Non-Orthodox who aren't inquiring cannot post here [Subforum Guidelines]


This subforum is for those interested in Orthodoxy to post their questions, concerns, or doubts. It's also for catechumens who want to learn more about the faith and church practices. Normally, newly registered members are not able to post threads for two weeks, but all male members will be able to post new threads here.

Subforum Guidelines:

1. Non-Orthodox answers are not permitted here.
The Inquirers subforum is for those interested in Orthodox Christianity, not other denominations of Christianity. If you are not Orthodox, or do not possess the Orthodox answer, you cannot answer questions that lead people to your non-Orthodox faith. You cannot evangelize non-Orthodox faiths on this forum.

2. "Inquiring" means you are inquiring to the faith, not looking for a prideful debate. Those looking to argue will be banned. This forum is not for theological debates.

[Updated 12/21/22]
Last edited:


I am cross posting this from the Western Rite Orthodoxy thread in hopes of getting better responses from veteran members/ortho folks.

“Possible inquirer here. I come from a Catholic background and currently attend a TLM (traditional Latin mass) near my home. It is a great, vibrant community with a beautiful liturgy. I don’t necessarily wish to leave it, but the fact is it is in “communion” with Rome and likely to be cancelled. It is subject to a pozzed out diocese and it currently rents the beautiful church from a pozzed out parish with hand sanitizer and Covid signs all over the place. The community feels like it is separate from the Novus Ordo RCC world, but it is not in reality.

That said, I do feel a sense of “Western/Latin roots”. I also have some Polish Blood yet I do not know if a Polish Orthodox Church exists in the US. I did see that there is a Western Rite Orthodox Church (part of ROCOR) near my home. From the website, I gather that it is a very small community. Then there is a Greek Orthodox (GOARCH) church right down the road from me, yet It seems that many have been saying that that part of the Orthodox Church is also becoming very pozzed.

Looking for some advice as pertains to inquiries in general but also to the Western Rite if anyone has any good info. Thanks.”


Looking at the current threads, this is probably the best place for this. This is an excerpt from a letter from Fr. Seraphim Rose to a catachumen, and I believe it would be helpful for inquirers to know how Orthodox see them.

I will set forth briefly what I believe to be the Orthodox attitude towards non-Orthodox Christians.

1. Orthodoxy is the Church founded by Christ for the salvation of mankind, and therefore we should guard with our life the purity of its teaching and our own faithfulness to it. In the Orthodox Church alone is grace given through the sacraments (most other churches don’t even claim [to] have sacraments in any serious sense). The Orthodox Church alone is the Body of Christ, and if salvation is difficult enough within the Orthodox Church, how much more difficult must it be outside the Church!

2. However, it is not for us to define the state of those who are outside the Orthodox Church. If God wishes to grant salvation to some who are Christians in the best way they know, but without ever knowing the Orthodox Church—that is up to Him, not us. But when He does this, it is outside the normal way that He established for salvation—which is in the Church, as a part of the Body of Christ. I myself can accept the experience of Protestants being “born again” in Christ; I have met people who have changed their lives entirely through meeting Christ, and I cannot deny their experience just because they are not Orthodox. I call these people “subjective” or “beginning” Christians. But until they are united to the Orthodox Church they cannot have the fullness of Christianity, they cannot be objectively Christian as belonging to the Body of Christ and receiving the grace of the sacraments. I think this is why there are so many sects among them—they begin the Christian life with a genuine experience of conversion to Christ, but they cannot continue the Christian life in the right way until they are united to the Orthodox Church, and they therefore substitute their own opinions and subjective experiences for the Church’s teaching and sacraments.

About those Christians who are outside the Orthodox Church, therefore, I would say: they do not yet have the full truth—perhaps it just hasn’t been revealed to them yet, or perhaps it is our fault for not living and teaching the Orthodox Faith in a way they can understand. With such people we cannot be one in the faith, but there is no reason why we should regard them as totally estranged or as equal to pagans (although we should not be hostile to pagans either—they also haven’t yet seen the truth!). It is true that many of the non-Orthodox hymns contain a teaching or at least an emphasis that is wrong—especially the idea that when one is “saved” he does not need to do anything more because Christ has done it all. This idea prevents people from seeing the truth of Orthodoxy which emphasizes the idea of struggling for one’s salvation even after Christ has given it to us, as St. Paul says: “Work out your salvation with fear and trembling.” But almost all of the religious Christmas carols are all right, and they are sung by Orthodox Christians in America (some of them even in the strictest monasteries!).

The word “heretic” (as we say in our article on Father Dimitry Dudko) is indeed used too frequently nowadays. It has a definite meaning and function, to distinguish new teachings from the Orthodox teaching; but few of the non-Orthodox Christians today are consciously “heretics,” and it really does no good to call them that.

In the end, I think, Fr. Dimitry Dudko’s attitude is the correct one: We should view the non- Orthodox as people to whom Orthodoxy has not yet been revealed, as people who are potentially Orthodox (if only we ourselves would give them a better example!). There is no reason why we cannot call them Christians and be on good terms with them, recognize that we have at least our faith in Christ in common, and live in peace especially with our own families. St. Innocent’s attitude to the Roman Catholics in California is a good example for us. A harsh, polemical attitude is called for only when the non-Orthodox are trying to take away our flocks or change our teaching—as the Roman Catholics tried to do in western Russia in past centuries. This explains why some people even today continue this harsh tone.

As for prejudices—these belong to people, not the Church. Orthodoxy does not require you to accept any prejudices or opinions about other races, nations, etc.