what are the differences between orth...

what are the differences between orthodoxy and roman catholicism?

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Since: Aug 14

Nigeria, Africa

#1 Aug 18, 2014
This question has been asked many times. Most Orthodox, in attempting to distinguish between Orthodoxy and Roman Catholicism, usually mention the Pope or Purgatory, sometimes the filioque. Historically, the differences, however, are far more numerous and quite profound.

Also, in modern times, since Vatican II of thirty years ago, that major, if not tragic attempt, to "update" Roman Catholicism (e.g., the revision of canon law), the differences between Orthodoxy and the followers of the Pope have widened.

In our present discussion, however, the concern will be those differences which have grown since Orthodoxy and Roman Catholicism separated almost a thousand years ago.

more at this link: http://www.ocf.org/OrthodoxPage/reading/ortho...

Since: Jan 12

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#2 Sep 5, 2014
Orthodoxy is unbroken whereas Rome ventured off into her own ploy. Rome sought for total control where the role of a true Bishop does not seek such control. We have not a Pope and such will never be the case because such was not tradition the early Church hence the schism of 1054.

Since: Aug 14

Nigeria, Africa

#3 Sep 5, 2014
I just love a fight for who is the first Church. I looked hard and can not find anything in the bible that speaks of the orthodox or the RCC. You are right though both of yall are from early on but you took separate paths and both to this day clam they have the right tradition. It seems the RCC wanted to have a Pope running everything and tat just wasn't going to happen because it never was part of the Church. If it was there wouldn't been any reason to fight over it. After this the RCC has went all sorts of directions wile as you said orthodoxy least held to he early teachings of that day

Since: Jan 12

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#4 Sep 5, 2014
Jimmy, If you want to go beyond medieval Catholicism to the early Church Fathers you must study the Church prior to the Schism of 1054. A Protestant who lays aside not only their Protestant innovations but also the accretions from medieval Catholicism will be able to accept Holy Tradition as given by Christ to his Apostles and which has been faithfully safeguarded by Eastern Orthodoxy for the past two millennia.

Read Two Paths by Michael Whelton: http://journeytoorthodoxy.com/2010/10/30/two-...

Since: Jan 12

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#5 Sep 5, 2014
> > Fr. Stephen Freeman:

Many Orthodox converts have looked elsewhere first. Perhaps even hoping that elsewhere would answer their questions and supercede the necessity of becoming Orthodox. But I think for those who become Orthodox, elsewhere just did not do the trick. There is a neatness and tidiness, for instance, about Roman Catholic ecclesiology. In fact, I think it’s so tidy that it is man’s invention and not God’s. But you can argue with me about that some other time. I can hardly think of a situation in which God has been so tidy elsewhere. Why should it only be ecclesiology?

Since: Jan 12

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#6 Sep 5, 2014
> > Fr. Jon E. Braun:

The Papacy: Among the Twelve, Saint Peter was early acknowledged as the leader. He was spokesman for the Twelve before and after Pentecost. He was the first bishop of Antioch and later bishop of Rome. No one challenged his role. After the death of the Apostles, as leadership in the Church developed, the bishop of Rome came to be recognized as first in honor, even though all bishops were equals.

But after nearly 300 years, the bishop of Rome slowly began to assume to himself a role of superiority over the others, ultimately claiming to be the only true successor to Saint Peter. The vast majority of the other bishops of the Church never questioned Rome’s primacy of honor, but they patently rejected its claim to be the universal head of the Church on earth. This claim became one of the major factors leading to the tragic split between the Western and Eastern Church.

Since: Jan 12

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#7 Sep 5, 2014
> > Father Michael Azkoul:

The Development of Doctrine

The Orthodox Church does not endorse the view that the teachings of Christ have changed from time to time; rather that Christianity has remained unaltered from the moment that the Lord delivered the Faith to the Apostles (Matt. 28: 18-20). She affirms that "the faith once delivered to the saints" (Jude 3) is now what it was in the beginning. Orthodox of the twentieth century believe precisely what was believed by Orthodox of the first, the fifth, the tenth, the fifteenth centuries.

To be sure, Orthodoxy recognizes external changes (e.g., vestments of clergy, monastic habits, new feasts, canons of ecumenical and regional councils, etc.), but nothing has been added or subtracted from her Faith. The external changes have a single purpose: To express that Faith under new circumstances. For example, the Bible and divine Services were translated from Hebrew and Greek into the language of new lands; or new religious customs arose to express the ethnic sensibilities of the converted peoples, etc.; nevertheless, their has always been "one faith, one Lord, one baptism" (Eph. 4: 4).

