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Featured Who is your favorite Pope

Discussion in 'Christian History' started by Not David, Jun 21, 2019.

  1. Not David

    Not David Der Ewige Katechumene

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    Pope Shenouda III is really popular among Coptics, right?
     
  2. Not David

    Not David Der Ewige Katechumene

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    I try my best
     
  3. dzheremi

    dzheremi Coptic Orthodox non-Egyptian

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    Yes. For the majority of Coptic Orthodox people under 41 years of age (this includes me), he is the only Pope they have ever really known. HH Pope Tawadros II of course still counts, but again, he's kinda new to be saying anything about in a historical context.
     
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  4. prodromos

    prodromos Senior Veteran Supporter

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    Except that he was an Apostle, not a bishop.
     
  5. Yennora

    Yennora Buy the truth and sell it not. Pro 23:23

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    St. Cyril VI and St. Shenouda III are my favourite two. (sorry for choosing 2 :p)
    As a former Coptic Orthodox, I was fascinated with St. Shenouda III in the tremendous amount of wisdom he always showed in his words and actions and the kindness he showed towards others. He was a brilliant example to follow. Sadly I wasn't yet born when St. Cyril VI was there but I knew from my parents/others/my researches that he was a really powerful saint, in fact, one of the most notable popes in the Coptic history. Both of them were powerful enough to oppose corrupt politicians who persecuted Christians like Saddat, Gamal Abdel Nasser and Husni Mubarak. Sadly the current pope doesn't do much in terms of Christian rights and I left the Orthodox faith anyway as I'm non-denominational now so I don't follow any particular popes. My only pope is Christ <3
     
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  6. Peter J Barban

    Peter J Barban Well-Known Member

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    As a Protestant, my favorite pope is ME! ;)
     
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  7. (° ͡ ͜ ͡ʖ ͡ °) (ᵔᴥᵔʋ)

    (° ͡ ͜ ͡ʖ ͡ °) (ᵔᴥᵔʋ) Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Is Peter the Apostle considered a Pope? If so, I would pick him.
     
  8. prodromos

    prodromos Senior Veteran Supporter

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    The Apostles are the prototype of the bishops and they established other men as bishops but their ministry was unique
     
  9. Monk Brendan

    Monk Brendan Well-Known Member Supporter

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    The late Pope Schenuda of Alexandria.
    Pope ST. Leo 1 with his tome that accurately defined the relation of Christ's human and divine natures.
     
  10. Quid est Veritas?

    Quid est Veritas? In Memoriam to CS Lewis

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    Gregory VII.

    Good old Hildebrand, he really was a man of convictions. He thoroughly carried out the Cluniac reforms, and managed to bring the Church into line. The Church had become infected with secular concerns, and the only way to carry out Cluny's programme of moral regeneration was to give them some independance from it. As such, his standing up to the most powerful man of his time, the Emperor Henry IV, was completely necessary. That he then tried, repeatedly, to reconcile and establish precedent, shows a shrewd man - like at Canossa. While he fought for Papal supremacy in feudal matters, really that was a necessary precondition in Europe of his time, for a Church that was bought and sold for its fiefs to be turned back to its God. He was also a peacekeeper, as his attempts at brokering an arrangement between the Italian Normans and the rest show, to his own detriment.

    His epitaph is also poignant: I loved Justice and hated Iniquity, so I die in exile.
    If he had just toed the line, he would have had a charmed life. Instead, he fought for what he believed in, for a good Christian society headed by the Church, and ended up having to excommunicate the most powerful man in Europe thrice, be driven from Rome multiple times, and ended up dying away from it. A great man, in my opinion.
     
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  11. Ayenew

    Ayenew New Member

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    dzheremi, is it also not atleast "too early" to say "his missteps"? Well, I'm saying this because he is my favourite recent pope.
     
