How would Protestant react when the CC and OC unite?


Since there has been some dialogue between the Patriarchs of the Orthodox Christianity and the the Catholic Church; a likelihood of unification seem possible.

What if the Catholic Church and Orthodox reunited, how would Protestants react to this?


Lets not put the cart before the horse…so to speak…

Time is the only way to tell really.

Lets see if A really happens before we worry about B.


Considering there is no one opinion among the many varieties of Protestants, we could only speculate. Some, such as High Anglicans, might see it as a very positive thing. While other non-liturgical Fundamentalist Christians might see it quite negatively–as a sign that they are the last “remnant” set against a world religion taking over. Those are the extremes I think we could expect with every shade of approval and disapproval, joy and loathing in between.


Spend some time on the Eastern Christianity forum.

It’s not likely to be an issue you and I live to deal with. :frowning:

35-40 years of progress ain’t much to overcome 50+ generations of mistrust and hostility. It would be a miracle of biblical proportions for it to happen in our lifetimes.

Here’s hoping. :thumbsup:


I agree with the poster who said you would see all types of reactions. I also think it would depend on how the reunification took place and pursuant to what terms. A complete capitulation by the Orthodox to Papal Supremacy and Infallability would probably be looked at with dismay by Protestants. Yet, if reunification took place according to a structure that was less than complete capitulation, then perhaps it could be viewed as a possible template for an eventual reunion of some of the “more Catholic” Protestant Churches with Rome.


I would come back to the CC. But I honestly do not believe there will be a reunion. I believe someday, some Orhtodox Churches will come in union with Rome and the rest will call them Uniates. This has already happened in the past. If Orthodoxy were truly united it could happen, but the Russians are not likely to do what the Greeks do and so on.



It could probably spur a significant exodus from mainline Protestant churches into a reunified Catholic-Orthodox Church, although I do agree that fundamentalist Protestants, such as KJV-onlyists might view it differently, and negatively, causing them to become more hostile, more defiant than they already are.

However, the chances of full Catholic-Orthodox reunification is probably still generations away.


Praise God, I am overcome with emotion at the mere thought of it. How awesome that the orginal CHURCH OF CHRIST should be reunited.

But I believe it WILL happen. Frankly I do not care what protestants [or muslims or aethiests] think, that for me has not entered the equation. It is that ‘HER WHOM CHRIST FOUNDED’ should once more be one. That I pray I will live to see.


We would celebrate it:thumbsup:


I don’t think this is what the Catholic Church is looking for.

B16 himself said we would be loony tunes to think that the Orthodox could possibly accept anything more than a pre-scism type of papacy.


Protestants would only be united if they convert to Catholicism. In fact, their history is Catholic… there no Protestants before the Reformation


I think this would be great. I would like to see all churches reunited.


Pray. I love the Orthodox Church.

I would not trade it for a pre-schism Church, though. Had there been an infalible papacy at that time, there might not have been a schism in the first place.

Look at our faiths. They are both so beautiful (in different ways)


I would be astonished if the Catholic Church accepted anything less than a complete capitulation to Papal authority. They can’t accept anything less or it would be an admission that Papal authority is not universal. What about it Catholics? What do you think?


Papal authority will not be going away. I honestly don’t see how we can compromise on that issue.

I would love to see us all united as one. :slight_smile:


Then why would B16 make a remark like that? JPII was the same way.

The Catholic Church will initially do most of the “giving in”, even on the subject of papal authority. I don’t see unification being a one-step deal. As the Orthodox realize its not a ball-and-chain, my-way-or-the-highway authority, there may be some movement on their side.

I see cooperation in evangelization in Africa and Asia as European and American influence around the world die off and radical Islam continues to put the squeeze on Christianity.

There is plenty of room for Eastern thought.

The Church has learned to think of time and progress in terms of centuries. The Orthodox and Catholic popes are laying the ground work for reunification a few hundred years in advance.


What, exactly, did Benedict say and did he say it as Pope? I am not challenging here, I am genuinely interested.

Nonetheless, I don’t see how you can give up the universal and supreme authority of the Papacy without falling apart. You preached that concept infallabily for centuries. Were you telling the truth then, or now? That is the sort of response you’ll get if you give it up. Of course, as a Protestant, I think that it is unwarranted and that you should give it up, but that’s another topic…


As you can tell, I was paraphrasing. But that was the jist of what he said. I don’t have a link for you, but this comment was made since he was pope, but not as infallible.

Nonetheless, I don’t see how you can give up the universal and supreme authority of the Papacy without falling apart.

Primacy of Rome in *every *aspect is not necessarily a problem for all Orthodox. When unity happens, there will be further splits from Orthodoxy and Catholicism. Whatever happens will be the best for each of the churches, but not everyone in every church will be able to stomach reunification.

