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Identity and background of Eastern Catholics

Saxon

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I didn't want to wade into this, but Eastern Catholicism seems to me like an exercise in cognitive dissonance. I've heard Eastern Catholics frequently refer to themselves as "Orthodox in communion with Rome". There's an interview on YouTube featuring Matt Fradd discussing those matters with an American Eastern Catholic priest. Fradd kept prodding him on that subject - to be in communion with Rome you must accept the Papacy, Purgatory, the Immaculate Conception, and all the other dogmas. The priest kept waffling, literally "yes, but no, but yes, but not really" and really wanted to emphasize that he's "Orthodox". It sounded like he was trying to convince himself one way or the other.
 

MalpanaGiwargis

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There's an interview on YouTube featuring Matt Fradd discussing those matters with an American Eastern Catholic priest. Fradd kept prodding him on that subject - to be in communion with Rome you must accept the Papacy, Purgatory, the Immaculate Conception, and all the other dogmas.
I used to attend the Byzantine Catholic parish Matt Fradd attends. It was actually in part a conversation with him that made clear to me what I already pretty much knew—that I was really Orthodox in my heart, and I needed to make that a reality. I think I probably stopped communing there around that time when I realized I did not really share the same faith as the parishioners there, though I continued to attend for a while longer.
 

Deacon Lance

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I didn't want to wade into this, but Eastern Catholicism seems to me like an exercise in cognitive dissonance. I've heard Eastern Catholics frequently refer to themselves as "Orthodox in communion with Rome". There's an interview on YouTube featuring Matt Fradd discussing those matters with an American Eastern Catholic priest. Fradd kept prodding him on that subject - to be in communion with Rome you must accept the Papacy, Purgatory, the Immaculate Conception, and all the other dogmas. The priest kept waffling, literally "yes, but no, but yes, but not really" and really wanted to emphasize that he's "Orthodox". It sounded like he was trying to convince himself one way or the other.
Those are a minority very vocal online. Most are fine with who they are.
 

Shanghaiski

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Shanghaiski, this post constitutes public criticism of moderation. You will receive 100 points for 2 weeks as a result. Feel free to appeal via PM. Thanks. —Ainnir
Funny that a term used by "Eastern Catholics" to identify "Eastern Catholics" should be banned. My Ukrainian "Eastern Catholic" advisor would laugh derisively.
 

Deacon Lance

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Funny that a term used by "Eastern Catholics" to identify "Eastern Catholics" should be banned. My Ukrainian "Eastern Catholic" advisor would laugh derisively.
We don’t use that term and you have been here long enough to know better.
 

augustin717

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Funny that a term used by "Eastern Catholics" to identify "Eastern Catholics" should be banned. My Ukrainian "Eastern Catholic" advisor would laugh derisively.
In my home region - back then Hungary proper- where Orthodoxy fared Muchi better than Greek Catholicism, the official name of what we’d call the Orthodox Church until after 1850, was “Biserica Greco-Orientală neunită”, that is “The non-united Greco-Oriental Church.”
The Greek Catholics called themaelves and still do “uniți” , “united”.
 

FULK NERA

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I didn't want to wade into this, but Eastern Catholicism seems to me like an exercise in cognitive dissonance. I've heard Eastern Catholics frequently refer to themselves as "Orthodox in communion with Rome". There's an interview on YouTube featuring Matt Fradd discussing those matters with an American Eastern Catholic priest. Fradd kept prodding him on that subject - to be in communion with Rome you must accept the Papacy, Purgatory, the Immaculate Conception, and all the other dogmas. The priest kept waffling, literally "yes, but no, but yes, but not really" and really wanted to emphasize that he's "Orthodox". It sounded like he was trying to convince himself one way or the other.
did he talk about the Unit as some organic 'bridge' between RCC and EO? ANATHEMA
 

FULK NERA

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I typed ‘Unia’ but the machine perverted my text.
 

Lateran649

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Being EC can be a very difficult thing indeed. As the priest in question who left the UGCC for the Archdiocese, I had been very much in the 'Orthodox in communion with Rome' camp, and said so publicly on many different fora. I came to realise, though, for a number of reasons both theological and functional, that being 'Orthodox in communion with Rome' gives you a lot of Rome, and only as much Orthodoxy as you can get away with.
 

