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« on: April 30, 2006, 04:40:55 PM »

What, according to the Eastern Orthodox Churches, are the heresy's of the Catholic Church?
It would be great if you could say why as well and put it in bullit points.
Thanks
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« Reply #1 on: April 30, 2006, 08:17:57 PM »

What, according to the Eastern Orthodox Churches, are the heresy's of the Catholic Church?
It would be great if you could say why as well and put it in bullit points.
Thanks

  • Papal supremacy - In Orthodox ecclesiology no one bishop has authority over any other bishop within the very charism of his office.  Ultimately, even the other of the most divisive issues between RC and EO, the Filioque, is divisive (AISI) because of the authority the papacy has taken to himself to override even the decisions of bishops gathered together in Ecumenical Councils.
  • Papal infallibility (a natural growth of the doctrine of papal supremacy) - Infallibility is a characteristic of the entire Church; this characteristic cannot be isolated from the Church and bestowed on any single authority within the Church, be it a bishop or the Scriptures.  We see Catholics and Protestants doing much the same thing here: granting infallibility to an authority external to the Church.  Protestants grant infallibility to the Scriptures apart from Tradition and make the Scriptures an external authority, whereas Catholics grant this same infallibility to the Pope, making the Pope an external authority.  (By external authority, I mean an authority who is seen as being decisive on matters of doctrine without reference to the rest of the Church and her Holy Tradition.)
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« Reply #2 on: April 30, 2006, 08:21:24 PM »

Ultimately, even the other of the most divisive issues between RC and EO, the Filioque, is divisive (AISI) because of the authority the papacy has taken to himself to override even the decisions of Ecumenical Councils.

Actually, this was ruled on by the Eighth Ecumenical Council, which the bishop of Rome signed, as well. So, it's a heresy on the theological level because it was stated as such in an Ecumenical Council, on top of the authority issues.
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« Reply #3 on: April 30, 2006, 08:28:08 PM »

Actually, this was ruled on by the Eighth Ecumenical Council, which the bishop of Rome signed, as well. So, it's a heresy on the theological level because it was stated as such in an Ecumenical Council, on top of the authority issues.

I know that some Orthodox actually recognize two later councils (one of them involving St. Gregory Palamas and the debate over the Essence and Energies of God and the hesychastic movement) to be the Eighth and Ninth Ecumenical Councils, but this recognition is by no means universal within Orthodoxy.
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« Reply #4 on: April 30, 2006, 08:36:26 PM »

I know that some Orthodox actually recognize two later councils (one of them involving St. Gregory Palamas and the debate over the Essence and Energies of God and the hesychastic movement) to be the Eighth and Ninth Ecumenical Councils, but this recognition is by no means universal within Orthodoxy.

It was when all the Patriarchs and their Synods signed a paper agreeing it was. There has been no other official ruling to the contrary, as far as I know, from any canonical Orthodox Church.
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« Reply #5 on: April 30, 2006, 08:45:22 PM »

  • Papal supremacy
    • Papal infallibility
Are these issues (and resulting repercussions) the only issues??[/list]
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« Reply #6 on: April 30, 2006, 08:48:49 PM »

There's also purgatory, the filioque, the assumption of Mary (which is an issue because it is now dogma), the Immaculate conception, supererogatory works, created grace, and so on. They were just starting with the easy ones.  Cool
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« Reply #7 on: April 30, 2006, 08:51:12 PM »

They were just starting with the easy ones.  Cool

Yeah. I was about to start a list earlier today, then after it got going, I decided it would be too big an undertaking  Tongue
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« Reply #8 on: April 30, 2006, 09:01:19 PM »

I really don't understand why people always say the biggest difference between the Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church is the papacy, and things like uncreated vs created grace, the filioque, and the Orthodox view of the crucifixion in salvation are mere afterthoughts.  To me, those things are much bigger than how much power some guy has.  

Also, there is a difference in belief about the Eucharist.  Roman Catholics believe that the Body and the Blood are present in both species(so the wafers are both the Body and the Blood, as is the wine), but Orthodox believe that the bread is the Body and the wine is the Blood.  

