Talk:Western Rite/Archive 1

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thank you for all the work you've done on OrthodoxWiki - already it is a resource for Orthodox.
 
thank you for all the work you've done on OrthodoxWiki - already it is a resource for Orthodox.
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[[User:Pistevo|a/s]]
  
 
: Fixed! --[[User:ASDamick|Rdr. Andrew]] 21:06, 25 Feb 2005 (CST)
 
: Fixed! --[[User:ASDamick|Rdr. Andrew]] 21:06, 25 Feb 2005 (CST)
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== Thoughts on Criticisms of the Western Rite. ==
 
== Thoughts on Criticisms of the Western Rite. ==
 
 
One of the things I think was missed in the criticism section of this article was that what many find disquieting about Western Rite parishes is that most, if not all, are primarily convert parishes. In some circles there is a feeling that while the rite itself is unobjectionable, there is a danger that these parishes want to be Orthodox but not too Orthodox: they do not want to give up the comforting familiarity of their former religion and might thus come to further 'infect' the Church with other (this time unwarranted) innovations brought in from their former church. This, I think, is behind the worry about the lack of a liturgical tradition that is referenced in the main article.
 
One of the things I think was missed in the criticism section of this article was that what many find disquieting about Western Rite parishes is that most, if not all, are primarily convert parishes. In some circles there is a feeling that while the rite itself is unobjectionable, there is a danger that these parishes want to be Orthodox but not too Orthodox: they do not want to give up the comforting familiarity of their former religion and might thus come to further 'infect' the Church with other (this time unwarranted) innovations brought in from their former church. This, I think, is behind the worry about the lack of a liturgical tradition that is referenced in the main article.
  
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: In any event, judging at least from your comments here, I'd say that your expression powers are surely good enough to find use here on OrthodoxWiki&mdash;perhaps you'd consider registering an account and helping us out to the extent that you are able and inclined to do so.  --[[User:ASDamick|Rdr. Andrew]] 19:14, 9 Mar 2005 (CST)
 
: In any event, judging at least from your comments here, I'd say that your expression powers are surely good enough to find use here on OrthodoxWiki&mdash;perhaps you'd consider registering an account and helping us out to the extent that you are able and inclined to do so.  --[[User:ASDamick|Rdr. Andrew]] 19:14, 9 Mar 2005 (CST)
  
== Negotiations ==
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Perhaps "Objections to the Western Rite" should be its own article. I'd be happy to write it; I think I've heard EVERYTHING. :)
  
  In the late 1990s, negotiations had been underway with the Church of Serbia for the Eglise to come under its jurisdiction, but NATO's bombing of Kosovo in 1999 abruptly ended those hopes, as France was then seen by the Serbians as complicit in its persecution by the West. Talks reportedly resumed in 2004.
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== Negotiations ==
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In the late 1990s, negotiations had been underway with the Church of Serbia for the Eglise to come under its jurisdiction, but NATO's bombing of Kosovo in 1999 abruptly ended those hopes, as France was then seen by the Serbians as complicit in its persecution by the West. Talks reportedly resumed in 2004.
  
 
I must say I find this paragraph a little bizarre - maybe it's my American mentality of separation of church and state, but why would church negotiations be affected by what the French government does? And why is the ''reported'' necessary? Either they did or they didn't, and if it's a maybe, another wording might be more appropriate since ''reportedly'' sounds like someone is suspicious of certain claims which are being made. (And if this is the case, the concern should be made explicit). Thanks, [[User:FrJohn|Fr. John]]
 
I must say I find this paragraph a little bizarre - maybe it's my American mentality of separation of church and state, but why would church negotiations be affected by what the French government does? And why is the ''reported'' necessary? Either they did or they didn't, and if it's a maybe, another wording might be more appropriate since ''reportedly'' sounds like someone is suspicious of certain claims which are being made. (And if this is the case, the concern should be made explicit). Thanks, [[User:FrJohn|Fr. John]]
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: The latter bit is part of a sentence I put in there.  I used "reportedly," because I have no source for the information other than someone who is not part of either group saying that it is so, without citing any information.  Since this is hardly a "common knowledge" issue, I'd at least like some sort of published source before removing the "hedge" word.  --[[User:ASDamick|Rdr. Andrew]] 22:55, 1 Apr 2005 (EST)
 
: The latter bit is part of a sentence I put in there.  I used "reportedly," because I have no source for the information other than someone who is not part of either group saying that it is so, without citing any information.  Since this is hardly a "common knowledge" issue, I'd at least like some sort of published source before removing the "hedge" word.  --[[User:ASDamick|Rdr. Andrew]] 22:55, 1 Apr 2005 (EST)
  
