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Author Topic: Ecumenical Vespers: Archangel Orthodox Cathedral, Brussels, Jan. 23, 2014  (Read 6579 times) Average Rating: 0
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« Reply #45 on: January 29, 2014, 06:13:28 PM »


Not particularly useful for those here who don't know the Russian language.  Tongue And the article makes no mention at all of what the service was.
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« Reply #46 on: January 29, 2014, 06:15:35 PM »

Not always.  A cardinal may be an archbishop, bishop, priest or archdeacon.

Not in modern practice.

And yes, in the past there even used  to be lay cardinals too.
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« Reply #47 on: January 29, 2014, 06:25:04 PM »

Not always.  A cardinal may be an archbishop, bishop, priest or archdeacon.

Not in modern practice.

And yes, in the past there even used  to be lay cardinals too.
The so called lay cardinals weren't really lay persons but were in minor orders and therefore clerics.
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« Reply #48 on: January 29, 2014, 06:34:51 PM »

Does anyone know what Belgium requires from churches, synagogues, mosques that are recognized by the State

Not true. It's necessary if you want to receive subsidies from the Belgian government.

And yes, Belgium is weird.
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« Reply #49 on: January 29, 2014, 07:04:59 PM »

You understand wrong. Heresy means holding to any false doctrine.

Where is the banging-my-head-against-the-wall emoticon in this forum?

I was speaking about the meaning of the term back then, not in current usage. And my point is exactly that words can change, narrow or widen their meanings.
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« Reply #50 on: January 29, 2014, 07:13:36 PM »

You understand wrong. Heresy means holding to any false doctrine.

Where is the banging-my-head-against-the-wall emoticon in this forum?

I was speaking about the meaning of the term back then, not in current usage. And my point is exactly that words can change, narrow or widen their meanings.

No you're still wrong. Heresy never had such a limited meaning; it means any kind of deviation from right doctrine. So even if at a particular point in time the current heresy was something specifically Trinity-related, I don't think you could argue that the Fathers would not have considered other heresies, say Christological ones, as a different matter.
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« Reply #51 on: January 29, 2014, 07:35:34 PM »

I don't think you could argue that the Fathers would not have considered other heresies, say Christological ones, as a different matter.

Not only I can argue that, but I do, as you see.

Btw, academia.edu has an interesting paper on "Apostolic Canon 45: Praying With Heretics" by Aaron Friar.
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« Reply #52 on: January 29, 2014, 07:54:24 PM »

Btw, academia.edu has an interesting paper on "Apostolic Canon 45: Praying With Heretics" by Aaron Friar.

What did you find interesting about this paper? 
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« Reply #53 on: January 29, 2014, 08:22:28 PM »

And yes, Belgium is weird.

How ironic.
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« Reply #54 on: January 29, 2014, 10:03:14 PM »


Not particularly useful for those here who don't know the Russian language.  Tongue

Better?
http://www.archiepiskopia.be/index.php?content=article&category=news/2014&id=2014-01-24-1&lang=fr
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« Reply #55 on: January 29, 2014, 10:03:14 PM »

Not always.  A cardinal may be an archbishop, bishop, priest or archdeacon.

Not in modern practice.

And yes, in the past there even used  to be lay cardinals too.

Uh, yes in modern practice.  The new pontiff is introduced by the senior cardinal ARCHDEACON.
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« Reply #56 on: January 29, 2014, 10:08:44 PM »

Not always.  A cardinal may be an archbishop, bishop, priest or archdeacon.

Not in modern practice.

And yes, in the past there even used  to be lay cardinals too.

Uh, yes in modern practice.  The new pontiff is introduced by the senior cardinal ARCHDEACON.
it is the cardinal protodeacon actually.
But the cardinal deacons are all bishops except for the few priests 80 and over so named who receive dispensation from being ordained bishops as required by canon law.
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« Reply #57 on: January 29, 2014, 10:35:46 PM »

Does anyone know what Belgium requires from churches, synagogues, mosques that are recognized by the State

Not true. It's necessary if you want to receive subsidies from the Belgian government.

