Re: Facts about the establishment of Catholicate of east
- Dear Mathew G.M.,
1. HOW IS THE INDIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH DIFFERENT FROM THE COPTIC CHURCH? WHY CAN'T WE TAKE PART IN HOLY SACRAMENTS TOGETHER WITH THEM.
None of the above churches are denying the St. Petrine Supremacy. They are not claiming The Apostolic Throne of any other disciples. See of Mark differs from Apostolic Throne of St. Mark. See of Antioch is different from Apostolic Throne of St. Peter.
Even though the main issue before the synod of Nicaea was the heresy of Arius Canons were formulated for the administration of the church throughout the world. In the first Synod at Nicaea in AD 325 three Global Centers of Church were present and was further legalized in Universal Church arena. Again, in the second Synod in Constantinople in AD 381, a forth Center of the Universal Church was established, which was Constantinople. Thus Christians living in the four human inhabited centers of the world then, such as East Europe, West Europe, Asia and Africa were being religiously administered by four dedicated Patriarch or Pope. In the first Synod in Nicaea itself, Syrian Orthodox Patriarch of Antioch was given the jurisdiction of Antioch and all the East (complete Asian continent). Hence this was the decision of the Holy Synod and accordingly St. Mark was sent to Alexandria. St. Mark or his followers are not claiming that his laying hand on authority is not from St. Peter. They do not claim that their Papa is seated on the apostolic throne of St. Mark.
More over you yourself wrote
NOW THE SPLIT HAS WIDENED FURTHER.THE OTHER SIDE IS DENYING OUR ORIENTAL ORTHODOX HERITAGE; SIDING WITH THE CHALDEAN (SYRO MALABAR) NARRATIVE THAT WE WERE ALWAYS NESTORIANS AND NEVER ORIENTAL ORTHODOX PRIOR TO THE ARRIVAL OF THE PORTUGHESE; THERE ARE DISCUSSIONS ABOUT CHANGING THE UNIQUE SYRIAC IDENTITY COMPLETELY, CHANGING THE VESTMENTS OF BISHOPS; DROPPING THE USAGE OF SYRIAC LANGUAGE IN LITRUGY COMPLETELY, DROPPING THE 'SYRIAC' NAME FROM THE OFFICIAL NAME OF THE CHURCH ETC.�
So you mean to say that we must take part in holy sacraments together with them which will be conducted in Nestorian heresy. Then all the troubles which Our St. Yacoob Bhurdana suffered to overcome this heresy will be in vain. Our church will not be a Holy church ( sthuthy chovakkapetta viswasam allathayitheerum). As believers of Jacobite church can we afford to do it? Can we afford to sacrifice our true faith which our forefathers died for? For what? Just to maintain harmony for our comfort. Do you think our true faith has only that much value?
2.IN MY OPINION; IT WILL BE DIVINE THING FOR H.H ZAKKA I TO UNILATERALLY LIFT THE EXCOMMUNICATION ON THE IOC. I THINK IT WILL ENCOURAGE THEM TO WITHDRAW COURT CASES TOO.
How can it be a divine thing for H.H Zakka I to unilaterally lift the excommunication on the ioc.? First and foremost Holy Synod takes the decision. How can Holy Synod take a decision against true faith? If we can sacrifice our true faith just for our comfort why our forefathers took so much trouble to come to India at the time of need? There was heresy from the first century. Where would have been our true faith if our forefathers were thinking about their comforts? Instead they gave their life for the true faith which Jesus passed on through His desciples.
2. SO ARE YOU SAYING THAT H.H ZAKKA I IS THE EARTHLY HEAD OF THE ONE HOLY CATHOLIC CHURCH; WHICH INCLUDES THE COPTS, ETHIOPIANS AND ARMENIANS?
The below statement is made by Pope John Paul II when He met Patriarch Ignatius Yacoob III.
We are the Vicars of two churches of St. Peter. He is my elder brother. He will bless you all in the same language which our Lord, His mother and his disciples spoke.�
The answer for the above is available in Pope St. John Paul's statement.
