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Author Topic: New Pope causes fear  (Read 10775 times) Average Rating: 0
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Antiochian
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« on: April 20, 2005, 07:53:40 AM »

I've been reading through the Pope thread, and some of you share the same fear as I do.

This Pope seems hell bent on "uniting" all Christian faiths, his main focus being the 1000 year old schism with our church.

Now how do I interpret this? Do I interpret this as more Catholic proselytism in Orthodox countries? A vigorous Catholic campaign to cause schisms in Orthodox churches and bring them in union with Rome?

I am very worried about this, in fact I can't help but feel threatened.

Should I be?

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« Reply #1 on: April 20, 2005, 08:08:51 AM »

Dear borther antiochian,

I do not think that anybody should be worried for the future of the Church. 

As far as answer on your question is concrned I belive that we will just have to wait and see.

Whatever the case might be, simple fact remains, unless there is a dogmatic shift in heterodox questions that Rome is keeping up and renauncement of the same, there will be no Orthodox-Latin re-unification. Just like Benedict XVI  have been the Latin defender of the faith before he became pope so are all of our sheperds defenders of Orthodoxy. I hold that Church will be able to act Orthodox way on whatever signals the curia sends.

Fides Orthodoxam semper.
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« Reply #2 on: April 20, 2005, 08:09:59 AM »

Maybe. I don't know. Does anyone actually know what Pope Benedict's attitude to the Orthodox Church and the Unia has been so far?

And please, no more of the anti-Semitic carp (translate to Romanian to get the intended word). Just because Joseph Ratzinger was in the Hitler youth as a child doesn't make him a Nazi. My Czech (but remarkably blond and blue-eyed), 'lost German' great uncle was forced into the Hitler youth also, followed by the Waffen SS. He wasn't anti-Semitic, or racist, or pro-German, or a Nazi by choice. About the only thing he shared with the Nazis was a hatred of communism, but so do I. You really shouldn't judge a person on acts beyond their control and from the distant past. After all we're interested in what Pope Benedict will do, not what the boy Joseph once did.

Sorry for the aside, but I've been annoyed by some of the ignorant comments I read. I really am interested if anyone can answer my and Antiochian's questions though.

James
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« Reply #3 on: April 20, 2005, 08:29:12 AM »

I, for one, trust our bishops and am secure in the Faith. I rather think that this new pope has his plate full with other problems. As much as many, including me, liked the last pope, I did not see a lot of action addressing the problems within Roman Catholicism over the last few years under Pope John Paul II. Their church in both Americas is under great stress and is being heavily proselytized by Moslems and Protestants. I don't see a continuing concerted effort to subvert the East at the expense or trade-off of their traditional strongholds.
Over the last couple of weeks there was an article floating on the Web and being quoted (but not discussed here) about the Russian Orthodox Church and the European Union. It made several good points. The largest church in Europe is now the Orthodox Church - thanks to the freeing of Russia. Perhaps it is our time to lead and not to just remain in reactionary mode. Even the most liberal of our mother Orthodox Churches is more conservative than most of Catholicism.
I am just waiting to see what comes out of Rome, but not worrying about it.
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« Reply #4 on: April 20, 2005, 11:03:50 AM »

The largest church in Europe is now the Orthodox Church - thanks to the freeing of Russia.

You mean, because the Ukraine is part of Europe now?  Otherwise, I still find that hard to believe.
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« Reply #5 on: April 20, 2005, 11:08:18 AM »

The Ukraine has always been in Europe as has the most populated parts of Russia. Not so hard to believe.
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« Reply #6 on: April 20, 2005, 11:33:24 AM »

A priest friend pointed out that any unity is based on how the Cardinals greeted the new Pope...on their knees, in submission, and not as equals.  Something to think about.
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« Reply #7 on: April 20, 2005, 11:57:58 AM »

This link makes some points I didn't remember:

http://www.boston.com/news/world/europe/articles/2005/04/19/new_pope_to_be_installed_on_sunday/
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« Reply #8 on: April 20, 2005, 12:14:14 PM »

I have doubts on the assertion that the Orthodox Church is now bigger than the Catholic Church in Europe, even with the inclusion of European Russia.

The 2004 Vatican Statistical Yearbook Annuario Pontificio[/i estimates the Catholic population of Europe at approximatley 290 million.

Pope Benedict XVI is an orthodox Catholic.

Amado
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« Reply #9 on: April 20, 2005, 12:44:20 PM »

Good old Amadeus. Always one to go one better. It wasn't my article and I surely doubt the 290 mill figure. No way.
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« Reply #10 on: April 20, 2005, 01:16:46 PM »

Elisha first expressed his doubts.

I just seconded! Evil

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« Reply #11 on: April 20, 2005, 01:57:45 PM »

Going back to the thread's topic, this portion of the homily of His Holiness, Pope Benedict XVI, delivered during the celebration yesterday of his 1st Mass as Supreme Pontiff might be indicative of his own pontificate's ecumenism agenda:

Quote
x x x Nourished and sustained by the Eucharist, Catholics cannot but feel stimulated to tend towards that full unity for which Christ hoped in the Cenacle. Peter's Successor knows that he must take on this supreme desire of the Divine Master in a particularly special way. To him, indeed, has been entrusted the duty of strengthening his brethren.

Thus, in full awareness and at the beginning of his ministry in the Church of Rome that Peter bathed with his blood, the current Successor assumes as his primary commitment that of working tirelessly towards the reconstitution of the full and visible unity of all Christ's followers. This is his ambition, this is his compelling duty. He is aware that to do so, expressions of good feelings are not enough. Concrete gestures are required to penetrate souls and move consciences, encouraging everyone to that interior conversion which is the basis for all progress on the road of ecumenism.

Theological dialogue is necessary. A profound examination of the historical reasons behind past choices is also indispensable. But even more urgent is that 'purification of memory,' which was so often evoked by John Paul II, and which alone can dispose souls to welcome the full truth of Christ. It is before Him, supreme Judge of all living things, that each of us must stand, in the awareness that one day we must explain to Him what we did and what we did not do for the great good that is the full and visible unity of all His disciples.

The current Successor of Peter feels himself to be personally implicated in this question and is disposed to do all in his power to promote the fundamental cause of ecumenism. In the wake of his predecessors, he is fully determined to cultivate any initiative that may seem appropriate to promote contact and agreement with representatives from the various Churches and ecclesial communities. Indeed, on this occasion too, he sends them his most cordial greetings in Christ, the one Lord of all. x x x
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« Reply #12 on: April 20, 2005, 05:25:28 PM »

Sounds like the Antichrist may have a very big church to help him soon. My fear is that soon the Orthodox churches will 'reunite' with the Roman church and no longer be the Church. When the Antichrist comes what will he want? Christian Unity at all costs. A 'Church' that is fiercely loyal but not to Truth. And how big of a church will he have? A very big one! The biggest and most rotten: The Roman church. I apologize for offending anyone but the Roman church is a very rotten organization in many ways and is based on several great Lies. If such reunification takes place many people will leave the mainstream jurisdictions and join new jurisdictions in order to remain in the Church. Perhaps the mainstream Orthodox jurisdictions and ancient Patriarchs falling into heresy is the great falling away? Perhaps we will see this soon?
No one seems to realize what is really going on. This reconciliation everyone is talking about is a huge lie and fake love fest that produces such statements as just mentioned. They blur all paths to the Truth leading you to the dazzling muticoloured lamp of falsehood. They seek to place there own ambitions and goals over the Power of Truth and Spirit. They think that by their own efforts they can have what they want. It is all a big baloney shoveling contest.
As much as I admire the person of Benedict XVI I know that if he does anything helpful it will be to maintain the previous policies of the Roman church that have prevented any false reconciliation that has been sought by so many Roman Catholics.
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« Reply #13 on: April 20, 2005, 06:09:31 PM »

The biggest and most rotten: The Roman church. I apologize for offending anyone but the Roman church is a very rotten organization in many ways and is based on several great Lies.

Easy now Sabbas,  there is no institution on earth, administered by humans- that does not have some element of rottenness, even the Orthodox Church - the human acts always get tangled in politics at some level... I've seen it first hand at the parish and Metropolis level... some things are rotten here too...which is why all churches have had people leave. Let's give this new Pope a chance.  He is right on one thing... returning to unity is important... we can discuss the how this can be done to bring the truths both churches share into focus and then work on the differences ... but that it should be a goal ..absolutely...and, just as Catholics have been told they hold the Truth, so have we...we need to focus on our similarities and not differences..as a place to start...and then work from there.
In XC, Kizzy



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« Reply #14 on: April 20, 2005, 09:28:49 PM »

In John 17 where Jesus prays that His followers be one, it is so that the world, kosmos, will believe that the Father sent Him. This seems to imply that if there was a time when the Churches united, a dramatic effect would be many many people becoming Christians. A huge multitiude, worldwide.

Would doctrinal agreement have a massive effect on unbelievers? I believe it would have some effect, but not the conversion of multitudes.

What would? I think if we got back to having a reputation that the early church had, 'Look how those Christians love one another!'

God is Love.

God is Truth.

When we have both, the lost may find their way.

My guess is that the Holy Spirit wants to unite Christians, so that the prayer of Jesus will be answered. Why would the Antichrist want to unite Christians?

If it is true that the flock will remain a very small one, then Jesus' prayer in John 17 will not be answered. The kosmos will never believe. I think that is untenable.

Christina
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« Reply #15 on: April 20, 2005, 11:25:59 PM »


Easy now Sabbas, there is no institution on earth, administered by humans- that does not have some element of rottenness, even the Orthodox Church - the human acts always get tangled in politics at some level... I've seen it first hand at the parish and Metropolis level... some things are rotten here too...which is why all churches have had people leave. Let's give this new Pope a chance. He is right on one thing... returning to unity is important... we can discuss the how this can be done to bring the truths both churches share into focus and then work on the differences ... but that it should be a goal ..absolutely...and, just as Catholics have been told they hold the Truth, so have we...we need to focus on our similarities and not differences..as a place to start...and then work from there.
In XC, Kizzy

Kizzy I have to confess something. Inside I am still attached to the Old Roman Catholic church. As a kid I attended a very beautiful neo-gothic church, St.Mary's in Iowa City, many times. I was never baptized for many reasons I won't get into, but I lived as a Catholic for a long time. I very much like Benedict XVI. I still go to Latin Mass websites because I still feel the awe and atmosphere that once enthralled me and made me love the Roman church. However I ultimately became Orthodox after much prayer and study.
Quote
just as Catholics have been told they hold the Truth, so have we
I was never told growing up that the Orthodox Church is the True Church. I was told by relatives that the Roman church was truly Catholic and Apostolic. If all I was doing was going with what I was told than I would be a conservative RC in SSPX right now. However I discovered that their is a difference between what the Roman church teaches and the Orthodox Church teaches. The difference is that the Roman church has fallen into heresy and in fact many in the Roman church realize it inside when the study church history which is why they are so interested in apologizing for 1204 and promote Ecumenism. They simply cannot make the change of heart and mind to accept the Truth.
Just because we have similarities does not change the fact that only the Church, the Body of Christ, is THE CHURCH. The Roman Catholics follow a heresy and are no longer part of the Theandric Organism of the Church. They are a member that has been cut off and is now in a state of decomposition or rotting. If the majority of the jurisdictions that are now part of the Orthodox Church reunite and have intercommunion with the Roman church without the theological difference resolved through the Roman church throwing off their heretical teachings than many will leave and go to new jurisdictions to remain in the Church. You already have a growing number of people leaving to join the Old Calendar jurisdictions such as the Genuine Orthodox Church or Florinite synod which is huge both in Greece and America.

