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Orthodox Conversion
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Nacho Offline
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Post: #26
RE: Orthodox Conversion
TheBeast1, you are right about the Germans lol! No, they probably would have not been satisfied. Interesting tidbit about Luther and his high regard for the Eastern Orthodox church. I'll have to read up more on that.

Though I somewhat differ with the western view of forensic justification, I understand the framework in which it came. I would probably be splitting hairs in making a theological distinction. Sometimes it boils down to semantics. The west typically puts more of an emphasis on the atonement and forgiveness of sin through Christ's sacrifice on the cross.

The Orthodox would concur, but also emphasize that Christ came in order to defeat the last enemy of man, the power of death itself. "Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil;
And deliver them who through fear of death were all their lifetime subject to bondage. (HEB 2:14-15)

Interesting conversation, I've been out of the loop for awhile in regards to theology and church history. I do share your optimism about being united as Christians under a banner of salvation through Christ.
12-12-2017 01:59 AM
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MichaelWitcoff Offline
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Post: #27
RE: Orthodox Conversion
I personally believe, after a lifetime of studying various spiritual and philosophical systems, that there is nothing "beyond" Orthodox Christianity. It encompasses the fullness of the truth in a way which nothing else does, and every other belief system can be explained from within its context. Most importantly, there is no other religion which can claim that the Creator of the cosmos became man for us, showed us the Way to follow His laws, and live by grace and faith instead of by constant status-jockeying, "transcendental experiences," shamanistic paganism, or other such things. Christianity as a whole is the only religion in which God became man and reopened the gates of Paradise for us, and Orthodox Christianity is the proper interpretation of the faith and all that goes along with it.
01-13-2019 11:40 PM
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jcrew247 Offline
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Post: #28
RE: Orthodox Conversion
I'm interested in converting as well. Probably the Russian orthodox since I am also interested in marrying a russian woman who will probably want to keep her faith. But greek women are attractive too so who knows.
07-04-2019 01:31 PM
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Lost in Transfiguration Offline
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Post: #29
RE: Orthodox Conversion
My experience with the church is that it is very corrupt in Eastern Europe, for example it is well known how corrupt it is in serbia as well as Russia where the patriarch was caught wearing a 20k watch, which was then subsequently photo-shopped off his wrist because it was an embarrassment to the Putin administration. Make no mistake the church is firmly in step with the government to contain the more radical nationalist elements in these countries.
(This post was last modified: 07-05-2019 12:04 AM by Lost in Transfiguration.)
07-05-2019 12:01 AM
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Kid Twist Offline
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Post: #30
RE: Orthodox Conversion
^ What's your point?

A guy clowns a watch and that diminishes the beauty, truth, love and grace of Jesus Christ?

Too many people are not focused on what's important.

Get your passport ready!
07-05-2019 06:12 PM
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Lost in Transfiguration Offline
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Post: #31
RE: Orthodox Conversion
My point is you end up with a situation like in World War II where the Catholic Church worked with the Nazis to save its hide.

The watch wasn't even the bad thing, the bad thing is that they photoshopped it out and then lied about the incident happening.

It't making a deal with the devil when the church aligns itself with the state. The state is no paragon of virtue either.
07-05-2019 06:49 PM
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Emperor Constantine Online
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Post: #32
RE: Orthodox Conversion
(11-29-2017 10:57 PM)Dragan Wrote:  Can anyone that's orthodox give me some advise on converting, and maybe try to be devil's advocate and give me reasons why I shouldn't convert? I've been thinking about converting quite a while now (3-4 years now), and I'd love to get some perspective from someone in the church.

Don't rush into it. If you want to convert, start by going to the services and the catechism classes as often as you can.

Here's some observations, in no particular order:
- After chrismation, you will suffer the worst temptations you've ever felt. Everyone at my parish told me this, and I hoped they were exaggerating. They weren't. The demons are pissed when you join the Church, and they will try to pull you away.

- Once accepted into the Church, you have confession to keep you accountable. Admitting to God what you've done wrong with the priest witnessing is difficult but necessary. It's like having your shoulder reset: painful but you'll be glad you did.

- In the US, there are not many orthodox people and it can be really difficult to find a spouse.

- In a way it's hard, and in a way it's easy. It's easy because the path to salvation is laid out very clearly. It's hard because there's lots of fasting, you're supposed to be kind to people, there's no fornicating, everything in the Sermon on the Mount... but you're surrounded by people on the same path, and you have the example of the saints who went before you.