The fundamental witness to the Christian Tradition is the holy Scriptures; and the supreme expositors of the Scriptures are the divinely inspired Fathers of the Church, whether the Greek Fathers or Latin Fathers, Syriac Fathers or Slavic Fathers. Their place in the Orthodox religion cannot be challenged. Their authority cannot be superseded, altered or ignored.

On the other hand, Roman Catholicism, unable to show a continuity of faith and in order to justify new doctrine, erected in the last century, a theory of "doctrinal development."

Following the philosophical spirit of the time (and the lead of Cardinal Henry Newman), Roman Catholic theologians began to define and teach the idea that Christ only gave us an "original deposit" of faith, a "seed," which grew and matured through the centuries. The Holy Spirit, they said, amplified the Christian Faith as the Church moved into new circumstances and acquired other needs.

Consequently, Roman Catholicism, pictures its theology as growing in stages, to higher and more clearly defined levels of knowledge. The teachings of the Fathers, as important as they are, belong to a stage or level below the theology of the Latin Middle Ages (Scholasticism), and that theology lower than the new ideas which have come after it, such as Vatican II.

All the stages are useful, all are resources; and the theologian may appeal to the Fathers, for example, but they may also be contradicted by something else, something higher or newer.

Since: Jan 12

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#8 Sep 5, 2014
The Church

The Roman Catholic view of the Church (ecclesiology) differs from the Orthodox teaching on this subject in several ways.

The Latins teach that the visible head of the Church is the Pope, the successor to St. Peter, who was appointed to that sacred position by the Lord Himself with the words, "Thou art Peter and upon this rock I shall build my Church ... " (Matt. 16:18).

The Pope is, then, "the Bishop of the Catholic Church," her teacher, the vicar (agent, deputy) of Christ on earth. He is the interpreter of the Christian Tradition. When he speaks for the whole Church (ex cathedra), the Holy Spirit does not permit him to err. He is, therefore, infallible on matters of morals and doctrine. Other bishops are his lieutenants. He is the symbol of the episcopate's unity.

The Orthodox Church teaches that all bishops are equal. To be sure, there are different ranks of bishops (patriarch, archbishop, metropolitan, bishop); nevertheless, a bishop is a bishop. Such differences apply to the administration of a church or group of churches, not to the nature of the bishop. The president of a synod of bishops is called archbishop (Greek custom) or metropolitan (Russian custom).

According to Latin ecclesiology, each local parish is part of the universal or whole Church. The totality of Catholic parishes form the Body of Christ on earth. This visible Body has a visible head, the Pope. This idea of the Church implies that the local parish has two heads: the Pope and the local bishop. But a body with two visible heads is a monster. Also, the local bishop seems stripped of his apostolic authority if the Pope may contradict his orders. Indeed, he cannot become a bishop unless the Pope allows it.

Orthodoxy teaches that every bishop, "the living icon of Christ," and his flock constitute the Church in a certain place; or, as St. Ignatius the God-bearer says, the Church of Christ is in the bishop, his priests and deacons, with the people, surrounding the Eucharist in the true faith. All bishops and their flocks so constituted, together composing the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church.

In other words, there can be no Church without a bishop, no bishop without the Eucharist, and no bishop or Eucharist without the true faith, the Apostolic Faith, "the faith once delivered to the saints." (Jude 3) "The Church is in the bishop and the bishop in the Church," wrote St. Cyprian of Carthage.

Put another way, there is no Church where there is no bishop, and there is no bishop where there is no succession of bishops from the Apostles (apostolic succession); and there can be no succession from the bishops without the faith of the Apostles.

Also, there can be no Church without the Eucharist, the Sacrament of unity, because the Church is formed through it. The Body and Blood of Christ unites the Faithful to God: This fellowship or koinonia is the whole purpose of Christianity. At the same time, there can be no Eucharist - and no other Mysteries - without a bishop who teaches the true faith to the baptized.

Since: Jan 12

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#9 Sep 5, 2014
The Orthodox call the Eucharist "the mystical Supper." What the priest and the faithful consume is mysteriously the Body and Blood of Christ. We receive Him under the forms of bread and wine, because it would be wholly repugnant to eat "real" human flesh and drink "real" human blood.

According to Roman Catholic teachings about the Sacraments (mystagogy), a person becomes a member of the Church through Baptism. "Original sin" is washed away. Orthodoxy teaches the same, but the idea of an "original sin" or "inherited guilt" (from Adam) has no part in her thinking. More will be said later on this matter.