  12. Al Masihi

    Al Masihi Well-Known Member Supporter

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    As Pope of Rome, Pope Gregory the Great, as Pope of Alexandria, Athanasius the hammer of heretics.
     
  13. chevyontheriver

    chevyontheriver Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Yes. Apostle and pope.
     
  14. nonaeroterraqueous

    nonaeroterraqueous Nonexistent Member

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    Gustav Pope. The man was a talented painter.

    [​IMG]
     
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  15. dzheremi

    dzheremi Coptic Orthodox non-Egyptian

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    Ayenew, missteps in theology are different than other kinds of things, no? It can be argued whether or not he handled personally any particular matter in the right way, or if it is a good thing or not to have so many general bishops, or anything like that. But if you read, for instance, of his conflict with Fr. Matthew the Poor over the issue of Theosis, it is clear that Fr. Matthew understood it, whereas HH did not. Or, rather, what HH was responding to under the banner of 'Theosis' was not how that term is actually defined. That is why I wrote that either HH did not understand properly, or he was just not able to articulate his objections properly. I would prefer to believe as his defenders in this area have pointed out (and I have been one of those, in other contexts than this thread), that HH was responding to bad Arabic translations of the concept that made it sound like we "eat" the divinity (as in, it is consumed by us in the Eucharist the same way that regular food is), but that doesn't make the critique any more correct with regard to Fr. Matthew's understanding (which was not the same as those bad translations). Thanks be to God, both men were reconciled to one another before Fr. Matthew's departure.

    There are proper OO objections to the EO understanding of Theosis (though this would not be the place to get into them, and they are more technical, in the sense that the priest in question feels that a different, related term fits our theology better, and hence we ought to not "piggy-back" on EO theological terms we may not even understand, lest we give our own people the wrong idea of what we believe), but neither EO nor OO believe that we "eat" (consume) the divinity, so any critique that is based on that is out of line with what any church actually affirms.

    HH Pope Shenouda III is probably my favorite recent Pope, too (again, I'm too young to have known any other). I do not think it is necessary or even particularly wise to affirm absolutely everything any given leader may have written or said, as though he is immune from making mistakes or not completely understanding everything. Since we do not believe that our Pope is infallible, it shouldn't be impossible to say "Yes, I think he erred in this particular instance", and yet still hold him up as a good model, or a good teacher in other aspects, a saint, etc. Consider how the very same people who have alleged that he was heretical for "rejecting Theosis" (even though, again, what HH was rejecting was not Theosis, whether he himself understood that or not) have also recently published new editions of some of his writings (Eastern Orthodox publisher St. Vladimir's Seminary Press republished his work The Life of Repentance and Purity in 2016).

    I believe, of course, that HH was and is fully Orthodox, but we shouldn't kid ourselves into thinking that he was an academic theologian. He wrote much, but his specialties were definitely more in poetry and ascetical writings and the everyday application of the faith than in some kind of exhaustive, systematic theology. We need both approaches (and we certainly have both in our Church), but when I want something more comprehensive I will turn to our more scholarly writers like Fr. Shenouda Maher Ishak, Fr. Tadros Y. Malaty (especially his "______ in the Orthodox Concept" series; his writings vary greatly in their level, as he has also written introductory works and compiled commentaries from the fathers), Fr. Athanasius Iskander, Aziz S. Atiya, Maged S.A. Mikhail, etc. People like HH Pope Shenouda III, Fr. Matta El Miskeen, and others are more like the ancient fathers like Mor Philoxenos of Mabbug or similar: practical theologians, who came from the desert and were best suited to it and understood in that context. After reading more of HH's biography in various places, watching old interviews with him, and reading his poetry, part of me thinks that he probably never really wanted to come back from exile in the desert, but knew he had to in order to shepherd the Church. That in itself makes him commendable to me. May God accept his intercessions for us, his children.
     
