StarlightSeraphim
StarlightSeraphim

Gloria TV News on the 17th of February

My mistake-@RomanCandle's post, not Holy Cannoli.
StarlightSeraphim

Be Vigilant!

Behold the Bridegroom comes at midnight! Blessed is he who is found watching, and again unworthy is he who is found heedless. Beware, therefore, o my soul, that you not be shut out of the Kingdom.

The image of staring into the darkness in anticipation of the coming and Bright Day of Christ is very powerful. Looking at all the evil in the world it is easy to become despondent. How terrible it is …More
Behold the Bridegroom comes at midnight! Blessed is he who is found watching, and again unworthy is he who is found heedless. Beware, therefore, o my soul, that you not be shut out of the Kingdom.

The image of staring into the darkness in anticipation of the coming and Bright Day of Christ is very powerful. Looking at all the evil in the world it is easy to become despondent. How terrible it is to be paralyzed from doing good! Only by keeping hope in Christ is it possible to continue to labor diligently in the face of such overwhelming darkness.

Thank you Father Nay, may God bless you as a bearer of the light of Christ!
StarlightSeraphim

Gloria TV News on the 17th of February

People will come when worship is holy with a real respect for and sense of the sacred. Traditional worship engages all of the senses, you see holy images, hear reverent chanting and hymns, participate through physical actions united to prayers, smell incense and taste the divine. The worship itself is not just coming from thin air but is based on scriptures and what has been revealed as the …More
People will come when worship is holy with a real respect for and sense of the sacred. Traditional worship engages all of the senses, you see holy images, hear reverent chanting and hymns, participate through physical actions united to prayers, smell incense and taste the divine. The worship itself is not just coming from thin air but is based on scriptures and what has been revealed as the worship in the Heavenly Liturgy at the throne of God. When what we do here is modeled after that it prepares us for heaven. It truly is what people are yearning for in their hearts. As far as the German socialist go from that HollyCanolli's post, in Germany just as in Russia, when many people are culturally Catholic or Culturally Orthodox, or when the Church acts to support unjust practices of the government that go against it's principles, it loses its effectiveness as a moral authority. When the Church does speak up the forces of evil will always come against it, if the people fail to defend the truth as well then they are in great danger. If we who know the truth don't speak against lies then people will by the lie and we will lose even what we have. If people see the glory of the Church and that the people believe in it and are willing to suffer for it then the Church grows. The world is full of actors and fake things, people want what is real and true.
StarlightSeraphim

End of Carnival

The world loves the pagan festival of Carnival, but God's people love Him. Though we have to live in this world lets not join them in evil and be like them, tell them how we have something better! We are God's people, there is no greater joy. We look forward to Lent not as misery but as a time of repentance and preparation for Pascha and the glorious day of Resurrection! The fruits of repentance …More
The world loves the pagan festival of Carnival, but God's people love Him. Though we have to live in this world lets not join them in evil and be like them, tell them how we have something better! We are God's people, there is no greater joy. We look forward to Lent not as misery but as a time of repentance and preparation for Pascha and the glorious day of Resurrection! The fruits of repentance are great joy!
StarlightSeraphim

98% of Catholic women use contraception a ‘damned lie’:

This is just a distraction, the truth is simple and what the government is doing is indefensible. It is just a first step to curtail religious freedom. The First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution guarantees the free exercise of religion, when a religious institution is required to pay for "contraceptive services" that directly violate their religious convictions then that is a violation of that …More
This is just a distraction, the truth is simple and what the government is doing is indefensible. It is just a first step to curtail religious freedom. The First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution guarantees the free exercise of religion, when a religious institution is required to pay for "contraceptive services" that directly violate their religious convictions then that is a violation of that freedom. Don't give up the fight. They will say and do much worse.
Blessed are you when men hate you, And when they exclude you, And revile you, and cast out your name as evil, For the Son of Man’s sake. Rejoice in that day and leap for joy! For indeed your reward is great in heaven, For in like manner their fathers did to the prophets.
StarlightSeraphim

When Jesus Became God

Jesus did not become God, He always was God, even before all ages. The council was summoned by the Emperor, who desired unity in the Roman Empire and thus called the Church's bishops together to settle the raging of the heresy of Arianism, the doctrine that Jesus Christ was a created being and therefore not truly the one God. This was a new idea, this council was not to establish a new faith but …More
Jesus did not become God, He always was God, even before all ages. The council was summoned by the Emperor, who desired unity in the Roman Empire and thus called the Church's bishops together to settle the raging of the heresy of Arianism, the doctrine that Jesus Christ was a created being and therefore not truly the one God. This was a new idea, this council was not to establish a new faith but to affirm what was held to be true by the Apostles and to root out the false ideas that had spread with the second century movement of Gnosticism and the teachings of Arius. There was a church before there was a set cannon of scripture, it is the holy tradition and the truth revealed by the Holy Spirit that showed what was in line with the teaching of the Apostles that knew Christ and what appeared later by false teachers and abusers. Even John, the writer of the fourth gospel, spoke out against false teachers who called themselves Christians in the late first century. It is reported that one day John went into a public bath house and found there a well known Gnostic heretic named Cerenthus. John ran out crying, "Let us get out of here, for fear the place falls in, now that Cerinthus, the enemy of truth, is inside." From the very beginning, once the truth is revealed subtle deception that grows into destructive heresy follows. Just like the parable of the Wheat and Tares (Matthew 13:24-30) the enemy is subtle in planting lies among truth. When the New Testament cannon was set it was not a power play by Constantine but a long process of determining which books gave authentic witness to the truth, if it was not consistent with the apostolic teaching it was not included. The final cannon was not even settled to the current 27 books until long after Constantine. The Gnostic gospels of Phillip, Mary Magdelene, and Thomas were not written by people who knew Christ and they often were mere vehicles to insert the social and political battles of the day into a first century contexts as allegory, they are never what they seem at face value. These were not historical documents, there was no reason to include them. The whole point of the council was to find truth, and it succeeded at that. After the initial speeches by the emperor, Hosius is generally believed to have presided at the council, summoned on the scene by the emperor himself, who had retained him as theological advisor. Fr. Alexander Schmemann writes that Constantine intended the synod to be "the symbol and crown" of his victory over Licinius and the reunification of the Empire (p. 76). In his opening address, St. Constantine describes disputes within the Church as "more dangerous than war and other conflicts; they bring me more grief than anything else" (ibid., p. 77). That has been true throughout the ages, all the more need for unity of the faith in truth. We must be one body in Christ. The Apostles' preaching and the Fathers' doctrines have established one faith for the Church. Adorned with the robe of truth, woven from heavenly theology, it defines and glorifies the great mystery of Orthodoxy!
StarlightSeraphim

Case study

Iraneus,
Thank you for your continued honest and sincere discussion. I too have a family of Catholic and Orthodox and sincerely pray hope unity comes for the coming generation. As far as it is helpful, I would like to continue.