http://www.spc.yu/Vesti-2004/12/14-12-04-e.html Try this to begin with. Also, a version of the same report but originating with the French rather than the Serbians, as reported to ROCOR's WRO monastery: http://www.orthodoxresurgence.co.uk/Petroc/Michael04.htm - page down to Belgrade, 29 September.  - [[User:Aristibule[Aristibule]].
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http://www.spc.yu/Vesti-2004/12/14-12-04-e.html Try this to begin with. Also, a version of the same report but originating with the French rather than the Serbians, as reported to ROCOR's WRO monastery: http://www.orthodoxresurgence.co.uk/Petroc/Michael04.htm - page down to Belgrade, 29 September.  - [[User:Aristibule|Aristibule]].
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: Thanks!  --[[User:ASDamick|Rdr. Andrew]] 07:19, 4 Apr 2005 (EDT)
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The negotiations between Serbia and L'ECOF ARE common knowledge, if you travel in Western Rite circles. Literally every WRV clergyman is aware of them, as well as many in ROCOR, and even the Milan Synod, HOCNA, and various other splinter groups (as Aidan Keller of the Occidentalis Yahoo news list falsely reported L'ECOF had been assumed by the Copts [that's a different church with a similar name], then falsely reported the Serbs had alraedy accepted L'ECOF). Thanks, Aristibule, for providing links verifying my recounting of the facts.
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I share Fr. John's questions about Serbia breaking off negotiations with France last time, allegedly because of its support for Clinton's military actions. Perhaps we should see "at least like some sort of published source" before adding it?
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: I've removed the section in question.  It was a piece of information told to me by a former subdeacon in l'ECOF.
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: "Common knowledge" within a certain group is not the same as "common knowledge" as usually defined in academic standards.  For instance, it is common knowledge that Julius Caesar ruled the Roman Empire, but it is not common knowledge that some piece of his house was recently uncovered, something that probably only archaeologists would know.  --[[User:ASDamick|Rdr. Andrew]] 07:58, 4 Apr 2005 (EDT)
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All's well that ends well, Rdr. Andrew! :)
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== Persuasion? ==
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'''TO SET THE STAGE'''
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I made some changes to the Western Rite article. Rdr. Andrew Stephen Damick erased said changes. Another user then added some variant of my original comments back to these pages twice, each time having them erased.
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The irony is I made these changes at the specific invitation of: Rdr. Andrew. On the Yahoo group "westernriteorthodoxy," I offered stylistic and substantive comments about his Western Rite article, which he had linked on the group. He [http://groups.yahoo.com/group/westernriteorthodoxy/message/1037  said of my substantive changes] (including my note about the Franco-Serbian negotiations): "Thanks for your input. You're welcome, of course, to make adjustments to the article yourself, but should you choose not to, I'll try to incorporate your suggestions at some point in the future." Hence, I felt welcome to post here. When I took him up on his offer, he decided to censor me and delete the input he encouraged me to publish. I didn't realize by taking up his offer I was somehow falling into his little game.
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An admin hoped we could discuss this page in a Christian manner. Frankly, I am apprehensive even entering this dialogue, especially during Lent. As I mentioned, Rdr. Andrew and I met on the Yahoo group "westernriteorthodoxy," a listserv dedicated to Antioch's WRV. After I noted a "Ukrainian Orthodox" spambot's several messages about a Byzantine Rite outreach to the inner city homeless of Hawaii (!) were off-topic and reminded the group many independent church groups claim to be associated with the "Ukrainian Orthodox," Rdr. Andrew repeatedly attacked me with vitriolic rhetoric simply because because I believe with most of world Orthodoxy (including Antioch and the OCA) that to be part of the Orthodox Church proper one must be Orthodox in faith, in practice, and be in communion with one of the 15 autocephalous Orthodox churches. Indeed, even after I twice asked we not discuss the matter, he felt obliged to attack viciously. (All this before even introducing himself.) He then linked his Western Rite OrthodoxWiki article; after I offered some technical feedback he seemed [http://groups.yahoo.com/group/westernriteorthodoxy/message/1037 hyper-sensitively defensive]. He's even refused to post a comment I have sent to his blog twice about [http://www.livejournal.com/users/naqerj/366146.html a song named "Massachusetts"] recorded [http://www.lyricsfreak.com/b/bee-gees/15551.html by the Bee Gees], although he's added numerous posts since then. All this leads me to believe Rdr. Andrew is averse to criticism of any sort, however innocuous, and may not be an exemplar of reasoned Christian discourse. I hope we will have better luck here, and the rest of you will set the example should things become bogged down again. I simply don't feel like getting into an argument for argument's sake, especially with fellow Orthodox who are, for the most part, doing excellent work.
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'''PERSUASION'''
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Magda writes: "Repeatedly making the same changes does nothing to persuade." I was unaware one had to "persuade"; I was under the impression OrthodoxWiki was "a free-content encyclopedia and information center for Orthodox Christianity that anyone can edit." I particularly had this impression after I was directly invited to edit the Western Rite article on the matters Rdr. Andrew and I discussed on the "westernriteorthodoxy" group. I was not aware this meant "anyone, as long as we agree with their viewpoint, even if they link proof of their assertions." :) However, in case you missed them, here's:
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'''THE EVIDENCE'''
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Magda, et. al., much of the information I posted came from canonical Orthodox clergy within Antioch and ROCOR, and was verified in a public internet forum by Aidan Keller, a monk formerly with the Milan Synod's St. Hilarion Monastery in Austin, TX. He admitted in this message that SHM's "Archbishop Hilarion" received his orders from the Liberal Catholic Church, a group that has proudly trumpeted its Theosophist beliefs for decades. At some point, SHM became part of an Old Catholic group billing itself as the "Synod of Orthodox Bishops of the Western Rite." I linked [http://phonebook.superpages.com/negocios/C-Iglesias-Ortodoxas+Orientales/S-NJ/T-/PA-1/PB-16 the Yellow Pages entry] showing that group advertizing itself as "Orthodox," although they were then ''episcopoi vagantes'' (again, by Aidan Keller's admission, although he [http://groups.yahoo.com/group/westernritejurisdictions/message/24 claims they did not present themselves as Orthodox before entering the Milan Synod]). You will notice the SOBWR's address in the Yellow Page entry is the same as that of [http://www.odox.net/Synod-WestMilford.htm the the Abbey of the Holy Name], the residence of [http://www.orthodoxwest.net/directory.html "His Eminence, the Most Reverend Archbishop John, Ruling Archbishop"] of the Milan Synod. (Indeed, St. Hilarion's itself has reportedly [http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/newboard/index.php/topic,4012.msg53443.html#msg53443 claimed it was part of the Antiochian Archdiocese]. Similarly, Aidan Keller [http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Occidentalis/message/4016 charges his enemies] -- he often names Antiochians specifically as such -- with resorting "to lies, orchestrated rumours, shocking intrigue, bribery, and even forged documents," all without any proof, naturally.)
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Sources within Antioch and ROCOR state that SOBWR approached ROCOR's Abp. HILARION (then in the U.S., now in Australia). Aidan Keller admits Vladyka demanded they be reordained, and they refused. They were then received into the Milan Synod, by all accounts without reordination. Common sense also dictates if these ''vagantes'' refused to accede to ROCOR's demand for reordination, they would not likely do so for the Milan Synod. Thus, as far as the record can be reconstructed, the only ordination administred at St. Hilarion's Monastery stems from a Theosophist church. I freely acknowledge that Russia used to accept Roman Catholic priests simply by "vesting," but I'm not aware that Milan even did that in this case; by all accounts they simply accepted SHM directly, in orders. Perhaps Aristibule has this answer, as well?
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You may read Aidan Keller's admissions about his monastery's background [http://groups.yahoo.com/group/westernritejurisdictions/message/18 here] (you must first subscribe), although they are buried beneath mounds of denials and contradictions of his previous statements, etc.
