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Author Topic: Sacramental reception irregularities in the OO Tradition  (Read 5939 times) Average Rating: 0
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« Reply #45 on: June 15, 2010, 03:23:38 PM »

The issue, it seems to me, is not whether or not any EO have ever been received by baptism. Generally (because I do not want to exclude any instances that may exist) they have not. The issue is whether our Orthodox Faith is determined by the explicit teaching of the most important Fathers, or whether they are to be judged according to our own opinions.

Father,

I hate to have to question your intentions, but I am beginning to wonder if you are trying to make me look overly Protestant for the sake of discrediting my arguments. If so, I do not think such an analysis is fair, and I think it has no place in real debate.

I am not seeking to challenge the teachings of the Fathers. If anything I am seeking to question your interpretation of them. Or, if it is true that there is an irregularity in the approach of Saint Timothy and Saint Severus, I am seeking to challenge it in the light of the teachings of the other Fathers. However, I doubt that this latter situation is the case.

You yourself quoted an instance where the Fathers have proscribed that heretics be received by Chrismation. Why should it be any different for the Chalcedonians?

Here is also a quotation from the first rule of Saint Basil the Great:

"Nevertheless, it seemed best to the ancient authorities — those, I mean, who form the party*of Cyprian and our own Firmilian — to class them all under one head, including Cathari and Encratites and Aquarians and Apotactites; because the beginning, true enough, of the separation resulted through a schism, but those who seceded from the Church had not the grace of the Holy Spirit upon them; for the impartation thereof ceased with the interruption of the service. For although the ones who were the first to depart had been ordained by the Fathers and with the imposition of their hands they had obtained the gracious gift of the Spirit, yet after breaking away they became laymen, and had no authority either to baptize or to ordain anyone, nor could they impart the grace of the Spirit to others, after they themselves had forfeited it. Wherefore they bade that those baptized by them should be regarded as baptized by laymen, and that when they came to join the Church they should have to be repurified by the true baptism as prescribed by the Church. Inasmuch, however, as it has seemed best to some of those in the regions of Asia, for the sake of extraordinary concession (or "economy") to the many, to accept their baptism, let it be accepted. As for the case of the Encratites, however, it behooves us to look upon it as a crime, since as though to make themselves unacceptable to the Church they have attempted to anticipate the situation by advocating a baptism of their own; hence they themselves have run counter to their own custom. I deem, therefore, that since there is nothing definitely prescribed as regards them, it was fitting that we should set their baptism aside, and if any of them appears to have left them, he shall be baptized upon joining the Church. If, however, this is to become an obstacle in the general economy (of the Church), we must again adopt the custom and follow the Fathers who economically regulated the affairs of our Church. For I am inclined to suspect that we may by the severity of the proposition actually prevent men from being saved because of their being too indolent in regard to baptism. But if they keep our baptism, let this not deter us. For we are not obliged to return thanks to them, but to serve the Canons with exactitude. But let it be formally stated with every reason that those who join on top of their baptism must at all events be anointed by the faithful, that is to say, and thus be admitted to the Mysteries."

Basil makes it very clear that the Baptism of heretics and schismatics is not recognized as efficacious, and is completed by annointing/laying on of hands. Recognition of their Baptisms can only be a matter of "oconomia". Again, why it should be any different with the Chalcedonians, I don't know.

Also, that St Timothy and St Severus received the Chalcedonians by a confession of faith would not seem necessarily inconsistent with the process described in canon 7 of Constantinople II. For it does say that a confession of faith be received before the converts are anointed with chrism. Whether or not St Timothy or St Severus were advocated just a confession of faith or a confession of faith and then anointing appears to be unknown yet far.
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« Reply #46 on: June 15, 2010, 03:31:44 PM »

Perhaps you should cease your reliance upon your reasoning.

Also, what do you think distinguishes you from protestants who go looking in the scripture for proof texts?

Because the reasoning is based off of the teachings on the Fathers, this in particular interpreting "extra ecclesium nulla salus". This teaching has more Patristic basis than recognizing heretics as Saints.
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« Reply #47 on: June 15, 2010, 03:33:34 PM »

Forgive me if this has already been addressed in this thread or elsewhere, but how are EO's received into the Coptic Church at present?  Is it through Chrismation, or only confession?

