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Author Topic: De-Incarnated Christ of Orthodoxy?  (Read 13353 times) Average Rating: 0
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JLatimer
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« on: October 26, 2011, 12:01:58 PM »

Christ, in Orthodox thought (or, at least, a popularized articulation of Orthodox thought), possess [sic] a cosmic Kingship; He is the “brooding omnipresence in the dome” of any properly constructed Orthodox temple, which leaves sufficient room for a more apt “doxological” cry from the kliros: “We have no king but Caesar!” There is a strange, almost disturbing, inversion of what Eric Voegelin called the “cosmological empire”: Orthodox society (more imagined than real) is not structured as a reflection of the cosmos; the cosmos under Christ is structured like a Byzantine court, with an earthly ceremonial ritual transformed into a liturgy that is given, by title, a divine status.
...
Venuleius (blog author): I’ve toyed (and, really, that’s all this is — toying) with the thesis that Christ is effectively “de-Incarnated” in popularized Orthodox thought, piety, liturgics, etc. So to assert, as Catholicism does (or, at least, did until Vatican II), that Christ is King in this world is an almost incomprehensible assertion for the Orthodox. Christ is Heaven (“the dome”), not here on earth;
...
Also, for reasons of historical accident more than anything else, it seems (I’m speculating here) that Orthodox piety centralized a cosmic, transcendent Christ over an earthly, suffering Christ (who was also, paradoxically, kingly). It’s almost as if Christ’s Kingship can’t be understand when he was “just” leading the Apostles around Galilee or “just” enduring questioning, mockery, physical assault, etc. He had to be positioned in the Heavens, with a choir of angels and Saints, to be a King.

How would you respond to this assertion that Orthodoxy (as opposed to Catholicism) de-incarnates Christ, that we relegate Him to a 'mystical/cosmological' role detached from this world? Is there any merit to this critique? He makes some very provocative, to say the least, assertions: for example, the claim that the Orthodox stand in the position of the Jews exclaiming we have no king but Caesar.

Quote
Venuleius: The question of Christ’s humanity in Orthodox (popular) thought is a difficult one to unravel, though I thought Fr. Patrick Reardon’s recent lecture on the Orthodox Western Rite where he notes that the Liturgy of St. John reflects a pre-Chalcedonian Christology offers a clue into the different “emphases” one finds in Eastern and Western Christian piety and liturgics. I discussed this matter with a friend of mine, and he noted that the humanity of Christ only becomes “front and center” during the liturgical offices of Holy Week, but by Holy Saturday it’s pulled back. (On this point I keep thinking of the Byzatine icon of Christ simultaneously “in the Heavens” and “in the Tomb”; there’s a powerful demand that people never forget that Christ is still God, which is theologically correct, though one could argue that it detracts from the very real (human) suffering and death he endured.)
...
Francis: I hear you and remember one of Balthasars’ critiques of slavic Byzantine iconography being deincarnated.

Would you go so far as to say or see a functional Monophysitism?

 Shocked

Note how he admits that the demand to never forget the Divinity of Christ is "theologically" correct, but still seems uncomfortable with it. Hate to be facile and dismissive, but, well, you know, the N word...
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« Reply #1 on: October 26, 2011, 12:09:15 PM »

Wow, never thought I'd see my brother's blog quoted here.  Cheesy
« Last Edit: October 26, 2011, 12:10:55 PM by Andrew21091 » Logged
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« Reply #2 on: October 26, 2011, 12:11:30 PM »

I think Orthodox could stand to emphasize more of Christ's role as our mediator to God, which I think Catholics emphasize more during liturgy, but other than that I don't see much difference.

Of course, we contend that Christ came from a woman just like us, not one who was immaculately conceived.
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« Reply #3 on: October 26, 2011, 12:13:41 PM »

Christ, in Orthodox thought (or, at least, a popularized articulation of Orthodox thought), possess [sic] a cosmic Kingship; He is the “brooding omnipresence in the dome” of any properly constructed Orthodox temple, which leaves sufficient room for a more apt “doxological” cry from the kliros: “We have no king but Caesar!” There is a strange, almost disturbing, inversion of what Eric Voegelin called the “cosmological empire”: Orthodox society (more imagined than real) is not structured as a reflection of the cosmos; the cosmos under Christ is structured like a Byzantine court, with an earthly ceremonial ritual transformed into a liturgy that is given, by title, a divine status.
...
Venuleius (blog author): I’ve toyed (and, really, that’s all this is — toying) with the thesis that Christ is effectively “de-Incarnated” in popularized Orthodox thought, piety, liturgics, etc. So to assert, as Catholicism does (or, at least, did until Vatican II), that Christ is King in this world is an almost incomprehensible assertion for the Orthodox. Christ is Heaven (“the dome”), not here on earth;
...
Also, for reasons of historical accident more than anything else, it seems (I’m speculating here) that Orthodox piety centralized a cosmic, transcendent Christ over an earthly, suffering Christ (who was also, paradoxically, kingly). It’s almost as if Christ’s Kingship can’t be understand when he was “just” leading the Apostles around Galilee or “just” enduring questioning, mockery, physical assault, etc. He had to be positioned in the Heavens, with a choir of angels and Saints, to be a King.

How would you respond to this assertion that Orthodoxy (as opposed to Catholicism) de-incarnates Christ, that we relegate Him to a 'mystical/cosmological' role detached from this world? Is there any merit to this critique? He makes some very provocative, to say the least, assertions: for example, the claim that the Orthodox stand in the position of the Jews exclaiming we have no king but Caesar.

Quote
Venuleius: The question of Christ’s humanity in Orthodox (popular) thought is a difficult one to unravel, though I thought Fr. Patrick Reardon’s recent lecture on the Orthodox Western Rite where he notes that the Liturgy of St. John reflects a pre-Chalcedonian Christology offers a clue into the different “emphases” one finds in Eastern and Western Christian piety and liturgics. I discussed this matter with a friend of mine, and he noted that the humanity of Christ only becomes “front and center” during the liturgical offices of Holy Week, but by Holy Saturday it’s pulled back. (On this point I keep thinking of the Byzatine icon of Christ simultaneously “in the Heavens” and “in the Tomb”; there’s a powerful demand that people never forget that Christ is still God, which is theologically correct, though one could argue that it detracts from the very real (human) suffering and death he endured.)
...
Francis: I hear you and remember one of Balthasars’ critiques of slavic Byzantine iconography being deincarnated.

Would you go so far as to say or see a functional Monophysitism?

 Shocked

Note how he admits that the demand to never forget the Divinity of Christ is "theologically" correct, but still seems uncomfortable with it. Hate to be facile and dismissive, but, well, you know, the N word...
While I disagree with a great deal of what the author said, it is important to keep both facts in mind: both Christ's Divinity and his Humanity.
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« Reply #4 on: October 26, 2011, 12:14:27 PM »

Christ, in Orthodox thought (or, at least, a popularized articulation of Orthodox thought), possess [sic] a cosmic Kingship; He is the “brooding omnipresence in the dome” of any properly constructed Orthodox temple, which leaves sufficient room for a more apt “doxological” cry from the kliros: “We have no king but Caesar!” There is a strange, almost disturbing, inversion of what Eric Voegelin called the “cosmological empire”: Orthodox society (more imagined than real) is not structured as a reflection of the cosmos; the cosmos under Christ is structured like a Byzantine court, with an earthly ceremonial ritual transformed into a liturgy that is given, by title, a divine status.
...
Venuleius (blog author): I’ve toyed (and, really, that’s all this is — toying) with the thesis that Christ is effectively “de-Incarnated” in popularized Orthodox thought, piety, liturgics, etc. So to assert, as Catholicism does (or, at least, did until Vatican II), that Christ is King in this world is an almost incomprehensible assertion for the Orthodox. Christ is Heaven (“the dome”), not here on earth;
...
Also, for reasons of historical accident more than anything else, it seems (I’m speculating here) that Orthodox piety centralized a cosmic, transcendent Christ over an earthly, suffering Christ (who was also, paradoxically, kingly). It’s almost as if Christ’s Kingship can’t be understand when he was “just” leading the Apostles around Galilee or “just” enduring questioning, mockery, physical assault, etc. He had to be positioned in the Heavens, with a choir of angels and Saints, to be a King.

How would you respond to this assertion that Orthodoxy (as opposed to Catholicism) de-incarnates Christ, that we relegate Him to a 'mystical/cosmological' role detached from this world? Is there any merit to this critique? He makes some very provocative, to say the least, assertions: for example, the claim that the Orthodox stand in the position of the Jews exclaiming we have no king but Caesar.

Quote
Venuleius: The question of Christ’s humanity in Orthodox (popular) thought is a difficult one to unravel, though I thought Fr. Patrick Reardon’s recent lecture on the Orthodox Western Rite where he notes that the Liturgy of St. John reflects a pre-Chalcedonian Christology offers a clue into the different “emphases” one finds in Eastern and Western Christian piety and liturgics. I discussed this matter with a friend of mine, and he noted that the humanity of Christ only becomes “front and center” during the liturgical offices of Holy Week, but by Holy Saturday it’s pulled back. (On this point I keep thinking of the Byzatine icon of Christ simultaneously “in the Heavens” and “in the Tomb”; there’s a powerful demand that people never forget that Christ is still God, which is theologically correct, though one could argue that it detracts from the very real (human) suffering and death he endured.)
...
Francis: I hear you and remember one of Balthasars’ critiques of slavic Byzantine iconography being deincarnated.

Would you go so far as to say or see a functional Monophysitism?

 Shocked

Note how he admits that the demand to never forget the Divinity of Christ is "theologically" correct, but still seems uncomfortable with it. Hate to be facile and dismissive, but, well, you know, the N word...

When I click on the link, I get the blog article, but there's absolutely nothing about the person who wrote it.  Does he/she speak for the Catholic Church?  If so, in what capacity?  Or, is this just some anonymous blogger's opinion?
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« Reply #5 on: October 26, 2011, 12:14:33 PM »

Wow, never thought I'd see my brother's blog quoted here.  Cheesy

That's your brother?
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« Reply #6 on: October 26, 2011, 12:18:20 PM »

Wow, never thought I'd see my brother's blog quoted here.  Cheesy

That's your brother?

Is he RC?
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« Reply #7 on: October 26, 2011, 12:18:36 PM »

Wow, never thought I'd see my brother's blog quoted here.  Cheesy

That's your brother?

Aren't we all brothers and sisters?  Grin
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« Reply #8 on: October 26, 2011, 12:24:53 PM »

Wow, never thought I'd see my brother's blog quoted here.  Cheesy

That's your brother?

Is he RC?

Yes, he is my brother and yes he is Roman Catholic.
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« Reply #9 on: October 26, 2011, 12:25:02 PM »

I think the critique is perhaps valid if you slice Liturgy off and call it the whole of our beliefs, which this article seems to do.

The incarnation may not be emphasized as much in the rubrics of the Liturgy, but it is elsewhere: foremost in the Icons, which could not exist if we preached a "de-incarnated" Christ. Christ is as material as the icons on the wall, thus the Incarnation stands firm.

I don't see any need for the Liturgy to be, unto itself, a complete treatise on Orthodox beliefs. The Liturgy exists for a specific reason: for us to celebrate the Eucharist, which is itself a proclamation of the Incarnation.
« Last Edit: October 26, 2011, 12:25:40 PM by bogdan » Logged
JLatimer
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« Reply #10 on: October 26, 2011, 12:27:33 PM »

Wow, never thought I'd see my brother's blog quoted here.  Cheesy

That's your brother?

Is he RC?

Yes, he is my brother and yes he is Roman Catholic.

But was Orthodox at one point, no?
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« Reply #11 on: October 26, 2011, 12:29:28 PM »

Wow, never thought I'd see my brother's blog quoted here.  Cheesy

That's your brother?

Is he RC?

Yes, he is my brother and yes he is Roman Catholic.

But was Orthodox at one point, no?

He was.
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« Reply #12 on: October 26, 2011, 12:46:20 PM »

It seems to me he's trying to find an actual problem where non really exists--except in his own mind, of course.
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« Reply #13 on: October 26, 2011, 01:11:02 PM »

Christ, in Orthodox thought (or, at least, a popularized articulation of Orthodox thought), possess [sic] a cosmic Kingship; He is the “brooding omnipresence in the dome” of any properly constructed Orthodox temple, which leaves sufficient room for a more apt “doxological” cry from the kliros: “We have no king but Caesar!” There is a strange, almost disturbing, inversion of what Eric Voegelin called the “cosmological empire”: Orthodox society (more imagined than real) is not structured as a reflection of the cosmos; the cosmos under Christ is structured like a Byzantine court, with an earthly ceremonial ritual transformed into a liturgy that is given, by title, a divine status.
...
Venuleius (blog author): I’ve toyed (and, really, that’s all this is — toying) with the thesis that Christ is effectively “de-Incarnated” in popularized Orthodox thought, piety, liturgics, etc. So to assert, as Catholicism does (or, at least, did until Vatican II), that Christ is King in this world is an almost incomprehensible assertion for the Orthodox. Christ is Heaven (“the dome”), not here on earth;
...
Also, for reasons of historical accident more than anything else, it seems (I’m speculating here) that Orthodox piety centralized a cosmic, transcendent Christ over an earthly, suffering Christ (who was also, paradoxically, kingly). It’s almost as if Christ’s Kingship can’t be understand when he was “just” leading the Apostles around Galilee or “just” enduring questioning, mockery, physical assault, etc. He had to be positioned in the Heavens, with a choir of angels and Saints, to be a King.

How would you respond to this assertion that Orthodoxy (as opposed to Catholicism) de-incarnates Christ, that we relegate Him to a 'mystical/cosmological' role detached from this world? Is there any merit to this critique? He makes some very provocative, to say the least, assertions: for example, the claim that the Orthodox stand in the position of the Jews exclaiming we have no king but Caesar.

Quote
Venuleius: The question of Christ’s humanity in Orthodox (popular) thought is a difficult one to unravel, though I thought Fr. Patrick Reardon’s recent lecture on the Orthodox Western Rite where he notes that the Liturgy of St. John reflects a pre-Chalcedonian Christology offers a clue into the different “emphases” one finds in Eastern and Western Christian piety and liturgics. I discussed this matter with a friend of mine, and he noted that the humanity of Christ only becomes “front and center” during the liturgical offices of Holy Week, but by Holy Saturday it’s pulled back. (On this point I keep thinking of the Byzatine icon of Christ simultaneously “in the Heavens” and “in the Tomb”; there’s a powerful demand that people never forget that Christ is still God, which is theologically correct, though one could argue that it detracts from the very real (human) suffering and death he endured.)
...
Francis: I hear you and remember one of Balthasars’ critiques of slavic Byzantine iconography being deincarnated.

Would you go so far as to say or see a functional Monophysitism?

 Shocked

Note how he admits that the demand to never forget the Divinity of Christ is "theologically" correct, but still seems uncomfortable with it. Hate to be facile and dismissive, but, well, you know, the N word...
Nonsense?

Because that is what it is.  Odd coming from an Ultramontanist, given that they need-and demand we need-a "visible head," while we have no problem with Christ ruling the Church as the "invisible Head." Seems like another attempt to attack the Orthodox as somehow deficient in not having a "Vicar of Christ" "tanking the place of God on earth." Simple: He is ever present in the Orthodox Church, so He-and we-don't need a "Vicar."

And He is present physically-deincarnation would cause the whole very visible role of the Holy Icons to collapse in Orthodoxy.  Since I haven't seen that, I have no idea where they are getting this "deincarnation" in the Orthodox Church from.

Maybe he is upset that we do not share the Vatican's thirst for gore, the fetish for displaying body parts or the obsession to put His mother on a par with Him.  Oh, well. That's their problem, not ours.

There is also not a too thinly disguised swipe at Orthodoxy as "Caesaropapism."  Of course, besides the transformation of the church into a Papal state-despite the clear words during that passion he refers to "My Kingdom is not of this world"-the Vatican is always selective in its condemnation of "Caesaropapism."  It of course defends to the death the act of the Germanic kings in overturning the Tradition of Orthodox Rome, reiterated by Popes and inscribed on the doors of St. Peter's itself, in the insertion of the filioque in the mass at Rome, praises the Emperors of the Romans who dragged the bishops from the Orthodox patriarchates to submit to the Vatican in return for armies to defend their kingdom of this world, and celebrates the imposition of "union" by the Polish King (at the time trying to overturn the reformation in his native Sweden, and promising Polish lords Russian lands to make up for those lost to Sweden).  It isn't upset that we allegedly say "we have no king but Caesar," but that we refuse to recognize Caesar's successor as pontifex maximus as "Caesar" and "Supreme Pontiff."

I've been to many Orthodox Churches which had no Pantocrator in the dome.  I've never been to one which did not have an Icon of the Theotokos and Child (how He came) flanking the altar (how He comes now).

"It’s almost as if Christ’s Kingship can’t be understand when he was “just” leading the Apostles around Galilee or “just” enduring questioning, mockery, physical assault, etc. He had to be positioned in the Heavens, with a choir of angels and Saints, to be a King." Nearly every large Orthodox Cross I've seen has, above the Crucifixed Christ the inscription "King of Glory."

No, there is no merit in this "critique." Just an agenda.
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« Reply #14 on: October 26, 2011, 01:36:10 PM »

Wow, never thought I'd see my brother's blog quoted here.  Cheesy

That's your brother?

Is he RC?

Yes, he is my brother and yes he is Roman Catholic.

I’m sure you two have had some interesting discussions and debates over the years.  I found somewhat humorous the following comment that your brother made in the comments section of his blog: 

Venuleius:

"Look, I’m not Catholic because I care about liturgy; I’m Catholic because I don’t want to go to hell. I want my plenary indulgences, Rosaries, Novenas to St. Joseph so I can find a new position, daily morning Mass that’s over in time for me to get to work, afternoon Mass during the workday that I can go to on my lunch hour, night Mass during the week I can go to after work, Saturday night Mass that I can go to so I can do drugs, drink, and have sex with my wife on Sunday morning (because — all you Orthodox out there — that’s what Catholics who go to “accommodation Mass” really do), Confessionals where I don’t have to smell the priest’s breath, scary bloody Crucifixion statuary, Purgatory, the Filioque, the Immaculate Conception, Latin, normal, well-adjusted people, etc. That’s the package deal the Pope personally dispatched to me to get me to sign-up. So far, no buyer’s remorse."


From the little I have read of the blog, the author seems very much at home with scholasticism and the absolute certainty and clarity that results from such a centralized and organized religious institution.  About the comments provided in the OP, however, I don’t have a comment.       
« Last Edit: October 26, 2011, 01:36:45 PM by jah777 » Logged
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« Reply #15 on: October 26, 2011, 02:33:26 PM »

Wow, never thought I'd see my brother's blog quoted here.  Cheesy

That's your brother?

Is he RC?

Yes, he is my brother and yes he is Roman Catholic.

I’m sure you two have had some interesting discussions and debates over the years.  I found somewhat humorous the following comment that your brother made in the comments section of his blog: 

Venuleius:

"Look, I’m not Catholic because I care about liturgy; I’m Catholic because I don’t want to go to hell. I want my plenary indulgences, Rosaries, Novenas to St. Joseph so I can find a new position, daily morning Mass that’s over in time for me to get to work, afternoon Mass during the workday that I can go to on my lunch hour, night Mass during the week I can go to after work, Saturday night Mass that I can go to so I can do drugs, drink, and have sex with my wife on Sunday morning (because — all you Orthodox out there — that’s what Catholics who go to “accommodation Mass” really do), Confessionals where I don’t have to smell the priest’s breath, scary bloody Crucifixion statuary, Purgatory, the Filioque, the Immaculate Conception, Latin, normal, well-adjusted people, etc. That’s the package deal the Pope personally dispatched to me to get me to sign-up. So far, no buyer’s remorse."


From the little I have read of the blog, the author seems very much at home with scholasticism and the absolute certainty and clarity that results from such a centralized and organized religious institution.  About the comments provided in the OP, however, I don’t have a comment.       

I hope he is joking.
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« Reply #16 on: October 26, 2011, 02:43:01 PM »

I got a kick out of this response (which I agree with)
Quote
Personally, enjoy the “Jesus went down, punched the devil in the nose, and kicked down the gates of hell” side of the story more than the “He was bleeding all over the place” side. But I’m an insecure Cubs fan and enjoy being on the winning side for once.
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« Reply #17 on: October 26, 2011, 02:46:31 PM »

Wow, never thought I'd see my brother's blog quoted here.  Cheesy

That's your brother?

Is he RC?

Yes, he is my brother and yes he is Roman Catholic.

I’m sure you two have had some interesting discussions and debates over the years.  I found somewhat humorous the following comment that your brother made in the comments section of his blog: 

Venuleius:

"Look, I’m not Catholic because I care about liturgy; I’m Catholic because I don’t want to go to hell. I want my plenary indulgences, Rosaries, Novenas to St. Joseph so I can find a new position, daily morning Mass that’s over in time for me to get to work, afternoon Mass during the workday that I can go to on my lunch hour, night Mass during the week I can go to after work, Saturday night Mass that I can go to so I can do drugs, drink, and have sex with my wife on Sunday morning (because — all you Orthodox out there — that’s what Catholics who go to “accommodation Mass” really do), Confessionals where I don’t have to smell the priest’s breath, scary bloody Crucifixion statuary, Purgatory, the Filioque, the Immaculate Conception, Latin, normal, well-adjusted people, etc. That’s the package deal the Pope personally dispatched to me to get me to sign-up. So far, no buyer’s remorse."


From the little I have read of the blog, the author seems very much at home with scholasticism and the absolute certainty and clarity that results from such a centralized and organized religious institution.  About the comments provided in the OP, however, I don’t have a comment.       

I hope he is joking.

Seems pretty tongue-in-cheek to me.  But, what do I know?
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« Reply #18 on: October 26, 2011, 02:50:50 PM »

Another Latin Catholic criticizing completely legitimate aspects of Eastern Catholicism. *papal facepalm*
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« Reply #19 on: October 26, 2011, 03:04:39 PM »

Thanks for a great response, but let me play devil's advocate.

Nonsense?

Because that is what it is.  Odd coming from an Ultramontanist, given that they need-and demand we need-a "visible head," while we have no problem with Christ ruling the Church as the "invisible Head."

I think he might see invisibility as a sign of 'disincarnation'. ISTM he's working off an incarnate=visible idea. 

Quote
Seems like another attempt to attack the Orthodox as somehow deficient in not having a "Vicar of Christ" "tanking the place of God on earth." Simple: He is ever present in the Orthodox Church,

He might say, as sacerdotium but not as regnum. His critique seems to be that the Orthodox Church acts a dispenser of sacraments, but does not image Christ's Kingship over creation. How do you address that? What is Christ's Kingship? How does it differ from earthly kingship? How is it similar? How does He exercise it? How does the Orthodox Church show it forth?

Quote
so He-and we-don't need a "Vicar."

And He is present physically-deincarnation would cause the whole very visible role of the Holy Icons to collapse in Orthodoxy.  Since I haven't seen that, I have no idea where they are getting this "deincarnation" in the Orthodox Church from.

He mentions the idea that Orthodox icons are too 'ascetical' or 'mystical'. Again the idea that incarnate=visible (in this case in the sense of 'realistic'). 

Quote
Maybe he is upset that we do not share the Vatican's thirst for gore,

I think he might say what we see as a thirst for gore is a real, thoroughgoing commitment to the real, true, literal humanity of Christ. 

Quote
the fetish for displaying body parts or the obsession to put His mother on a par with Him.  Oh, well. That's their problem, not ours.

There is also not a too thinly disguised swipe at Orthodoxy as "Caesaropapism."  Of course, besides the transformation of the church into a Papal state-despite the clear words during that passion he refers to "My Kingdom is not of this world"

He seems to draw a distinction between "of this world", "in this world". He seems to think Orthodoxy, in stressing that Christ's Kingdom is not of this world, has pushed it altogether out of this world. For him, Christ's Kingdom is not of this world, but is in this world. I would tend to agree with that. But if not the Vatican, what does Christ's not-of-but-in-this-world Kingdom look like? 

Quote
-the Vatican is always selective in its condemnation of "Caesaropapism."  It of course defends to the death the act of the Germanic kings in overturning the Tradition of Orthodox Rome, reiterated by Popes and inscribed on the doors of St. Peter's itself, in the insertion of the filioque in the mass at Rome, praises the Emperors of the Romans who dragged the bishops from the Orthodox patriarchates to submit to the Vatican in return for armies to defend their kingdom of this world, and celebrates the imposition of "union" by the Polish King (at the time trying to overturn the reformation in his native Sweden, and promising Polish lords Russian lands to make up for those lost to Sweden).  It isn't upset that we allegedly say "we have no king but Caesar," but that we refuse to recognize Caesar's successor as pontifex maximus as "Caesar" and "Supreme Pontiff."

I've been to many Orthodox Churches which had no Pantocrator in the dome.  I've never been to one which did not have an Icon of the Theotokos and Child (how He came) flanking the altar (how He comes now).

"It’s almost as if Christ’s Kingship can’t be understand when he was “just” leading the Apostles around Galilee or “just” enduring questioning, mockery, physical assault, etc. He had to be positioned in the Heavens, with a choir of angels and Saints, to be a King." Nearly every large Orthodox Cross I've seen has, above the Crucifixed Christ the inscription "King of Glory."

The N word I was thinking was Nestorian. It seems there is a similar concern for defending the integrity of humanity in the Incarnation, and a similar result: the Word of God assuming not humanity but a man (as you said, a visible Vicar of Christ, "taking the place of God on earth").
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« Reply #20 on: October 26, 2011, 03:09:13 PM »

Greetings in that divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!



No, there is no merit in this "critique." Just an agenda.

You called it Wink

Christ, in Orthodox thought (or, at least, a popularized articulation of Orthodox thought), possess [sic] a cosmic Kingship; He is the “brooding omnipresence in the dome” of any properly constructed Orthodox temple, which leaves sufficient room for a more apt “doxological” cry from the kliros: “We have no king but Caesar!” There is a strange, almost disturbing, inversion of what Eric Voegelin called the “cosmological empire”: Orthodox society (more imagined than real) is not structured as a reflection of the cosmos; the cosmos under Christ is structured like a Byzantine court, with an earthly ceremonial ritual transformed into a liturgy that is given, by title, a divine status.
...
Venuleius (blog author): I’ve toyed (and, really, that’s all this is — toying) with the thesis that Christ is effectively “de-Incarnated” in popularized Orthodox thought, piety, liturgics, etc. So to assert, as Catholicism does (or, at least, did until Vatican II), that Christ is King in this world is an almost incomprehensible assertion for the Orthodox. Christ is Heaven (“the dome”), not here on earth;
...
Also, for reasons of historical accident more than anything else, it seems (I’m speculating here) that Orthodox piety centralized a cosmic, transcendent Christ over an earthly, suffering Christ (who was also, paradoxically, kingly). It’s almost as if Christ’s Kingship can’t be understand when he was “just” leading the Apostles around Galilee or “just” enduring questioning, mockery, physical assault, etc. He had to be positioned in the Heavens, with a choir of angels and Saints, to be a King.

How would you respond to this assertion that Orthodoxy (as opposed to Catholicism) de-incarnates Christ, that we relegate Him to a 'mystical/cosmological' role detached from this world? Is there any merit to this critique? He makes some very provocative, to say the least, assertions: for example, the claim that the Orthodox stand in the position of the Jews exclaiming we have no king but Caesar.

