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There's no real difference between Catholicism and Orthodoxy.

Go to the parish you are happy at.

That's enough.

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Originally Posted by MichaelO
There's no real difference between Catholicism and Orthodoxy.

Go to the parish you are happy at.

That's enough.


That view's pretty standard on this board. It's nicer than triumphalism, but no. "Tous schismatiques" logically denies the church; it really says there is no church. The church is not a house divided in principle.

That said, born Orthodox get the benefit of the doubt. None of their defined doctrine, as opposed to their opinions, is un-Catholic. We don't solicit conversions like what Jeremiah is thinking of doing, but because of the true-church claim, as Fr. Serge said to me, we accept them - quietly.

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Originally Posted by Jeremiah
Whatever any individual's reason for choosing communion with the Catholics or the Orthodox, I'm sure we can all safely assume it's personal and therefore subjective (some people make the choice for doctrinal or theological reasons; others for cultural or family reasons; others for marital reasons; the list goes on). As such, we should be reticent to claim there are "good" reasons or "bad" reasons for such choices. One's reasons are what they are.

Actually, I feel the same way. That's why I wanted to make it clear that I don't usually say "That's not a good basis for choosing which communion to belong to." -- even though I felt it appropriate to do so in this case, in view of TYF statement (and having read his writings in general for quite a while -- read and enjoyed, that is, not read with gritted teeth).

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Originally Posted by The young fogey
Originally Posted by MichaelO
There's no real difference between Catholicism and Orthodoxy.

Go to the parish you are happy at.

That's enough.

That view's pretty standard on this board. It's nicer than triumphalism, but no.

I've encountered Christians who held that view and were very triumphalistic.

But I digress ...

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Originally Posted by The young fogey
Originally Posted by likethethief
I think a change in church sui juris for someone who was living as a Greek Orthodox would be relatively simple once they're Catholic.

I think and hope so. And if marriage or ordination doesn't come up, it might not matter. Just go to an Eastern church.


In addition to marriage and ordination, children are affected by the father's Church status since the children are ascribed into the Church of the father, at least until they're 14, when they can freely select any Church sui iuris. One need not be married to have children so I'd add that as another instance where Church ascription matters. I completely agree that one is free to live as a Catholic in any Church sui iuris regardless of which one is canonically a member. Personally I spend a fair amount of time in Orthodox Churches as well, in particular most festal vigils, and Presanctified, probably other times if I thought about it more.

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Maybe churchgoers are less likely to have children out of wedlock.

Non-communing attendance outside of Sundays with the Orthodox is great. Definitely in the spirit of the Western convert Russian Catholics, who aren't self-haters but all positive, in love with the East: "We have bishops! They just happen not to be Catholic right now."

Understandably the Ukrainian Catholic exiles who were the first Eastern Christians I knew well and the first traditional Catholics I knew in person - took me to my first traditional Catholic liturgy - didn't feel that way.

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Originally Posted by The young fogey
Non-communing attendance outside of Sundays with the Orthodox is great.

I like to go to the PNCC parish in town (on Sundays), as I regard it as my "home parish" so to speak -- notwithstanding the fact that I'm officially in the Roman Communion, because that's how my parents had me baptized (some would dub that "a technicality", but I don't want to uncork that can of worms). It would be nice if it satisfied the "Sunday obligation" requirement, since on some weekends getting to two liturgies is slightly inconvenient (all the more so if one of the other one is Melkite), but what are you gonna do, right?

smile

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Originally Posted by The young fogey
Maybe churchgoers are less likely to have children out of wedlock.


A man can be widowed and be the father of young children, and I have a friend who adopted a child as a single parent. Not common but happens. And I dare say churchgoers do sometimes have children outside of of marriage. smile

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Originally Posted by Peter J
Originally Posted by The young fogey
Non-communing attendance outside of Sundays with the Orthodox is great.

