Im ready to join the church

Why did you approach an Orthodox church first? What makes you think it is preferable to Catholicism? Your answers to these questions will guide the answer to your original question.
 

DanielH

Pelican
Orthodox
Orthodoxy is the unchanging faith of Christ and the apostles, an important thing to look for in this time of change.

I'm sorry you weren't welcomed warmly. I travel semi frequently for work for long periods and have visited many churches. One Russian church ignored me, nobody said hi to me after I stood around for a while during coffee hour. I could have said hi to someone, but I didn't. Another Russian church took me in and was so kind to me that I became an altar server for the first time for a few weeks while I was there. The first church was mostly immigrants, the latter was mostly converts. Most churches were very kind to me, some are unfortunately more ethnic than others (Orthodoxy has anathematized ethnophyletism). I was baptized in a VERY Greek church and was practically adopted by a very pious family, and my Godmother is an immigrant. The point of this is God will take care of you no matter your circumstances.

You can look for another Orthodox parish near you with this site: https://www.assemblyofbishops.org/directories/parishes/

It has more parishes than Google Maps will show you.
 

Eusebius Erasmus

Kingfisher
Orthodox
I am sorry that the orthodox churches were not welcoming.

I would focus on getting the theology correct, while also attending the Divine Liturgy a few times. Try to find an Orthodox parish full of converts (Antiochian and ROCOR are good bets).
 

M_M

Pigeon
I'm ready to accept Christ. But I don't know how to do it.
Sounds like you’ve already done it. If you are “ ready to accept” Christ, then you already believe in Him as your Savior. You believe He died for your sins. This is salvation. You are saved.

Continue in His word daily with prayer and He will guide you.

Acts 16:30 Sirs, what must I do to be saved?
Acts 16:31 And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved.
 
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gent

Pigeon
I would hesitate to use the phrase "good enough" when referring to a church.

I was in your situation a few months ago. I thought that I should go to convert to Orthodoxy. But I was already a baptized Catholic from childhood so I started attending a Byzantine Catholic parish instead.

I will say that I've found the Catholic church to be incredibly rich and there are plenty of traditional churches where people are clued into what's going on. Just like the Orthodox church there is 2000 years of history to it, and it has many saints.

I am still too new in my faith to discern between the two. But I believe God will lead us to where we need to go. So make sure you are spending time in prayer and avoiding sin, whichever church you decide. Be open to God's voice in your life.

Right now the Catholic church seems to be providing what I need. I do also listen to Orthodox priests for guidance (ie. Father Josiah Trenham) but I take communion with the Catholic church.

God bless you and I hope you find what you're looking for.
 

OrthoLeaf

Sparrow
Orthodox
Of course not. One is the very body of Christ Himself. Its sacraments infused with the very presence of God and through which, we receive the medicine of immortality. The other, a false schismatic church. You are free to decide which one is the true Church and which one is the false schismatic church and act accordingly, but in no way should the other be considered "good enough". The question is literally a matter of life and death.

Take your time. Pray, study, be patient and trust in God to lead you to the true Church. It took me nearly two years before I came to my decision on this topic, there's no rush.
 

Augustus_Principe

Woodpecker
This forum is increasingly, and perhaps already, majority Orthodox. Obviously then you will get the majority of users telling you to “begome” Orthodox.

As a Catholic, I suggest you join the Catholic Church. Stay away from the novus ordo, modern church (just how an Orthodox will tell you to stay away from OCA, Greek Orthodox Church, etc) and seek a traditional church. Ideally, you will want to find an SSPX church, but an FSSP or ICKSP parish is just fine. If worst comes to worst, then a diocesan church that does the Latin Mass will have to suffice. Eastern Catholic Churches are also a great option if you want to go that route.

Keep in mind that Orthodox greatly exaggerate the difference between the churches and just about everything we do is a “heresy” in their eyes. The animosity greatly stems from the sack of Constantinople, Orthodox internalizing the commands of their oppressors (Mohammadens after Constantinople fell. The Turks purposefully installed anti-western patriarchs in order for there to be 0 hope of Union, therefore 0 hope of the west trying to help the Greeks retake Constantinople) and more recently, YouTubers.

I recommend this channel as they have a couple of videos in regards to why you should choose Catholicism over Orthodoxy
:
This relatively new channel is also answering objections raised by Ubi Petrus.

Again, be wary of exaggerated claims, and remember, the Catholic Church also recognizes the Desert Fathers, the Early Church Fathers and the Cappadocian Fathers, even though Orthodox makes it seem like we don’t.