There was another article also by Fr. Thomas Hopko that talks about the many issues between East and West that would have to be resolved before unity could be restored.
More
Iraneus,
Thank you for your continued honest and sincere discussion. I too have a family of Catholic and Orthodox and sincerely pray hope unity comes for the coming generation. As far as it is helpful, I would like to continue.

There was another article also by Fr. Thomas Hopko that talks about the many issues between East and West that would have to be resolved before unity could be restored.
www.orthodoxytoday.org/articles6/HopkoPope.php

A video that draws heavily from this article is here: youtu.be/T1An0kzGTnY

This is not a “we are right and you are wrong” problem, it is a massive failure that needs all of us to repair. It may seem that such unity is impossible, but with God all things are possible. In order to get there, East and West must be open to listening to the other side and not shut down dialogue by getting into debates on things that are not of the Faith. The issue of what role the Pope has is an important one, but aside from the role of the Papacy, and the filoque which we have talked about, the three points from the article that would most need discussion are these:

· He would also officially say that the immaculate conception of Christ's mother Mary from her parents, and Mary's total glorification in the risen Christ "at the right hand of the Father," are not properly explained in the papal bulls that originally accompanied the Roman church's "ex cathedra" dogmas on these two articles of faith. The pope would explain that Mary's conception by her parents was pure and holy without a need for God extraordinarily to apply "the merits of Christ" to Joachim and Anna's sexual act of conceiving her in order to free her from "the stain of original sin." And the pope would also have to make it clear that Mary really died, and was not assumed bodily into heaven before vanquishing death by faith in her Son Jesus.

· The pope would also clearly state that though there may be a purification and cleansing from sin in the process of human dying, there is no state or condition of purgatory where sinners pay off the temporal punishment that they allegedly owe to God for their sins. The pope would also stop the practice of indulgences whereby, through certain pious activities, Christians can allegedly reduce the "days" of purgatorial suffering for themselves and others.

· The pope would also make it clear that Christ's crucifixion was not a payment of the debt of punishment that humans allegedly owe to God for their sins. He would rather teach that Christ's self-offering to his Father was the saving, atoning and redeeming payment of the perfect love, trust, obedience, gratitude and glory that humans owe to God, which is all that God desires of them for their salvation.


The video focuses a lot on Rome, as the orthodox have many concerns that would have to be worked out with honest dialogue between East and West, but only talks about the Orthodox end during the last couple of minutes. The summation of the article is much better.

“Enormous goodwill, energy and time would be necessary to refashion the papacy so that the Pope of Rome might be Christianity's world leader as the bishop whose church "presides in love" among all the churches of orthodox faith and catholic tradition. And, as recent popes have insisted, radical repentance would be also be required, beginning with the Roman church itself whose calling, as first among Christian churches, is to show the way to all others.
The Orthodox churches would surely have to undergo many humbling changes in attitude, structure and behavior to be in sacramental communion with the Roman church and to recognize its presidency among the churches in the person of its pope. The Orthodox would certainly have to overcome their own inner struggles over ecclesiastical power and privilege. They would have to candidly admit their sinful contributions to Christian division and disunity, and to repent of them sincerely. They would also have to forego all desires or demands for other churches to repent publicly of their past errors and sins, being willing to allow God to consign everything of the past to oblivion for the sake of bringing about the reconciliation and reunion of Christians at the present time.
In a word, the Orthodox would have to sacrifice everything, excepting only the faith itself, for the sake of building a common future together with Christians who are willing and able to do so with them. Like Roman Catholics and Protestants, they would have to be willing to die with Christ to themselves and their personal, cultural and ecclesiastical interests for the sake of being in full unity with all who desire to be saved by the crucified Lord in the one holy church "which is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all" (Eph 1.23), that is "the household of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and bulwark of the truth." (1Tim 315)
With God all things are possible. It is with this conviction that we can dare to imagine a global unity of Christians under the leadership of the bishop whose church of Rome was originally the first to "preside in love" among all of Christ's churches on earth.”
StarlightSeraphim

Case study

ACLumsden,

You said "...From conversations with Eastern Orthodox people, one in communion with Rome, the other not in communion with Rome, my impression is that of rigorous resistance to theological development as society progresses and so to, man's experiences of God. Hence the Orthodox Church's growing irrelevance to modern people."

The way I understand it, it is not a resistance to the …More
ACLumsden,

You said "...From conversations with Eastern Orthodox people, one in communion with Rome, the other not in communion with Rome, my impression is that of rigorous resistance to theological development as society progresses and so to, man's experiences of God. Hence the Orthodox Church's growing irrelevance to modern people."

The way I understand it, it is not a resistance to the idea of theological development, but rather the idea that theology can be altered or moved unilaterally. I don’t personally see a problem with the Pope using his authority to nip new ideas that cause heresy and disunity in the bud, what I think is valid to be resistant to is the idea that the Pope can unilaterally cause a change in dogma and accepted belief which then could not be countermanded. Development is healthy if it is done organically through the life of the whole Church, guided by patristic authority but not in such a top down bureaucratic way. In the system where once the bishop of Rome is convinced a change can happen to the whole Church than all pressure to make changes are pushed in this direction and sometimes the Pope caves. This is the type of universal jurisdiction orthodox find troubling. If however, more than one key needs to be turned, so to speak, as in the age of the Councils, than it is more difficult for heresy to envelop the entire Church. To be clear, this is what I meant by quoting Pope St. Gregory’s Epistle XXXIII.

As for “the Church of Rome trying to leap forward before the development of men in order to secure Her relevance.” I’m not sure how it is in Europe but here when I visit the Catholic Church I feel out of place, it seems to have lost something when the English translation was not a real translation but a new Mass. I am interested in seeing the revised work that will be used this Advent. I am very glad that Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI took up this issue. As for making it relevent, it is not wise to change liturgical practices top down except in issues of error. The very fact that the Mass had to be changed and that the communion rail came down and that alter moved from the sanctuary caused problems for many over the last several decades. Admittedly, these changes all happened before I was born but having experienced the Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom in the English language, a faithful translation from the original, the Post Vatican II Mass just seemed so short and it was missing so much of the rich tradition that the Church has. It saddens me that people still complain that it is too long; they do this in the Orthodox Church as well and is not a denominational criticism. If people who complained about how much time they spend in Church understood what it really was they would never want it to end. I think that it is in the Liturgy that the real Catechism happens; it is the Heavenly Liturgy breaking into the earthly kingdom. A better understanding of this, a greater sense of reverence for the sacred, and a commitment to becoming real examples of Christ to those in the world are far better remedies than modern innovations that cater to illnesses of a lukewarm society.

