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Author Topic: Closer to Orthodoxy?  (Read 2723 times) Average Rating: 0
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Searching_for_Christ
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« on: January 11, 2012, 03:03:57 PM »

Hello my brothers and sisters in Christ   Grin

I have a random question that simply popped into my head.  Its nothing serious, but in your all personal opinions what would you consider closest to the Orthodox faith? Roman Catholics, or Traditionalist Anglo-Catholics?  Just a curious tidbit that I would love to see ya'll opinion on.


Pax Christi 
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Justin Kissel
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« Reply #1 on: January 11, 2012, 03:09:06 PM »

I'd say Oriental Orthodox. I know many say we share the same faith, and I'm not wanting to argue that point, but there are some differences in practices, and also in Bible canon and some tendencies to emphasise this or that in theology. After that, I don't know... I want to say Roman Catholics and then the Anglo-Catholics, followed by conservative Anglicans, but frankly I just don't know enough about what differences there are between the Orthodox and Anglicans (of various stripes) to say.
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Searching_for_Christ
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« Reply #2 on: January 11, 2012, 03:10:56 PM »

I'd say Oriental Orthodox. I know many say we share the same faith, and I'm not wanting to argue that point, but there are some differences in practices, and also in Bible canon and some tendencies to emphasise this or that in theology. After that, I don't know... I want to say Roman Catholics and then the Anglo-Catholics, followed by conservative Anglicans, but frankly I just don't know enough about what differences there are between the Orthodox and Anglicans (of various stripes) to say.

Well I personally would say that the rejection of the papacy would be a good foot in the right direction for Anglo-Catholics wouldn't you say?

Pax Christi
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Justin Kissel
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« Reply #3 on: January 11, 2012, 03:11:47 PM »

I'd say Oriental Orthodox. I know many say we share the same faith, and I'm not wanting to argue that point, but there are some differences in practices, and also in Bible canon and some tendencies to emphasise this or that in theology. After that, I don't know... I want to say Roman Catholics and then the Anglo-Catholics, followed by conservative Anglicans, but frankly I just don't know enough about what differences there are between the Orthodox and Anglicans (of various stripes) to say.

Well I personally would say that the rejection of the papacy would be a good foot in the right direction for Anglo-Catholics wouldn't you say?

Pax Christi

Yeah, definitely, especially since that's probably the central issue between Roman Catholics and Eastern Orthodox Smiley
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Searching_for_Christ
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« Reply #4 on: January 11, 2012, 03:16:35 PM »

I'd say Oriental Orthodox. I know many say we share the same faith, and I'm not wanting to argue that point, but there are some differences in practices, and also in Bible canon and some tendencies to emphasise this or that in theology. After that, I don't know... I want to say Roman Catholics and then the Anglo-Catholics, followed by conservative Anglicans, but frankly I just don't know enough about what differences there are between the Orthodox and Anglicans (of various stripes) to say.

Well I personally would say that the rejection of the papacy would be a good foot in the right direction for Anglo-Catholics wouldn't you say?

Pax Christi

Yeah, definitely, especially since that's probably the central issue between Roman Catholics and Eastern Orthodox Smiley

In my opinion Anglo-Catholics could almost pass as western "rites" within Holy Orthodoxy (with some obvious tweeking) as apposed to the Roman Catholic Church.  It would seem that Roman Catholic church would have to get rid of and change more, than an Anglo-Catholic may have to.  Of course those who are more knowledgeable than I might have something else to say about that.
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« Reply #5 on: January 11, 2012, 03:18:25 PM »

I'd say Oriental Orthodox. I know many say we share the same faith, and I'm not wanting to argue that point, but there are some differences in practices, and also in Bible canon and some tendencies to emphasise this or that in theology. After that, I don't know... I want to say Roman Catholics and then the Anglo-Catholics, followed by conservative Anglicans, but frankly I just don't know enough about what differences there are between the Orthodox and Anglicans (of various stripes) to say.

Well I personally would say that the rejection of the papacy would be a good foot in the right direction for Anglo-Catholics wouldn't you say?

Pax Christi

Yeah, definitely, especially since that's probably the central issue between Roman Catholics and Eastern Orthodox Smiley

However, with many Anglo-Catholics considering re-union with Rome, you might be put between a rock and a hard place if you decided to join them.

Inquire into Orthodoxy first.
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« Reply #6 on: January 11, 2012, 03:24:43 PM »

I would almost think that the Anglo-Catholic are reuniting with the Catholics, because of the familiarity of Western Liturgy.   Plus I would be willing to bet how "unfamiliar" they would be with Holy Orthodoxy.
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« Reply #7 on: January 11, 2012, 03:40:14 PM »

Like Asteriktos, I would say the EO and OO are closest. Significantly, this is also what my very much anti-Chalcedonian (the council, not necessarily the people) priest says.

So...um...Orthodoxy is closest to Orthodoxy?
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« Reply #8 on: January 11, 2012, 03:50:13 PM »

I would almost think that the Anglo-Catholic are reuniting with the Catholics, because of the familiarity of Western Liturgy.   Plus I would be willing to bet how "unfamiliar" they would be with Holy Orthodoxy.

That is because Orthodoxy is the best kept secret.

However, you already know that.

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« Reply #9 on: January 11, 2012, 04:08:07 PM »

Quote
That is because Orthodoxy is the best kept secret
Much to Orthodoxy's shame I think.

PP
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« Reply #10 on: January 11, 2012, 09:47:01 PM »

Like Asteriktos, I would say the EO and OO are closest. Significantly, this is also what my very much anti-Chalcedonian (the council, not necessarily the people) priest says.

So...um...Orthodoxy is closest to Orthodoxy?