I like to go to the PNCC parish in town (on Sundays), as I regard it as my "home parish" so to speak -- notwithstanding the fact that I'm officially in the Roman Communion, because that's how my parents had me baptized (some would dub that "a technicality", but I don't want to uncork that can of worms). It would be nice if it satisfied the "Sunday obligation" requirement, since on some weekends getting to two liturgies is slightly inconvenient (all the more so if one of the other one is Melkite), but what are you gonna do, right?

smile


I went to an Orthodox Divine Liturgy on a Sunday because their deacon was being made a protodeacon and I wanted to share in the happy event. Another Sunday the baby of friends was being baptized. When SF has the annual Bay to Breakers run from the Bay to the Ocean it shuts down major routes making it insane to get out to our parish and back home again. I just went to an Orthodox Church close to home. On those Sundays I saw no need to also go to a Latin Church where the Liturgy, the readings, the feastday, would be entirely different from my parish, having been in an Orthodox Church with the identical Liturgy as my home EC parish, apart from the heirarchs commemorated in the diptychs. July 6th was the altar feast, old calendar, for an OCA Church where we frequently go for Vespers. Their altar feast happened to fall on a Sunday so again I was there instead of my home parish.

I love the Roman Rite and I often go to daily Mass but as far as going to Mass on a Sunday after going to DL in an Orthodox Church, in order to fulfill an "obligation", it makes zero sense to me.

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Originally Posted by likethethief
Originally Posted by Peter J
Originally Posted by The young fogey
Non-communing attendance outside of Sundays with the Orthodox is great.

I like to go to the PNCC parish in town (on Sundays), as I regard it as my "home parish" so to speak -- notwithstanding the fact that I'm officially in the Roman Communion, because that's how my parents had me baptized (some would dub that "a technicality", but I don't want to uncork that can of worms). It would be nice if it satisfied the "Sunday obligation" requirement, since on some weekends getting to two liturgies is slightly inconvenient (all the more so if one of the other one is Melkite), but what are you gonna do, right?

smile


I went to an Orthodox Divine Liturgy on a Sunday because their deacon was being made a protodeacon and I wanted to share in the happy event. Another Sunday the baby of friends was being baptized. When SF has the annual Bay to Breakers run from the Bay to the Ocean it shuts down major routes making it insane to get out to our parish and back home again. I just went to an Orthodox Church close to home. On those Sundays I saw no need to also go to a Latin Church where the Liturgy, the readings, the feastday, would be entirely different from my parish, having been in an Orthodox Church with the identical Liturgy as my home EC parish, apart from the heirarchs commemorated in the diptychs. July 6th was the altar feast, old calendar, for an OCA Church where we frequently go for Vespers. Their altar feast happened to fall on a Sunday so again I was there instead of my home parish.

I love the Roman Rite and I often go to daily Mass but as far as going to Mass on a Sunday after going to DL in an Orthodox Church, in order to fulfill an "obligation", it makes zero sense to me.


I don't have a problem with that.

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Originally Posted by likethethief
There is no formal liturgical Rite for Orthodox Christians coming into full communion. Jeremiah would certainly not be confirmed/chrismated. He would be received by confession, recitation of the Creed, and Holy Eucharist. The question is only in which Catholic Church he would be ascribed.


I wonder how many RC priests are like the one that Jeremiah encountered. I only say that because I received a call once from a man who had been baptized at my (Orthodox) parish as an infant, became non-observant as an adult, only to have a religious awakening in the Roman Church as an older man. He was enrolled in an RCIA program, and needed proof of his baptism. In the letter that I wrote, I supplied this man with information on two levels. From the Orthodox perspective, joining the Roman Catholic Church makes him *not* in "good standing" with the Orthodox Church, and thus ineligible for things like a church funeral. From the Catholic perspective, since he already had received the sacraments of baptism *and confirmation* he technically should not be in an RCIA program and should not be confirmed. (I quoted the relevant sections of Catholic Canon Law, too.)

I can't help but think that many Roman Catholic priests are simply ignorant of Eastern practices--either Orthodox or Catholic--and don't take the time to actually learn what their own canon law states.

Fr. David

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Originally Posted by Chtec
Originally Posted by likethethief
There is no formal liturgical Rite for Orthodox Christians coming into full communion. Jeremiah would certainly not be confirmed/chrismated. He would be received by confession, recitation of the Creed, and Holy Eucharist. The question is only in which Catholic Church he would be ascribed.


