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Author Topic: Eastern Catholic vs. Western Orthodox?  (Read 41037 times) Average Rating: 0
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« Reply #315 on: December 08, 2010, 12:35:33 PM »

There wasn't for the first few centuries, but the Church was under persecution and had bigger issues to deal with. But yes, after the Church was able to operate freely, the liturgy of St John Chrysostom became the universal standard, and the local rites (except for St James' in Jerusalem) were suppressed in favor of uniformity.

This didn't happen until the 13th century though.  Even if we go up until the Schism, that's over 1,000 years of liturgical variety.

Quote
I'm not personally against having a Western Rite, but I do think it needs to be uniform. For one thing, clergy can't easily concelebrate and the visitors can't easily participate if there is a multiplicity of Western Rites floating around out there. (Unfortunately, the modern ideal of "diversity" fragments society and caters to every little whim, when real strength comes through uniformity.)

I can get behind this.
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« Reply #316 on: December 08, 2010, 01:36:40 PM »

To answer Subd. David,

> ... Father bless. 

The Lord bless.

> ... With the Western rite being so small, isn't the multiplicity of rites - of liturgies or in western terminology masses used counter-productive to having some uniform standards?

It is counter-productive to that specific goal, but honestly, until we have a way to consider the various options from an Orthodox point of view, critically, and before we have had a chance to really consider the various usages in comparison to one another, it's not bad that we have some variety as a way of ensuring that eventually the best option can be picked. Right now, if we were to select an option, we'd be whistling in the dark or taking a majority vote--neither approach has much precedence in Orthodox Church history.

> ... * You have ROCOR WR clergy who quite disagree with you about St. Tikhon and the place of the Orthodox-ised BCP.  Can you assist the debate by pointing to the sources of why these are fiction rather than fact?

My point is that there is zero evidence for the claims. If there exists a basis for claims, why not let the public know what it is? I'm not overstating my case; I'm pointing out that Sts. Tikhon and Nikolai did not express their rejection of the BCP eucharistic rite for Orthodox worship, and they did not express their approbation of the BCP eucharistic rite for Orthodox worship. So I'm saying what are the facts of the case: there is no evidence that they approved it for use, all "purple prose" notwithstanding.

> ... How does the BCP 1549/1662 which to my ex-Church of England, Anglican eyes looks remarkably like the English and Sarum rites of the St. Colman Prayer Book/'Shorter' St. Colman Prayer Book in both the mass and matins and evensong be pre-schism? 

It's not pre-Schism in origin, it is Protestant in origin.

> ... I understand that one can add an Orthodox epiclesis etc but do you believe that the BCP mass in any version is very close to the pre-schism English/Sarum mass rite?

No, not at all. It is crafted by Protestant Reformers in order to destroy, from amongst the English people, their firm belief in Orthodox doctrines such as the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist, their veneration of the Mother of God and other saints, their devotion to the Precious and Life-giving Cross of the Lord, and so forth. I have never cast any doubt upon the faith and good intentions of those using such a rite, and I have no desire that they be forced to abandon what they have come to love. On the contrary, I consider them equal brothers in Christ, of greater virtue than myself, and that we are all working in the same vineyards of Christ our great high priest. But the fact of how the various rites originated is something that must be transparent and is something that can be discussed. I am no purist in such matters of origination, by the way. I have simply been trained up in the atmosphere of the Russian Church and its conservatism, so I wind up more conservative / traditional in looking at these questions. At least I don't think I'm correct about everything in advance. Pardon me for being rude by talking about myself, but I do want my motives to be clear from the start.

> ... Certainly the amalgamation of offices to form the English Matins and Evensong - combining Lauds and Prime and Vespers and Compline is clearly a Reformation innovation, again unless I am wrong?

Yes, it is a Protestant innovation. It has some faint analogue or precedent in the joining together of offices in actual practice, a la Byzantine praxis of today regarding the little hours, etc. But to actually meld them together, discarding 80% of the divine office--that is, historically, the design of Protestant Reformers.

> ... Some WR say that the WR persisted in Jerusalem, on Mt Athos and in Constantinople (maybe in the English guard of the Byzantine Emperor) until well after the Schism - maybe another 300 years plus.  Is this your understanding, and can you point to some sources?

I would go much farther than that to suggest that the WR persisted in some form in the East CONTINUOUSLY from 1054 to the 20th century. While the historical record is full of lacunae, the fact is that the Roman Canon of the Mass was celebrated in a somewhat byzantinised Greek form in the middle middle ages, on Mt. Athos in Latin dress up to 1287 or so, in a somewhat byzantinised form in Slavonic at Hilandari on Athos, through the middle ages, and was preserved amongst Russian Old Believers, in Slavonic, up to the year 1963. And, of course, by 1963 the rite as an Orthodox-approved day-in-and-day-out observance, was well-established already. So there are historical suggestions that the WR never at any time died out completely in the Orthodox Church. Plenty of seminarians in the 20th century have been taught otherwise, but that is because the ground-breaking scholarship on this was done only in the last decade of the 20th century, so the meme that "WR died out in Orthodoxy after the Schism" is still in place amongst many of the less-aware clergy. As for the survival of Western rite on Athos till 1287, see my monograph at http://tinyurl.com/24tnc32.

> ... Do you believe the WR will be a homogeneous rite for those westerners of any land who want to be Orthodox but do not want to follow the majority rite, the Byzantine rite or do you believe that there will be National WR Churches - as in the French WR Orthodox Church, the English etc?.

The trend so far points to the former rather than the latter. However, if there were a particularly strong movement, it would be capable of forming even a national Orthodox Church, at some hypothetical future point.

> ... Sorry for so many questions, but as an ex-Anglican with a pretty clear understanding of the history of the English Church, and as a history major in medieval English history, the Sarum claims of the twenty-first century in some contemporary websites etc. seem more like the claims of 19th century romanticist  Anglo-Catholics.

I don't know which specific claims you're referring to, so I don't know how to intersect with this comment.

> ... I think it perfectly OK to revive the western-rite for those who want that particular tradition, but it needs to be done acknowledging the reality of the Schism, the reality of post-Schism heterodoxy in England and should be grounded in historical evidence-based proofs.

I think you have just enunciated my approach with a fair degree of precision.

> ... Is it not possible to simply pick up a pre 1054 Latin missal and breviary and translate into English - liturgical or modern rather than write new prayer-books, some of which are substantially based on English Reformation masses and offices written and re-formed hundreds of years after the Great Schism?

Certainly.
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« Reply #317 on: December 08, 2010, 02:07:28 PM »

Sleeper wrote:

> ... The point is that the conversation and meetings took place.  I'm not so easily convinced, as you are, that this means absolutely nothing.

Whoa, whoa! I never stated this means absolutely nothing. I think it means a lot of great import. It bespeaks openness, a willing to look at heterodox Christians' Christianity through their own eyes and not only through the eyes of Russian Orthodoxy. That speaks volumes. It bespeaks a willingness to work with heterodox Christians pastorally and not peremptorily, to help them towards the fullness of Orthodoxy. It does not form a basis for stating that St. Nikolai approved of the BCP eucharistic rite for use by Western rite Orthodox. Yet that is what the unwary are being led to believe.

> ... I've not encountered this one before, that's interesting.  In any research or reading I've done I think it's safe to say that the BCP has never been, and never will be authorized for Orthodox usage.  The closest thing would be the Liturgy of St. Tikhon, which is sort of "inspired by" the BCP's eucharistic rite, but that's all that I'm aware of.  Are there parishes actually using the BCP?

I would say that the St. Tikhon is the BCP eucharistic rite, as penned by Protestant Reformers, retrofitted with additions from the Byzantine and Roman rites. I often mention the St. Tikhon and the BCP as the same because they are the same essential eucharistic rite, just as the Tridentine and Sarum are two forms of the same essential eucharistic rite. I notice that this allows the St. Tikhon to be presented either as a totally new-created rite, to justify it to Orthodox Christians, and to be presented as the very BCP to Anglicans, so that they may like, approve of, and be drawn to, it. But one could speak to both audiences accurately, by calling it the BCP eucharistic rite with additions for Orthodox usage (most of which additions, Anglo-Catholics commonly make).

> ... And the approach you take, I'm sorry to say, really seems to me to be based on nothing but bias and prejudice. The way that I would look at the facts (and what most have concluded) is that there is every reason in the world to believe St. Tikhon was supportive of this, and no reason to think otherwise.

Then you can justifiably state there are hints, indications, that St. Tikhon was favourable to a modified BCP rite for Orthodox usage. What cannot justifiably be stated, is "St. Tikhon approved a modified BCP rite for Orthodox usage." Yet this latter is being repeated, stated, and claimed, and I am simply calling for sobriety and historicity. There's nothing biased or mean about it.  Look, I and many other Orthodox Christians have a great love of the Sarum rite. I would be similarly unjustified, if I deduced from what Fr. Ambrose Young has relayed, and his own comments, that "St. John Maximovitch was wanting to eventually upgrade to the Sarum rite." Yes, you could say there are gleanings, some basis for the POSSIBILITY he would have approved the Sarum, but no EVIDENCE for it. And what's good for the goose, is good for the gander.

> ... You might not be comfortable with asserting anything unless it has been spelled out for you, but that's not the way the world works.

Scholars have to back up their statements. I'm not holding anyone's claims up to a standard I don't also apply to my own work and the work of yet others. I have to be able to give a presentation on such topics not only to a gaggle of ROCOR laity and clergy, but to a round table of liturgical scholars at Oxford--in which precise milieu I have been known to present parts of my work (I refer to the 2000 Oxford Conference on Anglo-Saxon Ritual, where I was an active participant though not a presenter).

It's not an overly lofty standard.

> ... I'm grateful to God that you have a Western Rite that you love and find fulfilling.

I and many other faithful Orthodox Christians. This is a movement within the Russian Orthodox Church, and not confined to the Russian Church. It's definitely not a personal matter, a mere predilection. And just for the record, I am not saying, and have never said, that the Sarum is the only way to go for Western rite Orthodoxy. I say only that it is a particularly compelling path for theological, pastoral, practical-ascetic, aesthetic, ecclesiological, and ethnico-cultural reasons.
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« Reply #318 on: December 08, 2010, 02:28:59 PM »

Fair enough.  I can actually get behind most of that to be honest.  I apologize if I was misunderstanding you in any way.  I suppose I don't run in enough WR circles/message boards to know what is being "thrown around" as fact or myth or whatever.  I was catechized in a WR parish and was never, ever told "St. Tikhon approved the BCP for Orthodox Use."  In fact, I'd say it was always explained in the way that you did, that he was open to the conversation, that he was supportive enough to go through the great lengths it took to send the BCP back to Moscow, etc.  And I guess it's that openness and effort that is telling.  And it's that same openness I found in St. Nicholas of Japan.  If people are misconstruing that as blatant approval, then yes, that would be false.  If I implied that, I apologize, I was mainly speaking in regards to the WR in general and that the BCP came up in his consideration and conversation and that he was open to the possibility.  I call the supportive, you don't, fair enough. Smiley
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« Reply #319 on: December 08, 2010, 05:34:02 PM »

Well, it sounds like we are more on the same page than we thought at first. That's always comforting!

I think that the openness to Western rite which I find now characterises the clergy of the ROCOR (10 years ago, that was NOT the case) probably stems 90% from the continuing witness and sheer presence of the many parishes of the AWRV. I think that the AWRV prepared a path, in some sense, for the things currently being done with Western rite in ROCOR. Thus I am not only respectful of the Western rite faithful in the Antiochian jurisdiction as equal brothers and sisters in Christ, I am grateful as well.
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« Reply #320 on: December 08, 2010, 06:00:12 PM »

That's great to hear!  I have a question for you.  I've read through a version of the Sarum Rite that I found online, and I'd have to say that there was a HUGE similarity to the Rite of St. Tikhon.  What would you say the biggest differences are? 
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« Reply #321 on: December 09, 2010, 11:21:36 PM »

I would be interested to compare and contrast, but I would need to know what the text is that you read online. If you have a url, that would be great.
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« Reply #322 on: December 10, 2010, 01:19:56 AM »

Here is the site where I read it: http://www.liturgies.net/Liturgies/Historical/sarum.htm
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« Reply #323 on: December 10, 2010, 09:37:04 PM »

I would be interested to compare and contrast, but I would need to know what the text is that you read online. If you have a url, that would be great.

