Author Topic: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church  (Read 220263 times)

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Offline ignatius

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1440 on: September 01, 2009, 04:46:29 PM »
Grace and Peace,

I will only say this once. Do not follow the West... it only leads to death.
St Basil the Great (330-379 A.D.): “I think then that the one goal of all who are really and truly serving the Lord ought to be to bring back to union the churches who have at different times and in diverse manners divided from one another.”

Offline PeterTheAleut

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1441 on: September 02, 2009, 08:32:30 PM »
Grace and Peace,

I will only say this once. Do not follow the West... it only leads to death.
And what is "the West"?  Is it a philosophical system or prevailing world view?  Is it a culture and way of life?  Or is it an association of persons?  If you have persons in mind, then congratulations!  You just pronounced an ad hominem against half the world. ::)
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Offline Alveus Lacuna

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1442 on: September 02, 2009, 09:56:34 PM »
I will only say this once. Do not follow the West... it only leads to death.

Aren't you a Roman Catholic?
« Last Edit: September 02, 2009, 09:56:47 PM by Alveus Lacuna »

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Offline mike

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1444 on: September 09, 2009, 05:59:46 AM »
The Church has made some modifications out of Economia like allowing Baptism with sand if there's no source of water or oil nearby only if the person is near death and is expected to die. 

Are there any canons/letters/statements which state that clearly?

Sorry for having dug the topic up.
« Last Edit: September 09, 2009, 06:12:39 AM by mike »
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Offline serb1389

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1445 on: September 09, 2009, 11:44:36 AM »
I was just reading an old article by Fr. Alexander Schmemann about this topic and I thought i'd post part of it.  I  took a quick peek to see if someone else had referenced this and I havn't seen it but if i'm reposting something I apologize. 
Quote
In the essential reality which alone constitutes the content
of our faith and shapes the entire life of the Church, in the reality
of the Kingdom of God which is perfect communion, perfect
knowledge, perfect love and ultimately the "deification" of man,
there is truly "neither male nor female." More than that, in this
reality of which we are made partakers here and now, we all—men
and women, without any distinction—are "kings and priests," for
it is the essential priesthood of the human nature and vocation
that Christ has restored to us.
It is of this priestly life, it is of this ultimate reality that the
Church is both gift and acceptance. And that she may be this,
that she may always and everywhere be the gift of the Spirit
without any measure or limitations, the Son of God offered Himself
in a unique sacrifice, and made this unique sacrifice and this
unique priesthood the very foundation, indeed the very "form"
of the Church. This priesthood is Christ's, not ours. Not only
have none of us, men or women, any "right" to it, but it is
emphatically not one of the human vocations analogous, even if
superior, to all others. The priest in the Church is not "another"
priest, and the sacrifice he offers is not "another" sacrifice. It is
forever and only Christ's priesthood and Christ's sacrifice, for in
the words of our Prayer of Offertory, "it is Thou who offerest
and Thou who art offered, it is Thou who receivest and Thou who
distributest...." And thus the "institutional" priesthood in the
Church has no "ontology" of its own. It exists only to make Christ
Himself present, to make His unique Priesthood and His unique
Sacrifice the source of the Church's life and the "acquisition" by
men of the Holy Spirit. And if the bearer, the icon, and the fulfiller
of that unique priesthood is man and not woman, it is because
Christ is man and not woman. .. .
Why? This of course is the only important, the only relevant
question, the one that no "culture," no "sociology," no "history,"
and even no "exegesis" can answer. For it can be answered only
by theology in the primordial and essential meaning of that word
in the Church, as the contemplation and vision of the Truth itself,
as communion with the uncreated Divine Light. It is only here,
- 242 -
in this purified and restored vision, that we might begin to under-
stand why the ineffable mystery of the relationship between God
and His creation, between God and His chosen people, between
God and His Church is "essentially" revealed to us as a nuptial
mystery, as the fulfillment of a mystical marriage; why, in other
terms, creation itself, the Church herself, man and the world
themselves, when contemplated in their ultimate truth and destiny,
are revealed to us as a Bride, as a Woman clothed in the sun;
why in the very depth of her love and knowledge, of her joy and
communion, the Church identifies herself with one Woman whom
she exalts as "more honorable than the Cherubim, and beyond
compare more glorious than the Seraphim."
Is it this mystery that has to be "understood" by means of
our broken and fallen world which knows and experiences itself
only in its brokenness and fragmentation, in its tensions and
dichotomies, and which as such is incapable of the ultimate vision?
Or is it this vision and this unique experience that must again
become for us the "means" of our understanding of the world,
the starting point and the very possibility of a truly divine victory
over all that in this world is but human, historical, and cultural?

The article is called "concerning womens ordination" and its in Saint Vladimir's Quarterly 1973.  that's all the specs I have for it...please forgive.  If anyone wants to read it in its entirety just PM me
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Offline KevinOrr

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1446 on: September 09, 2009, 06:39:40 PM »
http://jbburnett.com/resources/schmemann/schmemann-ord-women.pdf

I believe this is the article from Fr. Schmemmann you are referencing. I found the link in one of the first several posts on this subject.

Kevin

Offline Irish Hermit

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1447 on: September 09, 2009, 06:49:41 PM »
Grace and Peace,

I will only say this once. Do not follow the West... it only leads to death.
And what is "the West"?  Is it a philosophical system or prevailing world view?  Is it a culture and way of life?  Or is it an association of persons?  If you have persons in mind, then congratulations!  You just pronounced an ad hominem against half the world. ::)

Father Justin Popovic who wrote so much about the West would tend to agree with Ignatius.   The same goes for Dostoyevsky and many Russian authors.

Offline PeterTheAleut

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1448 on: September 09, 2009, 06:57:40 PM »
Grace and Peace,

I will only say this once. Do not follow the West... it only leads to death.
And what is "the West"?  Is it a philosophical system or prevailing world view?  Is it a culture and way of life?  Or is it an association of persons?  If you have persons in mind, then congratulations!  You just pronounced an ad hominem against half the world. ::)

Father Justin Popovic who wrote so much about the West would tend to agree with Ignatius.   The same goes for Dostoyevsky and many Russian authors.
But that still doesn't answer my questions of Ignatius.  What is the "West" to which Ignatius made reference?
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Offline Irish Hermit

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1449 on: September 09, 2009, 07:11:12 PM »
If Ignatius thinks along the same lines as I do, he probably shares the sentiments of Dostoyevsky

The Lion and the Mouse: Dostoevsky and the Hideous Schizophrenia of the West

http://www.allacademic.com/one/www/research/index.php?cmd=www_search&offset=0&limit=5&multi_search_search_mode=publication&multi_search_publication_fulltext_mod=fulltext&textfield_submit=true&search_module=multi_search&search=Search&search_field=title_idx&fulltext_search=%3Cb%3EThe+Lion+and+the+Mouse%3A+Dostoevsky+and+the+Hideous+Schizophrenia+of+the+West%3C%2Fb%3E&PHPSESSID=b8119ca7a513ae927e2c0afc8d372ccb