Quote
Venuleius: The question of Christ’s humanity in Orthodox (popular) thought is a difficult one to unravel, though I thought Fr. Patrick Reardon’s recent lecture on the Orthodox Western Rite where he notes that the Liturgy of St. John reflects a pre-Chalcedonian Christology offers a clue into the different “emphases” one finds in Eastern and Western Christian piety and liturgics. I discussed this matter with a friend of mine, and he noted that the humanity of Christ only becomes “front and center” during the liturgical offices of Holy Week, but by Holy Saturday it’s pulled back. (On this point I keep thinking of the Byzatine icon of Christ simultaneously “in the Heavens” and “in the Tomb”; there’s a powerful demand that people never forget that Christ is still God, which is theologically correct, though one could argue that it detracts from the very real (human) suffering and death he endured.)
...
Francis: I hear you and remember one of Balthasars’ critiques of slavic Byzantine iconography being deincarnated.

Would you go so far as to say or see a functional Monophysitism?

 Shocked

Note how he admits that the demand to never forget the Divinity of Christ is "theologically" correct, but still seems uncomfortable with it. Hate to be facile and dismissive, but, well, you know, the N word...

We never separate His humanity from His divinity, and we rarely de-incarnate Christ, though many heresies in the past have.  This author is just misunderstanding our emphasis on the Divine.  We as Orthodox have already embraced the humanity of Christ by accepting His coming in the Incarnate form, however, we must continually reaffirm our experience of His Divinity because this is God Almighty!  We need God, and so we need the Divine!
Quote
]that Christ is King in this world is an almost incomprehensible assertion for the Orthodox.

This is nonsense because Christ is precisely King in this world because ALL of this world ONLY exists because of His  own divine authority, life-giving power, and creation sustaining force.  He is not tainted by our politics or socio-cultural baggage, true, rather He transcends these because of His Universal kingship, and when we cooperate with Him we to transcend our limited perspectives and join in not just in the Heavenly kingdom, but in manifesting the fullness of His kingship here on Earth in our present moments.

We accept Christ as King of both Heaven and Earth precisely by His Incarnation.  Does Christ sit on an earthly throne surrounded by an ethnic federation or kingdom? Not necessarily, but than again, Christ is the truly Universal King of all Creation, both in Heaven and in Earth.  We must therefore explicitly emphasize His kingship in Heaven, as this is as fundamentally important to us as any kingship on Earth. Further, as God Almighty, Christ is of course King in His Flesh, whether or not His crown is golden or of thorns, because as God Incarnate Christ perpetually and at every moment sustains all of His Creation.  The Universe is not self-existing, only God is self-existing, and so in His Incarnation Christ effectively demonstrates His earthly (i.e., physical dominion) kingship in that He is the One sustaining all of Creation, just God always has, however now not just from His Divine existence, but in an unimaginable physical form.  In this way, God expresses His kingly authority by physically sustaining the Universe, in being Himself a physical being, Jesus Christ the God-Man.

Our Divine liturgy is precisely that moment when the kingdoms of Heaven and Earth interact and unite by His Incarnation.  We are not merely transported to Heaven, as if separate from Earth, and going to worship a Christ whose Kingdom is also separated from Earth, rather the Kingdom of Heaven intrudes upon Earth, and we bridge the gap just as Christ does by His very own Flesh and Blood.  The Liturgy is not then orchestrated around the Byzantine Court, if anything, since the Liturgy is a glimpse into the Heavenly orders, the Byzantine courts (and indeed all Imperial Orthodox Courts, from Russia to Ethiopia and everywhere in between) were orchestrated around Heaven!
So we never think of Christ as only being a King in Heaven, even if He is sitting at the right hand of the Father as we pray in the Creed, because at the right hand of the Father He is sitting in His deified, resurrected, physical body, and as such is manifesting then His creative powers through His physical body, just as He always had through His spiritual hypostases as Father, Son the Word, and Holy Spirit.  Now that the Word is Incarnate, the Son expresses His Divine power through His physical hypostasis of His incarnate body.  So He is always an earthly King then in the sense that in  all of His actions He manifests them by His physical hypostasis, which is by definition earthly and interconnected with the physical realm of Earth by its very physicality.  How could He then be "detached" from the physical world when for all time and forever He remains a physical being by His eternal Incarnation?



He might say, as sacerdotium but not as regnum. His critique seems to be that the Orthodox Church acts a dispenser of sacraments, but does not image Christ's Kingship over creation. How do you address that? What is Christ's Kingship? How does it differ from earthly kingship? How is it similar? How does He exercise it? How does the Orthodox Church show it forth?


Christ's Kingship is the power of His Divinity which creates and sustains all moments of reality.  This kingship is expressed of course, by His Divinity as the Word, and yet become "earthly" because of the Incarnation.  God is King because He is all-powerful.  Jesus Christ is an earthly King because He is God in an earthly Form, manifesting the Immateriality of the Infinite Godhead's creative and sustaining faculties through His own human-divine hypostasis.  An earthly king expresses power and authority over his earthly dominion by his own existing body, which is the only way for humans to express their God-given agency.  Jesus Christ, as God, expresses His own Divine agency, also through His earthly Hypostasis, and therefore His Kingship, which is Divine, subsequently becomes Earthly as well.

I would say that this blog is simply clumsy and way to over-thinking it!

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #21 on: October 26, 2011, 03:14:40 PM »

I got a kick out of this response (which I agree with)
Quote
Personally, enjoy the “Jesus went down, punched the devil in the nose, and kicked down the gates of hell” side of the story more than the “He was bleeding all over the place” side. But I’m an insecure Cubs fan and enjoy being on the winning side for once.

Yes, I enjoyed that, too. It seems to me Venuleius' critique is based on a reading of those two 'sides of the story' as being opposed, and needing to be held in 'balance'. If you overemphasize the Divinity, you lose the humanity. So we shouldn't overemphasize the Divine, omnipotent Christ.

This way of thinking ISTM assumes, though, that the Divinity of Christ "went down, punched the devil in the nose, and kicked down the gates of hell". Helpless humanity is stuck bleeding while Divinity is taking care of business. For Venuleius, the emphasis on punching the devil in the nose is part of the "powerful demand that people never forget that Christ is still God", when in reality, isn't the Gospel message that all humanity, in Christ Jesus, went down, punched the devil in the nose, and kicked down the gates of hell?

Pascha is our victory.
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« Reply #22 on: October 26, 2011, 03:18:01 PM »

I got a kick out of this response (which I agree with)
Quote
Personally, enjoy the “Jesus went down, punched the devil in the nose, and kicked down the gates of hell” side of the story more than the “He was bleeding all over the place” side. But I’m an insecure Cubs fan and enjoy being on the winning side for once.

Yes, I enjoyed that, too. It seems to me Venuleius' critique is based on a reading of those two 'sides of the story' as being opposed, and needing to be held in 'balance'. If you overemphasize the Divinity, you lose the humanity. So we shouldn't overemphasize the Divine, omnipotent Christ.

This way of thinking ISTM assumes, though, that the Divinity of Christ "went down, punched the devil in the nose, and kicked down the gates of hell". Helpless humanity is stuck bleeding while Divinity is taking care of business. When in reality, isn't the Gospel message that all humanity, in Christ Jesus, went down, punched the devil in the nose, and kicked down the gates of hell?
I have heard that the East spends more time emphasizing the Divinity of Christ because the East had to face all of those heresies that denied his Divnity.
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« Reply #23 on: October 26, 2011, 03:23:22 PM »

I got a kick out of this response (which I agree with)
Quote
Personally, enjoy the “Jesus went down, punched the devil in the nose, and kicked down the gates of hell” side of the story more than the “He was bleeding all over the place” side. But I’m an insecure Cubs fan and enjoy being on the winning side for once.

Yes, I enjoyed that, too. It seems to me Venuleius' critique is based on a reading of those two 'sides of the story' as being opposed, and needing to be held in 'balance'. If you overemphasize the Divinity, you lose the humanity. So we shouldn't overemphasize the Divine, omnipotent Christ.

This way of thinking ISTM assumes, though, that the Divinity of Christ "went down, punched the devil in the nose, and kicked down the gates of hell". Helpless humanity is stuck bleeding while Divinity is taking care of business. When in reality, isn't the Gospel message that all humanity, in Christ Jesus, went down, punched the devil in the nose, and kicked down the gates of hell?
I have heard that the East spends more time emphasizing the Divinity of Christ because the East had to face all of those heresies that denied his Divnity.

What I'm trying to say, though, is that "trampling down death by death" is not emphasizing Christ's Divinity. After all, is it any wonder God could defeat death? The wonder is that in the Godman, humanity defeats death.
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« Reply #24 on: October 26, 2011, 03:34:20 PM »

Read the Christological threads here. It is obvious how serious some folks take Christ's Incarnation. Not very.

And I am out.
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« Reply #25 on: October 26, 2011, 03:35:40 PM »

I got a kick out of this response (which I agree with)
Quote
Personally, enjoy the “Jesus went down, punched the devil in the nose, and kicked down the gates of hell” side of the story more than the “He was bleeding all over the place” side. But I’m an insecure Cubs fan and enjoy being on the winning side for once.

Yes, I enjoyed that, too. It seems to me Venuleius' critique is based on a reading of those two 'sides of the story' as being opposed, and needing to be held in 'balance'. If you overemphasize the Divinity, you lose the humanity. So we shouldn't overemphasize the Divine, omnipotent Christ.

This way of thinking ISTM assumes, though, that the Divinity of Christ "went down, punched the devil in the nose, and kicked down the gates of hell". Helpless humanity is stuck bleeding while Divinity is taking care of business. When in reality, isn't the Gospel message that all humanity, in Christ Jesus, went down, punched the devil in the nose, and kicked down the gates of hell?
I have heard that the East spends more time emphasizing the Divinity of Christ because the East had to face all of those heresies that denied his Divnity.

I have heard that the Orthodox Church has learned how portray the divinity and humanity of Christ by partaking of the divine grace which is present only in the mysteries of the Orthodox Church.  Without such grace, Roman Catholicism became estranged from the authentic experience of divine grace and attempted to fill the spiritual vacuum with a pietisim that thrived on and nurtured the baser emotions through graphic portrayals of Christ’s suffering which were mostly characterized by gross materiality and plain gore without any spiritual quality.  This loss of authentic spiritual experience also led to the replacement of the authority of Christ with that of the Pope, the replacement of a God-centered spirituality in which man is deified with a man-centered pseudo-spirituality which attempts to humanize God, a replacement of the sober asceticism of the Desert Fathers with the delusions of “mystics”, etc.  At least that’s what I hear.   
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« Reply #26 on: October 26, 2011, 03:44:27 PM »

Read the Christological threads here. It is obvious how serious some folks take Christ's Incarnation. Not very.

And I am out.

Yes; only you, NicholasMyra, and Fr. Thomas Hopko take the Incarnation seriously. How could I forget?
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« Reply #27 on: October 26, 2011, 03:48:16 PM »

Read the Christological threads here. It is obvious how serious some folks take Christ's Incarnation. Not very.

And I am out.

Yes; only you, NicholasMyra, and Fr. Thomas Hopko take the Incarnation seriously. How could I forget?

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« Reply #28 on: October 26, 2011, 03:55:50 PM »

Read the Christological threads here. It is obvious how serious some folks take Christ's Incarnation. Not very.

And I am out.

Yes; only you, NicholasMyra, and Fr. Thomas Hopko take the Incarnation seriously. How could I forget?



Honestly, I didn't expect you to respond after you declared yourself "out". I'm a bit disappointed. But I'll admit you've successfully discomfited me again with your reply.
What are you saying?
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« Reply #29 on: October 26, 2011, 04:15:35 PM »

Read the Christological threads here. It is obvious how serious some folks take Christ's Incarnation. Not very.

And I am out.

Yes; only you, NicholasMyra, and Fr. Thomas Hopko take the Incarnation seriously. How could I forget?



Honestly, I didn't expect you to respond after you declared yourself "out". I'm a bit disappointed. But I'll admit you've successfully discomfited me again with your reply.
What are you saying?

Gee, I haven't seen one of those for awhile! It sure looks like one of those maps that someone else is so fond of posting  Grin.
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« Reply #30 on: October 26, 2011, 05:04:28 PM »

Wow, never thought I'd see my brother's blog quoted here.  Cheesy

That's your brother?

Is he RC?

Yes, he is my brother and yes he is Roman Catholic.

I bet that makes for some interesting chat over thanksgiving dinner...hehe Wink
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« Reply #31 on: October 26, 2011, 05:08:07 PM »

Wow, never thought I'd see my brother's blog quoted here.  Cheesy

That's your brother?

Is he RC?

Yes, he is my brother and yes he is Roman Catholic.

I bet that makes for some interesting chat over thanksgiving dinner...hehe Wink

You think they pray together  Grin Shocked?  Oy vey ist mir  Grin!
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« Reply #32 on: October 26, 2011, 05:10:02 PM »

"Christ is in our midst! Indeed he is, and forever shall be!"
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« Reply #33 on: October 26, 2011, 05:11:24 PM »

Read the Christological threads here. It is obvious how serious some folks take Christ's Incarnation. Not very.

And I am out.

Yes; only you, NicholasMyra, and Fr. Thomas Hopko take the Incarnation seriously. How could I forget?



I see a scary looking pig...did I fail?? Tongue
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« Reply #34 on: October 26, 2011, 05:13:03 PM »

Read the Christological threads here. It is obvious how serious some folks take Christ's Incarnation. Not very.

And I am out.

Yes; only you, NicholasMyra, and Fr. Thomas Hopko take the Incarnation seriously. How could I forget?

Well played, JLatimer!

... (for balance: I enjoy orthonorm and NicholasMyra's thoughts on the topic and have elsewhere agreed with them on discrete points related to the subject) ...
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« Reply #35 on: October 26, 2011, 05:13:20 PM »

Read the Christological threads here. It is obvious how serious some folks take Christ's Incarnation. Not very.

And I am out.

Yes; only you, NicholasMyra, and Fr. Thomas Hopko take the Incarnation seriously. How could I forget?



I see a scary looking pig...did I fail?? Tongue
I am disappointed that I saw what it actually was. What does THAT say about my psyche?
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« Reply #36 on: October 26, 2011, 05:14:26 PM »

Read the Christological threads here. It is obvious how serious some folks take Christ's Incarnation. Not very.

And I am out.

Yes; only you, NicholasMyra, and Fr. Thomas Hopko take the Incarnation seriously. How could I forget?



I see a scary looking pig...did I fail?? Tongue

Well...........hmmmmm........der ist no failink!  However......
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« Reply #37 on: October 26, 2011, 05:14:46 PM »

we are constantly reminded of Christ's humanity whenever we venerate the Theotokos or sing hymns of praise to her.
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« Reply #38 on: October 26, 2011, 05:18:51 PM »

Re the OP -- personally, I am beyond pleased that our Divine Liturgy speaks of Christ as "our true God".

I think popular protestantism especially lacks this awareness of the Lord's divinity properly understood.
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« Reply #39 on: October 26, 2011, 05:19:20 PM »

Read the Christological threads here. It is obvious how serious some folks take Christ's Incarnation. Not very.

And I am out.

Yes; only you, NicholasMyra, and Fr. Thomas Hopko take the Incarnation seriously. How could I forget?



I see a scary looking pig...did I fail?? Tongue
I am disappointed that I saw what it actually was. What does THAT say about my psyche?

I take it your question was rhetorical, right?  It was, wasn't it?  Shocked Grin
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« Reply #40 on: October 26, 2011, 05:24:35 PM »

Read the Christological threads here. It is obvious how serious some folks take Christ's Incarnation. Not very.

And I am out.

Yes; only you, NicholasMyra, and Fr. Thomas Hopko take the Incarnation seriously. How could I forget?
I blame St. Vlad's. They're always introducing innovations into the American theological landscape, like that whole "God became man" thing.
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« Reply #41 on: October 26, 2011, 05:28:05 PM »

Wow, never thought I'd see my brother's blog quoted here.  Cheesy

That's your brother?

Is he RC?

Yes, he is my brother and yes he is Roman Catholic.

But was Orthodox at one point, no?

He was.

You should invite your  brother to come join us on here! I for one am interested to hear his story...
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« Reply #42 on: October 26, 2011, 05:42:15 PM »

Read the Christological threads here. It is obvious how serious some folks take Christ's Incarnation. Not very.

And I am out.

Yes; only you, NicholasMyra, and Fr. Thomas Hopko take the Incarnation seriously. How could I forget?
I blame St. Vlad's. They're always introducing innovations into the American theological landscape, like that whole "God became man" thing.

Definitely one of the more onerous innovations to come out of that accursed den of iniquity and modernism. As an Aristotelio-Arian crypto-Apollinarian gnostic, I know that God is incorporeal and impassible, and that between Spirit and matter is an unbridgable gap as between two opposed and antagonistic concepts. As Plato says, and as was further clarified by Blessed Plotinus, only through leaving behind the body and entering into pure contemplation can we transcend the fetters of materiality and become pure spirit beings in union with the One Who is by nature immaterial.
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« Reply #43 on: October 26, 2011, 05:45:24 PM »

Read the Christological threads here. It is obvious how serious some folks take Christ's Incarnation. Not very.

And I am out.

Yes; only you, NicholasMyra, and Fr. Thomas Hopko take the Incarnation seriously. How could I forget?



Honestly, I didn't expect you to respond after you declared yourself "out". I'm a bit disappointed. But I'll admit you've successfully discomfited me again with your reply.
What are you saying?

It's internetz zykologikals. Re-read my post and your response. I am backing off this stuff, until people start paying me.

My post was a crafted statement to illicit a response, which I no doubt knew you would give, to attempt to show you your own latent and obvious insecurities regarding your position on the subject. It was vague and you filled in the blanks. Your blanks say more about how you stand than all those posts of yours in the threads.

IOW, your response is a whole lot more telling than mine.

I am clear on why I find the subject upsetting. Are you?

FWIW, the real ink blots are in color.
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« Reply #44 on: October 26, 2011, 05:45:51 PM »

Read the Christological threads here. It is obvious how serious some folks take Christ's Incarnation. Not very.

And I am out.

Yes; only you, NicholasMyra, and Fr. Thomas Hopko take the Incarnation seriously. How could I forget?
I blame St. Vlad's. They're always introducing innovations into the American theological landscape, like that whole "God became man" thing.

Definitely one of the more onerous innovations to come out of that accursed den of iniquity and modernism. As an Aristotelio-Arian crypto-Apollinarian gnostic, I know that God is incorporeal and impassible, and that between Spirit and matter is an unbridgable gap as between two opposed and antagonistic concepts. As Plato says, and as was further clarified by Blessed Plotinus, only through leaving behind the body and entering into pure contemplation can we transcend the fetters of materiality and become pure spirit beings in union with the One Who is by nature immaterial.

WISDOM!
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« Reply #45 on: October 26, 2011, 05:59:08 PM »

Read the Christological threads here. It is obvious how serious some folks take Christ's Incarnation. Not very.

And I am out.

Yes; only you, NicholasMyra, and Fr. Thomas Hopko take the Incarnation seriously. How could I forget?



Honestly, I didn't expect you to respond after you declared yourself "out". I'm a bit disappointed. But I'll admit you've successfully discomfited me again with your reply.
What are you saying?

It's internetz zykologikals. Re-read my post and your response. I am backing off this stuff, until people start paying me.

Why would people do that?

Quote
My post was a crafted statement to illicit a response, which I no doubt knew you would give, to attempt to show you your own latent and obvious insecurities regarding your position on the subject.

If by insecurities you mean awareness of the possibility that I am insufficient in knowledge, and could be totally and completely wrong in my opinions, I've got plenty, and they're not latent.

Quote
It was vague and you filled in the blanks. Your blanks say more about how you stand than all those posts of yours in the threads.

And what do they say, exactly?

Quote
IOW, your response is a whole lot more telling than mine.

Of that I'm not so sure.

IOW, how convenient for you.

Quote
I am clear on why I find the subject upsetting. Are you?

FWIW, the real ink blots are in color.

I didn't say I found the subject upsetting.
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« Reply #46 on: October 26, 2011, 06:06:31 PM »

My post was a crafted statement to illicit a response,
Yes, your response is illicit (but valid), but that's a subject for another thread. Wink
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« Reply #47 on: October 26, 2011, 06:07:26 PM »

only through leaving behind the body and entering into pure contemplation can we transcend the fetters of materiality and become pure spirit beings in union with the One Who is by nature immaterial.
Keep that up and you could be the next Frederica when you grow some grey hairs!  police
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« Reply #48 on: October 26, 2011, 06:11:46 PM »

Maybe he is upset that we do not share the Vatican's thirst for gore, the fetish for displaying body parts or the obsession to put His mother on a par with Him.  Oh, well. That's their problem, not ours.

I'm not sure I understand the part about body parts. Do we not also display "body parts"? I had a friend who was used to venerating little bones her in America but when he went to Mt. Athos, he was amazed that the monks would bring out hands, arms, and heads for veneration.







And the part about putting His Mother on par with Christ. I have not seen that. I think it is silly when former Protestant converts to Orthodoxy make up stories about how the Roman Catholic venerate the Mother of God too much. Have you never been to a Russian Church? I have been to an Akathist before the Kursk root icon, I have read my share of canons and akathists to the Mother of God as well. I would say that they way the Romans venerate her is no different than how Orthodox have. Just look at the lives of the Saints. Would you say St. Seraphim's devotion to the Mother of God was too much?

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« Reply #49 on: October 26, 2011, 06:15:43 PM »

Sure, but some people are deeply attached to the notion that "it's okay if the Orthodox do it, but if the Roman Catholics do the same thing, then it's bad."  Roll Eyes
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« Reply #50 on: October 26, 2011, 06:17:28 PM »

Maybe he is upset that we do not share the Vatican's thirst for gore, the fetish for displaying body parts or the obsession to put His mother on a par with Him.  Oh, well. That's their problem, not ours.

I'm not sure I understand the part about body parts. Do we not also display "body parts"?
I think Isa's talking about stuff like the Sacred Heart.
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« Reply #51 on: October 26, 2011, 06:28:05 PM »

Never mind that Orthodox think it's okay to pray in front of a crucifix. Even if Christ is not shown bleeding, you still know that's what He was doing at the time. That's okay, because it's Orthodox. A Roman Catholic crucifix, however, which usually doesn't show blood either (the giant wooden one behind the altar in my old parish didn't), is somehow wrong. Why? Because... we already covered that.  Huh
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« Reply #52 on: October 26, 2011, 06:29:54 PM »

Never mind that Orthodox think it's okay to pray in front of a crucifix. Even if Christ is not shown bleeding, you still know that's what He was doing at the time. That's okay, because it's Orthodox. A Roman Catholic crucifix, however, which usually doesn't show blood either (the giant wooden one behind the altar in my old parish didn't), is somehow wrong. Why? Because... we already covered that.  Huh

I haven't burnt the RC crucifix in my house for violating Orthodox anti-carnality laws, Biro.  Grin
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« Reply #53 on: October 26, 2011, 06:31:01 PM »

Gosh this is lame.

For something fun, listen to this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J1cz7CS4vmY
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« Reply #54 on: October 26, 2011, 06:34:24 PM »

Ladies and Gentlemen,

My ears are burning and I have discovered the source.  I forgot that I had an account on here from "back in the day," otherwise I wouldn't have bothered to venture on here.  I won't respond to the "critiques" of my post/comments which have been posted on here, mainly because I find them intellectually uninteresting when they're not outright fabrications which attempt to get a read on why I write what I write.  If you really want to know, ask.  Or, better yet, engage the topics on my blog if you're that enthralled by them.  I can't make you, of course.  But putting up an entire thread dedicated to a handful of quotes from my blog strikes me as not only uncharitable, but childish.  Making snide remarks to my brother concerning the fact I am Catholic while he is Orthodox is contemptuous.

I once jested to my brother that if anyone ever asked him I was no longer Orthodox, he should respond swiftly with, "Because of people like you."  I am starting to reconsider the good humor in which I originally made it.  Perhaps that is the best and, in a way, most honest reply of all.

Contrary to popular opinion in these parts, I do not reject the undeniable truth that both Catholics and Orthodox profess a Christology which is thoroughly Chalcedonian.  Nor, for that matter, am I "anti-Orthodox" any more than I am "anti-Eastern Catholic."  (I was one prior to being Orthodox.)  The "point" of my post, if anyone bothered to read it, was to examine the Christ of popular Orthodox piety compared to the Christ of popular Catholic piety as reflected in each confession's liturgies (broadly understood to include, inter alia, iconography, hymnography, festal celebrations, etc.).  Those thoughts, like many of my various queries on "things Christian," are driven by my own academic (nerdy?) interest and little else.  I have noted elsewhere the occasional "ambiguities" surrounding Christ's divinity in certain forms of Western Christian devotion, though that fact has never for a moment raised any doubt in my mind that the Catholic Church professes what Orthodoxy professes.  If I am guilty of any great "heresy" it is this: I find the wall which separates East and West to be more illusory than real; and where it does exist, I see a very porous barrier.  I know there are many on each side of the divide who have a stake in the myth of rupture and, well, there's little I can do about that.  But whine or protest as you may, it won't change the orientation of my thinking or, for that matter, my blogging.

As for why I parted ways with Orthodoxy, there is something like an echo of truth in the facetious remarks I made which were quoted on here earlier.  I find that the mainline Orthodox consciousness can only conceive of such "apostasy" in the basest of terms.  That is to say, an Orthodox Christian is more likely to believe I left because I wanted to eat a giant bacon cheeseburger 15 minutes before Mass than because I believe the Roman Catholic Church is, in its fulness, the "one Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church" professed by both parties in the Creed.  For that reason (amongst others), I prefer to avoid the topic unless I am in the company of those Orthodox I call friends.  I suppose, though, if you scan my blog long enough, you'll get a sense of the details.  To say it wasn't due to seeing a light on the road to Damascus would be an understatement.

In closing, I couldn't care less if you read my blog, but if you do, man up and make your protests known over there.  I don't delete comments or close threads.  I try, when I find the circumstances so warrant, to respond to many of the remarks made over there.  But it is a blog, it's not an academic journal and, since I make not a shilling from it, I find I am under no compulsion to investment a moment more than what I have readily available dealing with it.  I would have left the remarks on here to the digital dustbin of history, but I do take offense when people want to be -- pardon my French -- rude to my brother.



We don't use such "French" here, so your "French" has been translated to a more acceptable English alternative.  -PtA
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« Reply #55 on: October 26, 2011, 08:52:03 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Re the OP -- personally, I am beyond pleased that our Divine Liturgy speaks of Christ as "our true God".

I think popular protestantism especially lacks this awareness of the Lord's divinity properly understood.

