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Author Topic: Vatican to canonize two Popes  (Read 4145 times) Average Rating: 0
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« Reply #45 on: July 09, 2013, 11:21:21 AM »

Santagranddad, #1Sinner, and Alpo,

I'm possibly going to regret getting my fingerprints on this trainwreck of a conversation, but I'll keep it short:
- The Muslims-don't-believe-God-is-triune-so-they-don't-worship-the-same-God-we-do argument doesn't work. (Do anyone seriously believe that every person in the Old Testament who didn't believe God is triune, didn't worship the same God we do?)
- However, it doesn't necessarily follow that Muslims do worship the same God we do.
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« Reply #46 on: July 09, 2013, 11:27:34 AM »

This appears to be a matter for them and not Orthodox Christians.
QFT

It doesn't affect us so why should we care?

We will have to care because the next time some imbecilic media person asks about the saints in the Orthodox Church and will automatically assume that John XXIII and JP II are both ours, we will need to be insistent on correcting them.
Or we could say "there was a schism in the 11th century, they are not Orthodox nor are they saints."

It may be more accurate to say: "there was a schism in the 11th century, they are not Orthodox so we cannot say if they are saints."
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« Reply #47 on: July 09, 2013, 11:28:01 AM »

I was talking more about the blatant modernism, indifferentism and syncretism of the above two pontiffs, especially JP II "the great."
Modernism like allowing contraception indirect contradiction of the Fathers?

Personally, I love it when RC's bring this up.  In spite of all the things they've demonstrably changed and innovated over the centuries, their apologists hold on for dear life to the prohibition of artificial birth control as proof that only they are faithful to the original tradition.  Never mind, among other things, that the Fathers would laugh at the RC promotion of NFP as an acceptable form of birth control as if that was just fine because it didn't involve condoms but only thermometers, charts, etc.

Again, personally, I find the following more disturbing than a pastoral allowance of certain types of birth control to married couples:



I like Pope Francis' expressions of solidarity with the poor, but why make the Mass an ad for your cause du jour?  Really...a boat altar and an ambo with a ship's wheel on the front?  If that's how you treat your central worship service, no wonder average people think all the fuss over birth control is "all fart and no _hit".

Edited to correct spelling.
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« Reply #48 on: July 09, 2013, 11:29:52 AM »

I was talking more about the blatant modernism, indifferentism and syncretism of the above two pontiffs, especially JP II "the great."
Modernism like allowing contraception indirect contradiction of the Fathers?

Personally, I love it when RC's bring this up.  In spite of all the things they've demonstrably changed and innovated over the centuries, their apologists hold on for dear life to the prohibition of artificial birth control as proof that only they are faithful to the original tradition.  Never mind, among other things, that the Fathers would laugh at the RC promotion of NFP as an acceptable form of birth control as if that was just fine because it didn't involve condoms but only thermometers, charts, etc.

Again, personally, I find the following more disturbing than a pastoral allowance of certain types of birth control to married couple:



I like Pope Francis' expressions of solidarity with the poor, but why make the Mass an ad for your cause du jour?  Really...a boat altar and an ambo with a ship's wheel on the front?  If that's how you treat your central worship service, no wonder average people think all the fuss over birth control is "all fart and no _hit".
And yet, you crticize us for "modernism" when your Church has clearly caved on contraception. While the Fathers might criticize both of us on the matter, (only granting this for the sake of argument) your Church has clearly and directly abandoned the Patristic spirit on sexuality. So while you attack us on the speck in our eye, I think you should deal with the plank sticking out of yours.
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« Reply #49 on: July 09, 2013, 11:31:29 AM »

Santagranddad, #1Sinner, and Alpo,

I'm possibly going to regret getting my fingerprints on this trainwreck of a conversation, but I'll keep it short:
- The Muslims-don't-believe-God-is-triune-so-they-don't-worship-the-same-God-we-do argument doesn't work. (Do anyone seriously believe that every person in the Old Testament who didn't believe God is triune, didn't worship the same God we do?)
- However, it doesn't necessarily follow that Muslims do worship the same God we do.

It does work if you follow the teaching of Orthodoxy. But enough I'm too hot and uncomfortable to pursue a profitless debate. Best wishes.
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« Reply #50 on: July 09, 2013, 11:35:17 AM »

There is no official Orthodox approval of contraception and the concept of oikonomia predates the Great Schism.
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« Reply #51 on: July 09, 2013, 11:43:39 AM »

This appears to be a matter for them and not Orthodox Christians.
QFT

It doesn't affect us so why should we care?

We will have to care because the next time some imbecilic media person asks about the saints in the Orthodox Church and will automatically assume that John XXIII and JP II are both ours, we will need to be insistent on correcting them.
Or we could say "there was a schism in the 11th century, they are not Orthodox nor are they saints."

It may be more accurate to say: "there was a schism in the 11th century, they are not Orthodox so we cannot say if they are saints."

Or " ... don't say ... "
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« Reply #52 on: July 09, 2013, 12:09:58 PM »

And yet, you crticize us for "modernism" when your Church has clearly caved on contraception. While the Fathers might criticize both of us on the matter, (only granting this for the sake of argument) your Church has clearly and directly abandoned the Patristic spirit on sexuality. So while you attack us on the speck in our eye, I think you should deal with the plank sticking out of yours.

LOL.  We've clearly and directly abandoned the patristic spirit on sexuality?  How would you know, exactly, when your Church has clearly and directly abandoned the patristic spirit?    

Look, I didn't bring up Catholic modernism, I just quoted your response to someone else who brought it up.  I don't deny that there has been an "evolution" in the thinking on the matter of birth control among the Orthodox.  But it's important to understand the difference between the Catholic approach and the actual Orthodox approach (and not the Catholic caricature, which is that we "caved" like a bunch of horny teens).  

Paul VI condemned artificial birth control, against the advice of his counselors, in Humanae Vitae, and that remains the law and "tradition" of your Church, despite how widely ignored it is by the "Catholic" "faithful".  

From our side, to my knowledge, there's never been a conciliar approbation for artificial methods of birth control in general terms.  Even if the thought has evolved from "absolutely not" to "depends" (and that, too, only among some bishops--others are quite happy to continue to just say no), the potential allowance for it is always described in terms of discussion between a couple and their priest/spiritual father.  In other words, that conversation is held in the context of the Church and not just the couple, and if the allowance is blessed, it's simply an exercise of the power of binding and loosing in a particular case, not a general allowance or prohibition.  If we're going to look at what's "official" practice between the two Churches, then you should be fair about what the Orthodox position is.  But that position is more nuanced and less convenient for Catholic apologists, who want to score a point: if you want to, go ahead, but we're still winning.