Abstract:

 
It is the argument of this paper that a clearer understanding of the “schizophrenia” described by Sayyid Qutb and other Islamic fundamentalist thinkers might enable Westerners to grapple more effectively with the ideology of Islamic fundamentalism. At the very core of Qutb’s critique of the modern West is his analysis of the West’s contradictory nature – its “distinction between religion and life.” Importantly, there is nothing uniquely Islamic about this message, a point that could not be made more clear than in comparing Qutb’s concern about Western schizophrenia with that of one of the most devout Christian novelists read in the West, Fyodor Dostoevsky. By examining his novel, The Idiot, this paper intends to address Dostoevsky’s understanding of the conflicted nature of the West and its effects upon those who live within it. Ultimately Dostoevsky not only gives us a clear (and disapproving) picture of Western “schizophrenia,” but he comes to a very different conclusion about how to deal with it than did Qutb. He seemed to anticipate the empty promises of the grandiose, utopian philosophies which promised an end to societal contradictions (nationalism, fascism, Marxism, and Islamic fundamentalism). Indeed, he foresaw the one pivotal lesson of the 20th century – any imposed solution to end the modern world’s schizophrenia is far worse than the original condition to begin with.

Offline serb1389

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1450 on: September 09, 2009, 08:43:53 PM »
http://jbburnett.com/resources/schmemann/schmemann-ord-women.pdf

I believe this is the article from Fr. Schmemmann you are referencing. I found the link in one of the first several posts on this subject.

Kevin

Thanks!  that's the one i was referencing!  must have looked right over it...
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Offline SolEX01

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1451 on: September 09, 2009, 08:56:35 PM »
The Church has made some modifications out of Economia like allowing Baptism with sand if there's no source of water or oil nearby only if the person is near death and is expected to die. 

Are there any canons/letters/statements which state that clearly?

Sorry for having dug the topic up.

Thank you.   :)  While I can't cite canon law, the last paragraph of the link below explains how anyone can Baptize a child if there is no Priest available.

http://www.thecathedral.goarch.org/FOSSummary/BaptismBeginningtheJourneytoTheosisSeptember302008.dsp

Offline PeterTheAleut

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1452 on: September 10, 2009, 03:11:01 AM »
If Ignatius thinks along the same lines as I do, he probably shares the sentiments of Dostoyevsky

The Lion and the Mouse: Dostoevsky and the Hideous Schizophrenia of the West

http://www.allacademic.com/one/www/research/index.php?cmd=www_search&offset=0&limit=5&multi_search_search_mode=publication&multi_search_publication_fulltext_mod=fulltext&textfield_submit=true&search_module=multi_search&search=Search&search_field=title_idx&fulltext_search=%3Cb%3EThe+Lion+and+the+Mouse%3A+Dostoevsky+and+the+Hideous+Schizophrenia+of+the+West%3C%2Fb%3E&PHPSESSID=b8119ca7a513ae927e2c0afc8d372ccb

Abstract:

 
It is the argument of this paper that a clearer understanding of the “schizophrenia” described by Sayyid Qutb and other Islamic fundamentalist thinkers might enable Westerners to grapple more effectively with the ideology of Islamic fundamentalism. At the very core of Qutb’s critique of the modern West is his analysis of the West’s contradictory nature – its “distinction between religion and life.” Importantly, there is nothing uniquely Islamic about this message, a point that could not be made more clear than in comparing Qutb’s concern about Western schizophrenia with that of one of the most devout Christian novelists read in the West, Fyodor Dostoevsky. By examining his novel, The Idiot, this paper intends to address Dostoevsky’s understanding of the conflicted nature of the West and its effects upon those who live within it. Ultimately Dostoevsky not only gives us a clear (and disapproving) picture of Western “schizophrenia,” but he comes to a very different conclusion about how to deal with it than did Qutb. He seemed to anticipate the empty promises of the grandiose, utopian philosophies which promised an end to societal contradictions (nationalism, fascism, Marxism, and Islamic fundamentalism). Indeed, he foresaw the one pivotal lesson of the 20th century – any imposed solution to end the modern world’s schizophrenia is far worse than the original condition to begin with.

Irish Hermit,

Rather than derail this thread with your continued commentary on what you think Ignatius meant by his use of "the West", why don't you just let him answer for himself what he means and how it relates to this thread?  Maybe then we can get one and only one reply and move on from there.
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Offline mike

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1453 on: September 10, 2009, 03:38:28 AM »
Thank you.   :)  While I can't cite canon law, the last paragraph of the link below explains how anyone can Baptize a child if there is no Priest available.

http://www.thecathedral.goarch.org/FOSSummary/BaptismBeginningtheJourneytoTheosisSeptember302008.dsp

Thank you for your effort but it's not the thing I am looking for. I am looking for something that clearly states that in EO Church baptism can be done with sand in emergency situations and it is valid.

The only thing I found is:
Quote
As to the precise method to be used in a Baptism Rite, the Bible does not really offer much information. Each Church has had to make their own assumptions regarding the interpretations or meanings of certain words in the Bible, and in this way, they have arrived at different procedures. In fact, there is a story in the early Christian Church that accentuates this matter. It seems that a group of men were in the desert, around the second century after Christ, one of whom was a Christian Priest. An elderly man in the group was not yet a Christian and he began to die, and he asked the Christian Priest to Baptize him. The Priest agreed but there was no water available. Due to necessity, the Priest felt that he had to use desert sand in the Baptism Rite! He therefore did, and the man soon died. When the Priest got back to his Church leaders, he Confessed to them that he had done a Sin in performing a Baptism without water, and they then had extensive discussion regarding whether the "sand Baptism" had actually Saved the man or not and whether the Priest should be condemned. They eventually concluded that the Priest had done the right thing and that the sand Baptism had been valid and effective. However, they also made clear that water MUST be used in Baptisms except for such extreme circumstances.
source

Unfortunately I have no idea who is the author and whether he is related in any way to the EO Church.
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Offline Irish Hermit

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1454 on: September 10, 2009, 04:26:28 AM »

I am looking for something that clearly states that in EO Church baptism can be done with sand in emergency situations and it is valid.


Well, I was aked this question by my bishop when I was a young man:  what would you do if you're in a desert and no water?   I thought the sensible thing was to read the formula of Baptism, knowing that God will compeletely "honour" it.   In fact I suggested that the intention of the person desiring Baptism was quite enough.  But he insisted,  No! you need to baptize with sand.  So I had a clear statement from a bishop.

