Please check out this new podcast of videos my friend Chris Lofton and I are producing. The topics will be widely expansive, but there will certainly be a concentration on the truth of Catholicism viz a viz Eastern churches (Orthodox/Oriental) as the two main Red Woods of Christian History. Videos will be 20 to 30 minutes, so that it is digestable for average listeners.
This here is the first launch. Many more to come, God willing.
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Without a doubt, the current state of affairs in Catholicism, and the Papacy in particular, has struck one of the greatest challenges for her apologists. Many people are driven to think there is a massive problem with the coherence of Catholic ecclesiology with regard to the Papacy. The problem can be illustrated by citing one of the Catholic Church’s most astute contemporary theologians today. Continue reading →
There is a report going around, of which I have no further confirmation other than a post from a blog site entitled “The Stumbling Block” (access the post here), which states that +Steven Lopes, Bishop of the Personal Ordinariate of the Chair of Saint Peter, has made an intervention into the ministry of a certain Ordinariate priest, Fr Vaughn Treco, in order to request a recantation of the content of a certain homily he gave in the recent past. Bishop +Lopes insisted he renounce or he would lose his position as Pastor of the parish and would require Catechesis on the theology of the 2nd Vatican Council. I encourage all of you to listen to the sermon for yourself, and then read my take away below. Continue reading →
A dear friend of mine who has been quite the student of liturgical scholarship for years has taken up a task which has long been on his mind but for whatever reason has taken this long to put into writing. The subject has to do with the problems of liturgy and worship in the West. And I do not just mean beginning with the 20th century, but even long before that.
Here is a first part, I’m sure, of more to come. It begins:
“I’d like to share three anecdotes, cutting across ecclesial boundaries, to highlight a serious problem in the Roman Catholic Church I have been reflecting on for a while, before sharing my own reflections and welcoming further input…….”
I’d like to share three anecdotes, cutting across ecclesial boundaries, to highlight a serious problem in the Roman Catholic Church I have been reflecting on for a while, before sharing my own reflections and welcoming further input.
“The most powerful memory of my childhood”
I once worked with a lifelong Episcopalian lady who considers herself an orthodox Christian and is doctrinally conservative. One time, water-cooler chatter turned to the Book of Common Prayer and its role in the spiritual life in Anglican Christianity. She shared with me that the single most powerful and consistent memory of her childhood, and one that has kept her anchored in the faith in the face of personal tragedies and loss, is that of her late parents praying Morning and Evening Prayer together every day at set times, including singing and ceremonial appropriate for one’s domestic church. She said that these times were such that…
As many readers know, the Monothelite controversy occupied the Church’s attention in the 7th century, and it was concluded by a firm condemnation of the belief that in Christ there is only one single will or that his acts were from one theanadric operation. This evil which inflicted the Church was partly attributable to Pope Honorius I, who’s letters to Sergius, the Patriarch of Constantinople, seemed to have supported the idea that Christ had two natures but one will. Shortly after the reception of these letters, the Eastern Emperor, Heraclius, upon the composition of the Patriarch, released an edict called the Ecthesis ( εκθεσις , literally “statement of faith”), wherein Christ is taught to have one will. This was also accepted by the Patriarchs of Alexandria, Antioch , and Jerusalem. It is reported that the successor of Honorius, Severinus, had time before his death to reject it. The successor of Severinus…
In the Ukrainian tomos and elsewhere recently, the Patriarchate of Constantinople has asserted a universal right to hear appeals from bishops and clergy anywhere in the Orthodox world, on the basis of Canons 9 and 17 of the Council of Chalcedon. While Constantinople often likes to give the impression that this purported right is uncontested, historically it has been resisted just as often as it has been asserted. In his Rudder, St Nicodemus the Hagiorite (d. 1809) gives a long footnote to Canon 9 of the council, presented in its entirety below (Greek text after the jump) demonstrating on historical, logical and canonical grounds that Constantinople does not possess the right to hear appeals from other patriarchates, but that only an ecumenical council is the final judge in such cases. In particular, St Nicodemus notices that then, just as now, Constantinople’s claim seems to be motivated by its…
The scandals which have broken out in the Roman Catholic Church over the past decades, particularly since the Summer of 2018, have caused many scholars and analysts to ponder whether the rule on celibacy for the ordained clergy might be a cause for the the grave acts of sexual misconduct. However much there is a connection to be made or not made, I wanted to devote an extensive article on the rule on priestly celibacy (abstention from married life) and continence (abstention from sexual intercourse, but not necessarily marriage) in the early Church Fathers. Before I venture to do that, I would be remiss if I did not point the reader to a post already published by Unam Sanctam Catholicam on the subject, which is devoted mainly to citations from the early Church fathers and councils on this important matter. What I offer here is less citation (although I add ones not provided by Unam) and more commentary and reflection, particularly how this phenomena developed in both Eastern and Western Christendom. Although it is not always mentioned, the rule of priestly celibacy was one of the issues separating the ecclesial centers of Byzantium and the Latin West during the time of the great schism. It would be, therefore, all the more beneficial to see how the practice began from the earliest centuries. Continue reading →