Deacon Lance

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did he talk about the Unit as some organic 'bridge' between RCC and EO? ANATHEMA
As Metropolitan Nicholas of Amissos so cleverly stated (I paraphrase): bridges are walked on and Eastern Catholics have been walked on by both Latins and Orthodox. Eastern Catholics are rather windows that allow others to peer in and see how Rome treats Eastern Christians.
 

FULK NERA

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As Metropolitan Nicholas of Amissos so cleverly stated (I paraphrase): bridges are walked on and Eastern Catholics have been walked on by both Latins and Orthodox. Eastern Catholics are rather windows that allow others to peer in and see how Rome treats Eastern Christians.
Uniatism is simply ecclesiastical colonialism. It has no upside.
 

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I would say millions of people worshipping Jesus Christ and working on their sanctification is an upside. Orthodox (or Latin) triumphalism is something that has no upside.
The damage done to the presence of Christianity in the Middle East over the centuries by the creation of the Eastern Catholic Churches is incalculable. Elsewhere, the people in these churches would still be worshipping Christ, just not under Roman subjugation. It's not like the Eastern Catholic Churches are missionary endeavors.
 

Deacon Lance

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The damage done to the presence of Christianity in the Middle East over the centuries by the creation of the Eastern Catholic Churches is incalculable. Elsewhere, the people in these churches would still be worshipping Christ, just not under Roman subjugation. It's not like the Eastern Catholic Churches are missionary endeavors.
That is debatable. The Maronites were already there. The Chaldeans are larger and better organized than their counterpart. The Armenians and Syriacs owe some of the preservation of their patrimony to the work of Catholic monks. Elsewhere, like the Hapsburg Empire, Greek Catholicism helped prevent conversion of the populous to the Reformed Church and loss of their tradition. Every Church is a missionary endeavor.
 

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hat is debatable. The Maronites were already there. The Chaldeans are larger and better organized than their counterpart. The Armenians and Syriacs owe some of the preservation of their patrimony to the work of Catholic monks.
The Maronite example is just the earliest example, fruit of the Crusades, not some pre-existing Catholic church. Everywhere, the Catholic missions split communities and created classes of people who lived in a fantasy-land of being westerners, disconnected from their immediate context. The most dramatic example of the damage that can cause was the civil war in Lebanon, but overall these Catholic power-grabs everywhere sewed division and weakened communities that were already in a bad position.
 

Deacon Lance

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The Maronite example is just the earliest example, fruit of the Crusades, not some pre-existing Catholic church. Everywhere, the Catholic missions split communities and created classes of people who lived in a fantasy-land of being westerners, disconnected from their immediate context. The most dramatic example of the damage that can cause was the civil war in Lebanon, but overall these Catholic power-grabs everywhere sewed division and weakened communities that were already in a bad position.
The Maronites preexisted the Crusades. Just ask the Byzantine army whose buts they kicked back to Constantinople. But the Lebanese Civil War being the Maronite’s fault is a new one. But all this has nothing to do with the Western Rite or Rue Darue. Maybe the mod can split this and send it to Orthodox/Catholic.
 

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The Maronites preexisted the Crusades. Just ask the Byzantine army whose buts they kicked back to Constantinople.
Yeah, like most early Maronite history, that's kind of a myth.

But the Lebanese Civil War being the Maronite’s fault is a new one.
This is by far the most common diagnosis of the war outside of far-right circles.
 

Deacon Lance

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Yeah, like most early Maronite history, that's kind of a myth.
For goodness sake even the orthowiki timeline lists it. Your the first person I heard claim the Maronites didn’t exist before the Crusades.


This is by far the most common diagnosis of the war outside of far-right circles.
Where? In far-left circles? The mass movement of Palestinian Muslims from Jordan to Lebanon and subsequent troublemaking wasn’t the primary ignition?
 

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For goodness sake even the orthowiki timeline lists it. Your the first person I heard claim the Maronites didn’t exist before the Crusades.
I'm not saying that they didn't exist. I'm saying that the business about the Marada and so forth is entirely fictitious. There was a small Monothelete hierarchy in Syria from the 7th or 8th century, but the Maronites as they exist today, wholly Westernized in liturgy and theology, are a product of the Crusades and subsequent Latin missions.

