Interesting but perhaps incongruent deduction re Catholic/Orthodox churches


#1

Disclaimer: I am a cradle Catholic who is considering eastern orthodoxy. Take that for what you will.

However, it seems to me that all of the sui juris rites I have examined have a liturgy that is a WHOLE lot closer to the orthodox Liturgy than the catholic Mass. Is this evidence for what the orthodox claim, that they are closer to what the Apostles created, and less “changed” than the Roman Church?

If so, how much of a jump is it to think that maybe, if they are more Orthodox in their worship, could their doctrine be closer to the original intent as well?

This is not a troll thread. It is something I have been wondering about…


#2

Sui juris rites evolve due to language and culture. Being eastern in background is perhaps the reason why they are closer to the Orthodox liturgy who share similar culture. The mass has not changed in form, matter and intention though.


#3

See, the child has grown. But it is still the Spouse of Christ.

It was a seed, but is now a tree, that every bird can rest in its branches. Can’t you recognize the Seed in the Tree? The Church that Christ build “subsists” in the Catholic Church.

By changing the way one expresses the same Faith, does it changes the same? Note that the substance of the form of the Catholic liturgy cannot change. Expressions change, but the Love does not.

We have one King!


#4

Are your roots eastern? maybe you are drawn to that.
I know my roots are Italian that drew me to relearn to pray in Latin which is a beatiful language that is so similar to english in the way they construct sentences is eerie.


#5

Nope. It’s just as much changed, it’s just closer, or maybe just the same, as 1000 years ago. You want Liturgy as it was in the time of the Apostles, you have to meet at someone’s house with a few other people, read from something describing what Jesus did and said, discuss that or have someone talk about it, then share the breaking of the Bread. No one in any special vestments, no special rules about who says what when, the people in the next neighborhood will be doing things a bit differently.

I have no problem with Orthodoxy or you perhaps going that way. But it’s not better in terms of either Liturgy or theology. If there is a problem, it’s that they think it is.

Our Liturgy is the same as the 1st century in the elements and order, I believe. But the trappings around it, the forms have been standardized and have evolved to meet the needs of the various peoples around the world while still being so similar, that we are unified by that. It’s very comforting to know that in all the Catholic Parish churches around the world, whether cathedral or straw building or someone’s home in China, we are all reading the same Scripture, praying the same prayers, learning the same theology. We are, indeed, brothers and sisters in Christ.


#6

I’m not Orthodox because I believe divorce is a sin. Your move, Patriarchs.


#7

I don’t view this as the best way to approach this topic.


#8

Almost* all liturgies will be very similar in structure. The differences, however, are not insignificant. After all, there must some accounting for the fact that the average Coptic Orthodox (Basilian) liturgy is about three to three and a half hours, while the average Roman Catholic Mass is about an hour or an hour and fifteen minutes (and, from what I understand, the usual EO Byzantine liturgy is somewhere in between the two). So, without having the time (or the necessary texts) to do a side-by-side comparison, we can say that the Roman Mass is, from our perspective, at least quite condensed or abbreviated. While I have not been to a Roman Catholic Mass since converting to Orthodoxy, Orthodox friends of mine who have attended (because they have RC girlfriends) describe it similarly. Whether this makes the Orthodox Church closer to that of the apostles or not is debatable, but what we can say based on what we know of the development of our own liturgies is that the Liturgy of St. Basil (the most commonly celebrated of the Coptic Orthodox liturgies; I’m referring to it because that’s what I’m most familiar with) is actually an abbreviated form of the liturgy that was introduced to Alexandria by St. Mark himself. So in that way it is directly tied to the apostolic church, although it may just be showing the fact that our liturgical development as Orthodox Christians was arrested circa the 5th century (the core of the Basilian liturgy was fixed by the fourth century, but the parts around it are probably later; the Coptic form is based around the earliest complete manuscript, in the Sahidic dialect and dated 7th century AD; Byzantine versions are roughly one century later, but all the different versions [Coptic, Byzantine, Armenian, etc.] are hypothesized as coming from the same original source dating back to at least the time of St. Basil himself). Whereas the Latin Church has continued, for whatever reason, to develop its liturgies via subsequent councils and whatnot until they have what are known today as the Tridentine Mass (codified 1570) and the Novus Ordo (from the 1960s).

So I think the differences are more revealing about our attitudes toward the liturgy and broader issues of ecclesiology and Church governance than whether or not a particular church is apostolic. All churches which were founded by an apostle are apostolic, at least in the most minimalistic sense of the word (i.e., not as Orthodox understand this concept). But that is not a guarantee that they will have any particular form of liturgy.

*- The Anaphora of Mar Addai and Mari, used by the East Syrians, is also quite old, maybe even older than the above described Basilian liturgies, but it lacks in its oldest extant manuscripts (c. 10th century) any form of the words of institution common to all other liturgies used by the ancient churches.


#9

What are the basic components of the liturgy of the Coptic Orthodox (Basilian), dzheremi?

There are many types of Catholic mass, depends on the occasions but they always include the same components - the liturgy of the word and the liturgy of the Eucharist. A weekday mass can be finished in half an hour and folks can go on their normal activity of the day after that, while a more solemn or high mass can even last three hours, oh my, how we would sit that through with the children, like the Easter vigil.


#10

#11

Thanks. It seems roughly that the liturgy of the Eucharist is done before the liturgy of the word. I love the cartoon illustration. :slight_smile:

In the Catholic mass, the liturgy of the word would consist of the first part which begins with the entrance, then the greeting, rite of blessing and sprinkling of holy water (optional), penitential rite, the Glory (optional),the liturgy of the word (the readings and sermon), profession of faith (optional) and the prayer of the faithful (optional).

The optional is not said in the weekday mass.

The liturgy of the Eucharist is the second part of the mass which begins with the offering rite, the Eucharistic prayer (introductory prayer, preface, the Sanctus, the consecration, the acclamation, memorial prayer,& the Doxology), the Communion rite, and the concluding rite.

The Roman Missal probably includes all of the Orthodox liturgy but perhaps less on the ritual. For example the vesting, which is done by the celebrant himself at the sacristy before the entrance. I agree I am unable to think of the equivalent of the fraction prayers, the recitation of the Patriarchs from the diptych, in the Catholic mass.


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