Author Topic: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?  (Read 2022 times)

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Offline Nicholas_83

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Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« on: August 29, 2018, 11:09:24 PM »
I know a large percentage of Coptic Pope's are saints... Do you think Pope Shenouda III will/ should be a saint?
How common is this with the Armenians, Eritreans, Ethiopians, Malankara, and Syriacs? Any not yet cannonized that are likely to be?

Offline Poemen

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #1 on: August 30, 2018, 02:51:42 AM »
I personally believe he shouldn't be, due to his denial of theosis. Further, I feel that this will be sufficient to prevent his canonisation - the Church (at least over here in Australia) is rapidly becoming better educated in regards to all things, including but not limited to vestments, theology, and architecture. With better theological education, more people will be aware of some of the wrong things in his teaching I would suppose, or at least hope.
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Offline ZackShenouda439

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #2 on: September 18, 2018, 04:11:55 AM »
I personally believe he shouldn't be, due to his denial of theosis. Further, I feel that this will be sufficient to prevent his canonisation - the Church (at least over here in Australia) is rapidly becoming better educated in regards to all things, including but not limited to vestments, theology, and architecture. With better theological education, more people will be aware of some of the wrong things in his teaching I would suppose, or at least hope.

I agree. I don’t want him canonized either.

Offline Father Peter

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #3 on: September 18, 2018, 04:27:58 AM »
It would seem that some controversial Popes of the last 100 years were added to the Synaxarium without it being clear why this was so. It should not become a pro-forma matter. I think that it is not clear if the Synaxarium is being used as a historical text in some ways - this is the list of recent Popes, or if these figures are really intended to be considered saints. Since there never seems to have been any popular desire to consider some of these as saints this is problematic. But the way in which materials are being added to the Synaxarium in recent years is also problematic.
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Offline Aram

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #4 on: September 18, 2018, 12:46:45 PM »
The Martyrs of the Armenian Genocide were the first saints of the Armenian Church in a few hundred years, so no, it's pretty much not like the OP in any way for us. With that said, there are a lot of people (myself included) who believe Catholicos Vasken I should, and probably will be glorified sooner or later. But I digress.

Offline RaphaCam

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #5 on: September 18, 2018, 01:19:13 PM »
Almost all Coptic popes are listed as saints in Wikipedia, some user called PopeShenoudaIII seems to have put it that way years ago without any proper references. I just questioned that matter on the article's talk.
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Offline Father Peter

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #6 on: September 18, 2018, 01:46:06 PM »
I thought that Wiki incorrectly listed several modern Popes as saints, even very controversial ones who acted against the canons. But they don't seem to show as saints now?
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Offline RaphaCam

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #7 on: September 18, 2018, 01:49:16 PM »
I thought that Wiki incorrectly listed several modern Popes as saints, even very controversial ones who acted against the canons. But they don't seem to show as saints now?
I'm talking about this article, particularly.
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Offline Father Peter

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #8 on: September 18, 2018, 01:50:50 PM »
Yes, so am I.
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Offline RaphaCam

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #9 on: September 18, 2018, 01:55:21 PM »
So, they're almost all still displayed as saints, but this seems to have been with no sources at all, and there seem to be no reasons for which the few that aren't listed as saints aren't. One of them even seems to be included in some synaxarium, it makes no sense. I questioned this on the talk page.
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Offline Father Peter

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #10 on: September 18, 2018, 02:02:24 PM »
I am more concerned with the modern ones who have never been considered saints and are even criticised and condemned.
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Offline RaphaCam

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #11 on: September 18, 2018, 03:00:10 PM »
Which, for instance?
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Offline Father Peter

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #12 on: September 18, 2018, 04:30:20 PM »
John 19th for instance, who took the Patriarchate when he was already a bishop, against the canons and the Tradition.
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Offline Alpha60

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #13 on: September 18, 2018, 04:57:14 PM »
I think all Patriarchs and bishops of the church who died between the start of the Muslim Brotherhood and the Syrian War and the present, including Pope Shenouda, Patriarch Ignatius Zakka Iwas, Metropolitan Philip Saliba, Catholicos Mar Dinkha IV, Patriarch Ignatius IV of Antioch, and the Chaldean and Maronite leaders were killed by the psychilogical stresses of the scenario prematurely and are in a sense confessors, and should be regarded as blessed.

