Why don't traditional catholics simply convert to eastern orthodoxy.

Season’s Greetings

I am surprised that more traditional roman catholic don’t attend orthodox churches. I have thought about this myself. I live 30-60 minutes driving time from the nearest tlm chapel be it indult, sspx, or sedevacantis group. But the EO church is right in my neighborhood. The Divine Liturgy there is beautiful and the reverence for the eucharist goes behind anything I have seen at a mainstream novous ordo. The price of gas may be a factor in my conversion. Thank you and God bless you.

It is probably because Traditional Catholics still accept the Papal office (though sometimes radical ultra-traditionalists don’t accept the current holder of that office). If they joined Orthodox churches, it would be a denial of the Papacy, which is something no traditionalist, not even an ultra-traditionalists, could do.
But the Orthodox Church should soon come into full communion with the RCC, because the understanding has been clarified that they actually do accept Roman primacy. So, if you want to do ecumenism with them, than you could probably get your own parish into dialog with them, because it will not be long anymore (I hope and pray!).

I love the tradional latin Mass and would never leave communion with the Holy Father.

I am a traditional Catholic inasmuch as that is how I was born and raised. I grew up with the Mass in Latin being the norm. I was an altar boy and was 18 when the shift to the NO was virtually complete. I resented it as did many of my generation. Traditional Catholics of my age have this odd notion called submitting to the Magesterium of HMC.

I didn’t then, and I wouldn’t now, desert the Church of my ancestors. I do not attend my diocese’s indult Latin Mass. I attend our very reverent NO cathedral parish as I have since 1983 and I drive 25 miles (one way to attend). The choir sings sacred motets in Latin as well as chant. There are reverent NO parishes out there. It doesn’t have to come down to the EF or nothing.

As to the East, I know very little about any of the eastern or oriental churches. The nearest EO church is more than 70 miles away. I’ve been to a Divine Liturgy there a grand total of once and that was 30 years ago before I had moved to my present locale.

And, dmar, I believe you are being overly optimistic about any of our separated brethren in the orthodox church accepting the primacy of the Holy Father anytime soon. Ultra traditional Latin Rite Catholics look like Morris the Cat in comparison to some of the raging lions amongst the orthodox.

Liturgy isn’t everything.
The Eastern Churches permit divorce. Given the choice between clown Masses and liturgical dancers, or divorce, I think most, I hope all, Traditional Catholics would choose to reject the divorce.

However they have kept a very dignified liturgy whilst we have maybe moved away from it. There are usually some real points a schismatic can make in his favour.

In the end the whole issue lies in this question: why would someone leave the Church founded by Jesus Christ for schismatic and heretical Eastern Orthodox…because of the Liturgy?

If someone is really drawn towards East, fine…they can looks for an Eastern Catholic parish.

Dear Gandalf: As (for lack of a better term) , as someone who grew up when the EF was the norm, their liturgy would indeed by an attractive proposition. The one and only EO liturgy I attended was on Holy Saturday 1977 - The Great Vigil for Pascha.

It had been close to 10 years since I had seen a similar liturgy in any Latin Rite church. Let’s be careful, as well, about the epithets. (Never forget that the EO [et al] have valid sacraments.)
Our Lord was present in the Eucharist. Never felt that in any Protestant church.

The liturgical abuses we have experienced are nothing new. I’m getting really tired of sounding like a “one note samba” but, hey, for my graduation Mass from a Catholic boy’s high school in May, 1969 we sang Simon and Garfunkel (whom most of you don’t even remember!). Secular Vietnam era protest songs in the context of the Mass.

We need to get our own house in order. We are not Protestants nor are we Eastern Catholics. We threw out our Latin heritage wholesale and willy-nilly after Vatican II in the race to become more “relevant”? What is not recognized on all of these threads is how we transitioned to the NO.

Sorry folks, but I was there. I was an altar boy when it all started to change. I have first hand experience. We eased into it…we used the English translations of the Latin prayers…well I’m not going to hijack this tread and I’ve tried to talk about it before but it seems that so few of my generation remember what happened…and that is the clue to all of this traditional Catholic idea.

I was there too, Brotherhrolf, and I remember vividly. I agree we need to get our own house in order. I don’t think the EO is the answer to those who respect tradition, and I almost wonder whether the OP was really talking about an Eastern Catholic parish. But I’m going to say this, and maybe you won’t agree with me. We’re Latins, and we’re more Latin that perhaps we know. One thing the CC has always been is adaptable. When hordes of howling Teutons came, the Church stood fast, but flexible. I think the NO probably does make the Church more approachable to Protestants, but I don’t think the NO should be “Protestantized”. Lots of people around here went SSPX, but (and I was young then) my father refused, even though he hated the ICEL distortions and the “folk/felt” trend with a passion, to abandon his loyalty to the Church; to the Pope; to Rome.

For myself, I think there is room for both a vernacular (but respectful and faithful) N.O., as well as the TLM.

Actually the two Churches are still miles apart on this. The Orthodox accept the primacy of the Pope as him being the FIRST AMONG EQUALS The do not accept his infallibility and do not accept that he has the final say in things, His position to them is more honorary than anything else.