And yes, Belgium is weird.

Sorry, not understanding your first statement.  What is not true?  Are you referring to Gorazd's statement that nothing is required by the State of churches, synagogues, mosques, etc. that receive its money? 

What is necessary to receive subsidies from the Belgian government? 
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« Reply #58 on: January 29, 2014, 10:47:21 PM »

If members of a religion were doing things contrary to what they should be doing because the State provides for 48 priests, then maybe its better to not be involved.

If they aren't doing anything out of bounds, then it's a bonus to be recognized by the State.

And how did you come to that?


Which part?


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« Reply #59 on: January 30, 2014, 12:24:02 AM »

You understand wrong. Heresy means holding to any false doctrine.

Where is the banging-my-head-against-the-wall emoticon in this forum?

I was speaking about the meaning of the term back then, not in current usage. And my point is exactly that words can change, narrow or widen their meanings.

There is no evidence that "heretic" ever meant only "non-trinitarians" except in dreams
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« Reply #60 on: January 30, 2014, 12:34:47 AM »


Ah, French. Why, thank you, Mike.

Quote
Le 23 janvier 2014 ... un office de vêpres a été célébré en la cathédrale orthodoxe grecque de Bruxelles ... .

January 23, 2014, ... an Office of Vespers was celebrated in the Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Brussels.
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« Reply #61 on: January 30, 2014, 01:59:50 AM »

Maria,

Why do I sense a spirit of falsehood here?

If you speak French, or even if you read the whole thing with Google Translator, you would see that a vespers service has been presided by metropolitan Athenagoras, and celebrated by one Greek priest and two deacons.

After that, the RC archbishop held a sermon.


Even according to uncanonical "Old Calendarist" opinion, I do not see what is wrong with the mere presence of non-Orthodox Christians in an Orthodox vespers service.

Stop badmouthing and bashing the canonical Church. I'm fed up with that.
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« Reply #62 on: January 30, 2014, 02:05:12 AM »

Maria,

Why do I sense a spirit of falsehood here?

If you speak French, or even if you read the whole thing with Google Translator, you would see that a vespers service has been presided by metropolitan Athenagoras, and celebrated by one Greek priest and two deacons.

After that, the RC archbishop held a sermon.


Even according to uncanonical "Old Calendarist" opinion, I do not see what is wrong with the mere presence of non-Orthodox Christians in an Orthodox vespers service.

Stop badmouthing and bashing the canonical Church. I'm fed up with that.

Indeed. At no time during an Orthodox vespers service does the priest address the congregation standing on the ambon behind a lectern. This could only have occurred before or after the vespers service itself, and not during it.
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« Reply #63 on: January 30, 2014, 02:17:11 AM »


Even according to uncanonical "Old Calendarist" opinion, I do not see what is wrong with the mere presence of non-Orthodox Christians in an Orthodox vespers service.



I was wondering that too.  How else would we ever get converts? 
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« Reply #64 on: January 30, 2014, 02:49:24 AM »


I do not see what is wrong with the mere presence of non-Orthodox Christians in an Orthodox vespers service.

It is not the mere presence of non-Orthodox, but the active participation of these non-Orthodox by their prayers and readings standing on the Solea during that Ecumenical Vespers Service that is the problem.

And yes, I did attend an Ecumenical Vespers Service at St. Sophia Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Los Angeles in the late 1990s when Archbishop Sypridon came to town. I sang in the choir and we saw the entire show including the Methodist female minister who refused to mention Father and Son, so she amended the reading or prayer to accommodate herself.  Roll Eyes

I might still have the Ecumenical Vespers booklet that they handed out, but I think I tossed that out years ago because I cannot keep everything.