Offline AlexanderOfBergamo

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1455 on: September 10, 2009, 07:11:28 AM »
I read the same thing as IrishHermit long time ago, so I can attest it. Maybe a justification might be that at least a minimal quantity of humidity (=water) might be present in the desert sand, yet this is just a conjecture. I hope I can find a source for this, but I promise nothing.
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Offline mike

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1456 on: September 10, 2009, 07:20:15 AM »
Thank you all.
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Offline Fr. George

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1457 on: September 10, 2009, 10:38:07 AM »
I read the same thing as IrishHermit long time ago, so I can attest it. Maybe a justification might be that at least a minimal quantity of humidity (=water) might be present in the desert sand, yet this is just a conjecture. I hope I can find a source for this, but I promise nothing.

It's likely using the sand as a substitute in order to keep the deep meanings involved manifest at least partially: being immersed (or as close to it as possible) to participate in the Death and Resurrection, being washed (or as close to it as possible) to cleanse from sins, etc.
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Offline stanley123

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1458 on: October 20, 2010, 11:15:28 PM »

I am looking for something that clearly states that in EO Church baptism can be done with sand in emergency situations and it is valid.


Well, I was aked this question by my bishop when I was a young man:  what would you do if you're in a desert and no water?   I thought the sensible thing was to read the formula of Baptism, knowing that God will compeletely "honour" it.   In fact I suggested that the intention of the person desiring Baptism was quite enough.  But he insisted,  No! you need to baptize with sand.  So I had a clear statement from a bishop.
Is it better to dig a hole and triply immerse the person in sand for the Baptism, or would simple pouring suffice?
Anyway, what would this have to do with women priests?

Offline ialmisry

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1459 on: November 21, 2012, 07:38:33 PM »
Since someone mentioned this, I thought might as well bump it.
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,48128.msg839166.html#msg839166
« Last Edit: November 21, 2012, 07:39:22 PM by ialmisry »
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Offline orthonorm

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1460 on: November 21, 2012, 07:43:56 PM »
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Offline FormerReformer

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1461 on: November 21, 2012, 07:52:39 PM »
Since someone mentioned this, I thought might as well bump it.
http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,48128.msg839166.html#msg839166

33 pages.

Oh good.

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Offline orthonorm

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1462 on: November 21, 2012, 07:53:18 PM »
The first page is great. Gonna be on it for a while.

Thanks Isa for bumping it.
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Offline mike

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1463 on: July 10, 2013, 11:09:02 AM »
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Offline Carl Kraeff (Second Chance)

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1464 on: July 10, 2013, 02:10:51 PM »
A Nearly Forgotten History: Women Deacons in the Armenian Church
http://theorthodoxchurch.info/blog/news/2013/07/a-nearly-forgotten-history-women-deacons-in-the-armenian-church/

Thanks for posting this truly remarkable article.

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1465 on: July 10, 2013, 11:07:17 PM »
The Church has made some modifications out of Economia like allowing Baptism with sand if there's no source of water or oil nearby only if the person is near death and is expected to die. 

Are there any canons/letters/statements which state that clearly?

Sorry for having dug the topic up.

IIRC, St. Basil the Great mentions aerbaptism in one of his letters or canons and that, if the baby survive, a priest is to regularize the baptism.
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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1466 on: July 11, 2013, 06:08:41 PM »
The Church has made some modifications out of Economia like allowing Baptism with sand if there's no source of water or oil nearby only if the person is near death and is expected to die. 

Are there any canons/letters/statements which state that clearly?

Sorry for having dug the topic up.

IIRC, St. Basil the Great mentions aerbaptism in one of his letters or canons and that, if the baby survive, a priest is to regularize the baptism.

yup! 
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Offline ilyazhito

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1467 on: October 01, 2013, 04:08:41 PM »
Deacons are at the first rank of priesthood.

No, they are not. 

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,15225.msg229571.html#msg229571
When the Bishop tonsures a Reader, he says "Son, the first rank of priesthood is the reader. It behooveth thee therefore to peruse the Scriptures daily...". If the nature of the job excludes women from the priesthood (Priests have to offer sacrifices, but women make life, and it would be an aberration of the female role to offer a sacrifice and end life, even if only symbolically), then there is no reason that women should be ordained. If the issue of weather to allow women as altar servers in ordinary circumstances is  controversial, then there should be no question that women should NOT be ordained to the priesthood, because the priesthood is a larger office with more responsibilities than that of an altar server.

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1468 on: October 02, 2013, 04:28:40 PM »
Deacons are at the first rank of priesthood.

No, they are not. 

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,15225.msg229571.html#msg229571
When the Bishop tonsures a Reader, he says "Son, the first rank of priesthood is the reader. It behooveth thee therefore to peruse the Scriptures daily...". If the nature of the job excludes women from the priesthood (Priests have to offer sacrifices, but women make life, and it would be an aberration of the female role to offer a sacrifice and end life, even if only symbolically), then there is no reason that women should be ordained. If the issue of weather to allow women as altar servers in ordinary circumstances is  controversial, then there should be no question that women should NOT be ordained to the priesthood, because the priesthood is a larger office with more responsibilities than that of an altar server.

I agree with your conclusion. However, your argument is not a theological one and, as Metropolitan Kallistos has pointed out, this issue is still open--as a matter of theology. As a matter of practice, priestly functions have been assigned to males from the very beginning--indeed, going back to our Jewish roots. And, only priests and bishops have those functions; readers, sub-deacons, acolytes, deacons and deaconesses do not, as liturgical functions should not be conflated with priestly ones. To illustrate, during the Divine Liturgy (the common work of the laos), the people finish  some prayers by giving their assent, by saying amen. They also join in petitions by chanting/singing Lord have mercy, To Thee oh Lord and Grant this oh Lord. These are all liturgical functions that are done by males and females alike because we are all part of the Royal Priesthood, part of the Laos. Going back to the Bishop's prayer when he tonsures a reader, the phrase "the first step of priesthood is the reader" should be understood only as a wish for the reader to consider becoming a priest and not as a requirement. If not, this sort of approach, IMHO, reflects contamination by the West (in this case by Roman Catholicism on the Russian Church) and should not be taken as normative for the Church as a whole.

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1469 on: March 07, 2015, 05:53:23 AM »
Well, I am for ecumenical reconciliation, but not with Lambeth Palace; Metropolitan Kallistos Ware has admitted Anglican-Orthodox dialogue has been primarily academic since the Episcopal Church USA started ordaining women in 1979.  But here we see Metropolitan Ambrosius attempting to use such dialogue to start a conversation that should never be started.

Now Peter, I lamentably find myself for the first time having to disagree with you on this subject.
With what do you disagree?