Now, I'll grant that there are probably many Orthodox couples who make those decisions for themselves without the priest's advice, but they have everything in common with their Catholic friends when and if they do so.  But do Catholic couples even think of consulting their confessor on such marital matters?  Are they told or encouraged to do so?  And if they do, what's the guarantee that the confessor is not "allowing" them to use birth control even if "the law" prohibits it (I've certainly heard stories)?  But you go ahead and keep the law on the books even if it's widely ignored and you're not doing anything about it except pointing at the law.  All that makes you is a Pharisee.

Edited to change a preposition.  Schisms have broken out over such things, so yes, it was important.  Smiley    
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« Reply #53 on: July 09, 2013, 12:36:57 PM »

There is no official Orthodox approval of contraception and the concept of oikonomia predates the Great Schism.

This. I will never understand why Roman Catholics have such big hang-ups with oikonomia.
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« Reply #54 on: July 09, 2013, 12:55:25 PM »



I like Pope Francis' expressions of solidarity with the poor, but why make the Mass an ad for your cause du jour?  Really...a boat altar and an ambo with a ship's wheel on the front?  If that's how you treat your central worship service, no wonder average people think all the fuss over birth control is "all fart and no _hit".

Edited to correct spelling.

When I saw this, I thought, "Hmm, maybe Mor Ephrem has a point."
Then I looked up the story behind the altar and thought, "Hmmmmm. Maybe Francis has a point."
You do know that the people of the island built the altar for the Pope to use, right? Francis didn't bring it with him from the Vatican.
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« Reply #55 on: July 09, 2013, 01:05:54 PM »

That does change things a bit.

St John of San Francisco used to wear a cardboard mitre that his orphans had made for him...  Smiley
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« Reply #56 on: July 09, 2013, 01:15:21 PM »

I don't see how the boat trivializes anything.  Here is the story on the purpose of it.  It's a powerful statement by the Pope advocating for the rights of the oppressed.  What is he going to do? Tell the people "No, sorry, I'm not going to use this altar, get me a fancier one"?

http://ncronline.org/blogs/ncr-today/francis-blasts-globalization-indifference-immigrants
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« Reply #57 on: July 09, 2013, 01:36:46 PM »

There is no official Orthodox approval of contraception and the concept of oikonomia predates the Great Schism.

This. I will never understand why Roman Catholics have such big hang-ups with oikonomia.

I suppose that some Roman Catholics may well have "hang-ups" with the concept, but I suspect that there are others who simply do not understand it.  I once heard an anecdotal account of a discussion surrounding the principle of oikonomia that allegedly took place at a meeting of the North American Orthodox-Catholic Theological Consultation.  The Orthodox contingent explained, as best they could, how oikonomia was employed in individual circumstances and under what conditions, etc.  The immediate Catholic response (which endeavoured to put the Orthodox explanation in a nutshell) could best be summed up as being  more or less worded: "So...you make rules....and then you break them."  Fortunately, after further discussion and elucidation, the Catholic group came to have an excellent grasp of the concept.
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« Reply #58 on: July 09, 2013, 01:49:23 PM »

Santagranddad, #1Sinner, and Alpo,

I'm possibly going to regret getting my fingerprints on this trainwreck of a conversation, but I'll keep it short:
- The Muslims-don't-believe-God-is-triune-so-they-don't-worship-the-same-God-we-do argument doesn't work. (Do anyone seriously believe that every person in the Old Testament who didn't believe God is triune, didn't worship the same God we do?)
- However, it doesn't necessarily follow that Muslims do worship the same God we do.

I'm not quite sure why you consider spirited debate to be a trainwreck, but anyway....

I would answer that in the OT God only revealed so much about Himself. The OT saints worshipped God in the way that God had revealed Himself. In the NT we behold Jesus Christ as the image of God and God Incarnate. God has "revealed Himself to us."

Even if He had not revealed himself in the person of our LORD, God and Saviour Jesus Christ, the "god" of the quran is not the God of the OT simply because the OT was inspired and the latter is a figment of someone's imagination. I could write a holy book too claiming it was the words of the One God but that wouldn't make it so. I would be worshipping a figment of my imagination.
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« Reply #59 on: July 09, 2013, 01:51:28 PM »

There is no official Orthodox approval of contraception and the concept of oikonomia predates the Great Schism.

This. I will never understand why Roman Catholics have such big hang-ups with oikonomia.

I suppose that some Roman Catholics may well have "hang-ups" with the concept, but I suspect that there are others who simply do not understand it.  I once heard an anecdotal account of a discussion surrounding the principle of oikonomia that allegedly took place at a meeting of the North American Orthodox-Catholic Theological Consultation.  The Orthodox contingent explained, as best they could, how oikonomia was employed in individual circumstances and under what conditions, etc.  The immediate Catholic response (which endeavoured to put the Orthodox explanation in a nutshell) could best be summed up as being  more or less worded: "So...you make rules....and then you break them."  Of course, after further discussion and elucidation, the Catholic group came to have an excellent grasp of the concept.

Speaking as a former Roman Catholic I can say that this was my last hurdle to get over before converting. I still believe that ABC is sinful and would not use it. I'm currently trying to understand better the Orthodox approach to it.

Many Catholics, myself included, see or saw "Oikinomia" as a synonym for "license."
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« Reply #60 on: July 09, 2013, 02:12:16 PM »

Many Catholics, myself included, see or saw "Oikinomia" as a synonym for "license."

What's this?
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« Reply #61 on: July 09, 2013, 02:23:55 PM »

There is no official Orthodox approval of contraception and the concept of oikonomia predates the Great Schism.

This. I will never understand why Roman Catholics have such big hang-ups with oikonomia.

I suppose that some Roman Catholics may well have "hang-ups" with the concept, but I suspect that there are others who simply do not understand it.  I once heard an anecdotal account of a discussion surrounding the principle of oikonomia that allegedly took place at a meeting of the North American Orthodox-Catholic Theological Consultation.  The Orthodox contingent explained, as best they could, how oikonomia was employed in individual circumstances and under what conditions, etc.  The immediate Catholic response (which endeavoured to put the Orthodox explanation in a nutshell) could best be summed up as being  more or less worded: "So...you make rules....and then you break them."  Of course, after further discussion and elucidation, the Catholic group came to have an excellent grasp of the concept.

Speaking as a former Roman Catholic I can say that this was my last hurdle to get over before converting. I still believe that ABC is sinful and would not use it. I'm currently trying to understand better the Orthodox approach to it.

Many Catholics, myself included, see or saw "Oikinomia" as a synonym for "license."

Well, I hardly see the alphabet as sinful, but perhaps I have not studied by ABCs as well as I should have.   Grin

On a serious note, in regards to oikinomia, I think the big difference is just the understanding of what sin is from an Orthodox or RC perspective.  For an RC, a sin is a legal trespass.  From a legal perspective, something is always wrong or it is always ok.  There is no in between.  For the Orthodox, sin is missing the mark or anything that diverts our ability to unite with God.  In that mindset, there are things that may be beneficial at one time or place, but not at another.  It is a much more nuanced perspective.  It also has a much greater likelyhood of being abused which is probably what RC (quite rightly) often see and criticize.
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« Reply #62 on: July 09, 2013, 02:29:43 PM »

Many Catholics, myself included, see or saw "Oikinomia" as a synonym for "license."

