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Author Topic: Would this make sense ecclesiologically?  (Read 4693 times) Average Rating: 5
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« Reply #90 on: December 22, 2011, 08:02:58 PM »

Father, I don't think that either jah777 or Shanghaiski believe that Mrs. McGillicuddy is necessarily damned.



Schismatics are deprived of the hope of salvation not only because their baptism is invalid...


http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,28592.msg451038.html#msg451038

I believe that jah was using "salvation" in the same sense that St. Cyprian used it when he said that extra ecclesiam nulla salus. He can speak for himself, though.
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« Reply #91 on: December 22, 2011, 08:06:18 PM »

Father, I don't think that either jah777 or Shanghaiski believe that Mrs. McGillicuddy is necessarily damned.



Schismatics are deprived of the hope of salvation not only because their baptism is invalid...


http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,28592.msg451038.html#msg451038

I believe that jah was using "salvation" in the same sense that St. Cyprian used it when he said that extra ecclesiam nulla salus. He can speak for himself, though.

Well, I did comment on it:

"Jah , this is so heavy-handed and unnuanced that it becomes a vehicle of falsehood in the minds of those who hear it."

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« Reply #92 on: December 22, 2011, 08:42:34 PM »

This issue was discussed some time ago at another forum.  Here is a link to the information posted there:

Hilarion of Volokolamsk-"Schismatic" Sacraments Not Grace-Giving
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« Reply #93 on: December 22, 2011, 09:53:56 PM »

This issue was discussed some time ago at another forum.  Here is a link to the information posted there:

Hilarion of Volokolamsk-"Schismatic" Sacraments Not Grace-Giving

Metropolitan Hilarion is speaking of the lack of grace in the Mysteries of the Ukrainian Patriarchate which constitutes a recent schism from the Church of Russia.  The Russian Synod of bishops made a decision to defrock the "Patriarch" and return him to the state of a layman.   This was a legitimate use of their powers of binding and loosing.  Previously he had been a member of the Russian Synod.   Naturally they declared all his Mysteries to be graceless and ineffectual.

But when it comes to Roman Catholics Metropolitan Hilarion speaks differently:

“If a Roman Catholic priest converts to Orthodoxy, we receive him as a priest,
and we do not re-ordain him. And that means that, de facto, we recognize the
Mysteries of the Roman Catholic Church."

He made the same statement about Roman Catholic Sacraments, and even more emphatically, to the German paper "Der Spiegel."  In fact it was the reaction in some quarters to the Der Spiegel statement which caused the ROCA Mitred Archpriest Alexander Lebedeff to come to the Metropolitan's defence in the two messages I have referenced.
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« Reply #94 on: December 22, 2011, 09:58:20 PM »

/\  Additionally...


“To all intent and purposes, mutual recognition of each others Mysteries already exists between us. We do not have communion in the Mysteries, but we do recognize each others Mysteries”, declared Archbishop Hilarion (Alfeev) on the air during a broadcast of the program “The Church and the World” on the television channel “Russia”, on October 17th 2009.

(video and text, http://vera.vesti.ru/doc.html?id=237432).
 
Responding to the question of whether Roman Catholics can receive Communion from the Orthodox, or Orthodox Christians from the Roman Catholics, Archbishop Hilarion said that such giving of Communion should not take place, inasmuch as “eucharistic communion has been broken” between the Orthodox and Roman Catholics. But, at the same time, he made clear that in some cases such Communion is possible: “Exceptional cases occur, when, for example, a Roman Catholic is dying in some town where there is no Roman Catholic priest at all in the vicinity. So he asks an Orthodox priest to come. Then in such a case, I think, the Orthodox priest should go and give Communion to that person.”
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« Reply #95 on: December 22, 2011, 10:05:10 PM »

Regarding the "validity" of Sacraments extra ecclesiam

http://www.orthodoxresearchinstitute.org/articles/liturgics/reception_of_converts.htm

"...the Eparchial Synod of Bishops of the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America,
with the concurrence of the Holy and Sacred Synod of the Ecumenical Patriarchate
of Constantinople, has determined to recognize by extreme Oikonomia [sic] the heterodox
Baptisms normatively performed according to the prescribed form in the following
denominations and churches:....


(a.) Anglican Catholic
(b.) Anglican Communion (Church of England, Episcopal, etc.)

[snip]

(l.) Roman Catholic...."

People often look at me sideways as if I have lapsed into madness and fundamentalism when I say the Orthodox do not recognise non-Orthodox Baptisms per se, not even those of the Roman Catholic Church, but there it is in black and white from the Greeks in the US.
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« Reply #96 on: December 23, 2011, 01:39:29 AM »


Schismatics are deprived of the hope of salvation not only because their baptism is invalid...

Jah , this is so heavy-handed and unnuanced that it becomes a vehicle of falsehood in the minds of those who hear it.

Father, the words you are attributing to me above I did not say.  These words came from St. Hilarion (Troitsky) in his article “Christianity or the Church”.  It is a very good article, in my opinion, and quite comprehensive.  In general, if you quote a post of mine where I quote someone else, please indicate the origin of the quote in order to avoid confusion.  Here is St. Hilarion’s article in full:

http://www.pravoslavie.ru/english/christchurchilarion.htm


Here are the much wiser words of Metropolitan Philaret, reposed in 1985, the holy First Hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad:


“The Holy Orthodox Church is the repository of the divinely revealed Truth in all its fullness and fidelity to apostolic Tradition. Hence, he who leaves the Church, who intentionally and consciously falls away from it, joins the ranks of its opponents and becomes a renegade as regards apostolic Tradition. The Church dreadfully anathematized such renegades, in accordance with the words of the Saviour Himself (Matt. 18:17) and of the Apostle Paul (Gal. 1:8-9), threatening them with eternal damnation and calling them to return to the Orthodox fold.

“It is self evident, however, that sincere Christians who are Roman Catholics, or Lutherans, or members, of other non-Orthodox confessions, cannot be termed renegades or heretics—i.e. those who knowingly pervert the truth... They have been born and raised and are living according to the creed which they have inherited, just as do the majority of you who are Orthodox; in their lives there has not been a moment of personal and conscious renunciation of Orthodoxy. The Lord, "Who will have all men to be saved" (I Tim. 2:4) and "Who enlightens every man born into the world" (Jn. 1.43), undoubtedly is leading them also towards salvation In His own way."

I don’t disagree with Metropolitan Philaret regarding the sincere heterodox, that the Lord “undoubtedly is leading them also towards salvation in His own way,” but this is not the same as saying that the heterodox can be saved outside of the Church.  The Lord desires the salvation of all, but how can we say that the Lord is not working to bring the heterodox into the Orthodox Church?  The fact that not all enter the Orthodox Church does prove that the Lord is not working in all to bring all into the Orthodox Church.  But who am I to suggest that the Lord intends to save the heterodox in their heterodoxy?  On what basis can I make such a claim?  If the Orthodox Church is the Ark of Salvation wherein we know for sure that the grace of God abides and works through its holy mysteries, why would we speculate that maybe God will save some outside of the Church when God has not revealed that this is possible?  In all of the lives of the saints and patristic writings, do you know of any instances where God has revealed that a heterodox person has been saved in being faithful to their heterodoxy? (And I’m not speaking of instances where pagans or heterodox were prayed out of hell by an Orthodox saint)

On the other hand I have provided sources from the Russian Orthodox Church, synodal decrees which have been in force for 400 years.  I have also provided an important citation from the First Hierarch of my Church (which is also Jah's.)
 

As I have said before, the sources you have provided seem to only suggest that the Russian Orthodox Church historically has not received non-Orthodox Christians by baptism, that the ROC historically has acknowledged that Roman Catholics and Non-Chalcedonians have the form of Apostolic Succession, and that the ROC has acknowledged valid sacramental *forms* outside of the Orthodox Church.  Please correct me if I’m wrong, but I do not recall any of these quotes indicating that there is sacramental grace outside of the Orthodox Church.

Father, I don't think that either jah777 or Shanghaiski believe that Mrs. McGillicuddy is necessarily damned.


Schismatics are deprived of the hope of salvation not only because their baptism is invalid...

Again, these were not my words but the words of St. Hilarion (Troitsky).  In any case, to say that “there is no salvation outside of the Church” is not at all the same as saying that “all who repose in heterodoxy are damned.”  To affirm the first part is to affirm what God has revealed in the writings of the saints and Fathers.  It seems to me that we are obligated to remain faithful to what God has revealed and to encourage all who seek salvation to enter the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church, which is the Orthodox Church.  Whether a person reposes outside of the Orthodox Church or inside the Orthodox Church, we leave their eternal fate to the judgment of God, usually not knowing where or how they will experience eternity (unless the person was a great saint perhaps).  If a person reposes in heterodoxy, we leave that person’s eternal fate to the judgment of God knowing that God may save a person in a way that he has not seen fit to reveal to mankind.

Now, regarding your claim that the historical position of the Russian Orthodox Church is that sacramental grace can be found in heterodox sacraments, I have yet to see any quotes which affirm this.  If you have some quotes that clearly indicate this, and do not simply affirm Apostolic Succession or the “validity” of sacramental forms, please do share.  I attempted to get some such quotes from Fr. Alexander Lebedeff some time ago and he did send me a quote from Bishop Nikodim (Milash), the 19th century Serbian canonist, which clearly states his belief that all baptisms performed by schismatics and heretics are salvific if they are performed in the name of the Holy Trinity.  Bishop Nikodim, however, has not been glorified as a saint and I’m not sure to what extent others have adopted his views.

Furthermore, if the Russian Orthodox Church historically believed that sacramental grace exists outside of the Orthodox Church, then someone failed to inform St. Hilarion (Troitsky), St. Ignatius (Brianchaninov), the Optina Elders, and Met Anthony (Khrapovitsky) just to name a few.  In a Jan-Feb of 1991 edition of the publication “Orthodox Life”, the Jordanville Monastery (of which Metropolitan Laurus was then abbot) published an article by St. Ignatius (Brianchaninov) entitled “Concerning the Impossibility of Salvation for the Heterodox and Heretics.”  Both Optina and Valaam monasteries in Russia, if I’m not mistaken, were known to baptize Roman Catholics and all other converts.  Met Anthony (Khrapovitsky) clearly stated that sacraments outside of the Orthodox Church are devoid of grace, and he received the highest number of votes of any other candidate for the position of Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia prior to St. Tikhon’s name being chosen by lot.  I think Met Anthony (Khrapovitsky), first First Hierarch of ROCOR, had some understanding of the position of the Russian Orthodox Church on the subject of sacramental grace outside of the Orthodox Church.  His very thorough paper on the subject can be read here:

http://orthodoxinfo.com/ecumenism/khrap_econ.aspx

If we want to go back to very early Slavic Orthodoxy, we have the following words from St. Theodosius of the Kiev Caves (11th century), founder of the Kiev Pechersk Lavra:
Quote
”As for those who live in another faith: the Catholic, or the Muslim, or the Armenian - they shall not see eternal life."