Even though Armenian priests will commune EO's without any conversion process, I do know one former EO at another Armenian parish who wanted to make a formal conversion to the Armenian Church.  He was received through Chrismation.

Salpy, it is through Chrismation. I know this for certain as I not long ago discussed potentially converting with a Coptic Orthodox priest and he told me it would be by Chrismation. On top of this, when discussing inter-denominational marriages, the Diocese of the Southern United States says that EO can only marry OO if they are first Chrismated.
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« Reply #48 on: June 15, 2010, 03:50:56 PM »

Even though Armenian priests will commune EO's without any conversion process, I do know one former EO at another Armenian parish who wanted to make a formal conversion to the Armenian Church.  He was received through Chrismation.

Do you happen to know why he wanted to convert?

I don't think it was Chalcedon.  In real life conversions are usually not over issues like that.  Well, except for Deusveritasest.   Smiley
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« Reply #49 on: June 15, 2010, 03:51:43 PM »

You know that in your case it would have been by chrismation, but we don't know why the priest you approached advised that.

I know of Byzantines who were not received by chrismation. I have also already said that a form of anointing was introduced centuries after St Timothy and St Severus. And as I have said before, it is wrong to associate chrismation only with baptism. It has also always been used as a means of reconciliation, even in the case of those who have been Orthodox, have wandered away and come back again. The anointing that was used to reconcile those coming from the Byzantines was a form of reconciling not a form of baptism. It is a modern heresy that any old baptism can be made OK simply by chrismation. If a baptism is not a baptism it cannot be made a baptism. If an ordination is not an ordination it cannot be made an ordination.

All of the sacraments of the Byzantine Church are accepted by the Coptic Orthodox Church. This is why a Coptic Orthodox member of a mixed marriage can recieve all of the sacraments in the Greek Church. Therefore when a Byzantine transfer is anointed it cannot be because their baptism is considered defective.

I am not at all sure why you are so insistent of trying to show that the most Orthodox of Fathers are in error simply because they disagree with your opinion. Why can you not simply submit to the teaching of the Church. If you don't agree with it then don't keep struggling, just stay EO.

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« Reply #50 on: June 15, 2010, 04:29:55 PM »

You know that in your case it would have been by chrismation, but we don't know why the priest you approached advised that.

I know of Byzantines who were not received by chrismation. I have also already said that a form of anointing was introduced centuries after St Timothy and St Severus. And as I have said before, it is wrong to associate chrismation only with baptism. It has also always been used as a means of reconciliation, even in the case of those who have been Orthodox, have wandered away and come back again. The anointing that was used to reconcile those coming from the Byzantines was a form of reconciling not a form of baptism. It is a modern heresy that any old baptism can be made OK simply by chrismation. If a baptism is not a baptism it cannot be made a baptism. If an ordination is not an ordination it cannot be made an ordination.

All of the sacraments of the Byzantine Church are accepted by the Coptic Orthodox Church. This is why a Coptic Orthodox member of a mixed marriage can recieve all of the sacraments in the Greek Church. Therefore when a Byzantine transfer is anointed it cannot be because their baptism is considered defective.

I am not at all sure why you are so insistent of trying to show that the most Orthodox of Fathers are in error simply because they disagree with your opinion. Why can you not simply submit to the teaching of the Church. If you don't agree with it then don't keep struggling, just stay EO.

Father Peter

With respect Father Peter, I don't think that we are suitable for him.
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« Reply #51 on: June 15, 2010, 05:26:42 PM »

From the Coptic Orthodox tradition...

A text dated from 1854 prescribes a confession of faith and various prayers for a convert and then says that he is to have the Gospel and the Flask of Holy Chrism placed on his head, and then he is to be blessed with the Gospel and with the Flask of Holy Chrism which remains sealed, as confirmation of his promises - therefore in 1854 there is neither baptism nor chrismation. The Gospel and Chrism Flask are solemn witnesses to the promises made by the convert. The convert, in 1854, is not chrismated.

The Canons of Patriarch Christodulos (1047-1077AD) in Canon 26 says..

Whosoever has married a Melkite woman, it is not possible for them to be crowned with us, till after he has imposed on his wife the condition that she shall not communicate except with us, and that they shall not baptise their children except with us.

