Apostolic Succession question

Discussion in 'Church History' started by Rexlion, Mar 18, 2019.

  1. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    Would it be accurate to summarize the situation today as one in which:
    The Roman Church and its minor offshoots believe they alone have apostolic succession;
    The Orthodox Churches believe they alone have apostolic succession;
    The Anglican Churches believe they, plus both of the above, have apostolic succession.

    Is that about right? Or not?

    Also, are there any other groups of significant size which believe they have apostolic succession in their ordinations?
     
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  2. anglican74

    anglican74 Well-Known Member Anglican

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    We would also add that the Lutherans from the Nordic and Baltic branch of Lutheranism have apostolic succession, because they retained the episcopacy from the time of the Reformation
     
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  3. Jeffg

    Jeffg Active Member

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    A few years ago the Episcopal Church (USA) and the Lutheran (ELCA) entered into and agreement regarding being in full communion. I believe part of that agreement, was that there be some Episcopal involvement in the ordination of ELCA pastors/bishops, thus bringing those persons under/in the historic apostolic succession. See : wnload.elca.org/ELCA%20Resource%20Repository/Called_To_Common_Mission.pdf?_ga=2.176274086.2053587238.1553454591-2080262901.1553454591
    There was some debate over the issued within the ELCA if I remember correctly, but it could be argued that the ELCA now has Apostolic Succession via Episcopal cross ordination.
     
  4. Spiritus

    Spiritus New Member

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    The Catholic Church teaches that the Orthodox have maintained apostolic succession. They also teach that any church that broke off from the Catholic or Orthodox churches and retained a validly ordained bishop and use a recognized ordination rite retain apostolic succession.

    The majority of Orthodox hold that the Catholic Church has apostolic succession though many view Catholic holy orders as containing a defect which requires a second ordination if they were to convert. At one time some of the Orthodox viewed Anglicans as having apostolic succession though I believe their views have changed.
     
  5. Fidei Defensor

    Fidei Defensor Active Member

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    Technically all Christians have apostolic succession if they hold to the apostle’s teaching, “And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers.” (Acts 2:42, Holy Bible, ESV)

    “apostolic succession" means more than a mere transmission of powers. It is succession in a Church which witnesses to the apostolic faith, in communion with the other Churches, witnesses of the same apostolic faith.“ (apostolic succession, Wikipedia).
     
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  6. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    Well, in that sense you're right, but that isn't the common meaning of the phrase nor was it the thrust of my question. ;)
     
  7. Fidei Defensor

    Fidei Defensor Active Member

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    Hence why I said technically.:)
     
  8. Rexlion

    Rexlion Well-Known Member

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    Technically, you're being very technical!! :laugh:
     
  9. Fidei Defensor

    Fidei Defensor Active Member

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    That’smy technique. :p :D
     
  10. Cooper

    Cooper Member Anglican

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    Here in the wilderness, many believe apostolic succession comes through the work of the Holy Spirit -- not being born in the right place at the right time.

    :pray3:
     
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  11. Moses

    Moses New Member

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    Several of the Orthodox patriarchs recognized legitimacy of Anglican holy orders during the early-to-mid twentieth century. Women's ordination put a stop to that, though. We'd distinguish between apostolic succession in doctrine, and having the historical episcopate.

    One group not mentioned yet that has the historic episcopate is the Assyrian Church of the East. They split from the Orthodox over the term "theotokos," and for a while they were the largest Christian denomination. They're really small now, having lost a lot of adherents to Islam, but they're still around in the Middle East.
     
  12. Shane R

    Shane R Well-Known Member

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    Various Orthodox prelates, whether canonical or not is debatable, participated in some of the early consecrations for the Continuing churches.
     
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  13. Moses

    Moses New Member

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    Which ones? I knew there were some Old Catholics involved but I hadn't realized any Orthodox were.

    The more I learn of Church history, the more blurry the denominational lines seem.
     
  14. Shane R

    Shane R Well-Known Member

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    For one, James Parker Dees' chief consecrator was a fellow named Wasyl Sawyna, of one of the several Ukrainian Orthodox churches. I've had charts pass across my desk from a number of South American bishops and they almost inevitably contain a link to Carlos Duarte Costa (Brazilian Catholic) and any number of random Orthodox bishops. Dees wasn't the only one to get an Orthodox prelate mixed into his lines.
     
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