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Orthodox-Catholic Intercommunion in Pennsylvania?!

KostaC

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Peter J said:
KostaC said:
I don't know if this is the right place to ask it, but is there like a PR campaign going on in Catholic churches across the United States that states that Catholics are allowed to receive at Orthodox Churches and vice-versa?
I know it might seem like there is such a "PR campaign"; but if you spend time around e.g. Anglicans I believe you will find much the same thing. That is to say, their church's position is that they may receive in Catholic or Orthodox churches, so many of them expect Catholic or Orthodox priests to give them communion.
I have spent some time around Anglicans, so I can say that I agree with you fully. Much to the chagrin of my Catholic and Orthodox friends and family alike, I used to attend Anglo-Catholic liturgies to observe because I liked their liturgical style and English history, and time and time again a priest or an acolyte or a deacon would come up to me and ask if I'd like communion. It almost got a little bit unnerving (which is kind of mean to say, I suppose); everyone would say things along the line of "all our welcome, join us, join us!" One time I saw a very sweet, elderly acolyte extinguishing candles in the cathedral after liturgy, and I asked her for help. She asked me to go to the altar and get the chalice and it's covering for her. I told her that that wouldn't be right, since I'm not Anglican. She just thought that was the funniest thing ever and she asked why on Earth should any baptised Christian not be allowed to commune there and get the chalice afterwards? I went and got the chalice with its silken communion cloth and put it in the sacristy, but I felt wrong afterwards. That was the last time I tried to be a neutral observer. I lost my interest in High Church Anglicanism, especially after I read yesterday that the Church of England might make vestments during liturgy optional.
 

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OrthoNoob said:
Tallitot said:
He's probably doing it on his own.
He claims (again, I dont know how much store to set by this) that Metropolitan +NICHOLAS is aware of his ecclesiastical status and allows him to receive Holy Communion.
Metropolitan Nicholas has been reposed for quite some time now. The current bishop is His Grace Gregory.
I am very familiar with orthodox- greek Catholic relations. I live in the heart of it all. There is not intercommunion between the two. Remember the Orthodox usually left the catholic parishes over calender issues or property rights. Most are still a family divided..some at the greek Catholics some of the family at the Orthodox church. Some even built tge orthodox parish literally next door to the greek Catholic parish. Trust me, it isn't all hugs and handshakes.  Even after all these years.
If anyone is communing in both it is usually someone who is married to a greek Catholic and changing back and forth..in other words doing it on tgeir own. I have heard of married couples switching vack and forth fron gc to orth because one doesn't make them happy at the time..and being in a marriage of a gc and Orthodox it is easy. But being ib a Pennsylvanian slavic greek Catholic or orthodox church in coal country is a universe unto its own.
 

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Podkarptska may be the only one that understands Pennsylvania slavic churches other than me that has posted so far.  Trust me, the culture here is unique. I should write a book on it.
 

podkarpatska

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username! said:
OrthoNoob said:
Tallitot said:
He's probably doing it on his own.
He claims (again, I dont know how much store to set by this) that Metropolitan +NICHOLAS is aware of his ecclesiastical status and allows him to receive Holy Communion.
Metropolitan Nicholas has been reposed for quite some time now. The current bishop is His Grace Gregory.
I am very familiar with orthodox- greek Catholic relations. I live in the heart of it all. There is not intercommunion between the two. Remember the Orthodox usually left the catholic parishes over calender issues or property rights. Most are still a family divided..some at the greek Catholics some of the family at the Orthodox church. Some even built tge orthodox parish literally next door to the greek Catholic parish. Trust me, it isn't all hugs and handshakes.  Even after all these years.
If anyone is communing in both it is usually someone who is married to a greek Catholic and changing back and forth..in other words doing it on tgeir own. I have heard of married couples switching vack and forth fron gc to orth because one doesn't make them happy at the time..and being in a marriage of a gc and Orthodox it is easy. But being ib a Pennsylvanian slavic greek Catholic or orthodox church in coal country is a universe unto its own.
To demonstrate username's point, the late Metropolitan Nicholas would like to tell an apocryphal story of "Rusnak' man from Pennsylvania, named Tryphon who  joined the Merchant Marine during the war. His ship was torpedoed by the Japanese and he was the only survivor, coming ashore on a deserted island. Like Robinson Crusoe, he survived on his own for many years. The first thing he did was build a beautiful wooden church out of driftwood to give thanks for his deliverance from the sea. Forty years he was rescued by the Russian Navy. The Russian commander noticed that Tryphon was the only person on the island but there were four churches, one beautifully maintained, the other three in various stages of disrepair. Curious, he asked Tryphon why there were four churches with only one man on the island.  With a puzzled look, Tryphon answered him very matter of factly - 'I went to the other ones before the fight and the splits.'