Since: Jan 12

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#10 Sep 5, 2014
The Mother of God

The doctrine of the place and person of the Virgin Mary in the Church is called "mariology." Both Orthodoxy and Roman Catholicism believe she is "Mother of God" (Theotokos, Deipare) and "the Ever-Virgin Mary."

However, the Orthodox reject the Roman Catholic "dogma of the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary," which was defined as "of the faith" by Pope Pius IX, on the 8th of December 1854. This dogma holds that from the first instant of her conception, the Blessed Virgin Mary was, by a most singular grace and privilege of Almighty God, and in view of the merits of Jesus Christ, the Redeemer of the human race, preserved from all stain of Original Sin. It is a doctrine revealed by God, and therefore to be firmly and steadfastly believed by all the faithful (from the Bull Ineffabilis Deus).

Such a theory has no basis in the Scriptures nor the Fathers. It contains many ideas (such as "the merits of Christ") likewise without apostolic foundation. The idea that the Lord and His Saints produced more grace than necessary. This excess may be applied to others, even those in purgatory (see below).

But to return: the Church does not accept the idea that the Mother of God was born with the (inherited) guilt of Adam; no one is. She did, however, inherit the mortality which comes to all on account of Adam's Fall.

Therefore, there is no need to do what Latin theologians have done. There is no reason to invent a theory to support the dogma of the Immaculate Conception. There is no need to teach that, on account of "the merits of Christ," the Holy Spirit was able to prevent her from inheriting the guilt of Adam.

In fact, she was born like every other human being. The Holy Spirit prepared the Virgin Mary for her role as the Mother of God. She was filled with the Uncreated Energy of the Holy Spirit of God in order that she might be a worthy vessel for the birth of Christ. Nevertheless, several of the Fathers observed that before the Resurrection of her Son, she had sinned. St. John Chrysostom mentions the Wedding at Cana where she presumed to instruct Him (John 2:3-4). Here was proof of her mortality.

Receiving the Holy Spirit once more at Pentecost, she was able to die without sin. Because of her special role in the Divine Plan ("economy" or "dispensation"), she was taken into the heavens, body and soul. She now sits at the foot of her Son, making intercession for all those who implore her mercy. The Orthodox Church honors the miracle of her "assumption" with a feast on 15 August; likewise, the followers of the Pope.

Both also believe in the intercessions of the Virgin Mary and all the Saints. Such intercessions reflect the unity of the Church in heaven and the Church on earth.

Both also believe that there is a sense in which the Mother of God is the Church. The Church is the Body of Christ. Those who belong to the Church are identified with Him. But He is also our "brother" (Rom. 8:29). If Christ is our brother, then, the Virgin Mary is our mother. But the Church is our mother through Baptism. Therefore, the Virgin Mary is the Church.

Since: Jan 12

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#11 Sep 5, 2014
The Nature of Man

Human nature was created good, even in communion with the blessed Trinity which made "him." Male and female were created "in the likeness and image of God" (Gen. 1:26): "likeness" in virtue; "image" meaning to rule the earth rationally, to act wisely and freely. The woman was made as a "help-meet" to the man (Gen. 2:18; I Cor. 11:8-9). They were to live together in harmony and mutual respect.

So far Roman Catholicism agrees with the Church; it differs with Orthodoxy on the nature of man's fall and the human condition. Following Augustine of Hippo, the Latins teach that Adam and Eve sinned against God. The guilt of their sin has been inherited by every man, woman and child after them. All humanity is liable for their "original sin."

Following the Holy Fathers, the Orthodox Church holds that when Adam sinned against God, he introduced death to the world. Since all men are born of the same human stock as Adam, all men inherit death. Death means that the life of every human being comes to an end (mortality); but also that death generates in us the passions (anger, hate, lust, greed, etc.), disease and aging.

Roman Catholicism has ordinarily paid little attention to the Orthodox conception of man as slave to death through his passions as manipulated by the devil. In fact, the devil has been pushed to the background. Thus, the Crucifixion has been understood by the Latins as Christ suffering punishment for the human race ("vicarious atonement"), when, in truth, Christ suffered and died on the Cross to conquer the devil and destroy his power, death.

In any case, Orthodoxy has always put great stress on "mastery of the passions" through prayer (public worship and private devotions), fasting (self-denial) and voluntary obedience and regular participation in the Eucharist (sometimes called "the Mysteries"). Thus, the highest form of Christian living ("the supreme philosophy") is monasticism. Here all human energy is devoted to struggle for perfection.