I appreciate the sentiment but this is really just a "for fun" thread, where besides Holy Orthodoxy what Churches would you consider to be the closest to your Church in beliefs and Orthodoxy ect Smiley
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« Reply #11 on: January 11, 2012, 09:49:40 PM »

I would almost think that the Anglo-Catholic are reuniting with the Catholics, because of the familiarity of Western Liturgy.   Plus I would be willing to bet how "unfamiliar" they would be with Holy Orthodoxy.

That is because Orthodoxy is the best kept secret.

However, you already know that.



Yes, I know.....as you know that I know that you know Wink

I just have a lot of "sorting" I'm going through, and Anglo-Catholicism is where I have found myself at atm.   I do love and respect Holy Orthodoxy tho, my time in discussion with you and the others from TAW has left a lasting impact upon me.
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« Reply #12 on: January 11, 2012, 10:01:06 PM »

I would almost think that the Anglo-Catholic are reuniting with the Catholics, because of the familiarity of Western Liturgy.   Plus I would be willing to bet how "unfamiliar" they would be with Holy Orthodoxy.

That is because Orthodoxy is the best kept secret.

However, you already know that.



Yes, I know.....as you know that I know that you know Wink

I just have a lot of "sorting" I'm going through, and Anglo-Catholicism is where I have found myself at atm.   I do love and respect Holy Orthodoxy tho, my time in discussion with you and the others from TAW has left a lasting impact upon me.

Brother, I will pray for you. Keep the faith. Sing hymns. Pray unceasingly.
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« Reply #13 on: January 11, 2012, 10:08:42 PM »

Traditionalist Anglo-Catholicism. They seem to be more traditional than Roman Catholicism as a whole. But I've never been a Trad AC so I don't know for sure (though I have been a liberal, a conservative and a traditionalist Catholic at various times).
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« Reply #14 on: January 12, 2012, 11:53:50 AM »

As a traditional catholic Anglican (and Eastern Orthodox catechumen briefly over 5 years ago) I'd say there is a good bit of affinity betwteen the two, especially in the Anglican Continuum (which follows the Affirmation of St Louis--7 Councils, 7 sacraments, and no WO).  I was in the ACC (driving to a parish an hour away) until two summers ago when a new ACNA mission opened in my town.  However, I still have strong sympathies towards both the ACC (and other St Louis jurisdictions) and the EOC.
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« Reply #15 on: January 12, 2012, 04:03:36 PM »

I was raised Lutheran and my father's family were all Catholic but I have to agree with whoever said that Orthodoxy is like Orthodoxy. There is no equivalent, and all the others are equal - no one is any closer than any other. I base this opinion on how much I had to re-learn and re-orient my beliefs and thinking when I became Orthodox. There really is no equivalent. Even when we use the same words as others, we often mean totally different things or have a different understanding.
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« Reply #16 on: January 12, 2012, 06:12:29 PM »

I was raised Lutheran and my father's family were all Catholic but I have to agree with whoever said that Orthodoxy is like Orthodoxy. There is no equivalent, and all the others are equal - no one is any closer than any other. I base this opinion on how much I had to re-learn and re-orient my beliefs and thinking when I became Orthodox. There really is no equivalent. Even when we use the same words as others, we often mean totally different things or have a different understanding.

Well I wasn't asking in regards to stuff like "non-orthodox equivalents"  I was just wondering which Church seemed closest in similarity of beliefs.
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« Reply #17 on: January 12, 2012, 06:36:58 PM »

I was raised Lutheran and my father's family were all Catholic but I have to agree with whoever said that Orthodoxy is like Orthodoxy. There is no equivalent, and all the others are equal - no one is any closer than any other. I base this opinion on how much I had to re-learn and re-orient my beliefs and thinking when I became Orthodox. There really is no equivalent. Even when we use the same words as others, we often mean totally different things or have a different understanding.

Well I wasn't asking in regards to stuff like "non-orthodox equivalents"  I was just wondering which Church seemed closest in similarity of beliefs.

None of 'em. Orthodoxy is so different that none of them are any closer than any other. Unless you count the "lunatic fringe" who make it up as they go along.
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« Reply #18 on: January 12, 2012, 07:23:08 PM »

Yeah, basic similarities such as "belief in Apostolicity" or "Tradition" or any other idea you can come up with doesn't really make any non-Orthodox church closer to the EO or OO when you consider how differently the Orthodox approach and understand those ideas than the Catholics or the Protestants do. Only Orthodoxy is like Orthodoxy (and I spent some time among Byzantine Catholics after I tired of trying to reconcile with Rome, so I'd like to think that if there was any such similarity as the Catholics often say there is, I'd have found it there. Alas, there is no substitute for Orthodoxy. Anyone can use a censer, buy an icon, or for that matter claim to follow the early church. Only Orthodoxy lives in it.)
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« Reply #19 on: January 12, 2012, 07:34:46 PM »

Again with all do respect this thread was not, and never will be about what is supposedly the best substitute for Orthodoxy.  I respect Orthodoxy too much, and would rather not do such a thing in your home forum.  This was just suppose to be a fun thread of sorts.   Kinda like "whats closer to a hot dog? Kabasa (sp?) or sausage?" not to say that they are substitutes or anything of that sort. 


Pax Christi
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« Reply #20 on: January 12, 2012, 07:39:46 PM »

I understand that, but the point is that there isn't anything that qualifies as "closest". There just is and isn't.
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« Reply #21 on: January 12, 2012, 07:46:45 PM »

I don't know, I don't really buy it. When one reads deeply from both sides (without an agenda) there is not the vast difference between "The Most Unique Orthodoxy Ever," and Roman Catholicism (or Anglo-Catholicism). They tend to get exaggerated for one reason or another, and I have to say, it seems to happen mostly on the Orthodox side. Many facets of the Orthodox tradition get ignored or even distorted in an effort to make it seem completely different from anything else in any way.

