The Byzantine Forum
Newest Members
Alexander T., Raphael1999, Adrián Badida, fr nick, Andres Belizario
5640 Registered Users
Who's Online Now
0 registered members (), 179 guests, and 296 spiders.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Latest Photos
Byzantine Nebraska
Church of the Holy Trinity (UGCC) - Brazil
Papal Audience 10 November 2017
Upgraded Russian icon corner
Russian Greek Catholic Global Congress
Forum Statistics
Forums26
Topics34,836
Posts412,468
Members5,640
Most Online3,380
Dec 29th, 2019
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Page 1 of 5 1 2 3 4 5
Supposed differences in emphasis - yes or no? #124114 01/21/03 05:07 AM
Joined: Oct 2002
Posts: 1,665
Communion of Saints Offline OP
Member
OP Offline
Member
Joined: Oct 2002
Posts: 1,665
I have a question - is it really true that Eastern Christian tradition emphasizes 'the Resurrection' while Western tradition emphasizes 'the Passion,' not in art, but in theology/worship/devotion/ living one's spiritual life? Since both of these events did occur, how can we really say that one is emphasized over the other? Don't we always pay attention to both?
Does anyone have any thoughts and insights into this question ...?

Re: Supposed differences in emphasis - yes or no? #124115 01/21/03 05:54 AM
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 1,658
Mexican Offline
Member
Offline
Member
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 1,658
It is my understanding that the Latin tradition tends to enphasize the propitiatory and expiatory character of Christ's sacrifice in the Calvary, through Christ's passion men are redeemed from the condemnation of God. The Latin theology on this issue is very Eucharistic, it focuses very much on Christ's Body and his Blood for the remission of sins. According to the Latin tradition, Christ took the cross not only to save men but for satisfaction to God the Father, a satisfaction for his Divine Justice.
A mystiical approach to this is found in St. John of the Cross poems.

The Eastern approach to the resurrection can be seen through the liturgy:

"Christ is risen from the dead, and by His death He has trampled upon death and has given life to those who are in the tombs! or Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death and upon those in the Tombs bestowing life! "
(troparion, pascha)

"When You descended to death, O Immortal Life, You put Hades to death by the splendor of Your Divinity. And when You raised the dead from below the earth, all the Heavenly Powers cried out to You, "O Giver of Life, Christ our God, glory to You!"
(tone 2)

Re: Supposed differences in emphasis - yes or no? #124116 01/21/03 02:48 PM
Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 35
Peregrinus Offline
Member
Offline
Member
Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 35
I think the Eastern's emphasis on the Resurrection is most clear and obvious in the troparia and kontakia which are sung at every Sunday divine liturgy. The character of Sunday being a "little" Easter is really brought out by these hymns.

In the Latin church, there is nothing comparable. At least nothing that has stood out for me in a way like the resurrecional troparia have in the Byzantine rite.

Re: Supposed differences in emphasis - yes or no? #124117 01/21/03 03:30 PM
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 26,173
Orthodox Catholic Offline
Member
Offline
Member
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 26,173
Dear Communion of Saints,

The East tends to see the Feast of Pascha as a continuum of three days - the Day of the Cross, the Day of the Tomb and the Day of the Resurrection.

The risen Christ is also the Christ Who has the marks of the nails on His Hands and Feet and the Wound in His Side.

Again, there is a BALANCE of emphasis in the East.

The West tends to be focused on the Crucifixion of Christ.

This is brought home, to me at least, by the Good Friday processionals we have up here and the tremendous liturgical significance that Good Friday gets - but that Easter Sunday doesn't seem to get.

The East also sees no reason to "overdo" Christ's Passion in art etc. as obtains in the West.

Eastern Crosses tend to draw in the Corpus, and Crosses, such as that of San Damiano, offer another perspective on Christ's suffering.

The Passion and Cross of Christ are never honoured in the East without mentioning His Resurrection.

Some Eastern thinkers believed that the Western Catholic overemphasis on the Death of Christ led to "Death of God" theology.

I don't know. But I much more prefer the Resurrectional Optimism of the East, the victory of the Risen Christ etc.

We must always venerate His Sacred Wounds.

As someone once wrote, whenever someone presents to us an image of Christ, we must always ask to see the Marks of the Nails.

For if that image does not have the Marks, it is not Christ.

Alex

Re: Supposed differences in emphasis - yes or no? #124118 01/21/03 04:21 PM
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 193
Benedictine Offline
Member
Offline
Member
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 193
Alex,

What you say is true, but reflects a more "pre-Vatican II" / Tridentine model.

For instance, in the Vatican II reform of the Easter liturgy the Sacred Triduum (3 days) is the highlight of the liturgical year and it culminates at the Easter vigil - not Good Friday.

Most of the old Passion-centered devotions are now defunct. This became evident a few years ago when I tried to find a parish that still did Stations of Cross as a communal devotion during Lent [a childhood memory]. Most pastors didn't have time for it, calling it a merely private piety.