In John 17 where Jesus prays that His followers be one, it is so that the world, kosmos, will believe that the Father sent Him. This seems to imply that if there was a time when the Churches united, a dramatic effect would be many many people becoming Christians. A huge multitiude, worldwide.

Would doctrinal agreement have a massive effect on unbelievers? I believe it would have some effect, but not the conversion of multitudes.

What would? I think if we got back to having a reputation that the early church had, 'Look how those Christians love one another!'

God is Love.

God is Truth.

When we have both, the lost may find their way.

My guess is that the Holy Spirit wants to unite Christians, so that the prayer of Jesus will be answered. Why would the Antichrist want to unite Christians?

If it is true that the flock will remain a very small one, then Jesus' prayer in John 17 will not be answered. The kosmos will never believe. I think that is untenable.

Christina

Quote
Ver. 21. "That they all may be one, as Thou, Father, art in Me and I in Thee."

Here again the "as" doth not denote exact similarity in their case, (for it was not possible for them in so great a degree,) but only as far as was possible for men. Just as when He saith "Be ye merciful, as your Father." (Luke vi. 36.)

But what is, "In Us"?7 In the faith which is on Us. Because nothing so offends all men as divisions, He provideth that they should be one. "What then," saith some one, "did He effect this?" Certainly He effected it. For all who believe through the Apostles are one, though some from among them were torn away. Nor did this escape His knowledge, He evenforetold it, and showed that it proceeded from men's slack-mindedness.

"That the world may believe that Thou hast sent Me."

As He said in the beginning, "By this shall all men know that ye are My disciples, if ye love one another," And how should they hence believe? "Because," He saith, "Thou art a God of peace." If therefore they observe the same as those of whom they have learnt, their hearers shall know the teacher by the disciples, but if they quarrel, men shall deny that they are the disciples of a God of peace, and will not allow that I, not being peaceable, have been sent from Thee. Seest thou how, unto the end, He proveth His unanimity with the Father?
St.John Chrysostom

I think our Golden-mouthed Saint has spoken. Those who follow the teachings handed down are of the Apostles and made one. Those who do not adhere to what has been handed down, Roman Catholics, Protestants, etc. Can only be made One with us through confessing the Faith delivered by the Saints. Those who are truly Christians are those who have the Church as their mother for only in this way can you truly have God as your Father. Those who confess heretical doctrines unwillingly are called Christians out of love and charity for they do not know any better. Indeed God wants us all to be one but it is up to each individual to decide.
Doctrines are not just formulas in book. They are what we believe, how we live our lives in Christ. If you do not confess the doctrines of the Orthodox Faith than you cannot be in the Orthodox Church period! Heresy is no different from Atheism. Either you believe in and love the True God or you are just worshipping an elaborate formula and idea in your head. Some people outside the Church are very close to loving and knowing God but the only way to truly live your life in God is in His Church.

Why does the Antichrist want a great big 'Christian' church? This is quite obvious. So that he can drag as many people as possible into Hell. He will court religion and get people to love him as a very spritual man before he finally will attempt to obliterate Jesus Christ and put himself in our Lord's place. People can be fooled and dazzled and led astray very easily when they believe that because their church is so big and unified and 'loving' that it is the True Church. They will be in Synagogues of Satan.
I warn you. Do not go about interpreting the Scriptures on your own. The demons can whisper lies to us even when reading the Gospel.
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« Reply #16 on: April 21, 2005, 12:12:53 AM »


Kizzy I have to confess something. Inside I am still attached to the Old Roman Catholic church. As a kid I attended a very beautiful neo-gothic church, St.Mary's in Iowa City, many times. I was never baptized for many reasons I won't get into, but I lived as a Catholic for a long time. I very much like Benedict XVI. I still go to Latin Mass websites because I still feel the awe and atmosphere that once enthralled me and made me love the Roman church. However I ultimately became Orthodox after much prayer and study.

snip


Why does the Antichrist want a great big 'Christian' church? This is quite obvious. So that he can drag as many people as possible into Hell. He will court religion and get people to love him as a very spritual man before he finally will attempt to obliterate Jesus Christ and put himself in our Lord's place. People can be fooled and dazzled and led astray very easily when they believe that because their church is so big and unified and 'loving' that it is the True Church. They will be in Synagogues of Satan.
I warn you. Do not go about interpreting the Scriptures on your own. The demons can whisper lies to us even when reading the Gospel.

Sabbas,  I too like some of the old Roman Catholic church... esp the Gregorian chant and the old Tridentine mass, which I had gone to on various occasions with friends...I always visit St. Patricks when I'm in NYC at Christmas...and I feel my Orthodox faith in that church...I have been to St. Peter's as well and also St. Mark's in Venice, very Byzantine inside...I knelt beside St. Mark's coffin which is right there under the altar...So, to me these are still houses of the one God...

  I think the current Pope feels the same way about the old church... It was interesting seeing the Mass in Latin, so different from the short masses that most churches offer( I add, out of necessity because they have so many parishioners to get through in a Sunday).  However, I don't think the anti-christ would want one united church in the name of Christ. According to St. John:


"Who is a liar, but he who denies that Jesus is the Christ? This is Antichrist, who denies the Father, and the Son" (1 John 2:22);

My understanding is that the Anti-christ will deny Christ as the Son of the Father... I think a united church would be the best 'defense' against the Anti-christ...you know not 'divide and conquer'...I think the current Pope wants to get things right... at least that is my understanding from his speech..Let us hope so... that would be a step in the right direction....
In XC, Kizzy



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« Reply #17 on: April 21, 2005, 12:42:33 AM »

Ultimately there will come a point when the Antichrist we attempt to deny the Incarnation and try and make himself the Mediator between God and Man. Some prophecies say that at the anointing ceremony of the Antichrist as the New Christian King that the Creed will be read and when it comes to the, "And I believe in One Lord . . ." the Antichrist will become enraged and order that his name be said. As far out as this sounds it makes sense. A lot of people embrace New Age ideas and have become receptive to the Antichristian theology of men such as Teilhard de Chardin and Andrew Sullivan. They do not believe in Jesus Christ anymore they worship someone else. Dress the Devil up like Jesus they will worship him.

Their another discussion that just started on the Ecumenism Conference in Thessaloniki that I think you should read more about
http://uncutmountain.com/uncut/docs/Conclusions_of_the_Conference_on_Ecumenism.pdf
The conclusions they came to are as accurate and faithful a report on the Heresy of Ecumenism as you can get. Please read the article and at least consider its conclusions as valid.
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« Reply #18 on: April 21, 2005, 06:30:59 AM »

Why would the Antichrist want to unite Christians?

Dear Christina,

I can see several possible reasons why Antichrist would want to work through a false ecumenism based on "love, not doctrine".

Our Lord Jesus Christ warns us: "For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect." Matthew 24:24
What better way to decieve the elect than to tell them that their holding on to Tradition is contradicting the law of love? "You are unloving if you don't seek unity at all costs, even at the cost of keeping the Apostolic Tradition." Anyone who does not accept this "unity of love not doctrine" will very easily be seen as reactionary, an enemy of the new "superchurch".

I absolutely and unequivocally will oppose, to my dying day, any form of false ecumenism which is not based on doctrinal unity- "One Lord, One Faith, One Baptism". The reactions of others to this position is already: "he is an extremist", "he is unloving", "he lacks Christian charity"....etc. If this becomes the position of the new "superchurch" which is uniterd on the basis of "love not doctrine", I'm sure you will soon see who are really the unloving ones as the "extremists" start being eliminated one by one.

If Antichrist unites Christians on the basis of "love, not doctrine", he is seen as a saviour who brings peace. But if we forget the doctrines revealed by God, gradually we turn from him, and towards our new "saviour".

And what really annoys me, is that people who follow the "love not doctrine" basis for unity, dont even seem to realise that Our Lord's teachings on Love are only contained in the Apostolic Tradition they seek to replace with their brand of "love".

The reality is, the Church has never been divided. Christ cannot have two or more Bodies. There can only be one Body, One Church, as St. Paul puts it: "One Lord, One Faith, One Baptism". The prayer of Christ in John 17 shows us that the Icon of the Trinity- "that they may be one, even as We are One". This prayer has already been answered.

To say that this prayer is not answered yet tis to say that the"One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church" does not exist now but will exist in the future- clearly a false teaching.
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« Reply #19 on: April 21, 2005, 08:18:28 AM »

Quote
The 2004 Vatican Statistical Yearbook  Annuario Pontificio[/i estimates the Catholic population of Europe at approximatley 290 million.

Pope Benedict XVI is an orthodox Catholic.


What does this mean exactly? He belongs to the Uniats? I've seen it in the profile of many members in this forum, is it the same?
Excuse my ingorance on the issue, but it seems that just a few years ago the world would be Orthodox, Catholic or Muslim for me.

Also, it seems that lately the people tend to focus on the humanitarian part of Christianity, and ignore the liturgical part. To me, it seems that the Antichrist will begin to talk about love, compassion and all the things Jesus talked about, but instead completely ignore the faith part of Christianity (which is more important to me), and in time, when there is barely any faith left, he will elevate himself as the son of God.
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« Reply #20 on: April 21, 2005, 08:30:55 AM »

Ntinos,

I believe that you are getting confused between orthodoxy and Orthodoxy. If someone describes themself as an Orthodox Catholic they mean that they are Orthodox (Catholic being used as in 'One Holy Catholic Apostolic Church'). If you describe someone as an orthodox Roman Catholic however, you aren't saying that they follow the Orthodox faith but that their beliefs are those that are considered orthodox (normal if you like) for a Roman Catholic - i.e. not those of a liberal reformer or some such.

Pope Benedict XVI is not an eastern rite Catholic (so not Uniate as you put it) and he is certainly not Orthodox with a capital 'O'. Sometimes the capitalisation of a word really does matter, though as I assume English is not your first language your confusion is more than understandable.

James
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« Reply #21 on: April 21, 2005, 08:39:59 AM »

Ntinos,

I believe that you are getting confused between orthodoxy and Orthodoxy. If someone describes themself as an Orthodox Catholic they mean that they are Orthodox (Catholic being used as in 'One Holy Catholic Apostolic Church'). If you describe someone as an orthodox Roman Catholic however, you aren't saying that they follow the Orthodox faith but that their beliefs are those that are considered orthodox (normal if you like) for a Roman Catholic - i.e. not those of a liberal reformer or some such.

Pope Benedict XVI is not an eastern rite Catholic (so not Uniate as you put it) and he is certainly not Orthodox with a capital 'O'. Sometimes the capitalisation of a word really does matter, though as I assume English is not your first language your confusion is more than understandable.

James


Thank you very much for your answer. I'm from Greece, so english is not my first language, which gets me in trouble from time to time when speaking english.

When our friends in the forum suggest they are "Orthodox Catholic", they mean that they are like Pope Benedict (Ratzinger), Roman Catholics following the orthodox way of their Church?
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« Reply #22 on: April 21, 2005, 08:44:54 AM »



 "For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect." Matthew 24:24...<snip>
I absolutely and unequivocally will oppose, to my dying day, any form of false ecumenism which is not based on doctrinal unity- "One Lord, One Faith, One Baptism".


In the discussion between EO and RC at least, they will never deviate from this... both churches have a profound belief in One Lord, One Baptism, One Faith...and a triune God.... I don't believe for example the Jehovah's witnesses, Mormons, or Amish, or the Unity Church would be approached for unity....they were not born directly out of a break from the original church... I'm not sure anyone really cares about these three faiths and others like them when unity is spoken of...

My understanding is that the ecumenism effort focuses on those that were 'born' from a break with the original Church.. Actually to me, the only ecumenism to focus on initially is the RC/EO dialogue...I would want to start on that alone since to me that was the seed that created all the other splits.. and then deal with other issues...

