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Is uniatism even possible anymore? #107910 09/20/02 06:02 PM
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Deacon John Petrus Offline OP
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On another thread and albeit "tongue-in-cheek", Alex posted:

I don't know about you, but RC and Orthodox theologians discussing us are agreed that the model of church unity represented by us is no longer valid.

Therefore, the symbol would be "X."

Now, if there is a Uniate church already existing for every major Orthodox jurisdiction, is uniatism even possible anymore. For example, if a Ukrainian parish left Orthodoxy and joined the UC church, would this be uniatism? Or conversely, if a Ukrainian Catholic parish left and joined an Orthodox jurisdiction, would this be uniatism?

If an episcopal parish joins an RC, BC, or orthodox church, is this uniatism?

Now, by the same token, it appears that the enmity between the Ruthenian and the Carpatho-Russian Orthodox church is melting. Since the latter arose from the former and "returned" to Orthodoxy, and if, at some point in the future, it re-aligned with its "Mother-Ruthenian" Church, would this be uniatism, anti-uniatism, uniatism squared, or something else completely.

Does uniatism depend on the reason for unity? For example, is it uniatism if the people really feel that the new jurisdiction is the proper one, or is it uniatism only if the purpose for changing jursidictions is political, economic, etc. (like a better dental plan)?

John

Re: Is uniatism even possible anymore? #107911 09/20/02 09:46 PM
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I have a question.

I supose that one day the good Lord will have a united Church again, but what will the jurisdictions do?

I supose that if this is the case, the Byzcath Church will join the OCA. And there'll be a united Ruthenian Church (in fact the OCA received most of the Ruthenians who rejected latinizations, and only a minority now is under Metropolitan Nicholas, am I right?).

and the rest of the greek catholic churches will merge with thei Orthodox counterparts. Am I right?

Re: Is uniatism even possible anymore? #107912 09/21/02 12:52 AM
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Seeker of God Offline
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If the Church is united, there will be one Church in America. There will be no Greek Orthodox or Russian Orthodox or Byzantine Catholic or Coptic Orthodox. There will be only an American Church.

I thought it was agreed between Catholics and Orthodox that Uniatism was not the future solution? Perhaps I've been reading too much Orthodox polemics, but that's the impression I got.


He who can without strain keep vigil, be long-suffering and pray is manifestly a partaker of the Holy Spirit. But he who feels strain while doing these things, yet willingly endures it, also quickly receives help. - Mark the Monk
Re: Is uniatism even possible anymore? #107913 09/21/02 01:38 AM
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Fr. Joe Offline
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I supose that if this is the case, the Byzcath Church will join the OCA. And there'll be a united Ruthenian Church (in fact the OCA received most of the Ruthenians who rejected latinizations, and only a minority now is under Metropolitan Nicholas, am I right?).

I do not think that this is actually true. If you are talking about pre-1930s, then yes, those who wished to reject the "violations of the provisions of the Unia" (primarily married clergy and the election of bishops), as well as to preserve lay influence in church affairs (the committee system), united with the only Orthodox Church present in America that seemed plausible to them at the time - what was then the American Mission of the Russian Orthodox Church (later the Russian Orthodox Greek Catholic Metropolia and then the OCA).

During the "celibacy struggle" of the 1930s, the majority of those leaving the jurisdiction of Rome (over the same issues as above) united into a new Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Greek Catholic Diocese of the USA (Johnstown).

I don't think that it can be said that only a minority of the descendents of these pioneers are under the jurisdiction of Metropolitan Nicholas. The number is more substantial and similar in proportion to those in the OCA.

If it were to happen that with the union of the churches, Ruthenians would group together with their Orthodox counterparts, then it would be more logical for them to do so with the Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Greek Catholic Diocese than with the OCA, which would be the logical place for those in the Russian Catholic Church (such as St. Michael in NYC). While the OCA was built up largely by an exodus of Greek Catholics, it has rarely preserved the Ruthenian usage, so it would be a more comfortable move for Ruthenian Catholics to unite with their relatives in the Johnstown Diocese.

Only time will tell what the eventual outcome will be in the case that union is achieved. We can and have already in some places, made progress towards this goal using the "grassroots" or local level approach, emphasizing what we share in common and celebrating it, rather than focusing on what divides us. At least this should be the idea. "That they all may be one."