It is true that in the Latin church Ash Wednesday is still one of the most popular days - sometimes even surpassing Christmas & Easter themselves. But this liturgy doesn't really focus on the Passion of Christ - just our sinfulness. Maybe it taps into a vestige of Catholic guilt wink .

Add to that the commonplace practice of the absence of crucifixes from contemporary Latin churches & their replacement with the empty cross, a problem so glaring that the Holy See had to require their restoration in the recently released GIRM, and I would submit to you that the current state of modern Western Catholicism (in America at least) is far from over-emphasizing Christ's suffering.

IMO this is probably one of the most problematic trends in the Church which impacts everthing from worship to religious vocations.

PAX

Br. Elias

Re: Supposed differences in emphasis - yes or no? #124119 01/21/03 04:49 PM
Joined: Dec 2000
Posts: 1,698
Mor Ephrem Offline
Member
Offline
Member
Joined: Dec 2000
Posts: 1,698
Quote
Originally posted by Benedictine:
Add to that the commonplace practice of the absence of crucifixes from contemporary Latin churches & their replacement with the empty cross, a problem so glaring that the Holy See had to require their restoration in the recently released GIRM, and I would submit to you that the current state of modern Western Catholicism (in America at least) is far from over-emphasizing Christ's suffering.
Dear Father Elias,

My question in response to the above is simply this: if the current state of modern Western Catholicism in the West is far from over-emphasising Christ's suffering, what is it emphasising in its place? Certainly, my limited experience is that if there is not an emphasis on the Passion of Christ, there is also not a significant renewed emphasis on the Resurrection, either. Personally, I'd prefer one or the other to some of what is going on now. So, what has replaced this "pre-Vatican II" emphasis on the suffering of Christ?

Re: Supposed differences in emphasis - yes or no? #124120 01/21/03 05:10 PM
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 26,173
Orthodox Catholic Offline
Member
Offline
Member
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 26,173
Bless me a sinner, Father Elias!

Pax Christi!

Yes, you are more than correct here.

I'm referring mainly to "cultural Catholicism" and the Passion plays are done mainly by our wonderful Portuguese Community (Defreitas knows what I'm talking about smile ) and the Italian Community - God bless them both.

It is difficult to generalize here as elsewhere.

In our Ukrainian tradition, there is great devotion to the Passion and suffering of Christ and to that of His Holy Mother, especially the Pieta called by us the icon "Do Not Weep for Me, Mother."

We've even establish a separate liturgical feast for the Pieta which even our Orthodox brothers honour with an Akathist!

There is nothing wrong in devotion to the Crucifix either!

As Catholicos Mor Ephrem (we consecrated him "Catholicos" online, in case you are wondering . . .) implies, the modern Catholic "revamping" of traditional Latin devotions leaves something to be desired.

The emphases in art and liturgy are there, with their differences, as they should be.

My favourite Western image of a saint, next to St Benedict of course, is that of St Louis de Montfort holding the Crucifix and the Rosary beads.

Alex

Re: Supposed differences in emphasis - yes or no? #124121 01/21/03 06:08 PM
Joined: Oct 2002
Posts: 4,225
Jakub. Offline
Member
Offline
Member
Joined: Oct 2002
Posts: 4,225
Brethern,

Another quote from the Holy Father Pope John II,"The liturgy of the Eastern Church is fundamentally centered on the Resurrection,the Western Church while maintaining the primacy of the Resurrection,has gone further in the direction of the Passion". After discovering the Eastern side of myself, I am beginning to feel more complete in my faith and spirituality.

In Christ,
James

Re: Supposed differences in emphasis - yes or no? #124122 01/21/03 06:26 PM
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 26,173
Orthodox Catholic Offline
Member
Offline
Member
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 26,173
Dear James,

Don't you just love that Pope? smile

He seems to always know to say the right thing!

I don't know why he does, but I hope that his being Slavic has something to do with it, among other things . . .

Currently in Western Ukraine, the devotion of the Stations of the Cross is not only popular among Ukrainian Catholics, but also among Ukrainian Orthodox.

The latter add the 15th station of the Resurrection at the end.

Just to make it more "Orthodox" you see . . . smile

Alex

Re: Supposed differences in emphasis - yes or no? #124123 01/21/03 06:34 PM
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 1,252
paromer Offline
Member
Offline
Member
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 1,252
Dear Brother Elias,

quote by benedictine:
*************************************************
Most of the old Passion-centered devotions are now defunct. This became evident a few years ago when I tried to find a parish that still did Stations of Cross as a communal devotion during Lent [a childhood memory]. Most pastors didn't have time for it, calling it a merely private piety.
*************************************************

Come to my parish and you will find Stations of the Cross every Friday during Lent!!

And on Good Friday pilgimages to local shrines. People walk from short distances up to many miles, some carrying crosses, to remember the passion and death of our Lord. I guess you would call these practices extra-liturgical or private devotions.

