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militantsparrow
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« on: December 20, 2011, 09:12:53 AM »

Ive noticed that the Antiochian WR maintains several post schism devotions such as the stations of the cross, the Sacred Heart, the Rosary, etc.

I have two questions regarding these practices:
     1). How is this typically explained by the WR?
     2). What is the typical opinion by ER faithful?
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« Reply #1 on: December 20, 2011, 12:18:26 PM »

Ive noticed that the Antiochian WR maintains several post schism devotions such as the stations of the cross, the Sacred Heart, the Rosary, etc.

I have two questions regarding these practices:
     1). How is this typically explained by the WR?
     2). What is the typical opinion by ER faithful?

Sacred Heart? We do? Funny, I've not heard about it. I know some converts hold on to their Sacred Heart stuff, but I dont think thats an official stance of WR Orthodoxy.

As for the Rosary, read this, might help ya:


Quote


PP
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« Reply #2 on: December 20, 2011, 01:10:13 PM »

I have two questions regarding these practices:
     1). How is this typically explained by the WR?

Well, when it comes to explaining the rosary, I just bring up St. Seraphim of Sarov and St. Dimitri of Rostov who both prayed it.
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« Reply #3 on: December 20, 2011, 01:23:03 PM »

Ive noticed that the Antiochian WR maintains several post schism devotions such as the stations of the cross, the Sacred Heart, the Rosary, etc.

I have two questions regarding these practices:
     1). How is this typically explained by the WR?
     2). What is the typical opinion by ER faithful?

Sacred Heart? We do? Funny, I've not heard about it. I know some converts hold on to their Sacred Heart stuff, but I dont think thats an official stance of WR Orthodoxy.

As for the Rosary, read this, might help ya:


Quote


PP

Great article. Thank you. As far as the Sacred Heart devotion, it's in a Western Orthodox (Antiochian) prayer book I have. I can find it and give you the name shortly.
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« Reply #4 on: December 20, 2011, 01:23:36 PM »

Ive noticed that the Antiochian WR maintains several post schism devotions such as the stations of the cross, the Sacred Heart, the Rosary, etc.

I have two questions regarding these practices:
     1). How is this typically explained by the WR?
     2). What is the typical opinion by ER faithful?

Sacred Heart? We do? Funny, I've not heard about it. I know some converts hold on to their Sacred Heart stuff, but I dont think thats an official stance of WR Orthodoxy.

As for the Rosary, read this, might help ya:


Quote


PP

Great article. Thank you. As far as the Sacred Heart devotion, it's in a Western Orthodox (Antiochian) prayer book I have. I can find it and give you the name shortly.
I'd be interested in seeing it as I dont think its in mine.

PP
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« Reply #5 on: December 20, 2011, 01:24:54 PM »

I just found it. It's in the St. Ambrose Prayer Book. http://www.andrewespress.com/ambrose.html
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« Reply #6 on: December 20, 2011, 01:28:36 PM »

To quote Fr. Aidan (I think its the same Fr. Aidan here...he gets around on the interwebs)

Quote
The St. Ambrose prayer book does not have an official endorsement from any Orthodox hierarchy. Therefore it may contain piety or impiety, Orthodoxy or heresy, truth or error.

There is an Orthodox prayer book which has been blessed for use by lawful Orthodox church authority, and its name is "Orthodox Prayers of Old England" (OPOE). Blessed for usage within the Russian Orthodox Church in September 2008, OPOE remains the most comprehensive Western rite prayer book ever published.

It does not contain the Sacred Heart error, nor the problematical "Stations of the Cross." There is an older devotion in it, called the "Salutations Before the Holy Cross." It is somewhat similar to the modern Roman-Catholic Stations of the Cross, in that it focuses on the cross and the passion of Christ, but it is less systematic, including psalms, versicles, with no very definite progression or program. I have heard from a number of people who really like the Salutations Before the Holy Cross


I'll ask my priest tonight at Vespers.

