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Pope: Increase opportunities between Rome and Contantinople #412111
06/27/15 12:28 PM
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Tomassus Offline OP
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Pope: Increase opportunities for meetings and collaboration between the Churches of Rome and Constantinople

On the eve of the feast of Saints Peter and Paul, Pope Francis meets a delegation of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, in a tradition that has lasted for 47 years. The collaboration on the encyclical "Laudato sì" and the importance of theological dialogue to integrate synodality and primacy. The message of Bartholomew I.

27 June 2015
http://www.asianews.it/news-en/Pope:-Increase-opportunities-for-meetings-and-collaboration-between-the-Churches-of-Rome-and-Constantinople-34632.html

Vatican City (AsiaNews) – So that one day we can "participate together at the altar of the Eucharist", Pope Francis has expressed the “hope, therefore, that opportunities may increase for meeting each other, for exchange and cooperation among Catholic and Orthodox faithful, in such a way that as we deepen our knowledge and esteem for one another, we may be able to overcome any prejudice and misunderstanding that may remain as a result of our long separation ".

The Pope was speaking during his meeting this morning with the delegation of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople which traditionally comes to Rome to participate in the solemnity of the Apostles Peter and Paul.

The tradition of visiting each other during the celebrations of the respective patron saints (Peter and Paul in Rome, St Andrew, in November, for Constantinople), has lasted for 47 years and reinforces the experience of a greater unity between the two "sister Churches" . Last year the Pope Francis visited the Phanar and met Bartholomew I.

In his address the Pope recalled that "in the recent conference of presentation of the Encyclical Laudati sì the care of our common home Patriarch Bartholomew sent Metropolitan John Zizioulas, who also headed the delegation today. It 'was the first time that a Papal encyclical was presented and explained by an Orthodox.

Francis also expressed appreciation for the theological work of the joint Catholic and Orthodox commission: " The problems which we may encounter in the course of our theological dialogue must not lead us to discouragement or resignation. The careful examination of how in the Church the principle of synodality and the service of the one who presides are articulated, will make a significant contribution to the progress of relations between our Churches".

The Pope also assured prayers for the preparation of the pan-Orthodox Synod and asked for prayers for the upcoming Synod on the family, at which, he said, we are " looking forward also to the participation of a fraternal delegate from the Ecumenical Patriarchate".

During the audience, Metropolitan John delivered a message to Francis from Bartholomew I, made public by the Vatican press office. In it, Bartholomew emphasizes the value of theological dialogue and the Joint Commission.

"We are called - he said - to support this Dialogue with all our strength by means of active participation in the appropriate Committee of the best theological representatives at the disposal of our Churches, so that this difficult work may continue beyond political or other forms of motivations, particularly in the present critical phase when we are examining the thorny issue of Primacy in the Church".

Bartholomew recalled the mutual collaboration in ecological issues, resulted in work on the encyclical "Laudato sì" and stressed that "our unity must be sought and edified not only in our common past, but also in the contemporary reality lived in the world, which invites us jointly to transmit to modern man the message of the Gospel about joy, hope and love ".

Re: Pope: Increase opportunities between Rome and Contantinople [Re: Tomassus] #412142
06/30/15 05:24 AM
06/30/15 05:24 AM
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More than "increase(d) opportunities for meetings and collaboration" according to the Catholic World News report ( http://www.catholicculture.org/news/headlines/index.cfm?storyid=25380 ):

Catholic-Orthodox unity ‘one of my main concerns,’ says Pope

Pope Francis told a delegation from the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople that the restoration of “full, visible communion” between the Catholic Church and the Orthodox churches “represents one of my main concerns, for which I do not cease to pray to God.”

The Ecumenical Patriarch customarily sends a delegation to Rome for the Solemnity of Saints Peter and Paul, and the Pontiff in turn sends a delegation to Istanbul for the Feast of St. Andrew. This year, the Orthodox delegation included Metropolitan John Zizioulas of Pergamon, Metropolitan Maximos Vgenopoulos of Selyvria, and Father Heikki Huttunen of the Finnish Orthodox Church.

“It is my desire that we may be able to face, in truth but also with a fraternal spirit, the difficulties which still exist,” Pope Francis said on June 27. “In this way, I wish also to renew my support for the important work of the Joint International Commission for Theological Dialogue between the Catholic Church and the Orthodox Church.”

“The problems which we may encounter in the course of our theological dialogue must not lead us to discouragement or resignation,” he added. “The careful examination of how in the Church the principle of synodality and the service of the one who presides are articulated, will make a significant contribution to the progress of relations between our Churches.”