Two towns come to mind, one in western PA, the other in eastern. In western PA is the town of Clymer, PA with at least five parishes stemming from one root - having split over various issues ranging from the Unia in the 1930's to congregational property control in the 1990's. Same in St. Clair/Frackville where the splits had to do with the region of the villages of the founders, the Unia, property control and the calendar. Go figure. In both towns EVERYONE in each parish is related so some folks in each of the other churches. These are small towns with no more than say 8 - 10 thousand population at their height. The percentage of Eastern Christians in each was far less than fifty percent, so each of the parishes is relatively small.
 

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podkarpatska said:
username! said:
OrthoNoob said:
Tallitot said:
He's probably doing it on his own.
He claims (again, I dont know how much store to set by this) that Metropolitan +NICHOLAS is aware of his ecclesiastical status and allows him to receive Holy Communion.
Metropolitan Nicholas has been reposed for quite some time now. The current bishop is His Grace Gregory.
I am very familiar with orthodox- greek Catholic relations. I live in the heart of it all. There is not intercommunion between the two. Remember the Orthodox usually left the catholic parishes over calender issues or property rights. Most are still a family divided..some at the greek Catholics some of the family at the Orthodox church. Some even built tge orthodox parish literally next door to the greek Catholic parish. Trust me, it isn't all hugs and handshakes.  Even after all these years.
If anyone is communing in both it is usually someone who is married to a greek Catholic and changing back and forth..in other words doing it on tgeir own. I have heard of married couples switching vack and forth fron gc to orth because one doesn't make them happy at the time..and being in a marriage of a gc and Orthodox it is easy. But being ib a Pennsylvanian slavic greek Catholic or orthodox church in coal country is a universe unto its own.
To demonstrate username's point, the late Metropolitan Nicholas would like to tell an apocryphal story of "Rusnak' man from Pennsylvania, named Tryphon who  joined the Merchant Marine during the war. His ship was torpedoed by the Japanese and he was the only survivor, coming ashore on a deserted island. Like Robinson Crusoe, he survived on his own for many years. The first thing he did was build a beautiful wooden church out of driftwood to give thanks for his deliverance from the sea. Forty years he was rescued by the Russian Navy. The Russian commander noticed that Tryphon was the only person on the island but there were four churches, one beautifully maintained, the other three in various stages of disrepair. Curious, he asked Tryphon why there were four churches with only one man on the island.  With a puzzled look, Tryphon answered him very matter of factly - 'I went to the other ones before the fight and the splits.'
Hehe...ah the old island story..if anyone understood Pennsylvania slav churches it was Metropolitan Nicholas and Metropolitan Constantine. Both were hierarchs serving in the same area in Pennsylvania.
 