Actually I would argue quite the opposite.  In the past 200 hundred years of decentralized Protestant Christianity and the rise of denominationalism (even under the guise of supposed non-denominational churches Wink ) many of the heresies of the past have resurfaced from the same common, popular, and scholarly misconceptions which gave their initial rise in the first place. Christians generally understand Jesus Christ to be God Almighty, however it is His humanity they seem most to misunderstand. Most of these Christians then largely misunderstand the simple truths of the Creed, in that some believe Christ perhaps was not necessarily physical.  Others suppose He may have been a man, but not in the same kind of human body we all have naturally to humanity.  There are folks who profess that Christ is a man who became a God.  Others who say He is God who became a man.  Some churches teach that the Resurrection its a spiritual illusion, and not the deified physical body of Jesus Christ.  Some say the that in His Ascension He gave up His flesh as we do when we die, and that He sits at the right hand of the Father in Spirit.  Basically, about any way you could imagine Jesus Christ, there is a church for that full of people who agree with you.  Of course, this is all then a matter of imagination rather than Communionication.  If folks were in Communion with the Father, in the Son, through the Holy Spirit then they would be explained the Mysteries in their hearts by Grace and would not be so thoroughly confused and divided.  The Church is One, but as for these, who can say?

stay blessed,
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« Reply #56 on: October 26, 2011, 09:13:08 PM »

I would have left the remarks on here to the digital dustbin of history, but I do take offense when people want to be -- pardon my French -- rude to my brother.
Saying "you all must have some interesting conversations at Thanksgiving" is being rude...?  Huh



Profanity replaced with something more acceptable  -PtA
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« Reply #57 on: October 26, 2011, 09:17:02 PM »

Ladies and Gentlemen,

My ears are burning and I have discovered the source.  I forgot that I had an account on here from "back in the day," otherwise I wouldn't have bothered to venture on here.  I won't respond to the "critiques" of my post/comments which have been posted on here, mainly because I find them intellectually uninteresting when they're not outright fabrications which attempt to get a read on why I write what I write.  If you really want to know, ask.  Or, better yet, engage the topics on my blog if you're that enthralled by them.  I can't make you, of course.  But putting up an entire thread dedicated to a handful of quotes from my blog strikes me as not only uncharitable, but childish.  Making snide remarks to my brother concerning the fact I am Catholic while he is Orthodox is contemptuous.

I once jested to my brother that if anyone ever asked him I was no longer Orthodox, he should respond swiftly with, "Because of people like you."  I am starting to reconsider the good humor in which I originally made it.  Perhaps that is the best and, in a way, most honest reply of all.

Contrary to popular opinion in these parts, I do not reject the undeniable truth that both Catholics and Orthodox profess a Christology which is thoroughly Chalcedonian.  Nor, for that matter, am I "anti-Orthodox" any more than I am "anti-Eastern Catholic."  (I was one prior to being Orthodox.)  The "point" of my post, if anyone bothered to read it, was to examine the Christ of popular Orthodox piety compared to the Christ of popular Catholic piety as reflected in each confession's liturgies (broadly understood to include, inter alia, iconography, hymnography, festal celebrations, etc.).  Those thoughts, like many of my various queries on "things Christian," are driven by my own academic (nerdy?) interest and little else.  I have noted elsewhere the occasional "ambiguities" surrounding Christ's divinity in certain forms of Western Christian devotion, though that fact has never for a moment raised any doubt in my mind that the Catholic Church professes what Orthodoxy professes.  If I am guilty of any great "heresy" it is this: I find the wall which separates East and West to be more illusory than real; and where it does exist, I see a very porous barrier.  I know there are many on each side of the divide who have a stake in the myth of rupture and, well, there's little I can do about that.  But whine or protest as you may, it won't change the orientation of my thinking or, for that matter, my blogging.

As for why I parted ways with Orthodoxy, there is something like an echo of truth in the facetious remarks I made which were quoted on here earlier.  I find that the mainline Orthodox consciousness can only conceive of such "apostasy" in the basest of terms.  That is to say, an Orthodox Christian is more likely to believe I left because I wanted to eat a giant bacon cheeseburger 15 minutes before Mass than because I believe the Roman Catholic Church is, in its fulness, the "one Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church" professed by both parties in the Creed.  For that reason (amongst others), I prefer to avoid the topic unless I am in the company of those Orthodox I call friends.  I suppose, though, if you scan my blog long enough, you'll get a sense of the details.  To say it wasn't due to seeing a light on the road to Damascus would be an understatement.

In closing, I couldn't care less if you read my blog, but if you do, man up and make your protests known over there.  I don't delete comments or close threads.  I try, when I find the circumstances so warrant, to respond to many of the remarks made over there.  But it is a blog, it's not an academic journal and, since I make not a shilling from it, I find I am under no compulsion to investment a moment more than what I have readily available dealing with it.  I would have left the remarks on here to the digital dustbin of history, but I do take offense when people want to be -- pardon my French -- assholes to my brother.

Hey, welcome to the forums!  Grin Thanks for sharing your story.
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« Reply #58 on: October 26, 2011, 10:14:55 PM »

My post was a crafted statement to illicit a response,
Yes, your response is illicit (but valid), but that's a subject for another thread. Wink

Dude, and you didn't go for the Freudian slip?
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« Reply #59 on: October 26, 2011, 10:17:22 PM »

Ladies and Gentlemen,

My ears are burning and I have discovered the source.  I forgot that I had an account on here from "back in the day," otherwise I wouldn't have bothered to venture on here.  I won't respond to the "critiques" of my post/comments which have been posted on here, mainly because I find them intellectually uninteresting when they're not outright fabrications which attempt to get a read on why I write what I write.  If you really want to know, ask.  Or, better yet, engage the topics on my blog if you're that enthralled by them.  I can't make you, of course.  But putting up an entire thread dedicated to a handful of quotes from my blog strikes me as not only uncharitable, but childish.  Making snide remarks to my brother concerning the fact I am Catholic while he is Orthodox is contemptuous.

I once jested to my brother that if anyone ever asked him I was no longer Orthodox, he should respond swiftly with, "Because of people like you."  I am starting to reconsider the good humor in which I originally made it.  Perhaps that is the best and, in a way, most honest reply of all.

Contrary to popular opinion in these parts, I do not reject the undeniable truth that both Catholics and Orthodox profess a Christology which is thoroughly Chalcedonian.  Nor, for that matter, am I "anti-Orthodox" any more than I am "anti-Eastern Catholic."  (I was one prior to being Orthodox.)  The "point" of my post, if anyone bothered to read it, was to examine the Christ of popular Orthodox piety compared to the Christ of popular Catholic piety as reflected in each confession's liturgies (broadly understood to include, inter alia, iconography, hymnography, festal celebrations, etc.).  Those thoughts, like many of my various queries on "things Christian," are driven by my own academic (nerdy?) interest and little else.  I have noted elsewhere the occasional "ambiguities" surrounding Christ's divinity in certain forms of Western Christian devotion, though that fact has never for a moment raised any doubt in my mind that the Catholic Church professes what Orthodoxy professes.  If I am guilty of any great "heresy" it is this: I find the wall which separates East and West to be more illusory than real; and where it does exist, I see a very porous barrier.  I know there are many on each side of the divide who have a stake in the myth of rupture and, well, there's little I can do about that.  But whine or protest as you may, it won't change the orientation of my thinking or, for that matter, my blogging.

As for why I parted ways with Orthodoxy, there is something like an echo of truth in the facetious remarks I made which were quoted on here earlier.  I find that the mainline Orthodox consciousness can only conceive of such "apostasy" in the basest of terms.  That is to say, an Orthodox Christian is more likely to believe I left because I wanted to eat a giant bacon cheeseburger 15 minutes before Mass than because I believe the Roman Catholic Church is, in its fulness, the "one Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church" professed by both parties in the Creed.  For that reason (amongst others), I prefer to avoid the topic unless I am in the company of those Orthodox I call friends.  I suppose, though, if you scan my blog long enough, you'll get a sense of the details.  To say it wasn't due to seeing a light on the road to Damascus would be an understatement.

In closing, I couldn't care less if you read my blog, but if you do, man up and make your protests known over there.  I don't delete comments or close threads.  I try, when I find the circumstances so warrant, to respond to many of the remarks made over there.  But it is a blog, it's not an academic journal and, since I make not a shilling from it, I find I am under no compulsion to investment a moment more than what I have readily available dealing with it.  I would have left the remarks on here to the digital dustbin of history, but I do take offense when people want to be -- pardon my French -- assholes to my brother.

Man, we soooo need to hang!
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« Reply #60 on: October 26, 2011, 11:01:04 PM »

"Digital dustbin of history"

That is fantastic.
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« Reply #61 on: October 26, 2011, 11:28:41 PM »

This is somewhat "off topic" but pardon me for a second...

The various claims that there is a serious rupture between Orthodox and Catholic piety requires a high degree of substantiation which rarely, if ever, is offered.  The earlier remarks concerning the Mother of God are rich.  A brief scan of my old SJKP Liturgical Calendars, along with the ones issued by St. Herman's, reveals barely a day in the liturgical year when an icon of the Theotokos is not commemorated.  Also, if I recall correctly (I no longer have the books in front of me), the Slavonic Menaion contains nearly two-dozen full services to a Marian icon and the Slavonic Typikon has a specific order for those commemorations (which could, in theory, occur almost every day through recourse to the texts set forth in the General Menaion).  To call this "excessive" might be an understatement unless, of course, one happens to realize that devotion to Christ's Mother forms an integral part of the "ground level" piety of both confessions.  Moreover, I'm not sure how many people have sat down with some of the Menaion services or the many more Akathists which have been composed to the Theotokos (and her icons), but the devotional language is as strong, if not stronger, than what one finds in Catholic sources (say, the Rosary for instance or the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary which is still included in the 1962 Breviarium Romanum). 

As for the Immaculate Heart of Mary and its devotion, it has nothing to do with making Mary "on par" with Christ; it is a devotion which focuses on Mary's interior life -- ranging from her sorrows over the suffering of her Son to her deep love for all of humanity as exhibited by her constant intercession before God on our behalf.  (If you think this line of devotion is absent in Orthodoxy, then you've never read the original Akathist Hymn or, for that matter, spent 5 minutes with a pious Russian lady.)  The "Immaculate Heart" is a symbolic expression which engenders the experiences and love of Mary -- on which both Orthodox and Catholics revere as a model of Christian patience, hope, and love (i.e., key virtues).  To try and draw meaningless distinctions between this type of devotion and the popular devotions in Orthodoxy strikes me as gross (though not surprising).  As one person already noted, if the Catholics do what the Orthodox do, then it becomes "bad."  I would add to this that since Catholic devotion likely carries its own nuances (say, using a Latin word instead of a Greek word), then Orthodox, sadly, will pick up on this as critical.  But in the end, these are distinctions without a difference.

As for the "gore" of Catholicism, it may be there, but the Catholic Church is a big place: there's a lot there.  One could argue, I suppose, that the presence of "gore" is indicative of the incarnate understanding of Catholic Christianity: it doesn't dwell on attempts at a near-constant "otherworldliness"/quasi-Gnostic view of saintly existence (or, for that matter, Christ's existence).  I have nothing against icons, nor do I believe they are anything but beautiful expressions of the truth of the Christian Faith.  That a certain understanding of iconography can decay into the aformentioned pathologies is an unfortunate reality, though no more or less unfortunate than what can erupt out of the more "earthy" imaginings found in Western Christianity.  Both are subject to their excesses.  It's the absolutization which I find troubling (though it is one which, due to the tapestry of the West, isn't as problematic in Catholicism). 

I understand that it is difficult to raise these points given the strong triumphalist streak which runs through Orthodox conversion culture in America, but I wouldn't lose too much sleep over it.  My point is not to denigrate the East to hold up the West; I find both to be enriching fonts of a single Faith (though honesty compels me to affirm my view that it is the Orthodox East which is in Schism, but I wouldn't be a Catholic if I thought otherwise).  Of course there are concrete differences, including real divergences in theology which aren't easily reconciled.  But since I doubt most of this stuff is going to get sorted out in full before the Second Coming, I try not to lose too much sleep over it.  I am sorry if there is anyone out there who does.
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« Reply #62 on: October 27, 2011, 12:21:25 AM »

And the part about putting His Mother on par with Christ. I have not seen that. I think it is silly when former Protestant converts to Orthodoxy make up stories about how the Roman Catholic venerate the Mother of God too much. Have you never been to a Russian Church? I have been to an Akathist before the Kursk root icon, I have read my share of canons and akathists to the Mother of God as well. I would say that they way the Romans venerate her is no different than how Orthodox have. Just look at the lives of the Saints. Would you say St. Seraphim's devotion to the Mother of God was too much?

I don't think St. John the Wonderworker of San Francisco was a convert to Orthodoxy from Protestantism, though the fact that he was a bishop in ROCOR and served the Divine Liturgy daily indicates that he certainly did enter a Russian Church on a number of occasions.  In any case, in his book “Orthodox Veneration of Mary the Birthgiver of God”, he devotes an entire chapter to the subject of the Immaculate Conception and how Roman Catholicism perverted the veneration of the Mother of God.  As he demonstrates, even many of those whom the Papacy now venerates as saints did not accept the teaching regarding the Immaculate Conception, such as Thomas Aquinas and Bernard of Clairvaux who spoke against it.    Among other things, St. John the Wonderworker said:

Such a “vain deceit” is the teaching of the Immaculate Conception by Anna of the Virgin Mary, which at first sight exalts, but in actual fact belittles Her.  Like every lie, it is a seed of the “father of lies” (John 8:44), the devil, who has succeeded by it in deceiving many who do not understand that they blaspheme the Virgin Mary… all this is the fruit of vain, false wisdom which is not satisfied with what the Church has held from the time of the Apostles, but strives to glorify the Holy Virgin more than God has glorified Her.

Thus are the words of St. Epiphanius of Cyprus fulfilled:  “Certain senseless ones in their opinion about the Holy Ever-Virgin have striven and are striving to put Her in place of God” (St. Epiphanius, “Against the Antidikomarionites”).  But that which is offered to the Virgin in senselessness, instead of praise of Her, turns out to be blasphemy; and the All-Immaculate One rejects the lie, being the Mother of Truth (John 14:6).


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« Reply #63 on: October 27, 2011, 08:25:45 AM »

And the part about putting His Mother on par with Christ. I have not seen that. I think it is silly when former Protestant converts to Orthodoxy make up stories about how the Roman Catholic venerate the Mother of God too much. Have you never been to a Russian Church? I have been to an Akathist before the Kursk root icon, I have read my share of canons and akathists to the Mother of God as well. I would say that they way the Romans venerate her is no different than how Orthodox have. Just look at the lives of the Saints. Would you say St. Seraphim's devotion to the Mother of God was too much?

I don't think St. John the Wonderworker of San Francisco was a convert to Orthodoxy from Protestantism, though the fact that he was a bishop in ROCOR and served the Divine Liturgy daily indicates that he certainly did enter a Russian Church on a number of occasions.  In any case, in his book “Orthodox Veneration of Mary the Birthgiver of God”, he devotes an entire chapter to the subject of the Immaculate Conception and how Roman Catholicism perverted the veneration of the Mother of God.  As he demonstrates, even many of those whom the Papacy now venerates as saints did not accept the teaching regarding the Immaculate Conception, such as Thomas Aquinas and Bernard of Clairvaux who spoke against it.    Among other things, St. John the Wonderworker said:

Such a “vain deceit” is the teaching of the Immaculate Conception by Anna of the Virgin Mary, which at first sight exalts, but in actual fact belittles Her.  Like every lie, it is a seed of the “father of lies” (John 8:44), the devil, who has succeeded by it in deceiving many who do not understand that they blaspheme the Virgin Mary… all this is the fruit of vain, false wisdom which is not satisfied with what the Church has held from the time of the Apostles, but strives to glorify the Holy Virgin more than God has glorified Her.

Thus are the words of St. Epiphanius of Cyprus fulfilled:  “Certain senseless ones in their opinion about the Holy Ever-Virgin have striven and are striving to put Her in place of God” (St. Epiphanius, “Against the Antidikomarionites”).  But that which is offered to the Virgin in senselessness, instead of praise of Her, turns out to be blasphemy; and the All-Immaculate One rejects the lie, being the Mother of Truth (John 14:6).




Do you know the difference between an argument and an assertion, particularly an empty one?  This is invective, not an analysis.  Where is the explanation about how the Immaculate Conception is "demonic"?  How does it belittle the Mother of God?  And the words of St. Epiphanius don't even apply here -- or, at least, not without some substantial link.  No wonder Orthodox are accused of being ignorant and anti-intellectual.

"St." John may have lived a pious and ascetical life, but a first-rate thinker he was not.  This kind of inflammatory rubbish wouldn't earn a freshman a 'C' on his term paper and it won't convince a single soul that there is anything "off" about Catholic veneration and/or dogma concerning the Mother of God.  In short, it is not a serious objection, but the product of a prejudiced and small mind. 
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« Reply #64 on: October 27, 2011, 08:45:17 AM »

And the part about putting His Mother on par with Christ. I have not seen that. I think it is silly when former Protestant converts to Orthodoxy make up stories about how the Roman Catholic venerate the Mother of God too much. Have you never been to a Russian Church? I have been to an Akathist before the Kursk root icon, I have read my share of canons and akathists to the Mother of God as well. I would say that they way the Romans venerate her is no different than how Orthodox have. Just look at the lives of the Saints. Would you say St. Seraphim's devotion to the Mother of God was too much?

I don't think St. John the Wonderworker of San Francisco was a convert to Orthodoxy from Protestantism, though the fact that he was a bishop in ROCOR and served the Divine Liturgy daily indicates that he certainly did enter a Russian Church on a number of occasions.  In any case, in his book “Orthodox Veneration of Mary the Birthgiver of God”, he devotes an entire chapter to the subject of the Immaculate Conception and how Roman Catholicism perverted the veneration of the Mother of God.  As he demonstrates, even many of those whom the Papacy now venerates as saints did not accept the teaching regarding the Immaculate Conception, such as Thomas Aquinas and Bernard of Clairvaux who spoke against it.    Among other things, St. John the Wonderworker said:

Such a “vain deceit” is the teaching of the Immaculate Conception by Anna of the Virgin Mary, which at first sight exalts, but in actual fact belittles Her.  Like every lie, it is a seed of the “father of lies” (John 8:44), the devil, who has succeeded by it in deceiving many who do not understand that they blaspheme the Virgin Mary… all this is the fruit of vain, false wisdom which is not satisfied with what the Church has held from the time of the Apostles, but strives to glorify the Holy Virgin more than God has glorified Her.

Thus are the words of St. Epiphanius of Cyprus fulfilled:  “Certain senseless ones in their opinion about the Holy Ever-Virgin have striven and are striving to put Her in place of God” (St. Epiphanius, “Against the Antidikomarionites”).  But that which is offered to the Virgin in senselessness, instead of praise of Her, turns out to be blasphemy; and the All-Immaculate One rejects the lie, being the Mother of Truth (John 14:6).




Do you know the difference between an argument and an assertion, particularly an empty one?  This is invective, not an analysis.  Where is the explanation about how the Immaculate Conception is "demonic"?  How does it belittle the Mother of God?  And the words of St. Epiphanius don't even apply here -- or, at least, not without some substantial link.  No wonder Orthodox are accused of being ignorant and anti-intellectual.

"St." John may have lived a pious and ascetical life, but a first-rate thinker he was not.  This kind of inflammatory rubbish wouldn't earn a freshman a 'C' on his term paper and it won't convince a single soul that there is anything "off" about Catholic veneration and/or dogma concerning the Mother of God.  In short, it is not a serious objection, but the product of a prejudiced and small mind. 

Dude, seriously, when can we grab a drink together? I have some posts I would like to draft together with you. //:=)
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« Reply #65 on: October 27, 2011, 09:41:46 AM »

Do you know the difference between an argument and an assertion, particularly an empty one?  This is invective, not an analysis.  Where is the explanation about how the Immaculate Conception is "demonic"?  How does it belittle the Mother of God?  And the words of St. Epiphanius don't even apply here -- or, at least, not without some substantial link.  No wonder Orthodox are accused of being ignorant and anti-intellectual.

"St." John may have lived a pious and ascetical life, but a first-rate thinker he was not.  This kind of inflammatory rubbish wouldn't earn a freshman a 'C' on his term paper and it won't convince a single soul that there is anything "off" about Catholic veneration and/or dogma concerning the Mother of God.  In short, it is not a serious objection, but the product of a prejudiced and small mind. 

Wow. I don't think this kind of talk is called for.
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« Reply #66 on: October 27, 2011, 09:52:11 AM »

Do you know the difference between an argument and an assertion, particularly an empty one?  This is invective, not an analysis.  Where is the explanation about how the Immaculate Conception is "demonic"?  How does it belittle the Mother of God?  And the words of St. Epiphanius don't even apply here -- or, at least, not without some substantial link.  No wonder Orthodox are accused of being ignorant and anti-intellectual.

"St." John may have lived a pious and ascetical life, but a first-rate thinker he was not.  This kind of inflammatory rubbish wouldn't earn a freshman a 'C' on his term paper and it won't convince a single soul that there is anything "off" about Catholic veneration and/or dogma concerning the Mother of God.  In short, it is not a serious objection, but the product of a prejudiced and small mind. 

Wow. I don't think this kind of talk is called for.
[/quote]

I don't think running John of S.F.'s prejudices out here as some form of definitive proof that the Immaculate Conception or other forms of Catholic devotion to Mary is called for either.
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« Reply #67 on: October 27, 2011, 10:01:42 AM »

Do you know the difference between an argument and an assertion, particularly an empty one?  This is invective, not an analysis.  Where is the explanation about how the Immaculate Conception is "demonic"?  How does it belittle the Mother of God?  And the words of St. Epiphanius don't even apply here -- or, at least, not without some substantial link.  No wonder Orthodox are accused of being ignorant and anti-intellectual.

Please refer back to my message and see the statement that I was responding to, and you will see why I provided St. John’s concluding remarks from his chapter on the Immaculate Conception and did not develop or quote his entire argument.  The statement was essentially “I think it is silly when former Protestant converts to Orthodoxy make up stories about how the Roman Catholic venerate the Mother of God too much.”  It was then suggested that a person who would make this claim perhaps has “never been to a Russian Church.”  The concluding remarks from St. John were sufficient to show that it is not just “former Protestant converts” who have “never been to a Russian Church” that claim Roman Catholics have perverted the veneration of the Mother of God.  If you would like to read St. John’s entire argument, and not just his concluding remarks, I would recommend purchasing his book which is not very costly.
 
"St." John may have lived a pious and ascetical life, but a first-rate thinker he was not.  This kind of inflammatory rubbish wouldn't earn a freshman a 'C' on his term paper and it won't convince a single soul that there is anything "off" about Catholic veneration and/or dogma concerning the Mother of God.  In short, it is not a serious objection, but the product of a prejudiced and small mind. 

It is strange that without even reading St. John’s chapter on the subject, and basing yourself solely on a couple of concluding remarks from him, you proceed to give a scathing critique of his entire position, attempting to ridicule and insult one of the greatest saints of our times.  St. John’s position is carefully and thoroughly explained and developed, and it is rather the product of a “prejudiced and small mind” to so vehemently reject his conclusion without even reading what his conclusions were based on.  As far as “first-rate thinkers” go, for Orthodox Christians he is a “first rate thinker” because his thoughts and mental activity were energized by the grace of God which worked powerfully through his words, his prayers, his actions, etc.  That he would not be considered such a “first rate thinker” by Roman Catholics, however, is not surprising since for centuries Roman Catholic “theological” thought has pursued to its limits the working of human logic and reason apart from God’s illuminating and deifying grace.  To those who are “wise according to the world” with the barren and spiritually unfruitful “wisdom” of mere human logic and faithless skepticism, those who do not teach “with fleshly wisdom but by the grace of God (2 Cor. 1:12)” will always appear ignorant and foolish.   
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« Reply #68 on: October 27, 2011, 10:02:30 AM »

This is somewhat "off topic" but pardon me for a second...

The various claims that there is a serious rupture between Orthodox and Catholic piety requires a high degree of substantiation which rarely, if ever, is offered.  The earlier remarks concerning the Mother of God are rich.  A brief scan of my old SJKP Liturgical Calendars, along with the ones issued by St. Herman's, reveals barely a day in the liturgical year when an icon of the Theotokos is not commemorated.  Also, if I recall correctly (I no longer have the books in front of me), the Slavonic Menaion contains nearly two-dozen full services to a Marian icon and the Slavonic Typikon has a specific order for those commemorations (which could, in theory, occur almost every day through recourse to the texts set forth in the General Menaion).  To call this "excessive" might be an understatement unless, of course, one happens to realize that devotion to Christ's Mother forms an integral part of the "ground level" piety of both confessions.  Moreover, I'm not sure how many people have sat down with some of the Menaion services or the many more Akathists which have been composed to the Theotokos (and her icons), but the devotional language is as strong, if not stronger, than what one finds in Catholic sources (say, the Rosary for instance or the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary which is still included in the 1962 Breviarium Romanum). 

As for the Immaculate Heart of Mary and its devotion, it has nothing to do with making Mary "on par" with Christ; it is a devotion which focuses on Mary's interior life -- ranging from her sorrows over the suffering of her Son to her deep love for all of humanity as exhibited by her constant intercession before God on our behalf.  (If you think this line of devotion is absent in Orthodoxy, then you've never read the original Akathist Hymn or, for that matter, spent 5 minutes with a pious Russian lady.)  The "Immaculate Heart" is a symbolic expression which engenders the experiences and love of Mary -- on which both Orthodox and Catholics revere as a model of Christian patience, hope, and love (i.e., key virtues).  To try and draw meaningless distinctions between this type of devotion and the popular devotions in Orthodoxy strikes me as gross (though not surprising).  As one person already noted, if the Catholics do what the Orthodox do, then it becomes "bad."  I would add to this that since Catholic devotion likely carries its own nuances (say, using a Latin word instead of a Greek word), then Orthodox, sadly, will pick up on this as critical.  But in the end, these are distinctions without a difference.

As for the "gore" of Catholicism, it may be there, but the Catholic Church is a big place: there's a lot there.  One could argue, I suppose, that the presence of "gore" is indicative of the incarnate understanding of Catholic Christianity: it doesn't dwell on attempts at a near-constant "otherworldliness"/quasi-Gnostic view of saintly existence (or, for that matter, Christ's existence).  I have nothing against icons, nor do I believe they are anything but beautiful expressions of the truth of the Christian Faith.  That a certain understanding of iconography can decay into the aformentioned pathologies is an unfortunate reality, though no more or less unfortunate than what can erupt out of the more "earthy" imaginings found in Western Christianity.  Both are subject to their excesses.  It's the absolutization which I find troubling (though it is one which, due to the tapestry of the West, isn't as problematic in Catholicism). 

I understand that it is difficult to raise these points given the strong triumphalist streak which runs through Orthodox conversion culture in America, but I wouldn't lose too much sleep over it.  My point is not to denigrate the East to hold up the West; I find both to be enriching fonts of a single Faith (though honesty compels me to affirm my view that it is the Orthodox East which is in Schism, but I wouldn't be a Catholic if I thought otherwise).  Of course there are concrete differences, including real divergences in theology which aren't easily reconciled.  But since I doubt most of this stuff is going to get sorted out in full before the Second Coming, I try not to lose too much sleep over it.  I am sorry if there is anyone out there who does.

Wecome!!

Thank you for this, and your earlier post.  You have expressed many of my own thoughts in a manner far more cohesive, erudite, and well thought out than I ever could.  

JM
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« Reply #69 on: October 27, 2011, 10:21:40 AM »

jah777,

Even if your summation of John of S.F.'s views were meant as a reply to my brother, they failed to accomplish what you set out to achieve.  My brother offered concrete example of Russian Orthodox devotions to the Mother of God which are on par with the Catholic devotion.  He wasn't denying that there are Orthodox out there that criticize the Catholic position.  Moreover, your use of John of S.F. focused solely on the dogma of the Immaculate Conception; it didn't touch on any devotional aspect of Catholic piety. 