The Pope assured the Orthodox delegation of his prayers for the upcoming Pan-Orthodox Synod and asked for prayers for the upcoming Synod of Bishops of the Catholic Church on the family.


Last edited by Tomassus; 06/30/15 05:34 AM.
Re: Pope: Increase opportunities between Rome and Contantinople [Re: Tomassus] #412144
06/30/15 08:31 AM
06/30/15 08:31 AM
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Very nice.

But Rome has yet to make even one good will gesture on the things that matter most to Orthodoxy.

For example, why couldn't Rome just simply drop the "Filioque" now from the Creed and say that, from now on, we're going the way the Church has always went for the first millennium? (The NO Mass was introduced precisely from within this perspective.)

That's one example, but a series of others could be worked out directly with sympathetic Orthodox theologians and put into effect.

Alex

Re: Pope: Increase opportunities between Rome and Contantinople [Re: Orthodox Catholic] #412158
06/30/15 07:29 PM
06/30/15 07:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Orthodox Catholic
Very nice.

For example, why couldn't Rome just simply drop the "Filioque" now from the Creed and say that, from now on, we're going the way the Church has always went for the first millennium? (The NO Mass was introduced precisely from within this perspective.)


Strictly speaking, during most of the first millennium the Roman liturgy didn't include the creed. This was, apparently, a late innovation wink. Dropping the clause could work wonders though.



Last edited by Ambrosian; 06/30/15 07:30 PM.
Re: Pope: Increase opportunities between Rome and Contantinople [Re: Ambrosian] #412171
07/01/15 05:19 PM
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Dear Ambrosian,

My parish of St Nicholas now uses the original Nicene Creed all the time (there was a period when the church choir was, it seems, unaware they were saying it). It took a while.

And if it took an EC Church a while to get used to the original Creed, I'm sure it won't be a picnic for the Roman Catholic Church, should it ever decide to go that route in advance of a possible future union council with the Orthodox.

Alex

Re: Pope: Increase opportunities between Rome and Contantinople [Re: Orthodox Catholic] #412173
07/01/15 09:59 PM
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Having the original creed in the Eastern and Oriental Churches is one thing. Having it in the Latin Church is another. I doubt any such change will occur until there is greater and more official recognition on the part of the Orthodox that the filioque per se is not heretical, according to the Latin theology, and has never been used in an heretical sense in the Latin Church.

Also, as it was not the Pope of Rome who instituted the Creed in the Western Church in the first place, how in the world could he have the authority to remove it unilaterally? The best to hope for is that the Pope stops using it in the Roman diocese, and other Latin Churches and bishops will follow suit. I don't think my fellow non-Latins fully understand how defensive the Latin bishops are of their own inherent prerogatives for their own diocese.

I think a common date for Easter is a good start, but the issue of filioque depends on an initiative from the Orthodox as noted above, imo.

Blessings

Re: Pope: Increase opportunities between Rome and Contantinople [Re: mardukm] #412177
07/02/15 04:34 AM
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But the Pope could, tomorrow (or later this afternoon . . . smile ), issue a letter or an order to return to the original Creed - and the Latin Church would obey.

And the Pope could also simply go back to the original way Easter/Pascha was calculated i.e. the way the Orthodox continue to calculate it.

The RC bishops weren't so defensive when the Novus Ordo came into effect, thereby overhauling so much of their historic liturgical traditions.

Alex

Re: Pope: Increase opportunities between Rome and Contantinople [Re: mardukm] #412179
07/02/15 05:13 AM
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I may be wrong, but don't the non-chalcedonian/miaphysite churches use their own particular creeds?

Last edited by Ambrosian; 07/02/15 05:15 AM.
Re: Pope: Increase opportunities between Rome and Contantinople [Re: mardukm] #412180
07/02/15 05:33 AM
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Originally Posted by mardukm
Also, as it was not the Pope of Rome who instituted the Creed in the Western Church in the first place, how in the world could he have the authority to remove it unilaterally? The best to hope for is that the Pope stops using it in the Roman diocese, and other Latin Churches and bishops will follow suit. I don't think my fellow non-Latins fully understand how defensive the Latin bishops are of their own inherent prerogatives for their own diocese.


It could be argued that the Pope, in an indirect manner, did exactly that when St. Pius V ordered the adoption of the Tridentine Missal throughout the Roman Rite; the Filioque was a fait accompli by then, but after that point, a bishop is not free to stop using it. And Latin bishops might be defensive of their prerogatives, but altering the Missal or resisting changes ordered by Rome are not considered to be among those prerogatives.