Anyway, my vote would probably be Anglo-Catholicism. Smiley
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« Reply #22 on: January 12, 2012, 08:19:37 PM »

Sleeper: Maybe that's true of the EO because of their much longer period of union with Rome (I don't know; I wouldn't think so, but several more centuries of communion aren't something I'd dismiss), but that'd be a definite stretch concerning the OO. I was RC before coming to the Coptic Church. They are very different, even though we of course still commemorate the Orthodox saints of Rome, and one of the most famous Coptic monasteries is the Monastery of the Romans (Baramous, or "Pa-Romeos") in Wadi El Natrun.  Smiley

Even the Coptic CC (a tiny church) is not close to the COC, though in (RCC) theory they should be.

But judge for yourself: Orthodox liturgy and its its Catholic equivalent.

The only reason I would have known that the Noursat was Coptic (other than the fact that the Maronite friend who sent it to me told me it was) is that the priest pronounces his "jim" as "gim", there's a little bit of Coptic here and there (one half of the "Hiteni", which is finished in Arabic with female chanters, for some reason), and a halfhearted attempt at playing the cymbal for about 90 seconds. And, of course, in theology they have absorbed Rome's speculations. So, yes, there is a vast difference to be observed here.
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« Reply #23 on: January 12, 2012, 08:34:36 PM »

Sleeper: Maybe that's true of the EO because of their much longer period of union with Rome (I don't know; I wouldn't think so, but several more centuries of communion aren't something I'd dismiss), but that'd be a definite stretch concerning the OO. I was RC before coming to the Coptic Church. They are very different, even though we of course still commemorate the Orthodox saints of Rome, and one of the most famous Coptic monasteries is the Monastery of the Romans (Baramous, or "Pa-Romeos") in Wadi El Natrun.  Smiley

Even the Coptic CC (a tiny church) is not close to the COC, though in (RCC) theory they should be.

But judge for yourself: Orthodox liturgy and its its Catholic equivalent.

The only reason I would have known that the Noursat was Coptic (other than the fact that the Maronite friend who sent it to me told me it was) is that the priest pronounces his "jim" as "gim", there's a little bit of Coptic here and there (one half of the "Hiteni", which is finished in Arabic with female chanters, for some reason), and a halfhearted attempt at playing the cymbal for about 90 seconds. And, of course, in theology they have absorbed Rome's speculations. So, yes, there is a vast difference to be observed here.
LOL.  Do tell Mardukm.
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« Reply #24 on: January 12, 2012, 08:45:54 PM »

Oh, he is well aware of my opinion, but in his eyes, I have misunderstood or misrepresented Rome. Fair enough, I am no expert, but watch those two videos and ask yourself who is misrepresenting what.
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« Reply #25 on: January 12, 2012, 08:53:14 PM »

Oh, he is well aware of my opinion, but in his eyes, I have misunderstood or misrepresented Rome. Fair enough, I am no expert, but watch those two videos and ask yourself who is misrepresenting what.
Oh, I don't need to watch the videos to know the answer to that question. Wink
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« Reply #26 on: January 13, 2012, 12:43:07 AM »

When one reads deeply from both sides (without an agenda) there is not the vast difference between "The Most Unique Orthodoxy Ever," and Roman Catholicism (or Anglo-Catholicism). They tend to get exaggerated for one reason or another, and I have to say, it seems to happen mostly on the Orthodox side. Many facets of the Orthodox tradition get ignored or even distorted in an effort to make it seem completely different from anything else in any way.

When one reads deeply from both sides (without an agenda) there is a vast difference between any Orthodoxy, including Latin Orthodoxy of the conciliar period, and Roman Catholicism. They tend to get minimized for one reason or another, and I have to say, it seems to happen mostly on the Latin side. Many facets of the Orthodox tradition get ignored or outright distorted in an effort to make it seem more compatible to non-Orthodox expectations.

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« Reply #27 on: January 13, 2012, 12:59:00 AM »

When one reads deeply from both sides (without an agenda) there is not the vast difference between "The Most Unique Orthodoxy Ever," and Roman Catholicism (or Anglo-Catholicism). They tend to get exaggerated for one reason or another, and I have to say, it seems to happen mostly on the Orthodox side. Many facets of the Orthodox tradition get ignored or even distorted in an effort to make it seem completely different from anything else in any way.

When one reads deeply from both sides (without an agenda) there is a vast difference between any Orthodoxy, including Latin Orthodoxy of the conciliar period, and Roman Catholicism. They tend to get minimized for one reason or another, and I have to say, it seems to happen mostly on the Latin side. Many facets of the Orthodox tradition get ignored or outright distorted in an effort to make it seem more compatible to non-Orthodox expectations.



Oh, I see what you did there.
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« Reply #28 on: January 13, 2012, 01:34:13 AM »

When one reads deeply from both sides (without an agenda) there is not the vast difference between "The Most Unique Orthodoxy Ever," and Roman Catholicism (or Anglo-Catholicism). They tend to get exaggerated for one reason or another, and I have to say, it seems to happen mostly on the Orthodox side. Many facets of the Orthodox tradition get ignored or even distorted in an effort to make it seem completely different from anything else in any way.

When one reads deeply from both sides (without an agenda) there is a vast difference between any Orthodoxy, including Latin Orthodoxy of the conciliar period, and Roman Catholicism. They tend to get minimized for one reason or another, and I have to say, it seems to happen mostly on the Latin side. Many facets of the Orthodox tradition get ignored or outright distorted in an effort to make it seem more compatible to non-Orthodox expectations.



Oh, I see what you did there.

I figured one unsubstantiated opinion deserved another.
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« Reply #29 on: January 13, 2012, 02:43:31 AM »

Perhaps this won't "substantiate" anything, but I'll share some quotes to show I'm not alone in my persuasion and am in relatively good company.