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Finally, in my post, I linked Fr. Anthony Nelson of ROCOR's article on the role St. Hilarion's Monastery played in ordaining the head of the Gnostic Orthodox Church (the group that produces "Monastery Icons"). Aidan Keller claims this was innocent. However, according to Fr. Nelson the Gnostic [http://www.orthodoxinfo.com/general/monasteryicons.aspx publicly proclaimed that he had been a bishop in a former life], and the monastery had been featured on numerous television programs as a Hindu-Orthodox hybrid!
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I believe this proves all my assertions. I added them to give a more complete picture of St. Hilarion's Monastery, particularly since, as I noted, certain figures there have a disturbing background, high ambition, and have been less than honest about their background (and well as the practices, faith, and even ''Orthodoxy'' of Antioch -- but that's another post). Thank you.
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===In Reply #1===
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Rdr. Andrew sent me some more links to the whole thread of discussion on [http://groups.yahoo.com/group/westernriteorthodoxy westernriteorthodoxy]. I've ''briefly'' read through your discussion together, and I venture the following comments:
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#I'm amazed by the depth of discussion. I think at one point Ben said that no good history of Western Rite Orthodoxy yet exists. I'm very heartened to see so much knowledge going around and I have high hopes for this article here. I hope you folks don't give up on all of this.
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#It seems to me that your strained conversation is a sad side effect of internet discourse. How quickly differences escalate into flame wars! I'm not convinced that either of you are actually wrong. Let me explain:
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::Ben takes issue with Rdr. Andrew's openness to the Milan Synod and other groups which call themselves Orthodox, but are not in fact in communion with any of the ancient sees. Rdr. Andrew responds that we should not write these groups off too quickly, and gives some historical examples to back this up (e.g. the way some groups - even, e.g. the OCA - have failed at one point or another to meet the strict definition of canonicity offered by Fr. Matusiak (which I think is a good summary statement, but not a complete treatise on ecclesiastical polity).<br>
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::My impression is that Rdr. Andrew is being too cautious/charitable here. I don't know the specific history of the Milan Synod, but ''I recommend that we change it's descriptor from "Old Calendar" to something that more accurately highlights the problematic character of its claims.'' Perhaps the best thing to do would be to provide a link to an article which goes into some of the history of the [[ 1 Holy Synod of Milan|Milan Synod]].<br>
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::In terms of ecclesiology, obviously this isn't really the place for an in-depth discussion, but I award points to both parties. Personally, I don't have much trouble holding the two perspectives in tension. It seems that most of us (in mainstream canonical Orthodox churches) can appreciate that, even if we aren't fully in communion with R.O.C.O.R. (not yet at least), they still have a claim to authenticity that's radically different from, e.g., a group like H.O.C.N.A. It is "common sense" to us to state the basic criteria of canonicity without totally excluding some groups which have become estranged for certain kinds of historical reasons (in this case, communist control of the Moscow Patriarchate).<br>
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:3. It seems to me that both of you have a lot to contribute. Again, I'm not really sure why things have escalated so quickly (maybe because it's Lent?), but I trust that we are all "eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace." (Eph. 4:3) and that this can be resolved in a worthy manner.
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May God bless you both, [[User:FrJohn|Fr. John]] ('''''Honcho in Chief''''')
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---------------------------------
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:Wow, howdy, Chief! :) I certainly hope whatever kicked off things off in such a manner was a passing thing and we can make a "second first-impression." I'm more than willing. I'd certainly welcome any opportunity to promote the Western Rite within Antioch and broader (canonical) Orthodoxy. My criteria for Orthodoxy is not merely being Orthodox and in communion with "all the pentarchy" (Rome isn't around anymore), or even a single Patriarchate, but any one of the autocephalous churches. As such, ROCOR doubly qualifies, as it is in communion with Serbia and Jerusalem (and soon Moscow!). HOCNA, Milan, ROAC, and others are not and so do not. There are troubling allegations of spiritual, physical, and sexual abuse with several such groups, as well.
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:What is particularly troubling to me is that many converts come looking for the true Church -- the Body of Christ, Holy Orthodoxy -- and find the aggressive online proselytizing of one of these groups. (Particularly those looking for the Western Rite finding Milan.) Then rather than ending up within the Holy Church (particularly within the W. Rite of Antioch or ROCOR, which can use all the members we can get!), they end up in what most of us consider an "imitation Orthodox" group, so trying to end up Orthodox they end up in a very odd and non-Orthodox organization, convinced they're the ''real'' Orthodox. Further, many of these groups are dishonest about their relations with Orthodoxy (St. Hilarion's Monastery in particular, as noted), claiming simultaneously that:
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::1) Antioch and ROCOR love and cherish their liturgy and approve of the "validity" of their orders (red light!);
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::2) Antioch and ROCOR will stop at nothing to crush their "competitors"; and
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::3) Antioch and ROCOR's Western Rites are evil, post-schism, or - gasp! - "Byzantized"!
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:I think OrthodoxWiki is providing a potentially invaluable service to interested converts looking for information. In order to guide them into the safe haven of the Church, we need to be clear how mainstream Orthodoxy regards the Greek OCs.
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:If I may further muddy the waters, ROCOR despises most Greek OCs, as they were burned after setting them up, but they are still in communion with the Oropos-Fili faction. However, this group says it will break communion when ROCOR reunites with Moscow, so it's a temporary arrangement.
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:Father, bless. (And I'll see what I can do about getting you that extra-large monitor! Hey, you too, Andrew -- how's ''that'' for fence-mending?) :)
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::I would just add: I don't think the examples Rdr. Andrew used are appropos. The OCA was granted autonomy by Moscow, which means at a minimum it was in communion with '''Moscow'''. St. Maximus the Confessor was persecuted by his hierarch and fled...to the Pope of Rome. ROCOR has always been in communion with Serbia and Jerusalem (or one or the other). None of this can be said of the ever-splitting Greek OCs.
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===In Reply #2===
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Hi Ben, I really do see (and share) your concerns. Just in the past few months, I've been personally troubled by the divisiveness, aggressive proselytizing, and half-truths of one of these groups. I've also been looking into some allegations of sexual abuse against one group in particular and the more I scratched the surface, the more disturbed I was by what I found.
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All that said, I think Rdr. Andrew's concern is that we shouldn't lump all these groups together too quickly. I am more sympathetic with some of the Greek Old Calendarists than others... each has it's own history, it's own dramas.
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On Wikipedia, there's a thing called NPOV - "neutral point of view" - which we've adopted, in a modified form, at OrthodoxWiki (see [[OrthodoxWiki:Style_Manual#Neutrality_and_the_OrthodoxWiki_Bias|Neutrality_and_the_OrthodoxWiki_Bias]]). I think of this as the editorial voice we're trying to cultivate here - more descriptive than prescriptive. So, I think it's preferable to simply describe the situation of these various groups, including their own claims as well as the accusations against them and how they are regarded by other groups. We're aiming for description, and I'd like to leave any direct pronouncements about these groups to the official websites of the various Orthodox Churches, and any unofficial ones that want to enter into that fray. We're not trying to do everything - thank God they're there - but I do think OrthodoxWiki is filling an important gap in the Orthodox cyber-sphere.
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Practically, a descriptive tone would mean, for example, saying "these groups are regarded as schismatic by the Orthodox Churches in communion with the Ecumenical Patriarchate" or "their belief in reincarnation, if allegations are true, is incompatible with Orthodox teaching" rather than the more pointed and not very helpful "they're heretics."
