A most erroneous, uncharitable and uncalled for comment, in my opinion.

But still a most astounding admission from Elijahmaria that the religious culture of Saint Patrick and 5th century Christianity in Ireland was that of Orthodoxy and not that of modern Roman Catholicism!
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« Reply #123 on: August 25, 2011, 09:14:43 AM »

^ Really? A most erroneous, uncharitable and uncalled for comment, in my opinion.

Not when one considers some of the more vile things said about my faith here in this Forum.

The difference is that those who deliver those shots here mean precisely what they say and work hard to make it as ugly as possible.

I however do this kind of thing rarely, and in an attempt to show you what it feels like.  I don't really believe what I say, nor do I mean to do any lasting harm, unlike those here who want to see many aspects of my faith destroyed...and are quite willing and eager to say so.

Where are you when all that is happening?
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« Reply #124 on: August 25, 2011, 09:15:51 AM »

\

^ Really? A most erroneous, uncharitable and uncalled for comment, in my opinion.

But still a most astounding admission from Elijahmaria that the religious culture of Saint Patrick and 5th century Christianity in Ireland was that of Orthodoxy and not that of modern Roman Catholicism!

Who am I to argue with male claiming behavior?  Smiley
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« Reply #125 on: August 25, 2011, 10:19:00 AM »

\

^ Really? A most erroneous, uncharitable and uncalled for comment, in my opinion.

But still a most astounding admission from Elijahmaria that the religious culture of Saint Patrick and 5th century Christianity in Ireland was that of Orthodoxy and not that of modern Roman Catholicism!

Who am I to argue with male claiming behavior?  Smiley

But it was thine own self who put forth the claim that Saint Patrick's requests of God were an example of "In Orthodoxy, God owes man..." (another of your vile claims against Orthodoxy) thereby identifying the Saint with Orthodoxy (or what you erroneously perceive as Orthodoxy.  laugh )


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« Reply #126 on: August 25, 2011, 10:29:26 AM »

\

^ Really? A most erroneous, uncharitable and uncalled for comment, in my opinion.

But still a most astounding admission from Elijahmaria that the religious culture of Saint Patrick and 5th century Christianity in Ireland was that of Orthodoxy and not that of modern Roman Catholicism!

Who am I to argue with male claiming behavior?  Smiley

But it was thine own self who put forth the claim that Saint Patrick's requests of God were an example of "In Orthodoxy, God owes man..." (another of your vile claims against Orthodoxy) thereby identifying the Saint with Orthodoxy (or what you erroneously perceive as Orthodoxy.  laugh )

 laugh laugh laugh

Darn!!...you got me. 

Well that's ok.  I never did have much truck with Patrick anyway.

But ya cannot have Saint Brigit!!!

 angel
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« Reply #127 on: August 25, 2011, 12:28:41 PM »


Well that's ok.  I never did have much truck with Patrick anyway.


The high veneration in which the Irish hold Patrick is evidenced by the common salutation, "May God, Mary, and Patrick bless you."

He singlehandedly--an almost impossible task--converted Ireland. Saint Patrick established the Church throughout Ireland on lasting foundations: hetravelled throughout the country preaching, teaching, building churches, opening schools and monasteries, converting chiefs and bards, and everywhere supporting his preaching with miracles.

"The Annals of the Kingdom of Ireland" written by the Four Masters state that by the year 438 Christianity had made such progress in Ireland that the laws were changed to agree with the Gospel. That means that in just a few years a 60 year old man was able to so change the country that even the laws were amended. St. Patrick had no printing press, no finances, few helpers and Ireland had no Roman roads to travel on.  But when he died, about 466, Ireland was worshipping Christ in every part of the country.
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« Reply #128 on: August 25, 2011, 12:48:42 PM »


Well that's ok.  I never did have much truck with Patrick anyway.


The high veneration in which the Irish hold Patrick is evidenced by the common salutation, "May God, Mary, and Patrick bless you."

He singlehandedly--an almost impossible task--converted Ireland. Saint Patrick established the Church throughout Ireland on lasting foundations: hetravelled throughout the country preaching, teaching, building churches, opening schools and monasteries, converting chiefs and bards, and everywhere supporting his preaching with miracles.

"The Annals of the Kingdom of Ireland" written by the Four Masters state that by the year 438 Christianity had made such progress in Ireland that the laws were changed to agree with the Gospel. That means that in just a few years a 60 year old man was able to so change the country that even the laws were amended. St. Patrick had no printing press, no finances, few helpers and Ireland had no Roman roads to travel on.  But when he died, about 466, Ireland was worshipping Christ in every part of the country.

True enough.

I was jest joshin' ya!!
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« Reply #129 on: August 25, 2011, 04:09:15 PM »

Scott Hahn:

It occurred to me that Russia had been reaping the consequences of this Orthodox outlook throughout the twentieth century.


Seriously, the man should take his blinkers off.   THIS is what we have reaped in the 20th century  -- a harvest of 50 million martyrs who stand now before the throne of Jesus Christ and are already preparing the Church for a renewed flourishing of Christian faith and holiness.  To take Russia as an example, in the last 20 years the monasteries have grown from just 4 under Communism to over 400. Monasteries and convents filled with monks and nuns, and fresh accommodation being built at as fast as can be.  So many aspirants that the Holy Synod has asked the abbots to discourage older married couples separating and going into monasteries and to concentrate on taking the younger applicants. The same situation in Serbia.  Everywhere young monks with black beards.

We give glory and praise to God for these holy Martyrs and what their prayers are now bringing about.

"In Memory Of The 50 Million Victims Of The Orthodox Christian Holocaust"

http://www.serfes.org/orthodox/memoryof.htm

Fabulous article.
Quote
Editors Notes: We cannot even well imagine but "50 Million Victims Of The Orthodox Christian Holocaust" is not the correct number, as we have learned from Alexander Solzhenitsyn that more then 66.5 million Orthodox Christians also perished from 1917 and onward during the times of the Soviet Union.
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« Reply #130 on: August 25, 2011, 04:24:54 PM »


But the Partial Judgement is NOT the Final Judgement which will occur when Christ comes to judge mankind.  It is "partial" in the sense that it is not fully definitive and between it and the Final Judgment a soul's fate may be altered, even to the extent of being rescued from hell.

As we know salvation from hell was once a part of Western Catholic belief also but it has been discarded.  An echo of the old orthodox belief survives still in the Requiem Mass "Libera animas omnium fidelium defunctorum de poenis inferni et de profundo lacu."

For a little more on that see message 50
at
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,32546.msg514593.html#msg514593

The true and ancient Irish belief in rescue from hell....

"How Saint Patrick Spent Lent in the Year 439 AD"

White birds come to fly around them singing sweetly, and the Angel
promises Patrick the sea and the land as far as his eye can see.
Patrick asks, "Is there nothing else that He grants me besides this?"
The Angel tells him that he may have seven souls saved from hell on
every Saturday until Doomsday.  Patrick replies that if God is going to
give him anything, let Him give twelve souls.  "Thou shalt have them,
but get thee gone from the reek," says the Angel.


Patrick refuses to go, saying that as he has been tormented he will not
go until he is satisfied, and asks what else God will give him.  The
Angel promises the rescue from Hell of seven souls every Thursday in
addition to the twelve already promised every Saturday, if Patrick will
leave the reek.



Extract ::  "How Saint Patrick Spent Lent in the Year 439 AD"
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/celt-archive/message/2951

ROFL! This is awesome material to work with.

Thanks Father.
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Ignorance is not a lack, but a passion.
Tags: purgatory toll houses particular judgment Scott Hahn 
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