OO and EO difference (hurdles to Reunification)

Do you believe that OO and EO together are truly the same church?

  • Yes

    Votes: 77 52.0%
  • After reunification

    Votes: 49 33.1%
  • No

    Votes: 22 14.9%

  • Total voters
    148

prodromas

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It funny was being biased does I was blindly seeing how the miaphysite view can be confused with the monophysite view but I never saw how the EO's view of the diaphysite seems like the Nestorian heresy reworded thanks everyone for the great input. EkhristosAnest you have been quoted as knowing more on the state of negotiations between the EO and the OO I would love to hear your information. Also how do you get on the private chat boards because I would like to look at the threads about OO and EO relations this stuff really intrigues me and hope that reunification becomes "official" as it seems to be spiritually reunified among many brethren's!
 

Salpy

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A topic on how EO's view OO sacraments was split off from this thread and moved here:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,12563.msg170824.html#msg170824
 

Amdetsion

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Ian Lazarus said:
Truly, I think we just want to be divided.  Both sides, as far as I can recon, believe the very same thing.  We hold on to the same faith in the same God, and much the same practices.  It is the human factor which gets in the way.   No one is willing to sit at the table and say, "You know, we messed up here.  Our pride got in the way.  We want to be the only ones in charge and the only ones with the keys to the kingdom, so we figured you can't be.  We goofed.  But instead of making excuses, were gonna put our heads together, and pray that God make our minds and hearts one in the Holy Spirit, so that we can mend this long festering wound and begin to walk together again, like God intended.  We have the world to contend with, and that's more than enough."  And we can point fingers at eachother for ever and say that either of us are the arrogant ones.  The truth really is that, at least in my view, we are too ready to wave documents and claim correctitude, much as the pharasee in the temple.  We need look to the publican in this case, and until we do, there will be no healing.  There will be no union.  This is not an overly emotional person speaking here, but one who has seen these debates, read these threads, talked to my OO and EO bretheren, and see the same weariness about fighting over minutiae.  If we want to come together, we will find a way with God's help.  If we don't, we stay as we are: divided brothers, wanting to talk but refusing to take the first step.  

And yes, I know of the many dialogues that have take place between our two churches.  And I know the above seems overly simplified.  Maybe that's the point.

Peace, Brothers.
Peace to you brother Lazarus.

Your words are inspired indeed.

May God help us.

Your Servant
Deacon Amde Tsion
 

IS

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You are right.

Walk into any OO Church and you would need to be completely blind to miss the icons which we venerate. (Notably, neither Nestorians nor Anglicans have icons in the places they meet.)

As I do not know how long you are going to live, I can only pray that reunification may take place during your lifetime. (Can anyone confirm whether the Syrian Orthodox and the Antiochian Orthodox Churches are in intercommunion please?)

The only other problem is what to do with Synaxarium texts which condemn the other Church. For example, coming up this week in the Coptic Synaxarium is a story about how 30,000 Coptic Christians were martyred for refusing to accept the Council of Chalcedon. St. Samuel the monk, having heard the soldiers read the Tome of Leo, lept up and cursed the Tome and anyone else who would change the Faith of our Fathers. Words like these very strongly suggest that he zealously defended what the OOs had received. I'm aware of saints in both branches of the Church which 'converted' from the other and are condemned for so doing. What do we do about them? I could go on but you get the idea.
My worthless suggestion, say that all these saints were zealous for the true Orthodox Christian Faith as best they understood it and remove condemnations. If they are needed to explain something or for some other reason then add a sentance to say that the condemnation has been removed (once it has been) with something to the affect of the above statement explaining how and why.

May I please ask when the EOs started refering to themselves as the "Church of the Seven Councils"? Obviously the Apostles never did this nor did St. Athanasius nor St Cyril nor anyone else for many centuries of Christianity? Also, there are also an Eighth and a Ninth Ecumenical Council recognised by the Eastern Orthodox Church (though different from those of the RCs). Why then don't the EOs call themselves the "Church of the Nine Councils"?

