The Eastern Schism - Causes and Characters

Last night, I did a bit of reading about the causes and characters of the Eastern Schism:

The Eastern Schism
newadvent.org/cathen/13535a.htm

Michael Caerularius
newadvent.org/cathen/10273a.htm

Photius of Constantinople
newadvent.org/cathen/12043b.htm

If you have not read these articles, I recommend taking a look.

For those who are familiar with the history, my question is this: Do these articles give accurate accounts of the events that took place leading up to the Eastern Schism?

Thanks.

Very biased. If you would like a more balanced assessment of what happened listen to these podcasts. I imagine you’ll be surprised. In fact I would strongly encourage you to listen. I’ve posted podcasts on here many times on many subjects and no one ever listens to them. Maybe yall are afraid your ears will melt off if you listen to an Orthodox priest. :smiley:

Either way Fr Tom was the dean of St Vladimir’s Seminary. He is an amazing teacher and an exceedingly sweet man. There is nothing at all in any of his talks that could even begin to be considered polemical or anti-Catholic in anyway. I promise your head won’t explode and you won’t get angry if you listen to these.

The Tumultuous 9th Century - Part 3 - Photius the Great

Bishops - Part 35: The Pivotal 11th Century

Bishops - Part 36: The Pivotal 11th Century - Part 2

How do you know? Is there a machine that counts the number of listeners who click your links, and you have access to its numbers? Or are you just assuming that because nobody has said they listened to it?

Another argument from silence.

Like “no ECF ever considered Peter the Royal Steward.”

:wink:

I recommend reading all the articles at: www.2lungs.com

I also love this time line, which can be found at www.2lungs.com: catholicbridge.com/catholic/orthodox/timeline_history_of_catholic_orthodox_relations.php

The problem (which many Eastern Orthodox do not realize or do not admit) is that the Byzantine Emperor often interfered in Church affairs .

Man yall will argue about anything won’t you? :smiley:

So let me know after you finish the podcasts and we can have a fun discussion. :thumbsup:

What many Latins seem to have forgotten is not only that the popes were perfectly happy to exploit such a system, but also that the bishops in the East would often resist the emperor’s designs at the same time that the popes were actively attempting to exploit them. Prime examples would be the incident of Hormisdas’ formulary (where Justinian attempted, with partial success, to coerce the Eastern bishops into signing; though the bishop of Constantinople notably signed by retorting that the sees of New and Old Rome are one, sharing their prerogatives, while the bishop of Thessalonica allegedly ripped the formulary to shreds before ever opening it, already knowing of its contents before hand), the two so-called unions of Lyons and Florence (both of which were widely opposed by the clergy, and supported primarily by imperial power), and the incident between Cardinal Humbert and Michael Caerularius (in this case, however, it must be noted that though the emperor was pushing for Michael Caerularius to make peace with Rome, the outrageously rude behavior of Cardinal Humbert managed to turn the whole city of Constantinople against him, forcing the emperor to abandon his plans).

Oh, yes, and perhaps my favorite is that some of the Latins at Florence demanded that the emperor punish St. Mark of Ephesus for his refusal to sign (as usual, happy to promote Caesaro-papism when it suited their purposes). The emperor in this case, however, reasonably told them no.

On Photius, I would suggest you read Dvornik’s assessment of him, which is widely accepted, outside of ultra-traddie circles.

Cav-

To someone looking at some of this material for the first time, the sentence I highlighted in red seems to reinforce the idea that the East’s REAL arguments with Rome were mostly personal and political and not doctrinal at all. So, the filioque and azyme bread are mere pretexts. Sheesh.

I’ve known for most of my life that the Anglican Church was founded as a direct result of Henry VIII’s insatiable desire for a male heir (or Ann Boleyn or both), and that is a pretty pathetic basis for hiving off from the true Church.

But now it appears that Orthodoxy is sprung from the blind ambition of Photius and Caerularius for reasons that are no less shameful than that of Henry VIII?

And Orthodox are *proud *of this history? :shrug: Please tell me it’s not so.

