I wish the Greek Orthodox would reunite with us

Um, actually, you do, although they might not be hugely visible.

As a member of one of the apparently “not-so-devout” groups, I would just like to mention that you are always welcome in our churches, and that includes being welcome to celebrate the Eucharist with us.

Although I do truly (and non-sarcastically :cool:) appreciate the offer, I’m going to refuse in much the same way that Orthodox refuse our offer when we say that they can receive in Catholic Churches. :slight_smile:

I’d like to see the Orthodox churches taking a step forward on this, to be honest. Have the Patriarchs prepare a list of greviences and spiritual disagreements and present them to the Western Patriarchs. Then we can have a long, thorough ecumenical council and get these messy issues straightened out. We are Christ’s Church. We are both guided by the Holy Spirit, and if one of is is walking on the wrong path, it benefits both to discover on which points either of us err.

Although perhaps not the most destructive separation, I think the most tragic separation was between Catholics and Orthodox Churches. Certainly there are differences, but I think many of the issues between us are slight compared to the issues that divide our brothers and sisters in Protestant communities. One part of the Pope’s visit to the Holy Land really struck me - What a great site to see: Peter embracing his brother, Andrew!

" The reality is that we will eventually be as one and there will be a rejoinder, once clarification is made over the hierarchical Church structure and though it may seem a long time away, I have no doubt that within 25 years we will be together"

I truly believe this will never happen-the issue is one of ethnicity-in the USA where our citizens are of many ethnic origins-the Orthodox stick to their own Churches-those of Greek Heritage go to the Greek Orthodox -the Serbians to the Serbian orthodox Church -the Russians to the russian Orthodox-so the Orthodox may be united in theology but surely not in Church attendance

just imagine a RC Parish where those of Irish extraction demanded their own church or service and the Italians demanded a Church for themselves-the RC unites the various ethnic groups-

so the Orthodox need to get their act together at least in the USA where only a small population perhaps 1 million are Orthodox - they show no signs of doing so

an interesting idea would be for the RC to leave the papacy vacant for about 20 years -let the Holy Spirit guide them-this may bring the Episcoplians and Lutherans back into the fold but not the Orthodox

The first thing to promote is the unity of charity. Where holy charity rules, we won’t willfully distort what others say, or take delight in exacerbating problems, even if we feel obliged not to concur where doctrines are in fact different. Unfortunately, just as there are Jews who promote lies about and hatred of Pius XII, and who resented the canonization of St. Teresa Benedicta (Edith Stein), there are certain Orthodox teachers who promote hatred of Catholic devotion. I was alarmed to find, on one Orthodox website, a long article condemning the Imitation of Christ as an anti-Christian and heretical book. And a decade ago I made friends with a Copt who, nonetheless, sneered angrily whenever I mentioned St. John Paul II.

We’re to think the best of each other, especially where we have learned Christ and believe that He gives Himself sacrificially in the eucharist. We aren’t called to “fix” the problem; only to be docile to the Holy Spirit.

well, I find that idea extremely far-fetched … But let’s just suppose that it did happen. To say that may bring the Episcopalians and Lutherans back into the fold would suggest that the is already doctrinal agreement, something that Catholics don’t believe.

P.S. I was just thinking of something an Anglican said (back before Anglicanism went all liberal and … well, whatever you want to call it):

When two Christians of different denominations start arguing, it is usually not long before one asks whether such-and-such a point “really matters” and the other replies: “Matter? Why, it’s absolutely essential.”

Mere Christianity, C. S. Lewis

I can’t imagine that going any better than when it is done on the forum.

Replies of “Oh that’s nothing, you’re just stubborn”.

Wait, you mean it **isn’t **just a matter of you (Orthodox) being stubborn? Well I am shocked!

(OK, maybe not all that shocked.)

A thousand years of disagreement, fighting, and hurt feelings take a lot of time to heal. It can’t be rushed, and God is in control.

This was the case in the RCC not too long ago, and still is the case in some places.