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« Reply #65 on: January 30, 2014, 02:52:04 AM »

At no time during an Orthodox vespers service does the priest address the congregation standing on the ambon behind a lectern. This could only have occurred before or after the vespers service itself, and not during it.

On the contrary, it is never okay for a member of the laity or heterodox to stand on the Ambo at any time. That is reserved for Orthodox Christian deacons, priests, and hierarchs only.
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« Reply #66 on: January 30, 2014, 02:55:49 AM »

At no time during an Orthodox vespers service does the priest address the congregation standing on the ambon behind a lectern. This could only have occurred before or after the vespers service itself, and not during it.

On the contrary, it is never okay for a member of the laity or heterodox to stand on the Ambo at any time. That is reserved for Orthodox Christian deacons, priests, and hierarchs only.

Again, you've missed the point.  Tongue
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« Reply #67 on: January 30, 2014, 03:05:17 AM »

Honestly, I have no idea what happened in Los Angeles in the 1990s, and that has nothing to do with the topic of this thread. What happened now in Belgium is that Orthodox clergy celebrated a vespers service, and afterwards a RC archbishop held a sermon.

So basically your remaining issue is that the RC archbishop stood behind the ambo, during his speech that followed after the Orthodox vespers service. But have you provided a canon on who is allowed to stand behind the ambo? And even if there were one, who are you, a layperson not in communion with the Church, to question a canonical Metropolitan's right to exercise ikonomia on this issue?

Btw, I asked a priest, who happens to be part of the Bulgarian Patriarchate, about speaking from behind the ambo. He mentioned that this is something the President of Bulgaria, an Orthodox layman, also does.
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« Reply #68 on: January 30, 2014, 03:15:38 AM »

Honestly, I have no idea what happened in Los Angeles in the 1990s, and that has nothing to do with the topic of this thread. What happened now in Belgium is that Orthodox clergy celebrated a vespers service, and afterwards a RC archbishop held a sermon.

You are misrepresenting the facts. The Orthodox clergy, Catholic, and Protestant ministers all participated in this Vespers Service by standing on the solea and reading prayers. If you had looked at the pictures that I had posted and the rest online, you would have seen this participation by all parties and not just the Orthodox clergy.

Quote
So basically your remaining issue is that the RC archbishop stood behind the ambo, during his speech that followed after the Orthodox vespers service.
  He is heterodox and should not be speaking from the Ambo.

Quote
Btw, I asked a priest, who happens to be part of the Bulgarian Patriarchate, about speaking from behind the ambo. He mentioned that this is something the President of Bulgaria, an Orthodox layman, also does.
The Holy Orthodox Emperor of Constantinople was also allowed to speak from the Ambo and even enter the Altar to receive Holy Communion.
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« Reply #69 on: January 30, 2014, 03:16:58 AM »

Goodnight. Prayers for all.
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« Reply #70 on: January 30, 2014, 03:29:14 AM »

Honestly, I have no idea what happened in Los Angeles in the 1990s, and that has nothing to do with the topic of this thread. What happened now in Belgium is that Orthodox clergy celebrated a vespers service, and afterwards a RC archbishop held a sermon.

You are misrepresenting the facts.
Facts? Other than in your questionable descriptions, where do we ever see anything that says that what we see in the photos you posted actually happened during the service?

The Orthodox clergy, Catholic, and Protestant ministers all participated in this Vespers Service by standing on the solea and reading prayers. If you had looked at the pictures that I had posted and the rest online, you would have seen this participation by all parties and not just the Orthodox clergy.
You don't think you might be drawing unfair conclusions based on what you see in the photos? What makes you so certain that those photos were taken during the service? How do you know they weren't taken before or after the service? Were you there as an eyewitness?

Quote
So basically your remaining issue is that the RC archbishop stood behind the ambo, during his speech that followed after the Orthodox vespers service.
He is heterodox and should not be speaking from the Ambo.
What canon or rule states this? Sic Maria dixit?