Yes, this should cause us to weep and mourn and beg God to lead the heterodox to Orthodoxy.  But, we cannot not lose sight of the fact that though we are blessed to be members of the Orthodox Church, we too will have to give an account before God, and we too (and I am thinking here of myself!) stand liable to condemnation.  How can I lament the possibility of others being lost eternally when my own soul stands in jeopardy?  If I cannot save my own soul, if I cannot become a saint, how can I expect those around me to be saved and live holy and blameless lives before God in his One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church?  If the heterodox around me do not want to become Orthodox, I will surely be held accountable before God for failing to attract them to the Church through a holy and Christ-like life.
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« Reply #97 on: December 23, 2011, 02:22:58 AM »


Schismatics are deprived of the hope of salvation not only because their baptism is invalid...

Jah , this is so heavy-handed and unnuanced that it becomes a vehicle of falsehood in the minds of those who hear it.

Father, the words you are attributing to me above I did not say.

I am aware of that and that is why I said in message 79 not that you had written this but that you were promoting this idea, as indeed you were by your decision to quote those specific words from Saint Hilarion's monograph which is otherwise admirable and with which I have been very familiar since the 1970s.

The rest of your message seems to be an attempt to hold to "Schismatics are deprived of the hope of salvation not only because their baptism is invalid.." but the temerity to state this baldly is lacking and so words are piled upon words, hiding the barbarity of the claim in verbosity.  I hope I am wrong?

For example did you really intend to say::

Quote
The fact that not all enter the Orthodox Church does prove that the Lord is not working in all to bring all into the Orthodox Church.

What implications do you want the reader to understand in that statement?

Have you studied theology under any capable mentor?  Please do not answer if the question is uncomfortable.



Quote
 These words came from St. Hilarion (Troitsky) in his article “Christianity or the Church”.  It is a very good article, in my opinion, and quite comprehensive.  In general, if you quote a post of mine where I quote someone else, please indicate the origin of the quote in order to avoid confusion.  Here is St. Hilarion’s article in full:

http://www.pravoslavie.ru/english/christchurchilarion.htm


Here are the much wiser words of Metropolitan Philaret, reposed in 1985, the holy First Hierarch of the Russian Orthodox Church Abroad:


“The Holy Orthodox Church is the repository of the divinely revealed Truth in all its fullness and fidelity to apostolic Tradition. Hence, he who leaves the Church, who intentionally and consciously falls away from it, joins the ranks of its opponents and becomes a renegade as regards apostolic Tradition. The Church dreadfully anathematized such renegades, in accordance with the words of the Saviour Himself (Matt. 18:17) and of the Apostle Paul (Gal. 1:8-9), threatening them with eternal damnation and calling them to return to the Orthodox fold.

“It is self evident, however, that sincere Christians who are Roman Catholics, or Lutherans, or members, of other non-Orthodox confessions, cannot be termed renegades or heretics—i.e. those who knowingly pervert the truth... They have been born and raised and are living according to the creed which they have inherited, just as do the majority of you who are Orthodox; in their lives there has not been a moment of personal and conscious renunciation of Orthodoxy. The Lord, "Who will have all men to be saved" (I Tim. 2:4) and "Who enlightens every man born into the world" (Jn. 1.43), undoubtedly is leading them also towards salvation In His own way."

I don’t disagree with Metropolitan Philaret regarding the sincere heterodox, that the Lord “undoubtedly is leading them also towards salvation in His own way,” but this is not the same as saying that the heterodox can be saved outside of the Church.  The Lord desires the salvation of all, but how can we say that the Lord is not working to bring the heterodox into the Orthodox Church?  The fact that not all enter the Orthodox Church does prove that the Lord is not working in all to bring all into the Orthodox Church.  But who am I to suggest that the Lord intends to save the heterodox in their heterodoxy?  On what basis can I make such a claim?  If the Orthodox Church is the Ark of Salvation wherein we know for sure that the grace of God abides and works through its holy mysteries, why would we speculate that maybe God will save some outside of the Church when God has not revealed that this is possible?  In all of the lives of the saints and patristic writings, do you know of any instances where God has revealed that a heterodox person has been saved in being faithful to their heterodoxy? (And I’m not speaking of instances where pagans or heterodox were prayed out of hell by an Orthodox saint)

On the other hand I have provided sources from the Russian Orthodox Church, synodal decrees which have been in force for 400 years.  I have also provided an important citation from the First Hierarch of my Church (which is also Jah's.)
 

As I have said before, the sources you have provided seem to only suggest that the Russian Orthodox Church historically has not received non-Orthodox Christians by baptism, that the ROC historically has acknowledged that Roman Catholics and Non-Chalcedonians have the form of Apostolic Succession, and that the ROC has acknowledged valid sacramental *forms* outside of the Orthodox Church.  Please correct me if I’m wrong, but I do not recall any of these quotes indicating that there is sacramental grace outside of the Orthodox Church.

Father, I don't think that either jah777 or Shanghaiski believe that Mrs. McGillicuddy is necessarily damned.


Schismatics are deprived of the hope of salvation not only because their baptism is invalid...

Again, these were not my words but the words of St. Hilarion (Troitsky).  In any case, to say that “there is no salvation outside of the Church” is not at all the same as saying that “all who repose in heterodoxy are damned.”  To affirm the first part is to affirm what God has revealed in the writings of the saints and Fathers.  It seems to me that we are obligated to remain faithful to what God has revealed and to encourage all who seek salvation to enter the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church, which is the Orthodox Church.  Whether a person reposes outside of the Orthodox Church or inside the Orthodox Church, we leave their eternal fate to the judgment of God, usually not knowing where or how they will experience eternity (unless the person was a great saint perhaps).  If a person reposes in heterodoxy, we leave that person’s eternal fate to the judgment of God knowing that God may save a person in a way that he has not seen fit to reveal to mankind.

Now, regarding your claim that the historical position of the Russian Orthodox Church is that sacramental grace can be found in heterodox sacraments, I have yet to see any quotes which affirm this.  If you have some quotes that clearly indicate this, and do not simply affirm Apostolic Succession or the “validity” of sacramental forms, please do share.  I attempted to get some such quotes from Fr. Alexander Lebedeff some time ago and he did send me a quote from Bishop Nikodim (Milash), the 19th century Serbian canonist, which clearly states his belief that all baptisms performed by schismatics and heretics are salvific if they are performed in the name of the Holy Trinity.  Bishop Nikodim, however, has not been glorified as a saint and I’m not sure to what extent others have adopted his views.

Furthermore, if the Russian Orthodox Church historically believed that sacramental grace exists outside of the Orthodox Church, then someone failed to inform St. Hilarion (Troitsky), St. Ignatius (Brianchaninov), the Optina Elders, and Met Anthony (Khrapovitsky) just to name a few.  In a Jan-Feb of 1991 edition of the publication “Orthodox Life”, the Jordanville Monastery (of which Metropolitan Laurus was then abbot) published an article by St. Ignatius (Brianchaninov) entitled “Concerning the Impossibility of Salvation for the Heterodox and Heretics.”  Both Optina and Valaam monasteries in Russia, if I’m not mistaken, were known to baptize Roman Catholics and all other converts.  Met Anthony (Khrapovitsky) clearly stated that sacraments outside of the Orthodox Church are devoid of grace, and he received the highest number of votes of any other candidate for the position of Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia prior to St. Tikhon’s name being chosen by lot.  I think Met Anthony (Khrapovitsky), first First Hierarch of ROCOR, had some understanding of the position of the Russian Orthodox Church on the subject of sacramental grace outside of the Orthodox Church.  His very thorough paper on the subject can be read here:

http://orthodoxinfo.com/ecumenism/khrap_econ.aspx

If we want to go back to very early Slavic Orthodoxy, we have the following words from St. Theodosius of the Kiev Caves (11th century), founder of the Kiev Pechersk Lavra:
Quote
”As for those who live in another faith: the Catholic, or the Muslim, or the Armenian - they shall not see eternal life."

Yes, this should cause us to weep and mourn and beg God to lead the heterodox to Orthodoxy.  But, we cannot not lose sight of the fact that though we are blessed to be members of the Orthodox Church, we too will have to give an account before God, and we too (and I am thinking here of myself!) stand liable to condemnation.  How can I lament the possibility of others being lost eternally when my own soul stands in jeopardy?  If I cannot save my own soul, if I cannot become a saint, how can I expect those around me to be saved and live holy and blameless lives before God in his One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church?  If the heterodox around me do not want to become Orthodox, I will surely be held accountable before God for failing to attract them to the Church through a holy and Christ-like life.

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« Reply #98 on: December 23, 2011, 10:31:50 AM »

For example did you really intend to say::

Quote
The fact that not all enter the Orthodox Church does prove that the Lord is not working in all to bring all into the Orthodox Church.

What implications do you want the reader to understand in that statement?

Lord have mercy!  No, I did not intend to say that but left off a “not”.  It should have read:

“The fact that not all enter the Orthodox Church does not prove that the Lord is not working in all to bring all into the Orthodox Church.” 

I realize this sentence is not worded well, but my point should have been understood from the rest of the message, for instance:

The Lord desires the salvation of all, but how can we say that the Lord is not working to bring the heterodox into the Orthodox Church? 