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It seems to me that the facts of the cases speak more loudly than any direct polemic we want to insert. I would welcome a response from folks in any of those groups, as long as they didn't wipe out the words of those who have voiced concerns against them.
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One final note - about the OCA thing, I think Rdr. Andrew was referring more to the ambiguous status of the Metropolia before the autocephaly was granted by Moscow.
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Wishing you a good battle, [[User:FrJohn|Fr. John]]
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P.S. May I invite you to open an OrthodoxWiki account?
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== Formatting and Indentions ==
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I mentioned in my post on "westernriteorthodoxy," the only real problem I have with the technical side of the WesternRite article is that the indentions are hard to make out, particularly in areas where the article "scoots" one direction or another. I've looked at it on a 20" monintor, and one can barely tell the quoted paragraphs are indented. Is there anyway to increase the indentation say a few more centimeters? I think that would improve the page dramatically.
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Just my two cents.
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::There is a good deal of latitude given to the contributors in terms of formatting - we certainly want to go for clarity, although we should generally abide by the guidelines in the [[OrthodoxWiki:Style Manual]] (which itself is open for discussion).
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If you put a couple spaces before a paragraph<br>it turns into a text box. This can be helpful sometimes!
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:::::You can also indent a paragraph by putting colons ':' in front of it -- the more colons, the further in it goes.
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You might also find it helpful to ''italicize'' or use '''boldness''' in order to make things clear. For more information, please see [[Help:Editing]].
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Hope that helps! [[User:FrJohn|Fr. John]]
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P.S. A 20 inch monitor? That sounds great! Do you happen to have an extra one laying around :-)
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== Listservs ==
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I would not list "westernritejurisdictions," as it was founded for a specific, short-term purpose. A poster on Occidentalis had asked for documentation of several of Aidan Keller's statements on Occidentalis. Keller provided none, then censored him. As a sop to a few members of the Occidentalis group, Aidan Keller formed "westernritejurisdictions" to answer this guy's questions. Six months later, he has provided nothing. It's best to leave that what it was intended to be: a private fight between Aidan and "imjimmyd" (and his wife?). Your readers will get no spiritual benefit from reading it.
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I would not list Occidentalis for the same reason I wouldn't put "Milan Synod" in the article, but ALSO for another reason: Occidentalis has been Aidan Keller's forum for several calumnies against the Antiochian WRV. In one message, he claimed the St. Tikhon Vespers service was "substantially Byzantized," because it had the Prayer of St. Chrysostom -- added by Thomas Cranmer in 1549! Again, he claims eerie, scary, bad, mean Antiochians are out to crush him and his wonderful liturgy, which is the lone heir to pre-Schism Western liturgics (although all the books he cites as sources were printed LATE post-Schism, some in the 19th century). He also allows "super Orthodox" (Milan Synod, HOCNA, etc.) to call Orthodox and all non-super-Orthodox VILE, insulting names without censorship or rebuke...but those who ask questions he doesn't like, like "imjimmyd," are censored.
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I'm sure there are other Western Rite forums in existence, but I don't have my links handy. Others? Anyone? Anyone?
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*beginning of new comments by other user* I have found few Western Rite forums in use by actual Western Rite Orthodox. The 'westernriteorthodoxy' list at Yahoogroups probably being singular. Since the closing of the old "occidentalis" list in about 2002, AWRV clergy have not really participated in any online forum or listserv that I can find. The same goes for ROCOR WRO clergy as of 2003. The only place I know where discussion might be had on the subject is a single forum on another list that is primarily for Anglo-Catholic Anglicans, with Roman Catholics and Orthodox participating. - Aristibule
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-----------------
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About the listservs, I would suggest we list everything relevant, but that we clearly note the source, e.g. Antiochian Archdiocese, etc. or Controversial Groups (Milan Synod). We don't have to pretend that, e.g., the Milan Synod has legitimate canonical standing in the Orthodox world, but I think we should include all the data relevant to the discussion.
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Maybe this could be accomplished by including a brief overview of the relationship of the "non-mainstream" groups to the Western rite, including some of the things which have been discussed here and in the linked threads, but in digest form (and with links to more detailed OrthodoxWiki articles!).
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How does that sound to everybody? - [[User:FrJohn|Fr. John]]
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Sounds like a good idea, Father. It might help as many are seeing subtle language pushing the Milan Synod pov over the neutral language in other articles. I've tried to clarify on a few points where I have some knowledge of the subject. The issue is the language in how their Western Rite project is described, being of word choices which either overtly or by intimation cast aspersion on the Western Rite as used by the (mainstream) Orthodox Church. Having said that, reporting using the self-descriptive political language of the group imports the bias of the group. - Aristibule
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==Miscellaneous Information==
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*begin
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I have a few items to add later once I can get some more detailed information. I'm placing them here as placeholders so I don't forget.
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- The role of the Western Rite Orthodox in the "Pilgrimage to Orthodoxy", including the initial placement of then AWRV priest Fr. Michael Keiser over what would become the British Antiochian Deanery (and its subsequent Byzantinization.)
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- Dr. Raymond Winch (RIP), who was converted to Orthodoxy from Roman Catholicism in the late 1950s, and became a proponent for Western Rite Orthodoxy through "The Gregorian Club". His major influence was through his investigations into the canons which direct the Roman rite for those nations speaking the English tongue.
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- Use of a Byzantinized liturgy based around the Roman Canon by Russian Old Believers up into the 1960s in Turkey.
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- The special relationship of the Latin rite monasteries and churches of the post-Schism era on Mt. Athos and in Constantinople/Nicea/Crimea/"New England"(unkown place on the Black Sea coast)  which included Latin rite communities having privileges not extended towards other 'Latins'. The Varangians (Anglivarangoi) in particular, and how Blondal's theory of them remaining under Roman pastorate is problematic in several details.
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- The first Orthodox Christians in the Americas being the family of Leif Ericsson, sent by St. Olaf of Norway with priest to Greenland - users of a Roman rite, and under the 'omophorion' of the Bishop of Hamburg-Bremen (over half a century before the Great Schism). Records of that local church describe an Episcopal visit to 'Vinland' by the Greenland (North American) bishop of Gardar in the period while the Great Schism was developing. That community survived at least until the period contemporary with the voyages of Columbus.
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Any help in gathering details on any would be helpful. (I've got papers I'm supposed to be writing as well.) - Aristibule *end
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:::I can post the information regarding the Old Believers' use of the Roman Canon until the 1960s; Fr. John Shaw of ROCOR actually translated the liturgy in question. Also, Fr. Andrew Phillips wrote up the details of the Vinland use of the Western Rite. I'd happily note the information and link the articles. However, Andrew pointed out on "westernriteorthodoxy" that the article didn't go into the pre-Schism history of the Western Rite, per se. He suggested we start another article. I think this may be worth having all in one place. What think the rest of ye? I'm amenable to either solution. -- Ben Johnson
 +
 
