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Originally Posted by Apotheoun
Joe,

I think that the CDF document expresses the modern Latin view of the situation.

That said, I must admit that I see theological problems with the position taken by the Latin Church at its most recent particular synod (i.e., Vatican II), because the idea that a Church could be a "true" Church without being fully Catholic at the same time is contrary to the Tradition of both East and West. Let me put it this way, a Church cannot be "somewhat" true, or "somewhat" Catholic, it is either a real Church or not a real Church, and if it is a real Church, then it follows that it is wholly Catholic.

Now, as anyone familiar with the doctrine of the Eastern Church knows, Byzantine ecclesiology is Eucharistic and Trinitarian; and so, just as the whole Christ is present in the Eucharist (i.e., in every particle of the consecrated elements), so too the whole Church is present in each true particular Church. Of course the same truth is evident in the Triadological doctrine of the Church, because divinity is not broken into pieces in the tri-hypostatic God. In other words, the whole Godhead is present in each person of the Trinity. This is true also of the uncreated divine energies, which are indivisibly divided among all those who receive them.

Finally, I do not believe that the CDF document is heretical; instead, it simply presents a confused vision of the Church, and one that is not based upon the doctrine of the ancient Fathers.

God bless,
Todd

Todd,

That is very well said and I think I wholeheartedly agree.

Joe

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Originally Posted by AMM
Quote
I would respectfully suggest the Romanian patriarch, at a minimum, at least match the Catholic ecumenical generosity of the past 45 years before he starts hurling criticisms.

In my opinion he is talking nonsense. The Russians have had the most reasoned replies.

Which is a pleasant surprise, considering that Bishop Hilarion of Vienna seconded Met. Kirill's "official" reaction. cool

The honesty of the CDF's explanantory document (which is the historical stance of the Catholic Church) lent clarity to the Catholic position on the eve of the next session of the International Commission in Ravenna, Italy this Fall!

Let's now await a livelier discussion in Ravenna!

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Originally Posted by Apotheoun
I thought I would let you know about an article written by Fr. Fahey (S.J.) on the synodal nature of the Church. It is quite informative. Click the link below in order to read the article.

Eastern Synodal Traditions: Pertinence for Western Collegial Institutions [woodstock.georgetown.edu]

God bless,
Todd

It's good, and reflects much of what I understand of our synodal tradition. The history of the status of EC synods was interesting too. I was not aware of much of that.


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Originally Posted by tjm199
Slava Isusu Christu!

Ray--thanks for your posts. Please do not stop.

You know how one can not look directly at the sun (it blinds y9u and you do not see it well) but must look at the sun by not looking at it directly?

While at work today, my conscious mind on my tasks, it gave time for the subconscious to bubble things to the top. Things kind of cook - inside - and when done - bubble to the top.

So I am getting on solid ground now. I will post on that later.

But to comment on how history proves that bishops imprisoned other bishops, and hierarchy treated people horribly at times. For example - early on - it was just culture to kill of competition. Cities not many cites were into pluralism. The city and the king recognized on one God and one religion (whatever that may have been) and it was pperfectly acceptable to confiscate the property of anyone who did not worship the official god or gods.

Remember? St. Paul was accused of not honoring the gods. It was illegal not to honor the cities official gods. And so he was arrested and was going to be executed till he claimed
"I am a Roman citizen." which means he could appeal to Rome and be tried in Rome.

So when Christianity grew large enough - you bet your boots ... that Christian governors joined with Christian bishops - and issued edicts that pagans should be divested of all property, not allowed to work, their homes and good confiscated .. and being non-citizens it was not a crime to beat and kill them.

The persecutions that early Christian experience - they themselves meated out to pagans when Chritains gained political power.

No, anyone who believes the myth that all Christians were laid back, peaceful, and essentially rushing to sainthood... is mistaken. Bishops from the same church (let alone another church) often ran fellow bishops out of town - or assembled small armies to invade another bishops province.

These are personal sins of members of the church. Laity and hierarchy. It is history.