Well, it would not be an offer if it could not be refused. :sad_bye:

I’ve written about this before, but at the RC church in which I was baptized, the Latino population and the Anglo population essentially functioned as different churches, because they not only had their own (separate) priests to serve each community (as is right, since the Anglo priest did not know Spanish), but the sermons preached the two did not match, so they were literally getting different messages (the Anglos got messages about…whatever, I don’t remember, but the Latinos heard about how the white people donated $$$$$ money that week, while we only donated $$, so we should donate more so that we can show our commitment to church is equal to theirs; I am not exaggerating or kidding). I know this because I was the only one who ever went to both services, and I know I was not the only person of mixed Anglo-Latino background in the town (and where I grew up there were plenty of white people who knew Spanish and Hispanic people who knew English, so I guess this shows that those darn Catholics are just so ‘ethnic’…they don’t want to go to the other ethnicity’s service, even though they conceivably could without problems! There can be no other explanation, of course.)

I absolutely do not buy the RC canard that the Orthodox are ‘ethnic’, while those of the Roman communion are universal and all-inclusive and whatever. No doubt that’s the goal and that’s how some people see it, but the reality leaves a lot to be desired.

I will give the RC amateur apologists this, though: the majority of native-born, zero generation Orthodox in the west don’t care that their church is Greek, Syrian, Slavic, Egyptian, whatever, so in that sense I guess they could be seen as “ethnic”, since they don’t bend over backwards to make a church that has its roots in Egypt or Ethiopia or wherever seem like it came out of suburban Ohio or something. Good. Macaroni bechamel is better than hot dogs, and if you can’t deal with the fact that you’re a minority in the congregation for once, then maybe you’ve got a problem, rather than the people who are just going to the same liturgy they’ve been participating in for centuries when you showed up. This applies equally to Orthodox and Catholics – or are Syro-Malabar, Syro-Malankara, Chaldean, Syriac, Syro-Maronite, Ethiopian and Eritrean (“Ge’ez”), Coptic, Ruthenian, Melkite, Mozarab, Bragan, and Italo-Albanian Catholics somehow not Catholic, or do not comprise their own distinct ethnocultural and/or national groups?

I haven’t particularly cared for the Orthodox I’ve met. The ones I’ve met have either been racists/nationalists/xenophobes (which is one of the reasons I chose Catholicism over Orthodoxy, thanks to Pope Benedict’s often condemning racism, whereas I hear nothing of the sort out of the nationalist eastern churches and their biggest former KGB patriarch allying himself with a dictator) or have always looked down Catholics the same way the Protestants do, i.e. as us being ignorant pew lumps who don’t know history or the bible or Jesus, really. Fine, enjoy your lovely liturgies. Good luck trying to find young people to go to them when they’ve finally seen through all the claims of the Church about speaking for God when they can’t even stop their own divisions. Immigration supporting you will run out rather soon with western birthrates going in the toilet.

I doubt that the Churches will unite anytime soon. Theological differences aside: judging from my experience with the Russian Orthodox, most of them will never accept unity not because they are convinced that the idea of filioque or Purgatory, or Immaculate Conception is heretical. The main problem would be, that they would never want some guy in Italy telling them what to do and what to believe in.

Unless these nationalistic tendencies change (which I don’t see coming), there will be no union with the Catholic Church.

Adversity can be a crushing burden and it touches all lives in one way or another. What usually accompanies is anger, bitterness, narrow minded thinking and resentfulness.

Another may have a completely different reaction as yourself, instead of weakening them, the adversity strengthens them and as a believer they learn to rely on the power of the Holy Spirit, indeed it becomes a path to a deeper faith in God.

Prayers are with you!

While doing missions trips in Pakistan and parts of Africa, no one is asking about a filioque.

But that is exactly what happened in the United States. Each group of immigrants had their own parishes in their native tongues. In St. Louis, we still have what is now called “personal parishes.” We have Polish, Spanish, Hungarian, EF, etc. parishes. All in union with Rome. It can be done.

so the Orthodox need to get their act together at least in the USA where only a small population perhaps 1 million are Orthodox - they show no signs of doing so/

I’m not so sure about that. There are many Eastern Rite Churches now in communion with Rome. We have the Maronite Church here in St. Louis, which is a Lebanese rite. Their services are in Arabic. It has been done.

an interesting idea would be for the RC to leave the papacy vacant for about 20 years -let the Holy Spirit guide them-this may bring the Episcoplians and Lutherans back into the fold but not the Orthodox

For Lutherans, we’d have to resolve Sola Scriptura and justification by faith alone.

Episcopalians/Anglicans are already entering the Church under their own rite.

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