Father could you comment please on the St. Petroc Paruchia prayer book, the St. Colman Prayer Book, also out I believe as The Shorter St. Colman Prayer Book. I would appreciate your analysis of the liturgy rites - 'Sarum' and 'English' and the  Matins and Evensong offices that are very similar to the BCP offices.

The many blogs of the St. Petroc missions appear to argue that St. Tikhon and the Russian Church did authorise a BCP based liturgy: "The Orthodox Church re-introduced the Western Rite in 1870  and has a hundred year old authorisation for services being taken from the BOOK OF COMMON PRAYER and adapted for Orthodox use - "traditional Anglican" if you like - services that you, as a Church of England person would be very familiar with - not Italian or Irish or Greek but English. And it uses the complete Bible - not the truncated (fourteen books missing) version so common today.  The Western Rite had existed within Orthodoxy from AD 37 until the 1300s - the official re-authorisation of Western Rite within Orthodoxy in 1870, was specifically intended for us here in England."
http://forwardinorthodoxfaith.blogspot.com/  I'd appreciate your views.

Does liturgical diversity within the WR have any negatives for the Church Father? Within ROCOR alone the lack of uniformity is amazing. It is a pity that the
Orthodox Prayers of Old England could not be made uniform within ROCOR.  I am about to order a copy online.http://www.allmercifulsavior.com/Bookstore.html
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« Reply #324 on: December 11, 2010, 05:00:59 AM »

I am about to order a copy online.http://www.allmercifulsavior.com/Bookstore.html

Hope you succeed better than me. I tried to order it a while back ago but got zero response after placing an order. Tongue
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« Reply #325 on: December 12, 2010, 02:22:00 AM »

I can't comment on the St. Colman Prayer Book, in any form, because my efforts to obtain one have thus far proven fruitless.

> ... The many blogs of the St. Petroc missions appear to argue that St. Tikhon and the Russian Church did authorise a BCP based liturgy.

The Russian Church did authorise a BCP liturgy in 1997, but that was the first time it had been done. If the blogs claim otherwise, they are factually incorrect.

> ... Does liturgical diversity within the WR have any negatives for the Church Father? Within ROCOR alone the lack of uniformity is amazing. It is a pity that the Orthodox Prayers of Old England could not be made uniform within ROCOR.  I am about to order a copy online.http://www.allmercifulsavior.com/Bookstore.html

About ordering online from the All-Merciful Savior / St. John Cassian Press website, I don't recommend it. There are difficulties with the PayPal mechanism on that page. I would just send a cheque in the amount of $35 (that's the postpaid amt.) to St. John Cassian Press, P.O. Box 10692, Austin, TX  78766.

Such a high level of diversity does have negatives, but I prefer those negatives to many things which could result from a hastily-imposed uniformity, especially if the criteria for selecting what's imposed were based on popularity or extra-Orthodox values. And so it goes.

I have been meaning to compare/contrast the Sarum and BCP, but I want to do it carefully and time fails. The new church is a-building, and I am preparing some liturgical materials for a new series and doing a parish. And working full-time slaving over a hot computer for the godless State. Just can't do it all.
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« Reply #326 on: December 12, 2010, 03:05:25 AM »



I can't comment on the St. Colman Prayer Book, in any form, because my efforts to obtain one have thus far proven fruitless.



From the websbite
http://forwardinorthodoxfaith.blogspot.com/

BUY THE SAINT COLMAN PRAYER BOOK!
gmeal@tiscali.co.uk

However, I have been told by people who wished to buy copies that they were told that its distribution is restricted to members of the WR approved by the Metropolitan's assistant in the UK.   Presumably this is a restriction asked by the Metropolitan?
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« Reply #327 on: December 12, 2010, 07:23:53 AM »



I can't comment on the St. Colman Prayer Book, in any form, because my efforts to obtain one have thus far proven fruitless.



From the websbite
http://forwardinorthodoxfaith.blogspot.com/

BUY THE SAINT COLMAN PRAYER BOOK!
gmeal@tiscali.co.uk

However, I have been told by people who wished to buy copies that they were told that its distribution is restricted to members of the WR approved by the Metropolitan's assistant in the UK.   Presumably this is a restriction asked by the Metropolitan?

I cannot comment Fathers on the issues in relation to the St. Colman Prayer Book.  I have indeed seen a copy in the University of Tasmania ecumenical chapel which the Petrochian Paruchia use on Sundays as St. Dyfan's mission, serving WR Matins and St. Colman mass.  The copy I saw appeared however to be a stapled photocopy rather than a printed proper book, however it may have been a photocopy I guess. It was real however.  I will ask the mission priest, Fr. Barry if I can scan a copy and I will be happy to share it with you Fr. Aidan and Fr. Ambrose. 

Perhaps they can use modern internet technology and sell it on E Bay or set up their own online store in one of the Petrochian websites?  It is so easily done.That would be a useful missionary endeavour for them to consider.
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« Reply #328 on: December 12, 2010, 02:15:08 PM »

I am the American contact for the Saint Colman Prayer Book. We are a 'cottage industry' so do not supply them on the open market, but only within the circle of inquirers who want to worship within the Western Rite of the Orthodox Church. We have limited copies available, and no great funding towards producing them. (In fact, at present I am in need of a few pieces of equipment.)

Liturgical universalism in the ROCOR Western rite would make no sense, as the Russian tradition has included more than one form in its canonical rulings. The majority usage is that of Mount Royal, which follows the Russian Synod's ruling. It is still the use of Holyrood chapel in Mount Royal monastery, and in local form at Christminster in Ontario, and by the new fellowship of St. Gregory - and is included in the Saint Colman Prayer Book (the Shorter one as well.)

Fr. Hieromonk Michael (Wood) of Saint Petroc is a liturgical scholar, specializing in the Sarum rite and having a Licentiate in liturgical studies.  The Metropolitan has appointed him the assistant for Western rite affairs in the UK, Australia and New Zealand. All of his use was developed inside ROCOR under the leadership of Metropolitan Hilarion, following the Russian directives and synodal decisions. Furthermore - he has decades of experience in serving the Sarum in churches that were designed for the use. Many misunderstandings derive from an approach to texts that does not have the context of how the text is practically employed, and the liturgical context of a rite. A rite is more than just the Mass book. The offices he uses are not derived from the BCP tradition, but are an English translation of the Sarum diurnal following the Clewer translation (the Orthophile John Mason Neale was involved with that.) There is also a Sarum use arranged for missions (the main use of the paruchia), the Mount Royal liturgy, and the English rite - which is a shorter Sarum use liturgy arranged for familiarity to converting Anglicans. The latter liturgy does rest upon a Russian Synodal document produced by the Dept. of Anglican and Old Catholic relations in the first decade of the 20th c. This was in response to a letter asking for an analysis for use of the 1892 BCP in modified form - which was not only signed by St. Tikhon, but St. John Kochurov and others. (And, St. Tikhon did have Western rite here in America - in NYC no less. Later Mount Royal would celebrate in the same cathedral, but in front of the Royal Doors. There was also a mission in Connecticut in the 1970s using a BCP derived liturgy - part of Bp Gregory Grabbe's short-lived attempt at WRITE - and I think directly responsible for his own views on the matter, as well as his production of the 1979 extract - which in any case would have only abolished the Novus Ordo and 1979 BCP.)  The Anglican 'Alcuin Club' produced an overview of that document - the original of which was followed within ROCOR in the development of the English liturgy. The language employed is that of John D. Cosin. There is also the Celtic rite - which has yet to be employed (though it has precedent.)

There is a reason that Dom James and Fr. Michael were made the assistants for Western rite in ROCOR. There are reasons - solid canonical reasons - why each liturgical use is employed (the Celtic rite is the only one that we have not yet been able to celebrate.) There are also no fictions regarding the uses ROCOR employs - I would hope that neophytes would hold good faith on Church matters and those involved, rather than jumping to negative conclusions or believing gossip. Playing out the same drama on multiple forums does little good either. I had hoped after reunion that we would leave all this sort of hyper-Orthodox conspiracy-culture stuff behind. It certainly has never been the norm for ROCOR WRITE.

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« Reply #329 on: December 12, 2010, 02:26:10 PM »

Hi

If you want to make them available at no cost and with an income for your mission then visit http://www.lulu.com and create a paperback and/or hardback edition and then anyone can buy it and you get a revenue.

This is how I made my book Orthodox Christology available.

Father Peter
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« Reply #330 on: December 12, 2010, 02:38:19 PM »

Lulu.com has been under consideration. But there are other factors involved - and multiple people. I simply follow the lead of those who are in charge of publication in TAS and the UK. I'm just duplicating their efforts here, though with a little more difficulty: A4 anything is rare.

Funny story though - I bought one of Fr. Michael Keiser's books on Western Rite Orthodoxy once from lulu.com - and received a grammar for the German language! I had a good laugh with him about it.
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« Reply #331 on: December 12, 2010, 03:55:10 PM »

7.08.2009
Shorter Saint Colman Prayer Book Available
 
A belated notice - copies of the Shorter Saint Colman Prayer Book can be ordered through the Orthodox Christian West blog maintained by Novice Edward. Paypal is accepted and the price is 18 US dollars at this time.

Posted by Ari at 7/08/2009 10:26:00 PM 

http://paruchia.blogspot.com/2009/07/shorter-saint-colman-prayer-book.html
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« Reply #332 on: December 12, 2010, 04:02:07 PM »

Yes - that is quite old - I should have changed it. I'm friends with Subdeacon Edward Waters - and he is not the contact anymore for that. He has returned to the heritage of his Russian ancestors, and is busy with academia and directing choir. Dr. John Ward is the contact for AUS/NZ, Dr. Gildas Meal for the UK and Europe. I'm the contact for the US.
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« Reply #333 on: December 13, 2010, 07:15:03 AM »

I am the American contact for the Saint Colman Prayer Book. We are a 'cottage industry' so do not supply them on the open market, but only within the circle of inquirers who want to worship within the Western Rite of the Orthodox Church. We have limited copies available, and no great funding towards producing them. (In fact, at present I am in need of a few pieces of equipment.)

Liturgical universalism in the ROCOR Western rite would make no sense, as the Russian tradition has included more than one form in its canonical rulings. The majority usage is that of Mount Royal, which follows the Russian Synod's ruling. It is still the use of Holyrood chapel in Mount Royal monastery, and in local form at Christminster in Ontario, and by the new fellowship of St. Gregory - and is included in the Saint Colman Prayer Book (the Shorter one as well.)

Fr. Hieromonk Michael (Wood) of Saint Petroc is a liturgical scholar, specializing in the Sarum rite and having a Licentiate in liturgical studies.  The Metropolitan has appointed him the assistant for Western rite affairs in the UK, Australia and New Zealand. All of his use was developed inside ROCOR under the leadership of Metropolitan Hilarion, following the Russian directives and synodal decisions. Furthermore - he has decades of experience in serving the Sarum in churches that were designed for the use. Many misunderstandings derive from an approach to texts that does not have the context of how the text is practically employed, and the liturgical context of a rite. A rite is more than just the Mass book. The offices he uses are not derived from the BCP tradition, but are an English translation of the Sarum diurnal following the Clewer translation (the Orthophile John Mason Neale was involved with that.) There is also a Sarum use arranged for missions (the main use of the paruchia), the Mount Royal liturgy, and the English rite - which is a shorter Sarum use liturgy arranged for familiarity to converting Anglicans. The latter liturgy does rest upon a Russian Synodal document produced by the Dept. of Anglican and Old Catholic relations in the first decade of the 20th c. This was in response to a letter asking for an analysis for use of the 1892 BCP in modified form - which was not only signed by St. Tikhon, but St. John Kochurov and others. (And, St. Tikhon did have Western rite here in America - in NYC no less. Later Mount Royal would celebrate in the same cathedral, but in front of the Royal Doors. There was also a mission in Connecticut in the 1970s using a BCP derived liturgy - part of Bp Gregory Grabbe's short-lived attempt at WRITE - and I think directly responsible for his own views on the matter, as well as his production of the 1979 extract - which in any case would have only abolished the Novus Ordo and 1979 BCP.)  The Anglican 'Alcuin Club' produced an overview of that document - the original of which was followed within ROCOR in the development of the English liturgy. The language employed is that of John D. Cosin. There is also the Celtic rite - which has yet to be employed (though it has precedent.)

