Wednesday, January 14, 2004

Adventures in Ecumenism

I'm adding a link to Karl Thienes' "St. Stephen's Musings," an Orthodox blog of note.

I wanted to add this link with much fanfare and a thoughtful analysis of things Orthodox and Catholic, but I have not the time. Let me sum up:

1) Although I am firmly convinced of the validity of the claims of the pope of Rome, I am also firmly convinced that we need the Orthodox. Christianity is incomplete without Eastern Christianity.
2) Although I love Orthodox spirituality (and live it in my own Ruthenian Catholic parish), the Orthodox need us. They need the office of Peter to be exercised for them, to heal schisms and protect the faith.
3) Our ecumenical efforts should be spent less on reaching out to Anglicans, Lutherans, Baptists, and Evangelicals, and more on reaching out to Orthodoxy. Mainline Protestantism needs evangelization with true New Testament Christianity more than it needs ecumenism. Rome needs to turn East.
4) Our evangelization of our Protestant brethren will be more succesful if Eastern Christianity is more prominent, since it is clearly a Gospel Church, with Apostolic succession and true sacraments, but without all the historical entanglements that turn off so many Protestants to anything "Romish" or "Popish."
5) We should drop the filioque. It is true as Catholics understand it, but it is out of place in the creed and a barrier to reunion.

There's more, but it is late. Let me close by saying I hope to live long enough to see the great Reunion Council. Perhaps another Council of Constantinople? Or maybe Moscow would be a good place to hold it? Christ prayed that we all be one. May it happen!

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