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Posted By Eric Sammons On June 15, 2009 @ 8:56 am In Eastern Christianity,Ecumenism | Comments Disabled
In the spirit of this week’s OL conference, I link to a post by John at the blog Ad Orientem , a wonderful Orthodox blog I follow regularly. John comments on a post at the blog Energetic Procession  (so yes, this is a blog post about a blog post about a blog post – ain’t the Internet great?) regarding the “imposition” of the filioque upon Eastern Catholics.
John makes an important point about the recitation of the filioque (or lack thereof) within Eastern Catholic Churches. Even if they do not recite the filioque, John notes that “You are who you are in communion with.” In other words, if you are in communion with someone, you are accepting the truth of what they believe, whether you proclaim it or not. Put more negatively, you cannot claim that what someone else believes is heresy if you are in communion with them, as your communion means that you accept that “heresy” as valid for some to believe. So it is true that Eastern Catholics cannot condemn the filioque as heresy (although it is important to note that within Orthodoxy there is debate as to whether the filoque is heresy or just a theologumen that was illegitimately added to the Creed)
Yet I must disagree with the idea that Rome still “imposes” the filioque on Eastern Catholics. Energetic Procession lists past events (none later than the 18th century) as proof of this claim, yet this is not the current practice of Rome, and even Pope John Paul II attended a liturgy in which the filioque was not recited. I realize that there is a serious difference in theology between Orthodoxy and Catholicism in regards to the filioque, but it is simply not correct to claim that Rome imposes this practice on Eastern Catholics.
I have often heard it said that Rome must change in order for Orthodoxy to accept reunion with them. Yet in this case it has changed its practice, but instead of acknowledging that change, the old practice is being dragged out like the bones of Pope Formosus in order to condemn Rome further.
About a decade ago, the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity released a document  regarding the issue of the filioque. It would be instructive for all interested to read it in full.
Article printed from Divine Life – A Blog by Eric Sammons: http://ericsammons.com/blog
URL to article: http://ericsammons.com/blog/2009/06/15/imposition/
URLs in this post:
 post by John at the blog Ad Orientem: http://ad-orientem.blogspot.com/2009/06/eastern-rite-catholics-and-filioque.html
 post at the blog Energetic Procession: http://energeticprocession.com/2009/06/13/an-imposition/
 document: http://web.archive.org/web/20031013051015/www.petersnet.net/research/retrieve.cfm?recnum=1176
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