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Author Topic: Can an Orthodox Christian be chrismated twice?  (Read 2342 times) Average Rating: 0
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Philotheos
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« on: May 17, 2006, 04:38:53 AM »

I was baptized and chrismated as an infant. Yet my first experience with Orthodoxy occurred more than 17 years later. My parents had already converted to protestantism and I grew up in Protestant tradition. For this reason, I was chrismated twice(technically). The priest who administered the sacrament said chrismating a returing believer after long years of absence is in accordance with the Church Canon. However, I am hearing others who say that multiple chrismation is uncannonical. What am I supposed to do?
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ozgeorge
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« Reply #1 on: May 17, 2006, 05:53:01 AM »

I am hearing others who say that multiple chrismation is uncannonical. What am I supposed to do?
Listen to your priest. While it is true that Chrisimation leaves an indelible mark, re-chrisimation is not "uncanonical". During the 400 years of the Ottoman rule in Greece, those who apostasized to Islam in order to avoid persecution were re-Chrisimated in accordance with the Canons when they converted back to Orthodoxy.
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pensateomnia
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« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2006, 08:16:42 AM »

I agree with ozgeorge. EVEN IF there were something wrong with re-chrismation in your case -- and it doesn't seem there would be -- then the responsibility for that wrong would fall on your priest's shoulders (not yours). It is his duty and his responsibility to decide how to receive you, and it is his duty to check with his Bishop and receive approval. Your duty is simply to follow what he (and your Bishop) decide.

Many of the ancient canons call for chrismation for those who have lapsed and/or who belonged to certain schismatic/heretical groups. I am personally unaware of any official policy in the modern English-speaking Churches for cases such as yours, but it is certainly within the established practice of the Faith to re-chrismate.

Just FYI: Re-chrismation (or chrismation for one coming from a heretical group) was considered to be a penitential act in the ancient Church. It wasn't so much a RE-chrismation per se, as it was an "official" liturgical expression of the lapsed individual's repentance from error and profession of Truth. (Thus, members of some particularly notorious heresies, e.g. Nestorians and Monophysites, were even received by nothing more than a written denial of their error and profession of the Orthodox Faith).
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Anastasios
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« Reply #3 on: May 17, 2006, 08:26:22 AM »

The prayers for a post-baptismal chrismation and the chrismation of one returning from apostasy are different.  Of course, the prayers for chrismating Latins were also different, akin to repentance and not post-baptismal, until the time when the four eastern patriarchs began to baptize Catholics converting to Orthodoxy as a standard practice.

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« Reply #4 on: May 17, 2006, 09:15:56 AM »

My guess is at least pastorally/economically a born Orthodox who didn't grow up in that church but wants to start practising is different from a grown Orthodox who joins another church or faith but comes back. The first person didn't choose to lapse.
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ozgeorge
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« Reply #5 on: May 17, 2006, 10:34:04 AM »

My guess is at least pastorally/economically a born Orthodox who didn't grow up in that church but wants to start practising is different from a grown Orthodox who joins another church or faith but comes back. The first person didn't choose to lapse.
I don't think there is any difference, because no one is "born Orthodox". And if "choosing" is an issue, then infant baptism and chrisimation are invalid, since the infant did not "choose" to be baptised Orthodox in the first place. The Mysterion and the Grace it imparts are the same whether we receive them as an infant or as an adult.
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« Reply #6 on: May 17, 2006, 10:36:43 AM »

I don't think there is any difference, because no one is "born Orthodox". And if "choosing" is an issue, then infant baptism and chrisimation are invalid, since the infant did not "choose" to be baptised Orthodox in the first place. The Mysterion and the Grace it imparts are the same whether we receive them as an infant or as an adult.

I don't think that's what he meant. I think that what he is saying is that in the one case you have ignorance and in the other case you have deliberate choice.  Of course, one may argue that one has ignorance if they leave Orthodoxy for something else, or they may argue that lapsing in general is akin to leaving Orthodoxy for something else (ie hedonism or secularism) but I would agree with Serge/The young fogey that there is a difference in degree here.  And keep in mind that he prefaced his statement with pastorally, and I have to agree that from my experience what he says bears out.

