"I Left Eastern Orthodoxy for the Pope Francis Church"

Discussion in 'Non-Anglican Discussion' started by Religious Fanatic, Sep 2, 2019.

  1. Liturgyworks

    Liturgyworks Active Member

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    The problem of course was that Pope Leo X was an arrogant creep. Come to think of it, going as far back as the meddling Archbishop Leo I, who was doctrinally in opposition to his predecessors Pope St. Cyril of Alexandria and St. Celestine, the Bishop of Rome, who jointly took out Nestorius, and also dared to style himself Pontifex Maximus, the first time a Pagan title had been used to refer to a Christian cleric as far as I am aware.*

    *For those idiots who accuse Anglicanism of continuing to use “Romish” pagan titles for its clergy, this idea is nonsense; Bishop is an Anglicization of Superintendent in Greek (Episkopos), and Priest is an Anglicization of Presbyter. Rather, the word Priest was most unfortunately used to refer to the clergy of other religions, such as the Pontiffs (Bridge Builders) of Rome, the Greek Pagan clergy referred to individually as a Hierus, the Mobeds of Zoroastrianism, the hereditary Kohanim and Levites of Judaism, and the hereditary Brahmins of India.

    It is unfortunate that current translations of the Old and New Testament also misuse the word in this manner. The word Priest should only be used in the epistles that refer to Elders, and the word Bishop likewise; all other cases shojld be translated as Kohen Gadol for High Priest, Kohanim for regular Priests, and for other religions, the appropriate titles; for example the priests of Babylon were in fact referred to as Chaldeans, so using that word would make sense. Or just follow the Greek Bible and use the word Sacerdos. In this manner, “The Priesthood of All Believers” could be clarified as not meaning every Christian is a Presbyter, and the statement that Christians are Priests, Kings and Prophets would translate more accurately by saying that all Christians are Kings and Sacerdotal Prophets. In this manner, the word Priest could be properly used to refer to Presbyters, which is its true meaning.
     
  2. Rexlion

    Rexlion Active Member

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    That seems like a tricky, shyster-lawyer way of justifying it. If the bishop is excommunicated, his authority (which derived from TEC) should be stripped implicitly within the excommunication. How can he claim to be head of a "province of equal authority" to TEC? The only justification for that bishop to still hold authority, seems to me, would be to appeal to "authority directly from God;" but that could justify a whole host of people's actions in starting churches or denominations, couldn't it?

    You're right, conscience alone is not enough. But conscience combined with the Word of God is more than enough! A worldly metaphor would be disobeying the direct but unlawful order of a superior officer. When a person knows from the Bible and the agreeing inner witness that his superiors have entered into serious error and refuse to repent, if God tells him to depart from them and lead in the correct direction, he would be a fool not to "obey God rather than men."
     
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2019 at 11:37 PM
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  3. Botolph

    Botolph Well-Known Member

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    I understand the point you make, however you are at risk of denying the sacramental integrity of order, which is a place I think we should not go to, and indeed I suspect that article 26 suggests we should not venture unto.

    The argument for conscience has always classically been understood to be the informed conscience. Our conscience is informed by scripture, tradition, reason. The Church's magisterium, yes, but not only so. Scripture, yes, but not only so. Reason, yes, but not only so. For this we must pray diligently that we might be led in the right way, the way that gives right glory to God. In the main one would hope that the call to schism is the exception, not the rule, because we know from scripture, tradition and reason that God calls us to be one, as the three most holy persons of the Trinity are one.

    So in the need whilst I conclude that schism is sometimes the only viable option with integrity, we need to make sure that it is not the go to defence of our position, lest it be self fulfilling, and make our uttering the four notes of the church in the Nicene Creed a vacuous statement.
     
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  4. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    It is a lawyerly answer, but the Church is governed by principles of law and justice. We have canons and rules. Remember it was the antinomians (literally the anti-rulians) who claimed that following the New Testament there were no laws and rules, 'only love'. Luther had them excommunicated but quick. Today such people live again among the evangelicals, where again they prefer a church polity where they have to report to no one, accountable to no one, where they fly on $20million jets, and have 100 campus 'satellite churches'. It is not a church 'built on love' at all. That's rhetoric. We need rules and principles, accountability, laws, to govern the New Testament church, and it is a fundamental part of the reformed Catholic identity we all share as Anglicans.