Re: Pope: Increase opportunities between Rome and Contantinople [Re: mardukm] #412181
07/02/15 05:47 AM
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Quote
, but the issue of filioque depends on an initiative from the Orthodox

We're getting a bit off topic, but I have long believed that the Orthodox (well, the English speakers) should alter their translation to "who proceeds eternally from the Father".

Re: Pope: Increase opportunities between Rome and Contantinople [Re: Peter J] #412182
07/02/15 09:30 AM
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Dear Peter the Rock,

But that is the point exactly - or two points really.

Apart from the theology of the Filioque, which is actually a separate issue here, the East has always maintained that no one has the right to tamper with the Nicene Creed that was established by Ecumenical Councils to express the faith of the universal Church.

As was stated above, there are other creedal statements (the Latin West most uses the Apostles' Creed, as we know).

In addition, the point has been advanced that every sentence in the Nicene Creed is reflected in specific Scriptural verses. The Filioque is not.

All that is needed is for the Latin Church to return to the original Nicene Creed - and it has always affirmed that the original Creed sans Filioque still is a full Catholic creedal expression. Popes have used it, for example, when celebrating the Divine Liturgy in Greek.

The only Eastern group that made a local addition to the Creed is the Old Believers who added "True" to the statement regarding the Holy Spirit "And in the Holy Spirit, True and Life-Giving." The reason they did this is because "True" is used in the Creed with respect to the Persons of the Father and the Son "True God from True God."

No need to introduce yet another word which might result in another creedal controversy! (We know you don't want that! wink ).

Alex

Re: Pope: Increase opportunities between Rome and Contantinople [Re: Tomassus] #412183
07/02/15 09:39 AM
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Alex...what do you think about the Armenian version of the Nicean Creed as per my thread? You may want to respond there.

Re: Pope: Increase opportunities between Rome and Contantinople [Re: 70x7] #412188
07/02/15 06:09 PM
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Certainly, the Armenian version is both legitimate and interesting - as you said, there is nothing about it that is unorthodox.

Local creeds and also local variations of the Nicene Creed reflect, of course, the Particular spiritual culture - if one may use that expression - of a Particular Church.

The Nicene Creed as defined by the first two Ecumenical Councils was intended to be a universal standard of Orthodox Faith. So there would be a sense in which the original text of the Creed constitutes that standard against which other Local creedal variants/statements are to be measured against.

As we know, the early Ruthenian Orthodox in communion with Rome (that is how they defined themselves after the Union of Brest) sometimes included the word "Istinno" or "truly" to underscore that the "Holy Spirit TRULY proceeds from the Father" as a way to deflect attention from certain Latin quarters at the time that wished to impose the Filioque at the parish level (and "istinno" sounds similar to "I Syna" or "Filioque").

But the Filioque stands aside from all such creedal statements insofar as it would not meet the necessary test, if you will, of the Orthodox Faith of the original Nicene Creed nor of the "textus receptus" of that Creed.

Alex

Re: Pope: Increase opportunities between Rome and Contantinople [Re: Orthodox Catholic] #412193
07/03/15 01:47 AM
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Dear Alex,

Liturgical reform in the Latin Church began in the early 20th century, and originated from regional initiatives, not with Pope John XXIII or Pope Paul VI. That does not support the idea that the Pope can (supposedly) unilaterally change the Creed of the Latins.

In terms of textual variation and orthodoxy, there is no difference between the Armenian Creed and the Latin Creed.

It's on the level of meaning where there is a difference because "proceeds from the Father" means something different when the Greeks say it than when the Latins say it. To the Greeks it means the Holy Spirit originates hypstatically from the Father. To the Latins, it means the Holy Spirit shares the divine Essence with the Father (and, further, with the Son; from the Father through the Son). Either belief satisfies the 2nd Ecumenical Councils purpose to defend the divinity of the Holy Spirit.

The Armenian Creed is acceptable because despite its textual variation, its orthodoxy is readily obvious. It is not so obvious for filioque. However, the orthodoxy of filioque cannot be impugned, either.

Blessings

Re: Pope: Increase opportunities between Rome and Contantinople [Re: Tomassus] #412194
07/03/15 04:53 AM
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Alex, I take your point about not tampering with the Nicene Creed. However, I think it is clear that “proceeds eternally” is actually a more precise translation of “ekporeumenon”, so that's really the opposite of tampering.

Mardukm, it never ceases to amaze me how polemics have become the norm. In the case of this thread, when you said that the fact that the Orthodox do not agree with the filioque is a reason for saying it in the creed, I seriously wonder how many readers even batted an eye.

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