You preached that concept infallabily for centuries. Were you telling the truth then, or now? .

Things change in the light of history. Religions that don’t change die.

That is the sort of response you’ll get if you give it up. …

So what? Maybe reconciliation where both parties have to eat a little crow will appeal to the rest of the non-Christian world.

Of course, as a Protestant, I think that it is unwarranted and that you should give it up, but that’s another topic

I thought it was the indulgence abuses that were the problem.:smiley:

Anyway, if you’ll note the driving force of inter-faith dialog with Catholics, it is the pope. He is always the one reaching out. It has not always been the case, but maybe we learn from our mistakes. Like any good father.


I could be wrong about this, but from the EO posts I have read in here, I would say Protestants are more likely to reunite with the CC than are the EO. That would vary, of course.

I live in an area that is overwhelmingly Protestant, and in which there are no EOs or OOs. Every year, a good number of Protestants convert to Catholicism here. The only movement I see in the other direction is when somebody wants to divorce the wife of his youth and get another. The former far outnumber the latter.

I have, on occasion, handed a Protestant friend the Catechism of the Catholic Church and invited him/her to go through it and see how much of it/she disagrees with. There’s very little, really, and for good reason. Protestant beliefs and mores are largely taken from the background of western culture which, itself, was formed and directed by the Catholic Church. Protestant churches, for the most part, have almost no “doctrines” at all, and what most of them believe are simply the things they learn from the background with a kind of sectarian gloss over them. When the Pope speaks, and what he says is publicized, many, many Protestants listen. In talking to most (not all) Protestants about Catholicism, I find that they actually listen. The more they study about Catholicism, the less hostile they are to it, unless they have compromised or set their lives in such a way that they retain the hostility defensively.

Many EOs, on the other hand, (and I am sure this is not true of all, though it is certainly true of many who post in here) are hostile to the CC in an altogether different way. Many EOs regard the CC as “Protestant”, so to speak. Actually, worse than that. I daresay that if one of the EOs who regularly post in here went through a Catechism of the CC, they would underline more as objectionable than most Protestants would. That is because (and I only know about posters in here) some EOs regard every single thing the CC holds that postdates some council or other (Chalcedon, I think) as heretical, “new”; an “innovation”, illegitimate. Protestants are more inclined to simply see if what they read directly contradicts something they already believe, and do not automatically throw things out just because they were not the result of a pre-schism council. Protestants grant to the CC the right, nowadays, to be wherever it wants to be. The EO does not think the CC has any business being in Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Russia, Ukraine at all. Not at all. The EO does not consider it legitimate for the CC to proselytize worldwide; something few Protestants begrudge.

Perhaps I am biased in my belief that Protestants are much more likely to reunite with the CC, because I know a huge number of Protestants of many denominations very well, and know what they think, while my experience of EO is from a little reading and from this forum, which might be too narrow. Some “high church” Protestant denominations already consider themselves part of the CC, more or less, but with the difference that they have slightly different emphases on certain things. “Low church” folk like Evangelicals are usually looking for that “closer walk with Thee”, and once they are persuaded it really is in the Eucharist, the rest is not too hard.

I realize there are the Jack Chick Protestant nut-job sects. But on the whole, I would say that the Protestants I know, and the ones I run across in here are far more friendly disposed to the CC than are a good number of the EOs I have met in here. Now, maybe the ones I am talking about do not really represent the general view of EOs. Patriarch Bartholemew does not seem to share their views, and I have seen him sharply criticized by EOs in here because of it. I hope he represents most of Eastern Orthodoxy’s thinking in this regard, but I am tentatively unpersuaded that he does; particularly among the Russians, who constitute, at least in theory, the majority of the EOs.

Finally, (but returning somewhat to what I said above) there seem to be cultural differences that appear to mean a lot. They are very hard to describe, and I would have a hard time trying to define them in one of these posts. But that really doesn’t exist between Protestantism and Catholicism in as deep a way as it does between Catholicism and Orthodoxy.

I would like to see an EO refute my contention that Protestantism (by and large, not in detail) is closer to potential reunion with the CC than is Orthodoxy. I really would. But to refute me, one would first have to WANT to refute me, and I’m not sure that desire is there. Prove me wrong. I really do respect the apostolic nature of the EO churches, and I would like to think I am wrong.


Lest I be misunderstood, I want to expand on something I said. Some Protestant denominations really do have a pretty well developed “doctrinal set”. But many (the vast majority where I live) do not. The General Baptist doctrinal statement, for example, consists in one typewritten sheet. The Southern Baptist statement is a few pages. The “non-denominationals” have none at all, for the most part. I realize there is a good deal of doctrinal statement on the part of, e.g., Lutherans, high church Anglicans and high church Methodists. But for the most part, even those agree with the doctrines of the CC more than they disagree, and not many would “redline” much that is in the Catechism of the CC.

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