Fr. Patrick Henry Reardon, in an email to an Orthodox inquirer, said: 

"What almost always passes for Orthodox theology among English-speaking Orthodox these days is actually just a branch of the larger Orthodox picture. Indeed, it tends sometimes to be rather sectarian...The Orthodox Church is an ancient castle, as it were, of which only two or three rooms have been much in use since about 1920. These two or three rooms were furnished by the Russian émigrés in Paris between the two World Wars. This furniture is heavily neo-Palamite and anti-Scholastic...Anything that does not fit comfortably into that model is dismissed as Western and even non-Orthodox...For this reason I urge you, as you can, to read in the Orthodox sources that tend to get skipped in what currently passes for Orthodoxy."

Dr. David Bentley Hart, an Orthodox theologian and scholar, in the Scottish Journal of Theology, 60(1): 95-101 (2007) said:

"Frankly, I think that the theological idiom to which Orthodox theology has been confined for the last fifty years or so has largely exhausted itself and has become tediously repetitive. It has also, to a very great extent, done much to distort the Orthodox understanding of the traditions of both East and West."

In another article, The Myth of Schism, he went further:

"Anyone familiar with the Eastern Christian world knows that the Orthodox view of the Catholic Church is often a curious mélange of fact, fantasy, cultural prejudice, sublime theological misunderstanding, resentment, reasonable disagreement, and unreasonable dread: it sees a misty phantasmagoria of crusades, predestination, “modalism,” a God of wrath, flagellants, Grand Inquisitors, and those blasted Borgias.

As for how to remedy this situation (of apparent theological differences), I can offer only the weak recommendation of better education: perhaps we might find a way to force young Orthodox theologians to read Augustine and Aquinas, rather than fatuous treatments of Augustine and Aquinas written by dyspeptic Greeks, or to forge young Catholic theologians to immerse themselves in Byzantine scholasticism and Eastern ecclesiology, and to force everyone involved to learn the history of the church in all its ambiguity. But, whatever we do, we have too long allowed bad scholarship and empty cant and counterfeit history to influence and even dictate the terms of the relation between Orthodoxy and Rome.

Today, however, a grand mythology has evolved regarding the theological dispositions of the Eastern and Western Christendom, to the effect that the theologies of the Eastern and Western Catholic traditions have obeyed contrary logics and have in consequence arrived at conclusions inimical each to the other - that is to say, the very essence of what we believe is no longer compatible. I do not believe that, before the middle of the 20th century, claims were ever made regarding the nature of the division as radical as those one finds not only in the works of inane agitators like the altogether absurd and execrable John Romanides, but also in the works of theologians of genuine stature,  such as Dumitru Staniloae, Vladimir Lossky, or John Zizioulas in the East or Erich Przywara or Hans Urs von Balthasar in the West; and until those claims are defeated - as well they should be, as they are without exception entirely fanciful - we cannot reasonably hope for anything but impasse."


Both sides are guilty, of course. My impression of most of it lying with Orthodox is probably because I'm Orthodox and that's who I most read and converse with. But there seems to be a specific trend within North American convert-culture Orthodoxy that seeks to paint Orthodoxy in contra-distinction to everything else. Hence "The Most Unique Orthodoxy Ever." It's so "unique" it's not like anything! I understand the impulse, but it has unfortunate consequences.
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« Reply #30 on: January 13, 2012, 03:12:39 AM »

You're right, that didn't substantiate anything. I didn't buy Hart's article back when I was RC (when I read it more than once, as it is popular among internet RC apologists), and I don't buy it now.

With all due respect, I think the approach you are taking is a bit off. I can't speak about North American convert culture or whatever (I don't know that the OO have a large enough number of converts to have such a thing, unfortunately), but what I have noticed in my own environment is that all my Orthodox friends are very curious about the Roman Catholic Church. No doubt this is at least partially because we are in a heavily Roman Catholic environment, but there is also genuine respect there. A few months ago after the Agape meal our priest told us a story about visiting the "miracle" staircase of the Loretto Chapel in Santa Fe, and then suggested we all go there to see it for ourselves. Not necessarily because he believes in the supposed miracle or thinks we should believe in it, but because as a place for pious believers, we should at least go see it. Does that sound like unreasonable, fearful anti-Catholic posturing or what have you? All of the laity I know are similar; they assume that I know more about Orthodoxy than I actually do because I was once Catholic, and so can understand intuitively the position of the saints, the Theotokos, the priesthood, etc. Maybe the attitude Fr. Reardon describes is prevalent among EO converts, though.

None of this, however, obscures the very really differences between the Orthodox and Roman Catholic churches, however. If the EO overemphasize them, then certainly the RCs underplay them to a much greater degree. It doesn't mean RCs are bad people or anything like that, but I do tend to agree with the EP that they and the Orthodox are, in a sense, ontologically different. When I have brought this idea up around RCs (even before I found the COC), they didn't seem to understand what that meant. That doesn't bode well. Sad
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« Reply #31 on: January 13, 2012, 03:38:46 AM »

Perhaps this won't "substantiate" anything, but I'll share some quotes to show I'm not alone in my persuasion and am in relatively good company.

Actually, what I most object to in your original post was its invocation of some mythical individual "without an agenda". Perhaps there is an agnostic scholar of religion at Tokyo University who actually matches this description, but in general no one puts in the considerable effort to read deeply in either tradition (much less both) without some kind of personal stake. Indeed if anyone comes close to this description, it is the inquirer/convert trying to determine which Apostolic Church to join--though even then one can usually point to some level of pre-conception or prejudice, whether it's an emotional attachment to the Western liturgical tradition or a childhood spent hearing about the evils of the papacy. The best one can hope for is that people recognize their agenda and then try to let the sources speak for themselves.

