The Byzantine Forum
Newest Members
Lothar, VolodymyrRebinczak, jsunseri, Andrew_the_Ascetic, Giovanni1
5,865 Registered Users
Who's Online Now
2 members (Barryw65, Lothar), 108 guests, and 30 robots.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Latest Photos
Holy Saturday from Kirkland Lake
Holy Saturday from Kirkland Lake
by Veronica.H, April 24
Byzantine Catholic Outreach of Iowa
Exterior of Holy Angels Byzantine Catholic Parish
Church of St Cyril of Turau & All Patron Saints of Belarus
Byzantine Nebraska
Byzantine Nebraska
by orthodoxsinner2, December 11
Forum Statistics
Forums26
Topics35,191
Posts415,119
Members5,865
Most Online3,380
Dec 29th, 2019
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Joined: Feb 2022
Posts: 10
T
Tadhg Offline OP
Junior Member
OP Offline
Junior Member
T
Joined: Feb 2022
Posts: 10
I just read that there are Cardinals in the Eastern Rite. Is there somewhere I can find an Eastern Rites org chart?

For example, something like this in the Latin church: Pope, Cardinal, Archbishop, Bishop, Priest, Deacon

In Eastern Rite is it: Pope, Exarch, Bishop, Priest, Deacon? Where would a cardinal fit into that? And then the Pope is the proxy for the patriarch since Eastern Rites aren't autocephalous?

Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 6,897
Likes: 25
Moderator
Member
Offline
Moderator
Member
Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 6,897
Likes: 25
Christ is in our midst!!

Tadhg,

We speak today of Eastern Catholic Churches sui juris, not Eastern Rites. The former is the understanding we have from the Second Vatican Council and the latter is the idea that there is a common theology with different way of serving the Liturgy.

A cardinal is an honorary title given to a bishop--sometimes a priest who has served in an extraordinary way for many years. The title is usually given to a bishop of an important see in a country around the world or to a senior bishop who serves in the Roman Curia.

An Exarch is a bishop who serves as the head of a diocese or exarchate.

The Pope is a bishop at the top of the hierarchy. He falls into the order of bishop, priest--a delegate of a bishop to a parish or other work--and deacon--a delegate of the bishop for service to a parish or some other area.

Joined: Feb 2022
Posts: 10
T
Tadhg Offline OP
Junior Member
OP Offline
Junior Member
T
Joined: Feb 2022
Posts: 10
Interesting! thank you for your reply, Theophan. So, 'Eastern Rite' shouldn't be used to describe the Eastern Catholic Churches?

While a cardinal is an honorary title, it is more than that, correct? Not least in speaking of their influence in the election of the pope. The representation seems very important given the immediate jurisdiction that pope will have in every Catholic Church in the world.

The head of a given Eastern Catholic Church (below the pope) would then be an exarch though, right? I'm speaking in terms of jurisdiction and authority, I understand the pope, cardinals, exarch, are all bishops...

Thanks again

Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 6,897
Likes: 25
Moderator
Member
Offline
Moderator
Member
Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 6,897
Likes: 25
Chrit is in our midst!!

There are many titles for the heads of the Eastern Catholic Churches. Some are titled "Patriarch," some "Metropolitan," some "Major Archbishop." An exarch is the head of a diocese outside the territory of his Church, as I have been taught. An eparch is the head of a diocese in the territory of his particular Church.

A cardinal's only real function is to be part of the conclave that elects the next pope. They are also supposed to be advisors of the pope. Beyond that, it means the red on his cassock is bright red rather a bishop's faded red.

Referring to the Eastern Catholic Churches sui juris as simply "rites" IMHO is insulting to their spiritual and liturgical heritage--as if it were something less than it is.

Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 1,687
Moderator
Member
Offline
Moderator
Member
Joined: Nov 2001
Posts: 1,687
Although the term “eparch” is sometimes used to refer to the bishop of an eparchy, that term is not used in official documents of the Catholic Church. The official (meaning, canonical) term is eparchial bishop. The term “eparch” is more readily used in the Greek Orthodox Church.

Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 10,079
Likes: 11
Global Moderator
Member
Offline
Global Moderator
Member
Joined: Oct 2003
Posts: 10,079
Likes: 11
Tadhg,

Can't remember if I previously welcomed you to the forum. If not, let me do so - hopefully, you'll find it a useful place in which to become familiar with the Eastern Churches, Orthodox and Catholic.My brothers and friends, Bob and Deacon John, have addressed some of your questions but I suspect that your curiousity might benefit from a bit more detail, besides which you've hit on a few of my favorite topics.

At this moment, both Bob and Deacon John are thinking back to a time, pre-Facebook, when this forum was one of the two main sources for online discussion and information on Eastern Christianity and are probably thinking to themselves, "Here we go, Neil has discovered a potentially willing audience and is about to recreate one of those 'all you ever wanted to know' threads which were his stock in trade for so very long." They'd not be wrong but I'll try to be succinct and use links to some older threads here versus retyping what's already been said in years past. If at any point, you sense overload, feel free to say so.

I'll do this in parts over a few days. Bob already explained the historical change in terminology from 'Eastern Catholic Rites' to 'Eastern Catholic Churches'. There are still 'Rites', but the term now applies to what we do and how we do it, as opposed to who we are. The following is from a very old thread here. It details a bit of the history involved in the change and goes on to explain 'Rites' as the term is currently used.