I’m asking because I honestly don’t know: Is the following true or not?

"The quarrel of Photius was a gross defiance of lawful church order. Ignatius was the rightful bishop without any question; he had reigned peaceably for eleven years. Then he refused Communion to a man guilty of open incest (857). But that man was the regent Bardas, so the Government professed to depose Ignatius and intruded Photius into his see. Pope Nicholas I had no quarrel against the Eastern Church; he had no quarrel against the Byzantine see. He stood out for the rights of the lawful bishop. Both Ignatius and Photius had formally appealed to him. It was only when Photius found that he had lost his case that he and the Government preferred schism to submission (867). It is even doubtful how far this time there was any general Eastern schism at all. In the council that restored Ignatius (869) the other patriarchs declared that they had at once accepted the pope’s former verdict. But Photius had formed an anti-Roman party which was never afterwards dissolved.

“How deeply rooted and far-spread it was, is shown by the absolutely gratuitous outburst 150 years later under Michael Caerularius (1043-58). For this time there was not even the shadow of a pretext. No one had disputed Caerularius’s right as patriarch; the pope had not interfered with him in any way at all. And suddenly in 1053 he sends off a declaration of war, then shuts up the Latin churches at Constantinople, hurls a string of wild accusations, and shows in every possible way that he wants a schism, apparently for the mere pleasure of not being in communion with the West. He got his wish.”

I’m just asking. There will be no rejoinder from me on this matter. :blush:

But please be honest. We have our Borgias…who are these Orthodox clergymen and did they really split Christendom because of their own selfish ambitions?

If I’m not mistaken, Pope John VIII recognized Photius as the Patriarch of Constantinople.

I’ve been reading online reviews of that book, and I came across this:

Grumel on Dvornik
February 16, 2011

Because, in a recent discussion on this blog, a question arose concerning Francis Dvornik’s interpretation of the history of St. Photius, I am here presenting a translation of a review of Dvornik’s book The Photian Schism: History and Legend by Venance Grumel, himself a notable Photian scholar. The review originally appeared in the Revue des études byzantines, vol. 10 (1952), pp. 282-283; I found the text on-line yesterday at the French site Persée, a very useful site which I had not known of previously.

Dvornik (Fr.), The Photian Schism. History and Legend. Cambridge, University Press, 1948. In-8°, xiv-504 pages. Le schisme de Photius, Histoire et Légende, Paris, Les Éditions du Cerf, 1950. In-8°, 662 pages (Unam Sanctam XIX).

Except:

"**The first concerns the origin of the conflict; the author is absolutely unwilling to see Photius as responsible for it. ** [emphasis added] I fail to understand how one can refuse to recognize the cause of the conflict in Photius’s ordination by Gregory Asbestas, the bishop deposed by Ignatius — still less, how one can conceive of presenting this affront as an act of moderation, something which is genuinely hard to swallow. The second point concerns the declaration concerning the Creed, a subject that has engaged my attention more than once.[2] I am indeed informed [in this book] that my proof of that declaration’s inauthenticity is inconclusive, but this has not been shown, and, moreover, no notice is taken of the article which appeared in this journal in 1947, in which I returned to this subject[3]; I would refer the author to it, awaiting his response. I ought nevertheless to reply to the new argument which I did not know of at the time I wrote that article, namely, the testimony of the patriarch Euthymius. It would certainly be a most telling point if the person in question were Euthymius I; but the manuscript is from the fifteenth century, and there is no reason to reject the possibility of an attribution to Euthymius II — quite the contrary, as I shall show hereafter.[4] It must be said that such a possibility seems not to have occurred to Dvornik.

