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Russian Orthodox Church opens up to Catholic Church: “We have common challenges with Francis”

Anna Zafesova
11/8/13

vaticaninsider.lastampa.it/en/world-news/detail/articolo/russia-russia-rusia-29505/

At the end of November Vladimir Putin will be visiting the Vatican for the fourth time since 2000. But expectations and suspense are high ahead of the Russian president’s meeting with Pope Francis, even though Moscow has not yet officially confirmed the visit. All it has said is that “agreements need to be reached.” Russia’s relationship with the Holy Seehas been tense for the past twenty years and Moscow may be hoping that an innovative Pope like Francis, who comes from the New World and appears detached from all the bitterness of the Cold War, could be the man to cautiously bring about a turning point.

This appears to be the underlying hope of the congratulatory message the Patriarch of Moscow and All Russias, Kirill, sent to the new Pope, emphasising the common challenges faced by the Catholic and Orthodox Churches. Only a few days ago, the Synod’s choir sung in the Vatican: a small gesture which is not to be overlooked in the context of the delicate diplomatic relations between the two churches.

The first and third Rome have not been on good terms since the early 90’s, when a revived Orthodox Church reignited its age-old hostility accusing the Vatican of proselytism, despite the scarce presence of Catholics. While Wojtyla dreamt of a visit to Russia, Moscow was passing legislation that treated Catholics differently from other “traditional” denominations (Orthodoxy, Buddhism, Judaism and Islam), presenting them with legal and bureaucratic hurdles to make their life harder. The establishment of four new dioceses led to a big rift, with countless Catholic priests being expelled from the country and an almost total freeze in dialogue between the two faiths. The Polish and anti-communist John Paul II didn’t help ease the tensions as a figure; particularly tensions over the secrets of Fatima which the Orthodox see as confirmation of the Catholic Church’s attempt to forcibly convert people and the issue of the Polish priests whom Wojtyla had sent as apostolic delegates to Russia. The Russian Church breathed a sigh of relief when Ratzinger came on the scene with his conservative rhetoric but now Francis is Pope, it hopes for a turning point. In the early days of his pontificate Francis even prayed for Kirill on the feast day of St. Cyril. The Patriarch praised Bergoglio’s social commitment, emphasising his Argentinean background and has called for a common effort to defend traditional values from “aggressive liberalism”.

Putin has a delicate mission ahead of him. Befriending the “third-worlder” Pope could ease controversies between the Kremlin and the US and EU. But the president has forged an alliance with the Patriarchate, creating an image of himself among icons and monasteries, an opponent of gay friendly laws and a champion of the faith. If he shows too much rapport with Pope Francis, this will not go down well with traditionalists. Meanwhile though, Francis has become quite popular in the Russian media, which compare his austerity to the lavish lifestyles of the Orthodox clergy. The case of the clumsily doctored photograph which made an expensive watch worn by Kirill magically disappear, is still fresh in people’s memories.

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Originally Posted by Tomassus

vaticaninsider.lastampa.it/en/world-news/detail/articolo/russia-russia-rusia-29505/

The first and third Rome have not been on good terms since the early 90’s,


It is surprising that a Catholic paper would use the term "third Rome"!

Last edited by Irish Melkite; 11/10/13 01:41 AM.
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I had the same reaction when I read it.

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Originally Posted by Hieromonk Ambrose
Originally Posted by Tomassus

vaticaninsider.lastampa.it/en/world-news/detail/articolo/russia-russia-rusia-29505/

The first and third Rome have not been on good terms since the early 90’s,

It is surprising that a Catholic paper would use the term "third Rome"!

One thing I have observed is that reporters are always looking for little rhetorical "twists" that can make their articles more interesting to the reader--something like this fills the bill.

I doubt the writer--or his editor--appreciates what the term "third Rome" means from an ROC perspective.

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Or to many Orthodox who do NOT subscribe to the concept of a 'Third Rome.'

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Between the Clown Masses, the wreckified Novus Ordo Liturgy, the various dissident clergy, and nuns that don't want to wear habits, I'm hard pressed to figure out what the Orthodox in Russia see positive about all this???

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Originally Posted by Tomassus
. . . The Patriarch praised Bergoglio’s social commitment, emphasising his Argentinean background and has called for a common effort to defend traditional values from “aggressive liberalism”. . . .

The Russian Orthodox have been calling for an alliance with Roman Catholics in defense of traditional moral values for a decade now with no appreciable response from the Roman Church.

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Originally Posted by Irish_Ruthenian
Between the Clown Masses, the wreckified Novus Ordo Liturgy, the various dissident clergy, and nuns that don't want to wear habits, I'm hard pressed to figure out what the Orthodox in Russia see positive about all this???

Maybe the Russian Orthodox are focusing upon the "positive" of not being in communion with Rome and thus avoiding the problems you enumerated in your post.

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Originally Posted by Apotheoun
Originally Posted by Tomassus
. . . The Patriarch praised Bergoglio’s social commitment, emphasising his Argentinean background and has called for a common effort to defend traditional values from “aggressive liberalism”. . . .