Originally Posted by Irish Melkite
Church vs. Rite

For a long time, each group of Eastern Catholics was referred to by its name (most often reflective of its historical cultural/national identity or ethnic origin), followed by the word "Rite". Thus, you would hear references to someone being of the "Ukrainian Rite" or to "Melkite Rite Catholics". At the urging of the Eastern and Oriental Catholic hierarchs participating in the Second Vatican Council, particularly His Beatitude Maximos IV Saigh, Patriarch of Antioch & All the East, of Alexandria and of Jerusalem of the Greek-Melkites, of blessed memory, the Church recognized the status of the Eastern and Oriental Catholic Churches as sui iuris ecclesial entities, each of which uses a particular Rite. Thus, it is a disparagement (as well as inaccurate) to substitute "Rite" for "Church" in the name of any of these bodies.

The distinction is made in Canons 27 and 28 of the Eastern Code of Canon Law:

Canon 27

  • A group of Christian faithful united by a hierarchy, according to the norm of law, which the supreme authority of the Church, expressly or tacitly, recognizes as sui iuris, is called in this Code a Church sui iuris.


Canon 28

  • 1. A Rite is the liturgical, theological, spiritual, and disciplinary patrimony, culture, and circumstances of history of a distinct people, by which its own manner of living the faith is manifested in each Church sui iuris.

Additionally, in my personal opinion ...

Beyond the codified definition of "Rite", it should be further understood to be the collected liturgical patrimony or heritage by which a body of faithful conduct their religious life. It is more than just differences in language, culture, and vesture, although those are often among the most immediately obvious distinctions. It's often thought of as strictly applicable to liturgical worship service; it actually includes the totality of a people's religious expression, including their sacraments, sacramentals, devotionals, prayers, music, and even aspects of their religious artistic expression and ecclesial architecture.

Interestingly, in the West, persons belong to a Rite and Rites to a Church (which uses more than a single Rite).

By way of example:

  • most Western Catholics belong to the Latin Rite with smaller numbers adhering to the Ambrosian, Bragan, and Mozarabic Rites, all of which Rites belong to the Latin Church; while,


Conversely, in the East, persons belong to a Church and the Church (in some instances, more than a single Church) to a Rite. (In the case of the Armenian Rite, the Rite is used by only a single Church sui iuris and the Church's name and that of the Rite are identical.)

By way of example:

  • some Eastern Catholics belong to the Melkite Church, which (with several other Churches) uses the Byzantine Rite.


Many years,

Neil

PS Next time, the cardinalate and the Eastern Catholic Churches
.

Last edited by Irish Melkite; 03/18/22 08:29 AM.

"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."
Joined: Jul 2021
Posts: 44
Likes: 10
R
Member
Offline
Member
R
Joined: Jul 2021
Posts: 44
Likes: 10
The Pope is not the "head" of the Eastern Catholic Churches. Each canonical Church has its own visible head (sometimes a Metropolitan, usually a Patriarch). The Pope in Rome is, above all else, the Patriarch of Rome. He is equal in authority to all his brother Patriarchs. The Pope's regular/ordinary/immediate authority is limited to the Roman Catholic Church. The Pope has a unique role to play in the universal Church, but it is one of service, not of unquestioning authority. The idea that all Catholic Churches must submit to the Pope in Rome is a Roman trad fantasy. It does not reflect Catholic ecclesiology in the first millennium.

Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 6,897
Likes: 25
Moderator
Member
Offline
Moderator
Member
Joined: Nov 2002
Posts: 6,897
Likes: 25
Christ is in our midst!!

Ruthenian1988,

Your response is an Orthodox one and we could hope that this were the case. But reality sets in. Vatican I defined the place of the Bishop of Rome a great deal differently. Whether that was good or bad or wrong is up for debate. At the time, the Catholic Church was headed for the type of thing going on in Orthodoxy today. National Churches were at odds on various practical matters. A final authority where questions could be resolved was thought to be needed. That's where we are today. Maybe it was prophetic because it seems from some accounts that the German Church is heading into some very dangerous territory in its teaching, for one example. The problem with Catholic politicians in open rebellion to Church teaching in the United States is another.

So the practice of the Pope having the final say about when bishops retire is what it is for now.

Joined: Jul 2021
Posts: 44
Likes: 10
R
Member
Offline
Member
R
Joined: Jul 2021
Posts: 44
Likes: 10
Respectfully, what it is, is an abuse. Vatican I is not a done deal. The council ended without hashing everything out. We are not wrong to reject the rubber stamped Roman interpretation of papal authority. I, for one, wholly reject Pastor Aeturnus's explicit definition of papal supremacy. Such a thing was not part of the first millennium Church. The fact this error has persisted for decades now doesn't mean we should all get comfortable with it and just accept it.

That said, I'm not calling for breaking ties with Rome or burning and looting in the streets lol. But I think we ought to be encouraging our priests to encourage their bishops to make it known that we don't accept Vatican I's opinions, since the council was never resolved. Whether things could be hashed out in a synod, or if it'd take Vatican III to handle it, only God knows. And certainly there are bigger fish to fry in the world at the present moment. But I do believe this remains a very important subject that needs to be revisited. I believe the Eastern Orthodox and Roman Catholics both get the papacy terribly wrong. The Roman understanding of the papacy goes entirely too far. The Eastern Orthodox understanding of the papacy doesn't go far enough. And we Byzantine Catholics are caught up in the middle, recognizing the universal role the papacy plays in the Church, serving the unity of the Church. The papacy's role is one of service, not of authority.

1 member likes this: dochawk

Moderated by  Alice, Father Deacon Ed, theophan 

Link Copied to Clipboard
The Byzantine Forum provides message boards for discussions focusing on Eastern Christianity (though discussions of other topics are welcome). The views expressed herein are those of the participants and may or may not reflect the teachings of the Byzantine Catholic or any other Church. The Byzantine Forum and the www.byzcath.org site exist to help build up the Church but are unofficial, have no connection with any Church entity, and should not be looked to as a source for official information for any Church. All posts become property of byzcath.org. Contents copyright - 1996-2022 (Forum 1998-2022). All rights reserved.
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.5