voulaki726

Orthodox Christians?

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Hello! I was just wondering, out of all the Christians on this site, are there any Orthodox Christians?  I myself am Greek Orthodox.  Would love to know I'm not the only one!  :)

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There must be...

 

I am Catholic, as are a few others, and apart from the pope, Orthodox religions are seen as being compatible with Catholocism...

 

Catholics are so close to Orthodox that we accept the validity of your sacraments...

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Hello! I was just wondering, out of all the Christians on this site, are there any Orthodox Christians?  I myself am Greek Orthodox.  Would love to know I'm not the only one!  :)

I was baptized Melkite which is Greek catholic . My ancestors a long time ago used to be Greek Orthodox . I love the Greek mass but the nearest Melkite church is an hour away.

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When a question is phrased "what is THE Orhodox view on" ... look out. Usually the answers here are in line with "THIS Orthodox poster's opinion is"....

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I don't even know what an Orthodox Christian is. I'm a Christian, I believe the bible. All of the denominational names; Baptist, Lutheran, Catholic, Protestant, Orthodox, Methodist, Calvinist, Adventists, Presbyterians, etc., etc. I'd have to do a research paper to really understand what all of that stuff means.

 

I just believe on Jesus and what the bible says. What do you mean by "Orthodox" Christian?

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HeWhoWaits - my understanding is the Catholic and Orthodox churches are two groups that formed from a split in year 1054 known as the Great Schism of 1054.

The Catholic and Orthodox churches are very similar. The Catholic church is centered in west Europe with about 1.25 billion adherents, and the Orthodox church is centered in east Europe with about 225-300 million adherents. They split because of disagreements on theology and who has authority. They both claim to be the "one true church".

The Catholic church claims their pope has authority over everyone else. The Orthodox church has no office equivalent to pope, instead placing equal authority in bishops with separate jurisdictions, and holding councils.

My own men's fellowship is people from various churches and we leave our denominations at the door when we meet. We just go by the bible.

1 Corinthians 3 talks about divisions although that's a separate topic.

"For we are labourers together with God: ye are God's husbandry, ye are God's building."

1 Corinthians 3:9

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I don't even know what an Orthodox Christian is. I'm a Christian, I believe the bible. All of the denominational names; Baptist, Lutheran, Catholic, Protestant, Orthodox, Methodist, Calvinist, Adventists, Presbyterians, etc., etc. I'd have to do a research paper to really understand what all of that stuff means.

 

I just believe on Jesus and what the bible says. What do you mean by "Orthodox" Christian?

Well, spirit2change explained pretty well, but I will elaborate further.

 

When the Christianity was forming in the the early years there was pretty much just one church and there were different centers of Christianity each being overseen by different bishops.  These five main centers were Rome, Constantinople (Modern Day Istabul, Turkey), Antioch-Syria, Jerusalem, and Alexandria Egypt.  All of these bishops had equal power governing their jurisdiction.  

 

Now, let's also bare in mind, Christianity became legal during the time of the Roman Empire.  By that time, the empire had been split in two- the Latin speaking West (so Rome and everything west of it) and the Greek speaking east, centered in Constantinople.

 

Over time cultural and liturgical differences developed between the churches in the east and the west, but they all remained in communion with one another.

 

In the year 1054, however, tensions between east and west which had been slowly brewing over the years came to head, and the the Bishop of Rome (west) and the other bishops in the east, excommunicated each other. The dispute involved a disagreement on governing power (the Bishop of Rome, aka the POPE as we know him now) wanted supreme authority over the others, which they did not disagree with, as well as a few other issues.  So this resulted in what is called the Great Schism.

 

The church of the west came under the complete authority of the Bishop of Rome, who later became called the Pope, and that church came to be called the Roman Catholic Church.  The church the east became known as the Eastern Orthodox Church.

 

So that's it in a nutshell.  Orthodox Christians today are mostly in Eastern Europe and the Middle East, so countries like Greece and others in the Balkans, Russia, Romania, Georgia, Armenia, Bulgaria, Albania, Serbia, Lebanon, Syria, Egypt, Palestine, AND countries where these peoples emigrated to, such as..THE U.S.!

 

So that's it! The Orthodox and Catholic churches are pretty similar when it comes to things like sacraments, the Communion being the actual body and blood of Christ, the veneration of saints and the Virgin Mary, moral teachings, etc.

 

The main difference is Orthodox do not answer to the Pope, and there are slight theological differences but nothing major, and we have maintained a lot of the things that Catholics have reformed over the years (especially since Vatican II council in the 60's), such as stricter fasting rules (esp during Lent) and our priests can marry.  Also, we follow an older calendar, so sometimes Easter falls on a later different date.  Other differences are just differences in STYLE, if went to a Catholic Mass vs an Orthodox liturgy, the style would be different (music, chanting, art, etc.).  Also babies get baptized and receive communion and confirmation right after at the same time, so they can fully participate from the time they are babies. Also, Orthodox Churches tend to be ethnically affiliated, due to political reasons, so if you go to one the service will partly be in a different language and a lot of the people will be from the same cultural background.  So like, in the US, you will find Greek Orthodox Churches, Russian Orthodox Churches, etc, while there's just the Catholic Church, not affiliated with one particular ethnicity. 

