Friday, December 15, 2006

Let's Agree to Disagree, Pt. 2 (Liturgics)

To dovetail with the first part of this series, the same tolerance should be extended to liturgics. Subdn. Benjamin wrote an important post on why Western Rite Orthodox should not be drawn into partisan battles of ritual. (Heaven knows why this should need pointed out, but....) He wrote:
Those looking to continue some old "Parson's Handbook" vs. "Ritual Notes" death-match ought to keep it within Anglicanism ...[B]oth ritual approaches are venerable, based on the ancient traditions of the Western Churches. There is no reason why they can't be complementary. (And every reason they should be - BJ.)
As I wrote months ago, adapting the 1904 Observations to Sarum (ROCOR) or Continental (AWRV) rubrics "are different ways to do the same thing...Let's hear no more of various hair-splitting 'two approaches' posts, which serve only to divide an already (numerically speaking) miniscule religious movement (legitimate Western Rite Orthodox in the world), and opt instead to embrace the Church, Her teachings, and whichever approach She has furnished us at present."

This should not stop at the edge of the Western Rite, though. Both Byzantine and Western Rite liturgical practices are equally doxological, unquestionably Orthodox, and approved by the Church. Some Byzantines may now long for only one Orthodox liturgy...but the Church has never willed it thus. Likewise, some "ugly Western Riters" may look askance at their Byzantine brethren...but Sts. Gregory the Great and Theodore of Tarsus did not. We are one Church, one Faith, one Lord, one Baptism. Drawing together in the unity of the faith and the communion of the Holy Spirit, let us love one another with such an intensity that our light might illumine an ever-darkening world.

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2 Comments:

Blogger Gavin said...

An interesting blog. It is interesting that confirmation was practiced on infants, in the West, up until the 13th century. The English Synod of Worcester (I believe) gives severe penalties for those who don't have their children confrimed a year or less after baptism. It seems the main obstacle was the belief that only the bishop is proper for this sacrament.

You are indeed, right. The variations of the Western rites, is only match by the variations in the Eastern. Among the Byzantine Orthodox, there are great many differences between Serb, Bulgar, Greek and Russian. Among the Russians there are the Nikonian and Old Ritualists. In the Eastern rite Orhtodox churches, there is the Divine Liturgy of St. James, even, and there used to be the Divine Liturgy of Mark in Alexandria.

5:27 PM  
Blogger Angry Orthodox said...

Yes Gavin! You hit the nail squarely on the head. I don't get the hostility to all things western in the church, or as Fr. Gilquist calls it, "Romophobia."

St. John of Shanghai and San Francisco -John of St. Francis of Assisi, Hmmmmm- himself practiced the Western rites from time to time. That's good enough for me.

3:47 PM  

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