What's this?

There can be no dispensation from the objective moral law. That would be akin to saying that a priest or bishop could give a dispensation to commit willful murder. Again, this is the Roman Catholic view. In Roman Catholicism, ABC is objectively immoral in every circumstance. There can be no dispensation for it.
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« Reply #63 on: July 09, 2013, 02:33:53 PM »

There is no official Orthodox approval of contraception and the concept of oikonomia predates the Great Schism.

This. I will never understand why Roman Catholics have such big hang-ups with oikonomia.

I suppose that some Roman Catholics may well have "hang-ups" with the concept, but I suspect that there are others who simply do not understand it.  I once heard an anecdotal account of a discussion surrounding the principle of oikonomia that allegedly took place at a meeting of the North American Orthodox-Catholic Theological Consultation.  The Orthodox contingent explained, as best they could, how oikonomia was employed in individual circumstances and under what conditions, etc.  The immediate Catholic response (which endeavoured to put the Orthodox explanation in a nutshell) could best be summed up as being  more or less worded: "So...you make rules....and then you break them."  Of course, after further discussion and elucidation, the Catholic group came to have an excellent grasp of the concept.

Speaking as a former Roman Catholic I can say that this was my last hurdle to get over before converting. I still believe that ABC is sinful and would not use it. I'm currently trying to understand better the Orthodox approach to it.

Many Catholics, myself included, see or saw "Oikinomia" as a synonym for "license."

Well, I hardly see the alphabet as sinful, but perhaps I have not studied by ABCs as well as I should have.   Grin

On a serious note, in regards to oikinomia, I think the big difference is just the understanding of what sin is from an Orthodox or RC perspective.  For an RC, a sin is a legal trespass.  From a legal perspective, something is always wrong or it is always ok.  There is no in between.  For the Orthodox, sin is missing the mark or anything that diverts our ability to unite with God.  In that mindset, there are things that may be beneficial at one time or place, but not at another.  It is a much more nuanced perspective.  It also has a much greater likelyhood of being abused which is probably what RC (quite rightly) often see and criticize.

You have obviously never tried to learn Cyrillic.....darn tough alphabet that one  Wink

I understand where you are coming from. I still believe the RC's approach to this issue is more in keeping with the Patristic mind. That being said I can state with a fair amount of certainty that even though the RC Church officially condemns the practice that the a good % of Catholic couples contracept anyway.
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« Reply #64 on: July 09, 2013, 02:46:28 PM »

Perhaps it is because I have not studied it extensively, but what is inherently immoral with artificial birth control?  Obviously, there are certain kinds which can be an abortificiant, but not all are.  I know there are patristic writings against abortion, but I don't know of any against birth control. Where is the patristic mind on that issue?
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« Reply #65 on: July 09, 2013, 02:57:23 PM »

Perhaps it is because I have not studied it extensively, but what is inherently immoral with artificial birth control?  Obviously, there are certain kinds which can be an abortificiant, but not all are.  I know there are patristic writings against abortion, but I don't know of any against birth control. Where is the patristic mind on that issue?

In Roman Catholic teaching, contraception frustrates the natural end of the marital act. In essence it is slamming the door in God's face or kicking Him out of the bedroom so that you can enjoy the fruit of marriage without the natural consequences. Every act has a primary end and any number of secondary ends. The primary end of sex, in marriage of course, is procreation. If you take proactive and unnatural steps to frustrate that end, it is sinful. Again, this is the Roman teaching. Although I agree, I'm not arguing for it, just presenting it to you for clarification.

As for the Patristic mind, perhaps the "Church's mind" would have been a better term to use. Every Christian body up until the 1930s or so condemned ABC. It is only since then that everybody has either caved completely or made concessions. Can anybody point to Orthodox teaching prior to the 20th century where ABC was allowed? I personally don't know of any.
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« Reply #66 on: July 09, 2013, 03:00:22 PM »

Well, mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa, here we go on another tangent, woo hoo!  Tongue

When I saw this, I thought, "Hmm, maybe Mor Ephrem has a point."
Then I looked up the story behind the altar and thought, "Hmmmmm. Maybe Francis has a point."
You do know that the people of the island built the altar for the Pope to use, right? Francis didn't bring it with him from the Vatican.

I'm aware that the altar was constructed by the people of the island, and not brought from the Vatican.  That's besides the point.  What makes anyone anywhere think that a rainbow-coloured boat with a mensa attached is a suitable altar for the Liturgy?  It wasn't an emergency situation, it's not like chaplains saying Mass on the roofs of Jeeps in combat zones.

I don't see how the boat trivializes anything.  Here is the story on the purpose of it.  It's a powerful statement by the Pope advocating for the rights of the oppressed.  What is he going to do? Tell the people "No, sorry, I'm not going to use this altar, get me a fancier one"?

http://ncronline.org/blogs/ncr-today/francis-blasts-globalization-indifference-immigrants
 

Again, I'm aware of the story behind this event.  But your comment begs the question: since when is the rite of Mass/Divine Liturgy the appropriate venue to make "a powerful statement advocating for the rights of the oppressed"?  Such statements can and ought to be made in public preaching, within and without the Mass.  But is there a need to construct an altar out of a boat in order to make the point?  An altar is not just a table on which we do some Christian things to bread.  If you can bastardise an altar of sacrifice in order to make a humanitarian statement, what else can you do to the Liturgy to make whatever point you want to make?    

I don't know how effective such visual changes are in terms of making powerful statements on behalf of the oppressed, but I do know how effective they are in making powerful statements on what we do in the Liturgy.

And no, I don't think the Pope is going to tell them "Get me a fancier altar, I don't want to use this".  But I also don't think the Pope is like the Orthodox bishop of some small diocese who travels to a parish with a seminarian to assist him, and they show up and have to deal with whatever the parish has.  He's the Pope: he has a papal master of ceremonies who himself has several assistants and a whole department in charge of such things, and they are routinely involved in planning and executing papal liturgical events within and outside Rome.  That so many priests, bishops, and a Pope saw nothing wrong with using the Mass as a blank slate upon which to display their political/humanitarian statements is alarming.  