PP
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« Reply #7 on: December 20, 2011, 01:35:29 PM »

I have two questions regarding these practices:
     1). How is this typically explained by the WR?

Well, when it comes to explaining the rosary, I just bring up St. Seraphim of Sarov and St. Dimitri of Rostov who both prayed it.
You're WRO?

It is questinable if the "rosary" of St. Seraphim was the western one you are talking about.  He, and moreover St. Dimitri, like St. Peter Movila/Moghilas, lived in the Western Captivity.

There is nothing terribly heterodox about the western rosary commonly known, except when meditation is nudged into letting the imagination roam rather than being reigned in.  The basis of the rosary in the west was borrowed, post schism, from Orthodox practice in the East.

The Stations of the Cross are not heterodox either.

The Sacred Heart is heretical.  I think the  WRO should follow their forebears of the West before the schism, who had no need for cults devoted to body parts and devotions promulgated on the basis of "visions."  That all appeared in the West after the schism.
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« Reply #8 on: December 20, 2011, 01:39:50 PM »

To quote Fr. Aidan (I think its the same Fr. Aidan here...he gets around on the interwebs)

Quote
The St. Ambrose prayer book does not have an official endorsement from any Orthodox hierarchy. Therefore it may contain piety or impiety, Orthodoxy or heresy, truth or error.

There is an Orthodox prayer book which has been blessed for use by lawful Orthodox church authority, and its name is "Orthodox Prayers of Old England" (OPOE). Blessed for usage within the Russian Orthodox Church in September 2008, OPOE remains the most comprehensive Western rite prayer book ever published.

It does not contain the Sacred Heart error, nor the problematical "Stations of the Cross." There is an older devotion in it, called the "Salutations Before the Holy Cross." It is somewhat similar to the modern Roman-Catholic Stations of the Cross, in that it focuses on the cross and the passion of Christ, but it is less systematic, including psalms, versicles, with no very definite progression or program. I have heard from a number of people who really like the Salutations Before the Holy Cross


I'll ask my priest tonight at Vespers.

PP

Interesting. Please let me know what he tells you.
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« Reply #9 on: December 20, 2011, 01:56:19 PM »

The Sacred Heart is heretical.  I think the  WRO should follow their forebears of the West before the schism, who had no need for cults devoted to body parts and devotions promulgated on the basis of "visions."  That all appeared in the West after the schism.

I concur! Here is some good information on the Sacred Heart devotion:

The 5th EO Ecumenical Synod

IX.
If anyone shall take the expression, Christ ought to be worshipped in his two natures, in the sense that he wishes to introduce thus two adorations, the one in special relation to God the Word and the other as pertaining to the man; or if anyone to get rid of the flesh, [that is of the humanity of Christ,] or to mix together the divinity and the humanity, shall speak monstrously of one only nature or essence (φύσιν ἤγουν οὐσίαν) of the united (natures), and so worship Christ, and does not venerate, by one adoration, God the Word made man, together with his flesh, as the Holy Church has taught from the beginning: let him be anathema.

http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/npnf214.xii.vii.html

Protopresbyter Michael Pomazansky, On the Latin cult of the “Heart of Jesus.”

In connection with this decree of the Council it may be seen how out of harmony with the spirit and practice of the Church is the cult of the “sacred heart of Jesus” which has been introduced into the Roman Catholic Church. Although the above-cited decree of the Fifth Ecumenical Council touches only on the separate worship of the Divinity and the Humanity of the Saviour, it still indirectly tells us that in general the veneration and worship of Christ should be directed to Him as a whole and not to parts of His Being; it must be one. Even if by “heart” we should understand the Saviour’s love itself, still neither in the Old Testament nor in the New was there ever a custom to worship separately the love of God, or His wisdom, His creative or providential power, or His sanctity. All the more must one say this concerning the parts of His bodily nature. There is something unnatural in the separation of the heart from the general bodily nature of the Lord for the purpose of prayer, contrition and worship before Him. Even in the ordinary relationships of life, no matter how much a man might be attached to another — for example, a mother to a child — he would never refer his attachment to the heart of the beloved person, but will refer it to the given person as a whole.
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« Reply #10 on: December 20, 2011, 01:59:41 PM »

I'll make sure to tell everyone what my priest says tonight.

