Author Topic: Orthodox Catholic Church: Also known as: Orthodox Church; Greek Orthodox Church;  (Read 2761 times)

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Offline Hadel

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I thought this site was very interesting in regards to Orthodox Churches definitions and other historical factors: for your interests....Thanks, Hadel

Variety among Orthodox Churches

In Becoming Orthodox, Peter Gillquist asserts, ''The Orthodox church...miraculously carries today the same faith and life of the Church of the New Testament.''6 The presupposition behind this statement is that the Orthodox church is a unified body that speaks with one voice. In fact, Orthodoxy is not a monolithic bloc that shares a unified tradition and church life. The phrase ''Eastern Orthodoxy,'' commonly used to describe the Orthodox faith, actually refers to the dominant churches of Eastern Europe. In a broad sense, the Eastern tradition comprises all the Christian churches that separated at an early stage from the Western tradition (Rome) in order to follow one of the ancient patriarchies (Jerusalem, Antioch, Alexandria, and Constantinople).

During the twentieth century, these churches not only have spread throughout all continents, but also have penetrated many cultures that have not been traditionally associated with the Eastern tradition. Generally speaking, these churches can be grouped into one of the following:
. The Orthodox churches in the Middle East. These belong to the most ancient oriental ecclesiastical units, and they include the Patriarchies of Constantinople (modern Istanbul), Alexandria (Egypt), Antioch (Syria and Lebanon), Jerusalem (Jordan and the occupied territories), the Armenian Catholicossates of Etchmiadzin (former Soviet Republic) and Cilicia (Lebanon), the Coptic Orthodox church (Egypt), and the Syrian Orthodox church (Syria, Beirut, and India). 7

. The Orthodox Churches in Central and Eastern Europe. Both culturally and theologically, these churches follow closely the Byzantine (Constantinopolitan) tradition. Generally known as ''Eastern Orthodoxy,'' they include the autonomous churches of Russia, Romania, Serbia, Greece, Bulgaria, Georgia, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Poland, Albania, and Sinai.8

. The Orthodox Diaspora. Organized outside the traditional Orthodox countries, these ecclesiastical communities are found in Western Europe, North and South America, Africa, Japan, China, and Australia.
These churches have significant theological, ecclesiastical, and cultural differences among themselves. For example, the fifth-century Monophysite controversy over whether Christ has two natures or one separated the Byzantine church from the ancient Eastern churches. Furthermore, the Eastern churches disagree on the date for Easter and the legitimacy of church hierarchy and sacraments. As a result of such differences, the Eastern churches have parallel ecclesiastical structures not only in the same country but even in the same city, thus disregarding the rule of one bishop in one city.

Culturally, in addition to differing local liturgical traditions, the link between church and nation that became characteristic of Eastern Orthodoxy led to the founding of churches on ethnic principles. Most of the churches understand themselves as the real protector of their individual nations, people, and cultures. Despite political benefits, the church-nation relationship raises questions regarding the universality and the unity of the church, particularly in times of political or military tension between nations supported by sister Orthodox churches.

Despite triumphalistic claims of Orthodox apologists that they embody the true apostolic faith, in reality there is a cluster of conflicting traditions, theologies, and ecclesiastical structures. Protestant evangelicals in America who were eager to embrace the Orthodox faith soon discovered that Orthodox churches in America are divided. In fact, their liturgies are spoken in their national languages and they are hesitant to welcome outsiders.9 For example, Frank Schaeffer, a passionate promoter of Orthodoxy, concluded that one side of the Orthodox church in America is a ''sort of social-ethnic club,'' infected with nominalism, materialism, ethnic pride, exclusivism, and indifference to the sacraments.10
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Offline Αριστοκλής

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Only interesting in its obvious errors. Isn't that website comprised of contributed articles under, at best, unvetted sourcing?
"Religion is a neurobiological illness and Orthodoxy is its cure." - Fr. John S. Romanides

Offline Orthodoc

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This website is full of inaccurate statements.  looks like a Fundelmentalist website to me.  It obviously has no knowledge of Holy Orthodoxy.


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Grant victory to the Orthodox Christians over their adversaries.
And by virtue of thy Cross preserve thy habitation.

Offline lpap

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They are saying in :

"AI's publishers, Anton and Janet Hein-Hudson, support freedom of religion in thought and expression, as well as the freedom to present research information that helps people make informed decisions about various movements, belief systems and world views. 

The publishers operate from an evangelical, Christian point of view . However, Apologetics Index evaluates cults both theologically and sociologically."

So, they are honest enough to present themselves.


It is interesting to know how non-Orthodox see the Orthodox Church, even under their warped point of view. Their point of view of separate "national" churches under Orthodoxy should make us think twice before denying their conclusion. If their inference is extracted from our behaviour then we are wrong and they are just describing us, in our failure to present the true Orthodox Church. It is us that they describe in their judgement about Orthodox Church.
« Last Edit: May 14, 2005, 02:21:35 PM by lpap »
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Offline Αριστοκλής

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Right you are, Orthodoc

I just noticed the article links to the Negrut piece, well-known for its own outrageous distortions.

Pretty bad when they have to LIE. A few months ago I took on a similar website for inaccuracies. They responded they would correct their mistakes where I pointed them out. Hah! They ignored me after the first two exchanges.
"Religion is a neurobiological illness and Orthodoxy is its cure." - Fr. John S. Romanides

Offline cizinec

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Well, I think this discussion board and other sites do a decent job of getting out that message.  That's not to say that we shouldn't remain vigilant, but there will be these things as long as Satan is fighting against Christ's Church.
"Brother, your best friend ain't your Momma, it's the Field Artillery."