The Russian Orthodox have been calling for an alliance with Roman Catholics in defense of traditional moral values for a decade now with no appreciable response from the Roman Church.
I think both sides have been saying the same thing to each other, but other than speaking publicly to politicians and governments, what more can/should the Churches do jointly? Bp. Hilarion's teachings mirror Pope Benedict's, even in teachings of contraception and divorce - so what's the next step?

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Originally Posted by Irish_Ruthenian
Between the Clown Masses, the wreckified Novus Ordo Liturgy, the various dissident clergy, and nuns that don't want to wear habits, I'm hard pressed to figure out what the Orthodox in Russia see positive about all this???


"Wreckified"? As in the "wreckified" English language that's spoken in most parts of the USA? I know of no widespread occurrences of these "clown" Masses that you and others on this forum seem to think are legion. I've witnessed a kind, just and loving Orthodox priest invite children up and around the table of preparation so that they could more fully understand and appreciate what is going on during the Proskomedia. My daughter was carried through the Royal Doors and three times around the altar at her baptism and chrismation. What of it? Do you think they are dissidents for taking this pastoral liberty? I find that the real "wrecks" are the people that get disjointed at what they perceive as ritually unclean, and are unable to comprehend the disconnect between such attitudes and the Gospel injunctions of Jesus, the Christ.

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I am 65, have worked in Latin church music for years, and have never seen a clown mass anywhere near this part of the country. There may have been a few somewhere and some time ago, but their frequency has been blown completely out of proportion by the chronically hysterical.

Simply put, the churches are stronger together than they are separately and can do much good by working together. Let the ritually pure go drown themselves in the purification pond. LOL.

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Originally Posted by byzanTN
I am 65, have worked in Latin church music for years, and have never seen a clown mass anywhere near this part of the country. There may have been a few somewhere and some time ago, but their frequency has been blown completely out of proportion by the chronically hysterical.

Simply put, the churches are stronger together than they are separately and can do much good by working together. Let the ritually pure go drown themselves in the purification pond. LOL.


Fine for you, sir. If I had wanted a Protestant style Liturgy, I would have remained a Protestant and not gone through all the grief and aggravation of converting to the Catholic Faith. I feel blessed to have found not only the Byzantine Church in America, but a particular parish where Latinization is not particularly welcome.

You can make fun of me all you wish, some of us want the real thing and not a modernist substitute!

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Originally Posted by Utroque
Originally Posted by Irish_Ruthenian
Between the Clown Masses, the wreckified Novus Ordo Liturgy, the various dissident clergy, and nuns that don't want to wear habits, I'm hard pressed to figure out what the Orthodox in Russia see positive about all this???


"Wreckified"? As in the "wreckified" English language that's spoken in most parts of the USA? I know of no widespread occurrences of these "clown" Masses that you and others on this forum seem to think are legion. I've witnessed a kind, just and loving Orthodox priest invite children up and around the table of preparation so that they could more fully understand and appreciate what is going on during the Proskomedia. My daughter was carried through the Royal Doors and three times around the altar at her baptism and chrismation. What of it? Do you think they are dissidents for taking this pastoral liberty? I find that the real "wrecks" are the people that get disjointed at what they perceive as ritually unclean, and are unable to comprehend the disconnect between such attitudes and the Gospel injunctions of Jesus, the Christ.


So how can you use an example from the Orthodox Church to counter a point brought up by a Catholic about the Catholic church?

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Originally Posted by byzanTN
I am 65, have worked in Latin church music for years, and have never seen a clown mass anywhere near this part of the country. There may have been a few somewhere and some time ago, but their frequency has been blown completely out of proportion by the chronically hysterical.

Simply put, the churches are stronger together than they are separately and can do much good by working together. Let the ritually pure go drown themselves in the purification pond. LOL.


I have seven years on you, have not quite seen it all, but do know that most of the Catholics I have met, eastern, western, northern and southern, are people of deep faith, love and commitment; undisturbed by the sometimes bizarre liturgical occurrences that swirl about the world. They would affirm, most emphatically, that we have common challenges to be met, not only with Patriarch Kyril, but any other Orthodox leader who might be up to the challenge.

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Originally Posted by Utroque
Originally Posted by Irish_Ruthenian
Between the Clown Masses, the wreckified Novus Ordo Liturgy, the various dissident clergy, and nuns that don't want to wear habits, I'm hard pressed to figure out what the Orthodox in Russia see positive about all this???


"Wreckified"? As in the "wreckified" English language that's spoken in most parts of the USA? I know of no widespread occurrences of these "clown" Masses that you and others on this forum seem to think are legion. I've witnessed a kind, just and loving Orthodox priest invite children up and around the table of preparation so that they could more fully understand and appreciate what is going on during the Proskomedia. My daughter was carried through the Royal Doors and three times around the altar at her baptism and chrismation. What of it? Do you think they are dissidents for taking this pastoral liberty? I find that the real "wrecks" are the people that get disjointed at what they perceive as ritually unclean, and are unable to comprehend the disconnect between such attitudes and the Gospel injunctions of Jesus, the Christ.


It is lovely that the priest wants his parish to better understand the Proskemedia Service, especially the younger ones, who are the future of the Church.

That is not what I was talking about, and if you were to read my posts in the thread more carefully, my question was and still remains "What do the Russians want with the Roman Church and Her modern innovations to the Liturgy?"

There. Did I say that in a more acceptable way?

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