They also do not believe in other basic elements of the Roman Catholic Church.

As far as attending their Liturgies, nah, I’m Catholic and unless I have absolutely no other alternative I wouldn’t go. Hey I put up with consecrated corn tortillas, nuns giving homilies and celebrating the Mass in the place of a Priest, put up with Priests saying that Babylon prophesized is in reality the United States government, watched as the Mass became nothing more than a community picnic in some places and everything else that the progressives tried to ram down our throats. I’m still here and I’ll be here until the day I’m called to stand before God in judgement.

Well said! I went to an SSPX chapel here and thoroughly freaked when I found out they were not in communion with HMC. I have not been back since although they have gone from chapel to church.

Maybe it’s just me. My Irish ancestors had to attend secret Masses amongst the hedgerows. God save Eire! So much have you endured for the faith. My Acadian ancestors were rounded up and sent from Canada to the swamps of Louisiana.

I claim my ancestry and I soldier on. I respect those of my generation who embraced what happened after Vatican II. I have far too many friends on this forum who are my age. We agree to disagree. :yup: But there were those of us …we threw our history and our heritage out. I want to reclaim that history and heritage for future generations.

Lo, be still and listen. Can you not hear the choir singing Pange Lingua gloriosi! Comparsit mysterium! I only get to sing this on Holy Thursday now yet it used to be sung at every novena.

I don’t want to head to the East. Can’t we just go back to what we had 40 years ago and adopt large measures of it?

Oh to return to the City of our childhood! I can’t be anything but Catholic!. My friend, there was a Corpus Christi procession this summer from Jesuit’s to the Cathedral. There is Hope!

I wish I could have seen it my friend. I too can be nothing else. As I look back over the years of my life the one thing that has always kept me going was my Catholic faith, There is no other and I could never change.

I love reading the post on this tread. I was but a infant when the changes started coming into the church born in 1965. I do not have any memories of the Latin Mass but have loved what I have heard from my Mother and grandparent about it. there is a parish close by that does one Latin Rite Mass on Sunday and i have gone to it once and loved it but was lost a lot of the time. as it was a new experience for me. I plan to go more often. there is hope And i pray that the Old ways will one day become the norm.

As for leaving the Church for the E O the thought has gone through my mind, But I could not leave the Church.

Peace in Christ


As much room as Cain & Abel. Ishmael & Isaac. Maccabees & Antiochus.

I agree with your sentiments! And leave, never! The strange thing is how I have come full circle. I was like the other’s - it all started coming gradually and before we knew it, the old Mass was gone, but it was subtle and some of us didn’t realize what was happening. (I was a newlywed, just out of college, got busy with teaching and babies!) Then some years back I found out about the TLM here and went. Wow! I was home! Now I wish I had the beautiful old Mass every day. “The most beautiful thing this side of heaven.”

Besides never abandoning the communion with the Holy Father and the magisterium, to convert to Orthodoxy would be going to a tradition that never was mine. They have a valid Holy Communion, but it’s not my Tradition and are in schism. I want the Holy Roman Catholic Mass. EF when possible, or OF.

First, as others have said, I wouldn’t convert to Orthodoxy because the Orthodox do not accept the Holy Father.

Second, I would not change rites to Eastern Catholicism, at least based on the single EC liturgy that I have attended, and the EO Churches that I have seen, because it is too foreign to me. Even if I have grown up going to ugly Western churches, I know what a proper Western church should look like and that is where I belong. I live in the West, my family are all Western (Irish, Italian, French) and I am attached to the Latin Liturgy. I couldn’t imagine leaving the Latin Rite.

(EO Churches are beautiful, I mean no offense to them. While the singing at the Liturgy I attended was mediocre, I have heard that it can be quite stunning, but so can Latin Rite chant.)

I am a Traditional Catholic who prefers the Divine Liturgies of Sts. John Chrysostom and Basil the Great to the Masses of St. Gregory the Great and Pius V.

It really makes no sense for a Roman Catholic to convert to another church, even mine, over the liturgy.

No Roman Catholic should consider Holy Orthodoxy on that basis. It is a different theology, really too different. People should not think about it without learning something of the theology first, and be willing and able to embrace it.

A good first step could be one of the Eastern Catholic churches, which can accomodate your need to be under the Pope, have a dignified liturgy, and also actively participate in a community reflecting another part of the universality of the church.

One side benefit that I did not anticipate before I experienced it, was the relatively smaller size of the parishes. It is easy to make real friends in the parish, and impossible to hide. One becomes involved rather quickly, and it is not only an enriching experience, it can be fun too. Plus the more immediate relationship with the pastor, who can be your spiritual director in a very tangible way.

A move to Orthodoxy would not be good for someone convinced that the Papacy is ordered as it should be. In that case bloom where you are planted.

The reason I began this thread is because of conversations I have had with traditionalist and the like. I spoke to a EO clergymen who claims to have several trad type catholics in his congregation. I spoke to a sspx faithful who felt more at home in a greek orthodox environment than a novous ordo. I once had liberal tell that the orthodox church is the conservative branch of the catholic faith. Perhaps these people are very fringe or maybe some people simply convert to EO on the basis of liturgy alone.
Thank you all for your replies.

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