I nearly ended myself when I read the 2 posts made there , whilst eating my breakfast .
All I know is that I'm not learned enough to be able to sound like an encyclopedia robot.
oh well - I'm devastated
Wow! It's so great to hear from you! Thank you for attending Father Serge's funeral, he will be missed. You attending the funeral was a great act of Christian charity, being there in spirit for all of us who couldn't be there in person, you represented us by going. I imagine the journey was not an easy undertaking from Scotland to Ireland, boat trip, train or bus and back. It is good to hear from you, please post here more often.
Irish Melkite, you were a great mod over there. I always strove to tell the truth and in the end I got banned for something trivial. I lasted longer than most. Luckily we aren't so heavy handed here. As a matter of fact the Greek Catholic posters that frequent here often add good conversation. They gently stick up for their beliefs and for that respect is given. At other forums, not oc.net, they push this orthodox in union with rome attitude and a host of other ill-favoured ideals. As a former Greek Catholic I can personally tell you that in the real world Greek Catholics go to church, pray and go home. The major consensus is not like what you would find in the EC section of another forum.
For most Greek Catholics going to church is going to church. They know who they are, our families fought hard when some what for Orthodoxy. The actual truth on the ground and not on the internet is that often Greek Catholics (Ruthenians for the sake of typing are Greek CAtholics too, not Byzantine Catholics) feel like second class citizens to the Latin Rite Catholics.
Most of the lunatics are Roman Catholics who hate the Roman Catholic liturgy but like the Pope but like the Byzantine liturgies.
They are the ones that over-justify their existence. They are the ones that try to creep in pre-vatican 2 practices into the Greek CAtholic liturgies and services. They are the ones on the internet making normal Greek Catholic church going folk look crazy. They didn't come from families who in former times were forced by law to be Greek Catholic, it isn't part of their family history. I have never met a cradle Greek Catholic that boasts that they are the true model of unity and being under the pope ended the schism. For the most part the Greek Catholics online that I deal with are Roman Catholics with a complex. The exceptions are Anhela, Neil, Deacon Lance, even Elijahmaria. They know what they believe, they stick up for it and they don't get all offensive against the Orthodox. They know that if you live outside of the NE,Mid Atlantic and say Chicago that most Orthodox have never met a Greek Catholic and understand that these Orthodox don't know about them and say things that aren't nice because they don't understand, like Jesus said on the coross, "Father forgive them for they do not know"
Truth be told the average Greek Catholic parish has many pros that an Orthodox parish doesn't have. My parish and the Greek Catholic parish up the road have almost the same services. Antiphons are different. The former priest taught Orthodoxy straight up. Being under the pope was an afterthought. The people have been Greek Catholic for 400 years. their connection to rome is merely praying for the pope in litanies. This is how it is, and they have latinizations, sure. But they were Orthodox at one point and forced into Rome. They never concerned themselves with the Vatican too much. They don't have parish councils that override the priest. They don't have converts that shun their ethnic traditions, the very traditions that connect home life with the Faith ( ok, to a point they have Roman Catholics that get like this a bit).
And I'm not going to knock them, yes they are in union with the pope. It isn't their fault. Most people don't even think about it, they just go to church. And frankly they look at the Orthodox church that broke away from their church and think, man, I don't want to go through that parish council in fighting. The priests are paid a decent salary and receive medical insurance. You can't say that about every Orthodox parish and priest.
Now I would never go back to being Greek Catholic. I am under the Patriarch of Constantinople. I believe Orthodoxy is the fullness of the faith. It is worth it and everything I go through to be Orthodox. But I will never condemn someone for being Greek Catholic or staying Greek Catholic.
Remember where I live, people will go back and forth between Greek CAtholicism and Orthodoxy. Often marriages are interfaith and if the greek catholic priest makes them mad they'll go to the orthodox church until they decide to park it at the greek catholic church. Is that right? No. Am I God and the judge of mankind? No. Like I said, the former Greek Catholic priest at my family's "Greek Catholic parish which was my parish until I joined my family's Orthodox Church was the kindest man ever. He was as Orthodox as anyone, even though he was under the pope. I miss him, he taught the faith, he cared, he was there for his people, he suffered greatly with his diabetes and never complained. He was truly the father of his flock.
This stuff never gets talked about online. It always gets into some us versus them fight. I am not advocating inter-communion but I am saying that we have learned to love one another and work together. And Christ said, love one another and forgive, work together, strive for peace and goodwill towards mankind.