Quote
Btw, I asked a priest, who happens to be part of the Bulgarian Patriarchate, about speaking from behind the ambo. He mentioned that this is something the President of Bulgaria, an Orthodox layman, also does.
The Holy Orthodox Emperor of Constantinople was also allowed to speak from the Ambo and even enter the Altar to receive Holy Communion.
Thus you prove Gorazd's point.
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« Reply #71 on: January 30, 2014, 03:34:44 AM »

Quote
Btw, I asked a priest, who happens to be part of the Bulgarian Patriarchate, about speaking from behind the ambo. He mentioned that this is something the President of Bulgaria, an Orthodox layman, also does.
The Holy Orthodox Emperor of Constantinople was also allowed to speak from the Ambo and even enter the Altar to receive Holy Communion.
Thus you prove Gorazd's point.

The same honor of communing the monarch in the altar was also Russian practice in imperial times. The tsar and his wife were also called Batiushka and Matushka (Little Father, Little Mother) as a term of endearment. The same terms as are used to this day for a Russian priest and his wife.
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« Reply #72 on: January 30, 2014, 03:47:57 AM »

Honestly, I have no idea what happened in Los Angeles in the 1990s, and that has nothing to do with the topic of this thread. What happened now in Belgium is that Orthodox clergy celebrated a vespers service, and afterwards a RC archbishop held a sermon.

You are misrepresenting the facts. The Orthodox clergy, Catholic, and Protestant ministers all participated in this Vespers Service by standing on the solea and reading prayers. If you had looked at the pictures that I had posted and the rest online, you would have seen this participation by all parties and not just the Orthodox clergy.



And how do you know what anyone was reading since the article only states a homily was given, then it just says they went to the next room for refreshments.  

And how is it your business since you've removed yourself from Communion with the canonical Orthodox?  

You skipped answering the comments above.

You don't appear to have any other interest in the matter except to point out what you perceive as a wrongdoing by a local church in Europe, with which you've removed yourself from Communion.

If you're that bothered by it, why don't you write to them, explain that you left the Greek Orthodox Church in America, that you've taken up the torch for the Old Calendarist group, and would like some information from them so you can spread it all over the internet.  

I've never seen anything remotely close what you are describing in any of the Orthodox Churches I've attended: EP, ROCOR, Antiochian, OCA, Serbian.  
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« Reply #73 on: January 30, 2014, 05:57:09 AM »


The guy's obviously lying since he has a German accent.
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« Reply #74 on: January 30, 2014, 06:18:19 AM »

If members of a religion were doing things contrary to what they should be doing because the State provides for 48 priests, then maybe its better to not be involved.

If they aren't doing anything out of bounds, then it's a bonus to be recognized by the State.

And how did you come to that?

Which part?

You don't have to be recognised by the government to build churches or to worship. There were several Orthodox parishes before the Orthodox asked for recognition. But you'll only get money from the government when you're recognised by the government.

You also have to name someone as the spokesman for your religion, and now, per royal decree, Belgium recognises the metropolitan of the Ecumenical Patriarch or his representative as the spokesman for the entire Orthodox Church. That royal decree is all over the website of the Greek jurisdiction in Belgium. Of course, the Greek metropolitan uses this as another justification for his primacy in the Low Countries.

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« Reply #75 on: January 30, 2014, 08:49:40 AM »

I don't think you could argue that the Fathers would not have considered other heresies, say Christological ones, as a different matter.

Not only I can argue that, but I do, as you see.

Btw, academia.edu has an interesting paper on "Apostolic Canon 45: Praying With Heretics" by Aaron Friar.

Well you haven't argued, you have merely asserted. Arguing involves providing reasons and evidence to support your assertion.

Thanks for the link. It was a quick read and didn't provide any evidence in support of your position.
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« Reply #76 on: January 30, 2014, 08:54:17 AM »

Maria,

Why do I sense a spirit of falsehood here?

