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Is conversion from Orthodoxy to another Christian Faith a grave sin?

Paradosiakos

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I had this question in the back of my mind for quite some time. I am a RC and according to the Church it is a mortal sin to convert to another faith, including to Orthodoxy. Is it the same for an Orthodox to convert? This has not stopped me completely from wanting to convert to Orthodoxy. I have been pondering it for many years but still get cold feet for one reason or the other. Right now I feel I am more ready than ever to take the "plunge". I have a feeling it is probably is as serious a sin for the Orthodox to convert as it is for the RC.
 

LizaSymonenko

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In the Orthodox Church, a sin is a sin... there is no "mortal" delineation. Anything that drifts us away from God, is sinful. Granted, complementing a friend's haircut, when you think it looks terrible, is not as big a falling away as leaving the Church... nonetheless, we have hope that the Lord will forgive us our trespasses.

All sin is forgivable, if the sinner is repentant.
 

Paradosiakos

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That’s a great answer. I was aware that in the Orthodox Church a sin is a sin but and that the terms mortal and venial were not used. I thought I had read somewhere in an OCA text that more serious sins were considered grave. I know I still have a lot to learn.
I personally feel moving to the Orthodox Church would bring me closer to God so I would not feel it would be a sin.
In the beginning there was only one Church. I have a good feeling the Orthodox Church is all that’s left of it.
 

Christos3

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I guess it would depend on which Christian faith you converted to. Is it one that would lead you away from the true teachings of Christ and the church? IF you move from Orthodoxy to say Methodist or the liberal Lutheran church where gay marriage is blessed or to Jehovah's witness or Mormonism, then that would be a big yes,
 

Zelenikovo

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@Paradosiakos as I am aware for such decisions its good to consult an Elder Monk so Your Path will be Blessed Ahead ...
 

Paradosiakos

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Wow, where would I find an Elder Monk? I imagine one would be at a monastery. I think there is one but it is a few hours away. I've always wanted to visit one. This would be a good reason to finally go. I will have to look into their visitor policies.
 

Ainnir

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Paradosiakos, you can simply find the closest Orthodox parish and ask the priest there. There is no need to visit any monk, unless you simply wish to, which is reason enough to go in my opinion. It is a difficult enough journey without adding unnecessary burdens to it.
 

Paradosiakos

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I was just curious to see what the OC's view on this would be, whether Orthodoxy had any doctrine specifically addressing someone leaving the Church for another. I think the RC has something in their catechism about. I know when I spoke with an RC priest about leaving the RC for the OC, he told me I would be committing a sin of schism which is a mortal sin in the RC. The longer I continue to remain RC, the more I want to convert to the OC. My wife tells me that since I was baptized RC that I should remain RC. She would not convert with me if I do.
 

Averoff

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You need to grow in your Faith, if your journey leads to you Orthodoxy than how can that be a sin? As far as leaving Orthodoxy to go to another Faith or branch of Christianity, I know very few who have gone the other direction-mainly because they found spiritual fulfillment in the Orthodox Faith.
 

Paradosiakos

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I agree. I am not thinking that going to Orthodoxy is a sin in the least. I've even in childhood had a great respect for the faith not knowing much but understanding enough that their ways were more holy. I recently started listening to Ancient Faith Radio daily on my commutes seeking more about Orthodoxy. I feel I'm getting closer everyday.
 

notnamed88

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I'm in a similar boat to paradosiakos; however I seem to find similar issues in orthodoxy as I do in the roman catholic faith.

When the holy spirit healed me and pressed upon me to declare Christ my saviour, I was led to a catholic church to confess.

I chose later to pursue orthodoxy. As I've never been able to fully understand why the Pope has so much authority and rubs shoulders with such wicked people. Then again, Christ was condemned for meeting with sinners by the Pharisees.

For me, I'm leaning towards trying to fix the Roman Catholic faith from within, not with guile, but by being openly questioning. With a heart seeking The Truth first.
 

notnamed88

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The trads are having a hard time doing that.
Indeed, I opened 1 of my favorite bibles to a random page while I was contemplating the pope.

I found myself reading Jeremiah, what an insightful reading on how God tries to wake us up from backsliding with hardship.

While also promising to redeem those who return to righteousness.

If this holds true today (of course it does) I think the Western Nations are in for a very rough time.
 

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"Jeremiah, what an insightful reading on how God tries to wake us up from backsliding with hardship.