    His authority was not derived from TEC. For us, a bishop's authority is derived from God directly; the technical label in the 16th and 17th centuries was 'jus divinum'. You had treatises like 'Episcopacy by Divine Right' and 'The Perpetual Government of Christ's Church' tracing the episcopacy to a direct consecration by Christ, immediately as the apostles were, and thereupon mediately, through his followers through the centuries. Once you have such a consecration, even 2000 years later, you may be considered as having been mediately consecrated by Christ himself.

    So despite being stripped of office, Duncan was still a valid episcopus of Christ's Church. His diocese went with him, and that was the Diocese of Pittsburgh. What happened then was, the great primates of World Anglicanism broke communion with the Episcopal Church, and acknowledged him as in fact the Anglican primate for America.

    For us as Anglicans, no one has a divine right in the church, other than a bishop. So that cuts down 99% of the people who run off and start their own churches.

    But a bishop, yes he could claim to have authority directly from God, since he indeed does have it. But the next step, which most people will not have, is the recognition by the rest of the world. Until bishops have that, they are just running around on their own, not being a part of a Province. There are several such bishops in the Anglican world, so called episcopi vagantes. Had Duncan failed to secure the Anglican Primates, he would have been an episcopus vagans, and we would need someone else to properly organize the new American Province. He secured it pretty much immediately in 2008, and not only from Asian and African primates, but from America with the REC which was a founding member and submitted wholly under the new jurisdiction, forswearing any hint of self-rule, or pride, or independence.

    The trick is knowing when we have combined conscience with the Word of God correctly. We need a lot of help with that. Arius quoted a lot of Scripture, and certainly thought that he combined the Word and conscience correctly. I like the standard set up by John Jewel to Roman Catholics: "If any learned man of our adversaries be able to bring any one sufficient sentence out of any old Catholike Doctor, or Father ;  or out of any old general Council ;  or out of the holy Scriptures of God ;  or any one example of the Primitive Church for the space of six hundred years after Christ, whereby doctrines contrary to these may be clearly proved, I would give over and subscribe unto him."
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2019 at 9:43 AM
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  5. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    I wish to point out that while we answered on the same side of the issue, it wasn’t from the same underlying principles. Magisterium is a novel 19th century Romanist concept which should never have taken root in their theology, and has absolutely no meaning for us. It’s not the same concept as the ecclesia docens, the “teaching church”, a genuine historical concept indicating the teaching function of the Church.

    Holy orders are also similarly infused with sacramental language among Anglo-Catholics, as if anything if it is to be sacred, has to be a Sacrament. Augustine and Ambrose would have been very surprised to hear that. We can hold to apostolic succession, indelible orders, and the divine right of episcopacy without infusing Roman sacramental theology or Anglo Catholicism into it.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2019 at 1:52 PM
  6. Rexlion

    Rexlion Active Member

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    If I'm understanding this objection correctly, I wouldn't think it any risk. I think the pertinent part of Article 26 says, "...yet because they do not do so in their own name, but in Christ's, and minister by His commission and authority, we may use their ministry both in hearing the word of God and in the receiving of the sacraments." Note that it says we may use their ministry, not that we are required out of obedience to use their ministry.

    A very interesting point indeed.
     
  7. Liturgyworks

    Liturgyworks Active Member

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    Bishops who violate the doctrine of the One Holy Catholic Church as expressed in the Sacred Scripture, the Creeds, most especially the Nicene, the Ecumenical Councils, the writings of the Fathers*, the ancient canons, the living liturgical patrimony of the Church, cut themselves off from the Church and become heresiarchs.

    So when the Episcopalian bishops ordained women as priests, when they stopped helping sexual overcome the diseases of homosexuality and trans-sexuality, and when bishops like James Pike deprecated the Trinity, and when John Shelby Spong or one of his contemporaries questioned the reality of the Resurrection, they cut themselves off and became schismatic heresiarchs.

