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Author Topic: Fr. Reardon on the Western Rite  (Read 1628 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: July 29, 2011, 06:39:15 PM »

Fr. Patrick Henry Reardon presented his thoughts on the theme of "What benefits might Western Orthodoxy bring to Eastern Orthodoxy?" You can listen to his presentation here:  http://ancientfaith.com/specials/aoc_2011/western_rite
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« Reply #1 on: July 29, 2011, 07:23:52 PM »

Hmmmm.  I'll have to see if he has softened any.
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« Reply #2 on: July 29, 2011, 07:45:17 PM »

I've been listening intermittently all day (I'll get about 15 min in and get interrupted), so unfortunately I have yet to reach his conclusions. He's certainly talking up the Western Patrimony, though. 
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« Reply #3 on: July 29, 2011, 07:55:49 PM »

Hmmmm.  I'll have to see if he has softened any.

Isa this is your priest correct?
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« Reply #4 on: July 30, 2011, 10:13:34 AM »

I've been listening intermittently all day (I'll get about 15 min in and get interrupted), so unfortunately I have yet to reach his conclusions. He's certainly talking up the Western Patrimony, though. 
He is very much a Westerner-his hero is St. Jerome, says his prayers in Latin, and is a scholastic (though I'm not sure he sees the last point).
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« Reply #5 on: July 30, 2011, 10:15:19 AM »

Hmmmm.  I'll have to see if he has softened any.

Isa this is your priest correct?
Yes.  We had a dear priest of the WRO Fr. David who served with us until his recent repose (Memory Eternal!), and I noticed a slight change in Fr. Pat on the need of a WRO.
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« Reply #6 on: July 30, 2011, 12:04:52 PM »

I met Fr. Reardon about a year ago and he is a man after my own heart, a Latinist (I occasionally too will say the prayers in Latin which is an old habit), a classicist, etc.  Reading his Christ in the Psalms, which has become a favorite of mine, most of his liturgical references to the use of the psalms in the church are according to the Western Rite, which I can understand since he grew up Episcopal.  However, during his talk that I attended I didn't get the feeling he was anti-WRO although he was more comfortable in the Eastern Rite.

I don't have time now to listen to the podcast though I heard some tidbits (noticeably about the pre-Chalcedonian nature of the Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom which he talked about last year).  So, is Fr. Reardon anti-WRO?
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« Reply #7 on: July 30, 2011, 12:37:50 PM »

I met Fr. Reardon about a year ago and he is a man after my own heart, a Latinist (I occasionally too will say the prayers in Latin which is an old habit), a classicist, etc.  Reading his Christ in the Psalms, which has become a favorite of mine, most of his liturgical references to the use of the psalms in the church are according to the Western Rite, which I can understand since he grew up Episcopal.  However, during his talk that I attended I didn't get the feeling he was anti-WRO although he was more comfortable in the Eastern Rite.

I don't have time now to listen to the podcast though I heard some tidbits (noticeably about the pre-Chalcedonian nature of the Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom which he talked about last year).  So, is Fr. Reardon anti-WRO?
He actually grew up in the shadow of the Vatican, I believe.  At some point he switched the Episcopalians.

When he first came to All Saints, he said that if the bishop asked his opinion, he would say it was pastorally unwise, without any specifics. As much as he derides the BCP (he says in the recording that the problem is that it fixes the West in the worst period, the BCP and the Pauline Mass).  When Fr. David Lynch came (who is mentioned in the talk), he served Eastern rite, but later on, at Fr. Pat's request, talked about the WRO.

The talk linked to is interesting in that it attacks the issue by what the Orthodox Church can benefit from the WRO, not on what accommodation the Orthodox Church can make for Western converts.  Points I agree with, btw.
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« Reply #8 on: July 30, 2011, 12:44:46 PM »

I've been listening intermittently all day (I'll get about 15 min in and get interrupted), so unfortunately I have yet to reach his conclusions. He's certainly talking up the Western Patrimony, though. 
He is very much a Westerner-his hero is St. Jerome, says his prayers in Latin, and is a scholastic (though I'm not sure he sees the last point).
Fr. Reardon said that scholasticism began in the East, in Damascus.
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« Reply #9 on: July 30, 2011, 12:50:39 PM »

