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Re: Lutheran to Orthodox

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Don
July 02, 2004 06:05AM
I am a catechumen in the Orthodox Church, and like Patrick am involved with the Antiochian Archdiocese, though I do attend liturgies of other jurisdictions and have had wonderful talks with a Greek Archdiocese priest while I was an inquirer. I was raised in the Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod since childhood, baptized, confirmed, served as an acolyte, attended Lutheran highschool and later Lutheran college in the pre-seminary program, in short - was thoroughly immersed in the life of the Lutheran church. I was raised in a conservative and liturgical congregation rather than in some of the more liberal ones that others have experienced, but particuarly in college I did see that side of contemporary Lutheranism as well. Through my studies in college I began to read the Lutheran Confessions and became convinced that Lutheranism was a catholic reform movement rather than a protestant schism; the Confessions preserve the liturgy, ceremony, and tradition of the western church, ommitting "only [those abuses] which have crept into the Church without rightful authority" (AC XXI). I had always been interested in the beliefs of other churches and began to study Catholicism and Orthodoxy, both of which appeared to the tradition of the church, which I knew little about. I began to study church history and read the works of the bishops, martyrs, and theologians of the early church, which both confirmed my opinion of the necessity of holding a catholic faith, but at the same time raised doubts as to the degree to which the Lutheran church accomplished this. I found many areas in which it did, but many which it did not, including ecclesiology, soteriology, and the source of authority for doctrine and practice; I increasingly began to sympathize with Orthodoxy and criticize the development of the western church, realizing that Lutheranism was a schism from a schism - the seperated Roman patriarchate. The traditional Lutheran insistence on "sola fide" which was often taught as a passive intellectual acceptance of dogmatic propositions, and "sola scriptura" which taught the primacy of the individual in interpreting Holy Scripture against the consensus of the church "at all times and everywhere" increasingly seemed shallow and unsatifsying - in the mean time, my life as a Christian suffered from the lack of regular spiritual discipline and oversight. I eventually came to realize that I had two choiced: I could stay and "fight" for Orthodoxy within the Lutheran Church, or I could take a leap of faith into Orthodoxy itself. The former option has been tried in the past and failed by many faithful men and women, and I knew that even if I were to succeed in a limited way, I would still suffer an organic seperation from Orthodoxy, no matter what I held privately. 5 weeks ago I took that final step, and abandoning my former plans for seminary, sought entry into the Orthodox Church as a catechumen.
Subject Author Posted

Lutheran to Orthodox

Jesse June 25, 2004 03:07AM

Re: Lutheran to Orthodox

David June 30, 2004 02:47AM

Re: Lutheran to Orthodox

James July 01, 2004 05:05PM

Re: Lutheran to Orthodox

James July 02, 2004 02:22PM

Re: Lutheran to Orthodox

Patrick July 02, 2004 01:36AM

Re: Lutheran to Orthodox

Patrick July 02, 2004 01:36AM

Re: Lutheran to Orthodox

Don July 02, 2004 06:05AM