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TheTrisagion said:
Antonious Nikolas said:
KostaC said:
I don't know if this is the right place to ask it, but is there like a PR campaign going on in Catholic churches across the United States that states that Catholics are allowed to receive at Orthodox Churches and vice-versa? I have no problem explaining to people why I don't receive communion at a Catholic church or why I don't feel obliged to line up with the communicants and get a blessing from the priest. What I do take issue with is American Catholics telling me "we're all the same" and its only Orthodox prejudices that's why I say otherwise. The worst experience I've ever had with the idea of shared communion was when my two best friends had a temper tantrum during Divine Liturgy because they tried to go in line with me and I told them to sit back down and that they can get antidoro later. I got the same speech about how it's totally allowed, that we're all the same, what's most important is that we're not Protestant, and that it's prejudice against them. I'd like to know what gives.
I  don't know if it's a PR campaign exactly, but I've witnessed similar episodes and heard the same sort of lines (that it's all blind and unnecessary prejudice on the Orthodox side).  For example, one time a Roman Catholic nun showed up at our church and got in line to receive.  Our priest told her politely that only baptized Orthodox Christians who have fasted, et cetera, can approach.  She told him that no, it was okay, both her bishop and the pope said it was okay for Roman Catholics to receive in Orthodox churches.  Our priest then had to explain - again, very politely - that neither her bishop nor the Catholic pope had any authority to decide who Orthodox priests should admit to the chalice.  She wasn't very happy.  I wonder how accurate her report was.  Is someone in authority telling Catholics that intercommunion is allowed outside of instances of economia?
Who argues with a priest in the communion line? That would just be weird.
It may be weird but it does happen. Protestants have no theology of the priest as the guardian of the Chalice. Instead, they believe that it is just between them and God and that no man, even a priest, can stand between them and God by denying them Communion.
At one point the Catholics had a statement in the paperback Mass books that they have printed every few months that have all the changeable parts that stated that Eastern Orthodox can receive Holy Communion in the Catholic Church. However, when they realize how offensive that was to Orthodox, they amended the statement to state that Orthodox can receive Communion in the Catholic Church but that Orthodox should follow the teachings of their Church on where they can receive the Eucharist.

Fr. John W. Morris
 

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Oh I could name lots of towns this happened in. In my family's orthodox parish they won't say catholic in English during the creed because "we aren't greek Catholic".  Don't even ask, it's impossible to understand if you aren't from here. I got told that I was no good at the Greek Catholic parish by a guy because my family left to build the Orthodox parish. I wasn't even born then and my family that stayed were devout parishioners so I don't understand it.
 

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username! said:
Podkarptska may be the only one that understands Pennsylvania slavic churches other than me that has posted so far.  Trust me, the culture here is unique. I should write a book on it.
You really should.  I'd love to read it.
 

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frjohnmorris said:
It may be weird but it does happen. Protestants have no theology of the priest as the guardian of the Chalice.
Lutherans most certainly have. My friend is a Lutheran pastor and I once asked if he would he give me communion. The answer was negative and he explained to me that their Eucharist is only for those who subscribe to the Lutheran confessions. Not that I'd had any intent nor need to receive heterodox Eucharist but I wanted to hear his answer.

 

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Alpo said:
frjohnmorris said:
It may be weird but it does happen. Protestants have no theology of the priest as the guardian of the Chalice.
Lutherans most certainly have. My friend is a Lutheran pastor and I once asked if he would he give me communion. The answer was negative and he explained to me that their Eucharist is only for those who subscribe to the Lutheran confessions. Not that I'd had any intent nor need to receive heterodox Eucharist but I wanted to hear his answer.
He must be Missouri or Wisconsin Synod. The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America has open Communion.

Fr. John W. Morris
 

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I'm not Alpo but I assume his pastor friend would be Finnish synod since he's in Finland.
 

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KostaC said:
Peter J said:
KostaC said:
I don't know if this is the right place to ask it, but is there like a PR campaign going on in Catholic churches across the United States that states that Catholics are allowed to receive at Orthodox Churches and vice-versa?
I know it might seem like there is such a "PR campaign"; but if you spend time around e.g. Anglicans I believe you will find much the same thing. That is to say, their church's position is that they may receive in Catholic or Orthodox churches, so many of them expect Catholic or Orthodox priests to give them communion.
I have spent some time around Anglicans, so I can say that I agree with you fully. Much to the chagrin of my Catholic and Orthodox friends and family alike, I used to attend Anglo-Catholic liturgies to observe because I liked their liturgical style and English history, and time and time again a priest or an acolyte or a deacon would come up to me and ask if I'd like communion. It almost got a little bit unnerving (which is kind of mean to say, I suppose); everyone would say things along the line of "all our welcome, join us, join us!"
Yikes! I just don't know what's wrong with some people.

