Okay, so there’s 23 Catholic Churches. Correct? Could a list be posted of these Churches, please
I’m rather confused as to the different terms used to describe different things relating to the Eastern Churches. So, first of all, do the 22 Catholic Churches (that is, 23 minus Roman Catholic) accept the authority of Pope Benedict XVI? Also, are all these 23 Churches based in the same geographical areas? What is the term used to describe these “Churches of the East”?
I’m so confused with the terms “orthodox” Churches, “Eastern” Churches, and all that!
Hope somebody here can help me grow in my knowledge of the wonderful unity of the Catholic Church
I’m sure people on this forum will be able to help clarify matters for you.
Yes, the twenty-two eastern Catholic churches accept the authority of Pope Benedict XVI. Many of them understand his authority in a way different from the way some Latin (i.e. western) Catholics understand it, but they acknowledge his authority.
No, not necessarily. They may be named after the country in which they originate - the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, for instance - but many of them have dioceses or eparchies all over the world. The Ruthenian Catholic Church, for instance, has four eparchies in the United States, with their Metropolitan bishop in Pittsburgh. The Melkite Greek Catholic Church has one eparchy for all Melkite Catholics living in the United States, but its patriarch lives in Damascus, I think.
I’m not sure what you’re asking. As you can see from the wikipedia link, each eastern Catholic church generally has a name by which one can easily identify it, or know which one is being spoken of.
**(a) **The Orthodox churches are eastern Christian churches that are not in communion with the bishop of Rome, and therefore not with the Catholic Church.
At a couple different points in history, certain eastern churches either suddenly or gradually came to be estranged from the western churches. Today, these eastern churches that are not in communion with Rome are known as Orthodox churches.
Most (though not all) of the eastern Catholic churches were formed much later on, several centuries ago, out of groups of Orthodox Christians who wanted to re-enter communion with the bishop of Rome and the Catholic Church. So in forming jurisdictions that were in communion with Rome, they were no longer in communion with their former Orthodox churches.
(b) As for the term “Eastern” in “eastern churches,” that term simply identifies the traditional and historical origin of a given church’s way of practicing Christianity.
Churches whose origins and traditions lie in western or central Europe and certain parts of north Africa are western Christian groups: the Latin Church (i.e. the western church in the Catholic Church, which is in full communion with 22 eastern churches) and most Protestants.
Churches whose origins and traditions lie in the Middle East, Egypt, eastern Europe, Asia Minor, India, etc. are eastern Christian groups.
I hope this helps. I’m sure other posters will help as well. I tried to avoid inundating you with too much information, so I deliberately tried to keep this initial response as basic as possible.