    I should stress that I do not believe the Episcopal Church is schismatic, but rather corrupt members of its hierarchy are schismatic, and thus traditional Anglican churches that have severed ties with the Episcopal Church are not guilty of schism. In fact, no Anglican church that I am aware of can be accused of schism, although I would argue that heretical bishops and their dioceses in liberal churches like TEC, where they have caused the departure of parishes for ACNA or the Continuing Anglicans, are schismatic heresiarchs on a personal level, but their diocese is not itself schismatic; however, a diocese ruled by a heretical bishop who has cut him off, or for that matter a parish that splits because of a rector or vicar guilty of heresy and likewise cut off, has the effect of excusing the departing congregation from the charge of schism.

    There are some dioceses in the Episcopal Church that remain bastions of Orthodoxy, like that of Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and those dioceses are entirely or mostly free of heretics, so that would be a case where a schism could possibly occur; in like manner if a church in the ACNA or a continuing jurisdiction embraced heresy, it would be schismatic even if disfellowshipped by the jurisdiction to which it had belonged; in my view one always has clean hands departing from a heresy.

    ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

    I would note that my interpretation is extremely lenient, especially by Orthodox standards, with the doctrine of “You are what you are in communion with.” Furthermore there are many Eastern Orthodox who regard all non-EO churches as both heretical and schismatic, but I want to assure my Anglican friends that is not me. I believe the visible Church Catholic encompasses all churches in Apostolic succession which teach correct doctrine and have an episcopate or psuedo-episcopal polity (some forms of the Congregational polity in which the Pastor is a de facto bishop with the same powers over his parish that bishops in the early church, who often ruled over one unified church before the creation of multiple parishes to handle the growing congregation and provide more convenient access; and a few bishops of very small dioceses, including the Metropolitan of Bursa, whose last parish was closed by the Turks a few years ago, and the autonomous Archbishop of the Church of Sinai, which consists only of St. Catharine’s Monastery. I cannot rationalize Presbyterianism however and I think the decision of the Church of England to not enter into communion with the United Reformed Church, which argued their Moderator was a de facto Bishop, was quite correct.

    Needless to say, Anglicanism in its historic form, setting aside the heretical views of some recent bishops like Pike and Spong, I recognize as one of the great apostolic churches, the others being the Eastern Orthodox, the Macedonian Orthodox, the Union of Scranton, the Synod of Milan and the Portuguese Orthodox, the Russian Old Believers, the Oriental Orthodox, the Assyrian Church of the East, the Ancient Church of the East, the Mission Province of the Church of Sweden, and some other Lutheran and Reformed churches.
     
  8. Liturgyworks

    Liturgyworks Active Member

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    I agree entirely with this post. Although I would also observe that the derivation of Episcopal Authority from God has the effect of supporting the Anglo Catholic view as to Holy Orders being sacramental in character (one should also note the distinction between sacramentals and sacraments per se).
     
  9. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    I don’t think that’s necessarily true. Even Roman Catholics didn’t view holy orders as a sacrament until the Pope declared it as such in the Middle Ages. Like how marriage was declared by papal fiat to be a sacrament in the 1400s. It’s crazy how they thought they could just create new sacraments. To me, historically speaking, it’s this effort to turn sacred things into sacraments that has to be reversed. We can talk about marriage being indissoluble without it being a sacrament. We can talk about episcopacy by divine right without introducing foreign sacramental language. St Ambrose was pretty clear, writing about the Two Sacraments: baptism and the lord’s supper.

    This was the absolute genius of the Anglican reformers, to return us to the patristic definitions and formulations on all these things. I’m very grateful for their heroic effort in cleaning up our theology.

    Anglo-Catholics, for all the patristic interest under Pusey, have effectively become Anglo Roman Catholics; they study Benedict and JP2; they see everything as sacramental and magisterial. It’s a whole different thing now than how Pusey saw things in the 1840s. It’s not a stable movement, nor is it necessary, for we already recovered the patristic worldview in the 1540s.