“Therefore, I think one needs to look at a more complete picture of the problem, rather than who's right and who's wrong.”

Quite right. Given the image of the Church as Christ’s body I see it like this: Christ as the head of the church with the bishops making up each vertebra of the spine, and the Holy Spirit flowing to the body through the spinal cord and nerves. The Pope is at the top of the spine and when the bishops stand for the faith together and work together to support the function of the body then it functions. Now the back is broken, or at least some discs are displaced, and that has hindered the ability of the Church to function as it should. The article I mentioned in my last post by Fr. Thomas Hopko has something good on this as well:

And here, I would say, on the planet Earth right now, I think –in fact, I am sure – the Orthodox churches around the world are not motivated for unity. In some of the churches, they even think that ecumenism is a heresy. In some churches, there is a feeling that what we just did upstairs – pray together – is not Orthodox. These Orthodox feel we should not pray together with Catholics because they are heretics. Some Orthodox believe that…

So if there is a desire for unity, that will be proved not only by difficult, painful efforts to distinguish between what is essentially of the faith and what is not, but it will also require believers to do absolutely everything they can with others if only who by themselves are convinced would be contrary to the gospel if they did not – in other words – and this became a popular teaching of Pope John XXIII – who said “let us pledge to do together everything that we can, and do separately only the things that are still for us a matter of content and faith.” That’s exactly what John Paul II said in [his 1995 apostolic letter] “Orientale Lumen”… He called on Roman Catholics to affirm whatever is good, true, beautiful, holy, of God, wherever it is…” It’s absolute obligation for an Orthodox – and more than an obligation, a joy – to affirm any agreement anywhere among human beings that we can claim as really true, right and of God. Now, how much more would that be the case if we were talking about the Christian Faith? The gospel? Christ? His divinity? His humanity? If we share all those things in common, then we should affirm them, and stand before the world affirming them in common.

I honestly do not believe most Orthodox leaders are even conscious of that. There is another agenda going on, an agenda that belongs to this world…. That is why we Orthodox ourselves are so weak, miserable and divided, even though we claim a unity of faith (which we have) and a unity of worship (which we have), a unity in saints and tradition (which we have). But to actually do activities that would show this, witness to it, bring it to the world… I don’t think that is there.”
StarlightSeraphim

Case study

Ireneaus,
Thank you for clarifying your position. My apologies for taking offense. The reason I used examples beyond the chart was that the point was that the Roman Pontiff is not immune to heresy nor is any one Bishiporic. That is why it was always so important that the Church functioned as it was made to. The role of the papacy did change drastically in the middle ages. I had seen the Letter …More
Ireneaus,
Thank you for clarifying your position. My apologies for taking offense. The reason I used examples beyond the chart was that the point was that the Roman Pontiff is not immune to heresy nor is any one Bishiporic. That is why it was always so important that the Church functioned as it was made to. The role of the papacy did change drastically in the middle ages. I had seen the Letter of Clement to be the Corinthians before but the language used is with a fraternal exhortation and does not appeal to Peterine texts or claim extraordinary jurisdiction. The letter written by St. Ignatius of Antioch on the way to his martyrdom expresses this He writes, “to the Church that is in charge of affairs in Roman quarters…” and in Cannon 6 of the first council of Nicea we see “Let the ancient customs in Egypt, Libya, and Pentopolis prevail, that the Bishop of Alexandria have jurisdiction in these, since the like is customary for the Bishop of Rome also. Likewise in Antioch and the other provinces, let the Churches retain their privileges.”When the Asian Bishops headed by Polycrates, Bishop of Ephesus, refused to heed the decree and a dispute broke out between he and Pope St. Victor he reminded the Pope in a dignified response that the Church in Asia also had Apostolic origins. Eusebius writes “Thereupon Victor, head of the Roman Church, attempted at one stroke to cut off from the common unity all the Asian dioceses, together with the neighboring churches, on the ground of heterodoxy … But this was not to the taste of all the bishops: they replied with a request that he would turn his mind to the things that make for peace and love and unity towards neighbors. We still possess words of these men who sternly rebuked Victor. Among them was Iraneaus, who wrote on behalf of the Christians for whim he was responsible in Gaul.”

This back and forth is something that we could do forever, as we are dealing with a thousand year divorce there are many strong emotions and offenses between East and West I apologize for making a litany of complaints as this is not the place and that is not helpful. As I said before I truly do desire unity between East and West. I do not believe that the Catholic Church is heretical, nor is that the official position of the Orthodox Church, despite the opinions of many Orthodox. Rome’s position is also that the East is not heretical. We recognize the validity of each other’s sacraments and Apostolic Succession but disagree mainly over mechanics, liturgics and theological concepts that are not outside what can be reconciled. This is not the same thing as Protestants who deny the Sacraments of Communion and Confession among other things and are rightly called heretics. Even so, we are all brothers in Christ and we should be lamenting this division and trying to do something about it that may all worship together in spirit and in truth.
There is a great article by Fr. Thomas Hopko on what we Orthodox would have to do to achieve unity with Rome, I will put up the link so as not to go on and on, save one quote.
“… my opinion is that what is really required of the Orthodox most of all above everything, is a real desire for unity…to want to be one, to suffer over the division, to weep over it, to carry it around like a sword in your soul that we who claim Christ and praise God in Christ (especially in this world which is getting less and less Christian as the clock ticks), that Christians would be divided… A lot of Christians these days don’t even claim that and are not interested in that. But the members of the St. John Chrysostom Society … exist because of that. We claim to belong to the one, holy, catholic and apostolic church of Christ, the church that teaches the gospel truly, fully, that prays properly, that acts and teaches the right way to behave according to Christ, according to God Almighty, according to the Holy Scriptures, the canons, the saints, the fathers, etc. So the most important thing of all is the desire to be one, and to prove that desire, not only by praying – because we pray for unity at every single liturgy – but prayer without activity, without work, is just blasphemous. To be praying all these things and not to be working, not be ready to make any possible sacrifice you could make that doesn’t violate the essence of the faith. In other words, the Orthodox have to desire unity and be ready to sacrifice everything that they can without violating their convictions about the gospel in order to be one, particularly with Roman Catholics.”
www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-religion/1698562/posts
StarlightSeraphim