I've actually read the book you are quoting, so I'm not just blasting his summation.  But if you are going to reach into the text, it would be helpful if you summarized the argument instead of taking a few inflammatory lines and parading them out here like a triumphalist.
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« Reply #70 on: October 27, 2011, 10:38:46 AM »

This is somewhat "off topic" but pardon me for a second...

The various claims that there is a serious rupture between Orthodox and Catholic piety requires a high degree of substantiation which rarely, if ever, is offered.  The earlier remarks concerning the Mother of God are rich.  A brief scan of my old SJKP Liturgical Calendars, along with the ones issued by St. Herman's, reveals barely a day in the liturgical year when an icon of the Theotokos is not commemorated.  Also, if I recall correctly (I no longer have the books in front of me), the Slavonic Menaion contains nearly two-dozen full services to a Marian icon and the Slavonic Typikon has a specific order for those commemorations (which could, in theory, occur almost every day through recourse to the texts set forth in the General Menaion).  To call this "excessive" might be an understatement unless, of course, one happens to realize that devotion to Christ's Mother forms an integral part of the "ground level" piety of both confessions.  Moreover, I'm not sure how many people have sat down with some of the Menaion services or the many more Akathists which have been composed to the Theotokos (and her icons), but the devotional language is as strong, if not stronger, than what one finds in Catholic sources (say, the Rosary for instance or the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin Mary which is still included in the 1962 Breviarium Romanum). 

As for the Immaculate Heart of Mary and its devotion, it has nothing to do with making Mary "on par" with Christ; it is a devotion which focuses on Mary's interior life -- ranging from her sorrows over the suffering of her Son to her deep love for all of humanity as exhibited by her constant intercession before God on our behalf.  (If you think this line of devotion is absent in Orthodoxy, then you've never read the original Akathist Hymn or, for that matter, spent 5 minutes with a pious Russian lady.)  The "Immaculate Heart" is a symbolic expression which engenders the experiences and love of Mary -- on which both Orthodox and Catholics revere as a model of Christian patience, hope, and love (i.e., key virtues).  To try and draw meaningless distinctions between this type of devotion and the popular devotions in Orthodoxy strikes me as gross (though not surprising).  As one person already noted, if the Catholics do what the Orthodox do, then it becomes "bad."  I would add to this that since Catholic devotion likely carries its own nuances (say, using a Latin word instead of a Greek word), then Orthodox, sadly, will pick up on this as critical.  But in the end, these are distinctions without a difference.

As for the "gore" of Catholicism, it may be there, but the Catholic Church is a big place: there's a lot there.  One could argue, I suppose, that the presence of "gore" is indicative of the incarnate understanding of Catholic Christianity: it doesn't dwell on attempts at a near-constant "otherworldliness"/quasi-Gnostic view of saintly existence (or, for that matter, Christ's existence).  I have nothing against icons, nor do I believe they are anything but beautiful expressions of the truth of the Christian Faith.  That a certain understanding of iconography can decay into the aformentioned pathologies is an unfortunate reality, though no more or less unfortunate than what can erupt out of the more "earthy" imaginings found in Western Christianity.  Both are subject to their excesses.  It's the absolutization which I find troubling (though it is one which, due to the tapestry of the West, isn't as problematic in Catholicism). 

I understand that it is difficult to raise these points given the strong triumphalist streak which runs through Orthodox conversion culture in America, but I wouldn't lose too much sleep over it.  My point is not to denigrate the East to hold up the West; I find both to be enriching fonts of a single Faith (though honesty compels me to affirm my view that it is the Orthodox East which is in Schism, but I wouldn't be a Catholic if I thought otherwise).  Of course there are concrete differences, including real divergences in theology which aren't easily reconciled.  But since I doubt most of this stuff is going to get sorted out in full before the Second Coming, I try not to lose too much sleep over it.  I am sorry if there is anyone out there who does.

Wecome!!

Thank you for this, and your earlier post.  You have expressed many of my own thoughts in a manner far more cohesive, erudite, and well thought out than I ever could.  JM
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« Reply #71 on: October 27, 2011, 10:46:04 AM »

Greetings in that divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!



No, there is no merit in this "critique." Just an agenda.

You called it Wink

Christ, in Orthodox thought (or, at least, a popularized articulation of Orthodox thought), possess [sic] a cosmic Kingship; He is the “brooding omnipresence in the dome” of any properly constructed Orthodox temple, which leaves sufficient room for a more apt “doxological” cry from the kliros: “We have no king but Caesar!” There is a strange, almost disturbing, inversion of what Eric Voegelin called the “cosmological empire”: Orthodox society (more imagined than real) is not structured as a reflection of the cosmos; the cosmos under Christ is structured like a Byzantine court, with an earthly ceremonial ritual transformed into a liturgy that is given, by title, a divine status.
...
Venuleius (blog author): I’ve toyed (and, really, that’s all this is — toying) with the thesis that Christ is effectively “de-Incarnated” in popularized Orthodox thought, piety, liturgics, etc. So to assert, as Catholicism does (or, at least, did until Vatican II), that Christ is King in this world is an almost incomprehensible assertion for the Orthodox. Christ is Heaven (“the dome”), not here on earth;
...
Also, for reasons of historical accident more than anything else, it seems (I’m speculating here) that Orthodox piety centralized a cosmic, transcendent Christ over an earthly, suffering Christ (who was also, paradoxically, kingly). It’s almost as if Christ’s Kingship can’t be understand when he was “just” leading the Apostles around Galilee or “just” enduring questioning, mockery, physical assault, etc. He had to be positioned in the Heavens, with a choir of angels and Saints, to be a King.

How would you respond to this assertion that Orthodoxy (as opposed to Catholicism) de-incarnates Christ, that we relegate Him to a 'mystical/cosmological' role detached from this world? Is there any merit to this critique? He makes some very provocative, to say the least, assertions: for example, the claim that the Orthodox stand in the position of the Jews exclaiming we have no king but Caesar.

Quote
Venuleius: The question of Christ’s humanity in Orthodox (popular) thought is a difficult one to unravel, though I thought Fr. Patrick Reardon’s recent lecture on the Orthodox Western Rite where he notes that the Liturgy of St. John reflects a pre-Chalcedonian Christology offers a clue into the different “emphases” one finds in Eastern and Western Christian piety and liturgics. I discussed this matter with a friend of mine, and he noted that the humanity of Christ only becomes “front and center” during the liturgical offices of Holy Week, but by Holy Saturday it’s pulled back. (On this point I keep thinking of the Byzatine icon of Christ simultaneously “in the Heavens” and “in the Tomb”; there’s a powerful demand that people never forget that Christ is still God, which is theologically correct, though one could argue that it detracts from the very real (human) suffering and death he endured.)
...
Francis: I hear you and remember one of Balthasars’ critiques of slavic Byzantine iconography being deincarnated.

Would you go so far as to say or see a functional Monophysitism?

 Shocked

Note how he admits that the demand to never forget the Divinity of Christ is "theologically" correct, but still seems uncomfortable with it. Hate to be facile and dismissive, but, well, you know, the N word...

We never separate His humanity from His divinity, and we rarely de-incarnate Christ, though many heresies in the past have.  This author is just misunderstanding our emphasis on the Divine.  We as Orthodox have already embraced the humanity of Christ by accepting His coming in the Incarnate form, however, we must continually reaffirm our experience of His Divinity because this is God Almighty!  We need God, and so we need the Divine!
Quote
]that Christ is King in this world is an almost incomprehensible assertion for the Orthodox.

This is nonsense because Christ is precisely King in this world because ALL of this world ONLY exists because of His  own divine authority, life-giving power, and creation sustaining force.  He is not tainted by our politics or socio-cultural baggage, true, rather He transcends these because of His Universal kingship, and when we cooperate with Him we to transcend our limited perspectives and join in not just in the Heavenly kingdom, but in manifesting the fullness of His kingship here on Earth in our present moments.

We accept Christ as King of both Heaven and Earth precisely by His Incarnation.  Does Christ sit on an earthly throne surrounded by an ethnic federation or kingdom? Not necessarily, but than again, Christ is the truly Universal King of all Creation, both in Heaven and in Earth.  We must therefore explicitly emphasize His kingship in Heaven, as this is as fundamentally important to us as any kingship on Earth. Further, as God Almighty, Christ is of course King in His Flesh, whether or not His crown is golden or of thorns, because as God Incarnate Christ perpetually and at every moment sustains all of His Creation.  The Universe is not self-existing, only God is self-existing, and so in His Incarnation Christ effectively demonstrates His earthly (i.e., physical dominion) kingship in that He is the One sustaining all of Creation, just God always has, however now not just from His Divine existence, but in an unimaginable physical form.  In this way, God expresses His kingly authority by physically sustaining the Universe, in being Himself a physical being, Jesus Christ the God-Man.

Our Divine liturgy is precisely that moment when the kingdoms of Heaven and Earth interact and unite by His Incarnation.  We are not merely transported to Heaven, as if separate from Earth, and going to worship a Christ whose Kingdom is also separated from Earth, rather the Kingdom of Heaven intrudes upon Earth, and we bridge the gap just as Christ does by His very own Flesh and Blood.  The Liturgy is not then orchestrated around the Byzantine Court, if anything, since the Liturgy is a glimpse into the Heavenly orders, the Byzantine courts (and indeed all Imperial Orthodox Courts, from Russia to Ethiopia and everywhere in between) were orchestrated around Heaven!
So we never think of Christ as only being a King in Heaven, even if He is sitting at the right hand of the Father as we pray in the Creed, because at the right hand of the Father He is sitting in His deified, resurrected, physical body, and as such is manifesting then His creative powers through His physical body, just as He always had through His spiritual hypostases as Father, Son the Word, and Holy Spirit.  Now that the Word is Incarnate, the Son expresses His Divine power through His physical hypostasis of His incarnate body.  So He is always an earthly King then in the sense that in  all of His actions He manifests them by His physical hypostasis, which is by definition earthly and interconnected with the physical realm of Earth by its very physicality.  How could He then be "detached" from the physical world when for all time and forever He remains a physical being by His eternal Incarnation?



He might say, as sacerdotium but not as regnum. His critique seems to be that the Orthodox Church acts a dispenser of sacraments, but does not image Christ's Kingship over creation. How do you address that? What is Christ's Kingship? How does it differ from earthly kingship? How is it similar? How does He exercise it? How does the Orthodox Church show it forth?


Christ's Kingship is the power of His Divinity which creates and sustains all moments of reality.  This kingship is expressed of course, by His Divinity as the Word, and yet become "earthly" because of the Incarnation.  God is King because He is all-powerful.  Jesus Christ is an earthly King because He is God in an earthly Form, manifesting the Immateriality of the Infinite Godhead's creative and sustaining faculties through His own human-divine hypostasis.  An earthly king expresses power and authority over his earthly dominion by his own existing body, which is the only way for humans to express their God-given agency.  Jesus Christ, as God, expresses His own Divine agency, also through His earthly Hypostasis, and therefore His Kingship, which is Divine, subsequently becomes Earthly as well.

I would say that this blog is simply clumsy and way to over-thinking it!

stay blessed,
habte selassie

Great critique, thorough and to the point. Thank you!
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« Reply #72 on: October 27, 2011, 10:49:34 AM »

Maybe he is upset that we do not share the Vatican's thirst for gore, the fetish for displaying body parts or the obsession to put His mother on a par with Him.  Oh, well. That's their problem, not ours.

I'm not sure I understand the part about body parts. Do we not also display "body parts"? I had a friend who was used to venerating little bones her in America but when he went to Mt. Athos, he was amazed that the monks would bring out hands, arms, and heads for veneration.





Nicholas of Myra has already answered for me, correctly.
Maybe he is upset that we do not share the Vatican's thirst for gore, the fetish for displaying body parts or the obsession to put His mother on a par with Him.  Oh, well. That's their problem, not ours.

I'm not sure I understand the part about body parts. Do we not also display "body parts"?
I think Isa's talking about stuff like the Sacred Heart.

And the part about putting His Mother on par with Christ. I have not seen that. I think it is silly when former Protestant converts to Orthodoxy make up stories about how the Roman Catholic venerate the Mother of God too much. Have you never been to a Russian Church? I have been to an Akathist before the Kursk root icon, I have read my share of canons and akathists to the Mother of God as well. I would say that they way the Romans venerate her is no different than how Orthodox have. Just look at the lives of the Saints. Would you say St. Seraphim's devotion to the Mother of God was too much?
I'll reply to your brother, here and there, unless you want me to address something to you personally on this.
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« Reply #73 on: October 27, 2011, 11:02:53 AM »

Do you know the difference between an argument and an assertion, particularly an empty one?  This is invective, not an analysis.  Where is the explanation about how the Immaculate Conception is "demonic"?  How does it belittle the Mother of God?  And the words of St. Epiphanius don't even apply here -- or, at least, not without some substantial link.  No wonder Orthodox are accused of being ignorant and anti-intellectual.

"St." John may have lived a pious and ascetical life, but a first-rate thinker he was not.  This kind of inflammatory rubbish wouldn't earn a freshman a 'C' on his term paper and it won't convince a single soul that there is anything "off" about Catholic veneration and/or dogma concerning the Mother of God.  In short, it is not a serious objection, but the product of a prejudiced and small mind. 

Wow. I don't think this kind of talk is called for.

Apparently there's more than one Orthodox believer on this forum who can "call a spade a spade"!!

M.
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« Reply #74 on: October 27, 2011, 11:46:41 AM »

jah777,

Even if your summation of John of S.F.'s views were meant as a reply to my brother, they failed to accomplish what you set out to achieve.  My brother offered concrete example of Russian Orthodox devotions to the Mother of God which are on par with the Catholic devotion.  He wasn't denying that there are Orthodox out there that criticize the Catholic position.  Moreover, your use of John of S.F. focused solely on the dogma of the Immaculate Conception; it didn't touch on any devotional aspect of Catholic piety. 

I've actually read the book you are quoting, so I'm not just blasting his summation.  But if you are going to reach into the text, it would be helpful if you summarized the argument instead of taking a few inflammatory lines and parading them out here like a triumphalist.
btw, pot, did you forget to change your "faith" profile?

Jah777, excellent post.

But back our "orthodox" friend: you brother made an assertion:
I think it is silly when former Protestant converts to Orthodoxy make up stories about how the Roman Catholic venerate the Mother of God too much. Have you never been to a Russian Church?
Jah777 accomplished what he set out to achieve, showing how particularly empty the assertion was, offering a concrete example of a Russian Orthodox, who was not "a convert to Orthodoxy from Protestantism, though the fact that he was a bishop in ROCOR and served the Divine Liturgy daily indicates that he certainly did enter a Russian Church on a number of occasions" and although devoted to the Mother of God, criticized the Vatican's devotions, as did the concrete example Jah gave of your St. Bernard of Clairveaux and your "Angelic doctor" (neither of which, given their hostility to Orthodoxy, Russian or other, I think ever entered a Russian Orthodox Church, but both of which shared the Vatican's protest against the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church), basing his criticism firmly on the Orthodox criticism of such Mariolatry by the Catholic Father St. Epiphanius (though, it should be recalled, that though he served in Cyprus, he was born and raised in Palestine, and well versed there in the Apostolic teachings of the Lord's family).  Criticism well founded.  Too bad the Vatican didn't listen to its own "doctors of the church."  I guess the physician can't heal itself.

Your brother didn't deny that there are Orthodox out there that criticize the Vatican's position, he denied that they did so without any basis, and tried to dismiss it as some Protestant baggage in Orthodoxy.  Jah exposed that fallacy, not only with an Orthodox whose family has confessed the Faith at least since the birth of his relative, St. John of Tobolsk, in 1651, but with the Vatican's own authorities: both examples can be infinitely multiplied-I've seen, heard and read Pope Shenoudah articulate how the Vatican has turned the Theotokos into a goddess (His Holiness' words) many a time, and I think HH's family has held to the Orthodox Faith since Diocletian and the Era of Martyrs; and your doctor Bonaventure also rejected the IC, and I don't think he was a Protestant convert to Orthodoxy either.

The Feast of the Conception of St. Anne stands nowhere near on a par with the Feast of the Immaculate Conception.  Somewhere here we have a thread on how the Byzantine church, i.e. those who have gone into schism and submitted to the Vatican, have altered the liturgical texts of the former to reflect that latter.  "Didn't touch on any devotional aspect of Catholic piety"? "Such a “vain deceit” is the teaching of the Immaculate Conception by Anna of the Virgin Mary, which at first sight exalts, but in actual fact belittles her...deceiving many who do not understand that they blaspheme the Virgin Mary… all this is the fruit of vain, false wisdom which is not satisfied with what the Church has held from the time of the Apostles, but strives to glorify the Holy Virgin more than God has glorified Her". Yep, St. John touched on it.

At least Jah quoted some lines: all we have received from you is parading out your claim like a triumphalist to have read the book, and your inflammatory rubbish that St. John wasn't a "a first-rate thinker."  If you want to make such claims, take that log, start a fire with that rubbish, and by its light summarize your arguments against St. John and give us your summation, instead of your invective just accusing him of "prejudice."

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« Reply #75 on: October 27, 2011, 11:47:52 AM »

Do you know the difference between an argument and an assertion, particularly an empty one?  This is invective, not an analysis.  Where is the explanation about how the Immaculate Conception is "demonic"?  How does it belittle the Mother of God?  And the words of St. Epiphanius don't even apply here -- or, at least, not without some substantial link.  No wonder Orthodox are accused of being ignorant and anti-intellectual.

"St." John may have lived a pious and ascetical life, but a first-rate thinker he was not.  This kind of inflammatory rubbish wouldn't earn a freshman a 'C' on his term paper and it won't convince a single soul that there is anything "off" about Catholic veneration and/or dogma concerning the Mother of God.  In short, it is not a serious objection, but the product of a prejudiced and small mind. 

Wow. I don't think this kind of talk is called for.

Apparently there's more than one Orthodox believer on this forum who can "call a spade a spade"!!

M.
and another Ultramontanist fooled by what is put on the label.
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« Reply #76 on: October 27, 2011, 12:15:16 PM »

jah777,

Even if your summation of John of S.F.'s views were meant as a reply to my brother, they failed to accomplish what you set out to achieve.  My brother offered concrete example of Russian Orthodox devotions to the Mother of God which are on par with the Catholic devotion.  He wasn't denying that there are Orthodox out there that criticize the Catholic position.  Moreover, your use of John of S.F. focused solely on the dogma of the Immaculate Conception; it didn't touch on any devotional aspect of Catholic piety. 

I've actually read the book you are quoting, so I'm not just blasting his summation.  But if you are going to reach into the text, it would be helpful if you summarized the argument instead of taking a few inflammatory lines and parading them out here like a triumphalist.

The reference was made to the convert from Protestantism to Orthodoxy and the belief that Roman Catholics “venerate the Mother of God too much.”  You seem to be saying that this comment should remain exclusively within the focus of devotional forms and practices, however devotion cannot be separated from the dogmatic understanding regarding the one to whom worship (in the case of the Holy Trinity) or veneration/devotion (in the case of the Theotokos and the rest of the saints) is directed.  This is particularly emphasized in Orthodoxy where the word “Orthodoxy” means both right praise and right belief.  The teaching concerning the “Immaculate Conception” - that “Mary, from the first moment of her conception, by a singular grace and privilege of almighty God, and in view of the merits of Jesus Christ, Saviour of the human race, was preserved free from every stain of original sin (as defined by Pope Pius IX)”; is a perverted, distorted, and novel teaching concerning the Mother of God which results in a perverted, distorted, and novel devotion to her.  Roman Catholics and Orthodox may both kiss the same icon of the Mother of God, but they do not have the same beliefs concerning the one to whom their devotion is directed.  While seeming to exalt the role of the Mother of God by speaking of a “singular grace and privilege of almighty God” that she received at conception, she is not further glorified but rather dishonored and denigrated in that she is considered to have only been able to attain such holiness by this “singular grace and privilege of almighty God”.  Since she alone received this “singular grace” at her conception which God never has and never will grant to another person, she becomes less like us in her humanity and less our Mother.  Not having been conceived with the same tendency to sin as us, and claiming that unlike all of humanity she was absolutely sinless from the beginning, we are left with one who is like a fourth person of the Holy Trinity. 

I do not have St. John’s book with me at the moment, but I believe he touched on these points slong with many others, quoting even Bernard of Clairvaux’s refutation of this distorted teaching.  If you have St. John’s book, you can re-read it and offer a thorough critique, perhaps in another thread, if you think it was so badly done and would like to liberate these “anti-intellectual” Orthodox from ignorance.   
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« Reply #77 on: October 27, 2011, 12:16:51 PM »

I'm sorry that I offended you by posting this, Venuleius.
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« Reply #78 on: October 27, 2011, 12:17:25 PM »

ialmisry,

First, my brother's remark was this: "I think it is silly when former Protestant converts to Orthodoxy make up stories about how the Roman Catholic venerate the Mother of God too much. Have you never been to a Russian Church?"  How on earth does one distill from this opinion the view that there is not a single Russian Orthodox Christian who objects to some element of Catholic Marian devotion or dogma?  Only if one is out sniffing for an opportunity to add to the mix could one take this rhetorical question as a challenge to find some inflammatory assertions from the Russians toward Catholic Marian devotion.

Second, you haven't provided a single example of "false" Marian devotion in Catholicism; instead you remain stuck on the dogma of the Immaculate Conception.  On that, however, the disputes which exist in the Catholic tradition over the precise meaning of the doctrine (including the objections of Ss. Thomas Aquinas and Bernard of Clairvaux) are not dispositive.  John of S.F's choice to bring Aquinas and Bernard into the debate is a rehash of the old Protestant polemic against the doctrine.  It doesn't carry much water unless you believe (which the Catholic Church does not) that any single thinker in her 2,000 year history is infallible.  Moreover, Aquinas does not fully reject the doctrine; his work offers an alternative understanding of Mary's sanctification prior to her birth (cf. ST III:27:4).  Catholicism has a realistic enough understanding of its own theological history to know that there is no such thing as a "uniform witness"; this myth -- which is paraded amongst some Orthodox with respect to its own tradition -- doesn't get one very far when trying to ascertain the defining of dogmas over the centuries.  I once thought it was a Protestant hangup, but it seems to have some traction amongst contemporary Orthodox as well.

Third, the arguments contained in John of S.F's book on Mary are primarily rehashes of Protestant objections.  So I suspect my brother may have been hinting at more than he knew.  But again, the Immaculate Conception doctrine is distinct from the type of Catholic practices vis-a-vis Mary that he was getting at.  It wasn't his intention, I suspect, to open up a doctrinal debate.  I am still waiting for an example, whether it comes from John of S.F. or not, of what Catholic devotions toward Mary are false and constitute putting her on par with Christ (which was the original charge made earlier in this thread.).

Fourth, I don’t recall ever stating that the Feast of the Immaculate Conception is identical with the Feast of the Conception.  This is a red herring.  My focus was on devotional practices, not doctrine (though I understand the two are linked to a certain extent).  How does the Immaculate Conception lead Catholics to do something which fundamentally deviates from what the Orthodox do?  Or, better yet, explain how the Immaculate Conception places Mary on par with Christ.  I’m all eyes.

Last, if you want to believe that John of S.F. was a “first rate thinker,” that’s your business.  I will stand by my judgment based on what I have read.  That he relies shopworn arguments against Catholic doctrine doesn’t instill me with a lot of confidence that he could do much more than parrot the party line.  If it’s enough to convince you, that’s fine.  
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« Reply #79 on: October 27, 2011, 12:37:30 PM »

I think I am going to close out my participation on this thread, but I wanted to make a few final points:

First, if the Catholic Church's position on the Immaculate Conception is rendered incoherent by the fact that some of its theologians in the past have criticized the doctrine (or, in the case of Aquinas, offered alternatives to it), is it not fair to say that Orthodoxy's view is also rendered incoherent by the fact that St. Dimitri of Rostov accepted it and, moreover, that there were devotional groups in Slavic Orthodoxy dedicated to it?  What's good for the goose is good for the gander, right?

Second, a convincing argument against Catholic veneration of Mary <I>would have</I> linked up the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception with some concrete practices, yet this simple point seems to have been missed by more than a few people on here.  Even absent this, no one has even tried to explain how the Immaculate Conception puts Mary on par with Christ, perhaps because that's not what the dogma actually implies?  The Orthodox objection to the dogma typically comes in two forms:  First, there are those who (I think rightly) see the dogma as retroactively affirming the Augustinian view of original sin and are therefore uncomfortable with it.  Then there is the second, "popular," objection which generally runs like this: If the Catholic Church did it after 1054 (the arbitrary schism date), then it must be wrong.  That folks like John of S.F. attempted to marshal concrete arguments against it is a point I won't deny; but those critiques ring hollow, particularly given the rather substantial literature which now exists from Catholics and non-Catholics alike concerning the dogma.  But if you really, really want to believe that old "St." John is offering up something the Catholic Church hasn't thought of before, you go ahead and do that.  It's not my job (nor any Catholic's job, I suppose) to do your intellectual footwork for you.  Just keep in mind that I don’t think anyone outside a few dozen American Orthodox have ever thought much of the man’s intellectual output, regardless of his pious life.

Third, I apologize for letting myself get sucked into this vortex of silliness because I think my responses lend the false impression that I take a bulk of what is being tossed around here seriously.  I offered an open invitation on my own web-log for any of you to venture over there and take issue what I write.  I still object to the willingness of some to impute motivations to me which are not my own.  I may, of course, misunderstand some aspect of Orthodoxy (just as I may misunderstand some aspect of Catholicism), but correction is always the key to self-improvement.  The problem is that I don’t find much on here which really gets to what I was analyzing in the first place.  If that’s due to a lack of clarity on my part, then so be it.  But given my blog’s track record of attracting thoughtful comments and criticism from many different camps, I am going to stick by my assumption that more times than not, it is clear what I am doing and, when it isn’t, such misunderstandings can be corrected through additional comments and/or posts.  

Last, no one on here has to read anything I write.  Given the weak constitutions present in some of you, I would suggest you avoid everything I say lest you find yourself all in a dither.  Go do some prostrations are language removed for content -username! section moderatoror whatever it is pious Orthodox do.  Or, in the case of one person commenting on here and on my blog, try not to show up at your local liturgy 5 minutes before the Eucharist and then spend the last 15 minutes rummaging your hands through the post-Communion bread as if you hadn’t had a meal in 5 days.  Orthodoxy is a small town in this part of the globe; some of you aren’t as anonymous as you think.

 You are hereby officially warned for two weeks for your comment and language that I removed.  While I know you are new to the forum please re-read the rules in the upper toolbar simply by clicking on the word 'Rules.'  Before you post please re-read and ask yourself, "Am I a little upset, should I post this, am I being offensive to anyone and saying phrases un-acceptable on an Orthodox Christian webiste?" 
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« Reply #80 on: October 27, 2011, 01:09:30 PM »

Do you know the difference between an argument and an assertion, particularly an empty one?  This is invective, not an analysis.  Where is the explanation about how the Immaculate Conception is "demonic"?  How does it belittle the Mother of God?  And the words of St. Epiphanius don't even apply here -- or, at least, not without some substantial link.  No wonder Orthodox are accused of being ignorant and anti-intellectual.

"St." John may have lived a pious and ascetical life, but a first-rate thinker he was not.  This kind of inflammatory rubbish wouldn't earn a freshman a 'C' on his term paper and it won't convince a single soul that there is anything "off" about Catholic veneration and/or dogma concerning the Mother of God.  In short, it is not a serious objection, but the product of a prejudiced and small mind. 