I am herewith attaching the photo with caption.
3.WE CANNOT SAY THAT EVERYONE SHOULD TAKE OUR STANDS ABOUT JURISDICTION. WE HAVE THE SPECIAL RELATIONSHIP WITH THE SEE OF ANTIOCH NOT BECAUSE OF PETERINE PRIMACY. IT IS BECAUSE OF HISTORICAL AND CANONICAL REASONS.
AT THE SAME TIME IF SOMEONE WANTS TO HOLD ON TO THE SAME FAITH AS US; BUT NOT BE UNDER THE JURISDICTION OF THE PATRIARCH; WE SHOULD RESPECT THAT. THE OPTION IS NOT TWO SEPERATE CHURCHES AS THE MARTHOMA; WHY CANT WE LIFT THE EXCOMMUNICATION AND TREAT THEM AS PART OF THE ONE CATHOLIC AND APOSTOLIC CHURCH ? IN OTHER WORDS TREAT THE IOC JUST LIKE WE TREAT THE ETHIOPIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH?
It is the not the same faith as us. The reasons for not able to lift excommunication is in my answer for your fist question.
- Dr.Leena and others interested,
It is not my job to point out your non sequiturs but I wonder how you inferred that I believe "that there won't be any change in policies of an institute as long as it is run by the same sect of people" because I would have thought that it is emphatically clear from my sentence you quoted that "policies do change". What I was merely pointing out was that the nature of the University i.e., ethos remained Protestant. And from your earlier messages I gather that you believe MSOT seminary is "better off being on its own". While I don't entirely agree with that, I believe your opinion stems from the concern over the Protestant nature of University. In the `Kalpana' you quoted in one of your previous messages, HH the Patriarch asked for clarification to Baselios Augen I for "affiliating the Seminary to the Serampore University of Culcutta[sic], which is well known as a protestant university". To me it looks like His Holiness was concerned over the Protestant nature of the University to which a Syriac Orthodox Seminary is affiliated to. And as far as I know their ethos haven't changed.
I thank you for taking the trouble to contact the proper authorities regarding the syllabus and affiliation. Shri Joshy Pauls clarification was similar. Though what I learnt from my own enquiry was that before the BD course commences a foundation course on our faith, liturgy and addenda is taught to the priests-in-training of our church and after completing that they advance to the regular 4 year BD program with a University prescribed syllabus with no dilutions. So, unless you have categorized everything that is being taught at the MSOT seminary as syllabus my information is inaccurate.
The Orthodox seminary was affiliated in 1964 and 38 years have passed since His Holiness asked for clarifications in 1974. I do understand that we were pre occupied with the schism for many years. Surely it is time to think, at least, of a Theological University with Orthodox ethos as a long term goal. You asked, "Who told you that they are not planning it?" Well, do you know if there is any long-term vision of that sort? Usually it has been our practice to announce things we plan to do with a lot of hue and cry and I didn't hear about this one. Maybe I wasn't paying attention when it was being announced. I am well aware of our "achievements" as you put it and I am not criticizing any of it rather I congratulate our HB Thomas I, Catholicose of India, and all the associated people on their steadfastness to bring glory to our Church. But I do hope it didn't come at the cost of our spiritual growth.
Theological studies in India are not easy and the Church has a certain responsibility to make it better. From what I understand MSOT seminary doesn't offer Masters or Doctoral courses. Maybe we can start from there. Maybe my opinion to put Theological University on a higher priority as one of our Church's goals is a minority one and, as you put it, is not one which is passed by the Holy Synod with "two third majorities". But even in a top-down structure like ours I believe the voice of an ordinary faithful do matter and airing opinions on this forum gives me an opportunity to engage in meaningful opinion building process.
Lastly on a personal note, my query whether you were related to me was to make us not "strangers". Though a simple yes or no might have sufficed, I do understand your reservations for giving out personal information even though I gave out my personal information. But being 22 and a student (oops! I did it again: P) makes me relax over my own privacy concerns.
Hope I've been polite, courteous and clear.
Zach George Arapura