There is no mention of the Melkite woman being baptised or chrismated before marriage.

In the 13th century Book of Spiritual Medicine attributed to Bishop Michael of Atrib when speaking of the Byzantines says..

And about this, the Holy Spirit knows that their faith is straight or nearly straight, they separate themselves from us by their traditions, sayings that they are committed to either by ignorance; the fathers did not ordered us to baptise them. The reason of the baptism is to be performed in the Name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit; The Consubstantial Trinity and the eternity. It is also the faith in the Incarnation of the Son... Whosoever believes in this is an Orthodox faithful, nothing is less for his faith but he was separated in different customs, traditions, lack of knowledge of explanation, He opposed to some fasting days, or some statements or food. His faith is not lesser but he should be considered as a sinner faithful, whenever he will leave this sin separated him from us, he became one with us, he should not be baptised or curse him or curse his belief … according to what is ordered by the Canon 36 and 25 of the 318 fathers (of Nicaea).

This says that the faith of the Byzantines is 'nearly straight' and that they should be received as 'sinning faithful', that is, penitents, and that they should not be baptised because they are already 'Orthodox faithful'.

Another commentary of the same period..

The question number fourteen: “If a Melkite or Nestorian person wishes to enter to the Jacobite denomination, should he be baptised? And if he has any rank of the priesthood, should he be re-consecrated? And if he is married, should he be re-crowned or not?

The Answer: The Aconites, Melkites and Nestorians have in common ten fundamental issues of the faith among them the unique baptism. If someone, from the above two denominations, or their followers, wishes to leave his denomination to enter to the Jacobite denomination, his baptism will be accepted after renouncing the belief of the two substances, the two hypostases and the two will in the reality of Lord Christ – to Whom be the glory- and confess the oneness in all the abovementioned. The Jacobite priest will recite prayers established in the Coptic Church for each group for joining it (the Church). This all will take place in front of the holy altar  with the instruction of the priest.

As for the ranks of the priesthood, the (candidate) will be degraded one degree, and accepted and he will be consecrated by the hand of the Jacobite priest to the same rank that he left, in order to concelebrate with us. As for the other rank, it depends on his worthy. As for the marriage, it should be accepted after the renunciation to what was mentioned and the confession of what was listed.”


Again, the baptism is accepted on renouncing error and confessing the Orthodox Faith. There is no mention of chrismation, and certainly no baptism. These three groups have ten fundamentals of faith in common with the Orthodox. All that is required is a right confession and the prayers of reconciliation.

This seems to me to clearly show the practice of the Orthodox Church in Egypt from the 5th to the 19th century. There is no evidence that the official position has ever been to baptise converts from the Byzantine Church, nor even to chrismate until our own times. Even with the modern chrismation it is not clear to me that this has any connection with baptism. Dr Youhanna Youssef, from whose excellent paper on the reception of converts I have taken these extracts, has shown that the developing rite has some connection to the rite for praying for healing for the sick - which of course also includes an anointing that has nothing to do with regularising a baptism.

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« Reply #52 on: June 15, 2010, 07:13:58 PM »


I am not at all sure why you are so insistent of trying to show that the most Orthodox of Fathers are in error simply because they disagree with your opinion. Why can you not simply submit to the teaching of the Church. If you don't agree with it then don't keep struggling, just stay EO.

Father Peter

He's got pretty much the same problem with our Fathers.
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« Reply #53 on: June 16, 2010, 01:56:08 PM »

I don't see how his position is dramatically different from those OO who criticize St. Cyril for accepting the Formula of Reunion.
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« Reply #54 on: June 16, 2010, 02:16:06 PM »

I don't see how his position is dramatically different from those OO who criticize St. Cyril for accepting the Formula of Reunion.

Those who think the Formula of Reunion was an unwise move are criticizing one particular act of one particular saint.  We do that.  We don't hold to the belief that our saints are infallible.

What's going on with Chris here is that he is (if I understand correctly) criticizing a tradition (not re-baptizing EO's) which has been upheld by a number of Church Fathers, and the Church itself, over the centuries.
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« Reply #55 on: June 16, 2010, 03:40:44 PM »

It is a condition common to converts. Its correction requires doing just as Fr. Peter said, and submitting one's own will, understanding, and opinions to the teaching of the Church and her tradition. We ourselves are no standard of perfection, rather it is the other way around. The Church tells us that it is we who are wrong, we who need to change.