Case study

The Gregorian reforms of the 11th century signaled a radical departure in the Western Church from the Church of the Ecumenical Councils. The ancient collegial structure of Church government, which offered a common forum for churches both East and West to settle differences and thus provide a common bond, was to be replaced in the West by a Papal Monarchy, exercising an authoritarian, highly …More
The Gregorian reforms of the 11th century signaled a radical departure in the Western Church from the Church of the Ecumenical Councils. The ancient collegial structure of Church government, which offered a common forum for churches both East and West to settle differences and thus provide a common bond, was to be replaced in the West by a Papal Monarchy, exercising an authoritarian, highly centralized form of Church government that ultimately controlled every aspect of Church life. Through its newfound claims of temporal power, the papacy would conduct wars, sign treaties, form alliances, and depose kingdoms, and would challenge Europe’s concept of the divine right of kings. With these reforms Rome would “substitute, perhaps fatally, visible organizational unity for the unity of love and mixed the kind of power represented by the Roman Empire with that of the Cross and the Resurrection.” (Kenneth Scott Latourette A History of Christianity)
The evils of investiture, resulting in simony and clerical corruption were the rallying cry of the Gregorian reform but it was a revolution that breached its boundaries. The ultimate aim of the revolutionary ideologists was not reform of the prevailing system but replacing it with a new order. The creed manifesto for the Gregorian reform is to be found in the Dictus Papea published by Gregory VII. The claims were breathtaking. Some of them would be considered blasphemous by such Popes as St. Gregory the Great who wrote, “whosoever calls himself, or wishes to be called, Universal Priest, is in his elation precursor of Antichrist” (Epistle XXXIII, Pope St. Gregory to Mauricus Augustus)
Also we have the Pseudo-Isidorean (False) Decretals, the most extensive and influential set of forgeries found in medieval Canon law. The authors were a group of Frankish clerics writing in the second quarter of the ninth century under the pseudonym Isidore Mercator. They aimed to defend the position of bishops against metropolitans and secular authorities by creating false documents purportedly authored by early popes, together with interpolated conciliar documents.
Dictatus papae
That the Roman church was founded by God alone.
That the Roman pontiff alone can with right be called universal.
That he alone can depose or reinstate bishops.
That, in a council his legate, even if a lower grade, is above all bishops, and can pass sentence of deposition against them.
That the pope may depose the absent.
That, among other things, we ought not to remain in the same house with those excommunicated by him.
That for him alone is it lawful, according to the needs of the time, to make new laws, to assemble together new congregations, to make an abbey of a canonry; and, on the other hand, to divide a rich bishopric and unite the poor ones.
That he alone may use the imperial insignia.
That of the pope alone all princes shall kiss the feet.
That his name alone shall be spoken in the churches.
That this is the only name in the world.
That it may be permitted to him to depose emperors.
That he may be permitted to transfer bishops if need be.
That he has power to ordain a clerk of any church he may wish.
That he who is ordained by him may preside over another church, but may not hold a subordinate position; and that such a one may not receive a higher grade from any bishop.
That no synod shall be called a general one without his order.
That no chapter and no book shall be considered canonical without his authority.
That a sentence passed by him may be retracted by no one; and that he himself, alone of all, may retract it.
That he himself may be judged by no one.
That no one shall dare to condemn one who appeals to the apostolic chair.
That to the latter should be referred the more important cases of every church.
That the Roman church has never erred; nor will it err to all eternity, the Scripture bearing witness.
That the Roman pontiff, if he have been canonically ordained, is undoubtedly made a saint by the merits of St. Peter; St. Ennodius, bishop of Pavia, bearing witness, and many holy fathers agreeing with him. As is contained in the decrees of St. Symmachus the pope.
That, by his command and consent, it may be lawful for subordinates to bring accusations.
That he may depose and reinstate bishops without assembling a synod.
That he who is not at peace with the Roman church shall not be considered catholic.
That he may absolve subjects from their fealty to wicked men.
StarlightSeraphim

Case study

In regards to your chart:

St. Athanasius, was condemned by Pope Liberius though he was the leader of the defenders of orthodoxy against Arianism at the time. St. Athanasius told us that “Catholics faithful to Tradition” can be “reduced to a handful”. He wrote during the Arian crisis, when the global episcopacy defected to Arianism and Pope Liberius went into heresy, signed a heretical Arian …More
In regards to your chart:

St. Athanasius, was condemned by Pope Liberius though he was the leader of the defenders of orthodoxy against Arianism at the time. St. Athanasius told us that “Catholics faithful to Tradition” can be “reduced to a handful”. He wrote during the Arian crisis, when the global episcopacy defected to Arianism and Pope Liberius went into heresy, signed a heretical Arian creed and invalidly excommunicated St. Athanasius, as did the heretical bishops of the East.

“Even if Catholics faithful to Tradition are reduced to a handful, they are the ones who are the true Church of Jesus Christ.” (Epistle to the Catholics)

St. Vincent of Lerins is the Father of the Church most associated with the defence of unchanging doctrinal tradition. It is the subject of his main treatise, the Commonitory. He foresaw that if the whole Church should go into heresy we must keep to the traditional Faith handed down from the Fathers.

Pope Innocent III stated that a pope can “wither away into heresy” and “not believe” the Faith.
“The pope should not flatter himself about his power, nor should he rashly glory in his honour and high estate, because the less he is judged by man, the more he is judged by God. Still the less can the Roman Pontiff glory, because he can be judged by men, or rather, can be shown to be already judged, if for example he should wither away into heresy, because “he who does not believe is already judged.

Pope John XXII taught the false doctrine that those who died in the faith did not see the presence of God until the Last Judgment, though eventually he repented of this.

Pope Adrian VI stated that “it is beyond question” that a pope can “err in matters touching the Faith”, he can “teach heresy” in decrees. He also stated “many Roman Pontiffs were heretics”.

“If by the Roman Church you mean its head or pontiff, it is beyond question that he can err even in matters touching the faith. He does this when he teaches heresy by his own judgement or decretal. In truth, many Roman pontiffs were heretics. The last of them was Pope John XXII”

At the very bottom of the chart you have this:

“* Honorius was condemned by the sixth ecumenical council not for heresy, but for failing to declare ex cathedra the Catholic faith on the dispute at hand”

To allow the Council to speak for itself is enough to dispel this assertion. Honorius was personally condemned as a heretic by the Sixth Ecumenical Council. This was ratified by two succeeding Ecumenical Councils. He was also condemned by name by Pope Leo II, and by every pope up through the eleventh century who took the oath of papal office. Roman Catholic historian and bishop of Rottenburg, Karl Joseph von Hefele (1809-1893). His work on the ecumenical councils is very highly regarded by Catholic theologians.

“The standard work of Hefele’s, however, is the ‘Conciliengeschichte’ in seven volumes, reaching to the fifteenth century and embracing the history of dogma, canon law, liturgy, ecclesiastical discipline, and political history, so far as necessary. Von Funk rightly says that ‘as one of the most detailed and thorough works on church history, it has attained a prominent place in the learned literature of our time.’” (Johannes Baptist Sägmüller, Karl Joseph von Hefele, Catholic Encyclopedia 1910)

He wrote of the condemnations of Honorius as follows.