The Mass has only one political statement--the kingdom of God.  The Mass has only one humanitarian statement--the gospel of salvation.  The rites of the Liturgy are what they are in order to convey that and that alone.  Particular applications of gospel principles, such as the humanitarian situation this was meant to address, are best done through preaching, teaching, political action, humanitarian aid, etc.  But the rite of Mass isn't where to do it because the rite of Mass is supposed to bring the kingdom of God down to earth, and elevate us to things above.  In a sense, it's outside of time, even if it is celebrated on earth within time.  A boat-altar doesn't convey that idea, and was never meant to, by everyone's own admission.  That's a huge problem.              
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« Reply #67 on: July 09, 2013, 03:41:11 PM »

Well, mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa, here we go on another tangent, woo hoo!  Tongue

When I saw this, I thought, "Hmm, maybe Mor Ephrem has a point."
Then I looked up the story behind the altar and thought, "Hmmmmm. Maybe Francis has a point."
You do know that the people of the island built the altar for the Pope to use, right? Francis didn't bring it with him from the Vatican.

I'm aware that the altar was constructed by the people of the island, and not brought from the Vatican.  That's besides the point.  What makes anyone anywhere think that a rainbow-coloured boat with a mensa attached is a suitable altar for the Liturgy?  It wasn't an emergency situation, it's not like chaplains saying Mass on the roofs of Jeeps in combat zones.

I don't see how the boat trivializes anything.  Here is the story on the purpose of it.  It's a powerful statement by the Pope advocating for the rights of the oppressed.  What is he going to do? Tell the people "No, sorry, I'm not going to use this altar, get me a fancier one"?

http://ncronline.org/blogs/ncr-today/francis-blasts-globalization-indifference-immigrants
 

Again, I'm aware of the story behind this event.  But your comment begs the question: since when is the rite of Mass/Divine Liturgy the appropriate venue to make "a powerful statement advocating for the rights of the oppressed"?  Such statements can and ought to be made in public preaching, within and without the Mass.  But is there a need to construct an altar out of a boat in order to make the point?  An altar is not just a table on which we do some Christian things to bread.  If you can bastardise an altar of sacrifice in order to make a humanitarian statement, what else can you do to the Liturgy to make whatever point you want to make?    

I don't know how effective such visual changes are in terms of making powerful statements on behalf of the oppressed, but I do know how effective they are in making powerful statements on what we do in the Liturgy.

And no, I don't think the Pope is going to tell them "Get me a fancier altar, I don't want to use this".  But I also don't think the Pope is like the Orthodox bishop of some small diocese who travels to a parish with a seminarian to assist him, and they show up and have to deal with whatever the parish has.  He's the Pope: he has a papal master of ceremonies who himself has several assistants and a whole department in charge of such things, and they are routinely involved in planning and executing papal liturgical events within and outside Rome.  That so many priests, bishops, and a Pope saw nothing wrong with using the Mass as a blank slate upon which to display their political/humanitarian statements is alarming.  

The Mass has only one political statement--the kingdom of God.  The Mass has only one humanitarian statement--the gospel of salvation.  The rites of the Liturgy are what they are in order to convey that and that alone.  Particular applications of gospel principles, such as the humanitarian situation this was meant to address, are best done through preaching, teaching, political action, humanitarian aid, etc.  But the rite of Mass isn't where to do it because the rite of Mass is supposed to bring the kingdom of God down to earth, and elevate us to things above.  In a sense, it's outside of time, even if it is celebrated on earth within time.  A boat-altar doesn't convey that idea, and was never meant to, by everyone's own admission.  That's a huge problem.              


I think you are making mountains out of molehills

The mass is the celebration of the Eucharist. That is the fullness of the gospel message. The altar in discussion is totally keeping in line with the gospel message as it is inline with the humanitarian spirit of the gospel. Now you mention that this should be kept to public preaching away from the mass is where the gospel is to be proclaimed. This is wrong. It is very appropriate for the mass as the mass too is where preaching is done. You make the mistake of thinking that preaching is exclusively verbal. Intact the altar is appropriate for the mass as it is making a statement due to what it symbolizes. This symbolism is preaching.
As St.Francis of Assisi said :

"Preach the gospel at all times and when necessary use words"
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« Reply #68 on: July 09, 2013, 03:49:57 PM »

Perhaps it is because I have not studied it extensively, but what is inherently immoral with artificial birth control?  Obviously, there are certain kinds which can be an abortificiant, but not all are.  I know there are patristic writings against abortion, but I don't know of any against birth control. Where is the patristic mind on that issue?

In Roman Catholic teaching, contraception frustrates the natural end of the marital act. In essence it is slamming the door in God's face or kicking Him out of the bedroom so that you can enjoy the fruit of marriage without the natural consequences. Every act has a primary end and any number of secondary ends. The primary end of sex, in marriage of course, is procreation. If you take proactive and unnatural steps to frustrate that end, it is sinful. Again, this is the Roman teaching. Although I agree, I'm not arguing for it, just presenting it to you for clarification.

As for the Patristic mind, perhaps the "Church's mind" would have been a better term to use. Every Christian body up until the 1930s or so condemned ABC. It is only since then that everybody has either caved completely or made concessions. Can anybody point to Orthodox teaching prior to the 20th century where ABC was allowed? I personally don't know of any.

You may want to look up the patristic writings on birth control. It's definitely out there and was without a doubt considered sinful. Having those specific texts to refer to will help in the future when this discussion comes up.
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« Reply #69 on: July 09, 2013, 04:03:18 PM »

Many Catholics, myself included, see or saw "Oikinomia" as a synonym for "license."

What's this?

There can be no dispensation from the objective moral law. That would be akin to saying that a priest or bishop could give a dispensation to commit willful murder. Again, this is the Roman Catholic view. In Roman Catholicism, ABC is objectively immoral in every circumstance. There can be no dispensation for it.

That is not true.  Dispensation can be given if the reason for using the birth control is primarily for a non-birth control reason.  Women who need hormone replacement therapy for instance.  The Estrogen is therapeutic with a secondary possibility of preventing conception. 
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« Reply #70 on: July 09, 2013, 04:05:30 PM »

I think you are making mountains out of molehills

The mass is the celebration of the Eucharist. That is the fullness of the gospel message. The altar in discussion is totally keeping in line with the gospel message as it is inline with the humanitarian spirit of the gospel. Now you mention that this should be kept to public preaching away from the mass is where the gospel is to be proclaimed. This is wrong. It is very appropriate for the mass as the mass too is where preaching is done. You make the mistake of thinking that preaching is exclusively verbal. Intact the altar is appropriate for the mass as it is making a statement due to what it symbolizes. This symbolism is preaching.
As St.Francis of Assisi said :

"Preach the gospel at all times and when necessary use words"

I didn't say that humanitarian messages should be kept out of the Mass.  I said they belong to preaching and teaching, within or outside of Mass.  But it's another thing to play with the rites in order to make such points.  

I don't deny that example is a form of preaching, but the liturgy is not the place for such examples.  Did Francis of Assisi approve of boat-altars?  I think not: he was actually very keen on proper liturgy.  If ideas have changed with the times, I don't you can pin it on Francis of Assisi.    