It seems to me that certain theological issues and Christological controversies can be a distraction from real spiritual work. Obsession with them masks passions like pride and egoism, covering them under a seemingly pious mantle of confessional purity and dogmatic righteousness. It is a dangerous spiritual situation, whether one is leaving a particular Church or coming to faith in the first place. A convert, who has not grown up under spiritual authority, must submit himself to it. This requires a recognition that his is not himself an authority--quite a struggle, especially for modern man.
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« Reply #56 on: June 16, 2010, 04:32:04 PM »

Father, I will need to take some time to prepare before making my next response.
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« Reply #57 on: June 16, 2010, 04:49:31 PM »


Another commentary of the same period..

The question number fourteen: “If a Melkite or Nestorian person wishes to enter to the Jacobite denomination, should he be baptised? And if he has any rank of the priesthood, should he be re-consecrated? And if he is married, should he be re-crowned or not?

The Answer: The Aconites, Melkites and Nestorians have in common ten fundamental issues of the faith among them the unique baptism. If someone, from the above two denominations, or their followers, wishes to leave his denomination to enter to the Jacobite denomination, his baptism will be accepted after renouncing the belief of the two substances, the two hypostases and the two will in the reality of Lord Christ – to Whom be the glory- and confess the oneness in all the abovementioned. The Jacobite priest will recite prayers established in the Coptic Church for each group for joining it (the Church). This all will take place in front of the holy altar  with the instruction of the priest.

As for the ranks of the priesthood, the (candidate) will be degraded one degree, and accepted and he will be consecrated by the hand of the Jacobite priest to the same rank that he left, in order to concelebrate with us. As for the other rank, it depends on his worthy. As for the marriage, it should be accepted after the renunciation to what was mentioned and the confession of what was listed.”


Fr. Peter- would you mind naming this source and also who translated it? Some questions about it:

Who were the Aconites?

Is "denominations" really the right translation of the word being used to describe the Jacobites along with the "Melkites" and Nestorians?

It says Eastern Orthodox baptism is accepted after renouncing belief not only in two hypostases (which of course we never professed) but two substances and two wills. Are these latter two conditions still in place?
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« Reply #58 on: June 16, 2010, 05:13:06 PM »

It's a rough English translation from an Arabic source. It was translated by Dr Youhanna Youssef.

I could find out what the Arabic word translated as denomination is. It clearly is not 'denomination' which is a latin word.

Our Orthodox understanding of the one will and one nature is not always understood by the Byzantines. It does not mean what you may think it to mean. I'd not want this thread to go off into a discussion of will. Indeed I think we have just finished that topic again not long ago.

As a priest I would want to understand what any Byzantine convert meant by two natures and two wills. It is the meaning that matters. Let me perhaps say, as a brief response, that what would be rejected would be a view of the natures and wills of Christ which introduced division into the Word incarnate. That would still be necessary for membership of the Orthodox Church. This does not mean that I would be shocked by your use of the phrases 'two wills' and 'two natures'. Nor even that I would consider them always and entirely heretical. I would certainly consider them less sound and less useful. Which is why I would not think that the Church would simply deal at the lexical level and reject words and phrases without seeking to understand what is meant by a particular person requesting membership of the Church.

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« Reply #59 on: June 17, 2010, 08:56:16 PM »

Huh? I thought that Serbians, Athonites and at least part of the ROCOR are still receiving all converts by baptism regardless of their background.

Are you sure that's also the case for OO? I know the Synod in Resistance bishop here has received OO by confession of faith alone, and that group tends to baptise all other converts.
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« Reply #60 on: July 12, 2010, 07:11:43 PM »

A related question: Has there ever been the practice of any OO church to receive Chalcedonians by baptism?