“It is in the highest degree startling, even scarcely credible, that an Ecumenical Council should punish with anathema a Pope as a heretic!…That, however, the sixth Ecumenical Synod actually condemned Honorius on account of heresy, is clear beyond all doubt, when we consider the following collection of the sentences of the Synod against him:

“At the entrance of the thirteenth session, on March 28, 681, the Synod says: ‘After reading the doctrinal letter of Sergius of Constantinople to Cyrus of Phasis (afterwards of Alexandria) and to Pope Honorius, and also the letter of the latter to Sergius, we found that these documents were quite foreign...to the apostolic doctrines, and to the declarations of the holy Councils and all the Fathers of note, and follow the false doctrines of heretics. Therefore we reject them completely, and abhor...them as hurtful to the soul. But also the names of these men must be thrust out of the Church, namely, that of Sergius, the first who wrote on this impious doctrine. Further, that of Cyrus of Alexandria, of Pyrrhus, Paul, and Peter of Constantinople, and of Theodore of Pharan, all of whom also Pope Agatho rejected in his letter to the Emperor. We punish them all with anathema. But along with them, it is our universal decision that there shall also be shut out from the Church and anathematized the former Pope Honorius of Old Rome, because we found in his letter to Sergius, that in everything he followed his view and confirmed his impious doctrine.’

“Towards the end of the same session the second letter of Pope Honorius to Sergius was presented for examination, and it was ordered that all the documents brought by George, the keeper of the archives in Constantinople, and among them the two letters of Honorius, should immediately be burnt, as hurtful to the soul.
Again, the sixth Ecumenical Council referred to Honorius in the sixteenth session, on August 9, 681, at the acclamations and exclamations with which the transactions of this day were closed. The bishops exclaimed: ‘Anathema to the heretic Sergius, to the heretic Cyrus, to the heretic Honorius, to the heretic Pyrrhus!’

Still more important is that which took place at the eighteenth and last session, on September 16, 681. In the decree of the faith which was now published, and forms the principal document of the Synod, we read: ‘The creeds (of the earlier Ecumenical Synods) would have sufficed for knowledge and confirmation of the orthodox faith. Because, however, the originator of all evil still always finds a helping serpent, by which he may diffuse his poison, and therewith finds fit tools for his will, we mean Theodore of Pharan, Sergius, Pyrrhus, Paul, Peter, former bishops of Constantinople, also Honorius, Pope of Old Rome, Cyrus of Alexandria, etc., so he failed not, by them, to cause trouble in the Church by the scattering of the heretical doctrine of one will and one energy of the two natures of the one Christ.’

“It is clear that Pope Leo II also anathematized Honorius...in a letter to the Emperor, confirming the decrees of the sixth Ecumenical Council...in his letter to the Spanish bishops...and in his letter to the Spanish King Ervig. Of the fact that Pope Honorius had been anathematized by the sixth Ecumenical Synod, mention is made by...the Trullan Synod, which was held only twelve years after...Like testimony is also given repeatedly by the seventh Ecumenical Synod; especially does it declare, in its principal document, the decree of the faith: ‘We declare at once two wills and energies according to the natures in Christ, just as the sixth Synod in Constantinople taught, condemning...Sergius, Honorius, Cyrus, etc.’ The like is asserted by the Synod or its members in several other places...To the same effect the eighth Ecumenical Synod expresses itself. In the Liber Diurnus the Formulary of the Roman Chancery (from the fifth to the eleventh century), there is found the old formula for the papal oath...according to which every new Pope, on entering upon his office, had to swear that ‘he recognised the sixth Ecumenical Council, which smote with eternal anathema the originators of the heresy (Monotheletism), Sergius, Pyrrhus, etc., together with Honorius.’” (A History of the Councils of the Church (Edinburgh: Clark, 1896), Volume V, pp. 181-187).

In The Seven Ecumenical Councils by Henry R. Percival, which is likewise very informative on the matter. He wrote, “most Roman controversialists of recent years have admitted both the fact of Pope Honorius’s condemnation, and the Monothelite (and therefore heretical) character of his epistles.”

“I shall therefore say nothing further on this point but shall simply supply the leading proofs that Honorius was as a matter of fact condemned by the Sixth Ecumenical Council.

1. His condemnation is found in the Acts in the xiiith Session, near the beginning.

2. His two letters were ordered to be burned at the same session.

3. In the xvith Session the bishops exclaimed ‘Anathema to the heretic Sergius, to the heretic Cyrus, to the heretic Honorius, etc.’

4. In the decree of faith published at the xviijth Session it is stated that ‘the originator of all evil ... found a fit tool for his will in ... Honorius, Pope of Old Rome, etc.’

5. The report of the Council to the Emperor says that ‘Honorius, formerly bishop of Rome’ they had ‘punished with exclusion and anathema’ because he followed the monothelites.

6. In its letter to Pope Agatho the Council says it ‘has slain with anathema Honorius.’

7. The imperial decree speaks of the ‘unholy priests who infected the Church and falsely governed’ and mentions among them ‘Honorius, the Pope of Old Rome, the confirmer of heresy who contradicted himself.’ The Emperor goes on to anathematize ‘Honorius who was Pope of Old Rome, who in everything agreed with them, went with them, and strengthened the heresy.’

8. Pope Leo II. confirmed the decrees of the Council and expressly says that he too anathematized Honorius.

‘Also Honorins. qui hanc apostolicam sedem non apostolilcae traditionis doctrina lustravit, sed profana proditione immaculatam fidem subvertere conatus est, et omnes, qui in suo errore defuncti sunt.’

9. That Honorius was anathematized by the Sixth Council is mentioned in the Trullan Canons (No. j.).

10. So too the Seventh Council declares its adhesion to the anathema in its decree of faith, and in several places in the acts the same is said.

11. Honorius’s name was found in the Roman copy of the Acts. This is evident from Anastasius’s life of Leo II. (Vita Leonis II.)

12. The Papal Oath as found in the Liber Diurnus taken by each new Pope from the [eighth] to the eleventh century, in the form probably prescribed by Gregory II., ‘smites with eternal anathema the originators of the new heresy, Sergius, etc., together with Honorius, because he assisted the base assertion of the heretics.’

13. In the lesson for the feast of St. Leo II. in the Roman Breviary the name of Pope Honorius occurs among those excommunicated by the Sixth Synod. Upon this we may well hear Bossuet: ‘They suppress as far as they can, the Liber Diurnus: they have erased this from the Roman Breviary. Have they therefore hidden it? Truth breaks out from all sides, and these things become so much the more evident, as they are the more studiously put out of sight.’