I should also note from reading this that whilst the bishops would be the ones to form a council to solve our division, they would probably not pre-empt resolving issues regarding this within their own diocese by doing so. In other words, the lay people need to first have their hearts settled before union can be achieved. I have met somebody who said quite plainly that "only the Oriental Orthodox are Christian". Now until this person can be convinced that EOs are also Christian, it would be dangerous to this person's soul for the bishop to join with EOs. Nonetheless, people who hold these strict views seem to be a dwindling number. Hopefully the EO monks in a certain area may soon understand the OO position that we may unite also.

Peace be with Christ's Church.
 

prodromas

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Didymus I think to answer your question about why the Orthodox call themselves the "church of the 7 councils" is because 8 and 9 are not truly considered ecumenical because of the division between east and west. interestingly didymus I was actually going to ask a learned OO whether there were OO saints that were 100% against the EO and vice versa. Also to answer that particular query both of can agree no matter how righteous and holy a saint is that does not mean what they say is doctrine and is definitely not infallible what we should admire is that these people died to protect the apostolic faith at all costs!
 

PeterTheAleut

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prodromas said:
Didymus I think to answer your question about why the Orthodox call themselves the "church of the 7 councils" is because 8 and 9 are not truly considered ecumenical because of the division between east and west.
Actually, after the Great Schism, many--I would venture to say the majority--in the Orthodox Church don't believe Rome needs to be represented to make a council ecumenical.  "Rome no longer follows the way of truth, so why should we care what she thinks?"  But you are right that many do not recognize the so-called "Eighth and Ninth Councils" as ecumenical.  We recognize the Palamite hesychasm defended in the councils as part of the essence of our faith, but, to a good number of us, the councils themselves don't satisfy many of the criteria needed to make them ecumenical.  (That, however, is the proper subject of another thread on another board.)

Didymus said:
May I please ask when the EOs started refering to themselves as the "Church of the Seven Councils"? Obviously the Apostles never did this nor did St. Athanasius nor St Cyril nor anyone else for many centuries of Christianity? Also, there are also an Eighth and a Ninth Ecumenical Council recognised by the Eastern Orthodox Church (though different from those of the RCs). Why then don't the EOs call themselves the "Church of the Nine Councils"?
Well, duh! ;)(I offer this exclamation totally in jest. 8))  The Apostles and the other saints you name all died centuries before the Iconoclastic Controversy ever required a Seventh Council.  Do you think they would have the foresight to recognize that the EO would need to call a Seventh Ecumenical Council and call the Church the "Church of the Seven Councils" centuries in advance?  We call ourselves the "Church of the Seven Councils" in a way synonymous with calling ourselves the "Eastern Orthodox Church"--it's more of a label that (sadly) shows how we are separate from the "heterodox" churches (one major communion of whom many EO today believe never was heterodox despite our misunderstanding).
 

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prodromas said:
both of can agree no matter how righteous and holy a saint is that does not mean what they say is doctrine... what we should admire is that these people died to protect the apostolic faith at all costs!
Agreed 8)

PeterTheAleut, it seems somewhat odd to us still as we don't go around calling ourself the "Church of the Three Councils" ???
 

Amdetsion

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PeterTheAleut said:
Well, duh! ;)(I offer this exclamation totally in jest. 8))  The Apostles and the other saints you name all died centuries before the Iconoclastic Controversy ever required a Seventh Council.  Do you think they would have the foresight to recognize that the EO would need to call a Seventh Ecumenical Council and call the Church the "Church of the Seven Councils" centuries in advance?  We call ourselves the "Church of the Seven Councils" in a way synonymous with calling ourselves the "Eastern Orthodox Church"--it's more of a label that (sadly) shows how we are separate from the "heterodox" churches (one major communion of whom many EO today believe never was heterodox despite our misunderstanding).
I beleive our brother had a very ligitimate point to his question which you failed to see.

It seems to me that his point was that:

The apostles did not call themselves the church of the "first council" which they conviened in Jerusalem where very key decisions were made in the name of Christ through the power of the Holy Spirit. They did not seems to need to make a distinction between those who were to follow the orders set at the 1st council and those who would not follow the decisions and remain with business as usual prior to the 1st council.