While also promising to redeem those who return to righteousness."

Our Lord God is so wonderful to draw us even when we are covered in mud and stuck on chasing our own tail in futility. He is my Redeemer!
 

LizaSymonenko

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The bigger question is not "leaving"... but, "why" you are leaving.

I personally have never found anything within the Orthodox Church that would compel me to even consider going elsewhere. Granted I do not always agree with all Orthodox Christians and their views, and I often fall short of adhering to the teachings of the Church, however, I know them to be true.

If you find something you disagree with in Orthodoxy, you need to step back and investigate why you disagree. Do you have a valid point, or are you simply trying to justify your own sinfulness, or perhaps you are just jumping on the bandwagon of society?

Do you disagree with whatever teaching you disagree with merely to make your own life easier, or to placate your conscience, etc.?

These are the things that need to be considered.
 

Paradosiakos

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I consider myself a trad, maybe even a rad trad depending who you would ask. It seems there's just no room for trads in the RC, especially in the west. I'm sure things will not be fixed inside or out in the RC, at least not in my lifetime.

I've had a hard time trying to find something I would find disagreeable in the Orthodox Church. The only thing that comes to mind is the allowance of divorce but I don't know every angle how it's addressed. The RC allows for annulment in certain circumstances but I hear even that is very difficult. Maybe divorce in Orthodox Church isn't as easy as some RC's make it sound.

When I look back at the issue of divorce in one Church or the other, personally I would not ever pursue it so I don't really care knowing more about it. My wife and I made a vow before God that, roughly translated, included 'till death do us part'.

Some say I'm just looking for greener pastures but in my view I'm just looking for some grass. Most of all the grass in my field seems to have turned to chaff.
 

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If you leave the Orthodox faith knowing it is true you will lose your soul, not by some dude getting angry and pronouncing a judgement sitting on some cloud in the sky, but by the very nature of the sin itself.
 

LizaSymonenko

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I've had a hard time trying to find something I would find disagreeable in the Orthodox Church. The only thing that comes to mind is the allowance of divorce but I don't know every angle how it's addressed. The RC allows for annulment in certain circumstances but I hear even that is very difficult. Maybe divorce in Orthodox Church isn't as easy as some RC's make it sound.

When I look back at the issue of divorce in one Church or the other, personally I would not ever pursue it so I don't really care knowing more about it. My wife and I made a vow before God that, roughly translated, included 'till death do us part'.

Some say I'm just looking for greener pastures but in my view I'm just looking for some grass. Most of all the grass in my field seems to have turned to chaff.
Divorce is NOT taken lightly in the Orthodox Church... and yet out of LOVE, the Church wishes the faithful to live in joy, peace and good health... and for couples to help each other (and their children) on the road to salvation.

However, sometimes one of the individuals falls short of expectations... they break the bonds of marriage through immoral behavior, or the husband (or wife) tortures the other - physically or mentally... or they fall into an addiction (drugs, alcohol, porn, gambling...)... leaving the other person struggling and themselves falling into sin and away from salvation through frustration, anger, angst... Sometimes, one beats the other, bruising them, breaking bones, etc.

This is not how God or the Church wishes people to live. Therefore, for the safety of the innocent spouse, and their children, the Church, out of love and compassion, permits divorce...with due cause... and not because you found something younger or richer, etc.

Even so, it is limited to three times. A second marriage is permitted (shorter service), and a third... because things happen.... but, not a fourth.... which identifies divorce/remarriage as a habit not a necessity.
 

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If you want to become Orthodox, then do so because Orthodoxy is true and the only unadulterated truth. Do so because Orthodoxy is life, and the only real, eternal life. Do so because Orthodoxy is the saving faith, not just one option of many. For, if you become Orthodox, and then leave, you will have to give an account to God. This is to accept Orthodoxy on its own terms, which are clearly set forth by the saints.
 

Paradosiakos

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As an RC we’re allowed to commune at EC Churches as well as any Church that is in communion with Rome. I think we’re not to make a habit of it that it’s better to attend a RC Church that is in my archdiocese. I don’t and I won’t for personal reasons. When we did go to Church physically, it was at a Church run by the Dominicans in the adjoining archdiocese. They are the most traditional adhering RC in the area. Unfortunately like most RC parishioners, they are about unfriendly as most. The Orthodox I have found are the most friendly, welcoming and warm people I’ve met when visiting their Churches.
 
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