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Author Topic: Holy Apostles Covenant and the Old Calendarist Movement  (Read 8317 times) Average Rating: 0
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Matthew777
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« on: August 11, 2006, 10:16:30 PM »

In hopes of learning more about this translator of the Orthodox New Testament, I visited the website of Holy Apostles Covenant and found that they are affiliated with the Old Calendarist movement.
http://www.holyapostlesconvent.org/hac-links.shtml

Upon clicking the Genuine Orthodox Church of Greece and the Diaspora, this is to be found:
"After the change of the calendar (10-3-1924), the non secede Orthodoxs (ironically misnamed Oldcalendarists), being under persecution..."
http://www.omologitis.org/main_pag/hellenic_1024x768.htm

This raises the question, how have the Old Calendarists been persecuted, and by whom? Furthermore, should Old Calendarists be considered a fringe movement or a legitimate part of the Orthodox Church?
And lastly, if the Holy Apostles Covenant provides an Old Calendarist interpretation of the Scriptures, would that be any different from that of "mainstream" Orthodoxy? Any clarifications would be very helpful.

Peace.
« Last Edit: August 11, 2006, 10:18:08 PM by Matthew777 » Logged

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« Reply #1 on: August 11, 2006, 11:34:52 PM »

Quote
This raises the question, how have the Old Calendarists been persecuted, and by whom?

Orthodox Christians, and secular authorities in Orthodox countries have persecuted them. Thankfully, usually only theft, vandalism, etc. occur, and only a few deaths have taken place that I am aware of. Though even a few is obviously a few too many.

Quote
Furthermore, should Old Calendarists be considered a fringe movement or a legitimate part of the Orthodox Church?

In a way, the question is a strange one. The majority of Eastern Orthodox Christians are old calendarist. That is mostly thanks to the Moscow Patriarchate being Old Calendar, but the Jerusalem Patriarchate, Serbian Patriarchate, ROCOR, and others also use the Old Calendar. Actually, outside of North America, the New Calendar is in the extreme minority.

Now, if by "Old calendarists" you mean those who are part of a group that broke off from a Church over the calendar issue, or have walled themselves off, or declared the group that they broke from to be schismatic or heretical, then I don't know. They apparently were not so fringe that men like St. Nikolai of Serbia and various ROCOR bishops considered it a good thing to help them. ROCOR even entered into communion with not a few "old calendarist" groups. And, considering that an Administrator at this site is one of those potentially "fringe old calendarists," I'd suggest a bit more tact in the way you phrase things Wink

Quote
And lastly, if the Holy Apostles Covenant provides an Old Calendarist interpretation of the Scriptures, would that be any different from that of "mainstream" Orthodoxy? Any clarifications would be very helpful

Their Bible, by-in-large, doesn't include their own commentary (except when explaining why they chose this or that translation), so you would probably only get some bias (if any) indirectly, through the numerous patristic quotes they decide to include or exclude. Personally, I think their translation is difficult to read and awkward. Then again, I've thought that about every liturgical translation to come out of Holy Transfiguration Monastery, and everyone else seems to think the HTM is the bees knees, so what do I know? Smiley
« Last Edit: August 11, 2006, 11:35:55 PM by Asteriktos » Logged
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« Reply #2 on: August 12, 2006, 12:42:59 AM »

Matthew,

Just to be clear, a point which Asteriktos brought up but maybe mixed terms;

There are those on the Old Calendar, which is the majority of the EO, as he said.

There are "Old Calendar-ists," (this may be an artificial distinction in langauge, but necessary in this conversation) who decided that the presence of the "New" Calendar (officially the "Revised Julian Calendar") is enough to break off relations with certain jurisdictions.  While Moscow, Jerusalem, Belgrade et al. are on the Old Calendar, they are not "Old Calendarists."
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« Reply #3 on: August 12, 2006, 01:02:49 AM »

It seems to me, that out of the Eastern Orthodox Church, the Old Calendarist "traditionalists" are the most steadfastly Orthodox.
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« Reply #4 on: August 12, 2006, 02:30:05 AM »

Are you so concerned with "who's more Orthodox"?  Following that thought, you will never be content.
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« Reply #5 on: August 12, 2006, 08:14:53 AM »

It seems to me, that out of the Eastern Orthodox Church, the Old Calendarist "traditionalists" are the most steadfastly Orthodox.


What a great declaration! You have obviously done your homework. Congratulations on your new opinion. Hope you enjoy it.
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« Reply #6 on: August 12, 2006, 10:30:50 AM »

Matthew,

I am an Old Calendarist, but I refuse to engage in your "fad of the week,"  We Old Calendarists are not a fad, an ideology, or something you can put under your usual regimen of speculations. I'm sorry if that sounds harsh, but I am not going to spend hours enaging you only to have you go on to your next fad next week.

Holy Apostles Convent and the like, under "Bishop" Gregory, are not Old Calendarists. They were with us for a total of a few years, never really with us though during that time (trying to cause intrigue, etc. and were finally excommunicated), and now are "independent", i.e. vagante.  If you want to see real Old Calendarists, I refer you to our Metropolis's website, www.thegreekorthodoxchurch.com.  And with that, I bow out of this discussion.

