www.byzcath.org
Posted By: asianpilgrim Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 06/08/08 03:04 PM
I've downloaded the "Eastern Catholic Churches 2007" survey from www.cnewa.org. [cnewa.org.] It is compiled from the statistics published in the Annuario Pontificio.

I only planned to scan through it (I was calculating the number of EC's worldwide for a power-point presentation I've been making) but I was so surprised and dismayed to find the numbers for the BCC and UGCC in USA and Canada, that I had to make this post.

For example, in 1990, the BCC had 268,161 members, while in 2007 it had only 96,761. Keep in mind that in the 1960's, there were an estimated 300,000 Ruthenian Catholics in the USA.

From 1990 to 2007, the Eparchy of Passaic went down from 85,050 to 21,808, Van Nuys tumbled from 17,125 to a mere 2,863, Parma from 22,202 to 12,371 and Pittsburgh from 143,784 to 59,719.

The UGCC eparchies in the US collapsed from 158,533 (1990) to 102,678 (2007), and this is with statistics for Philadelphia apparently being changed from 2006 to 2007 (a statistical improbability). From 1990 to 2007, Philadelphia went from 77,571 to 65,000, St. Josaphat in Parma from 11,964 to 10,937 -- well, that's not so bad -- St. Nicholas in Chicago from 28,000 to 10,000, and Stamford from 40,998 to 16,741.

The UGCC in Canada plummeted from 201,957 (1990) to 85,586 (2007). Winnipeg fell from 49,350 to 29,740, Edmonton from 40,907 to 28,750, New Westminster from 7,700 to 7,835 (ok, that was growth, not shrinkage), Saskatoon from 24,000 to 8,395 and -- most terribly -- Toronto, from 80,000 to 10,866!

I actually find some of the statistics of collapse to be unebelievable. I find it hard to believe, for example, that the Eparchy of Toronto, with 65 parishes and more than half of Canada's UGCC priests (131 out of 257 in 2007), has a flock of merely 10,866. Surely it must be a lot bigger than that?

Coming back to the BCC: how can Van Nuys have a mere 2,863?

I understand that UGCC statistics in the Ukraine had been too optimistic in the 1990's up to 2000, and have been revised downwards in the past few years to lower and more realistic levels. (Indeed, the statistics I'm referring to have overall UGCC figures being revised from 5,159,533 in 2000 to 4,223,425 in 2007). Surely, though, statistics being revised to more realistic levels does not account for the tragic rapidity with which the BCC and UGCC in the North Americas are shrinking.

If these figures are accurate -- and that, I guess, is a big IF -- the BCC and UGCC are facing a serious crisis and may very well disappear from the North Americas in 20-30 years, barring a new wave of immigration and a rapid and powerful renewal. (Or perhaps they'll end up being rolled into a single jurisdiction once more, given the smaller numbers.)

May this pilgrim know why this crisis has become so severe? What do you think?
I think the Eastern Catholic Churches need to seriously consider a new evangelization plan for the Eparchies. In fact the entire Catholic Church needs to consider this and get moving!
Stephanos I
Holy Spirit breathe afresh on us!
Originally Posted by asianpilgrim
The UGCC eparchies in the US collapsed from 158,533 (1990) to 102,678 (2007), and this is with statistics for Philadelphia apparently being changed from 2006 to 2007 (a statistical improbability).

I should have said "UNCHANGED", not "being changed"
Posted By: a pilgrim Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 06/08/08 05:16 PM
asianpilgrim,

Speaking as one 'pilgrim' to another (:D), here's something to consider when you look at the numbers, especially those published in the Annuario Pontifico...

Over the past couple of decades, many, MANY canonical Byzantine Catholic have relocated to areas which are not serviced by a parish of their own sui iuris Church and have, along with their families, 'defaulted' to membership within the nearest Latin parish. These Byzantine families have, for the most part, broken all ties with their Byzantine heritage and are, for all intents and purposes, living their lives as Latin Catholics - yet they officially remain Byzantine Catholics! Each one of them impacts the numbers you see in the Annuario Pontifico by a factor of two - one fewer Byzantine AND one more Latin Catholic.

This 'exodus,' if you will, has been in effect long enough now that new generations are being pulled in. Example: A Byzantine husband and wife relocate and join a Latin parish; they settle into liturgical life of their new, Latin parish, assuming (incorrectly!) that registration at a Latin Catholic parish 'automatically' now makes them Latin Catholics (it does not); a baby comes along and, quite naturally, they have their child baptised in their Latin parish, again assuming that the child is 'officially' a Latin Catholic as well (he or she is not).

The fact is, without a Change of Canonical Enrollment this entire family is still 'officially' Byzantine Catholic! Even the child baptized in the Latin Church is officially a Byzantine Catholic! Yet it's a safe bet that none of them will ever show up again in the official roll call of Byzantine Catholics published in the Annuario Pontifico. Now, multiply this same scenario by thousands (literally!) of occurrences over the past couple of decades and it's not hard to see how the numbers get falsely skewed. There are thousands upon thousands of Byzantine Catholics in the USA alone who don't even know that they're Byzantine Catholics! It wouldn't surprise me if, in fact, the 'true' numbers of canonical Byzantines actually showed a year-to-year increase over these past couple of decades, just as a result of children being born into these canonical Byzantine families... yet the numbers will never again count these people as the Byzantines they actually are. They are, truly, the "Lost Byzantines."


Al (a pilgrim)
Posted By: lanceg Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 06/08/08 05:37 PM
Agreed- and I think it is also worthwhile for the Ruthenian and Ukrainian Church at least, (if not all of the Byzantine Churches)to consider merging back into one Metropolia.

On the hopeful side, our younger couples and families in our parish, under 40, have great zeal and love for the Byzantine Rite, and it could be that we will see a influx of people as they study the history of the Church and the fathers. However, some of them are transfers from the Roman Rite, which is okay, but we need to reach out to new converts, people unchurched or lapsed.

I think we need to make connections with the Emergent Church movement. There are several streams in that movement. Some of them admire the history of the Church, especially spiritual practices such as Icons, spiritual readings, the Divine Office, etc.

Our Byzantine services such as the akathist hymns, give voice to the characters of the scriptural narrative. We contemplate the annunciation, for example, from the perspective of the angel or the Mother of God. We in this way become part of the narrative, which is what many people with a postmodern perspective seek to do.

I think there is tremendous opportunity before us with the emergent church movement. People in this movement have a suspicion about American versions of Christianity.