Anyway, I know I'm not going to convince everyone.  I just think the priorities of some Catholics are interesting.    
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« Reply #71 on: July 09, 2013, 04:11:01 PM »

Perhaps it is because I have not studied it extensively, but what is inherently immoral with artificial birth control?  Obviously, there are certain kinds which can be an abortificiant, but not all are.  I know there are patristic writings against abortion, but I don't know of any against birth control. Where is the patristic mind on that issue?

In Roman Catholic teaching, contraception frustrates the natural end of the marital act. In essence it is slamming the door in God's face or kicking Him out of the bedroom so that you can enjoy the fruit of marriage without the natural consequences. Every act has a primary end and any number of secondary ends. The primary end of sex, in marriage of course, is procreation. If you take proactive and unnatural steps to frustrate that end, it is sinful. Again, this is the Roman teaching. Although I agree, I'm not arguing for it, just presenting it to you for clarification.

As for the Patristic mind, perhaps the "Church's mind" would have been a better term to use. Every Christian body up until the 1930s or so condemned ABC. It is only since then that everybody has either caved completely or made concessions. Can anybody point to Orthodox teaching prior to the 20th century where ABC was allowed? I personally don't know of any.

You may want to look up the patristic writings on birth control. It's definitely out there and was without a doubt considered sinful. Having those specific texts to refer to will help in the future when this discussion comes up.
I don't see thought, how the patristic teachings that many point to as barring birth control don't also bar natural family planning.  If you are going to say sex is only for procreation, then what are you doing when you are intentionally scheduling your sex times to avoid contraception? I also don't see how those teachings reflect St. Paul's discussion on the matter but rather reflect the common Stoic philosophy of the day, but that is a topic for another day.
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« Reply #72 on: July 09, 2013, 04:14:58 PM »

Perhaps it is because I have not studied it extensively, but what is inherently immoral with artificial birth control?  Obviously, there are certain kinds which can be an abortificiant, but not all are.  I know there are patristic writings against abortion, but I don't know of any against birth control. Where is the patristic mind on that issue?

In Roman Catholic teaching, contraception frustrates the natural end of the marital act. In essence it is slamming the door in God's face or kicking Him out of the bedroom so that you can enjoy the fruit of marriage without the natural consequences. Every act has a primary end and any number of secondary ends. The primary end of sex, in marriage of course, is procreation. If you take proactive and unnatural steps to frustrate that end, it is sinful. Again, this is the Roman teaching. Although I agree, I'm not arguing for it, just presenting it to you for clarification.

As for the Patristic mind, perhaps the "Church's mind" would have been a better term to use. Every Christian body up until the 1930s or so condemned ABC. It is only since then that everybody has either caved completely or made concessions. Can anybody point to Orthodox teaching prior to the 20th century where ABC was allowed? I personally don't know of any.

You may want to look up the patristic writings on birth control. It's definitely out there and was without a doubt considered sinful. Having those specific texts to refer to will help in the future when this discussion comes up.
I don't see thought, how the patristic teachings that many point to as barring birth control don't also bar natural family planning.  If you are going to say sex is only for procreation, then what are you doing when you are intentionally scheduling your sex times to avoid contraception? I also don't see how those teachings reflect St. Paul's discussion on the matter but rather reflect the common Stoic philosophy of the day, but that is a topic for another day.

Wow, three straw men in three sentences.
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« Reply #73 on: July 09, 2013, 04:17:31 PM »

Perhaps it is because I have not studied it extensively, but what is inherently immoral with artificial birth control?  Obviously, there are certain kinds which can be an abortificiant, but not all are.  I know there are patristic writings against abortion, but I don't know of any against birth control. Where is the patristic mind on that issue?

In Roman Catholic teaching, contraception frustrates the natural end of the marital act. In essence it is slamming the door in God's face or kicking Him out of the bedroom so that you can enjoy the fruit of marriage without the natural consequences. Every act has a primary end and any number of secondary ends. The primary end of sex, in marriage of course, is procreation. If you take proactive and unnatural steps to frustrate that end, it is sinful. Again, this is the Roman teaching. Although I agree, I'm not arguing for it, just presenting it to you for clarification.

As for the Patristic mind, perhaps the "Church's mind" would have been a better term to use. Every Christian body up until the 1930s or so condemned ABC. It is only since then that everybody has either caved completely or made concessions. Can anybody point to Orthodox teaching prior to the 20th century where ABC was allowed? I personally don't know of any.

You may want to look up the patristic writings on birth control. It's definitely out there and was without a doubt considered sinful. Having those specific texts to refer to will help in the future when this discussion comes up.
I don't see thought, how the patristic teachings that many point to as barring birth control don't also bar natural family planning.  If you are going to say sex is only for procreation, then what are you doing when you are intentionally scheduling your sex times to avoid contraception? I also don't see how those teachings reflect St. Paul's discussion on the matter but rather reflect the common Stoic philosophy of the day, but that is a topic for another day.

Wow, three straw men in three sentences.
As I said before, I haven't intensely studied the topic, so I'm not trying to tell anyone they are wrong,  I just don't understand the position in saying that birth control is inherently immoral.  If you would like to respond rather than just saying I'm setting up strawmen, please feel free.  I readily admit that I may not fully understand the other perspective.
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« Reply #74 on: July 09, 2013, 04:19:43 PM »

Many Catholics, myself included, see or saw "Oikinomia" as a synonym for "license."

What's this?

There can be no dispensation from the objective moral law. That would be akin to saying that a priest or bishop could give a dispensation to commit willful murder. Again, this is the Roman Catholic view. In Roman Catholicism, ABC is objectively immoral in every circumstance. There can be no dispensation for it.

That is not true.  Dispensation can be given if the reason for using the birth control is primarily for a non-birth control reason.  Women who need hormone replacement therapy for instance.  The Estrogen is therapeutic with a secondary possibility of preventing conception. 

Come on. You know that isn't what I meant. Birth Control taken for the primary reason for which it was invented. better?  Wink
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« Reply #75 on: July 09, 2013, 04:19:56 PM »

I like Pope Francis' expressions of solidarity with the poor, but why make the Mass an ad for your cause du jour?  Really...a boat altar and an ambo with a ship's wheel on the front?  If that's how you treat your central worship service, no wonder average people think all the fuss over birth control is "all fart and no _hit".

While not my cup of tea and I would not approve of such in a permanent church, I tend to give churches a pass on outdoor celebrations.  I mean throwing brocade over a card table, while it may look like a regular altar, is still a card table.  And I have seen both Catholic and Orthodox do it.  

Being involved with the Boy Scouts, I see a lot of approaches some better than others, but you make do with whta you have.  For example the first Orthodox Liturgy at Philmont Scout Ranch:
http://byztex.blogspot.com/2009/08/first-orthodox-liturgy-performed-at.html
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« Reply #76 on: July 09, 2013, 04:25:36 PM »

Many Catholics, myself included, see or saw "Oikinomia" as a synonym for "license."