Anastasios
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« Reply #7 on: August 12, 2006, 01:03:14 PM »

I'd suggest a bit more tact in the way you phrase things Wink

How's this for tact.  I'm not sure Matthew would know tact if it came up and hit him in the face.
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« Reply #8 on: August 12, 2006, 01:06:42 PM »

I am an Old Calendarist, but I refuse to engage in your "fad of the week,"ÂÂ  

I've been an admirer of Father Seraphim Rose for two years, his writings, and others featured at the Orthodox Christian Information Center, are how I became introduced to what is called "Old Calendarism" and "Orthodox traditionalism." It's something that, as an Oriental Orthodox Christian, I'd never be a part of, but I respect it nonetheless. That I am inquiring about something for the first time doesn't mean I just suddenly heard of what it is.

Peace.
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« Reply #9 on: August 12, 2006, 01:14:11 PM »

Matthew,

Frankly, it doesn't matter when you heard about it; the point is, this is your interest for this week.  The fact that you say you will never be apart of us just further confirms the futility of engaging you--why would I want to spend my time talking about beloved Church in the context of something "interesting" or "admirable" as if we are being examined under your microscope? How can you not see that your pseudo-academic style of analyzing group after group is actually offensive at times to the people you are examining?  You are basically asking a bunch of people here who are not Old Calendarist, to sit around and speculate with you, who are not even Eastern Orthodox, as to the legitimacy of our Church.  Not appreciated!

However, if you are really interested, there are some books out there about us and if you want to learn about us, I suggest you find them.  I'll even do you the favor of not citing them, so you can have an adventure finding them. Smiley

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« Reply #10 on: August 12, 2006, 01:17:52 PM »

However, if you are really interested, there are some books out there about us and if you want to learn about us, I suggest you find them.ÂÂ  

That is a good idea. Perhaps one of them would be at the public library.
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« Reply #11 on: August 24, 2006, 12:00:40 AM »

How does Holy Apostles Convent's compare to other translations of the New Testament?
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« Reply #12 on: August 24, 2006, 12:09:59 AM »

It is very close to the Greek text and can be hard to read just like the Greek but it is my personal choice for reading the NT. One thing I really like is that some words are not translated like Logos. There is also an attempt to keep some of the word plays that John uses intact. I have never heard anyone trash the text only the footnotes.
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« Reply #13 on: August 24, 2006, 12:33:40 AM »

Is the text easier to read than the KJV?
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« Reply #14 on: August 24, 2006, 06:42:52 PM »

What exactly is the "problem" with "Old-Calendarism" and "traditionalism"?  I've always considered my own Church the Coptic Church as one of the most traditional and strictly Old Calendar (so, no, not all OO's are the same as the Malankara Churches).

God bless.

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« Reply #15 on: August 24, 2006, 06:44:23 PM »

What exactly is the "problem" with "Old-Calendarism" and "traditionalism"?  I've always considered my own Church the Coptic Church as one of the most traditional and strictly Old Calendar (so, no, not all OO's are the same as the Malankara Churches).

God bless.

Mina

I can't speak for my non Old Calendarist friends but it seems their problem is not so much with us being traditional and on the Old Calendar (although some do have problems with that) as much as our refraining from communion with them and consecrating our own bishops without their approval.

Anastasios
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« Reply #16 on: August 24, 2006, 06:50:58 PM »

I can't speak for my non Old Calendarist friends but it seems their problem is not so much with us being traditional and on the Old Calendar (although some do have problems with that) as much as our refraining from communion with them and consecrating our own bishops without their approval.

Anastasios

Sounds about right.
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« Reply #17 on: August 24, 2006, 07:14:26 PM »

Mina,

There is a difference between traditional, and traditionalist. The first term is like a general description of an approach or mindset, while the second term is more like a title or badge of honor worn by those who want to seperate themselves from other, supposedly less faithful, Orthodox. Generally these traditionalist groups will say that those in "world Orthodoxy" (ie. 95% of Orthodoxy) is heretical or schismatic, and graceless. I don't know about the personal position of Anastasios, but that is what his Church has affirmed as it's public, official position for generations now. I guess Antiochians, OCAers, etc. don't take kindly to being told that they aren't in the Church, don't have valid sacraments, etc. (Again, I am not attributing that belief to Anastasios, but that position is the official one of his Church, even if a majority of their people disagree with it).
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« Reply #18 on: August 24, 2006, 07:15:12 PM »

I can't speak for my non Old Calendarist friends but it seems their problem is not so much with us being traditional and on the Old Calendar (although some do have problems with that) as much as our refraining from communion with them and consecrating our own bishops without their approval.

Anastasios

Is that true for ALL Old-Calendarists, is that just generally?

God bless.
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« Reply #19 on: August 24, 2006, 07:16:52 PM »

Mina,

There is a difference between traditional, and traditionalist. The first term is like a general description of an approach or mindset, while the second term is more like a title or badge of honor worn by those who want to seperate themselves from other, supposedly less faithful, Orthodox. Generally these traditionalist groups will say that those in "world Orthodoxy" (ie. 95% of Orthodoxy) is heretical or schismatic, and graceless. I don't know about the personal position of Anastasios, but that is what his Church has affirmed as it's public, official position for generations now. I guess Antiochians, OCAers, etc. don't take kindly to being told that they aren't in the Church, don't have valid sacraments, etc. (Again, I am not attributing that belief to Anastasios, but that position is the official one of his Church, even if a majority of their people disagree with it).