There's also purgatory, the filioque, the assumption of Mary (which is an issue because it is now dogma), the Immaculate conception, supererogatory works, created grace, and so on. They were just starting with the easy ones.  Cool
But Orthodox believe in the Assumption of the Virgin Mary too!!  Unless there is some subtle aspect that is different that I am not aware of.....
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« Reply #9 on: April 30, 2006, 09:07:09 PM »

But Orthodox believe in the Assumption of the Virgin Mary too!!  Unless there is some subtle aspect that is different that I am not aware of.....

The reason is because they dogmatized it. It involves the dichotomy some Orthodox make between Holy Tradition and dogma. Of course, most Orthodox don't seem to have any problem with it, as it is almost universally held in Orthodoxy, as far as I have heard.
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« Reply #10 on: April 30, 2006, 09:13:36 PM »

There's also purgatory, the filioque, the assumption of Mary (which is an issue because it is now dogma), the Immaculate conception, supererogatory works, created grace, and so on. They were just starting with the easy ones.  Cool

1.  Beginning with Purgatory....why do we Orthodox pray for the dead?

2.  The Assumption of Mary....what is the problem here?  Her life is an allegory for the life
of the faithful, why then (not even entering into the consideration of her sufferings), should she not be given the preemptive grace of assumption that is to be the reward of the faithful?

In the light of the Sovereignty of Almighty God, is it unfitting, that  His most perfect creation
be given this prerogative as an example to us and what we have to look forward to if we are faithful as she was and is faithful?

3.  And what is the problem of her Immaculate Conception?   Was Christ to incarnate into the body of one still carrying the stain of original sin?   How could the Spotless One, do such a thing?
If He is going to perform the miracle of the Virgin Birth, why would he NOT grant the graces in accord with Baptism, Preemptively to prepare this abode??

I see her immaculate conception as well as her assumption as being the most natural way for the Triune God to proceed and set the precedents in motion that would ultimately be the very life of the believer and the Church.

4. Supererogatory works, I am not familiar with this concept.

5. Created grace, is another one I am unfamiliar with.

Thank you.

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« Reply #11 on: April 30, 2006, 09:23:30 PM »

1.  Beginning with Purgatory....why do we Orthodox pray for the dead?

3.  And what is the problem of her Immaculate Conception?   Was Christ to incarnate into the body of one still carrying the stain of original sin?   How could the Spotless One, do such a thing?
If He is going to perform the miracle of the Virgin Birth, why would he NOT grant the graces in accord with Baptism, Preemptively to prepare this abode??

I see her immaculate conception as well as her assumption as being the most natural way for the Triune God to proceed and set the precedents in motion that would ultimately be the very life of the believer and the Church.

4. Supererogatory works, I am not familiar with this concept.

5. Created grace, is another one I am unfamiliar with.

Thank you.

1. Orthodox pray for the dead so that it may help them in some way. There is not much more said that is "universally accepted" beyond that. Purgatory is different because it deals with expiation because of temporal guilt.

3. Orthodoxy holds that the conception was indeed immaculate. It is the baggage on the Catholic side that is rejected, which is implicitly tied to their version of the doctrine, including such things as original sin.

4. Superorogatory works are those which are "beyond" what the Catholic Church expects. They are supposed to provide merits, which can be used for getting through purgatory.

5. Orthodoxy holds that Grace is uncreated, that it is part of God, something like God being Love.
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« Reply #12 on: April 30, 2006, 09:27:39 PM »

Quote
Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church is the papacy, and things like uncreated vs created grace, the filioque, and the Orthodox view of the crucifixion in salvation are mere afterthoughts.  To me, those things are much bigger than how much power some guy has.  

Probably because papacy and filioque came first before the others.  And in truth, it is easier (at least imho to get around the view of salvation, grace, etc.) whereas the Romans have backed themself into a corner with papal infallibility.
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« Reply #13 on: April 30, 2006, 09:31:06 PM »

Don't forget anzymes  Wink

I think Asteriktos has a good list.
I'd probably only add the firm idea of the afterlife that Catholics have.  Also, the scholasticism that developed it is also problematic to Orthodox theology.  As one theologian I know told me, "Catholicism, even after the schism, wasn't too bad.  It didn't really go down hill until the dogmatized Aristotle
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« Reply #14 on: April 30, 2006, 09:40:49 PM »


1. Orthodox pray for the dead so that it may help them in some way.  Purgatory is different because it deals with expiation because of temporal guilt.

Thank you!  