As for the book, we use the corrected Book of Common prayer and I have not seen the S.H. devotion in it.

PP
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« Reply #11 on: December 20, 2011, 02:05:04 PM »

The Sacred Heart is heretical.  I think the  WRO should follow their forebears of the West before the schism, who had no need for cults devoted to body parts and devotions promulgated on the basis of "visions."  That all appeared in the West after the schism.

I can already hear Sleeper sighing now.  Wink
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« Reply #12 on: December 20, 2011, 02:18:06 PM »

The Sacred Heart is heretical.  I think the  WRO should follow their forebears of the West before the schism, who had no need for cults devoted to body parts and devotions promulgated on the basis of "visions."  That all appeared in the West after the schism.

I can already hear Sleeper sighing now.  Wink
LOL.  He has sighed in posts responding before. That is nothing new for either him, me or the two of us together.  Until someone can sigh up an example of a cult of a visionary or body part before the schism in the West, I see no reason to change my opinion on the matter, or mend my speech thereon.
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« Reply #13 on: December 20, 2011, 02:21:27 PM »

I'll make sure to tell everyone what my priest says tonight.

As for the book, we use the corrected Book of Common prayer and I have not seen the S.H. devotion in it.

PP

My parish actually uses the Greogorian liturgy. I wonder if that's part of the discrepency. I will say that as a Roman Catholic, I never looked at the SH devotion as worshipping a body part (but they may be due to my own ignorance). I always looked at it as a devotion to Christ's mercy.
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« Reply #14 on: December 20, 2011, 02:22:16 PM »

To quote Fr. Aidan (I think its the same Fr. Aidan here...he gets around on the interwebs)

Quote
The St. Ambrose prayer book does not have an official endorsement from any Orthodox hierarchy. Therefore it may contain piety or impiety, Orthodoxy or heresy, truth or error.

There is an Orthodox prayer book which has been blessed for use by lawful Orthodox church authority, and its name is "Orthodox Prayers of Old England" (OPOE). Blessed for usage within the Russian Orthodox Church in September 2008, OPOE remains the most comprehensive Western rite prayer book ever published.

It does not contain the Sacred Heart error, nor the problematical "Stations of the Cross." There is an older devotion in it, called the "Salutations Before the Holy Cross." It is somewhat similar to the modern Roman-Catholic Stations of the Cross, in that it focuses on the cross and the passion of Christ, but it is less systematic, including psalms, versicles, with no very definite progression or program. I have heard from a number of people who really like the Salutations Before the Holy Cross


I'll ask my priest tonight at Vespers.

PP

Interesting. Please let me know what he tells you.

So you are all WRO?  Gloria Deo!
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« Reply #15 on: December 20, 2011, 02:22:55 PM »

I'll make sure to tell everyone what my priest says tonight.

As for the book, we use the corrected Book of Common prayer and I have not seen the S.H. devotion in it.

PP

My parish actually uses the Greogorian liturgy. I wonder if that's part of the discrepency. I will say that as a Roman Catholic, I never looked at the SH devotion as worshipping a body part (but they may be due to my own ignorance). I always looked at it as a devotion to Christ's mercy.
Which parish is that, may I ask?
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« Reply #16 on: December 20, 2011, 02:35:02 PM »

I'll make sure to tell everyone what my priest says tonight.

As for the book, we use the corrected Book of Common prayer and I have not seen the S.H. devotion in it.

PP

My parish actually uses the Greogorian liturgy. I wonder if that's part of the discrepency. I will say that as a Roman Catholic, I never looked at the SH devotion as worshipping a body part (but they may be due to my own ignorance). I always looked at it as a devotion to Christ's mercy.
We use the Liturgy of St. Tikhon if that makes a difference.