Do you remember what God commanded on Moses when they were about to take possession of the promised land? Kill every man, woman, and child! This order was standard fair for the times. Every 'god' issued this blanket order when one tribe took over the city of another tribe and they had a different god. Notice that although the command was "Kill 'em all!" not many years down the line - there was trouble because Hebrew men were marrying Canaanite women. Were not they all dead?! In reality - although the 'good' gave blanket 'permission' to kill everyone - the killing would stop as soon as the city capitulated. Usually (after the capitulation) only the royal family and important official were killed off... just so that the nation could not arise again. Such did Babylon do to Judea when it invaded and took the booty and slaves back to Babylon.

And so there is a fictitious and mythical concept of 'the church' and ones own religion. Be it Orthodox or Roman Catholic ... we all (at times) have a myth in our mind and not reality.

But on the contrary - becoming holy and being sanctified by Providence and conscience - is a direct dive right - into reality. Our escapes from reality are cut off. We must pass through the flaming sword that guards the path back to eden (God's All-Providence). And all that is unreal is cut away.

Sorry... it just seemed so poetic.

I am going to post tonight on the 'letter'. I am on solid ground now. I have to check a few things to confirm what I suspect. The letter is not what some of us thought it was. See you later.

-ray

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Hi Todd,

By the way, can you tell me what 'CIC' is? I don't recognize the abbreviation.

I am not trying to equate Catholicism with Latin, at least as I understand the terms. And no offense taken.

I am suggesting that all Catholics are obligated to hold to all church teachings, regardless of the teachings' pedigree. As one in the process of becoming a Roman Latin Catholic, I don't believe that affiliation means I have the right to deny, reject, withhold assent, or tamper with any church teachings simply because they may have influences of Greek theology, or Hellenism, or Neo-Platonic thinking. Nor do I think I have the right to take Latin scholasticism and use that as a reason to reject anything the Church has declared simply because it doesn't conform to my idea of Latin scholasticism.

I am only calling for the same kind of commitment and assent from Byzantine/Eastern Catholics. I believe one can lead both a meaningful Byzantine Catholic life and affirm what the Church has solemnly declared in its entirety.

If the CCEO is seen by that many Eastern Catholics as being that unacceptable, then I would respectfully submit that we should probably forget about talking to the Eastern Orthodox, as I think we are heading for some serious, internal, intra-Catholic problems just among ourselves.

Regards to all,
Robster

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The CIC is the Codex Iuris Canonici (i.e., the Latin Church's Code of Canon Law). That said, the CCEO and the CIC are nearly word for word identical. In fact, the CCEO is written in Latin, and as such it is the ultimate Latinization of the Eastern Catholic Churches.

It is ironic that Pope John Paul II was the one to actually bring about the complete Latinization of the canons of the Eastern Catholic Churches, because that was something that Pius IX -- as Fr. Fahey noted in his article -- only dreamed of doing.

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This 'letter' (the subject of the thread) is not really a letter at all. It is a portion and not the whole of an casual interview. The publication of it is intended to be informative - and it is not presented as infallible nor as any kind of official pronouncement or letter.

Nor is it intended to to replace such official Constitution documents such as Lumen Gentium (from which quotes are used in the interview) and several other documents from which quotes (and mis-quotes!) are used in the interview. And so this interview is not intended to present a coherent 'doctrine' and should not be read as doing so. It is, as it were, a patchwork addressing assorted items from several documents (and it is the original documents which present the stance and position of the Roman Catholic church - not this interview).

And so I, at least, am one who assumed the 'letter' to be something other than what it is.

Reading the interview without being familiar (as I was not) with Lumen Gentium ... lacks context to the interview. The interview assumes familiarity with a considerable number of offcial documents:Lumen Gentium, Unitatis Redintergratio, Orentalium Ecclesiarum, Ecclesiam Suam, Ut Unum Sint, and other official documents Mysterium Ecclesiae, Dominus Iesu, Communionis Notio which were intended to clarify terms and definition.

This interview was not intended with the purpose of clarifying terms and definitions. In fact the interview tends to muddy the waters. But then again ... it is only a causal interview and the world does not hinge on it.

In other words this interview does not stand alone - it requires the context of these other documents for its meaning.

Mis-quoteing
The quotes are not real accurate if one compares them to the official documents. The interviewed seems to quoting from memory perhaps, but in any case ... some of the quotes are not accurate and there is at least one typo error, that I can see, that has unwittingly changes something very significant.