Perhaps you can respond to some of the other questions I posed to you in my message?
« Last Edit: December 23, 2011, 10:36:48 AM by jah777 » Logged
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« Reply #99 on: December 23, 2011, 11:50:00 AM »

The position of the Church does not always fit the Western cookie-cutter model. There is some ambiguity, but I think it is clear that 1. Salvation only comes from and through Christ and His Church (that is, one cannot divide the two as if the Church teaches one thing and Christ another) and 2. to say that there is no salvation outside the Church is true--not that those outside the Church are automatically and necessarily damned (there is not even security for those in the Church), but that if people outside the Church are saved it is due to the grace of the Church, which is the grace of God, which overflows. To say otherwise would imply that God's will and that of the Church are at odds or that the Church does not have clear boundaries. This would be heresy.
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« Reply #100 on: December 23, 2011, 12:00:35 PM »

The position of the Church does not always fit the Western cookie-cutter model. There is some ambiguity, but I think it is clear that 1. Salvation only comes from and through Christ and His Church (that is, one cannot divide the two as if the Church teaches one thing and Christ another) and 2. to say that there is no salvation outside the Church is true--not that those outside the Church are automatically and necessarily damned (there is not even security for those in the Church), but that if people outside the Church are saved it is due to the grace of the Church, which is the grace of God, which overflows. To say otherwise would imply that God's will and that of the Church are at odds or that the Church does not have clear boundaries. This would be heresy.

Since we are in the Catholic/Orthodox thread I can say this is a very nice expression of Catholic teaching and it is accurate.

The Catholic Church does not teach us, her faithful, that Orthodoxy is outside of the Church. 

We allow that you have form and grace and succession.

I don't think universal Orthodoxy has spoken on this matter quite yet. 

All of your good quotes notwithstanding.
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« Reply #101 on: December 23, 2011, 01:58:21 PM »

The position of the Church does not always fit the Western cookie-cutter model. There is some ambiguity, but I think it is clear that 1. Salvation only comes from and through Christ and His Church (that is, one cannot divide the two as if the Church teaches one thing and Christ another) and 2. to say that there is no salvation outside the Church is true--not that those outside the Church are automatically and necessarily damned (there is not even security for those in the Church), but that if people outside the Church are saved it is due to the grace of the Church, which is the grace of God, which overflows. To say otherwise would imply that God's will and that of the Church are at odds or that the Church does not have clear boundaries. This would be heresy.

Since we are in the Catholic/Orthodox thread I can say this is a very nice expression of Catholic teaching and it is accurate.

The Catholic Church does not teach us, her faithful, that Orthodoxy is outside of the Church. 

We allow that you have form and grace and succession.

I don't think universal Orthodoxy has spoken on this matter quite yet. 

All of your good quotes notwithstanding.

Good luck convincing him of that, the special charism of infallibility possessed by St. Mark of Ephesus proves otherwise. Roll Eyes
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« Reply #102 on: December 23, 2011, 02:17:18 PM »

Good luck convincing him of that, the special charism of infallibility possessed by St. Mark of Ephesus proves otherwise. Roll Eyes

St. Mark is remembered by the Church as a champion of Orthodoxy specifically because of his role in resisting the False Union of Florence. He's not infallible, but he's certainly more of a universally recognized authority on the Church's view of the Roman church than you or elijahmaria. St. Maximus, St. John of Damascus, and St. Gregory Palamas are not infallible either--but if you are going to disagree with them about, respectively, Christ's theandric will, icons, or the Divine Energies, you need to come up with more than the simple fact that they are not infallible if you want to be taken seriously, since the Church has recognized them as experts in that area.
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« Reply #103 on: December 23, 2011, 02:27:03 PM »

Good luck convincing him of that, the special charism of infallibility possessed by St. Mark of Ephesus proves otherwise. Roll Eyes

St. Mark is remembered by the Church as a champion of Orthodoxy specifically because of his role in resisting the False Union of Florence. He's not infallible, but he's certainly more of a universally recognized authority on the Church's view of the Roman church than you or elijahmaria. St. Maximus, St. John of Damascus, and St. Gregory Palamas are not infallible either--but if you are going to disagree with them about, respectively, Christ's theandric will, icons, or the Divine Energies, you need to come up with more than the simple fact that they are not infallible if you want to be taken seriously, since the Church has recognized them as experts in that area.

Funny, I remember ecumenical councils which affirm St. Maximos' teachings on dyothelitism, and St. John of Damascus' teachings on holy images. Which ecumenical council may I find that affirms St. Mark of Ephesus' teachings on the Catholic Church?
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« Reply #104 on: December 23, 2011, 02:32:45 PM »

Good luck convincing him of that, the special charism of infallibility possessed by St. Mark of Ephesus proves otherwise. Roll Eyes

St. Mark is remembered by the Church as a champion of Orthodoxy specifically because of his role in resisting the False Union of Florence. He's not infallible, but he's certainly more of a universally recognized authority on the Church's view of the Roman church than you or elijahmaria. St. Maximus, St. John of Damascus, and St. Gregory Palamas are not infallible either--but if you are going to disagree with them about, respectively, Christ's theandric will, icons, or the Divine Energies, you need to come up with more than the simple fact that they are not infallible if you want to be taken seriously, since the Church has recognized them as experts in that area.

Funny, I remember ecumenical councils which affirm St. Maximos' teachings on dyothelitism, and St. John of Damascus' teachings on holy images. Which ecumenical council may I find that affirms St. Mark of Ephesus' teachings on the Catholic Church?

Sola synoda!
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« Reply #105 on: December 23, 2011, 02:41:05 PM »

Good luck convincing him of that, the special charism of infallibility possessed by St. Mark of Ephesus proves otherwise. Roll Eyes

St. Mark is remembered by the Church as a champion of Orthodoxy specifically because of his role in resisting the False Union of Florence. He's not infallible, but he's certainly more of a universally recognized authority on the Church's view of the Roman church than you or elijahmaria. St. Maximus, St. John of Damascus, and St. Gregory Palamas are not infallible either--but if you are going to disagree with them about, respectively, Christ's theandric will, icons, or the Divine Energies, you need to come up with more than the simple fact that they are not infallible if you want to be taken seriously, since the Church has recognized them as experts in that area.

Funny, I remember ecumenical councils which affirm St. Maximos' teachings on dyothelitism, and St. John of Damascus' teachings on holy images. Which ecumenical council may I find that affirms St. Mark of Ephesus' teachings on the Catholic Church?

Sola synoda!

That's rich, considering the fundamentalist attitude towards the fathers some people take. Behold your God, encoded in Philip Schaff's multi-volume series on the ante and post-nicene fathers.
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« Reply #106 on: December 23, 2011, 02:45:17 PM »

Was this the content that was supposed to be linked to...?
just for when this thread gets locked
http://www.saintjonah.org/articles/RTOC.htm
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“The Russian True Orthodox Church”

          Of recent days, those most vocally opposed to the Act of Canonical Communion between the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia (ROCOR) and the Moscow Patriarchate (MP), have suggested that membership in the socalled “Russian True Orthodox Church” (RTOC) would be an alternative to accepting any compromise with Moscow. However, not everyone is aware of who or what the “Russian True Orthodox Church” is and where it comes from.

          Like so many other schismatic groups the “Russian True Orthodox Church” tries to give itself an aura of historical legitimacy. Allusions to it being the natural successor to the Catacomb Church as founded by St Joseph, Metropolitan of Petrograd, are not founded on fact. In reality the last of the Catacomb bishops, Archbishop Antony GalinskyMikhailovsky died in Kiev in 1976 and was survived by a number of priests, but no bishop. Consequently, the Catacomb Church, having no bishop came to an end.
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« Reply #107 on: December 23, 2011, 03:15:05 PM »

Now, regarding your claim that the historical position of the Russian Orthodox Church is that sacramental grace can be found in heterodox sacraments, I have yet to see any quotes which affirm this.  If you have some quotes that clearly indicate this, and do not simply affirm Apostolic Succession or the “validity” of sacramental forms, please do share.  I attempted to get some such quotes from Fr. Alexander Lebedeff some time ago and he did send me a quote from Bishop Nikodim (Milash), the 19th century Serbian canonist, which clearly states his belief that all baptisms performed by schismatics and heretics are salvific if they are performed in the name of the Holy Trinity. 

Since I mentioned a single quote that has been provided to me to demonstrate the claim that the Russian Orthodox Church has historically believed in the presence of sacramental grace outside of the Orthodox Church, I would be remiss if I did not provide a link to the following text from Bishop George (Grabbe) which critiques Bishop Nikodim’s text:

http://orthodoxinfo.com/ecumenism/strictness.aspx

Bishop George provides a helpful commentary on Bishop Nikodim’s statement and shows why it is problematic and how it is inconsistent with what Bishop Nikodim and others have clearly stated elsewhere.  At the end of this article there is the text of the 1971 decision of ROCOR to accept all converts by baptism, which provides a very helpful explanation of the Greek and Russian historical practices of receiving converts from Protestantism and Roman Catholicism.  A couple of years ago I asked Metropolitan Hilarion (Kapral) of ROCOR if this decision is still in force and if converts from Roman Catholicism and Protestantism are still typically received by baptism, and he said that this decision is still in force and converts are baptized unless special circumstances indicate that economy should be applied.

Regarding the history of the reception of Protestants and Catholics into the Orthodox Church in Greece and Russia, the following was stated in the 1971 decision of the ROCOR Synod:

Quote
With regard to Roman Catholics and Protestants who claim to have preserved baptism as a mystery (e.g. the Lutherans), in Russia since the time of Peter I the practice has been followed of receiving them without baptism, through the renunciation of their heresy and by the chrismation of Protestants and unconfirmed Catholics. Until Peter's reign, Catholics were baptized in Russia. In Greece the practice also varied, but for the past almost 300 years after a certain interval, the practice of baptizing those converting from Catholicism and Protestantism was again introduced. Those received in another manner are not recognized as Orthodox in Greece.

While historically the methods of receiving Roman Catholics and Protestants into the Church has varied, I still have yet to see evidence that any local Orthodox Church historically believed that sacramental grace exists outside of the Orthodox Church.  For all of the harsh responses to the position of the saints, Fathers, and councils of the Church which have been quoted in this thread, nobody has provided a single quote from any saint, father, or council to credibly contradict the quotes that have been provided.  If one wishes to directly oppose what countless saints, fathers, and counsels have clearly and unambiguously declared then nobody will stop you from doing so, but why would anyone who desires the salvation of their souls set themselves at such odds with those whom God has glorified and raised up as examples and instructors for us all?
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« Reply #108 on: December 23, 2011, 03:33:04 PM »

Good luck convincing him of that, the special charism of infallibility possessed by St. Mark of Ephesus proves otherwise. Roll Eyes

St. Mark is remembered by the Church as a champion of Orthodoxy specifically because of his role in resisting the False Union of Florence. He's not infallible, but he's certainly more of a universally recognized authority on the Church's view of the Roman church than you or elijahmaria. St. Maximus, St. John of Damascus, and St. Gregory Palamas are not infallible either--but if you are going to disagree with them about, respectively, Christ's theandric will, icons, or the Divine Energies, you need to come up with more than the simple fact that they are not infallible if you want to be taken seriously, since the Church has recognized them as experts in that area.