PP
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« Reply #17 on: December 20, 2011, 02:41:13 PM »

To quote Fr. Aidan (I think its the same Fr. Aidan here...he gets around on the interwebs)

Quote
The St. Ambrose prayer book does not have an official endorsement from any Orthodox hierarchy. Therefore it may contain piety or impiety, Orthodoxy or heresy, truth or error.

There is an Orthodox prayer book which has been blessed for use by lawful Orthodox church authority, and its name is "Orthodox Prayers of Old England" (OPOE). Blessed for usage within the Russian Orthodox Church in September 2008, OPOE remains the most comprehensive Western rite prayer book ever published.

It does not contain the Sacred Heart error, nor the problematical "Stations of the Cross." There is an older devotion in it, called the "Salutations Before the Holy Cross." It is somewhat similar to the modern Roman-Catholic Stations of the Cross, in that it focuses on the cross and the passion of Christ, but it is less systematic, including psalms, versicles, with no very definite progression or program. I have heard from a number of people who really like the Salutations Before the Holy Cross


I'll ask my priest tonight at Vespers.

PP


Interesting. Please let me know what he tells you.

So you are all WRO?  Gloria Deo!

I am not yet a catechumen, but will be soon. It's actually the parish you recommended some time ago. Holy Incarnation.
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« Reply #18 on: December 20, 2011, 02:48:59 PM »

Ive noticed that the Antiochian WR maintains several post schism devotions such as the stations of the cross, the Sacred Heart, the Rosary, etc.

I have two questions regarding these practices:
     1). How is this typically explained by the WR?
     2). What is the typical opinion by ER faithful?

1) Orthodoxy has absorbed non-Christian practices--it's less of a stretch to absorb the practices of Non-Orthodox Christians when they are found to be, or can be made, compatible with Orthodox praxis.
2) The whole WR endeavor is relatively new. It's going to take some time to shake out what is fully compatible, what needs adjustment, and what really just needs to be abandoned. Like ialmisry, I'm not aware of any problems with the rosary or the Stations of the Cross, although they need to be prayed in keeping with the Orthodox tradition and without the intense visualization encouraged by some in the West. On the other hand, the Sacred Heart is extremely problematic (there was a fairly recent thread about this where even some of the staunchest WR proponents were clear this was a wasn't a practice that could/should be brought over)
3) The WR endeavor has several drivers. One is pastoral--Hieararchs (usually cradle orthodox for this particular one) are sensitive to the idea that 'Eastern' Orthodoxy seems alien/foreign/exotic to Western converts. Therefore they bless those converts to continue to use those devotions they are familiar/comfortable with, since it is always better that someone be in the Church than outside it. Some converts, on the other hand, are running from something specific in their old denomination (ordination of women, anger at the Roman hierarchy over the child abuse scandal, etc) rather than running to Orthodoxy, and such converts take advantage of the hieararch's pastoral care to continue doing exactly what they were doing in their old denomination without any effort to identify the substantive differences between that and actual Orthodox teaching and praxis. That is a significant part of what needs to be 'shaken out'.

[The last point will almost certainly generate some controversy, so let me try to emphasize that I am not saying that is the only or even primary reason hieararchs support the WR. And I'm also not saying that the above is characteristic of most WR converts. But both strains do exist and when they coincide is when we get things like the Sacred Heart in a supposedly Orthodox prayer book]

The above points kind of address both your questions but to be a little more specific about #2--the members of this board seem to be largely pro-WR. Off-net, in conversations with bishops and priests, I see a lot more ambivalence towards the WR, in particular because of the types of things you cite. Many clergy think the WR is a bad idea. Many more are thoroughly undecided. Laity in an ER parish tend not to have an opinion--that's something the bishops are doing for those people over there and it doesn't really have anything to do with my own attempts to live as an Orthodox Christian.
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« Reply #19 on: December 20, 2011, 02:58:18 PM »

To quote Fr. Aidan (I think its the same Fr. Aidan here...he gets around on the interwebs)

Quote
The St. Ambrose prayer book does not have an official endorsement from any Orthodox hierarchy. Therefore it may contain piety or impiety, Orthodoxy or heresy, truth or error.

