Are Trads welcome in the East?

I am in the process of becoming curious about the Divine Liturgy and the practice of Eastern Christianity. However, it seems that in my visits to the Traditional Catholicism forum and other places here on CAF, the folks that I notice as being associated with the East seem hostile to the Tradition. I put the word “notice” in Italics because it has the character of a subjective impression and nothing more rigorous than that.

So I was just wondering in general: has the East fallen to the Left, or are parts still friendly to the Right? I know that there has been a lot of beauty and holiness in the East (and I’m very impressed by the shared saints of the East, such as Dionysius, Chrysostom, Athanasius, etc.) but if in latter times it has become a haven of Liberals then of course I’ll stay away.

Note: I have no intention of getting into a fight with anyone. I’m just looking for a straight answer and then I’ll go away.

Hi, although I’m not Eastern myself, I’m registered with an Eastern parish and this is what I can tell you from my experience. The East wants nothing to do with Roman trads who come to Eastern parishes to escape what they perceive as abuses in their own church. I’ve seen first hand, and I’m sure others have to, where Roman trads come into an Eastern parish just because the priest faces east and use it as a venue to complain about the west and ruin an atmosphere. In my experience, there’s no such thing as “trads” in the east. There’s no left/right paradigm that Roman trads always set up. Being Catholic is what matters. Any Catholic is welcome in an Eastern parish as long as their motives aren’t to hijack the parish and turn it into a catharsis for Roman “trads.”

When you say “hostile toward tradition,” this is somewhat of a misnomer because what many “trads” bemoan as the loss of tradition in the west is completely irrelevant to that of the East.

Also, if by hostility toward tradition, you mean embracing Vatican II, well that would be embracing tradition for the East because Vatican II encouraged the East to return to her own traditions rather than being latinized. So when Roman traditionalists complain about Vatican II, in my experience, those on the East do and have the right to get annoyed.

Many so-called “traditional catholics” are nothing of the sort.

They include quite a few who reject papal authority, and quite a few who think the only valid act of Divine Worship is the EF/TLM.

It’s not that there is hostility to the actual Traditions of the Church. There is hostility to the subset that are persistently willfully ignorant of the Truth of what is Church Tradition.

Plus, a lot of EC parishes have suffered from So-called Traditionalists who want nothing more than to replace the tradition of the ECC’s with the Trent missal… and make every effort to turn the various divine worship services into approximations of the Trent missal. Sadly, a few of these have been EC priests… or, in at least one case, a Ruthenian Bishop.

The short answer is no, all Catholics are welcome of course. I had the pleasure of meeting an elderly gentleman who was the stereotypical traditionalist, he resented the OF and the vernacular in the Roman Mass, but he was going to the same vernacular (English) Divine Liturgy I go to. Nice fella, he was welcomed and loved by the people at the parish.

I think the point of friction oftentime is the viewpoint of a Roman Catholic traditionalist on what tradition is and what is keeping tradition and forcing that viewpoint on Eastern Catholics. That is the common point of contention I see here in these forums. Most traditionalists think that part of keeping tradition is keeping an official language such as Latin. In the East its not the same way. While traditional languages are kept within the Church, expressing the Liturgy in the vernacular is also seen as a way of extending the traditions are the new generations have better appreciation of the same traditions expressed in a language they can easily understand.

Basically, while the faith is the same, the approach is entirely different. You should be willing to check your traditionalist perceptions at the door.

My suggestion is for one to attend IF one is interested in the traditions of the East and Orient but NOT if one is looking for an escape from the Novus Ordo. If one has no interest in the East and Orient on its own terms, (and although there are similarities, those terms are different from what one might be accustomed to in the Latin Church) I’d suggest sticking with the EF.

I think AdvanceAlways does have a point. I know of several TLM-goers who obviously have no problem with the Latin but will not attend an DL unless it’s in English. Makes me wonder if they’re really traditionalists. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if I were to learn they’re out there to modernize the TLM as well. Closet progressives?

You seem to equate a fixation on language with traditionalism even though you have continually been told that it is traditional to have the Divine Liturgy celebrated in a language that the congregation knows.

I guess you think it is proper for “traditionalists” to kneel during the consecration at the Divine Liturgy too.

I think his point was more that the Roman trads who come to eastern parishes have no real understanding of Eastern praxis, traditions and what not. I doubt most of these Latins are aware of the vernacular tradition in the East.

You seem to equate a fixation on language with traditionalism even though you have continually been told that it is traditional to have the Divine Liturgy celebrated in a language that the congregation knows.

Yes, I have big problem with poor translations.

I guess you think it is proper for “traditionalists” to kneel during the consecration at the Divine Liturgy too.


Pro, now I’m confused? Are you saying that the DL isn’t translated accurately?

So the translations into the vernacular of the Divine Liturgy are poor?

Hmmm, so you really have nothing to add.

I don’t know that. I’ve only studied various translations of the Latin Rite liturgies. The Romance languages and the Polish come closer to the originals than the English translation, but even there they are still translations.

I know if I were from Ukraine, I might feel insulted and pained if they forced me to hear the whole DL in English.

The Ukrainians in my parish don’t seem to have any problems. Now I see what Br. David is saying… Vernacular is NOT an issue in the East!

My apologies then. I misinterpreted your position.

I take it ByzCath is Br. David?

Well, I have no need to escape the Novus Ordo. I have already escaped it. However, this thread has told me what I need to know. Thank you for your candid replies.

Yep he is. No apologies needed, I didn’t mean to see annoyed. :slight_smile:

All are welcome to the East as long as they respect our traditions and do not wish to impose their traditions upon us.

I’ve never felt unwelcome in an Eastern Catholic Church, and I’m a Latin Trad. Also, judging by the numbers of people I’ve seen kneeling during the consecration at a few Eastern churches, I concluded that all those people couldn’t possibly all be Latins.

I will offer my apologies as well if I may have misunderstood you.

I take it ByzCath is Br. David?

While my username is ByzCath, if you read in my signature you will see that my name is Br David and I am a member of the Order of Carmel.

Some could say that I have my feet in both worlds as I am a Byzantine Catholic who is a member of a Roman Catholic religious order.

The Ukrainian and Melkite translations seem to be pretty well done. The translation of the RDL (Revised Divine Liturgy) of the Ruthenians is not the greatest but it is better than the current OF translation (which changes in a year thank God). So I guess I can give you the translation issue at least in one case.

Latinization has been forbidden long before Vatican II, it was forbidden by Pope Leo XIII in the Bull ORIENTALIUM DIGNITAS, When you speak of traditionalists being annoyed with Vatican II, I assume you mean things done in “the spirit of Vatican II” like the Hindus at Fatima a few years ago or changes in the Latin Rite of the Church such as “Teen Life Masses”. The Hindu “worship” at Fatima should at the very least annoy all Catholics regardless of Rite and changes and distaste for changes in the Latin Rite hardly concern Eastern Catholics in any way which would offend them.

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