The agreement between the Coptic and Rum patriarchates of Alexandria on recognizing each other's baptisms would seem to imply that the Copts did not recognize Chalcedonian baptisms beforehand, especially seeing as how, if I remember correctly, they still don't recognize the baptisms of any other group.
No, the Copts recognized Ruumii baptisms. The opposite has not always been the case, however.
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« Reply #61 on: July 19, 2010, 03:54:48 PM »

In the history of the Armenian Church we find examples of rebaptizing of Chalcedonic Armenians. I can now recall two catholicoses of the 10th century, Anania and Khachik, who ordered to rebaptize the Chalcedonic Armenians before accepting them in our Church.

In both sides, EO and OO, at different times there were different practices of accepting each other. So "irregularities" occurred in both sides. Just as today. In one place the EO rebaptize the Armenians, in another place they only chrismate, while in some third place none of this is done, the Armenians are accepted through confession only.

For example, according to the decision of the Holy Synod of the Russian Orthodox Church from 1840.II.20 neither Nestorians, nor miaphysites are rebaptized or even chrismated when being accepted into the Russian Church. It is enough for them to renounce their old belief and accept the new faith. This is done according to the 95th rule of Trullo.
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« Reply #62 on: July 19, 2010, 06:34:24 PM »

 Also, St. Daniel the Stylite is a saint in the Armenian Church and he was very Chalcedonian, and very anti-OO.  I guess his asceticism was admired by the Armenians and they were able to overlook his Christological position.

I want to give a correction here.  I got this information from an Armenian calendar book that said the St. Daniel we venerate in early December is Daniel the Stylite.  This morning I was able to ask someone about this, and I was told that this is incorrect and that the St. Daniel we venerate in early December is one of the Desert Fathers.

That's a bit of a relief.  I mean it's nice having an open minded Church, but this was a little too open minded.   Grin
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« Reply #63 on: November 05, 2011, 07:44:54 PM »

I would like to resurrect this thread because I am curious of something...

Father, if the the Byzanto-Melkites (and even Nestorians, for that matter) were received into our/the Church only via confessing Orthodoxy and renouncing their previous beliefs, why is it modern practice in OOxy to re-chrismate the Melkites?

Also, how did our Coptic Church feel about the Syriacs receiving the Nestorians via confession?

Further, who are the "Aconites"?

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« Reply #64 on: November 05, 2011, 08:34:34 PM »

It is a modern heresy that any old baptism can be made OK simply by chrismation. If a baptism is not a baptism it cannot be made a baptism. If an ordination is not an ordination it cannot be made an ordination.

Father, bless,

I'm not sure what the OO do with Roman Catholics, but it's common in EO jurisdictions of Greek patrimony to Chrismate them. And yet a significant amount of the Orthodox (both Oriental and Eastern) seem pretty adamant about them not having sacramental grace. Every official explanation I've seen of this says that their RC Baptism is retroactively graced by the Chrismation. Are you sure that this is a heretical sacramentology? If so, that means that the EO Church has some majorly defective praxis in this area.
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« Reply #65 on: November 05, 2011, 08:36:59 PM »

^Do you two think that the economia "escape-hatch" applies in this case in point?
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« Reply #66 on: November 05, 2011, 08:43:18 PM »

Who are you asking?
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« Reply #67 on: November 05, 2011, 08:50:36 PM »

Who are you asking?
^Do you two think that the economia "escape-hatch" applies in this case in point?
Both of you.
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« Reply #68 on: November 05, 2011, 08:56:13 PM »

Who are you asking?
^Do you two think that the economia "escape-hatch" applies in this case in point?
Both of you.

 Sad

Father Peter said that economy cannot be applied in this case and it's "heretical" to claim that it can be. I'm waiting for him to reply and elucidate, but right now I have to disagree as pretty much everything I've seen on the topic disagrees with him (if I'm understanding him correctly).
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« Reply #69 on: November 06, 2011, 01:24:39 PM »

Any chrismation of Eastern Orthodox is non-canonical and is expressly forbidden by the Fathers.

Such anointings have only taken place very recently - in the last decades as far as I can see. Certainly in the 19th century there was still no anointing of those joining the Church from the EO. Even the manifest ecclesiology of the Synod at present shows that this is an error since it is accepted that some (and therefore all) EO may receive all the sacraments in the Coptic Orthodox Church, and that some (and therefore all) Coptic Orthodox may receive all the sacraments in the EO Church. How can Coptic Orthodox be allowed to receive the sacraments in the EO communion by economy? It is not possible if the EO lack sacramental grace. It is clear that the EO are being considered as being within the bounds of the Church even while there is still a division. This has always been the view of the Church, and is illustrated by all the instances of partial and termporary reunion which have taken place in the history of the Church.