What's this?

There can be no dispensation from the objective moral law. That would be akin to saying that a priest or bishop could give a dispensation to commit willful murder. Again, this is the Roman Catholic view. In Roman Catholicism, ABC is objectively immoral in every circumstance. There can be no dispensation for it.

That is not true.  Dispensation can be given if the reason for using the birth control is primarily for a non-birth control reason.  Women who need hormone replacement therapy for instance.  The Estrogen is therapeutic with a secondary possibility of preventing conception. 

Precisely. The idea of economia has a place in Roman Catholicism, but I think the large nature of many parishes prevents it. There isn't the same sort of relationship between priests and laity in many Roman Catholic parishes as there is in Orthodox parishes. And the vast majority of Roman Catholics don't go to confession, so there is no confessor with which to speak, even if they thought to seek some dispensation or greater understanding of the issue.  The thing about legalism is that it always applies, so there is less need for individual guidance. And, I find it odd that the celibate clerics of Roman Catholicism seem to have little time to provide individual spiritual direction anyway. (I'm not sure how they send their time, honestly.  In my limited realm of experience, they take a lot of trips. But maybe that's not the norm.).

Anyway, my main point is that the ratio of priests to people militates against individual guidance of the type that would lend itself to applications of economia in Roman Catholicism. And most Catholics never go to confession anyway.
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« Reply #77 on: July 09, 2013, 04:33:33 PM »

Perhaps it is because I have not studied it extensively, but what is inherently immoral with artificial birth control?  Obviously, there are certain kinds which can be an abortificiant, but not all are.  I know there are patristic writings against abortion, but I don't know of any against birth control. Where is the patristic mind on that issue?

In Roman Catholic teaching, contraception frustrates the natural end of the marital act. In essence it is slamming the door in God's face or kicking Him out of the bedroom so that you can enjoy the fruit of marriage without the natural consequences. Every act has a primary end and any number of secondary ends. The primary end of sex, in marriage of course, is procreation. If you take proactive and unnatural steps to frustrate that end, it is sinful. Again, this is the Roman teaching. Although I agree, I'm not arguing for it, just presenting it to you for clarification.

As for the Patristic mind, perhaps the "Church's mind" would have been a better term to use. Every Christian body up until the 1930s or so condemned ABC. It is only since then that everybody has either caved completely or made concessions. Can anybody point to Orthodox teaching prior to the 20th century where ABC was allowed? I personally don't know of any.

You may want to look up the patristic writings on birth control. It's definitely out there and was without a doubt considered sinful. Having those specific texts to refer to will help in the future when this discussion comes up.
I don't see thought, how the patristic teachings that many point to as barring birth control don't also bar natural family planning.  If you are going to say sex is only for procreation, then what are you doing when you are intentionally scheduling your sex times to avoid contraception? I also don't see how those teachings reflect St. Paul's discussion on the matter but rather reflect the common Stoic philosophy of the day, but that is a topic for another day.

Wow, three straw men in three sentences.
As I said before, I haven't intensely studied the topic, so I'm not trying to tell anyone they are wrong,  I just don't understand the position in saying that birth control is inherently immoral.  If you would like to respond rather than just saying I'm setting up strawmen, please feel free.  I readily admit that I may not fully understand the other perspective.

Okay big dawg, I didn't say NFP is okay, I didn't say that sex is only for procreation and I doubt the Fathers were all secret stoics with a veneer of Christianity.

As for explaining why it's immoral, that's above my paygrade. I'm just a goon on the internet. I just try to follow the authentic teachings of the tradition as I see it.
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« Reply #78 on: July 09, 2013, 04:47:27 PM »

While not my cup of tea and I would not approve of such in a permanent church, I tend to give churches a pass on outdoor celebrations.  I mean throwing brocade over a card table, while it may look like a regular altar, is still a card table.  And I have seen both Catholic and Orthodox do it.  

Oh sure.  I've been involved in setting such things up.  Tongue  But while brocade over a card table makes the altar no less a card table, it's also not "making a statement".  They could've set up a card table with a simple white cloth, a cross, and a couple of candles, and I wouldn't have had as much of an issue with it.  That would've been simpler than a boat-altar, and no less available.  But that was not the point of the boat-altar in the first place.  

There's a difference between "making a statement" and "making do".  In the Boy Scout Liturgy you posted a link to, they weren't making a statement, they were using what they had.  Obviously, this is sometimes done better, sometimes worse.  Whether you need to serve the Liturgy at all at a camp (and if so under what circumstances) is another question entirely.  But whatever it is, it's not making the Liturgy into an advertisement for a cause.  That is my biggest issue--it's not just a matter of petulant Orthodox with super-high liturgical tastes who can't get down with simplicity.      
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« Reply #79 on: July 09, 2013, 05:06:46 PM »

Well, mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa, here we go on another tangent, woo hoo!  Tongue

When I saw this, I thought, "Hmm, maybe Mor Ephrem has a point."
Then I looked up the story behind the altar and thought, "Hmmmmm. Maybe Francis has a point."
You do know that the people of the island built the altar for the Pope to use, right? Francis didn't bring it with him from the Vatican.

I'm aware that the altar was constructed by the people of the island, and not brought from the Vatican.  That's besides the point.  What makes anyone anywhere think that a rainbow-coloured boat with a mensa attached is a suitable altar for the Liturgy?  It wasn't an emergency situation, it's not like chaplains saying Mass on the roofs of Jeeps in combat zones.

I don't see how the boat trivializes anything.  Here is the story on the purpose of it.  It's a powerful statement by the Pope advocating for the rights of the oppressed.  What is he going to do? Tell the people "No, sorry, I'm not going to use this altar, get me a fancier one"?

http://ncronline.org/blogs/ncr-today/francis-blasts-globalization-indifference-immigrants
 

Again, I'm aware of the story behind this event.  But your comment begs the question: since when is the rite of Mass/Divine Liturgy the appropriate venue to make "a powerful statement advocating for the rights of the oppressed"?  Such statements can and ought to be made in public preaching, within and without the Mass.  But is there a need to construct an altar out of a boat in order to make the point?  An altar is not just a table on which we do some Christian things to bread.  If you can bastardise an altar of sacrifice in order to make a humanitarian statement, what else can you do to the Liturgy to make whatever point you want to make?    

I don't know how effective such visual changes are in terms of making powerful statements on behalf of the oppressed, but I do know how effective they are in making powerful statements on what we do in the Liturgy.