There is a reason that Dom James and Fr. Michael were made the assistants for Western rite in ROCOR. There are reasons - solid canonical reasons - why each liturgical use is employed (the Celtic rite is the only one that we have not yet been able to celebrate.) There are also no fictions regarding the uses ROCOR employs - I would hope that neophytes would hold good faith on Church matters and those involved, rather than jumping to negative conclusions or believing gossip. Playing out the same drama on multiple forums does little good either. I had hoped after reunion that we would leave all this sort of hyper-Orthodox conspiracy-culture stuff beh ind. It certainly has never been the norm for ROCOR WRITE.


Aristobule I do hold faith with what ROCOR has decided with the western-rite.  That does not however preclude scholars like Hieromonk Aidan (Keller) who is a noted Sarum expert to from disagreeing with those who argue that the Russian Church approved a BCP based mass rite for Western-rite Orthodox use in the way argued on a number of WR blogs and websites i.e. that the Holy Synod approved it and it stayed that way.  Hieromonk Aidan (Keller) in particular says that this claim cannot be proven.

I can't comment on the St. Colman Prayer Book, in any form, because my efforts to obtain one have thus far proven fruitless.

> ... The many blogs of the St. Petroc missions appear to argue that St. Tikhon and the Russian Church did authorise a BCP based liturgy.

The Russian Church did authorise a BCP liturgy in 1997, but that was the first time it had been done. If the blogs claim otherwise, they are factually incorrect.


I have been meaning to compare/contrast the Sarum and BCP, but I want to do it carefully and time fails. The new church is a-building, and I am preparing some liturgical materials for a new series and doing a parish. And working full-time slaving over a hot computer for the godless State. Just can't do it all.

In relation to the Petrochian S. Colman Prayer Book and Shorter S. Colman Prayer Book, I would have thought that the widest possible dissemination would be beneficial to the mission of the Paruchia, especially in reaching out to heterodox groups.  Could you at least place it online in PDF format to allow people to access it if there are no actual bound copies for sale?   If there are actual non=photocopy hard copies please, sell them via lulu or ebay or Amazon.

t I am not trying to enter the polemic on the veracity of claims in relation to Western-rite history or liturgical probity in relation to the BCP, however for those with scholastic knowledge in this area like Hieromonk Aidan (Keller) and Hieromonk Ambrose, I think respectful debate, the sharing of texts and resources, and developing a greater shared understanding of mission is preferable.

I also think that it is appropriate to accept that the Western-rite has its critics and defenders, and that the history of the Western-rite has not been a honeymoon experience since the 19th century. The Western-rite may be indeed beginning to blossom in Orthodoxy but it has many challenges to achieve the success that Byzantine-rite missionary endeavour has achieved in the West, not the least being a lack of proper parish churches, a lack of married priests, the age of many Western-rite clergy, and the lack of organic connection between ROCOR and AWRV Western-rite in the US and elsewhere. Despite what esteemed priests like Hieromonk Aidan (Keller) and Hieromonk Michael (Mansbridge-Wood) /(Wood?) say, I think that having a different rite, and different mass rite in particular in places like Christ the Savior Monastery, St. Petroc weakens their endeavor. Have the WR in ROCOR and the AWRV got together to try and agree on liturgy?

How much should Orthodox Western-rite draw on the liturgical history and praxis of heterodox or vagante traditions? While they may call themselves "Catholic", "Orthodox" or even "Celtic" if they come from a tiny area of the United Kingdom, what counts is scholarship and understanding within the Holy Orthodox Church. Much as I love the beauty of the Church of England's BCP - having grown up in Australia with it, it was produced by heterodox divines with a clear Reformation agenda, and was written hundreds of years after England became a nation of apostates from the faith of the Orthodox Church and is clearly not a Sarum pre-schism Orthodox mass or breviary or rituale. Indeed the emphasis on Sarum as opposed to Latin or Celtic as opposed to Roman is emphasising a very small rite, predominantly from the British Isles, albeit with a little continental spin off  or is the rest of the Western world supposed to adopt Celtic socio-cultural norms or the norms of the Diocese of Salisbury (Sarum)?
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« Reply #334 on: December 13, 2010, 10:27:36 AM »

SubdeaconDavid, have you ever read Lux Occidentalis by Fr. John Connely?
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« Reply #335 on: December 13, 2010, 10:47:11 AM »

No I haven't read it.  I'll google it and check it out.  I am NOT any authority on the western-rite - just an ex Anglican with a healthy knowledge of traditional Anglo-Catholicism, an admiration for some in traditional continuing Anglicanism i.e. some in the Anglican Catholic Church (ACC) and a healthy disregard for the vagantes, would be bishops and other fringe dwellers.  My scepticism with western-rite Orthodoxy is that I know the idiosyncratic and eccentric and Anglo-centric nature of many within continuing Anglicanism and I am fearful for the Church of what these types can do, but then again, I also know that there are sincere and prayerful men of God in the western-rite like Dom David and others, and the gates of hell won't prevail.

I am also grateful for the shelter of "Eastern" Orthodoxy.  When I joined the Orthodox Church at age 17, in 1978, after the Epsicopal Church in the US ordained women 'priests', my Anglican confessor said it would never happen here, but it did.  Thankfully through the missionary grace filled Russian Orthodox Church Abroad as we called ROCOR then, I was received into the Church and since then western-Christianity has continued to fracture and fall apart.  My own journey has not been easy, but by the grace of God I finally at age 49 feel secure in the faith. 

Here is a very positive aspirational piece from a priest of the Antiochian Church in the USA:  I like it because it shares with the reader that you can embrace the "Eastern" and remain "Western" and frankly I'd rather concentrate on these positives than fight  the western-rite people - even if I can and will continue to disagree with them.

 Here are my reactions...TEN YEARS LATER.

What I hoped to find in the Orthodox Church
I was seeking stability in the faith. I sought the Church that St. Irenaeus had described, which "carefully preserves" apostolic teachings and "proclaims them and teaches them and hands them down with perfect harmony", throughout the world and from generation to generation. By process of elimination, I had concluded that only the Orthodox Church fit this description. I came to the Orthodox Church demoralized and exhausted, war-weary from the losing battle of trying to maintain traditional doctrinal, liturgical and moral standards in western Christianity.

In ten years in the Orthodox Church, I have encountered not one disbelieving bishop, priest, theologian or layperson. Certainly there are Orthodox who don't take the faith seriously or who are lax in their practice, but so far as I can see no one denies it or is trying to change it. Orthodox unity in the faith still astounds me. I found what I was seeking.

What I feared as I came to the Orthodox Church
(1) That I would never fit in. Those who have grown up Orthodox cannot imagine how forbidding the Orthodox Church can appear to an outsider. I now find it hard to believe that ten years ago people with Middle Eastern and Greek backgrounds seemed very exotic to me. Orthodoxy felt "foreign" and "ethnic" to this German/Welsh/Irish-American. Partly I was a prisoner of my own ethnic background. But also I was afraid I would break some eastern cultural or religious taboo and cause great offense. Orthodox worship appeared very difficult to master, and I was afraid "cradle" Orthodox would laugh at me as I struggled to learn it. I was wrong. Yes, I have encountered some ethnic differences - which have caused me to grow. I have learned to hug and kiss a lot more, and also to express myself more forcefully. (I have had to abandon Anglican subtlety. There's no point in "beating around the bush" with Orthodox people!) I have eaten things I never ate before. The wonderful ethnic diversity of Orthodoxy has been broadening to me in a number of ways. (Ah, the food at our church suppers!)
But my fears were unfounded. Though I still make mistakes (just ask the bishops...), Orthodox worship has not been as difficult as I anticipated. Furthermore, once you learn it, it holds still: no national liturgical commission is trying to revise and modernize Orthodox worship - thank God! The "cradle" Orthodox who have come to Saint Nicholas have, with almost no exceptions, been sweet and tolerant as I have learned Orthodoxy. Indeed I have never felt so loved in my life. And as for the Antiochian Archdiocese... surely the Middle-Easterners who welcomed us into their Archdiocese must sometimes find us converts and our mistakes and peculiar ways hard to take, but I have found only the warmest of welcomes. There has been not the slightest pressure to become anything ethnically other than what I am. After ten years, I feel far more at home in this "foreign" Orthodox Church than I ever felt in my former denomination.

(2) I was afraid I would starve to death. I feared Khouria Dianna and I would have to live in poverty, being supported only by a struggling little mission in a "poor immigrant Church". I was wrong. I can't speak of all Orthodox jurisdictions and parishes - but I am amazed at the amount of money that flows through the Antiochian Archdiocese and through this congregation. My former supposedly wealthy denomination had nothing to compare to Antiochian Village and Conference Center, or to the style of our Archdiocese Conventions and Conferences, or to the proportion of money that goes to good works outside the Archdiocese. I could never have imagined that in ten years our own small congregation would have a fine temple, mostly paid off, and would have given away well over $100,000. The people of Saint Nicholas have supported me more than generously. Khouria Dianna has found it good to work full time, because her health insurance is so good. But we have got our children through college, for the first time in our life we own a home, my automobile allowance allows me to pay cash for my cars, and we have traveled more and farther than ever before in our lives. This has been a great faith-builder: we have far more trust in the power of God to provide. And I was afraid of going hungry!

What else I have found in the Orthodox Church
(1) The Kingdom of God. I have shared this with many of you before: About the fourth Sunday after I became Orthodox, as I stood at the altar at Divine Liturgy, the presence of God and the saints and angels became Real to me. It was not an intellectual discovery (I had believed it before), nor was it a new feeling. The Kingdom was just Present, almost palpable. That was how I began to encounter the common Orthodox experience of worship as "heaven on earth". It has continued at every service since then. At worship in my former denomination, I tried hard to concentrate my mind on God and the saints. Now I don't have to. They concentrate on me; they surround me; they encompass me. Words are inadequate. I can't describe the indescribable. But most Orthodox know from their own experience what I'm trying to say.

(2) That Orthodoxy has the power to change lives, beginning with my own: My despair and weariness have turned to hope and and energy. Inside, I feel younger than I did ten years ago. And I have seen so many in my congregation turn to God in a new way. Again, I don't deny that there are many nominal Orthodox, and none of us practice Orthodoxy as we should. But I see that the Orthodox doctrine of theosis (that God makes us like himself, makes us holy) is not theory: it is a description of what actually happens to people in the Orthodox Church. In my former denomination I always felt that I had to change people by my own words and efforts. Here God and the Church do it, and I'm simply one of those being changed.

(3) Not only great joy but also lots of fun! Starting a new mission was hard work on the part of all of us, and just conducting Orthodox worship is exhausting. (Western services now seem so short.) But I have never enjoyed myself or laughed so much in my life. This has been a delight.

(4) That the outside world looks odder and odder. Partly this is because American culture has kept changing since I became Orthodox, while Orthodoxy has held still. Things which seemed unconscionable in our culture even ten years ago are now commonplace. But also the world seems stranger to me because Orthodoxy is even more counter-cultural than I ever imagined. In the western denominations, radical theology, pop worship, women's ordination and "gay" rights are ever more the order of the day - while in Orthodoxy these things are still not even being debated, nor is there any sign that they will be. The western secular world continues to think that politics and economics and education can solve our problems, and that a just society can be created by man without reference to God and his truth - while Orthodoxy is God and his truth. I watch the evening news and read non-Orthodox religious publications and just shake my head: what ever do these people think they're doing? As an Orthodox I feel far less threatened by what's going on outside the Church, and I find that now it makes me sad instead of angry - but the non-Orthodox world looks ever more peculiar to me.