Monasticism, in this sense, among Roman Catholics has all but disappeared. As a "supernatural religion" so-called, it has become increasingly "this-worldly." Therefore, it has abandoned its medieval heritage, and its understanding of man, his nature and destiny has become increasingly secular.
Eyeseaewe

Germany

#12 Sep 6, 2014
testing the spirits wrote:
But to return: the Church does not accept the idea that the Mother of God was born with the (inherited) guilt of Adam; no one is. She did, however, inherit the mortality which comes to all on account of Adam's Fall.

In fact, she was born like every other human being.
Needless to say I have a lot of ,problems with Mary and what the church teaches. I don't see what is taught about Mary in scripture. Those two statements seem contradictory to me. If Mary was born like every other human being how could she not have (inherited) guilt of Adam?
testing the spirits wrote:
Receiving the Holy Spirit once more at Pentecost, she was able to die without sin. Because of her special role in the Divine Plan ("economy" or "dispensation"), she was taken into the heavens, body and soul. She now sits at the foot of her Son, making intercession for all those who implore her mercy. The Orthodox Church honors the miracle of her "assumption" with a feast on 15 August; likewise, the followers of the Pope.
Both also believe in the intercessions of the Virgin Mary and all the Saints. Such intercessions reflect the unity of the Church in heaven and the Church on earth.
I didn't know it was possible to receive the Holy Spirit more than once. I thought you were refreshed again When did Mary receive the Spirit the first time when she was overshadowed?

The praying to Mary and Saints, where do you find that in scripture?

testing the spirits wrote:
Both also believe that there is a sense in which the Mother of God is the Church. The Church is the Body of Christ. Those who belong to the Church are identified with Him. But He is also our "brother" (Rom. 8:29). If Christ is our brother, then, the Virgin Mary is our mother. But the Church is our mother through Baptism. Therefore, the Virgin Mary is the Church.
That is a very weak assumption you have made I believe. By you reasoning Mary is our mother since we are the brother of Christ and if Mary is the church likewise we are the church. Would it be more correct to say Mary was part of the church as we are part of the church?These verses give me a very different impression than what you are saying.
Joh 19:26 When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son!
Joh 19:27 Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home.



Church is our mother through Baptism (spirit or water)? I assume you are speaking of being born again but you surely are not tying Mary as mother into whichever type of baptism you are speaking of are you?
Eyeseaewe

Germany

#13 Sep 6, 2014
Do you consider Protestants to be saved?

Since: Jan 12

Location hidden

#14 Sep 7, 2014
Eyeseaewe wrote:
Do you consider Protestants to be saved?
Yes.

Since: Jan 12

Location hidden

#15 Sep 7, 2014
Eyeseaewe wrote:
<quoted text>Needless to say I have a lot of ,problems with Mary and what the church teaches. I don't see what is taught about Mary in scripture. Those two statements seem contradictory to me. If Mary was born like every other human being how could she not have (inherited) guilt of Adam?
<quoted text>I didn't know it was possible to receive the Holy Spirit more than once. I thought you were refreshed again When did Mary receive the Spirit the first time when she was overshadowed?
The praying to Mary and Saints, where do you find that in scripture?
<quoted text>That is a very weak assumption you have made I believe. By you reasoning Mary is our mother since we are the brother of Christ and if Mary is the church likewise we are the church. Would it be more correct to say Mary was part of the church as we are part of the church?These verses give me a very different impression than what you are saying.
Joh 19:26 When Jesus therefore saw his mother, and the disciple standing by, whom he loved, he saith unto his mother, Woman, behold thy son!
Joh 19:27 Then saith he to the disciple, Behold thy mother! And from that hour that disciple took her unto his own home.
Church is our mother through Baptism (spirit or water)? I assume you are speaking of being born again but you surely are not tying Mary as mother into whichever type of baptism you are speaking of are you?
Please note that Eastern Orthodox do not esteem Mary the same as Rome. We do not pray to Mary and the Saint, we ask them to intercede for us. Today, this is done by almost every denomination in the sense that they ask members of their Church to pray for them. If we can ask people on earth to pray for us, why cant we ask those in heaven to pray for us. I see no difference.