In that sense, both your quotes are just as much 'unsubstantiated opinion' as either of our original posts. Neither cites any actual example of a difference that's not really a difference nor do they quote any actually authoritative voice from either tradition--canonized saint, Father, conciliar document or, in the West's case, Papal document--to back up their opinion. Indeed the closest we get is Dr. Hart's citation of multiple eminent theologians (from both sides) who *disagree* with him. And while Fr. Patrick's quote names no names, he seems to imply just as clearly as Dr. Hart that his opinion is in the minority.

If you are going to accuse people of being 'guilty' of something, you really should assume the burden of actually demonstrating that.
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« Reply #32 on: January 13, 2012, 04:01:28 AM »

Parenthetically, I also have to add that I find it ironic that Fr. Patrick identifies the 'Paris school' as a major source of the 'problem' as he sees it. I know many Orthodox who would agree that the Paris school is a limited and somewhat problematic nexus of modern Orthodox thought--but with the exception of Fr. Patrick (and possibly Dr. Hart), the normal objection is that the Paris school was *too* accomadating of Western and modernist thought. Or in other words, if you toss out the Parish school, you might actually find the mainstream of Orthdoxy moving even further from where you seem to think it should be.
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« Reply #33 on: January 13, 2012, 04:14:16 AM »

You want to cut through the cr*p? Ignore most of the current "theologians", and spend a year keeping your eyes and ears open to a year of the Orthodox liturgical cycle - DLs, Vespers, Matins, Compline, Triodion, Pentecostarion, etc, as well as other services such as weddings, funerals, supplicatory services, akathists, ordinations, unction, etc. Immerse yourself in what is read, chanted and sung. Examine and absorb the iconography. Only then can Orthodoxy truly be compared to other denominations. It won't take long to realize the depth of difference between Orthodoxy and any other Christian denomination.
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« Reply #34 on: January 13, 2012, 04:30:51 AM »

Since this appears to be turning into an advice thread (thanks, LBK; good suggestions!), I would like to recommend the sayings of the Desert Fathers. I learned/am learning more from them than any book by any professional Orthodox theologian or whatever you'd call them. There are many translations. Probably the most popular and widely available in English is by Benedicta Ward.
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« Reply #35 on: January 13, 2012, 10:47:57 AM »

... spend a year keeping your eyes and ears open to a year of the Orthodox liturgical cycle - DLs, Vespers, Matins, Compline, Triodion, Pentecostarion, etc, as well as other services such as weddings, funerals, supplicatory services, akathists, ordinations, unction, etc. Immerse yourself in what is read, chanted and sung. Examine and absorb the iconography. Only then can Orthodoxy truly be compared to other denominations. It won't take long to realize the depth of difference between Orthodoxy and any other Christian denomination.

I'm not a theologian and I am not approaching it from a theological pov, but from my convert personal perspective, coming to Orthodoxy was a radical shift in understanding, perspective, orientation - whatever you want to call it. A priest friend told me that in a recent inquirer's class, one member (an evangelical) exclaimed, "But, Father, if that's true, then everything I ever knew is wrong. I'm going to have to fix everything!" To which Father responded, "Well, son, that's right, but you don't have to do it alone. All the heavy lifting has already been done for us."

My experience was something like that. Everything that I thought I knew was wrong. That's why I say that no denomination is any closer to Orthodoxy than any other. Two sides of the same coin.
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« Reply #36 on: January 13, 2012, 11:05:21 AM »

I want to thank dzheremi for reposting the link to the Ecumenical Patriarch's address from 1997 at Georgetown University. I have felt for many years that he expresses the fundamental differences between the Orthodox and the western Church of Rome as well, and in terms as understandable, as I have seen.

Pious believers and simple priests and monks preserve more essential truth in many ways than do most pontificating and polemically minded apologists and academics. I always try to keep that in mind when I engage in 'comparative' analyses of Orthodoxy and Roman Catholicism.
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« Reply #37 on: January 13, 2012, 01:07:27 PM »

If the EO overemphasize them, then certainly the RCs underplay them to a much greater degree.

As a life-long Roman Catholic I can tell you that there are plenty of Roman Catholics who believe that we are extremely close to Eastern Orthodoxy.

But on the other hand, there are also plenty of RCs who believe that Orthodoxy and Protestantism are extremely close, without either of them being close to Catholicism.

If you're looking for a statement that RCs can agree on, I might suggest "Catholicism is good, Protestantism is bad, Orthodoxy is somewhere in between".
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« Reply #38 on: January 13, 2012, 01:25:00 PM »

If the EO overemphasize them, then certainly the RCs underplay them to a much greater degree.

As a life-long Roman Catholic I can tell you that there are plenty of Roman Catholics who believe that we are extremely close to Eastern Orthodoxy.

But on the other hand, there are also plenty of RCs who believe that Orthodoxy and Protestantism are extremely close, without either of them being close to Catholicism.

If you're looking for a statement that RCs can agree on, I might suggest "Catholicism is good, Protestantism is bad, Orthodoxy is somewhere in between".

The only Roman Catholics who would take the position that Orthodoxy and Protestantism are 'extremely close....' are those who would argue forcefully that outside of the Church of Rome there can be no salvation. Correct me if I am in error, but I was under the impression that this does not reflect the teaching of the Church of Rome - although many who profess to be Catholic hold to said opinion.
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« Reply #39 on: January 13, 2012, 07:10:15 PM »

You're right, that didn't substantiate anything. I didn't buy Hart's article back when I was RC (when I read it more than once, as it is popular among internet RC apologists), and I don't buy it now.

There isn't really anything to "buy" as Dr. Hart is just stating the facts of history (albeit with some humorous jabs thrown into the mix). I have the bulk of the article in mind, rather then the quotes I selected (which I freely admit were chosen because they cut right to the chase).

