The Byzantine Forum
Newest Members
Michael_P, Deirdre Glasheen, JohnFromRuthenia, Michael Labish, meeklytrying
5,786 Registered Users
Who's Online Now
1 members (1 invisible), 102 guests, and 14 robots.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Latest Photos
Church of St Cyril of Turau & All Patron Saints of Belarus
Byzantine Nebraska
Byzantine Nebraska
by orthodoxsinner2, December 11
Church of the Holy Trinity (UGCC) - Brazil
Church of the Holy Trinity (UGCC) - Brazil
by Santiago Tarsicio, March 17
Papal Audience 10 November 2017
Papal Audience 10 November 2017
by JLF, November 10
Upgraded Russian icon corner
Upgraded Russian icon corner
by The young fogey, October 20
Forum Statistics
Forums26
Topics35,077
Posts414,157
Members5,786
Most Online3,380
Dec 29th, 2019
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
#124461 06/13/03 12:04 AM
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 438
D
Member
OP Offline
Member
D
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 438
There is an angle regarding our peculiar history that I don't think has been discussed here before. It has to do with the establishment of the Byzantine Catholic Church(es) in the US. While I have no statistics at hand, I believe that the majority of OCA (Russian), as well as virtually all of the Ukrainian and Ruthenian Churches derive their existence from a common patrimony.

They all arose from Byzantine Catholics of Eastern Europe and owe their separation, not to theological, liturgical, or even practical differences but merely to political differences.

It has often been discussed on this forum the interaction between Fr. Alexis Toth and Bishop John Ireland. The politics here are easier to understand since it dealt primarily with the internal American Catholic Church structure. Bishop John envisioned only a Latin Church for the US and wished to suppress the establishment of the Eastern Catholic churches here. (Although about 20 years after his run in with Fr. Alexis, he did assist in the establishment of a separate Ukrainian parish within his jurisdiction.) Most of us know that this attitude was instrumental in the establishment of the Russian Orthodox Church in the mainland of the US.

However, I suspect the more interesting and by far the more influential struggle had to do with Eastern European politics between the Russians and the Hungarians. In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the Russians were heavily involved in the Panslav movement. The Hungarians in Magyarization (Hungarianization).

Both of these GOVERNMENTS were actively supporting discontent among Eastern European Eastern Christians living in the US. The governments themselves were financially supporting the fledgling Churches in this country and I suspect they did so substantially.

Why? Well, take for example the Russians. Some of our ancestors would "convert" to orthodoxy and then return home. They would foment discontent within their home villages and thus initiate orthodox (i.e. pro-Slav and thus anti-Hungarian) parishes.

Now there are many of you who know this history much better than I. However it seems to me that the separation that exists among the various Eastern Churches of Slav origin is purely political.

I propose that the tools that keep us separated: multiple Orthodox and Catholic jurisdictions, rabid polemics, etc. really have very little to do with us. We were turned against our brothers and sisters despite sharing a common faith. We are victims of governmental interventions as they pursued their own agendas. These agendas had nothing to do with religion.

I also propose that while the manipulating powers have changed, our separation remains a very useful political tool inside and outside the Churches themselves.

I, for one, refuse to be a pawn any longer. I refuse to recognize any real difference between Orthodox and Eastern Catholic Christians. I am willing to be open-minded to differences in worship (e.g. kneeling during the anaphora, use/non-use of a curtain, teplota, minor liturgical variances, different word usage, etc.) These things do not separate us. They must be embraced. Otherwise, how can we realize our Christian call to unity.

Can we really say that we "left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My name's sake..." (Matthew 19:29) or merely for the sake of some worldly agenda?

(Dcn) John

#124462 06/13/03 12:07 AM
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 438
D
Member
OP Offline
Member
D
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 438
I apologize for this separate entry but could not think of a way to include it in my "soap box" entry above.

I would like to explore how we (all Slav Eastern Christians) have been exploited for political gain.

John


Link Copied to Clipboard
The Byzantine Forum provides message boards for discussions focusing on Eastern Christianity (though discussions of other topics are welcome). The views expressed herein are those of the participants and may or may not reflect the teachings of the Byzantine Catholic or any other Church. The Byzantine Forum and the www.byzcath.org site exist to help build up the Church but are unofficial, have no connection with any Church entity, and should not be looked to as a source for official information for any Church. All posts become property of byzcath.org. Contents copyright - 1996-2022 (Forum 1998-2022). All rights reserved.
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.5