There is an Orthodox prayer book which has been blessed for use by lawful Orthodox church authority, and its name is "Orthodox Prayers of Old England" (OPOE). Blessed for usage within the Russian Orthodox Church in September 2008, OPOE remains the most comprehensive Western rite prayer book ever published.

It does not contain the Sacred Heart error, nor the problematical "Stations of the Cross." There is an older devotion in it, called the "Salutations Before the Holy Cross." It is somewhat similar to the modern Roman-Catholic Stations of the Cross, in that it focuses on the cross and the passion of Christ, but it is less systematic, including psalms, versicles, with no very definite progression or program. I have heard from a number of people who really like the Salutations Before the Holy Cross


I'll ask my priest tonight at Vespers.

PP


Interesting. Please let me know what he tells you.

So you are all WRO?  Gloria Deo!

I am not yet a catechumen, but will be soon. It's actually the parish you recommended some time ago. Holy Incarnation.

Excellent choice. May it increase!
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                           and both come out of your mouth
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« Reply #20 on: December 20, 2011, 04:03:57 PM »

We love it there. It's a fantastic parish.
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« Reply #21 on: December 20, 2011, 06:02:19 PM »

Ive noticed that the Antiochian WR maintains several post schism devotions such as the stations of the cross, the Sacred Heart, the Rosary, etc.

3) The WR endeavor has several drivers. One is pastoral--Hieararchs (usually cradle orthodox for this particular one) are sensitive to the idea that 'Eastern' Orthodoxy seems alien/foreign/exotic to Western converts. Therefore they bless those converts to continue to use those devotions they are familiar/comfortable with, since it is always better that someone be in the Church than outside it. Some converts, on the other hand, are running from something specific in their old denomination (ordination of women, anger at the Roman hierarchy over the child abuse scandal, etc) rather than running to Orthodoxy, and such converts take advantage of the hieararch's pastoral care to continue doing exactly what they were doing in their old denomination without any effort to identify the substantive differences between that and actual Orthodox teaching and praxis. That is a significant part of what needs to be 'shaken out'.



I started exploring Orthodoxy in a Greek Orthodox church. I would have converted to Orthodoxy anyway because of historical theological reasons anyway but was attracted to Western Rite when I learned about it from this website. I found a Parish and the liturgy was close to what I grew up with in a pre VII Roman Catholic Church. I had never realized how much the  RCC had changed in terms of teaching and reverence and respect. I had  already decided that the main sticking point I had was development of Doctrine, Purgatory, and Infallibility. The Western  Rite appeals to  me because most of us are converts including the Priest and Deacon and sub deacon. As I mentioned before, I was recieved into the Church this past Sunday  and feel like I have come home to a church that is True and culturally(sp?) familiar. I initially started looking into Church history because I wondered why James rather than Peter was the spokesman in Acts 15. Sorry for rambling
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« Reply #22 on: December 20, 2011, 06:03:56 PM »

Ive noticed that the Antiochian WR maintains several post schism devotions such as the stations of the cross, the Sacred Heart, the Rosary, etc.

3) The WR endeavor has several drivers. One is pastoral--Hieararchs (usually cradle orthodox for this particular one) are sensitive to the idea that 'Eastern' Orthodoxy seems alien/foreign/exotic to Western converts. Therefore they bless those converts to continue to use those devotions they are familiar/comfortable with, since it is always better that someone be in the Church than outside it. Some converts, on the other hand, are running from something specific in their old denomination (ordination of women, anger at the Roman hierarchy over the child abuse scandal, etc) rather than running to Orthodoxy, and such converts take advantage of the hieararch's pastoral care to continue doing exactly what they were doing in their old denomination without any effort to identify the substantive differences between that and actual Orthodox teaching and praxis. That is a significant part of what needs to be 'shaken out'.