Quote
With all due respect, I think the approach you are taking is a bit off. I can't speak about North American convert culture or whatever (I don't know that the OO have a large enough number of converts to have such a thing, unfortunately), but what I have noticed in my own environment is that all my Orthodox friends are very curious about the Roman Catholic Church. No doubt this is at least partially because we are in a heavily Roman Catholic environment, but there is also genuine respect there. A few months ago after the Agape meal our priest told us a story about visiting the "miracle" staircase of the Loretto Chapel in Santa Fe, and then suggested we all go there to see it for ourselves. Not necessarily because he believes in the supposed miracle or thinks we should believe in it, but because as a place for pious believers, we should at least go see it. Does that sound like unreasonable, fearful anti-Catholic posturing or what have you? All of the laity I know are similar; they assume that I know more about Orthodoxy than I actually do because I was once Catholic, and so can understand intuitively the position of the saints, the Theotokos, the priesthood, etc. Maybe the attitude Fr. Reardon describes is prevalent among EO converts, though.

Fair enough. I said as much already. I tend to "run" in Orthodox convert circles, so I'm just sharing my perception (or "unsubstantiated opinion" as the preferred nomenclature seems to be). But in North America it's precisely those converts who churn out "Coming/Journey/Road to Orthodoxy" books intended to show "the West" how "unique" Orthodoxy really is (their understanding of Orthodoxy anyway).

Perhaps this won't "substantiate" anything, but I'll share some quotes to show I'm not alone in my persuasion and am in relatively good company.

Actually, what I most object to in your original post was its invocation of some mythical individual "without an agenda". Perhaps there is an agnostic scholar of religion at Tokyo University who actually matches this description, but in general no one puts in the considerable effort to read deeply in either tradition (much less both) without some kind of personal stake. Indeed if anyone comes close to this description, it is the inquirer/convert trying to determine which Apostolic Church to join--though even then one can usually point to some level of pre-conception or prejudice, whether it's an emotional attachment to the Western liturgical tradition or a childhood spent hearing about the evils of the papacy. The best one can hope for is that people recognize their agenda and then try to let the sources speak for themselves.

Okay. Without an agenda was poorly worded, perhaps "aware of their prejudices and pre-conceptions and doing their best to lay them aside" works better. The point still remains that when one puts forward the considerable effort to read deeply from both sides, the caricatures some are so used to fall by the wayside. Here I'm thinking of all the common examples, filioque, Immaculate Conception, Papacy, Purgatory, you know, all those things that make us "different" from one another.

Quote
In that sense, both your quotes are just as much 'unsubstantiated opinion' as either of our original posts. Neither cites any actual example of a difference that's not really a difference nor do they quote any actually authoritative voice from either tradition--canonized saint, Father, conciliar document or, in the West's case, Papal document--to back up their opinion. Indeed the closest we get is Dr. Hart's citation of multiple eminent theologians (from both sides) who *disagree* with him. And while Fr. Patrick's quote names no names, he seems to imply just as clearly as Dr. Hart that his opinion is in the minority.

I gave you Dr. Hart's reference, you can go read it for yourself. I posted the quotes I did because they were succinct summations of their substantiations, not because they were the substantiations themselves.

Quote
If you are going to accuse people of being 'guilty' of something, you really should assume the burden of actually demonstrating that.

Alright, sounds good. I'll try to find some time to dig up some concrete examples instead of just my own experiences (and I mean that with not the slightest bit of sarcasm).
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« Reply #40 on: January 13, 2012, 07:23:01 PM »

Parenthetically, I also have to add that I find it ironic that Fr. Patrick identifies the 'Paris school' as a major source of the 'problem' as he sees it. I know many Orthodox who would agree that the Paris school is a limited and somewhat problematic nexus of modern Orthodox thought--but with the exception of Fr. Patrick (and possibly Dr. Hart), the normal objection is that the Paris school was *too* accomadating of Western and modernist thought. Or in other words, if you toss out the Parish school, you might actually find the mainstream of Orthdoxy moving even further from where you seem to think it should be.

When I first read "Paris school," I thought of the Sorbonne, and its opposition to the new papacy's position on filioque, not the "Paris school" of Russian exiles.
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« Reply #41 on: January 13, 2012, 07:26:25 PM »

You want to cut through the cr*p? Ignore most of the current "theologians", and spend a year keeping your eyes and ears open to a year of the Orthodox liturgical cycle - DLs, Vespers, Matins, Compline, Triodion, Pentecostarion, etc, as well as other services such as weddings, funerals, supplicatory services, akathists, ordinations, unction, etc. Immerse yourself in what is read, chanted and sung. Examine and absorb the iconography. Only then can Orthodoxy truly be compared to other denominations. It won't take long to realize the depth of difference between Orthodoxy and any other Christian denomination.

Amen, Amen, Amen.

Unless the theologian is dead, glorified, and lauded by the Church as a teacher of the faith, I greet him with the sound of one hand clapping, accompanied by crickets and the salmon of doubt.
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« Reply #42 on: January 13, 2012, 07:28:03 PM »

Quote from: podkarpatska

The only Roman Catholics who would take the position that Orthodoxy and Protestantism are 'extremely close....' are those who would argue forcefully that outside of the Church of Rome there can be no salvation. Correct me if I am in error, but I was under the impression that this does not reflect the teaching of the Church of Rome - although many who profess to be Catholic hold to said opinion.