Has there been any down side?
Scarcely any. Becoming Orthodox has been overwhelmingly a positive experience for me. However...
(1) For some of the reasons mentioned above, I've discovered that Orthodoxy is more difficult to communicate to our society than I would have guessed. At first I felt that if Americans could only be to exposed to Orthodoxy, they would rush into the Church. Certainly Orthodoxy is growing in the world - and our Antiochian Archdiocese has grown by leaps and bounds during the past ten years - but I also now see that many modern Americans find it hard to understand Orthodoxy. They are so accustomed to human-centered, man-made religion that they find it difficult even to grasp the concept of God-centered, revealed religion. Many do not see the purpose of worship. More than a few have come to our Orthodox services (even in English) and have no idea what's going on. "Making America Orthodox" is not as easy as I thought.

(2) As I moved into Orthodoxy and discovered how good it is, for a while I felt unhappy that I had waited so long to become Orthodox. Why did I waste so much time in western Christianity trying to reinvent the wheel, when the real Church was here waiting for me all the while? I could have spent my whole ministry in the Church; we could have raised our children in the Orthodox faith. I'm still sad about this, but I've come to accept that God has his own timing, that he can use even my slowness and stupidity and stubbornness for good.

Would I do it all over again?
Yes! Yes! Yes! These past ten years in Orthodoxy have been the best and happiest and most fulfilling of my life. Thanks to God and thanks to Saint Nicholas for bringing me home.
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« Reply #336 on: December 13, 2010, 11:25:12 AM »

Ari, how may we who are involved in this discussion, go about ordering a copy of the shorter and longer St. Colman Prayer Books? Let me know the physical address and the price, and I will send a check tomorrow.

You have stated what to me is very surprising news: that in the 1970s there was a BCP eucharistic rite in use in the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia, in a mission in Connecticut. What was the name of this mission? Who was the priest? Was it actually Bp. Gregory Grabbe who approved the BCP eucharistic anaphora? What Alcuin Club volume?

Regarding the one comment that the Sarum is a geographically limited use, I couldn't disagree more. It is notable not for its eccentricity or narrow distribution, but for having been the most widely-used form, across all Europe, of the old Roman rite. It was typical. It was standard (well, as standard as things got back in those days, which was not very standard by our standards). It was highly respected at Rome, where the Pope would keep, as his master of ceremonies, a Sarum clergyman. Its service books were published at Venice, Basle, Paris... it was used in Portugal. But "quid multa?" (Why multiply examples?)
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« Reply #337 on: December 13, 2010, 12:58:27 PM »

I'm sorry to start yet another sidenote, but was it Sarum use which was used in the Scandinavian churches before the Schism?
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« Reply #338 on: December 14, 2010, 03:18:47 AM »

Ari, how may we who are involved in this discussion, go about ordering a copy of the shorter and longer St. Colman Prayer Books?

You have stated what to me is very surprising news: that in the 1970s there was a BCP eucharistic rite in use in the Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia, in a mission in Connecticut. What was the name of this mission? Who was the priest? Was it actually Bp. Gregory Grabbe who approved the BCP eucharistic anaphora? What Alcuin Club volume?

Father, you would have to contact Fr. Michael directly about that. As I suggested some years ago ('02-'03) you might reciprocate with him - and with Dom David, Dom James. The issues of distribution are partly economic, and partly guarded because of experiences with those who have acted in bad faith. We had one clergyman in a group outside the mainstream ask for the SCPB, and immediately upon receiving it began lying that it was just a 'Book of Common Prayer'. Fires had to be put out over that - and we still have negative impact from that one person's act (ignorant or malicious.) We've had attempts by those in groups that practice homosexual unions and women's ordination to get the book - some of which had even claimed already on their websites or to others that they did liturgy the ROCOR Western rite way. There is no interest in our sacred rites being used to legitimize such things. Hence it is expected that those who get the books use them, and use them *without modification* - especially helpful for those coming from Anglican or Independent backgrounds that are used to DIY liturgy. (We also don't tend to the liberal/libertarian side of the spectrum - but traditional and conservative. So there is going to be resistance to such an idea as 'open source liturgy'. "The doors, the doors....")

For history - I believe the parish using the BCP was St. Anthony's in Greenwich, and was in ROCOR from the late '60s until Bishop Gregory (Grabbe) was elevated to the Episcopate. The story was passed on to me in '00-'01 by an Oblate of Christminster who in those days was with HTM-Boston. The group had been received with the help of Bp Gregory when he was Chancellor, and then disappeared around '75. From what I understand, his experience with that group soured him on WRITE: according to the Oblate, the parish had experimented with an unadapted BCP.  That, and the changes of the RCC and PECUSA in their 1970 missal and 1979 BCP all prompted the 1979 ukase on modern rites not being used. (I would hope that just because a Blanco exists, that some wouldn't blame Orthodox monasticism.)  Out of curiosity - do you remember the ROCOR Western Rite parish that used to exist in Atlanta in the 1980s?

The Alcuin Club volume is the 'Russian Observations upon the American Prayer Book, translated imperfectly and selectively by Wilfrid J. Barnes. Though the general gist of that translation is correct: "The committee, after reviewing these "Observations," allowed in general the possibility that if Orthodox parishes, composed of former Anglicans, were organized in America, they might be allowed, at their desire, to perform their worship according to the "Book of Common Prayer," but only on condition that the following corrections were made in the spirit of the Orthodox Church. " It was not carried out - nor is the English liturgy of ROCOR a full realization of that Synodical directive, but only the English eucharistic rite is based on the directives of the original Russian document (and, it was an act of the Holy Synod - as it had been set up for that purpose. 'Committee' is a poor translation on Barnes' part.) You might want to ask Vladyka about the documents surrounding this issue.

Of course, that has nothing to do with the rest of the material in the Saint Petroc books developed by Vladyka, Fr. Michael, and others - which are not based on the BCP, but on the Sarum Missal and Breviary (the English rite, again, is also not an adaptation of the BCP rite - though it shares some material with the 1549 and Non-Juror's liturgy.) The Great Litany is not BCP, nor are the offices used (Matins, Prime, Lauds, Terce, Sext, None, Evensong, Compline), nor are the Occasional Services. The language will be familiar to former Anglicans, as it is the language of Cosin and the Douai-Rheims - and the general form is familiar, as the BCP - especially the non-Reformed ones - have similarity to the Rites of the Western tradition from whence they derive.

****

Alpo - the Sarum rite did influence the uses of the Scandinavian churches, and even further afield. There was a general 'body' of uses that were proper to the Northwest: Britain, Ireland, France, the Low Countries, Germany, Scandinavia, and Portugal - all having shared features in rite (the ritual text, ceremonial, ornaments, etc.) Not surprising as the missions in most of those areas largely came out of England.

****

David -  I would point out that your views of the Western rite and our clergy in particular *are exactly the same* as they were when you were a vagante Anglican earlier this year. So just who is importing just what? Yes, many vagantes have joined the Orthodox Church in both Eastern and Western rites. Many of them good clergy and laity - some not. We've received clergy from Old Catholics, Milan Synod, Exarchate of Alexandria, French Orthodox - all sorts. We even have now liturgy being used in ROCOR now that was brought in from vagante groups in the past three years. We're not Puritans. One could remember St. Gregory the Great's advice to St. Augustine of Canterbury - to Christianize what was outside the church (even the pagan temples), and to use what he found in the Gallican rites that were 'pious', of 'religion', and 'upright' or 'true'. St. Gregory the Great's advice certainly applies to our present mission. That being said - the majority of us in ROCOR WRITE do use one or other of the rites found in the SCPB. Some have brought in versions with more modern translations (e.g. 'ages of ages', rather than 'world without end' - the latter of which Dom Augustine argued for the retention of, and which all the original Mount Royal books retain.) The uses we have in the SCPB (Mount Royal, Sarum, English - and even Celtic) have canonical reasons for their use, and a tradition of use in the Russian church, and thus fit in with what has been done before. It would be ridiculous though to overthrow long-standing ROCOR Western rite tradition to force a use on everyone that has been imported from a separated body - and for what? It would be foolish, if not only because those who might wish so are simply not aware *what* ROCOR and the Russian Church has done with Western rite over the past century and a half.

The problem with modern scholarship is that it just as easily operates from modernist or post-modernist assumptions. Scholarship rarely agrees, rarely reaches a consensus, and is fluid in that it changes with the decades. Theories rise and fall, schools co-exist and vacillate in their importance. If we make 'scholarship' the requirement for our use - then we *have* become the modern Anglicans. That is exactly the impulse that has produced the modern 'Common Worship' or even the Novus Ordo mass. Scholarship is limited by the scholar - what he is able to perceive by his experience, by mental mistakes he makes. Even the 'peer review' process can be flawed, particularly where several minds pass around a flawed meme. There will be then some resistance against ideologies being imported into the Western rite of ROCOR that derive from something else than Orthodoxy. That being said - we do need cooperation in mission. But, respectful debate cannot happen when it begins on false premises. Spreading false tales, playing 'secret agent', and stirring up trouble are certainly not the way to get our clergy 'out of their shell'. (And, some of us have tried to drag them out of their cells into the 21st c. fields - there's work to be done.)

Fr. Michael is definitely not in danger of importing any Anglican attitudes: that is all just a straw-man employed by those who wanted to remake ROCOR's Western rite in their own image (a vagante attitude if there ever was one.) He is quite critical of those Anglican and vagante attitudes, which often show up in a virulent anti-Westernism, or a desire to Reform the Orthodox Western rite - without having spent any time in it. Fr. Michael is a sincere, prayerful, and most Orthodox man of God. So is Fr. Barry. They are much loved and respected by those who truly know them.

I can appreciate the zeal of the convert as well - but a little realism is called for. The Byzantine rite missionary outreach to Westerners has not achieved all that great of success in the West. In the South, it is as old a mission as the Western rite: and still lacks proper parish churches, lacks vocations, has aging clergy population, and a lack of connection between the other jurisdictions (I shouldn't have to point out the obvious - ROCOR, MP-ROCUSA, OCA, UOCUSA, ACROD, etc.) It has never been a major concern through most of Orthodox presence in the modern West. A few attempts at an English language Byzantine rite were abject failures (the Toombs affair, for instance.) English speaking Byzantine rite can be found in all sorts of camps as well - there is no unity to it, partisanship for all sorts of jurisdictions, spiritual fathers, translations, adopted national customs and identities. There has been no major impact on our societies - not yet. In fact, in some parts it is precisely 'dropping out, and tuning in'.  So it is quite a bit premature to speak of it as a 'success' in those terms... we're just not there yet.

 There might also be more connection with AWRV than you or others realize. We maintain a close relationship with some in the AWRV. Dom James does as well - particularly with others in the AWRV or pro-Western rite AOC Byzantine clergy. I do not think that imposing one liturgical use or another would help mission at all. For someone in the Eastern rite to suggest it? I would counter with 'you first'. See if you can get your parish to switch to doing liturgy in the Greek mode - or even if they would want to merge with St. George, Hobart so as not to duplicate efforts? How successful has the Russian mission in Hobart been in producing/keeping stable and pious clergy candidates for their parish? See if the Old Rite folk are willing to convert over to Nikonian now as well - I doubt most would consider that a helpful suggestion. Within a day's drive of myself are a handful of different Byzantine rites: Greek, Antiochian, Ukrainian. Those that use English rarely ever use the same translation. The ordering of the services are different, what services they have, the chant, rubrics, ceremonies, customs.  The irony of that being - even with the small differences in the Western rite, they are still less different from each other than the differences one has in the Byzantine rite.

PS - I'm not Aristobule. That is someone else - Aristobulus is also someone else (and on this forum.) I am Aristibule - but I'll answer to Arwystli Og, Aethelraed/Aelred, or Ari.
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« Reply #339 on: December 14, 2010, 07:44:11 AM »

"Aristibule" you have a remarkable knowledge of the Church in Tasmania for an American - or perhaps I am incorrect in assuming that you are American. You also do NOT know my attitude from earlier in the year and you do not know me. One could be excused for thinking that someone else - who also does not know my mind was writing this under your name. But,"Ari", let me say in all sincerity that I regret any offences given in the debate with the Western-rite advocates.