I will pray for you to make the best decision. Even if you decide to go Orthodox, at least you’re not a Protestant who thinks you’re already good and all you have to do is read your Bible. God bless.
 

M_M

Pigeon
I will pray for you to make the best decision. Even if you decide to go Orthodox, at least you’re not a Protestant who thinks you’re already good and all you have to do is read your Bible. God bless.
Actually, if he is a believer, then, he is “good”.

John 6:47 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life.

He has eternal life. Already has it presently.

And of course there is more to do. But he is a babe in Christ. He needs milk, not meat. You’re loading him up with nonsense about orthodox v Catholic, schisms, etc....

The focus should always be on Christ.
 

Cartographer

Kingfisher
Gold Member
It's not good, and probably not possible to pursue Faith alone. Christ intended for us to be in fellowship with other believers.

But don't let the decision of which church to join be a stumbling block.

1 Corinthians 12 4-11 KJV
4Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5And there are differences of administrations, but the same Lord. 6And there are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all. 7But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal. 8For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; 9To another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit; 10To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues: 11But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will.

And later in he suggests that simply following what is really the Holy Spirit guiding you is a good way to start and he'll show you a better way if you continue to pursue it.

28And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues. 29Are all apostles? are all prophets? are all teachers? are all workers of miracles? 30Have all the gifts of healing? do all speak with tongues? do all interpret? 31But covet earnestly the best gifts: and yet shew I unto you a more excellent way.

I'd look for a place where it seems God is being sincerely and solemnly worshiped by people whose belief is pervasive in their lives, not just on the outside.
 

MichaelWitcoff

Ostrich
Orthodox
The focus should always be on Christ.
You wouldn’t even know Who Christ Is, or anything about His birth life / ministry / death / Resurrection / Ascension, without the Bible that His Church wrote, compiled, and canonized for you. I grow weary of these ignorant Protestant attacks on apostolic Christianity; they are always the same, coming from people who know nothing about Christian history, and they are all easily debunked by maybe an hour - tops - of actual research. Yes, the Church matters. It is the theanthropic Body of Christ. Grace can influence your life the way God sees fit, but those outside the Body of Christ do not possess the fullness of the Christian faith or the sacramental life outlined in the very Bible they claim as sole authority while refusing to truly read.

The focus is *always* on Christ. But without the Church, you would not only not have a Bible, but also not know what the correct (orthodox) of Christ is to begin with. Does someone who “believes in Christ,” but believes He was merely a man, have eternal life? What about someone who believes He was some kind of spirit appearing as human, but without a physical body? What about someone who believes “Christ” is just an allegory for their own personhood? These things matter, and profoundly so; you cannot “focus on Christ” without knowing Who He Is in the first place.

Enter the Church, which has specifically and exhaustively dogmatized the correct apostolic beliefs and anathematized false innovations and heresies that lead souls astray.
 
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OrthoLeaf

Sparrow
Orthodox
Keep in mind that Orthodox greatly exaggerate the difference between the churches and just about everything we do is a “heresy” in their eyes. The animosity greatly stems from the sack of Constantinople, Orthodox internalizing the commands of their oppressors (Mohammadens after Constantinople fell. The Turks purposefully installed anti-western patriarchs in order for there to be 0 hope of Union, therefore 0 hope of the west trying to help the Greeks retake Constantinople) and more recently, YouTubers.
This is a strawman argument. The sack of 1204 does not effect my theological convictions in the slightest. Nor have I "internalized the commands of my Mohammaden oppressors", who, as an Anglo-Saxon/Norman Canadian, have never oppressed me or my ancestors. As I stated above, I spent roughly two years with a foot in both camps, while also reading the Church Fathers. Coming from an atheist upbringing, I had to do this to learn what the Catholics taught, what the Orthodox taught and what the earliest Christians taught as I was totally ignorant on all three fronts. I can still clearly remember first reading about the Filioque controversy and thinking to myself "well, that seems like splitting hairs. I don't see the big deal here." It was only after I continued to dig deeper into the ancient Patristics and began to see their worldview reflected within the Orthodox Church and through an unintended process of osmosis conformed my worldview to it, that the enormous chasm between east and west became obvious.