Well, I thought "traditionalist" meant something along the line of growing beards and wearing the traditional black cloak priests wear, etc. etc. etc.  I never thought of it as being highly exclusive from the rest of the Orthodox.

Thanks for that insight.

Mina
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« Reply #20 on: August 24, 2006, 07:58:48 PM »

I have no problem with the Old Calanderist movement nor Orthodox Traditionalism.
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« Reply #21 on: August 24, 2006, 08:22:35 PM »

Mina,

There is a difference between traditional, and traditionalist. The first term is like a general description of an approach or mindset, while the second term is more like a title or badge of honor worn by those who want to seperate themselves from other, supposedly less faithful, Orthodox. Generally these traditionalist groups will say that those in "world Orthodoxy" (ie. 95% of Orthodoxy) is heretical or schismatic, and graceless. I don't know about the personal position of Anastasios, but that is what his Church has affirmed as it's public, official position for generations now. I guess Antiochians, OCAers, etc. don't take kindly to being told that they aren't in the Church, don't have valid sacraments, etc. (Again, I am not attributing that belief to Anastasios, but that position is the official one of his Church, even if a majority of their people disagree with it).

You may have had conversations with one of our bishops via email, you may have had discussions with me previously in private, you may have read various statements, but to my knowledge you never worshipped with us or even visited one of our parishes.  All your "knowledge" of us is quite academic and aloof.  You are highly overgeneralizing things and oversimplifying things.  But of course while none of that matters to you, Mr. "Gadfly", it does matter to those of us you analyze or describe, without having been a part of or even intimately familiar with. In fact, Justin, I don't even see your position as that different from that of Matthew.  I'm sure you consider yourself to be lightyears ahead of him intellectually, but the fact of the matter is, you and he engage in the act of speculation about things you really don't know or understand.  Stop being an armchair researcher.  If you actually want to write about stuff, do the legwork (like me) and actually meet the people you assess, experience things in real life. access REAL ARCHIVES of documents and do research there, etc. You're smart enough to have a PhD by now and be a university professor (and in fact, there is still time for you to do this or something else academic and serious in nature).  But if you spend the rest of your life engaging in scholarship with a modem, you are not going to actually broaden your horizons and will never be the enlightened individual you seem to already imagine yourself.

Anastasios
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« Reply #22 on: August 24, 2006, 08:54:52 PM »

And who did not see that post coming from a mile off?   Undecided
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« Reply #23 on: August 24, 2006, 09:52:25 PM »

Mina,

There is a difference between traditional, and traditionalist. The first term is like a general description of an approach or mindset, while the second term is more like a title or badge of honor worn by those who want to seperate themselves from other, supposedly less faithful, Orthodox. Generally these traditionalist groups will say that those in "world Orthodoxy" (ie. 95% of Orthodoxy) is heretical or schismatic, and graceless. I don't know about the personal position of Anastasios, but that is what his Church has affirmed as it's public, official position for generations now. I guess Antiochians, OCAers, etc. don't take kindly to being told that they aren't in the Church, don't have valid sacraments, etc. (Again, I am not attributing that belief to Anastasios, but that position is the official one of his Church, even if a majority of their people disagree with it).

When I was a Catholic, I didn't take kindly to being told I wasn't receiving the Sacraments, but does that make it true that I was receiving the Sacraments?  No.  Orthodoxy isn't based on how people feel.  If you preach heresy (as the Church says the Ecumenists do), then you don't have Grace.  The Church has always taught that heretics don't have Grace.  Here is an article that explains why the New Calendar is more than just wrong, its heretical (by Archpriest Fr. Anthony Gavalas of the Holy Protection of the Holy Theotokos in Astoria, under the Synod Abp. Nicholaos of Athens and All Greece):

The Calendar Question and the Proposed
Common Celebration of Pascha by the
Orthodox and Roman Catholics

by Archpriest Anthony B. Gavalas


     The question of the change in the Church’s Festal Calendar is not of general interest. Even among those concerned with religious matters, only a few are familiar with the reasons why the State (or “official”) Church of Greece changed the calendar and accepted that of Pope Gregory XIII, under the deceptive appellation of the “Corrected Julian Calendar.”
Among those who have even the vaguest idea about this question, if one asks them why the change came about, they will answer that the Julian (Old) Calendar is faulty and loses days, and that, had the change not been implemented, why, in a short time we would have been celebrating the Feast of our Savior’s Nativity in the summer! (It seems that such individuals have been influenced by Christmas cards, in which snow is presented as an indispensable element in the celebration of the Nativity, forgetting that our Orthodox brothers in Australia observe the Feast in the midst of the December heat, without this spoiling the celebration.)

A few, more “learned” persons, when a discussion of the calendar change arises, come up with obscure notions about astrological theories. But do not persist in your questions, for you will find that these same opinionated astronomers (who feign knowledge) do not even know the names of the planets in our solar system!

Others, again, think that the calendar change is something that occurred in the past; an old dispute which is no longer of interest, except to the hardheaded “Old Calendarists”; and that this issue is irrelevant to the “canonical” life of the Church.

All of these individuals are greatly deluded. The calendar question has not been resolved. Not even those who implemented it in 1924, and brought about such confusion—even they have not yet accomplished their ultimate goal of reform.