Fr. Joe

Re: Is uniatism even possible anymore? #107914 09/21/02 05:19 AM
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djs Offline
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Seeker of God:

Will rite define church, or do you anticipate a merger with the Latins, also in this American church?

Personally, I think that inter-communion is enough union. There may be mergers of churches that are very closely related in practice (BCC & ACROD), but anticipating much beyond this is obviously troublesome. Consider that within the Catholic Church UGCC and BCC are separate, and within Orthodoxy ACROD, OCA, and Ukrainian Orthodox in America have separate jurisdictions. Mergers may ultimately be prudent, but I would hate to see Orthodox/Catholic re-communion get hung up over juridictional issues that have not been amenable to solution within either church.

djs

Re: Is uniatism even possible anymore? #107915 09/21/02 12:15 PM
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Glory to Jesus Christ!
Quote
Originally posted by Petrus:
For example, if a Ukrainian parish left Orthodoxy and joined the UC church, would this be uniatism? Or conversely, if a Ukrainian Catholic parish left and joined an Orthodox jurisdiction, would this be uniatism?
To the first, yes.

To the second, no, it would be called returning to one's mother Church. Many would call a Latin Catholic Church breaking off from Rome and joining the Antiochian Orthodox Church's Western Rite Uniatism however. God Bless!

Re: Is uniatism even possible anymore? #107916 09/21/02 06:50 PM
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The Balamand agreement (1993) http://www.orthodoxinfo.com/ecumenism/balamand_txt.htm includes four key ideas:

1) the past practice of receiving particular, eastern churches into union with Rome has manifestly not led to corporate reunion between EO's and Catholics, but has instead been a continuing source of "tensions and oppositions", and therefore obviously is not a model for achieving corporate reunion.

2) "Because of the way in which Catholics and Orthodox once again consider each other in relationship to the mystery of the Church and discover each other once again as Sister Churches, this form of 'missionary apostolate' described above, and which has been called 'uniatism', can no longer be accepted either as a method to be followed nor as a model of the unity our Churches are seeking."

The description of "missionary apostolate" includes working for partial reunion through proseltyzation that may involve "extra-ecclesial interests", "civil authorities".

3) recognition of the right to existence and to pastoral action of the Eastern Catholic Churches

4) affirmation of the inviolable freedom of persons and the universal obligation to follow the dictates of their own conscience.

From this perspective, if a person moved from one legitimate church to another - e.g., EO to EC or vice versa, following the dictates of conscience (uncorrupted by coercion of financial inducements) such a move could not be called "uniatism" likewise if a not necessarily proper-subset of the parishioners in a parish did the same, it could not propoerly be called "uniatism". The issue of a "parish" making such a move - terminology that might imply keeping parish property - that is a more complicated question that involves the legal issue of the ownership of the property according to the laws of the state and the ecclesiastical jurisdiction. But this has nothing to do with "uniatism" per se. Accepting, for example, the Macedonian Orthodox as a body as an Eastern Catholic Church in union with Rome would be a continuation of "uniatism".

Nik, your response seems to harbor an implicit rejection of Balamand, or to be using some other definition of "uniatism". This declaration has been repudiated by some Orthodox. Can any of the Orthodox posters discuss the current status of the this agreement within Orthodoxy?

djs

Re: Is uniatism even possible anymore? #107917 09/21/02 07:39 PM
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As you said, intercommunion will be better.

I think that the Americanization of the Church (in general) is dangerous, since some people want to create a Patriarchate in the USA for all Americans (including Canadians, Mexicans, and members of the original ethnic communities). Some bishops (a minority) wanted the OCA to join the GOC with the same hierarch and to dissolve all the other ethnic jurisdictions.

Some people even wanted the Ecumenical Patriarch to leave Ystambul and to re-found his residence in New York or Pittsburg.
About the Americanization of the Church, a writer once said: "I woulnd't be surprised if in the next 70 years, the Pope himself leaves Italy and installs the Holy See in New York or Washington".

