Eastern Catholics? An interview with Fr. Maximos

Yesterday I gave a brief presentation on Eastern Christianity with my friend Kate, who is Eastern Orthodox (ROCOR). It was so much fun – I had a blast talking about my love for the East 🙂

Eastern Catholicism is a bit of a mystery to a lot of people. Honestly, Roman Catholics and Eastern Orthodox Christians often look at Eastern Catholics and scratch their heads. Are they Catholic? Are they Orthodox? I’m sure similar questions are going to be raised tomorrow so I thought I’d post the following YouTube interview of Fr. Maximos from Holy Resurrection Monastery since it deals with many of these questions surrounding Eastern Catholic identity:

If you’d like to learn more, I’d invite you to check out these other posts:

Roman Catholics Say The Darndest Things: Part 2

A few days ago I began responding to the common reactions I hear when a Roman-Rite Catholic visits an Eastern-Rite parish for the first time. Last time I covered numbers 1-10 and today I’m going to finish the list with numbers 11-20 for “Roman Catholics Say The Dardnest Things”:

11. “What are the circles on sticks being carried around?”
These are called “rapidia” (or “flabella”). They are carried by altar servers in the Gospel procession and again when the bread and wine are brought to the altar. On them are pictures of angels. Symbolically, they remind us that our earthly liturgy touches Heaven.


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Roman Catholics Say The Darndest Things


As I mentioned a few days ago, I have issued an open invitation to my friends to come with me to a Byzantine parish on Saturday, 29th June to celebrate the Feast of St. Peter and St. Paul (if you’d like to come, just let me know).

I have already written quite a bit about the byzantine tradition and about my first visit to this parish, but I thought I’d put together a couple of short posts identifying some of the liturgical differences which may be encountered by my Roman Rite friends while on their visit at the end of the month.

I’ll finish the list in a few days, but here are numbers 1-10 for Roman Catholics Say The Darndest Things:

1. “Why does the outside of the building look so weird?!”
Eastern and western churches have different architectural styles, so expect to see domes rather than a spire.

Outside Holy Angels

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Going back east

A couple of months ago I found myself back around my old stomping ground of Washington DC. It was great to return to one of my favourite US cities, catching up with friends and re-visiting all my favourite places.

As providence would have it, I had the opportunity to hear Deacon Sabatino Carnazzo speak at the Catholic Information Center (CIC).  Deacon Sabatino is founder of the Institute of Catholic Culture, a Virginia-based organization about which I have previously written.

Since writing that earlier blog post, I visited Our Lady of Guadalupe Seminary in Nebraska and did a double-take when I saw an office with his name on it! Clearly this guy gets around! his brother’s name on it!

Anyway, during this “Year of Faith”, the CIC has been hosting a series of lectures on the documents of the Second Vatican Council and I just so happened to be in town for Deacon Carnazzo’s lecture on Orientalium Ecclesiarum, the Decree concerning the Eastern Rite Catholic Churches, a subject close to my heart.


No, I’m not a Roman Catholic…

Deacon Carnazzo is himself an Eastern-Rite Catholic and during his talk he explained the origin of the Eastern Churches and gave a brief introduction to life as an Eastern Catholic. In his talk he encouraged all Western Catholics to become familiar with the Eastern Church. How is this to be done? Well, if you want to get to know someone, you share a meal with them. For Catholics, this means sharing in the Eucharistic feast.

So, in the spirit of this, I have set up a Facebook event and invited my friends to come with me to celebrate the Feast of St. Peter and St. Paul at the end of the month at my local Byzantine parish. If you’re in town and you’d like to come, feel free to shoot me an email.

Glory to Jesus Christ! Glory forever!

The article Going back East first appeared on RestlessPilgrim.net

The Eastern Catholic Church: An Introduction

As the new school year begins, the Confirmation programme at Our Lady of the Rosary starts again. This Sunday will therefore be my last regular Sunday worshiping at an Eastern Rite parish :-(.

However, this Sunday is going to be extra special as my Mum will be coming with me to experience the Byzantine Divine Liturgy for the first time :-). Several other friends will also be coming for the first time. So, in case they check my blog before Sunday, here’s a little introduction to the Eastern Catholic Church:

Vatican 2 on the The Eastern Churches

As part of my continued service to the students of Franciscan University of Steubenville ;-), I have just recorded the audio for the document “Orientalium Ecclesiarum”.

This document was produced by the Second Vatican Council and concerns the Churches in the Catholic Church which follow an Eastern Rite. Given that I attend an Eastern Rite parish during the summers, it’s rather odd that I’ve never actually sat down and read this document before.

Still, better late than never I suppose…

A long time ago, when I first began this blog, I start producing a series entitled “V2 we love you!”. At the time, the JP2 Group was reading the document “Dei Verbum”. I anticipated that we would work through more of the Council’s documents. My hope was that the series of blog entries would provide a helpful accompaniment to our study.

We didn’t end up studying any more of the documents and so I never wrote the blog posts. However, a little while ago I signed up for a course on the Second Vatican Council at the Diocesan Institute which starts this October. Hopefully that’ll get me motivated and I will once again be renewing my efforts with the series.

Anyway, the text for the document is available here and the audio is available below:

Orientalium Ecclesiarum

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