In XC, Kizzy



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« Reply #23 on: April 21, 2005, 08:48:04 AM »

The biggest and most rotten: The Roman church.

If you feel this way about the Roman Church, then what, might I ask, are you views on the Episcoplian Church in the USA? Gay bishop...some bishops who deny the virgin birth and the bodily resurrection of Christ, accept abortion and the pill. If I would ever consider a church working hand-in-hand with the Antichrist it would be a church that disregards scripture and 2000 yrs of holy tradition to just be relevant and totally modern. With all the ills in Roman, I just don't see any of that...especially with this Pope, at least he's "orthodox" from a Roman Catholic point of view.
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« Reply #24 on: April 21, 2005, 08:54:12 AM »



Thank you very much for your answer. I'm from Greece, so english is not my first language, which gets me in trouble from time to time when speaking english.

When our friends in the forum suggest they are "Orthodox Catholic", they mean that they are like Pope Benedict (Ratzinger), Roman Catholics following the orthodox way of their Church?

No, I don't believe so. I think they mean they are Orthodox, as you and I are. If they'd written orthodox Catholic then yes, I'd agree with your impression.

I think all they're saying by using that description is that it is we Orthodox that are the true Catholics as it is the Orthodox Church that is the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church of the Creed. They are basically unwilling to let the Roman Catholics appropriate a term which shouldn't, at least from our perspective, apply to them at all.

Oh, how much easier it is to discuss these things in Romanian where catolic means (Roman) Catholic and sobornicesc means Catholic (as in the Creed). Does Greek make any such distinction?

James
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« Reply #25 on: April 21, 2005, 08:58:08 AM »

monkvasyl,

I agree, and it's not much better with the Anglicans here in the UK. On top of which they're a perfect foreshadowing of some future unified pseudo-church, managing somehow to contain people with beliefs as disparate as Calvinism and Anglo-Catholicism in the same 'church'. Clearly unity of faith is not an Anglican strong point either.

James
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« Reply #26 on: April 21, 2005, 09:15:01 AM »


Oh, how much easier it is to discuss these things in Romanian where catolic means (Roman) Catholic and sobornicesc means Catholic (as in the Creed). Does Greek make any such distinction?

James

In Greek, there's only the "general" word Catholic, which means means catholic, and has it's roots in ancient Greek, so we only have one word meaning catholic (as in catholic) and Catholic (as in Roman Catholic). Over the times, after the schizm, because the Latins had a larger Church and we were mentioned as Orthodox, the word Catholic came to be used in Greek for the Roman Catholics.

As for the Anglican Church, it doesn't really seem to reakise that the head of the Church is Jesus Himself and not the King.
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« Reply #27 on: April 21, 2005, 09:21:01 AM »

I agree, and it's not much better with the Anglicans here in the UK. On top of which they're a perfect foreshadowing of some future unified pseudo-church, managing somehow to contain people with beliefs as disparate as Calvinism and Anglo-Catholicism in the same 'church'. Clearly unity of faith is not an Anglican strong point either.

It's arguable that faith period isn't on the Anglican radar screen at all.  In the US for certain (and probably elsewhere, as well), Anglicanism has become a religious umbrella for a number of individual social movements.  As I very cynically joke (and no offense to our Anglican members intended), I used to be Episcopalian, but then I converted to Christianity.
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« Reply #28 on: April 21, 2005, 09:38:36 AM »



It's arguable that faith period isn't on the Anglican radar screen at all. In the US for certain (and probably elsewhere, as well), Anglicanism has become a religious umbrella for a number of individual social movements. As I very cynically joke (and no offense to our Anglican members intended), I used to be Episcopalian, but then I converted to Christianity.

So true. I was a Lutheran but used to attend Anglican services because there are hardly any Lutheran churches in England. My biggest confusion was caused by the fact that I could go into one church and find they were almost Lutheran, yet another and find it filled with the glazed-eyed 'happy clappy' brigade, and yet another and I could be forgiven for thinking I'd taken a wrong turn and gone to an RC church by mistake. I never understood how the Anglican church was any kind of a church at all, and this as a Protestant with a really quite nebulous idea of what a church is.

To me, the Anglican church seems to be more of a social club for the vaguely religious/moral, with coffee mornings and jumble sales often more important than the Liturgy. This is perhaps less true on high church end of the scale, but then I can't understand how they can possibly be in the same church as the others. The Anglican church is so broad it's vanished into the distance.

That's not to say I haven't met individual Anglicans who are genuine Christians with strong faiths, but they seem few and far between and it's beyond me how they can continue on in that church.

James
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« Reply #29 on: April 21, 2005, 10:36:50 AM »

Don't forget the sherry after the "mass".  I wonder if Henry VIII would reconize or even want to be associated with the church he founded?
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« Reply #30 on: April 21, 2005, 10:43:16 AM »

I wonder what kind of dialogue Pope Benedict XVI will have with Protestants?  I'm sure they still "smart" from his comment that they are not really a church. 

But I'm sure the office of the papcy will change or soften  him somewhat.  I remember a deacon on the eve of his ordination to the priesthood, said he would follow and apply the Canons as they are written.  Several of us tried to convience him that would not work.  Months later when we met him, he said once he got a parish he realized he couldn't apply the Canons as he originally said he would.  He soften his approach, I'm sure Benedict will also do the same, during his short time with us.  He even feels his papacy will be measured by years.
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« Reply #31 on: April 21, 2005, 11:04:48 AM »

Don't forget the sherry after the "mass". I wonder if Henry VIII would reconize or even want to be associated with the church he founded?

Isn't it about time a moderator stepped in and put an end to the cheap anti-Anglican potshots?
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« Reply #32 on: April 21, 2005, 11:22:58 AM »

Let us read what some Orthodox hierarchs and some of the world's leaders say about Benedict XVI:

"I offer heartfelt congratulations on Your election to the ancient Roman office. I wish You God's help in the high service of leading the Roman Catholic church. Our (RC and Orthodox) churches, which have authority and influence, should unite their efforts to spread Christian values to modern humankind. The secular world is losing its spiritual way and needs our joint testimony as never before." - Patriarch Alexiy II, Russian Orthodox Church

--------------------------------------

"I greet Your Holiness with brotherly love in Christ on the occasion of your election as Bishop of Rome and successor to the ancient See of Saint Peter. As you assume the responsibilities and heavy burdens of the ministry with which you have been entrusted, I wish to assure you of my brotherly esteem and prayerful best wishes.

"Your ever-memorable predecessor, His Holiness Pope John Paul II, was greatly respected by many Orthodox Christians throughout the world. It is my sincere hope and prayer that Your Holiness will be inspired by his example and will continue to work for the realization of our Lord’s high-priestly prayer, 'That all may be one' (John 17:21).

"Be assured of my steadfast prayer that Almighty God will bless you with strength and good health, so that you may serve Christ and the flock with which He has entrusted you for many long and fruitful years. As you begin your pontificate, may the Mother of God and Ever-Virgin Mary, the Holy Apostles Peter and Paul, and all the Saints, intercede for you before the Throne of Our Lord Jesus Christ, the Eternal High Priest."  Metropolitan Herman, Primate of the Orthodox Church in America

------------------------

"This is a great honour for Germany. I think he will be a worthy successor to Pope John Paul II. I congratulate him on behalf of the government and all Germans." - German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder

------------------------

"His Holiness brings a wealth of experience to this exalted office. The United Nations and the Holy See share a strong commitment to peace, social justice, human dignity, religious freedom and mutual respect among the world's religions. The Secretary-General looks forward to the contributions His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI will make in strengthening those values." - UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan

-----------------------

"I want to offer congratulations to Pope Benedict XVI, a man of great wisdom, and knowledge. He's a man who serves the Lord. And we remember well a sermon at the pope's funeral in Rome -- how his words touched our hearts and the hearts of millions. We join our fellow citizens and millions around the world who pray for continued strength and wisdom as His Holiness leads the Catholic Church." - US President George Bush

-----------------------

I send Pope Benedict XVI my warmest congratulations and sincere good wishes for the high mission that has just been entrusted on the head of the Catholic Church - French President Jacques Chirac

----------------------

"I ... state the willingness of the government of Spain to sustain the historic relations between Spain and the Holy See and to cooperate with Your Holiness during your mandate. I take this opportunity, Your Holiness, to send you the testimony of my highest consideration and esteem." - Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero, Spanish Prime Minister

----------------------

"May your acceptance of this tremendous burden of service bear fruit in our world. May God give you strength for these new cares." - Irish President Mary Mcaleese

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"The Queen of England and the Duke of Edinburgh have sent a private message with their best wishes." - Buckingham Palace

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"I certainly express the feelings of all Italians, and am particularly delighted, when I present Your Holiness with the warm and respectful homage of the Italian government." - Silvio Berlusconi, Italian Prime Minister

--------------------

Some one here already carries a big stick with his unflattering remarks. I hope he has a heart equally as big for him to be able to carry that stick when it becomes bigger and heavier!

Amado
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« Reply #33 on: April 21, 2005, 11:29:38 AM »

.... I don't believe for example the Jehovah's witnesses, Mormons, or Amish, or the Unity Church would be approached for unity....

I'm sorry, Kizzy, no disrespect is intended, but I must object to including the Amish with the JW's, Mormons and Unity (non-trinitarian and not Christian in the ordinary sense, though Mormons would I think disagree with that) The Amish and Mennonites are Trinitarian. They come from the Anabaptist movement from Switzerland orignally:

http://www.clark-cty-wi.org/historya&m.htm
http://www.amish.net/faq.asp

There would be no Amish visiting this forum, as if they are members of their church they do not use computers or other modern technology, it varies by group fyi (formally joining happens in young adulthood, before that the youth often own cars or drive or do others things that are not allowed to church members) but if anyone from an Amish-Mennonite background or who has not yet joined should come here I wanted to give correct information. Many people don't know alot about the Amish, perhaps beyond seeing "Witness" or a drive through parts of Pennsylvania or Ohio.

Ebor
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« Reply #34 on: April 21, 2005, 11:30:12 AM »

come on, no potshots. one more attack on anyone, i don't care who, and this thread gets closed.

call me an [fill in word here] sympathizer, but I don't care.
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« Reply #35 on: April 21, 2005, 11:36:36 AM »

Thank you, Cap't. 

I was wondering just how this managed to veer into shredding the Anglicans. One might suggest that those on the outside may not understand or have knowledge of what's inside perhaps?  (also just what is wrong with having sherry after mass? Though depending on time of day other beverages may be consumed.  I've seen Vodka after EO liturgies.  Wink)

Ebor
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« Reply #36 on: April 21, 2005, 11:56:39 AM »

Latest comments from Pope Benedict XVI on ecumencial dialogue:

http://www.boston.com:80/news/world/europe/articles/2005/04/21/from_new_pontiff_a_vow_of_openness

I was rather intrigued that he will be staying in his old apartment until the Papal apartments are ready. Imagine the President deciding to stay in his own home for the time being. The pope must be driving his security team crazy!
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« Reply #37 on: April 21, 2005, 12:10:05 PM »

No, he is not staying at his apartment. He will continue his lodging at the Domus inside the Vatican, together with the other conclave Cardinals until the Papal Apartment is readied. He went there to break the seal with the Camarlengo yesterday.

He went back to his apartment also yesterday to pick up some things he left when he joined the other conclave Cardinals at the Domus. He caused quite a stir when he was seen by alert media hounds walking to his apartment  with security in tow. Pandemonium broke lose as thousands converged on His Holiness. The "men in black" had a hard time preserving a room for maneuver for their asset!  But shook every extended hand and blessed and kissed some children in the crowd.