In the specific case of Pope Shenouda, his comments on Theosis aside, which were made due to a lack of theological training, I like a lot of what he did; the only actions he made which annoy me involve slamming the door in the face of the Assyrians during the process of ecumenical dialogue and then vetoing their attmept to join the Middle Eastern Council of Churches, and also apparently abolishing the liturgical cope as a priestly vestment.  But other things he did in terms of vestments, such as popularizing the Helmet of St. Anthony, which had been preserved in the Syriac Orthodoc tradition, but if one views an old photo of a Coptic monastery circa 1900, is notably absent, and also reopening the guest houses of Coptic monasteries and creating a spirit of service among the monks, and also, admitting Fr. Lazarus el Antony, were brilliant successes (Fr. Lazarus was permitted to join the Coptic church as a monk and travel to Egypt from Australia, where he had been working as a monk in a state of relative unhappiness for the Serbian Orthodox Church, due to a personal blessing received from Pope Shenouda, and my understanding Pope Shenouda later authorized his ascent to his current status as a priest and an anchorite); also, Pope Shenouda’s decision to receive the BOC was a good one, even if he did not discern the specific problems with Metropolitan Seraphim; or perhaps he did, but reckoned they would either be corrected or failing that, that something like the present situation, with a very successful St. George’s Mission appearing to relieve the Metropolitan of a pastoral burden he lacked, shall we say, the charisma, to carry, would arise.

On the whole, I look at the career of Pope Shenouda as being an extreme success.  Also, in all fairness to everyone, Pope Tawadrows II managed to give all tradition-minded Oriental Orthodox Christians a full-on panic attack with heart palpitations when he appeared briefly to entertain the harebrained idea of Pope Francis and Archbishop Justin Welby of Canterbury to fix the date of Pascha to the second Sunday in Easter; in the event it appears the current Pope was simply being respectful and charitable in the grand tradition of Coptic ecumenical relations, and this was misinterpreted as endorsement (just as poor Patriarch Ignatius Aphrem II nearly inadvertantly caused a schism by, under a situation of extreme political pressure, apparently kissing a Quran under the watchful gaze of several Syrian officials who could have wiped out the Suroye Christians with a mere gesture of the hand; mercifully, everyone kissed and made up in that case).  As far as I know, Pope Shenouda never made a PR gaffe on the scale of either the current Syriac or Coptic Patriarchs.
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Offline irishpilgrim

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #14 on: October 02, 2018, 04:25:48 AM »
I fear that Pope Shenouda's rapidly expanding  unorthodox innovations and neglects in areas of gender and family theology (feminism, divorce, and atheistic psychotherapy), and inadequately examined ecumenical compromises with immorality and modernism infected EO jurisdictions and the immorality ridden RCC has compromised the traditional Orthodox stability and unity of current and future Coptic families and children. Formerly united, spiritually  solid father led Coptic families are no longer nurtured and supported by the world centered Coptic bishops and Pope engineered by Pope Shenouda.

The criteria of the electors of new RCC Saint Pope John Paul would probably similarily honor Pope Shenouda, they have both left similarly spiritually disabled legacies.

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #15 on: October 02, 2018, 04:30:13 AM »
I fear that Pope Shenouda's rapidly expanding  unorthodox innovations and neglects in areas of gender and family theology (feminism, divorce, and atheistic psychotherapy), and inadequately examined ecumenical compromises with immorality and modernism infected EO jurisdictions and the immorality ridden RCC has compromised the traditional Orthodox stability and unity of current and future Coptic families and children. Formerly united, spiritually  solid father led Coptic families are no longer nurtured and supported by the world centered Coptic bishops and Pope engineered by Pope Shenouda.

The criteria of the electors of new RCC Saint Pope John Paul would probably similarily honor Pope Shenouda, they have both left similarly spiritually disabled legacies.

Always a treat to be able to predict exactly what somebody's post is going to be before you even click on the thread...