This is clearly not a matter of economy. Even during the fiercest persecution of the Church by the Empire it was considered deeply wrong to baptise, chrismate or ordain anyone coming from the EO. At the same time our Fathers are also quite happy to say that the ordinations of other schismatic and heretical groups are not to be accepted at all. Therefore the Fathers were able to distinguish between those they wished to consider as completely outside the Church, and those somehow connected to the Church but in error.
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« Reply #70 on: November 06, 2011, 01:52:02 PM »

^That's interesting. I wonder why we have started to chrismate EOs, then. Huh Well, what are your thoughts on the Nestorians being received into the Jacobite Church only through renouncing a two-hypostasis Christology? Does this imply we believed the Nestorian baptism was grace-filled? Also, how did the Coptic Church feel about her sister Syrian Church receiving Nestorians through confession?

EDIT: Also Father, isn't the Coptic-Roman Orthodox intercommunion only applicable in Egypt? I know my Diocese does not commune Chalcedonians and I do not think my Priest would approve of me communing with the EO until we fully reunite, though he does believe they are Orthodox in faith.

It is also interesting to see that we have Saints and Holy Fathers like Bp. Michael of Atrib who was open to the idea that the Byzantine faith was 'straight'/Orthodox or 'nearly straight' long before the joint commissions.

Thank you again.
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« Reply #71 on: November 06, 2011, 02:15:35 PM »

Severian, it can't be theologically restricted to Egypt though.

If there is lay intercommunion in Egypt then there is lay intercommunion full stop. It may not be practiced commonly elsewhere for a variety of reasons but theologically there can be no reason for it not to be.

Personally, I know of plenty of Coptic priests who commune EO, and plenty of Copts who have communed among the EO.
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« Reply #72 on: November 06, 2011, 02:17:40 PM »

Severian, if you study our history you will see that the EO have ALWAYS been received as Orthodox when they have rejected those errors which caused division in the first place.
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« Reply #73 on: November 06, 2011, 02:18:42 PM »

Severian, it can't be theologically restricted to Egypt though.
That's what I was thinking too...

What about the Jacobite Syrian Orthodox receiving Nestorians simply after renouncing a belief in two hypostases? What are your thoughts on that?
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« Reply #74 on: November 06, 2011, 02:19:07 PM »

Severian, if you study our history you will see that the EO have ALWAYS been received as Orthodox when they have rejected those errors which caused division in the first place.
I see what you mean, and I am aware our Saints did receive them into our Church after renouncing their previous beliefs. I was simply making a general remark.
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« Reply #75 on: November 06, 2011, 02:50:39 PM »

Lol!

I just want it to be very clear that the modern 'hard-line' view which some Copts exhibit is a modern novelty.

To be strict about Christology has not required an exclusive attitude towards the Chalcedonians on the part of our Fathers, and it seems to me that it is problematic to begin chrismating EO now, after so much useful dialogue, when such anointings were anathema in the past even during periods of fierce persecution.

THIS BELOW IS NOT ADDRESSED AT YOU AT ALL!!!!!

To be radically Orthodox requires a rootedness in the teaching and example of the Fathers, not the narrow application of a subset of canons in accordance with personal opinion. I want to keep asking 'What does St Severus say and do?'.

The Fathers who suffered personal loss, exile and even martyrdom did not teach us to reject the baptism, chrismation and even ordination and consecration of those in the Chalcedonian communion. I truly hesitate to know what to think when considering the anointing of any person coming from the Chalcedonians, even though I know the current practice, because St Severus considers it 'an abominable tenet of a self-created observance, I mean that of the illegal re-anointing'.

