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http://byztex.blogspot.com/2014/11/kyiv-patriarchate-greek-catholics.html

Thursday, November 6, 2014
Kyiv Patriarchate: Greek Catholics should leave Rome, join us
Moscow, November 6 (Interfax) - The Ukrainian Greek-Catholic Church should stop subordinating Rome and unite with Orthodox believers, leader of the self-proclaimed Kiev Patriarchate Filaret Denisenko believes.

"The first and the main goal: the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate should separate from Moscow. Then nothing will prevent us from uniting in one Church. All other Orthodox Church will recognize us. In result, the UGCC will separate from Rome," Denisenko said in his interview posted by the Gazeta.ua website.

According to him, thus, Orthodox and Greek-Catholics "will become one autocephalous Orthodox Church."

"Greek-Catholic Church was established because Ukrainians did not have their own state. Today this reason is eliminated, we have independent Ukraine. There is no reason for divisions," the schismatic leader said.

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Kind of an old story, in a way.

Catholics want Orthodox to become Catholic, Orthodox want Catholics to become Orthodox. And on and on ...

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His Holiness the Patriarch of Kyiv has expressed these same sentiments before on many an occasion.

And, frankly, I can't say that his vision wouldn't in all likelihood be the best possible outcome for everyone concerned: the Ukrainians (who would have one united Church), Rome (which would finally be divested of that ecumenical pain in the neck that is called the UGCC) and the Moscow Patriarchate (who would no longer have sleepless nights, its worst nightmare having become a reality . . .).

Alex

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Do you think, Alex, if this hypothetical comes true, would the rest of Orthodoxy be compelled to grant autocephaly?

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Dear Lester,

Eventually, in time - yes and hopefully without any internal schisms within canonical Orthodoxy.

It really is hard to believe how a small country like Ukraine (small in relation to its big neighbour to the east) could elicit such tensions and issues.

Even Rome makes itself look, shall we say, not good when it refuses to acknowledge the patriarchate of the UGCC, the largest EC Church and when it drags its heels on something so very obvious and basic as the beatification of the Venerable Metropolitan Andrew Sheptytsky (which would still only limit his veneration to the UGCC).

And this when the two RC prelates of Lviv have been canonized . . .

If the East-West politics are so sharp and unrelenting, why doesn't Rome just let the UGCC do these things itself?

In fact, the UGCC has gone ahead and declared a patriarchate for itself while the UGCC cultus of Met. Andrew Sheptytsky, "on the ground," is higher than that of the beatified EC martyrs (in fact, the majority of those martyrs had Sheptytsky as their mentor).

I once had lunch with an Orthodox Bishop whose father, according to him, was rescued during the war by Sheptytsky. He told me he and many other Orthodox he knew, privately venerate Bl. Andrew.

The cultus of Metropolitan Andrew apparently doesn't offend the Ukrainian Orthodox . . .

Who knew?

Alex

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The whole issue of the Vatican's NOT advancing to its definition of Sainthood the martyrs of the Eastern Catholic church who suffered under Communism - particularly as they piously and with no regard for their lives rejected the false reunions with the Orthodox is to me - someone who is Orthodox but with Greek Catholic roots - a great offense and, frankly, an insult to those most loyal to the Church of Rome throughout the turmoil of the 20th century. Some may say it is none of my business,but if the texts of the Union of Brest mean anything at all in 2014 it is clear that the Bishops of Kiev and surrounding areas who signed the union clearly intended to preserve their status as an autocephalous, or at least autonomous, self ruling Church as they were following both the Orthodox rubrics and other related praxis and teachings. And local veneration of such courageous men and women is at the heart of such venerable eastern practice.

As I've mentioned several times, when the late Metropolitan Nicholas of Amissos urged his Orthodox flock to remember and pray for those martyrs like the martyred bishops Pavel and Teodor and others, I was touched deeply for that was a courageous stand for an Orthodox prelate to take. Bishop Pavel was related to my grandmother and I have no doubt that his intercessions have aided us and perhaps steered my son's recent vocation to the Orthodox priesthood.

Be like Nike says, 'just do it' - tell Rome what you think by acting with courage and respect for eastern teachings.


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Dear DMD,

Well, you never cease to amaze so many of us here, sir! smile

You are related to Bl. Pavel? My grandfather had a tremendous veneration/devotion to Bl. Pavel and he said everyone in the UGCC did for years before he was raised to the altars.

It was my grandfather who first told me about how Bl. Pavel received the stigmata while in prison - you obviously come from excellent and holy stock sir!

And any time you would like to make EC affairs your business - PLEASE DO SO!

The Vatican allows the ROC to make UGCC affairs its business - I prefer your input WAY MORE! smile smile

What a marvellous and religious gentleman you are sir!

Alex

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I don't exactly know the connection, but my father and his sister always insisted that they were related on their mother's side of the family. As Alex and others know, the term 'related to' is sometimes - often - stretched a bit by American terms in that part of Europe, but I take their word for it. I know that Bishop Pavel served as a priest before becoming a Bishop in the family's village church in Cigelka, Slovakia located near Dukla in the former Sarish District.

