Heart is pulling me towards Orthodoxy


I have read your post and I can relate. I am a cradle Catholic and did fall away for quite a while and during this time went to many different churches. All of them no matter which one seemed to missing something no matter which one I went to. After a while I began to see just how beautiful the Catholic mass was. They were all missing holy communion along with all the sacraments. I know the Catholic church has its bad problems but this for doe sent change the foundation of
It’s origin. All churches have problems and
all of them had their beginnings by breaking away from the Catholic church. Well that’s how I feel about this in a few sentences. God bless… Gary


Canon 844 section 3 does not make acceptance of the Pope a precondition for an Orthodox Christian to receive. Personally I take this as allowing me to receive in extreme circumstances such as an emergency where there were no Orthodox clergy available. Indeed as you say, communion is a symbol of full unity and regularly receiving outside of one’s church would be a sign of indifference.


I had glossed over this the first time I read your reply, but I think this is an important verse to remember.

Great question - I have no idea other than like your assumption, I expect it was much stricter. Along the lines of being more strict, in the early church, confession was given publicly in front of the whole church!


That is true. While Eucharist is symbol of unity, salvation comes first. Just a question, would Orthodox priest be able to administer sacrament to me if I was in danger of death or so? I know that from Catholic viewpoint he would, but what about Orthodox viewpoint?


As in all things Orthodox, there is no clear cut answer. In the Middle East where all Christians are under persection, the answer is most definitely yes. In Russia, most likely no. Here in the US, the official response is probably “no”, but I also don’t know of any Priest who wouldn’t drop everything to minister to a soul in dire need regardless of there church. I wish it were more clear cut, but that’s the way it is.


I did read Fr. John Meyendorff’s “Marriage, an Orthodox perspective” and it helped me understand a lot. he does touch somewhat on how the Orthodox got to where they are now.
I agree with the Orthodox way for marriage , to be honest. On the other hand, I more agree with the Catholic teaching on artificial contraception. Believe it or not, my husband and I as Protestants decided to use NFP for the last of our fertile years. I really liked NFP.
Birth control is no longer an issue for us now., though.


Yes I remember this. The interesting thing I thought was that she was the one who had filed for divorce from Joe Kennedy, so I’m not sure it was even about a woman scorned.
ETA: I believe Pope Francis had spoken about respecting the Orthodox way of handling the issue, I remember it being quite controversial on here.


And the first rule of intercommunion club, we don’t talk about intercommunion club. It’s just like fight club :joy::rofl::joy:



It’s so true!

On a less-humorous side note, does it ever get tiresome having to constantly defend your Catholicity on a Catholic forum?



When forming a KofC chapter at my byzantine parish, we have Orthodox parishioners who never formally transitioned (and some describe themselves as Orthodox). Our inquiry wentall the way up to Supreme, and they accepted that Orthodox communing in a Catholic church are Catholic for membership purposes . . .

Yes, although more often these days it has to with abuse of Orthodox and the denial of church teaching to do so, as in some of the recently removed posts.

In the past, it was more the condescending “instruction” of what the eastern little brothers were required to believe (also denying church teaching) to the point that I left in discust several times before the current moderation system came around . . .



It is but I do understand where they are coming from. This is a Roman Catholic forum where people come learn to defend their faith and it’s from the Roman Catholic perspective. I think there should be more on the website about understanding the relationship between the Latin and the Eastern Catholic Churches.



That’s difficult, it actually does send different message towards us Catholics but in the end schism is mortal sin- whether or not you are guilty of it, God will be judge of it, not me. However I suppose we would call any heretics separated brethren as long as they are humans (Children of God), they are our brethren and we care for their salvation. I don’t mean to somehow undervalue brethren part but Christians are called to love everyone anyway, including those in schism or heresy.


It’s mostly that you claim to be “exactly” like Orthodox, and that we would not recognize difference in your parish (which I don’t necessarily believe as in Liturgies you would commemorate Pope, even if that is latinization), you seem to give respectful silence to Papal Infallibility and treat Pope in more Orthodox view than Catholic one. While you are right things might change, as of now they did not. It’s about obedience now- I hope many things change in discipline of Latin Church yet I don’t act like they did yet. It’s just that Latin dogma proclaimed by Council guided by Holy Spirit which is infallible, is infallible. There is no “but”, there is no “this is theologia secunda”, it either is true or is not- interpret it Eastern way of course, but ultimately truth stays same and both sides should acknowledge it. This is literally only thing that troubles me about East, that they perhaps hold out to be Orthodox too much (not talking about tradition, but ecclesiology) and forget they are Catholic first, Eastern second.


We express our faith in the same way as our Orthodox brethren, whether it be liturgically, theologically, spiritually or our life of prayer.

Depends on the Church. I know of a couple of Melkite parishes that do not.

Not only me but also some of our Patriarchs and bishops right now, in the present day.



Many of these “general Western Councils”, as Popes since Saint Paul VI have referred to them as, dealt with issues facing the Latin West. I’m assuming you are speaking of Purgatory, the Immaculate Conception etc.?