Over and against the postmodern perspective, we do proclaim an absolute objective truth. But we also represent traditions that are far deeper and diverse than the typical American Christianity. I believe that the postmodern seeker of truth can find meaning in our Byzantine Churches and traditions.


Lance

A Byzantine Christian in a Postmodern World [byzantinechristian.blogspot.com]
Posted By: Mykhayl Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 06/08/08 06:11 PM
C^BA ICYCY XPUCTY!
Please more.
Posted By: Pustinik Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 06/08/08 07:29 PM
The question of generational migration out of and into Byzantine Catholic communities would be a good Ph.D. dissertation in Sociology of Religion, among other areas of study. Many Romans who were disaffected with liturgical reforms came into Byzantine Catholic parishes, including those of more conservative bent who are home schooling their children.

Regarding outward movement, a well documented range of issues impacted immigrants and their 1-3 generation descendents. These include liturgical and cultural elements, a desire to belong, and breakdown of ethnic communities that tended to hold ethnic-based ecclesial communities together. Protestants and Roman Catholics in the West knew each other - even where conflict existed. Eastern rites seemed more exotic and, yes, more strange in some regards.
Posted By: Roman Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 06/08/08 08:13 PM
The Toronto UGCC eparchy figures are indeed hard to believe, though I see an equally surprising increase for the Toronto "Slovaks". I suspect that a transfer of juridction may have been involved.
You know, surely, the comment that there are lies, damn lies, and statistics. To that please add "ecclesiastical statistics". I strenously doubt that any of this figures is based upon serious research.

Fr. Serge
Posted By: Tim Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 06/08/08 09:09 PM
Fr. Serge is doubtless correct about the need to add a fourth and more egregious category of statistical misinformation to the standard three.

I fear, however, that any error in the UGCC, BCC and other EC stats in the Annuario is more likely to be one of overstatement than understatement. (The tendency of the stats to vary only minimally year-to-year suggests that overworked ecclesiastics (at parochial or eparchial level in one of the Churches here, in the Apostolic Delegation if that is where data are consolidated, or in Rome) have simply plugged in old numbers rather than chase down accurate current ones.

This would seem to bode ill for at least some Eastern Catholic Churches in this hemisphere. The time has certainly come for a serious study of what is happening in our faith communities, and why. If the lessons learned cannot be applied to revitalize the BCC and UGCC, perhaps they will provide helpful insights for other Eastern Catholic (and Orthodox) Churches who may have been lulled into a false sense of security (as indeed were the UGCC and BCC in past years) by a surge in numbers caused by immigration.
Incidentally, who is going to pay for a genuinely scientific survey of who goes to what Church?

Fr. Serge
Posted By: Pustinik Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 06/08/08 11:19 PM
Hopefully some graduate student(s) might be inspired to undertake this for a masters or doctoral thesis (work in the area has probably already been done). This and related topics would be ripe areas for an academic career, including publications. That kind of research can benefit the particular churches and not cost any investment on the part of the churches. Moreover, it's better if there is no ecclesial investment as such sponsorship of research can sometimes lead to pressuring the researcher to lean one way or another when presenting outcomes (not to say that academic advisors do not add their own pressures).
-----------------------------------------------------
"Acquire a peaceful spirit, and thousands around you will be saved." �St. Serafim of Sarov
It is not always clear if the statistics reflect an estimate of the number of (Eastern) Catholics or the actual number of registered parishioners. Probably the number of people who are canonically (Eastern) Catholics is higher than the number of registered parishioners.

It is therefore interesting to compare the number of Catholics (whether estimated or registered) and the number of baptisms, which is likely to be quite accurate.

According to The Official Catholic Directory 2007[/i] [usccb.org], there are 67,515,016 Catholics in the United States and 1,018,152 baptisms, making 15 baptisms per 1000 Catholics.

The [i]Annuario Pontificio 2006 reports 976,181 Eastern Catholics and 8123 baptisms in the United States. This makes 8 baptisms per 1000 Eastern Catholics, well below the national average.

However, there is a lot of variation in the number of baptisms per 1000 Eastern Catholics:
Greek Melkites (14)
Maronites (13)
Chaldeans (10)
Byzantines/Ruthenians (8)
Syriacs (8)
Ukrainians (7)
Armenians (6)
Romanians (5)
Syro-Malabars (3)

There is even greater variation from one eparchy to another. The Archeparchy of Philadelphia reports 3 baptisms per 1000 Catholics; the Eparchy of Saint Nicholas of Chicago reports 21. And while the Archeparchy of Pittsburgh reports 5 baptisms per 1000 Catholics, the Eparchy of Van Nuys reports 26.

The Greek Melkites and the Maronites are closest to the national average, while the Syro-Malabars for whatever reason have a very low number. On the whole, though, I suspect the Eastern Catholic Churches in the United States are doing quite well given the huge geographical distances and the impossibility of having a presence in every city or even in every state.
When I was a Melkite back in the mid 1990s, two large Lebanese families joined the congregational church. Unfortunately, both families have volunteered to go on missions to the Holy Land to convert more Eastern Christians (Byzantines and Orthodox) to the protestants.

They wanted Bible studies. When I asked them about the Holy Sacraments, especially Holy Communion, they mentioned that they were all priests, prophets and kings. They were quite content to participate in the monthly communion service at their protestant church.

They really did not know their faith.
Originally Posted by Roman
The Toronto UGCC eparchy figures are indeed hard to believe, though I see an equally surprising increase for the Toronto "Slovaks". I suspect that a transfer of juridction may have been involved.

The Canadian Slovak Catholics are quite invisible on the Internet and seem to have very few parishes and communities.
Posted By: Lawrence Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 06/09/08 01:19 AM

EC's could use something like the St Monica sodality.
Originally Posted by Tim
Fr. Serge is doubtless correct about the need to add a fourth and more egregious category of statistical misinformation to the standard three.

I fear, however, that any error in the UGCC, BCC and other EC stats in the Annuario is more likely to be one of overstatement than understatement. (The tendency of the stats to vary only minimally year-to-year suggests that overworked ecclesiastics (at parochial or eparchial level in one of the Churches here, in the Apostolic Delegation if that is where data are consolidated, or in Rome) have simply plugged in old numbers rather than chase down accurate current ones.

This would seem to bode ill for at least some Eastern Catholic Churches in this hemisphere. The time has certainly come for a serious study of what is happening in our faith communities, and why. If the lessons learned cannot be applied to revitalize the BCC and UGCC, perhaps they will provide helpful insights for other Eastern Catholic (and Orthodox) Churches who may have been lulled into a false sense of security (as indeed were the UGCC and BCC in past years) by a surge in numbers caused by immigration.