It is still quite vague to me, how Orthodox prayers help them?  My own personal understanding was that an attitude must be ironed out so that the soul is without wrinkles.  That this takes time and opportunity for new decisions that will reform the attitudes of the soul to make it conformed to Christ, that it may enter eternal happiness.  I have a hard time connecting with expiation, it seems so punitive.



 It is the baggage on the Catholic side that is rejected, which is implicitly tied to their version of the doctrine, including such things as original sin.

In the Orthodox faith, what then is the purpose of Baptism if not to erase the stain of original sin?



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« Reply #15 on: April 30, 2006, 09:48:00 PM »

It is still quite vague to me, how Orthodox prayers help them?  My own personal understanding was that an attitude must be ironed out so that the soul is without wrinkles.  That this takes time and opportunity for new decisions that will reform the attitudes of the soul to make it conformed to Christ, that it may enter eternal happiness.  I have a hard time connecting with expiation, it seems so punitive.

In the Orthodox faith, what then is the purpose of Baptism if not to erase the stain of original sin?

Well, the attitude of the soul is very important, for this is what determines whether a person experiences joy or anger in the life to come. Prayers in some way assist the soul in coming closer to God and getting over these issues. And yes, it does take a LOT of time, even moreso when one is passed on.

Baptism is many things, among them "putting on Christ," dying and being raised with Him, beginning the transfiguration of the heart, and erasing the person's sins. However, original sin is not an Orthodox belief; we are only reponsible for what we do. When Adam and Eve fell, they corrupted humanity so that we inherit a sinful nature and such things as pain during childbirth. However, the disposition towards sin doesn't constitute sin, it is merely something else Christ came to overcome, and that we must follow with Him to overcome for ourselves.
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« Reply #16 on: April 30, 2006, 09:49:59 PM »

    Are these issues (and resulting repercussions) the only issues??[/list]

    No.  I just started with these two issues because these are the two biggest ones that I see, and because these two issues are foundational to so many other heresies that the RC church has developed.

    I'm afraid that many of us who respond to this thread will only proclaim every Orthodox doctrine and practice to be correct (which doesn't cause me any problem) and declare every difference in doctrine and practice within the RC church to be heresy simply because it isn't part of our Tradition (which does cause me a problem).  AISI, many, but not all, of the differences in doctrine and practice can be attributed to mere regional differences that existed even before the Schism and are just naturally a part of the diversity of Christian experiences of the Faith.

    Some have mentioned the Immaculate Conception as a recent RC heresy.  To me, this is primarily another example of the heresy of papal supremacy and infallibility.  The dogma was NOT part of the RC faith until Pope Pius IX proclaimed it as infallible and binding upon all Christians in 1854.  Prior to 1854, there was clearly no consensus, even among the post-Schism Fathers of the RC church, on the truth of this doctrine.

    The Immaculate Conception also strikes the Orthodox as heretical for theological reasons.  For one, the dogma is based on a soteriology that is too heavily influenced by Augustinian views of Original Sin.  A more balanced understanding of the Fathers such as can be found in the Orthodox Church recognizes that Man is deformed and weakened by Adam's sin, making us vulnerable to choose to sin, but not that we are actually stained by the guilt of Adam's sin as the RC's Augustinianism teaches.  Orthodox soteriology, therefore, does not need a doctrine of Immaculate Conception.

    We also see the Immaculate Conception dogma making the Theotokos to be the "great exception" rather than the "great example."  The Immaculate Conception really separates Mary from her Jewish faith tradition and makes her out to be something different, which in turn makes her role as mother of the Messiah somewhat separated from this Jewish tradition.  The dogma also makes an exception of the Theotokos--an exception that some Orthodox even consider degrading to her role in our salvation--by implying that God took away from her her freedom to obey her own destiny.  This goes counter to why the Orthodox see in Mary the "great example," for it was the free obedience of the Theotokos that allowed God to form Himself within her womb.
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    « Reply #17 on: April 30, 2006, 10:05:12 PM »

    1.  Beginning with Purgatory....why do we Orthodox pray for the dead?

    2.  The Assumption of Mary....what is the problem here?  Her life is an allegory for the life
    of the faithful, why then (not even entering into the consideration of her sufferings), should she not be given the preemptive grace of assumption that is to be the reward of the faithful?

    In the light of the Sovereignty of Almighty God, is it unfitting, that  His most perfect creation
    be given this prerogative as an example to us and what we have to look forward to if we are faithful as she was and is faithful?