- Lots of people will think you're crazy. And the harder you try to fulfil Christ's commands, the more crazy people will think you are.

- One one hand, make very sure you're serious before you join. On the other hand, to quote Fr. Seraphim Rose, "It's later then you think. Hasten therefore to do the work of God."
07-05-2019 09:42 PM
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Sword and Board Offline
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Post: #33
RE: Orthodox Conversion
(07-05-2019 06:49 PM)Lost in Transfiguration Wrote:  My point is you end up with a situation like in World War II where the Catholic Church worked with the Nazis to save its hide.

The watch wasn't even the bad thing, the bad thing is that they photoshopped it out and then lied about the incident happening.

It't making a deal with the devil when the church aligns itself with the state. The state is no paragon of virtue either.

Gee, thanks for warning us with your good intentions "chosen one", now kindly

Gtfo
07-06-2019 07:41 AM
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Kid Twist Offline
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Post: #34
RE: Orthodox Conversion
The "church" that we believe in is the one that St. Ignatius talked about, the local people under their bishop

Church and state politics is something different, neither disables me, necessarily, from practicing the orthodox faith that has been preserved through the ages. It may try, but that's a different topic.

Get your passport ready!
07-07-2019 03:39 PM
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BigFellow Offline
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Post: #35
RE: Orthodox Conversion
The Orthodox Church often purports to hold steadfast to its traditions and claims not to surrender to cultural whims and fads. If that is the case, why do so many of the Orthodox believe in evolution?

For thousands of years almost no one believed in evolution and believed that the Earth was created around 4004 B.C. It wasn't until the the last century that a lot of people started believing in evolution and an earth that was millions of years old.

I am interested in Russian and Eastern European women, and I have been disillusioned with many modern churches, so I have been taking a look at Orthodoxy with an open mind.

However I recently heard Orthodox apologist Kallistos Ware speak favorably of evolution, and that was a major setback.
07-27-2019 10:46 AM
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Kid Twist Offline
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Post: #36
RE: Orthodox Conversion
(07-27-2019 10:46 AM)BigFellow Wrote:  The Orthodox Church often purports to hold steadfast to its traditions and claims not to surrender to cultural whims and fads. If that is the case, why do so many of the Orthodox believe in evolution?

For thousands of years almost no one believed in evolution and believed that the Earth was created around 4004 B.C. It wasn't until the the last century that a lot of people started believing in evolution and an earth that was millions of years old.

There is no "position" on "evolution." What are you saying it is (ie what do you say it is or suggest it means to "believe" in it)?

Who believed the Earth was created around 4004 BC? Please cite.

If Aliens exist or humans have a weird last common ancestor with other animals, it does not change the teachings nor practice of the Orthodox Church.

Get your passport ready!
07-29-2019 11:14 PM
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BigFellow Offline
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Post: #37
RE: Orthodox Conversion
(07-29-2019 11:14 PM)Kid Twist Wrote:  
(07-27-2019 10:46 AM)BigFellow Wrote:  The Orthodox Church often purports to hold steadfast to its traditions and claims not to surrender to cultural whims and fads. If that is the case, why do so many of the Orthodox believe in evolution?

For thousands of years almost no one believed in evolution and believed that the Earth was created around 4004 B.C. It wasn't until the the last century that a lot of people started believing in evolution and an earth that was millions of years old.

There is no "position" on "evolution." What are you saying it is (ie what do you say it is or suggest it means to "believe" in it)?

Who believed the Earth was created around 4004 BC? Please cite.

If Aliens exist or humans have a weird last common ancestor with other animals, it does not change the teachings nor practice of the Orthodox Church.

When I speak of evolution, I am referring to a process by which humans evolved from lower forms of life, such as apes, over the course of millions of years. We know that is not true because the Bible says that God created man on the 6th day.

Archbishop Ussher is best known for the 4004 BC date. He based that on the Bible's chronology. Other Christian scholars have come up with different dates, but they weren't significantly far off from that.
07-30-2019 09:42 PM
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Kid Twist Offline
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Post: #38
RE: Orthodox Conversion
Let's say I disagree with you. How does that matter? This is not dogma of the Orthodox church, and again, changes nothing about what it teaches or practices. It is, at best, in the realm of private opinion (theologumena).

Genesis is not a literal account. As I'm quite sure you know, there are 2 Genesis creation stories.

Get your passport ready!
07-30-2019 11:20 PM
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BigFellow Offline
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Post: #39
RE: Orthodox Conversion
(07-30-2019 11:20 PM)Kid Twist Wrote:  Let's say I disagree with you. How does that matter? This is not dogma of the Orthodox church, and again, changes nothing about what it teaches or practices. It is, at best, in the realm of private opinion (theologumena).