I can only agree. Looking at the entire slew of Eastern Catholic statistics only made me more suspicious as to the veracity of the statistics.

Without in any way wishing to malign anyone, or to pass judgement on any given institution, the statistics for the Maronites and the Melkites (which are so far out compared to secular estimates as well as official Catholic statistics from the 1960's) seemed to me to be especially bloated. For example, the official Maronite statistics have it that there are more than 1.4 million Maronites in Lebanon (out of a total population of 4 million), while secular statistics put Maronites at 12-20% of the population (which means 480,000 - 800,000). And it is no secret that there is a massive Maronite outward migration. Complicating matters is the Lebanese government's avoidance of having to take a census, in order to avoid another round of ethnic and sectarian violence. Of course, the Maronites have every reason to NOT look fewer: it will only embolden Hezbollah and other Hagarenes in the area to put an end to their presence once and for all.

At the same time, the dry statistics tell me of massive losses to the Latin Church. For example, there are said to be 700,000 Maronites in Argentina (served by FOUR parishes and 29 priests) and 468,000 Maronites in Brazil (served by TEN parishes and 12 priests). (Secular statistics at times actually give higher figures for Brazil.) Obviously, only a small fraction of these Maronites have access to their own churches and clergy. Guess where they most likely go? Why, to the Latin churches, or a lot of them may already be Protestants (especially in Brazil). Given that Maronites are close to the Latin church, shifting to the Latin churches won't be too hard for them.

The statistics also tell me that North American Eastern Catholics are actually very lucky! US Eastern Catholic eparchies and exarchates have a disproportionate share of the clergy of their respective sui juris churches. For example, there are only 24,435 Melkites in the US out of an estimated 1.3 million throughout the world, but this tiny fraction -- which accounts for less than 2% of all Melkites, at least according to official statistics -- have 64 priests, or about eleven percent of the world's 521 Melkite priests.

There are only about 100,000 Ukrainian Catholics in the US and about 85,000 in Canada -- again, as per official stats, which may not be wholly trustworthy -- out of 4.2 million throughout the world (or less than 5% of the total) but these are served by 500 of the world's 3,013 UGCC priests, or about a sixth of the total number.

Of course, it isn't just the Eastern Catholics who have the problem of skewered statistics. Latin church figures -- oh, that much-abused "we're a billion strong!" -- are meaningless in the face of the rapid secularization of Catholic Europe and North America and the rapid Protestantization of large portions of Catholic Latin America. In my country, the "80 % Catholic figure" is a sham in the face of massive secularization, loss of faith, low church attendance (less than 20%) and conversions to either Protestantism or Islam.

I sometimes think that if a true census of Catholics who are active or at least practicing at times, were to be taken, Latin Catholics probably won't even reach 200 million worldwide.

But that is probably what we need -- a more accurate knowledge of our own numbers. The shocking realization that we are not as many as we would like to think should aid in a long-overdue change of mentality. We must accept that the age of cultural Christianity is over and that, henceforth, the church must think and act as a creative and dynamic minority (to use a phrase made popular in recent years) with a powerful missionary urge.
Posted By: Paul B Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 06/09/08 05:21 AM
The 2007 numbers reported for the BCC are probably slightly understated; the 1990 numbers were probably grossly overstated. I base this statement upon the instructions for conducting the censuses of this decade and how they were conducted in my parish.
Rather than the priest estimating the population, each family or individual had to pick up, complete and return the census form within a month (if I remember correctly.)

So if a family/person did not attend at least two Sundays (one to receive the census and one to return it) they weren't counted. Perhaps the pastor made other arrangements but you can see that those who attend Easter and Christmas or frequently go to the Roman Church wouldn't be included.

Maybe some pastors could fill us in on the particulars of the census accuracy in their parishes.

Fr Deacon Paul

Posted By: a pilgrim Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 06/09/08 01:24 PM
Originally Posted by Latin Catholic
...It is therefore interesting to compare the number of Catholics (whether estimated or registered) and the number of baptisms, which is likely to be quite accurate...

I respectfully disagree. Using the number of recorded baptisms within a given sui iuris Church is no more accurate than using the number of registered parishioners. Over the past few decades there have been literally thousands of children born into Byzantine Catholic families and baptized in Latin Catholic parishes. In most cases, these children (and probably their parents as well) become forever recorded on the books as Latin Catholics... this, despite the fact that in the official eyes of the Catholic Church they are, and should remain, Byzantines!

The problem is that the Catholic Church does a lousy job of tracking the true canonical enrollment of her members. Byzantine families who move to areas not served by a Byzantine parish invariably 'default' to the nearest Latin parish. They believe that by registering at that Latin parish they have become Latin Catholics. Sadly, many, if not most, of the Latin clergy mistakenly believe the same thing - precious few take the time to research the background of their new parishioners past the basic fact that they are "Catholics."

Canon Law permits any Catholic individual to worship within any other sui iuris Catholic Church at any time - even if it be throughout that individual's entire life! These individuals, however, remain canonical members of their own sui iuris Church (unless an official Change of Canonical Enrollment is enacted). Their children, even those children baptized in a Latin ceremony, officially retain their father's canonical enrollment, regardless of which sui iuris Church their baptism occurs within. This is Church Law. You'd be hard-pressed, however, to find more than a handful of Catholics, laity and clergy alike, who realize this fact. As a result, we currently have thousands upon thousands of canonical Byzantine Catholics here in the USA living life as Latin Catholics, all with the tacit approval of the Catholic Church.

Our Catholic Church must either step up and do a much better job of tracking (and perhaps enforcing) the canonical enrollment of her membership or change the rules regarding canonical enrollment to fit the de facto situation that currently exists. Clearly, the status quo is somewhat of a farce.

Al (a pilgrim)
Originally Posted by a pilgrim
Originally Posted by Latin Catholic
...It is therefore interesting to compare the number of Catholics (whether estimated or registered) and the number of baptisms, which is likely to be quite accurate...

I respectfully disagree. Using the number of recorded baptisms within a given sui iuris Church is no more accurate than using the number of registered parishioners. Over the past few decades there have been literally thousands of children born into Byzantine Catholic families and baptized in Latin Catholic parishes. In most cases, these children (and probably their parents as well) become forever recorded on the books as Latin Catholics... this, despite the fact that in the official eyes of the Catholic Church they are, and should remain, Byzantines!