Funny, I remember ecumenical councils which affirm St. Maximos' teachings on dyothelitism, and St. John of Damascus' teachings on holy images. Which ecumenical council may I find that affirms St. Mark of Ephesus' teachings on the Catholic Church?

Sola synoda!

That's rich, considering the fundamentalist attitude towards the fathers some people take. Behold your God, encoded in Philip Schaff's multi-volume series on the ante and post-nicene fathers.

Accepting the Fathers is not tantamount to rejecting anything besides them. I really shouldn't have to be explaining this to an Orthodox Christian. Undecided
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« Reply #109 on: December 23, 2011, 03:55:21 PM »

If we want to go back to very early Slavic Orthodoxy, we have the following words from St. Theodosius of the Kiev Caves (11th century), founder of the Kiev Pechersk Lavra:
Quote
As for those who live in another faith: the Catholic, or the Muslim, or the Armenian - they shall not see eternal life."



Interesting that you would propagate a very nasty (and untrue) teaching attributed to Saint Theodosy but you fight tooth and nail against the teachings of the 17th century Russian Synod on the authenticity of Roman Catholic and Miaphysite Mysteries.
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« Reply #110 on: December 23, 2011, 05:21:12 PM »

Is it feasible or possible that Eastern Catholics have sacramental grace and Latin Catholics do not?

I'm wondering how this relates to the Orthodox view of schism affecting grace only gradually. Would all Orthodox churches under the Union of Brest, for example, have instantly lost sacramental grace because they were forced to convert by secular authorities?

The Eastern Catholics who were Orthodox in history have the form, but not the grace.

If someone forces you to deny Christ, and you do it, do you still have the grace of the Holy Spirit? You don't have to repent of your apostasy?
Eastern Catholics believe in Christ
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« Reply #111 on: December 23, 2011, 06:03:07 PM »

For example did you really intend to say::

Quote
The fact that not all enter the Orthodox Church does prove that the Lord is not working in all to bring all into the Orthodox Church.

What implications do you want the reader to understand in that statement?

Lord have mercy!  No, I did not intend to say that but left off a “not”.  It should have read:

“The fact that not all enter the Orthodox Church does not prove that the Lord is not working in all to bring all into the Orthodox Church.”  

I realize this sentence is not worded well, but my point should have been understood from the rest of the message, for instance:

The Lord desires the salvation of all, but how can we say that the Lord is not working to bring the heterodox into the Orthodox Church?  

Perhaps you can respond to some of the other questions I posed to you in my message?

No, I am too emotionally involved.  I remember the time I was told by a convert, now a Greek priest, that my mother was in hell by virtue of the fact that she was a Roman Catholic.  When he realised that he was about to get my fist on his nose he hastily added that his own mother and brothers and sisters would also be going to hell (they are Anglican.)

This was meant to be a mollifying statement!  Angry

I offer this anecdote because in my years of pastoral work with converts I have encountered men who have a predisposition to the gloomy and the negative and who experience a frisson of perverse joy in proclaiming that 95% of the human race (non-Orthodox through the ages) are in eternal torment.

Reasoning with such people is non-productive.  One can but love them and be kind to them, praying for their release -while of course vehemently denying what they say when they attempt to influence other parishioners.

Now I am not saying you are one such person.  I am explaining why I do not want to get involved in a tit-for-tat exchange of quotes.
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« Reply #112 on: December 23, 2011, 06:15:45 PM »

Is it feasible or possible that Eastern Catholics have sacramental grace and Latin Catholics do not?

I'm wondering how this relates to the Orthodox view of schism affecting grace only gradually. Would all Orthodox churches under the Union of Brest, for example, have instantly lost sacramental grace because they were forced to convert by secular authorities?

The Eastern Catholics who were Orthodox in history have the form, but not the grace.

If someone forces you to deny Christ, and you do it, do you still have the grace of the Holy Spirit? You don't have to repent of your apostasy?
Eastern Catholics believe in Christ

If you leave the true Body of Christ for a false one, what does that mean?
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« Reply #113 on: December 23, 2011, 08:24:25 PM »

Is it feasible or possible that Eastern Catholics have sacramental grace and Latin Catholics do not?

I'm wondering how this relates to the Orthodox view of schism affecting grace only gradually. Would all Orthodox churches under the Union of Brest, for example, have instantly lost sacramental grace because they were forced to convert by secular authorities?

The Eastern Catholics who were Orthodox in history have the form, but not the grace.

If someone forces you to deny Christ, and you do it, do you still have the grace of the Holy Spirit? You don't have to repent of your apostasy?
Eastern Catholics believe in Christ

If you leave the true Body of Christ for a false one, what does that mean?

Wow!

Eastern Catholics, as a body, have *not* denied Christ, although perhaps some individuals may have done so, just as perhaps some Orthodox individuals may have done so.  To assert or imply that they have is a blatant and totally uncharitable slap in the face to not just Eastern Catholics but all Catholics and is just patently untrue.  I would invite you to back off from that implication and offer an apology to all Catholics here, but especially Eastern Catholics.  Your chutzpah is not only unfounded, but totally mind-boggling!

Eastern Catholics, along with Western Catholics, along with Orthodox Christians *are* the true Body of Christ!  You seem to know so precisely where the boundaries of the Church are and are not, what the Church is and is not, that I'm overwhelmed by the depth and breadth of your wisdom and knowledge, which seems to surpass that of many theologians, Orthodox and Catholic, whom I have read, not to mention various priests and bishops I've encountered. 

Oh...and Merry Christmas  Wink Grin Roll Eyes!
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« Reply #114 on: December 23, 2011, 08:30:53 PM »

Is it feasible or possible that Eastern Catholics have sacramental grace and Latin Catholics do not?

I'm wondering how this relates to the Orthodox view of schism affecting grace only gradually. Would all Orthodox churches under the Union of Brest, for example, have instantly lost sacramental grace because they were forced to convert by secular authorities?

The Eastern Catholics who were Orthodox in history have the form, but not the grace.

If someone forces you to deny Christ, and you do it, do you still have the grace of the Holy Spirit? You don't have to repent of your apostasy?
Eastern Catholics believe in Christ

If you leave the true Body of Christ for a false one, what does that mean?

Wow!

Eastern Catholics, as a body, have *not* denied Christ, although perhaps some individuals may have done so, just as perhaps some Orthodox individuals may have done so.  To assert or imply that they have is a blatant and totally uncharitable slap in the face to not just Eastern Catholics but all Catholics and is just patently untrue.  I would invite you to back off from that implication and offer an apology to all Catholics here, but especially Eastern Catholics.  Your chutzpah is not only unfounded, but totally mind-boggling!

Eastern Catholics, along with Western Catholics, along with Orthodox Christians *are* the true Body of Christ!  You seem to know so precisely where the boundaries of the Church are and are not, what the Church is and is not, that I'm overwhelmed by the depth and breadth of your wisdom and knowledge, which seems to surpass that of many theologians, Orthodox and Catholic, whom I have read, not to mention various priests and bishops I've encountered. 

Oh...and Merry Christmas  Wink Grin Roll Eyes!

Come on, JM. We both know that Shanghaiski is just reiterating Orthodox ecclesiology as he and many Orthodox theologians and clergy see it. You don't have to like it, but asking him to apologize for it is kind of dumb. Do you apologize to Anglicans because your church teaches that their sacraments are not true?
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« Reply #115 on: December 23, 2011, 08:33:28 PM »

If we want to go back to very early Slavic Orthodoxy, we have the following words from St. Theodosius of the Kiev Caves (11th century), founder of the Kiev Pechersk Lavra:
Quote
As for those who live in another faith: the Catholic, or the Muslim, or the Armenian - they shall not see eternal life."



Interesting that you would propagate a very nasty (and untrue) teaching attributed to Saint Theodosy but you fight tooth and nail against the teachings of the 17th century Russian Synod on the authenticity of Roman Catholic and Miaphysite Mysteries.

Even if St Theodosy had said this it would still be very nasty and very untrue. Thank God he didn't really say it though.
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« Reply #116 on: December 23, 2011, 08:37:48 PM »

Is it feasible or possible that Eastern Catholics have sacramental grace and Latin Catholics do not?

I'm wondering how this relates to the Orthodox view of schism affecting grace only gradually. Would all Orthodox churches under the Union of Brest, for example, have instantly lost sacramental grace because they were forced to convert by secular authorities?

The Eastern Catholics who were Orthodox in history have the form, but not the grace.

If someone forces you to deny Christ, and you do it, do you still have the grace of the Holy Spirit? You don't have to repent of your apostasy?
Eastern Catholics believe in Christ

If you leave the true Body of Christ for a false one, what does that mean?

Wow!

Eastern Catholics, as a body, have *not* denied Christ, although perhaps some individuals may have done so, just as perhaps some Orthodox individuals may have done so.  To assert or imply that they have is a blatant and totally uncharitable slap in the face to not just Eastern Catholics but all Catholics and is just patently untrue.  I would invite you to back off from that implication and offer an apology to all Catholics here, but especially Eastern Catholics.  Your chutzpah is not only unfounded, but totally mind-boggling!

Eastern Catholics, along with Western Catholics, along with Orthodox Christians *are* the true Body of Christ!  You seem to know so precisely where the boundaries of the Church are and are not, what the Church is and is not, that I'm overwhelmed by the depth and breadth of your wisdom and knowledge, which seems to surpass that of many theologians, Orthodox and Catholic, whom I have read, not to mention various priests and bishops I've encountered.  

Oh...and Merry Christmas  Wink Grin Roll Eyes!

Come on, JM. We both know that Shanghaiski is just reiterating Orthodox ecclesiology as he and many Orthodox theologians and clergy see it. You don't have to like it, but asking him to apologize for it is kind of dumb. Do you apologize to Anglicans because your church teaches that their sacraments are not true?

You're right William, I don't like it.  I don't like it because to claim or imply that Eastern Catholics have denied Christ is, well, a falsehood.  If this is what Orthodox ecclesiology claims, what "many Orthodox theologians and clergy" assert, then it makes me all the more relieved that I have returned to the Catholic Church, even though I hold that, as I said, the Orthodox Church along with the Catholic Church is the true Body of Christ.