Re: Is uniatism even possible anymore? #107918 09/22/02 02:49 AM
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Perhaps I do not understand the concept of "rite"? I meant that if we were "one Church," Americans would be in the "American Church," and not "The Ukranian Church in America," "Byzantine Catholic rite," etc. I don't think foreign ethnicity altogether would have to be ended (e.g., there could be a few Romanian speaking Churches, or whatever was needed), but I'd think we would be moving towards one American Church, administratively speaking. Maybe I just don't understand? confused


He who can without strain keep vigil, be long-suffering and pray is manifestly a partaker of the Holy Spirit. But he who feels strain while doing these things, yet willingly endures it, also quickly receives help. - Mark the Monk
Re: Is uniatism even possible anymore? #107919 09/22/02 04:45 AM
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Dear Seeker:

Here's a nice graphic that differentiates between "tradition", "rite", and "church". http://www.byzantinecatholic.org/history/page4.html

I thought it odd that you included in your original list the Coptic Orthodox of the Coptic Rite and Alexandrian tradition, with various churches of the Byzantine tradition and rite.
So I asked if you would also contemplate that this unified church would include Catholics/Orthodox of the Latin tradition (and Roman rite).

I would be happy if we would be working simply to establish a basis for holding that a sufficient unity of faith existed to allow for inter-communion, and let ecclesiastical cooperation, mergers, canon law review, etc. follow organically afterwards.

I think that you are right that someday an American church of the Byzantine tradition and rite will occur, but I don't forsee a unified structure that also embraces other traditions and/or rites, unless there emerges a de novo American rite. I shudder to think what that might entail.

Requiring a solution to the jurisdiction problem prior re-communion just muddies the water, IMO.

djs

Re: Is uniatism even possible anymore? #107920 09/23/02 01:51 PM
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Dear Friends,

An excellent question.

Uniatism is a mind-set where a Particular Church joins another because it feels it "lacks" certain things that, in its mind, makes it less of a Church than it "could be."

As such, the first Eastern Catholics following the Union of Brest-Litovsk were not "uniates." Perhaps the bishops involved were, but certainly not the laity who felt that the Pope had joined their Orthodox Church which is why they were commemorating him . . .

Uniatism gripped our Ukrainian Catholic Church later on with the onset of Latinization where Eastern traditions were looked upon, by our ancestors, with suspicion and then jettisoned in favour of Latin ones.

I don't believe that a Ukrainian Orthodox Church or individual who comes into communion with the Ukrainian Catholic Church is involved with "uniatism."

The Ukrainian Catholic Church has, for the most part, grown out of that mindset as a Particular and Patriarchal Church that is confident in its own sense of history, identity and liturgical makeup.

And I believe that Eastern Catholics who join Orthodoxy can be "uniates" depending on their mindset and the reasons for their joining Orthodoxy.

Russian Orthodoxy actively promoted "uniatism" in the 18th and 19th centuries.

Eastern Catholics becoming Orthodox were left alone with their Latinizations, the Old Believers joining Russian Orthodoxy were called the "Uniate Believers" and so were Assyrians who formed an Assyrian Orthodox Church within Russian Orthodoxy.

The development of both a Tridentine and Anglican Orthodox Rite by the Russians was also an extension of its uniate model of church union as well.

And I say this not to criticize the Russian Church since I don't think that Uniatism is all that bad, at least as an initial model.

If you really believe you are the True Church, then uniatism is an accommodation for those who wish to join with you while maintaining their traditions.

Particular Church theology is a later development and, in the West, is partially Rome's way of saying "mea culpa" in developing uniate Churches.

But I think Uniate Churches in Russia would be less offensive than what Rome is currently up to there.

Alex

Re: Is uniatism even possible anymore? #107921 09/25/02 08:00 PM
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The first post of this thread (by Petrus) has the phrase "the Mother-Ruthenian Church." Was that a general phrase? I didn't think there was a Mother-Ruthenian Church, but I do like that phrase!

Our Ruthenian Church follows the new Calendar, and the Carpathian OrthodoxChurch follows the old Calendar.

Oh, I think this is getting interesting.

By the way, we have Holy Resurrection Monastery in California. Does our Carpathian Orthodox twin-sister Church have any monasteries? I couldn't find any on their web-site. Maybe I didn't know what to look under.
:p

Re: Is uniatism even possible anymore? #107922 09/25/02 08:09 PM
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Dear Beginner,

As an aside, the Assyrian Church actually split into two groups on the calendar question, and both are led by separate Patriarchs whose ONLY difference between them is the Calendar question.

I'm for the True, er, Julian Calendar.

But if going to the new Calendar meant avoiding a schism, Santa Claus here I come! wink

Alex


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