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Originally Posted by Irish Melkite
You won't find a specific line in the Canons - Eastern or Western - that states [that those baptized persons entering the Catholic Church from Western Churches (e.g., Protestant Churches) must be received as Latins, unless they seek permission to be received otherwise]. (To be honest, I don't believe that the term "Protestant" even appears in the Latin Code.) It is inferred from the text I quoted, and the commentaries to the Code by the Canon Law Society of America are explicit in interpreting it in that way. Are those commentaries binding? Questionable but, since they generally reflect the majority opinion of the canon law community (which is largely Latin), they will be the interpretation put to the matter by most Latin jurisdictions.
This seems like a prime example of where a law that was intended to protect the minority ends up being interpreted in such a way as to "protect" the majority instead.

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I don't think that there's much to argue about this. If you're a Protestant; especially one from a non-liturgical background, and you're going to receive the Mysteries of Initiation in an Eastern Catholic Church, you're an Eastern Catholic. 'Nuff said. I spoke to a few bishops and priests here in Australia, and this is what they said.

To put it simply, to receive free meals from house A and then choosing to live in house B instead is just selfish, let alone uncanonical. ;)Its just basic courtesy. With all due respect, why should the Latin Church take ownership of the converts? smile

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Originally Posted by Akira
Protestant exposure and attraction to Eastern Catholicism in a pluralistic state with multiple Catholic churches sui juris was not a significant reality until the past century or so.

Akira,

An excellent observation - though I'd probably narrow it to the past half-century (and that's generous).

Ray,

Nice find!

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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Originally Posted by Irish Melkite
Originally Posted by Akira
Protestant exposure and attraction to Eastern Catholicism in a pluralistic state with multiple Catholic churches sui juris was not a significant reality until the past century or so.

Akira,

An excellent observation - though I'd probably narrow it to the past half-century (and that's generous).

Ray,

Nice find!

Many years,

Neil
I'm guessing that a lot of it has to do with the dismantling of the Roman liturgy and the Eastern churches maintaining a reverent liturgy. I'm a Roman convert from Protestantism and I doubt I would love the Divine Liturgy as much if I had ready access to a Roman Mass approximately as reverent and by the book.

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Originally Posted by WetCatechumen
I'm guessing that a lot of it has to do with the dismantling of the Roman liturgy and the Eastern churches maintaining a reverent liturgy. I'm a Roman convert from Protestantism and I doubt I would love the Divine Liturgy as much if I had ready access to a Roman Mass approximately as reverent and by the book.

WC,

VII certainly contributed to the Latin world and Westerners in general being more aware of us - simply because our existence suddenly became an open secret. As well, just as you suggest, the changes in the Latin Mass caused folks to look at us - for better and, sometimes, for worse. (You'll see references made to the misguided efforts of some who came to us to make us into Churches which served a Divine Liturgy that they could comfortably recognize as a variant on the historical Latin Mass - thankfully, those times are past.)

As to the Western Mass being served reverently and 'by the book' - (and I offer these comments in passing, I do NOT intend that this thread become a place to debate the Mass versus the Divine Liturgy) - I attended Mass in a Latin parish this past Sunday because I was in Pennsylvania (of all places) but nowhere near any Eastern temple.

(Yes, my brethren from the Holy Land, there are such places within the hallowed state confines - think Lancaster County biggrin . As a parishioner there, having apparently noticed the backwards Signs of the Cross made by me and my two little ones, observed to me in passing - "You're too far west, but not far enough West, to find the East, right?" biggrin )

Anyway, it was my first time at Mass in several years, other than a wedding or funeral. So what did I experience or see? A relatively modern church structure. a priest serving ad populam, altar girls serving, EMHCs, some people reciting the Lord's Prayer with hands raised in the orans position and some others doing so while holding hands, and one absolutely ghastly hymn that l suspect would have been roundly rejected both by most High Church Protestants and Evangelical Christians.

I'm very well aware of the tendency within a lot of the Latin community to decry all of those things - and to particularly denounce those which violate the holy and revered GIRM.

Now, I can't say that I'm a fan of any of what I've described, but (the referenced hymn, which had no redeeming qualities, aside) ... the most memorable things that I took away from St Philip the Apostle Church were a virtually full church, populated in its entirety by very reverent folk of all ages - including that priest, those altar girls, the EMHCs, and all who prayed the Lord's Prayer - regardless of whether they did so with their hands clasped or in one of the two positions described.

