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#352455 09/06/10 11:51 PM
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bkovacs Offline OP
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Is it true that there are more Antiochian Orthodox Christians in the US, vs Melkite Catholic Christians. I though that that were pretty evenly split membership wise.

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The Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of N. America has 258 parishes and missions in the United States. The Melkites might have 20-40 parishes in all of North America.

On a microcosmic level, all former Byzantine Catholics in the state of Oklahoma are members of St. Elijah Antiochian Orthodox Church in Oklahoma City. The remaining Byzantines have a mission in Tulsa and there are 5 Byzantine Catholics in the Lawton area.

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Ah, yes--but half of those Antiochians and two thirds of their clergy are Protestant converts. Not that this is a bad thing (where would the OCA have been without all those Greek Catholic who broke away in the 1890s?), but the situation of the AOC is a bit unique. The Melkites, like all the Eastern Catholic jurisdictions, have been hampered until recently by tacit opposition to their evangelical outreach by the Latin Church hierarchy. This was the case so long, that in many jurisdictions, evangelization has atrophied. I think the Melkites do a pretty good job with their limited resources, and consistently punch above their weight.

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Glory to Jesus Christ!

Dear Stuart,

How does our parish evangelize? Would this past Middle Eastern Food Festival be considered as such? If so, or if not, how else do our parish evangelize?

Kyrie eleison,

Manuel

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Do not underestimate the power of ethnic food--my family is living proof (though it was piroghi and halupki that got us in the door, not dolmates and spanikopita). Beyond that, you must see how frequently some of the people of Transfiguration bring their friends and neighbors to Liturgy (I've done so myself). Some of these visitors find themselves drawn to return, and a few of them go all the way. Of course, all of us as individuals are called upon to evangelize in our daily lives, using words if we must, as St. Francis of Assisi wrote.

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Originally Posted by StuartK
, like all the Eastern Catholic jurisdictions, have been hampered until recently by tacit opposition to their evangelical outreach by the Latin Church hierarchy.


Hi Stuart:

Could you please elaborate on the above?

In Christ:
Einar

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From the first arrivals of the Greek Catholics down to the Second Vatican Council, Greek Catholics were only barely tolerated by the Latin hierarchy in the United States. There were several efforts to have Greek Catholicism totally suppressed, the last being at the Second Vatican Council itself.

Failing to get rid of us, the Latin Church severely restricted our activities, discouraged intercourse between the Latin and Greek Churches and made it quite clear that the Greek Catholic Churches existed solely to meet the needs of their respective immigrant communities and that evangelization of both the unchurched and Protestants was the exclusive perquisite of the Latin Church. That the Code of Canons considers every Protestant a lapsed Roman Catholic, to be received into the Latin Church, is indicative (fortunately, I don't know anyone who pays attention to that one). It was pounded into us for so long, that in the end we believed it.

The Second Vatican Council, of course, changed everything except minds and attitudes. The odd thing is, while the Latin bishops have become more understanding and tolerant, we have failed to use our new freedom wisely if at all, but continue to act, for the most part, as though our mission is still just to cater to the needs of immigrants. If we only tried, we would find plenty of people with no connection to the Christian East who are starving spiritually and would find nourishment at our table (how do these food metaphors keep surfacing?).

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Originally Posted by StuartK
[...]That the Code of Canons considers every Protestant a lapsed Roman Catholic, to be received into the Latin Church, is indicative (fortunately, I don't know anyone who pays attention to that one).[...]
I should like a specific quote to substantiate this claim. In particular I would like to know if there are currently any difficulties if a baptized non-Catholic wishes to join, say, the Melkite Greek-Catholic Church?

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Originally Posted by StuartK
There were several efforts to have Greek Catholicism totally suppressed, the last being at the Second Vatican Council itself.
Now, that's an interesting statement! Never heard that before.

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Latin Catholic asks: "I should like a specific quote to substantiate this claim. In particular I would like to know if there are currently any difficulties if a baptized non-Catholic wishes to join, say, the Melkite Greek-Catholic Church?"

Some Latins have claimed this based on a faulty reading of:

CCEO Canon 35

"Baptized non-Catholics coming into full communion with the Catholic Church should retain and practice their own rite everywhere in the world and should observe it as much as humanly possible. Thus, they are to be enrolled in the Church sui iuris of the same rite with due regard for the right of approaching the Apostolic See in special cases of persons, communities or regions."

Since the above was intended to encourage Orthodox coming in to communion to retain their rite, and only a Church can possess a rite, and Protestant's dont have true churches but ecclesial communities the above does not mean Protestants are auto enrolled in the Latin Church the way Orthodox are auto enrolled into a Byzantine Church upon conversion. Only Old Catholics and Polish National Catholics would be considered enrolled in the Latin Church upon entering communion.


My cromulent posts embiggen this forum.
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Another example of how laws can be applied in ways never intended by the lawgivers ...

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Every problem begins as a solution.

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I think these Latin Bishops of the past, failed to realize that the Greek Catholics/Orthodox originated from the Eastern half of the Roman Empire. You know, the more intelligent half of the Roman Empire. And as the Western half of the Roman Empire was crumbling, you know the part they originated from. It was Byzantium that still had the Roman Emperor, and WAS the Roman Empire. NOT the Holy Roman Empire of the West. Byzantine Christianity, was the form of Christianity of the Imperial Court of the Roman Empire. And therefore the last capitol of the Roman Empire of antiquity.

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Originally Posted by StuartK
From the first arrivals of the Greek Catholics down to the Second Vatican Council, Greek Catholics were only barely tolerated by the Latin hierarchy in the United States. There were several efforts to have Greek Catholicism totally suppressed, the last being at the Second Vatican Council itself.

Failing to get rid of us, the Latin Church severely restricted our activities, discouraged intercourse between the Latin and Greek Churches and made it quite clear that the Greek Catholic Churches existed solely to meet the needs of their respective immigrant communities and that evangelization of both the unchurched and Protestants was the exclusive perquisite of the Latin Church. That the Code of Canons considers every Protestant a lapsed Roman Catholic, to be received into the Latin Church, is indicative (fortunately, I don't know anyone who pays attention to that one). It was pounded into us for so long, that in the end we believed it.

The Second Vatican Council, of course, changed everything except minds and attitudes. The odd thing is, while the Latin bishops have become more understanding and tolerant, we have failed to use our new freedom wisely if at all, but continue to act, for the most part, as though our mission is still just to cater to the needs of immigrants. If we only tried, we would find plenty of people with no connection to the Christian East who are starving spiritually and would find nourishment at our table (how do these food metaphors keep surfacing?).

I think this about sums it up for me. I know that the church gave the Greek Catholics a very hard time here in the States when they first came over but I was not aware they tried to suppress the Greek churches during the second Vatican Council! I had heard about what you have mentioned in the the second paragraph and figured that the church out grew this attitude.

Oh well, It certainly has made my decision to leave that much easier.

In Christ:
Converted Viking



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Originally Posted by Luvr of East
Glory to Jesus Christ!

Dear Stuart,

How does our parish evangelize? Would this past Middle Eastern Food Festival be considered as such? If so, or if not, how else do our parish evangelize?

Kyrie eleison,

Manuel

Shlomo Manuel,

Contact the Eparchy of Our Lady of Lebanon and they can send you a guide for your parish to start Evangelizing. If you need the number let me know.

Fush BaShlomo,
Yuhannon

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