Yesterday was his first close encounter with the public as Pope.

Amado
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« Reply #38 on: April 21, 2005, 12:27:43 PM »

They just released the pope's email address:  benedictxvi@vatican.va
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« Reply #39 on: April 21, 2005, 12:58:14 PM »

This means that if I write to him, he will answer?
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« Reply #40 on: April 21, 2005, 01:17:51 PM »

No, it means you CAN now write to him with the speed of  e-mail!

Will HE personally answer back? I don't think His Holiness Benedict XVI, or any Pope or Orthodox chief hierarch for that matter, has the sufficient time to answer thousands, if not millions, of letters sent to his office.

I think  some person or persons in the Vatican communications office will do the answering. The e-mail address has been jammed every minute with thousands of congratulotory messages from around the world since it was revealed.

So, if you do send an e-mail, expect your answer for a little while longer.

Amado
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« Reply #41 on: April 21, 2005, 01:42:01 PM »

You already have a growing number of people leaving to join the Old Calendar jurisdictions such as the Genuine Orthodox Church or Florinite synod which is huge both in Greece and America.


Please define 'huge' for me quantitatively speaking.  I'm not doubting, just want to be able to determine scope.  Thanks.
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« Reply #42 on: April 21, 2005, 02:27:26 PM »

"There would be no Amish visiting this forum, as if they are members of their church they do not use computers or other modern technology, it varies by group fyi (formally joining happens in young adulthood, before that the youth often own cars or drive or do others things that are not allowed to church members) but if anyone from an Amish-Mennonite background or who has not yet joined should come here I wanted to give correct information.  Many people don't know alot about the Amish, perhaps beyond seeing "Witness" or a drive through parts of Pennsylvania or Ohio."

Just a note to clarify. I live amongst the Amish here in Northern Indiana, and yes they do use computers quite frequently, at work and in public libraries. 
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« Reply #43 on: April 21, 2005, 07:49:40 PM »

come on, no potshots. one more attack on anyone, i don't care who, and this thread gets closed.

call me an [fill in word here] sympathizer, but I don't care.
Just don't shoot me!

Don't forget the sherry after the "mass". I wonder if Henry VIII would reconize or even want to be associated with the church he founded?
I really have to agree that that is going too far. There are still a lot of Anglo-Catholic churches. I think that Henry VIII would recognize those.
If you feel this way about the Roman Church, then what, might I ask, are you views on the Episcoplian Church in the USA?  Gay bishop...some bishops who deny the virgin birth and the bodily resurrection of Christ, accept abortion and the pill.  If I would ever consider  a church working hand-in-hand with the Antichrist it would be a church that disregards scripture and 2000 yrs of holy tradition to just be relevant and totally modern.  With all the ills in Roman, I just don't see any of that...especially with this Pope, at least he's "orthodox" from a Roman Catholic point of view.
All I can say is that they are at least honest. Roman Catholicism is wrapped in lies. Peel them away and what is at the core? A big rotten lie. This is not an attack it is the truth. Go ahead and deny it but those of us who have studied Church history know better.
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« Reply #44 on: April 21, 2005, 08:32:22 PM »


Just a note to clarify. I live amongst the Amish here in Northern Indiana, and yes they do use computers quite frequently, at work and in public libraries.

Are they powered by steam?? When I was in PA at an educational center they showed how they converted electrical appliances, like cake mixers, to be powered otherwise...like with steam...They are not allowed to be connected to the outside world.  They also explained how no one is allowed school after the 8th grade because they feel beyond that,  one only becomes more curious about the outside world and the knowledge is not needed for living in the Amish community.  Perhaps in Indiana it is different...
Kizzy.
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« Reply #45 on: April 21, 2005, 08:47:14 PM »



I'm sorry, Kizzy, no disrespect is intended, but I must object to including the Amish with the JW's, Mormons and Unity (non-trinitarian and not Christian in the ordinary sense, though Mormons would I think disagree with that) The Amish and Mennonites are Trinitarian. They come from the Anabaptist movement from Switzerland orignally:

Ebor

Ebor, My only point in mentioning the Amish is that, from what I learned at an Amish educational center in PA,  their faith forbids being involved  in anything outside of their community and their faith..Hence I do not believe that either the EO or RC would try to meet with them... Even their appliances are not powered by anything that is connected to the outside world... it is  a closed society with stiff penalties for not following the rules...However, I have assumed that all Amish communities are the same as the ones in Lancaster County Pa,  and perhaps this is not true. 
In that community,  the Leader of the community is selected in the following way: Bibles are placed on a table, one of which has a special note hidden inside. All of the eligible men then pick up a Bible and whoever selects that Bible is the new leader of the community and their faith teaches that  he was selected by God...

Kizzy
 
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« Reply #46 on: April 21, 2005, 11:15:46 PM »

Very good points.  However, having been Roman Catholic and now Orthodox, I can tell you that the unity the Roman Catholic Church seeks is for everyone to realize how wrong they were for "breaking away" from Roman Catholicism.  They believe that everyone, Orthodox and Protestant, broke away from them.  Hence, they need to come "by the grace of God" back to the "true" Church - Catholicism.    They seem to think that the early church had the same understanding of things like papal infallibility, purgatory, indulgences and other things they've added over the years.  They keep talking about wanting unity, but it's a unity that will require Roman Catholic doctrine as a prerequisite.  They don't seem to be able to comprehend that most of their problems are a direct result of having abandoned Orthodoxy.  Because of their pompous, arrogant, miserable understanding of papal authority they can never have true "collegiallity" among their bishops.  As long as they adhere to their ridiculous "papal infallibility" doctrine, true collegiallity is impossible.  Catholic bishops are nothing more than local adminstrators and paper pushers for the pope.  As long as they continue to insist on their celibacy rule, in complete opposition to common sense and early church practice (and current orthodox practice), they'll continue down the road they're on - waiting for all of us to "come back" after realizing the errors of our ways.

If they're waiting for me, it'll be a cold day you know where.  Orthodoxy, with all its flaws, still guards pure doctrine and early church practice that should make the Romans take notice.  Unfortunately, they never will - except by a miracle from God.
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« Reply #47 on: April 22, 2005, 12:14:37 AM »

Very good points. However, having been Roman Catholic and now Orthodox, I can tell you that the unity the Roman Catholic Church seeks is for everyone to realize how wrong they were for "breaking away" from Roman Catholicism. They believe that everyone, Orthodox and Protestant, broke away from them. Hence, they need to come "by the grace of God" back to the "true" Church - Catholicism.

This is a common perception of the RC church...I tend to believe that the churches parted ways equally... It started with iconoclasm... during which time the East was in a despicable mess and the western church  tried to help  restore icons, and keep the saints relics from being tossed in the river. There were many centuries during iconoclasm and then after with much confusion:   the east then went through all kinds of shenanigans to get people to come back to the church... like using actors in the church to act out the liturgy  ( this gave birth to the staged ecclesiastical play, which had never been seen in the west).. This went on for several centuries. So all during iconoclasm and the 2 centuries or so after,  the east was a mess... anything but traditional...and during this time Rome ended up being the traditionalist and carried on the faith... That the east finally got it's act straight after centuries of unrest is terrific...and it is too bad that Rome got carried away with itself while the east was straightening itself out... but we were not the traditional church continuously from inception to today...and saying to Rome "oh we're back now and all straightened out..took us awhile but here we are" after centuries of being amess didn't automatically mean that everyone was going to drop everything so we could be involved again and then tell them what they were doing wrong...

 I note that the new Pope mentinoned that looking at history  is an important part of understanding why things are as they are...  it will be interesting if he does...because while we celebrate the return of the icons, I don't think people appreciate the role that whole era had in removing the church from the 'circle of equals'  with Rome... and how the schism really started then... and culminated in 1054...

As to non-celibate clergy... while I strongly believe that priests should be married, as a practical matter it makes for an incredible financial requirement of the parish... kids, college education,etc... all end up in the salary of the priest... If the RC were to have married priests, their entire financial structure would need to change...and that will not be easy to do in one fell swoop... My understanding is RC priests don't get a salary per se, but room and board...so the bulk of the parish contribution goes elsewhere...I'm not sure the RC church sees having more priests that no one can pay as a benefit..

Kizzy

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« Reply #48 on: April 22, 2005, 12:46:45 AM »

Hi Kizzy..
Roman Catholic  do have some married priests ...if they happen to be married and want to come into the faith.R.Catholic....
Also the news last night they did say that there might be exceptions to what can be done .......depending now on what this Pope wants and does......
I guess we have to wait and see....
Glory be to God..
helen

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« Reply #49 on: April 22, 2005, 07:32:05 AM »




And what really annoys me, is that people who follow the "love not doctrine" basis for unity, dont even seem to realise that Our Lord's teachings on Love are only contained in the Apostolic Tradition they seek to replace with their brand of "love".

The reality is, the  Church has never been divided. Christ cannot have two or more Bodies. There can only be one Body, One Church, as St. Paul puts it: "One Lord, One Faith, One Baptism". The prayer of Christ in John 17 shows us that the Icon of the Trinity- "that they may be one, even as We are One". This prayer has already been answered.

To say that this prayer is not answered yet tis to say that the"One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church" does not exist now  but will exist in the future- clearly a false teaching.

Dear OzGeorge,

I do not believe in a Love that ignores Truth. As I wrote in my post: God is Love AND God is Truth (because Jesus said He is the Truth)

Speak the Truth in Love.

Truth without Love is a clanging cymbol. Love without Truth is something else, because Love rejoices in the Truth.

In fact, IMO Truth without Love is not Truth either, because how can something be Truth if it misses the point entirely? We all know of cased where people have used Scripture or the Fathers to promote something that is contrary to Orthodoxy. People can be fooled into thinking what they have is Truth, while it is just what they think is Truth and is contrary to Tradition.

Imagine a coin where heads is Truth and tails is Love. Place the coin so that Truth has Love on the floor and give it a push. It won't go very far. Try it the other way round where Love has Truth on the floor, it won't go far either.

Place the coin on its edge so Love and Truth are balanced, give it a shove, and it will roll.

Quoting St John Chrysostom or other Ancient Fathers will not do for me, regarding the world, because their view of the world was not as extensive as ours. In the NT, Paul writes that the Gospel had been preached in the whole world, but the Greek is not Kosmos, neither is it Aion (age) it is the Greek word for the Empire. I do not know if St John said the word for Empire, or world, but he didn't know about the Americas or Oceania. Jesus said Kosmos, the whole globe! There has never been a time when the whole globe has believed that Jesus was sent by the Father. Orthodoxy has yet to be taken into the whole globe.

To quote One Lord, One Faith and One Baptism as referring to Orthodoxy, has its limits I believe. If I am received into the Orthodox Church I will not be required to be baptised again. I was baptised into the Church of England, and confirmed. I will need to be chrismated. If the position was as you argue, OzGeorge, I think I would need to be baptised.

I have been taught that Orthodoxy can say where the Church is, but it cannot say where the Church is not. To say that Christians in the RC Church or Protestant churches are not really Christians, I think is an example of extremism. To say that those churches do not have the Faith in its fulness, I believe to be true. I know that when I first studied the Ecumenical Councils, I had no problem with their findings. I had a problem with 3D images in RC Churches, but for some reason, had never had a problem with icons. I've always liked icons.

Jesus prayed that the KOSMOS will believe as a result of unity, that has to be worldwide, not Roman Empire wide. Not a unity of love disregarding truth, because love rejoices in the Truth!

The present Pope is orthodox within his own Tradition, which means he believes in the developments of RCism over the last 1000 years. That is far from a position of anything goes. He cannot be wanting unity on that basis, unless he went back to his progressive days in the early 60s.