“With such an array of proof no conservative historian, it would seem, can question the fact that Honorius, the Pope of Rome, was condemned and anathematized as a heretic by the Sixth Ecumenical Council.” (The Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers (Edinburgh: Clark, 1899))

Unsurprisingly, some Catholic theologians deceived on this matter and some apologists still do, refusing to admit that the pope was condemned and excommunicated as a heretic by the council. Pope Honorius was condemned as a heretic by three ecumenical councils. All newly elected popes had to profess his condemnation before they could assume their office until the eleventh century and all Latin priests recited it in their breviary until the sixteenth. It is incredible that ecumenical councils under the care of papal legates and approved by popes would anathematize and excommunicate a pope without the utmost care and that Rome would have all her popes and priests confess it for a thousand years were it not justified. There is no room for doubt here. His heretical letters were burnt by order of the council and only a scrap survived; it is ridiculous that some should try to construct a case to acquit Honorious on the basis of the scrap and in the face of so much historical testimony.

If you are trying to show by this chart that the East is led by heretics and Rome alone is free from error that is untrue and not support by history nor is that attitude consistent with the Faith of the Apostles. The Church has always been conciliar. All must work together to preserve it, any bishop or Pope can be in error but the truth is preserved by keeping what was passed down to us. Peter himself was publicly resisted to his face by St. Paul because he endangered the truth of the Gospel. We must keep to the traditional Faith handed down from the Fathers.
StarlightSeraphim

Case study

Irenaus-

"I am not sure who Paul Owens is but I dont think he chooses his words carefully enough. He described the Trinity as three modes which is the heresy of Modalism. Catholics dont believe Trinity is represented by three modes. Perhaps he meant three relations/persons?"

I think that is what he meant too.

Right about Latin and Greek, for Orthodox the problem is that in John 15:26 Christ …More
Irenaus-

"I am not sure who Paul Owens is but I dont think he chooses his words carefully enough. He described the Trinity as three modes which is the heresy of Modalism. Catholics dont believe Trinity is represented by three modes. Perhaps he meant three relations/persons?"

I think that is what he meant too.

Right about Latin and Greek, for Orthodox the problem is that in John 15:26 Christ said He will send the Holy Spirit that proceeds from the Father. In the Greek this talks about origin, it is clear that while Christ sends the Spirit it originates from the Father, defined in Orthodoxy as the font of Divinity. The problem is not so much a conflict with Jn 20:22 but with language describing both the nature of and operation of the Trinity. If the Spirit originates in person of the Father it does not also originate in the person of the Son, though they are as one essence.

This is not a Theological issue that is irresolvable between East and West, the real issue that was being fought over was that the Creed could be further defined without an Ecumenical Council. The history is long and complicated beging with an insertion by local councils in Spain to combat Arianism and later spreading in the West. We know Pope Leo III forbade the use of the filioque clause and ordered that the original version of the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed be engraved on silver tablets displayed at St. Peter's Basilica in Rome so that his conclusion would not be overturned in the future. Pope Leo III agreed with the filioque phrase theologically but was opposed to adopting it in Rome because he wanted to preserve Church unity as Charlemagne wanted to use it as a wedge against the East. Later, in 1014, the German Emperor Henry II of the Holy Roman Empire visited Rome for his coronation and found that the Creed was not used during the Mass. At his request, the bishop of Rome added the Creed, as it was known in the West with the filioque, after the Gospel. Forty years later the East was accused of heresy for not using the filioque and the Bull of Excumunication was place on the alter of the Hagia Sophia.

The real conflict has more to do with a clash of the Western idea of Papal Monarchy and the Eastern idea of Collegial Tradition and in the way the crisis was handled than the actual theological debate over the filiouque. The Orthodox actually believe in Papal primacy. They believe that Christ called Peter to be the first among the Apostles, and that his successor in Rome was gifted with a special charism of leadership. The Eastern Orthodox believe, however, that the Papacy began to misuse this power in the eleventh century. By claiming universal jurisdiction, they believe that the Papacy overstepped the primacy given to it by Christ. Dialogue between East and West have resumed to come to terms with this very issue, which must be resolved if there is to be reunification, which I whole heartedly pray for.
StarlightSeraphim

Become a Proxy of God in this World

The great righteous man, Venerable Seraphim of Sarov, clearly and convincingly explains the parable of the ten virgins. Venerable Seraphim's basic thought lies in the understanding of the aim of Christian life as "the acquisition of the grace of the All-Holy Spirit", which he expressed in the remarkable conversation with the merchant, N. Motovilov.

Venerable Seraphim says to his converser: "In …More
The great righteous man, Venerable Seraphim of Sarov, clearly and convincingly explains the parable of the ten virgins. Venerable Seraphim's basic thought lies in the understanding of the aim of Christian life as "the acquisition of the grace of the All-Holy Spirit", which he expressed in the remarkable conversation with the merchant, N. Motovilov.

Venerable Seraphim says to his converser: "In the parable of the wise and foolish virgins, when the foolish ones lacked oil, it was said: 'Go and buy in the market.' But when they had bought, the door to the bride chamber was already shut and they could not get in. Some say that the lack of oil in the lamps of the foolish virgins means a lack of good deeds in their lifetime. Such an interpretation is not quite correct. Why should they be lacking in good deeds if they are called virgins, even though foolish ones? Virginity is the supreme virtue, an angelic state, and it could take the place of all other good works. I think that what they were lacking was the grace of the All-Holy Spirit of God. These virgins practiced the virtues, but in their spiritual ignorance they supposed that the Christian life consisted merely in doing good works. By doing a good deed they thought they were doing the work of God, but they little cared whether they acquired thereby the grace of God's Spirit. Such ways of life based merely on doing good without carefully testing whether they bring the grace of the Spirit of God, are mentioned in the Patristic books. 'There is another way which is deemed good at the beginning, but it ends at the bottom of hell.' "

Not every "good work", according to the teaching of Venerable Seraphim, has spiritual value; but only those "good works" are valuable which are performed in Christ's name. In fact, it is easy to image (and this often happens) that unbelieving people perform good works. But the Apostle Paul says of them: And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing (I Corinthians 13:3).

But all "formal" Christians, who live out of contact with God and care not about their salvation, prepare for themselves the portion of those who were rejected. "No one mounts to heaven while living cooly", teaches Venerable Isaac the Syrian. Neither formal faith, without a life according to Christ's commandments (Luke 6:46; James 1:22; Romans 2:13), nor prophecies in Christ's name or many miracles worked by His Name, as is evident from the Saviour's words (Matthew 7:21-23), are sufficient for inheriting the Kingdom of Heaven.

"Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his", says the Apostle Paul (Romans 8:9), and it will be natural for such to hear the words of the Son of God: Verily I say unto you, I know you not (Matthew 25:12).
StarlightSeraphim

PRI In Russia!