    Btw @Botolph don’t take anything of what I say personally. I appreciate everything you have to say! :cheers:
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2019 at 8:36 PM
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  10. Rexlion

    Rexlion Active Member

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    Of course the Romans would deny that they'd created new sacraments. They'd tell us that it was simply an official recognition of what had always been considered a sacrament by the church all along. :rolleyes:
     
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  11. Liturgyworks

    Liturgyworks Active Member

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    I rather doubt that; I am not questioning your honesty of course nor would I, since I consider you a beacon and a pillar of piety; the Church of the East, the Oriental Orthodox and the Eastern Orthodox, which the Romans excommunicated without merit in 433, 451 and 1054, all count and have always counted Orders a sacred mystery. Now a mystery is equivalent in most respects to a sacrament, albeit it is better defined, but with the exception of the Church of the East, the list of mysteries enumerated by the Orthodox has always agreed, and corresponds to that of Rome, except to the extent additional services which Rome considers sacramentals some Orthodox might consider to be mysteries per se, for example, the Great Blessing of Water. Which is pretty mysterious if you look into it. I have no idea why or how the Jordan reverses its flow on the Feast of the Epiphany on January 18 (new style) but it happens.

    At any rate, while I will concede what you are saying is possible owing to your erudition, I will respectfully ask for a source, because if that’s true it means Rome was highly divergent from the Orthodox for the entire period before the schism. Indeed, if it is true it means that Rome could have declared Holy Orders a sacrament in order to attempt to find common ground with the Orthodox and persuade them to accept the Pope as their master at the Council of Florence (which nearly happened; St. Mark of Ephesus rallied the people against the Council, which by the way was typical Popish evil - it was made a precondition for military assistance for the Byzantine Empire from the West against the invading Turks, who by 1439 had already taken most of Asia Minor, and Constantinople would fall 14 years later). Essentially the people of what was left of the Byzantine Empire courageously decided to reject the decision of their bishops and accept brutal Turkish rule, the loss of their best churches like Hagia Sophia and Hagia Irene, which became mosques, and the subjugation of a dhimmi and the tax on first born sons in some provinces whereby select firstborn boys were seized, circumcised, converted to Islam, radicalized, and became the Janissaries (if you have ever wondered who the Janissaries were or where they came from, there is the dark tragic answer).

    But moved by the horror of Turkocratia, I have digressed, as Members may have noticed by now I am inclined to do, and thus returning to the original point, Rome not regarding Holy Orders as a sacrament bewilders me in light of the treatise of St. Ambrose of Milan On The Priesthood. That said, I am not sure if Rome regards ordination to ranks below that of Subdeacon as a sacrament or merely a sacramental; only Subdeacons and Deacons are held to be Sacred Ministers, and historically for a long time there were, in violation of the ancient traditions of the Roman Church, no Permanent Deacons; these were reintroduced in the 20th century, so before that time the Sacred Ministers at a Solemn High Mass were either seminarians who were serving as transitional subdeacons and deacons, or more commonly, were priests who vested as deacons and subdeacons.

    By the way, while Rome rejected Anglican orders owing to the petty reason of Anglicans denying their sacramental status, ROCOR, the most conservative canonical Orthodox church, accepted them for many years, and received Anglican priests who wanted to join by vesting, which is also how Roman Catholic clegy, and clerics from the Church of the East and the Oriental Orthodox are received (and vice-versa) which is a simple service in which the converted cleric is ceremonially dressed in the vestments of the Eastern Orthodox church.

    Now, while I consider the argument that Holy Orders are a sacred mystery viable because of the Calling of the Twelve and the Ordination of St. Matthias to replace Judas and the deacons including St. Stephen the Protomartyr and Nicolas the heresiarch of the Nicolaitans, incontrovertible, I think the Anglican view of two sacraments is viable and can be reconciled with the Orthodox and Anglo Catholic position (depending on how attached to Anglo Catholicism the Anglo Catholics are). The way you do it is to simply define sacred mysteries as a vast superset into which the two Dominical Sacraments apply as supreme examples, owing to their vitality, or alternately and less satisfactorily you classify the others as sacramentals. Either way, this approach preserves full compatibility with the Book of Common Prayer, the Catechism, and the 39 Articles.