If you speak French, or even if you read the whole thing with Google Translator, you would see that a vespers service has been presided by metropolitan Athenagoras, and celebrated by one Greek priest and two deacons.

After that, the RC archbishop held a sermon.


Even according to uncanonical "Old Calendarist" opinion, I do not see what is wrong with the mere presence of non-Orthodox Christians in an Orthodox vespers service.

Stop badmouthing and bashing the canonical Church. I'm fed up with that.

It is clear from the photos that the heterodox were participating in the service, by reading out prayers and giving sermons while the Orthodox bishop was seated on his throne.
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« Reply #77 on: January 30, 2014, 09:01:24 AM »

Honestly, I have no idea what happened in Los Angeles in the 1990s, and that has nothing to do with the topic of this thread. What happened now in Belgium is that Orthodox clergy celebrated a vespers service, and afterwards a RC archbishop held a sermon.

You are misrepresenting the facts. The Orthodox clergy, Catholic, and Protestant ministers all participated in this Vespers Service by standing on the solea and reading prayers. If you had looked at the pictures that I had posted and the rest online, you would have seen this participation by all parties and not just the Orthodox clergy.



And how do you know what anyone was reading since the article only states a homily was given, then it just says they went to the next room for refreshments.  

And how is it your business since you've removed yourself from Communion with the canonical Orthodox?  

You skipped answering the comments above.

You don't appear to have any other interest in the matter except to point out what you perceive as a wrongdoing by a local church in Europe, with which you've removed yourself from Communion.

If you're that bothered by it, why don't you write to them, explain that you left the Greek Orthodox Church in America, that you've taken up the torch for the Old Calendarist group, and would like some information from them so you can spread it all over the internet.  

I've never seen anything remotely close what you are describing in any of the Orthodox Churches I've attended: EP, ROCOR, Antiochian, OCA, Serbian.  

There is plenty of information of similar events happening in other jurisdictions. E.g. there is a whole video of the the EP praying with the Pope back in 2006. What this thread makes clear is that some here will not accept even photographic evidence of Orthodox bishops praying with heretics as evidence of ecumenism. They simply will not accept any evidence at all and are unreachable in their delusion. But we can hope the evidence will convince the open-minded.
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« Reply #78 on: January 30, 2014, 09:11:49 AM »

Since this is all so very confusing, I suggest we hire a private investigator to determine exactly what took place on the day in question and when.  Ideally, since we want someone intimately familiar with local laws and customs, the fellow should be a Belgian.  I think I know just the chap to solve the cases of The Robed Women and Mysterious Affair at the Ambo.

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« Reply #79 on: January 30, 2014, 09:34:52 AM »

Since this is all so very confusing, I suggest we hire a private investigator to determine exactly what took place on the day in question and when.  Ideally, since we want someone intimately familiar with local laws and customs, the fellow should be a Belgian.  I think I know just the chap to solve the cases of The Robed Women and Mysterious Affair at the Ambo.



A brilliant suggestion!
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« Reply #80 on: January 30, 2014, 09:38:26 AM »

When one observes these "ecumenical" events on tape it is interesting that while protestants and catholics will close their eyes and bow their heads generally, the orthodox clerics usually do not, indicating they are present and keeping silent respectful of the rights of others to pray but do are not actually participating actively in the prayer. The other thing you note is that when they pray they pray as Orthodox Christians utilizing all orthodox prayer forms and practices. You see this in the United States during the 911 memorial services and various services in times of national or state need. This practice can even be found in the tines of the Orthodox state dating back to Byzantium. This is an expectation of citizens  of a nation regardless of the denomination.
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« Reply #81 on: January 30, 2014, 10:17:31 AM »

When one observes these "ecumenical" events on tape it is interesting that while protestants and catholics will close their eyes and bow their heads generally, the orthodox clerics usually do not, indicating they are present and keeping silent respectful of the rights of others to pray but do are not actually participating actively in the prayer. The other thing you note is that when they pray they pray as Orthodox Christians utilizing all orthodox prayer forms and practices. You see this in the United States during the 911 memorial services and various services in times of national or state need. This practice can even be found in the tines of the Orthodox state dating back to Byzantium. This is an expectation of citizens  of a nation regardless of the denomination.