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #16 on: October 02, 2018, 05:09:51 AM »
I love and respect HH Pope Tawadros very much indeed. Our hierarchs need our prayers. We should pray for them at least and more than we spend time criticising them. I am a Traditionalist and serious in my Orthodoxy, but I am also a realist. In those terms I am very grateful to God for the gift of HH Pope Tawadros at this time. What is required is a greater commitment from each of us to a true Orthodox experience of transformation in the Holy Spirit, rather than a passive expectation that someone else should be fixing all our problems.

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Offline RobS

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #17 on: October 02, 2018, 10:32:17 AM »
Can someone provide articles on Pope Shenouda's denial of theosis? I'd like to read his reasoning behind that. I figure its better to ask the Coptic members here than googling.
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Offline ayenew

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #18 on: October 06, 2018, 02:57:52 AM »
The decision should be given to the Church. But I feel he is a saintly father for "ordinary Christians". I even found his writings "against Theosis" more sound than what is written in support. Btw, is Theosis an accepted teaching of the OOC?

Offline ZackShenouda439

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #19 on: October 06, 2018, 03:58:38 AM »
The decision should be given to the Church. But I feel he is a saintly father for "ordinary Christians". I even found his writings "against Theosis" more sound than what is written in support. Btw, is Theosis an accepted teaching of the OOC?

Yes, it’s accepted teaching of the OOC. OO Church fathers taught Theosis. St Severus of Antioch, St philoxenus of mabbug etc taught it. It’s not optional. If one is going to deny theosis than might as well deny the incarnation for they go hand & hand. Pope Shenouda’s writings against theosis were contrary to that of the fathers.

I encourage you start by reading what the fathers wrote & then go back & read Pope Shenouda’s writings & I can assure you, it will be clear that his anti-theosis writings are heretical.

Offline Remnkemi

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #20 on: October 11, 2018, 09:26:51 AM »
I think one should be careful regarding "denial of theosis" in Pope Shenouda's writings. What exactly does this mean? Afaik, Pope Shenouda never actually said "I deny theosis". What he argued most frequently is that divinity cannot be eaten. This is not far off from saying divinity is immutable. If this disqualifies Pope Shenouda from canonization, then we have bigger problems.

Not everyone who doesn't write about a topic makes him canonically questionable. Silence (or even an alternate definition) on theosis does not equate with heresy. In fact, other than St Cyril or St Athanasius, afaik again, no Coptic pope spoke of theosis in their writings. Does that make them all disqualified from sainthood? Of course not.

In addition, not all OOs accept or find Palamite descriptions of theosis as necessary. Even EOs who do have difficulty fully articulating what is meant by essence/energy distinction. Does this fall under "denial of theosis"? No.

Of course, most will like to have seen Pope Shenouda speak more clearly about theosis and other topics. He didn't and we shouldn't question his Orthodoxy or potential canonization just because he didn't do what we wanted him to do without telling him what we wanted him to do before he departed.

Let's leave the judging of saint canonization to the bishops and synods.

Offline Justin Kolodziej

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #21 on: October 11, 2018, 02:51:04 PM »
Not that it's (currently) my concern, but besides the broad "partakers of the divine nature (physis)" do you even have anything conciliarly defined regarding theosis? Seems like in the OO some questions like that could be more open than over here.
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Offline ZackShenouda439

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #22 on: October 11, 2018, 08:43:57 PM »
Hey Remnkemi,


Well, I myself don’t find the palamite descriptions of theosis as necessary & I don’t really use them but the issue I see is not Pope Shenouda’s lack of articulation of theosis but his open denial of deification.

The content in this book is one example https://www.stgr.org/share/Pope_Shenouda_Books/English/Man%20Deification%20V1.pdf

There is a lot of issues with it. In page 9 for example he says “it’s impossible to say that any of the fathers have ever advocated deification of man”

How do we reconcile this with the teachings of the fathers when they explicitly taught deification? And that’s just one of many examples in this text alone.