First, in order to understand how important this issue is, we should remember that the so-called “Old” (in reality, “CHURCH”) Calendar and the Paschalion, or the formula for calculating the date of Pascha, were established by a decision and decree of the First Å’cumenical Synod in 325 A.D. Present at this Synod were St. Constantine the Great, St. Nicholas, St. Spyridon, St. Athanasios—three hundred eighteen Holy Fathers in total. They were aware, even then, that there were deficiencies in the Julian Calendar, but they considered harmony among the Orthodox as a whole, and the expression of their unity in the Festal Calendar (the immovable Feasts) and the Paschalion, as well as the avoidance of concelebration with the heterodox, more important than astronomical exactitude.

This unity came to be broken, after thirteen hundred years, by the heretical Pope Gregory and his own calendar, the Gregorian Calendar, which he tried to impose on the Orthodox Church also. However, the Orthodox Patriarchs of that time reacted against this innovation in Pan-Orthodox Councils convened in 1583, 1587, and 1593. These Councils found it insufficient simply to condemn the Papal Calendar; rather, they also imposed an anathema on any who accepted it. These pronouncements have never been rescinded and continue to remain in force. The Papist Calendar and the Papal Paschalion, including all those who accept them, remain under the anathema of these Holy Councils, as well as under the anathema of the Seventh Å’cumenical Synod, which condemned anyone who violates Holy Tradition, whether in written or unwritten form.

Everyone should be aware of the true reasons for the change in the Festal Calendar in 1924. It was based neither on fears of a summertime Nativity Feast nor on astrological misgivings — no! The reason for this change, which has occasioned such misfortune and division among the Orthodox people, which brought about a schism between traditionalist and modernist Orthodox, is to be found in the history of the greatest betrayal of the Orthodox people in the twentieth century: in the betrayal of ecumenism. Let us learn of this in the very writings of these traitors: in the infamous Encyclical of 1920, which was issued by the Å’cumenical Patriarchate “To the Churches of Christ Everywhere.” This Encyclical is noteworthy, since for the first time the various kinds of heresy and their offshoots are addressed as “Churches of Christ.” And by whom? By the Hierarchs of our venerable Å’cumenical Patriarchate!

This Encyclical lays the groundwork for the union of all of the “churches,” irrespective of what each one believes, and is the founding charter for the betrayal that is ecumenism. This Encyclical enumerates the measures that must be taken to accomplish the much-desired (for them) union of the “churches.” And what is the first measure to which the Encyclical makes reference? Behold:

“The adoption of a uniform calendar for the celebration of the great Feasts by all of the churches at the same time” (John Karmiris, Dogmatic and Creedal Monuments [in Greek], Vol. II, pp. 958-959). Did you read that carefully? Read it again. There is no reference to a loss of days. Nothing about a summertime Nativity Feast. Nothing about astronomical or chronological defects. The entire matter of the calendar change was, and is, that of the perfidious betrayal of the Orthodox people into the jaws of the beast of ecumenism! All of the other excuses put forth are for the naïve, for the simple-minded, who are thought incapable of grasping the “splendor” of the Masonically-inspired ecumenical movement. This step, that is, the calendar change, was delayed until the right time for its implementation. When? In 1924. In the midst of the confusion and uproar of the widespread devastation of Asia Minor, in the chaotic course of population exchanges, and during the dictatorship of Plastiras-Gonatas! Truly, these wolf-shepherds, mercenaries of ecumenism, gave life to the old Greek proverb, “The wolf rejoices in tumult”

But their plan remains half-accomplished. Their charter dictates that all of the great Feasts should be celebrated by all Christians at the same time. They succeeded only in the imposition of the Festal Calendar of the Pope. And though they wanted then to impose the Papal Paschalion, they did not accomplish this, except in Romania, for two years, which years, however, were stained by blood—the blood of the Orthodox who protested against this innovation. It was adopted by the Church of Finland for “pastoral reasons”; but most modernists are compelled to follow the CHURCH (Old) Calendar for the entire cycle of the Triodion (Great Lent) and the Pentecostarion. In other words, they follow two calendars!

This is why we wrote in the beginning of this article that the calendar question has not been resolved. There remains the thorn in the side of the executors of the provisions of the Patriarchal Encyclical of 1920: the imposition of a new Paschalion, to complete their work!

For years, now, they have been debating how to realize this much-desired objective. They are aware of the consequences of the change in the Festal Calendar and do not want to create, in addition to Old Calendarists, “Old Paschalists”! Not that they pity the flock! It is simply that they do not wish to appear politically inept to their arch-Masonic masters.

And so it is that every so often we hear or read about the need to reform the Paschalion, especially when Orthodox Pascha is very late in comparison to Western Easter. The question has been a matter of “serious debate” on the agendas of the preconciliar gatherings held in preparation for the convocation of a so-called “Eighth Ecumenical Council.”

And a number of solutions have been suggested. Indeed, some have suggested the adoption of the “corrected” Western calculation for Pascha, which does not take into consideration the date of the Jewish Passover. Others, more cunning, exploiting the weakness of the many Orthodox who, unfortunately, have “lost their Paschalia” and live out the year without taking into account the natural rhythm of the ecclesiastical cycle, have proposed another solution: “A permanent, appointed Sunday, either in April or May, which will also be acceptable to the heterodox!”