    3. ÂÂ And what is the problem of her Immaculate Conception? ÂÂ  Was Christ to incarnate into the body of one still carrying the stain of original sin? ÂÂ  How could the Spotless One, do such a thing?
    If He is going to perform the miracle of the Virgin Birth, why would he NOT grant the graces in accord with Baptism, Preemptively to prepare this abode??

    I see her immaculate conception as well as her assumption as being the most natural way for the Triune God to proceed and set the precedents in motion that would ultimately be the very life of the believer and the Church.

    4. Supererogatory works, I am not familiar with this concept.

    5. Created grace, is another one I am unfamiliar with.

    Thank you.



    Regarding the Immaculate Conception....

    Actually, your question is framed from a Western viewpoint. It is important to realize that the Orthodox have always believed that people suffer the effects of the original Sin, but that the 'stain' of the Original Sin is not on us personally. Because the Theotokos cannot have the stain of the sin, there is no reason for her to have been conceived Immaculately.

    Also, this doctrine can also be heretical due to the role the Theotokos played in 'enfleshing' the Lord. The human part of the God-Man that Jesus is was given to Him through the Incarnation. If the Western belief is right---where all of us have the 'stain' of Original Sin, but the Theotokos did not---then the humanity assumed by Christ would also not have this 'stain'. Therefore, mankind could not be redeemed, since the humanity assumed by Christ would not be the same humanity all the rest of us share!

    Thus, this borders on one of the classic definitions of a heresy: a teaching that either seperates Christ's humanity from His Divinity, or subordinates one member of the Trinity to be unequal with the other Persons (filioque, anyone?).

    I believe it was Khomiakov who stated, when told of the Immaculate Conception dogma that it was "a marvelous solution to a non-existent problem".

    It actually also touches on the role of superogatory works. We are each accountable for what we have done in our lives, and we cannot have access to the good deeds of others as some sort of spiritual checking account. Now, others can pray for us for mercy when the time comes, but we cannot say that because my saintly godmother prayed on my behalf, then I am 'entitled' to have so many of my sins wiped away. No, I am guilty of that which I have not confessed and repented of, and only I am responsible for my own misdeeds.

    Regarding created grace---again, the Orthodox hold that grace is uncreated, since the mission of the church is to heal and return Creation back to its original function intended by God, which is to share with Him our full natures as images and likenesses of Him. Therefore grace cannot be created, as then it is less than God, and for humanity to grow into His image and likeness He must share Himself with us through the Church. Because he has no point of creation, His Grace which heals us must be Uncreated.

    Created grace I have seen referred to in Catholic explanations for how their sacraments work, but not in their more recent (post 1970 publications--the issue is their previous theological understanding is simply 'talked around' and not addressed). In effect, grace is created and imparted to the recipient. However, our point is that this grace is not what we need to fulfill our destinies and God's desires for us. Since it has a point of creation it is less than fully Divine.

    I've probably muddled the explanations, but my theological library is back home now, and not accessible.
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    « Reply #18 on: April 30, 2006, 10:15:55 PM »

      I'm afraid that many of us who respond to this thread will only proclaim every Orthodox doctrine and practice to be correct (which doesn't cause me any problem) and declare
    every difference in doctrine and practice within the RC church to be heresy simply because it isn't part of our Tradition (which does cause me a problem).  

    Thank you so much for saying that.  How can we ever live on earth as it is in Heaven if we approach the faith empirically and dismissively?   You and Bizzlebin have been most gracious and helpful.
    I still have many questions that will take time to form.[/list]
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    « Reply #19 on: April 30, 2006, 10:23:02 PM »



    For one, the dogma is based on a soteriology that is too heavily influenced by Augustinian views of Original Sin.


    This was before the great schism,  was there division in the church over this issue then?  Or was there a consenses arrived at.
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    « Reply #20 on: April 30, 2006, 10:48:07 PM »

    However, we, the Orthodox, still hold the dogma of the Original Sin, as stated in the canons of the Council of Carthage (418), later recieved by the Sixth Ecumenical Council of Constantinople; the said dogma wasn't even an issue between the East and the West until very recently. Growing up in an Orthodox country I've always been taught that the Holy Baptism washes away the Original ("Ancestral", how we call it in Romanian) sin.
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    « Reply #21 on: April 30, 2006, 10:49:57 PM »

    However, we, the Orthodox, still hold the dogma of the Original Sin, as stated in the canons of the Council of Carthage (418), later recieved by the Sixth Ecumenical Council of Constantinople; the said dogma wasn't even an issue between the East and the West until very recently. Growing up in an Orthodox country I've always been taught that the Holy Baptism washes away the Original ("Ancestral", how we call it in Romanian) sin.

