Does the Pope have supreme universal jurisdiction over the Eastern Churches?


Okay, I get it, we’re back at I’m a guilty Orthodox schismatic. Why then, according to the conditions in Canon 844 would I, a guilty schismatic, still be allowed to receive communion in a Catholic church?



This happens often between the Melkite and Antiochian Orthodox Churches. They see each other as the same Church. Just an issue with “upper management”.

I have heard it has dropped off some due to an increase of former Protestant clergy now Orthodox clergy who bring their anti-Catholic baggage with them, so I have heard.


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Maybe because you’re going in the right direction :laughing:


Isaac, you deserve a better answer than I can give off the top of my head, but I will get you the answer… OK? :sunglasses:



It was mentioned as one of the reasons for the excommunication, No?

I think that there are Russian Orthodox who have virtue, even though they are not in union with Roman Catholicism.

I see where it says that if there is no harmony or no unity, then there is no virtue. I think that you can have virtue, even though you may not have unity.



That is the opinion of Jimmy Akin. I was told differently.



It depends on where you are, as has already been noted. However, I think what you say is generally true in the USA, although perhaps with a few exceptions such as has been mentioned above with some Melkites and some Antioch Orthodox.



It is a discipline, not a doctrine, so it is not “absolute”. I think God gave clarity to this matter by declaring the days of Leo on the face of the earth completed before the bull could be delivered, thus invalidating its contents. The one that really got me was about the hair. beards, tonsure, etc. Really?!



The SSPX refuses to submit to the Supreme Pontiff in the matter of celebrating the New Mass. If the SSPX is in schism, by refusing to celebrate the New Mass. and if it is a mortal sin to willfully embrace scism, why did the Holy Father, the Supreme Roman Pontiff, lift the excommunications of the bishops of the SSPX and grant faculties to allow Roman Catholics to go to confession to an SSPX priest validly?

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did you note Jimmy Akin’s internal links ? Isn’t that where it originates from?

AND in extension

  1. a Catholic does not fulfill his Sunday Obligation attending an Orthodox celebration from ”

  2. Catholics are not permitted to attend an Orthodox Church on Sunday instead of going to a Catholic one, as this does not satisfy the regular Sunday obligation” from

  3. Although Catholics can occasionally attend Eastern Orthodox liturgies as a guest, those liturgies do not fulfill the Sunday/holy day obligation to attend Mass.” from

BTW, what were YOU told?



For some clarification,

  1. Excommunication is not meant to be permanent. People can change and excommunication can be ended for them by the pope.

  2. For an 8 min explanation, if interested,



Filioque was mentioned as reason of excommunication, yes. It was an error of Cardinal whose legatine powers faded, a human erred not the Church as entire structure. Many saint bishops were excommunicated because of human errors or false accusations or witnesses even in pre-schism Church.

Harmony and unity are not specified as unity with Rome in such sentence nor as perfect unity.

He lifted excommunications, not the schism- he lifted restrictions placed by their sins, not sins themselves. It’s like saving someone trying to suicide- they don’t lose the sin of trying to suicide but they will not lose their life.




To give you a better answer, Looking back on the links and quotes already given, I’d like to add for further clarity & explanation just in case ……

Proper Disposition is a key point mentioned in canon law… in answering the exceptions you ask about.

  1. Must manifest Catholic faith in respect to these sacraments, meaning are properly disposed. As in


  1. Grave necessity / exceptional circumstances / Fear of death / etc


This is genius! In other words, proper disposition means no mortal sin, schism is a mortal sin, therefore, Orthodox may never partake in accordance with Canon 844!



No. You did not clarify.

Is SSPX in schism or not according to your definition? They do refuse submission to the Supreme Pontiff, don’t they? They refused to sign an agreement of reconciliation.



I have a hard time believing Orthodox are not taught to be properly disposed. Differences in custom should be respected, but proper disposition is not about length of fasts but honoring the Lord.

As I mentioned earlier, the standard for the Orthdox is not necessity, but “ Whenever necessity requires or a genuine spiritual advantage suggests…”



I can’t take credit for anything. That’s why I quote copiously. AND, from the beginning of my formation, I remember that proper disposition was always stressed.



I see that, you didn’t open the link given.



But seriously, what is the point of canon 844 making allowances for Orthodox the possibility of receiving communion if it isn’t actually possible for them to be properly disposed?



The teaching about proper disposition is there.
844 §3. Catholic ministers administer the sacraments of penance, Eucharist, and anointing of the sick licitly to members of Eastern Churches which do not have full communion with the Catholic Church if they seek such on their own accord and are properly disposed This is also valid for members of other Churches which in the judgment of the Apostolic See are in the same condition in regard to the sacraments as these Eastern Churches.

I’ll just say,

Our parish has between 3-4,000 parishioners.

  1. We have 5 masses, 1 Saturday eve, and 4 on Sunday.
  2. we have daily mass where ~ 80-120 parishioners attend daily mass.

Is there individual checks to see who is inappropriately there in the communion line? No

Is proper disposition only applicable for Catholics and not non-Catholics? No



I see that you don’t want to give a yes or no answer. That was the opinion of Mr. Staples.
According to the definition you have given, the SSPX is in schism since they refuse to submit to the Roman Pontiff. However, it appears that you do not want to say that they are in schism, so the definition does not hold.
Further, the definition you gave of schism would not apply to a schism between the Greeks and the Russians.


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