With that, I'm outta here.  Tomorrow is the Eve of the Nativity of the Christ you and yours claim that I and my fellow Eastern Catholics have denied.  I, along with my fellow Eastern and Western Catholics will be joyously celebrating His Nativity, worshiping Him, and receiving Him in Holy Communion at the Mass of the Nativity.  Yes...that very same Christ which you and yours falsely claim we have denied.  Go figure.
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« Reply #117 on: December 23, 2011, 08:43:12 PM »

Is it feasible or possible that Eastern Catholics have sacramental grace and Latin Catholics do not?

I'm wondering how this relates to the Orthodox view of schism affecting grace only gradually. Would all Orthodox churches under the Union of Brest, for example, have instantly lost sacramental grace because they were forced to convert by secular authorities?

The Eastern Catholics who were Orthodox in history have the form, but not the grace.

If someone forces you to deny Christ, and you do it, do you still have the grace of the Holy Spirit? You don't have to repent of your apostasy?
Eastern Catholics believe in Christ

If you leave the true Body of Christ for a false one, what does that mean?

Wow!

Eastern Catholics, as a body, have *not* denied Christ, although perhaps some individuals may have done so, just as perhaps some Orthodox individuals may have done so.  To assert or imply that they have is a blatant and totally uncharitable slap in the face to not just Eastern Catholics but all Catholics and is just patently untrue.  I would invite you to back off from that implication and offer an apology to all Catholics here, but especially Eastern Catholics.  Your chutzpah is not only unfounded, but totally mind-boggling!

Eastern Catholics, along with Western Catholics, along with Orthodox Christians *are* the true Body of Christ!  You seem to know so precisely where the boundaries of the Church are and are not, what the Church is and is not, that I'm overwhelmed by the depth and breadth of your wisdom and knowledge, which seems to surpass that of many theologians, Orthodox and Catholic, whom I have read, not to mention various priests and bishops I've encountered. 

Oh...and Merry Christmas  Wink Grin Roll Eyes!

Come on, JM. We both know that Shanghaiski is just reiterating Orthodox ecclesiology as he and many Orthodox theologians and clergy see it. You don't have to like it, but asking him to apologize for it is kind of dumb. Do you apologize to Anglicans because your church teaches that their sacraments are not true?

You're right William, I don't like it.  I don't like it because to claim or imply that Eastern Catholics have denied Christ is, well, a falsehood.  If this is what Orthodox ecclesiology claims, what "many Orthodox theologians and clergy" assert, then it makes me all the more relieved that I have returned to the Catholic Church, even though I hold that, as I said, the Orthodox Church along with the Catholic Church is the true Body of Christ.

Don't be so relieved. You could find many Catholic theologians and clergy who would assert the same thing about Catholics who become Orthodox.  Smiley

For what it's worth, I don't think that Eastern Catholics have denied Christ. Only the bishops and some priests who originally left the Orthodox Church. I can't hold the laity responsible for something they were probably hardly aware of, nor can I blame the subsequent generations who simply stayed with the church of their fathers.
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« Reply #118 on: December 23, 2011, 08:47:28 PM »

With that, I'm outta here.  Tomorrow is the Eve of the Nativity of the Christ you and yours claim that I and my fellow Eastern Catholics have denied.  I, along with my fellow Eastern and Western Catholics will be joyously celebrating His Nativity, worshiping Him, and receiving Him in Holy Communion at the Mass of the Nativity.  Yes...that very same Christ which you and yours falsely claim we have denied.  Go figure.

Just FYI, getting obnoxiously indignant doesn't make you right.

Have a blessed Nativity, anyway.
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« Reply #119 on: December 23, 2011, 08:48:05 PM »

Is it feasible or possible that Eastern Catholics have sacramental grace and Latin Catholics do not?

I'm wondering how this relates to the Orthodox view of schism affecting grace only gradually. Would all Orthodox churches under the Union of Brest, for example, have instantly lost sacramental grace because they were forced to convert by secular authorities?

The Eastern Catholics who were Orthodox in history have the form, but not the grace.

If someone forces you to deny Christ, and you do it, do you still have the grace of the Holy Spirit? You don't have to repent of your apostasy?
Eastern Catholics believe in Christ

If you leave the true Body of Christ for a false one, what does that mean?

Wow!

Eastern Catholics, as a body, have *not* denied Christ, although perhaps some individuals may have done so, just as perhaps some Orthodox individuals may have done so.  To assert or imply that they have is a blatant and totally uncharitable slap in the face to not just Eastern Catholics but all Catholics and is just patently untrue.  I would invite you to back off from that implication and offer an apology to all Catholics here, but especially Eastern Catholics.  Your chutzpah is not only unfounded, but totally mind-boggling!

Eastern Catholics, along with Western Catholics, along with Orthodox Christians *are* the true Body of Christ!  You seem to know so precisely where the boundaries of the Church are and are not, what the Church is and is not, that I'm overwhelmed by the depth and breadth of your wisdom and knowledge, which seems to surpass that of many theologians, Orthodox and Catholic, whom I have read, not to mention various priests and bishops I've encountered. 

Oh...and Merry Christmas  Wink Grin Roll Eyes!

Come on, JM. We both know that Shanghaiski is just reiterating Orthodox ecclesiology as he and many Orthodox theologians and clergy see it. You don't have to like it, but asking him to apologize for it is kind of dumb. Do you apologize to Anglicans because your church teaches that their sacraments are not true?

You're right William, I don't like it.  I don't like it because to claim or imply that Eastern Catholics have denied Christ is, well, a falsehood.  If this is what Orthodox ecclesiology claims, what "many Orthodox theologians and clergy" assert, then it makes me all the more relieved that I have returned to the Catholic Church, even though I hold that, as I said, the Orthodox Church along with the Catholic Church is the true Body of Christ.

Don't be so relieved. You could find many Catholic theologians and clergy who would assert the same thing about Catholics who become Orthodox.  Smiley

For what it's worth, I don't think that Eastern Catholics have denied Christ. Only the bishops and some priests who originally left the Orthodox Church. I can't hold the laity responsible for something they were probably hardly aware of, nor can I blame the subsequent generations who simply stayed with the church of their fathers.

Oh, but I am relieved!  Enormously so. 

Can you tell me which Catholic theologians and clergy have asserted that Catholics who have become Orthodox have denied Christ?  With some referenced sources?

Now...I am outta here and signing off for the night.

Merry Christmas!!!  Wink Wink
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« Reply #120 on: December 23, 2011, 08:59:19 PM »

Oh, but I am relieved!  Enormously so. 

I don't get what the point of saying that is. It's incredibly obnoxious, rude and uncharitable. I, as an ex-Roman Catholic, do not go up to my Catholic parents and tell them how relieved I am that I no longer belong to what I perceive as their liberalizing, liturgically irreverent and minimalist, heretical church. You, as an ex-Orthodox, should show the same respect and common decency. It really is pretty unbecoming.  Undecided

Quote
Can you tell me which Catholic theologians and clergy have asserted that Catholics who have become Orthodox have denied Christ?  With some referenced sources?
I would think that such a position would be natural considering how the RCC sees itself as the true church of Jesus Christ and sees the Orthodox Churches as defective. Wouldn't leaving the true church of Christ for one that is "defective" be, in some capacity, rejecting Him?

Quote
Now...I am outta here and signing off for the night.

Merry Christmas!!!  Wink Wink

Merry Christmas! Christ is born!  Smiley
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« Reply #121 on: December 24, 2011, 12:01:56 AM »

Is it feasible or possible that Eastern Catholics have sacramental grace and Latin Catholics do not?

I'm wondering how this relates to the Orthodox view of schism affecting grace only gradually. Would all Orthodox churches under the Union of Brest, for example, have instantly lost sacramental grace because they were forced to convert by secular authorities?

The Eastern Catholics who were Orthodox in history have the form, but not the grace.

If someone forces you to deny Christ, and you do it, do you still have the grace of the Holy Spirit? You don't have to repent of your apostasy?
Eastern Catholics believe in Christ

If you leave the true Body of Christ for a false one, what does that mean?
Well since Eastern Catholics have joined the true Body of Christ rather than departed from it, I do not know what you mean.
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« Reply #122 on: December 24, 2011, 02:02:05 AM »

If we want to go back to very early Slavic Orthodoxy, we have the following words from St. Theodosius of the Kiev Caves (11th century), founder of the Kiev Pechersk Lavra:
Quote
As for those who live in another faith: the Catholic, or the Muslim, or the Armenian - they shall not see eternal life."

Interesting that you would propagate a very nasty (and untrue) teaching attributed to Saint Theodosy but you fight tooth and nail against the teachings of the 17th century Russian Synod on the authenticity of Roman Catholic and Miaphysite Mysteries.

Father, please quote for me the text from the 17th century Russian Synod concerning the “authenticity of Roman Catholic and Miaphysite Mysteries.”  Again, I am not interested in statements recognizing the existence of sacramental “forms” outside of the Orthodox Church, nor in decisions which permit non-Orthodox Christians to be received into the Orthodox Church without baptism.  I am only interested here in seeing quotes from this Synod, and any Orthodox saints and fathers, which specifically affirm the presence of grace-filled and salvific sacraments outside of the Orthodox Church.


Perhaps you can respond to some of the other questions I posed to you in my message?[/size]

No, I am too emotionally involved.  I remember the time I was told by a convert, now a Greek priest, that my mother was in hell by virtue of the fact that she was a Roman Catholic.  When he realised that he was about to get my fist on his nose he hastily added that his own mother and brothers and sisters would also be going to hell (they are Anglican.)

I think what this priest said to you was extremely inappropriate.  How can we say that we know certain people to be in hell (unless God has revealed the matter to a clairvoyant saint, which in this case is unlikely)?    We can (and should in my opinion) affirm that salvation is only possible in the Orthodox Church, as so many saints and Fathers have declared, but when a person reposes we should humbly and fervently pray for their salvation regardless of whether or not they were Orthodox, praying with full hope and trust in God to have mercy on the departed. 


   
Now I am not saying you are one such person.  I am explaining why I do not want to get involved in a tit-for-tat exchange of quotes.

Okay, but I will say that I think it would be very constructive if you could share some quotes from saints, Fathers, and councils which support the claim that salvific and grace-filled sacraments are performed outside of the Orthodox Church.  So far, no such quotes have been provided in the thread while many quotes have been provided which would indicate the opposite.
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« Reply #123 on: December 24, 2011, 02:32:47 AM »

If the teaching you quoted from St. Theodosius of the Kiev Caves is your personal belief:

Quote
As for those who live in another faith: the Catholic, or the Muslim, or the Armenian - they shall not see eternal life."

then I ask you to discuss it with your bishop.