 +
:::: Thanks Ben. If we could begin with Fr. Andrew's information, and I'll add and correct from there. I believe I've read it before, and I know some details he might not been aware of. I can understand a separate area for pre-Schism history, but the area I'm interested in is that 'post-Schism' continuity of Western forms within the Eastern Church, or in the West where it has bearing upon canonical issues of our jurisdictions? Would that need to be in a separate article as well?  - Aristibule

Latest revision as of 15:11, February 26, 2007

Given our recent bit of nasty editing by 128.146.246.204 on this, I think we definitely need to expand this article to include some of the controversy. I'll try to work on a section about the controversial nature of the WR soon, but of course if anyone wants to beat me to it, they're most welcome. Stuff like 128.146.246.204's edits are not. --Rdr. Andrew 21:25, 19 Feb 2005 (CST)

Contents

Vandalism

If the vandalism of OrthodoxWiki continues by 128.146.246.217 / 128.146.246.204 / 128.146.246.246 (a visitor from osuweb.net), I'm going to ban every IP from that domain I see. In the meantime, this article is going to be protected (editable only by sysops) for a week. --Rdr. Andrew 12:26, 20 Feb 2005 (CST)

Hey, you want to write your OPINION, that's fine. But don't lie about the Orthodox faith. The Orthodox Church - ANY JURISDICTION - has NEVER been "in communion" with Roman Catholic schismatics. Your implication that the Russian Orthodox Church Outside of Russia is in any way a "branch" or other "brotherly member" of the Uniat church is Libelous and must be stopped.
I'm going to presume that this paragraph is from the Reader Michael (OCA) mentioned on Talk:Main Page.
If you believe that the article as it currently stands is merely opinion and is "lies," then you are welcome to offer up edits of this article which reflect another point of view. However, accusations that WR Orthodox are "Roman Catholics" is simply inaccurate. They are not in communion with the Vatican, and most never have been. Those that used to be broke communion from Rome in becoming Orthodox (or usually sometime before).
"Uniate" (as you used in your edits) is also not accurate. The Unia specifically refers to parishes which had been formerly Orthodox, broke from the Orthodox Church, and then went into union with Rome. The only similarity that WR Orthodox have with Rome is that they share common roots for their liturgical tradition (and since Vatican II, the deviation has become quite wide).
You say that you're in the OCA. Your bishops are fully in communion with the bishops who care for most of the WR parishes. Have you called your bishops to break communion with those who, in your view, continue to promulgate Roman Catholicism in the guise of Orthodoxy? You might better claim that the WR is an attempt to promulgate Orthodoxy in the guise of Roman Catholicism. (After all, the "guise" of the WR is much more similar to Rome than to Constantinople.) I genuinely and seriously wonder whether you have even read the article.
As you say, ROCOR is not a "branch" of the Uniates, and the article is not claiming that, either. ROCOR does have Western Rite parishes, and at least two WR monasteries (one in Rhode Island and the other in New Zealand). (If you doubt this, I recommend you contact their administration to determine this for yourself.) This does not make ROCOR Uniates.
In any event, you have thus far shown yourself nearly incapable of contributing to OrthodoxWiki in a rational, charitable manner, throwing accusations about without attempting to work within the standards set here. Your contributions so far are precisely the sort of thing we're working to avoid. Now, if you want to work within our standards and represent heretofore unrepresented points of view in a rational, encyclopedic manner, you are most welcome. If, on the other hand, you are not willing to do so, we'll work to prevent your vandalism. It's your choice.
In the meantime, I'll make some notes in this article reflecting your opinions in the "Criticism" section. --Rdr. Andrew 06:25, 21 Feb 2005 (CST)


New Zealand

Rdr Andrew,

i am unaware of any western rite monastery in new zealand. there was a group in the 70's that started a skete, but firstly i'm not sure if they are western rite (probably not), and secondly in any event they went under the serbian diocese.

however, you may be referring to the <a href="http://www.rocor.org.au/stpetrocmonastery/">St Petroc monastery</a> in tasmania, australia.

thank you for all the work you've done on OrthodoxWiki - already it is a resource for Orthodox. a/s

Fixed! --Rdr. Andrew 21:06, 25 Feb 2005 (CST)

Unprotected

I've returned this article to "unprotected" status a day early, because of the change of heart of Sputnik. Glory be to God for all things! --Rdr. Andrew 08:03, 26 Feb 2005 (CST)

Thoughts on Criticisms of the Western Rite.

One of the things I think was missed in the criticism section of this article was that what many find disquieting about Western Rite parishes is that most, if not all, are primarily convert parishes. In some circles there is a feeling that while the rite itself is unobjectionable, there is a danger that these parishes want to be Orthodox but not too Orthodox: they do not want to give up the comforting familiarity of their former religion and might thus come to further 'infect' the Church with other (this time unwarranted) innovations brought in from their former church. This, I think, is behind the worry about the lack of a liturgical tradition that is referenced in the main article.

Or to put this another way, if a long established parish with multigenerational families of Orthodox were to change peacefully from the Byzantine Rite to the Western Rite then many who are now uneasy with the latter would find it easier to become reconciled with it. Of course, other objections such as the uniformity of liturgical practice and so on would still be made but the nature of discourse would, I think, be different. (But not, probably, better - consider new-calendar v old-calendar.)

Nickolas Kalivas

81.187.212.42 16:58, 8 Mar 2005 (CST)

You can, of course, make these additions to the article if you should so choose. I wonder about the idea of an ER parish becoming WR, though. Why would they do that? It seems something of a non sequitur.
I've heard this criticism, though, and I'll note it in the appropriate section, along with some of the counters I've heard, as well. --Rdr. Andrew 17:48, 8 Mar 2005 (CST)

I did not want to make changes to the main article since I don't have references that I can point to. Since my comments are anecdotal I prefer to leave them in a discussion until I (or someone else) can point to something that is more than what may be a couple of ill-remembered stories.

As for a putative parish changing rites, I do not expect this to happen since, as you say, why would they do that? I'm using this illustration in an attempt to explain how a long-standing liturgical tradition acts as a buffer to criticism and thus might help to blunt some arguments. Put crudely "St ----'s church has been around for a hundred years and is well respected for its stability, good works, etc. It changed to the Western Rite five years ago for reasons of its own and, while I do not understand why, I trust them so it must be ok."

My powers of expression aren't usually that good, and certainly get worse when it gets near to midnight, but I hope that I've made myself clearer. I have absolutely no desire to be controversial but thought I'd add information about something that I thought might have been missed. In any case, I look forward to reading any updates when they come around.

Nickolas Kalivas

81.187.212.42 17:50, 9 Mar 2005 (CST)

No worries! As you can see from the article, not everything on OrthodoxWiki is documented (much like the Orthodox Church itself), but the fact that both you and I have heard this criticism is, I think, enough to merit it a mention.
I understood what you meant about the respectability of an established ER parish becoming WR, but the sheer unlikelihood of that ever happening makes it something of a moot point, don't you think?
In any event, judging at least from your comments here, I'd say that your expression powers are surely good enough to find use here on OrthodoxWiki—perhaps you'd consider registering an account and helping us out to the extent that you are able and inclined to do so. --Rdr. Andrew 19:14, 9 Mar 2005 (CST)

Perhaps "Objections to the Western Rite" should be its own article. I'd be happy to write it; I think I've heard EVERYTHING. :)

Negotiations

In the late 1990s, negotiations had been underway with the Church of Serbia for the Eglise to come under its jurisdiction, but NATO's bombing of Kosovo in 1999 abruptly ended those hopes, as France was then seen by the Serbians as complicit in its persecution by the West. Talks reportedly resumed in 2004.