 

The Orthodox Church is considered by many to be the more ancient Church, or the "first" Church/the one true Church", and we pride ourselves on the fact that nothing has been changed.  However, the Catholic Church also considers itself the "first" and "one true Church," and both churches claim Apostolic succession- meaning they were both founded by the Apostles.

 

Despite the differences, we are more similar than different and I get along very well and find a lot of common ground with Catholics.  

 

I know all of this stuff bc half of my family is Orthodox and half of my family is Catholic, haha!

 

As for Protestants, that's another story.  So there was just Roman Catholic and Orthodox at one point, but then many people began to become unhappy with the practices of the Catholic Church.  So in 1400-something, a German monk named Martin Luther sought to reform the Catholic Church, but then the church didn't like what he was trying to do, so they excommunicated him.  So he went and founded his own church- the Lutheran Church and what was called the "Protestant Reformation" began.  Different groups broke away from the Catholic Church and started founding their own.  Examples other than Lutheran include, Presbyterian, Anglican, Methodist, Baptist, etc.  There's literally thousands of Protestant Churches today! Protestantism swept mostly though Western and Northern Europe, and then was first brought to the US by the Pilgrims and subsequent immigrants from North/Western Europe.  Protestantism further developed in the US, and even more branches formed.  I can't tell you what they believe, but they do differ considerably from Catholicism and Orthodoxy of course- each Protestant Church has its own unique beliefs.

 

Today, Protestantism is probably the most dominant form of Christianity in the US, followed by Roman Catholicism.  Not many people know about Orthodoxy, but we are here! We also have a stronger presence worldwide.  If you are curious about, look up a local church in your area and go! : )

 

So there you go! A crash course in the development of the different branches of Christianity. Hope this enlightened you! AMEN!

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Well, you answered my question....a little. It wasn't the history part...the lineage of where each denomination sprung from that I was really getting at but rather exactly what it looks like to go to that church. If one is truly a Christian, they've committed their life to Christ and believe he is the son of God and Messiah and faith that his death has paid the penalty for sin and that we have eternal life through him, what did it mean that they go to an "Orthodox" church. My church is really considered non-denominational and I can envision what a church service there looks like, all teaching just comes right out of the bible.

 

I can visualize the Catholic church best as I went to a Catholic school for a few years as a kid. The truth is the church is the body of Christ and it is one body, these categories are man made things. That being said I am aware that the Catholic church has LOTS of traditions and symbolism with all of the statues and praying to all of these human "saints", treating Mary almost as a deity rather than a human who was chosen to be Jesus's earth mom and then who had a normal marriage to Joseph afterwards, sinned and died like every one else. They pray to her. I know they baptize children as if that can give them salvation when they are grown. I know they repeat these 3 prayers on the rosary millions of times throughout their lives and confess to a priest. Much of that I ignore. We are commanded to "repent and be baptized" meaning you must be old enough to "repent" and make that decision. We are never instructed to prayer to Mary or any other human but rather to God. Any "help" in what we should pray for comes from the "helper" the Holy Spirit "who makes intersession for us".

 

Anyway, I don't really participate in much of the traditions the Catholic church has, I pledge no allegiance to some man who lives in Italy. I can visualize some of the aspects of what it means to be Catholic. If I walked into a church that was "Orthodox" I couldn't visualize if that means there is some clear things I'd notice that were different from your everyday Christian church. Communion, that is just straight out of the bible "do this in remembrance of me....this is my body...this is my blood" so if there are denominations that have different views of communion I don't know about them. At my church  we eat it ourselves, we don't do to a priest to put it in our mouths. We do it every week. I went to another church when I was younger in which they only did it a few times per year. You said "saints", that sounds like what I envision with the Catholic church. Classifying people as "saints". The letters of Paul addressed the saints at each church he was writing to. We just focus on Jesus and knowing the word and letting him change our lives, there is no talking of saint "this" and saint "that".

Does being "Orthodox" look a lot like being Catholic?

 

p.s. Is that Bell or Jasmine? I have a little sister and I was quite aware of all of the Disney princesses. She loves everyone and had a dress for just about everyone.

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I am also non-denominational. I was raised Catholic and a Christian I worked with pointed out all those things in Catholicism that went against the Bible like praying to saints, treating Mary like a deity, etc. like HeWhoWaits mentioned. I also just believe what the Bible says. There are so many denominations it makes my head spin. I think God just wants us to be one united Church under His Son.

Ps that's Belle!

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