The problem is that the Catholic Church does a lousy job of tracking the true canonical enrollment of her members. Byzantine families who move to areas not served by a Byzantine parish invariably 'default' to the nearest Latin parish. They believe that by registering at that Latin parish they have become Latin Catholics. Sadly, many, if not most, of the Latin clergy mistakenly believe the same thing - precious few take the time to research the background of their new parishioners past the basic fact that they are "Catholics."

Canon Law permits any Catholic individual to worship within any other sui iuris Catholic Church at any time - even if it be throughout that individual's entire life! These individuals, however, remain canonical members of their own sui iuris Church (unless an official Change of Canonical Enrollment is enacted). Their children, even those children baptized in a Latin ceremony, officially retain their father's canonical enrollment, regardless of which sui iuris Church their baptism occurs within. This is Church Law. You'd be hard-pressed, however, to find more than a handful of Catholics, laity and clergy alike, who realize this fact. As a result, we currently have thousands upon thousands of canonical Byzantine Catholics here in the USA living life as Latin Catholics, all with the tacit approval of the Catholic Church.

Our Catholic Church must either step up and do a much better job of tracking (and perhaps enforcing) the canonical enrollment of her membership or change the rules regarding canonical enrollment to fit the de facto situation that currently exists. Clearly, the status quo is somewhat of a farce.

Al (a pilgrim)

Benedicite!

The points you make are of course quite correct! I only mean to say that the number of baptisms can be a useful guide to how many people are actually being reached. None of these statistics say anything about how many Eastern Catholics there are canonically speaking, i.e. how many people there are who belong to Eastern Catholic Churches as defined by the Code of Canons.

As a Latin Catholic I am personally appalled by the apparent lack of knowledge and indeed the apparent lack of interest among most Latin clergy and laity about the Eastern Catholic Churches, and sadly I don't know if there is any remedy for this!
Posted By: A student Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 06/09/08 02:14 PM
During a discussion among a group of us gathering at a post-liturgy social, one other aspect of this topic was raised. The need for a clear canonical designation really only arises in the case of marriage. Even then, a change of rite is not technically required, but only permission of the bishops. This has to do with 'jurisdiction' i.e. one sui juris church has no 'jurisdiction' over another.

I just recently learned that my Dad, raised RC, married my BC mother in the '40's and has ever since been associated with a BC church (until a few years ago when he moved to an area where no BC church is convenient). He still intends to be buried from the BC church he attended most of his life. He would have changed 'canonical enrollment' to BC many years ago, except that it required going thru Rome, which he was reluctant to do. Fortunately, the changing of church designation is now a matter of letters to both bishops ---- a much more reasonable process. So technically, my Dad remains RC. I married a RC, who did not change canonical enrollment, though he considers himself BC. My sons, though raised BC are techically RC unless they officially change canonical enrollment, (they are over 18 years of age).

In our BC parish, many families live so far away that though registered in our parish, they probably attend RC churches as well. So, there are more families on our BC parish role than the average attendance numbers reflect.

My cousin, raised RC, decided to join both a local RC and a local BC church, telling each pastor about this, so as to be able to serve and grow spiritually in each.

There seem to be many dimensions to the confusion in the statistics on this topic!

Peace to you all! A student
Posted By: a pilgrim Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 06/09/08 02:50 PM
Originally Posted by A student
...The need for a clear canonical designation really only arises in the case of marriage...

Hi, A student!

Not only with regard to marriage but also, and even moreso, with regard to Holy Orders! Your sons could not pursue ordination within the Byzantine Catholic Church, the Church that obviously represents the liturgical and theological praxes closest to their hearts, because, quite frankly, they're not Byzantine Catholics. This, of course, could be changed, as you recognize, with a Change of Canonical Enrollment.

Although I cannot testify to its accuracy, I have heard a story of a young man who was denied ordination to the RC priesthood at the last minute because the fact somehow surfaced, very late in his formation, that his father was, in fact, Ukranian Greek Catholic.

Al (a pilgrim)
Posted By: lanceg Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 06/09/08 03:03 PM
see this link: http://www.emergentvillage.com/

The emergent people are typically evangelicals or people from the evangelical movement who have broken with the evangelical subculture. There are several streams in the emergent church, and one simple definition is not adequate.

Some of the emergent church people call themselves post-evangelical, post-conservative, and some in the movement have started house or pub churches, where they have theological discussion over a glass of beer or wine.

They try to engage or in some cases, embrace, postmodern culture. Some of them especially value postmodern literature, and the use of the narrative. They reject therefore, grand, meta-narratives, such as a triumphalistic view of America or the Reformation (and also, Constantinian Catholicism/Orthodoxy). They seek admirable to hear the voice of those who have been marginalized in history.

They are critical of traditional evangelicalism and its subculture, especially in its American form, and have broadened their historical and political perspectives. Some have criticized them for being too "liberal", especially the more traditional and reformed evangelicals. However, they are still very much in the evangelical camp because they promote faith in Christ and seek to win others to Him. They maintain a high view of the Bible, and maintain basic evangelical doctrine.

They have rejected the anti-catholicism of their parent's generation, and have looked back to the fathers for monastic wisdom and spiritual practices, even though there seem to be no large numbers of them joining Catholic or Orthodox churches.

They have created another movement, called the New Monasticism, begun by Baptist student Shane Claiborne, in which these young evangelicals seek to live a radical life of discipleship, in emulation of the ancient monastics, with emphasis on rules of prayers, icons, fasting, almsgiving, working with the poor and street people, and generally living simply. They have looked to the older evangelical left, as represented by people like Jim Wallis & Sojourners, for guidance and inspiration.

I believe Catholics and Orthodox will miss an tremendous opportunity to bring other believers and spiritual seekers into unity with the Church if we fail to engage this movement.


Lance

A Byzantine Christian in a Postmodern World [byzantinechristian.blogspot.com]
Posted By: Diak Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 06/09/08 03:15 PM
CIX!

Lance, thanks so much for posting that information. We do indeed need to reclaim and recover the idea of Christian culture and the village. The village will not be in the beginning a geographical thing, of those with similar love for Christ and His Church living next to each other. That may come in time, but certainly we can implement elements of the village in terms of prayer/liturgy, spirituality, and social fellowship.