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  16. Lords Man

    Lords Man Active Member

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    Mine is the one that never was. Many years ago, as the Cardinals met in conclave to elect a new Pope, one name that was suggested was Bishop Sicola. He was from Italy I think. But he was not even given serious consideration all because people did not want to have a Pope Sicola. (I think they preferred Coke) ^_^
     
  17. chevyontheriver

    chevyontheriver Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Is this now degenerating into a humor thread?
     
  18. Lords Man

    Lords Man Active Member

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    Is good humor degenerate??
     
  19. chevyontheriver

    chevyontheriver Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Who made you pope to decide what is good humor?
     
  20. Lords Man

    Lords Man Active Member

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    That's funny!!!
     
  21. dms1972

    dms1972 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I honestly don't know about many except the ones in my own lifetime - but as a protestant and even though I don't agree with the idea of a papacy, I had admiration for Pope John Paul II.
     
  22. rockytopva

    rockytopva Love to pray! :) Supporter

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    Pope Benedict

    My mothers side is from Germany and our community is made up of former coal miners. Pictured below is one of the saints of our church by the name of Dallas. This man would shout in church, shout as he would work his farm, and shout at home. Everywhere he went he would make the place ring with his glad praise. When I was a young fellow he would pray behind me at the altar with tears streaming down his cheek and onto my shoulders. He would also run the aisles as the Holy Spirit would move in him.

    Dallas favors Pope Benedict a whole lot. I have often thought that it would be something if Pope Benedict were Pentecostal... I can hear him shouting now!

    [​IMG]
     
  23. DamianWarS

    DamianWarS Follower of Isa Al Masih Supporter

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    Pope means "father" but it has turned into a very specific title that etymologically speaking can not be supported from its origins. Jesus tells us we should only call one Father and although this is played down and often swept under the rug there is a sense or irony with this office that has cause such strife in the church, from the east/west schism to the reformation all from someone who is not just innocuously called "father", but called "the Father". So who is my favourite "the Father"? There is no other but my Father in Heaven and all glory goes to him and him alone.
     
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  24. dzheremi

    dzheremi Coptic Orthodox non-Egyptian

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    That is demonstrably false.

    τοῦτον ἐγὼ τὸν κανόνα καὶ τὸν τύπον παρὰ τοῦ μακαρίου πάπα ἡμῶν Ἡρακλᾶ παρέλαβον.[I received this rule and ordinance from our blessed Pope, Heraclas.]

    -- Letter of Bishop Dionysius of Rome (d. 268) to Philemon, as recorded in Eusebius' Church History, 4th century

    This is the first recorded usage of the term "Pope" to be applied to a Christian bishop. The bishop of the Church of Alexandria (no matter which one you mean) has carried the title ever since. Rome did not adopt it to refer to its own bishops until several centuries later, in the wake of Chalcedon.
     
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  25. Ignatius the Kiwi

    Ignatius the Kiwi Newbie

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    If Lutherans are not from the Roman Church then you in effect have no history. Your Church arose in the 15th century out of the mind of a single man called Martin Luther, before whom the Church was governed and guided by Anti-Christ men called Popes from at least the fifth century (by your reckoning). This almost seems like a restorationist position.

    This doesn't absolve you from reckoning why your theology exists in terms that respond to western theological categories and problems instead of being wholly unique and as you say 'from Christ.' The Lutheran spiritual heritage owes much to the work of Catholics after the Schism in terms of laying the groundwork for which a Luther could arise.
     
  26. Pavel Mosko

    Pavel Mosko Arch-Dude of the Apostolic Supporter

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    On the Roman side I pick Leo the Great for standing up to Attila the Hun.
    https://www.wordonfire.org/resources/blog/the-pope-who-rode-out-to-confront-attila-the-hun/


    On the Coptic side I pick Kyrillos the 6th.

    A very interesting figure.

    He was a mix of
    1) Saint Francis of Assissi
    2) A Russian Starets spiritual father
    3) a new testament area miracle worker and prophet, but lived in the modern age.

