I was watching a news program last night in which Stone Phillips was investigating miracles in the Church. I have two questions, based on what I watched:
What criteria/process does the Church use to investigate claims of miracles?
What is the Eastern Catholic Church? Is it in line with Vatican?
There was a married priest on the program who was a priest in the Eastern Catholic Church. I’ve never heard of this branch of Catholicism before.
Any help anyone can give me would be appreciated. Thanks!
Shalom Ha Moshiach!
I watched that program too last night and thought they did a pretty decent job of it, better than I had expected from the mainstream media.
They talked about how the Catholic Church tries to determine whether or not a particular even was miraculous, but it depends if you are talking about apparitions or healings. There were 4 criteria for healings and I think they were:
- must have been instantaneous
- must have been complete
- must be permanent
- cannot be explained by medicine or science.
That is about all that I remember off the top of my head. I would recommend a book that came out not long ago:
The Miracle Detective by Randall Sullivan, he was a skeptic writer for Rolling Stone magazine that went to Mejugoria (spelling ?) to investigate and had a conversion himself. In his book he not only explains Mejugoria and his private conversion but he also goes into detail about how the Catholic Church investigates such things…that was actually the original intent of the book before he became caught up in it all.
The Catholic Church was split in two when the Roman Empire split between east and west, also known as the Great Schism, in the year 1054. They are Catholic because they can still trace their origins back to the apostles, but they are not in full communion with Rome because they dont view the Bishop of Rome as the head of the Church. Other than that one (major) doctrinal difference they teach the same things as the Roman Church and because they are apostolic they have valid sacraments. Which means that if you found yourself in a situation where you needed to receive Communion or any other sacrament and there was no way for you to find a Roman Catholic priest you could actually receive the sacraments from an Eastern Catholic Church.
Likewise they are permitted to receive our sacraments as long as they have permission from their Bishop.