Where? In far-left circles?
In all academic and journalistic accounts I've seen not written by a partisan of Samir Geagea, basically.

The mass movement of Palestinian Muslims from Jordan to Lebanon and subsequent troublemaking wasn’t the primary ignition?
In short, no, it wasn't. The primary ignition was longstanding Maronite anxiety about maintaining minority rule. The first fascist militia established by Maronites dates back to the 1930s. The first civil conflict where force was used to maintain Maronite minority rule and a European self-image for Lebanon happened in 1958. The genocidal ideology put forward within the Lebanese Maronite Order and at Kaslik University (by figures like Paul Naaman and Charbel Kassis) also predates the early 70s-- to quote the Vatican's envoy to Lebanon in that period, Cardinal Paolo Bertoli, about those monks: "These people are not Christians."

The other religious communities in Lebanon were by and large supportive of the Palestinians from '67 through at least the early to mid 80's, when the Shia somewhat turned. The Orthodox leadership remained adamantly pro-Palestinian the entire time-- Met Georges Khodr lived in Tripoli under PLO protection for most of the war, even as the Maronites were plundering Balamand. The Armenians only armed themselves to keep the Maronites out of Borj Hammoud. So, to simplify a very complicated and long event-- in its origins, it was neither a war of Lebanese against Palestinians nor of Christians against Muslims, but rather of one (probablly majority) element of the Maronite community against everyone else (and as time went on, primarily against itself).
 

Deacon Lance

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I'm not saying that they didn't exist. I'm saying that the business about the Marada and so forth is entirely fictitious. There was a small Monothelete hierarchy in Syria from the 7th or 8th century, but the Maronites as they exist today, wholly Westernized in liturgy and theology, are a product of the Crusades and subsequent Latin missions.



In all academic and journalistic accounts I've seen not written by a partisan of Samir Geagea, basically.



In short, no, it wasn't. The primary ignition was longstanding Maronite anxiety about maintaining minority rule. The first fascist militia established by Maronites dates back to the 1930s. The first civil conflict where force was used to maintain Maronite minority rule and a European self-image for Lebanon happened in 1958. The genocidal ideology put forward within the Lebanese Maronite Order and at Kaslik University (by figures like Paul Naaman and Charbel Kassis) also predates the early 70s-- to quote the Vatican's envoy to Lebanon in that period, Cardinal Paolo Bertoli, about those monks: "These people are not Christians."

The other religious communities in Lebanon were by and large supportive of the Palestinians from '67 through at least the early to mid 80's, when the Shia somewhat turned. The Orthodox leadership remained adamantly pro-Palestinian the entire time-- Met Georges Khodr lived in Tripoli under PLO protection for most of the war, even as the Maronites were plundering Balamand. The Armenians only armed themselves to keep the Maronites out of Borj Hammoud. So, to simplify a very complicated and long event-- in its origins, it was neither a war of Lebanese against Palestinians nor of Christians against Muslims, but rather of one (probablly majority) element of the Maronite community against everyone else (and as time went on, primarily against itself).
I think it is more nuanced than you are presenting and I am not excusing atrocities committed by the Phalangists. But to ignore the PLOs attempt to create a state within a state and the support of such by other Muslim countries is unfair.
 

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But to ignore the PLOs attempt to create a state within a state and the support of such by other Muslim countries is unfair.
But the thing is, the PLO had broad-based support in Lebanese society in the late 60s and early 70s. It was only viewed as a foreign body by right-wing, almost entirely Maronite elements. And the Palestinian cause can hardly be considered a purely Muslim one, especially given the number of Christian Palestinian refugees in Lebanon and the prominence of Christians in the Palestinian leadership (most notably the leader of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, Georges Habash, whose funeral can be viewed here).

My point, though, here, isn't about assigning moral blame as such-- all parties who fought did awful things. It's that the war happened because of the delusion on the part of the Maronite civil and ecclesiastical leadership (and occasional of the Christian bourgeoisie heavily under their influence, such as the nominally Orthodox but in practice ardently Maronite Charles Malik) that they were westerners defending an isolated outpost of the West-- a delusion that has its origins precisely in the Catholic "missions" in the Middle East.
 