I wonder how many RC priests are like the one that Jeremiah encountered. I only say that because I received a call once from a man who had been baptized at my (Orthodox) parish as an infant, became non-observant as an adult, only to have a religious awakening in the Roman Church as an older man. He was enrolled in an RCIA program, and needed proof of his baptism. In the letter that I wrote, I supplied this man with information on two levels. From the Orthodox perspective, joining the Roman Catholic Church makes him *not* in "good standing" with the Orthodox Church, and thus ineligible for things like a church funeral. From the Catholic perspective, since he already had received the sacraments of baptism *and confirmation* he technically should not be in an RCIA program and should not be confirmed. (I quoted the relevant sections of Catholic Canon Law, too.)

I can't help but think that many Roman Catholic priests are simply ignorant of Eastern practices--either Orthodox or Catholic--and don't take the time to actually learn what their own canon law states.

Fr. David

I would expect a Catholic to understand at least this ^^ part ... we're not Anglicans you know. wink

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Of course Fr. David said the right things. There's that parallel true-church claim, but more important to us, this man has been chrismated and communed. He is not a Protestant or non-Christian and thus does not belong in RCIA.

I don't buy the liberal myth that our seminaries churn out pious ignoranti, and I can't believe they would not teach what the church does about the Christian East. That said, not every priest is an intellectual or interested in this subject, and as everyone who's gone to school knows, what you're not interested in and don't use (and frankly, in parish life this doesn't come up much), you forget.

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Originally Posted by Chtec

I can't help but think that many Roman Catholic priests are simply ignorant of Eastern practices--either Orthodox or Catholic--and don't take the time to actually learn what their own canon law states.

Fr. David


Father David, I would agree with the first part of your statement. Not so much for the second part. smile I think that our priests need to be aware of what they don't know, and then go to the pros.

Canon Law, like secular laws, can be very difficult to understand accurately. My own opinion is that whenever someone who is either Orthodox or has a hint of Eastern or Oriental Catholic in their family presents themselves for marriage, confirmation, baptism of children... the priest, deacon, or whomever is handling that needs to go straight to their chancery for advise from the canonist there. We don't have any EC canonist in the chancery for the RC parish where I'm a catechist. But when needed they have their go-to EC canon lawyer/s they contact and get answers.

When someone calls or comes into the rectory inquiring about "becoming Catholic" I think most often they are referred to the parish Director of Religious Education. I know my DRE is very well educated. I've been a catechist under her for many years and she continues to inspire me. But given the high ratio of RC Catholic parishes to Orthodox parishes at least where I live it's likely pretty rare for an RC parish to have this experience of Orthodox seeking to become Catholic more than once, if that.

However, that being said, the National Statutes for the Catechumenate are quite clear regarding Orthodox, which they call "Eastern Christians".
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RCIA, Appendix, 2, #474: In the case of Eastern Christians who enter into the fullness of Catholic communion, no liturgical rite is required, but simply a profession of Catholic faith, even if such persons are permitted, in virtue of recourse to the Apostolic See, to transfer to the Latin rite.


I fear many DREs and possibly priests, that I can't say, don't know the ins and outs of the RCIA ritual text and the appendix. For sure we had a deacon who completely contradicted on a different topic what is clearly stated in the appendix.

My DRE knows the ritual text including the appendix. Her copy of our Study Edition, and mine, have the pages falling out from frequent referencing. Sadly the North American Forum for the Catechumenate where she and I greatly benefited from a number of excellent in depth training weekends, closed last year for lack of financial resources.

For the canon law part, I wouldn't know as much as I do, which is very limited, if I hadn't been an Eastern Catholic when I was a student in the one term of canon law that was required in the 3 year program where I was trained in this Diocese. I asked a lot of questions in and out of class and the teacher has kept himself very available to me for my questions since then.

From all I have learned over the years my usual response for anything that involves canon law remains "Contact your chancery and ask them." smile


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Yes. Unless someone makes the actual effort to learn about something, he will not know of it unless it is fashionable or scandalous, and then in a distorted form.

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