What made you qualified to judge the ACC which in Anglican terms at least was formed out of the 1978 Congress of St. Louis by Episcopalian bishops who consecrated new bishops opposed to the ordination of women? Vagante in whose terms?  All Anglicans are heterodox - outside the Church, but to conservative Anglicans the ACC is not vagante, and ROCOR has dialogue with the ACC. The ACC is undoubtedly heterodox but it has some worthy men in it's ministry, some of whom want reconciliation with Orthodoxy. It espouses at least all 7 Ecumenical Councils, 7 sacraments and the full canon of the Bible. It rejects abortion, despairs like Orthodoxy of divorce, and is liturgically not so distant from your own rite.

Yes like some Byzantine rite Orthodox coming from an Anglican background I chose after becoming Orthodox to seek to rediscover my English and Anglican roots, but I have also repented of that sinful error of judgement.  That exploration did not occur in a vacuum.  It occurred in the context of an Orthodox parish shattered by pastoral events that left it with no resident priest to this day. Thank God for the ministry of our Dean who preserved the parish!

It occurred influenced by my personal history of having been raped as an altar boy  from the age of 11 and abused by 4 Anglican priests - one of whom as an adult I helped send to prison for his crimes against me and 10 other boys, one of whom committed suicide.  And that is just one pedophile 'priest'.  For some the damage is lifelong, and for all life is never the same as if it never happened.  

So Aristibule my spiritual journey was not a model one, nor were the life-shattering experiences that led to it. It is a continuous story of challenging one's narrative, of understanding where blame lies and identifying the collateral damage in one's life.

Pray God that your children never endure this pain, and pray that if you encounter this in your Church, that you treat the survivors as just that - survivors of trauma and not as sinful or worse as complicit. Abuse shatters trust, breaks relationships and can destroy lives.

One thing my experience gave me is a keen sense of ethics and justice which is why I forced the Anglican Church in Tasmania to hold an Inquiry into child abuse in the Church and why to this day I have a keen sense of what is morally disingenuous and why I work with homeless people, many of whom suffer from trauma, mental-illness and marginalisation.

I might add that throughout my 10 years in the wilderness my Orthodox wife stuck by me - I cannot add having multiple wives or abandoning the spouse that I married in the temple to my sins like Henry VIII and company, and at least in this I complied with the Orthodox canons for a subdeacon not to remarry.

I prayed and fasted long and hard about coming back home to Orthodoxy and my struggle was with my own sense of immense sinfulness, at having walked away from the absolute Truth of God's revelation in Christ and His Holy Orthodox and Catholic and Apostolic Church.  I have had to live with the knowledge that what I did was harmful for me and for my family and the last months have been about building relationships anew. I am eternally grateful for the mercy of Vladyka and our Dean, Mitred Archpriest Mikhail Protopopov in all of this in bringing me home to Orthodoxy and for blessing me to serve again in the subdiaconate.  I am also grateful for the ministry of your own Father Michael (Mansbridge-Wood) in encouraging my return home.

Regrettably, my experience of western Christianity makes me a very nuanced judge of the Western-rite because I guess the Western-rite which has so much Anglican-ness about it pushes buttons about my own history and trauma.  Little wonder that I prefer the security of a Byzantine temple to the Western-rite. I also know that sexual abuse has occurred in Orthodox Churches and in the Byzantine rite. Again for any offences, please forgive me.

I agree the Byzantine rite has it's challenges but it has produced perhaps 100fold the number of priests and thousands of converts, many of whom are not geriatrics.  The rejuvenation of my own parish is chief issue with me these days.  That we have no resident priest saddens me as much as it saddened me when Hieromonk Michael (Mansbridge-Wood) told me that the Launceston WR consisted now of pretty well only Father Barry and his matushka, or when I saw that the mean age at St. Dyfans WR was between about 50 and 70 and then only 4 people for Matins when Fr. Barry was sick and could not come - although my own parish has an ageing congregation and our Typika numbers vary from about 8 to 20 at best. Pastoral incompetence cost us one aspiring Western convert nun, several families, both Russian and Australian converts and 10 years later, not all the scars have healed for some.

I am aware that there are differences in liturgical practice even in the Byzantine rite but within ROCOR is remarkable consistency, at least in Australia. In relation to the WR I am not in any sense an expert or a liturgical "scholar", possessing a Licentiate (?) like Hieromonk Michael (Mansbridge-Wood) and I do not wish anything but success for the Petrochian Paruchia.  It is no easy thing at nearly three-score years and ten after a lifetime of labour to be doing what he is doing trying to get the WR off the ground here in Tasmania, in Australia and elsewhere. It is also a far harder task without the financial backing of the Church, without proper parish churches (in Australia) and few parochial clergy.  Frankly it is too much of a podvig for me.

One of the blessings of many years in ROCOR before my fall from grace was getting relatively comfortable with the Slavic rites and Church Slavonic.  In coming home to the Slavonic rite is a genuine coming home, a relief to be in the safe and familiar, and a blessing from God to have so much love and pastoral care of my undeserving self.

I respectfully do think that western scholastic rigour can enhance the understanding that we have of the western-rite, western-rite liturgy and history.  Otherwise what do we have - oral tradition, a lack of evidence-based proof for decisions and a whole lot taken on faith and trust?  I think it absurd that a missionary organisation like the St. Petroc Paruchia does not disseminate it's prayer book far and wide, accepting that while some nutters might claim to be using it in their heterodox situation, that there must be many more for whom the book would be a useful tool in evangelism.  Byzantine rite liturgical books are freely available to buy on the web and in stores, and there a free prayer book downloads.  Why can't you do the same or at least have an online store selling it on one of your many websites?

For heavens sake send one to Fr. Adrian and Fr. Ambrose and be done with it and allow two clearly insightful minds to contribute to the debate. I challenge you to share it with them, as a gesture of brotherly sharing. For myself Ari I am weary of the debate and invective and know that I am better employed in weeding my soul of sins and cleaning the altar nicely in my parish church than in trying to make sense of the place of the western-rite in God's scheme for His Church.
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« Reply #340 on: December 14, 2010, 08:37:49 AM »

Yes, please don't assume - and no, you don't have to use "scare quotes" with my name. It isn't a psuedonym - I don't, and never have used such a thing as psuedonyms.

I've had long contacts with the ACC and other Continuing groups: attended for years. Came close to joining them as well as the Anglicans themselves at an earlier time - was in 'intercommunion' with the Anglicans as an Old Catholic. From the Anglican perspective, the ACC are vagantes and schismatics. Yes - ROCOR has dialogue with the ACC - and other Continuing groups, some closer to Orthodoxy than the ACC (such as the HCC-AR.) We have dialogue with other vagante groups as well - Old Catholic, even some deriving from the Eastern tradition. I've never really been isolated from the English tradition - not in the sense that some want to consider it 'theirs' and the rest of us nothing to do with English Christendom and its heritage.

So - on the contrary, your experience does not make you a nuanced judge of the western rite in Orthodoxy. Your victimhood in the Protestant Anglican Church has *nothing* at all to do with Western Orthodoxy. What the Anglicans do doesn't reflect on the Western rite Orthodoxy - or vice versa for that matter.

I've been involved with the Western Rite ROCOR folk in Tasmania for over a decade now (and, I know for a fact there are more than 4 in Hobart. Sometimes you have low attendance. Sometimes you don't - but I happen to know a number of the people there - more than I've had here, and we've been a dozen at our highest.)

And, yes - I'm party to what you've written for quite awhile. I was initially in the Society of Saint Tikhon (then kicked out, then added back in - gave up finally.) My wife is still friends with you, and often voices her frustrations to me over your conversations. ;-)

However - and I am aware of your history with the sexually abused - and came across your media interview long before I met you online. I'm very sorry for your suffering. I'm very glad your marriage survived as well. I'm happy to say I'm still married to the only one I've ever been married to - and have never had relations with any other. My children have not been abused, and I'm very watchful for that. All parents should be vigilant - even in churches. But - it creates more problems to project onto innocent people faults that they do not own. I too have a keen sense of justice - not from trauma, but as part of my personality.

As for the Byzantine rite having produced 'more' than the Western rite: apples and oranges. The largest Orthodox communities are still ethnic chaplaincies in the diaspora. There are signs that might be changing - hopeful sings - and the Western rite is one of them. There certainly is not any evidence that the Byzantine rite is more successful for converting Westerners. We have clergy in the UK and US lamenting how many converts simply fall away - and that all in the Byzantine rite. Very few are able to do as you do, and come back yet again. We're losing the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th generation 'cradle' Orthodox as well.

I am aware of the struggles of the Russian community in Hobart. You cannot rejuvenate it by tearing down other's communities. (I know about the nun too - traded emails too a long time ago. You are not the only one to mention her to me within the past few months.)

As for scholastic rigor - we do have that. There is solid scholarship behind our uses - Dom Augustine had multiple degrees in theology. His work provides the basis for the rest of our work. But, it is scholarship *within* Tradition - not mere 'faith and trust'. But - we *do* have tradition - we are not Protestants. Our scholarship, however, disagrees with the scholarship of others who want to change our use. We don't need to send books to whom you request - for the sake of Heaven, their sakes, or your sake. There is more going on there than you are privy too - and it is a 'trust issue'. That will take some work .. and that won't happen on a public forum. There is no reason to engage with everyone who considers themselves the 'greatest expert either' - certainly not with the ecclesiastical equivalents of Time Cube. I do think that we have had two great problems: no officially moderated direct communication between all parties in the Western rite, and secondly - nothing done to counter the bad-PR created by external campaigns against some in the Western rite. That, again, isn't going to be solved on this forum either.

You definitely don't have to get your head in "Sarum world" (wherever that might be. We could start a Wiltshire amusement park maybe?) But - you do realize that you are doing all this prodding and cajoling in forums dedicated to the Western rite? My head is in my heart - my heart is in the heart of the Church - and I exist in the 21st c. Anglosphere. That's where my 'head' is. Sarum is just a town some of my ancestors are from - where the pre-schism uses of Wessex were codified into a rite that would have an importance in the West that rite of Constantinople would come to have in the East.

Ari

"Aristibule" you have a remarkable knowledge of the Church in Tasmania for an American - or perhaps I am incorrect in assuming that you are American. What made you qualified to judge the ACC which in Anglican terms at least was formed out of the 1978 Congress of St. Louis by Episcopalian bishops who consecrated new bishops opposed to the ordination of women? Vagante in whose terms?  All Anglicans are heterodox - outside the Church, but to conservative Anglicans the ACC is not vagante, and ROCOR has dialogue with the ACC. You also do NOT know my attitude from earlier in the year - one could be excused for thinking that someone else - who also does not know my mind was writing this under your name. But,"Ari", let me say in all sincerity that I regret any offences given in the debate with the Western-rite advocates.
...
My experience of western Christianity makes me a very nuanced judge of the Western-rite because I guess the Western-rite which has so much Anglican-ness about it pushes buttons about my own history and trauma.  Little wonder that I prefer the security of a Byzantine temple to the Western-rite. I also know that sexual abuse has occurred in Orthodox Churches and in the Byzantine rite. Again for any offences, please forgive me.
...
For heavens sake send one to Fr. Adrian and Fr. Ambrose and be done with it and allow two clearly insightful minds to contribute to the debate. I challenge you to share it with them, as a gesture of brotherly sharing. For myself Ari I am weary of the debate and invective and know that I am better employed in weeding my soul of sins and cleaning the altar nicely in my parish church than in trying to get my head in your Sarum world.

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« Reply #341 on: December 14, 2010, 10:01:29 AM »

Yes, please don't assume - and no, you don't have to use "scare quotes" with my name. It isn't a psuedonym - I don't, and never have used such a thing as psuedonyms.
What is a scare quote Ari?  No idea what you mean.

Quote
I've had long contacts with the ACC and other Continuing groups: attended for years. Came close to joining them as well as the Anglicans themselves at an earlier time - was in 'intercommunion' with the Anglicans as an Old Catholic. From the Anglican perspective, the ACC are vagantes and schismatics. Yes - ROCOR has dialogue with the ACC - and other Continuing groups, some closer to Orthodoxy than the ACC (such as the HCC-AR.) We have dialogue with other vagante groups as well - Old Catholic, even some deriving from the Eastern tradition. I've never really been isolated from the English tradition - not in the sense that some want to consider it 'theirs' and the rest of us nothing to do with English Christendom and its heritage.

