If you have been raised Orthodox, you may be asking: can the orthodox church join the Catholic Church? You are certainly not the first to ask this question, but some people are still unsure about the process. It involves several steps, such as learning about Orthodox doctrine and tradition. Enrollment culminates in a service of initiation known as Holy Chrismation, which is reserved for Christians baptized in Christ.
Ecumenism is a process of Christian unity. The Orthodox Church has often been critical of Catholic ecumenical efforts since the early twentieth century. The Orthodox Church has opposed participation in the World Council of Churches and the National Council of Churches of Christ in the United States. Its representatives, however, have signed a statement that lays out criteria for ecumenism.
The Protestant-led Ecumenical Movement is a collection of denominations and confessions, often embracing heresies that the Orthodox Church once combated. As a result, the Orthodox Church has been wary of Ecumenism and certain monastic communities have battled the hierarchy over it. Orthodox Church delegates urged the catholic church to join the Ecumenical Movement, but this movement resisted them.
The Ecumenical Movement aims to unite all Christians, but it may be at a cost to many. Many converts have been despised by their families for abandoning their mother churches, and have had to rebuild their lives. Their emotional connections to their own Church have been severed. This betrayal is difficult to bear, and can even cause physical illness.
Infallibility of the pope
Infallibility of the pope is a personal charisma that a pontiff enjoys when teaching ex cathedra. Unlike other teaching authority, the pope does not have to seek the ratification of the Church to issue his teachings. His ex cathedra teachings are considered infallible, as are his decisions concerning the sacraments. The pope also enjoys infallibility when he speaks to the people in his capacity as the pastor of all believers and the spiritual head of the Church universal.
While it may be true that popes have made mistakes over the centuries, opponents of infallibility have been unable to prove that any papal decision was wrong. Toner’s article demolished the notion of papal infallibility, but he also emphasized that the opposition to the definition was not spontaneous, but rather carefully orchestrated. A definition of infallibility is necessary to preserve the dignity and integrity of the pope and the Catholic Church.