Faith/Spirituality Forum: Eastern catholics
Eastern catholics QUESTION from Teresa August 6, 2001 Dear Bro John Paul,
Our pastor just returned from a month of teaching english to seminarians in the Ukraine. In his homily last night he spoke about how beautiful the Eastern liturgy is. He said he walked into a church where some priests were singing vespers and it brought tears to his eyes. He said when these priests saw his roman color they looked at him with real hostility. He felt sad because they are our brothesr, said we must pray hard for reconcilition. Why do the easter catholics think we are heretics?
Our pastor said that when he saw how deep and rich the faith of these people he realized why the communist government had to wipe it out so violently. He said that by comparison, in our culture,the luke warm catholicism poses no threat to the government.
ANSWER by John-Paul Ignatius, OLSM on July 31, 2001 Dear Mrs. Teresa:
Well it is a shame that these Eastern Rite Catholics appeared hostile. But think of the reason. Latin Rite Catholic tend to think they are the only Catholics around, routinely forgetting about the Eastern Rites, and at the same time are the most irreverent to God and the most splintered. This doesn't excuse the hostility, but it does explain some of it.
Most of the problems we see in the Latin Rite with abuses of liturgy, liberalism, heretics and such are not found much in the Eastern Rite Catholic Churches.
Those Churches have maintained their profound respect and reverence and sense of the sacred, while we in the west have come to find those concepts foreign to our worldview.
The United States is among the worst of these. We in America have a culture that is PROFOUNDLY immature and profoundly profane.
But it doesn't have to be that way. We can influence our parishes to greater reverence and orthodoxy by prayer and example.
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