Wow. I don't think this kind of talk is called for.

Indeed it is not. To come onto our forums and insult one of our saints like this is completely uncalled for. Sad
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« Reply #81 on: October 27, 2011, 01:16:39 PM »

Do you know the difference between an argument and an assertion, particularly an empty one?  This is invective, not an analysis.  Where is the explanation about how the Immaculate Conception is "demonic"?  How does it belittle the Mother of God?  And the words of St. Epiphanius don't even apply here -- or, at least, not without some substantial link.  No wonder Orthodox are accused of being ignorant and anti-intellectual.

"St." John may have lived a pious and ascetical life, but a first-rate thinker he was not.  This kind of inflammatory rubbish wouldn't earn a freshman a 'C' on his term paper and it won't convince a single soul that there is anything "off" about Catholic veneration and/or dogma concerning the Mother of God.  In short, it is not a serious objection, but the product of a prejudiced and small mind. 

Wow. I don't think this kind of talk is called for.

Indeed it is not. To come onto our forums and insult one of our saints like this is completely uncalled for. Sad

In terms of reality, to say that St. John the Wonderworker was not a great thinker is not an insult.  I have his icon that was touched to his body by my bed and I petition the mediation of his holiness during compline.   But I would never think of him as a great theologian or ecclesial thinker. 

But I am a bit concerned by the tone of the poster.  IF he had actually been attacked, then I could see his defending himself but he has come here on the offensive and that does not speak well for Catholics when he does that.  It would be better that he withdraw if that is his only contribution to this Forum.

M.
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« Reply #82 on: October 27, 2011, 02:25:24 PM »

My post was a crafted statement to illicit a response,
Yes, your response is illicit (but valid), but that's a subject for another thread. Wink

Dude, and you didn't go for the Freudian slip?
What? Freud wore a slip?
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« Reply #83 on: October 27, 2011, 03:57:59 PM »

First, if the Catholic Church's position on the Immaculate Conception is rendered incoherent by the fact that some of its theologians in the past have criticized the doctrine (or, in the case of Aquinas, offered alternatives to it), is it not fair to say that Orthodoxy's view is also rendered incoherent by the fact that St. Dimitri of Rostov accepted it and, moreover, that there were devotional groups in Slavic Orthodoxy dedicated to it?  What's good for the goose is good for the gander, right?

No, your argument here is without foundation.  The Roman Catholic position is not “rendered incoherent by the fact that some of its theologians in the past have criticized the doctrine” because in Roman Catholicism all that matters is the “infallible” dogmatic declarations of your Popes, and Pope Pius the IX "ex cathedra" declared the Immaculate Conception as a dogma of the Roman Catholic faith and assigned to condemnation any and all who would think otherwise.  See the following:


Declaration of Pope Pius IX on the Immaculate Conception from Ineffabilis Deus
http://www.papalencyclicals.net/Pius09/p9ineff.htm

Wherefore, in humility and fasting, we unceasingly offered our private prayers as well as the public prayers of the Church to God the Father through his Son, that he would deign to direct and strengthen our mind by the power of the Holy Spirit. In like manner did we implore the help of the entire heavenly host as we ardently invoked the Paraclete. Accordingly, by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, for the honor of the Holy and undivided Trinity, for the glory and adornment of the Virgin Mother of God, for the exaltation of the Catholic Faith, and for the furtherance of the Catholic religion, by the authority of Jesus Christ our Lord, of the Blessed Apostles Peter and Paul, and by our own: ”We declare, pronounce, and define that the doctrine which holds that the most Blessed Virgin Mary, in the first instance of her conception, by a singular grace and privilege granted by Almighty God, in view of the merits of Jesus Christ, the Savior of the human race, was preserved free from all stain of original sin, is a doctrine revealed by God and therefore to be believed firmly and constantly by all the faithful."

Hence, if anyone shall dare -- which God forbid! -- to think otherwise than as has been defined by us, let him know and understand that he is condemned by his own judgment; that he has suffered shipwreck in the faith; that he has separated from the unity of the Church; and that, furthermore, by his own action he incurs the penalties established by law if he should are to express in words or writing or by any other outward means the errors he think in his heart.


This declaration is both clear as to its message and to its binding authority for all followers of the Pope’s religion.  As for the opinions of St. Dimitri Rostov or any other Orthodox saint, in the Orthodox Church we do believe in patristic consensus and hold up as true only that which has been believed “everywhere, always, and by all.”  We also recognize that there have been periods in history when some Orthodox people and places came under an unacceptable degree of Roman Catholic influence.  Thankfully, these heretical influences have been fairly successfully eradicated thanks to the patristic revivals that have occurred in Russia starting with St. Paisius Velichkovsky (who equated Eastern Rite Catholics with unbelievers that have no hope of salvation) in the 18th century, and in other local Orthodox churches at different times.  Today, it appears that Orthodoxy stands on quite a solid patristic foundation thanks to the relative freedom of the Church at this time and the availability and accessibility of patristic writings.

Second, a convincing argument against Catholic veneration of Mary <I>would have</I> linked up the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception with some concrete practices, yet this simple point seems to have been missed by more than a few people on here.

“Convincing” is a subjective determination.  As I explained in a previous message, which you may not have read, you cannot separate devotion from the dogmatic teaching concerning the one to whom your devotion is expressed.  A deformed and distorted view of the Mother of God (such as is found in your dogma of the Immaculate Conception) results in a deformed and distorted veneration of her which dishonors rather than glorifies her.
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« Reply #84 on: October 27, 2011, 04:16:25 PM »

what is worse, de-incarnation or re-incarnation? To suggest either is heresy...
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« Reply #85 on: October 27, 2011, 04:27:44 PM »

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holy_Prepuce

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« Reply #86 on: October 27, 2011, 05:34:06 PM »

Lotta anger here in this thread. This is rather unchristian behavior.
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« Reply #87 on: October 27, 2011, 05:38:16 PM »

ialmisry,

First, my brother's remark was this: "I think it is silly when former Protestant converts to Orthodoxy make up stories about how the Roman Catholic venerate the Mother of God too much. Have you never been to a Russian Church?"
I think I read him correctly
I think it is silly when former Protestant converts to Orthodoxy make up stories about how the Roman Catholic venerate the Mother of God too much. Have you never been to a Russian Church?
I knew I had.
How on earth does one distill from this opinion the view that there is not a single Russian Orthodox Christian who objects to some element of Catholic Marian devotion or dogma?
You'll have to ask that distiller.  Neither Jah nor myself were drinking that moonshine, any more than we drink the Kool Aid.
I don't think St. John the Wonderworker of San Francisco was a convert to Orthodoxy from Protestantism, though the fact that he was a bishop in ROCOR and served the Divine Liturgy daily indicates that he certainly did enter a Russian Church on a number of occasions.  In any case, in his book “Orthodox Veneration of Mary the Birthgiver of God”, he devotes an entire chapter to the subject of the Immaculate Conception and how Roman Catholicism perverted the veneration of the Mother of God.  As he demonstrates, even many of those whom the Papacy now venerates as saints did not accept the teaching regarding the Immaculate Conception, such as Thomas Aquinas and Bernard of Clairvaux who spoke against it.  
Your brother didn't deny that there are Orthodox out there that criticize the Vatican's position, he denied that they did so without any basis, and tried to dismiss it as some Protestant baggage in Orthodoxy.  

Only if one is out sniffing for an opportunity to add to the mix
like I said, I stay away from the Kool Aid.

could one take this rhetorical question as a challenge to find some inflammatory assertions from the Russians toward Catholic Marian devotion.
No, it was intended to dismiss Orthodox arguments against the Mariolatry of the Vatican as "Protestant" baggage.  Pope Shenoudah, whose ancestors probably have confessed the Orthodox Faith from the Era of Martyrs under Diocletian, has often criticized the Vatican for turning the Holy Theotokos into some goddess (and rebuked the Protestants for treating her as an incubator); back West your Doctor Bonaventure would have nothing to do with that "foreign dogma" of the IC. Such examples can be multiplied, that have nothing to do with Protestants, converts, America, the Tea Party, or a host of other non sequiturs thrown in to throw the unwarry off track.

And the Russians have a right to fight the inflammotry assertions that they have to fulfill the hallucinations of Fatima.


Second, you haven't provided a single example of "false" Marian devotion in Catholicism; instead you remain stuck on the dogma of the Immaculate Conception.
More than false enough.  But no, that's not enough, we have to have your recently canonized Maximillian Kolbe preach the quasi-incarnation of the "Immaculata" (based explicitely in part on the "visions" of Lourdes: we get told here a lot that the Vatican doesn't base dogma on visions: if it did, what would it do differently?), and Dr. Mark Miravalle off in Stuebenville, the airwaves, the net etc. preaching in apocalyptic tones the pressing need to proclaim the "Fifth Marian Dogma," of which the IC was one step in the walk down the broad way through the wide gates that will not prevail against the Orthodox Church.
-on that note, I make my standard statement that at no time ever has the Orthodox Faith of the Catholic Church included a belief in a "coredemptrix mediatrix of all graces": I have to make that statement so it can be a witness when the Vatican goes down that rut that Ineffabilis Deus and Munificentissimus Deus carved out-we are always being told that we always believed in the IC until the Vatican made it infallible. We don't share its megalomania, as would be required for such an inflammatory assertion to contain any veracity.-

On that, however, the disputes which exist in the Catholic tradition over the precise meaning of the doctrine (including the objections of Ss. Thomas Aquinas and Bernard of Clairvaux) are not dispositive.  John of S.F's choice to bring Aquinas and Bernard into the debate is a rehash of the old Protestant polemic against the doctrine.
LOL. And so you return to the vomit you just said wasn't yours.

Your Doctor Bonaventure started the Angelus (a nice office, btw) by ringing bells to celebrate the Annunciation, a feast on the calender 9 months before the Nativity of Christmas, and as a biological event the Doctor Bernard shows his awareness precise enough that when they rejected celebration of the conception of St. Anne (note the title), it cannot be squared by any meaning of the IC.

The Protestant polemic can't be that old: 157 years isn't ancient history.

It doesn't carry much water unless you believe (which the Catholic Church does not) that any single thinker in her 2,000 year history is infallible.

The Vatican claims it has had about 266 (it refuses to issue an official list, and the ones in common use have been "revised" a la Winston Smith) infallible thinkers. The trick is knowing when they are infallible, a secret it is not telling. Btw, the length of its history only stretches about a 1,000 years back.
 
Moreover, Aquinas does not fully reject the doctrine; his work offers an alternative understanding of Mary's sanctification prior to her birth (cf. ST III:27:4).
"God made Him Who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in Him we might become the righteousness of God." I Cor. 5:21.  Aquinas seems to have missed that.  It could have saved him some trouble, seeing that his argument was needless. And he quotes St. John Chrysostom, so close but so far.
Quote
'I say nothing of what has gone before, that you have outraged Him, Him that had done you no wrong, Him that had done you good, that He exacted not justice, that He is first to beseech, though first outraged; let none of these things be set down at present. Ought ye not in justice to be reconciled for this one thing only that He has done to you now?' And what has He done? Him that knew no sin He made to be sin, for you. For had He achieved nothing but done only this, think how great a thing it were to give His Son for those that had outraged Him. But now He has both well achieved mighty things, and besides, has suffered Him that did no wrong to be punished for those who had done wrong. But he did not say this: but mentioned that which is far greater than this. What then is this? Him that knew no sin, he says, Him that was righteousness itself , He made sin, that is suffered as a sinner to be condemned, as one cursed to die. For cursed is he that hangs on a tree. Galatians 3:13 For to die thus was far greater than to die; and this he also elsewhere implying, says, Becoming obedient unto death, yea the death of the cross. Philippians 2:8 For this thing carried with it not only punishment, but also disgrace. Reflect therefore how great things He bestowed on you. For a great thing indeed it were for even a sinner to die for any one whatever; but when He who undergoes this both is righteous and dies for sinners; and not dies only, but even as one cursed; and not as cursed [dies] only, but thereby freely bestows upon us those great goods which we never looked for; (for he says, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him;) what words, what thought shall be adequate to realize these things? 'For the righteous,' says he, 'He made a sinner; that He might make the sinners righteous.'  Yea rather, he said not even so, but what was greater far; for the word he employed is not the habit, but the quality itself. For he said not made [Him] a sinner, but sin; not, 'Him that had not sinned' only, but that had not even known sin; that we also might become, he did not say 'righteous,' but, righteousness, and, the righteousness of God. For this is [the righteousness] of God when we are justified not by works, (in which case it were necessary that not a spot even should be found,) but by grace, in which case all sin is done away. And this at the same time that it suffers us not to be lifted up, (seeing the whole is the free gift of God,) teaches us also the greatness of that which is given. For that which was before was a righteousness of the Law and of works, but this is the righteousness of God.
http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/220211.htm

Catholicism has a realistic enough understanding of its own theological history to know that there is no such thing as a "uniform witness";
The Catholic Church does have a uniform (=/=unanimous;monolithic) witness consensus of the Faithful everywhere at all times, but as for the Vatican, do tell your clergy: I keep hearing many on EWTN, Relevant Radio, etc. stating as the "proof" of their claims that all 266 (or whatever number they use) of those infallible pontiffs taught the same thing without exception.  I've never had the pleasure of seeing them exchange thoughts with the (mainly ex-Protestant convert) apologists who depend on "development of dogma."

this myth -- which is paraded amongst some Orthodox with respect to its own tradition
No, consistent standard. We reject the Vatican's heretical doctrinal development of the Trinity, like we rejected the Arians'.
It seems you reacted to the West the same way that the Arians reacted to the Church when the doctrine of the Trinity was formally defined.

I'm sure you see it that way.

I think you mean sewn up. Look at my post above, about the antibodies.
Yeah, I thought it was sewn after I posted it but wasn't sure. Good thing this is a theological discussion and not grammar class.  Wink

Op cit. Viz supra. The inability of the Vatican to see clearly on the issue is a very large part of its problem.
If you mean that the Church is a stagnant organization that has no use for the Holy Spirit because everything has already been revealed and needs no further clarification, of course the Vatican isn't going to "see" that because that notion is false.
Didn't read my post above, did you?

Now I look like my baby picture, despite I'm taller, weight more, right now have a 5 o'clock (actually more) shadow. That's development.

I also have a cross tattoo on my wrist which you will search in vain for on my baby pictures.  You call that developement but its not quite that: no matter how old I got, that tattoo wasn't going to appear until I had them apply it with the needle.

My best friend has four kidnies, from two kidney transplants. Not quite development there either.  He looks like his baby picture, though, too.

I have my doubts about those who have a "sex change," that they resemble their baby picture in specific ways, but I concede that their faces are probably the same.  You would have to get plastic surgery to change that, like Michael Jackosn.

I remember when he married Miss Presley, someone said they would believe it when she had a baby that looked like he used to look. Not like this:


But that's the problem: ya'll at the Vatican can't make a distinction between growing and radical plastic surgery, because it's all change=development.  So you appropriate it as a license to attribute the most outlandish things to the "deposit of Faith."

Then do not confirm the heretic in his heresy.
I agree, which is why I'll stay in Full Communion with the Roman Pontiff, thanks. Cheesy


So was cardinal umberto.
You will have to elaborate because I am unfamiliar with him.
The envoy pope Leo IX sent to impose the filioque on the One, Holy,Catholic and Apostolic Church in the East.

No, but then it wasn't claiming to "develop" anything, and wasn't enunciating things never heard before.
What was the purpose of the Council then if everything was already fully developed and known beforehand?
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,20719.msg453992/topicseen.html#msg453992

-- doesn't get one very far when trying to ascertain the defining of dogmas over the centuries.  I once thought it was a Protestant hangup, but it seems to have some traction amongst contemporary Orthodox as well.
In the case of the IC, it would have to be contemporary: no one needed to bother with it much until the Vatican made it the immortal teaching of the Apostles in 1853.  The Vatican is quite up to date with these things: as has been brought up here many a time, the Anglo-Irish Cathechism +1870 Nihil obstat. Imprimatur, denied papal infallibility as "a Protestant invention: it is no article of the Catholic faith."  The next edition took the opportunity of "correcting" this:+Nihil Obstat. Winston Smith, S.T.D., Censor. Imprimatur. + Cardinal O'Brien, Archbishop of Oceania.

Somewhere here I recently posted the tracks that traction left over poor Cardinal Hefele when it ran him down.

Third, the arguments contained in John of S.F's book on Mary are primarily rehashes of Protestant objections.  So I suspect my brother may have been hinting at more than he knew.

Can't comment, as I haven't read the book as far as I recall.

but again, I don't have to, to know the problems with the IC, the Quasi-Incarnation of the Immaculata, Fatima, Lourdes, the Immaculate Heart....

But again, the Immaculate Conception doctrine is distinct from the type of Catholic practices vis-a-vis Mary that he was getting at.
yes,well we Orthodox have a habit of peering behind the facade of the Potemkin basilica to see what's there, and not stick with the guided tour with the minder. And its not all that distinct: e.g. saying an akathist in front of this:

"Don't you know that a little yeast works through the whole batch of dough?"  We have more than a bakers dozen here on the IC.


It wasn't his intention, I suspect, to open up a doctrinal debate.
 
I don't think so either, which is why I haven't opened one up with him.


I am still waiting for an example, whether it comes from John of S.F. or not, of what Catholic devotions toward Mary are false and constitute putting her on par with Christ (which was the original charge made earlier in this thread.).
LOL. If you were half as well read as you claim, you would recognize the IC (which St. John IIRC specifies) as one.



Your Doctor Bernard said it well enough
7. Wherefore, although it has been given to some, though few, of the sons of men to be born with the gift of sanctity, yet to none has it been given to be conceived with it. So that to One alone should be reserved this privilege, to Him who should make all holy, and coming into the world, He alone, without sin should make an atonement for sinners. The Lord Jesus, then, alone was conceived by the Holy Ghost, because He alone was holy before He was conceived. He being excepted, all the children of Adam are in the same case as he who confessed of himself with great humility and truth, I was shapen in iniquity, and in sin hath my mother conceived me (Ps. li. 6).
too bad the Vatican refused to be innoculated, and instead became infected.

Fourth, I don’t recall ever stating that the Feast of the Immaculate Conception is identical with the Feast of the Conception.
You don't have to: if the Vatican's followers confuse what conception we are talking about (most of your correligionists confuse it with the Virgin Birth), we aren't confused. We're familiar with a similar transformation of the Meeting of the Lord into the Purficiation of the Virgin.  Top billing tells, one reason why St. Anne is named in the Feast in question, to restrain the exuberance from getting out of hand as happened in the IC.

This is a red herring.
No, that's a calendar.

My focus was on devotional practices, not doctrine (though I understand the two are linked to a certain extent).
We are aware how the lex orandi, lex credendi has fallen into abeyance with the Vatican accepting anyone as is, as long as they kiss the papal slipper, but we still say what we mean and mean what we say.  Though you may take the scholastic compartimentalization of the Church, we hold to her as a well articulated Body, not a pile of disjointed limbs and members.  As such, your focus doesn't limit our line of vision.

How does the Immaculate Conception lead Catholics to do something which fundamentally deviates from what the Orthodox do?
http://www.fifthmariandogma.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=section&layout=blog&id=23&Itemid=560
http://www.fifthmariandogma.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=section&layout=blog&id=18&Itemid=581

Or, better yet, explain how the Immaculate Conception places Mary on par with Christ.  I’m all eyes.
but can you see?
Quote
IMMACULATE CONCEPTION:
These words fell from the lips of the Immaculata herself. Hence, they must tell us in the most precise and essential manner who she really is.

In a 1933 Letter from Nagasaki, St. Maximilian explains further that in the name, “Immaculate Conception,” the Mother also gives us the secret of her very nature:
In her apparition at Lourdes she does not say: “I was conceived immaculately,” but “I am the Immaculate Conception.”  This points out not only the fact that she was conceived without original sin, but also the manner in which this privilege belongs to her. It is not something accidental; it is something that belongs to her very nature. For she is Immaculate Conception in [her very] person.

The uncreated Immaculate Conception and the created Immaculate Conception. The Divine Spirit and the human spouse perfected in His grace are united by an interior, essential union. Uncreated love conceives and dwells within the depths of her soul, and she becomes His quasi-incarnation. For this reason, as St. Maximilian tells us, Mary is also the Mediatrix of all graces and gifts of the Spirit.

“The Co-redemptrix” Because
“The Immaculate Conception”
The Immaculate Conception, the unparalleled prodigy of grace granted by the Eternal Father, is (along with her Divine Maternity), the foundation for all of the subsequent roles assigned her by the Trinity for the benefit of humanity.  
Indeed, the humble Virgin of Nazareth is the Coredemptrix not only because she is Mother of God, but also because she is the Immaculate Conception who presents our petitions to our Divine Judge and King.

Indulgenced Prayers in Relation to Mary Co-redemptrix
Lex orandi, lex credendi — as the Church prays, so she believes. The indulgences approved by the Holy See for prayers associated with the Immaculate conception also finds its parallel with the Co-redemptrix doctrine.  On June 26, 1913, the Holy Office issued a document expressing the Congregation’s satisfaction in adding the name of Mary to the name of Jesus in the indulgenced greeting, “Praised be Jesus and Mary” which is then responded to, “Now and forever.” The document then states: “There are those Christians whose devotion to the most favored among virgins is so tender as to be unable to recall the name of Jesus without the accompanying name of the Mother, our Co-redemptrix, the Blessed Virgin Mary."
Six months later, the same Holy Office granted a partial indulgence for the recitation of a prayer of reparation to the Blessed Virgin (Vergine benedetta). The prayer ends with the words: “I bless thy holy Name, I praise thine exalted privilege of being truly Mother of God, ever Virgin, conceived without stainof  sin, Coredemptrix of the human race.”

Imprimatur
Ernesto Cardinal Corripio Ahumada
http://www.voxpopuli.org/immaculate.pdf

pretty soon you will be accusing us of de-incarnating the Theotokos.


Last, if you want to believe that John of S.F. was a “first rate thinker,” that’s your business.
I haven't said a thing about what I believe about St. John as a thinker, though I will say here and now that he was/is a first rate pastor.  If I need to defend that, I am quite prepared to do so.  Since compliments are rarely a cause of slander, I don't think it necessary.

To dismiss his ideas as mere prejudice, attributing to him a small mind, label his writings inflammatory rubbish, daring to grade him and find him wanting, questioning his piety and asceticism ("may have...")-such invective not only fails as analysis, but consititute libel, counselor, if not substantiated.  Given St. John's Advocate in a supremer court than here, I should think there would be bigger concerns, but in the mundane world of the net, coming on an Orthodox forum and libeling not only an Orthodox saint, but a beloved one (not only of the Orthodox:St. John I'm sure will remember this EM) at that, something beyond taking your word on it is in order.  Unlike compliments, defamation usually causes problems.

I will stand fall by my judgment based on what I have read.
based on what we have read so far.

That he relies shopworn
LOL. Cliché much?
arguments against Catholic doctrine doesn’t instill me with a lot of confidence that he could do much more than parrot the party line.  If it’s enough to convince you, that’s fine.  
your parroting certainly isn't.
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« Reply #88 on: October 27, 2011, 06:10:18 PM »


Exactly. But we'll all be long gone and in our graves before anybody else admits it.
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« Reply #89 on: October 28, 2011, 05:19:47 AM »

What Holy Orthodoxy really think's about the Catholic Marian Delusional Apparitions.... Grin
Link.....http://orthodoxinfo.com/inquirers/marian_apparitions.aspx



APART FROM WALSINGHAM in my distant Anglican days, the Marian shrines had never really interested me. I was of course aware of some of the most important ones—Lourdes, Fatima, and more recently Medjugorje—, and knew that while many people (the vast majority being Roman Catholics, of course) considered these apparitions a direct sign from Heaven, others (mainly Protestant) considered them some kind of hallucination or even demonic delusion. Not being a member of the Roman Catholic Church, I felt under no obligation or inclination to give them much thought. But learning that an Orthodox priest had been on pilgrimage to Lourdes, and that the wife of another Orthodox priest organized an annual visit by a group of Orthodox women to Lourdes, my interest was aroused, and I began to feel a strong compulsion to take a closer look at the Marian apparitions and their shrines.

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« Reply #90 on: October 28, 2011, 06:00:35 AM »

I didn't know private blogs spoke for the entirety of the Orthodox Christian faith.  Roll Eyes
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« Reply #91 on: October 28, 2011, 02:10:28 PM »

I didn't know private blogs spoke for the entirety of the Orthodox Christian faith.  Roll Eyes
The article is not from a private blog, but from the organ of a (then) ROCOR monastery which houses the relics of King St. Edward of England.  It is quite good (though I do not agree 100% with it, but then if 2 persons agree 100%, only one of them is doing the thinking) and quite fair, although it does talk about the differences between the Orthodox and the Vatican, problems with aspects of Marian cults, and other things we evidently are not supposed to notice, let alone talk about. This is a good flavor of it
Quote
In the New Testament we see the incomparable spiritual beauty of the Mother of the Lord. In her shining humility she always points away from herself. Mother of the Messiah, she humbly refers to herself as God's handmaiden. Her kinswoman Elizabeth's praise of her is immediately referred to God, Who has regarded her lowliness. She does not presume to issue her own orders to the servants at Cana, but quietly advises them to obey her Son's instructions. The Acts leaves her not engaged in some private initiative, but waiting in prayer with the whole body of the believers.

The lady of all the apparitions, by contrast, remains firmly centre stage, with the spotlight fixed permanently on herself. She decrees new titles for herself: The Immaculate Conception, Our Lady of the Rosary, Mother of Consolation, Virgin of the Poor, Queen of Peace. She seeks amendment and consolation for injuries done to herself:—"Dry the tears on my face, which I pour down as I observe what you do" (Medjugorje), "Look at my Heart, surrounded with thorns with which ungrateful men pierce me at every moment by their blasphemies and ingratitude. There are so many souls whom the Justice of God condemns for sins committed against me that I have come to ask for reparation: sacrifice yourself for this intention" (Fatima).

The Messages
In the end it must be the content of the messages themselves which inspires acceptance or rejection of the visions. As stated previously, this was why we have not included Walsingham among the Marian shrines, as the message, whether revealed to Richeldis in a private vision or a dream, was a simple request for a chapel in honour of the incarnation....Firstly there is the air of politeness and courtesy. "Come nearer, children, don't be afraid: I am here to tell you great news," at La Salette. "Will you do me the kindness of coming here for a fortnight," at Lourdes The Lady of Zeitoun bows in greeting to the assembled crowds. The Gospa of Medjugorje repeats her parrotlike refrain at the end of every message, "Thank you for responding to my call."

There is the same absence of Christ, or at least His marginalization as a distant figure of vengeance, whose just wrath is held back by the Virgin. At Medjugorje He is equally distant, though not fearful, and we are invited to "think more about Jesus" on Christmas Day and "do something concrete for Jesus Christ,"—that is, "bring a flower as a sign of abandonment to Jesus. I want every member of the family to have one flower next to the crib so that Jesus can see and see your devotion to him."