I don't want to get into an argy-bargy here with you because it so horrifies me to debate this in front of the non-Orthodox and to give this wicked belief even the smallest credibility..
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« Reply #124 on: December 24, 2011, 02:54:28 AM »

Quote
”As for those who live in another faith: the Catholic, or the Muslim, or the Armenian - they shall not see eternal life."

As one of the above mentioned hell bound persons, I'd like to ask about what happened at the beginning of this video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fT2nS7Goa-4

At the beginning of that video, one sees Russian Orthodox clergy kissing the hand of the Armenian Catholicos.  Someone told me that the Russian clergy did that because the Russian Church recognizes the validity of the Armenian Church's priesthood.  Isn't that the position of the Russian Orthodox Church?  If they recognize our priesthood, wouldn't they recognize our other sacraments?
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« Reply #125 on: December 24, 2011, 04:33:05 AM »

Good luck convincing him of that, the special charism of infallibility possessed by St. Mark of Ephesus proves otherwise. Roll Eyes

St. Mark is remembered by the Church as a champion of Orthodoxy specifically because of his role in resisting the False Union of Florence. He's not infallible, but he's certainly more of a universally recognized authority on the Church's view of the Roman church than you or elijahmaria. St. Maximus, St. John of Damascus, and St. Gregory Palamas are not infallible either--but if you are going to disagree with them about, respectively, Christ's theandric will, icons, or the Divine Energies, you need to come up with more than the simple fact that they are not infallible if you want to be taken seriously, since the Church has recognized them as experts in that area.

Funny, I remember ecumenical councils which affirm St. Maximos' teachings on dyothelitism, and St. John of Damascus' teachings on holy images. Which ecumenical council may I find that affirms St. Mark of Ephesus' teachings on the Catholic Church?

I notice you skip over St. Gregory Palamas, who like St. Mark has not been confirmed by an Ecumenical council, but who like St. Mark is generally recognized by the Church as a champion of Orthodoxy on a specific topic.

But the point isn't even whether St. Mark is correct. The point is that St. Mark said certain things about the Roman Church and has been universally celebrated by the Church for his role in rejecting the union of Florence. And a number of other saints and local councils have said things in accord with St. Mark. And all these things are in accord with even older Fathers going back to the very beginning who have stated there is the Church and there are those in schism from the Church--and that those in schism from the Church do not have the Grace of the Sacraments (and yes, St. Basil's 'First Canonical Letter' stating that was affirmed by an ecumenical council).

In the face of all that, all you have offered is mockery.

Certainly, no saint is individually infallible. But the consensus of the saints, on the other other hand, is authoritative. And one gets to the consensus by starting with individual saints. Do you have any evidence that St. Mark's position is not representative of the Patristic consensus? Any Father in the last six or seven centuries that stated that Rome was not (at least) in schism? Any Father or Ecumenical Council that taught that schismatics still have Mysteries?

If you do, then you have something constructive you could add to the conversation. Without it, all you have is your opinion--which your certainly entitled to--but you're not entitled to expect anyone else to give up their own opinion to agree with you.
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« Reply #126 on: December 24, 2011, 04:57:54 AM »


 And all these things are in accord with even older Fathers going back to the very beginning who have stated there is the Church and there are those in schism from the Church--and that those in schism from the Church do not have the Grace of the Sacraments (and yes, St. Basil's 'First Canonical Letter' stating that was affirmed by an ecumenical council).
....................

Certainly, no saint is individually infallible. But the consensus of the saints, on the other other hand, is authoritative.


Yes, I agree with this but I would take it one step further, in line with what I was taught in Serbia.   It is the bishops who hold a greater authority because it falls to them to examine the Fathers and, exercising their apostolic authority, make a decision on what to accept and what to modify and what to lay aside.

Would you let me introduce some of the things which Fr Alexander Lebedeff of the Russian Church Abroad has written because I find them pertinent to our topic, and it is succinct and well expressed....

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/orthodox-tradition/message/135810


Actually, not just the position [he is referring to recognition of Catholic Sacraments in schism]
of the Russian Orthodox Church during the past 400 years, but the position of the whole Church
up until Patriarch Cyril and the Tomos of 1755.

I would suggest careful reading of the following.

The best Greek theologian and scholar to write on this issue, Fr. George
Metallinos, in his book "I confess One Baptism" (available on-line) writes:

"According to the prevailing view, after the schism the Orthodox Church
recognized ''the validity of the Latin sacraments,''[228] and indeed that of
baptism. Upon their conversion, the Church applied Canon VII of the Second
Ecumenical Council or XCV of Penthekte to them, or occasionally received
them by a mere recantation of their foreign doctrines.[229] Even after the
Crusades and the Council of
Ferrara/Florence (1438-1439), when the relations between Orthodox and Latins
became strained, and the stance of the Orthodox East in dealing with the
Latins became more austere, [230] the East considered the application of
Canon VII of the Second Ecumenical Council to be an adequate measure of
defense, that is she received them by chrismation and a written statement.
This action was officially ratified by the Local Council of Constantinople
in 1484, with the participation, moreover, of all the Patriarchs of the
East.

This Council also wrote an appropriate service.[231] Thus, according to I.
Karmiris (and also according to the arguments of the Latinizers and
pro-westerners during the Turkish rule), the cases of ''rebaptism'' were
exceptions, owing ''to individual initiative,'' and ''not to an
authoritative decision of the Church.''[232]

"This custom, however, was overturned in 1755 under Cyril V, Patriarch of
Constantinople, by the imposing of the (re)baptism of Latins and all Western
converts in general,[233] again through the application of Canon VII of the
Second Ecumenical Council and the other relevant Canons of the Church. This
action, to this day the last ''official'' decision of the Orthodox
Church,[234] was opposed by those who disagreed. It was considered to have
subverted the decision of the Council of 1484. because of its circumstantial
character,[235] not having gained universal acceptance and application, it
was often not adhered to. In addition, the practice of the Russian Church
from 1667 differed from that of the other Orthodox Patriarchates, and indeed
that of Constantinople.[236] This, then, is what is commonly accepted to
this day concerning the issue in question."

http://www.oodegr.com/english/biblia/baptisma1/B6.htm


Here we see that the prevailing view was that the Orthodox Church, since
1054, "accepted the validity of the Latin sacraments" and that even after
the Council of Florence, when relations between the East
and the West had totally deteriorated, the Council of Constantinople of
1484, at which all four Eastern Patriarchs participated, decreed that Latins
should be accepted by Chrismation and a written statement,
and, more importantly, this Council created a special service for the
Reception of Converts according to the mandated form (Chrismation after
giving a statement renouncing false teachings and professing the
Orthodox faith).

Fr. Metallinos underscores that the Oros of 1755 under Cyril V
**overturned** this previously established custom.

It is critical to note that the Russian Church **NEVER** accepted the Oros
of 1755 as being binding for it, and continues to this day to consider as
prevailing the decision of the Council of Constantinople
in 1484, which directed that Latins NOT be baptized. This was confirmed at
the Council of the Russian Church in 1667--the last time that a Council of
the Russian Church addressed this issue.

In fact, it would have been impossible for a Council of the Russian Orthodox
Church to have accepted the Oros of 1755, since there WERE NO Councils of
the Russian Church held from 1690 until 1917!!!

The Russian Church Council in 1667, at which two Patriarchs of the East
participated, had previously sent queries to ALL of the ancient Patriarchs,
asking for their opinion on this question. The unanimous
reply of all four Patriarchs confirmed the position of the 1484 Council of
Constantinople--that Latins were not to be repabtized.

Fr. George Metallinos writes: "The Council of Moscow in 1620-21 decided to
baptize Western converts.[276] However, the ''great'' Council of Moscow in
1666-67, in which the Patriarchs of Alexandria and Antioch also
participated, approved the decision of the 1484 Council of Constantinople,
and thus rejected the (re)baptism of Western converts."

We must remember tyhat Fr. George Metallinos' work is based on the positions
of the Kollyvades Fathers, especially Neophytos and C. Oikonomos. Still, he
admits:

"Nevertheless, the Council of Constantinople in 1484 creates the greatest
difficulties for an acceptance of our theologian's position on Latin
baptism. This Council decided ''only to anoint with chrism
the Latins who come over to Orthodoxy,.after they submit a written statement
of faith.'' In other words, it ranks them in the class of the Arians and
Macedonians of the Second Ecumenical Council (Canon
VII).[262]"

In a footnore, Metallinos quotes Bishop Kallistos Ware:

"Ware writes in this connection: ''Neither of these Councils [i.e.
Constantinople, 1484, and Moscow, 1667] was exposed to foreign pressure or
acted from fear of Papist reprisals"

So it is totally incorrect to attribute the position of the Russian Church
regarding accepting as valid the baptism of the Latins to Peter the Great or
to Western influence.

Actually, regarding Peter I, Metallinos quotes from a reply in 1718 of
Ecumenical Patriarch Jeremias III to Czar Peter the Great, in which the
Patriarch directs the Czar to receive Latins ''by mere
chrismation,''

Metallinos is forced to admit that even the theologian he uses as the basis
for his thesis, C. Oikonomos, wrote the following:

"''I honor and respect the Russian Church as the undefiled bride of Christ
and inseparable from her Bridegroom, and in addition as my own benefactress,
by which the Lord has done and shall do many great and marvelous things, as
she unerringly and verily follows the rule of piety. Hence, I do not doubt
that it was in a spirit of discernment that she chose the older rule, in
accordance with which she accepts
the baptism of the other Churches [sic], merely chrismating those who join
when they renounce their patrimonial beliefs with a written statement and
confess those of the Orthodox faith.''[317]"

Here we have the clear statement of Metallinos chief theologian that the
Church of Russia chooses to follow what he calls "the **older rule**, in
accordance with which she accepts the baptism of other
Churches."

Now, please tell me how is the position stated by Archbishop Hilarion of
Volokolamsk any different from the position of the Russian Church has held
since 1667, which is based on the decision of the Council of the Four
Patriarchs of 1484?

With love in Christ,

Prot. Alexander Lebedeff
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« Reply #127 on: December 24, 2011, 05:06:06 AM »

And there is a second message of Fr Alexander Lebedeff which I count as very pertinent and wish to enter as evidence in the thread...