As far as I know, you are correct in this.
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« Reply #43 on: January 13, 2012, 07:35:51 PM »

You want to cut through the cr*p? Ignore most of the current "theologians", and spend a year keeping your eyes and ears open to a year of the Orthodox liturgical cycle - DLs, Vespers, Matins, Compline, Triodion, Pentecostarion, etc, as well as other services such as weddings, funerals, supplicatory services, akathists, ordinations, unction, etc. Immerse yourself in what is read, chanted and sung. Examine and absorb the iconography. Only then can Orthodoxy truly be compared to other denominations. It won't take long to realize the depth of difference between Orthodoxy and any other Christian denomination.

Amen, Amen, Amen.

Unless the theologian is dead, glorified, and lauded by the Church as a teacher of the faith, I greet him with the sound of one hand clapping, accompanied by crickets and the salmon of doubt.

 Kiss laugh laugh
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« Reply #44 on: January 13, 2012, 08:05:14 PM »

You want to cut through the cr*p? Ignore most of the current "theologians", and spend a year keeping your eyes and ears open to a year of the Orthodox liturgical cycle - DLs, Vespers, Matins, Compline, Triodion, Pentecostarion, etc, as well as other services such as weddings, funerals, supplicatory services, akathists, ordinations, unction, etc. Immerse yourself in what is read, chanted and sung. Examine and absorb the iconography. Only then can Orthodoxy truly be compared to other denominations. It won't take long to realize the depth of difference between Orthodoxy and any other Christian denomination.

Amen, Amen, Amen.

Unless the theologian is dead, glorified, and lauded by the Church as a teacher of the faith, I greet him with the sound of one hand clapping, accompanied by crickets and the salmon of doubt.

Throwing the baby out with the bath water, I see.
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« Reply #45 on: January 13, 2012, 09:21:29 PM »

I didn't buy Hart's article back when I was RC

Could you say more about this?
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« Reply #46 on: January 13, 2012, 09:26:42 PM »

Quote from: podkarpatska

The only Roman Catholics who would take the position that Orthodoxy and Protestantism are 'extremely close....' are those who would argue forcefully that outside of the Church of Rome there can be no salvation. Correct me if I am in error, but I was under the impression that this does not reflect the teaching of the Church of Rome - although many who profess to be Catholic hold to said opinion.

As far as I know, you are correct in this.

You may be right, but I'd like to see for myself. Can either of you provide back-up for "The only Roman Catholics who would take the position that Orthodoxy and Protestantism are 'extremely close....' are those who would argue forcefully that outside of the Church of Rome there can be no salvation."?
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« Reply #47 on: January 13, 2012, 11:19:03 PM »

You want to cut through the cr*p? Ignore most of the current "theologians", and spend a year keeping your eyes and ears open to a year of the Orthodox liturgical cycle - DLs, Vespers, Matins, Compline, Triodion, Pentecostarion, etc, as well as other services such as weddings, funerals, supplicatory services, akathists, ordinations, unction, etc. Immerse yourself in what is read, chanted and sung. Examine and absorb the iconography. Only then can Orthodoxy truly be compared to other denominations. It won't take long to realize the depth of difference between Orthodoxy and any other Christian denomination.

Amen, Amen, Amen.

Unless the theologian is dead, glorified, and lauded by the Church as a teacher of the faith, I greet him with the sound of one hand clapping, accompanied by crickets and the salmon of doubt.

Throwing the baby out with the bath water, I see.
No You don't see.
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« Reply #48 on: January 13, 2012, 11:48:49 PM »

You want to cut through the cr*p? Ignore most of the current "theologians", and spend a year keeping your eyes and ears open to a year of the Orthodox liturgical cycle - DLs, Vespers, Matins, Compline, Triodion, Pentecostarion, etc, as well as other services such as weddings, funerals, supplicatory services, akathists, ordinations, unction, etc. Immerse yourself in what is read, chanted and sung. Examine and absorb the iconography. Only then can Orthodoxy truly be compared to other denominations. It won't take long to realize the depth of difference between Orthodoxy and any other Christian denomination.

Amen, Amen, Amen.

Unless the theologian is dead, glorified, and lauded by the Church as a teacher of the faith, I greet him with the sound of one hand clapping, accompanied by crickets and the salmon of doubt.

Throwing the baby out with the bath water, I see.
No You don't see.
You are in no position to know whether that is true, o prideful one.
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« Reply #49 on: January 14, 2012, 12:58:28 PM »

You want to cut through the cr*p? Ignore most of the current "theologians", and spend a year keeping your eyes and ears open to a year of the Orthodox liturgical cycle - DLs, Vespers, Matins, Compline, Triodion, Pentecostarion, etc, as well as other services such as weddings, funerals, supplicatory services, akathists, ordinations, unction, etc. Immerse yourself in what is read, chanted and sung. Examine and absorb the iconography. Only then can Orthodoxy truly be compared to other denominations. It won't take long to realize the depth of difference between Orthodoxy and any other Christian denomination.

Amen, Amen, Amen.

Unless the theologian is dead, glorified, and lauded by the Church as a teacher of the faith, I greet him with the sound of one hand clapping, accompanied by crickets and the salmon of doubt.

Throwing the baby out with the bath water, I see.
No You don't see.
You are in no position to know whether that is true, o prideful one.
Actually in this case, he IS in position to say that if the judgment you posted of him is wrong.
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« Reply #50 on: January 14, 2012, 04:13:54 PM »

You want to cut through the cr*p? Ignore most of the current "theologians", and spend a year keeping your eyes and ears open to a year of the Orthodox liturgical cycle - DLs, Vespers, Matins, Compline, Triodion, Pentecostarion, etc, as well as other services such as weddings, funerals, supplicatory services, akathists, ordinations, unction, etc. Immerse yourself in what is read, chanted and sung. Examine and absorb the iconography. Only then can Orthodoxy truly be compared to other denominations. It won't take long to realize the depth of difference between Orthodoxy and any other Christian denomination.

Amen, Amen, Amen.