From Lumen Gentium ...
Quote
"These elements, as gifts belonging to the Church of Christ, are forces impelling toward catholic unity."
which has the meaning that these gifts (which may be present in many churches and communities) are forces that impel these churches and towards a universal unity.

That he word 'catholic' is not capitalized which makes it a description (according to traditional use of the Greek term) and not the name of one particular church. It therefore represents the meaning of a catholic (universal Christ based) unity between all churches and communities ... which is caused by the gifts themselves.

and now the mis-quote from the interview ...
Quote
�as gifts properly belonging to the Church of Christ, impel towards Catholic Unity�
With the typo, the capitalization of the word 'catholic' to 'Catholic' ... the word is now a formal name of only one particular church - the Roman Catholic church. And the meaning would be that these gifts that other churches and communities have - impel them toward unity with - the Roman Catholic church and may seem to imply a non-voluntary and non-free will submission to its Pope. In other words - a command - to submit.

Such a new meaning given to Lumen Gentium is not the same meaning that this section Lumen Gentium has in its own context.

Lumen Genium is the trump card.

But this mis-quote and capitalization has set the stage for further misunderstanding.

And so rather than clarify this section of Lumen Gentium ... it appears to inadvertently significantly altered the meaning of the authoritative and approved Lumen Gentium intends to present to the Petrine collective.

You will see what I mean in my coin of the phrase 'Petrine collective' below.

This typo coming so early in the interview ... cast a different shade of color upon all else which follows. It 'sets the stage' so to speak.

Further Confusion
This particular portion of the interview refers to section 8 of Lumen Genium ...

Quote
In number 8 of the Dogmatic Constitution Lumen gentium �subsistence� means this perduring, historical continuity and the permanence of all the elements instituted by Christ in the Catholic Church[8], in which the Church of Christ is concretely found on this earth.

It is possible, according to Catholic doctrine, to affirm correctly that the Church of Christ is present and operative in the churches and ecclesial Communities not yet fully in communion with the Catholic Church, on account of the elements of sanctification and truth that are present in them.[9] Nevertheless, the word �subsists� can only be attributed to the Catholic Church alone precisely because it refers to the mark of unity that we profess in the symbols of the faith (I believe... in the �one� Church); and this �one� Church subsists in the Catholic Church.[10]

But because the stage has already been set by a transformation of catholic (universal and non-specific to any one particular church) ... to ... a meaning specific to the one particular church (the Roman Catholic church) ... the reader will now tend to give the meaning of 'Roman Catholic church' to any appearance of 'Catholic Church' in the interview. And so this one typo, and loose quotes, tends to continue (in the mind of the reader) a shift in the shading from the official document meanings.

As I said in a post which I had asked Fr. Anthony to delete (it was a pre-mature post) ... official Vatican documents are generally very careful with the use of capitalization of certain terms which can carry a dual meaning. The meaning of the term in use - is shaped by if it is capitalized or not. Of course we also find this in every day common English also

(bob: to bounce up and down AND Bob: the first name of a person).

In the official document of Lumin Gentium ... the meaning of 'Catholic Church' is wider than a designation of the particular church which is the Roman Catholic church. The meaning in Lumen Gentium designates - all the particular churches which voluntarily submit to the Primacy of Peter. In the follow quote from Lumen Gentium ... we can see its use to designate that wider collective. It is important to note its use for the fact that it is saying that the act of maintaining the Church of Christ - is found in this collective - and not in the Roman Catholic church alone or exclusively. Note that Lumen Gentium uses the word 'sustains'. I had to look-up 'subsists' and it simply means: to sustain, to maintain, to continue. It does not have the meaning of a source or an origin. The origin and source is Christ himself - who maintains and sustains 'His holy Church' (the members) ... in what I am calling ... the voluntary collective governed by Peter.

Quote
8. Christ, the one Mediator, established and continually sustains here on earth His holy Church, the community of faith, hope and charity, as an entity with visible delineation (9*) through which He communicated truth and grace to all. But, the society structured with hierarchical organs and the Mystical Body of Christ, are not to be considered as two realities, nor are the visible assembly and the spiritual community, nor the earthly Church and the Church enriched with heavenly things; rather they form one complex reality which coalesces from a divine and a human element.(10*) For this reason, by no weak analogy, it is compared to the mystery of the incarnate Word. As the assumed nature inseparably united to Him, serves the divine Word as a living organ of salvation, so, in a similar way, does the visible social structure of the Church serve the Spirit of Christ, who vivifies it, in the building up of the body.