Years ago His Eminence Kallistos Ware said we need to say why we don't ordain women, and since then I've seen some very convincing papers on the subject.  If anything this material simply needs to be distributed more broadly.
You're engaging me in a discussion of why women should not be ordained. Do you then disagree with me that this question of women's ordination should be discussed in the Church? ISTM that you don't disagree, or else you wouldn't be engaging me in this discussion. ;)

But actually the answer is very simple, and that is that the Apostle Paul imposes injunctions on women exercising authority over men in church, and also directs them to, within the ecclesiastical sphere, "keep silent."
Is it really that simple? ISTM that there are many in the Church who would disagree with this interpretation of St. Paul.

Most Orthodox interpret this as allowing female singers, and the deaconesses appear to have been one and the same with the order of widows mentioned by Paul.  So we don't in fact need an ecumenical council to say our bishops shouldn't even dare propose this, because in the entire history of the Orthodox Church, there were no female priests or bishops, or to my knowledge, any saints who advocated for them, although it's possible there may be some among the New Martyrs of Russia, after all, St. Pavel Florensky cleansed himself of his heresy with his own blood, confessing the name of our Lord, and we also have the Pauline injunction.
WHY has the Church never ordained a woman to the priesthood or episcopacy? On what theological/ecclesiological grounds do we base this opposition? One of the reasons we need to discuss this subject in council is that we need to articulate a reason much stronger than "but this is the way we've always done things, Father."

So no pious bishop has the right to come out in favor of it, to the extent Ambrosius appears to have done, if I read the article correctly.  But I may have misread it.
Considering that the openness to or support of women's ordination has NEVER been condemned formally as a heresy, I don't see how no bishop has the right to at least advocate for considering the possibility of ordaining women.
« Last Edit: March 07, 2015, 05:56:13 AM by PeterTheAleut »
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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1470 on: March 07, 2015, 11:40:43 AM »
The problem comes back to the Pauline injunctions.  Unlike the limited liturgical function of the deaconess, the Episcopate and Presbyteriate inherently involve the exercise of authority over men.  These Pauline injunctions preclude, among other things, homosexuality.  Now Ive debated with some liberal Protestants who take the view it doesn't matter what St. Paul said, since he was just a misogynist/homophobe who distorted the message of Jesus, but you and ai both know this view is silly, as the oldest and most detailed account we have of, for example, the Eucharist, comes from 1 Corinthians, and the Orthodox Church, being built on Holy Tradition, regards the books of the Athanasian Canon as definitive and of equal import; we are not interested in, for example, the Gospel of Philip or the Tripartite Tractate as sources of doctrine.

Now I do not take a maximalist view of Orthodoxy that requires us to maintain unbending adherence to every received liturgical and devotional custom.  But I think it's wrong to say that the outer limits of Orthodoxy are solely defined by the Ecumenical Councils or anathemas issued by other authorities; something does not need to be formally condemned as a heresy in order to be heretical.   The fact that the ordination of women has never occurred and that the ancient canons concerned in the Pedalion specify a male priesthood, and furthermore take into account St. Paul's remark that the bishop should be the husband of one wife and use that as the basis for prohibiting divorced and remarried clergy, the marriage of ordained clergy, and the remarriage of widowers in Holy Orders, gives us a remarkable clear picture as to how the early church interpreted these epistles.  Thus, a formal condemnation of openness to or support of female ordination from a church authority is not necessary, in so far as taking such a view would put one in opposition to St. Paul.  And who would dare to do that?  St. Paul uses the phrase "I do not allow", suggesting others may have, but it's St. Paul whose epistles form such a vital part of the canon, and what St. Paul was against, we cannot possibly be for.  The Holy Bible, as many have pointed out, is the heart of Holy Tradition, and the Epistles and other books of the New Testament besides the Gospels are second only to the Gospels in importance.

So thus, the reason here is chiefly Biblical rather than conciliar or canonical, although the fact the canons say nothing of the ordination of women to any office other than deaconess can be read as disapproval.  Now to clarify what I wished to express relating to the discussion of these matters, as I see it it's entirely legitimate to point to the epistles in question in answer to the question "why don't we ordain women," and if then pressed as to why we have female choirs, simply state that the church interprets the Pauline directive that women should keep silent in church as not prohibiting such choirs.  Although admittedly this is an inconsistency of great antiquity and we can see that in many times and in many places this question has been sidestepped by using boys choirs to provide soprano voices.  It would certainly be an exemplary act of great piety and devotion if a woman were to make a point of never speaking at all inside the Nave.   But just as Holy Tradition does not allow female priests and bishops, it does allow female choirs and also in the churches of the Middle East, ululation.

So in my view, because of what Paul said, it is wrong for a bishop to question the wisdom of Paul in disallowing, in churches under his jurisdiction, women to exercise authority over men, which the early church appears to have interpreted as a ban on the Presbyteriate and episcopate, as these two roles, Priest and Bishop, are those to which authority is primarily attached.  What is more, I would argue that since Paul makes this so plain, it's wrong for a bishop to propose more discussion of the matter; it would show greater piety on his part to simply cite the epistles in question.   And indeed, for that matter, I believe women should not ordain their hair with costly trinkets, but this falls into the realm of personal morality.  But if a confessor were to see one of his spiritual daughters consistently appearing in fine jewelry, he rather ought to speak up about it in my view.

Lastly, I have yet to see a single successful female pastor in any Protestant denomination who justified the controversy surrounding the ordination of women and the schisms that resulted, with the exception of Christian Science, which was for a time successful, but is Gnostic and really a different faith tradition.   Now in Gnosticism, by the way, I see a potential answer to this problem.  The Orthodox should simply refer people who want these things to those churches that have them.  It's for this reason also that I don't mind at all the Episcopalians using the Book of Common Prayer.  As I see it, the duty of the Orthodox Church is to maintain a consistent witness.  Now I define Holy Tradition broader than most; I advocate reconciliation of the Eastern and Oriental Orthodox as a matter of urgency, I believe disused liturgical services such as the Cathedral Typikon are in no respects suppressed.  But I really think on this point there are overwhelming Biblical and practical reasons not to do it, and any bishop who does openly advocate it, which to his credit Metropolitan Kallistos Ware has stopped short of doing, is acting irresponsibly.

Now if you want even more theological points, we can also go down the avenue of the bishop being male representing Christ in the Eucharist, the priests in turn representing the bishop as it were.  If Christ, our Highest Priest, were female, or like in Gnosticism had a female counterpart forming a syzygy, then priestesses would fit theologically.  But since Christ, the supreme priest, was male, the. It follows that all priests should also be male to represent Him; what is more, as far as we know, all the priests who have ever served in the true religion of the Lord God of Sabaoth, such as Melchizidek, who may have been Christ and at the very least typologically represented him, and the Aaronic Kohanim of the religion of Israel and Judaism, have been male.  So it seems that our God desires that men offer sacrifices to Him.  However the Old and New Testaments are full of excellent female servants of God; who could be closer to God or make a fuller intercession for us than the most Holy Theotokos?  But as was pointed out, she was not a priest, nor a priestess, but a mother.  It seems motherhood, either naturally or spiritually through holy celibacy, is the desired service of women, just as priesthood is the desired service of men. 