Unless the theologian is dead, glorified, and lauded by the Church as a teacher of the faith, I greet him with the sound of one hand clapping, accompanied by crickets and the salmon of doubt.

Throwing the baby out with the bath water, I see.
No You don't see.
You are in no position to know whether that is true, o prideful one.
Actually in this case, he IS in position to say that if the judgment you posted of him is wrong.
I don't think that was the meaning of the statement. If he meant that he does not throw modern theologians out of the window (regardless of their quality, hence throwing the baby out with the bathwater), then he is free to say so plainly.
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« Reply #51 on: February 04, 2012, 10:23:07 AM »

Quote from: podkarpatska

The only Roman Catholics who would take the position that Orthodoxy and Protestantism are 'extremely close....' are those who would argue forcefully that outside of the Church of Rome there can be no salvation. Correct me if I am in error, but I was under the impression that this does not reflect the teaching of the Church of Rome - although many who profess to be Catholic hold to said opinion.

As far as I know, you are correct in this.

You may be right, but I'd like to see for myself. Can either of you provide back-up for "The only Roman Catholics who would take the position that Orthodoxy and Protestantism are 'extremely close....' are those who would argue forcefully that outside of the Church of Rome there can be no salvation."?

Anyone want to help biro and podkarpatska out here?
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« Reply #52 on: February 04, 2012, 11:19:37 AM »

I think that Roman Catholicism is closest to Eastern Orthodox Christianity because both churches accept the doctrine of the 7 Ecumenical Synods (Councils), which are the bodies that documented Christian doctrine, the matters of faith that must be accepted for salvation.  Appearances and nuanced doctrinal interpretations cannot be substituted for the church's doctrine.  Note that I only said "closest," because the Church of Rome has deviated from the purity of this doctrine.  The Anglican Church's earliest beliefs are closer to Roman Catholicism than to Orthodoxy, of course; their subsequent doctrinal interpretations, even the fact that they can revise or modify church doctrine, keeps them closer to Roman Catholicism than to Orthodoxy.
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« Reply #53 on: February 04, 2012, 11:31:32 AM »

Winter, a house in a remote are. Darkly and coldly everywhere around and warmly inside the house. There are a few people outside. Some of them are far from the house, some - closer and some already stay in from of the entrance doors but all of them suffer from the cold the very same way.
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« Reply #54 on: February 04, 2012, 12:04:19 PM »

I think that Roman Catholicism is closest to Eastern Orthodox Christianity because both churches accept the doctrine of the 7 Ecumenical Synods (Councils), which are the bodies that documented Christian doctrine, the matters of faith that must be accepted for salvation.

Do you believe, then, that Anglo-Catholics don't accept the doctrines of the 7 Ecumenical Councils?
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« Reply #55 on: February 04, 2012, 12:59:18 PM »

I think that Roman Catholicism is closest to Eastern Orthodox Christianity because both churches accept the doctrine of the 7 Ecumenical Synods (Councils), which are the bodies that documented Christian doctrine, the matters of faith that must be accepted for salvation.  Appearances and nuanced doctrinal interpretations cannot be substituted for the church's doctrine.  Note that I only said "closest," because the Church of Rome has deviated from the purity of this doctrine.  The Anglican Church's earliest beliefs are closer to Roman Catholicism than to Orthodoxy, of course; their subsequent doctrinal interpretations, even the fact that they can revise or modify church doctrine, keeps them closer to Roman Catholicism than to Orthodoxy.

Do we believe in the same 7 ecumenical councils? I was under the impression, perhaps false, that there was a disagreement on which 7 make up the ecumenical councils.
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« Reply #56 on: February 04, 2012, 01:08:56 PM »

I think that Roman Catholicism is closest to Eastern Orthodox Christianity because both churches accept the doctrine of the 7 Ecumenical Synods (Councils), which are the bodies that documented Christian doctrine, the matters of faith that must be accepted for salvation.  Appearances and nuanced doctrinal interpretations cannot be substituted for the church's doctrine.  Note that I only said "closest," because the Church of Rome has deviated from the purity of this doctrine.  The Anglican Church's earliest beliefs are closer to Roman Catholicism than to Orthodoxy, of course; their subsequent doctrinal interpretations, even the fact that they can revise or modify church doctrine, keeps them closer to Roman Catholicism than to Orthodoxy.

Do we believe in the same 7 ecumenical councils? I was under the impression, perhaps false, that there was a disagreement on which 7 make up the ecumenical councils.
I'm not aware of any such disagreement.
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« Reply #57 on: February 04, 2012, 01:52:28 PM »

On wiki it says that the RCC does not accept the Quinisext Council also known as the council in Trullo. Is this an issue for the Orthodox?
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« Reply #58 on: February 04, 2012, 02:31:30 PM »

Do we believe in the same 7 ecumenical councils? I was under the impression, perhaps false, that there was a disagreement on which 7 make up the ecumenical councils.

Catholics and Eastern Orthodox agree on those (although Catholics would call them "the first 7").

(Possibly you're thinking of disagreement regarding the Fourth Council of Constantinople, but that isn't one of the seven anyhow.)
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« Reply #59 on: February 04, 2012, 02:38:54 PM »

On wiki it says that the RCC does not accept the Quinisext Council also known as the council in Trullo. Is this an issue for the Orthodox?
Yes.
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« Reply #60 on: February 17, 2012, 04:53:52 PM »

Do we believe in the same 7 ecumenical councils? I was under the impression, perhaps false, that there was a disagreement on which 7 make up the ecumenical councils.

Catholics and Eastern Orthodox agree on those (although Catholics would call them "the first 7").

(Possibly you're thinking of disagreement regarding the Fourth Council of Constantinople, but that isn't one of the seven anyhow.)


Yes, that is what I was thinking about. Thanks.
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