I started exploring Orthodoxy in a Greek Orthodox church. I would have converted to Orthodoxy anyway because of historical theological reasons anyway but was attracted to Western Rite when I learned about it from this website. I found a Parish and the liturgy was close to what I grew up with in a pre VII Roman Catholic Church. I had never realized how much the  RCC had changed in terms of teaching and reverence and respect. I had  already decided that the main sticking point I had was development of Doctrine, Purgatory, and Infallibility. The Western  Rite appeals to  me because most of us are converts including the Priest and Deacon and sub deacon. As I mentioned before, I was recieved into the Church this past Sunday  and feel like I have come home to a church that is True and culturally(sp?) familiar. I initially started looking into Church history because I wondered why James rather than Peter was the spokesman in Acts 15. Sorry for rambling

I am really terrible at quoting. the last paragraph only is mine
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« Reply #23 on: December 20, 2011, 06:04:37 PM »

I give up
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« Reply #24 on: December 20, 2011, 06:24:40 PM »

Ive noticed that the Antiochian WR maintains several post schism devotions such as the stations of the cross, the Sacred Heart, the Rosary, etc.

3) The WR endeavor has several drivers. One is pastoral--Hieararchs (usually cradle orthodox for this particular one) are sensitive to the idea that 'Eastern' Orthodoxy seems alien/foreign/exotic to Western converts. Therefore they bless those converts to continue to use those devotions they are familiar/comfortable with, since it is always better that someone be in the Church than outside it. Some converts, on the other hand, are running from something specific in their old denomination (ordination of women, anger at the Roman hierarchy over the child abuse scandal, etc) rather than running to Orthodoxy, and such converts take advantage of the hieararch's pastoral care to continue doing exactly what they were doing in their old denomination without any effort to identify the substantive differences between that and actual Orthodox teaching and praxis. That is a significant part of what needs to be 'shaken out'.



I started exploring Orthodoxy in a Greek Orthodox church. I would have converted to Orthodoxy anyway because of historical theological reasons anyway but was attracted to Western Rite when I learned about it from this website. I found a Parish and the liturgy was close to what I grew up with in a pre VII Roman Catholic Church. I had never realized how much the  RCC had changed in terms of teaching and reverence and respect. I had  already decided that the main sticking point I had was development of Doctrine, Purgatory, and Infallibility. The Western  Rite appeals to  me because most of us are converts including the Priest and Deacon and sub deacon. As I mentioned before, I was recieved into the Church this past Sunday  and feel like I have come home to a church that is True and culturally(sp?) familiar. I initially started looking into Church history because I wondered why James rather than Peter was the spokesman in Acts 15. Sorry for rambling

I am really terrible at quoting. the last paragraph only is mine
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« Reply #25 on: December 20, 2011, 06:35:57 PM »

Ive noticed that the Antiochian WR maintains several post schism devotions such as the stations of the cross, the Sacred Heart, the Rosary, etc.

3) The WR endeavor has several drivers. One is pastoral--Hieararchs (usually cradle orthodox for this particular one) are sensitive to the idea that 'Eastern' Orthodoxy seems alien/foreign/exotic to Western converts. Therefore they bless those converts to continue to use those devotions they are familiar/comfortable with, since it is always better that someone be in the Church than outside it. Some converts, on the other hand, are running from something specific in their old denomination (ordination of women, anger at the Roman hierarchy over the child abuse scandal, etc) rather than running to Orthodoxy, and such converts take advantage of the hieararch's pastoral care to continue doing exactly what they were doing in their old denomination without any effort to identify the substantive differences between that and actual Orthodox teaching and praxis. That is a significant part of what needs to be 'shaken out'.