Deacon Lance

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But the thing is, the PLO had broad-based support in Lebanese society in the late 60s and early 70s. It was only viewed as a foreign body by right-wing, almost entirely Maronite elements. And the Palestinian cause can hardly be considered a purely Muslim one, especially given the number of Christian Palestinian refugees in Lebanon and the prominence of Christians in the Palestinian leadership (most notably the leader of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, Georges Habash, whose funeral can be viewed here).

My point, though, here, isn't about assigning moral blame as such-- all parties who fought did awful things. It's that the war happened because of the delusion on the part of the Maronite civil and ecclesiastical leadership (and occasional of the Christian bourgeoisie heavily under their influence, such as the nominally Orthodox but in practice ardently Maronite Charles Malik) that they were westerners defending an isolated outpost of the West-- a delusion that has its origins precisely in the Catholic "missions" in the Middle East.
But it was a foreign body! Regardless of how some may have viewed it.
 

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But it was a foreign body! Regardless of how some may have viewed it.
Why? The border between Lebanon and Palestine was only a few decades old and had been arbitrarily drawn by foreign colonial powers. Especially in the Orthodox and Sunni communities, tons of families had since time immemorial existed on both sides of where Sykes and Picot drew a line. It was for the Lebanese-- not the French, British or Israelis, to decide what was foreign and what wasn't.
 

Deacon Lance

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Why? The border between Lebanon and Palestine was only a few decades old and had been arbitrarily drawn by foreign colonial powers. Especially in the Orthodox and Sunni communities, tons of families had since time immemorial existed on both sides of where Sykes and Picot drew a line. It was for the Lebanese-- not the French, British or Israelis, to decide what was foreign and what wasn't.
Imaginary line or not, the majority were those expelled from Palestine to Jordan then from Jordan to Lebanon. What claim did they have to Lebanese territory?
 

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Imaginary line or not, the majority were those expelled from Palestine to Jordan then from Jordan to Lebanon. What claim did they have to Lebanese territory?
Well to start with, most Lebanese were for quite a while okay with their presence, which is enough to legitimize them. (After all, large numbers of Lebanese fought on their behalf). A government ruling on behalf of the wealthy members of a community barely making up 1/3 of the population, the compradors and collaborators of the old colonial occupation, hardly had the moral authority to say who did or didn't belong there.

And in terms of Palestine---> Jordan---> Lebanon, that's the route that the PLO leadership took. But the vast majority of Palestinians in Lebanon were pretty straightforwardly expelled from Northern Palestine by the Israelis in two waves. The '48 wave was mostly Christian and given Lebanese passports. The '67 wave was mostly Muslim. Christians among them still live on Greek Orthodox Church property and Muslims live in dire conditions on UN property and both groups are still subject to inhuman civil and economic restrictions. All for an imaginary colonialist border.
 

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The history of the creation of the Unia is no comedy. The laypeople who had their confession warped by political and military force are not to blame. May they find sanctification despite the worst the world throws at them, particularly the worldly way faith is subverted by political force. But schism has a way of perpetuating itself and thus the majority of Uniates do not find their way back to their original confession of Orthodoxy. The repentance of their leaders who continue to bind them to Rome and deprive them of the ministration of their autochthonous churches would go a long way toward healing the schism from Orthodoxy, which is not merely a way of worshiping but also making present Christ at the level of Local Church. It is a lie to continue to present the Unia as Orthodoxy when it presents religious colonialism.
I am hesitant to comment on such matters, as I do not want to be one of ‘those people’ who turn on what they have left, but I have never stopped thinking about the Unia, what it represents, and what its life is like on the ground, and while I don’t doubt for one moment the sincerity of faith of many, many members of the Greek Catholic Churches, I think that what you have said here is very well expressed.
 