This solution, for many reasons, will appeal to worldly-minded “Christians,” but is equally a violation of Orthodox Tradition and the dictates of the First Å’cumenical Synod.

Brothers, conservative (pious) New Calendarists, I ask you: “What will you do in view of this new betrayal...?”



--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Originally published in Homogeneia [in Greek], June, 1996. Translated from the Greek by Archbishop Chrysostomos and Father Anthony.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
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« Reply #24 on: August 24, 2006, 10:30:24 PM »

I would agree that a real, hardcore ecumenist is a heretic.  The problem is, there are so many shades of gray.  The problem with ecumenism is that unlike other heresies, it has many levels and there are various degrees of thought concerning the issue.  Is every member of "World Orthodoxy" (I really hate that term) an ecumenist in the true sense of the word? No.  That raises the problem of being in communion with those in error, but this is a rather abstract point that does not lend itself easily to hard examples and proofs.  Hence, I find such discussions online to be rather tasteless.

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« Reply #25 on: August 24, 2006, 11:53:29 PM »

If you preach heresy (as the Church says the Ecumenists do), then you don't have Grace.  The Church has always taught that heretics don't have Grace.  Here is an article that explains why the New Calendar is more than just wrong, its heretical

This is blunt, and Anastasios will probably take me to task over much that I'm about to say, but give me a break.  It is one thing to preach the heretical idea that heterodox sacraments have grace in and of themselves; it is totally another to say that the New Calendar is heretical.

Quote
Among those who have even the vaguest idea about this question, if one asks them why the change came about, they will answer that the Julian (Old) Calendar is faulty and loses days, and that, had the change not been implemented, why, in a short time we would have been celebrating the Feast of our Savior’s Nativity in the summer! (It seems that such individuals have been influenced by Christmas cards, in which snow is presented as an indispensable element in the celebration of the Nativity, forgetting that our Orthodox brothers in Australia observe the Feast in the midst of the December heat, without this spoiling the celebration.)

Once again, a break, please.  He takes a very real criticism of the Old Calendar--the fact that it is much more inaccurate than the New--and ascribes a motive to it that no one in their right mind (and no one that I've heard talk about the New Calendar) would adhere to.  The point is that, for those of us who seek to make the days we've established and celebrate as God's Church correspond with our best understanding of God's heavens, the Old Calendar is little more than a desire to uphold the letter of the law to an unbelievable degree while all but forgetting the spirit of the calendar in the first place: to redeem the time of the world around us.

Quote
A few, more “learned” persons, when a discussion of the calendar change arises, come up with obscure notions about astrological theories. But do not persist in your questions, for you will find that these same opinionated astronomers (who feign knowledge) do not even know the names of the planets in our solar system!

Well, if the reverend father wants to dismiss easily observed and proveable theories of planetary motion as "obscure notions," he's welcome to it.  His comparison with the recent controversial reclassification of Pluto and other dwarf planets is grasping at straws, as it is not the observation and the awareness of the behavior of said heavenly bodies that is in question here; rather it is the category in which we will arbitrarily place these observed and recorded bodies.

Quote
All of these individuals are greatly deluded. The calendar question has not been resolved. Not even those who implemented it in 1924, and brought about such confusion—even they have not yet accomplished their ultimate goal of reform.

Now, I will admit, the implementation of the New Calendar was absolutely for the wrong reasons--trying to foster some superficial, artificial unity with the heterodox using externals like common calendar dates--and it was done without the consent of most of the Church (the latter reason is reason enough for this New Calendar supporter to switch back to the Old Calendar for now until we can all, together, get our heads in sync with modern astronomy and all make the leap to the New Calendar together and stop adhering to this embarrassing anachronism).

Quote
First, in order to understand how important this issue is, we should remember that the so-called “Old” (in reality, “CHURCH”) Calendar and the Paschalion, or the formula for calculating the date of Pascha, were established by a decision and decree of the First Å’cumenical Synod in 325 A.D.... They were aware, even then, that there were deficiencies in the Julian Calendar,

Yes, and had they had the option of more accurate readings and a more accurate measurement, which one do you think they would have gone with?  Which one do you think the secular Roman Empire (who determined the use of the Julian Calendar in the first place) would have used, given the choice?

Quote
but they considered harmony among the Orthodox as a whole, and the expression of their unity in the Festal Calendar (the immovable Feasts) and the Paschalion, as well as the avoidance of concelebration with the heterodox, more important than astronomical exactitude.

Disunity among other Orthodox had nothing to do with the actual calendar, but rather with the method of calculating the Paschalion--some wanted Pascha on Nisan 14, others wanted it the Sunday after that, some wanted the current calculation...but they all used the common Julian reckoning to crunch their numbers.

Quote
However, the Orthodox Patriarchs of that time reacted against this innovation in Pan-Orthodox Councils convened in 1583, 1587, and 1593. These Councils found it insufficient simply to condemn the Papal Calendar; rather, they also imposed an anathema on any who accepted it. These pronouncements have never been rescinded and continue to remain in force.

Yet they are not considered of the same authority as Ecumenical Councils.  And they seem to be quite open to the charge of political motivation, as well as theological objection...