Our Constantinopolitan tradition lends itself very well, actually, towards this, and most of our people in the early immigration waves were themselves of the village. We have an immense treasure that can be shared in living rooms with "bright corners" as much as in a beautiful Church edifice.
Posted By: Tim Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 06/09/08 03:53 PM
Further on the subject of "Transfer/Change of Canonical Jurisdiction":

It arises also in the case of Baptism/Re-Baptism. I applied for and was granted a "Change of Rite" from Latin to "Byzantine-Slavonic" way back in pre-Vatican II days. I made the necessary declaration of intent to transfer (required by the letter, all in Latin, that I had received from the Apostolic Delegate) before a Ukrainian Catholic priest. Many years later, when our newly adopted child needed to be chrismated and receive first Eucharist, having been validly baptized by a Catholic layperson before coming to us, my BCC pastor informed me, with great regret, it must be said, after checking with eparchial experts, that he could not celebrate the Mysteries of Initiation for our child because I was UGC, canonically, and that our only recourse would be to invite a UGC priest to celebrate the Mysteries in our BCC parish church, or go to a UGC church. We did the latter.

It appears that, at least in the view of some canonists, a Change of Rite under the old Oriental Code, even when it drew no distinction among the several Churches that used the Byzantine-Slavonic Rite, nevertheless must be retroactively construed as a Transfer of Canonical Jurisdiction, with the "Receiving" jurisdiction determined by the parish in which the declaration of intent to change was made.

I am tempted to quote the remark of the character from the old TV program, "Laugh In": "Verrrrry interrresssting! But shtooopid!"
Re UGCC in Canada

The bishops of Canada tend to use as the official number of UGCC members in Canada the statistic produced by the last Canadian government census.

Not very accurate in my estimation. There are many UGCC members who think themselves as Latin Catholic because that is where they go to church every Sunday (or at least twice a year).
Posted By: a pilgrim Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 06/09/08 04:35 PM
Bless, Father!

So what's the answer??

I'd be willing to bet that, at least in the USA, there are probably more canonical Byzantine Catholics worshipping as Latin Catholics, living Latin Catholic liturgical lives, raising their children as Latin Catholics, even truly believing that they are Latin Catholics - than there are following the corresponding Byzantine traditions.

How do we 'fix' this... or do we?

The Catholic Church has clear-cut rules regarding who belongs to which sui iuris Church... yet she seems to ignore the fact that a good number of the faithful ascribed to the Latin Church in the Annuario Pontifico numbers are technically and canonically not Latin. What's the point of the rules if they are so blatantly disregarded? Why bother to keep and publish 'the numbers' year after year if they are so erroneous?

Should the rules regarding canonical enrollment be more strictly enforced? Changed? Eliminated?

As a priest, what are your thoughts, Father?

Kissing your hand,

Al (a pilgrim)
Recently, a young woman was married in our Church. She was a little girl when she actually became a member of the UGCC - or so I thought. She was baptized in the Lutheran Church. When preparing for marriage we found out that she is to be regarded as a Latin Catholic because she once belonged to the Lutheran Church. We had to go to the local Latin bishop and seek permission for her to marry in our church (she has practiced in our church for many, many years).

I checked with a canonist on the matter and he confirmed that is someone is already baptized and enters into the Catholic Church in a Byzantine Church, they are not in fact Byzantine Catholic but Latin Catholic (unless they came from an eastern Church).

This makes it very difficult if not impossible to accept people into our churches.

The canons regarding this are biased - certainly - toward the Latin Church. As they are not divine laws, they should be seriously reviewed and , imho, eliminated.
I would like to add that I am not a canonist... I am simply relaying what I have been told by a canonist.
Father Michael, bless!

I have heard that opinion from some canonists as well, but if they are going to argue the technicalities to suit that point of view, I'd say that since Lutheranism is not considered a church by the Catholic Communion, any baptism is not considered "valid and licit" until she or he decides to approach Catholicism - therefore the Church which receives the ex-protestant is the Church to which he/she canonically belongs.

In the case of your parishioner, she was baptised in Lutheranism - a faith community, not a Church, according to our Canons - and was received via UGCC, therefore her initial contact with Catholicism is with UGCC and to UGCC she belongs.

The same rules don't apply to the Eastern, Oriental, or Assyrian Churches since those are Truely and Properly Churches and the Catholic Church fully recognizes their Sacraments.

In my book, any protestant wishing to be received into any Catholic Church can choose which Church on their own. The two exceptions to this rule are the Ukrainian Lutheran Church and the Marthoma Syrian Church of Malabar -- these two eastern-rite "protestant" (not truly protestant, 'reformed orthodox' would be a better term to describe them) Churches would automatically be enrolled to their Eastern Counterpart unless the candidate asks not to be.
Posted By: Job Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 06/12/08 12:14 AM
Originally Posted by father michael
The canons regarding this are biased - certainly - toward the Latin Church.

No
Posted By: Tim Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 06/12/08 12:48 AM
If I understand Fr. Michael correctly, I think my view would be closer to his.

It seems that one effect of the canons, particularly those dealing with "ecclesiae sui juris" and Transfers of Canonical Jurisdiction, is to 'balkanize' the Eastern Catholic Churches, even within their 'traditional' territories. However open and welcoming a particular parish community may be, or try to be, and however much an individual or a family may feel 'integrated' (spiritually and socially) into that community, the fact will remain that, for canonical purposes, people remain members of the Particular Church into which they were incorporated by their parentage, by the Mysteries of Initiation they received, and/or by the 'form' of their canonical transfer. These 'niceties' seem to be observed more carefully among some of the Eastern Churches than among the Latins.

One can only wonder what to make of a situation, such as that in the Eparchy of Uzhhorod, which is located within the teritory of Ukraine, enjoys cordial relaitons with the UGC Patriarch and participates in many activities with its UGC co-religionists, but remains canonically separate. It seems unlikely that neat canonical lines can be drawn between two 'Greek Catholic' Churches whose members, however distinct their ethnic heritage, now share a common political life, increasingly speak the same language, and are likely to intermingle socially and also inter-marry. Hopefully, they will arrive at a more practical approach to crossing ecclesiastical boundaries than their BCC and UGCC counterparts have found in this country.
Posted By: Diak Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 06/24/08 01:18 PM
Originally Posted by father michael
Recently, a young woman was married in our Church. She was a little girl when she actually became a member of the UGCC - or so I thought. She was baptized in the Lutheran Church. When preparing for marriage we found out that she is to be regarded as a Latin Catholic because she once belonged to the Lutheran Church. We had to go to the local Latin bishop and seek permission for her to marry in our church (she has practiced in our church for many, many years).

I checked with a canonist on the matter and he confirmed that is someone is already baptized and enters into the Catholic Church in a Byzantine Church, they are not in fact Byzantine Catholic but Latin Catholic (unless they came from an eastern Church).

This makes it very difficult if not impossible to accept people into our churches.