Pay attention to the capitalization!

In the above quote .. the capitalized 'Church' mean the Church - as a collective - and not particular to any one particular church and/or to the exclusion of other churches in the collective. If we change the capitulation so say " continually sustains here on earth His holy church" the meaning would be one specific and particular church (such as the Roman, or such as the Coptic) to the exclusion of others.

Now note another mis-quote.

From the intervieiw ...
Quote
�Because these Churches, although separated, have true sacraments and above all � because of the apostolic succession � the priesthood and the Eucharist, by means of which they remain linked to us by very close bonds�

and now form the official document of Unitatis Redintegratio from which the person is attempting to quote...
Quote
These Churches, although separated from us, yet possess true sacraments and above all, by apostolic succession, the priesthood and the Eucharist, whereby they are linked with us in closest intimacy.

And so we can see that his quotes are very loose to say the least. We can also note that this interview is a patch work of portions of official documents and by that fact ... a lack of familiarity of the intended meaning of the quotes as they originally exist inside the documents to which they belong ... lends the uninformed reader to combine the quotes on his own, which has the effect of creating a haphazard picture which is really all out of context.

It is good to note that, in my experience of reading Vatican and Roman Catholic official documents ... the Roman Catholic official documents never presumes to speak for the Orthodox churches. The documents are addressed to its own church (the Roman Catholic members) and to the collective of churches who are united to Peter.

That is to say that the meaning of all of these official documents - is applicable to the Petrina collective. The meaning of these documents is not pushed, thrust, demanded, or officiated upon the Orthodox world or its members. If you ask me ... this is great respect for the Orthodox desire for separation.

The application of these documents (what one should believe) is only to the Petrine collective (those churches and members who voluntarily consent to governance by the Primacy of Peter).

It is also to be noted that just because documents like this claim such things as the subsistence of Christ to be present in the Petrine collective - they make no assumption that it does not exist in other churches outside of that collective - it leaves the subject alone - as it should because the Orthodox have their apostolic bishops and and synods, etc..



May peace be to all my Orthodox friends.
May the subsistence of Christ within your own churches - bring you all to heaven.
Please pray for us Catholics to obtain haven also.

Peace to my brothers and sisters in Christ's churches.
-ray

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BTW...

My posts always time out and I can edit not edit them further .. I make so many mistakes.

I could not find the word "defective" or "defect" used as it was in the interview - in any of the official documents I looked at (no, I did not read them all smile )

Also, it is sad but I am sure that some who have vented anger here .. have probably abandoned the thread and so will not be considering that there are human things which caused this mess.

God! it is a hard thing to be human. You should try it some time! ... what's that you say? ... Oh.
You did.

-ray


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Ray Kaliss wrote: <<This 'letter' (the subject of the thread) is not really a letter at all. It is a portion and not the whole of an casual interview. The publication of it is intended to be informative - and it is not presented as infallible nor as any kind of official pronouncement or letter.>>

I disagree. It may not be a letter, but it certainly is not a "casual interview".

"RESPONSES TO SOME QUESTIONS REGARDING CERTAIN ASPECTS
OF THE DOCTRINE ON THE CHURCH" Is NOT presented as an informal interview, as if Cardinal was sitting at a press conference answering questions from journalists off the cuff.

In fact the document ends with these words: "The Supreme Pontiff Benedict XVI, at the Audience granted to the undersigned Cardinal Prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, ratified and confirmed these Responses, adopted in the Plenary Session of the Congregation, and ordered their publication. Rome, from the Offices of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, June 29, 2007, the Solemnity of the Holy Apostles Peter and Paul. William Cardinal Levada, Prefect

The document is offered in the form of a formal written text approved by the Pope, who ordered its publication.

See: http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/c...oc_20070629_responsa-quaestiones_en.html


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Originally Posted by Lazareno
I disagree. It may not be a letter, but it certainly is not a "casual interview".

I stand corrected on that.

But there is nothing infallible about it. And it remains true that it relies on other more important documents for its context. And it certainly really does contain misquotes and errors of capitalization which - inadvertently shift the meaning of portions of the original documents.

I have shown you the proof of that and you can check that for yourself if you care too. Or you can ignore that fact if you want to also.