    It also helps, because if you say that Ordination is, like Communion and Baptism, a mystery, but unlike them, not a sacrament, the argument that God selects bishops becomes incontrovertible even for those who are of an Arminian disposition, like John Wesley, but the 39 Articles is preserved. Also, the argument against ordaining women becomes more forceful. In like manner, the historic objection of the Church of England to divorce and remarriage, where one could only get remarried at a few places like the Savoy Chapel (as it was a Royal Peculiar) or else had to seek out the Church of Scotland with its non-sacramental theology, which led to what I regard as the correct abdication of Edward VIII (who also turned out to be a Nazi), and which alas is no longer in force, and also the objection to gay marriage, are strengthened, because they are placed in a category with the two sacraments, that of a mystery, while not being recognized as sacraments. This provides almost full compatibility with Orthodoxy, which regards the two Anglican sacraments as being paramount, and view it as part of the reception process together with baptism), and which at the same time does not define these as sacraments but as sacred mysteries, a category which Anglicans can use as a catch-all in order to accomodate Anglo Catholics and also restore the previous close relationship with the Orthodox, especially the Russians.
     
  12. Liturgyworks

    Liturgyworks Active Member

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    Firstly, I do rather hope @Stalwart that you and I can also raise a toast to each other in friendship, for I never take your disagreements with me personally. On the contrary, it has often been the case that we discovered we were in agreement, for example, our apparent difference of opinion on icons, it turned out we had the same view, because we both agree that icons cannot be objects of worship; that would make them idols, and also I feel like we have formed a friendship despite our differences of opinion on other things. :)

    I also want to assure you that, while I am obviously not an Anglo-Catholic, I have never read Pusey or John Paul II; I did download all of the theological books by Pope Benedict XVI but I stopped because his writings I found to be incredibly boring. :loopy: The only interesting thing of his that I read was a biography of the Benedictine Cluniac abbot St. Odo, who was an interesting figure even aside from his career as a shapeshifter from the Gamma Quadrant brilliantly portrayed by Rene Auberjonois in Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. :biglaugh:

    I mainly read actual Patristic works, and at that, mainly by Greek and Syriac writers; of the Latin authors I only really like St. Ambrose, St. John Cassian, St. Gregory Dialogos, St. Vincent of Lerins, St. Hippolytus and St. Isidore of Seville. St. Augustine is interesting but has a tendency to be wrong and ugly, for example, his horrible and disgusting view that unbaptized infants are inextricably damned.

    If Anglo Catholics are actually reading mainly Roman Catholic writers, that is a huge problem, and it would risk frustrating reunion with the Orthodox. I am fond of the “Anglodox” groups like the Scottish Non-Juring Episcopalians, and John Wesley. In fact, I think the best writer for Anglo Catholics to start with is John Wesley, because he was a loyal Anglican curate until his death (the British Methodists became schismatic against his wishes, and the Methodist Episcopal Church was created along Anglican lines to immediately fill the void created by the Church of England refusing to ordain bishops for America, and this was set up two years before the Protestant Episcopal Church; the problem of course is that the Methodists in America discarded most of Wesley’s theology and stopped using the Book of Common Prayer, except for the African Methodist Episcopal Church, which still uses a recension of it). It infuriates me by the way that the United Methodist Church dares to call itself Methodist and not use the Book of Common Prayer, of which John Wesley wrote “I Believe there is no Liturgy in the World, either in ancient or modern language, which breathes more of a solid, scriptural, rational Piety, than the [Book of] Common Prayer of the Church of England.”

    But at any rate, I think John Wesley an ideal starting point for Anglo Catholics because aside from being Anglican to the core, he also documented, introduced and explained the obscure pre-Augustinian soteriology known to the Orthodox as Theosis, translating that as Entire Sanctification, and proving its scriptural merit; he was also one of the first Anglicans to call for frequent, ideally weekly or multi-weekly Communion (although not at the expense of Mattins or Evensong), which is a major Anglo Catholic point.

    Reading modern Roman Catholic theologians is toxic however, because they either believe and promote false doctrines, not only about the Pope but also the Immaculate Conception, the Nestorian Sacred Heart devotion, the bizarre Corpus Christie feast, which makes no sense, because the Holy Communion is properly commemorated on Maundy Thursday, and why celebrate the body but not the blood?

    They also slander the Anglican church in the case of Newman or Chesterton, lie about CS Lewis and claim he was Catholic, when in fact he was Anglican (his friend Tolkien was Roman Catholic, but he and his son tended to view the Missal with the same attidude a pious traditional Anglican views the Book of Common Prayer, reciting prayers from the Missal in Latin in times of distress just as an Anglican reads prayers from the BCP in English, during the wars for example, although I daresay the Breviary would have been more useful for that purpose, but the Roman Rite is weird).

