Monday, July 19, 2010

More thoughts on the Unia

Not too long ago, I wrote a post about the dangers the Uniate Churches (e.g. Greek Catholics and those who are outwardly using Orthodox praxis, but are dogmatically Roman Catholic and submit to the pope) pose whenever theological discussions are held between the Roman Catholics and the Orthodox churches. The Roman Catholics conistently hold these Uniate Churches as "models of unity" because they can still keep their traditions and still submit to the pope as Head of the Church at the same time. Such a model has been denounced many times as unacceptable to Orthodox ecclesiology by even the ecumenist Ecumenical Patriarch, VARTHOLOMAIOS I, even though some agreed statements like that of Balamand have given the papists an almost solid victory.

My own thoughts being mediocre as they are, a recent talk given by a Greek priest, Theodoros Zisis, who is also a professor of the Theological School of the Aristotelian University of Thessaloniki gives even more substantive weight to my thesis that the Unia present real problems of dialogue and (re)union with Rome. I particularly like this statement:
Unity is not achieved by 'uniting the churches', but rather through 'union with the Church'.....

And that is the problem. We talk so much about uniting churches of such dispareate theologies, ecclesiologies and praxis that what we have is nothing more than an amalgam of traditions with competing claims as to what is Christian. Such a cafeteria of confessions only poses more problems than what it supposedly solves!

You can read the rest of Fr. Theodore's thoughts on this subject here.

1 comment:

  1. The image I always use when this comes up is that this idea of 'uniting the churches' is like stitching up a wound from a rusty knife without having cleaned it and gotten a tetanus shot first. It will hold together for a little while, but soon it will become infected and require so much more repairing than it would have, had it been done right the first time.

    Thus it follows that the credibility of a theologian who espouses such premature, formal unity, is on par with the credibility of a surgeon who would stitch you up and send you home with no thought to sanitizing your wounds.