Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Happy Feast Day of St. Raphael the Archangel

Happy Feast Day of St. Raphael the Archangel! Raphael is my patron saint and has interceded for me many times. He helped me tonight when I was doing a workout; without his prayers I could not have done nearly as well as I did. There was a time last October when I was very dehydrated before cross country practice. We had to run for at least 10 miles. I panicked because I thought I wouldn't be able to make it due to my extreme thirst. However, I prayed to St. Raphael fervently and at some point during the run, I felt like I had a drink of water. St. Raphael had answered my prayers! I even ran much faster on the way back, and my pace for the 10 miles ended up being 7:06. I frequently pray to this great angel of healing and I urge you to commend yourself to his powerful prayers.

On My List of Post-1054 Common Saints

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In the Ship-of-Fools forum, IngoB cited my recent "Post-1054 Common Saints" list, and the fact that St. Gregory Palamas is officially a saint of the Catholic Church. The user ---Andrew--- replied as follows:

Come on, IngoB! This is almost comical!

That list contains people who said in very explicit terms that the Latins (the Catholics of their time) were influenced by Satan, and that they were corrupting the faith of the Apostles. They also believed that the one church was the Orthodox Church.

And now you want to claim those people as Saints in the Catholic Church?
According to the reliable sources I used,{1} Mother Church has approved these saints for veneration, and the Church knows better than IngoB and I. I've been trying to find the full rationale for allowing veneration of these saints in light of extra ecclesiam nulla salus and the anti-Latin statements of some of these saints, and pending that discovery, my original statement in the post suffices:"St. Gregory Palamas was a formal heretic and schismatic, but the Church acknowledges that he repented before he died, or else she would not sanction his veneration."

Notes & References
{1} These reliable sources are the Roman Martyrology itself, Butler's Lives of the Saints, Catholic Saints Online, John Delaney's Dictionary of Saints, the Byzantine Monthly Menaion published by the Metropolitan Cantor Institute, the Menaion of Most Rev. Joseph Raya used by Melkite Greek Catholics, the Benedictine Monks of Ramsgate, Heiligenlexikon.de, and the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Menaion of the Archeparchy of Winnipeg.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Joseph of Volokolamsk on Leaving Mass Early

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An Orthodox Lithuanian abbot Joseph of Volokolamsk spoke well when he said: "Know this, brethren: do not creep out of the church before the dismissal prayer, for he who exits from the divine chant or converses or whispers has been seduced by demons, as the Divine Scriptures bear witness."{1}
Notes & References
{1} Jones, Terry. "Saint Joseph of Volokolamsk." Patron Saints Index. 28 Sept. 2009 <http://saints.sqpn.com/saintjb3.htm>.

What Is Asceticism?

In Cappadocian Theology the other day, we were trying to distinguish between asceticism and monasticism, to explain how one could be an ascetic without being a monk. Here is the definition my professor, Dr. George Demacopoulos, provided for asceticism: a "deliberate attempt by Christians to subvert those impulses that lead to temporal gratification (food, lust, power, reputation) and to rechannel one's energy toward the praise of God""positive attribute" (active striving for Θέωσις, "not just an active distancing from something)."

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Cardinal Josyf Slipyj of Blessed Memory on the Appropriateness of Catholic Veneration of Gregory Palamas

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Update 3/1/2016: Dear readers, I have and will publish in English, when able source {2}: Tvory Kard. Josyfa Verchovnoho Archyjepiskopa [Opera omnia Card. Josephi (Slipyj Kobernyckyj-Dyckovskyj) archiepiscopi maioris]. Rome: Universitas Ucrainorum a S. Clemente Papa, 1968-. 3/4:75-83. I need to hear back from the Ukrainian Catholic University of Pope St. Clement in Rome regarding source {3}. Pray for me, a sinner!

1. This is what I can gather regarding the holy Josyf Slipyj's justification of Catholic veneration of Gregory Palamas,{1} based on the relevant section of Pelikan, Jaroslav. Confessor Between East and West: a Portrait of Ukrainian Cardinal Josyf Slipyj. W.B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., 1990.