    After John Wesley, the other required reading for Anglo Catholics ought to be Percy Dearmer, who I am inclined to glorify as a saint owing to his work for the poor, who in his Parson’s Handbook strenously objected to the Romanizing of Anglican parishes and took great pains to differentiate between a synthesis of the historic English as allowed by the Book of Common Prayer, which has only two candles on the altar as well as side screens and in Lent is properly covered by a Lenten Array as an alternative to a violet cloth, vs. Roman high altars which are set with six candles (which are only lit for a solemn mass; the Romans use only two candles for a low mass). Indeed the book represents the definitive distinction between the Anglican Rite as used in a high church setting, and the Roman Rite, which was never used in England, the old rites being those of Sarum, Hereford, Durham and York. And indeed it ticks me right off that when the Roman Catholics were properly Emancipated, they did not restore these old uses, but instead imposed the Tridentine Roman Rite, which did not exist when the Church of England became autocephalous by royal prerogative, and which had never been used in England before that time.

    So bearing in mind we are of different opinions, I do hope our friendship remains very strong.
     
  13. Liturgyworks

    Liturgyworks Active Member

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    While true in general, you are making the false Roman-Protestant dichotomy. Although that said, the Orthodox churches do not have sacraments, they have sacred mysteries, but these are the same as those counted by Rome. And you know or will come to know if you study us that we hate change.

    But yes, you are right, the Romans talk through both sides of their mouth on theology; the Immaculate Conception was somehow always believed despite it being effectively Eutychian or even Gnostic, Amoris Laetitia is somehow in conformity with the Magisterium despite directly contradicting it, the early Church always believed in Papal infallibility, when a study of it proves this is false, and indeed Pope Honorious I was anathematized for being a Monothelite heresiarch, something Romans do not like to talk about, and when Archbishop Victor of Rome attempted to command certain churches in Asia Minor to change the date on which Pascha (Easter) was celebrated, they ignored him, and his own bishop, the brilliant heresiologist St. Irenaeus of Lyons (who wrote in Greek and is counted as a Greek father; it was only under Victor that Latin was introduced into the Roman Rite, and this was in order to be a language “understanded of the people”, told his Archbishop in a polite way, in a surviving epistle, to basically shut up and leave the Eastern churches alone, because he had no jurisdiction there. Indeed Victor didn’t even have the power or desire to depose St. Irenaeus; it is probable that before the twin innovations of Papal Supremacy and the College of Cardinals Rome was ruled by a Holy Synod, like the Anglican House of Bishops, and like the other ancient churches, even today, of which the Pope was merely primus inter pares (first among equals, the chairman).

    So voila, if a Catholic tries to argue in favor of Latin being the only acceptable liturgical language or that Papal Supremacy is ancient or that dogmatic innovations of recent hears were always believed, you now have all the facts needed to shoot them down.

    This is why Patristics is so important; as I think @Stalwart would agree, it shows us what to believe and also the errors the Roman church made which spoiled everything in the West until the Reformation. And the study of the Eastern churches is also important because they represent what the Roman church might look like had it not descended into heresy (and it is important not to just look at Eastern Orthodoxy; the Oriental Orthodox have huge differences in worship, and the Church of the East is even more removed, in that it relies almost entirely on Antiochene theology rather than the Alexandrian-biased synthesis of Alexandria and Antioch we find in the Orthodox).

    And this is also where your preferred Byzantine text type comes from (still used in all Eastern churches; the Syriac Peshitta derives from the Byzantine text as does the Vulgate, and furthermore, the real church of Alexandria never used the Alexandrian text type, or if it did, it rejected it; I am certain these books were produced either by Eusebius of Caesarea, who the Pope ordered 50 Bibles from, and who turned out to be an Arian Heretic, or were produced by the Arians during the period of decades when they controlled Alexandria and surrounding churches and St. Athanasius was in exile).
     