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/orthodox-tradition/message/133733

In reality, the Russian Orthodox Church fully recognized the validity of
apostolic succession in both the Roman Catholic and Oriental Orthodox
Churches (Copts, Armenians, Assyrians, etc.).

I can find, rather easily, at least fifty pre-revolutionary official sources
of the Russian Orthodox Church that state, unequivocally, that the Roman
Catholics have apostolic succession--these are textbooks of
Canon Law, Manuals and Handbooks for Clergy, and other sources that
reference official Decrees of the Holy Synod.

The Baptism of Roman Catholics and Monophysites was recognized as completely
valid and salvific, as were the Mysteries of Confirmation, Marriage and
Ordination.

Remember, the official position of the Russian Orthodox Church was that none
of these Mysteries should be repeated if a Roman Catholic were to wish to
become Orthodox.

Orthodox priests were explicitly **forbidden** to "re-baptize" Roman
Catholics. And Roman Catholic priests who became Orthodox were accepted
simply by Confession of Faith and then vesting--they were not baptized,
chrismated or reordained.

And-- the Russian Orthodox Church issued an official decree allowing Roman
Catholic Uniates to be given Holy Communion by Orthodox priests in those
areas where they could not be ministered to by a Uniate priest.

In the "Handbook for Priests" by Bulgakov, a discussion is found regarding
whether Episcopalian (Anglican) priests could also be received in full
ecclesiastical rank when becoming Orthodox, as were Roman
Catholics. The question revolved as to whether the Anglicans had preserved
valid apostolic succession **AS HAD THE CATHOLICS**.

So-- there is no question that the Church of Russia considered the Roman
Catholics to have valid apostolic succession.


With love in Christ,
Prot. Alexander Lebedeff
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« Reply #128 on: December 24, 2011, 05:46:06 AM »

Good luck convincing him of that, the special charism of infallibility possessed by St. Mark of Ephesus proves otherwise. Roll Eyes

St. Mark is remembered by the Church as a champion of Orthodoxy specifically because of his role in resisting the False Union of Florence. He's not infallible, but he's certainly more of a universally recognized authority on the Church's view of the Roman church than you or elijahmaria. St. Maximus, St. John of Damascus, and St. Gregory Palamas are not infallible either--but if you are going to disagree with them about, respectively, Christ's theandric will, icons, or the Divine Energies, you need to come up with more than the simple fact that they are not infallible if you want to be taken seriously, since the Church has recognized them as experts in that area.

Funny, I remember ecumenical councils which affirm St. Maximos' teachings on dyothelitism, and St. John of Damascus' teachings on holy images. Which ecumenical council may I find that affirms St. Mark of Ephesus' teachings on the Catholic Church?

I notice you skip over St. Gregory Palamas, who like St. Mark has not been confirmed by an Ecumenical council, but who like St. Mark is generally recognized by the Church as a champion of Orthodoxy on a specific topic.

Sure, but St. Gregory was confirmed by the hesychast councils, which have been widely accepted in Orthodoxy. Again, where is St. Mark of Ephesus' position on the Catholic Church confirmed by a council?

But the point isn't even whether St. Mark is correct. The point is that St. Mark said certain things about the Roman Church and has been universally celebrated by the Church for his role in rejecting the union of Florence. And a number of other saints and local councils have said things in accord with St. Mark. And all these things are in accord with even older Fathers going back to the very beginning who have stated there is the Church and there are those in schism from the Church--and that those in schism from the Church do not have the Grace of the Sacraments (and yes, St. Basil's 'First Canonical Letter' stating that was affirmed by an ecumenical council).

You know what else that letter says?

Quote
The sentence of the Lord that it is unlawful to withdraw from wedlock, save on account of fornication, applies, according to the argument, to men and women alike.  Custom, however, does not so obtain.  Yet, in relation with women, very strict expressions are to be found; as, for instance, the words of the apostle “He which is joined to a harlot is one body”and of Jeremiah, If a wife “become another man’s shall he return unto her again? shall not that land be greatly polluted?”And again, “He that hath an adulteress is a fool and impious.”26392639    Prov. xviii. 22, LXX. Yet custom ordains that men who commit adultery and are in fornication be retained by their wives. Consequently I do not know if the woman who lives with the man who has been dismissed can properly be called an adulteress; the charge in this case attaches to the woman who has put away her husband, and depends upon the cause for which she withdrew from wedlock. In the case of her being beaten, and refusing to submit, it would be better for her to endure than to be separated from her husband; in the case of her objecting to pecuniary loss, even here she would not have sufficient ground. If her reason is his living in fornication we do not find this in the custom of the church; but from an unbelieving husband a wife is commanded not to depart, but to remain, on account of the uncertainty of the issue. “For what knowest thou, O wife, whether thou shalt save thy husband?” Here then the wife, if she leaves her husband and goes to another, is an adulteress.  But the man who has been abandoned is pardonable, and the woman who lives with such a man is not condemned.  But if the man who has deserted his wife goes to another, he is himself an adulterer because he makes her commit adultery; and the woman who lives with him is an adulteress, because she has caused another woman’s husband to come over to her.
http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/npnf208.ix.clxxxix.html

Is this also 'infallible?' If so, many Orthodox women who have divorced their husbands on the grounds of adultery or abuse have been mistakenly led into a life of adultery by the Orthodox Church.

In the face of all that, all you have offered is mockery.

Post something interesting, instead of St. so-and-so held such-and-such opinion (God forbid we give our own opinions), and I think this thread might be greatly improved.

Certainly, no saint is individually infallible. But the consensus of the saints, on the other other hand, is authoritative. And one gets to the consensus by starting with individual saints. Do you have any evidence that St. Mark's position is not representative of the Patristic consensus? Any Father in the last six or seven centuries that stated that Rome was not (at least) in schism? Any Father or Ecumenical Council that taught that schismatics still have Mysteries?

There is no consensus, that is the whole point, to which the sources Fr. Ambrose has posted give witness.

If you do, then you have something constructive you could add to the conversation. Without it, all you have is your opinion--which your certainly entitled to--but you're not entitled to expect anyone else to give up their own opinion to agree with you.

The only thing anybody 'has' here is an opinion. You don't suppose that you 'have' those patristic quotations by some means of possession, do you? If we can admit that there is no consensus, and work then from there, that would certainly provide for a more interesting discussion. I personally like Fr. Ambrose's personal opinion, in this post http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,28315.msg446335.html#msg446335. What do you think of the idea that we simply cannot know?
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« Reply #129 on: December 24, 2011, 06:05:25 AM »

Yes, I agree with this but I would take it one step further, in line with what I was taught in Serbia.   It is the bishops who hold a greater authority because it falls to them to examine the Fathers and, exercising their apostolic authority, make a decision on what to accept and what to modify and what to lay aside.

Would you let me introduce some of the things which Fr Alexander Lebedeff of the Russian Church Abroad has written because I find them pertinent to our topic, and it is succinct and well expressed...

I should make clear that I am not actually engaging 'the topic'--my own experience is that this topic is too complex and multi-faceted (not to mention emotionally loaded) to be easily addressed in the format of a discussion forum (more on this in a bit), and my own time on this forum is too limited and haphazard to commit to such an in-depth discussion in any case.

Rather, as I do have an interest in the topic, I was trying to point out that, aside from you, the participants on one side of the discussion have not even tried to engage in a discussion of the Orthodox teaching(s) on this matter. They have expressed their personal opinions as if they were more important than the opinions of the saints and Fathers and mocked those who have at least attempted to build their position on the foundations of actual Church teaching rather than 'every man his own pope.' That does not apply to your own contributions which certainly present evidence that must be dealt with--just as the Patristic witness of St. Mark or St. Theodosius or St. Basil's canonical epistle must be dealt with and not simply dismissed.

As for the complexity of this topic, I will simply point out that I was on the Indiana Orthodox list when Fr. Alexander originally posted his detailed history of the Russian Church's position. So in addition to seeing his documentation of the historical position, I also saw him express full obedience and agreement with ROCOR's 1971 decision to start receiving Roman Catholics via baptism, and post comments such as:
Quote
https://listserv.indiana.edu/cgi-bin/wa-iub.exe?A2=ind9605C&L=ORTHODOX&P=R17981
The "Roman Catholic" Church (note the epithet "Roman"--if it were truly "Universal" you wouldn't need to define it as "Roman") is a schismatic (means "broken away") body that has over the centuries developed many heretical (meaning "false") teachings on some of the very basic teachings of the Church. It has false teachings on oeiginal sin, the Holy Trinity, the Mother of God, life after death, the "headship" of the Church, "infallibility" of the Pope, and many others. It introduced many new practices that were not in keeping with the established tradition of the Church, such as celibacy of priests, communion with unleavened bread, communion under only one species (notwithstanding the clear words of Christ: "Drink of it _all_ of you" laymen in the Roman Catholic Church were denied communion with the Blood of Christ for centuries), prohibition for laymen to read the Bible, prohibition of holding the services in a language the people could understand, indulgences (which were even sold for money), and many other aberrations, most of which eventually led to the Protestant
Reformation, which was an attempt to correct some of these clearly erroneous practices.

and
Quote
https://listserv.indiana.edu/cgi-bin/wa-iub.exe?A2=ind9706D&L=ORTHODOX&P=R14226
It should be clear to an infant that if the object of scrutiny (here, the Roman Catholic Church) changes significantly, then historical precedents concerning the previous incarnation of the object of scrutiny have no bearing at all. Who cares what pre-revolutionary Books of Needs and Handbooks for Priests or Pan-Orthodox Councils said about the recetion of Roman Catholic converts, when the Roman Catholic church itself, has, in recent decades, undergone such massive changes as to make it unrecognizable, compared to the Tridentine church that these guidelines referred to?

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« Reply #130 on: December 24, 2011, 06:19:40 AM »

Yes, I agree with this but I would take it one step further, in line with what I was taught in Serbia.   It is the bishops who hold a greater authority because it falls to them to examine the Fathers and, exercising their apostolic authority, make a decision on what to accept and what to modify and what to lay aside.

Would you let me introduce some of the things which Fr Alexander Lebedeff of the Russian Church Abroad has written because I find them pertinent to our topic, and it is succinct and well expressed...

I should make clear that I am not actually engaging 'the topic'--my own experience is that this topic is too complex and multi-faceted (not to mention emotionally loaded) to be easily addressed in the format of a discussion forum (more on this in a bit), and my own time on this forum is too limited and haphazard to commit to such an in-depth discussion in any case.

