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The Daltaí Boards » Archive: 1999-2004 » 2004 (October-December) » Archive through October 13, 2004 » Irish Orthodoxy / Celtic Church « Previous Next »

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Jonas
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Username: Jonas

Post Number: 489
Registered: 08-2004


Posted on Tuesday, October 12, 2004 - 09:49 am:   Edit Post Print Post

A chairde!

I know this topic isn't primarily about Irish but I was wondering if you know anything about the Celtic Church. I'm not talking about the modern, new-age influenced variety but about the historical church. According to what I've heard, this church (which of course was the one founded by Naomh Pádraig) was in many ways similar to the Byzantine Church and maintained contacts with it. However, eventually (10th century?) the Catholic Church deemed it heretical.

Since the conctacts between the Byzantine Church and the Celtic Church has started to become a topic in the discussion of the history of the Nordic countries it would be interesting to know a bit more.

Slán go fóill,
Jonas

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Aonghus
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Username: Aonghus

Post Number: 281
Registered: 08-2004
Posted on Tuesday, October 12, 2004 - 12:25 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

It's a little more complicated.

The Church in Ireland, as founded by St Patrick, was organised around monasteries. The monastic idea was imported from the East, particularly Syria/Egypt etc. So it is probable that there were contacts. Bishops were subordinate to abbots.

The continental system of dioceses led by bishops was inherited from the organisation of the Roman Empire, of which Irealnd of course was never a part. There were no towns to speak of in Ireland until the Vikings came; so monasteries were the cebtres of religion.


The arguments with Rome started when Irish monks moved into the English Kingdoms from the North (from Scotland) and Romanised Missionaries from the South. The main point of Controversy was about the correct date to celebrate Easter. At some point Rome changed the method of calculating Easter; the Irish Church kept with the old ways.

The two clashed in England. Try a google for "Synod of Whitby" (now, there is a good Norse Name!) for more detail.

I think it is true to say that the Irish church always had contacts with both the Eastern and Western Churches. But I'm quite confident that the Irish Church always recognised the supremacy of Rome: i.e. it was always Roman Catholic. St Patrick was sent by the Pope of his time to mission to the Irish. (But of course, I'm a Roman Catholic, and therefore biased!)

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Ducat (Unregistered Guest)
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Posted From: 82.69.43.128
Posted on Tuesday, October 12, 2004 - 01:12 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

Yes, I agree. The Celtic Church always considered itself subject to Papal authority. It differed only in the date of Easter (Paschal controversy) and in an emphasis on ascetic monastic life, as well as incorporating strains of pre-Christian nature worship, ar feadh m'eolais.

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Jonas
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Username: Jonas

Post Number: 490
Registered: 08-2004


Posted on Tuesday, October 12, 2004 - 01:26 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

Go raibh míle maith agaibh. Oviously the church would have recognised Papal authority since it existed before the schism that led to a Catholic and an Orthodox church. From what I've heard, the differences weren't that small - or rather, the similarities with what later became orthodoxy were somewhat bigger. I assume many Orthodox would be prepared to make as much as possible out of the differences while Catholics might want to downplay them. My own interest lies in the historical aspects, not in the theological ones apart from the fact that they of course are a part of the history.

As I said, I myself know very little of this. My informant should know more, he has a PhD in history, one brother who is a bishop and one who is an archbishop :-)

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Aonghus
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Username: Aonghus

Post Number: 284
Registered: 08-2004
Posted on Wednesday, October 13, 2004 - 04:16 am:   Edit Post Print Post

Well. I'm only an amateur in this subject, too.

There is a lot of material on the web on the Synod of Whitby, which is where the issues were resolved (in favour of Rome) for the Kingdom of Northumbria.

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Ó_diocháin
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Username: Ó_diocháin

Post Number: 29
Registered: 09-2004
Posted on Wednesday, October 13, 2004 - 05:22 am:   Edit Post Print Post

Jonas, a chara,
A few other important differences in the Celtic Church appear to have been the absence of Archbishops (until the mid 12th century), the role of bishop being more that of a "parish priest" - if you'll forgive the anachronistic terminology - the lack of a celibacy rule for ordained priests (for almost four centuries after this had become the norm elsewhere in the Western Church), a greater concentration on scriptural study (through the monastic tradition) than found elsewhere and distinct liturgical forms, incorporating more Old Testament elements than elsewhere in the Western Church (perhaps deriving from the scriptural study?).
I've e-mailed a friend for some references on this for you - in particular the liturgical forms for which he knows of some sources in Old Irish - and would hope to post something in the next couple of days when he gets back to me.
Slán beo!
Chris

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Aonghus
Member
Username: Aonghus

Post Number: 285
Registered: 08-2004
Posted on Wednesday, October 13, 2004 - 06:54 am:   Edit Post Print Post

St Malachy is an important figure in the 12 century reform towards Rome of the Church in Ireland. However, the need for reform was due to the disruption caused by the Norse invasions more than anything else!

http://www.google.com/search?hl=ga&q=malachy+armagh

See also:
http://www.from-ireland.net/lewis/arm/armarchdio.htm

(Message edited by aonghus on October 13, 2004)

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Jonas
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Username: Jonas

Post Number: 491
Registered: 08-2004


Posted on Wednesday, October 13, 2004 - 04:30 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

Chris, a chara! Thanks for your reply and thanks for contacting your friend! Bheadh sé ana-shuimiúil é sin a léamh.
Aonghus, go raibh maith agat aríst



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