There are the same secrets, apocalyptic warnings, good advice on church going and behaviour, and exhortations to "love," "do penance," and "pray." The message of Banneux was quite literally, "Pray a lot." Prayer means the rosary, which is constantly mentioned. Although Medjugorje supporters claim that the Mass is emphasized as the central prayer, the rosary has general preeminence. It is "the one form of prayer preferred by Mary" (O'Carroll). "The rosary is a powerful weapon against Satan ... We must defeat Satan with rosaries in our hands ... " (Medjugorje). Assistance at the hour of death is promised at Fatima to those who confess, receive Communion on the first Saturday of five consecutive months and recite a set umber of rosaries for a set amount of times with the correct intention. All the visionaries have recited the rosary, and the apparition at Medjugorje appeared regularly during its public recitation. The boy seer of Fatima was given the promise that he would go to heaven but would "have to recite many rosaries." One of the Medjugorje visionaries received a rosary from the Lady personally (whether this was actually a materialization is not clear) and the Pope was sent one specially blessed for him by the Gospa.

There is the same teaching of purgatory and Papal supremacy, and the same emphasis on the sacred Heart of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary. Pope John Paul II likewise emphasizes the Immaculate Heart and associates it with the sacred Heart. Those who embrace the Immaculate Heart are offered salvation at Fatima, and the Gospa of Medjugorje invites us to consecrate ourselves to the Immaculate Heart and make atonement for the sins by which the Heart of Jesus has been offended.

There are the same bargains, promises and threats, inducements to right action through self-interest. If you do this, I promise to do that: if you omit to do so and so, such and such will follow or not follow. "Those who wear the Medal will receive great favours, especially if they wear it round their neck." "If sinners will only repent, the stones and rocks will turn into heaps of wheat" (La Salette). "If people do as I tell you, many souls will be saved and there will be peace" (Fatima). "If we do not change, the punishment will be very great" (Garabandal).

Lourdes is in many ways a striking contrast. The rosary is as prominent, and the apparition holds a rosary on her arm and lets the beads slip through her fingers as Bernadette kneels and recites her prayers. But while there is no mention whatsoever of Christ, there is also no mention of Hearts, purgatory, apocalyptic threats or bargains. The utterances are few and concise, consisting in the main of short commandments: "Go and kiss the ground for the conversion of sinners; Go and drink at the spring ...; Go and tell the priests to have a chapel built here." The contrast with the garrulousness of the Gospa of Medjugorje could not be more marked.

The vision's short statement, "I am the Immaculate Conception," has had a greater impact than any other message from the shrines. Protestants are inclined to see in it no more than a reflection of Bernadette's mental ability and the state of her grammar. Roman Catholic theologians at the time puzzled over it and felt uneasy because it was uncomfortably similar to Old and New Testament statements made by God and Christ, and seemed to parallel "I am the Resurrection," "I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life." Marian maximalists rejoiced at what they saw as divine honours given the Virgin in heaven, and hopefully awaited further revelations by future apparitions, saying, "I am the Mediation of all graces," and "I am the Co-Redemption." To their chagrin, they were disappointed, and had to make do with "I am the Lady of the Rosary" and "I am the Virgin of the Poor." Marian minimalists, on the other hand, insisted that the Virgin was purposely limiting her privileges to the Immaculate Conception and thereby implying that she was not the Mediatrix of all graces or Co-Redemptrix. Some Orthodox, in an attempt to justify their own acceptance of the Lourdes apparition, try to attach significance to the the date on which the statement was made, namely March 25th, saying that the Virgin was referring not to her own conception by St Anna, but to the (only) Immaculate Conception of the Lord Jesus Christ on the day of the Annunciation.

The statement would seem to be as enigmatic as many from the Delphic oracle. What it did do was precipitate and confirm the dogma of Papal Infallibility. In imposing the dogma of the Immaculate Conception in 1854, the Pope acted on his own authority without the consent of a General Council. For this he was greatly criticised in some ecclesiastical circles. When the Lady of Lourdes announced her name by privilege as "I am the Immaculate Conception," she not only proved that the Pope had been right about the dogma, but confirmed his ability to act on his own, in other words that the supreme authority belonged to the Pope alone. Papal Infallibility became an official dogma in 1870. As Alan Neame puts it, Our Lady of Lourdes was to some degree the mother of Papal Infallibility and the grandmother of the Old Catholics who went into schism rather than accept it.

If someone should inconveniently recall that [St] Catherine of Sienna [fourteenth century], during her vision, was told by Our Lady that she was not immaculately conceived, again, Rome has the answer. Even saintly people can misinterpret their revelations, and Catherine was so influenced by her Dominican teachers, who opposed the teaching, that "even in her mystical rapture this holy woman could not sufficiently immerse herself in God to overcome the suggestion" (Archbishop of Split).
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« Reply #92 on: October 28, 2011, 02:28:43 PM »

Just a quick note about Marian apparitions, whether "approved" or not by the Vatican or a local bishop--From the Catechism of the Catholic Church, #67:  "Throughout the ages, there have been so-called "private" revelations, some of which have been recognized by the authority of the Church. They do not belong, however, to the deposit of faith. It is not their role to improve or complete Christ's definitive Revelation, but to help live more fully by it in a certain period of history. Guided by the Magisterium of the Church, the sensus fidelium knows how to discern and welcome in these revelations whatever constitutes an authentic call of Christ or his saints to the Church.

Christian faith cannot accept "revelations" that claim to surpass or correct the Revelation of which Christ is the fulfilment, as is the case in certain nonChristian religions and also in certain recent sects which base themselves on such "revelations".
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« Reply #93 on: October 28, 2011, 05:03:49 PM »

I found the article linked below informative:

"Eastern Presuppositions" and Western Liturgical Renewal
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« Reply #94 on: October 28, 2011, 05:20:34 PM »

I found the article linked below informative:

"Eastern Presuppositions" and Western Liturgical Renewal
While you are here, Apotheoun: can you make heads or tails of Venuleius (the blog linked in the OP) is talking about?  Best I can gather, he is trying to bring in the "Caesaropapism" charge in the back window.
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« Reply #95 on: October 28, 2011, 10:23:26 PM »

I found the article linked below informative:

"Eastern Presuppositions" and Western Liturgical Renewal
While you are here, Apotheoun: can you make heads or tails of Venuleius (the blog linked in the OP) is talking about?  Best I can gather, he is trying to bring in the "Caesaropapism" charge in the back window.
I do not really see much validity to the Christological criticisms lodged against the Byzantine liturgy, because the Byzantine liturgy - unlike the liturgy of the West - has been heavily influenced by the conciliar tradition (i.e., all Seven Ecumenical Councils) as a whole.  That said, the focus of worship - when talking about Christ - is, and always should be, the person of the Logos, and never His two natures in the abstract (see the seventh anathema against "The Three Chapters" of the Fifth Ecumenical Council).
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"All that the Father has belongs likewise to the Son, except Causality."
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"We should believe that divine grace is present in the icon of Christ and that it communicates sanctification to those who draw near with faith."
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« Reply #96 on: October 28, 2011, 10:49:04 PM »

I found the article linked below informative:

"Eastern Presuppositions" and Western Liturgical Renewal
While you are here, Apotheoun: can you make heads or tails of Venuleius (the blog linked in the OP) is talking about?  Best I can gather, he is trying to bring in the "Caesaropapism" charge in the back window.
I do not really see much validity to the Christological criticisms lodged against the Byzantine liturgy, because the Byzantine liturgy - unlike the liturgy of the West - has been heavily influenced by the conciliar tradition (i.e., all Seven Ecumenical Councils) as a whole.  That said, the focus of worship - when talking about Christ - is, and always should be, the person of the Logos, and never His two natures in the abstract (see the seventh anathema against "The Three Chapters" of the Fifth Ecumenical Council).
Thanks.

Yeah, I'm not getting it either.  I don't find anything of Christ the King as a dominant theme in the liturgy of Rome (the fest of Christ the King wasn't instituted until 1925) as opposed to that of Constantinople.  Since the divine liturgy is the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth, I think he is reading to much into the Pantocrator in the dome.
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A hasty quarrel kindles fire,
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If you blow on a spark, it will glow;
if you spit on it, it will be put out;
                           and both come out of your mouth
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« Reply #97 on: October 28, 2011, 11:03:13 PM »

I found the article linked below informative:

"Eastern Presuppositions" and Western Liturgical Renewal
While you are here, Apotheoun: can you make heads or tails of Venuleius (the blog linked in the OP) is talking about?  Best I can gather, he is trying to bring in the "Caesaropapism" charge in the back window.
I do not really see much validity to the Christological criticisms lodged against the Byzantine liturgy, because the Byzantine liturgy - unlike the liturgy of the West - has been heavily influenced by the conciliar tradition (i.e., all Seven Ecumenical Councils) as a whole.  That said, the focus of worship - when talking about Christ - is, and always should be, the person of the Logos, and never His two natures in the abstract (see the seventh anathema against "The Three Chapters" of the Fifth Ecumenical Council).
Thanks.

Yeah, I'm not getting it either.  I don't find anything of Christ the King as a dominant theme in the liturgy of Rome (the fest of Christ the King wasn't instituted until 1925) as opposed to that of Constantinople.  Since the divine liturgy is the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth, I think he is reading to much into the Pantocrator in the dome.
The assertion that the Byzantine liturgy is "de-incarnated" is nonsensical to me, because the whole economy of icons in worship is founded upon the incarnation.  When I see an icon of Christ the Pantokrator in the dome of a Church I am reminded immediately of the reality of the incarnation which alone made His iconic depiction possible.
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« Reply #98 on: October 29, 2011, 01:42:00 AM »

I found the article linked below informative:

"Eastern Presuppositions" and Western Liturgical Renewal
While you are here, Apotheoun: can you make heads or tails of Venuleius (the blog linked in the OP) is talking about?  Best I can gather, he is trying to bring in the "Caesaropapism" charge in the back window.
I do not really see much validity to the Christological criticisms lodged against the Byzantine liturgy, because the Byzantine liturgy - unlike the liturgy of the West - has been heavily influenced by the conciliar tradition (i.e., all Seven Ecumenical Councils) as a whole.  That said, the focus of worship - when talking about Christ - is, and always should be, the person of the Logos, and never His two natures in the abstract (see the seventh anathema against "The Three Chapters" of the Fifth Ecumenical Council).

when you say "two persons in the abstract" can you clarify that for us what you mean?
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« Reply #99 on: October 29, 2011, 01:43:36 AM »

I found the article linked below informative:

"Eastern Presuppositions" and Western Liturgical Renewal
While you are here, Apotheoun: can you make heads or tails of Venuleius (the blog linked in the OP) is talking about?  Best I can gather, he is trying to bring in the "Caesaropapism" charge in the back window.
I do not really see much validity to the Christological criticisms lodged against the Byzantine liturgy, because the Byzantine liturgy - unlike the liturgy of the West - has been heavily influenced by the conciliar tradition (i.e., all Seven Ecumenical Councils) as a whole.  That said, the focus of worship - when talking about Christ - is, and always should be, the person of the Logos, and never His two natures in the abstract (see the seventh anathema against "The Three Chapters" of the Fifth Ecumenical Council).
Thanks.

Yeah, I'm not getting it either.  I don't find anything of Christ the King as a dominant theme in the liturgy of Rome (the fest of Christ the King wasn't instituted until 1925) as opposed to that of Constantinople.  Since the divine liturgy is the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth, I think he is reading to much into the Pantocrator in the dome.

IIRC, the Pantocrator dome itself is supposed to imply that God is with us and around us, as opposed to a pointed steeple which points to a distant God high up in the clouds, so I don't get that criticism at all.
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« Reply #100 on: October 29, 2011, 02:32:35 AM »

I found the article linked below informative:

"Eastern Presuppositions" and Western Liturgical Renewal
While you are here, Apotheoun: can you make heads or tails of Venuleius (the blog linked in the OP) is talking about?  Best I can gather, he is trying to bring in the "Caesaropapism" charge in the back window.
I do not really see much validity to the Christological criticisms lodged against the Byzantine liturgy, because the Byzantine liturgy - unlike the liturgy of the West - has been heavily influenced by the conciliar tradition (i.e., all Seven Ecumenical Councils) as a whole.  That said, the focus of worship - when talking about Christ - is, and always should be, the person of the Logos, and never His two natures in the abstract (see the seventh anathema against "The Three Chapters" of the Fifth Ecumenical Council).

when you say "two persons in the abstract" can you clarify that for us what you mean?
I didn't say "two persons in the abstract"; instead, I spoke of "two natures in the abstract."  To speak of Christ's natures as if they exist separately is a form of Nestorianism, and as such it must always be avoided.  Christian worship is directed to Christ as a single divine person.
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« Reply #101 on: October 29, 2011, 10:49:54 AM »

I found the article linked below informative:

"Eastern Presuppositions" and Western Liturgical Renewal
While you are here, Apotheoun: can you make heads or tails of Venuleius (the blog linked in the OP) is talking about?  Best I can gather, he is trying to bring in the "Caesaropapism" charge in the back window.
I do not really see much validity to the Christological criticisms lodged against the Byzantine liturgy, because the Byzantine liturgy - unlike the liturgy of the West - has been heavily influenced by the conciliar tradition (i.e., all Seven Ecumenical Councils) as a whole.  That said, the focus of worship - when talking about Christ - is, and always should be, the person of the Logos, and never His two natures in the abstract (see the seventh anathema against "The Three Chapters" of the Fifth Ecumenical Council).
Thanks.

Yeah, I'm not getting it either.  I don't find anything of Christ the King as a dominant theme in the liturgy of Rome (the fest of Christ the King wasn't instituted until 1925) as opposed to that of Constantinople.  Since the divine liturgy is the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth, I think he is reading to much into the Pantocrator in the dome.
The assertion that the Byzantine liturgy is "de-incarnated" is nonsensical to me, because the whole economy of icons in worship is founded upon the incarnation.  When I see an icon of Christ the Pantokrator in the dome of a Church I am reminded immediately of the reality of the incarnation which alone made His iconic depiction possible.

In fact the icon, often found behind the altar, of the Theotokos of the Sign is a direct iconic symbol of the Incarnation.

M.
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« Reply #102 on: October 29, 2011, 11:06:08 AM »

I found the article linked below informative:

"Eastern Presuppositions" and Western Liturgical Renewal
While you are here, Apotheoun: can you make heads or tails of Venuleius (the blog linked in the OP) is talking about?  Best I can gather, he is trying to bring in the "Caesaropapism" charge in the back window.
I do not really see much validity to the Christological criticisms lodged against the Byzantine liturgy, because the Byzantine liturgy - unlike the liturgy of the West - has been heavily influenced by the conciliar tradition (i.e., all Seven Ecumenical Councils) as a whole.  That said, the focus of worship - when talking about Christ - is, and always should be, the person of the Logos, and never His two natures in the abstract (see the seventh anathema against "The Three Chapters" of the Fifth Ecumenical Council).
Thanks.

Yeah, I'm not getting it either.  I don't find anything of Christ the King as a dominant theme in the liturgy of Rome (the fest of Christ the King wasn't instituted until 1925) as opposed to that of Constantinople.  Since the divine liturgy is the Kingdom of Heaven on Earth, I think he is reading to much into the Pantocrator in the dome.
The assertion that the Byzantine liturgy is "de-incarnated" is nonsensical to me, because the whole economy of icons in worship is founded upon the incarnation.  When I see an icon of Christ the Pantokrator in the dome of a Church I am reminded immediately of the reality of the incarnation which alone made His iconic depiction possible.

In fact the icon, often found behind the altar, of the Theotokos of the Sign is a direct iconic symbol of the Incarnation.

M.
Indeed.  And the Icon of the Annunciation, usually flanking the Royal Doors, and the Theotokos icon on the one side. 
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« Reply #103 on: October 30, 2011, 12:24:16 AM »

Christ, in Orthodox thought (or, at least, a popularized articulation of Orthodox thought), possess [sic] a cosmic Kingship; He is the “brooding omnipresence in the dome” of any properly constructed Orthodox temple, which leaves sufficient room for a more apt “doxological” cry from the kliros: “We have no king but Caesar!” There is a strange, almost disturbing, inversion of what Eric Voegelin called the “cosmological empire”: Orthodox society (more imagined than real) is not structured as a reflection of the cosmos; the cosmos under Christ is structured like a Byzantine court, with an earthly ceremonial ritual transformed into a liturgy that is given, by title, a divine status.
...
Venuleius (blog author): I’ve toyed (and, really, that’s all this is — toying) with the thesis that Christ is effectively “de-Incarnated” in popularized Orthodox thought, piety, liturgics, etc. So to assert, as Catholicism does (or, at least, did until Vatican II), that Christ is King in this world is an almost incomprehensible assertion for the Orthodox. Christ is Heaven (“the dome”), not here on earth;
...
Also, for reasons of historical accident more than anything else, it seems (I’m speculating here) that Orthodox piety centralized a cosmic, transcendent Christ over an earthly, suffering Christ (who was also, paradoxically, kingly). It’s almost as if Christ’s Kingship can’t be understand when he was “just” leading the Apostles around Galilee or “just” enduring questioning, mockery, physical assault, etc. He had to be positioned in the Heavens, with a choir of angels and Saints, to be a King.

How would you respond to this assertion that Orthodoxy (as opposed to Catholicism) de-incarnates Christ, that we relegate Him to a 'mystical/cosmological' role detached from this world? Is there any merit to this critique? He makes some very provocative, to say the least, assertions: for example, the claim that the Orthodox stand in the position of the Jews exclaiming we have no king but Caesar.

Quote
Venuleius: The question of Christ’s humanity in Orthodox (popular) thought is a difficult one to unravel, though I thought Fr. Patrick Reardon’s recent lecture on the Orthodox Western Rite where he notes that the Liturgy of St. John reflects a pre-Chalcedonian Christology offers a clue into the different “emphases” one finds in Eastern and Western Christian piety and liturgics. I discussed this matter with a friend of mine, and he noted that the humanity of Christ only becomes “front and center” during the liturgical offices of Holy Week, but by Holy Saturday it’s pulled back. (On this point I keep thinking of the Byzatine icon of Christ simultaneously “in the Heavens” and “in the Tomb”; there’s a powerful demand that people never forget that Christ is still God, which is theologically correct, though one could argue that it detracts from the very real (human) suffering and death he endured.)
...
Francis: I hear you and remember one of Balthasars’ critiques of slavic Byzantine iconography being deincarnated.

Would you go so far as to say or see a functional Monophysitism?

 Shocked

Note how he admits that the demand to never forget the Divinity of Christ is "theologically" correct, but still seems uncomfortable with it. Hate to be facile and dismissive, but, well, you know, the N word...
Nonsense?

Because that is what it is.  Odd coming from an Ultramontanist, given that they need-and demand we need-a "visible head," while we have no problem with Christ ruling the Church as the "invisible Head." Seems like another attempt to attack the Orthodox as somehow deficient in not having a "Vicar of Christ" "tanking the place of God on earth." Simple: He is ever present in the Orthodox Church, so He-and we-don't need a "Vicar."

And He is present physically-deincarnation would cause the whole very visible role of the Holy Icons to collapse in Orthodoxy.  Since I haven't seen that, I have no idea where they are getting this "deincarnation" in the Orthodox Church from.

Maybe he is upset that we do not share the Vatican's thirst for gore, the fetish for displaying body parts or the obsession to put His mother on a par with Him.  Oh, well. That's their problem, not ours.

There is also not a too thinly disguised swipe at Orthodoxy as "Caesaropapism."  Of course, besides the transformation of the church into a Papal state-despite the clear words during that passion he refers to "My Kingdom is not of this world"-the Vatican is always selective in its condemnation of "Caesaropapism."  It of course defends to the death the act of the Germanic kings in overturning the Tradition of Orthodox Rome, reiterated by Popes and inscribed on the doors of St. Peter's itself, in the insertion of the filioque in the mass at Rome, praises the Emperors of the Romans who dragged the bishops from the Orthodox patriarchates to submit to the Vatican in return for armies to defend their kingdom of this world, and celebrates the imposition of "union" by the Polish King (at the time trying to overturn the reformation in his native Sweden, and promising Polish lords Russian lands to make up for those lost to Sweden).  It isn't upset that we allegedly say "we have no king but Caesar," but that we refuse to recognize Caesar's successor as pontifex maximus as "Caesar" and "Supreme Pontiff."

I've been to many Orthodox Churches which had no Pantocrator in the dome.  I've never been to one which did not have an Icon of the Theotokos and Child (how He came) flanking the altar (how He comes now).

"It’s almost as if Christ’s Kingship can’t be understand when he was “just” leading the Apostles around Galilee or “just” enduring questioning, mockery, physical assault, etc. He had to be positioned in the Heavens, with a choir of angels and Saints, to be a King." Nearly every large Orthodox Cross I've seen has, above the Crucifixed Christ the inscription "King of Glory."

No, there is no merit in this "critique." Just an agenda.

Ah ImAllMisery once again uses a Predator missle strike into a market crowded place when a suppressed .22 behind the ear would be sufficient. Damn Germans and all. 

Funny thing is I totally agree with him. Where did this come from? Not left field but somewhere past the foul pole, maybe the parking lot.... Yeah the damn Franks & Germans too (on account of their never obeying Rome pertaining to Orthdoxy untill they take it over then they demand submission from everybody else....).
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« Reply #104 on: October 30, 2011, 07:42:26 PM »

I got a kick out of this response (which I agree with)
Quote
Personally, enjoy the “Jesus went down, punched the devil in the nose, and kicked down the gates of hell” side of the story more than the “He was bleeding all over the place” side. But I’m an insecure Cubs fan and enjoy being on the winning side for once.


This way of thinking ISTM assumes, though, that the Divinity of Christ "went down, punched the devil in the nose, and kicked down the gates of hell". Helpless humanity is stuck bleeding while Divinity is taking care of business. For Venuleius, the emphasis on punching the devil in the nose is part of the "powerful demand that people never forget that Christ is still God", when in reality, isn't the Gospel message that all humanity, in Christ Jesus, went down, punched the devil in the nose, and kicked down the gates of hell?

Pascha is our victory.

Say WHAT?! CHRIST IS THE ONE AND ONLY HUMAN WHO DID SO.
that He could do so is because He is GOD as well as human.

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« Reply #105 on: October 30, 2011, 08:36:22 PM »

I got a kick out of this response (which I agree with)
Quote
Personally, enjoy the “Jesus went down, punched the devil in the nose, and kicked down the gates of hell” side of the story more than the “He was bleeding all over the place” side. But I’m an insecure Cubs fan and enjoy being on the winning side for once.


This way of thinking ISTM assumes, though, that the Divinity of Christ "went down, punched the devil in the nose, and kicked down the gates of hell". Helpless humanity is stuck bleeding while Divinity is taking care of business. For Venuleius, the emphasis on punching the devil in the nose is part of the "powerful demand that people never forget that Christ is still God", when in reality, isn't the Gospel message that all humanity, in Christ Jesus, went down, punched the devil in the nose, and kicked down the gates of hell?

Pascha is our victory.

Say WHAT?! CHRIST IS THE ONE AND ONLY HUMAN WHO DID SO.
that He could do so is because He is GOD as well as human.


On this we are agreed. Venuleius, well....
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« Reply #106 on: October 30, 2011, 08:39:53 PM »

Christ, in Orthodox thought (or, at least, a popularized articulation of Orthodox thought), possess [sic] a cosmic Kingship; He is the “brooding omnipresence in the dome” of any properly constructed Orthodox temple, which leaves sufficient room for a more apt “doxological” cry from the kliros: “We have no king but Caesar!” There is a strange, almost disturbing, inversion of what Eric Voegelin called the “cosmological empire”: Orthodox society (more imagined than real) is not structured as a reflection of the cosmos; the cosmos under Christ is structured like a Byzantine court, with an earthly ceremonial ritual transformed into a liturgy that is given, by title, a divine status.
...
Venuleius (blog author): I’ve toyed (and, really, that’s all this is — toying) with the thesis that Christ is effectively “de-Incarnated” in popularized Orthodox thought, piety, liturgics, etc. So to assert, as Catholicism does (or, at least, did until Vatican II), that Christ is King in this world is an almost incomprehensible assertion for the Orthodox. Christ is Heaven (“the dome”), not here on earth;
...
Also, for reasons of historical accident more than anything else, it seems (I’m speculating here) that Orthodox piety centralized a cosmic, transcendent Christ over an earthly, suffering Christ (who was also, paradoxically, kingly). It’s almost as if Christ’s Kingship can’t be understand when he was “just” leading the Apostles around Galilee or “just” enduring questioning, mockery, physical assault, etc. He had to be positioned in the Heavens, with a choir of angels and Saints, to be a King.

How would you respond to this assertion that Orthodoxy (as opposed to Catholicism) de-incarnates Christ, that we relegate Him to a 'mystical/cosmological' role detached from this world? Is there any merit to this critique? He makes some very provocative, to say the least, assertions: for example, the claim that the Orthodox stand in the position of the Jews exclaiming we have no king but Caesar.

Quote
Venuleius: The question of Christ’s humanity in Orthodox (popular) thought is a difficult one to unravel, though I thought Fr. Patrick Reardon’s recent lecture on the Orthodox Western Rite where he notes that the Liturgy of St. John reflects a pre-Chalcedonian Christology offers a clue into the different “emphases” one finds in Eastern and Western Christian piety and liturgics. I discussed this matter with a friend of mine, and he noted that the humanity of Christ only becomes “front and center” during the liturgical offices of Holy Week, but by Holy Saturday it’s pulled back. (On this point I keep thinking of the Byzatine icon of Christ simultaneously “in the Heavens” and “in the Tomb”; there’s a powerful demand that people never forget that Christ is still God, which is theologically correct, though one could argue that it detracts from the very real (human) suffering and death he endured.)
...
Francis: I hear you and remember one of Balthasars’ critiques of slavic Byzantine iconography being deincarnated.

Would you go so far as to say or see a functional Monophysitism?

 Shocked

Note how he admits that the demand to never forget the Divinity of Christ is "theologically" correct, but still seems uncomfortable with it. Hate to be facile and dismissive, but, well, you know, the N word...
Nonsense?

Because that is what it is.  Odd coming from an Ultramontanist, given that they need-and demand we need-a "visible head," while we have no problem with Christ ruling the Church as the "invisible Head." Seems like another attempt to attack the Orthodox as somehow deficient in not having a "Vicar of Christ" "tanking the place of God on earth." Simple: He is ever present in the Orthodox Church, so He-and we-don't need a "Vicar."

And He is present physically-deincarnation would cause the whole very visible role of the Holy Icons to collapse in Orthodoxy.  Since I haven't seen that, I have no idea where they are getting this "deincarnation" in the Orthodox Church from.

Maybe he is upset that we do not share the Vatican's thirst for gore, the fetish for displaying body parts or the obsession to put His mother on a par with Him.  Oh, well. That's their problem, not ours.

There is also not a too thinly disguised swipe at Orthodoxy as "Caesaropapism."  Of course, besides the transformation of the church into a Papal state-despite the clear words during that passion he refers to "My Kingdom is not of this world"-the Vatican is always selective in its condemnation of "Caesaropapism."  It of course defends to the death the act of the Germanic kings in overturning the Tradition of Orthodox Rome, reiterated by Popes and inscribed on the doors of St. Peter's itself, in the insertion of the filioque in the mass at Rome, praises the Emperors of the Romans who dragged the bishops from the Orthodox patriarchates to submit to the Vatican in return for armies to defend their kingdom of this world, and celebrates the imposition of "union" by the Polish King (at the time trying to overturn the reformation in his native Sweden, and promising Polish lords Russian lands to make up for those lost to Sweden).  It isn't upset that we allegedly say "we have no king but Caesar," but that we refuse to recognize Caesar's successor as pontifex maximus as "Caesar" and "Supreme Pontiff."