Since we already accept those in Egypt without such anointing it is inconsistent at the least to demand it elsewhere. Indeed we can imagine a scenario where an EO has been communing for years at a Coptic Church, without any anointing, and then both this one and the Coptic priest emigrate to some island and the EO must now be anointed. It is not theologically consistent and therefore it is not clear to me what the ecclesiological intention of such instructions is? This is a very recent situation. I am sure that it will continue to be discussed and a more clearly patristic resolution will be established in due course.
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« Reply #76 on: November 06, 2011, 03:00:44 PM »

^Yes, it does seem inconsistent and it may be discontinued soon. But, I am quite surprised the Syriac Orthodox received Nestorians simply after renouncing a belief in a duality of hypostases, I would have thought the Coptic Church would have thrown a fit. Wink
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« Reply #77 on: November 06, 2011, 03:05:34 PM »

In regard to the reunion of Nestorians with the Syrian Church (I guess you mean the reconciliation of the Indian Church with the Syrian and the provision of bishops?) I would say that in the terms of St Severus the Chalcedonians were also essentially 'Nestorian', and that this was certainly the view at the earlier period of St Timothy who introduced the universal process for receiving Chalcedonians.

The fact that (from our point of view) the Chalcedonian communion excluded certain positions in the 6th century, and became clearly NOT 'Nestorian' or 'semi-Nestorian' is not the basis for our communion having received Chalcedonians by confession of Faith since the process was created and adopted at a time before the 6th century developments. Therefore the historic reconciliation of the 'Nestorians' by the Syrian Orthodox is entirely within the view of this historic and patristic process of reconciliation.
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« Reply #78 on: November 06, 2011, 03:15:11 PM »

^Thank you again, Fr. Peter. Smiley
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« Reply #79 on: November 06, 2011, 03:29:48 PM »

In the Middle Ages the Coptic Orthodox Church had some relations with Rome that were generally positive. Francis of Assisi was in Egypt, and I am trying to find out if there are any Egyptian records of his visit, and the response to him.

There were various Catholic visitors to Egypt who were received fairly warmly. And there were Coptic visitors to Rome, and Coptic participants in the Roman reunion councils. The Coptic Orthodox Church appears to have been in a vague union with the Roman Church for some time, and I am trying to see to what extent this included inter-communion.

It seems to me that the reconciliation failed, as it did elsewhere, because the Romans were looking for a fairly dominating response, and the adoption of Roman practices and teachings, while the Coptic Orthodox were willing to consider some sort of relationship on the basis of not changing their Faith one iota.

It does appear that in this period of rapprochment there was no expectation on the part of the Copts that the Roman Catholics would be baptised, chrismated or ordained.

Of course there were other partial and temporary reconciliations with the Eastern Orthodox and none of those included baptisms, chrismations or ordinations. I am working on an extended paper which will consider the OO attitude and practice throughout history to the reception of Chalcedonians and then meaning of this history for present efforts at reconciliation.
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« Reply #80 on: November 06, 2011, 03:50:32 PM »

In the Middle Ages the Coptic Orthodox Church had some relations with Rome that were generally positive. Francis of Assisi was in Egypt, and I am trying to find out if there are any Egyptian records of his visit, and the response to him.

There were various Catholic visitors to Egypt who were received fairly warmly. And there were Coptic visitors to Rome, and Coptic participants in the Roman reunion councils. The Coptic Orthodox Church appears to have been in a vague union with the Roman Church for some time, and I am trying to see to what extent this included inter-communion.

It seems to me that the reconciliation failed, as it did elsewhere, because the Romans were looking for a fairly dominating response, and the adoption of Roman practices and teachings, while the Coptic Orthodox were willing to consider some sort of relationship on the basis of not changing their Faith one iota.

It does appear that in this period of rapprochment there was no expectation on the part of the Copts that the Roman Catholics would be baptised, chrismated or ordained.

Of course there were other partial and temporary reconciliations with the Eastern Orthodox and none of those included baptisms, chrismations or ordinations. I am working on an extended paper which will consider the OO attitude and practice throughout history to the reception of Chalcedonians and then meaning of this history for present efforts at reconciliation.

Actually, I read somewhere in Theodore Hall Patrick's book about the Coptic Church that one of the patriarchs contemplated uniting with Rome and accepting its dogmas, including purgatory, Fioloque, and Rome's primacy, but was this union was rejected because Rome wanted to Latinize Copts, and the Coptic synod considered such ideas as heresy and rebuked the patriarch for such considerations.  It seems it was during a time of desperation I believe when Coptic hierarchies were suffering from the Jizya laws of the Muslims.
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