Now I'm sure you've heard all of this before, dear Peter, and I do not doubt your great piety.  You have been consistently kind to me on this forum.  If you disagree with the general approach I take on this, please do not take offense.  In fact you almost certainly have been Orthodox longer than I have, and are more pious and observant than I am; my health makes going to church a struggle.  In fact one thing I love about this forum is there are people on it who I can disagree with while still admiring their piety, such as Porter, who is a devout catechumen whose baptism will be like the blooming of an Easter Lilly.   I was driven from the Methodist Church for being too conservative, and landed here in the land of Holy Orthodoxy almost by accident, although from my youth I had been interested in Orthodoxy.  But I've found in people like Metropolitan Kallistos Ware intense wisdom; I suspect his eminence probably does support women's ordination and perhaps even a softer touch on gays, but I don't care, because His Eminence is overflowing with divine grace and this is evident in his writings.  The one thing I don't think Orthodoxy should be is defined by what we oppose; I object to homosexuality but have nothing but love for homosexuals.  And in the pursuit of love one can see examples among the saints who perhaps got swept off their feet just a bit, for example, St. Gregory of Nyassa in suggesting the possibility of universal salvation.  Although ironically that same St. Gregory wrote, if memory serves, a canon or a stinging rebuke directed against homosexuality.

So in the end what really matters is obedience to the church.  Now it does appear that lamentably the Metropolitan violated church order, but we don't know the extent yet and the Archbishop is prudently investigating the matter before applying any penalty.  But even if one supports the ordination of women, until such time as it is licit surely they should not be allowed to concelebrate in that matter, and the commemoration of non Orthodox prelates in the Diptychs or elsewhere is seriously frowned upon. 
Antisemitism, racism and prejudicial nationalism should have no place in Orthodoxy.  For to paraphrase  St. Paul, there is neither Jew nor Greek, neither male nor female, slave or freeman, in the Christian Church.

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1471 on: March 07, 2015, 12:55:16 PM »
The problem comes back to the Pauline injunctions.  Unlike the limited liturgical function of the deaconess, the Episcopate and Presbyteriate inherently involve the exercise of authority over men.  These Pauline injunctions preclude, among other things, homosexuality.  Now Ive debated with some liberal Protestants who take the view it doesn't matter what St. Paul said, since he was just a misogynist/homophobe who distorted the message of Jesus, but you and ai both know this view is silly, as the oldest and most detailed account we have of, for example, the Eucharist, comes from 1 Corinthians, and the Orthodox Church, being built on Holy Tradition, regards the books of the Athanasian Canon as definitive and of equal import; we are not interested in, for example, the Gospel of Philip or the Tripartite Tractate as sources of doctrine.

Now I do not take a maximalist view of Orthodoxy that requires us to maintain unbending adherence to every received liturgical and devotional custom.  But I think it's wrong to say that the outer limits of Orthodoxy are solely defined by the Ecumenical Councils or anathemas issued by other authorities; something does not need to be formally condemned as a heresy in order to be heretical.   The fact that the ordination of women has never occurred and that the ancient canons concerned in the Pedalion specify a male priesthood, and furthermore take into account St. Paul's remark that the bishop should be the husband of one wife and use that as the basis for prohibiting divorced and remarried clergy, the marriage of ordained clergy, and the remarriage of widowers in Holy Orders, gives us a remarkable clear picture as to how the early church interpreted these epistles.  Thus, a formal condemnation of openness to or support of female ordination from a church authority is not necessary, in so far as taking such a view would put one in opposition to St. Paul.  And who would dare to do that?  St. Paul uses the phrase "I do not allow", suggesting others may have, but it's St. Paul whose epistles form such a vital part of the canon, and what St. Paul was against, we cannot possibly be for.  The Holy Bible, as many have pointed out, is the heart of Holy Tradition, and the Epistles and other books of the New Testament besides the Gospels are second only to the Gospels in importance.

So thus, the reason here is chiefly Biblical rather than conciliar or canonical, although the fact the canons say nothing of the ordination of women to any office other than deaconess can be read as disapproval.  Now to clarify what I wished to express relating to the discussion of these matters, as I see it it's entirely legitimate to point to the epistles in question in answer to the question "why don't we ordain women," and if then pressed as to why we have female choirs, simply state that the church interprets the Pauline directive that women should keep silent in church as not prohibiting such choirs.  Although admittedly this is an inconsistency of great antiquity and we can see that in many times and in many places this question has been sidestepped by using boys choirs to provide soprano voices.  It would certainly be an exemplary act of great piety and devotion if a woman were to make a point of never speaking at all inside the Nave.   But just as Holy Tradition does not allow female priests and bishops, it does allow female choirs and also in the churches of the Middle East, ululation.

So in my view, because of what Paul said, it is wrong for a bishop to question the wisdom of Paul in disallowing, in churches under his jurisdiction, women to exercise authority over men, which the early church appears to have interpreted as a ban on the Presbyteriate and episcopate, as these two roles, Priest and Bishop, are those to which authority is primarily attached.  What is more, I would argue that since Paul makes this so plain, it's wrong for a bishop to propose more discussion of the matter; it would show greater piety on his part to simply cite the epistles in question.   And indeed, for that matter, I believe women should not ordain their hair with costly trinkets, but this falls into the realm of personal morality.  But if a confessor were to see one of his spiritual daughters consistently appearing in fine jewelry, he rather ought to speak up about it in my view.

Lastly, I have yet to see a single successful female pastor in any Protestant denomination who justified the controversy surrounding the ordination of women and the schisms that resulted, with the exception of Christian Science, which was for a time successful, but is Gnostic and really a different faith tradition.   Now in Gnosticism, by the way, I see a potential answer to this problem.  The Orthodox should simply refer people who want these things to those churches that have them.  It's for this reason also that I don't mind at all the Episcopalians using the Book of Common Prayer.  As I see it, the duty of the Orthodox Church is to maintain a consistent witness.  Now I define Holy Tradition broader than most; I advocate reconciliation of the Eastern and Oriental Orthodox as a matter of urgency, I believe disused liturgical services such as the Cathedral Typikon are in no respects suppressed.  But I really think on this point there are overwhelming Biblical and practical reasons not to do it, and any bishop who does openly advocate it, which to his credit Metropolitan Kallistos Ware has stopped short of doing, is acting irresponsibly.