    We hold the doctrine of Original Sin in the sense that we believe that Adam and Eve's sin was the original one, yes, but that is about as far as it goes.
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    « Reply #22 on: April 30, 2006, 10:58:28 PM »

    We also believe that we share in that first sin, in some way.
    We had religion classes in school there, and that is how we were taught by the parish priest.
    That is not to say that our parish priest is the ultimate theological authority, but just to get an idea what the a regular Orthodox priest teaches his flock, in a non-polemical environment.
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    « Reply #23 on: April 30, 2006, 11:12:36 PM »

    We also believe that we share in that first sin, in some way.
    We had religion classes in school there, and that is how we were taught by the parish priest.
    That is not to say that our parish priest is the ultimate theological authority, but just to get an idea what the a regular Orthodox priest teaches his flock, in a non-polemical environment.

    We share in the consequences, but not the sin itself. It has often been called the "ancestral curse." Even the Bible establshed the principle:

    "The fathers shall not be put to death for the children, neither shall the children be put to death for the fathers: every man shall be put to death for his own sin." (Deuteronomy 24:16)
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    « Reply #24 on: April 30, 2006, 11:15:11 PM »

    But those that die without having been baptized, even the babes, is generally taught that they cannot inherit God's Kingdom, being severed from Christ.
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    « Reply #25 on: April 30, 2006, 11:20:06 PM »

    But those that die without having been baptized, even the babes, is generally taught that they cannot inherit God's Kingdom, being severed from Christ.

    They cannot enter without Christ, of course, but there is not a definitive stance that they are without Him. In fact, a lot of the Fathers I have read seem to think they go right to heaven, and that God is with them.
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    « Reply #26 on: April 30, 2006, 11:27:51 PM »

    However, we, the Orthodox, still hold the dogma of the Original Sin, as stated in the canons of the Council of Carthage (418), later received by the Sixth Ecumenical Council of Constantinople; the said dogma wasn't even an issue between the East and the West until very recently. Growing up in an Orthodox country I've always been taught that the Holy Baptism washes away the Original ("Ancestral", how we call it in Romanian) sin.

    There seems to be some substantial difference of opinion in Orthodoxy over this issue.  I for one favor the Council of Carthage and Sixth Ecumenical Council of Constantinople.

    I believe the Holy Spirit sent wonders and signs to Lourdes to make a proclamation from the mouth of a poor ignorant girl.  The incorrupt body of Saint Bernadette, and continuing miracles,  to this day testifies to this truth.

    I do not agree with the heavy handed way in which doctrines are forced upon the Eastern churches, but neither is it necessary to our stiffen our necks when someone abuses authority.



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    « Reply #27 on: April 30, 2006, 11:28:28 PM »

    Quote
    "The fathers shall not be put to death for the children, neither shall the children be put to death for the fathers: every man shall be put to death for his own sin." (Deuteronomy 24:16)

    I'm curious as to what you make of the passages which say the opposite?

    "You shall not make for yourself a carved image—any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments." - Ex. 20:4-6

    "And the Lord passed before him and proclaimed, The Lord, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abounding in goodness and truth, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, by no means clearing the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children and the children’s children to the third and the fourth generation." - Ex. 34:6-7

    "The Lord is longsuffering and abundant in mercy, forgiving iniquity and transgression; but He by no means clears the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generation." - Num. 14:18

    "And your sons shall be shepherds in the wilderness forty years, and bear the brunt of your infidelity, until your carcasses are consumed in the wilderness." - Num. 14:33

    "Prepare slaughter for his children, Because of the iniquity of their fathers, Lest they rise up and possess the land, And fill the face of the world with cities." - Is. 14:21

    "You show lovingkindness to thousands, and repay the iniquity of the fathers into the bosom of their children after them—the Great, the Mighty God, whose name is the Lord of hosts." - Jer. 32:18
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    « Reply #28 on: April 30, 2006, 11:35:34 PM »

