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I've had numerous requests for this pdf of late. I am not sure why I had not posted this before, except that I suppose I hoped people would write their own letters in their own style. I post it now since it appears that numerous learned people actually believe that the Revised Divine Liturgy restores authentic Eastern praxis, and that is demonstrably false. The RDL is far less Eastern (authentic to official forms in text and rubrics) then was the 1964.

The attached was originally part of a letter to Metropolitan Basil with copies to the other bishops. The response came from Bishop Andrew Pataki of Passaic (now retired) and was a very formal and strangely worded accusation of disobedience for the crime of asking an archbishop to reconsider a decision.

Just to keep things clear I note again that the Liturgy I have asked to make normative for the Ruthenian Church is that given in the the official Ruthenian Recension Liturgical Books published by Rome (beginning with the Liturgicon in 1941/1942). This is the one Rome has repeatedly directed our bishops to use and which they have for all these decades refused to declare normative. In the end, all that we ask of the bishops is to do what Rome has told them to do regarding Liturgy. This should never be confused with the "as celebrated" in some places.

Comments welcome.

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Thank you for posting this John! Why does it not surprise me that Bishop Andrew repled as you say he did. smile

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The Congregation for the Eastern Churches should prepare and promulgate an equivalent of Liturgiam Authenticam for the Eastern Catholic Churches, preferably one prepared in conjunction or consultation with the Orthodox Churches.


Does not the 1996 Instruction already in a sense do this for the Eastern Churches? It is a fairly solid document and the UGCC Synod has included the Instruction in the list of obligatory liturgical manuals for the entire Synod.

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Indeed, the Liturgical Instruction ought to be considered a guiding document for all the Eastern Catholic Churches, but I have been told by a number of Ruthenian priests that the Council of Bishops "has not received" a number of guidelines in the instructions, e.g., regarding restoration of Orthros and Vespers, suppression of Saturday vigil liturgies, and, of course, bringing liturgical usage into line with those of the counterpart Orthodox Church.

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The Orthodox part is never taken into consideration when we discuss any possible "reform" of the Byzantine greek-catholic liturgy. In Romania at least. If here somebody will tell a greek-catholic priest that even the Orthodox have something to say in any possible reform of the rite, he not even take into consideration and look at you as some freak or something. In Romania there are even linguistical differences between the greek-catholics and the Orthodox...not to speak about the liturgical typica...

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At the risk of sounding less than charitable, it seems as though our hierarchs, in promulgating the RDL, incorporated inclusive language to pander to those who'd be the last to darken the doors of what they view as an "oppressive, patriarchal, sexist institution" (i.e., radical feminists) anyway.

I question why they didn't first try to get a "sense of the faithful" from the laity of the Ruthenian Church. The feeling I've always gotten from talking to lay women in the Church is that they are every bit as resistant as men, if not more so, to the use of gender-neutral, inclusive language even when restricted to a "horizontally-inclusive" sense. As I see it, everyone of goodwill in the Church knows that "...for He is gracious and loves mankind" in the Liturgy or "...for us and for all men" in the Creed applies to both males and females.

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RE: The feeling I've always gotten from talking to lay women in the Church is that they are every bit as resistant as men, if not more so, to the use of gender-neutral, inclusive language even when restricted to a "horizontally-inclusive" sense. As I see it, everyone of goodwill in the Church knows that "...for He is gracious and loves mankind" in the Liturgy or "...for us and for all men" in the Creed applies to both males and females.

I've not been following this subject, so I am walking into it blind ...except for the part about "gender neutral, inclusive language". No disrespect intended, but I am an old woman and have seen where this path goes- like a tangent it goes every and anywhere sometimes. The Blessed Trinity isn't gender neutral, the human family isn't gender neutral, God doesn't use gender neutral language and neither do families. When God speaks of mankind or men- it reminds me of our creation. I am inspired not offended.

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Originally Posted by columba


I've not been following this subject, so I am walking into it blind ...except for the part about "gender neutral, inclusive language". No disrespect intended, but I am an old woman and have seen where this path goes- like a tangent it goes every and anywhere sometimes. The Blessed Trinity isn't gender neutral, the human family isn't gender neutral, God doesn't use gender neutral language and neither do families. When God speaks of mankind or men- it reminds me of our creation. I am inspired not offended.


