Re: Is it OK for Orthodox to Attend Non-Orthodox Churches?
- Dear Gebre Menfes Kidus (Selam),
First of all I would like to congratulate you and your family members for coming to the true faith ie Oriental Orthodoxy (Ethiopian Orthodox Church and the Syrian Orthodox Church are a part of the Holy Oriental Orthodox Communion) .I would like to say that you and your family are specially blessed by our Lord to bring you into this Holy Faith.
You mentioned that "From time to time my wife attends my Father-in-law' s church; and sometimes our children go with her. I have not forbidden this, because I have felt that as long as they are learning about the Bible and Christian morality then this is a positive thing. But I do fear that they may be misled by unorthodox doctrines and influences. "
I would like to state that it would be highly advisable not to send your wife and kids to hethrodox churches (both the Protestant ones and the Roman catholic ones). The bible that the Protestants teach are not the Holy bible in its original form . They have changed the contents to suit their faith (which is a heresy).Moreover they follow the Hebrew canon (ofcanonical books of the Bible OT) which is not the canon of the Oriental Orthodox Churches (or for that matter any of the ancient apostolic churches).Ethiopian Orthodox church has more canonical books that any other OO churches or any other churches in the world.So when they are teaching the so called Bible of theirs , they are neither teaching the complete bible nor the true faith handed down to apostles which is found in the OO churches.What they teach is an incomplete bible and heretical doctrines which were cursed by the Holy Spirit through the Holy Synods and Church fathers.
Sin came to mankind through the Eve the first woman who believed in the wrong interpretation (through people who doesn't have the right to interpret the words of Lord ie in Eve,s case it was the serpent (satan)). Satan still follows this strategy . So be careful.
It would be better not to go for Catholic studies as they have a tendency to attract people to their hetrodox teachings.
If their is any other OO churches like Syrian Orthodox , Coptic Orthodox , Armenian Orthodox , Eritrean Orthodox ,Malankara Syrian Orthodox (Jacobite) it will be advisable for you to attend these Churches and take communion there.
If that is not possible , you may attend any Eastern Orthodox Churches or even a Roman Catholic Church , but for taking Holy Communion and Holy Confession you should go to nearest OO church.
Another thing that you can do is get books on the OO theology with special emphasis on Ethiopian Orthodox Church and teach your wife and kids the true faith .Each sunday after the church you could teach them the readings from the Holy Bible according to the Ethiopian Orthodox Church .You may also browse the net and get a lot of info on the oriental orthodox theology(eg www.stignatious.com/annseries and www.melthodaye.com etc )
With prayers for you and your family for getting stronger in True Oriental Orthodox faith of the Holy Ethiopian Orthodox Church .
Your brother in Christ
Apu Jose (Thomaskutty)
- Dear brother in Christ,
Before going into the issue of attending the services of non-orthodox churches, can you please explain in the forum how you became interested in orthodox theology. We are all interested to hear your experience.