So - on the contrary, your experience does not make you a nuanced judge of the western rite in Orthodoxy. Your victimhood in the Protestant Anglican Church has *nothing* at all to do with Western Orthodoxy. What the Anglicans do doesn't reflect on the Western rite Orthodoxy - or vice versa for that matter.
Ari when you are seeking to bring ANGLICANS to Orthodoxy as in your Forward in Orthodox Faith blogspot page, Anglican history, culture and people do impact on Orthodoxy. You say that Byzantine rite jurisdictions in the West are only ethnic chaplaincies.  In part this is true but it denies the reality that Greeks in Australia are Greek AUSTRALIANS, Russians are Russian AUSTRALIANS and Anglos are Anglo-AUSTRALIANS.  The Australian Diocese of ROCOR is in Australia, prays for HM the Queen and is as Australian in essence as it is Russian.  We have Anglo-Australian priests, English liturgies, English books...... Going to an English ROCOR service is culturally Australian to me. 

Quote
I've been involved with the Western Rite ROCOR folk in Tasmania for over a decade now (and, I know for a fact there are more than 4 in Hobart. Sometimes you have low attendance. Sometimes you don't - but I happen to know a number of the people there - more than I've had here, and we've been a dozen at our highest.)

A
However - and I am aware of your history with the sexually abused - and came across your media interview long before I met you online. I'm very sorry for your suffering. I'm very glad your marriage survived as well. I'm happy to say I'm still married to the only one I've ever been married to - and have never had relations with any other. My children have not been abused, and I'm very watchful for that. All parents should be vigilant - even in churches. But - it creates more problems to project onto innocent people faults that they do not own. I too have a keen sense of justice - not from trauma, but as part of my personality.
Thank you.  May the Lord preserve your family from such traumas.

Quote
As for the Byzantine rite having produced 'more' than the Western rite: apples and oranges. The largest Orthodox communities are still ethnic chaplaincies in the diaspora. There are signs that might be changing - hopeful sings - and the Western rite is one of them. There certainly is not any evidence that the Byzantine rite is more successful for converting Westerners. We have clergy in the UK and US lamenting how many converts simply fall away - and that all in the Byzantine rite. Very few are able to do as you do, and come back yet again. We're losing the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th generation 'cradle' Orthodox as well.

I am aware of the struggles of the Russian community in Hobart. You cannot rejuvenate it by tearing down other's communities. (I know about the nun too - traded emails too a long time ago. You are not the only one to mention her to me within the past few months.)
Tearing down is very strong Ari.  I wish the WR well.  I hope Hieromonk Michael (Mansbridge-Wood) gets to hang up his bags and be a monk in a monastery in his remaining years, to write, to pray and to be a living monastic witness, because younger priests have taken up the missionary work.  It seems such a pity that your monasteries in the main are really like mission stations, not places for the laity to come and pray the monastic cycle with a monastic community

Quote
As for scholastic rigor - we do have that. There is solid scholarship behind our uses - Dom Augustine had multiple degrees in theology. His work provides the basis for the rest of our work. But, it is scholarship *within* Tradition - not mere 'faith and trust'. But - we *do* have tradition - we are not Protestants. Our scholarship, however, disagrees with the scholarship of others who want to change our use. We don't need to send books to whom you request - for the sake of Heaven, their sakes, or your sake. There is more going on there than you are privy too - and it is a 'trust issue'. That will take some work .. and that won't happen on a public forum. There is no reason to engage with everyone who considers themselves the 'greatest expert either' - certainly not with the ecclesiastical equivalents of Time Cube. I do think that we have had two great problems: no officially moderated direct communication between all parties in the Western rite, and secondly - nothing done to counter the bad-PR created by external campaigns against some in the Western rite. That, again, isn't going to be solved on this forum either.
"Ecclesiastical time cube?" What on earth do you mean.  I am not asking to know the great politics to which you are privy to - Fr. Aidan asked for a St Colman Prayer Book and I think you should be courteous enough to a brother-priest and a scholar to send him one.

Quote
You definitely don't have to get your head in "Sarum world" (wherever that might be. We could start a Wiltshire amusement park maybe?) But - you do realize that you are doing all this prodding and cajoling in forums dedicated to the Western rite? My head is in my heart - my heart is in the heart of the Church - and I exist in the 21st c. Anglosphere. That's where my 'head' is. Sarum is just a town some of my ancestors are from - where the pre-schism uses of Wessex were codified into a rite that would have an importance in the West that rite of Constantinople would come to have in the East.
What is the Anglosphere?  Western culture is not homogeneous.  Continental Europe is culturally very different to the British Isles and all of it is very different to the US which is very diffreent from Australia and the British Commonwealth Anglo nations.  Surely what you need is local WR Churches - a British WR Church, an American WR Church, an Australian WR Church, with your own bishops, under our First Hierarch, but nonetheless distinctive WR local Churches that reflect that Tulsa Arizona is as alien to Hobart as you may  claim Ekaterinberg is to both of us.

The WR needs to be careful lest it take on Anglo-ethnocentrism because I am sure the French WR, the Italian WR are not in any way in the Anglosphere.  Moreover the English and Americans have a lot of people in Europe and the Near East feeling that we retain Anglo-ethnic superiority, a residue of colonial days when we looked down on "continentals" and Slavs what to speak of what used to be called "Levantines".
Quote
Ari

"Aristibule" you have a remarkable knowledge of the Church in Tasmania for an American - or perhaps I am incorrect in assuming that you are American. What made you qualified to judge the ACC which in Anglican terms at least was formed out of the 1978 Congress of St. Louis by Episcopalian bishops who consecrated new bishops opposed to the ordination of women? Vagante in whose terms?  All Anglicans are heterodox - outside the Church, but to conservative Anglicans the ACC is not vagante, and ROCOR has dialogue with the ACC. You also do NOT know my attitude from earlier in the year - one could be excused for thinking that someone else - who also does not know my mind was writing this under your name. But,"Ari", let me say in all sincerity that I regret any offences given in the debate with the Western-rite advocates.
...
My experience of western Christianity makes me a very nuanced judge of the Western-rite because I guess the Western-rite which has so much Anglican-ness about it pushes buttons about my own history and trauma.  Little wonder that I prefer the security of a Byzantine temple to the Western-rite. I also know that sexual abuse has occurred in Orthodox Churches and in the Byzantine rite. Again for any offences, please forgive me.
...
For heavens sake send one to Fr. Adrian and Fr. Ambrose and be done with it and allow two clearly insightful minds to contribute to the debate. I challenge you to share it with them, as a gesture of brotherly sharing. For myself Ari I am weary of the debate and invective and know that I am better employed in weeding my soul of sins and cleaning the altar nicely in my parish church than in trying to get my head in your Sarum world.


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« Reply #342 on: December 14, 2010, 10:37:18 AM »

Scare quotes http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scare_quotes

No need for them with my name - I am quite literally me.

Forward in Orthodox Faith is for Western Christians in general - part of it addresses questions that Anglicans have fielded to us, some to Catholics, and the rest to others. But, no - converting Anglicans to Western rite Orthodox does not mean that we are bringing in Anglican Protestantism, sexual abuse, or any other number of negative things. There is a process of *conversion* there. It isn't bringing anything into the Church but people. Even people like me - sons of John Wesley and Arnold Harris Mathew.

I'm not too worried about the Australian question. My experience is more with the UK, Canada, and US. Many Tasmanians (and even some in other parts of Australia) are indeed Anglo-Celtic: many Australians have deep and close ties to the British Isles. Sure you're Australian, they're Australian - everyone is Australia is Australian. I know Cypriot Australians. Australia isn't America - we know that full well in the US. Some Australians tell me that many Australians tend to forget that they are not Americans. Not every American is an American - its not all that clear, because the two countries are not analogous - even if some parts have similarity to some in the other country. However - there is still a cultural familiarity across the Anglosphere (the English speaking countries deriving from Britain.) Something that Extreme Nationalism with its Anglophobia (or Amerophobia) cannot erase. And parts of the US are more like Canada, parts are more like the UK, parts are like Australia.

That some of us in the Western rite *are* English does not automatically mean some sort of 'Anglocentrism' is involved. ROCOR WRITE is also involved in Latin America, the East Indies, the Continent of Europe ... we have Portuguese, Hispanics, Italians, French, and more. Just because some of us are English or Anglo doesn't automatically mean that we are somehow 'too ethnic'. We in the paruchia don't represent all of the WRITE, have never intended to - we have our 'area of focus' - which is our home. Some convert through Byzantine rites because of Russophilia, Hellenophilia, or other 'philias' - some have other reasons to convert: theological reasons are good. I find Anglophilia rather rare in the Western rite - so no danger of Anglocentrism. Being Anglo means that Anglophilia just isn't going to happen. Anglo-culture is simply what we're in - with all its good points, and bad points. No more than Russians have to be 'Russophiles' to be Orthodox. They are simply Russian Orthodox.

Time Cube: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Time_Cube

Surely what you need is local WR Churches - a British WR Church, an American WR Church, an Australian WR Church, with your own bishops, under our First Hierarch, but nonetheless distinctive WR local Churches that reflect that Tulsa Arizona is as alien to Hobart as you may  claim Ekaterinberg is to both of us.


Agreed - though I am not aware that there is a Tulsa, Arizona. We're talking 'Church time' though - that might take awhile to get there. Though I doubt Hobart is all that alien. I don't find most of the US alien - and it immense and extremely diverse, nor Canada, nor Southern England and South Wales. Ireland was more foreign than the UK or Canada - but I'd still move to Dublin in a flash. Mexico - yeah, that was a little alien - and Panama as well (though I think Panama is one of the most beautiful places in the world.) What I do find alien is liberalism/modernism - that's something else entirely though.
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« Reply #343 on: December 14, 2010, 04:46:06 PM »


No need for them with my name - I am quite literally me.

I hope you are you and not someone else.  Powerful things names and their meaning.  Aristibule is a statement of faith in Orthodox history and I imagine extremely rare today.  I imagine you get lots of people in the States saying "how do you spell that?" 

I notice in some of the Paruchian blogs and websites that there is both Hieromonk Michael (Mansbridge-Wood), and that is what Vladyka used in his Ukaze allocating the UK and Australia to him and the US and Canada to Dom David, but there is also Fr. Michael (Wood) or Hieromonk Michael (Wood).  Now I assume that the use of the "Mansbridge" is something that one can drop if one wants to be culturally more relevant to Americans, rather than using the double-hinged moniker.  What indeed is in a name?

I don't think that Anglicans coming to WR or to the Byzantine rite bring with them child abuse - although in my view eternal vigilance is required and I would hope that the Church in every diocese has National police checks on all clergy, employees and volunteers.

Again fixing quotes, please quote properly. Please refer to the http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,20616.0.html to learn how to quote.
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« Reply #344 on: December 14, 2010, 09:56:31 PM »


I am the American contact for the Saint Colman Prayer Book.


I was very surprised by what seems to be your refusal (in your subsequent messages) to supply a copy to Fr Aidan, surely a man whose credentials in working to restore WR worship to the Church are impressive.