Those who criticize the Latin Church, its liturgical forms and praxis, etc, would do well to spend significantly less time on policing and documenting the 'abuses' so-called and giving the same degree of attentiveness to prayer and worship that these 'abusers' did.

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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This is a very old thread, but I came across this issue before, and have decided to re-visit it. I am an evangelical who entered the Church through the Melkite rite, and have since discovered this issue. It came up briefly with the priest of the parish I joined (now deceased), but after discussing, he did not disagree with my view that evangelicalism did not constitute a "rite." I have been unable to find a technical canonical definition of "rite," but it does seem to presume a valid Eucharist, or at least an apostolic lineage, and that is obviously not really applicable to evangelicalism. On top of that, my particular Protestant denomination moved out of Anglicanism in the early 1800s, and some ministers did actually receive a possibly valid (even if illicit) ordination through an Eastern Orthodox bishop (who apparently was known for such things in Europe), such that one might argue this initiated an Eastern lineage of sorts into the denomination. But I have heard different answers from fairly knowledgeable people of different Eastern rites (bishops who hold different views than deacons, including those who have worked for Catholic evangelistic offices, etc.)

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Christ is in our midst!!

melkman2,

Welcome to the forum. We hope your journey with us proves to be spiritually fruitful.

Bob
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Originally Posted by melkman2
I have been unable to find a technical canonical definition of "rite," but it does seem to presume a valid Eucharist, or at least an apostolic lineage, and that is obviously not really applicable to evangelicalism.

The Code of Canons of the Eastern Churches defines "rite" as follows: "Rite is the liturgical, theological, spiritual and disciplinary heritage, distinguished according to peoples' culture and historical circumstances, that finds expression in each autonomous church's way of living the faith."

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Hi--thanks for the quote. I think I came across this. However, note the use of the word "church." Then-Pope Benedict informed us that techniclaly, those groups lacking a valid Eucharist due to lack of apostolic succession, are not "churches" but ecclesial communities. Perhaps the code was being too loose, but this suggests to me that technically, a rite is linked to a Eucharistic tradition. Though I can of course see how the rest of the description would fit Protestant communities and their worship.

Of course, saying they are "autonomous" would also not fit how that term would be understood for AS groups (e.g., gnsotics are in some sense autonomous), and one can press in what sense they really have a liturgy without the Eucharist.

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Originally Posted by melkman2
Hi--thanks for the quote. I think I came across this. However, note the use of the word "church." Then-Pope Benedict informed us that techniclaly, those groups lacking a valid Eucharist due to lack of apostolic succession, are not "churches" but ecclesial communities. Perhaps the code was being too loose,....
Well before the Code and Pope Benedict:
Quote
CHAPTER III

CHURCHES AND ECCLESIAL COMMUNITIES [De Ecclesiis et de Communitatibus ecclesialibus] SEPARATED FROM THE ROMAN APOSTOLIC SEE

13. We now turn our attention to the two chief types of division as they affect the seamless robe of Christ....
22...Though the ecclesial Communities which are separated from us lack the fullness of unity with us flowing from Baptism, and though we believe they have not retained the proper reality of the eucharistic mystery in its fullness, especially because of the absence of the sacrament of Orders, nevertheless when they commemorate His death and resurrection in the Lord's Supper, they profess that it signifies life in communion with Christ and look forward to His coming in glory. Therefore the teaching concerning the Lord's Supper, the other sacraments, worship, the ministry of the Church, must be the subject of the dialogue.

DECREE ON ECUMENISM
UNITATIS REDINTEGRATIO
Novemrber 21, 1964

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Objectively, they are Latin Catholics.

According to CCEO 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."

"Ascription to the proper ritual Church 'sui iuris' is automatic but needs to be recorded." - EWTN, https://www.ewtn.com/catholicism/library/when-an-orthodox-joins-the-catholic-church-4391

In practice, let us take the opposite example of say Russian Orthodox becoming Catholics and joining the Church through a Latin priest. In real scenarios, these people became Russian Catholics, not Latin Catholics, and have to petition the bishop to initate a request for a transfer to the Latin Church if they wish to be so.

Any other opinion is in error. Anglicans, Methodists, Lutherans, etc. entering the Catholic Church automatically become members of the Latin Church.

Parallel cases define clearly the law.

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Originally Posted by Giovanni1
Objectively, they are Latin Catholics.

According to CCEO 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."