Quote
The Papist Calendar and the Papal Paschalion, including all those who accept them, remain under the anathema of these Holy Councils, as well as under the anathema of the Seventh Å’cumenical Synod, which condemned anyone who violates Holy Tradition, whether in written or unwritten form.

And the Calendar is a specific part of Holy Tradition within the...unwritten category?  Must be; I sure can't find it listed anywhere as definitely Holy Tradition.

Quote
Indeed, some have suggested the adoption of the “corrected” Western calculation for Pascha, which does not take into consideration the date of the Jewish Passover.

This is a case of the pot calling the kettle black, methinks...true, the Western Calendar does not take into consideration the Jewish Passover, nor does it take into consideration the moveable nature of the Vernal Equinox.  Yet the Old Calendar does no better with regards to the Equinox, and in fact, does worse!  The Vernal Equinox is traditionally celebrated on March 21st, and this date (as reckoned by the New Calendar) is often very close--perhaps a few days off at the very most--to when the actual, astronomically observable Equinox happens in the heavens.  When does the Old Calendar observe "March 21st"?  13 days later!  It doesn't matter that the actual event that we're waiting for has already come and gone; we must wait so that we can mark when it was supposed to have happened--as if the heavens owe it to our obsolete, inaccurate reckonings to not move as God fashioned them to move and really be reckoned according to readings that astronomers during the Crusades were looking to change.

Quote
Others...have proposed another solution: “A permanent, appointed Sunday, either in April or May, which will also be acceptable to the heterodox!”

Which, of course, flies in the face of even the "Revised Julian" protocols.  No Orthodox I've ever heard of (if we New Calendarist heretics can even be called such  Roll Eyes) would agree to a fixed Sunday for Pascha.

Quote
This solution, for many reasons, will appeal to worldly-minded “Christians,” but is equally a violation of Orthodox Tradition and the dictates of the First Å’cumenical Synod.

Another example of the reverend father's inability to compare an unwise move whose motivations today are different from those that founded it with a totally foreign idea based solely on ecumenism.  He means well, I'm sure, but this is one of the weaker cases against the New Calendar that I've read.
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« Reply #26 on: August 25, 2006, 10:22:05 PM »

How does Holy Apostles Convent's NT compare to other translations in terms of readability?
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« Reply #27 on: August 28, 2006, 10:50:32 AM »

Most people here have hear my comments on the whole calendar issue-- namely, that it is at this point about differentiation and nothing else. This being "faith issues", I'll skip the ecumenical aspect; but within Orthodoxy, it's something to argue about.

But that takes us back to Holy Apostles Convent and their "translation". Again, I haven't seen it-- has anyone?-- but comments on line seem to divide neatly into theoretical acclaim for its devotion to the Byzantine (TR?) text and actual criticism for its impenetrable English. As far as I understand it, the convent itself is yet another domain of the deposed Gregory; for that reason alone, one should be wary.
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« Reply #28 on: August 28, 2006, 12:09:48 PM »

How does Holy Apostles Convent's NT compare to other translations in terms of readability?

Too subjective a criterion for me. It's "OK". I don't like format and notes in rear, however.
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« Reply #29 on: August 28, 2006, 02:21:57 PM »

[quote author=Αριστοκλής link=topic=9727.msg133588#msg133588 date=1156781388]
Too subjective a criterion for me.
[/quote]

Is it at least easier to read than the KJV?

[quote author=Αριστοκλής link=topic=9727.msg133588#msg133588 date=1156781388]
I don't like format and notes in rear, however.
[/quote]

Footnotes, oftentimes, can distract from the text itself.
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« Reply #30 on: August 28, 2006, 03:00:23 PM »

On a related note (i.e., a comment about this translation), in its appendix on manuscripts used for both the Hebrew Scriptures (OT) and the Greek (NT) Scriptures, this NT makes the following statements:

"The Hebrew version in circulation today, the so-called Massoretic (sic) Text, is chiefly a re-translation of the Septuagint into Medieval Hebrew that was produced in stages between the 2nd and 9th centuries and upon which the Old Testament King James Version is based.... The Massoretic (sic) Text is partly a restoration of these six translations [i.e., Aquila (A.D. 130), Theodotion (A.D. 180), Symmachus (A.D. 210), and the so-called Quinta, Sexta, and Septima (all 3rd century)] as well."

ISBN 0944359175 The Holy Gospels (p. 582)
ISBN 0944359183 Acts, Epistles and Revelation (not sure what page, but the
comments about the Masoretic Text are the same, as I recall)
December 2000
Published by Holy Apostles Convent


As I understand it, they are saying that the Hebrew Masoretic text is in large part a re-translation from a Septuagintal/Greek text - and in "Medieval Hebrew" at that.

So I asked the B-Hebrew list the following: "How valid is this claim? It's the first time I've heard/read such a thing. If it's a false or erroneous claim, where can I find sources/documentation to disprove it?"

Here are some of the responses I received. It sounds like the authors of this Holy Apostles translation are overly zealous for the Septuagint to the point of making unsupportable and false statements.

Sounds to me like you've got somebody's unsupported propaganda in your hands.

It's complete nonsense. Any book should be able to refute it. Try Ernst Würthwein, _The Text of the Old Testament_ or F. F. Bruce, _The Canon of Scripture_.