And no, I don't think the Pope is going to tell them "Get me a fancier altar, I don't want to use this".  But I also don't think the Pope is like the Orthodox bishop of some small diocese who travels to a parish with a seminarian to assist him, and they show up and have to deal with whatever the parish has.  He's the Pope: he has a papal master of ceremonies who himself has several assistants and a whole department in charge of such things, and they are routinely involved in planning and executing papal liturgical events within and outside Rome.  That so many priests, bishops, and a Pope saw nothing wrong with using the Mass as a blank slate upon which to display their political/humanitarian statements is alarming.  

The Mass has only one political statement--the kingdom of God.  The Mass has only one humanitarian statement--the gospel of salvation.  The rites of the Liturgy are what they are in order to convey that and that alone.  Particular applications of gospel principles, such as the humanitarian situation this was meant to address, are best done through preaching, teaching, political action, humanitarian aid, etc.  But the rite of Mass isn't where to do it because the rite of Mass is supposed to bring the kingdom of God down to earth, and elevate us to things above.  In a sense, it's outside of time, even if it is celebrated on earth within time.  A boat-altar doesn't convey that idea, and was never meant to, by everyone's own admission.  That's a huge problem.              


But how different is this altar though from any number of liturgical appointments which many of us, at least among the Slavs, are familiar with? One example might be the often ornate attempts to replicate the Church building in the form of the tabernacle for the altar, often lovingly crafted by a local carver or carpenter, but not with a sense of grandeur or even 'studied' skill, but as folk art? How about hand embroidered altar cloths, icon cloths, communion cloths, vestments and so on......The wooden, stave churches of the Carpathians, the primitive iconography found in 17th century churches and so on and on.... I am sure that Greeks have their own examples of similar gifts from the heart to the Church and I would not be surprised to learn of wood from shipwrecks being used to fashion altar tables in the Greek Islands - not in the shape of the one used by Pope Francis, but having the same heartfelt intent?
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« Reply #80 on: July 09, 2013, 05:15:55 PM »

 But whatever it is, it's not making the Liturgy into an advertisement for a cause.  That is my biggest issue--it's not just a matter of petulant Orthodox with super-high liturgical tastes who can't get down with simplicity.

I agree the Liturgy shouldn't be an advertisement for a cause.  I just sense this is more of psychological/emotional/cathartic issue then one of cause of the day, like welding a cross out of the I-beams of the World Trade Center, or erecting a chapel at Auschwitz.
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« Reply #81 on: July 09, 2013, 05:25:14 PM »

Many Catholics, myself included, see or saw "Oikinomia" as a synonym for "license."

What's this?

There can be no dispensation from the objective moral law. That would be akin to saying that a priest or bishop could give a dispensation to commit willful murder. Again, this is the Roman Catholic view. In Roman Catholicism, ABC is objectively immoral in every circumstance. There can be no dispensation for it.

That is not true.  Dispensation can be given if the reason for using the birth control is primarily for a non-birth control reason.  Women who need hormone replacement therapy for instance.  The Estrogen is therapeutic with a secondary possibility of preventing conception. 

Precisely. The idea of economia has a place in Roman Catholicism, but I think the large nature of many parishes prevents it. There isn't the same sort of relationship between priests and laity in many Roman Catholic parishes as there is in Orthodox parishes. And the vast majority of Roman Catholics don't go to confession, so there is no confessor with which to speak, even if they thought to seek some dispensation or greater understanding of the issue.  The thing about legalism is that it always applies, so there is less need for individual guidance. And, I find it odd that the celibate clerics of Roman Catholicism seem to have little time to provide individual spiritual direction anyway. (I'm not sure how they send their time, honestly.  In my limited realm of experience, they take a lot of trips. But maybe that's not the norm.).

Anyway, my main point is that the ratio of priests to people militates against individual guidance of the type that would lend itself to applications of economia in Roman Catholicism. And most Catholics never go to confession anyway.

Deacon Lance was comparing apples and oranges. There is no Roman priest anywhere that has the authority to grant a dispensation to use ABC for the purpose of birth control. Using a birth control pill for acne or some other condition is not what I was talking about.
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« Reply #82 on: July 09, 2013, 05:28:54 PM »

Many Catholics, myself included, see or saw "Oikinomia" as a synonym for "license."

What's this?

There can be no dispensation from the objective moral law. That would be akin to saying that a priest or bishop could give a dispensation to commit willful murder. Again, this is the Roman Catholic view. In Roman Catholicism, ABC is objectively immoral in every circumstance. There can be no dispensation for it.

That is not true.  Dispensation can be given if the reason for using the birth control is primarily for a non-birth control reason.  Women who need hormone replacement therapy for instance.  The Estrogen is therapeutic with a secondary possibility of preventing conception. 

Come on. You know that isn't what I meant. Birth Control taken for the primary reason for which it was invented. better?  Wink
Yes.  I wasn't sure, however, because there are some nuts who say even in these circumstances it is a sin and manufacture all kinds of pseudo-science to support their belief.
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« Reply #83 on: July 09, 2013, 05:36:40 PM »

Many Catholics, myself included, see or saw "Oikinomia" as a synonym for "license."

What's this?

There can be no dispensation from the objective moral law. That would be akin to saying that a priest or bishop could give a dispensation to commit willful murder. Again, this is the Roman Catholic view. In Roman Catholicism, ABC is objectively immoral in every circumstance. There can be no dispensation for it.

That is not true.  Dispensation can be given if the reason for using the birth control is primarily for a non-birth control reason.  Women who need hormone replacement therapy for instance.  The Estrogen is therapeutic with a secondary possibility of preventing conception. 

Precisely. The idea of economia has a place in Roman Catholicism, but I think the large nature of many parishes prevents it. There isn't the same sort of relationship between priests and laity in many Roman Catholic parishes as there is in Orthodox parishes. And the vast majority of Roman Catholics don't go to confession, so there is no confessor with which to speak, even if they thought to seek some dispensation or greater understanding of the issue.  The thing about legalism is that it always applies, so there is less need for individual guidance. And, I find it odd that the celibate clerics of Roman Catholicism seem to have little time to provide individual spiritual direction anyway. (I'm not sure how they send their time, honestly.  In my limited realm of experience, they take a lot of trips. But maybe that's not the norm.).

Anyway, my main point is that the ratio of priests to people militates against individual guidance of the type that would lend itself to applications of economia in Roman Catholicism. And most Catholics never go to confession anyway.

Deacon Lance was comparing apples and oranges. There is no Roman priest anywhere that has the authority to grant a dispensation to use ABC for the purpose of birth control. Using a birth control pill for acne or some other condition is not what I was talking about.

You're right.
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« Reply #84 on: July 09, 2013, 06:14:19 PM »

But how different is this altar though from any number of liturgical appointments which many of us, at least among the Slavs, are familiar with? One example might be the often ornate attempts to replicate the Church building in the form of the tabernacle for the altar, often lovingly crafted by a local carver or carpenter, but not with a sense of grandeur or even 'studied' skill, but as folk art? How about hand embroidered altar cloths, icon cloths, communion cloths, vestments and so on......The wooden, stave churches of the Carpathians, the primitive iconography found in 17th century churches and so on and on.... I am sure that Greeks have their own examples of similar gifts from the heart to the Church and I would not be surprised to learn of wood from shipwrecks being used to fashion altar tables in the Greek Islands - not in the shape of the one used by Pope Francis, but having the same heartfelt intent?