  14. bwallac2335

    bwallac2335 Active Member

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    This is why Patristics is so important; as I think @Stalwart would agree, it shows us what to believe and also the errors the Roman church made which spoiled everything in the West until the Reformation. And the study of the Eastern churches is also important because they represent what the Roman church might look like had it not descended into heresy (and it is important not to just look at Eastern Orthodoxy; the Oriental Orthodox have huge differences in worship, and the Church of the East is even more removed, in that it relies almost entirely on Antiochene theology rather than the Alexandrian-biased synthesis of Alexandria and Antioch we find in the Orthodox).

    And this is also where your preferred Byzantine text type comes from (still used in all Eastern churches; the Syriac Peshitta derives from the Byzantine text as does the Vulgate, and furthermore, the real church of Alexandria never used the Alexandrian text type, or if it did, it rejected it; I am certain these books were produced either by Eusebius of Caesarea, who the Pope ordered 50 Bibles from, and who turned out to be an Arian Heretic, or were produced by the Arians during the period of decades when they controlled Alexandria and surrounding churches and St. Athanasius was in exile).[/QUOTE]


    What. is the real difference in Oriental Orthodox and Eastern Orthodox Christiology? Am I right that they realized that both are pretty much in agreement?
     
  15. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    Thanks. I was writing from memory so I looked into this some more. And the more I looked, the more I realized that Rome actually never did declare orders to be a Sacrament, at least until the 20th century. Here is the relevant excerpt from the early-1900s Catholic Encyclopedia entry on a holy orders:

    http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/11279a.htm

    “The sacramental character of the priesthood has never been denied by anyone who admitted the Sacrament of Order (right :rolleyes:) ... though not explicitly defined, it follows immediately from the statements of the Council of Trent. Thus (Sess. XXIII, can. 2), "If any one saith that besides the priesthood there are not in the Catholic Church other orders, both major and minor, by which as by certain steps, advance is made to the priesthood, let him be anathema."

    In other words even as late as the Council of Trent it was not defined as a sacrament. And since this is the only reference the Encyclopedia makes to its history, as a shorthand I’m going to take the leap that nothing further has ever been officially declared, at least until the 20th century!

    I got the history mixed up with the history of the other “new sacraments”. Marriage was made a sacrament in the 1400s as we know (see book “How Marriage Became A Sacrament”, the title which says everything). And the “Sacrament of Confession” was for the first time declared at the 4th Lateran Council in 1215 AD:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fourth_Council_of_the_Lateran

    Canon 21, the famous "Omnis utriusque sexus" ... is sometimes incorrectly quoted as commanding the use of sacramental confession for the first time. In actuality the confession came into existence over a long period of time. (right :rolleyes:) However, this was the first time that it took the shape of the Christian confessional as we know it today.”

    As for the divergence from the Eastern Orthodox tradition, and the Sacraments enumerated, I’d love to ask you for a quote from any pre-1000 theologian listing the Sacraments in the Roman way, as seven, and listing those specific seven, in particular marriage, orders, and confession.
     
    Last edited: Sep 12, 2019 at 11:56 AM
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  16. Liturgyworks

    Liturgyworks Active Member

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    I have to make sure you understand my exact position first: the Orthodox don’t have sacraments, they have mysteries, and the exact count of these varies, and it is my opinion that there are more than seven, and the idea there are only Seven was due to Romanization. I apologize if I was not adequetely clear on that point. I also stressed that baptism and the Eucharist are given a special importance. For example, St. John of Damascus writes about two mysteries in a way that supports the Anglican position. My view is that priesthood is a sacred mystery, but not a paramount mystery or sacrament; priesthood is not required for each individual faithful but rather just as marriage ensures there will be people to baptize and give the Lord’s supper to, the priesthood ensures there will be people to give it to them.

    To wit, I should ask if you have read book IV of St. John of Damascus, The Exact Exposition of the Orthodox Faith? Regarding holy orders, the aforementioned work by St. Ambrose I believe shows it to be a sacred mystery, as well as the Scriptural incidents of ordination by our Lord, and in Acts, and that scripture suffices together with the text of the Orthodox ordination service, which I can get you, and the books on the priesthood by both Sts. Ambrose and also the title of the same name by St. John Chrysostom, which is equally good, validate my position that it is a second order mystery.