What on earth is it about the Saint Colman Prayer Book that makes you refuse to let him see a copy?  You seem ashamed of it?  I see from reading a subsequent message that you say it is the work of Metropolitan Hilarion and Hieromonk Michael and the responsibility for the SCPB falls upon the shoulders of the Metropolitan.  Surely the Metropolitan would not have headed a liturgical project which is at all shonky and surely he has not instructed you not to allow it to be seen by the rest of the WR clergy of the Russian Church Abroad  !?  What you are writing is decidedly odd and I am sure you have misunderstood the Metropolitan.
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« Reply #345 on: December 14, 2010, 11:00:38 PM »

Its not my place to give or refuse. And I'll not argue about it. I just find it hard to imagine that Christians can dream up so many negative implications to something so simple. Bullying someone to steal a copy of a book? *conversation over*   Huh
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« Reply #346 on: December 14, 2010, 11:20:49 PM »

Its not my place to give or refuse. And I'll not argue about it. I just find it hard to imagine that Christians can dream up so many negative implications to something so simple. Bullying someone to steal a copy of a book? *conversation over*   Huh
Who is being bullied to STEAL a copy of the St. Colman Prayer Book (SCPB) or even the Shorter St. Colman Prayer Book (SSCPB)?  You are claiming Ari that the Western-rite is deserving of restoration to a place of honour in the Church, and in the lives of Western Europeans, British and others. I assume that Hieromonk Michael (Mansbridge-Wood) very genuinely believes that the SCPB and SSCPB is a better or more appropriate WRO prayer book than what is being used by Dom David and others in the United States, although I assume that the new St. Petroc  US 48 acre monastery will use the SCPB.  If it has the imprimateur of His Eminence the First Hierarch then it ought to be available not only to the Petrochian Paruchia, but to the wider Western-rite in the US in ROCOR and the Antiochian WR Vicariate and yes, to us in the Byzantine rite too. Frankly it should be sold through the St. John of Kronstadt press and other Russian Orthodox web-sales sites.

If it is a superior prayer book then please share it with a scholar like Fr. Aidan whose only interest is liturgics and the Orthodox faith and is not into the politics that you clearly imply is the motive of those who want to see your prayer book. Please note I am not in any way impugning the SCPB or SSCPB or it's chief author or anyone else who collaborated on it. So I am asking that you share it in Christian charity.

Personally I'd like the opportunity to appreciate the SCPB and the SSCPB on their merits.  Who knows - I might feel a greater connection with the Western-rite but none of us can appreciate the liturgical gem if the book is not available to all but initiates in the Paruchia.  I'd actually welcome the chance to attend the St. Petroc Monastery and pray the hours with the WRO community on a quiet day or retreat, but the defensiveness in regard to the SCPB and SSCPB is not even ecumenical to the Byzantine rite. Did the Church of England folk who attended the Petrochian Western-rite Mass in St. Magnus the Martyr get to see a copy, or buy one?
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« Reply #347 on: December 14, 2010, 11:22:16 PM »

Its not my place to give or refuse. And I'll not argue about it. I just find it hard to imagine that Christians can dream up so many negative implications to something so simple.

Why did you say "I am the American contact for the Saint Colman Prayer Book" and now say that you cannot supply it to a Western Rite priest of the same Church as yourself?  

If anything is negative it is your refusal to carry through with what you said you were able to do.

There is something very interesting about this particular prayer book when it creates such secrecy and mystery.

By way of contrast the prayer books and service books created by Far Aidan for the WR are all on public sale with the blessing of Metropolitan Hilarion and he has blessed their reprinting.

Quote
Bullying someone to steal a copy of a book? *conversation over*   Huh

I don't know who, if anybody, has been bullied into stealing a copy.  I think you may be fantasising?  But the very fact that you have such fears confirms what we are starting to think, that there is something decidedly odd about this prayer book.  Has the Metropolitan had second thoughts about having led the liturgical group which created it and has he forbidden its distribution?

You don't have to answer any of that.  We are beginning to realise that you wish to shroud the Saint Colman Prayer Book in secrecy.  Most odd!

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« Reply #348 on: December 15, 2010, 12:18:26 AM »

The Metropolitan has blessed the Saint Colman Prayer Book for distribution - and it is quite public. That is not what I can distribute. It isn't forbidden in any case. However, there are limited copies of the Shorter SCPB and a list of who gets them already. Those who have already judged it without seeing it - they don't need a copy. Clergy not on the list are referred to Fr. Michael, as he can find easier ways of getting the material to them.

And - no secrecy and mystery. By way of contrast - no one is making money off of these books, no one is promoting them as 'the greatest thing ever'. It is just quite clear who is working to destroy Western rite. They'll say evil things if they don't have the book - and evil things if they do have the book. The difference is that those who don't know better are more likely to believe someone who says 'I have the book, and X is wrong with it' - even when that is a lie. So, certain people are not going to be sent the book. Then at least we can say 'How would they know? Here's the book.' It wouldn't be a help to anyone to do otherwise. Especially when those demanding a copy admit to having never served Western rite, and not knowing enough to serve it - but want to claim expertise in judging it? Or giving spiritual advice unasked on a forum, interfering in spiritual matters between a bishop and his people? Or when they have proven over time that anything they get ahold of will be twisted into a negative presentation?

The conversation always comes down to this point - the usual suspects clamoring for blood, and the end of Western rite. IF they have to set Western rite against Western rite, they'll do it. Take one down, then they can turn on the other. I think some will be surprised when they find themselves next for 'dinner'.
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« Reply #349 on: December 15, 2010, 12:55:55 AM »

The Metropolitan has blessed the Saint Colman Prayer Book for distribution - and it is quite public. That is not what I can distribute. It isn't forbidden in any case. However, there are limited copies of the Shorter SCPB and a list of who gets them already. Those who have already judged it without seeing it - they don't need a copy. Clergy not on the list are referred to Fr. Michael, as he can find easier ways of getting the material to them.

And - no secrecy and mystery. By way of contrast - no one is making money off of these books, no one is promoting them as 'the greatest thing ever'. It is just quite clear who is working to destroy Western rite. They'll say evil things if they don't have the book - and evil things if they do have the book. The difference is that those who don't know better are more likely to believe someone who says 'I have the book, and X is wrong with it' - even when that is a lie. So, certain people are not going to be sent the book. Then at least we can say 'How would they know? Here's the book.' It wouldn't be a help to anyone to do otherwise. Especially when those demanding a copy admit to having never served Western rite, and not knowing enough to serve it - but want to claim expertise in judging it? Or giving spiritual advice unasked on a forum, interfering in spiritual matters between a bishop and his people? Or when they have proven over time that anything they get ahold of will be twisted into a negative presentation?

The conversation always comes down to this point - the usual suspects clamoring for blood, and the end of Western rite. IF they have to set Western rite against Western rite, they'll do it. Take one down, then they can turn on the other. I think some will be surprised when they find themselves next for 'dinner'.


So you weren't joking !!  The only way for most people to see a copy does seem to be to send someone to steal one!!  LOL!  I take it from your earlier message that this has been happening already.  I suppose it is a compliment in a way.  Maybe they could be electronically tagged for recovery by the book police.  laugh police

It's kind of weird when you say that people in possession of a copy can use it to destroy Western Rite.  Hundreds of people have copies of Fr Aidan's Prayer Book and there have been no reports to date of attempts to sabotage WR with it. 

Coming to a parish near you.....
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« Reply #350 on: December 15, 2010, 01:04:47 AM »


Especially when those demanding a copy admit to having never served Western rite, and not knowing enough to serve it -


I believe I am still quite capable of celebrating a Missa pro Defunctis, and in Latin, if you would ever like me to do that (and if the Metropolitan blesses it.)
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« Reply #351 on: December 15, 2010, 01:10:51 AM »

The Metropolitan has blessed the Saint Colman Prayer Book for distribution - and it is quite public. That is not what I can distribute. It isn't forbidden in any case. However, there are limited copies of the Shorter SCPB and a list of who gets them already. Those who have already judged it without seeing it - they don't need a copy. Clergy not on the list are referred to Fr. Michael, as he can find easier ways of getting the material to them.

And - no secrecy and mystery. By way of contrast - no one is making money off of these books, no one is promoting them as 'the greatest thing ever'. It is just quite clear who is working to destroy Western rite. They'll say evil things if they don't have the book - and evil things if they do have the book. The difference is that those who don't know better are more likely to believe someone who says 'I have the book, and X is wrong with it' - even when that is a lie. So, certain people are not going to be sent the book. Then at least we can say 'How would they know? Here's the book.' It wouldn't be a help to anyone to do otherwise. Especially when those demanding a copy admit to having never served Western rite, and not knowing enough to serve it - but want to claim expertise in judging it? Or giving spiritual advice unasked on a forum, interfering in spiritual matters between a bishop and his people? Or when they have proven over time that anything they get ahold of will be twisted into a negative presentation?

The conversation always comes down to this point - the usual suspects clamoring for blood, and the end of Western rite. IF they have to set Western rite against Western rite, they'll do it. Take one down, then they can turn on the other. I think some will be surprised when they find themselves next for 'dinner'.


Ari I am neither clamouring for blood or having a go!  Let me say again.  I do not want the Western-rite to fail and I wish the missionary work of Hieromonk Michael (Mansbridge-Wood) and his confreres every success and blessing from God.  I do not prefer the Western-rite because my heart and soul and intellect are drawn to the Apostolic traditions of the Byzantine rite.  I also accept that sometimes I and others could be less confrontational and more demonstrably respectful of the very sincere efforts of the St. Petroc spiritual tradition and spiritual family to share Orthodoxy in a western way.  

Wanting to understand source material like the St. Colman Prayer Book is not oppositional.  One cannot understand what one has not seen or read or experienced.  I understand also that the SCPB and SSCPB fit into the wider schema of WRO liturgical life, but I stand by what I said.  I assume that the author(s) of the SCPB and SSCPB are happy with the work, happy with it's authenticity (with the imprimateur of the First Hierarch) and I cannot understand why you think that it is automatically going to be challenged, misconstrued or used by opponents of the WR and of the St. Petroc Paruchia.

Perhaps it would be more useful to put on the table the fact that the WR is not universally well-regarded, whether in error or not, and to work at building bridges, of selling the message of the WR to the Byzantine-rite, of concelebrating with Byzantine-rite clergy, in inviting the Byzantine faithful to come and pray and get a blessing.  A priest is a priest and the Liturgy (or mass in western language) is equally valid in both rites for Byzantine and Western-rite priests and faithful. Build bridges rather than withdraw.

In life we value relationships. It is clearly regrettable that there is so much distrust between Byzantine and WR.  If the Western-rite is separate, especially in a defensive way, no positive relationships are built.  Good-will is required from both sides. Mutual prayer is required from both sides of the debate.  Access to material such as the SCPB and SSCPB should be a given even to those who are inimical.  I have an Anglican Breviary, a Benedictine Monastic Diurnal, St. Dunstan's Plainsong Psalter, a number of editions of the Book of Common Prayer, the Lancelot Andrewes WR BCP and more.  Not everything in them is Orthodox but while there may be things I disagree with, I value the piety with which they were written, crafted and prayed, and I treasure having them. I would extend the same respect to the St. Colman Prayer Book, and hope one day to actually have one.
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« Reply #352 on: December 15, 2010, 01:15:31 AM »



Fr. Bless, Which Of the rites eastern or western do you prefer now ...I could understand  you  being Irish, and raised into the western rite, that it could be more nearer to your heart....



Especially when those demanding a copy admit to having never served Western rite, and not knowing enough to serve it -


I believe I am still quite capable of celebrating a Missa pro Defunctis, and in Latin, if you would ever like me to do that (and if the Metropolitan blesses it.)
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« Reply #353 on: December 15, 2010, 01:27:44 AM »

St. John of Shanghai & San Francisco blessed l'Eglise Catholique Orthodoxe de France or ECOF.  That it largely fell over into schism was perhaps because it was before it's time in the neophyte world of a western-rite revival.  Nonetheless I think that establishing national jurisdictions of the western-rite in individual countries with their own diocese and deaneries, with their own bishops sitting under the omophor of the Chief Hierarch will be the way of the future.  Ultimately that may mean an autocephalous or autonomous Church, maintaining a connection with the Mother Russian Church, rather like than North American Metropolia aka OCA but clearly and uniquely reflecting the western-rite tradition and local cultures of their own countries. It is impossible for example to imagine a Western-rite in which Latin does not have some place, as it does at Christminster in the US.  Latin is part of the soul of Western Christianity.

Do I think that the WR will overtake the missionary endeavours of the Russian and Greek and other Orthodox Churches?  Not at all.  Nonetheless let me be on the record of saying that I believe that the western-rite fulfils a place in the schema of Orthodoxy, albeit to a very small and niche market, but one that is clearly growing, especially in the United States. Do I think that there is rivalry between Byzantine and Western-rite for converts?  Certainly, there is.  The undoubted success of the Byzantine-rite in many ways is a model for the neophyte and very small, but growing Western-rite.  No doubt there are mistakes made by the Byzantine that can be avoided.