Beautifully put!

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Originally Posted by columba
I've not been following this subject, so I am walking into it blind ...except for the part about "gender neutral, inclusive language". No disrespect intended, but I am an old woman and have seen where this path goes- like a tangent it goes every and anywhere sometimes. The Blessed Trinity isn't gender neutral, the human family isn't gender neutral, God doesn't use gender neutral language and neither do families. When God speaks of mankind or men- it reminds me of our creation. I am inspired not offended.


I agree that the Holy Trinity is not gender neutral, nor is the human family. However, there are places in the original Greek where the language is gender neutral. For instance, "who for us [blank} and for our salvation, came down from heaven and became [blank] In both cases, the [blank] in the original Greek uses "Anthropos"--gender neutral, as opposed to "Anir"--gender specific male.

With that said, I would rather use gender specific than gender neutral.

(I am not trying to start a hissing match--so don't hoo until I say boo.)

Of course, one million monkeys on typewriters could be right.

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Anthropos is not necessarily gender neutral.

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Originally Posted by Athanasius The L
Anthropos is not necessarily gender neutral.


Very true.

Originally Posted by Fr Brendan
However, there are places in the original Greek where the language is gender neutral. For instance, "who for us [blank} and for our salvation, came down from heaven and became [blank] In both cases, the [blank] in the original Greek uses "Anthropos"--gender neutral, as opposed to "Anir"--gender specific male.


The point, however, is that the Greek anthropos can be as gender neutral/specific as the English man. So why not use man/men to translate anthropos/anthropous? And why in the RDL rendering is man/men not used for the first [blank], "for us [blank]" but the RDL then DOES use it for the second [blank], "and became [blank]" giving, as the RDL's Creed has it, "and became man"?

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\\The point, however, is that the Greek anthropos can be as gender neutral/specific as the English man. So why not use man/men to translate anthropos/anthropous? And why in the RDL rendering is man/men not used for the first [blank], "for us [blank]" but the RDL then DOES use it for the second [blank], "and became [blank]" giving, as the RDL's Creed has it, "and became man"?\\

In Slavonic, as I understand it, "chellovek" (used to render anthropos) is neutral, while "muzh" (anir) is always male. Significantly, Psalm 1 in both Greek and Slavonic (and Latin, for that matter) use the word for gender specific "male". Therefore, "Blessed is the one...." is inaccurate.

Aa Greek Orthodox bishop justly renowned for his learning and piety who directed that the Creed be recited in English as "who for us and for our salvation..... and was made human," saying that this was a closer rendering of the Greek text.

Slavonic uses forms of "chellovek" and not "muzh" in this same place.

Inclusive language when used for political purposes is odious, but if the sense of the Greek (or Slavonic or Latin) is inclusive, I have no problem with it.

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I do not know the Greek Orthodox bishop in question, but after allowing the Holy Cross and other translations of the Creed the Greek Archdiocese did (several years ago) issue an official text, and includes the correct phrase: "Who for us men and for our salvation came down from heaven and was incarnate of the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary and became man." I know that all Greek parishes have not yet adopted the official form of the Creed. See The Nicene Creed.

I am sure that this Greek bishop is renowned for his learning and piety, and I do not question it. Yet on this particular issue he is wrong. Stating "who for us and our salvation" leaves out a term (one which we generally translate into English as "men", and while "human" is equivalent it is very SciFi). His omitting to translate a term is something that many Roman Catholics wanted to do with their translation of the Creed, but which the Vatican clearly labeled as "theologically grave".

All gender neutral language is the result of politics, and is odious. Replacing phrases like "who for us men" (which is a clear reference to all men from Adam and Eve until the last child conceived before the Second Coming) with phrases like "who for us" (which is potentially exclusive because it could mean only those standing there at the moment) is bad theology.

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Originally Posted by bpbasilphx
\\The point, however, is that the Greek anthropos can be as gender neutral/specific as the English man. So why not use man/men to translate anthropos/anthropous? And why in the RDL rendering is man/men not used for the first [blank], "for us [blank]" but the RDL then DOES use it for the second [blank], "and became [blank]" giving, as the RDL's Creed has it, "and became man"?\\

In Slavonic, as I understand it, "chellovek" (used to render anthropos) is neutral, while "muzh" (anir) is always male. Significantly, Psalm 1 in both Greek and Slavonic (and Latin, for that matter) use the word for gender specific "male". Therefore, "Blessed is the one...." is inaccurate.


