Monday, September 27, 2010

Met. Hilarion: no breakthroughs in dialogue

Again a "robo-translated" article with all the imperfections that implies. Much of what is written in the native tongue of Churches is slowly translated into English or sometimes not at all. So I post this knowing a better translation might arrive (which I will post later) or one might never appear. UPDATE: As promised, here is the official English translation.

( - As the President of the Department for External Church Relations of Moscow Patriarchate popular idea several media working document of the Joint International Commission for Theological Dialogue between the Roman Catholic and the Orthodox Church does not reflect the position of the Orthodox parties on the issue of primacy of the Roman bishop, and can only be seen as merely auxiliary material for further work .

Contrary to the assertions of the press, at the meeting of the Orthodox-Catholic Theological Commission in Vienna, there were no "breakthroughs" made. All the session was devoted to discussion of the role of the bishop of Rome in the 1st millennium. On this subject the steering committee of the Commission had earlier prepared a document discussed in the last year in Cyprus . A draft version of the document "flowed" in the media and has been published.

It was assumed that Vienna will be able to finish the discussion of this document. But nothing happened: It took a lot of time discussion of the status of the text. Orthodox members from the very beginning of the meeting insisted that "the Cyprus document" can neither be formally issued on behalf of the Commission, nor signed by its members. From our perspective, this paper needs substantial revision, but after treatment he may have only the status of "working document" that is merely auxiliary material (instrumentum laboris), which can be used to prepare the following documents, but he will not have any official status.

"The Cyprus paper has strictly historical in nature and, speaking about the role of the bishop of Rome, almost no mention of the bishops of other Local Churches of the first millennium, creating misconceptions about how to distribute power in the early Church. In addition, the document is not clear and precise allegations that the jurisdiction of the bishop of Rome in the 1st millennium did not extend to the East. It is hoped that these gaps and omissions will be filled in the finalization of the text.

After a lengthy discussion, the Commission decided that the document needed more work and that a final decision on his status will be made at the next plenary meeting of the committee, ie expected in two years. By this time, will be drafted a new document, which will consider the same issues, but only from the theological point of view.

For the Orthodox participants is obvious that the 1st millennium jurisdiction of the bishop of Rome was distributed solely to the West, whereas in the East territories were divided between the four Patriarchy - Constantinople, Alexandria, Antioch and Jerusalem. The Bishop of Rome had no direct jurisdiction of the East, despite the fact that in some cases Eastern hierarchs spoke to him as an arbiter in theological disputes. Data treatment did not have a systematic character and in no way be interpreted in the sense that the bishop of Rome was seen in the East as the holder of the supreme authority throughout the universal Church.

I hope that in subsequent meetings of the commission the Catholic side would agree with this position, as evidenced by numerous historical evidence.

No comments:

Post a Comment