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« Reply #82 on: January 30, 2014, 10:59:34 AM »

Btw, academia.edu has an interesting paper on "Apostolic Canon 45: Praying With Heretics" by Aaron Friar.

What did you find interesting about this paper? 

I guess you're not going to answer.

Building on what Jonathan said, not only did it not provide evidence for your position, but in at least one place it appears to intentionally misrepresent the historical record in order to argue its point (that's the funny thing about footnotes...some people actually read them and try to verify claims for themselves). 

A three and a half page "paper" is no paper.  I can also post my canon law homework on academia.edu, but that doesn't make me an authority.   
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« Reply #83 on: January 30, 2014, 11:15:33 AM »

At no time during an Orthodox vespers service does the priest address the congregation standing on the ambon behind a lectern. This could only have occurred before or after the vespers service itself, and not during it.

On the contrary, it is never okay for a member of the laity or heterodox to stand on the Ambo at any time. That is reserved for Orthodox Christian deacons, priests, and hierarchs only.

Again, you've missed the point.  Tongue

Did she?  I think the people trying to argue that this wasn't a liturgical service or that the speech from the ambon didn't happen in the context of a service are missing the point. 

The ambon doesn't suddenly become a non-liturgical space when there's no service going on.  It is the place from which the Gospel is read and preached and is one with the altar (in that particular church, the architecture makes that clear enough), and so those who are allowed to speak from it in an Orthodox church are limited to the major clergy of the Orthodox Church.  Everyone else can and does speak from the floor. 

The photo appears to confirm this practice for various Protestant ministers who are depicted standing on the floor and slightly to one side, so it makes the RC archbishop stand out as a notable exception.  And I doubt these people are picking where they wish to speak when they're clearly guests in someone else's house. 

It would be much better, IMO, to simply admit one of these possibilities than to keep trying to add more smoke and mirrors:

a) these things can get silly and some stupid stuff might be done, but it's unintentional and doesn't represent a watering down or muddying of the faith;
b) there's nothing important about an ambon in the Orthodox Church, so it's not a restricted area, and anyone can go up to it and speak from it without issue as long as it's not disruptive during public services;
c) the ambon is restricted to major clerics of the Orthodox Church, but an exception was made for a RC archbishop because his orders are considered valid in a way the Protestants' orders aren't.     
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« Reply #84 on: January 30, 2014, 11:21:21 AM »

Btw, I asked a priest, who happens to be part of the Bulgarian Patriarchate, about speaking from behind the ambo. He mentioned that this is something the President of Bulgaria, an Orthodox layman, also does.

I suspect that this is an application of liturgical customs which applied to Orthodox monarchs.  Whether or not it is legitimate to apply those customs to elected, non-consecrated heads of state who happen to be Orthodox can be argued, but if you have to reach for that category of people in order to argue that the ambon is not restricted to the clergy, you are stretching.  It's kinda like submitting someone's ungraded grad school homework as if it were a peer-reviewed article of demonstrated scholarship.   
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« Reply #85 on: January 30, 2014, 11:26:18 AM »

At no time during an Orthodox vespers service does the priest address the congregation standing on the ambon behind a lectern. This could only have occurred before or after the vespers service itself, and not during it.

On the contrary, it is never okay for a member of the laity or heterodox to stand on the Ambo at any time. That is reserved for Orthodox Christian deacons, priests, and hierarchs only.

Again, you've missed the point.  Tongue

Did she?  I think the people trying to argue that this wasn't a liturgical service or that the speech from the ambon didn't happen in the context of a service are missing the point. 