Now if you want even more theological points, we can also go down the avenue of the bishop being male representing Christ in the Eucharist, the priests in turn representing the bishop as it were.  If Christ, our Highest Priest, were female, or like in Gnosticism had a female counterpart forming a syzygy, then priestesses would fit theologically.  But since Christ, the supreme priest, was male, the. It follows that all priests should also be male to represent Him; what is more, as far as we know, all the priests who have ever served in the true religion of the Lord God of Sabaoth, such as Melchizidek, who may have been Christ and at the very least typologically represented him, and the Aaronic Kohanim of the religion of Israel and Judaism, have been male.  So it seems that our God desires that men offer sacrifices to Him.  However the Old and New Testaments are full of excellent female servants of God; who could be closer to God or make a fuller intercession for us than the most Holy Theotokos?  But as was pointed out, she was not a priest, nor a priestess, but a mother.  It seems motherhood, either naturally or spiritually through holy celibacy, is the desired service of women, just as priesthood is the desired service of men. 

Now I'm sure you've heard all of this before, dear Peter, and I do not doubt your great piety.  You have been consistently kind to me on this forum.  If you disagree with the general approach I take on this, please do not take offense.  In fact you almost certainly have been Orthodox longer than I have, and are more pious and observant than I am; my health makes going to church a struggle.  In fact one thing I love about this forum is there are people on it who I can disagree with while still admiring their piety, such as Porter, who is a devout catechumen whose baptism will be like the blooming of an Easter Lilly.   I was driven from the Methodist Church for being too conservative, and landed here in the land of Holy Orthodoxy almost by accident, although from my youth I had been interested in Orthodoxy.  But I've found in people like Metropolitan Kallistos Ware intense wisdom; I suspect his eminence probably does support women's ordination and perhaps even a softer touch on gays, but I don't care, because His Eminence is overflowing with divine grace and this is evident in his writings.  The one thing I don't think Orthodoxy should be is defined by what we oppose; I object to homosexuality but have nothing but love for homosexuals.  And in the pursuit of love one can see examples among the saints who perhaps got swept off their feet just a bit, for example, St. Gregory of Nyassa in suggesting the possibility of universal salvation.  Although ironically that same St. Gregory wrote, if memory serves, a canon or a stinging rebuke directed against homosexuality.

So in the end what really matters is obedience to the church.  Now it does appear that lamentably the Metropolitan violated church order, but we don't know the extent yet and the Archbishop is prudently investigating the matter before applying any penalty.  But even if one supports the ordination of women, until such time as it is licit surely they should not be allowed to concelebrate in that matter, and the commemoration of non Orthodox prelates in the Diptychs or elsewhere is seriously frowned upon.

I agree, obedience to the Holy Tradition is important if one desires to remain within the Holy Orthodox Church.

Read this excerpt from the Finnish document that touches on Women's Ordination:
http://www.kosmas.fi/PDF-files-veljeston%20paasivu/Finn_Ort_Probl_2009_Autumn.pdf

Quote
"... The grounds for male priesthood lie in the tradition of the Church: women have never been
ordained priests or bishops. This continuity is considered important, even if no-one is able to
explain the theology behind it. Arguments on priesthood as an icon (priest as an icon of Christ) or
different natures of man and woman are naturally very interesting in the theological sense, but they
are least of all insufficient in explaining why priesthood as an office is restricted for men alone.” In
the same newspaper on 4 April 2007, Student of Theology Riina Nguyen, Master of Theology Jooa
Vuorinen and Student of Arts Elena Gorshkow-Salonen asked: “Can the church afford not to use the
constantly growing group of women with theological education?” and added: “The arrogant attitude,
according to which the Church doesn’t discuss some topics, ignores the constant and creative work
of the Holy Spirit among us.”

Such a “theology”, in which Tradition is challenged to provide contemporary people with arguments
acceptable for them and fit for their world view, is widely spreading in the Orthodox Church of
Finland. Egotistical criticism admiring one’s own intellect has become a second nature, especially
among the young
. (p. 33)

Another website urges caution when encountering strange new teachings that are not in accord with Holy Tradition, but arise from prideful egotism.  http://www.uocofusa.org/news_110728_2.html

Quote
St. Paul warned us though that there will be wolves in sheep's clothing, who will pervert and twist Christ's true teaching. In every generation there have arisen both false pastors and people with ears itching for different and novel doctrines.
Ἅγιος ὁ Θεός
Ἅγιος ἰσχυρός
Ἅγιος ἀθάνατος
ἐλέησον ἡμας

Offline PeterTheAleut

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1472 on: March 07, 2015, 03:04:23 PM »
The problem comes back to the Pauline injunctions.  Unlike the limited liturgical function of the deaconess, the Episcopate and Presbyteriate inherently involve the exercise of authority over men.  These Pauline injunctions preclude, among other things, homosexuality.  Now Ive debated with some liberal Protestants who take the view it doesn't matter what St. Paul said, since he was just a misogynist/homophobe who distorted the message of Jesus, but you and ai both know this view is silly, as the oldest and most detailed account we have of, for example, the Eucharist, comes from 1 Corinthians, and the Orthodox Church, being built on Holy Tradition, regards the books of the Athanasian Canon as definitive and of equal import; we are not interested in, for example, the Gospel of Philip or the Tripartite Tractate as sources of doctrine.

Now I do not take a maximalist view of Orthodoxy that requires us to maintain unbending adherence to every received liturgical and devotional custom.  But I think it's wrong to say that the outer limits of Orthodoxy are solely defined by the Ecumenical Councils or anathemas issued by other authorities; something does not need to be formally condemned as a heresy in order to be heretical.   The fact that the ordination of women has never occurred and that the ancient canons concerned in the Pedalion specify a male priesthood, and furthermore take into account St. Paul's remark that the bishop should be the husband of one wife and use that as the basis for prohibiting divorced and remarried clergy, the marriage of ordained clergy, and the remarriage of widowers in Holy Orders, gives us a remarkable clear picture as to how the early church interpreted these epistles.
I don't think, though, that they make so very clear the opposition to women's ordination that you read into them.

Thus, a formal condemnation of openness to or support of female ordination from a church authority is not necessary, in so far as taking such a view would put one in opposition to St. Paul.  And who would dare to do that?  St. Paul uses the phrase "I do not allow", suggesting others may have, but it's St. Paul whose epistles form such a vital part of the canon, and what St. Paul was against, we cannot possibly be for.  The Holy Bible, as many have pointed out, is the heart of Holy Tradition, and the Epistles and other books of the New Testament besides the Gospels are second only to the Gospels in importance.

So thus, the reason here is chiefly Biblical rather than conciliar or canonical, although the fact the canons say nothing of the ordination of women to any office other than deaconess can be read as disapproval.
That's actually an argument from silence, which is rarely ever convincing.

