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Honestly, I think everyone is eagerly awaiting the intervention of his All Holiness, EP Bartholomew of Constantinople at the world Synod of Bishops.

But a pleasant surprise comes from the intervention of
Archimandrite Ignatios Sotiriadis, fraternal delegate from the Orthodox Church of Greece, who spoke last Saturday to the Synod ahead, or in anticipation, of the Ecumenical Patriarch.

Excerpts from his speech as reported by ZENIT:

http://www.zenit.org/article-23901?l=english

Amado




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I would like to see his entire speech.

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I do believe that the Bishop of Rome, the Pope, should serve as a model of pan-Christian unity. Historically, as 'first among equals', he did.

In some manner, he *still* does, even today, in a Christian world split among itself.

Every successful family, every group, every organization, every parish, every company, every school, every everything, in human nature and history, has an older brother/sister, father/mother, president, monarch, CEO, manager, principal, or leader of some sort to help guide and serve as a respected model of unity, organization and advice.

I believe that the Papacy, in some form and some agreement, is key and essential for Christian unification. The Christian unity some fear may not be the unity which God intends. The particular role and position of the Papacy (vis a vis head of the Roman Catholic Church) which many fear is not necessarily the one which God intends. A contemporary papal 'model of unity' as spokesperson and unifier of Christianity is not one which should compromise Orthodoxy's traditions, beliefs, approaches, or even structure. It is not one which should be allowed to meddle, to impose or to judge. He should be a model of respect and coordination, such as an older brother might be.

We need a witness of unity to survive in today's world. Even in Orthodox countries such as Greece, the Church is struggling in today's sea of secularism, materialism, paganism, and relativism. That is probably the point of reality that the Archimandrite is brave enough to accept and speak from.

Let's pray that the Holy Spirit will lead us to *how the Bishop of Rome can be used to this end*, in God's plan, in God's will, and without the fears, mistrust, and baggage which evolved and came with it after the first thousand years until fairly recently.

This is a new millenium with new possibilities. Time, as never before, is of the essence. Islam encroaches on one side, and neo-paganism on the other.

Alice


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Your right Alice +Let us Pray

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Interventions at the world Synod of Bishops (because every Synod father and fraternal delegates, like the Archimandrite Ignatios Sotiriadis of the Orthodox Church of Greece, is given the equal opportunity to address the assembly), tend to be short.

The complete text of the Archimandrite's address:

http://www.zenit.org/article-23892?l=english

Amado



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Quote
Islam encroaches on one side, and neo-paganism on the other.


ALICE:

Christ is in our midst!! He is and always will be!!

Again, you have brought clarity to what we all face. What many of us fail to grasp as we dig our heals into the age-old polemics is that united we stand and divided we fall. It's as simple as that.

Somehow we weren't all as uniform as many would like to think in the first millenium. We were already developing our pastoral and liturgical forms with long distances between us. Unfortunately, many historical developments have come and gone between us that have hardened our own positions and given everyone the idea that his own--and his alone--pastoral and liturgical way of approaching the matrix of life is the only yardstick by which Christianity can be measured. We have lost the idea that the wonder of God's creation is our unity in diversity--the adaptation to the particular circumstances that we find ourselves in. That doesn't mean we compromise the teaching of Christ but that it might have a different face in a different locale. And we also forget that different forms appeal to different people(s) because of their own particular historical, cultural, and liguistic development.

The arguments over what form of matter we bring to the Eucharist--the old leavened versus unleavened arguments--won't mean much if we have Islam destroying us on one side and the neo-pagans defining us as people who cling to "hate speech": the Scriptures have already been so defined for over a decade in some quarters.

The Oriental Orthodox will not be Byzantine Orthodox will not be Latin or Eastern Catholic will not be either of the two. In the meantime, the world on the one hand and Islam on the otehr is easily able to pick us apart one at a time. Ask the Copts in Egypt or the Christians of all stripes in Iraq. While we debate over academic things, they live under threat of murder, forced conversion, torture, and all the hatred turned into violence the malevolent human mind can imagine.

And we're worried about theories that aren't even able to be enforced in practice.

In Christ,

BOB

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Bob,

I understand your frustration but the arguments are certainly about more serious things than unleavened vs. leavened bread.

Joe

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I don't mean to sound like a old grouch here but it is time to do the deed and can the talk. Enough of a Church divided! The division is a scandal. In my simple mind it is our belief in the Eucharist that binds us together. Enough of the theological nit picking that separates us!

In Christ:
Converted Viking

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Originally Posted by Converted Viking
I don't mean to sound like a old grouch here but it is time to do the deed and can the talk. Enough of a Church divided! The division is a scandal. In my simple mind it is our belief in the Eucharist that binds us together. Enough of the theological nit picking that separates us!

In Christ:
Converted Viking
Kind of like a shotgun wedding?

I happen to disagree with your observation. If you enter into a relationship with the air of misunderstanding theologically between the churches, then you are setting up both for failure for a time that will be much greater than has already existed. Believe me it will unravel fast. Work out the differences first, and then the reunion may be eternally lasting. Rush it before any of the parties are ready, and further scandal will befall the entire witness of both churches to the glee of all our enemies.