    Quote
    recieved by the Sixth Ecumenical Council of Constantinople;

    Well.... the only problem with that is that the 6th Ecumenical Council sometimes accepted contradictory canons and principles, so acceptance of a Council (or collection of Canons of a Church Father) is by no means a precise and dogmatic acceptance of every single doctrine or belief within those sources. The sources accepted by the 6th Ecuemenical Council endorsed a number of different views towards the apocrypha/deuterocanonical, for example. Sometimes the people who originally wrote the canons didn't even follow their own canons (e.g., the principle established at the 1st Ecumenical Council that bishops were not to go from city to city).
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    « Reply #29 on: April 30, 2006, 11:36:56 PM »

    Quote
    But those that die without having been baptized, even the babes, is generally taught that they cannot inherit God's Kingdom, being severed from Christ.

    Actually, to the best of my knowledge, this is not the teaching of the Orthodox Church.  I know Ware mentions it as does some other Orthodox authors.  If I have the time, I'll dig out the quote.  The Church does teach that baptism is neccesary, however, it is also moot on what happens to those that are not baptized.  I think it was the late Metropolitan Philaret? (I'm not sure on this either), even though the Orthodox Church believes herself to be the one Church, she does not know what happens to those outside it (thus baptism).
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    « Reply #30 on: April 30, 2006, 11:37:58 PM »

    Quote
    But those that die without having been baptized, even the babes, is generally taught that they cannot inherit God's Kingdom, being severed from Christ.

    That's the first time I've heard that... though it might go along with making the child pay for the sins of the father Wink
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    « Reply #31 on: April 30, 2006, 11:39:42 PM »

    The Catechism of St. Philaret of Moscow clearly teaches the dogma of the Original sin.
    It is revisionist theology what Kalomiros does in his "The River of Fire".
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    « Reply #32 on: April 30, 2006, 11:43:11 PM »

    Asteriktos,
    Do you know that, within the OC, unbaptized children are not even allowed a Christian burial, in an Orthodox cemetery. Back in my little town, there were a section, in a remote corner of the cemetery reserved for those that commited suicide and unbaptized children. It is clerar then, that the OC is not very hopeful as to their lot.
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    « Reply #33 on: April 30, 2006, 11:46:05 PM »

    Quote
    Do you know that, within the OC, unbaptized children are not even allowed a Christian burial

    No, I didn't know that. I do know that catechumens (who obviously aren't baptized yet) do get an Orthodox burial though.  Don't understand that one.

    Quote
    It is clerar then, that the OC is not very hopeful as to their lot.

    Well, no offense, but you seem to be the only one (who has responded yet anyway) that has heard of this. I certainly haven't heard that this happens, but am familiar with Church Fathers who say that such children do go to heaven (e.g., Gregory of Nyssa).
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    « Reply #34 on: April 30, 2006, 11:56:06 PM »

    There seems to be some substantial difference of opinion in Orthodoxy over this issue.

    I wouldn't make any judgments about the "opinion of Orthodoxy" based on an Internet forum. As chris said recently: If you ask a question on OC.net, you're sure to get answers -- and maybe one of them will be correct.

    A few points:

    1) As for "Original Sin": Some Orthodox theologians (a la Lossky) have made much of this issue, but, in reality, most -- if not all -- of their arguments depend on an overemphasis on Augustin's work. After his fight with Pelagius, Augustin developed a theology of original sin as inherited guilt (not just corrupted nature), which guilt he said was tied to and passed on by procreation. While certain medieval Catholics (and 19th century apologists) preached similar things, the modern Catholic Church has distanced itself from such overly-Augustinian talk. The Catechism of the Catholic Church, for example, states that original sin does not include personal guilt (405).

    2) Dormition vs. Assumption: The standard Orthodox complaint is that the Catholic doctrine of the Assumption, as infallibly defined by Pope Pius XII, does not make it clear that Mary actually died before being assumed into heaven. This is quite troubling to Orthodox sensibilities, a fact that is only exacerbated by the fact that, at times, Catholic writings and popular piety include the belief that Mary did NOT die and, because she was Immaculately Conceived etc. etc., was assumed directly into heaven.