2. Cardinal Slipyj cited the 1917 Eastern Catholic "Petersburg Synod" as historical precedent, since that synod sanctioned Eastern Cathlic veneration of Orthodox saints who were not canonized in the Roman Catholic Church (Pelikan 228).{1} The God-bearing cardinal argued for the compatibility of Palamite theology with Catholic theology based on his study of the writings of Fr. John Meyendorff and Fr. Georges Florovsky, both Eastern Orthodox scholars (228).{2} Ultimately, as the most erudite Slipyj argued in the 200-page votum to which Fr. Serge Keleher refers{3} that the mystical theology of Gregory Palamas is indispensable to the Eastern Catholic tradition and Eastern Catholic piety, rather than antithetical to Catholic theology (228).
Notes & References
{1}
{2} Tvory Kard. Josyfa Verchovnoho Archyjepiskopa [Opera omnia Card. Josephi (Slipyj Kobernyckyj-Dyckovskyj) archiepiscopi maioris]. Rome: Universitas Ucrainorum a S. Clemente Papa, 1968-. 3/4:75-83.
{3} Slipyj, Letter to Archbishop Franciscus Seper of Zagreb, 6.iv.1971, Archivum Patriarchale Sanctae Sophiae, Università Catolica Ucraina, Rome, 40:90-91.
{4} See post #218811 by Fr. Serge Keleher in The Byzantine Forum.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Post-1054 Common Saints

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These are some post-1054 saints that are found on both Orthodox and Catholic calendars of saints. Happy feast day of the great St. Sergius of Radonezh! Update 2/9/2010: there are some that I deleted, but I will restore them if I can confirm that they are actually on calendars of saints of any of the sui iuris Churches.

Note:




Update 11/8/2010: Thank you Brandon Watson and David Mills for linking to this post. Dear reader, please also check out my 11/2/2010 post "Post-Schism Russian Orthodox Saints (Fr. Joseph Schweigl)". Thank you and God bless you and yours. Pray for me, a sinner!

*St. Abraham of Rostov (Abercius: archimandrite) [†10/29/1073]
Source: Ukrainian Greek Catholic Menaion for October 29, Melkite Greek Catholic Menaion for October 29, Ruthenian Catholic Calendar for October 29.
*St. Abraham of Smolensk (archimandrite) [1150-8/21/1224]
Note: St. Abraham of Smolensk is one of the 21 Russian Orthodox saints that Ven. Pope Pius XII of Rome authorized for veneration by Russian Catholics in a 1940 decree, according to Butler's Lives of the Saints, Thurston & Attwater Edition, Vol. III (July-Sept) 639-640.
*St. Anthony of the Kiev Far Caves (Antipas: monk founder of Russian monasticism) [983-5/7/1073]
Source: Roman Martyrology for May 7, Ukrainian Greek Catholic Menaion for July 10, Ruthenian Catholic Calendar for July 10.
*St. Anthony of Vilnius (martyr) [†4/14/1347]
Source: Ukrainian Greek Catholic Menaion for April 14, Ruthenian Catholic Calendar for April 14.
*St. Barlaam of Khutyn, Novgorod (abbot) [†11/6/1193]
Note: St. Barlaam of Khutyn, whom the Russian Catholics invoke in the prothesis of the Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, is one of the 21 Russian Orthodox saints that Ven. Pope Pius XII of Rome authorized for veneration by Russian Catholics in a 1940 decree, according to Fr. Yves Congar, O.P., "A propos des saints canonisés dans les Eglises orthodoxes," Revue des sciences religieuses, 22 (1948), 254.
*St. Cyril of Turov (bishop) [1130-4/28/1182]
Source: Melkite Greek Catholic Menaion for April 28, Ukrainian Greek Catholic Menaion for April 28, Ruthenian Catholic Calendar for April 28.
*St. Euphrosyne of Polotsk (princess & virgin nun) [†5/23/1173]
Sources: Ukrainian Greek Catholic Menaion for May 23, Ruthenian Catholic Calendar for May 23.
*St. Eustace of Vilnius (martyr) [†4/14/1347]
Source: Ukrainian Greek Catholic Menaion for April 14, Ruthenian Catholic Calendar for April 14.
*St. Gregory Palamas the Wonderworker of Thessalonica (Hesychast archbishop & abbot) [1296-11/14/1359]
Sources: Melkite Greek Catholic Menaion for Second Sunday of Great Lent, Ukrainian Greek Catholic Menaion for Second Sunday of Great Lent.
*St. Isaiah the Wonderworker of Rostov (bishop) [†5/15/1090]
Source: Melkite Greek Catholic Menaion for May 15, Ruthenian Catholic Calendar for May 15.
*St. John of Vilnius (martyr) [†4/14/1347]
Source: Ukrainian Greek Catholic Menaion for April 14, Ruthenian Catholic Calendar for April 14.
*St. Leontius the Wonderworker of Murom (Bishop of Rostov) [†5/23/1073]
Note: St. Leontius of Rostov, whom the Russian Catholics invoke in the prothesis of the Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, is one of the 21 Russian Orthodox saints that Ven. Pope Pius XII of Rome authorized for veneration by Russian Catholics in a 1940 decree, according to Butler's Lives of the Saints, Thurston & Attwater Edition, Vol. III (July-Sept) 639-640.
*St. Michael the Wonderworker of Chernigov (Grand Prince of Kiev & martyr) [†1246]
Source: Ruthenian Catholic Calendar for September 20.
*St. Nicetas of the Kiev Far Caves (Bishop of Novgorod) [†1/31/1109]
Source:
Note: St. Nicetas of Novgorod, whom the Russian Catholics invoke in the prothesis of the Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, is one of the 21 Russian Orthodox saints that Ven. Pope Pius XII of Rome authorized for veneration by Russian Catholics in a 1940 decree, according to Fr. Yves Congar of pious memory, "A propos des saints canonisés dans les Eglises orthodoxes," Revue des sciences religieuses, 22 (1948), 254.
*St. Nicetas the Stylite, Wonderworker of Pereyaslavl & Zalesski () [†5/24/1186]
Source: Ukrainian Greek Catholic Menaion for May 24, Ruthenian Catholic Calendar for May 24.
*St. Parasceva Petka the New, Wonderworker of Serbia () [†10/14/1201]
Source: Ukrainian Greek Catholic Menaion for October 14, Ruthenian Catholic Calendar for October 14.
*St. Sergius the Wonderworker of Radonezh (Bartholomew: abbot) [5/3/1314-9/25/1392]
Source: Roman Martyrology for September 25.
Note: St. Sergius of Radonezh, whom the Russian Catholics invoke in the prothesis of the Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, is one of the 21 Russian Orthodox saints that Ven. Pope Pius XII of Rome authorized for veneration by Russian Catholics in a 1940 decree, according to Butler's Lives of the Saints, Thurston & Attwater Edition, Vol. III (July-Sept) 639-640. I have not tracked down this decree. For more info, see my post "Ven. Pope Pius XII and St. Sergius of Radonezh."
*St. Stephen of the Kiev Far Caves (abbot of Pechersk & bishop of Vladimir in Volhynia) [†4/27/1094]
Source: Melkite Greek Catholic Menaion for April 27, Ukrainian Greek Catholic Menaion for April 27, Ruthenian Catholic Calendar for April 27.
*St. Stephen the Enlightener of Perm (bishop & Apostle to the Zyrians) [1340-4/26/1395]
Source: Roman Martyrology for April 26.
*St. Theodore the Wonderworker of Chernigov (counselor & martyr) [†1246]
Source: Ruthenian Catholic Calendar for September 20.