RSV Genesis 2:24 Therefore a man [LXX: anthrōpos; RST:chelovek] leaves his father and his mother and cleaves to his wife, and they become one flesh.

How is the Greek anthrōpos and the Slavonic/Russian chelovek gender neutral here?

There are other examples in scripture; this has been noted and discussed on this forum.

--------------

LXX: Septuagint
RST: Russian Synodal Translation
RSV: Revised Stamdard Version

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\\All gender neutral language is the result of politics, and is odious.\\

Not in and of itself. This is like saying that all cats are vicious (and I happen to be a cat lover).

One reason in my attempts at translation I've tried to distinguish between "anthropos" and "anir" is to show where the original uses one or the other.

Following similar reasoning, I've tried to distinguish between "sheol" and "gehenna" using these terms, rather than "hell" and "hades," which have become trivialized in popular speech.

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Originally Posted by bpbasilphx
\\All gender neutral language is the result of politics, and is odious.\\

Not in and of itself. This is like saying that all cats are vicious (and I happen to be a cat lover).

My cat snarls at politically-correct gender neutral language! All cats become vicious when confronted with bad theology. biggrin

The whole move to re-write the texts with inaccurate language just so that it is gender neutral is rooted in the politics of secular feminism. That is part of the reason the Vatican has labeled it (like this example of omitting the word "men" in the Creed) as "theologically grave". That good people don't see the root politics does not mean that they don't exist.

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Secular humanism and gender feminism is one thing.

Seeking to make the texts as accurate as possible is another.

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There was a proposal about 20 years ago that Eastern Orthodox and Eastern Catholics using the Byzantine Rite publish common texts of the Divine Liturgy and other services. Unfortunately, the commission failed, chiefly because the Eastern Catholic delegation led, I believe, by Fr. Robert Taft, insisted on so called inclusive language and modern English. As the pdf article notes the idea of modern "inclusive language" is foreign to Eastern Orthodoxy.
You should note that every Eastern Orthodox Church uses the same text for the services, although the English translations may differ. The Greeks favor modern English, while the Antiochians and OCA favor more traditional Elizabethian English.
I should note that it is quite common in the Eastern Orthodox Church for the Priest to read or chant the Anaphora out loud so that the people can hear it. His Beatitude, Patriarch Ignatius IV, the Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Antioch endorsed reading the Anaphora out loud.

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Originally Posted by Fr. John Morris
There was a proposal about 20 years ago that Eastern Orthodox and Eastern Catholics using the Byzantine Rite publish common texts of the Divine Liturgy and other services. Unfortunately, the commission failed,

Hi Father. Is there further reading available on that effort?

(I realize I'm coming in quite late to this thread -- I'm not on this subforum very often.)

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Chiefly because of the Eastern Catholic delegation? I doubt it. The way I heard it was there was no delegation, only a proposal that never got of the ground for lack of interest of all parties. Neither Orthodox or Eastern Catholics can agree to common texts within their own jurisdictions. How could they get several jurisdictions to agree with one?


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I do recall that at least ACROD and the BCC were going to put a common text together but that never happened. The "Blue Pew Book" that is in most ACROD parishes has a lot of translation that is the exact of the old 1966? Archeparchy of Munhall. I believe much of that came from the joint proposal. When the BCC finally got around to their part approx. 20 years later, they created the "teal terror". Which totally "ran off the rails".

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Originally Posted by bpbasilphx
\\All gender neutral language is the result of politics, and is odious.\\

Not in and of itself.

This ^^ is an old post, but regardless I'm glad to see I'm not the only person on this forum who doesn't agree with "All gender neutral language is the result of politics, and is odious." cool

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Gender neutral language has its place. It is recommended in style books, like The Chicago Manual of Style and the APA Manual of Style, for all modern publications.

That said, editors and technical writing instructors generally agree that this kind of language is best applied in degrees and that language used in things like the Pledge of Allegiance or in categories such as prayer are static and, therefore, may be immune to gender neutral language strictures.

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Originally Posted by Mark R
Gender neutral language has its place.

Which is very different from saying that it is all odious.

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