I have thought about what I am about to post, I put off saying it for some time but I am going to say it anyway.
Think about what is going on here. This has gone beyond a disagreement about one or another historical act or whether this act or that act was 'representative' of the other's faith.
I have tried to state my disagreements over the years with Roman teaching in a reasoned, dispassionate manner, without resorting to the sort of childish nonsense that this thread has devolved into - and frankly, which every thread on this sub-forum always seems to degenerate into. While not always successful, I do try to disagree without resorting to be disagreeable, but for many of you online that simple task -which I am sure your mother told you to do as children - seems impossible.
If this were a courtroom, no judge would tolerate behavior by counsel which would go on and on like here.
I know I am 'lecturing' and that many of you will no doubt object. Too bad, the behavior here is un-Christian, preposterous, indefensible and does a disservice to the Saints that each of you purport to honor in your own way. You are playing the devil's hand - not that of God. No wonder the Theotokas' tears are manifest in so many churches in our time.
Back atcha!! Talk to al Mis[e]ry.
There are no grounds for communion here.
I wanted to share something that influenced me greatly as a child.
I remember when I was a boy in the early 1960's, some twenty-five years or so after the bitter, internecine struggles within the Ruthenian Greek Catholic Church which led to the schism resulting in today's BCC and the ACROD, hearing a sermon during what we used to call a Lenten Mission, when a visiting elderly priest from a neighboring parish of our Diocese would come, help with confessions and preach.
Exactly what he said is probably lost to the mists of time, but I recall the heart and soul of his sermon and the passion with which he delivered it. He was referring to the residual bitterness, jealousy and name-calling which at that time had formed a part of neighborhood life as the families and friends - many separated by the choices they made during those times - still carried the scars of fear, anger and to some - even hatred from that division.
There had recently been something of a 'scandal' if you would, in the neighborhood as two former friends 'got into it' coming home from work at the camera plant down the road after 'lifting' more than a few 'boilermakers.' They caused quite a commotion, swearing, calling each other names like 'tselibat', 'katzap', 'rimsky' or 'shismatic' and so on. Finally they had to be taken home by the paddy wagon to dry out and calm down. It was the talk of the old neighborhood - one in which everyone was a Slav and was either affiliated with the Metropolia parish, the BCC parish, the ACROD parish, the UOC parish, the UGCC parish, the Slovak Lutheran Church or the Slovak Catholic Church and for the most part, related by blood to probably every other person living there.
This continuing bickering greatly troubled my dad, then a middle-aged priest as it distracted from the real business of the Church. He confided his concerns with the old priest - a man who was ordained Greek Catholic in Europe many years prior, but who joined the Orthodox Church as a young man during the struggles. The old man agreed to speak of these things that evening at the Lenten service.
He reflected on how he, as an old man, looked back at those times a quarter century beforehand, and he was certain that he made the proper choice in life by joining the Orthodox.
Yet he couldn't help but wonder, especially during the penitential season of the Great Lent as we sat in our respective neighboring churches, sang the same hymns contemplating the sorrow of the Mother of God and the agony of Christ's crucifixion,and prepared in the same traditional way for the coming Great Day - the Pascha - how the Mother of God viewed our earthly behavior and our continued rancor and ill-will.
He turned to Luke, 6:42, chuckling as he noted that Scripture wasn't just something our Protestant friends memorized. He read Our Lord's words of admonition in a stern, but kindly voice: "How can you say to your brother, 'Brother, let me take the speck out of your eye,' when you don't see the beam in your own eye? You hypocrite! First remove the beam from your own eye, and then you'll see clearly enough to remove the speck from your brother's eye." "
In order for us to get past the hurt of the past, he went on to say, we had to look inwardly - into the darkness of our own inner fears and cleanse our own self of our own bitterness and acknowledge that while we could be certain we made the right choice to be where we found ourselves that we had to recognize that we, the Orthodox, were not without sin, that we had not purged the evils of jealousy, fear and anger from our hearts and that our brothers and sisters next door were trying their best to do what we were doing - seeking salvation and God's eternal reward.
It hit home a few years later when my father's 'Teta' passed away - his father's sister, who along with her other sisters remained Greek Catholic in 1937 when my grandfather took his family and founded the ACROD parish in their hometown. For over thirty years we didn't speak with 'that' side of the family. 'They' missed my parent's wedding, the birth of their children and the death of one in a tragic accident - despite this, my grandfather refused to go to the funeral home or the funeral. My dad always thought that some year things would be patched up, that there would be another Christmas or Easter to get together and forgive each other for any harm or hurt our mutual behaviors may have caused each other. But, the sad reality was that was not to be.
Over the years I developed a 'zero' tolerance for extreme behavior which is retained only because that's that way it was.
Frankly, I am not directing my comments here to the posters who have in the past and no doubt in the future will continue their eternal game of 'gotcha'. I confess that when I get angered or upset, I too, readily have joined in the fray.
However, I really hope that others of you, who may casually stumble across this thread or ones like it, might realize that most of us - be we Orthodox or be we Catholic - have no illusions about life, about reality and about divisions and that the comments which frequently populate the internet are not really a window into our respective souls, our respective Churches or the God, in whose service we share.
In the end, I still think that most of know that at the very essence of any problem like that confronting the Church and her divided state - any solution has to begin within one's own heart and soul.
Christ is Risen! Indeed, He is Risen!