I started exploring Orthodoxy in a Greek Orthodox church. I would have converted to Orthodoxy anyway because of historical theological reasons anyway but was attracted to Western Rite when I learned about it from this website. I found a Parish and the liturgy was close to what I grew up with in a pre VII Roman Catholic Church. I had never realized how much the  RCC had changed in terms of teaching and reverence and respect. I had  already decided that the main sticking point I had was development of Doctrine, Purgatory, and Infallibility. The Western  Rite appeals to  me because most of us are converts including the Priest and Deacon and sub deacon. As I mentioned before, I was recieved into the Church this past Sunday  and feel like I have come home to a church that is True and culturally(sp?) familiar. I initially started looking into Church history because I wondered why James rather than Peter was the spokesman in Acts 15. Sorry for rambling

Let me reiterate that I'm not saying that all, or even most WR, converts are coming in because they think they've found a place the can continue to be Continuing Anglicans or pre-VII Roman Catholics in peace. I think most convert for the same reasons anybody converts to Orthodoxy and the choice of a WR parish is basically the same as the choice between an OCA or GOA or Antochian parish (assuming there are even multiple parishes around to allow a choice). But that strain does exist and it can lead to the retention of post-schism devotions that really have no place in an Orthodox context.

My own background is as 'Western' as you can get - English, Scotch, German and Native American ancestry, raised in an evangelical church in small-town American southwest,  never crossed the Atlantic, studied Medieval English lit in grad school, etc. Soon after my reception into the Church, I had occasion to visit a WR parish one Sunday. And coming from my low-church, Western background, everything there was just as alien/foreign/exotic as anything going on at my home GOA parish.

(And in the OCA parish where I spent most of my Orthodox life before a recent move, most of us were converts--including not only the priest but the bishop.)

P.S: Don't worry, you'll get the hang of the formmating eventually.
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« Reply #26 on: December 20, 2011, 06:57:43 PM »

No sigh from me this time Wink I believe Isa and I are actually on the some page (somewhat) in regards to the Sacred Heart. I don't practice the devotion myself, but hold open the possibility that it can be seen through Orthodox eyes and put to use, if understood properly. In the thread devoted to the topic I merely defended it because no one else was doing so and I know there are many "lurkers" who can be on the fence about such things. I myself would not be brokenhearted if the devotion were left to Roman Catholics, and most of the Antiochian priests I know feel the same way. The feast is not celebrated at my parish, the devotion is neither encouraged nor condemned (you do indeed find it in the St. Ambrose Prayer Book) and it's most likely going to be left up to pastoral counsel if used.

At any rate, in regards to the OP, within the Antiochian Western Rite Vicariate the approach is simple: As Western Orthodox Catholics, we have before us the totality of the Western Catholic patrimony, (ancient, medieval and contemporary - up to the point that the Vicariate was started anyway), as a means to work out our salvation in fear and trembling, in communion with, and under the guidance of, the great Orthodox patriarchates. Part of the missionary aspect of the Vicariate is to lovingly preserve everything within this vast heritage that embodies the Apostolic Orthodox faith and spirit. And this is done without putting arbitrary dates on things (like 1054 AD) as "cut off" points, because it is recognized that nothing in history is that clean. The Western Catholic churches held to the Orthodox faith for well over 1,000 years and this is the context within which anything that came about in the last 1,000 years is understood and carried out.

This is the precise definition given by our first Vicar General, and I don't think you'll find a better one:

Western Orthodoxy is the rediscovery of the Orthodoxy which withered in the west, and its revitalization, not through the transferral of eastern Patristic thought and devotional attitudes, but by the patient searching out, assembly and coordination of the supratemporal factors which created and characterized pre-schismatic occidental Christianity in its essence, and the careful selection of valid survivals in contemporary western thought and culture. 12 - “The Western Rite in the Orthodox Church.” St. Vladimir’s Theological Quarterly, Vol. 2, No. 2 (Spring 1958), p. 35.