I've been to many Orthodox Churches which had no Pantocrator in the dome.  I've never been to one which did not have an Icon of the Theotokos and Child (how He came) flanking the altar (how He comes now).

"It’s almost as if Christ’s Kingship can’t be understand when he was “just” leading the Apostles around Galilee or “just” enduring questioning, mockery, physical assault, etc. He had to be positioned in the Heavens, with a choir of angels and Saints, to be a King." Nearly every large Orthodox Cross I've seen has, above the Crucifixed Christ the inscription "King of Glory."

No, there is no merit in this "critique." Just an agenda.

Ah ImAllMisery once again uses a Predator missle strike into a market crowded place when a suppressed .22 behind the ear would be sufficient. Damn Germans and all. 

Funny thing is I totally agree with him. Where did this come from? Not left field but somewhere past the foul pole, maybe the parking lot.... Yeah the damn Franks & Germans too (on account of their never obeying Rome pertaining to Orthdoxy untill they take it over then they demand submission from everybody else....).

Funny, I don't find Isa to be miserable at all. Perhaps you are erroneously equivocating the misery he causes you to feel with his actual being.
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« Reply #107 on: October 30, 2011, 08:41:31 PM »

Perhaps he is referring to the endless block quotes?  Huh
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« Reply #108 on: October 30, 2011, 08:43:33 PM »

Perhaps he is referring to the endless block quotes?  Huh

I personally love seeing gigantic quotes. They eventually become like puzzles when they get big enough.
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« Reply #109 on: October 30, 2011, 09:20:53 PM »

Perhaps he is referring to the endless block quotes?  Huh

I personally love seeing gigantic quotes. They eventually become like puzzles when they get big enough.

Aha!  A maze-lover!!
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« Reply #110 on: October 30, 2011, 11:27:26 PM »

Perhaps he is referring to the endless block quotes?  Huh

Or perhaps the comments dripping with disdain and condescension? I know I know its hard to pick up (for blind folks) but its there quite often, honest! Especially when dealing with the pesky plebeian Latins...

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« Reply #111 on: October 31, 2011, 11:01:32 AM »

I got a kick out of this response (which I agree with)
Quote
Personally, enjoy the “Jesus went down, punched the devil in the nose, and kicked down the gates of hell” side of the story more than the “He was bleeding all over the place” side. But I’m an insecure Cubs fan and enjoy being on the winning side for once.


This way of thinking ISTM assumes, though, that the Divinity of Christ "went down, punched the devil in the nose, and kicked down the gates of hell". Helpless humanity is stuck bleeding while Divinity is taking care of business. For Venuleius, the emphasis on punching the devil in the nose is part of the "powerful demand that people never forget that Christ is still God", when in reality, isn't the Gospel message that all humanity, in Christ Jesus, went down, punched the devil in the nose, and kicked down the gates of hell?

Pascha is our victory.

Say WHAT?! CHRIST IS THE ONE AND ONLY HUMAN WHO DID SO.
that He could do so is because He is GOD as well as human.



Romans 5:15-19 (KJV)
But not as the offence, so also is the free gift. For if through the offence of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many. [16] And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgment was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification. [17] For if by one man's offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.) [18] Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life. [19] For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous.
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« Reply #112 on: October 31, 2011, 10:52:08 PM »

It was not "divinity" nor was it "humanity" in some abstract sense that defeated the devil; instead, it was Christ, the second person of the Holy Trinity, who defeated death (and the devil) by dying and rising from the dead.

Natures do not act, only persons act, and it is a form of Nestorianism to say otherwise.
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« Reply #113 on: October 31, 2011, 11:20:41 PM »

It was not "divinity" nor was it "humanity" in some abstract sense that defeated the devil; instead, it was Christ, the second person of the Holy Trinity, who defeated death (and the devil) by dying and rising from the dead.

Natures do not act, only persons act, and it is a form of Nestorianism to say otherwise.
In a similar vein, the importance of the filioque: the Spirit does not proceed from the divine nature, but from the Person of the Father.
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« Reply #114 on: November 01, 2011, 10:23:33 AM »

It was not "divinity" nor was it "humanity" in some abstract sense that defeated the devil; instead, it was Christ, the second person of the Holy Trinity, who defeated death (and the devil) by dying and rising from the dead.

Natures do not act, only persons act, and it is a form of Nestorianism to say otherwise.

I understand, but just as we participate in Adam's fall, don't we participate in Christ's victory over sin, death, and the devil because of our having the same nature?
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« Reply #115 on: November 01, 2011, 10:35:01 AM »

It was not "divinity" nor was it "humanity" in some abstract sense that defeated the devil; instead, it was Christ, the second person of the Holy Trinity, who defeated death (and the devil) by dying and rising from the dead.

Natures do not act, only persons act, and it is a form of Nestorianism to say otherwise.

I understand, but just as we participate in Adam's fall, don't we participate in Christ's victory over sin, death, and the devil because of our having the same nature?

Not because of our same nature, per se.

We participate in Adam's fall because he is our parent. Our parent's cannot give us what they don't have. They lack communion and so do we.

Jesus (God), however redeemed humanity through our form, but we also are redeemed by our faith (trust) in Him through prayer and the sacraments (Eucharist).
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« Reply #116 on: November 01, 2011, 11:45:26 AM »

It was not "divinity" nor was it "humanity" in some abstract sense that defeated the devil; instead, it was Christ, the second person of the Holy Trinity, who defeated death (and the devil) by dying and rising from the dead.

Natures do not act, only persons act, and it is a form of Nestorianism to say otherwise.
In a similar vein, the importance of the filioque: the Spirit does not proceed from the divine nature, but from the Person of the Father.

Follow that logic through and it makes the Holy Spirit an energy of the Father and then we can REALLY talk about subordinationism.
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« Reply #117 on: November 01, 2011, 11:48:31 AM »

It was not "divinity" nor was it "humanity" in some abstract sense that defeated the devil; instead, it was Christ, the second person of the Holy Trinity, who defeated death (and the devil) by dying and rising from the dead.

Natures do not act, only persons act, and it is a form of Nestorianism to say otherwise.
In a similar vein, the importance of the filioque: the Spirit does not proceed from the divine nature, but from the Person of the Father.

Follow that logic through and it makes the Holy Spirit an energy of the Father and then we can REALLY talk about subordinationism.

Doesn't the Nicene Creed specifically state procession and begotten from 'the Father', though?
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« Reply #118 on: November 01, 2011, 12:05:56 PM »

It was not "divinity" nor was it "humanity" in some abstract sense that defeated the devil; instead, it was Christ, the second person of the Holy Trinity, who defeated death (and the devil) by dying and rising from the dead.

Natures do not act, only persons act, and it is a form of Nestorianism to say otherwise.
In a similar vein, the importance of the filioque: the Spirit does not proceed from the divine nature, but from the Person of the Father.

Follow that logic through and it makes the Holy Spirit an energy of the Father and then we can REALLY talk about subordinationism.

Doesn't the Nicene Creed specifically state procession and begotten from 'the Father', though?

It does.  But the question is, how is one to understand that...That is always the question.  And it is for the Church and not human logic, or illogic, to answer.
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« Reply #119 on: November 01, 2011, 12:31:38 PM »

It was not "divinity" nor was it "humanity" in some abstract sense that defeated the devil; instead, it was Christ, the second person of the Holy Trinity, who defeated death (and the devil) by dying and rising from the dead.

Natures do not act, only persons act, and it is a form of Nestorianism to say otherwise.
In a similar vein, the importance of the filioque: the Spirit does not proceed from the divine nature, but from the Person of the Father.

Follow that logic through and it makes the Holy Spirit an energy of the Father and then we can REALLY talk about subordinationism.
no, WE can't, but YOU all already have.
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« Reply #120 on: November 01, 2011, 12:35:25 PM »

It was not "divinity" nor was it "humanity" in some abstract sense that defeated the devil; instead, it was Christ, the second person of the Holy Trinity, who defeated death (and the devil) by dying and rising from the dead.

Natures do not act, only persons act, and it is a form of Nestorianism to say otherwise.
In a similar vein, the importance of the filioque: the Spirit does not proceed from the divine nature, but from the Person of the Father.

Follow that logic through and it makes the Holy Spirit an energy of the Father and then we can REALLY talk about subordinationism.

Doesn't the Nicene Creed specifically state procession and begotten from 'the Father', though?

It does.  But the question is, how is one to understand that...That is always the question.
And the Fathers have already answered it. In 381.  Not in 589.

And it is for the Church and not human logic, or illogic, to answer.
And she had: too bad your scholastics confused the two.
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« Reply #121 on: November 03, 2011, 11:08:35 AM »

I came across this post and thought of this thread
The Lutherans and the Vatican?
Why are you always talking about this tiny city-state surround by Rome?  Grin

Monarch envy
No.

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« Reply #122 on: November 03, 2011, 02:46:13 PM »

It was not "divinity" nor was it "humanity" in some abstract sense that defeated the devil; instead, it was Christ, the second person of the Holy Trinity, who defeated death (and the devil) by dying and rising from the dead.

Natures do not act, only persons act, and it is a form of Nestorianism to say otherwise.
In a similar vein, the importance of the filioque: the Spirit does not proceed from the divine nature, but from the Person of the Father.

Follow that logic through and it makes the Holy Spirit an energy of the Father and then we can REALLY talk about subordinationism.

Doesn't the Nicene Creed specifically state procession and begotten from 'the Father', though?

It does.  But the question is, how is one to understand that...That is always the question.
And the Fathers have already answered it. In 381.  Not in 589.

And it is for the Church and not human logic, or illogic, to answer.
And she had: too bad your scholastics confused the two.

This is all just Ooo-Rah for Orthodoxy.

It has no substance and when you try to GIVE it substance you can only do it by distorting Catholic teaching.

That's pretty darn shabby...intellectually and spiritually.
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« Reply #123 on: November 03, 2011, 03:33:33 PM »

It was not "divinity" nor was it "humanity" in some abstract sense that defeated the devil; instead, it was Christ, the second person of the Holy Trinity, who defeated death (and the devil) by dying and rising from the dead.

Natures do not act, only persons act, and it is a form of Nestorianism to say otherwise.
In a similar vein, the importance of the filioque: the Spirit does not proceed from the divine nature, but from the Person of the Father.

Follow that logic through and it makes the Holy Spirit an energy of the Father and then we can REALLY talk about subordinationism.

Doesn't the Nicene Creed specifically state procession and begotten from 'the Father', though?

It does.  But the question is, how is one to understand that...That is always the question.
And the Fathers have already answered it. In 381.  Not in 589.

And it is for the Church and not human logic, or illogic, to answer.
And she had: too bad your scholastics confused the two.

This is all just Ooo-Rah for Orthodoxy.
Go ORTHODOX!

YEAH JESUS!

It has no substance and when you try to GIVE it substance you can only do it by distorting Catholic teaching.
I never distort Catholic teaching. I never even distort the Vatican's teaching, just dispute it.

That's pretty darn shabby...intellectually and spiritually.
+Sic dixit Maria Nov. 3, 2011

I always found it shabby to make assertions and to refuse to even try to substantiate them. filioque, IC, papal supremacy, papal infallibility and accusations of "de-incarnated" Orthodox Christology....the argument from (Vatican) authority-particularly by those who deny that they have part in its "magisterium"-does not lend any credence to ignoring plain facts.

"proceeds from the Father." period. "the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father's essence, not having been generated but simply proceeding (John 15:26) For this is the doctrine of Holy Scripture. But the nature of the generation and the procession is quite beyond comprehension."  Full stop.
http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/33041.htm
"Moreover, by the Law and the Prophets in former times and afterwards by His Only-begotten Son, our Lord and God and Saviour Jesus Christ, He disclosed to us the knowledge of Himself as that was possible for us.  All things, therefore, that have been delivered to us by Law and Prophets and Apostles and Evangelists we receive, and know, and honour , seeking for nothing beyond these."
http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/33041.htm
Quote
Likewise we believe also in one Holy Spirit, the Lord and Giver of Life: Who proceeds from the Father and rests in the Son: the object of equal adoration and glorification with the Father and Son, since He is co-essential and co-eternal : the Spirit of God, direct, authoritative , the fountain of wisdom, and life, and holiness: God existing and addressed along with Father and Son: uncreate, full, creative, all-ruling, all-effecting, all-powerful, of infinite power, Lord of all creation and not under any lord : deifying, not deified : filling, not filled: shared in, not sharing in: sanctifying, not sanctified: the intercessor, receiving the supplications of all: in all things like to the Father and Son: proceeding from the Father and communicated through the Son, and participated in by all creation, through Himself creating, and investing with essence and sanctifying, and maintaining the universe: having subsistence, existing in its own proper and peculiar subsistence, inseparable and indivisible from Father and Son, and possessing all the qualities that the Father and Son possess, save that of not being begotten or born. For the Father is without cause and unborn: for He is derived from nothing, but derives from Himself His being, nor does He derive a single quality from another. Rather He is Himself the beginning and cause of the existence of all things in a definite and natural manner. But the Son is derived from the Father after the manner of generation, and the Holy Spirit likewise is derived from the Father, yet not after the manner of generation, but after that of procession. And we have learned that there is a difference between generation and procession, but the nature of that difference we in no wise understand. Further, the generation of the Son from the Father and the procession of the Holy Spirit are simultaneous.

All then that the Son and the Spirit have is from the Father, even their very being : and unless the Father is, neither the Son nor the Spirit is. And unless the Father possesses a certain attribute, neither the Son nor the Spirit possesses it: and through the Father , that is, because of the Father's existence , the Son and the Spirit exist , and through the Father, that is, because of the Father having the qualities, the Son and the Spirit have all their qualities, those of being unbegotten, and of birth and of procession being excepted. For in these hypo static or personal properties alone do the three holy subsistences differ from each other, being indivisibly divided not by essence but by the distinguishing mark of their proper and peculiar subsistence.

Further we say that each of the three has a perfect subsistence, that we may understand not one compound perfect nature made up of three imperfect elements, but one simple essence, surpassing and preceding perfection, existing in three perfect subsistences. For all that is composed of imperfect elements must necessarily be compound. But from perfect subsistences no compound can arise. Wherefore we do not speak of the form as from subsistences, but as in subsistences. But we speak of those things as imperfect which do not preserve the form of that which is completed out of them. For stone and wood and iron are each perfect in its own nature, but with reference to the building that is completed out of them each is imperfect: for none of them is in itself a house.

The subsistences then we say are perfect, that we may not conceive of the divine nature as compound. For compoundness is the beginning of separation. And again we speak of the three subsistences as being in each other , that we may not introduce a crowd and multitude of Gods. Owing to the three subsistences, there is no compoundness or confusion: while, owing to their having the same essence and dwelling in one another, and being the same in will, and energy, and power, and authority, and movement, so to speak, we recognise the indivisibility and the unity of God. For verily there is one God, and His word and Spirit.
filioque distorts the substance of that Catholic teaching.
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« Reply #124 on: November 10, 2011, 03:12:56 PM »

Sorry I didn't get to this earlier.  I thought I owed Gabriel/Venuleius a response first.
Thanks for a great response, but let me play devil's advocate.

Nonsense?

Because that is what it is.  Odd coming from an Ultramontanist, given that they need-and demand we need-a "visible head," while we have no problem with Christ ruling the Church as the "invisible Head."

I think he might see invisibility as a sign of 'disincarnation'. ISTM he's working off an incarnate=visible idea.
Stepping back a moment, before the age of photography and mass media-indeed, maybe even back to before the invention of mass printing, how much more visible was the Vatican's "visible head" than Christ?  The present celebrity status of the sovereing of the Vatican, where perhaps even to the last hut in deepest, darkest Africa inhabited by a follower has a picture of his supreme pontiff-or at least knows what he looks like-does not reach back more than  two centuries, if that.  Such visibility did exist: the emperors, both pagan and Christian, had their image mass produced, and disfiguring one was capital offense (there is an amusing anecdote during the early Islamic conquests, where a Muslim inadvertedly shot a statue of the emperor on a border pillar, and the Muslims, to settle the matter, agreed to the Romans to carve a statue of the caliph-being Bedouin, the Muslims had no such things (not yet)-so that it could have a arrow shot in it to settle the score).  Caesar's image was on the coin of the realm for a reason: it is said that the switch to profile from full face (the medieval practice, the idea being similar to the canon of iconography of having the image in full engagement with the viewer by showing both eyes) came after the War of the Rose: profiles identiy the person better, and King Henry, after the civil war, wanted it clear who was the boss (later, King Louis XVI would rue that: he was recognized from the currency when he tried to escape France).  With the Gregorian Reform taking place during and after the Vatican's schism, the supreme pontiff pretty much settled down in Rome/Italy-when he was not in Avignon-so that nearly none of his followers would not recognize him if they looked him in the eye.  And then, who was the visible head here?

In contrast, one had a better than even chance of seeing the local bishop.  As Pope St. Leo observed "what was visible in our Savior has passed over into His Mysteries," St. Ignatius exhorted that "where the bishop is, let the people be, as where Christ is, there is the Catholic Church," and Christ Himself said "he who receives you receives Me."  As such, Christ the one highpriest resides in "the episcopate," which, as St. Cyprian observed, "is one, each one holding it for the whole."  This says it all:

(that's the real pope, btw).
Quote
Seems like another attempt to attack the Orthodox as somehow deficient in not having a "Vicar of Christ" "tanking the place of God on earth." Simple: He is ever present in the Orthodox Church,

He might say, as sacerdotium but not as regnum. His critique seems to be that the Orthodox Church acts a dispenser of sacraments, but does not image Christ's Kingship over creation. How do you address that? What is Christ's Kingship? How does it differ from earthly kingship? How is it similar? How does He exercise it? How does the Orthodox Church show it forth?
The Romans, taking their cue from Christ's own words "Render unto Caesar that which is Caesar's, and unto God what is God's" had their answer:

"In God We Trust" (for the non-Americans, that is the slogan on all US coins/money).  It seems that Gabriel/Venuleius has this in mind

for "Christ the King" (a rather odd point of attact on the Orthodox, given that the Vatican instituted it less than a century ago, by the same sovereign of the Vatican who signed the Lateran treaty with Mussolini).  You will note that he wears a tiara, with a secular crown at His feet. Perhaps remembering the good ol' days

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Donation_of_Constantine
Christ Himself, however has ruled out theocracy, which is what Gabriel/Venuleius seems to be putting up as an ideal:"My Kingdom is not of this world."  It is for that reason that, although a monarchist, I cannot agree with those who argue that there must be a "God anointed sovereign."  St. Paul wrote to the Romans "honor the emperor" when he was Nero.  So too, I cannot agree with identifying political parties with the Church, nor forms of governance.

So, about Christ's kingship over creation, one needs only to go to the Great Blessing of water (unlike "Christ the King," a celebration of great antiquity) to find that:
Quote
Great are you, O Lord, and wonderful your works, and no word is adequate to sing the praise ofyour wonders. (Three times)
For by your own will you brought the universe from non-existence into being, you hold creationtogether by your might, and by your providence you direct the world. You composed creation from four elements; with four seasons you crowned the circle of the year. All the spiritual Powers tremble before you. The sun sings your praise, the moon glorifies you, the stars entreat you, thelight obeys you, the deeps tremble before you, the springs are your servants. You stretched out theheavens on the waters; you walled in the sea with sand; you poured out the air for breathing. Angelic Powers minister to you. The choirs of the Archangels worship you. The many-eyedCherubim and the six-winged Seraphim as they stand and fly around you hide their faces in fear ofyour unapproachable glory. For you, being God uncircumscribed, without beginning andinexpressible, came upon earth, taking the form of a servant, being found in the likeness of man. For you could not bear, O Master, in the compassion of your mercy to watch mankind beingtyrannised by the devil, but you came and saved us. We acknowledge your grace, we proclaim your mercy, we do not conceal your benevolence. You freed the generations of our race. Yousanctified a virgin womb by your birth. All creation sang your praise when you appeared. For youare our God, who appeared on earth and lived among men. You sanctified the streams of Jordan bysending down from heaven your All-holy Spirit and you crushed the heads of the dragons thatlurked there.

(And the Priest says this verse three times, blessing the water with his hand at each verse):Therefore, O King, lover of mankind, be present now too through the visitation of your Holy Spirit,and sanctify this water

There is more I can say on the subject of Christian kingship (e.g. the Legend of the Last Roman Emperor, who conquers the world and then goes to Jerusalem to lay his crown down on Calvary), which I'll have to leave now for later.

Quote
so He-and we-don't need a "Vicar."

And He is present physically-deincarnation would cause the whole very visible role of the Holy Icons to collapse in Orthodoxy.  Since I haven't seen that, I have no idea where they are getting this "deincarnation" in the Orthodox Church from.

He mentions the idea that Orthodox icons are too 'ascetical' or 'mystical'. Again the idea that incarnate=visible (in this case in the sense of 'realistic').

The problem is that the sanctity of the saint, invisible to invisible eyes, is no less real.  That is why a photo is not an icon: it doesn't capture that.

infrared photos are don't look like a photograph either

are they any less real or of this physical reality thereby?

Quote
Maybe he is upset that we do not share the Vatican's thirst for gore,

I think he might say what we see as a thirst for gore is a real, thoroughgoing commitment to the real, true, literal humanity of Christ.
The Christians of the first millenium, even in the West and Rome itself, were not slacking in commitment to the real, true, literal humanity of Christ, yet we see none of this obsession with body parts and "bleeding all over the place" as someone put it, until after Rome ran off the rails 1054 or thereabouts.  There is an emphasis on the Eucharist being a bloodless sacrifice. We should all hold that thought, as it entails no denial of Christ's humanity.  The gore seems a derivative of the mentality of the Tenebrae service, conducted as if we did not know how the story ends.

Quote
the fetish for displaying body parts or the obsession to put His mother on a par with Him.  Oh, well. That's their problem, not ours.

There is also not a too thinly disguised swipe at Orthodoxy as "Caesaropapism."  Of course, besides the transformation of the church into a Papal state-despite the clear words during that passion he refers to "My Kingdom is not of this world"

He seems to draw a distinction between "of this world", "in this world". He seems to think Orthodoxy, in stressing that Christ's Kingdom is not of this world, has pushed it altogether out of this world. For him, Christ's Kingdom is not of this world, but is in this world. I would tend to agree with that. But if not the Vatican, what does Christ's not-of-but-in-this-world Kingdom look like?
In our present world in the USA? Voting your conscience.  Symphonia is a Christian concept to the core.  The papal states is not, any more than the Holy Governing Synod is.

Quote
-the Vatican is always selective in its condemnation of "Caesaropapism."  It of course defends to the death the act of the Germanic kings in overturning the Tradition of Orthodox Rome, reiterated by Popes and inscribed on the doors of St. Peter's itself, in the insertion of the filioque in the mass at Rome, praises the Emperors of the Romans who dragged the bishops from the Orthodox patriarchates to submit to the Vatican in return for armies to defend their kingdom of this world, and celebrates the imposition of "union" by the Polish King (at the time trying to overturn the reformation in his native Sweden, and promising Polish lords Russian lands to make up for those lost to Sweden).  It isn't upset that we allegedly say "we have no king but Caesar," but that we refuse to recognize Caesar's successor as pontifex maximus as "Caesar" and "Supreme Pontiff."

I've been to many Orthodox Churches which had no Pantocrator in the dome.  I've never been to one which did not have an Icon of the Theotokos and Child (how He came) flanking the altar (how He comes now).

"It’s almost as if Christ’s Kingship can’t be understand when he was “just” leading the Apostles around Galilee or “just” enduring questioning, mockery, physical assault, etc. He had to be positioned in the Heavens, with a choir of angels and Saints, to be a King." Nearly every large Orthodox Cross I've seen has, above the Crucifixed Christ the inscription "King of Glory."

The N word I was thinking was Nestorian. It seems there is a similar concern for defending the integrity of humanity in the Incarnation, and a similar result: the Word of God assuming not humanity but a man (as you said, a visible Vicar of Christ, "taking the place of God on earth").
Yes, btw the elaborate rituals that surrounded the sovereign of the Vatican until lately, are largely taken from the court of Caesar (like the office of "supreme pontiff") and of New Rome.
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« Reply #125 on: November 13, 2011, 02:25:09 AM »

It was not "divinity" nor was it "humanity" in some abstract sense that defeated the devil; instead, it was Christ, the second person of the Holy Trinity, who defeated death (and the devil) by dying and rising from the dead.

Natures do not act, only persons act, and it is a form of Nestorianism to say otherwise.
In a similar vein, the importance of the filioque: the Spirit does not proceed from the divine nature, but from the Person of the Father.
I agree.
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« Reply #126 on: November 13, 2011, 11:47:01 AM »

It was not "divinity" nor was it "humanity" in some abstract sense that defeated the devil; instead, it was Christ, the second person of the Holy Trinity, who defeated death (and the devil) by dying and rising from the dead.

Natures do not act, only persons act, and it is a form of Nestorianism to say otherwise.
In a similar vein, the importance of the filioque: the Spirit does not proceed from the divine nature, but from the Person of the Father.
I agree.

Would you say that he proceeds in substance from the Person of the Father?
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« Reply #127 on: November 13, 2011, 04:07:14 PM »

Isa, Tenebrae is a quite ancient service, well before the Rome went off the rails, as you put it, well before the 800s even. How are you connecting it to the "gore"?
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« Reply #128 on: November 13, 2011, 05:09:53 PM »

It was not "divinity" nor was it "humanity" in some abstract sense that defeated the devil; instead, it was Christ, the second person of the Holy Trinity, who defeated death (and the devil) by dying and rising from the dead.

Natures do not act, only persons act, and it is a form of Nestorianism to say otherwise.
In a similar vein, the importance of the filioque: the Spirit does not proceed from the divine nature, but from the Person of the Father.
I agree.

Would you say that he proceeds in substance from the Person of the Father?
I'm not Apotheoun, whom I am convinced is far more brilliant than I am when it comes to this sort of stuff, but I think there would first have to be an agreement on what substance (ousia) is. I think the East and West disagree on this, from my limited experience.
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« Reply #129 on: November 13, 2011, 05:19:37 PM »

Isa, Tenebrae is a quite ancient service, well before the Rome went off the rails, as you put it, well before the 800s even. How are you connecting it to the "gore"?

I know of the existence of Tenebrae, but am unfamiliar with its form and content. However, I can say that even the Orthodox Matins of Holy Saturday (conducted on Great Friday evening), while commemorating perhaps the darkest phase of the Passion of Christ - His entombment - still contain glimmers of anticipation of the inexpressible joy and brightness of the Resurrection. All is not beyond hope. Here's an example:

O my Son and my God, though I am wounded to the core and torn to the heart as I see You dead, yet confident in Your resurrection, I magnify You.
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« Reply #130 on: November 13, 2011, 05:25:31 PM »

It was not "divinity" nor was it "humanity" in some abstract sense that defeated the devil; instead, it was Christ, the second person of the Holy Trinity, who defeated death (and the devil) by dying and rising from the dead.

Natures do not act, only persons act, and it is a form of Nestorianism to say otherwise.
In a similar vein, the importance of the filioque: the Spirit does not proceed from the divine nature, but from the Person of the Father.
I agree.