When was this book published? I suppose before the DSS were discovered this could not be disproved. But the discovery of the DSS has proved that the MT, at least its consonants, dates from before the Christian era, with only rather minor changes since then e.g. in the Isaiah scroll. The suggestion that MT is "medieval" is thereby completely disproved. It is hard to prove that the text is much earlier, but the Hebrew is clearly different from that of most non-biblical DSS and in significant ways closer to pre-exilic inscriptions. This strongly suggests that the MT text is to a large extent some centuries older than the DSS, and probably dates back to a period before Greek was widely known in the land of Israel - which would be rather inconsistent with it being a translation of any kind of Greek text.

It is not difficult to demonstrate the inaccuracy of this claim. It is true that it's easier to date the LXX (Septuagint), particularly the Torah part thereof, to slightly before the oldest attested Hebrew copies of the Bible, but:
1. Parts of the Bible contain acrostic poems in Hebrew, but only in Hebrew, not in Greek. It is patently absurd to think that the Greeks wrote the LXX precisely in such a way that 1,000 years later the Greek could be translated into a Hebrew acrostic.
2. Much of Genesis consists of word plays that only work in Hebrew. For example, Isaac is called (in Hebrew) YITZCHAK because that name shares a root with "laugh," and according to the text itself Isaac's birth involves laughter (on Sarah's part). Abram's name means "exalted father" (something like "tribal elder"), but, again, only in Hebrew, not in Greek. Other examples abound. And again, it is absurd to think that nonsensical Greek was composed just to make the Hebrew translation clever.
3. A minor matter, but the Hebrew in the Bible is not medieval Hebrew at all.
4. The DSS (Dead Sea Scrolls) confirm the authenticity of much of the Hebrew text of the Bible. These date to just after the LXX, and long before the Masoretes.
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« Reply #31 on: August 28, 2006, 03:17:34 PM »

"The Hebrew version in circulation today, the so-called Massoretic (sic) Text, is chiefly a re-translation of the Septuagint into Medieval Hebrew that was produced in stages between the 2nd and 9th centuries and upon which the Old Testament King James Version is based.... The Massoretic (sic) Text is partly a restoration of these six translations [i.e., Aquila (A.D. 130), Theodotion (A.D. 180), Symmachus (A.D. 210), and the so-called Quinta, Sexta, and Septima (all 3rd century)] as well."

ISBN 0944359175 The Holy Gospels (p. 582)
ISBN 0944359183 Acts, Epistles and Revelation (not sure what page, but the
comments about the Masoretic Text are the same, as I recall)
December 2000
Published by Holy Apostles Convent

That is just a load of dingo's kidneys. One of the arguments made to justify preferring the LXX is its differences from the MT.
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« Reply #32 on: August 28, 2006, 03:31:26 PM »

That is just a load of dingo's kidneys. One of the arguments made to justify preferring the LXX is its differences from the MT.


Absolutely. Everyone now recognizes the signficance of the LXX preserving some pre-MT readings or variant readings, and it supports the NT quoting from the LXX. And there is some evidence to support Justin Martyr's statement to "Trypho" that the Jews may have changed some Scriptures because of their Christological interpretation. (E.g., there is the "they pierced my hands and feet" vs. "like a lion my hands and feet" in Ps. 22:16 (English Bible versification); the DSS apparently supports the former, and hence the LXX rendering.) But to state that the MT was a retranslation from the LXX done between the 2nd and 9th centuries A.D. (C.E.), and into "Medieval Hebrew," is almost a form of linguistic anti-Semitism, IMO.
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« Reply #33 on: August 28, 2006, 03:53:02 PM »

That is just a load of dingo's kidneys. One of the arguments made to justify preferring the LXX is its differences from the MT.


Exactly. The Septuagint is a translation of an earlier version of the Hebrew Bible, and the Masoretic text was later made, whether from the Septuagint or the Hebrew, to edit out the prophecies and types for the coming of Christ.
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« Reply #34 on: August 28, 2006, 04:11:55 PM »

Absolutely. Everyone now recognizes the signficance of the LXX preserving some pre-MT readings or variant readings, and it supports the NT quoting from the LXX. And there is some evidence to support Justin Martyr's statement to "Trypho" that the Jews may have changed some Scriptures because of their Christological interpretation. (E.g., there is the "they pierced my hands and feet" vs. "like a lion my hands and feet" in Ps. 22:16 (English Bible versification); the DSS apparently supports the former, and hence the LXX rendering.) But to state that the MT was a retranslation from the LXX done between the 2nd and 9th centuries A.D. (C.E.), and into "Medieval Hebrew," is almost a form of linguistic anti-Semitism, IMO.

So, then, the Masoretic Text was what, exactly?  I know it's absurd to claim what the HAC folks do, but where exactly did the MT come from--what I mean is, what is it based on as a version of the Hebrew Scriptures, and when was it put together?
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« Reply #35 on: August 28, 2006, 04:31:04 PM »

Quote
So I asked the B-Hebrew list the following: "How valid is this claim? It's the first time I've heard/read such a thing. If it's a false or erroneous claim, where can I find sources/documentation to disprove it?"...

1. Parts of the Bible contain acrostic poems in Hebrew, but only in Hebrew, not in Greek. It is patently absurd to think that the Greeks wrote the LXX precisely in such a way that 1,000 years later the Greek could be translated into a Hebrew acrostic.