About 11 years ago I attended an Anglican liturgy in a very small chapel, but I definitely never got any comments like the ones you described, thank goodness, (although sometimes I thought the minister and people gave me "looks" when they noticed that I wasn't going up for communion).
 

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Peter J said:
Yikes! I just don't know what's wrong with some people.

About 11 years ago I attended an Anglican liturgy in a very small chapel, but I definitely never got any comments like the ones you described, thank goodness, (although sometimes I thought the minister and people gave me "looks" when they noticed that I wasn't going up for communion).
Unfortunately, it seems like Anglicanism is dying out in the United States; any time I'd attend to observe, liturgy would be in a small chapel. The closest Anglican church to where I live in DC is entirely made up of elderly people; so shockingly so I'd say the situation in the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of North and South America pales in comparison to the demographic makeup of the Episcopal Church.

It really does boil down to the Protestant belief that Holy Communion/Qurbana is nothing but a symbol. If you don't believe that the bread and wine literally become the Body and Blood of Christ, what does it matter who consumes it? They're trying to be nice, so they're offering what they have, but for us said act is nearly insulting because God's presence in the Eucharist means so much to us.

I never got a look, but confusion was the rule and not the exception. Another problem I would have to guess is that it seems like most Protestant sects have open communion now, so that certainly confuses people, I bet. If for example the Anglican acolyte I had met had given Communion to Lutherans, Methodists, and confused Catholics before, she probably figures that I as an Eastern Christian shouldn't be left out.

But hey, what do I know? I barely know enough about my own Church, so I have no authority to guess what happens in other ones. I just don't understand Protestantism, and I probably never will.
 

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frjohnmorris said:
Alpo said:
frjohnmorris said:
It may be weird but it does happen. Protestants have no theology of the priest as the guardian of the Chalice.
Lutherans most certainly have. My friend is a Lutheran pastor and I once asked if he would he give me communion. The answer was negative and he explained to me that their Eucharist is only for those who subscribe to the Lutheran confessions. Not that I'd had any intent nor need to receive heterodox Eucharist but I wanted to hear his answer.
He must be Missouri or Wisconsin Synod. The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America has open Communion.

Fr. John W. Morris

As augustin said, I'm not American. The friend is a confessional Lutheran though but even the Lutheran state church around here doesn't have open communion.
 

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Papist said:
Why would anyone feel the need to receive the Eucharist in a church body which is not one's own?
Excellent question!  The answer lies somewhere between pride (both personal and corporate) and an inadequate understanding of what communion is on a real and practical level.
 

Alpo

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Papist said:
Why would anyone feel the need to receive the Eucharist in a church body which is not one's own?
Most of the Protestants basically see whole Christendeom as their own church body. Hence the idea of open communion.
 

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Schultz said:
Papist said:
Why would anyone feel the need to receive the Eucharist in a church body which is not one's own?
Excellent question!  The answer lies somewhere between pride (both personal and corporate) and an inadequate understanding of what communion is on a real and practical level.
It could be a lot simpler than that. When I was in a Catholic preschool I didn't understand why I couldn't have those tasty-looking wafers.
 

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Iconodule said:
Schultz said:
Papist said:
Why would anyone feel the need to receive the Eucharist in a church body which is not one's own?
Excellent question!  The answer lies somewhere between pride (both personal and corporate) and an inadequate understanding of what communion is on a real and practical level.
It could be a lot simpler than that. When I was in a Catholic preschool I didn't understand why I couldn't have those tasty-looking wafers.
They were probably not tasty.
 