I did read something about him from his Cardinal days in which he believed that the Orthodox should stick with where they are now, but drop their statements against RC development, for unity to occur. The Orthodox, he wrote, should not be required to accept what RCs accept from the last 1000 years.

In Christ
Christina
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« Reply #50 on: April 22, 2005, 08:12:52 AM »

I think you've read things into my post that aren't there.
What can I say?
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« Reply #51 on: April 22, 2005, 08:31:44 AM »

If we Orthodox are firmly rooted in our Faith, then nothing that Rome or any church does will affect us.  If we feel Rome is full of lies, then why even listen to them?  We need to pray for our hierarchs that they will listen to the Holy Spirit and not give in to these lies.  While we are at it, we should also pray for these other churches:  Rome and the like, so that they will also listen to the workings of the Holy Spirit, and come to the Truth.  There will never be true unity till it comes from God, then nothing will be able to stop it...not even the real Antichrist.  I know I'll never live to see that, but it will happen.  Glory to God for that.
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« Reply #52 on: April 22, 2005, 09:46:24 AM »

I do not think Sabbas was exagerating or speaking immoderatly regarding the Latin Church.

If examined superficially, there are of course many things common between Orthodoxy and Catholicism - though I would say that even this superficial similarity has diminished in the course of recent decades.

However, it's also fair to say (and more important to emphasize, for now we are speaking of the heart) that fundamentally Orthodox Christianity and Catholicism are different animals.  The Latin Church has made the "height of theology" that very method which, if we listen to the Holy Fathers, is actually rooted in the very foundations of our condition as fallen beings.  The Latins no longer have the means for "curing" what in fact ails man (all men) who come into this world.  Heresy, particularly when it touches upon what we say directly about God, is in fact simply a species (and a particularly devious one) of idolatry - for idols spring from the darkness of the fallen heart, and the imagination of unillumined minds (or minds not obedient and struggling under the guidence of those who are illumined - namely, the Holy Fathers, whether ancient or modern) - just as "Christian" heresies do.

I don't make any claims to sanctity - however, I think I can say as a dog chasing after those who are undoubtedly Saints, or greatly advanced in their struggle, that it is incredibly superficial for people in the Orthodox fold to believe we are remotely close to seeing the corporate reconciliation of the Latins with Holy Orthodoxy and the Body of Christ.  There is simply too great a chasm, and nothing has occured in all of the decades of "ecumenism" to make that gulf any smaller.  If anything, all that's happened, I think, is many Orthodox themselves have become marginal in their adherance to the faith and in terms of their identity as members of the Church (and some others, quite frankly, have said and done things which are worthy of censure.)

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« Reply #53 on: April 25, 2005, 10:29:02 AM »

If we Orthodox are firmly rooted in our Faith, then nothing that Rome or any church does will affect us. If we feel Rome is full of lies, then why even listen to them? We need to pray for our hierarchs that they will listen to the Holy Spirit and not give in to these lies. While we are at it, we should also pray for these other churches: Rome and the like, so that they will also listen to the workings of the Holy Spirit, and come to the Truth. There will never be true unity till it comes from God, then nothing will be able to stop it...not even the real Antichrist. I know I'll never live to see that, but it will happen. Glory to God for that.
You forget that when the end times come the great mass of people will truly believe they are unified spiritually. This will be the Great Falling away that is prophesied. We have to worry about Rome because those within Rome truly believe that they are doing the right thing when in fact they are spreading an evil pernicious ideology that threatens to take as many Orthodox in as possible. I pray for all people but I do not pray that the current organizational structure known as the Roman Catholic church or any Protestant churches will enter into some kind of unity with Orthodoxy. That would not be a true conversion to Orthodoxy as I know it and such an idea flies in the face of common sense.
Quote
There will never be true unity till it comes from God, then nothing will be able to stop it
I think you are seeking an earthly paradise or dream of some perfect age for the Church that will someday exist in this world.
Alas you are falling into the heresy millenialism. The idea that somehow the goal of our Church is to establish some vast Ecclesiastical Empire of peace on earth in this world rather than seeking the other world. We are sojourners on this earth and have no lasting city. The Roman Catholic faith believes that they have a lasting city: Rome. And that this city, its bishop, and its empire are the Church for them. This is true throughout history. What did Vasco de Gama want? gold and more Roman Catholics. What did all the conquistadors want? gold, prestige, and more Roman Catholics. What did the Inquisition want? to coerce people and torture them till they fell in line with Rome. What are indulgences? a business deal so that more churches can be built. St.Peters Basilica is probably the greatest symbol of Simony in existence. Indeed the Roman Catholic church organization/business/empire is the best structure for the Antichrist to co-opt.
You see the unity from God you seek can only come in the Final Judgment when this world will no longer exist. Do not seek some half-baked Christian unity in this world or else you will find yourself duped by the Antichrist and not vigilant with a "watchful heart and sober mind waiting the coming of the bright and appointed day of our Lord and God and Saviour Jesus Christ who shall come in Glory to reward each according his deeds."
I do not think Sabbas was exagerating or speaking immoderatly regarding the Latin Church.

If examined superficially, there are of course many things common between Orthodoxy and Catholicism - though I would say that even this superficial similarity has diminished in the course of recent decades.

However, it's also fair to say (and more important to emphasize, for now we are speaking of the heart) that fundamentally Orthodox Christianity and Catholicism are different animals. The Latin Church has made the "height of theology" that very method which, if we listen to the Holy Fathers, is actually rooted in the very foundations of our condition as fallen beings. The Latins no longer have the means for "curing" what in fact ails man (all men) who come into this world. Heresy, particularly when it touches upon what we say directly about God, is in fact simply a species (and a particularly devious one) of idolatry - for idols spring from the darkness of the fallen heart, and the imagination of unillumined minds (or minds not obedient and struggling under the guidence of those who are illumined - namely, the Holy Fathers, whether ancient or modern) - just as "Christian" heresies do.

I don't make any claims to sanctity - however, I think I can say as a dog chasing after those who are undoubtedly Saints, or greatly advanced in their struggle, that it is incredibly superficial for people in the Orthodox fold to believe we are remotely close to seeing the corporate reconciliation of the Latins with Holy Orthodoxy and the Body of Christ. There is simply too great a chasm, and nothing has occured in all of the decades of "ecumenism" to make that gulf any smaller. If anything, all that's happened, I think, is many Orthodox themselves have become marginal in their adherance to the faith and in terms of their identity as members of the Church (and some others, quite frankly, have said and done things which are worthy of censure.)



Thank you for your post Augustine.
Quote
Heresy, particularly when it touches upon what we say directly about God, is in fact simply a species (and a particularly devious one) of idolatry - for idols spring from the darkness of the fallen heart, and the imagination of unillumined minds (or minds not obedient and struggling under the guidence of those who are illumined - namely, the Holy Fathers, whether ancient or modern) - just as "Christian" heresies do.

Indeed we see the idols of the Ecumenists. The pope and Patriarch of Constantinople exchanging kisses. Orthodox priest praying with Roman Catholic and Anglican Clergy. A lot of back slapping hugs and smiles as we all come together and indulge in a frenzy of false love. It is frightful for me to even imagine it. Yet a lot of people are duped by it and truly believe that this is what our Lord wants. Forget about what He has revealed to us and how he has led us and cleansed the Church of the illness of heresy many times before lets just get together and try to love one another. This is obviously a lot of balogna. I pray for every person I hear has died or is in need whether they are Orthodox or not. I sincerely care about the fate of every person that is living and has lived and I truly believe that I owe them more than just a hug I have the duty to tell them the Truth and if they won't except it I still have a duty to continue caring about them. To deny them the Truth of our Faith is to engage in a false love and a heresy that is truly what St.Justin of Chelije said,"A Pan-heresy because it encompasses all the heresies that have ever existed."

Quote
There is simply too great a chasm, and nothing has occured in all of the decades of "ecumenism" to make that gulf any smaller. If anything, all that's happened, I think, is many Orthodox themselves have become marginal in their adherance to the faith and in terms of their identity as members of the Church (and some others, quite frankly, have said and done things which are worthy of censure.)
This absolutely true! I can think of no one from Roman Catholicism who has been led to convert to Orthodoxy or decided to start demanding that the Roman Catholic church return to Orthodoxy due to ecumenical dialogue. At most it just leads Roman Catholics to demand that their priests be allowed to marry and that more joint prayer sessions occur with willing Greek Orthodox priests.
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« Reply #54 on: April 25, 2005, 12:06:29 PM »


I think you are seeking an earthly paradise or dream of some perfect age for the Church that will someday exist in this world.
Alas you are falling into the heresy millenialism.

You are mis quoting me here....I am not speaking of a world unity...a common government, but what Christ had said, "that all may be one".  We can try to unity the churches, and we will fail, but the worlding of the Holy spirit can and will unity the churches. 

I can't understand why Orthodoxy has this unhealthy fear and disgust for anything from Rome.  Remember it wasn't Rome that started the World Council of churches, it was the Protestants.  If we speak out against the "new" theology of the Protestants we are seen as religion bashing, but to call the Roman Church working with the antichrist is okay.  I am surprised that no one yet has called Rome the "Whore of Babylon".

I am more concerned what the Orthodox hierarchy is doing that is not "kosher", than what Rome or any of the Protestants are doing.  One example, that I fear to use because it causes so much fighting among the Orthodox, is the calendar.  When mainstream Orthodoxy calls Old Calendardist and Traditionalists "kooks" and "heretics" I tremble.  Yet no one throws anathemas at the Finish Church for using the same date for Pascha as the West.  Let's remove the board from our own eyes before trying to remove the splinter from others.  In other words, Orthodoxy should be more concerned with cleaning up its own house.
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« Reply #55 on: April 25, 2005, 01:18:07 PM »

Yes, we should all pray ...
monkvasyl.......Roman Catholisism shall fall ......she has no ROCK the true faith has gone....(many prophets have seen this)

As Orthodox Christians though, we should pray for them  to realise their mistake .......

We have many  examples of the Orthodox Martyrs who died for Orthodoxy.......

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« Reply #56 on: April 25, 2005, 01:34:03 PM »



You are mis quoting me here....I am not speaking of a world unity...a common government, but what Christ had said, "that all may be one". We can try to unity the churches, and we will fail, but the worlding of the Holy spirit can and will unity the churches.

I can't understand why Orthodoxy has this unhealthy fear and disgust for anything from Rome. Remember it wasn't Rome that started the World Council of churches, it was the Protestants. If we speak out against the "new" theology of the Protestants we are seen as religion bashing, but to call the Roman Church working with the antichrist is okay. I am surprised that no one yet has called Rome the "Whore of Babylon".

I am more concerned what the Orthodox hierarchy is doing that is not "kosher", than what Rome or any of the Protestants are doing. One example, that I fear to use because it causes so much fighting among the Orthodox, is the calendar. When mainstream Orthodoxy calls Old Calendardist and Traditionalists "kooks" and "heretics" I tremble. Yet no one throws anathemas at the Finish Church for using the same date for Pascha as the West. Let's remove the board from our own eyes before trying to remove the splinter from others. In other words, Orthodoxy should be more concerned with cleaning up its own house.

That all may be one does not refer to churches uniting in some future time into a giant Ecumenical Church. It is the will of our Lord that we all will be One in His own Body, His own Church. The unity that you are talking about is earthly and not real Christian unity at all but some heretical unity. If the Protestants and Roman Catholics want the True Faith they must become Orthodox and each individual must decide that, not their church hierarchs. Each individual has to choose to be Orthodox. They cannot simply be brought in because their hierarchs have decided to become Orthodox. These arguments alone show how little common sense Ecumenism has.