Folk art, ornaments and liturgical items handcrafted by pious faithful of varying levels of artistic talent, etc. are not what I'm talking about here.  I've seen my share of such in various churches, and I've been gifted with some examples which I cherish and use. 

I see a difference between using wood from a shipwrecked boat to make an altar (which, when I first heard the story, is what I thought was going on and thought "Cool") and using a boat as an altar by attaching a mensa to it.  Given the reason for the Pope's visit, I don't think I'm wrong in seeing the altar as a "political statement", even if the message isn't fundamentally political per se.  Silly example, but I'd have a similar problem with a card table being used as an altar for Sunday Mass in a park during a 5K run if they decided to put sneakers on each leg of the table and drape it in an Adidas antependium.  Tongue 
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« Reply #85 on: July 09, 2013, 07:19:26 PM »

Did Francis of Assisi approve of boat-altars?

I have no idea, and neither do you. Cool

Also, it's my understanding that the Orthodox (at least the Netodox I've encountered here) don't even consider him a saint anyway, so would it even matter?  Roll Eyes
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« Reply #86 on: July 09, 2013, 09:27:25 PM »

Metropolitan Hilarios also said Muslims and Orthodox worship the same god.

He is in good company. AFAIK at least St. John Damascene said that too.

Then you appear not to have read St John's "Heresy of the Ishmaelites"?

Nope. But that could be what I'm referring to. Note that St. John talks about "heresy" and not "paganism" or anything like that. Heretics might be wrong but they have the same God as we have.

I doubt anyone in the patristic era actually thought, "Well, they're heretics, but at least they worship the same God as we do, not like those pagans." If anything, they thought of heretics as being worse, and the question of "same God" never came up because it is a stupid question asked by ecumenists, who were not yet spawned at the time.
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« Reply #87 on: July 09, 2013, 09:30:03 PM »

This appears to be a matter for them and not Orthodox Christians.
QFT

It doesn't affect us so why should we care?

We will have to care because the next time some imbecilic media person asks about the saints in the Orthodox Church and will automatically assume that John XXIII and JP II are both ours, we will need to be insistent on correcting them.
Or we could say "there was a schism in the 11th century, they are not Orthodox nor are they saints."

It may be more accurate to say: "there was a schism in the 11th century, they are not Orthodox so we cannot say if they are saints."

No, that is not accurate. There are not saints outside of the Orthodox faith.
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« Reply #88 on: July 09, 2013, 09:37:09 PM »

Perhaps it is because I have not studied it extensively, but what is inherently immoral with artificial birth control?  Obviously, there are certain kinds which can be an abortificiant, but not all are.  I know there are patristic writings against abortion, but I don't know of any against birth control. Where is the patristic mind on that issue?

In Roman Catholic teaching, contraception frustrates the natural end of the marital act. In essence it is slamming the door in God's face or kicking Him out of the bedroom so that you can enjoy the fruit of marriage without the natural consequences. Every act has a primary end and any number of secondary ends. The primary end of sex, in marriage of course, is procreation. If you take proactive and unnatural steps to frustrate that end, it is sinful. Again, this is the Roman teaching. Although I agree, I'm not arguing for it, just presenting it to you for clarification.

As for the Patristic mind, perhaps the "Church's mind" would have been a better term to use. Every Christian body up until the 1930s or so condemned ABC. It is only since then that everybody has either caved completely or made concessions. Can anybody point to Orthodox teaching prior to the 20th century where ABC was allowed? I personally don't know of any.

You may want to look up the patristic writings on birth control. It's definitely out there and was without a doubt considered sinful. Having those specific texts to refer to will help in the future when this discussion comes up.
I don't see thought, how the patristic teachings that many point to as barring birth control don't also bar natural family planning.  If you are going to say sex is only for procreation, then what are you doing when you are intentionally scheduling your sex times to avoid contraception? I also don't see how those teachings reflect St. Paul's discussion on the matter but rather reflect the common Stoic philosophy of the day, but that is a topic for another day.

Wow, three straw men in three sentences.
As I said before, I haven't intensely studied the topic, so I'm not trying to tell anyone they are wrong,  I just don't understand the position in saying that birth control is inherently immoral.  If you would like to respond rather than just saying I'm setting up strawmen, please feel free.  I readily admit that I may not fully understand the other perspective.

Okay big dawg, I didn't say NFP is okay, I didn't say that sex is only for procreation and I doubt the Fathers were all secret stoics with a veneer of Christianity.

As for explaining why it's immoral, that's above my paygrade. I'm just a goon on the internet. I just try to follow the authentic teachings of the tradition as I see it.

I never said that you did. I was just responding to the comment by #1Sinner that the RC is closer the the patristic mind than the Orthodox is on the topic of birth control. I was legitimately interested in why he said that.  I don't think you were even in the convo, so I certainly did not set you up for any strawmen. I know that RC writers that I have read have pulled out several patristics who say that sex is for procreation and therefore I responded by wondering how that does not also go against NFP, but I have never read of any patristics who specifically condemn birth control (probably because as far as I know, it didn't exist at the time)
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« Reply #89 on: July 09, 2013, 09:40:51 PM »

I was talking more about the blatant modernism, indifferentism and syncretism of the above two pontiffs, especially JP II "the great."
Modernism like allowing contraception indirect contradiction of the Fathers?

Personally, I love it when RC's bring this up.  In spite of all the things they've demonstrably changed and innovated over the centuries, their apologists hold on for dear life to the prohibition of artificial birth control as proof that only they are faithful to the original tradition.  Never mind, among other things, that the Fathers would laugh at the RC promotion of NFP as an acceptable form of birth control as if that was just fine because it didn't involve condoms but only thermometers, charts, etc.

Again, personally, I find the following more disturbing than a pastoral allowance of certain types of birth control to married couple:



I like Pope Francis' expressions of solidarity with the poor, but why make the Mass an ad for your cause du jour?  Really...a boat altar and an ambo with a ship's wheel on the front?  If that's how you treat your central worship service, no wonder average people think all the fuss over birth control is "all fart and no _hit".
And yet, you crticize us for "modernism" when your Church has clearly caved on contraception. While the Fathers might criticize both of us on the matter, (only granting this for the sake of argument) your Church has clearly and directly abandoned the Patristic spirit on sexuality. So while you attack us on the speck in our eye, I think you should deal with the plank sticking out of yours.

According to you, but no, you are not informed by real Orthodoxy any more than some people on this forum who taut all sorts of odd things
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