I've been listening intermittently all day (I'll get about 15 min in and get interrupted), so unfortunately I have yet to reach his conclusions. He's certainly talking up the Western Patrimony, though. 
He is very much a Westerner-his hero is St. Jerome, says his prayers in Latin, and is a scholastic (though I'm not sure he sees the last point).
Fr. Reardon said that scholasticism began in the East, in Damascus.
Yes, I know what he is talking about but no, the conclusion is incorrect.
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« Reply #10 on: July 30, 2011, 01:16:10 PM »

I didn't get the impression he was anti-WRO in any way, shape or form. In fact, he spoke quite highly of the Western patrimony, as someone already pointed out, focusing mainly on the treasures within that could be of great benefit and balance to our Eastern Rite brethren (who are "gasping for air breathing with only one lung," or "flapping with one wing" as he so eloquently put it).

His main concerns, which he admitted were just his opinion and an area outside his expertise (he didn't even refer to the right Pope when speaking of the Tridentine reforms Grin) were with the liturgy, which I wish he had more time to get into, because I didn't quite follow what his concerns were. The BCP is irrelevant, since no Orthodox use that and he didn't specificy which BCP he had in in mind (the DL of St. Tikhon incorporates some elements from the 1928 BCP, but it is far more Gregorian than it is BCP). And the Tridentine reforms seem to be a non-issue. However, he referred to these as the "low point" in the historical development of the Western liturgy (whilst many think of it as the high point, the BCP being the absolute height of liturgical English and the classic Roman Rite being largely untouched since St. Gregory). Shame he couldn't expand on that.

I think if he could've continued, and what he hinted at a little bit, was that his concern was with the few feasts of the West that celebrate doctrines as opposed to events, such as Corpus Christi and Trinity Sunday, etc. Again, I wish he had time to go into this because I really don't see what the problem is. What's the issue with celebrating the Real Presence and cultivating devotion to the Holy Trinity?

What I took away from it was that both East and West have much that can be of benefit to each other, and one of the outcomes of a flowering Western Rite in the Orthodox Church will be just that (as we've seen with the reinvigorated devotion to icons in the WR).
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« Reply #11 on: July 30, 2011, 04:19:32 PM »

The talk linked to is interesting in that it attacks the issue by what the Orthodox Church can benefit from the WRO, not on what accommodation the Orthodox Church can make for Western converts.  Points I agree with, btw.

And that is an important distinction to make.  Too often, it seems, the discussion of the Western Rite is always framed around how to make Orthodox those who come from Western Rite backgrounds (i.e. Roman Catholic, Episcopal, High Church Lutheran, etc.) almost a Unia in reverse.
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« Reply #12 on: January 29, 2012, 12:58:28 PM »

He actually grew up in the shadow of the Vatican, I believe.  At some point he switched the Episcopalians.

Given the way the Episcopalians have gone in the last few decades, I'm sure many Roman Catholics would love to switch them.
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« Reply #13 on: January 29, 2012, 11:07:50 PM »

I listened to it. I have to say I was dissapointed. The talk seemed a bit rambling and aimed at a very academically-inclined audience.

Most of the discussion seemed to be about St. Augustine, not the Western Rite specifically. I'm still puzzled how that was germane to the discussion - after all, one can attend an Eastern Rite church and appreciate St. Augustine, so, why does his writings prove the need for WRO?

At the very end, Fr. Patrick Reardon dropped a couple of tantalizing clues to his opinions on the Western Rite. One was that he was concerned that they fixed their liturgies during a historical low period (he mentions Cramner and the Council of Trent). So I wanted him to answer the question: What was wrong with the liturgies from (I'm assuming) the 16th century? Does Fr. Patrick prefer a western rite (there are many) from an earlier era? If so, what is it? Those questions would be well worth a follow-up discussion on AFR.

As for his distaste for feast days that commemorate doctrines rather than historical events (ie the Feast of Christ the King), that hardly seems to be a very potent argument against the Western Rite. On the other hand, it's an interesting observation and I honestly had never thought about that before...
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« Reply #14 on: January 31, 2012, 11:44:44 PM »

I'm not sure Fr. Patrick intended it as an argument against Western Rite. But you're right, it would make a very poor argument, for the fact that none of those late-arrived theme-feasts (Corpus Christi, Sacred Heart, Christ the King, etc.) need be celebrated by Western Rite Orthodox Christians in the first place.
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