Tell that to Archimandrite Father Robert Taft S.J. of blessed memory.

It seems like, and please correct me if I’m wrong, that you are saying that we must believe in Purgatory, for example, and we can interpret that in our own way. If that is what you are saying, we as Byzantine Catholics cannot do that. It would be going against what the Church has asked us to do since Vatican II and be fully Eastern. We interpret purification after death in our own way and it’s not Purgatory. Purgatory is a place in which we make expiation for our sins. We don’t believe that. It’s not part of our theology.

Again, correct me if I’m missing your point.

Have you ever wondered why some of us see ourselves as Orthodox? Living in the west we are surrounded by not only Roman Catholics but Protestants, both who believe Catholic is synonymous with Roman Catholic. We can say we are Catholic to our hearts content but no one will believe it.

What! You don’t believe in Purgatory? You’re not Catholic!
What! You used leavened bread? You’re not Catholic!
What’s up with all the incense and chanting and vespers two or three times a week? What’s up with the Jesus Prayer why not the Rosary? You’re not Catholic!

Try defending this constantly to your Catholic brethren or Protestant friends. I’m sure people on this forum will have a heart attack when they see this, when out of town and there is no Eastern Catholic Church, my wife, daughter and I go to an Eastern Orthodox Church. This is were we feel spiritually at home. Can we receive communion? Depends on the priest.



Commemorating more that the bishop is a latinization–byzantine praxis is the priest commemorates bishop, bishops the metropolitan, metropolitans the patriarch (brother head), and patriarchs the other patriarchs.


I’m just going to throw some thoughts out there to help me better understand. Please don’t take this as being argumentative.

It is my understanding that the West’s understanding of Purgatory has changed. At one time we believed Purgatory to be a place subject to time. Somewhere between my first communion (1979) & now, we understand there is no time & it’s more of a state than a place.

Now, I’m thinking maybe this change has taken place due to influence of the East.

I personally think that’s what union between East & West should look like. Finding the one truth between the two truths, if that makes sense.

At the same time I understand where OrbisNonSuficit is coming from. We’re either Catholic or we’re not. Not just you or Eastern Catholics, but us Westerners as well. Because there is only one truth.

I have no problem with you saying the Jesus prayer instead of the Rosary. That’s an Eastern thing. I find it fascinating & want to learn more about it, how it developed. I would not be upset one iota if our tradition took on more Eastern flavor, especially if it were a bottom up thing.

Even if that means our understanding of purgatory changes. Or the Immaculate Conception, or original sin. The goal is truth. Isn’t it?

As children we all understood these things differently. As we’ve grown & our capacity to understand has increased, the way we understood these things changed. It’s the way it is for us as individuals, it’s the same way for us as a people, as a Church.


Basic faith perhaps, but not ecclesiology for certain, not view on Latin dogmas neither anything else. Catholics are required to believe and affirm Dogmas of Faith, not Doctrines. Theologia prima can not be changed.

Interesting. Personally I believe commemoration in itself is great sign of unity, and would include commemoration of Easterners in Latin services for sake of educating Latin Catholics about Eastern Catholics. Yet, I’ve been mistaken that Eastern Catholics do commemorate Pope always.

Thing is, regardless of terminology, those Councils were guided by Holy Spirit. Holy Spirit showed us truth and to refuse to affirm it just to remain more “eastern” would be same way as refusing to admit any of pre-schism ecumenical councils to remain more “western” (whatever that would be, hypothetically speaking of course). Theologia secunda may vary but to reject theologia prima, therefore formulation of Ecumenical Councils, or give them respectful silence either means you think Latins are wrong about being guided by Holy Spirit or Holy Spirit was wrong to proclaim such truth. You are to be Eastern, not Eastern Orthodox. To believe in purgatory in Eastern view is fine, to reject it because “well our ancestors did that” is wrong. To choose respectful silence it so be Jansenist. Your theology is yours, however theology is a science as such, it can always start to reflect on things that need reflection in present time. Purgatory is not YET part of your theology. Theology itself is not dogma, not unchanging truth- unlike decisions of Ecumenical Councils.

I believe Latin Catholics should be more educated about Eastern Catholics and about the Church, to stop persecution from within the Church which is very flawed and very sad approach. However, same way, Eastern Catholics should not reject Universal Church and Her proclamations as “proclamations of autocephalous primate- Latin Church, that can their thing but we don’t need to care”. We seek unity as perfect as it can be, not just tolerance or acknowledgement.


I agree, that would be best approach but that would take quite some time. I hope for it yet there are steps to be taken first.

Yes, there is a parable that if one person is looking at barrel from side, he sees square and if another one looks from above, he sees circle. Ultimately, it would be best to unite those views and come to conclusion there is barrel. To deny existence of barrel or not care about it at all however, is not beneficial at all.


Well said Orbis, we are first and foremost Catholic, before we are either Eastern or Latin Rite Catholic. The liturgical rite of worship is secondary to our faith and our foundation of unity in the Holy See, as signified by the office of the Roman Pontiff.

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