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #23 on: October 11, 2018, 09:56:06 PM »
Hey Remnkemi,


Well, I myself don’t find the palamite descriptions of theosis as necessary & I don’t really use them but the issue I see is not Pope Shenouda’s lack of articulation of theosis but his open denial of deification.

The content in this book is one example https://www.stgr.org/share/Pope_Shenouda_Books/English/Man%20Deification%20V1.pdf

There is a lot of issues with it. In page 9 for example he says “it’s impossible to say that any of the fathers have ever advocated deification of man”

How do we reconcile this with the teachings of the fathers when they explicitly taught deification? And that’s just one of many examples in this text alone.
Thanks for posting this. It appears Pope Shenouda III himself answered my question when no one else did.
"The apostle's words mean that we take part with the Divine Nature in work, in will, and in edification of God's Kingdom, not that we take the Divine nature as they translate it!"

I think what he is calling deification is the claim that we can take on the Divine Essence or become Divine Persons ourselves, which it would be absurd to say any Fathers taught. What are you calling deification?
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We should fortify ourselves with the truths of the Faith. Our main focus should be to become saints. Unfortunately some spend much of their time in either trying to sort things out or what is worse, trying to convince the world that they are right. If we all aim at sanctifying ourselves, God will intervene and He will straighten things out. We cannot do it without Him.

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #24 on: October 11, 2018, 10:13:26 PM »
Hey Remnkemi,


Well, I myself don’t find the palamite descriptions of theosis as necessary & I don’t really use them but the issue I see is not Pope Shenouda’s lack of articulation of theosis but his open denial of deification.

The content in this book is one example https://www.stgr.org/share/Pope_Shenouda_Books/English/Man%20Deification%20V1.pdf

There is a lot of issues with it. In page 9 for example he says “it’s impossible to say that any of the fathers have ever advocated deification of man”

How do we reconcile this with the teachings of the fathers when they explicitly taught deification? And that’s just one of many examples in this text alone.
Thanks for posting this. It appears Pope Shenouda III himself answered my question when no one else did.
"The apostle's words mean that we take part with the Divine Nature in work, in will, and in edification of God's Kingdom, not that we take the Divine nature as they translate it!"

I could see several different varieties of Protestant saying the exact same thing  :-\...
« Last Edit: October 11, 2018, 10:14:20 PM by Volnutt »
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Offline ZackShenouda439

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #25 on: October 12, 2018, 04:32:37 AM »
Hey Remnkemi,


Well, I myself don’t find the palamite descriptions of theosis as necessary & I don’t really use them but the issue I see is not Pope Shenouda’s lack of articulation of theosis but his open denial of deification.

The content in this book is one example https://www.stgr.org/share/Pope_Shenouda_Books/English/Man%20Deification%20V1.pdf

There is a lot of issues with it. In page 9 for example he says “it’s impossible to say that any of the fathers have ever advocated deification of man”

How do we reconcile this with the teachings of the fathers when they explicitly taught deification? And that’s just one of many examples in this text alone.
Thanks for posting this. It appears Pope Shenouda III himself answered my question when no one else did.
"The apostle's words mean that we take part with the Divine Nature in work, in will, and in edification of God's Kingdom, not that we take the Divine nature as they translate it!"

I think what he is calling deification is the claim that we can take on the Divine Essence or become Divine Persons ourselves, which it would be absurd to say any Fathers taught. What are you calling deification?

He’s setting up a straw-man in order to deny deification. The person he’s critiquing never said we can take on the divine essence ourselves or become divine persons ourselves. He also denies the notion of Christ being able to dwell within us. He does this in page 16.

Offline Iconodule

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #26 on: October 13, 2018, 02:41:25 PM »
Nvm
« Last Edit: October 13, 2018, 02:41:54 PM by Iconodule »
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Offline Ainnir

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Re: Pope Shenouda III a saint? Other Patriarchs, Catholicoi?
« Reply #27 on: October 17, 2018, 09:19:00 AM »
I split a thread containing what I consider extreme polemics, at the very least.  It is in the EO-OO private fora and can be accessed via the link below.  --Ainnir

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,74729.0.html
« Last Edit: October 17, 2018, 09:19:39 AM by Ainnir »
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