Now to clarify what I wished to express relating to the discussion of these matters, as I see it it's entirely legitimate to point to the epistles in question in answer to the question "why don't we ordain women," and if then pressed as to why we have female choirs, simply state that the church interprets the Pauline directive that women should keep silent in church as not prohibiting such choirs.  Although admittedly this is an inconsistency of great antiquity and we can see that in many times and in many places this question has been sidestepped by using boys choirs to provide soprano voices.  It would certainly be an exemplary act of great piety and devotion if a woman were to make a point of never speaking at all inside the Nave.   But just as Holy Tradition does not allow female priests and bishops, it does allow female choirs and also in the churches of the Middle East, ululation.

So in my view, because of what Paul said, it is wrong for a bishop to question the wisdom of Paul in disallowing, in churches under his jurisdiction, women to exercise authority over men, which the early church appears to have interpreted as a ban on the Presbyteriate and episcopate, as these two roles, Priest and Bishop, are those to which authority is primarily attached.
Was St. Paul's injunction an absolute injunction, such that no woman is EVER to have authority over men in church for the rest of time until the great Parousia, or was he speaking to some cultural phenomena of his day? I don't think this a question you're qualified to answer all by yourself. This is why the subject of women's ordination should be raised in council and should be debated in the Church. Who, then, is going to lead this debate and set the proper ground rules for this debate if not for our bishops?

What is more, I would argue that since Paul makes this so plain,
No, he doesn't make this so plain.

it's wrong for a bishop to propose more discussion of the matter;
Because it's not so plain what St. Paul meant, it's necessary in today's world and therefore wise for bishops to propose more discussion on the matter of women's ordination.

it would show greater piety on his part to simply cite the epistles in question.   And indeed, for that matter, I believe women should not ordain their hair with costly trinkets, but this falls into the realm of personal morality.  But if a confessor were to see one of his spiritual daughters consistently appearing in fine jewelry, he rather ought to speak up about it in my view.

Lastly, I have yet to see a single successful female pastor in any Protestant denomination who justified the controversy surrounding the ordination of women and the schisms that resulted, with the exception of Christian Science, which was for a time successful, but is Gnostic and really a different faith tradition.   Now in Gnosticism, by the way, I see a potential answer to this problem.  The Orthodox should simply refer people who want these things to those churches that have them.  It's for this reason also that I don't mind at all the Episcopalians using the Book of Common Prayer.  As I see it, the duty of the Orthodox Church is to maintain a consistent witness.  Now I define Holy Tradition broader than most; I advocate reconciliation of the Eastern and Oriental Orthodox as a matter of urgency, I believe disused liturgical services such as the Cathedral Typikon are in no respects suppressed.  But I really think on this point there are overwhelming Biblical and practical reasons not to do it, and any bishop who does openly advocate it, which to his credit Metropolitan Kallistos Ware has stopped short of doing, is acting irresponsibly.

Now if you want even more theological points, we can also go down the avenue of the bishop being male representing Christ in the Eucharist, the priests in turn representing the bishop as it were.
But then this raises the question: What does Christ's being male, and therefore not female, mean for our salvation? If Christ can save only what He has taken on, does this mean that no woman shall be saved? Christ was also a Jew. Does that mean that to represent Christ in presiding over the Eucharist a priest or bishop must be a Jew? Jesus was a lot of different things by virtue of his birth in the poor family of a Jewish carpenter. What of these personal characteristics are completely incidental to His ministry and therefore not salvific, and what of these personal characteristics are central to our salvation? We know that the Word of God became human to save humans. What, then, does it mean that He chose to become male and not female? Is His decision to be male central to our salvation, as many of the opponents of women's ordination imply? Or is His sex purely an accident of the fact that to be human He had to be one or the other--He couldn't be both or neither--and that to be taken seriously in a strongly patriarchal society He had to be male?

If Christ, our Highest Priest, were female, or like in Gnosticism had a female counterpart forming a syzygy, then priestesses would fit theologically.  But since Christ, the supreme priest, was male, the. It follows that all priests should also be male to represent Him;
As I argued earlier, Christ was also a Jew, but we certainly don't take this to mean that our priests must be Jewish.

what is more, as far as we know, all the priests who have ever served in the true religion of the Lord God of Sabaoth, such as Melchizidek, who may have been Christ and at the very least typologically represented him, and the Aaronic Kohanim of the religion of Israel and Judaism, have been male.
Maybe this is how God needed to interact with cultures that were largely patriarchal.

So it seems that our God desires that men offer sacrifices to Him.  However the Old and New Testaments are full of excellent female servants of God; who could be closer to God or make a fuller intercession for us than the most Holy Theotokos?  But as was pointed out, she was not a priest, nor a priestess, but a mother.  It seems motherhood, either naturally or spiritually through holy celibacy, is the desired service of women, just as priesthood is the desired service of men. 

Now I'm sure you've heard all of this before, dear Peter, and I do not doubt your great piety.  You have been consistently kind to me on this forum.  If you disagree with the general approach I take on this, please do not take offense.
No offense taken, except that sometimes your posts wander and cover a lot of extraneous material that, by being pared out, could cut the length of many of your posts in half. ;)
« Last Edit: March 07, 2015, 03:35:19 PM by PeterTheAleut »
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Offline PeterTheAleut

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1473 on: March 07, 2015, 03:16:24 PM »
I agree, obedience to the Holy Tradition is important if one desires to remain within the Holy Orthodox Church.

Read this excerpt from the Finnish document that touches on Women's Ordination:
http://www.kosmas.fi/PDF-files-veljeston%20paasivu/Finn_Ort_Probl_2009_Autumn.pdf
Who is the Brotherhood of Saint Kosmas of Aitolia, and why should we recognize them as authoritative representatives of our Tradition?

Quote
"... The grounds for male priesthood lie in the tradition of the Church: women have never been
ordained priests or bishops. This continuity is considered important, even if no-one is able to
explain the theology behind it. Arguments on priesthood as an icon (priest as an icon of Christ) or
different natures of man and woman are naturally very interesting in the theological sense, but they
are least of all insufficient in explaining why priesthood as an office is restricted for men alone.” In
the same newspaper on 4 April 2007, Student of Theology Riina Nguyen, Master of Theology Jooa
Vuorinen and Student of Arts Elena Gorshkow-Salonen asked: “Can the church afford not to use the
constantly growing group of women with theological education?” and added: “The arrogant attitude,
according to which the Church doesn’t discuss some topics, ignores the constant and creative work
of the Holy Spirit among us.”

