Statement of the North American Orthodox/Catholic Theological Consultation on the Occasion of the Eighty-fifth Anniversary of the Promulgation of the decree Cum data fuerit

The North American Orthodox-Catholic Theological Consultation

Saint Methodios Faith and Heritage Center, Contoocook, New Hampshire
June 4, 2014

The year 2014 marks the eighty-fifth anniversary of the promulgation of the decree Cum data fuerit. In 1929, the Sacred Congregation for the Oriental [Eastern Catholic] Churches issued this document, which stated that “priests of the Greek-Ruthenian Rite who wish to go to the United States of North America [sic] and stay there must be celibates” (Article 12).  This statement led to a general prohibition of the ordination of married Eastern Catholics to the priesthood in North America. This resulted in divisions in Eastern Catholic communities and even in families.

The Second Vatican Council spoke of the importance of preserving the legitimate traditions of the Eastern Churches. In the decree, Orientalium ecclesiarum, the Council emphasized the need to preserve the “legitimate liturgical rite and … established way of life” of Eastern Catholics. The Council continued, stating that Eastern Catholics “should attain to an even greater knowledge and a more exact use of [this rite and way of life] and if in their regard they have fallen short owing to contingencies of times and persons, they should take steps to return to their ancestral traditions” (par. 6).  Furthermore, the decree Presbyterorum ordinis states, “This holy synod, while it commends ecclesiastical celibacy, in no way intends to alter that different discipline which legitimately flourishes in the Eastern Churches.  It permanently exhorts all those who have received the priesthood and marriage to persevere in their holy vocation” (sec. 16). Nevertheless, until recently, very few married Eastern Catholic men have been allowed to be ordained to the priesthood in North America.

With these things in mind, the North American Orthodox/Catholic Theological Consultation encourages the lifting of the restrictions regarding the ordination of married men to the priesthood in the Eastern Catholic Churches of North America.  This action would affirm the ancient and legitimate Eastern Christian tradition, and would assure the Orthodox that, in the event of the restoration of full communion between the two Churches, the traditions of the Orthodox Church would not be questioned. We are convinced that this action would enhance the spiritual lives of Eastern Catholics and would encourage the restoration of unity between Catholic and Orthodox Christians.


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“Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you." (Matthew 6:33 ESV)

Scripture

September 16, 2018
Seventeenth Sunday After Pentecost
Sunday After the Exaltation of the Cross
- Matins: Luke 24:36-53 (Gospel 6)
- Liturgy: Galatians 2:16-20, Mark 8:34b-9:18

Eighteenth Week After Pentecost
- Monday: Ephesians 4:25-32, Luke 3:19-22
- Tuesday: Ephesians 5:20-26, Luke 3:23-4:1
- Wednesday: Ephesians 5:25-33, Luke 4:1-15
- Thursday: Ephesians 5:33-6:9, Luke 4:16-22
- Friday: Ephesians 6:18-24, Luke 4:22-30
- Saturday: 1 Corinthians 15:39-45, Luke 4:31-36

September 23, 2018
Eighteenth Sunday After Pentecost
- Matins: John 20:1-10 (Gospel 7)
- Liturgy: 2 Corinthians 9:6-11, Luke 5:1-11

Nineteenth Week After Pentecost
- Monday: Philippians 1:1-7, Luke 4:37-44
- Tuesday: Philippians 1:8-14, Luke 5:12-16
- Wednesday: Philippians 1:12-20, Luke 5:33-39
- Thursday: Philippians 1:20-27, Luke 6:12-19
- Friday: Philippians 1:27-2:4, Luke 6:17-23
- Saturday: 1 Corinthians 15:58-16:3, Luke 5:17-26

September 30, 2018
Nineteenth Sunday After Pentecost
- Matins: John 20:11-18 (Gospel 8)
- Liturgy: 2 Corinthians 11:31-12:9, Luke 6:31-36

October 1, 2018
Feast of the Protection of the Mother of God
- Vespers: Genesis 28:10-17, Ezekiel 43:27-44:4, Proverbs 9:1-11
- Matins: Luke 1:39-49, 56
- Liturgy: Hebrews 9:1-7, Luke 10:38-42; 11:27-28

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September
1 - Liturgical New Year (7526)
4 - Labor Day (USA & Canada)
8 - The Nativity of our Most Holy Lady, the Mother of God and Ever-Virgin Mary
14 - The Universal Exaltation of the Precious and Life-Giving Cross

October
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8 - Columbus Day (USA), Thanksgiving Day (Canada)
15 - Sunday of the Fathers of the Seventh Ecumenical Council

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"They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were killed with the sword...." (Hebrews 11:37a)

Please lift up in prayer all those who are persecuted and deprived of liberty, everywhere in the world. Please especially remember the peoples of Iraq, Syria, Egypt, Niger - the whole Middle East and Africa - who are literal martyrs for Christ. Also the peoples of Ukraine. They are our brothers, for all are one in Christ.

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Exaltation of the Cross

Save Your people, O Lord, and bless Your inheritance; * grant victory to Your Church over her enemies * and protect Your commonwealth by Your Cross. (Troparion - Tone 1)

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit, now and ever, and to the ages of ages. Amen.

Willingly lifted up on the Cross, O Christ God, * bestow Your compassions upon the new commonwealth that bears Your name. * By your power grant joy to Your Church, * granting her victory over her enemies. * May she have your Cross as the weapon of peace * and the invincible ensign of victory. (Kontakion - Tone 4)

The Church celebrates the Feast of the Exaltation of the Cross on September 14th.

Random Proverb

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction. (Proverbs 1:7 ESV)

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Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner.

Wisdom from the Church Fathers

Our holy fathers have renounced all other spiritual work and concentrated wholly on this one doing, that is, on guarding the heart, convinced that, through this practice, they would easily attain every other virtue, whereas without it not a single virtue can be firmly established.

St. Symeon the New Theologian