Western Rite Orthodoxy

Is anyone a member of one of these parishes?

I had the pleasure of attending Mass at Emmanuel Orthodox Church in Warren, MA. I haven’t attended such a solemn English liturgy in quite some time.

While it is important to take what you read at Wikipedia with a grain of salt, if even a small portion of this is true, then it shows that “Western Rite Orthodoxy” is founded by men, looking for power, not Jesus and the Holy Spirit.


It’s essentially an alternative to Old Catholics and Anglicans, but more akin to Protestantism than true Eastern Orthodoxy or Oriental Orthodoxy.

The Western Rite operates under the auspices of Orthodox Hierarchs, so frankly, I have no idea what you mean.

From what I have read, there is some unease among some Orthodox because the Western Rite does not exclusively celebrate the Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom. And, I don’t think they would be condoned (especially not by the canonical Antiochians) if they weren’t Orthodox?

I am just curious if anyone attends a WO parish or has attended one. What was your experience?

I’m not sure if I just read what I think I did (it’s late, after all, and my eyes sometimes play tricks on me). If I did … well, I’ll just say that I definitely won’t be asking you for an opinion about Eastern Catholicism.

I don’t think I’m following you. Eastern Catholicism returned home to Communion with Rome (and some were always in communion). They were legitimate Churches before the Great Schism, during their time in Orthodoxy, and after they returned to communion with Peter.

What I meant was that Western Rite Orthodoxy was not the result of a schism, like the Eastern Orthodox or even the Old Catholics. They were not parishes that decided to leave Rome and align themselves with the Orthodox. These were individuals who attempted to figure out how to create their own Western liturgical based church and crafted one after researching historic rites of the Latin Church (including several of the non Roman Rites from 15th century England). After their research they selected a rite that they liked, and modified it to fit with their protestant and/or anti-Catholic backgrounds.

The Western Rite’s founding is more in line with the founding of a protestant church and not an organic development like the traditional Rites of Orthodox and the Catholic Churches.

I wish there was closer to me. I would very interested in checking it out.



Where are you getting that idea?

Not to side-track the conversation, but let us remember Pope Benedict’s statement on the Pauline “Reform”:

They have deserted a vital process of growth and becoming in order to substitute a fabrication. They did not want to continue the development, the organic maturing of something living through the centuries, and they replaced it, in the manner of technical production, by a fabrication, a banal product of the moment. (Ratzinger in Revue Theologisches, Vol. 20, Feb. 1990, pgs. 103-104)

Nothing wrong with posting a statement by the Pope Emeritus, I pray? It seems that, at the very least, the creators of the Western Rite were pulling from ancient or long-standing Christian sources.

No, nothing wrong with it at all (leaving side the question of how off topic the quote is). :slight_smile:

Personally, I have just been holding off on posting until I see what direction this thread goes … whether it is going to be all about bashing WRO, or what exactly. :o

from reading the history of how the first Western Rite churches were founded in the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

I am confused…is this so called Western Rite a protetant church with rcc like liturgy or an orthodox church?

And if Orthdox…who is their patrairch?

Western Rite Orthodox are Orthodox that use various forms of the Western/Latin/Roman Rite. They are in various Churches, some legitimate, others not so much.

The Antiochian Orthodox Church has the Western Rite Vicariate under it’s umbrella, they generally use a modified form of the Anglican Book of Common Prayer, adjusted to conform to some Byzantinizations, usually celebrated in English.

The Russian Orthodox Church Outside Russia has the Liturgy of St. Gregory the Great, which is a slightly Russified form of the Tridentine Liturgy, usually celebrated in the vernacular or Latin.

The Syriac Orthodox Church of Antioch and the Malankara Orthodox Church of India had a Western Rite celebrated in one community outside Goa, India; they were using the Tridentine Rite in Latin, but in the last 100 years or less have adopted the Malankara Syriac Liturgy in the vernacular due to a lack of priests knowledgeable in Tridentine form.

They are an Orthodox Church, but was founded by former Protestants and ex-Catholic priests. They were founded and then petitioned the Eastern Orthodox Church for communion. They are under the auspice of an Auxiliary Bishop of the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America


Note: I always find it interesting when Churches describe themselves on their official websites by claiming how they differ from or fixed the errors of the Catholic Church.

Their website even mentions how Anglican and Roman Catholic parishes allow inclusive language and female priests. :rolleyes:


These western rite liturgies are bizarre because they are not “orthodox” but fabrications of post schism liturgies with byzantifications–a mix of orthodox, protestant and catholic elements. They even use leavened bread and forbid statues. it’s a hot mess and hasn’t worked out that well within the orthodox church.

very similar to the anglican use parishes.

As a former Anglican, our parish split 3 ways. One Catholic, some stayed and are now continuing Anglicans and a few with the associate priest went Western Orthodox.

I did attend their liturgy and it was exactly from the Book of Common Prayer 1928. This was many years ago. My memory of the service was that it was dreary compared to what they experienced as Anglo Catholics. They also used wooden clappers not bells.

The parish is still active. I also attended one in Michigan and although they used the BCP, they had no chairs except for a few.

They were very friendly and were a little too aggressive trying to get us to attend. As far as I recall all were former Anglicans.

Not to sound uncharitable but most of the Anglicans who became Antiochian wanted to keep the liturgy but did not want any authority over them. At least that is the impression they gave. I am not familiar with what is required by the Antiochian Church that one must believe to be in good standing. Also as I recall some Anglicans had to be re-baptized and all Confirmed again and their priests re-ordained (which is the same as former Anglican priests, they must be re-ordained and all must be confirmed again, but not baptized to become Catholic.)

Anglicans in general as has been said are a motley crew, you can believe anything and be an Anglican in good standing.

In the Hearts of Jesus and Mary


I am Western Orthodox and have been for almost six years. Some good posts in this thread and some that are just way off base.

Nothing was “created” to achieve anything. Parishes who felt alienated from their communions reached out to the Orthodox Church with the hopes of preserving their received heritage and entering into full communion with the worldwide Orthodox Churches. They were given the blessing to do so. Nothing was fabricated to try to re-enact the past or any other such nonsense. When this initially occurred in the late 1950s, it was the Tridentine Mass that was brought along with them, along with their sacred music, their art, their vestments, their private devotions, etc. There were some minor alterations to bring things into accordance with Orthodox doctrine, such as the removal of the filioque and the insertion of an explicit epiclesis. But that’s about it.

When Anglican parishes sought to enter, the same approach was taken. The English liturgy that had been passed down via the Non-Jurors, the Caroline Divines, the Oxford Movement, etc., had largely been preserved intact and approved, given some minor alterations.

We are not Protestant, we are not masquerading as anything, we are simply Orthodox Christians who have been given the blessing to preserve the vast heritage of Western catholic Christianity that was lovingly handed down to us.


Or perhaps I should say: Exactly the trouble with Internet discussion forums.

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