    And I think it is ludicrous for us to say that there are only Seven mysteries, which many Orthodox catechisms say; I believe this is an error, a romanization the result of Jesuit intrigues; rather we have two primary mysteries, which are essentially baptism and the Eucharist (which are tightly coupled with two supporting mysteries which happen immediately after baptism and before communion in our rite, chrismation and reconciliation; in the Anglican church this mystery is done both individually and in the confiteor of the Divine Office, such as Evensong). But how can marriage be a mystery, or in the case of Anglicanism, comfirmation, when Burial is not? Burial has to be enumerated as a sacred mystery, and this also lends weight to the Orthodox prohibition against the evil Pagan practice of the destruction of the body through voluntary cremation, in which case we deny a funeral (this does not apply to involuntary cremation mandated by the state, for example, in Japan; all Japanese Orthodox are cremated, the destruction of the body by explosions for example in war, or in a fire,

    Also, the 1911 Catholic Encyclopedia is obsolete and discredited on most key points. About the only thing in it that I can verify it gets right is the list of Assyrian service books. It often contradicts the offical RC catechism from 1900 and is massively obsolete now. The chapters describing the machinations and politics of the Vatican are fun, however, especially the chapter on Propaganda.

    *The Japanese Orthodox church has 9,610 members under Metropolitan Daniel Nushiro, an autonomous self-ruling Metropolis of the Russian Orthodox Church. They are mildly persecuted or rather discriminated against by the Empire of Japan, or whatever we are supposed to call it Post-MacArthur (the Republic of Japan with an Emperor?) on account of not being allowed to bury their dead, cremation being prescribed by law in the Land of the Rising Sun owing to Buddhist-Shinto Pagan chauvinism, but they do not raise a fuss on this issue as the Orthodox do allow cremation where it is mandated, but we do not like it,

    I myself should mention I have a personal horror of cremation and one reason I left St. Francis of Assisi Episcopal Church was, aside from the lousy music forcing me to the said service, and my friend Fr. Dean’s imminent retirement and impending replacement by this horrible deaconess female deacon, was revulsion when Fr. showed me the Columbarium. I will readily concede Anglicans are probably going to have a different view on this issue and not share my personal horror of cremation, but nontheless I regard the Burial service in the Book of Common Prayer as a sacred mystery which should entail placing the deceased in the ground, or burial at sea.
     
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  17. Liturgyworks

    Liturgyworks Active Member

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    The difference, or rather the lack thereof, is best understood by reading Orthodox Christology by the British Coptic priest Fr. Peter Farrington. You can get it for like $10 on iBooks.
     
  18. Stalwart

    Stalwart Well-Known Member Anglican

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    The defense rests, your honor. I think almost nobody knows these trivia about John of Damascus.

    We need the polemicists to stop castigating the 2 Sacraments position as somehow short or inadequate. It IS the authentic doctrine of the original Undivided Church. We don’t intend to strip the sacredness, or the secularize, the other things Rome calls Sacraments, such as confession or orders. These *are* sacred, some of them even older or *more* sacred than the two sacraments. Marriage for instance was instituted as a sacred thing in the Garden of Eden; we can partake of this indissoluble gift given to the very Adam and Eve themselves. Holy orders were the sacred institution from Moses, Aaron and Melchizedech, ministering holy things to the people. Meanwhile Baptism and the Lord’s Supper were “only” instituted in the New Testament. Agreed that we receive the holiest things on earth in those two things, but other aspects of the divine life which are not sacraments we can reckon to have even greater sacred legacy. It is a constellation of sacred things, with two north stars.

    At the same time, attaching the label of Sacraments to every sacred thing is also a mistake, because it means that the Church gets to decide what Sacraments even are. In the Middle Ages they almost decided that a Coronation was going to be one of the Sacraments.

    Making the Church into a master of sacred things, rather than a *servant* to sacred things, is bringing the Roman church into a crisis, where they are altering their doctrine in favor of LGBT globalist agenda, and putting the power of their church behind *that*. And it’s also infallible and irreversible. Meanwhile we as Anglicans are helpless to alter the eternal teaching (we don’t believe in a magisterium); if someone does presume to do so they are not infallible and can be corrected.
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2019 at 2:24 PM

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