I must say I find this paragraph a little bizarre - maybe it's my American mentality of separation of church and state, but why would church negotiations be affected by what the French government does? And why is the reported necessary? Either they did or they didn't, and if it's a maybe, another wording might be more appropriate since reportedly sounds like someone is suspicious of certain claims which are being made. (And if this is the case, the concern should be made explicit). Thanks, Fr. John

Regarding the issue of breaking off talks after NATO began bombing Serbia -- I think it was essentially an issue of guilt by association. (Notice, for instance, how Americans started boycotting or renaming various French cultural products simply because the French government didn't support the invasion of Iraq.)
The latter bit is part of a sentence I put in there. I used "reportedly," because I have no source for the information other than someone who is not part of either group saying that it is so, without citing any information. Since this is hardly a "common knowledge" issue, I'd at least like some sort of published source before removing the "hedge" word. --Rdr. Andrew 22:55, 1 Apr 2005 (EST)

http://www.spc.yu/Vesti-2004/12/14-12-04-e.html Try this to begin with. Also, a version of the same report but originating with the French rather than the Serbians, as reported to ROCOR's WRO monastery: http://www.orthodoxresurgence.co.uk/Petroc/Michael04.htm - page down to Belgrade, 29 September. - Aristibule.

Thanks! --Rdr. Andrew 07:19, 4 Apr 2005 (EDT)

The negotiations between Serbia and L'ECOF ARE common knowledge, if you travel in Western Rite circles. Literally every WRV clergyman is aware of them, as well as many in ROCOR, and even the Milan Synod, HOCNA, and various other splinter groups (as Aidan Keller of the Occidentalis Yahoo news list falsely reported L'ECOF had been assumed by the Copts [that's a different church with a similar name], then falsely reported the Serbs had alraedy accepted L'ECOF). Thanks, Aristibule, for providing links verifying my recounting of the facts.

I share Fr. John's questions about Serbia breaking off negotiations with France last time, allegedly because of its support for Clinton's military actions. Perhaps we should see "at least like some sort of published source" before adding it?

I've removed the section in question. It was a piece of information told to me by a former subdeacon in l'ECOF.
"Common knowledge" within a certain group is not the same as "common knowledge" as usually defined in academic standards. For instance, it is common knowledge that Julius Caesar ruled the Roman Empire, but it is not common knowledge that some piece of his house was recently uncovered, something that probably only archaeologists would know. --Rdr. Andrew 07:58, 4 Apr 2005 (EDT)

All's well that ends well, Rdr. Andrew! :)

Persuasion?

TO SET THE STAGE

I made some changes to the Western Rite article. Rdr. Andrew Stephen Damick erased said changes. Another user then added some variant of my original comments back to these pages twice, each time having them erased.

The irony is I made these changes at the specific invitation of: Rdr. Andrew. On the Yahoo group "westernriteorthodoxy," I offered stylistic and substantive comments about his Western Rite article, which he had linked on the group. He said of my substantive changes (including my note about the Franco-Serbian negotiations): "Thanks for your input. You're welcome, of course, to make adjustments to the article yourself, but should you choose not to, I'll try to incorporate your suggestions at some point in the future." Hence, I felt welcome to post here. When I took him up on his offer, he decided to censor me and delete the input he encouraged me to publish. I didn't realize by taking up his offer I was somehow falling into his little game.

An admin hoped we could discuss this page in a Christian manner. Frankly, I am apprehensive even entering this dialogue, especially during Lent. As I mentioned, Rdr. Andrew and I met on the Yahoo group "westernriteorthodoxy," a listserv dedicated to Antioch's WRV. After I noted a "Ukrainian Orthodox" spambot's several messages about a Byzantine Rite outreach to the inner city homeless of Hawaii (!) were off-topic and reminded the group many independent church groups claim to be associated with the "Ukrainian Orthodox," Rdr. Andrew repeatedly attacked me with vitriolic rhetoric simply because because I believe with most of world Orthodoxy (including Antioch and the OCA) that to be part of the Orthodox Church proper one must be Orthodox in faith, in practice, and be in communion with one of the 15 autocephalous Orthodox churches. Indeed, even after I twice asked we not discuss the matter, he felt obliged to attack viciously. (All this before even introducing himself.) He then linked his Western Rite OrthodoxWiki article; after I offered some technical feedback he seemed hyper-sensitively defensive. He's even refused to post a comment I have sent to his blog twice about a song named "Massachusetts" recorded by the Bee Gees, although he's added numerous posts since then. All this leads me to believe Rdr. Andrew is averse to criticism of any sort, however innocuous, and may not be an exemplar of reasoned Christian discourse. I hope we will have better luck here, and the rest of you will set the example should things become bogged down again. I simply don't feel like getting into an argument for argument's sake, especially with fellow Orthodox who are, for the most part, doing excellent work.

PERSUASION

Magda writes: "Repeatedly making the same changes does nothing to persuade." I was unaware one had to "persuade"; I was under the impression OrthodoxWiki was "a free-content encyclopedia and information center for Orthodox Christianity that anyone can edit." I particularly had this impression after I was directly invited to edit the Western Rite article on the matters Rdr. Andrew and I discussed on the "westernriteorthodoxy" group. I was not aware this meant "anyone, as long as we agree with their viewpoint, even if they link proof of their assertions." :) However, in case you missed them, here's:

THE EVIDENCE

Magda, et. al., much of the information I posted came from canonical Orthodox clergy within Antioch and ROCOR, and was verified in a public internet forum by Aidan Keller, a monk formerly with the Milan Synod's St. Hilarion Monastery in Austin, TX. He admitted in this message that SHM's "Archbishop Hilarion" received his orders from the Liberal Catholic Church, a group that has proudly trumpeted its Theosophist beliefs for decades. At some point, SHM became part of an Old Catholic group billing itself as the "Synod of Orthodox Bishops of the Western Rite." I linked the Yellow Pages entry showing that group advertizing itself as "Orthodox," although they were then episcopoi vagantes (again, by Aidan Keller's admission, although he claims they did not present themselves as Orthodox before entering the Milan Synod). You will notice the SOBWR's address in the Yellow Page entry is the same as that of the the Abbey of the Holy Name, the residence of "His Eminence, the Most Reverend Archbishop John, Ruling Archbishop" of the Milan Synod. (Indeed, St. Hilarion's itself has reportedly claimed it was part of the Antiochian Archdiocese. Similarly, Aidan Keller charges his enemies -- he often names Antiochians specifically as such -- with resorting "to lies, orchestrated rumours, shocking intrigue, bribery, and even forged documents," all without any proof, naturally.)

Sources within Antioch and ROCOR state that SOBWR approached ROCOR's Abp. HILARION (then in the U.S., now in Australia). Aidan Keller admits Vladyka demanded they be reordained, and they refused. They were then received into the Milan Synod, by all accounts without reordination. Common sense also dictates if these vagantes refused to accede to ROCOR's demand for reordination, they would not likely do so for the Milan Synod. Thus, as far as the record can be reconstructed, the only ordination administred at St. Hilarion's Monastery stems from a Theosophist church. I freely acknowledge that Russia used to accept Roman Catholic priests simply by "vesting," but I'm not aware that Milan even did that in this case; by all accounts they simply accepted SHM directly, in orders. Perhaps Aristibule has this answer, as well?

You may read Aidan Keller's admissions about his monastery's background here (you must first subscribe), although they are buried beneath mounds of denials and contradictions of his previous statements, etc.