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Iconodule said:
Schultz said:
Papist said:
Why would anyone feel the need to receive the Eucharist in a church body which is not one's own?
Excellent question!  The answer lies somewhere between pride (both personal and corporate) and an inadequate understanding of what communion is on a real and practical level.
It could be a lot simpler than that. When I was in a Catholic preschool I didn't understand why I couldn't have those tasty-looking wafers.
Well, you were a child.  Let's limit the discussion to adults. :)
 

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hecma925 said:
Iconodule said:
Schultz said:
Papist said:
Why would anyone feel the need to receive the Eucharist in a church body which is not one's own?
Excellent question!  The answer lies somewhere between pride (both personal and corporate) and an inadequate understanding of what communion is on a real and practical level.
It could be a lot simpler than that. When I was in a Catholic preschool I didn't understand why I couldn't have those tasty-looking wafers.
They were probably not tasty.
Usually, they weren't.
 

ialmisry

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Schultz said:
Papist said:
Why would anyone feel the need to receive the Eucharist in a church body which is not one's own?
Excellent question!  The answer lies somewhere between pride (both personal and corporate) and an inadequate understanding of what communion is on a real and practical level.
exactly, with a dash of judging without wanting to be judged.
 

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ialmisry said:
Usually, they weren't.
If they're the same as the Protestant wafers that became really popular when I was growing up in evangelical circles, they taste like styrofoam.
 

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Antonious Nikolas said:
KostaC said:
I don't know if this is the right place to ask it, but is there like a PR campaign going on in Catholic churches across the United States that states that Catholics are allowed to receive at Orthodox Churches and vice-versa? I have no problem explaining to people why I don't receive communion at a Catholic church or why I don't feel obliged to line up with the communicants and get a blessing from the priest. What I do take issue with is American Catholics telling me "we're all the same" and its only Orthodox prejudices that's why I say otherwise. The worst experience I've ever had with the idea of shared communion was when my two best friends had a temper tantrum during Divine Liturgy because they tried to go in line with me and I told them to sit back down and that they can get antidoro later. I got the same speech about how it's totally allowed, that we're all the same, what's most important is that we're not Protestant, and that it's prejudice against them. I'd like to know what gives.
I  don't know if it's a PR campaign exactly, but I've witnessed similar episodes and heard the same sort of lines (that it's all blind and unnecessary prejudice on the Orthodox side).  For example, one time a Roman Catholic nun showed up at our church and got in line to receive.  Our priest told her politely that only baptized Orthodox Christians who have fasted, et cetera, can approach.  She told him that no, it was okay, both her bishop and the pope said it was okay for Roman Catholics to receive in Orthodox churches.  Our priest then had to explain - again, very politely - that neither her bishop nor the Catholic pope had any authority to decide who Orthodox priests should admit to the chalice.  She wasn't very happy.  I wonder how accurate her report was.  Is someone in authority telling Catholics that intercommunion is allowed outside of instances of economia?
First of all, with Roman Catholic churches outnumbering our by at least 10 to 1 why would a RC even consider receiving Communion in an Orthodox church. There are too many RCC's around to do that.  There is NO excuse for a RC to receive Communion in an Orthodox church, they need to patronize their own churches.
 

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KostaC said:
I don't know if this is the right place to ask it, but is there like a PR campaign going on in Catholic churches across the United States that states that Catholics are allowed to receive at Orthodox Churches and vice-versa? I have no problem explaining to people why I don't receive communion at a Catholic church or why I don't feel obliged to line up with the communicants and get a blessing from the priest. What I do take issue with is American Catholics telling me "we're all the same" and its only Orthodox prejudices that's why I say otherwise. The worst experience I've ever had with the idea of shared communion was when my two best friends had a temper tantrum during Divine Liturgy because they tried to go in line with me and I told them to sit back down and that they can get antidoro later. I got the same speech about how it's totally allowed, that we're all the same, what's most important is that we're not Protestant, and that it's prejudice against them. I'd like to know what gives.
It is not up to the Pope or the local Catholic Bishop to tell Eastern Orthodox who may receive Holy Communion in Eastern Orthodox Churches. The Catholics should have enough respect for our religion to respect our beliefs about Communion.

Fr. John W. Morris
 

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username! said:
Podkarptska may be the only one that understands Pennsylvania slavic churches other than me that has posted so far.  Trust me, the culture here is unique. I should write a book on it.
Relative to this microcosm you and Podkarptska are describing, have you guys seen this?
 

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Any Orthodox clergyman who gives communion to a Roman Catholic is obviously an ecumenist.
 