Quote
I can't understand why Orthodoxy has this unhealthy fear and disgust for anything from Rome.
I named specifics. I was not showing any unhealthy or indiscriminate digust for 'anything from Rome.' My fear and disgust for what has come out of Roman Catholicism seems justified but if you do not agree please don't tell me its unhealthy.
Quote
Remember it wasn't Rome that started the World Council of churches, it was the Protestants. If we speak out against the "new" theology of the Protestants we are seen as religion bashing, but to call the Roman Church working with the antichrist is okay.
Rome is now the most powerful Ecumenist organization and long before Ecumenism existed it did everything it could to force people into its churches. The Uniates are a good example of what happens when Orthodox sold their souls for the sake of 'Christian unity.'
Also, since when was I pro-Protestantism? I know that you may not have been referring to me but I cannot think of anyone on the board, other than TomS, who is Orthodox and supports Protestantism. Protestant theology is very evil and often semi-Arian if not entirely so. It is also Nestorian in its denial of the Mother of God and that the Body of Christ is visible and one. Protestantism is in many ways worse than Roman Catholicism but as I have said before at least it is honestly heretical. Trust me I have no Protestant leanings. I was brought up with many fiercely conservative Roman Catholic relatives and I disliked Protestantism long before I found out the truth about Roman Catholicism and its lies.

Quote
I am more concerned what the Orthodox hierarchy is doing that is not "kosher", than what Rome or any of the Protestants are doing. One example, that I fear to use because it causes so much fighting among the Orthodox, is the calendar. When mainstream Orthodoxy calls Old Calendardist and Traditionalists "kooks" and "heretics" I tremble. Yet no one throws anathemas at the Finish Church for using the same date for Pascha as the West. Let's remove the board from our own eyes before trying to remove the splinter from others. In other words, Orthodoxy should be more concerned with cleaning up its own house.
I think my avatar speaks for itself. I do think that the Finnish church should go back to being in line with the Russian Patriarchate using the Alexandrian Paschalion and the Julian calendar. The Valaam monks had to go through hell after the Revolution when they fell under Finland jurisdiction and had bishops trying to force the New Calendar on them. Many such as Elder Mikhail stuck to the Old Calendar and suffered for it.
I think that mainstream Orthodoxy may clean itself up. The Thessaloniki Conference was a step in the right direction but there is a heck of a lot that needs to be reversed and changed!
But I will say that you need to pull the wool from your eyes and look at what the Roman church has consistently done to our Orthodox brothers and sisters in the Balkans. The Roman church does affect us and we do have to be concerned.
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« Reply #57 on: April 26, 2005, 02:45:43 PM »

Sabbas,

Quote
If the Protestants and Roman Catholics want the True Faith they must become Orthodox and each individual must decide that, not their church hierarchs. Each individual has to choose to be Orthodox. They cannot simply be brought in because their hierarchs have decided to become Orthodox. These arguments alone show how little common sense Ecumenism has.

Well, this isn't quite right - corporate re-unions have happened before, and I somehow doubt that every last man, woman, and child who went along with such re-unions to the Church from schism were completely clear on just what precisely differed between Orthodoxy and say, Uniatism (this kind of re-union has happened many times - both in the old world, and most conspicuously here in N.America.)

However, I think on a practical level you are probably right, in that there is just so much of a difference in outlook and so much in the way of "baggage" with the Latins, that any conversion to Orthodoxy would probably have to be a "individual" decision.  I suppose it would not be like the Uniates, where you could drop commemorating the Pope, and throw out some bad books, and hope that within a generation or so any remaining damage can be undone.  It's also worth noting that historically many of the sects/schisms restored to Orthodoxy "en masse" and by some very lenient form of economy, generally involved not only breaks which were (relative to the Papal Schism) not that old, but also groups who were in much of their practical religious life (praxis, etc.) not that far from the Church.  For example, way back, there was very little which would have indicated that a church was "Arian" - you'd have to listen to their creeds, or pose a few questions before that would have become obvious.

Suffice it to say, I'm quite certain you cannot say this about Orthodox Christianity and say, Roman Catholicism.  And less now than ever perhaps.  Even offering large groups of Latins some kind of "cleaned up" Latin rite Church as a means of making their conversion easier wouldn't do it these days, as precious few of them actually even worship in a way which is remotely "Orthodox" - they'd feel just as strange in say, a "Tridentine-like" temple as they would one using the Divine Liturgy of St.John Chrysostom.

However I would love for some miracle of grace to prove me wrong, and see a mass conversion, including Latin hierarchs, to Holy Orthodoxy.  I'd only ask others to forgive me for not seeing it as very likely.

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« Reply #58 on: April 26, 2005, 03:51:23 PM »

Perhaps it would be best if Christians from different traditions credited each other with the same level of love and sincerity that they themselves possess. As a Roman Catholic I have not the slightest doubt that the Holy Spirit in some way is present within not only the Catholic tradition but the Orthodox one also. I do not pretend either that there are first and second class Christians, God gives his Spirit with no miserly hand.

It is my belief that if we, all of us, listen humbly to the Spirit speaking in our hearts we will find one day that unity which God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit so clearly desires for his body the Church. Exchanging insults and going over ancient disputes is probably not the path that we should walk.

Through the prayers of the Mother of God may we become brothers and sisters indeed.
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« Reply #59 on: April 28, 2005, 08:27:01 AM »

Philokalia,

Quote
Perhaps it would be best if Christians from different traditions credited each other with the same level of love and sincerity that they themselves possess. As a Roman Catholic I have not the slightest doubt that the Holy Spirit in some way is present within not only the Catholic tradition but the Orthodox one also. I do not pretend either that there are first and second class Christians, God gives his Spirit with no miserly hand.

I beg your forgiveness, but this is one thing which drives me up the wall - the modern day confusion between "love" and "luv", or as Hieromonk Ambrose (formerly Fr.Alexey Young) said at a recent conference hosted by our parish, to be "loving" is not always the same as being "nice" or "well liked."

It's the zeitgeist right now, popularized by the excesses of the "ecumenical movement" to view Orthodox Christianity and Roman Catholicism as somehow being "inches apart" from one another in terms of their doctrinal and spiritual life.  Unfortunately, this is not the case, and is only assumed to be such because many Roman Catholics (and not a few modernistic "Orthodox" it would seem) perceive Orthodox Christianity to be "Catholicism without the Pope", a sort of "Uniatism not in Communion with Rome".

Would it be "unloving" or could it be perceived as a callous attack on the "sincerity" of others, were a Roman Catholic to soberly recognize that he and a Jehovah's Witness do not share the same religion?  I mean, both use a lot of the same terminology, both have a lot of shared literature (Bible)...but none of that makes them the same thing.  Nor do I think you'd fault your Roman Catholic brother/sister if he were (at best) "agnostic" about the "grace" to be found in the Watchtower Society.

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« Reply #60 on: April 28, 2005, 11:03:32 AM »

Even offering large groups of Latins some kind of "cleaned up" Latin rite Church as a means of making their conversion easier wouldn't do it these days, as precious few of them actually even worship in a way which is remotely "Orthodox" - they'd feel just as strange in say, a "Tridentine-like" temple as they would one using the Divine Liturgy of St.John Chrysostom.

However I would love for some miracle of grace to prove me wrong, and see a mass conversion, including Latin hierarchs, to Holy Orthodoxy. I'd only ask others to forgive me for not seeing it as very likely.


Augustine, Change can happen slowly over time if the LC did in fact begin to focus more on ancient tradition in the church. It would not be immediate... just as the changes from Vat. II took quite awhile for the people to accept them... a change incorporating ancient tradition and doctrine over time is realistic, it is only our impatience to want something grander/ faster and people want to hear 'oh we've been wrong all along...' for self-righteousness... This is not necessary..children of the Lord can become closer to him an inch at a time...and appreciate each inch... One thing I have noticed is the greater focus on icons within all RC churches -not just Byzantine rite... and also discussion on the teachings of the early fathers of the church... while this is not 'sufficient' it is evidence of roots we share.

In XC, Kizzy
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« Reply #61 on: April 28, 2005, 11:14:49 AM »

Philokalia,



I beg your forgiveness, but this is one thing which drives me up the wall - the modern day confusion between "love" and "luv", or as Hieromonk Ambrose (formerly Fr.Alexey Young) said at a recent conference hosted by our parish, to be "loving" is not always the same as being "nice" or "well liked."

It's the zeitgeist right now, popularized by the excesses of the "ecumenical movement" to view Orthodox Christianity and Roman Catholicism as somehow being "inches apart" from one another in terms of their doctrinal and spiritual life. Unfortunately, this is not the case, and is only assumed to be such because many Roman Catholics (and not a few modernistic "Orthodox" it would seem) perceive Orthodox Christianity to be "Catholicism without the Pope", a sort of "Uniatism not in Communion with Rome".

Would it be "unloving" or could it be perceived as a callous attack on the "sincerity" of others, were a Roman Catholic to soberly recognize that he and a Jehovah's Witness do not share the same religion? I mean, both use a lot of the same terminology, both have a lot of shared literature (Bible)...but none of that makes them the same thing. Nor do I think you'd fault your Roman Catholic brother/sister if he were (at best) "agnostic" about the "grace" to be found in the Watchtower Society.



While RC and EO are not identical... they are the closest theologically... that is even recognized by clergy... They both recognize the sanctity of saints, the Triune God, the presence of Christ in the Eucharist through the Holy Spirit, the intercessions of the Virgin Mary for us, and veneration by making the sign of the cross....The major tenets of the faith are the same and this is not true with other Christian groups...some may have one of these elements, but not all.  The differences we find between the two churches arose due to cultural differences between Rome and the East- and the different external challenges each of them faced-  and the way in which those differences lead to different wording to describe  the same thing.   


In XC, Kizzy



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« Reply #62 on: April 28, 2005, 11:37:23 AM »

is the Orthodox sense of uncertainty about Roman Catholics. The Orthodox, as I understand it, have no official stance as to whether Roman Catholics are part of the Church or not. Individuals are free to hold opinions one way or another.

Given that fact, it is hard to envision how any seious discussion of reunion could even begin. After all, reunion would imply that Roman Catholicism is a legitimate part of the "Church".

I'm not ciriticizing the Orthodox position at all. But no significant headway can be made until the Orthodox have wrestled with this issue.
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« Reply #63 on: April 28, 2005, 11:42:25 AM »

is the Orthodox sense of uncertainty about Roman Catholics.  The Orthodox, as I understand it, have no official stance as to whether Roman Catholics are part of the Church or not.  Individuals are free to hold opinions one way or another.

Given that fact, it is hard to envision how any seious discussion of reunion could even begin.  After all, reunion would imply that Roman Catholicism is a legitimate part of the "Church".

I'm not ciriticizing the Orthodox position at all.  But no significant headway can be made until the Orthodox have wrestled with this issue.

Uhhh...what?!?  Are you serious?  Every Orthodox statement has said that the Roman Church is outside the Church - not a part of the Body of Christ.  The Church can not be divided.  The only thing the Orthodox Church says for individuals is that the Holy Spirit blows where it wills and we can't say where He doesn't blow, but we know that He guides the Orthodox Church.

Btw, are you even Orthodox?
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« Reply #64 on: April 28, 2005, 12:00:35 PM »

"Every Orthodox statement has said that the Roman Church is outside the Church - not a part of the Body of Christ."

Not true.  The MP very recently made the statement that she believes the Catholic Church is a sister Church with valid sacraments.

Fr. Deacon Lance
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« Reply #65 on: April 28, 2005, 12:23:24 PM »

No, I am not Orthodox, but Roman Catholic.  I've read pretty extensively about Eastern Christianity and incorporate lots of Eastern Christian prayers in my prayer life, so I'm more than an idle observer.

