Monday, January 17, 2005

The Eastern Schism: a postscript

I recognize that "Eastern Schism" is not an amiable expression in a time of generally amiable and solicitous ecumenical overtures emanating from Rome towards her Eastern brethren. When it comes to accounting for Church history, these brethren have their just share of complains about how legates of Rome have at time behaved towards them. Where these brethren persist, for whatever reason, in what can only be called "selective memory" of Church history, however, a frank commitment to the facts of that history bear reviewing.

When asked why he had become a Catholic, John Henry Newman is said to have remarked, perhaps with just a touch of impatience, that it is not the kind of question one can answer adequately between the soup and the fish courses. When his interlocutors persisted, as I recall, he responded by suggesting, probably no less impatiently, that the record of Church history is sufficient for any sufficiently persistent inquirer to find his own way to the truth.

That record is read only selectively where certain basic historical, ecclesiological, and theological facts are passed over, as they often are by our eastern brethren. For anyone interested in taking a full account of the facts that Rome sees as indispensable in the historical dispute concerning the Eastern Schism, here are some resources that will serve well:

A. Websites and online articles

B. Books Available online (in most cases)

C. Available offline (through direct mail order or library loan)

  • Allies, Thomas W. St. Peter, His Name and His Office. 1852; London: Catholic Truth Society, 1895. [a condensation of Passaglia's Commentarius by the most intellectually prominent among the converts Cardinal Newman assisted in bringing into the Catholic Church] .
  • Grumel, Venance. "La Lettre du pape Etienne V a l'empereur Basile Ier," RevEtByz 11 (1953), 129-155.
  • Grumel, Venance. "New Light on the Photian Schism," Unitas 5 (1953), 140-148.
  • Jaki, Stanley L. Eastern Orthodoxy's Witness to Papal Primacy. 2004. Real View Books, 1436 Devonshire Lane, Port Huron, MI: 48060.
  • Jugie, Martin. Le schisme byzantin, apercu historique et doctrinal. Paris: P. Lethielleux, 1941.
  • Jugie, Martin. Theologia dogmatica christianorum orientalium ab Ecclesia catholica dissidentium. 5 volumes. Paris: Letouzey et Ane, 1926-1935.
  • Lindsay, Colin. The Evidence for the Papacy: As Derived from the Holy Scriptures and from Primitive Antiquity. London: Longmans, Green & Co., 1870.
  • Passaglia, Carlo. Commentarius de praerogativis beati Petri apostolorum principis. Ratisbonae: Manz, 1850.
  • Rivington, Luke. The Primitive Church and the See of Peter, with an Introduction by the Cardinal Archbishop of Westminster. London: Longmans, Green, 1894.
  • Scott, Sidney Herbert. The Eastern Churches and the Papacy. London: Sheed & Ward, 1928.
  • Waterworth, James. A Commentary, by Writers of the First Five Centuries on the Place of St. Peter in the New Testament; and that of St. Peter's Successors in the Church. London: Richardson, 1871.