The canons regarding this are biased - certainly - toward the Latin Church. As they are not divine laws, they should be seriously reviewed and , imho, eliminated.

I couldn't agree more, Fr. Michael. Really everything should be remanded to the local bishops involved as was the case in the universal Church until well into the second millenium. I am also attempting to assist a man with a transfer at the present; the Latin chancery involved wants to send his case to Rome for adjudication even though he is a layman, never made any religious vows or was a Latin seminarian. All he did was ask for a transfer to the UGCC.
Originally Posted by Diak
I am also attempting to assist a man with a transfer at the present; the Latin chancery involved wants to send his case to Rome for adjudication even though he is a layman, never made any religious vows or was a Latin seminarian. All he did was ask for a transfer to the UGCC.

That is patently absurd and a blatant disregard by the Latin hierarch of his implicit responsibilities under the Canons to determine whether or not the spiritual well-being of the person presently under his pastoral care would be best served by a transfer of canonical enrollment and, if so, to grant approval to the transfer.

Many years,

Neil
Originally Posted by Irish Melkite
Originally Posted by Diak
I am also attempting to assist a man with a transfer at the present; the Latin chancery involved wants to send his case to Rome for adjudication even though he is a layman, never made any religious vows or was a Latin seminarian. All he did was ask for a transfer to the UGCC.

That is patently absurd and a blatant disregard by the Latin hierarch of his implicit responsibilities under the Canons to determine whether or not the spiritual well-being of the person presently under his pastoral care would be best served by a transfer of canonical enrollment and, if so, to grant approval to the transfer.

Many years,

Neil


Hello Neil:

Could you please tell me which canons? I am starting to have a feeling I am going to need them.

In Christ:
Converted Viking
Converted Viking

Get all your ammunition together smile

Suggest you try Fr Deacon Randy as well

Prayers for your success smile
well, from what I see, there is a need for better cooperation between Latins and Easterns. when an EC seeks to join a Latin parish out of necessity (believe me, as an EC in a Latin parish, I understand), the Priest should know of the closest possible EC parish appropriate to the person. in other words, it should be the responsibility of all sui generis churches to provide Latin Priests with websites, whatever, for the EC person. the person can then stay in touch with their tradition, and at the same time, benefit from Sacraments offered in the Latin parish until such a time (if ever) an EC presence is established in the Latin diocese where the isolated EC person resides. I wonder just how many ECs of whatever sui generis church reside in the Latin Diocese of Knoxville who have moved here from where ever who do not have a clue that there is a Ruthenian/Byzantine mission near Knoxville. not everyone is going to run to the computer and log in Byzantine parishes in Tennessee via Yahoo. for some reason or another, many just won't do it. while Father Serge does touch on the problem of inaccurate and outdated figures, we still have the problem as ECs one and all to look out for isolated and "stray" brothers and sisters. this may explain in part as to why the figures look so catastrophic.
Much Love,
Jonn
P.S. it is hoped that the Latin Priest will act in such a way as to be helpful to the EC he comes across. I don't think that the average Latin Priest or Bishop, for that matter, is a sheep stealer, but given the benefit of a doubt, he just doesn't know.
JonnNightwatcher - your last comment
Quote
it is hoped that the Latin Priest will act in such a way as to be helpful to the EC he comes across. I don't think that the average Latin Priest or Bishop, for that matter, is a sheep stealer, but given the benefit of a doubt, he just doesn't know.
is I suspect very very accurate .
Posted By: SeanL Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 06/25/08 10:29 PM
Regarding the canonical question:
From my reading, most often Canons 35 and 901 (from the Eastern Code) are cited regarding the issue of whether Protestants may enter the Eastern Church directly or if they have to seek change of church sui iuris.
Can. 35, Baptized non-Catholics coming into full communion with the Catholic Church should retain and practice their own ritte and should observe it everywhere in the world as much as humanly possible. Thus, they are to be ascribed to 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.

This canon may be interpreted as meaning that baptized Protestants are ascribed to the Latin Church once they enter the Catholic Communion. However, there are assumptions behind this that could be taken into consideration. Are Protestants "Latin rite" Christians? This question may go doubly for Protestants who have evolved far from the Latin patrimony (many evangelicals, independent church folk, etc.). Even if you do grant (for the sake of argument) that Protestants are "Latin" rite - how about Protestants who have been baptized as children, but have not been raised to any significant degree in thier church community (this previous point may not be relevant at Canon Law) - however, I would believe that it is a significant pastoral issue - which becomes a legal issue considering that salvation of souls is the primary purpose of the Canons. Further, some Protestants do have a directly corresponding rite or use within the Catholic Church, Anglicans for example. Most, Protestants, it could be argued, do not in fact have a corresponding 'rite' or patrimony within the Catholic Church. If these points are granted - many, if not most, baptized Protestants would be free to approach the Eastern Churches without ramifications at (Canon)Law.

Canon 901 makes the issue even more interesting:
If non-Catholics, who do not belong to an Eastern Church, are recieved into the Catholic Church, the norms given above are to be observed with the neccessary adaptations, provided they have been validly baptized.

the canons prior (896-900) to this one affirm that baptized Christians are free to approach the Eastern Church for reception into communion. The right to recieve being excercised by the Bishop or the local pastor as the case may require. The text of these canons may also include language that may refer to more "complex" cases of recieving people into the Eastern Church. However, When one says that Protestants desiring to become Eastern Catholics must apply for change of rite - that (at least in my humble and imperfect reading) is in fact an interpritation of the canons that can be questioned and isn't what the canons in fact say.

At any rate, I would appreciate other perspectives that may balance out, correct, amend my own.
Just my 2 cents.
Converted Viking-


Quote
CCEO
Canon 32

1. No one can validly transfer to another Church sui iuris without the consent of the Apostolic See.

2. In the case of Christian faithful of an eparchy of a certain Church sui iuris who petition to transfer to another Church sui iuris which has its own eparchy in the same territory, this consent of the Apostolic See is presumed, provided that the eparchial bishops of both eparchies consent to the transfer in writing.

CIC
Can. 112 �1. After the reception of baptism, the following are enrolled in another ritual Church sui iuris:

1/ a person who has obtained permission from the Apostolic See;

2/ a spouse who, at the time of or during marriage, has declared that he or she is transferring to the ritual Church sui iuris of the other spouse; when the marriage has ended, however, the person can freely return to the Latin Church;

3/ before the completion of the fourteenth year of age, the children of those mentioned in nn. 1 and 2 as well as, in a mixed marriage, the children of the Catholic party who has legitimately transferred to another ritual Church; on completion of their fourteenth year, however, they can return to the Latin Church.