    3) It should be clear, therefore, that Catholic doctrine is by no means uniform on these topics. The Medieval Church's take is one thing (e.g. one can or cannot believe in the Immaculate Conception, as the Council of Trent stated), the 19th century Church is another (it's an infallible dogma...except in the case of Mary's death...that's up for grabs) and the modern Catholic reinterpretation/diversity of practice is a whole different can of worms...Hence, Orthodoxy's penchant for trying to say as little as possible and its particular dislike for infallibly defining these matters.
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    « Reply #35 on: May 01, 2006, 12:24:18 AM »

    Asteriktos,
    Do you know that, within the OC, unbaptized children are not even allowed a Christian burial, in an Orthodox cemetery. Back in my little town, there were a section, in a remote corner of the cemetery reserved for those that committed suicide and unbaptized children. It is clerar then, that the OC is not very hopeful as to their lot.

    It's also a fairly wide-spread popular belief (at least in Moldova...even parts of Greece) that if the priest fails to submerse, say, the hand of a child, then that child will grow up to be a thief, because his hand isn't regenerated.

    Popular practice and custom (especially those which seem to come from the time of the Turkokrateia) often differ from what finds in the ancient Fathers.

    Anyway, even the Catholic Church, whose Western Fathers were more keen on defining such things, developed the concept of being in limbo. And, to complicate things further, JPII (in Evangelium Vitae) said that the Church does not actually know the fate of unbaptized babies.
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    « Reply #36 on: May 01, 2006, 12:52:37 AM »

    I don't think that not allowing an unbaptized child a Christian burial, is a folk tradition, but a provision of the "Molitvelnic" (I don't know how this is called in English).
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    « Reply #37 on: May 01, 2006, 01:02:37 AM »

    I wouldn't make any judgments about the "opinion of Orthodoxy" based on an Internet forum. As chris said recently: If you ask a question on OC.net, you're sure to get answers -- and maybe one of them will be correct.

    Returning to the preschism Church, after 20 years of RC, I can share with you what I was taught,
    more through osmosis than any formal classes. (which I did not take)

    Mary fell asleep and was assumed into Heaven.  

    I have never heard that  "because she was Immaculately Conceived etc. etc., was assumed directly into heaven."  as you mentioned.

    What ever happened to the simple faith of the fishermen?  The lack of cohesiveness and divergence of opinion is staggering?  And I know from experience that one Orthodox group does not accept the particular differences of another Orthodox group with charity,  rather differences are ostracized.  And neither is the RC church exempt from this plague, where charisms are destroyed rather than nurtured.

    If true religion is to feed the orphans and the widows and keep oneself unspotted from the world,
    where do we stand before God?   None of these universities and religious institutions existed the first few centuries, yet the believers of those times far surpassed us in holiness. If the letter of the law kills but the heart of the law gives life, where should we be focusing and putting our efforts?

    If charity edifies but knowledge puffs up, why are we continuing to expand our knowledge and defining more walls to separate us?  Brothers, this is not as Christ would have it, we need to take a step back into Eternity and examine our behavior.   This looks nothing like the Bride of Christ,
    and it is a scandal to the world who expects to find love, unity and consistency in His Church.

    Let us pray for reform, beginning in our own hearts, and reaching outwards.
     







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    « Reply #38 on: May 01, 2006, 01:29:07 AM »

    Well, no offense, but you seem to be the only one (who has responded yet anyway) that has heard of this. I certainly haven't heard that this happens, but am familiar with Church Fathers who say that such children do go to heaven (e.g., Gregory of Nyssa).

    Yet another reason why reason and our understanding of God requires us to, along with St. Gregory of Nyssa, adopt the Christian doctrine of apokatastasis. Wink
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    « Reply #39 on: May 01, 2006, 02:07:23 AM »

    Returning to the preschism Church, after 20 years of RC, I can share with you what I was taught,
    more through osmosis than any formal classes. (which I did not take)

    Mary fell asleep and was assumed into Heaven.  

    I have never heard that  "because she was Immaculately Conceived etc. etc., was assumed directly into heaven."  as you mentioned.