Finally, in my post, I linked Fr. Anthony Nelson of ROCOR's article on the role St. Hilarion's Monastery played in ordaining the head of the Gnostic Orthodox Church (the group that produces "Monastery Icons"). Aidan Keller claims this was innocent. However, according to Fr. Nelson the Gnostic publicly proclaimed that he had been a bishop in a former life, and the monastery had been featured on numerous television programs as a Hindu-Orthodox hybrid!

I believe this proves all my assertions. I added them to give a more complete picture of St. Hilarion's Monastery, particularly since, as I noted, certain figures there have a disturbing background, high ambition, and have been less than honest about their background (and well as the practices, faith, and even Orthodoxy of Antioch -- but that's another post). Thank you.

In Reply #1

Rdr. Andrew sent me some more links to the whole thread of discussion on westernriteorthodoxy. I've briefly read through your discussion together, and I venture the following comments:

  1. I'm amazed by the depth of discussion. I think at one point Ben said that no good history of Western Rite Orthodoxy yet exists. I'm very heartened to see so much knowledge going around and I have high hopes for this article here. I hope you folks don't give up on all of this.
  2. It seems to me that your strained conversation is a sad side effect of internet discourse. How quickly differences escalate into flame wars! I'm not convinced that either of you are actually wrong. Let me explain:
Ben takes issue with Rdr. Andrew's openness to the Milan Synod and other groups which call themselves Orthodox, but are not in fact in communion with any of the ancient sees. Rdr. Andrew responds that we should not write these groups off too quickly, and gives some historical examples to back this up (e.g. the way some groups - even, e.g. the OCA - have failed at one point or another to meet the strict definition of canonicity offered by Fr. Matusiak (which I think is a good summary statement, but not a complete treatise on ecclesiastical polity).
My impression is that Rdr. Andrew is being too cautious/charitable here. I don't know the specific history of the Milan Synod, but I recommend that we change it's descriptor from "Old Calendar" to something that more accurately highlights the problematic character of its claims. Perhaps the best thing to do would be to provide a link to an article which goes into some of the history of the [[ 1 Holy Synod of Milan|Milan Synod]].
In terms of ecclesiology, obviously this isn't really the place for an in-depth discussion, but I award points to both parties. Personally, I don't have much trouble holding the two perspectives in tension. It seems that most of us (in mainstream canonical Orthodox churches) can appreciate that, even if we aren't fully in communion with R.O.C.O.R. (not yet at least), they still have a claim to authenticity that's radically different from, e.g., a group like H.O.C.N.A. It is "common sense" to us to state the basic criteria of canonicity without totally excluding some groups which have become estranged for certain kinds of historical reasons (in this case, communist control of the Moscow Patriarchate).
3. It seems to me that both of you have a lot to contribute. Again, I'm not really sure why things have escalated so quickly (maybe because it's Lent?), but I trust that we are all "eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace." (Eph. 4:3) and that this can be resolved in a worthy manner.

May God bless you both, Fr. John (Honcho in Chief)


Wow, howdy, Chief! :) I certainly hope whatever kicked off things off in such a manner was a passing thing and we can make a "second first-impression." I'm more than willing. I'd certainly welcome any opportunity to promote the Western Rite within Antioch and broader (canonical) Orthodoxy. My criteria for Orthodoxy is not merely being Orthodox and in communion with "all the pentarchy" (Rome isn't around anymore), or even a single Patriarchate, but any one of the autocephalous churches. As such, ROCOR doubly qualifies, as it is in communion with Serbia and Jerusalem (and soon Moscow!). HOCNA, Milan, ROAC, and others are not and so do not. There are troubling allegations of spiritual, physical, and sexual abuse with several such groups, as well.
What is particularly troubling to me is that many converts come looking for the true Church -- the Body of Christ, Holy Orthodoxy -- and find the aggressive online proselytizing of one of these groups. (Particularly those looking for the Western Rite finding Milan.) Then rather than ending up within the Holy Church (particularly within the W. Rite of Antioch or ROCOR, which can use all the members we can get!), they end up in what most of us consider an "imitation Orthodox" group, so trying to end up Orthodox they end up in a very odd and non-Orthodox organization, convinced they're the real Orthodox. Further, many of these groups are dishonest about their relations with Orthodoxy (St. Hilarion's Monastery in particular, as noted), claiming simultaneously that:
1) Antioch and ROCOR love and cherish their liturgy and approve of the "validity" of their orders (red light!);
2) Antioch and ROCOR will stop at nothing to crush their "competitors"; and
3) Antioch and ROCOR's Western Rites are evil, post-schism, or - gasp! - "Byzantized"!
I think OrthodoxWiki is providing a potentially invaluable service to interested converts looking for information. In order to guide them into the safe haven of the Church, we need to be clear how mainstream Orthodoxy regards the Greek OCs.
If I may further muddy the waters, ROCOR despises most Greek OCs, as they were burned after setting them up, but they are still in communion with the Oropos-Fili faction. However, this group says it will break communion when ROCOR reunites with Moscow, so it's a temporary arrangement.
Father, bless. (And I'll see what I can do about getting you that extra-large monitor! Hey, you too, Andrew -- how's that for fence-mending?) :)
I would just add: I don't think the examples Rdr. Andrew used are appropos. The OCA was granted autonomy by Moscow, which means at a minimum it was in communion with Moscow. St. Maximus the Confessor was persecuted by his hierarch and fled...to the Pope of Rome. ROCOR has always been in communion with Serbia and Jerusalem (or one or the other). None of this can be said of the ever-splitting Greek OCs.

In Reply #2

Hi Ben, I really do see (and share) your concerns. Just in the past few months, I've been personally troubled by the divisiveness, aggressive proselytizing, and half-truths of one of these groups. I've also been looking into some allegations of sexual abuse against one group in particular and the more I scratched the surface, the more disturbed I was by what I found.

All that said, I think Rdr. Andrew's concern is that we shouldn't lump all these groups together too quickly. I am more sympathetic with some of the Greek Old Calendarists than others... each has it's own history, it's own dramas.

On Wikipedia, there's a thing called NPOV - "neutral point of view" - which we've adopted, in a modified form, at OrthodoxWiki (see Neutrality_and_the_OrthodoxWiki_Bias). I think of this as the editorial voice we're trying to cultivate here - more descriptive than prescriptive. So, I think it's preferable to simply describe the situation of these various groups, including their own claims as well as the accusations against them and how they are regarded by other groups. We're aiming for description, and I'd like to leave any direct pronouncements about these groups to the official websites of the various Orthodox Churches, and any unofficial ones that want to enter into that fray. We're not trying to do everything - thank God they're there - but I do think OrthodoxWiki is filling an important gap in the Orthodox cyber-sphere.

Practically, a descriptive tone would mean, for example, saying "these groups are regarded as schismatic by the Orthodox Churches in communion with the Ecumenical Patriarchate" or "their belief in reincarnation, if allegations are true, is incompatible with Orthodox teaching" rather than the more pointed and not very helpful "they're heretics."