    Cyril VI (Atta) of Alexandria - OrthodoxWiki


    PopeCyril14.jpg
     
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  27. dzheremi

    dzheremi Coptic Orthodox non-Egyptian

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    The idea of the "position" is a slippery thing.

    Pope Gregory I of Rome (590-604) was famous for saying in one of his letters to his Alexandrian Chalcedonian counterpart that the See of St. Peter is at three places the see of one (reflecting the pre-modern ecclesiological position common to the Chalcedonians that all three are "Petrine" sees), and of course the much-vaunted "Chair of Peter" used to refer to an actual chair (and while a chair still exists by that name to this day, it is not the same as the ones earlier feasts were organized in recognition of). Much of the RCC's modern ecclesiology can be argued for by analogy to things that do in fact reach deep back into history, but must be extended in this or that way far beyond what any other historic Church or communion recognizes or ever recognized. Hence, the OO and EO churches of Alexandria both call their respective bishops "Pope", but neither have this idea of it as some kind of 'office' or position separate from that of a bishop/patriarch. I can't speak about the EO at this level, but I know that for us this is even reflected in the way that we address our Pope, because a bishop is called "Sayedna" in Arabic ("Our Master", cf. Slavic "Vladyka"), while the Pope is called "Sayedna El Baba", to emphasize that when it comes right down to it, the Pope is a bishop, not some other 'office' or 'position' higher than that of a bishop. Yes, he has certain rights and responsibilities that are unique to him by virtue of his position as the most senior bishop in the Church (i.e., chairing the Holy Synod), but even those are tied to constraints that prevent him from operating as though he carries ultimate authority within himself by virtue of his position (i.e., the same Holy Synod that he chairs can forcibly censure and/or depose him, as last happened to Pope Yusab II in the 1950s).

    So it seems strange that someone (or a lot of someones, if our LCMS friend is correct) would argue that "the papacy is evil" and all this while at the same time apparently doing so within a framework that lends legitimacy to that same ecclesiological outlook that they appear to be rebelling against. I know it seems like nitpicking, but frankly, since the Papacy existed at Alexandria for several centuries before the bishop of Rome was anything other than that to anyone outside of the West, reading Protestant objections that clearly revolve around Rome's own theological orbit rather than the ecclesiology of the whole (...catholic? :sorry:) Church outside of Rome in particular (and a really quite late version of Rome, at that; recall the earlier Gregory I) is kinda proving our friend Ignatius right about the whole "Lutherans having no history if they didn't descend from Rome" thing.
     
  28. ItIsFinished!

    ItIsFinished! Jesus Christ is our only hope.

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    He definitely wasn't #3 on your list.
     
  29. dzheremi

    dzheremi Coptic Orthodox non-Egyptian

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    This is not for you or anyone to judge in any way. Recall the OP's call that we be friendly to one another, and not judge others' picks.
     
  30. dzheremi

    dzheremi Coptic Orthodox non-Egyptian

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    Back to topic...I hope this will help so that the thread will not be closed!

    He did not immediately come to mind in my first post, but I feel like we should probably all meditate on how awesome HH Pope Peter I of Alexandria (the Seal of the Martyrs; we call him that because he was the last patriarch to be martyred during the Diocletian persecutions, in 311 AD) is. According to the History of the Patriarchs of Alexandria by HG Serverus El Ashmunein (Severus Ibn Al Muqaffa'):

    • HH refused Arius absolution and declared him to be a heretic and excommunicated him shortly before his own martyrdom. (Now that's how you go out!)
    • He conspired with the soldiers who guarded his jail cell to smuggle him out so that he could be martyred, saving the lives of many of the people who had gathered outside of his cell to offer themselves to be martyred instead
    • After praying before the relics of our father the evangelist and martyr St. Mark (because HH was to be martyred in the same place as the evangelist was), HH said His final and greatest prayer while looking up to heaven: "O Son of God, Jesus Christ, Word of the Father, I pray and beseech thee to make to cease from us this persecution which is upon thy people, and to grant that the shedding of the blood of this thy servant may put an end to the oppression of thy reasonable flock."
    • After his martyrdom, his body was guarded by a few of the believers, and eventually once the people who had been gathered at his cell saw it and were able to weep over it, they wrapped it in a leather mat on which he used to sleep, and took it to the church and sat it upon the bishop's throne for the celebration of the liturgy. After this time, they buried HH with the fathers of the church.