Such a “theology”, in which Tradition is challenged to provide contemporary people with arguments
acceptable for them and fit for their world view, is widely spreading in the Orthodox Church of
Finland. Egotistical criticism admiring one’s own intellect has become a second nature, especially
among the young
. (p. 33)

Another website urges caution when encountering strange new teachings that are not in accord with Holy Tradition, but arise from prideful egotism.  http://www.uocofusa.org/news_110728_2.html

Quote
St. Paul warned us though that there will be wolves in sheep's clothing, who will pervert and twist Christ's true teaching. In every generation there have arisen both false pastors and people with ears itching for different and novel doctrines.
Is Tradition nothing more than "but we've always done it this way, Father."? I don't believe so. If anything, Tradition will give us theological reasons why we do what we do.
« Last Edit: March 07, 2015, 03:16:38 PM by PeterTheAleut »
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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1474 on: March 08, 2015, 02:52:15 AM »
Peter, I think the trick to understanding this issue is that unlike, say, Arianism, there is no singular anathema, or theological point that invalidates this, but rather, a convergence of numerous and varied reasons.  But that's only assuming one doesn't take into account St. Paul on the issue; before enumerating the different strands of the web of reasons to not ordain women to the priesthood, I have to say I don't understand your logic in how you're reading St. Paul on this issue, because if we have to qualify Paul relative to his current conditions while simultaneously ignoring how the Church responded to his directives in the following nineteen centuries, it would be very difficult to obtain anything of dogmatic value from him.
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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1475 on: March 08, 2015, 03:21:27 AM »
Peter, I think the trick to understanding this issue is that unlike, say, Arianism, there is no singular anathema, or theological point that invalidates this, but rather, a convergence of numerous and varied reasons.
Has the Church ever proclaimed anything definitive on any or all of these numerous and varied reasons?

But that's only assuming one doesn't take into account St. Paul on the issue;
Honestly, the only thing I don't take into account in this debate is your interpretation of St. Paul on the issue. I really don't see it based on any other authority than your belief that your interpretation of St. Paul is correct.

before enumerating the different strands of the web of reasons to not ordain women to the priesthood, I have to say I don't understand your logic in how you're reading St. Paul on this issue, because if we have to qualify Paul relative to his current conditions while simultaneously ignoring how the Church responded to his directives in the following nineteen centuries, it would be very difficult to obtain anything of dogmatic value from him.
Who's ignoring how the Church has historically responded to St. Paul's directives on the role of women in the Church? When I think of such saints as Nina of Georgia and Olga of Kiev, whom the Church names "Equal to the Apostles", or of Mary Magdalene, whom Jesus commissioned to preach His resurrection to the Apostles, or even of some of the women St. Paul named in his epistles as leaders within the Church, I have to wonder just how clear St. Paul and the Church really are on the role of women in the Church. I really don't see your case that women should remain silent in church and have no authority over men being anywhere near as clear cut as you think it is.
« Last Edit: March 08, 2015, 03:39:57 AM by PeterTheAleut »
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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1476 on: March 08, 2015, 04:16:34 AM »
My position is simply that women should not be ordained to the priesthood or the episcopate; I believe that the basis for this is The praxis of the early church and the roles women served on it.  Outside of the temple, women like St. Nino of Georgia did wondrous things.   And served as deaconesses baptizing women, because in that age people baptized were in the nude or close to it, and it was viewed as inappropriate for the priests to go down into the water with female catechumens in that respect.  And these same women enthusiastically received the Eucharist inside the church.

Now I'll admit there is no direct absolute authoritative hierarchical link between what Paul said and the ancient practice of the church, but the two seem more than sufficiently linked to satisfy me.  But if you were to argue for an Ecumenical Council to resolve this issue I daresay I might support you, because it would be nice to have absolute clarity on this.
Antisemitism, racism and prejudicial nationalism should have no place in Orthodoxy.  For to paraphrase  St. Paul, there is neither Jew nor Greek, neither male nor female, slave or freeman, in the Christian Church.

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1477 on: June 07, 2015, 09:25:05 PM »
The following split off from here: http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,64592.msg1300669.html#msg1300669  -PtA


I think I understand women's ordination's appeal. Equal opportunity, and as a straight man I love women and want them to love me back. If I thought I could invent a church, it would probably look like credally and sacramentally sound and conservative-looking but "open-minded" high Episcopal, like their Order of Julian of Norwich. If I really didn't understand women, I'd probably buy this.

The world, including relations between the sexes and the church, doesn't work that way. We can't invent a church, and giving women power doesn't endear you to them. Think about it: are women turned on by men who don't stand up to them? Women want men to be men. That and, as the conservative Protestants say, the Bible's clear about male headship. Ordaining women doesn't impress secular feminists; the love of my life 25 years ago was one so I know. It doesn't convert the unchurched and drives away most of the religious. Like the other mainline Protestant churches, the Anglicans have done everything the secular world said it wants and they're still cratering.

Catholicism and Orthodoxy can't make that change. Like Hebrew National hot dogs, we answer to a higher power than the king or public opinion including a majority vote.

I favor it because male headship doesn't make a lot of sense to me outside of a hunter gatherer context in which women are relatively incapacitated six-nine months out of the year.

Also because I'm still not entirely sure one can affirm with a straight face that women are just as important to God and just as much bearers of the Imago Dei as men on the one hand and then deny them one of God's most important callings on the other.
« Last Edit: June 09, 2015, 12:07:42 AM by PeterTheAleut »

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1478 on: June 07, 2015, 09:34:12 PM »
The arguments for women's ordination are plausible. The church has never taught them.
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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1479 on: June 07, 2015, 09:37:11 PM »
The arguments for women's ordination are plausible. The church has never taught them.

Well, if women's ordination is a good and every good and perfect gift is from God, then what does that say about the church?
« Last Edit: June 07, 2015, 09:37:29 PM by Volnutt »

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1480 on: June 07, 2015, 09:42:57 PM »
The arguments for women's ordination are plausible. The church has never taught them.

Well, if women's ordination is a good and every good and perfect gift is from God, then what does that say about the church?

That the church is a fraud so steal and fornicate away, because you only live once. But then life would be meaningless so why not kill yourself if things go bad?
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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1481 on: June 07, 2015, 09:46:59 PM »
Huh? If you ordain women it will be okay to steal and kill?

Nobody says that. Come on.  ::)

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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1482 on: June 07, 2015, 09:48:33 PM »
Huh? If you ordain women it will be okay to steal and kill?

Nobody says that. Come on.  ::)

Catholicism and Orthodoxy are package deals. When you break one doctrine or commandment, you break them all.
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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1483 on: June 07, 2015, 09:49:24 PM »
Also because I'm still not entirely sure one can affirm with a straight face that women men are just as important to God and just as much bearers of the Imago Dei as men women on the one hand and then deny them one of God's most important callings on the other.




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Re: Ordination of Women in the Orthodox Church
« Reply #1484 on: June 07, 2015, 09:51:03 PM »
Huh? If you ordain women it will be okay to steal and kill?

Nobody says that. Come on.  ::)

Catholicism and Orthodoxy are package deals. When you break one doctrine or commandment, you break them all.

No, you don't.

If I lie, I do not have to confess to theft. If I argue with my parents, I do not have to confess to worshipping pagan gods.

You would be easier to take seriously if you did not seem to believe the sky were constantly about to fall.