It has been my impression that the Orthodox do not have a definitive statement about the validity of RC sacraments.  And I've seen enough discussion among the Orthodox to know that opinions vary widely on the subject.
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« Reply #66 on: April 28, 2005, 12:36:51 PM »

Would it be "unloving" or could it be perceived as a callous attack on the "sincerity" of others, were a Roman Catholic to soberly recognize that he and a Jehovah's Witness do not share the same religion? I mean, both use a lot of the same terminology, both have a lot of shared literature (Bible)...but none of that makes them the same thing. Nor do I think you'd fault your Roman Catholic brother/sister if he were (at best) "agnostic" about the "grace" to be found in the Watchtower Society.

NO, no, no, no Augustine, Watchtower has not a "shared literature(Bible)" nor they have "same terminology". They are using their own "Book" and their own terminology that is not even a religion.

I think you are drawing a parallel between two absolutely different "entities".
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« Reply #67 on: April 28, 2005, 12:37:41 PM »

ProfundoQ,

Actually we have a fairly simple and straightforward way to determine who's in the Church and who is not...they are called Dyptics. At every liturgy where the head of an Autocephalous Church presides, they list the people they are in Communion with. The Patriarchate of Rome is not listed in the Dyptics of ANY Orthodox Church, making our posistion on Rome quite clear, they are outside the Church.

As far as the validity of sacraments goes, this is not a question that is really even related to whether or not one is in the Church, but rather is related to how closely the customs of the ecclesiastical organization administering the sacraments are to the customs of the Church.

Technically speaking, only Orthodox Sacraments are valid in both Form and Essence; however, it is possible that the sacraments of those outside the Church can be valid in form, though never in Essence. Moreover, if we believe the sacrament to be valid in form, when one enters the Orthodox Church (perhaps through Chrismation, or by Confession of Faith/Renunciation of Heresy then partaking in the Eucharist), that sacrament (either Chrismation or the Eucharist) will, by virtue of making you a member of the Church, make up for the lack of essence in the Original Sacrament. So for example, if you are received by Chrismation, you may have gotten the form of baptism years ago, which the Church recognizes as a valid form, but you received the essence of Baptism at your Christmation along with both the form and essence of the Holy Chrism.
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« Reply #68 on: April 28, 2005, 01:25:01 PM »

"Every Orthodox statement has said that the Roman Church is outside the Church - not a part of the Body of Christ."

Not true. The MP very recently made the statement that she believes the Catholic Church is a sister Church with valid sacraments.

Fr. Deacon Lance

Fr. Deacon, ProfundoQ,
I'm going to have to *gasp* agree with GiC here.  From our POV, no matter what +Pat. Alexy II said - his statement is just one of charity and nothing else.  It is how GiC put it.


GiC,
As a side note, what is the practice from your experience in the GOA (and the EP as well if you have direct experience or have heard from someone else) regarding the OCA?  Is +Met. Herman not mentioned - because the OCA is viewed as still under the Omophor of Moscow?  From what I can tell, the diptychs are only actually said during certain Hierarchical services (like a consecration).
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« Reply #69 on: April 28, 2005, 01:37:07 PM »

Elisha,

Last time an OCA Metropolitan went to Constantinople, I believe he was received a the Metropolitan of the American Metropolia of the Patriarchate of Moscow, and given the same courtesy and privileges that any other Metropolitan UNDER Moscow would be given (which essentially means that if they con-celebrated the Liturgy, which I do not believe they did, he would not have been allowed to have been mitered as the head of a recognized Autocephalous Church would have been).

As far as the dyptics, I believe they are supposed to be said in the Hierarchical Divine Liturgy where the commemorations would usually go.
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« Reply #70 on: April 28, 2005, 01:41:23 PM »

"Every Orthodox statement has said that the Roman Church is outside the Church - not a part of the Body of Christ."

Not true. The MP very recently made the statement that she believes the Catholic Church is a sister Church with valid sacraments.

Fr. Deacon Lance
This was also stated at forums of EO and RC bishops and they agreed and recommended we should stop calling each other heretics and recognized each other as sister churches.. Name calling is where the 'hate' begins and what stops any full understanding of the other's plight... and it is a plight for which the church's were separated... starting with iconoclasm in the East, which put the Eastern church into a mess... and during that time of several centuries during and after Rome continued the faith.... We lost our connection with the Roman see starting with that and never fully regained it- going from one tragedy of rule to another....While we say we have a 2000 year old faith, it was not a continuous practice... there were several potholes on the path to today that the church got stuck in...

In XC, Kizzy
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« Reply #71 on: April 28, 2005, 02:23:37 PM »

ProfundoQ,

Actually we have a fairly simple and straightforward way to determine who's in the Church and who is not...they are called Dyptics. At every liturgy where the head of an Autocephalous Church presides, they list the people they are in Communion with. The Patriarchate of Rome is not listed in the Dyptics of ANY Orthodox Church, making our posistion on Rome quite clear, they are outside the Church.

As far as the validity of sacraments goes, this is not a question that is really even related to whether or not one is in the Church, but rather is related to how closely the customs of the ecclesiastical organization administering the sacraments are to the customs of the Church.

Technically speaking, only Orthodox Sacraments are valid in both Form and Essence; however, it is possible that the sacraments of those outside the Church can be valid in form, though never in Essence. Moreover, if we believe the sacrament to be valid in form, when one enters the Orthodox Church (perhaps through Chrismation, or by Confession of Faith/Renunciation of Heresy then partaking in the Eucharist), that sacrament (either Chrismation or the Eucharist) will, by virtue of making you a member of the Church, make up for the lack of essence in the Original Sacrament. So for example, if you are received by Chrismation, you may have gotten the form of baptism years ago, which the Church recognizes as a valid form, but you received the essence of Baptism at your Christmation along with both the form and essence of the Holy Chrism.

Thanks for the information. A couple of questions:

1. With regard to any potential reunion, what is the significance of the fact that the RC Church is not listed in any Dyptic? Does that ipse facto actively discourage dicsussion? Or is the kind of thing that would be revised should reunion ever take place?

2. I do know that Orthodoxy has no official stance on some aspect of RC legitimacy? Would it perhaps be the validity of the sacraments? Your post suggests that some Orthodox believe that RC sacraments may have valid form and othes not, but Orthodoxy officially states that all RC sacraments lack essence. Is this true?

Thanks,
Prof
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« Reply #72 on: April 28, 2005, 03:09:15 PM »

Sabbas,



Well, this isn't quite right - corporate re-unions have happened before, and I somehow doubt that every last man, woman, and child who went along with such re-unions to the Church from schism were completely clear on just what precisely differed between Orthodoxy and say, Uniatism (this kind of re-union has happened many times - both in the old world, and most conspicuously here in N.America.)

However, I think on a practical level you are probably right, in that there is just so much of a difference in outlook and so much in the way of "baggage" with the Latins, that any conversion to Orthodoxy would probably have to be a "individual" decision. I suppose it would not be like the Uniates, where you could drop commemorating the Pope, and throw out some bad books, and hope that within a generation or so any remaining damage can be undone. It's also worth noting that historically many of the sects/schisms restored to Orthodoxy "en masse" and by some very lenient form of economy, generally involved not only breaks which were (relative to the Papal Schism) not that old, but also groups who were in much of their practical religious life (praxis, etc.) not that far from the Church. For example, way back, there was very little which would have indicated that a church was "Arian" - you'd have to listen to their creeds, or pose a few questions before that would have become obvious.

Suffice it to say, I'm quite certain you cannot say this about Orthodox Christianity and say, Roman Catholicism. And less now than ever perhaps. Even offering large groups of Latins some kind of "cleaned up" Latin rite Church as a means of making their conversion easier wouldn't do it these days, as precious few of them actually even worship in a way which is remotely "Orthodox" - they'd feel just as strange in say, a "Tridentine-like" temple as they would one using the Divine Liturgy of St.John Chrysostom.

However I would love for some miracle of grace to prove me wrong, and see a mass conversion, including Latin hierarchs, to Holy Orthodoxy. I'd only ask others to forgive me for not seeing it as very likely.


Augustine I am aware of the large number of Uniates who returned to the Orthodox faith through the work of St.Alexis Toth and agree that this could happen again with the Uniates but as far as the Roman Catholics and Protestants are concerned I just do not believe that practically, as you pointed out, they could really just become Orthodox through a reunion enacted by their hierarchs because it requires to much of an individual change of mind and heart for a modern day Protestant or Roman Catholic to become Orthodox simply because their minister or bishop did. Perhaps a Latin Mass Roman Catholic would get Orthodox worship and theology a little quicker as seems to have been the case with Hieromonk Ambrose when he left Roman Catholicism after Vatican II but overall I just think it is inappropriate to even discuss some type of reunion between Roman Catholics and Orthodox when the Roman church no longer exercises the necessary discipline to maintain its faith and make sure everyone going to communion believes in that faith. The Roman church has chosen a worse path since Vatican II that denies absolute Truth, embraces modernism and relativism, and is simply not anywhere near Orthodoxy. You can say all you want about Pope Benedict XVI being 'conservative' but he is embracing the Ecumenism that destroys Christian Truth the same as Vatican II embraced it what more needs to be known?
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« Reply #73 on: April 28, 2005, 03:22:17 PM »



Thanks for the information. A couple of questions:

1. With regard to any potential reunion, what is the significance of the fact that the RC Church is not listed in any Dyptic? Does that ipse facto actively discourage dicsussion? Or is the kind of thing that would be revised should reunion ever take place?

2. I do know that Orthodoxy has no official stance on some aspect of RC legitimacy? Would it perhaps be the validity of the sacraments? Your post suggests that some Orthodox believe that RC sacraments may have valid form and othes not, but Orthodoxy officially states that all RC sacraments lack essence. Is this true?

Thanks,
Prof
With regards to number 1 I think you should remember that the late Patriarch Athenagoras did enter the name of the Pope, at this time Pope Paul VI, into the Diptych's in 1968. What happened? Nothing! If a reunion really did occur than yes the Pope would be inserted into the Diptych's assuming GiC is correct about Patriarch Bartholomew II not having the Pope in the Diptychs now.

Quote
2.  I do know that Orthodoxy has no official stance on some aspect of RC legitimacy?  Would it perhaps be the validity of the sacraments?  Your post suggests that some Orthodox believe that RC sacraments may have valid form and othes not, but Orthodoxy officially states that all RC sacraments lack essence.  Is this true?
Pan-Orthodox Synods have consistently denied that the Roman church is a part of the Church. The Roman Church does not have the Essence. It does not have the Ecclesial Grace of the Mysteries.
No, I am not Orthodox, but Roman Catholic. I've read pretty extensively about Eastern Christianity and incorporate lots of Eastern Christian prayers in my prayer life, so I'm more than an idle observer.

It has been my impression that the Orthodox do not have a definitive statement about the validity of RC sacraments. And I've seen enough discussion among the Orthodox to know that opinions vary widely on the subject.
Opinions are one thing the teaching of the Church is quite another.

A good book on the Orthodox position on Roman Catholics and others is the The Non-Orthodox by Patrick Barnes http://www.orthodoxinfo.com/inquirers/status.aspx This is a good book and not something by an 'extremist' as some Ecumenists argue. When it was in print it was sold by Regina Press and how extreme are they?
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« Reply #74 on: April 28, 2005, 04:33:36 PM »

If I recall correctly, Sabbas, only ONE Divine Liturgy was celebrated by Pat Athenagoras with the Pope of Rome in the Dyptychs.
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« Reply #75 on: April 28, 2005, 04:48:50 PM »


A good book on the Orthodox position on Roman Catholics and others is the The Non-Orthodox by Patrick Barnes http://www.orthodoxinfo.com/inquirers/status.aspx This is a good book and not something by an 'extremist' as some Ecumenists argue. When it was in print it was sold by Regina Press and how extreme are they?