-ray




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On second thoughts...

No. Ya know what Lazareno ... I am not going to give that to you. I am not going to play the semantics game.

It sez in it that it was an interview. The tone of it is a casual interview. It is not a formal pronouncement, It is not an infallible declaration. It does not represent a change in the official Roman Catholic documents. It does contain errors of quotations and capitalization. And if the Pope had ordered it published ... by approving the publication of it that does not indicated that he had even proof read it himself. It is an informative article only.

My God man ... can we allow these people to be human? Must it be that every Cardinal and priest never-ever make any mistakes and must always speak infallibly for God at every moment?

Anyway .. I encourage you to human understanding and charity as without these virtues we are lost. Bitter. Good things appear bad.

Now.. on to a big breakfast for me.

Peace to you.
-ray




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A little note of humor for anyone who has any.

So...

I figure "God! someone should tell the vatican.va how this document is being interpreted!" and so I figure... "I will".

So I am going write and email (short) saying "Do you guys know this is happening out here in the world??" and give them links to the the thread at the byzcath forum. They can read all the posts if they want to. And I can tell them to check out my post where I prove the mis-quotes and captilation error etc.. etc..

and I locate the contact email address for the Vatican Publishing house. It is right there on a web page at the Vatican web site.

it is lev@publish.va

!

So I send off my email and it bounces "No such host"

a little thought and I figure it out. It should be lev@publish.vatican.va - and that works.

So that gave me a chuckle anyway. The publishing house can not even get its own email address correct.

Italians.

smile

-ray



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Thanks for the information.

Regards,
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Article on MSNBC.com
Pope: Other denominations not true churches [msnbc.msn.com]

I am truly perplexed by this overall article. Items that are causing me concerns:

Quote
Orthodox churches were defective and that other Christian denominations were not true churches.

Quote
restates key sections of a 2000 document the pope wrote when he was prefect of the congregation, �Dominus Iesus,� which set off a firestorm of criticism among Protestant and other Christian denominations because it said they were not true churches but merely ecclesial communities and therefore did not have the �means of salvation.�

Quote
The document said Orthodox churches were indeed �churches� because they have apostolic succession and that they enjoyed �many elements of sanctification and of truth.� But it said they lack something because they do not recognize the primacy of the pope � a defect, or a �wound� that harmed them, it said.
(bold my own)

Quote
�This is obviously not compatible with the doctrine of primacy which, according to the Catholic faith, is an �internal constitutive principle� of the very existence of a particular church,� the commentary said.

Despite the harsh tone of the document, it stresses that Benedict remains committed to ecumenical dialogue.

�However, if such dialogue is to be truly constructive, it must involve not just the mutual openness of the participants but also fidelity to the identity of the Catholic faith,� the commentary said.

What caused this to be issues? How can we mend relations when we are calling our Orthodox brethren a 'defect'?

I am very very very displeased.

Thoughts?

In Christ,

Michael

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No big surprise here. This pope is a more consistent theologian than John Paul II was, or at least more forthright, and he is simply saying out loud what the RC's have always believed. I would think we would have the same attitude towards all Protestant groups, and we would certainly regard the RCC as at the very best "deeply wounded." At least the mask of "two lungs"
and "sister churches" has been taken off. This does indeed make any further dialogue more difficult in a way, but only because it makes it more honest.
That is not a bad thing at all. Ecumenical activity must be based on our true beliefs and positions, not on simply obscuring them to make nice or to pretend there has been progress if there has in fact been none or little.

Benedict has simply made clear that the papal primacy, including
universal jurisdiction, is a basic tenet of Roman Catholicism. Without it, he and his church believes, they would cease to be "The Church." That is, from the Orthodox POV, a completely erroneous understanding of primacy, and it leads inevitably to many other errors. By accepting it, WE would cease
to be "The Church" in its historical, theological and ecclesiological fullness. That reality which is now reaffirmed by Benedict certainly makes the outlook for reunification bleak--but no bleaker than it was in fact before. The difficulties simply are now not being covered up by fuzzy "agreed statements" and such.

This should not end ecumenical theological discussions, which are valuable not only for defining our differences but also for the very important task of unearthing our commonalities. It should simply put these discussions on a more honest footing.

Just my 2 cents

Alexandr

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