I'm Orthodox, ask me anything


Well actually I’m still a catechumen waiting to be baptized. I’m converting to Orthodoxy from Roman Catholicism. Ask me anything (not related to my conversion though) about the Orthodox Christian faith. I am not an expert in theology, albeit I try to read the Church Fathers and the Scriptures often. I will do my best to answer.


What is your fasting regime before receiving Holy Communion?
Also, do you fast on Wednesdays and Fridays throughout the year?
During Lent, how strictly do you observe the fast and what is recommended by the Church.


It might differ from place to place, but in my particular jurisdiction we’re asked to skip dinner the night before and fast from that point on until reception. I obviously have not fully participated in this yet since I am still in the process, but I will soon!

Also, do you fast on Wednesdays and Fridays throughout the year?

Yes. We fast on Wednesday in commemoration of Christ’s betrayal and on Friday in commemoration of Christ’s crucifixion.

During Lent, how strictly do you observe the fast and what is recommended by the Church.

Again this may differ from place to place, but here are the general guidelines: https://oca.org/orthodoxy/the-orthodox-faith/worship/the-church-year/lenten-fasting


Why isn’t your Roman Catholic baptism seen as valid? (Edit - if that is the reason for your being baptized into Orthodoxy, that is.)

Or is there another reason you are being baptized?


Well it depends on the jurisdiction. The Orthodox Church has made no official pronouncement on these issues. Whether or not RC or Protestant sacraments contain grace is not something that the Church pronounces. Nothing certain can be said about the validity or invalidity of your baptism.

Now there are many Bishops who would accept RC and Protestant baptism as “valid” by economy, this isn’t necessarily a pronouncement on it’s validity, but rather an act of charity so as to follow in the spirit of the law. Other jurisdictions of the Church baptize every convert entering by default regardless of their previous history. Regardless, even if a particular jurisdiction would not grant economy in these cases, if another jurisdiction grants economy and has the person undergo chrismation instead of baptism, then this person must be accepted by all Orthodox no matter their opinion on how this person should’ve been received.

In my particular case I am being baptized, but it could be different for others.


Thanks. I probably should have phrased my question differently, as it made some assumptions that I did not realize don’t necessarily apply to Orthodox practice.


I am going to sleep now since I have to wake up for my job later but please provide all your questions and I will do my best to answer them when I come back later.


Why do you think the Orthodox Church is the one true Church and not the Catholic Church


do you believe the Holy Spirit only proceeds from the Father, rather then from the Father and the Son


I read somewhere that the Orthodox mean something different when using “Sunday Obkigation” compared to Catholics. When I read the explanation, it didn’t seem any different at all in practice. Would you be able to ecplain?


Does that mean that you, personally, do not believe your Catholic Baptism was valid?


Because the Church Fathers confirm it. Latin theology started taking a turn around the 5th century and later scholasticism did not help. Many heresies arose in the west with this. The Orthodox Church continues to follow the original teachings of the apostles and fathers.


The Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father alone. There might be a sense in which we could say the Holy Spirit proceeds through the Son, but certainly the rendering of the Holy Spirit proceeding from the Father and the Son introduced numerous heretical ideas; that and the insertion of the Filioque into the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed is unwarranted in the first place whether the idea inserted be heretical or not. More information can be found here: https://oca.org/reflections/fr.-lawrence-farley/the-filoque-clause


Orthodox are obligated to be at the Divine Liturgy every Sunday, and in many places missing three Sundays in a row without valid reasons warrants excommunication based on what was decided at the Council of Trullo (692 A.D.), a Council which is the basis for Orthodox canon law.


My priest is having me baptized. Personally I follow in the teachings of the Orthodox Church in that I believe nothing can be said about heterodox baptisms.


What makes you certain that Eastern Orthodoxy constitutes the one true Church as opposed to Oriental Orthodoxy? If I were to reject the papacy, I don’t think I could honestly choose between the two. That’s one of the reasons I’m Catholic.

If your answer is that the Orientals rejected Chalcedon, while the Church accepted it…that strikes me as circular. Part of the Church accepted Chalcedon and part of the Church rejected it. I personally accept it because Pope St. Leo accepted it…


Orthodox do not accept Councils because of the Pope, the third canon of the First Council of Constantinople is explicitly rejected by the Roman Catholic Church because of the Pope indeed, but the Orthodox Church accepts it because of the consensus of the fathers on it, not because of what one Pope says. It’s the same thing with the Quintisext Council, which the Roman Church rejects, but which the Orthodox Church has always accepted. Both of these are pre-schism. The Orthodox Church accepts Chalcedon not just because a Pope accepted it, but because the fathers accepted it. Your logic doesn’t really work here.


Why did you want to leave us to go to them


I explicitly said I would not be answering questions regarding my own conversion.


Can you please name these heresies for us?

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