In IC XC,
Father Anthony+


Everyone baptized into Christ should pass progressively through all the stages of Christ's own life, for in baptism he receives the power so to progress, and through the commandments he can discover and learn how to accomplish such progression. - Saint Gregory of Sinai
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JOE:

Christ is in our midst!! He is and always will be!!

I agree with you completely. My point continues to be that we have to look at what can legitimately be considered as local variations and let them be something we can live with. Unfortunately there are many who expand the whole list of every gesture, fasting rule, and other difference into the serious theological areas as if they were all of the same importance.

OTOH, we do face serious external pressures that seem to call us to look at the real need to band together. We have to look nor further than the example of some places like Sweden where certain portions of the Gospel may not be proclaimed because they are considered hate speech to understand that we need each other desperately. It is not enough to dismiss the need for unity out of hand lest we perish individually for lack of it. While it may be that we cannot commune together, we do need to find a common voice to meet the world that we live in--an increasingly hostile one at that.

Personally, I think we all missed the boat here. This type of Synod should have been an ecumenical one where all the Churches and ecclesial communities were invited to be equal members and a common vision generated as to how to move forward to meet the challenges we all face. Being that many of us are already celebrating the Year of St. Paul, this would have been a great move forward.

In Christ,

BOB


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Originally Posted by theophan
JOE:

Christ is in our midst!! He is and always will be!!

I agree with you completely. My point continues to be that we have to look at what can legitimately be considered as local variations and let them be something we can live with. Unfortunately there are many who expand the whole list of every gesture, fasting rule, and other difference into the serious theological areas as if they were all of the same importance.

OTOH, we do face serious external pressures that seem to call us to look at the real need to band together. We have to look nor further than the example of some places like Sweden where certain portions of the Gospel may not be proclaimed because they are considered hate speech to understand that we need each other desperately. It is not enough to dismiss the need for unity out of hand lest we perish individually for lack of it. While it may be that we cannot commune together, we do need to find a common voice to meet the world that we live in--an increasingly hostile one at that.

In Christ,

BOB

Bob,

My own view is that the only fundamental obstacle to restoration of communion between our churches is the papacy; or at least, it is Rome's teaching concerning the papacy. Certainly, other doctrines and practices would have to be worked out, but solving the issue of papal primacy is the first and last step in doing so.

Joe

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Originally Posted by Father Anthony
Originally Posted by Converted Viking
I don't mean to sound like a old grouch here but it is time to do the deed and can the talk. Enough of a Church divided! The division is a scandal. In my simple mind it is our belief in the Eucharist that binds us together. Enough of the theological nit picking that separates us!

In Christ:
Converted Viking
Kind of like a shotgun wedding?

I happen to disagree with your observation. If you enter into a relationship with the air of misunderstanding theologically between the churches, then you are setting up both for failure for a time that will be much greater than has already existed. Believe me it will unravel fast. Work out the differences first, and then the reunion may be eternally lasting. Rush it before any of the parties are ready, and further scandal will befall the entire witness of both churches to the glee of all our enemies.

In IC XC,
Father Anthony+

Father Anthony,

Your words are wise. If we want two examples of premature union, we only need to look at Lyons in 1274 (I think?) and Florence in 1453.

Joe

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Originally Posted by Father Anthony
Originally Posted by Converted Viking
I don't mean to sound like a old grouch here but it is time to do the deed and can the talk. Enough of a Church divided! The division is a scandal. In my simple mind it is our belief in the Eucharist that binds us together. Enough of the theological nit picking that separates us!

In Christ:
Converted Viking
Kind of like a shotgun wedding?

I happen to disagree with your observation. If you enter into a relationship with the air of misunderstanding theologically between the churches, then you are setting up both for failure for a time that will be much greater than has already existed. Believe me it will unravel fast. Work out the differences first, and then the reunion may be eternally lasting. Rush it before any of the parties are ready, and further scandal will befall the entire witness of both churches to the glee of all our enemies.

In IC XC,
Father Anthony+

No disrespect intended but I don't think men are capable of working out the differences.

Converted Viking

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I think I am going to wait until the speeches appear on the official EP web site here:
http://www.ec-patr.org/docdisplay.php?lang=en&cat=62

Three items are up thus far in both Greek and official English translations:

MESSAGE OF THE PRIMATES OF THE ORTHODOX CHURCHES(12/10/2008).
[Greek]
ADDRESS by His All Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew at the Official Opening of the Pauline Symposium (11 October 2008).
ADDRESS by His All Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew at the Synaxis of the Heads of Orthodox Churches (Phanar, October 10, 2008).
[Greek]

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Originally Posted by Converted Viking
No disrespect intended but I don't think men are capable of working out the differences.

Converted Viking
Then what you are saying is that men can not be guided by the Holy Spirit.

In IC XC,
Father Anthony+


Everyone baptized into Christ should pass progressively through all the stages of Christ's own life, for in baptism he receives the power so to progress, and through the commandments he can discover and learn how to accomplish such progression. - Saint Gregory of Sinai
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