I second this and would also point out that as harsh/critic as Patrick Barnes may be in the book, he ALSO includes an Appendix or Epilogue with a letter from St. Doritheus of Gaza on NOT judging others and another on the use of the word 'heretic'.  This gist of the discussion on the word 'heretic' meaning, that even though from an Orthodox POV we may be correct, it is uncharitable to needlessly/aimlessly/carelessly throw the word around in referring to non-Orthodox.
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« Reply #76 on: April 28, 2005, 05:29:26 PM »



I second this and would also point out that as harsh/critic as Patrick Barnes may be in the book, he ALSO includes an Appendix or Epilogue with a letter from St. Doritheus of Gaza on NOT judging others and another on the use of the word 'heretic'. This gist of the discussion on the word 'heretic' meaning, that even though from an Orthodox POV we may be correct, it is uncharitable to needlessly/aimlessly/carelessly throw the word around in referring to non-Orthodox.
I would not say he is a harsh critic just that he has to show where a lot of modern commentators are going way too far and not teaching what the Orthodox Church teaches. Since this has almost become an epidemic of sorts it is a necessary medicine to call people back in such a way.
Also anyone who has met Patrick Barnes knows he is a nice guy. If you think he is an extremist you will find yourself pleasantly suprised if you ever meet him.
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« Reply #77 on: April 29, 2005, 12:09:54 AM »

There is nothing about Patrick Barnes, his writings, or his websites, that indicates any kind of inordinate malice or lack of virtue.  People assume nonsense like this for one simple reason - because he has had the nerve to rain on the ecumaniacal "luv fest", by simply repeating what Church Teachers (old and new) have had to say on the topic of ecumenism, and the relationship of heresy to the Church.

For some reason, people seem to believe the only "jerk" these days is the "hard" or "intolerant" one; I guess liberal, permissive, modernistic "jerks" don't exist.

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« Reply #78 on: April 29, 2005, 01:35:21 AM »

There is nothing about Patrick Barnes, his writings, or his websites, that indicates any kind of inordinate malice or lack of virtue. People assume nonsense like this for one simple reason - because he has had the nerve to rain on the ecumaniacal "luv fest", by simply repeating what Church Teachers (old and new) have had to say on the topic of ecumenism, and the relationship of heresy to the Church.

For some reason, people seem to believe the only "jerk" these days is the "hard" or "intolerant" one; I guess liberal, permissive, modernistic "jerks" don't exist.



Exactly!  I said as harsh as he "may be" not is.  I'm meaning from the more "liberal" Orthodox mindset.
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« Reply #79 on: May 02, 2005, 05:46:15 PM »

Dcn. Lance,

Quote
Not true.  The MP very recently made the statement that she believes the Catholic Church is a sister Church with valid sacraments.

I'd be very interested in having a source for this.

Thanks in advance!

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« Reply #80 on: May 03, 2005, 08:57:53 AM »

It is somewhere on the MP website.
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« Reply #81 on: May 03, 2005, 09:40:24 AM »

Dcn. Lance,

Do you remember what the article was about?  Title?

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« Reply #82 on: May 03, 2005, 10:44:09 AM »

Augustine,

I am sorry I do not remember the title.  The subject of the document was relations bewteen the Russian Orthodox Church and the Catholic Church.  Specifically I think the Synod was complaining about the erection of Latin Catholic dioceses in Russia and was referencing the previously friendly relations prior to the reestablishment of the UGCC.  In fact ,Patriarch Alexy, when he was a bishop, was in favor of communing Latin Catholics who did not recourse to a catholic priest.  Prior to the fall of communism there were only two functioning Latin parishes in Russia, Moscow and St. Petersburg.

Fr. Deacon Lance
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« Reply #83 on: May 03, 2005, 02:00:29 PM »

Fr Deacon Lance writes:

[I am sorry I do not remember the title. The subject of the document was relations bewteen the Russian Orthodox Church and the Catholic Church. Specifically I think the Synod was complaining about the erection of Latin Catholic dioceses in Russia and was referencing the previously friendly relations prior to the reestablishment of the UGCC. In fact ,Patriarch Alexy, when he was a bishop, was in favor of communing Latin Catholics who did not recourse to a catholic priest. Prior to the fall of communism there were only two functioning Latin parishes in Russia, Moscow and St. Petersburg.]

Reply:

Fr Deacon, you are going to have to be a little more explicit than that. What you have to take into consideration is.... under what circumstances it is being used and exactly what he is addressing?

Example is this recent statement by the Russian Orthodox Church where they use the term 'sister churches' claim being used by Rome at the same time it is proseltyzing in the territory of this so called 'sister church'. It is used in a derogatory and mocking way showing the difference in what the RCC says publically and what it does privately. "By their deeds they shall be known!"
------------

From a recent article in 'Moscow News' addressing Orthodox Catholic/Roman Catholic relations where the term 'sister churches' is used -

There are two main problems marring the relationship between the Russian Orthodox and Roman Catholic Churches. One of them is Catholic proselytism on the territory of Russia and the CIS, and the other is the conflict between Orthodox believers and Greek Catholics in Western Ukraine, Father Igor Vyzhanov told RIA Novosti.

The Moscow Patriarchate defines Catholic proselytism as activities by the Roman Catholic Church aimed at involving Russians, who historically and traditionally belong to the Orthodox Church, in Catholic Church practices and services. “This is exactly what the activities of many Catholic missionaries from abroad are aimed at,” Vyzhanov said.

These frictions between the two Churches ensured that Pope John Paul II’s long-cherished visit to Russia never happened, and the planned meeting of the Pope with Russian Patriarch Alexiy II in Graz, Austria in 1997 was cancelled.

According to Vyzhanov, there was a joint disclaimer project prepared for the meeting of 1997 that contained a refusal of 'uniatisim' as a means of reuniting the two Churches and a rejection of Catholic proselytizing in Russia and other countries of the CIS. However, at the very last moment authorities from the Roman Catholic Church decided to eliminate these two points from the document, which made the meeting senseless for the Orthodox side.

A spokesman for the Moscow Patriarchate also recalled that last year, when the Vatican returned a copy of the Virgin of Kazan icon to Russia, Patriarch Alexiy stated firmly that “a meeting with the Pope must not be an event for the record, but a result of overcoming those conflicts that hurt all the believers”.

The conflict between the Orthodox and Greek Catholics in Western Ukraine is rooted deep in history, Igor Vyzhanov said. Its origins date as far back as the 16th century, when in 1596 in Brest some of the Orthodox bishops of Western Rus, then occupied by the Polish-Lithuanian state Rech Pospolitaya, set up a “Unia” - a union with the Roman Catholic Church.

As a result of the Unia, some Orthodox believers accepted the Pope as the Head of Church and adopted Catholic doctrine, maintaining the Orthodox ritual.

Those who set up the Unia with Rome received the name of Greek Catholics, or Uniates. With the total support of Polish authorities and the Catholic Church they started imposing the Unia on the territory of present-day Ukraine and Belarus.

“In the 18th century after Poland was divided, the previously Orthodox territories were once more part of the Russian Empire, and the believers could return to the Orthodox Church. The Unia only existed in the lands that were under Austria-Hungarian rule, and served as a constant weapon in the anti-Russian politics of the state,” Vyzhanov said.

“During World War II Ukrainian Greek Catholics cooperated with Nazi invaders. In 1946 the Soviet government prohibited Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church activities on the territory of the USSR,” he noted.

At the end of the 1980s and beginning of the 1990s the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church was legalized again. By that time a large Orthodox community had formed in the region, following the Moscow Patriarchate.

Immediately after the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church was legalized, the Orthodox side offered to peacefully divide the church buildings and other possessions, according to the balance of Orthodox and Catholic believers in the region. In 1990 a board was formed with representatives of all the interested parties: Roman Catholics, Ukrainian Greek Catholics, the Russian Orthodox and Ukrainian Orthodox Churches.

“However, under pressure from radical nationalists, a weighty party in Ukraine at that time, representatives of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church left the board, depriving its work of all meaning,” the spokesman underlined.

Proclaiming “historical justice restoration”, with the full support of anti-Russian and anti-Orthodox local authorities, Greek Catholics captured churches by force. Finally in the Lvov, Ternopol and Ivano-Frank regions the Orthodox were deprived of almost all their churches and their civil rights.

The situation has not changed much since then. “Considering the fact that most Ukrainian believers are Orthodox, the Russian Orthodox Church cannot ignore the way its flock is being oppressed in these three regions. This is why we keep addressing the Vatican, in whose jurisdiction Greek Catholics rightfully belong,” Vyzhanov said.

He also pointed out that Ukrainian Greek Catholics keep trying to impose their influence on the Orthodox South and East of the country, where historically the Unia never set foot. “The plans of Ukrainian Greek Catholic officials are to move their headquarters from Lvov to Kiev and achieve the status of a patriarchate to be able to confront the Orthodox Church. But for the absence of formal approval from the Holy See, they would have acted long ago,” said the Patriarchy’s secretary.

Vyzhanov said there are several obstacles keeping the existing problems between the two Churches from being settled. “This is above all a certain inconsistency in the position of the Roman Catholic Church,” he said.

On the one hand, officials in the Vatican have never tired of demonstrating their peaceful intentions towards the Orthodox Church. When visiting Moscow in February 2004, Cardinal Walter Casper, head of the Pope’s council on Christian Union assistance, announced that Catholics see the Orthodox Church as a sister-Church and seek brotherhood with it. “Proselytism in Russia is not our policy, in fact it’s against the policy of the Vatican,” he assured.[/u]

Vyzhanov said that “there are lots of cases of good relations between the Russian Orthodox Church and certain episcopates, monasteries, universities and charity institutions belonging to the Roman Catholic Church”.

Despite this and the loudly proclaimed respect and love for Orthodoxy, there exist the “aggressive missionary activities” that Catholics carry out in Russia and other countries of the CIS, which the Orthodox Church can’t help seeing as unfriendly, he said.

Missionary activities on the territory of Russia are also carried out in spite of a document placing restrictions on them. It was published in 1992 by the Pope’s “Pro Russia” commission after a meeting between the Vatican and the Moscow Patriarchate in Geneva. The document was entitled “General principles and practical regulations to coordinate the evangelizing activities and ecumenical obligation of the Catholic Church in Russia and other countries of the CIS”. The paper obliges Catholic clergy to refrain from overly persistent missionary activities in the stated countries and possibly cooperate with the Russian Orthodox Church.

“However, since the paper was published, there wasn’t a single case of Roman Catholics obeying its demands,” Vyzhanov said.
He also said the mood among Catholics is quite contrary to the “Pro Russia” paper’s mood, which became especially obvious in 2002 when four Catholic eparchies were established without even consulting the Orthodox Church. “Most Russian believers belong to the Orthodox Church. The new Catholic structures are clearly too big for the small number of Russian Catholics that is overestimated by their authorities,” Vyzhanov said.

He added that in 2002 there were two more eparchies established in the traditionally Orthodox lands of Ukraine’s South and East. In May 2003 the Vatican announced the establishment of two new Catholic eparchies in Kazakhstan.

“It’s obvious that in both cases the Catholic establishments are oversized to fit the expected success of missionary activities. The Russian Orthodox Church, whose influence by far exceeds that of the Catholics in these countries, can’t help being troubled by such treatment by a ’sister-Church’,” Vyzhanov underlined.
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