Do I think that the Western-rite is the natural place for Western Orthodox Christians?  For some yes, but the very successes of the Russian, Antiochian and Greek Churches, and the Serbs too predicates that there is a very real synergy between Western people who are spiritually seeking, and the Byzantine rite.  What worked for Prince Vladimir in Constantinople will continue to win souls to Byzantine rite Orthodoxy.  
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« Reply #354 on: December 15, 2010, 03:21:03 AM »


Especially when those demanding a copy admit to having never served Western rite, and not knowing enough to serve it -


I believe I am still quite capable of celebrating a Missa pro Defunctis, and in Latin, if you would ever like me to do that (and if the Metropolitan blesses it.)

Just out of curiosity, have you ever asked your Metropolitan if he'd allow you to celebrate a (WR) mass sometimes? I know, services of the Church are not something to be played with. But if I was a priest and grown up with Latin tradition I certainly had a temptation to try WR sometimes. Fortunately I'm not a priest. angel
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« Reply #355 on: December 15, 2010, 03:33:01 AM »


Especially when those demanding a copy admit to having never served Western rite, and not knowing enough to serve it -


I believe I am still quite capable of celebrating a Missa pro Defunctis, and in Latin, if you would ever like me to do that (and if the Metropolitan blesses it.)

Just out of curiosity, have you ever asked your Metropolitan if he'd allow you to celebrate a (WR) mass sometimes? I know, services of the Church are not something to be played with. But if I was a priest and grown up with Latin tradition I certainly had a temptation to try WR sometimes. Fortunately I'm not a priest. angel


Years ago I asked him about serving the Lorrha Liturgy for a few major Irish Saints' days of the year and he was agreeable.  Of course I am a purist and would have done this in Latin.  But I confess I was overwhelmed by the logistics of arranging it and so it has never come to pass. 

Speaking of things Irish, I have a copy of Saint John Chrysostom in Irish, translated by Archimandrite Sergei Keleher who serves it at Saint Kevin's pro-cathedral in Dublin. 
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« Reply #356 on: December 15, 2010, 10:56:10 AM »

The Metropolitan has blessed the Saint Colman Prayer Book for distribution - and it is quite public. That is not what I can distribute. It isn't forbidden in any case. However, there are limited copies of the Shorter SCPB and a list of who gets them already. Those who have already judged it without seeing it - they don't need a copy. Clergy not on the list are referred to Fr. Michael, as he can find easier ways of getting the material to them.

And - no secrecy and mystery. By way of contrast - no one is making money off of these books, no one is promoting them as 'the greatest thing ever'. It is just quite clear who is working to destroy Western rite. They'll say evil things if they don't have the book - and evil things if they do have the book. The difference is that those who don't know better are more likely to believe someone who says 'I have the book, and X is wrong with it' - even when that is a lie. So, certain people are not going to be sent the book. Then at least we can say 'How would they know? Here's the book.' It wouldn't be a help to anyone to do otherwise. Especially when those demanding a copy admit to having never served Western rite, and not knowing enough to serve it - but want to claim expertise in judging it? Or giving spiritual advice unasked on a forum, interfering in spiritual matters between a bishop and his people? Or when they have proven over time that anything they get ahold of will be twisted into a negative presentation?

The conversation always comes down to this point - the usual suspects clamoring for blood, and the end of Western rite. IF they have to set Western rite against Western rite, they'll do it. Take one down, then they can turn on the other. I think some will be surprised when they find themselves next for 'dinner'.


I haven't followed this thread for a week or so. What happened? Suddenly, it's become a dark place of paranoia and ad personam accusations.

There are a number of sources for the shorter St. Colman's Prayer Book. But I can't understand how a person can advocate for something and then refuse to make it available. The book edited by Fr. Aidan, for example, is quite readily available. So anyone with a reasonably open mind can make his own judgment. Why not do the same for the other Western Rite material? Surely, the scarcity of service books would work against anyone forming a clear idea of it, or even of coming to love it, as many of you obviously do?
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« Reply #357 on: December 15, 2010, 04:58:59 PM »


I haven't followed this thread for a week or so. What happened? Suddenly, it's become a dark place of paranoia and ad personam accusations.

There are a number of sources for the shorter St. Colman's Prayer Book. But I can't understand how a person can advocate for something and then refuse to make it available.


The reason for the very restricted distribution may be because the dominant place in this Prayer Book is given to the Book of Common Prayer,  In recent years there has been a strong move among Western Rite people to go back to pre-schism forms of liturgy and possibly the Saint Colman is now a little embarrassing and too BCP for modern taste?

Fr Michael, who is the assistant to the Metropolitan for WR mission in the UK and Australia, appears to confirm that the Saint Colman Prayer Book is an adaptation of the Book of Common Prayer.

He writes...

"In the aftermath of the Church of England's General Synod decision to go right ahead
with bishopesses, and of the shambles that Rowan Williams has managed to make of
Lambeth, it is timely to say out loud to Church of England laity, that there is an alternative
to the pseudo-leadership of the papacy. The Pope is neither the only nor the best way
for members of the Church of England to go!! How many Church of England people realise
that the Western Rite was first authorised for Orthodox use specifically IN ENGLAND over
a hundred and thirty years ago (just after the Primus of Scotland had visited Russia and
discussed unity with Church authorities there - and reported his conversations to the
Convocation of Canterbury)? How many realise that services extracted from the Book of
Common Prayer were authorised for adaption for Orthodox use over a hundred years ago?
Embryo Western Rite parishes/missions can be formed immediately in England (or Scotland
or Wales) and seek immediate Orthodox oversight while they prepare themselves for
formal reception. A Western Rite Orthodox Prayer Book already exists - it is just a matter
of them making contact with us."

This is taken from what Fr Michael wrote on
 http://westernorthodoxchristian.blogspot.com/2008/08/open-letter-to-fr-michael-wood-rocor.html

Other contributors confirm that the Saint Colman Praeyer Book is BCP

"...what you don't mention is that your "English liturgy" is no more than a modified Book of Common Prayer; a sort of "Liturgy of St Tikhon, 2nd Edition".

and

"Some fascinating historical claims made here! My personal favorite claim was "How many realise that services extracted from the Book of Common Prayer were authorised for adaption for Orthodox use over a hundred years ago?" I DEFY YOU, FATHER, TO SHOW ME ONE SERVICE BASED ON THE BOOK OF COMMON PRAYER THAT WAS AUTHORIZED BY THE RUSSIAN SYNOD OVER A HUNDRED YEARS AGO. You will not, because they do not exist. If any does, it is certainly not in use now. You can cite the observations, but even those observations are not services, nor are they even being followed."
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« Reply #358 on: December 16, 2010, 09:18:09 AM »


I haven't followed this thread for a week or so. What happened? Suddenly, it's become a dark place of paranoia and ad personam accusations.

There are a number of sources for the shorter St. Colman's Prayer Book. But I can't understand how a person can advocate for something and then refuse to make it available.


The reason for the very restricted distribution may be because the dominant place in this Prayer Book is given to the Book of Common Prayer,  In recent years there has been a strong move among Western Rite people to go back to pre-schism forms of liturgy and possibly the Saint Colman is now a little embarrassing and too BCP for modern taste?

Fr Michael, who is the assistant to the Metropolitan for WR mission in the UK and Australia, appears to confirm that the Saint Colman Prayer Book is an adaptation of the Book of Common Prayer.

He writes...

"In the aftermath of the Church of England's General Synod decision to go right ahead
with bishopesses, and of the shambles that Rowan Williams has managed to make of
Lambeth, it is timely to say out loud to Church of England laity, that there is an alternative
to the pseudo-leadership of the papacy. The Pope is neither the only nor the best way
for members of the Church of England to go!! How many Church of England people realise
that the Western Rite was first authorised for Orthodox use specifically IN ENGLAND over
a hundred and thirty years ago (just after the Primus of Scotland had visited Russia and
discussed unity with Church authorities there - and reported his conversations to the
Convocation of Canterbury)? How many realise that services extracted from the Book of
Common Prayer were authorised for adaption for Orthodox use over a hundred years ago?
Embryo Western Rite parishes/missions can be formed immediately in England (or Scotland
or Wales) and seek immediate Orthodox oversight while they prepare themselves for
formal reception. A Western Rite Orthodox Prayer Book already exists - it is just a matter
of them making contact with us."

This is taken from what Fr Michael wrote on
 http://westernorthodoxchristian.blogspot.com/2008/08/open-letter-to-fr-michael-wood-rocor.html

Other contributors confirm that the Saint Colman Praeyer Book is BCP

"...what you don't mention is that your "English liturgy" is no more than a modified Book of Common Prayer; a sort of "Liturgy of St Tikhon, 2nd Edition".

and

"Some fascinating historical claims made here! My personal favorite claim was "How many realise that services extracted from the Book of Common Prayer were authorised for adaption for Orthodox use over a hundred years ago?" I DEFY YOU, FATHER, TO SHOW ME ONE SERVICE BASED ON THE BOOK OF COMMON PRAYER THAT WAS AUTHORIZED BY THE RUSSIAN SYNOD OVER A HUNDRED YEARS AGO. You will not, because they do not exist. If any does, it is certainly not in use now. You can cite the observations, but even those observations are not services, nor are they even being followed."

Which BCP are we talking about?
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« Reply #359 on: December 16, 2010, 09:25:39 AM »


I haven't followed this thread for a week or so. What happened? Suddenly, it's become a dark place of paranoia and ad personam accusations.

There are a number of sources for the shorter St. Colman's Prayer Book. But I can't understand how a person can advocate for something and then refuse to make it available.


The reason for the very restricted distribution may be because the dominant place in this Prayer Book is given to the Book of Common Prayer,  In recent years there has been a strong move among Western Rite people to go back to pre-schism forms of liturgy and possibly the Saint Colman is now a little embarrassing and too BCP for modern taste?

Fr Michael, who is the assistant to the Metropolitan for WR mission in the UK and Australia, appears to confirm that the Saint Colman Prayer Book is an adaptation of the Book of Common Prayer.

He writes...

"In the aftermath of the Church of England's General Synod decision to go right ahead
with bishopesses, and of the shambles that Rowan Williams has managed to make of
Lambeth, it is timely to say out loud to Church of England laity, that there is an alternative
to the pseudo-leadership of the papacy. The Pope is neither the only nor the best way
for members of the Church of England to go!! How many Church of England people realise
that the Western Rite was first authorised for Orthodox use specifically IN ENGLAND over
a hundred and thirty years ago (just after the Primus of Scotland had visited Russia and
discussed unity with Church authorities there - and reported his conversations to the
Convocation of Canterbury)? How many realise that services extracted from the Book of
Common Prayer were authorised for adaption for Orthodox use over a hundred years ago?
Embryo Western Rite parishes/missions can be formed immediately in England (or Scotland
or Wales) and seek immediate Orthodox oversight while they prepare themselves for
formal reception. A Western Rite Orthodox Prayer Book already exists - it is just a matter
of them making contact with us."

This is taken from what Fr Michael wrote on
 http://westernorthodoxchristian.blogspot.com/2008/08/open-letter-to-fr-michael-wood-rocor.html

Other contributors confirm that the Saint Colman Praeyer Book is BCP

"...what you don't mention is that your "English liturgy" is no more than a modified Book of Common Prayer; a sort of "Liturgy of St Tikhon, 2nd Edition".

and

"Some fascinating historical claims made here! My personal favorite claim was "How many realise that services extracted from the Book of Common Prayer were authorised for adaption for Orthodox use over a hundred years ago?" I DEFY YOU, FATHER, TO SHOW ME ONE SERVICE BASED ON THE BOOK OF COMMON PRAYER THAT WAS AUTHORIZED BY THE RUSSIAN SYNOD OVER A HUNDRED YEARS AGO. You will not, because they do not exist. If any does, it is certainly not in use now. You can cite the observations, but even those observations are not services, nor are they even being followed."

Which BCP are we talking about?

Although he is a native Australian Fr Michael has a great love of things English and when he came into Orthodoxy he held the high position of Archdeacon of Lambeth for the ARJA, so I imagine he used the 1662.  Others here will have more certain knowledge.
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