In peace, let us pray to the Lord.

We pray for mercy, life, peace, health, salvation, and visitation for the servants of God who strive against the evil of abortion, and for the pardon and remission of their sins.

That He will not remember the transgressions of His people, but will turn away all His righteous wrath which He has stirred up against us, let us pray to the Lord.

That He will bless…More
In peace, let us pray to the Lord.

We pray for mercy, life, peace, health, salvation, and visitation for the servants of God who strive against the evil of abortion, and for the pardon and remission of their sins.

That He will not remember the transgressions of His people, but will turn away all His righteous wrath which He has stirred up against us, let us pray to the Lord.

That He will bless the good intentions of His servants who strive to rescue His children from violent death, and allow them to begin successfully and to finish without obstacle, through the power and grace of the most Holy Spirit, let us pray to the Lord.

That He will guide the hands of His servants to complete their work successfully, let us pray to the Lord

That He will bless His servants with the grace of the most Holy Spirit, and make their efforts well pleasing in His sight, let us pray to the Lord

That He will assign a guardian angel to banish from this effort every enemy and obstacle, whether visible or invisible, let us pray to the Lord.

That this work may be ordered in wisdom and may end in perfection, by the grace of the Holy Spirit, let us pray to the Lord.

Help us, save us, have mercy on us, and keep us, O God, by Thy grace.

Again we pray for the children of God condemned to death by the unjust judgement of men: that the Lord our God would soften the hearts of those who seek their violent destruction, and rescue those who are being led forth to the slaughter, we diligently pray Thee, O Lord, hearken and have mercy!

Again we beg Thee, O Lord, to hear our prayer, and have mercy on Thy servants who strive to save the lives of Thy innocent children. In Thy grace and bounty, fulfill their petitions and forgive all their transgressions, whether voluntary or involuntary. Accept their sacrifice of praise upon Thy heavenly altar; protect them from every visible and invisible enemy; deliver them from all misery, sickness, and affliction; grant them health and length of days, we pray Thee, O Lord, hearken and have mercy.

Again we pray for all who have fallen into the hands of the godless civil authority for the sake of God's children, and who languish in courts and prisons: that the Lord our God may look upon them with compassion; that He may comfort, strengthen and preserve them; and that He may deliver them speedily from bondage and oppression, let us all say: O Lord, hearken and have mercy.

By Thine infinite power, O Lord, our God, move to compassion and mercy the hearts of those who hold Thy servants in cruel captivity; restrain them from doing harm or permitting evil to befall Thy servants, but rather cause them to relent and to release them; free the captives whole and unharmed, O Lord, and bestow Thy mercy upon them, let us all say: hearken quickly and graciously have mercy!

Thy vile enemies, O Lord, have annihilated Thy children and defiled Thy churches, and have imprisoned Thy faithful servants. Look down from heaven, therefore, and behold, and forsake us not utterly, but quickly cleanse the land of Thy people of the wickedness of those who oppose Thee, with humble heart we entreat Thee, our God Who art mighty in strength and wondrous in wisdom: O Compassionate One, hearken and have mercy!

Gospel Reading: At that time, Jesus told them a parable, to the effect that they ought always to pray and not lose heart. He said, "In a certain city there was a judge who neither feared God nor regarded man; and there was a widow in that city who kept coming to him and saying, 'Vindicate me against my adversary,' For a while he refused; but afterward he said to himself, 'Though I neither fear God nor regard man, yet because this widow bothers me, I will vindicate her, or she will wear me out by her continual pleadings.'
And the Lord said, "Hear what the unrighteous judge says, And will not God vindicate his elect, who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long over them? I tell you, he will vindicate them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of man returns, will he find faith on earth?"
Glory to Thee, O Lord, glory to Thee.


O most merciful, all gracious and compassionate Lord Jesus Christ our Savior, Son of God: we entreat Thee, most gracious Master: look with compassion upon Thy children who have been condemned to death by the unjust judgement of men. And as Thou hast promised to bestow the heavenly kingdom on them born of water and the Spirit, and who in blamelessness of life have been translated unto Thee; and Who said, "Suffer the little children to come unto me, for of such is the kingdom of heaven" - we humbly pray, according to Thy unfailing promise: grant the inheritance of Thy kingdom to the multitude of spotless infants who have been cruelly murdered in the abortuaries of this land; for Thou art the resurrection and the life and the repose of all Thy servants and of these innocents, O Christ our God.

Turn the hearts of those who seek to destroy Thy little ones. We beseech Thee to pour forth Thy healing grace upon them, that they may be convicted in their hearts and turn from their evil ways. Remember all of them that kill our children as on the altars of Moloch, and render not unto them according to their deeds, but according to Thy great mercy convert them: the unbelieving to true faith and piety, and the believing that they may turn from evil and do good.

O Holy Master, Almighty Father and pre-eternal God, Who alone made and directs all things; Who rises up quickly against the evil of the impious ones; who, by providence, teaches Thy people preservation of justice and the obliteration of evil on earth; Who condescends to raise up warriors for the protection of the people of God: we entreat Thee with compunction, that as Thou didst give David power to defeat Goliath, and as Thou didst condescend through Judas Maccabeus, to seize victory from the arrogant pagans who would not call on Thy Name; so too, grant protection to us, Thy servants against the enemies rising against us as we go forth to do spiritual battle against the evil one and those who do his will rather than Thine.

For Thou art a merciful God, and lovest mankind, and unto Thee do we send up glory: to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. Now and ever, and unto the ages of ages.

It is turly meet to bless you, O Theotokos,
Ever blessed and most pure,
And the Mother of our God.
More honorable than the Cherubim,
And more glorious beyond compare than the Seraphim:
In virginity you gave birth to God the Word.
True Theotokos, we magnify you.


O Mother of God, our queen and our hope, the refuge of the abandoned and the intercessor for those who have gone astray; the joy of all who sorrow and the protectress of the needy; you see our poverty, our affliction and misery. Help us who are weak; feed us who are hungry; intercede for us with your Son and our God, and may He deal with us as He pleases. For we have no other hope, no other intercessor, no other consolation except you, O Virgin Theotokos. Protect us beneath your veil, now and ever, and unto the ages of ages.