You keep going back to scripture as if scripture was always around for the early Church. It wasn't. The same men who canonized scripture centuries after Pentecost, are the same men who taught the things listed on my post. Are we to accept them for picking books to canonize then write them off on other things they taught?
Eyeseaewe

Germany

#16 Sep 7, 2014
testing the spirits wrote:
<quoted text>
Please note that Eastern Orthodox do not esteem Mary the same as Rome. We do not pray to Mary and the Saint, we ask them to intercede for us. Today, this is done by almost every denomination in the sense that they ask members of their Church to pray for them. If we can ask people on earth to pray for us, why cant we ask those in heaven to pray for us. I see no difference.
I see a difference. We do not have an example of asking those that are dead to intercede for us in the bible. The Samuel/Saul situation was frowned upon. The Luke 16 gulf between the living and the dead also makes me doubt the success of this type of prayer. Why not go straight to Jesus who we know is alive and can answer. No one really knows if the dead interceding for us can be done by us praying to them .
testing the spirits wrote:
<quoted text>You keep going back to scripture as if scripture was always around for the early Church. It wasn't. The same men who canonized scripture centuries after Pentecost, are the same men who taught the things listed on my post. Are we to accept them for picking books to canonize then write them off on other things they taught?
How do you know it wasn't? We have an account of the eunuch having a copy of Isaiah. Why would it be so unusual for the early church to have at least some books gradually in written form. The apostles and disciples would give an oral version at the beginning but I doubt it Peter or John would write anything different than the oral version they gave the church. The early church held everything in one accord and met daily. If they are devoting themselves full time to the gospel the the apostles are devoting themselves to full time teaching and starting churches I don't see any reason some of this could not have been written down. It was what they were living for and Jews were used to having written scripture. The Jews were very good at remembering the oral scriptures as well.
Eyeseaewe

Germany

#17 Sep 7, 2014
testing the spirits wrote:
<quoted text>

You keep going back to scripture as if scripture was always around for the early Church. It wasn't. The same men who canonized scripture centuries after Pentecost, are the same men who taught the things listed on my post.
When I go back to scripture it is because I know what is there. Why do you think it would be any different with the early church? When the apostles gave them oral scripture it was very real to them. They would know it.
testing the spirits wrote:
<quoted text>Are we to accept them for picking books to canonize then write them off on other things they taught?
We accept scripture as infallible. We cannot accept the decision of what is scripture by a man as infallible. Nevertheless we have what we have. They could be wrong on other things they taught as well and I don't think you will have trouble finding that is the case in some detail although it may be a small one.

Since: Sep 13

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#18 Sep 8, 2014
testing the spirits wrote:
<quoted text>
Yes.
Wouldn't the question be , " Can protesters be saved?"
Dave P

Grayson, KY

#19 Sep 8, 2014
Mike_Peterson wrote:
<quoted text>
Wouldn't the question be , " Can protesters be saved?"
The Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved. Not people picking the right original one true church in order to be saved.

For I see a we: There are many of us out there that reject the idea of inheriting Adams guilt. On that stance I agree with the orthodox position. We all inherit the penalty, the consequence because as Paul tells us "all die because ALL SINNED". We don't die because we inherited guilt. We may inherit a fallen nature. But not guilt. We are guilty on our own accord.
Randy

Axton, VA

#20 Sep 8, 2014
Dave P wrote:
<quoted text>
The Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved. Not people picking the right original one true church in order to be saved.
For I see a we: There are many of us out there that reject the idea of inheriting Adams guilt. On that stance I agree with the orthodox position. We all inherit the penalty, the consequence because as Paul tells us "all die because ALL SINNED". We don't die because we inherited guilt. We may inherit a fallen nature. But not guilt. We are guilty on our own accord.
Exactly, Dave! I will say this. On a few points Eastern Orthodox seems to have tried to stay true to the teachings of the apostles. The RCC departed and developed NEW things, including wanting a Pope to govern all Churches. If it was the norm of the day to have one Pope controlling everything, the East would have never rejected Rome. The Church had Bishops which seems to be the pattern of the Bible for the Churches. Rome wanted control [still does] and to this day, Eastern Orthodox rejects the RCC teaching on the Pope, Original sin, even things about Mary, Purgatory, and other things. Again, as I told you, I am not ready to jump on the Orthodoxy bandwagon but do find it interesting that both them and the RCC claim to be THE CHURCH yet they cannot even agree. They are no better than the so called "Prots" they condemn.

God is the Judge and He only knows the heart of men.

Shall we immerse 3 times to be sure ;-)

Maybe we should sprinkle with Holy water as we say a Trinitarian word formula ;-)

If this isn’t good enough, maybe the mysteries [sacraments] will keep us from Rome’s purgatory ;-)

Eastern Orthodox says this and the RCC says that yet you both claim to THE CHURCH. You are no better than the “Prots” you condemn. In fact, it could be argued that Rome started this all. If not for the RCC departing from so many truths and developing its own way, there would not been a protest. At least the Eastern Orthodox has stayed true to their system of beliefs.

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