Peace to you all
I am A Roman Catholic and live in New Zealand in the South Pacific near
Australia. I enjoy seeing your posts when they do come through. One of my
favourite saints is your very own St. Ignatius for his defence of our
Christain faith, so early on after the apostles death. He is an important
bedrock to our faith. The Christians of Lebanon are a model of ecumenical
cooperation without parallel in the world. Orthodox and Catholics (mostly
Maronite, Syrian, and Byzantine rites) work and live together in harmony. Is
it like that in Syria?
Here is the common declaration between our two Churches. My understanding is
that as we are sister Churches you are allowed to receive our communion.
Both of us have valid sacraments and both believe in the Real presence of
Our Lord in the communion. However it is best to check with your
Priest/Bishop first. Below is the joint statement and the URL
COMMON CHRISTOLOGICAL DECLARATION BETWEEN THE CATHOLIC CHURCH AND THE
ASSYRIAN CHURCH OF THE EAST
John Paul II and Mar Dinkha IV
On the morning of Friday, 11 November, His Holiness John Paul II, Bishop of
Rome and Pope of the Catholic Church, and His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV,
Catholicos-Patriarch of the Assyrian Church of the East, signed a Common
Christological Declaration. Here is the English text.
His Holiness John Paul II, Bishop of Rome and Pope of the Catholic Church,
and His Holiness Mar Dinkha IV, Catholicos-Patriarch of the Assyrian Church
of the East, give thanks to God who has prompted them to this new brotherly
Both of them consider this meeting as a basic step on the way towards the
full communion to be restored between their Churches. They can indeed, from
now on, proclaim together before the world their common faith in the mystery
of the Incarnation.
As heirs and guardians of the faith received from the Apostles as formulated
by our common Fathers in the Nicene Creed, we confess one Lord Jesus Christ,
the only Son of God, begotten of the Father from all eternity who, in the
fullness of time, came down from heaven and became man for our salvation.
The Word of God, second Person of the Holy Trinity, became incarnate by the
power of the Holy Spirit in assuming from the holy Virgin Mary a body
animated by a rational soul, with which he was indissolubly united from the
moment of his conception.
Therefore our Lord Jesus Christ is true God and true man, perfect in his
divinity and perfect in his humanity, consubstantial with the Father and
consubstantial with us in all things but sin. His divinity and his humanity
are united in one person, without confusion or change, without division or
separation. In him has been preserved the difference of the natures of
divinity and humanity, with all their properties, faculties and operations.
But far from constituting "one and another", the divinity and humanity are
united in the person of the same and unique Son of God and Lord Jesus
Christ, who is the object of a single adoration.
Christ therefore is not an " ordinary man" whom God adopted in order to
reside in him and inspire him, as in the righteous ones and the prophets.
But the same God the Word, begotten of his Father before all worlds without
beginning according to his divinity, was born of a mother without a father
in the last times according to his humanity. The humanity to which the
Blessed Virgin Mary gave birth always was that of the Son of God himself.
That is the reason why the Assyrian Church of the East is praying the Virgin
Mary as "the Mother of Christ our God and Saviour". In the light of this
same faith the Catholic tradition addresses the Virgin Mary as "the Mother
of God" and also as "the Mother of Christ". We both recognize the legitimacy
and rightness of these expressions of the same faith and we both respect the
preference of each Church in her liturgical life and piety.
This is the unique faith that we profess in the mystery of Christ. The
controversies of the past led to anathemas, bearing on persons and on
formulas. The Lord's Spirit permits us to understand better today that the
divisions brought about in this way were due in large part to
Whatever our Christological divergences have been, we experience ourselves
united today in the confession of the same faith in the Son of God who
became man so that we might become children of God by his grace. We wish
from now on to witness together to this faith in the One who is the Way, the
Truth and the Life, proclaiming it in appropriate ways to our
contemporaries, so that the world may believe in the Gospel of salvation.
The mystery of the Incarnation which we profess in common is not an abstract
and isolated truth. It refers to the Son of God sent to save us. The economy
of salvation, which has its origin in the mystery of communion of the Holy
Trinity - Father, Son and Holy Spirit -, is brought to its fulfilment
through the sharing in this communion, by grace, within the one, holy,
catholic and apostolic Church, which is the People of God, the Body of
Christ and the Temple of the Spirit.
Believers become members of this Body through the sacrament of Baptism,
through which, by water and the working of the Holy Spirit, they are born
again as new creatures. They are confirmed by the seal of the Holy Spirit
who bestows the sacrament of Anointing. Their communion with God and among
themselves is brought to full realization by the celebration of the unique
offering of Christ in the sacrament of the Eucharist. This communion is
restored for the sinful members of the Church when they are reconciled with
God and with one another through the sacrament of Forgiveness. The sacrament
of Ordination to the ministerial priesthood in the apostolic succession
assures the authenticity of the faith, the sacraments and the communion in
each local Church.
Living by this faith and these sacraments, it follows as a consequence that
the particular Catholic churches and the particular Assyrian churches can
recognize each other as sister Churches. To be full and entire, communion
presupposes the unanimity concerning the content of the faith, the
sacraments and the constitution of the Church. Since this unanimity for
which we aim has not yet been attained, we cannot unfortunately celebrate
together the Eucharist which is the sign of the ecclesial communion already
Nevertheless, the deep spiritual communion in the faith and the mutual trust
already existing between our Churches, entitle us from now on to consider
witnessing together to the Gospel message and cooperating in particular
pastoral situations, including especially the areas of catechesis and the
formation of future priests.
In thanking God for having made us rediscover what already unites us in the
faith and the sacraments, we pledge ourselves to do everything possible to
dispel the obstacles of the past which still prevent the attainment of full
communion between our Churches, so that we can better respond to the Lord's
call for the unity of his own, a unity which has of course to be expressed
visibly. To overcome these obstacles, we now establish a Mixed Committee for
theological dialogue between the Catholic Church and the Assyrian Church of
Given at Saint Peter's, on 11 November 1994
Your Brother in Christ
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Tuesday, 10 October 2000 14:03
Subject: [SORForum] (no subject)
> Grace and peace be with all,
> I know we have many mutual saits with our roman catholic brethren.. but
> naturally after the schism, we recognize many different saints.
> What is our view on Roman Catholic Saints? Is devotion to any of them