This would stand to impart that the apostles did not start this sort of 'scoring card' concept the west has now.

This 'scoring card' concept is a "johnny-come-lately" having NO apostolic origin at all.

This terminology (church of the 7 councils) is a pontification whenever used as if to look down on all others on earth while saying to all that "WE - THIS IS THE TRUE CHURCH and YOU ARE NOT". It smacks of the kind a of Roman-Catholicness people have come to disrespect.

The Church established by Christ and His chosen apostles is Holy, Universal and apostolic; orthodox in our Lord Jesus Christ. Any councils we may have are subject to that which is already established. Thus we are "orthodox". WE are not orthodox outside of the Holy Universal Church. So to say church of the 7 councils is moot to serious orthodox doctrine and respect for Holy tradition and order sent down to us from the beginning since all councils and all activity is a product of the church and takes place within the church. THe church can not change. NO man has the power to change the church.

So I re-assert the question: Why the need to say church of the 7 councils?

It is in my view arrogance and upity high mindedness , a we-are-the truely-blessed-and-they-are-not attitude that is behind this insensitive and un-necessary term. Which is to be expected from the western mind. You can see the we-are-better-than-all-others on earth exuding in every facit of life today from the west. This attitude is the epicenter of western culture. You would be at a loss to find a place on earth today that has not been destroyed or obliterated by the exploits of the mighty west. Two world wars pretty much speak the truth of this point.

Such terminology to me is completely objectionable having no spiritual power. The terminology is bitter. It has the visage of a frowning face

Such terminology cannot offer anyone anything but emnity and confusion. A self serving terminology which reaks of the stinch of utter hopelessness

Such are contrary to the teachings that our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ established in His church.

The church of the 7 councils is a very unfortunate...pitiful  use of words when speaking about the true Church of Christ since Christ's Church does not need to be defined by councils....the councils however need to be defined by Christ and His church.

Obey God Church!

Love one another Church!

Return good for evil Church!

Withstand each other with patience; perservering all things with love and unity Church.

Divide the faith (not the church) equally among all the church (church here is singular) so that no man falters. And if one falls; pick him up. Let the weak be carried by the stronger Church!

Pray for each other! forgive one another! as you would want God to forgive you Church!

If we all can actually begin to adhere to any of the above "churches" we would begin to see God and His mercy which he has for all of us who are his true followers which is the only real thing that joins us over the significance of councils.

God help us!

Your Servant
Deacon Amde Tsion
 

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prodromas said:
Didymus I think to answer your question about why the Orthodox call themselves the "church of the 7 councils" is because 8 and 9 are not truly considered ecumenical because of the division between east and west. interestingly didymus I was actually going to ask a learned OO whether there were OO saints that were 100% against the EO and vice versa. Also to answer that particular query both of can agree no matter how righteous and holy a saint is that does not mean what they say is doctrine and is definitely not infallible what we should admire is that these people died to protect the apostolic faith at all costs!
Re: The nine Ecumenical Councils, I don't think what you are saying is valid. Even if the lack of the west would invalidate the Ninth Ecumenical Council (and I don't grant this), this is not true of the Eighth, which was pre-schism. Also, if I am reading you correctly, this would seem to invalidate the ability of the Church to hold an Ecumenical Council in the future, which pretty much concedes Roman Catholic claims.
 

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Αριστοκλής said:
It is a common Roman Catholic claim that our Church is unable (post-schism) to hold an Ecumenical Council because we are not in Communion with the Pope, and they point to the fact that we (supposedly) only accept seven Ecumenical Councils. Now, even accepting that we only hold to seven Ecumenical Councils, the conclusion does not follow. However, podromas, in saying that the Eighth and Ninth Ecumenical Councils are not truly Ecumenical because the west was not involved (and, as I said before, this is not valid for the Eighth), concedes this point. It follows from his reasoning that we are even unable to hold an Ecumenical Council in the future.
 

lubeltri

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Symeon said:
It is a common Roman Catholic claim that our Church is unable (post-schism) to hold an Ecumenical Council because we are not in Communion with the Pope, and they point to the fact that we (supposedly) only accept seven Ecumenical Councils.
I believe our understanding is that the Supreme Pontiff must be represented at the council and that the Apostolic See has to confirm it afterwards.
 