Anastasios
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ozgeorge
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« Reply #7 on: May 17, 2006, 11:01:35 AM »

I don't think that's what he meant. I think that what he is saying is that in the one case you have ignorance and in the other case you have deliberate choice.  Of course, one may argue that one has ignorance if they leave Orthodoxy for something else, or they may argue that lapsing in general is akin to leaving Orthodoxy for something else (ie hedonism or secularism) but I would agree with Serge/The young fogey that there is a difference in degree here.  And keep in mind that he prefaced his statement with pastorally, and I have to agree that from my experience what he says bears out.
I still disagree, and for the same reason as before. Re-chrisimation is not a "punishment", but a "re-sealing" of a "damaged" seal. Whether done in ignorance or not, the seal is still "damaged", and needs to be confirmed as genuine and intact again. It is the Mysterion which confers grace, not our consciousness or ignorance of it- and in the same way, we can "damage" the Mysterion both consciously (by renouncing Christ) or in ignorance.
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« Reply #8 on: May 17, 2006, 12:15:15 PM »

Quote
I still disagree, and for the same reason as before. Re-chrisimation is not a "punishment", but a "re-sealing" of a "damaged" seal. Whether done in ignorance or not, the seal is still "damaged", and needs to be confirmed as genuine and intact again. It is the Mysterion which confers grace, not our consciousness or ignorance of it- and in the same way, we can "damage" the Mysterion both consciously (by renouncing Christ) or in ignorance.

And I still disagree. SmileyÂÂ  We are talking about degree, and there most certainly is a difference in degree between these two situations, and pastorally, lapsed Orthodox are almost never rechrismated.  For most, confession is enough to restore the grace lost whether by ignorance or malice.

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« Reply #9 on: May 17, 2006, 12:24:06 PM »

My guess is at least pastorally/economically a born Orthodox who didn't grow up in that church but wants to start practising is different from a grown Orthodox who joins another church or faith but comes back. The first person didn't choose to lapse.

Sure. That makes sense. Unfortunately, the Church in general has not really developed any policy for receiving such people. In fact, it doesn't even really have a "policy" for how to receive baptized and chrismated Orthodox Christians who intentionally join Protestant Churches and then return to Orthodoxy. Thus, in practice there are many options -- chrismate, accept by profession of faith, just let back in after confession -- and what happened to Philotheos is certainly not weird or "unacceptable." He need not worry that his reception was "wrong," nor need he worry that he himself erred (since the choice was his priest's and, by extension, his Bishop's).

Whether or not the Church SHOULD develop specific means of reception for (a) Orthodox who leave the Church unintentionally and (b) Orthodox who leave the Church intentionally (including those who just don't come for decades?) is another matter. (As is what the exact method of reception SHOULD be).
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« Reply #10 on: June 18, 2006, 01:44:35 AM »

I agree with every one here. I'll have to redo my baptizem and Chrismation as well. As mine was done in the manner like that of the RC. I pray that once I am rebaptized and Chrismayed in the Orthodox Church as being Orthodox that I'll be respected as one
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« Reply #11 on: June 18, 2006, 11:44:13 AM »

What am I supposed to do?

Chrismated twice!! And following your Priests directions?!  Shocked Whoever heard of such a thing?

Wow! Dude, you are doomed to hell for sure. Sorry.  Wink

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« Reply #12 on: June 18, 2006, 03:37:24 PM »

I agree with every one here. I'll have to redo my baptizem and Chrismation as well. As mine was done in the manner like that of the RC. I pray that once I am rebaptized and Chrismayed in the Orthodox Church as being Orthodox that I'll be respected as one

Are you saying that you are going to be re-baptized in the near future because your previous baptism was performed by aspersion?

Secondly, how can you consider your priesthood valid if you don't even consider your baptism to be so? (If one's baptism isn't valid, one isn't even part of the Church yet, much less a ministerial priest).
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« Reply #13 on: June 18, 2006, 04:17:08 PM »

I agree with every one here. I'll have to redo my baptizem and Chrismation as well. As mine was done in the manner like that of the RC. I pray that once I am rebaptized and Chrismayed in the Orthodox Church as being Orthodox that I'll be respected as one

Copied from here:

You can join any church you choose - all somebody like me wants is that the truth be told about whatever church that may be - but you should know that Metropolitan Valentin's church* is likewise out of the Orthodox communion. Unlike your current metropolitan who never was Orthodox, Valentin is a former Orthodox bishop. [End.]

(Not exactly vagantes - they keep the same basic beliefs and practices as the Orthodox and, going back to the original topic, as former members easily can be re-admitted.)

*Updated.
« Last Edit: June 18, 2006, 09:06:43 PM by The young fogey » Logged

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« Reply #14 on: July 01, 2006, 02:26:49 PM »

Copied from here:

You can join any church you choose - all somebody like me wants is that the truth be told about whatever church that may be - but you should know that Metropolitan Valentin's church* is likewise out of the Orthodox communion. Unlike your current metropolitan who never was Orthodox, Valentin is a former Orthodox bishop. [End.]

(Not exactly vagantes - they keep the same basic beliefs and practices as the Orthodox and, going back to the original topic, as former members easily can be re-admitted.)

*Updated.

Yes, when I went to grad school, the only Orthodox presence was a small mission that turned out to be a bunch of wackos. When the priest insisted on re-baptizing me, I was out of there. (I understand they left and haven't been around for a long time.)


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