    You have to be very strong in faith to lead the soldiers who would eventually behead you to the place where they would do so! And all so that the people would be safe. That is a leader!

    (Also I was going to say "Why were so many already-martyred/passed leaders sat on their thrones after death in the old days?!" Then I remembered that we still do that...they're just usually not decapitated first these days. :eek:)
     
  31. dzheremi

    dzheremi Coptic Orthodox non-Egyptian

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    From the short entry on the papacy of HH St. Julian (يوليانوس Yulianos), we learn a few interesting details:

    There was a man who was a wise priest, and had studied the books of God, and his name was Julian; and he walked in the path of chastity and religion and tranquility. So a body of bishops of the synod assembled, together with the orthodox laity, in the city of Alexandria, and searched among the whole people, but could find none like this priest. So they laid their hands upon him, and appointed him patriarch. He composed homilies and sermons on the saints; and he continued in the see ten years. After this patriarch, the bishop of Alexandria did not remain always in that city, but issued thence secretly, and ordained priests in every place, as Saint Mark, the evangelist, had done. Julian went to his rest on the 8th. of Barmahat, or on the 12th. of Babah, as some say, in the fifth year of the reign of Severus the prince.
    +++

    HH St. Julian was only the eleventh Pope of Alexandria (c. 180-189), so there are some details here that are probably indicative of a kind of 'pre-standardization' way of doing things, with the laity involved in the search for a Patriarch! Granted, there is something to be said for the fact that priests and others are raised up from among the people (it's not like anyone's born a priest, bishop, etc.), but the entry makes it sound like the synod told the people to go out and try to find someone better than HH St. Julian, and then everyone just decided "Nope; he's the best there is." :) And it is also interesting here to read that the it was this early on (post 189) that the Patriarch did not necessarily stay in Alexandria...or perhaps only especially interesting for me, because much seems to be made by some people of the move of the Patriarchate to Cairo many centuries later (without ever abandoning Alexandria; now we simply have two places which comprise the Patriarchate, though the one at Alexandria is undoubtedly much older, obviously), but this shows us that it is not without precedent, as the Patriarch himself apparently had to leave the city quite early on...long before the Muslims, long before Chalcedon, long before all this other stuff that would create the present-day situation.

    Maybe I'm a nerd, but I love learning these little historical details that fill in the picture of how we got to where we are. And also to see HH St. Julian following the model of our evangelist St. Mark, of course. This is how Egypt was Christianized by the fourth century or so. (Though the closure of the pagan temples by the order of the Emperor was issued in the 380s, it was very inconsistently enforced on the district/nome level, and actually the last temple -- to Isis at Philae -- wasn't even officially closed until the time of Emperor Justinian I in the sixth century, but by that time the small number of remaining pagans no longer went there, but worshiped in their homes; we can tell this by some laws that were passed after the closing of the temples that levied penalties against any Christians who bothered pagans in their homes.)

    Edit: Hahahaha. So I guess there was some autocorrecting going on for "Nome", which is the word for what was essentially a district in Roman Egypt. Not Gnome. Roman Egypt was not composed of gnomes. *shudder*
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2019
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  32. PaulCyp1

    PaulCyp1 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Peter
     
  33. chevyontheriver

    chevyontheriver Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I keep forgetting that. Then reality hits, as it regularly does. I have temporarily re-learned my lesson.
     