I've noticed that this argument of similarity is always on the side of the Catholics and never from the Orthodox. This is not because we hold a grudge since the age of the crusades, or that we're just lapdogs for our non-existent Muslim overlords, it's because we are zealous for our faith and will not compromise even one inch with it - much like the Trad Caths - this zealotry is not a negative thing at all, even if it offends others. I'm sure you would agree that offending a few Novus Ordo Catholics or protestants, in defense of traditional Catholicism is worth the preservation of the traditional faith. In fact, I know this is the case, given the last sentence in your post. I call the heresies of the Catholic church out, not out of bitterness or vindictiveness, but because I earnestly believe them to be a perversion of the True Faith and because I desire my Catholic brothers, as well my Protestant brothers, to come to the ancient and life giving faith of Holy Orthodoxy.
 

iop890

Crow
Gold Member

I started watching this a few days ago at the behest of another Catholic and within 20 minutes the guest had sited the Nestorian and non-Chalcedonian churches as examples of disunity within Eastern Orthodoxy. Calling them, along with the actual Eastern Orthodox, "the three Eastern Orthodox churches".

I've noticed a lot of Catholics do this, even apologists that should have the historical knowledge to know better, like the guy in the video.

I haven't finished it, so I don't know if it gets better.
 

OrthoLeaf

Sparrow
Orthodox
The focus is *always* on Christ. But without the Church, you would not only not have a Bible, but also not know what the correct (orthodox) of Christ is to begin with.
Exactly and to add to your point for @M_M

The Church is the body of Christ. Scripture is the Word of Christ. Icons testify of Christs saving work. The Sacraments are the very presence of Christ. Through the Eucharist, we receive Christ. In baptism, we put on Christ. During confession, we are forgiven by Christ. In Marriage, we are made one in Christ.

The entire faith is Divine Revelation, not just Scripture! Our faith is a living, transformative and mystical faith in Christ, through Christ and for Christ. Not a vain epistemological affirmation of a particular philosophical treatise - which, ironically enough, is literally the Hellenic philosophical worldview, not the Christian worldview.

The day Protestants realize that there are no dialectics in Christ or in His Church and that the True Faith is literally about basking in the glories of God, of which the illumination via Scripture is only one aspect, will be the day that they rejoice and run to the baptismal font. Our faith is just so profound, so beautiful and so life changing that once you "see" the mystagogical aspect to it, which I tried but undoubtedly failed to express adequately, you simply have no choice but to convert.
 

M_M

Pigeon
Yes, the Church matters.
Sure it does. But although the church is His body. And they are one. Christ is still the head.

Col 1:18 And he is head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence.


So there is no need to you be weary of what I said. What I said was biblical. Christ should be the focus. The head. He is preeminent.

Horus, the original poster is a babe in Christ, so one should point him to Christ first. Not arguments about Church history.
 

MichaelWitcoff

Ostrich
Orthodox
Yes, Christ is the head of His Church. His Church is a visible (at least in part) institution, planted by the Apostles and maintained until the present day. It is not an "argument about Church history," it's historical Christianity and there was never even a question about this for at least the first thousand years of the faith, when the one Church split into Roman Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy. Even then there was never a question as to what the word "Church" referred to. If you want to follow Christ properly, with the fullness of His revelation to us, then you have to become part of His Body rather than simply rip the Bible out of its context.

What Protestants believe was unheard of until fifteen centuries after the Resurrection, and every Protestant who learns about Christian history eventually comes face to face with the fact that their beliefs and practices are ahistorical and alien to what the Apostles actually taught:
 
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Deo Vindice

Chicken
Orthodox
I started watching this a few days ago at the behest of another Catholic and within 20 minutes the guest had sited the Nestorian and non-Chalcedonian churches as examples of disunity within Eastern Orthodoxy. Calling them, along with the actual Eastern Orthodox, "the three Eastern Orthodox churches".

I've noticed a lot of Catholics do this, even apologists that should have the historical knowledge to know better, like the guy in the video.

I haven't finished it, so I don't know if it gets better.
Well, at least the non-Chalcedonian churches do call themselves the “Orthodox” churches. So in fact there are three “Eastern Orthodox” churches, though from a Catholic perspective, none of the three Eastern communions are actually orthodox. “Oriental” literally means “Eastern”.
 

DanielH

Pelican
Orthodox
Well, at least the non-Chalcedonian churches do call themselves the “Orthodox” churches. So in fact there are three “Eastern Orthodox” churches, though from a Catholic perspective, none of the three Eastern communions are actually orthodox. “Oriental” literally means “Eastern”.
This is an especially lazy example of justifying the word-concept fallacy, where "Eastern" among entirely different religions separated for 1600 years are being conflated. You cannot group the Eastern Orthodox in with the Orientals without being intentionally deceptive or caved-in-skull ignorant.

When we say "Eastern Orthodox," we are talking about the universal Church that people actually convert to and still produces saints.

Are you a sedevacantist? It's interesting that you have a latin name and two posts when we've had a string of sedevacantists with similar names get banned in the past few months.
 
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