Would you say that he proceeds in substance from the Person of the Father?
I'm not Apotheoun, whom I am convinced is far more brilliant than I am when it comes to this sort of stuff, but I think there would first have to be an agreement on what substance (ousia) is. I think the East and West disagree on this, from my limited experience.

You think we disagree on the substance/essence of God?

Well that is quite something!

 Smiley

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« Reply #131 on: November 14, 2011, 01:26:30 AM »

Isa, Tenebrae is a quite ancient service, well before the Rome went off the rails, as you put it, well before the 800s even. How are you connecting it to the "gore"?
It's general tenor, once Rome had gone off the rails and having nothing to anchor it, drifted towards the "Jesus bled all over the place" as someone posted in the linked blog, the emphasis of the Crucifixion being seperated from the Resurrection-as if we do not know how the story ends-would heighten the elements of the Good Friday story, which has a lot of blood in it.
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« Reply #132 on: November 14, 2011, 09:15:32 AM »

It was not "divinity" nor was it "humanity" in some abstract sense that defeated the devil; instead, it was Christ, the second person of the Holy Trinity, who defeated death (and the devil) by dying and rising from the dead.

Natures do not act, only persons act, and it is a form of Nestorianism to say otherwise.
In a similar vein, the importance of the filioque: the Spirit does not proceed from the divine nature, but from the Person of the Father.
I agree.

Would you say that he proceeds in substance from the Person of the Father?
No, I would say that He proceeds hypostatically from the Father, which means that He receives His subsistence and essence from the person of the Father alone.
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« Reply #133 on: November 14, 2011, 10:53:28 AM »

It was not "divinity" nor was it "humanity" in some abstract sense that defeated the devil; instead, it was Christ, the second person of the Holy Trinity, who defeated death (and the devil) by dying and rising from the dead.

Natures do not act, only persons act, and it is a form of Nestorianism to say otherwise.
In a similar vein, the importance of the filioque: the Spirit does not proceed from the divine nature, but from the Person of the Father.
I agree.

Would you say that he proceeds in substance from the Person of the Father?
No, I would say that He proceeds hypostatically from the Father, which means that He receives His subsistence and essence from the person of the Father alone.

Is the essence of the Holy Spirit not the essence of the Father?

And is the essence of the Son not the essence of the Father?

And is the essence of the Father not the essence of the Holy Spirit and the Son?

Are there THREE essences?
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« Reply #134 on: November 14, 2011, 10:57:42 AM »

It was not "divinity" nor was it "humanity" in some abstract sense that defeated the devil; instead, it was Christ, the second person of the Holy Trinity, who defeated death (and the devil) by dying and rising from the dead.

Natures do not act, only persons act, and it is a form of Nestorianism to say otherwise.
In a similar vein, the importance of the filioque: the Spirit does not proceed from the divine nature, but from the Person of the Father.
I agree.

Would you say that he proceeds in substance from the Person of the Father?
No, I would say that He proceeds hypostatically from the Father, which means that He receives His subsistence and essence from the person of the Father alone.

Is the essence of the Holy Spirit not the essence of the Father?
So the Spirit begets the Son?

And is not the essence of the Son not the essence of the Father?
So the Father is begotten?

And is not the essence of the Father not the essence of the Holy Spirit and the Son?
Are you arguing for modalism?

Are there THREE essences?
ONE in essence.
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« Reply #135 on: November 14, 2011, 11:00:44 AM »

It was not "divinity" nor was it "humanity" in some abstract sense that defeated the devil; instead, it was Christ, the second person of the Holy Trinity, who defeated death (and the devil) by dying and rising from the dead.

Natures do not act, only persons act, and it is a form of Nestorianism to say otherwise.
In a similar vein, the importance of the filioque: the Spirit does not proceed from the divine nature, but from the Person of the Father.
I agree.

Would you say that he proceeds in substance from the Person of the Father?
No, I would say that He proceeds hypostatically from the Father, which means that He receives His subsistence and essence from the person of the Father alone.

Is the essence of the Holy Spirit not the essence of the Father?
So the Spirit begets the Son?

And is not the essence of the Son not the essence of the Father?
So the Father is begotten?

And is not the essence of the Father not the essence of the Holy Spirit and the Son?
Are you arguing for modalism?

Are there THREE essences?
ONE in essence.

I am sorry but this response indicates that you are clueless when it comes to some pretty basic concepts used in the councils that define your faith.
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« Reply #136 on: November 14, 2011, 12:17:53 PM »

It was not "divinity" nor was it "humanity" in some abstract sense that defeated the devil; instead, it was Christ, the second person of the Holy Trinity, who defeated death (and the devil) by dying and rising from the dead.

Natures do not act, only persons act, and it is a form of Nestorianism to say otherwise.
In a similar vein, the importance of the filioque: the Spirit does not proceed from the divine nature, but from the Person of the Father.
I agree.

Would you say that he proceeds in substance from the Person of the Father?
No, I would say that He proceeds hypostatically from the Father, which means that He receives His subsistence and essence from the person of the Father alone.

Is the essence of the Holy Spirit not the essence of the Father?
So the Spirit begets the Son?

And is not the essence of the Son not the essence of the Father?
So the Father is begotten?

And is not the essence of the Father not the essence of the Holy Spirit and the Son?
Are you arguing for modalism?

Are there THREE essences?
ONE in essence.

I am sorry but this response indicates that you are clueless when it comes to some pretty basic concepts used in the councils that define your faith.
that you ask these questions that go nowhere exposes you as one without a clue but with an agenda.
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« Reply #137 on: November 14, 2011, 04:24:47 PM »

It was not "divinity" nor was it "humanity" in some abstract sense that defeated the devil; instead, it was Christ, the second person of the Holy Trinity, who defeated death (and the devil) by dying and rising from the dead.

Natures do not act, only persons act, and it is a form of Nestorianism to say otherwise.
In a similar vein, the importance of the filioque: the Spirit does not proceed from the divine nature, but from the Person of the Father.
I agree.

Would you say that he proceeds in substance from the Person of the Father?
No, I would say that He proceeds hypostatically from the Father, which means that He receives His subsistence and essence from the person of the Father alone.

Is the essence of the Holy Spirit not the essence of the Father?
So the Spirit begets the Son?

And is not the essence of the Son not the essence of the Father?
So the Father is begotten?

And is not the essence of the Father not the essence of the Holy Spirit and the Son?
Are you arguing for modalism?

Are there THREE essences?
ONE in essence.

I am sorry but this response indicates that you are clueless when it comes to some pretty basic concepts used in the councils that define your faith.
that you ask these questions that go nowhere exposes you as one without a clue but with an agenda.
You are such a sweetie heart.  Roll Eyes
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« Reply #138 on: November 14, 2011, 08:51:25 PM »


that you ask these questions that go nowhere exposes you as one without a clue but with an agenda.

I would say that the one with the agenda is the one who suggested that the Trinity divides the divine essence into three.
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« Reply #139 on: November 14, 2011, 09:23:11 PM »

Sorry I didn't get to this earlier.  I thought I owed Gabriel/Venuleius a response first.
Thanks for a great response, but let me play devil's advocate.

Nonsense?

Because that is what it is.  Odd coming from an Ultramontanist, given that they need-and demand we need-a "visible head," while we have no problem with Christ ruling the Church as the "invisible Head."

I think he might see invisibility as a sign of 'disincarnation'. ISTM he's working off an incarnate=visible idea.
Stepping back a moment, before the age of photography and mass media-indeed, maybe even back to before the invention of mass printing, how much more visible was the Vatican's "visible head" than Christ?  The present celebrity status of the sovereing of the Vatican, where perhaps even to the last hut in deepest, darkest Africa inhabited by a follower has a picture of his supreme pontiff-or at least knows what he looks like-does not reach back more than  two centuries, if that.  Such visibility did exist: the emperors, both pagan and Christian, had their image mass produced, and disfiguring one was capital offense (there is an amusing anecdote during the early Islamic conquests, where a Muslim inadvertedly shot a statue of the emperor on a border pillar, and the Muslims, to settle the matter, agreed to the Romans to carve a statue of the caliph-being Bedouin, the Muslims had no such things (not yet)-so that it could have a arrow shot in it to settle the score).  Caesar's image was on the coin of the realm for a reason: it is said that the switch to profile from full face (the medieval practice, the idea being similar to the canon of iconography of having the image in full engagement with the viewer by showing both eyes) came after the War of the Rose: profiles identiy the person better, and King Henry, after the civil war, wanted it clear who was the boss (later, King Louis XVI would rue that: he was recognized from the currency when he tried to escape France).  With the Gregorian Reform taking place during and after the Vatican's schism, the supreme pontiff pretty much settled down in Rome/Italy-when he was not in Avignon-so that nearly none of his followers would not recognize him if they looked him in the eye.  And then, who was the visible head here?

In contrast, one had a better than even chance of seeing the local bishop.  As Pope St. Leo observed "what was visible in our Savior has passed over into His Mysteries," St. Ignatius exhorted that "where the bishop is, let the people be, as where Christ is, there is the Catholic Church," and Christ Himself said "he who receives you receives Me."  As such, Christ the one highpriest resides in "the episcopate," which, as St. Cyprian observed, "is one, each one holding it for the whole."  This says it all:

(that's the real pope, btw).
Quote
Seems like another attempt to attack the Orthodox as somehow deficient in not having a "Vicar of Christ" "tanking the place of God on earth." Simple: He is ever present in the Orthodox Church,

He might say, as sacerdotium but not as regnum. His critique seems to be that the Orthodox Church acts a dispenser of sacraments, but does not image Christ's Kingship over creation. How do you address that? What is Christ's Kingship? How does it differ from earthly kingship? How is it similar? How does He exercise it? How does the Orthodox Church show it forth?
The Romans, taking their cue from Christ's own words "Render unto Caesar that which is Caesar's, and unto God what is God's" had their answer:

"In God We Trust" (for the non-Americans, that is the slogan on all US coins/money).  It seems that Gabriel/Venuleius has this in mind

for "Christ the King" (a rather odd point of attact on the Orthodox, given that the Vatican instituted it less than a century ago, by the same sovereign of the Vatican who signed the Lateran treaty with Mussolini).  You will note that he wears a tiara, with a secular crown at His feet. Perhaps remembering the good ol' days

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Donation_of_Constantine
Christ Himself, however has ruled out theocracy, which is what Gabriel/Venuleius seems to be putting up as an ideal:"My Kingdom is not of this world."  It is for that reason that, although a monarchist, I cannot agree with those who argue that there must be a "God anointed sovereign."  St. Paul wrote to the Romans "honor the emperor" when he was Nero.  So too, I cannot agree with identifying political parties with the Church, nor forms of governance.

So, about Christ's kingship over creation, one needs only to go to the Great Blessing of water (unlike "Christ the King," a celebration of great antiquity) to find that:
Quote
Great are you, O Lord, and wonderful your works, and no word is adequate to sing the praise ofyour wonders. (Three times)
For by your own will you brought the universe from non-existence into being, you hold creationtogether by your might, and by your providence you direct the world. You composed creation from four elements; with four seasons you crowned the circle of the year. All the spiritual Powers tremble before you. The sun sings your praise, the moon glorifies you, the stars entreat you, thelight obeys you, the deeps tremble before you, the springs are your servants. You stretched out theheavens on the waters; you walled in the sea with sand; you poured out the air for breathing. Angelic Powers minister to you. The choirs of the Archangels worship you. The many-eyedCherubim and the six-winged Seraphim as they stand and fly around you hide their faces in fear ofyour unapproachable glory. For you, being God uncircumscribed, without beginning andinexpressible, came upon earth, taking the form of a servant, being found in the likeness of man. For you could not bear, O Master, in the compassion of your mercy to watch mankind beingtyrannised by the devil, but you came and saved us. We acknowledge your grace, we proclaim your mercy, we do not conceal your benevolence. You freed the generations of our race. Yousanctified a virgin womb by your birth. All creation sang your praise when you appeared. For youare our God, who appeared on earth and lived among men. You sanctified the streams of Jordan bysending down from heaven your All-holy Spirit and you crushed the heads of the dragons thatlurked there.

(And the Priest says this verse three times, blessing the water with his hand at each verse):Therefore, O King, lover of mankind, be present now too through the visitation of your Holy Spirit,and sanctify this water

There is more I can say on the subject of Christian kingship (e.g. the Legend of the Last Roman Emperor, who conquers the world and then goes to Jerusalem to lay his crown down on Calvary), which I'll have to leave now for later.

Quote
so He-and we-don't need a "Vicar."

And He is present physically-deincarnation would cause the whole very visible role of the Holy Icons to collapse in Orthodoxy.  Since I haven't seen that, I have no idea where they are getting this "deincarnation" in the Orthodox Church from.

He mentions the idea that Orthodox icons are too 'ascetical' or 'mystical'. Again the idea that incarnate=visible (in this case in the sense of 'realistic').

The problem is that the sanctity of the saint, invisible to invisible eyes, is no less real.  That is why a photo is not an icon: it doesn't capture that.

infrared photos are don't look like a photograph either

are they any less real or of this physical reality thereby?

Quote
Maybe he is upset that we do not share the Vatican's thirst for gore,

I think he might say what we see as a thirst for gore is a real, thoroughgoing commitment to the real, true, literal humanity of Christ.
The Christians of the first millenium, even in the West and Rome itself, were not slacking in commitment to the real, true, literal humanity of Christ, yet we see none of this obsession with body parts and "bleeding all over the place" as someone put it, until after Rome ran off the rails 1054 or thereabouts.  There is an emphasis on the Eucharist being a bloodless sacrifice. We should all hold that thought, as it entails no denial of Christ's humanity.  The gore seems a derivative of the mentality of the Tenebrae service, conducted as if we did not know how the story ends.

Quote
the fetish for displaying body parts or the obsession to put His mother on a par with Him.  Oh, well. That's their problem, not ours.

There is also not a too thinly disguised swipe at Orthodoxy as "Caesaropapism."  Of course, besides the transformation of the church into a Papal state-despite the clear words during that passion he refers to "My Kingdom is not of this world"

He seems to draw a distinction between "of this world", "in this world". He seems to think Orthodoxy, in stressing that Christ's Kingdom is not of this world, has pushed it altogether out of this world. For him, Christ's Kingdom is not of this world, but is in this world. I would tend to agree with that. But if not the Vatican, what does Christ's not-of-but-in-this-world Kingdom look like?
In our present world in the USA? Voting your conscience.  Symphonia is a Christian concept to the core.  The papal states is not, any more than the Holy Governing Synod is.

Quote
-the Vatican is always selective in its condemnation of "Caesaropapism."  It of course defends to the death the act of the Germanic kings in overturning the Tradition of Orthodox Rome, reiterated by Popes and inscribed on the doors of St. Peter's itself, in the insertion of the filioque in the mass at Rome, praises the Emperors of the Romans who dragged the bishops from the Orthodox patriarchates to submit to the Vatican in return for armies to defend their kingdom of this world, and celebrates the imposition of "union" by the Polish King (at the time trying to overturn the reformation in his native Sweden, and promising Polish lords Russian lands to make up for those lost to Sweden).  It isn't upset that we allegedly say "we have no king but Caesar," but that we refuse to recognize Caesar's successor as pontifex maximus as "Caesar" and "Supreme Pontiff."

I've been to many Orthodox Churches which had no Pantocrator in the dome.  I've never been to one which did not have an Icon of the Theotokos and Child (how He came) flanking the altar (how He comes now).

"It’s almost as if Christ’s Kingship can’t be understand when he was “just” leading the Apostles around Galilee or “just” enduring questioning, mockery, physical assault, etc. He had to be positioned in the Heavens, with a choir of angels and Saints, to be a King." Nearly every large Orthodox Cross I've seen has, above the Crucifixed Christ the inscription "King of Glory."

The N word I was thinking was Nestorian. It seems there is a similar concern for defending the integrity of humanity in the Incarnation, and a similar result: the Word of God assuming not humanity but a man (as you said, a visible Vicar of Christ, "taking the place of God on earth").
Yes, btw the elaborate rituals that surrounded the sovereign of the Vatican until lately, are largely taken from the court of Caesar (like the office of "supreme pontiff") and of New Rome.

I found this helpful. Thank you.
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« Reply #140 on: December 25, 2011, 05:04:33 PM »

The blog post in question kind of touched a nerve with me because it brought to light some of the problems I've had with Byzantine liturgy.

I really prefer traditional Western rites. But there's no WRO parish anywhere near me. Sad
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« Reply #141 on: December 25, 2011, 05:40:08 PM »

Let's play nice, it's Christmas!
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« Reply #142 on: December 25, 2011, 06:11:34 PM »

The blog post in question kind of touched a nerve with me because it brought to light some of the problems I've had with Byzantine liturgy.
Such as?
I really prefer traditional Western rites. But there's no WRO parish anywhere near me. Sad
Where are you at?
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« Reply #143 on: December 26, 2011, 12:45:29 AM »

The blog post in question kind of touched a nerve with me because it brought to light some of the problems I've had with Byzantine liturgy.
Such as?

Well, sometimes I feel as though the hymnography tries to much to be a real long theological discourse. I know that liturgy is a huge source of theology, but still, it seems that there's not much room for concision.

Also, I love Gregorian chant. And Latin.


Quote
I really prefer traditional Western rites. But there's no WRO parish anywhere near me. Sad
Where are you at?

Louisville, KY.
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« Reply #144 on: December 26, 2011, 02:26:12 AM »

Let's play nice, it's Christmas!
The posts that have your defenses up are probably those that date back to mid November. This thread was resurrected just today after a hiatus of several weeks.
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« Reply #145 on: December 26, 2011, 02:26:32 AM »

The blog post in question kind of touched a nerve with me because it brought to light some of the problems I've had with Byzantine liturgy.
Such as?

Well, sometimes I feel as though the hymnography tries to much to be a real long theological discourse. I know that liturgy is a huge source of theology, but still, it seems that there's not much room for concision.

Also, I love Gregorian chant. And Latin.
The Tridentine high mass is concise?
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« Reply #146 on: December 26, 2011, 02:46:09 AM »

The blog post in question kind of touched a nerve with me because it brought to light some of the problems I've had with Byzantine liturgy.
Such as?

Well, sometimes I feel as though the hymnography tries to much to be a real long theological discourse. I know that liturgy is a huge source of theology, but still, it seems that there's not much room for concision.

Also, I love Gregorian chant. And Latin.

I hate to be a sexist, but there is something otherworldy holy when only men chant in Gregorian in monophonic.

Then again certain Byzantine chants have blown me away recently...
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« Reply #147 on: December 26, 2011, 03:32:30 AM »

The blog post in question kind of touched a nerve with me because it brought to light some of the problems I've had with Byzantine liturgy.
Such as?

Well, sometimes I feel as though the hymnography tries to much to be a real long theological discourse. I know that liturgy is a huge source of theology, but still, it seems that there's not much room for concision.

Also, I love Gregorian chant. And Latin.

I hate to be a sexist, but there is something otherworldy holy when only men chant in Gregorian in monophonic.

Then again certain Byzantine chants have blown me away recently...

I have to say I concur. I have 3 Fontgombault recordings as well as several other Solemses. and three of the Spanish monastery that had that platinum album (as well as a few others) and I have the Voices CD from Avignon (the one where Decca went to various female convents to decide the best one and is very critically acclaimed) and another formerly famous female one and the males are just heads and tails above the ladies.  I do have an Ambrosian Chant CD with all women and it is very good as well as one of the Gloria Del Cantores with either women or girls (maybe both but they do have at least girls and boys) and it is very good. 

However Ive always preferred women for modern music. Like Harriet Wheeler of The Sundays or Dolores O'Riordan of the Cranberries, Leigh Nash of Sixpense none the Richer, Alison Krauss, Natalie Merchant, or Fiona Apple, or Jasimine Rogers formerly of Boa (hardly anyone has heard of them).
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« Reply #148 on: December 26, 2011, 09:51:10 AM »

Let's play nice, it's Christmas!
The posts that have your defenses up are probably those that date back to mid November. This thread was resurrected just today after a hiatus of several weeks.


Thanks! i didn't notice....
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« Reply #149 on: December 27, 2011, 05:09:51 PM »

The blog post in question kind of touched a nerve with me because it brought to light some of the problems I've had with Byzantine liturgy.
Such as?

Well, sometimes I feel as though the hymnography tries to much to be a real long theological discourse. I know that liturgy is a huge source of theology, but still, it seems that there's not much room for concision.

Also, I love Gregorian chant. And Latin.

I hate to be a sexist, but there is something otherworldy holy when only men chant in Gregorian in monophonic.

Then again certain Byzantine chants have blown me away recently...

Unless they're nuns in a nunnery, women should not be chanting in church. Smiley
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« Reply #150 on: December 27, 2011, 07:20:13 PM »

The blog post in question kind of touched a nerve with me because it brought to light some of the problems I've had with Byzantine liturgy.
Such as?

Well, sometimes I feel as though the hymnography tries to much to be a real long theological discourse. I know that liturgy is a huge source of theology, but still, it seems that there's not much room for concision.

Also, I love Gregorian chant. And Latin.

I hate to be a sexist, but there is something otherworldy holy when only men chant in Gregorian in monophonic.

Then again certain Byzantine chants have blown me away recently...

Unless they're nuns in a nunnery, women should not be chanting in church. Smiley
Thankfully, at my church, we prevent this horrible abuse by handing a piece of duct tape, with the words, "1 Corinthians 14:34," written on it, to each woman as she enters the building.
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« Reply #151 on: December 27, 2011, 07:39:16 PM »

The blog post in question kind of touched a nerve with me because it brought to light some of the problems I've had with Byzantine liturgy.
Such as?

Well, sometimes I feel as though the hymnography tries to much to be a real long theological discourse. I know that liturgy is a huge source of theology, but still, it seems that there's not much room for concision.

Also, I love Gregorian chant. And Latin.

I hate to be a sexist, but there is something otherworldy holy when only men chant in Gregorian in monophonic.

Then again certain Byzantine chants have blown me away recently...

Unless they're nuns in a nunnery, women should not be chanting in church. Smiley
Thankfully, at my church, we prevent this horrible abuse by handing a piece of duct tape, with the words, "1 Corinthians 14:34," written on it, to each woman as she enters the building.

True LOL!

Mario, you really are coming into your own.

*single tear*
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« Reply #152 on: December 27, 2011, 07:39:38 PM »

The blog post in question kind of touched a nerve with me because it brought to light some of the problems I've had with Byzantine liturgy.
Such as?

Well, sometimes I feel as though the hymnography tries to much to be a real long theological discourse. I know that liturgy is a huge source of theology, but still, it seems that there's not much room for concision.

Also, I love Gregorian chant. And Latin.

I hate to be a sexist, but there is something otherworldy holy when only men chant in Gregorian in monophonic.

Then again certain Byzantine chants have blown me away recently...

Unless they're nuns in a nunnery, women should not be chanting in church. Smiley
Thankfully, at my church, we prevent this horrible abuse by handing a piece of duct tape, with the words, "1 Corinthians 14:34," written on it, to each woman as she enters the building.

ROTFL!!!

 laugh laugh laugh laugh laugh
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« Reply #153 on: December 27, 2011, 09:13:56 PM »

The blog post in question kind of touched a nerve with me because it brought to light some of the problems I've had with Byzantine liturgy.
Such as?

Well, sometimes I feel as though the hymnography tries to much to be a real long theological discourse. I know that liturgy is a huge source of theology, but still, it seems that there's not much room for concision.

Also, I love Gregorian chant. And Latin.

I hate to be a sexist, but there is something otherworldy holy when only men chant in Gregorian in monophonic.

Then again certain Byzantine chants have blown me away recently...

Unless they're nuns in a nunnery, women should not be chanting in church. Smiley
Thankfully, at my church, we prevent this horrible abuse by handing a piece of duct tape, with the words, "1 Corinthians 14:34," written on it, to each woman as she enters the building.

Oh My ! LOL! laugh laugh
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« Reply #154 on: December 27, 2011, 09:30:50 PM »

The blog post in question kind of touched a nerve with me because it brought to light some of the problems I've had with Byzantine liturgy.
Such as?

Well, sometimes I feel as though the hymnography tries to much to be a real long theological discourse. I know that liturgy is a huge source of theology, but still, it seems that there's not much room for concision.

Also, I love Gregorian chant. And Latin.

I hate to be a sexist...

Come now, tell the truth, Achronos. Do you really hate it?  laugh Most sexists I have met delight in their sexism; male and female alike!  Wink
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« Reply #155 on: December 27, 2011, 09:31:21 PM »

The blog post in question kind of touched a nerve with me because it brought to light some of the problems I've had with Byzantine liturgy.
Such as?

Well, sometimes I feel as though the hymnography tries to much to be a real long theological discourse. I know that liturgy is a huge source of theology, but still, it seems that there's not much room for concision.

Also, I love Gregorian chant. And Latin.

I hate to be a sexist, but there is something otherworldy holy when only men chant in Gregorian in monophonic.

Then again certain Byzantine chants have blown me away recently...

Unless they're nuns in a nunnery, women should not be chanting in church. Smiley
Thankfully, at my church, we prevent this horrible abuse by handing a piece of duct tape, with the words, "1 Corinthians 14:34," written on it, to each woman as she enters the building.

 laugh
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« Reply #156 on: December 27, 2011, 10:08:48 PM »

The blog post in question kind of touched a nerve with me because it brought to light some of the problems I've had with Byzantine liturgy.
Such as?

Well, sometimes I feel as though the hymnography tries to much to be a real long theological discourse. I know that liturgy is a huge source of theology, but still, it seems that there's not much room for concision.

Also, I love Gregorian chant. And Latin.

I hate to be a sexist, but there is something otherworldy holy when only men chant in Gregorian in monophonic.

Then again certain Byzantine chants have blown me away recently...

I myself prefer Byzantine chant when its done by men with alternating chanter/ison, not so much when done by women, and dislike it when done by a choir, and am very aesthetically displeased when its accompanied by organ (I don't want to start an organ thread, I have nothing against them theologically, and they certainly have their place in secular music, I have just never heard an organ accompany a Greek choir that didn't make me desperately search SCOBA for the closest Russian/OCA/Antiochian/any other jurisdiction parish). Russian chant sounds better with a full choir.
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« Reply #157 on: December 27, 2011, 10:48:21 PM »

Quote
The N word I was thinking was Nestorian. It seems there is a similar concern for defending the integrity of humanity in the Incarnation, and a similar result: the Word of God assuming not humanity but a man (as you said, a visible Vicar of Christ, "taking the place of God on earth").

Yup!
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"loving one's enemies does not mean loving wickedness, ungodliness, adultery, or theft. Rather, it means loving the theif, the ungodly, and the adulterer." Clement of Alexandria 195 A.D.

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Paint It Red


« Reply #158 on: December 29, 2011, 10:17:33 AM »

The blog post in question kind of touched a nerve with me because it brought to light some of the problems I've had with Byzantine liturgy.
Such as?

Well, sometimes I feel as though the hymnography tries to much to be a real long theological discourse. I know that liturgy is a huge source of theology, but still, it seems that there's not much room for concision.

Also, I love Gregorian chant. And Latin.

I hate to be a sexist...

Come now, tell the truth, Achronos. Do you really hate it?  laugh Most sexists I have met delight in their sexism; male and female alike!  Wink
Well I have nothing against women singers/vocalists, some of them can send a shiver down or turn me on. There is just something about male chanting which is simultaneously mysterious and otherworldy. The dynamic women bring to chanting is the whole ethereal quality. 
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