The Spirit is descended!
There is something to that Maria, but when the boots hit the ground, I don't think that EOs will even want to address communion until we start acting like the Church we claim to be.
You know what, after years of considering this matter, I think that we Catholics really need to clean house before we can seriously provide something to which Eastern Orthodox Christians would want to be reunited.
1. The Liturgy must be reformed! -We are on our way, but have a long way to go.
2. We need to deal with the abuse crisis. -This must involve great openness on the part of Church hierarchic and prosecusion of the offending parties.
3. We must reform our fasting practices. -I think what has been happening in the U.K. is fantastic, but again, we all have a long way to go.
4. Theological liberals need to go. - Yup, get rid of the dissenting heretics in some seminaries and in the priesthood. I think His Holiness is working towards this but it is a slow process.
Once these issues are addressed, then we can commence with beating eachother over the head over issues like the Papacy, the Filioque, Purgatory, and the like.
Can I get you an invite to the Consultations? The Orthodox will welcome your point of view!
You would not want me!! I say that these things are all good and necessary but that communion transcends human weakness!!
At this point I am looking around expect Christ to have returned. ialmisry and Papist agreed on something.
I agree too. I have an Orthodox acquaintance from England (Bosporus Swim Class 2011) I recently just expressed similar sentiments when he, horrified, had posted a link on his wall of the "ordination" of RC Womenpriests. I explained to him that they were not Catholic, but that they and those like them had sympathetic factions within our church.
Orthodox and Catholics have a long way to go in the ground war. We've already proven, twice (Lyons and Florence) that top down restorations of communion don't work. We also proved with the Roman and Maronites churches reunion with portions of the Greek and various Miaphysite and Assyrian churches that it doesn't work.
The desire for reunion must come, not from the Pope and Ecumenical Patriarch or the Pope of Alexandria meeting, or even of bishops, but of an outpouring of love and humility and servitude from each Christian to another.
Sadly, in the West, our liturgy has become so deformed as to make it hardly recognizable to our Apostolic Brethren. It is getting better, but reunion cannot and should not happen until the Roman church gets its liturgy in order. Praxis in the local parish needs to change. There are many good things about Roman parishes - these can stay the same. But in some cases, the Orthodox outdo us. It doesn't mean we think you're right (see "The Way of a Pilgrim" when he talks about Old Believers - sometimes, I feel this way about you Orthodox - but not that harshly), but we acknowledge that we must change. Look at how badly the dismal change in the Roman Liturgy has trickled down to the Eastern churches - it's not been good. some Maronite parishes offer Qurbana facing the people. The use of liturgical languages has dropped off dramatically. The Ruthenian Pew Book got a major overhaul that was not the best.
But yes, liturgy and fasting and theological liberals. Liturgy is on the rise, theological liberals on the way out. We're getting better on the abuse crisis, but this needs to go. It needs to be out of the news - not because it's not being reported, but because there needs to be nothing to report. Pray for us sinners, brethren!
Fasting, we are way behind. I follow Greek fasting rules during Lent and Advent. It's been greatly beneficial to my spiritual life (plus I lost 20 pounds last Lent - my Greek Orthodox friend, also a convert - but swam the Bosporus - gains weight because he eats too much bread. Stupid carbs! I guess I'm too picky. :p )
But I've had other Catholic friends start fasting more. The thing is, the only way mandatory fasting will come back (and it would be beneficial for me) is if people start doing the fasting anyway without it being mandatory. If we removed the ability to substitute a different Friday penance (let's face it, who does anyway? Most good Catholics I know just abstain from meat anyway - and even many of the good Catholics I know are unaware of mandatory Friday penance).
Things will get better. But until they do, you have no business with us. But let's keep talking. As much as some of us love the "traditions" of First Communion and Confirmation, I wish we would just give them to infants. We're not Protestants who delay the receipt of grace until the one receiving can understand.