Genesis is not a literal account. As I'm quite sure you know, there are 2 Genesis creation stories.

I don't see why you would assume that Genesis is not a literal account. There are other parts of Scripture that are obviously not historical, such as Jesus' parables, Psalms, etc... Genesis is not written that way, but is written as historical. It was believed to be historical until evolutionists and liberals came along in the 19th century.

My concern is that evolution is widely accepted among Orthodox Christians, even if it is not officially dogma of the church.

I see God's creation of the world as a foundational matter. If you can reject the creation story, why couldn't you reject Jesus, the incarnation, the resurrection, etc...? God's creation of man is special. Man did not come about through some random process through millions of years. Evolution makes man into simply a sack of amino acids and absolves him of moral responsibility. Man is just a speck of dust in a universe that develops by chance.

The claim of two Genesis creation stories does not undercut the historical accuracy of Genesis, and that is just one way of interpreting Genesis.
07-31-2019 08:14 PM
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Kid Twist Offline
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Post: #40
RE: Orthodox Conversion
(07-31-2019 08:14 PM)BigFellow Wrote:  It was believed to be historical until evolutionists and liberals came along in the 19th century.

St. John Chrysostom did not hold this position. He was from the 4th century. Origen even earlier.

The Bible is not a historical, forensic text. This is modernity written into the Bible. It is a text of many stories from history, wisdom literature, letters to particular churches, and proceedings of Christ with the Apostles to show us the Way.

The Gospel, ie what the King has done for us, how we should receive him for defeating the last enemy, death --- that should be our concern.

You are trying to fight "science" with the same mindset as those you disagree with. I'm telling you there is another way.

Get your passport ready!
08-05-2019 11:02 PM
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BigFellow Offline
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Post: #41
RE: Orthodox Conversion
(08-05-2019 11:02 PM)Kid Twist Wrote:  
(07-31-2019 08:14 PM)BigFellow Wrote:  It was believed to be historical until evolutionists and liberals came along in the 19th century.

St. John Chrysostom did not hold this position. He was from the 4th century. Origen even earlier.

The Bible is not a historical, forensic text. This is modernity written into the Bible. It is a text of many stories from history, wisdom literature, letters to particular churches, and proceedings of Christ with the Apostles to show us the Way.

The Gospel, ie what the King has done for us, how we should receive him for defeating the last enemy, death --- that should be our concern.

You are trying to fight "science" with the same mindset as those you disagree with. I'm telling you there is another way.

What was St. John Chrysostom's position? Did he believe in evolution? Origen was bright but held a number of problematic views; neither the Catholic nor the Orthodox Church will refer to him as "Saint".

I see theistic evolution as modernity written into the Bible.

I do not see myself as adopting the same mindset as those I disagree with.
08-08-2019 08:30 PM
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Kid Twist Offline
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Post: #42
RE: Orthodox Conversion
These are good questions, and should be asked and discussed, but I notice that you are missing my point from several paragraphs ago. If "believing in evolution" means that I doubt the orthodox doctrine and practice, then it will tend to be a problem. But notice that this point deals with how one is worrying, detailing, or confessing said "scientific" questions.

Please let me repeat, the Bible is about first God preparing the way for the God-man to save the world and as a result, bringing forth the "Gospel" (evangelion), literally that which the King (God) has done for us (defeated the enemies, including the last one, death) and how we should receive Him.

You keep looking at it with a historic, forensic lens. It is not a scientific manual.

Everything else is, while certainly interesting to us humans, just speculation.

As a final point, I am totally fine with you having strong opinions about the creation of man, whatever they are. But even those mean nothing if we aren't obedient, take up our cross, and follow. We have our communion in that, not in our vain speculations, however interesting they may be.

Get your passport ready!
(This post was last modified: 08-10-2019 08:56 AM by Kid Twist.)
08-10-2019 08:55 AM
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BigFellow Offline
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Post: #43
RE: Orthodox Conversion
(08-10-2019 08:55 AM)Kid Twist Wrote:  These are good questions, and should be asked and discussed, but I notice that you are missing my point from several paragraphs ago. If "believing in evolution" means that I doubt the orthodox doctrine and practice, then it will tend to be a problem. But notice that this point deals with how one is worrying, detailing, or confessing said "scientific" questions.