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Symeon said:
It is a common Roman Catholic claim that our Church is unable (post-schism) to hold an Ecumenical Council because we are not in Communion with the Pope, and they point to the fact that we (supposedly) only accept seven Ecumenical Councils. Now, even accepting that we only hold to seven Ecumenical Councils, the conclusion does not follow. However, podromas, in saying that the Eighth and Ninth Ecumenical Councils are not truly Ecumenical because the west was not involved (and, as I said before, this is not valid for the Eighth), concedes this point. It follows from his reasoning that we are even unable to hold an Ecumenical Council in the future.
I see. prodomas might wrong, I'm afraid. But we've debated the status of these later 'ecumenically called';i.e., by the emperor here in the past. I believe the consensus (or at least my opinion at the time) was reached that these councils are provisionally ecumenical for us and merely lack the 'official' stamp of approval of yet another ecumenical councils. I know of  no EO church which rejects any of these councils. One must bear in mind that for the council of 879, we were in communion (or restored communion) with the Latins and even in the 1300s the schism was not yet set in stone. Hence, there may indeed have been some reluctance to so name those later three councils for the reasons that prodomas asserts. but I don't believe that situation exists now or applies at this time. Yeah, I know...not very lucid today, am I?
 

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Amdetsion said:
So I re-assert the question: Why the need to say church of the 7 councils?

It is in my view arrogance and upity high mindedness , a we-are-the truely-blessed-and-they-are-not attitude that is behind this insensitive and un-necessary term.
Deacon,

I really don't think that most EO's have this attitude.  I know Peter the Aleut doesn't have that sort of outlook.  I think the EO's just think of their Church's beliefs as having been defined by these seven councils, same as we think of our Church's beliefs as having been defined by the three we recognize.  They are just stating a fact about their Church.  Perhaps some are arrogant about it, but not most.  I think you were too quick to come to the conclusion that there was an attitude when there wasn't any.  Let's try to assume the best about those we discuss this with.  Thanks.  :)
 

PeterTheAleut

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Salpy said:
Deacon,

I really don't think that most EO's have this attitude.  I know Peter the Aleut doesn't have that sort of outlook.  I think the EO's just think of their Church's beliefs as having been defined by these seven councils, same as we think of our Church's beliefs as having been defined by the three we recognize.  They are just stating a fact about their Church.  Perhaps some are arrogant about it, but not most.  I think you were too quick to come to the conclusion that there was an attitude when there wasn't any.  Let's try to assume the best about those we discuss this with.  Thanks.  :)
I personally don't even refer to my (EO) Church as the "Church of the Seven Councils;" to me, she is just the Church.  This is not borne out of any personal objection to the more restrictive name; I just never saw any reason to use it.
 

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In fact I think if we refer to our selves as churches of a particular council we truly ruin the essence of Orthodoxy being defined at particular parts in history as opposed to the way.
 

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PeterTheAleut said:
I personally don't even refer to my (EO) Church as the "Church of the Seven Councils;" to me, she is just the Church.  This is not borne out of any personal objection to the more restrictive name; I just never saw any reason to use it.
Me, too.
This term always struck me as one used when talking with RCs and in the context that we are the "Catholics of the Seven Councils". Outside that, never used otherwise and certainly not in OO/EO relations.
 
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The OO Church never regarded itself the Church of the "Three Ecumenical Councils", and i'm not sure that it is even accurate or correct to start using such an appellation. Immediately after Chalcedon, OO Fathers often referred to Ephesus 449 and (I think) Ephesus 475 alongside Ephesus 431 and Nicaea 325 and Constantinople 381 as being the defining instruments of the faith. In the encyclical issued at Ephesus 475, the Bishops declared:

For we are satisfied with the doctrine and faith of the apostles and of the holy fathers, the three hundred and eighteen bishops; to which also the illustrious Council of the one hundred and fifty in the Royal City, and the two other holy Synods at Ephesus adhered, and which they confirmed.
This suggests that Ephesus 449 was considered on par with Ephesus 431 in some sense.
 
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