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After taking a gander at the Sarum Rite I tooled around the WR internet and read the Charter of ROCOR’s Vicariate

The history of the creation of the Unia is no comedy. The laypeople who had their confession warped by political and military force are not to blame. May they find sanctification despite the worst the world throws at them, particularly the worldly way faith is subverted by political force. But schism has a way of perpetuating itself and thus the majority of Uniates do not find their way back to their original confession of Orthodoxy. The repentance of their leaders who continue to bind them to Rome and deprive them of the ministration of their autochthonous churches would go a long way toward healing the schism from Orthodoxy, which is not merely a way of worshiping but also making present Christ at the level of Local Church. It is a lie to continue to present the Unia as Orthodoxy when it presents religious colonialism.
Repent of what? You acts as though the unions were orchestrated yesterday. Hundreds of years have passed. Generations have grown up Eastern Catholic with Christ being made present in their local Church. We are happy where we are.
 

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Repent of what? You acts as though the unions were orchestrated yesterday. Hundreds of years have passed. Generations have grown up Eastern Catholic with Christ being made present in their local Church. We are happy where we are.
While I concede that much of the damage was done long ago when Orthodox people were first torn away from their Local Churches by Latin authorities, it wasn’t that long ago that those who resisted were persecuted even to death for it. There are many martyr Saints of Carpatho-Rus from WWII. The continuing denial of authentic Orthodox identity And the invention of a fake one that claims to be a ‘bridge’ between autochthonous Orthodoxy and a colonizing Latin Christianity is lamentable.
 

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Of being keepers of stolen sheep.
How can someone born and raised Greek Catholic today be considered stolen sheep? The majority of Greek Catholics have no interest in joining the Orthodox Church. The “Orthodox in communion with Rome” variety are a minority. Hundreds of years have passed. Get over it. We are here to stay.
 

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While I concede that much of the damage was done long ago when Orthodox people were first torn away from their Local Churches by Latin authorities, it wasn’t that long ago that those who resisted were persecuted even to death for it. There are many martyr Saints of Carpatho-Rus from WWII. The continuing denial of authentic Orthodox identity And the invention of a fake one that claims to be a ‘bridge’ between autochthonous Orthodoxy and a colonizing Latin Christianity is lamentable.
We too have martyrs from WWII. Let me state again we are not a bridge. We know who we are and we will not be defined by you.
 

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The “Orthodox in communion with Rome” variety are a minority.
I would argue that the "Orthodox in communion with Rome" position is the most dishonest, as it is easily falsifiable, and so its purveyors are the most in the wrong. That said, the wounds that the Eastern Catholic Churches have caused and cause by their continued existence (and prosletyzing activity, despite occasional claims to the contrary) are crimes against the Body of Christ.


We know who we are and we will not be defined by you.
Except that the Eastern Catholic Churches can only be defined in relationship to their Orthodox mother churches. They have no self-definition apart from that.
 

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I would argue that the "Orthodox in communion with Rome" position is the most dishonest, as it is easily falsifiable, and so its purveyors are the most in the wrong. That said, the wounds that the Eastern Catholic Churches have caused and cause by their continued existence (and prosletyzing activity, despite occasional claims to the contrary) are crimes against the Body of Christ.
Welcome to 2021 where there are no emperors or czars to enforce the will of the Catholic or Orthodox Churches. People have the freewill to choose what they want to be. Continual crying over our existence is not helping the Orthodox Church. Collusion with the state to suppress us (the real crime against the Body of Christ) has only made us stronger.
 

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Except that the Eastern Catholic Churches can only be defined in relationship to their Orthodox mother churches. They have no self-definition apart from that.
Says you. And a few don‘t even have an Orthodox mother church. We will define ourselves.
 

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We will define ourselves.
Maronites aside, I've never seen an Eastern Catholic self-definition that wasn't entirely with reference to Orthodoxy.

Collusion with the state to suppress us
Every single Eastern Catholic Church was created out of a cynical geopolitical power-play. Several continue to exist only for political reasons.
 

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Every single Eastern Catholic Church was created out of a cynical geopolitical power-play. Several continue to exist only for political reasons.
Now you’re just descending into not polemics. Many were self-initiated unions like my own. Which ones do you consider existing only for political reasons?
 

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Well, all those in the former Austrian Empire and in the Middle East. And India. For starters.
You are ridiculous. What political reason exists to necessitate the Hungarian Greek Catholic Church for example? Or any Eastern Catholic Church you are accusing?
 
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