�2. The practice, however prolonged, of receiving the sacraments according to the rite of another ritual Church sui iuris does not entail enrollment in that Church.



I guess it may depend upon whether the Latin Church will allow Canon 32 to apply to its members when those members petition to change ritual Churches. I know this happened in my case, so there may exist an interpretive ruling by the competent authority.

Originally Posted by father michael
Recently, a young woman was married in our Church. She was a little girl when she actually became a member of the UGCC - or so I thought. She was baptized in the Lutheran Church. When preparing for marriage we found out that she is to be regarded as a Latin Catholic because she once belonged to the Lutheran Church. We had to go to the local Latin bishop and seek permission for her to marry in our church (she has practiced in our church for many, many years).

I checked with a canonist on the matter and he confirmed that is someone is already baptized and enters into the Catholic Church in a Byzantine Church, they are not in fact Byzantine Catholic but Latin Catholic (unless they came from an eastern Church).

This makes it very difficult if not impossible to accept people into our churches.

The canons regarding this are biased - certainly - toward the Latin Church. As they are not divine laws, they should be seriously reviewed and , imho, eliminated.

Does anyone know what the canons state with respect to someone who was baptized in a Protestant community, chrismated in an Orthododox Church, and subsequently received in the Catholic Church. Would such a person be considered canonically Eastern Catholic on the basis of his Orthodox chrismation or Roman Catholic on the basis of the Protestant baptism?

Ryan
Technically the canons mention protestants as our "separated brethren" in "faith communities" who are joined to us "imperfectly" through baptism. Many Latin canonists have argued that mainline protestants "belong" to the Latin church, should they convert. This is further complicated by some mainline protestants now having invalid "baptism" - which means many of these people are sacramentally not Christian at all.
I say, let the canonists speculate, meanwhile encourage any protestant who wishes to join any of the Eastern Churches do so freely.

In regard to your question, Athanasius, of a protestant who may or may not have received proper baptism in Protestant community, chrismated in the Orthodox Church (which is always accepted as valid by all Catholic Churches), I'd say to err on the side of caution and regard the individual as Eastern - especially in a case where he or she wishes to join an Eastern Catholic Church.
Michael:

Thank you for your response. My interest is very personal, and perhaps I should speak with my pastor to clarify. I was born to Protestant parents. My father was raised Pentecostal, and my mother was raised Southern Baptist. When I was about six, I was immersed in a Pentecostal congregation. I say "immersed" because I am not certain as to the formula used. My guess is that the Trinitarian formula was used, but it may have been simply "in the name of Jesus." When I was about 13-14, we started attending the Southern Baptist congregation in which my mother was raised. Like many Southern Baptists, this congregation tends to recognize as baptism only baptism administered by Baptists, so I was immersed again. In this case, I am certain that the Trinitarian formula was used--I can remember. In 2005, I was chrismated in a mission of the OCA. Subsequently, after my engagement to my wife, I was received in a parish of the Byzantine Catholic Metropolia of Pittsburgh. I would think that I am canonically considered to be a member of the BCC since I was received from an Orthodox Church, but I do not presume to know.

Ryan
Originally Posted by Michael_Thoma
I say, let the canonists speculate, meanwhile encourage any protestant who wishes to join any of the Eastern Churches do so freely.

Amen!!!

FDD
Originally Posted by ebed melech
Originally Posted by Michael_Thoma
I say, let the canonists speculate, meanwhile encourage any protestant who wishes to join any of the Eastern Churches do so freely.

Amen!!!

FDD


Dear FDD:

The thing that bothers me about this though is that they would still be technically under the authority of a Latin Rite bishop while being members of an Eastern Rite Church. For me it is a problem of place. An analogy would be that I live in another country that I am totally invested in every way and yet I am still the citizen of another. I would never feel complete.

I understand that the Byzantine Rite Churches are in fact in Union with Rome so the analogy above is not a good one but I am looking at it terms of the local level if you would allow it as that is where most of us operate from a day to day bases. It could be that I have a head problem but part of my identity is very much wrapped up in the Church.

In Christ:
Converted Viking
Originally Posted by ebed melech
Originally Posted by Michael_Thoma
I say, let the canonists speculate, meanwhile encourage any protestant who wishes to join any of the Eastern Churches do so freely.

Amen!!!

FDD

I have a friend who was raised Methodist, and was received into the Byzantine Catholic Church. He subsequently realized (while discerning a vocation) that he was more attached to western practice than he realized. He applied for a change of enrollment, and it was just recently granted. The point here being some group of canonists (in both dioceses) decided he was Byzantine, even though he was baptized a Methodist - hence I'm not sure the status of a protestant who converts is necessarily Roman. Polish National Catholics and Orthodox are obviously different, but Protestants in my limited experience are free to go where they want.

Justin
Lest one wishes to become ordained does it really matter?

CDL
Originally Posted by carson daniel lauffer
Lest one wishes to become ordained does it really matter?

Dan,

I think it does matter. On both this and at least one additional thread we are discussing and bemoaning the numbers of faithful ascribed to the Eastern Catholic Churches. Why is anyone concerned about these figures? Is it not because we fear our future or lack thereof?

We speak of evangelization and the need for Eastern Catholics to commit to it. Whom do we plan to evangelize? And to what end, if those whom we do successfully evangelize have no standing in the parish to which we bring them?

Is it enough that they just attend, that they drop an envelope in the basket, that they help out at the bazaar or food fair, that we can promise them that - despite not being enrolled in "our" (not "their" Church) - we'll be pleased to bury them from it? Inherent in the nature of a parish - once but less true today in the West, but still particularly true in the East - is "belonging". I have seen the same comment that you posted above countless times in past years, here and elsewhere, posted by any number of persons, cradle, convert, and translatees (for lack of a better term). I have to admit that each time, I feel absolute frustration.

The fullest sense of belonging to the Ritual Church in which one worships is, for many, reason enough to do so.

One can (and many do) worship for years, even decades, without formally petitioning Change and neither feel nor are made to feel any less a part of their "adopted" parish family.

It is still, however, not the same as knowing, when you see, meet, very possibly speak with the Patriarch, Major-Archbishop, Metropolitan, or Eparch of the Church sui iuris which you attend that he is your Patriarch or Major-Archbishop or Metropolitan or Eparch.