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username! said:
People in Pennsylvania that attend Slavic churches are descended from Ukrainians/slovaks and poles. Russians are a newer ethnic group to PA churches usually.
Good to know!  Thanks for the info.  Not being from the area, I suppose I was thinking of St. Tikhon's Monastery and The Deer Hunter.
 

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Antonious Nikolas said:
username! said:
People in Pennsylvania that attend Slavic churches are descended from Ukrainians/slovaks and poles. Russians are a newer ethnic group to PA churches usually.
Good to know!  Thanks for the info.  Not being from the area, I suppose I was thinking of St. Tikhon's Monastery and The Deer Hunter.
With the exception of Ukranians, I do not think that the Eastern Catholic Ruthenians would be particularly happy being considered Slovaks or Poles. They usually call themselves Rusyns.

Fr. John W. Morris
 

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It's more complicated than a simple Eastern Catholic/Eastern Orthodox dichotomy. The most outspoken pro Rusyn religious figure in the "Ruthenian" homeland has been an Orhodox priest, the rector of Uzhorod Cathedral of the Holy Cross(MP), the Archpriest Dmitry Sydor, who has been prosecuted and placed under house arrest by regional Ukrainian authorities for his efforts. The American president of the Carpatho Rusyn society is Orthodox from an OCA/ACROD background.  And those who self identify as Rusyn do not self identify as Slovaks, Poles , Russians or Ukrainians - even though they share borders and some cultural and linguistic  similarities with each.
 

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frjohnmorris said:
Antonious Nikolas said:
username! said:
People in Pennsylvania that attend Slavic churches are descended from Ukrainians/slovaks and poles. Russians are a newer ethnic group to PA churches usually.

Good to know!  Thanks for the info.  Not being from the area, I suppose I was thinking of St. Tikhon's Monastery and The Deer Hunter.
With the exception of Ukranians, I do not think that the Eastern Catholic Ruthenians would be particularly happy being considered Slovaks or Poles. They usually call themselves Rusyns.

Fr. John W. Morris
Again, things I am aware of. I could have said descendants of people from the former austrian Hungarian province of halychyna.
 

BTRAKAS

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KostaC said:
I don't know if this is the right place to ask it, but is there like a PR campaign going on in Catholic churches across the United States that states that Catholics are allowed to receive at Orthodox Churches and vice-versa? I have no problem explaining to people why I don't receive communion at a Catholic church or why I don't feel obliged to line up with the communicants and get a blessing from the priest. What I do take issue with is American Catholics telling me "we're all the same" and its only Orthodox prejudices that's why I say otherwise. The worst experience I've ever had with the idea of shared communion was when my two best friends had a temper tantrum during Divine Liturgy because they tried to go in line with me and I told them to sit back down and that they can get antidoro later. I got the same speech about how it's totally allowed, that we're all the same, what's most important is that we're not Protestant, and that it's prejudice against them. I'd like to know what gives.
I've noticed with their watered down ecclesiolgy since Vatican II, plenty of otherwise knowledgeable Roman Catholic laity and even priests, erroneously consider Eastern Orthodox Christians to be so similar in faith that their Holy Communion can be shared with Eastern Orthodox, and Oriental Orthodox, for that matter.

However, if you look at the Missal in the pews of a Roman Catholic Church, they have language that advises that while they will serve Communion to both Eastern and Oriental Orthodox, those Eastern and Oriental Orthodox seeking to Commune in the Roman Catholic Church, should have the permission of their bishop to so commune.  (I don't think this statement is limited to the RC diocese in which I reside.)

As to the original post, I don't believe the claim of the individual who asserts he's of a Roman Catholic Byzantine Rite and receives Holy Communion in a GOAA parish with the knowledge of the bishop.  If he's in Pennsylvania, except for Greater Philadelphia, he would be within the GOAA's Metropolis of Pittsburgh, under Metropolitan Savas; I am certain there is no sharing of the Chalice with Byzantine Rite Roman Catholics with his knowledge, or that of his predecessor Metropolitan Maximos.  I am just as sure that ACROD's Metropolitan Nicholas of Blessed Memory would not have approved of this claimed practice. (The GOAA's Metropolitan Nicholas of Detroit was Locum Tenens of the GOAA's Pittsburgh Metropolis for less than two months or so two years ago.  I am equally certain he would not have approved of this sharing of the Chalice outside of Eastern Orthodoxy.)

