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7552Re: [orthodox-synod] Re: Mixed marriages [was:Esphigmenou monks extremists?}

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  • Rev. Sergei Overt
    Feb 1, 2003
      Thank you Fr. John. You explained it so well.
      You might add that the converts from the mixed marriage
      might have been received into the Church(Orthodoxy) at times by Chrismation
      "according to the Trebnik" as Metroplitan Vitaly, then my diocesan bishop,
      had instructed me once!
      I have an older couple where the non-Orthodox spouse was received many
      years ago by one of the elderly Russian priests here by what I can make out
      as the "3-rd rite",Confession and Communion. The children (who are now
      grown)were all baptized Orthodox of course.

      Fr. S.

      ----- Original Message -----
      From: "Fr. John R. Shaw" <vrevjrs@...>
      To: <orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com>; <orthodox-synod@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Saturday, February 01, 2003 2:33 PM
      Subject: [orthodox-synod] Re: Mixed marriages [was:Esphigmenou monks

      > Fr. Gregory Williams wrote:
      > > "We" in ROCOR, if it includes me (and a
      > > significant number of others) do _not_ bestow the Church's blessing
      > upon
      > > unions between Orthodox Christians and heretics of any variety. Such
      > unions
      > > are quite explicitly and vehemently forbidden by the Church, frequent
      > > "economies" in the present-day notwithstanding (see "Does the Orthodox
      > > Church Permit Mixed Marriages", Living Orthodoxy, vol. XI #2, for
      > pertinent
      > > canonical and other citations).
      > Two points regarding the above:
      > 1) Monks normally do not perform marriages, except if they are bishops,
      > or assigned to a parish; and, since women and female animals are not
      > allowed on Mt. Athos, there is no way there could be "mixed (or other)
      > marriages" at Esphigmenou.
      > 2) While of course there can be arguments offered against mixed
      > marriages, nevertheless, the Orthodox Church *does* permit them. At
      > least, the Church permits them if one accepts the authority of the
      > Russian Church, and of all the other Local Churches, instead of merely
      > citing Canons that refer to ancient heretics and situations in a
      > predominantly Orthodox society.
      > At the present time, and especially in America, for a priest to refuse
      > to perform a mixed marriage (even though the Church does permit it),
      > the result usually is one of the following:
      > a) The couple simply *go to another, usually non-Orthodox, church*,
      > where the marriage takes place -- and where the children will now
      > probably be baptized and raised.
      > b) The non-Orthodox partner *converts, but insincerely*, merely so that
      > the ceremony can go ahead. Usually, this has a negative impact on the
      > individual, who might become a lukewarm parishioner, but often never
      > sets foot in the door again and has no further interest in Orthodoxy.
      > c) In one or two cases I have heard of, it was possible to persuade the
      > Orthodox would-be partner to *break off the engagement*; but this in
      > turn resulted in a lasting resentment which undermined that person's
      > commitment to the Church.
      > Yes, *sometimes* there are "good" conversions to Orthodoxy as a result
      > of a priest insisting on "baptizing" the non-Orthodox party. But one
      > cannot count on this, and I have known of many lasting and sincere
      > conversions that came about years after the "mixed marriage" was
      > blessed by the Church.
      > In Christ
      > Fr. John R. Shaw
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