    I've heard the RC doctrine as Mary was assumed into Heaven BEFORE she fell asleep (as in, never did in an earthly format - similar to Elijah or Enoch).  The EO view is apparant if you look at an icon of the Dormition.
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    « Reply #40 on: May 01, 2006, 03:58:07 AM »

    I've heard the RC doctrine as Mary was assumed into Heaven BEFORE she fell asleep (as in, never did in an earthly format - similar to Elijah or Enoch).  The EO view is apparant if you look at an icon of the Dormition.
    The official Roman Catholic dogma is actually non-committal on the subject of the Theotokos' death. The Dogma which was promulgated by Pope Pius XII On November 1, 1950 and decreed to be infallible was that: “The Immaculate Mother of God, the ever Virgin Mary, when the course of her earthly life was run, was assumed in body and soul to heavenly glory.” This wording leaves the question of her death open.
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    « Reply #41 on: May 01, 2006, 07:55:37 AM »

    • Papal supremacy - In Orthodox ecclesiology no one bishop has authority over any other bishop within the very charism of his office. ÂÂ Ultimately, even the other of the most divisive issues between RC and EO, the Filioque, is divisive (AISI) because of the authority the papacy has taken to himself to override even the decisions of bishops gathered together in Ecumenical Councils.
    And the reason for this is that the church reflects the nature of God; unity in diversity. As all members of the Trinity are fully God, so all members of the church are fully Catholic.[/list]
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    « Reply #42 on: May 01, 2006, 09:34:57 AM »

      And the reason for this is that the church reflects the nature of God; unity in diversity. As all members of the Trinity are fully God, so all members of the church are fully Catholic.[/list]

      So Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are exactly equal according to you?
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      « Reply #43 on: May 01, 2006, 09:37:26 AM »

      I'm curious as to what you make of the passages which say the opposite?

      "You shall not make for yourself a carved image—any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments." - Ex. 20:4-6

      "And the Lord passed before him and proclaimed, The Lord, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abounding in goodness and truth, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, by no means clearing the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children and the children’s children to the third and the fourth generation." - Ex. 34:6-7

      "The Lord is longsuffering and abundant in mercy, forgiving iniquity and transgression; but He by no means clears the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children to the third and fourth generation." - Num. 14:18

      First generation we understand the provocation of an evil thought, second the desire, third the evil habit, i.e. consent and fourth the evil action. The Lord punishes those who habitually think and act in an evil way (3rd & 4th generation). Provocation (1st) and desire (2nd generation) he forgives. - St. Maximus the Confessor

      Quote
      ..."Prepare slaughter for his children, Because of the iniquity of their fathers, Lest they rise up and possess the land, And fill the face of the world with cities." - Is. 14:21

      Children are the evil thoughts, which passions (fathers) give birth in the hearts of men (land). These thoughts, the Lord commands to slaughter lest they possess the land and fill our inner selves (world) with sins (cities).

      Quote:

      If the use of the Law had been everywhere made perfectly clear, and strict historical sequence had been preserved, we should not have believed that the Scriptures could be understood in any other than the obvious sense. The Word of God therefore arranged for certain stumbling-blocks and offences and impossibilities to be embedded in the Law and the historical portion, so that we may not be drawn hither and thither by the mere attractiveness of the style, and thus either forsake the doctrinal part because we receive no instruction worthy of God, or cleave to the letter and learn nothing more Divine. And this we ought to know, that the chief purpose being to show the spiritual connection both in past occurrences and in things to be done, wherever the Word found historical events capable of adaptation to these mystic truths, He made use of them, but concealed the deeper sense from the many; but where in setting forth the sequence of things spiritual there was no actual event related for the sake of the more mystic meaning, Scripture interweaves the imaginative with the historical, sometimes introducing what is utterly impossible, sometimes what is possible but never occurred. Sometimes it is only a few words, not literally true, which have been inserted; sometimes the insertions are of greater length. And we must this way understand even the giving of the Law, for therein we may frequently discover the immediate use, adapted to the times when the Law was given; sometimes, however, no good reason appears. And elsewhere we have even impossible commands, for readers of greater ability and those who have more of the spirit of inquiry; so that, applying themselves to the labour of investigating the things written, they may have a fitting conviction of the necessity of looking therein for a meaning worthy of God. - The Philocalia of Origen
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      « Reply #44 on: May 01, 2006, 09:48:34 AM »

      I don't think that not allowing an unbaptized child a Christian burial, is not a  tradition, but a provision of the "Molitvelnic" (I don't know how this is called in English).

      Unbaptized children don't get a church funeral because such is a mystery (sacrament) of the Church (no, there aren't only seven).  You have to be baptized to receive other mysteries. That has nothing to do with the Church's position on their eternal destiny.

      Anastasios
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