There are some who oppose this approach to things and want to "pick up where the Orthodox West left off" and forget everything from the last millennium in Western Catholic thought, praxis, etc., but that would be imprudent and unwise, albeit somewhat understandable. The Western Orthodox movement was not a romantic movement, it was one of genuine ecumenism. And it shows just how seriously some quarters of Orthodoxy are willing to take reunion! The fact is, the Spirit of Truth is not one of exclusion, but one of inclusion. As St. Paul says, "Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things." (emphasis mine)

Western Orthodox Catholics simply worship and pray within the living patrimony that has been handed down to us from the time of the Apostles, just as our Eastern Orthodox brethren do. We have abandoned anything that violates the ancient spirit and have preserved anything that embodies it, regardless of provenance or time period. No patrimony is perfect (including the Eastern Orthodox!) and we must always receive our inheritance with deep humility, but to change it willy-nilly, to hack at it with our liturgical/devotional pick axes according to our own "wisdom" is not the Spirit of Christ, it is the spirit of iconoclasm.

Those who doubt the truth, wisdom, beauty, purity, and loveliness of the "post-Schism" elements of our patrimony (like the Rosary, Stations of the Cross or the Anglo-Catholic heritage preserved in our Tikhon Rite parishes) must ask themselves why so many who have been formed by this patrimony have come to recognize the faith and worship of the Orthodox communion as there own. It certainly wasn't money or security or property that caused these parishes to abandon those very things in order to come into communion with the Orthodox Church. Those who know how greatly many of our Western Orthodox parishes struggle understand the real reasons they have sought refuge in the bosom of the Orthodox communion. (And they also know how disheartening it can be when those we had hoped to call brothers, those we hoped would rejoice with us at coming into the Orthodox fold, meet us with venomous attacks and question our motives and mock our patrimony as if it's no different than paganism or something). It sounds dramatic, but I could tell you some horror stories.

The fact is that those who have come into the Orthodox Church as Western Catholic parishes are there because of their patrimony, not in spite of it. And the hierarchs who have welcomed and blessed them to continue living out their Christian lives in this manner recognize that and encourage them to preserve it so that it can be handed down to future generations of Orthodox Christians, glory be to God!
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« Reply #27 on: December 20, 2011, 08:02:47 PM »

The fact is that those who have come into the Orthodox Church as Western Catholic parishes are there because of their patrimony, not in spite of it. And the hierarchs who have welcomed and blessed them to continue living out their Christian lives in this manner recognize that and encourage them to preserve it so that it can be handed down to future generations of Orthodox Christians, glory be to God!

This is very well stated and makes a ton of sense to me. Thank you.
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« Reply #28 on: December 20, 2011, 08:06:09 PM »

Witega,
Thank you for your thoughts. I for one am not choosing WRO for any of the reasons you state. It just happens to be a liturgy my wife prefers.
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« Reply #29 on: January 25, 2012, 11:41:29 PM »

I have two questions regarding these practices:
     1). How is this typically explained by the WR?

Well, when it comes to explaining the rosary, I just bring up St. Seraphim of Sarov and St. Dimitri of Rostov who both prayed it.
You're WRO?

It is questinable if the "rosary" of St. Seraphim was the western one you are talking about.  He, and moreover St. Dimitri, like St. Peter Movila/Moghilas, lived in the Western Captivity.

There is nothing terribly heterodox about the western rosary commonly known, except when meditation is nudged into letting the imagination roam rather than being reigned in.  The basis of the rosary in the west was borrowed, post schism, from Orthodox practice in the East.

I'm not WRO. However, I was born Catholic and I picked up praying the rosary after my grandparents passed away within the last few years. There is nothing about it that isn't Orthodox. The "Hail Mary" part is in Scripture and we Orthodox don't find anything wrong with asking the Mother of God to pray for us (not to mention save us). St. Seraphim most likely said a different translation than what is used in the West (like the "Theotokos and Virgin Rejoice" in the Jordanville prayer book). Though the meaning of the prayer is the same. He encouraged saying the prayer 150 times a day. I don't think that is far off at all since it was no secret that St. Seraphim had a very strong love and devotion to the Mother of God.

As for the meditation bit, I don't imagine the mysteries when I say the rosary in the sense that I play out the events in my head. I use it as a type of remembrance. Like when I'm at the mystery of the Crucifixion, I will say the prayer while looking at an icon of Christ on the Cross and contemplate it and try to call to mind verses from Scripture to help.  
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