The Easter Triduum is celebrated in the parish culminating with the Easter Vigil (catecumens baptized and others received into the Church).

I don't know if my parish is balanced or not. It does seem to include both passion-crucifixion and resurection during Lent and the Easter Triduum

Some day I would like to attend the Easter Vigil at a Byzantine church. smile

Peace.

Best regards,

Paul

Re: Supposed differences in emphasis - yes or no? #124124 01/21/03 06:39 PM
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 1,252
paromer Offline
Member
Offline
Member
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 1,252
Quote
Originally posted by Orthodox Catholic:


In our Ukrainian tradition, there is great devotion to the Passion and suffering of Christ and to that of His Holy Mother, especially the Pieta called by us the icon "Do Not Weep for Me, Mother."

Alex
Dear Alex,

Is there a website were I might see this icon?

Best regards,

Paul

Re: Supposed differences in emphasis - yes or no? #124125 01/21/03 07:05 PM
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 26,173
Orthodox Catholic Offline
Member
Offline
Member
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 26,173
Dear Paul,

Holy Transfiguration Monastery's catalogue has one, I believe.

Alex

Re: Supposed differences in emphasis - yes or no? #124126 01/21/03 07:26 PM
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 1,133
Memo Rodriguez Offline
Member
Offline
Member
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 1,133
Hi:

I'd like to add a few comments.

I think that saying that the East focuses on the Resurrection while the West focuses on the Passion is overtly simplistic.

Commemoration of the Lord's Passion would be meaningless without His Resurrection.

His Resurrection wouldn't even happen without His Passion.

You might be right that the West doesn't have a direct equivalent of the Resurrectional tones, but we do have a constant reference to the Risen Christ in the way we finish our collect prayers:

"We ask this through Our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son, who LIVES and reigns with You, in the Unity of the Holy Spirit, One God, for ever and ever".

Conversely, I'd say that on Good Friday, the Latin Church doesn't even celebrate the Eucharist (which is also true for all the Catholic Churches, if I recall correctly), however, the most magnificent and solemn liturgical celebration of the entire year is the Paschal Vigil.

The Latin Paschal Vigil is so full of symbols and references to the Resurrection, that nobody who has participated in one can honestly say that the Latin Church disregards this mystery, which is the center of our faith.

The only other celebration of the Resurrection I've participated in, is the Byzantine Paschal Vigil and quite honestly, I was expecting a little more.

Shalom,
Memo.

Re: Supposed differences in emphasis - yes or no? #124127 01/21/03 07:31 PM
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 26,173
Orthodox Catholic Offline
Member
Offline
Member
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 26,173
Dear Memo,

Again, no one is saying that the Latin West denies the Resurrection!

But, devotionally and historically, the Latin West has focused on the Crucifixion much more than the East.

Again, a comparison of crucifixes West and East bears this out.

And the "Church of the Resurrection" in Jerusalem is called, by Roman Catholics, the "Church of the Holy Sepulchre."

I've been to Catholic Churches where they have perpetual Shrines of the Sepulchre. One in southern France had a statue of the Dead Christ lying in state. I, for one, found that to be rather distasteful in every way.

The Resurrection, the glory of the Mother of God, the power of the Holy Spirit are liturgically and devotionally emphasized by the Byzantine Church in a way the West has yet to approximate.

Both perspectives are needed.

Alex

Re: Supposed differences in emphasis - yes or no? #124128 01/21/03 09:54 PM
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 4,678
Logos - Alexis Offline
Member
Offline
Member
Joined: Aug 2002
Posts: 4,678
Quote
According to the Latin tradition, Christ took the cross not only to save men but for satisfaction to God the Father, a satisfaction for his Divine Justice.
I think it's a unfair and untrue to say this. Many (Latin) Catholic priests have specifically told me (over the internet, O Skeptical Axios wink ) that this is a Protestant phenomenon, and theywere thoroughly against it. I read an entire document on the different Catholic and Protestant views (about God's Divine Justice), and the Catholic apologists roundly scorned the "Jesus had to die to appease the Father's justice" idea.

Alex is right, both the Crucifixion and the Resurrection are equally important. I draw spiritual graces much more from the Crucifixion rather than the Resurrection; I think a little too much. One of my goals is to better understand the Resurrection and what it meant.

ChristTeen287

Page 1 of 5 1 2 3 4 5

The Byzantine Forum provides message boards for discussions focusing on Eastern Christianity (though discussions of other topics are welcome). The views expressed herein are those of the participants and may or may not reflect the teachings of the Byzantine Catholic or any other Church. The Byzantine Forum and the www.byzcath.org site exist to help build up the Church but are unofficial, have no connection with any Church entity, and should not be looked to as a source for official information for any Church. All posts become property of byzcath.org. Contents copyright - 1996-2020 (Forum 1998-2020). All rights reserved.
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.3