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Hello,

This is only my second post and I hope someone replies to this question. First, my questions comes from reading a website called "From East to West". The author of this site is Dr. Anthony Dragani. In one of his Q&A sections, there is this Q&A:

"Patriarchs #2:It's my understanding that "sui iuris" translates roughly into "self governing". Being under the authority of the pope, how much freedom do Eastern Catholic patriarchs indeed have in the governing of their jurisdictions? Can they ordain bishops freely, or must episcopal ordinations be approved by Rome?

In their "traditional" geographic territories Eastern Catholic Patriarchs, together with their Synods, have full authority over their Churches. They can ordain bishops freely without seeking the approval of Rome.

Outside of the "traditional" territories, in the so-called "diaspora," the authority of Eastern Catholic Patriarchs is somewhat limited. While they maintain full authority in liturgical matters, the appointment of bishops is done by the Congregation for the Oriental Churches in Rome."

I, myself, am a Roman Catholic who has been worshiping in the local Melkite parish for just over a year now and find myself slowly becoming Melkite in mind and spirituality and love of the East.

The quoted comment about the Patriarchs having full authority only within their "traditional" territory but a Congregation appoints bishops in the "diaspora" really troubles me.

How do you guys (Eastern Catholics and especially the Melkites) relate to this? Is this acceptable? Are you fighting against this? This just really troubles me in my gut. Doesn't seem nor feel right. If patriarchs are bound by their "traditional" territories, than maybe the Latin Church should follow that same thought.

Kyrie eleison,

Manuel

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Manuel,

It is an issue that does not sit well with us, at all. However, it is for now the way things are - there's not a lot that we can do about it, except pray for enlightenment.

Actually, as regards the Latin Church, all of its bishops are appointed by Rome, but Rome is essentially its patriarchal or primatial See - so that's fine with us.

Many years,

Neil


"One day all our ethnic traits ... will have disappeared. Time itself is seeing to this. And so we can not think of our communities as ethnic parishes, ... unless we wish to assure the death of our community."
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Dear Irish,

What I meant by keeping to their traditional territories is that beyond Europe, no other territory is "traditional" in the sense of the patistic era. I have no problem with the Pope choosing the Latin Bishops. Just that the rest of the world is not "traditional" Roman territory and well, as I'm sure you guys are far more aware of and sensitive to than I, is unfair, imbalanced and restrictive to the rest of the Churches. That's all.

Thank you and kyrie eleison,

Manuel

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I think it needs to be said that the Pope, as Pope of the whole Church appoints bishops for Eparchies etc etc outside the Patriarchates after being advised by the Patriarch or Major Archbishop of that particular church who should get the appointment. I think it works quiet smoothly these days.

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Originally Posted by Pavel Ivanovich
I think it needs to be said that the Pope, as Pope of the whole Church appoints bishops for Eparchies etc etc outside the Patriarchates after being advised by the Patriarch or Major Archbishop of that particular church who should get the appointment. I think it works quiet smoothly these days.

cool


Dear Pavel,

What I am understanding, at least from the Melkite Greek Catholics, is that they hold a more Orthodox belief of the rights and powers of the Pope. They do not accept Papal infallibility or Supremacy. They do believe that the Pope has a primacy and that that does entail certain rights and powers. From the Deacon and other individuals that I have spoken with, their understanding of those rights and powers is that the Pope can have a final say in disputes if they cannot be handled internally and if they request the aid of the Pope. That the Pope cannot just come in and law down his law or his traditions. From what I understand, they do not accept the post schism "ecumenical councils" because all of Christendom (the Eastern Churches) either were not present, did not sign the documents out of disagreement or were, for whatever the circumstances (from I understand a lot of times for survival in politically desperate times; i.e. the hoped for help from the west when the Muslims were on the heel of Constantinople)forced into signing documents they did not with a free will desire to sign. And because of these historical facts, they see what us Romans call "Ecumenical Councils" as just "Synods of the West". And so, for the Churches who have (or perhaps should have as I think the Ukrainians do not have a Patriarch yet)Patriarchs,for them to need the approval of another Patriarch is unbalanced, humiliating and lacking justice. Even if how this current system works is working "smoothly", IF what I am understanding my Melkite brothers are saying is correct, and being Roman I am cautious in accepting this but I am studying their statements myself, then this current smoothly working system is an unjust system and we must look to how the Patriarchs related to each other before the schism.

Again this is just a summary of how I understand the situation, in particular from the Melkite perspective. Irish Melkite or others (I think StuartK, is that his name?, is also Melkite), if I am misunderstanding anything, than please correct it so I will not speak falsely in conversation.

Thank you and Kyrie eleison,

Manuel

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HB the Patriarch has no problem at all in recommending those he thinks fit for posts outside the Patriarchate to the Pope. There is another reshuffle going on right now and HB has passed the current list on before heading off to visit the faithful in South America.

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Shlomo Lkhoolkhoon,

What needs to be done is for our "leaders" to lead. They need to go to the Vatican and tell the curia and the Pope that their territories should be worldwide just like within the Roman Church.

I can not see how the Pope and the rest of the Church can claim that we are fully functioning Churches when we can not appoint our own eparchs "outside our traditional territories". When we can not fully evangelize in lands outside our traditional territories.

But like sheep we will bleep, but do nothing.

Fush BaShlomo Lkhoolkhoon,
Yuhannon

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what needs to be done is that all the heads of their particular church need to stand up to Rome ant truly be autonomous. we are IN COMMUNION with Rome, not UNDER Rome. i dont think Rome during the 1st millenium placed bishops outside of its patriarchial jurisdiction. the Pope of Rome is the Guardian of the Faith, but when it comes to apointing our own bishops i think its up to tha particular church (unless that particular bishop is a danger to the faith then the Pope of Rome DOES have a right to intercede). just my thoughts...(please dont stone be to death...lol im only human)

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what needs to be done is that all the heads of their particular church need to stand up to Rome ant truly be autonomous.


Good luck.

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This thread ought to be combined withe the "Weird Question" thread in Town Hall or vice versa. Both deal with the same topic.

Bob
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I have no problem with the Pope appointing Eastern Catholic bishops in the "diaspora" (a word which implies there will be a homecoming--are we all supposed to move back to Eastern Europe or the Middle East at some point?), as long as there is strict reciprocity; i.e., that the Eastern Catholic patriarchs get to appoint all the Latin bishops in their "traditional territories). I look forward to Patriarch Lyubomir deciding who gets to be the Latin bishop of Lviv, Kyiv, or even Moscow, while Patriarch Gregorios gets to appoint Latin bishops everywhere from Egypt to the borders of Turkey (though he may have to fight it out with the Syrian Catholic patriarch, too).

Basically, when it comes to the policies of Rome, a good question to ask is whether Rome would stand for it if the shoe was on the other foot. If the answer is yes, then it is, in all likelihood, an unjust and oppressive policy.

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I meant, if the answer is "no".

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Repeating what I posted in the topic about the Italo-albanian administrator:

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H.B. Gregorios III (it seems that is the way he want to be called, as the Patriarchate staff corrected my translation to French of his name in some news I translated and sent) wrote an article about the Patriarchal jurisdiction and he says the Church is above all an assembly of faithful and the Patriarch is above all the Pastor of his people, before being an administrator of a bonded territory. He makes reference to the Ghassanid "ethnarcate", a non-territorialy Eparchy, whose Bishop followed the movements of that Arab nomad people, the first beduinic tribe to be converted to Christianism, from which my family descend. Those Eparchies existed in the antiquity in a perfectly canonical manner.


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