So much for the scholarship of that list...the LXX were not Greeks, but were Jews.
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« Reply #36 on: August 28, 2006, 04:38:35 PM »

The MT is the edition of the Hebrew text produced over a long, somewhat indefinite period and reaching the point of a single fixed text around the 9th-10th centuries CE. It consists not only of the text itself, but also of a considerable critical apparatus. The issue, in a nutshell, is that in the diaspora the problem of variant texts became acute because there was not longer a central authority-- the temple-- to appeal to. They also attempted to control interpretation by pinning down the vowels.

The main issue is that they were so successful that until the DSS came along there was very little independent evidence of the text (chiefly in the Talmud, which evolved in parallel), other than the LXX. When the DSS appeared it became clear that some of the differences between the LXX and the MT did in fact represent differences in the Hebrew which the LXX was presumably based upon. Other differences were shown to be LXX mistranslations. However, the notion that the MT is a back translation from the LXX is just rediculous; the DSS show this conclusively, as if other evidence weren't sufficient.
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« Reply #37 on: August 28, 2006, 04:39:30 PM »

[quote author=Αριστοκλής link=topic=9727.msg133625#msg133625 date=1156797064]
So much for the scholarship of that list...the LXX were not Greeks, but were Jews.
[/quote]

Yes, I think he miswrote, or wrote "the Greeks" as shorthand for "the Greek-speaking/writing Jews who translated the LXX". There is able scholarship on the B-Hebrew list, though there are novices as well - it's open to all. To dismiss the B-Hebrew comments/criticisms of the HAC NT because of this one poor statement is to miss his point.
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« Reply #38 on: August 28, 2006, 04:40:32 PM »

So, then, the Masoretic Text was what, exactly?  I know it's absurd to claim what the HAC folks do, but where exactly did the MT come from--what I mean is, what is it based on as a version of the Hebrew Scriptures, and when was it put together?

I think Keble addresses this in his reply, so there's not much I would add (based on my limited knowledge of the transmission of the MT - as opposed to my slightly-better knowledge of the transmission of the NT text Grin ).
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« Reply #39 on: August 28, 2006, 04:51:06 PM »

To dismiss the B-Hebrew comments/criticisms of the HAC NT because of this one poor statement is to miss his point.

Maybe. Maybe not.
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« Reply #40 on: August 28, 2006, 05:06:51 PM »

[quote author=Αριστοκλής link=topic=9727.msg133631#msg133631 date=1156798266]

To dismiss the B-Hebrew comments/criticisms of the HAC NT because of this one poor statement is to miss his point.

Maybe. Maybe not.[/quote]

On what basis do you dismiss any or all of the writer's 4. points, i.e.:

It is not difficult to demonstrate the inaccuracy of this claim. It is true that it's easier to date the LXX (Septuagint), particularly the Torah part thereof, to slightly before the oldest attested Hebrew copies of the Bible, but:
1. Parts of the Bible contain acrostic poems in Hebrew, but only in Hebrew, not in Greek. It is patently absurd to think that the Greeks wrote the LXX precisely in such a way that 1,000 years later the Greek could be translated into a Hebrew acrostic.
2. Much of Genesis consists of word plays that only work in Hebrew. For example, Isaac is called (in Hebrew) YITZCHAK because that name shares a root with "laugh," and according to the text itself Isaac's birth involves laughter (on Sarah's part). Abram's name means "exalted father" (something like "tribal elder"), but, again, only in Hebrew, not in Greek. Other examples abound. And again, it is absurd to think that nonsensical Greek was composed just to make the Hebrew translation clever.
3. A minor matter, but the Hebrew in the Bible is not medieval Hebrew at all.
4. The DSS (Dead Sea Scrolls) confirm the authenticity of much of the Hebrew text of the Bible. These date to just after the LXX, and long before the Masoretes.


(Contrary to his 3rd point, I don't think the HAC (FYI - It's Holy Apostles Convent, not Covenant) NT claim that the MT is written in "Medieval Hebrew" is a "minor matter"; indeed, this statement goes to the heart of the HAC claim that the MT was a late, medieval "translation.")
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« Reply #41 on: August 29, 2006, 08:17:50 AM »

You fail to convince me.
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« Reply #42 on: August 29, 2006, 09:32:51 AM »

[quote author=Αριστοκλής link=topic=9727.msg133724#msg133724 date=1156853870]
You fail to convince me.
[/quote]

Fail to convince you of what? Are you not convinced or persuaded of the falsity of the HAC NT's statement that the Masoretic Text is a "Medieval Hebrew" back-translation from the LXX?  Huh
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« Reply #43 on: August 29, 2006, 02:21:50 PM »

Fail to convince you of what? Are you not convinced or persuaded of the falsity of the HAC NT's statement that the Masoretic Text is a "Medieval Hebrew" back-translation from the LXX?  Huh

Yes. That's it.
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« Reply #44 on: August 29, 2006, 02:51:09 PM »

The issue, in a nutshell, is that in the diaspora the problem of variant texts became acute because there was not longer a central authority-- the temple-- to appeal to. They also attempted to control interpretation by pinning down the vowels.

So, what were the MT's variant texts?  Hebrew versions that circulated throughout the diaspora and were thought to have arisen independently of the LXX (and possessed the linguistic/literary peculiarities of the DSS-era Hebrew texts)?
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