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St. Seraphim of Sarov??

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St. Seraphim of Sarov??

Post  Roguejim on Fri May 13, 2011 5:59 am

If you scroll down the page at the link below, you will come across this exhortation by a Benedictine Prior at a Clothing Ceremony, i.e., the giving of the monastic habit to a new brother:

"...Finally, I place you under the protection
of the venerable and God-loving Saint Seraphim of Sarov,
a monk-priest of the Russian Orthodox Church,
who was born on July 19, 1754..."

Blessed John Paul II apparently also made mention of this saint(?) in Crossing the Threshold of Hope.

So, my question is how an Orthodox monk can be a saint. One Catholic religious told me that a schismatic can never be a saint. I emailed the Prior with my question, but did not receive a satisfactory answer.


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Re: St. Seraphim of Sarov??

Post  Guest on Fri May 13, 2011 9:20 am

Actually Jim, I ran into this very questions several years ago because I am very interested in the Eastern Churches. Apparently the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith allows the celebration of the feast days of post-Schism "Orthodox" saints in the Eastern Catholic Churches. This has been going on since pre-Vatican II times. I think Pope Pius XII was the first to allow it.

This book talks about that issue:

There is also a book about Blessed Leonid Feodorov which I own that talks about this issue. I will have to find the appropriate section and to type it up.

The idea in doing this is that many times the Orthodox Churches were separated from Rome in good faith. The schism was not really solidified in many places until 200-400 years after the "official" year of the schism in 1054. In fact, Vladimir Soloviev points out that the Russian Orthodox Church never make a formal declaration of schism against Rome.

I still do not know what to think of the issue. I think perhaps it is wishful thinking on the part of those who desire unity. The idea is that if the Russians reunited to Rome and could not celebrated the feasts of their national saints that would be too much for them to handle.

The issue becomes REALLY sticky when you go to a Byzantine Catholic Church here in the States and they are celebrating the feast of "Saint" Gregory Palamas, who had heretical theology AND called the Pope an antichrist in his writings. How this man can be a saint I have no idea.

I will post more resources about this. I think there is an article in Tradition in Action on this matter.


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Re: St. Seraphim of Sarov??

Post  Guest on Fri May 13, 2011 9:34 am

Pius XII and the Russian ‘Saints’

Atila S. Guimarães


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Re: St. Seraphim of Sarov??

Post  Roguejim on Fri May 13, 2011 2:33 pm

Thanks for the article.

I wonder if the Orthodox Church would have declared that these saints shared the same exact faith as the Roman Catholic faith.

Were these saints invincibly ignorant of the heresies they held, if they in fact held any? It seems that we cannot admit for a second that these saints were in schism without denying Extra Ecclesiam Nulla Salus as well. This is a can of worms that I am not competent to sort out.

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