"The third and most important question is that which concerns the Eighth Ecumenical Council. Dvornik thinks he can prove that it was abrogated by John VIII. To this end, he makes use of documents transmitted by Yves of Chartres, not taking account of the fact that these fragments originated at the Photian council where the papal documents had been altered. He makes use also of the Western juridical tradition according to which the ecumenicity of this council did not appear until the end of the eleventh century. One should not forget that this council of 869, which produced no definition of faith, was convened solely to decide on matters relating to persons and that, after the Photian question had been settled at the council of 879, there was no reason to bring it up again, and the peace of the Church demanded that it not be. But between this and an abrogation there is quite a stretch. Furthermore, the complete letter from Pope Stephen I to Emperor Basil I (which we presented at the International Congresses of Byzantine Studies of Paris and of Bruxelles) shows clearly that no pope, up to Stephen’s time, had annulled the acts of the Eighth Council.

“I shall leave aside, for the time being, the other points which are of lesser importance.”

bekkos.wordpress.com/2011/02/16/grumel-on-dvornik/

Thoughts?

catholicculture.org/culture/library/view.cfm?recnum=1355

Byzantium and the Roman Primacy

by Francis Dvornik

He writer has several reading material at the end of the article.

Listen to the podcast on Photius and you’ll learn a little more about the situation. Do it…:thumbsup:

I see you are ever the optimist Seraphim. Sadly I am rather more cynical than you.

:wave:

That’s four. Or possibly five…I’ve lost count.

Hi Randy,

Interesting post. I’m curious to see how many of our seperated brethren will do so. (I’m guessing it will be quite a few.)

Oh I looked alright. :cool:

I will say I genuinely hope the old Catholic Encyclopedia isn’t the only source people look at for this question.

Has anyone listened to any of the podcasts?

:slight_smile: I would tell you how I knew but … Well, I can’t give away all my secrets right? :blush: :cool:

I’m sure you can predict my response to this: that Henry’s sins are a necessary but not a sufficient part of any good explanation of the English Reformation.

I’m asking because I honestly don’t know: Is the following true or not?

"The quarrel of Photius was a gross defiance of lawful church order. Ignatius was the rightful bishop without any question; he had reigned peaceably for eleven years. Then he refused Communion to a man guilty of open incest (857). But that man was the regent Bardas, so the Government professed to depose Ignatius and intruded Photius into his see. Pope Nicholas I had no quarrel against the Eastern Church; he had no quarrel against the Byzantine see. He stood out for the rights of the lawful bishop. Both Ignatius and Photius had formally appealed to him. It was only when Photius found that he had lost his case that he and the Government preferred schism to submission (867). It is even doubtful how far this time there was any general Eastern schism at all. In the council that restored Ignatius (869) the other patriarchs declared that they had at once accepted the pope’s former verdict. But Photius had formed an anti-Roman party which was never afterwards dissolved.

“How deeply rooted and far-spread it was, is shown by the absolutely gratuitous outburst 150 years later under Michael Caerularius (1043-58). For this time there was not even the shadow of a pretext. No one had disputed Caerularius’s right as patriarch; the pope had not interfered with him in any way at all. And suddenly in 1053 he sends off a declaration of war, then shuts up the Latin churches at Constantinople, hurls a string of wild accusations, and shows in every possible way that he wants a schism, apparently for the mere pleasure of not being in communion with the West. He got his wish.

I’m just asking. There will be no rejoinder from me on this matter. :blush:

But please be honest. We have our Borgias…who are these Orthodox clergymen and did they really split Christendom because of their own selfish ambitions?

The bit in bold seems a bit of a wild claim. For starters, why on earth would the Patriarch want a conflict? It’s asserted that there was no reason for such a conflict; surely this can’t be the case!

Looking a little closer, it appears that Leo IX wrote to Keroularios in response to a belligerent letter from the Greek Archbishop of Ochrid to an Apulian bishop, in which the Archbishop had attacked Latin customs. Leo IX defended the Latin Church, in part by appealing to the Donation of Constantine to assert Rome’s spiritual and temporal jurisdiction. Keroularios then retaliated with not a little anger.

Nobody comes out of the story very well, and I don’t want to defend Keroularios as a pastor of the Church universal, but it seems clear to me that the ‘history’ you’re reading is a little less than objective in its assessment of the schism.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.