The original post has to be a false assertion.
 

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You read stuff on the internet about shared communion between greek catholics and orthodox.with perhaps the highest amount of both churches you might look to Pennsy for the answer. The answer is NO it does not happen.
 

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Basil 320 said:
KostaC said:
I don't know if this is the right place to ask it, but is there like a PR campaign going on in Catholic churches across the United States that states that Catholics are allowed to receive at Orthodox Churches and vice-versa? I have no problem explaining to people why I don't receive communion at a Catholic church or why I don't feel obliged to line up with the communicants and get a blessing from the priest. What I do take issue with is American Catholics telling me "we're all the same" and its only Orthodox prejudices that's why I say otherwise. The worst experience I've ever had with the idea of shared communion was when my two best friends had a temper tantrum during Divine Liturgy because they tried to go in line with me and I told them to sit back down and that they can get antidoro later. I got the same speech about how it's totally allowed, that we're all the same, what's most important is that we're not Protestant, and that it's prejudice against them. I'd like to know what gives.
I've noticed with their watered down ecclesiolgy since Vatican II, plenty of otherwise knowledgeable Roman Catholic laity and even priests, erroneously consider Eastern Orthodox Christians to be so similar in faith that their Holy Communion can be shared with Eastern Orthodox, and Oriental Orthodox, for that matter.

However, if you look at the Missal in the pews of a Roman Catholic Church, they have language that advises that while they will serve Communion to both Eastern and Oriental Orthodox, those Eastern and Oriental Orthodox seeking to Commune in the Roman Catholic Church, should have the permission of their bishop to so commune.  (I don't think this statement is limited to the RC diocese in which I reside.)

As to the original post, I don't believe the claim of the individual who asserts he's of a Roman Catholic Byzantine Rite and receives Holy Communion in a GOAA parish with the knowledge of the bishop.  If he's in Pennsylvania, except for Greater Philadelphia, he would be within the GOAA's Metropolis of Pittsburgh, under Metropolitan Savas; I am certain there is no sharing of the Chalice with Byzantine Rite Roman Catholics with his knowledge, or that of his predecessor Metropolitan Maximos.  I am just as sure that ACROD's Metropolitan Nicholas of Blessed Memory would not have approved of this claimed practice. (The GOAA's Metropolitan Nicholas of Detroit was Locum Tenens of the GOAA's Pittsburgh Metropolis for less than two months or so two years ago.  I am equally certain he would not have approved of this sharing of the Chalice outside of Eastern Orthodoxy.)

The original post has to be a false assertion.
What always amazes me about this issue is why a person who is not a member of a Church would even want to receive Communion in that Church? It has to be a thing of pure pride caused by a person who thinks that no one has the right to stand between them and God. It is all part of the individualism and rejection of the idea of the priesthood that began in Western society with Luther and Protestantism and has influenced every aspect of our culture. As a result spiritual and moral anarchy reigns as each person becomes their own private ecumenical council who decides for themselves what to believe. Whenever I hear a person say, "I am spiritual, but not religious" is shudder, because the truth is that they are neither, but have made a god of themselves and their private opinions.
An Eastern Catholic who takes Communion in the Orthodox Church, knowing that it is not allowed, is really showing intense disrespect not only for our Church, but for their own Church, because neither allows intercommunion. The Roman Catholic position on Communion is the same as the Eastern Orthodox position. Communion is a manifestation of a union that has been achieved. It is the end result of ecumenical dialogue and the achievement of unity, not a rest stop on the way towards unity. We have much in common with the Catholic Church and should work together with them especially to present a common defense of traditional Christian morality in a society that is becoming increasingly hostile towards traditional Christian moral values. But we should also have enough respect for out Catholic brothers and sisters in Christ that we should not ignore our differences.


Fr. John W. Morris
 
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