*St. Theodosius of the Kiev Far Caves (abbot & Father of cenobitic monasticism in Russia) [†5/3/1074]
Source: Roman Martyrology for May 3, Ruthenian Catholic Calendar for May 3
Note: St. Theodosius Pechersky, whom the Russian Catholics invoke in the prothesis of the Divine Liturgy of St. John Chrysostom, is one of the 21 Russian Orthodox saints that Ven. Pope Pius XII of Rome authorized for veneration by Russian Catholics in a 1940 decree, according to Butler's Lives of the Saints, Thurston & Attwater Edition, Vol. III (July-Sept) 639-640.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

A Cool Birthday Present

Around my birthday this fall, I will be blessed to be in University Church to witness the bestowal of an honorary degree to His All Holiness, Bartholomew I, Archbishop of Constantinople New Rome and Ecumenical Patriarch (Η Αυτού Θειοτάτη Παναγιότης ο Αρχιεπίσκοπος Κωνσταντινουπόλεως Νέας Ρώμης και Οικουμενικός Πατριάρχης Βαρθολομαίος Α').{1} I pray that he and his flock soon return to communion with the Apostolic See of Rome, from which the successors of St. Peter, the Prince of the Apostles, preside over Christ's One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church.

Notes & References
{1} Dimítrios Archontónis (Δημήτριος Αρχοντώνης), b. 2/29/1940 in Imbros, Turkey, r. 11/2/1991-present.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Update

Very busy cataloging the miracles attributed to many Catholic and Eastern Orthodox saints from the 11th century to the present. Each day I'm adding lots of names, biographical blurbs, hyperlinked references, and icons/photos/illustrations as I methodically scour the calendars of the respective churches. Each icon in the Wonderworker Project Progress posts means the update was from the Sunday or later of the current week. As of today, I have gone through the entire OCA calendar in my Word document listing all the ones I found,{1} but have yet to add dozens of these names to the site.