"Ascription to the proper ritual Church 'sui iuris' is automatic but needs to be recorded." - EWTN, https://www.ewtn.com/catholicism/library/when-an-orthodox-joins-the-catholic-church-4391

In practice, let us take the opposite example of say Russian Orthodox becoming Catholics and joining the Church through a Latin priest. In real scenarios, these people became Russian Catholics, not Latin Catholics, and have to petition the bishop to initate a request for a transfer to the Latin Church if they wish to be so.

Any other opinion is in error. Anglicans, Methodists, Lutherans, etc. entering the Catholic Church automatically become members of the Latin Church.

Parallel cases define clearly the law.

Excepting Anglicans that is not true. I know of several cases where Protestants of various kinds joined Eastern Catholic Churches with no stop over in the Latin Church, some becoming priests. Baptized non-Catholics coming into the Catholic Church may choose the Sui Iuris Church they wish to ascribe to provided that Church has jurisdiction in that territory because they have no rite.


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Actually, nevermind, if I read further into the CCEO, I find,

"Canon 588 - Catechumens are free to enroll in whatever Church sui iuris they want, according to the norm of can. 30; however, it has to be provided that nothing stands in the way of their enrollment in the Church that is more appropriate to their culture."

All Protestants generally involve becoming Catechumens, hence the need for Chrismation. The Orthodox most generally should have received the Sacraments of Initiation hence they are generally put into their ritual Churches automatically.

Actually the Anglican Ordinariate is a subdivision of the Latin Church, so that actually may not apply even then, as the Anglican Ordinariate is a choice and not a force on Anglican converts.

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But again, it seems according to many sources there seems to be disagreement on this question, whether Canon 588 also means those who are simply received into the Church whether baptized or chrismated, or does only Canon 35 apply. It seems Canon 588 means a non-baptized person which is why it says specifically "culture" as say an atheist Russian convert, yet Canon 35 means a baptized non-Catholic which it why it says specifically "rite" which denotes ritual, for example say Sedevacantists.

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To clarify what I wrote earlier,

Canon 588 deals with non-baptized individuals, citing Canon 30. That anyone who is baptized becomes a member of the Church sui iuris that the church in which they are baptized in belongs to. But it should be providied that nothing stands in the way for them to be enrolled in the Church sui iuris which is related to their culture. I cannot say the case of deathbed baptisms or baptisms outside of a church.

So in this case, if a Russian atheist wanted to join the Catholic Church, is baptized in a Latin-rite Catholic Church, that Russian would become a Latin-rite Catholic due to the fact that they were baptized in a Latin-rite Catholic Church, and will not become a Russian-rite Catholic as he was not baptized in a Russian-rite Catholic Church.

Canon 35 states that baptized non-Catholics who wish to enter the Catholic Church must join the Church sui iuris which matches their religion's tradition, but, that these individuals can ask the Apostolic See in cases of individuals or multiple individuals or areas as mentioned above in order to join a different rite.

Therefore, if a Greek Orthodox man wishes to enter the Catholic Church, despite entering the Church by the help of a Maronite Catholic priest, the man would become a Greek-rite Catholic, unless he explicitly petitioned the Apostolic See (or asks the local bishop to petition for him, or petitions after entering the Church) in order to join another Church sui iuris.

In these cases, "rite" according to Canon 28 of the CCEO, is defined basically by traditions. Hence in the Catholic Church, there are many different traditions such as those of the Ambrosians, the Carthusians, Dominicans, etc. yet these all fall under the Latin-rite. Therefore, Western Protestants would automatically by default enter the Latin-rite Catholic Church when they enter the Church.

But, "culture" here simply means the rite of the geographic area or ethnicity, and is only stated here in relation that if a person wishes to become say a Russian-rite Catholic, since he is Russian, that there should be nothing that should stand in his way of doing so.

So to put it simply,

Western Protestants entering the Church without petitioning to join a different Church sui iuris would automatically join the Latin-rite Catholic Church.

People of the various Orthodox groups would join the Catholic sui iuris of the same religious tradition, unless none exists, in which case they would join the most similar one.

Despite automatically entering that Church sui iuris, either before or after entering the Catholic Church, the Apostolic See change an individual's membership in a Church sui iuris.

But unbaptized individuals, unless they probably petitioned the Apostolic See, by virtue of baptism in a church under a Church sui iuris, would become a member of that Church sui iuris.

For clarity, write to a bishop or the Dicastery for the Eastern Churches.

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