When, perhaps looking more than a wee bit different from others in the parish (not a lot of red-haired Syrians or Lebanese biggrin ), you are asked by a visitor "do you come here often?", there is a special feeling in being able to look to them and say, with love, justifiable pride, and without reservation or explanation - "I belong here; I'm a (Melkite, Ruthenian, Syriac, Ukrainian etc.) Catholic".

This fall, it will be 43 years since I came to the Melkite Church and it is roughly 40 years now since I was formally translated from the Latin Rite to what was then erroneously termed the Grieco-Melkite Rite. I have never looked back or regretted the choice that I made and I remain forever grateful to Archimandrite Lucien Malouf, of blessed memory, who encouraged my pursuit of that change in a day when it was harder to come by, and Richard Cardinal Cushing, also of blessed memory, who enthusiastically urged approval of my petition by Rome.

Many years,

Neil
Neil,

I see your point. Then it should be clearly and simply a matter of a priest being able to catechise and receive persons' translation or Chrismation without any sense of need for Rome's permission. My point wasn't that persons ought not to belong but only that it ought not to require permission from Rome to belong if in fact we see ourselves and are seen as a sui juris Church and not just a funny rite.

I think one of the biggest differences between East and West is the West's overreliance upon or perhaps an overuse of canon law as if "law" is Spirit. I believe that this may be at the heart of our inability to get proper stats.

CDL
Originally Posted by carson daniel lauffer
it should be clearly and simply a matter of a priest being able to catechise and receive persons' translation or Chrismation without any sense of need for Rome's permission. My point wasn't that persons ought not to belong but only that it ought not to require permission from Rome to belong if in fact we see ourselves and are seen as a sui juris Church and not just a funny rite.

Dan,

I could not agree more. Regretably, Rome has not deigned to ask my opinion or yours frown

Many years,

Neil
Posted By: John K Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 07/02/08 03:46 PM
That's all well and good, but when a "sui juris" church does act like it, it seems to get taken to task. Remember Met. Judson implementing the new law in 1999 and it being recalled because it said that marriage was not an impediment to ordination? I seem to recall words flying around from a certain network about those rebellious Ruthenians. It seems you're damned if you do and damned if you don't.
I think Eastern Catholics should look to the SSPX and the Traditionalist movement, to learn some lessons on how to get Rome to listen.

Really, I think it's time that the Eastern Churches played a bit of hardball with the Roman Curia. Were it not for the tenacity of Msgr. Marcel Lefebvre, of Michael Davies, of Fr. Joseph Bisig and certain others, Summorum Pontificum would never have been promulgated. I'm sure that the UGCC and the Melkites could learn a thing or two from them.

Of course, the actions should not reach the extent of actually proposing schism from Rome. However, there is nothing wrong in pointing to the actual provisos of the various treaties of Union, in order to remind Rome that the Eastern Churches entered into communion with Rome ONLY because Rome had vowed to respect them and their rights. Sadly, Rome has all too often broken its word when it comes to the rights and privileges of the Eastern Catholic Churches.
Sounds to me as if you are advocating a degree of 'civil disobedience '

not 100% sure that this is the way to go
Posted By: invocation Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 07/02/08 05:04 PM
Originally Posted by asianpilgrim
I think Eastern Catholics should look to the SSPX and the Traditionalist movement, to learn some lessons on how to get Rome to listen.

Really, I think it's time that the Eastern Churches played a bit of hardball with the Roman Curia. Were it not for the tenacity of Msgr. Marcel Lefebvre, of Michael Davies, of Fr. Joseph Bisig and certain others, Summorum Pontificum would never have been promulgated. I'm sure that the UGCC and the Melkites could learn a thing or two from them.


I believe imitating those figures is right at the top of the list of "Latinizations" we should avoid!

Rome is as receptive to the role of the sister Churches as it has ever been. Rome is still figuring out how to behave as companion who views us as an equal, and will continue to do so for some time to come in all likelihood, but arrogance and uncharitable behavior will not help. I would be ashamed if my Church ever looked to those people as models.
Posted By: Etnick Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 07/02/08 05:10 PM
Originally Posted by Our Lady's slave
Sounds to me as if you are advocating a degree of 'civil disobedience '

not 100% sure that this is the way to go

Why not? Nothing else works. Nothing other than the talk of another schism will make an otherwise ignoring Rome pay attention to the "other lung" it says it loves so much. They took action 100 years ago and finally appointed a bishop, although a little too late as thousands had already defected.

If Rome refuses to play hardball the end result could be a gain for the Orthodox churches, which is ok with me. wink

Originally Posted by asianpilgrim
I think Eastern Catholics should look to the SSPX and the Traditionalist movement, to learn some lessons on how to get Rome to listen.

Really, I think it's time that the Eastern Churches played a bit of hardball with the Roman Curia. Were it not for the tenacity of Msgr. Marcel Lefebvre, of Michael Davies, of Fr. Joseph Bisig and certain others, Summorum Pontificum would never have been promulgated. I'm sure that the UGCC and the Melkites could learn a thing or two from them.

Of course, the actions should not reach the extent of actually proposing schism from Rome. However, there is nothing wrong in pointing to the actual provisos of the various treaties of Union, in order to remind Rome that the Eastern Churches entered into communion with Rome ONLY because Rome had vowed to respect them and their rights. Sadly, Rome has all too often broken its word when it comes to the rights and privileges of the Eastern Catholic Churches.


WHERE ARE MY ASBESTOS GLOVES?
ever hear of Archbishop Zoghby? he would have championed your cause, and what is rapidly becoming mine as well.
Much Love,
Jonn
Originally Posted by Our Lady's slave
Sounds to me as if you are advocating a degree of 'civil disobedience '

not 100% sure that this is the way to go

Civil disobedience to unjust or canonically non-existent and illegitimate laws and rules -- yes!

From 1974 to 2007, countless priests (NOT the SSPX) were suspended for the crime of celebrating an "illegal" and "abolished" Mass -- namely the TLM.

Guess what Pope Benedict XVI said in 2007: the TLM was never abolished!
Posted By: dochawk Re: Falling Byzantine Catholic statistics - 07/05/08 04:56 AM
Originally Posted by carson daniel lauffer
Lest one wishes to become ordained does it really matter?

It can.

We hadn't gotten around to changing ritual. That leaves us subject to the RC bishhopas our ordinary. While this wouldn't usually matter, it came up in terms of an underage marriage (with a "conception" in the backround). The local RC diocese does not allow marriage under any circumstance below 19. The BC does . . .

I'll leave the resolution for a different time and place (leave it as we obeyed the instructions of our Ordinary, surprising as we found them), but the result is different due to our canonical enrollment.

hawk
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