The ambon doesn't suddenly become a non-liturgical space when there's no service going on.  It is the place from which the Gospel is read and preached and is one with the altar (in that particular church, the architecture makes that clear enough), and so those who are allowed to speak from it in an Orthodox church are limited to the major clergy of the Orthodox Church.  Everyone else can and does speak from the floor. 

The photo appears to confirm this practice for various Protestant ministers who are depicted standing on the floor and slightly to one side, so it makes the RC archbishop stand out as a notable exception.  And I doubt these people are picking where they wish to speak when they're clearly guests in someone else's house. 

It would be much better, IMO, to simply admit one of these possibilities than to keep trying to add more smoke and mirrors:

a) these things can get silly and some stupid stuff might be done, but it's unintentional and doesn't represent a watering down or muddying of the faith;
b) there's nothing important about an ambon in the Orthodox Church, so it's not a restricted area, and anyone can go up to it and speak from it without issue as long as it's not disruptive during public services;
c) the ambon is restricted to major clerics of the Orthodox Church, but an exception was made for a RC archbishop because his orders are considered valid in a way the Protestants' orders aren't.     

Or, to boil it down even more... it might not have been such a good idea to let the RC archbishop give a sermon there, but this is not a "False union is imminent!" moment.
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« Reply #86 on: January 30, 2014, 11:41:15 AM »

Or, to boil it down even more... it might not have been such a good idea to let the RC archbishop give a sermon there, but this is not a "False union is imminent!" moment.

Sure, that too.  I mean, no offence, but mainstream Eastern Orthodoxy is so "immature" nowadays that no such union could take place.  You don't even always get along with each other.  Tongue 
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« Reply #87 on: January 30, 2014, 11:58:25 AM »

Again: any canons about ambo usage?


PS: Mor Ephrem, if you want to accuse Eastern Orthodoxy of "immaturity", wouldn't "Eastern/Oriental Orthodox Private Discussions" be the right place for that?
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« Reply #88 on: January 30, 2014, 12:13:54 PM »

"If you let dirt inside your front door, sooner or later it'll be all through the house."

PP
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« Reply #89 on: January 30, 2014, 12:35:49 PM »

Again: any canons about ambo usage?

I'll see what I can find, though I'm not sure if a canon is necessary for such things.  When did universal and long-standing custom become worthless in the Orthodox Church?  There's no canon prohibiting a subdeacon from wearing an epigonation, but who cares?  It's just not done.    

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PS: Mor Ephrem, if you want to accuse Eastern Orthodoxy of "immaturity", wouldn't "Eastern/Oriental Orthodox Private Discussions" be the right place for that?

No, because I didn't mean that as polemically as you seem to have taken it or want to take it: polemic had nothing to do with it, it's just an observation.  As a communion, there's enough division (political, not theological) within the EO ranks to guarantee that any "false union" with RC's or Protestants would fail even faster than Florence if it was attempted at all.  So I'm not really concerned that EO involvement in the ecumenical movement is as dangerous as others claim.  

But I don't like nonsense like letting non-Orthodox clerics preach from the ambon in the presence of Orthodox clerics, and I don't like the smoke and mirrors brought into this thread to hide it.  "How do we even know it was Vespers?"  "It was not during a service, but before or after."  "Presidents and Kings can stand there too, a priest told me so, but where are your canons to prove your point?"  Just be honest about it.  If it's not a restricted liturgical space, prove it to be so against universal and long-standing practice.  If you accept Roman Catholic orders but not Protestant orders, say so and own it.  If it's a good thing to participate in these functions and it involves zero watering down of the faith, very well.  I'm not necessarily against any of those, just make the case.  But it's not fair to paint anti-ecumenists, people "outside the canonical  Church", etc. as paranoid fanatics when people within the "canonical Church" resort to less than honest means to defend some things which go on at these events.        
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