Rather, as I do have an interest in the topic, I was trying to point out that, aside from you, the participants on one side of the discussion have not even tried to engage in a discussion of the Orthodox teaching(s) on this matter. They have expressed their personal opinions as if they were more important than the opinions of the saints and Fathers and mocked those who have at least attempted to build their position on the foundations of actual Church teaching rather than 'every man his own pope.' That does not apply to your own contributions which certainly present evidence that must be dealt with--just as the Patristic witness of St. Mark or St. Theodosius or St. Basil's canonical epistle must be dealt with and not simply dismissed.

Excuse me then, for having the gall to doubt that the few sources provided are the end of the matter. The fact that our bishops do not treat all Roman Catholics, clergy and layman alike, as unbaptized heathens seems to provide testimony to the idea that there is some sort of grace present in Catholicism. That we do not actively attempt to steal all of the sheep we possibly can from the Roman Catholic Church and establish our own rival patriarchate of Rome and all the West (as much as such an action might delight Isa laugh) seems also to speak to the idea that, while they may not be within the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church, 'without grace' might not be the reality of their situation. If we truly are to believe that Catholicism is completely without sacramental grace, and we do not do everything within our power to convert as many Catholics as we can, so as to save their souls from being led into perdition by their false Church, then we are truly contemptible people and not fit to enter into the kingdom of heaven. That our current reality seems to disagree with the fathers whom you and others here have quoted here cannot simply be discounted either.

As for the complexity of this topic, I will simply point out that I was on the Indiana Orthodox list when Fr. Alexander originally posted his detailed history of the Russian Church's position. So in addition to seeing his documentation of the historical position, I also saw him express full obedience and agreement with ROCOR's 1971 decision to start receiving Roman Catholics via baptism, and post comments such as:
Quote
https://listserv.indiana.edu/cgi-bin/wa-iub.exe?A2=ind9605C&L=ORTHODOX&P=R17981
The "Roman Catholic" Church (note the epithet "Roman"--if it were truly "Universal" you wouldn't need to define it as "Roman") is a schismatic (means "broken away") body that has over the centuries developed many heretical (meaning "false") teachings on some of the very basic teachings of the Church. It has false teachings on oeiginal sin, the Holy Trinity, the Mother of God, life after death, the "headship" of the Church, "infallibility" of the Pope, and many others. It introduced many new practices that were not in keeping with the established tradition of the Church, such as celibacy of priests, communion with unleavened bread, communion under only one species (notwithstanding the clear words of Christ: "Drink of it _all_ of you" laymen in the Roman Catholic Church were denied communion with the Blood of Christ for centuries), prohibition for laymen to read the Bible, prohibition of holding the services in a language the people could understand, indulgences (which were even sold for money), and many other aberrations, most of which eventually led to the Protestant
Reformation, which was an attempt to correct some of these clearly erroneous practices.

and
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https://listserv.indiana.edu/cgi-bin/wa-iub.exe?A2=ind9706D&L=ORTHODOX&P=R14226
It should be clear to an infant that if the object of scrutiny (here, the Roman Catholic Church) changes significantly, then historical precedents concerning the previous incarnation of the object of scrutiny have no bearing at all. Who cares what pre-revolutionary Books of Needs and Handbooks for Priests or Pan-Orthodox Councils said about the recetion of Roman Catholic converts, when the Roman Catholic church itself, has, in recent decades, undergone such massive changes as to make it unrecognizable, compared to the Tridentine church that these guidelines referred to?



See, now this is interesting. The idea that the Roman Catholic Church bears so little resemblance to the Tridentine Church that we should have to reassess the position taken by the Russian Orthodox Church several hundred years ago might be interesting to explore, especially if the right questions are asked.
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« Reply #131 on: December 24, 2011, 07:38:27 AM »

The Orthodox Church has the grace of the Holy Spirit.

That's all that needs to be said, and all that can be said with any certainty. Legalistic speculation about when a schism truly becomes a schism and when grace departs from a schismatic group, although interesting, is mere speculation.

It certainly would make sense to say that if an Orthodox bishop leaves the Church and joins himself to a schismatic or heretical body, all those under his jurisdiction would not immediately find themselves in the same situation. However, to construct an ecclesiology on assumptions about when and how a particular body loses sacramental grace (and thereby membership in the Body of Christ) is like building a house on sand. It might work on paper, but won't have any basis in reality.

The determination as to whether a group which has gone into schism has apostolic succession and mysteriological grace belongs in the first instance to the bishops of the canonical Church from which it departed into schism or, if it is a schism of a schism, to the originating canonical Church.  

It is the bishops of that Church who exercise the powers of binding and loosing.    

In many instances Churches will act very leniently with breakaway groups, praying that charity and leniency will bring them back to the Church.  

Sometimes the bishops are quite quick in rendering a judgement of deprivation of sacramental grace.  The Church of Serbia, for example, declared officially that the sacraments, including Baptism and the Priesthood, of the Free Serbian Orthodox Church were invalid.  We therefore had to baptize and chrismate and marry any people coming to us from the Free Serbian Church.

If we read Jonathan Gress' messages on the Forum I think he says that some of the Greek schismatic groups were deprived of sacramental grace very early by a decision of the bishops of the Church of Greece.

There can be only one Church of Christ.   As Archpriest Michael Protopopov notes in his small monograph on +Tikhon Pasechnik and the RTOC:

"If one’s actions take a person outside the Church then that person is outside the Church. There is no alternative. There is no shopping list of churches. There is only One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church."

http://pages.prodigy.net/frjohnwhiteford/RTOC.htm


Actually, I think upon re-reading The Struggle against Ecumenism, published by Holy Transfiguration Monastery, it seems the State Church never synodically condemned the True Orthodox as schismatic, at least not up until the three bishops joined the True Orthodox in 1935. Archbishop Chrysostomos himself openly spoke of the TO as schismatics, and of his own accord he compelled the state authorities to persecute the TO as such (my impression is because of ideological sympathy between himself and the revolutionary republican government), but many other hierarchs in the State Church remained sympathetic to the TO, which is why they couldn't collectively agree to condemn them.
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« Reply #132 on: December 24, 2011, 12:01:43 PM »

Oh, but I am relieved!  Enormously so. 

I don't get what the point of saying that is. It's incredibly obnoxious, rude and uncharitable. I, as an ex-Roman Catholic, do not go up to my Catholic parents and tell them how relieved I am that I no longer belong to what I perceive as their liberalizing, liturgically irreverent and minimalist, heretical church. You, as an ex-Orthodox, should show the same respect and common decency. It really is pretty unbecoming.  Undecided

Quote
Can you tell me which Catholic theologians and clergy have asserted that Catholics who have become Orthodox have denied Christ?  With some referenced sources?
I would think that such a position would be natural considering how the RCC sees itself as the true church of Jesus Christ and sees the Orthodox Churches as defective. Wouldn't leaving the true church of Christ for one that is "defective" be, in some capacity, rejecting Him?

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Now...I am outta here and signing off for the night.

Merry Christmas!!!  Wink Wink

Merry Christmas! Christ is born!  Smiley

William,

My comment was the truth.  As such it was also no more "incredibly obnoxious, rude and uncharitable" than the untrue and inflammatory comments which were made by Shanghaiski about Eastern Catholics denying Christ, which showed no respect or common decency toward his fellow Christians.  I'm sorry you felt offended by my comments, and apologize for having giving you offense.  Beyond that, the comments stand as written.

Even if the Catholic Church sees Orthodoxy as in some ways "defective" we do not exclude you from being part of the true Body of Christ, nor do we claim that you have denied Him.

And you still haven't told us which Catholic theologians and clergy have asserted that Catholics who have become Orthodox have denied Christ.  Are you able to do so?

Christ is Born! Glorify Him!
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« Reply #133 on: December 24, 2011, 12:14:04 PM »

Oh, but I am relieved!  Enormously so.  

I don't get what the point of saying that is. It's incredibly obnoxious, rude and uncharitable. I, as an ex-Roman Catholic, do not go up to my Catholic parents and tell them how relieved I am that I no longer belong to what I perceive as their liberalizing, liturgically irreverent and minimalist, heretical church. You, as an ex-Orthodox, should show the same respect and common decency. It really is pretty unbecoming.  Undecided

Quote
Can you tell me which Catholic theologians and clergy have asserted that Catholics who have become Orthodox have denied Christ?  With some referenced sources?
I would think that such a position would be natural considering how the RCC sees itself as the true church of Jesus Christ and sees the Orthodox Churches as defective. Wouldn't leaving the true church of Christ for one that is "defective" be, in some capacity, rejecting Him?

Quote
Now...I am outta here and signing off for the night.

Merry Christmas!!!  Wink Wink

Merry Christmas! Christ is born!  Smiley



William,

My comment was the truth.  As such it was also no more "incredibly obnoxious, rude and uncharitable" than the untrue and inflammatory comments which were made by Shanghaiski about Eastern Catholics denying Christ, which showed no respect or common decency toward his fellow Christians.  I'm sorry you felt offended by my comments, and apologize for having giving you offense.  Beyond that, the comments stand as written.

Even if the Catholic Church sees Orthodoxy as in some ways "defective" we do not exclude you from being part of the true Body of Christ, nor do we claim that you have denied Him.

And you still haven't told us which Catholic theologians and clergy have asserted that Catholics who have become Orthodox have denied Christ.  Are you able to do so?

Christ is Born! Glorify Him!

Thank you for coming to the defense of my departed Greek Catholic ancestors and those living who did not follow my Grandfathers back into the Orthodox Church. In my family, we were taught to respect them and pray for their intentions and remember the departed. I pray that I am CERTAIN, or at least as certain as a human may be, that they too share in the grace and loving embrace of our Lord and Savior and are under the protection of our Most Holy Mother Mary, the Birthgiver of God and Theotokas. How that is so I leave to the wisdom of God. After all, as Paul reminds us, we see things now as a child or as through a dark mirror. Trust in the Lord and in his Wisdom.

It was their steadfastness that preserved the light and the Faith through and beyond the difficulties caused by the Unias and the struggles in the Americas and in Europe.

The mere fact that our clergy do not concelebrate the Mysteries tells us the obvious; that too each other, in some way or ways, West and East view the other as 'defective.' Let's not beat a dead horse during this season of joy and miracles!

Christos Razdajetsja! Slavite Jeho!

s'bohom

David

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« Reply #134 on: December 24, 2011, 12:52:26 PM »

 Divergence came about through political and social pressure. Even if Churches reunite today. Many in the past will remain graceless.
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