Please let me repeat, the Bible is about first God preparing the way for the God-man to save the world and as a result, bringing forth the "Gospel" (evangelion), literally that which the King (God) has done for us (defeated the enemies, including the last one, death) and how we should receive Him.

You keep looking at it with a historic, forensic lens. It is not a scientific manual.

Everything else is, while certainly interesting to us humans, just speculation.

As a final point, I am totally fine with you having strong opinions about the creation of man, whatever they are. But even those mean nothing if we aren't obedient, take up our cross, and follow. We have our communion in that, not in our vain speculations, however interesting they may be.


The Bible is not primarily intended as an exhaustive science textbook, but it does provide us with certain facts about the world and those facts must accepted as true, as they come from God. They should be a starting point for any study of science or study of the natural world.
If God proclaims certain truths about the natural world, we are to accept those truths as a foundation for our study of the natural world. Any manmade methodologies for studying nature and the world must first start with God’s truths and go from there. We are not permitted to adopt our own truth that conflicts with what God has already established.

I would reject the claim made by some that the Bible is not a historical text. It does claim to be history and provide historical accounts of events. In fact its chronological precision is quite remarkable, as it lists the ages of various individuals and allows one to trace genealogy from Jesus back to creation. A chronological written history generally provides a more precise record and is easier to interpret than fossils, ancient pots, bones, etc...

I agree that we should be obedient, take up the cross, and follow. But if one is free to reject the Genesis account that leaves one free to reject other scriptural teachings as well.

By the way I recently came across an article about orthodox apologist Kallistos Ware. It said he supports homosexual marriage and women’s ordination. This was disappointing as I thought he had led many people to Eastern Orthodoxy, and I was thinking of buying his books. It appears that there are liberal and conservative wings not just in Protestantism and Catholicism, but Orthodoxy as well. Orthodoxy doesn’t seem to be immune from that.
08-11-2019 08:54 AM
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Kid Twist Offline
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Post: #44
RE: Orthodox Conversion
I stand by my words above. I suggest you re-read them. I do not reject "The Genesis Account" and you aren't orthodox (I don't think), but you suggest somehow that I do. I have been telling you that, for various reasons, I do not. I have no problem continuing to discuss it, it's just more fruitful not going in circles.

Kallistos may have had questionable judgment with whom he speaks or grants interviews to, but in researching I find no convincing evidence that he "supports homosexual marriage or women's ordination." I urge you to research that as well. I find no such equivalence in EO similar to the very real dichotomy of protestantism/RC which is even synodal at times. You speculate, and are incorrect.

In no way do I suggest that someone "orthodox" or calling himself such can't apostasize, however.

BigFellow, you jump to many conclusions, quickly and early.

Get your passport ready!
(This post was last modified: 08-11-2019 10:21 PM by Kid Twist.)
08-11-2019 10:20 PM
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BigFellow Offline
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Post: #45
RE: Orthodox Conversion
(08-11-2019 10:20 PM)Kid Twist Wrote:  I stand by my words above. I suggest you re-read them. I do not reject "The Genesis Account" and you aren't orthodox (I don't think), but you suggest somehow that I do. I have been telling you that, for various reasons, I do not. I have no problem continuing to discuss it, it's just more fruitful not going in circles.

Kallistos may have had questionable judgment with whom he speaks or grants interviews to, but in researching I find no convincing evidence that he "supports homosexual marriage or women's ordination." I urge you to research that as well. I find no such equivalence in EO similar to the very real dichotomy of protestantism/RC which is even synodal at times. You speculate, and are incorrect.

In no way do I suggest that someone "orthodox" or calling himself such can't apostasize, however.

BigFellow, you jump to many conclusions, quickly and early.

Another thing I saw in the news recently is that the Orthodox Church in America refused to pass a resolution condemning clergy and teachers who approve homosexuality.

These are articles I saw about Kallistos Ware--
https://www.orthodoxytoday.org/blog/2018...-marriage/

https://www.orthodoxytoday.org/blog/2018...marriages/
08-12-2019 11:23 PM
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Kid Twist Offline
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Post: #46
RE: Orthodox Conversion
I'm unclear after reading the answers in the "virtue" link (which was a UK article and discussion, vis a vis Anglicanism and Orthodoxy) about what he's really saying. Please redirect me if you think he is saying outright (not emphasis from the Fr. with the greek surname).

Either way, if he is not calling homosexuality for what it is, he is leading people astray. The Orthodox position is clear. I think he should, and may have already been, called out to clarify precisely what he is saying, and why he gave the interview at all to this group.

Get your passport ready!
08-13-2019 05:42 PM
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