Notes & References
{1} Some of these post 11th-century wonderworkers have no biographical information on the OCA site, so those are the only ones I might have missed. I've tried to get info on them from other sites, sometimes with success. I've even added ones without biographical entries/details that nonetheless have the appellation "Wonderworker" or a similar title in their respective entries.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Remembering the 2993 9/11 Victims

Eternal rest grant unto them, O Lord.
And may perpetual light shine upon them
May the souls of the faithfully departed through the mercy of God, rest in peace.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Notes on Oration 43 of St. Gregory the Theologian

Funeral Oration for St. Basil the Great, by St. Gregory the Theologian
*Present form was probably not the original; some amplification occurred – serious illness prevented him attending the funeral of St. Basil the Great
*The great St. Basil would give him topics to discuss, and the most challenging (in fact, impossible) is giving enough praise to his person – a sacred debt – the magnificence of St. Basil is ineffable – closest of friends, St. Basil was a mentor who often corrected him –
*St. Basil taught that we must judge nobility based on individual merit, not prestige of birth – he had excellent role models who were generous to the poor, but their most eminent feature was the greatness of their children
*Basil his father (second prize), and St. Emmelia
*Distinguished Christian philosopher – thank God for Athens, since it was because of this city that Gregory got to know Basil – he was respected by most students just because of his reputation, and he won disputes with ease
*Attached to St. Basil like a polyp – they were both focused on becoming saints
*He fed the hungry, like a second St. Joseph the Patriarch – showed that God, not human favor, gave him his episcopal see
*Humble, not willing to blame St. Gregory
*Won over his opponents by magnanimity and chivalry instead of flattery and servility
*Brave enough to openly defy the emperor Valens and the prefect – nothing will get him to abandon his faith, and death will only help him, since it will send him to Heaven – prefect Modestus came to respect Basil
*Basil not at all distracted when Emperor Valens entered the Church in the middle of the Liturgy – Basil's words to him led to Valens greatly reducing his persecution of Christians
*Valens' son died because of Valens' plots against St. Basil, because Valens mixed in the advice of the heterodox with the advice of the orthodox
*Basil miraculously healed the prefect Modestus, who convinced many others of the wondrous powers and virtues of Basil
*Basil exiled, more concerned with the Cross than riches
*Basil a virgin who fasted, free of passions/concupiscence
*Gregory calls himself inferior to St. Basil in all respects except distress
*Established monastic communities and hospitals, a great philanthropist – Basil kissed and cleansed lepers
*Basil the most pure and enlightened of all time – a great theologian
*Basil prudently avoided saying in so many words "the Holy Spirit is God" because he knew that if he said so, he might easily be expelled from the city and the heretics would take over the city – he nevertheless taught and proved that the Holy Spirit is God, despite not using that express phrase in public – he used it in private, however, with Gregory and others
*Compares him to Old Testament Sts. Moses, Samuel, Elijah, Aaron, Joseph, etc.
*Zealous like Peter and intense like Paul, lofty utterances like Sts. John the Theologian and James the Greater
*Not a martyr like St. Stephen the Protomartyr because people revered him too much to kill him
*Many people look like Basil in outward appearance, while falling short of his universal virtues
*Miraculously stronger in his last words, despite being extremely physically weak
*Gives his humble offering to St. Basil and begs for his intercession, and awaits with joy seeing him in the next life as they behold the Blessed Trinity

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Background Info on the Cappadocian Fathers

Notes from my first meeting in the class Cappadocian Theology at Fordham, with Dr. Demacopoulos:

St. Gregory the Theologian offered Chair of Rhetoric of Athens at age 26 (like graduate philosophy student of Harvard being named university President) – President of Constantinople I – Archbishop of Constantinople – EXTREMELY bright but not a politician – quits in the middle of the most important Christian council in history – St. Basil the Great dead at that point – starts writing poetry back in Cappadocia as therapy – writes in Homeric verse (Homer 8th century BC – basically a different language not used for 600 years) – 1200 poems in Homeric verse to express his concerns, fears, troubles, & humiliations – basically wrote the first treatise on pastoral care (what it's like to be a priest)

We know the least about the younger brother of St. Basil the Great, St. Gregory of Nyssa, named after St. Gregory the Wonderworker, who was a student of Origen – we don't know where Nyssa went to school – was married, unlike the other two, no longer "actively married" at a certain point – no longer married bishops at this point – inferiority complex, writes a treatise On Virginity (prob. the most affirmative document that any of the three produced in favor of monasticism) – most significant contribution: first Christian author to consider that God is infinite – against Platonism – Plato said if God was infinite, God changed – can never fully know God because He is infinite –

St. Basil most politically programmatic – first one to become bishop – Caesarea: Sizz-ah-ree-ah – like being bishop of New York
Emperor cuts jurisdiction in half – St. Basil creates new Episcopal sees out of small village – conflict with St. Basil mentioned in poem, but not eulogy