May He Who rose again from the dead, Christ our true God, through the prayers of His holy, immaculate, and all blameless Mother, and of all the saints, have mercy on us and save us.
Amen.
StarlightSeraphim

Case study

In an outstanding article on the Trinity written by Paul Owen, this distinction is well explained:
“First of all, mainstream Christians distinguish between the Trinitarian economy of God, and the Trinitarian ontology of God. What does that mean? These terms are an attempt to come to grips with two aspects of God’s relationship to the world: his otherness (transcendence), and his presence in the …More
In an outstanding article on the Trinity written by Paul Owen, this distinction is well explained:
“First of all, mainstream Christians distinguish between the Trinitarian economy of God, and the Trinitarian ontology of God. What does that mean? These terms are an attempt to come to grips with two aspects of God’s relationship to the world: his otherness (transcendence), and his presence in the world (immanence). God is not, in his essence, a part of the space-time continuum which we might designate the “created order.” It is necessary to distinguish between the Life of God, which is grounded in Divine Sovereignty (Exodus 3:14) and the life of the contingent world.”

John 15:26 is the key text for the theological issue of the filioque whhich was and remains a major cause of debate and disagreement between Orthodoxy and Western Christianity. The question is how the “functional” operations of God in our world relate to the eternal, ontological question of the “begotten-ness” and “procession” of the Son and Spirit. The Nicea-Constantinple Creed was developed in an ecumenical way, the unilateral insertion into the ecumenical Creed is problematic considering John 15:26.

“When the Comforter comes, whom I will send to you from the Fathe,r the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father, He will bear witness of Me.”

“Filioque” (“and the Son”) seriously challenges, if not totally destroys, the originally-intended meaning of this Creedal statement. The introduction of the Filioque is clearly a departure from the original intention and design of the A.D. 381 version of the Constantinopolitan Creed. However, it is not a departure from apostolic orthodoxy.
In other words, official Roman Catholicism teaches that the Latin procedit used in the Vulgate to translate the Greek ekporeutai had in fact a wider meaning, not only that of ‘having its cause and origin in,’ but “a wide implication.” In fact, it is explained that procedit was understood as equivalent to proinai, a concept which can be a source of confusion between economy and ontology.

Hence, apart from the issue of the canonical legitimacy of this modification, the real question seems simple: is the underlying theology correct?

Because Paul Owen writes from a Western perspective, his presentation quickly reveals the root of the difference between the Greek and Latin perspectives:
“Orthodox Christians believe that God is one eternal, personal and spiritual divine substance who exists in three modes of subsistence, or three self distinctions.”

Here, “Orthodox Christians” refers to ‘mainstream (Western) Christians,’not to the Eastern Orthodox. In fact, the authentic Eastern Orthodox mind would disagree with the above statement which seems to confuse “personal” and “substance.” The Greek Fathers would have written quite a different summary, something along the lines of:
“Orthodox Christians believe in one God the Father, whose person is uncaused and unoriginate, who, because He is love and communion, always exists with His Word and Spirit.”

The Father alone is unbegotten and non-proceeding. But does the Monarchy, the font of Deity, reside in the Father’s person, or in his Being? Is the Son begotten of the Father’s person, or his Being? Does the Spirit proceed from the Father’s person, or his Being? If, as the Eastern Church insists, the font of Deity resides in the Father’s person, then the Spirit clearly must proceed from the Father alone, since the Son does not possess the Father’s person. But if the font of Deity resides in the Father’s Being, then the conclusion may be drawn that the
Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Son, since all are agreed that the Father and the Son are con-substantial, that is, that they are identical in essence.

This is exactly what St. Photius had explained in his Mystagogy of the Holy Spirit:
“If the Father is cause of the hypostases produced from Him not by reason of nature, but by reason of the hypostasis; and if, up to now, no one has preached the impiety that the Son’s hypostasis consists of the principle of the Father’s hypostasis… then there can be no way the Son is cause of any hypostasis in the Trinity.”
StarlightSeraphim

Traditional Catholic Monks of Papa Stronsay, Scotland

It reminds me also of the 60 minutes special on the Monastery on Mt. Athos.

www.cbsnews.com/video/watch;storyMediaBox
StarlightSeraphim

Case study

What I am "going on about" is that that style of worship that you see is something new that is not what was recieved through the tradition of the Church that the apostles and many centuries of Christians lived. It is a symptom of a culture that has lost touch with the notion of the sacred. The Catholic Mass is supposed to be sacred but as time goes on it is becoming less and less sacred and less …More
What I am "going on about" is that that style of worship that you see is something new that is not what was recieved through the tradition of the Church that the apostles and many centuries of Christians lived. It is a symptom of a culture that has lost touch with the notion of the sacred. The Catholic Mass is supposed to be sacred but as time goes on it is becoming less and less sacred and less and less Catholic. When the Church is afraid to talk about sin, when it is afraid to ask her members to be committed and sacrifice for Christ, when it goes out of its way to jazz it up so to speak because it is afriad that people won't relate to it or will find it boring or just won't come it will not survive because it is no longer His Church, but a human innovation. The answer is not to change the Church to suit man , but for man to be transformed by God. The Church did not thrive and spread throughout the known world because it put on a good show, it grew because it brought the light of Christ to those in darkness! Her members went to the places where the sickness and rot was, ministered to and loved loved the people, offered them hope and suffered alongside them. That is the faith of the apostles, and that is what I feel is being lost in the Church.
StarlightSeraphim

Case study

This video compares two different styles of worship, the American and the Orthodox. The contrasts are not just a result of differing theologies and cultural practices but an essential difference to the way these peoples relate to God and the essential questions they ask as to what salvation means.
In America people have an external freedom that is prison for their souls. The cardinal sin in our …More
This video compares two different styles of worship, the American and the Orthodox. The contrasts are not just a result of differing theologies and cultural practices but an essential difference to the way these peoples relate to God and the essential questions they ask as to what salvation means.
In America people have an external freedom that is prison for their souls. The cardinal sin in our culture is to feel bad or to be unhappy. Therefore when one is sorrowful it is the sorrow itself that those around us find offensive and so we in America treat the symptom rather than the cause. Modern Christianity has lost the idea of suffering, the idea of the Cross, and offers people a high-tech and “happy” life without thinking substitute. And people buy it, they spend fortunes on distractions and rarely if ever dig deep within themselves. The foe of mankind wants to convince us that we can be happy and live as we want, and that the only thing we can wish is that others would be like us. But this happiness is nothing but “having fun” and the goal is to take away the true path to God. But you cannot be happy if you don’t know what suffering is. You cannot love you fellow human beings if you don’t carry your cross.
Orthodox worship is not so concerned with our feelings, but with the deeper eternal state of our souls. The liturgy is based on Heavenly worship and the life in the Church is designed to prepare us for death. As much as we try to avoid thinking about it, death is an unavoidable, certain, reality. The state of our souls, not our physical life, is of the greatest concern. The liturgy is not meant to excite the body or emotions but to plunge into the depths of the soul. It is above all things transformative; each liturgy has an effect in this lifelong process. It is not an opiate that distracts us from our troubles but something that that truly reaches and heals the root causes of our suffering; sin, death, and separation from God.