    Last edited: Jun 22, 2019
  34. Gracia Singh

    Gracia Singh Newbie Supporter

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    Me, too.

    Pope Pius the XII is one Pope I would like to learn more about. In spite of recent books seeking to smear him as, essentially, a Nazi, I suspect that there is more to it, and that he was / is actually quite holy.
     
  35. dzheremi

    dzheremi Coptic Orthodox non-Egyptian

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    @Gracia Singh and @Michie (if she's willing to come back!): Do you guys have something equivalent to Eastern Christian Synaxarium/Synaxarion -- collections of commemorations of saints of the given day and other events which are celebrated on your calendar (e.g., the opening of churches, various miracles, the translation of relics, etc.)? I know there are historical Roman martyrologies, which are probably the closest thing to the synaxaria, but I can't tell if they're merely collections of martyrs' commemorations, or if they span a wider breadth of Roman Church history. Here is an older (1916) but still modern Roman Martyrology, courtesy of the Internet Archive. From what I can see, it is quite literally what it says: A collection of martyrs' biographies, and only that (whereas the Coptic synaxarium deals not only with martyrs, but with the establishment of churches and monasteries, the translation of relics, and other things; I don't know how this compares to Byzantine EO/EC synaxaria, since I've never seen any).

    I am thinking that with the large number of early Roman Popes who were martyred, such a resource would be good for you, and any other Catholic who might not know very many historical Popes. I must admit I didn't really peruse the linked Roman Martyrology closely (we commemorate several of the Popes of Rome already in our own tradition, and predictably I just didn't recognize most of the names I saw in my short view of the Roman Martyrology, either because they're 'too late' for my communion, or only known in the West or among the Chalcedonians more broadly, etc.), but I figure at least some of the historical Popes who were martyred must be in there somewhere! And if not there, then certainly in some other historical Catholic documents. It is always good to know the history of your Church, of course, but I know from having been RC myself before coming to Orthodoxy that there is a vast difference in approaches to historical topics that it seems like, from this side of the Nile anyway, puts some barriers in the way of Catholics and others who want to learn this history. (That's not meant to be a value judgment about your church, just an observation from having put "Roman book of martyrs" into Google before I could remember the word "Martyrology" and getting almost nothing but results about Foxe's Book of Martyrs, which is a Protestant martyrology that is heavily biased against the RCC, for obvious reasons.)

    In the Coptic Orthodox Church, we read the synaxarium entry of the day aloud in full as part of every liturgy, so it's impossible to escape the history of the Church! :D But I've been told before here on CF that this practice is a distinctly 'OO' thing, and I think that's right, as I don't remember hearing the martyrology or synaxarium read aloud in any Catholic service I went to, either Roman (Latin) or Eastern (Ruthenian, as it happened in my case).

    At any rate, I hope the linked martyrology can be the start of greater appreciation of your awesome ecclesiatical history, not in lieu of praising those leaders whom you've already praised (of course), but as a matter of spiritual and historical enrichment.
     
  36. rturner76

    rturner76 Senior Veteran Supporter

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    For me it id Pope Frances. I concede that I do not know much about the Popes of The Church so I am biased. He is a Jesuit and I respect that order. I'm sure there have been others but Frances rooted his ministry in the care of the poor. There can be no greater calling than to alleviate suffering. I also think it is time that South America be honored for carrying the Catholic torch for the rest of the world. The faith is crumbling all over the Northern hemisphere. Protestantism is growing down there but The Church is still leading. The charismatics and Adventists offer an exiting service.
     
  37. Tim Downs

    Tim Downs Member

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    Well since I am anti-Catholic I guess I’m not offended by your statement.
     
  38. Not David

    Not David Der Ewige Katechumene

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    Thanks for sharing Michie!
     
  39. Not David

    Not David Der Ewige Katechumene

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    There was a Lutheran who was friendly and who like Pope Gregory the Great. So why shouldn't I believe you are an extremist?
     
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