It seems to me that the facts of the cases speak more loudly than any direct polemic we want to insert. I would welcome a response from folks in any of those groups, as long as they didn't wipe out the words of those who have voiced concerns against them.

One final note - about the OCA thing, I think Rdr. Andrew was referring more to the ambiguous status of the Metropolia before the autocephaly was granted by Moscow.

Wishing you a good battle, Fr. John

P.S. May I invite you to open an OrthodoxWiki account?

Formatting and Indentions

I mentioned in my post on "westernriteorthodoxy," the only real problem I have with the technical side of the WesternRite article is that the indentions are hard to make out, particularly in areas where the article "scoots" one direction or another. I've looked at it on a 20" monintor, and one can barely tell the quoted paragraphs are indented. Is there anyway to increase the indentation say a few more centimeters? I think that would improve the page dramatically.

Just my two cents.

There is a good deal of latitude given to the contributors in terms of formatting - we certainly want to go for clarity, although we should generally abide by the guidelines in the OrthodoxWiki:Style Manual (which itself is open for discussion).
If you put a couple spaces before a paragraph
it turns into a text box. This can be helpful sometimes!
You can also indent a paragraph by putting colons ':' in front of it -- the more colons, the further in it goes.

You might also find it helpful to italicize or use boldness in order to make things clear. For more information, please see Help:Editing.

Hope that helps! Fr. John

P.S. A 20 inch monitor? That sounds great! Do you happen to have an extra one laying around :-)

Listservs

I would not list "westernritejurisdictions," as it was founded for a specific, short-term purpose. A poster on Occidentalis had asked for documentation of several of Aidan Keller's statements on Occidentalis. Keller provided none, then censored him. As a sop to a few members of the Occidentalis group, Aidan Keller formed "westernritejurisdictions" to answer this guy's questions. Six months later, he has provided nothing. It's best to leave that what it was intended to be: a private fight between Aidan and "imjimmyd" (and his wife?). Your readers will get no spiritual benefit from reading it.

I would not list Occidentalis for the same reason I wouldn't put "Milan Synod" in the article, but ALSO for another reason: Occidentalis has been Aidan Keller's forum for several calumnies against the Antiochian WRV. In one message, he claimed the St. Tikhon Vespers service was "substantially Byzantized," because it had the Prayer of St. Chrysostom -- added by Thomas Cranmer in 1549! Again, he claims eerie, scary, bad, mean Antiochians are out to crush him and his wonderful liturgy, which is the lone heir to pre-Schism Western liturgics (although all the books he cites as sources were printed LATE post-Schism, some in the 19th century). He also allows "super Orthodox" (Milan Synod, HOCNA, etc.) to call Orthodox and all non-super-Orthodox VILE, insulting names without censorship or rebuke...but those who ask questions he doesn't like, like "imjimmyd," are censored.

I'm sure there are other Western Rite forums in existence, but I don't have my links handy. Others? Anyone? Anyone?

  • beginning of new comments by other user* I have found few Western Rite forums in use by actual Western Rite Orthodox. The 'westernriteorthodoxy' list at Yahoogroups probably being singular. Since the closing of the old "occidentalis" list in about 2002, AWRV clergy have not really participated in any online forum or listserv that I can find. The same goes for ROCOR WRO clergy as of 2003. The only place I know where discussion might be had on the subject is a single forum on another list that is primarily for Anglo-Catholic Anglicans, with Roman Catholics and Orthodox participating. - Aristibule

About the listservs, I would suggest we list everything relevant, but that we clearly note the source, e.g. Antiochian Archdiocese, etc. or Controversial Groups (Milan Synod). We don't have to pretend that, e.g., the Milan Synod has legitimate canonical standing in the Orthodox world, but I think we should include all the data relevant to the discussion.

Maybe this could be accomplished by including a brief overview of the relationship of the "non-mainstream" groups to the Western rite, including some of the things which have been discussed here and in the linked threads, but in digest form (and with links to more detailed OrthodoxWiki articles!).

How does that sound to everybody? - Fr. John

Sounds like a good idea, Father. It might help as many are seeing subtle language pushing the Milan Synod pov over the neutral language in other articles. I've tried to clarify on a few points where I have some knowledge of the subject. The issue is the language in how their Western Rite project is described, being of word choices which either overtly or by intimation cast aspersion on the Western Rite as used by the (mainstream) Orthodox Church. Having said that, reporting using the self-descriptive political language of the group imports the bias of the group. - Aristibule

Miscellaneous Information

  • begin

I have a few items to add later once I can get some more detailed information. I'm placing them here as placeholders so I don't forget.

- The role of the Western Rite Orthodox in the "Pilgrimage to Orthodoxy", including the initial placement of then AWRV priest Fr. Michael Keiser over what would become the British Antiochian Deanery (and its subsequent Byzantinization.)

- Dr. Raymond Winch (RIP), who was converted to Orthodoxy from Roman Catholicism in the late 1950s, and became a proponent for Western Rite Orthodoxy through "The Gregorian Club". His major influence was through his investigations into the canons which direct the Roman rite for those nations speaking the English tongue.

- Use of a Byzantinized liturgy based around the Roman Canon by Russian Old Believers up into the 1960s in Turkey.

- The special relationship of the Latin rite monasteries and churches of the post-Schism era on Mt. Athos and in Constantinople/Nicea/Crimea/"New England"(unkown place on the Black Sea coast) which included Latin rite communities having privileges not extended towards other 'Latins'. The Varangians (Anglivarangoi) in particular, and how Blondal's theory of them remaining under Roman pastorate is problematic in several details.

- The first Orthodox Christians in the Americas being the family of Leif Ericsson, sent by St. Olaf of Norway with priest to Greenland - users of a Roman rite, and under the 'omophorion' of the Bishop of Hamburg-Bremen (over half a century before the Great Schism). Records of that local church describe an Episcopal visit to 'Vinland' by the Greenland (North American) bishop of Gardar in the period while the Great Schism was developing. That community survived at least until the period contemporary with the voyages of Columbus.

Any help in gathering details on any would be helpful. (I've got papers I'm supposed to be writing as well.) - Aristibule *end

I can post the information regarding the Old Believers' use of the Roman Canon until the 1960s; Fr. John Shaw of ROCOR actually translated the liturgy in question. Also, Fr. Andrew Phillips wrote up the details of the Vinland use of the Western Rite. I'd happily note the information and link the articles. However, Andrew pointed out on "westernriteorthodoxy" that the article didn't go into the pre-Schism history of the Western Rite, per se. He suggested we start another article. I think this may be worth having all in one place. What think the rest of ye? I'm amenable to either solution. -- Ben Johnson
Thanks Ben. If we could begin with Fr. Andrew's information, and I'll add and correct from there. I believe I've read it before, and I know some details he might not been aware of. I can understand a separate area for pre-Schism history, but the area I'm interested in is that 'post-Schism' continuity of Western forms within the Eastern Church, or in the West where it has bearing upon canonical issues of our jurisdictions? Would that need to be in a separate article as well? - Aristibule
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