In this case, I do believe that Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger and also Pope Benedict has been greeted and lauded by the Slavic Orthodox world, at least, and by the EP, as an exemplary representative of the papal Church. So if there were a problem, I have NO doubt that we'd be hearing it loud and clear.
Also with respect to one of the other triumphal posts in line here over the last few days...IF the Catholic Church were not recognized by the bishops and patriarchs of Orthodoxy as a Church at all...we'd be hearing that as well...from something other than...what did Father Ambrose call it?...oh yes....the "lunatic fringe."
The thing is that I have never known any bishop, when asked if the Pope and the Catholic bishops are genuine and authentic and valid bishops to answer yes. How many bishops will answer Yes? How many will answer No? How many will avoid the question and change the subject?
Any Orthodox members have experience with this? My impression is that our bishops treat the question of the episcopal Orders of the Pope with the same politeness that the Pope treats the Archbishop of Canterbury.
The same thing happens with Catholic priests and bishops and questions concerning Orthodoxy. They politely point to the statements coming from the highest levels.
There's no doubt in my mind that there are Catholic bishops who are repulsed by Orthodoxy.
But I wasn't talking about things at that level.
Heck...there are Orthodox bishops who are repulsed by other Orthodox bishops.
Resumption of Communion can never be predicated on fallen and venal humanity.
Nor can it be predicated on the refusal of every Orthodox Patriarch to acknowledge the validity of the Pope's episcopal Orders. Mary, they simply won't do it. They remember only two well the fate of their predecessors after Florence. The faithful will not tolerate it.
Then y'all better write and let'em know the jig is up!!
The Patriarchs do not have to be told. They already know.
Peruse the Statements which have been issued by the "Parliament" of monks of Mount Athos over the decades of the dialogue. Not one Patriarch has sallied forth to say: "Ignore the monks! They are wrong. Of course the Pope is a valid bishop." Nor has any theologian stood against the monks. They can't because in effect they would be denying the "Cyprianite" theology on sacraments outside the Church and in heresy which has been, by and large, the bedrock of Eastern teaching since the year dot. To go against it would provoke schism and revolution in the Church.
Then, in good faith, the patriarchs need to stop the dialogue cold, and start the process of advertising to have the Papists become Orthodox.
That needs to be done forthrightly. At the moment it is too fuzzy and nobody is getting the message clearly.
There is no need to stop the dialogue. Are you telling me then that the Catholics do not intend to create a union through uniformity of faith? Such a false union would undoubtedly be unacceptable to the Orthodox.
Depends on what you envision by "uniformity" of faith...and really it depends on what is understood by "faith"...
Are you asking if the Catholic Church plans to "convert"...whatever that means to you...
The answer, most probably, given what I see around here is....No. The Catholic Church is not in dialogue as preparation for conversion to Orthodoxy. It has never been presented that way by either side, but apparently, according to Father Ambrose, that is what has been intended all along.