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Perhaps the days of waiting for Rome to act should end now. Why can't the UGCC Patriarch just do it?
Rome wins - it can say it had nothing to do with it
UGCC wins - public veneration
UOC-KP wins - UGCC shows its no longer subordinate to Rome
UOC-MP wins - they can disown it, blame Rome for not acting and get more internal support.

The only negative I can see is that carrot the MP keeps waving in Rome's face about this oft mentioned, never carried out 'meeting of the Pope with the ROC Patriarch'. It's not really that great a prize anyway, at least not to Rome. It would do wonders for the ROC Patriarch, however, in Western eyes, especially since PP. Francis is such a media darling.

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Dear Michael,

You've put your finger on something really significant here - among other things - when you talked about how Moscow likes to hold Rome responsible for the "waywardness" of the UGCC.

On the one hand, the Orthodox ecumenical commissions and also Churches as a whole will berate Rome for having too much of a jurisdictional strangle hold on its "Uniates" as a primary roadblock for ecumenical forward-looking development.

On the other, any flexing of UGCC "Particular Muscle" that leads to negative consequences for the MP's geopolitical goals invariably leads to it complaining to Cardinal Kasper and his Krew (as they always appear to take the MP's complaints seriously) insisting that a tighter leash on the UGCC is the order of the day.

Fr. Archimandrite Sergius Keleher (+memory eternal!) once led a discussion about the internal UGCC debate in the late 19th century about who would canonise St Josaphat. He talked about how intense the discussions became between the two UGCC sides where one was for the Particular church to do the glorifying while the other (and we can guess who belonged to the "other" group) held out for Rome to do it.

Rome did it in the end, of course. But even though Rome canonised St Josaphat iin 1875, he was only canonised for the Eastern Catholic Churches and his cultus was only extended to the Western Church in 1888! One could have made the case that Rome was breaking its own rules pertaining to canonisation since this act always established the universal cultus of a saint from the get-go.

In short, the canonisation of 1875 turned out to be, in retrospect, quite the put down of the UGCC.

Alex

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I, too, have most definitely heard the complaints from Orthodox about Rome having, as you so nicely put it, a jurisdictional strangle hold on its "Uniates". I don't think I have any problem with those complaints in-and-of themselves, excepting the fact that those who make them are, more often than not, extremely slow to criticize the way the Orthodox handle Western-Rite Orthodoxy.

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nevermind

Last edited by DMD; 11/11/14 10:41 PM.
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Originally Posted by Peter J
I, too, have most definitely heard the complaints from Orthodox about Rome having, as you so nicely put it, a jurisdictional strangle hold on its "Uniates". I don't think I have any problem with those complaints in-and-of themselves, excepting the fact that those who make them are, more often than not, extremely slow to criticize the way the Orthodox handle Western-Rite Orthodoxy.
One significant difference is, no one ever claimed the WRO are an autonomous/autocephalous Church. They are not only normally totally dependent on the local Eastern hierarch, they are subordinate to Eastern praxis and tolerated (not by right, as claimed by ECs and Rome) by the local Eastern bishop to the extent of their wish.

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Originally Posted by Michael_Thoma
Originally Posted by Peter J
I, too, have most definitely heard the complaints from Orthodox about Rome having, as you so nicely put it, a jurisdictional strangle hold on its "Uniates". I don't think I have any problem with those complaints in-and-of themselves, excepting the fact that those who make them are, more often than not, extremely slow to criticize the way the Orthodox handle Western-Rite Orthodoxy.
One significant difference is, no one ever claimed the WRO are an autonomous/autocephalous Church. They are not only normally totally dependent on the local Eastern hierarch, they are subordinate to Eastern praxis and tolerated (not by right, as claimed by ECs and Rome) by the local Eastern bishop to the extent of their wish.


My nevermind was along the same lines, except to note that most of the Orthodox world does not really accept the 'Western Rite' experiment as it reminds them of what they complain of in the reverse - and WRO lacks the liturgical authenticity of tradition which the Eastern Catholic churches posses.

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Originally Posted by Peter J
I, too, have most definitely heard the complaints from Orthodox about Rome having, as you so nicely put it, a jurisdictional strangle hold on its "Uniates". I don't think I have any problem with those complaints in-and-of themselves, excepting the fact that those who make them are, more often than not, extremely slow to criticize the way the Orthodox handle Western-Rite Orthodoxy.

I have never run into Orthodox Christians, online or in person, who claim that the Western Rite Orthodox are self-governing Churches; while Rome publicly says that the Eastern Catholic Churches are just that, i.e., self-governing. But alas if you read the profile on the Vatican website for the Congregation for the Oriental Churches you see that all authority for those Churches is actually vested in the Eastern Congregation of the Roman Curia:

"In addition, it [i.e., the Eastern Congregation] has exclusive authority over the following regions: Egypt and the Sinai peninsula, Eritrea and Northern Ethiopia, Southern Albania and Bulgaria, Cyprus, Greece, Iran, Iraq, Lebanon, Palestine, Syria, Jordan and Turkey. (Profile for the Congregation for the Oriental Churches).

At least the Orthodox are honest. biggrin

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