That is correct. It boils down to open vs closed, church communion systems. And it’s not just the Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, and certain Lutheran churches. Some Baptist and other Protestant denominations, feel that way also. And it should be noted, that since I am an EO “prospect”…I side with closed communion, the “offical” stance.
Gentlemen, I was responding to Pilgrim’s comment, and the concern that closing a communion is tantamount to consider those ‘outside’ as not on the same Christian footing as those ‘inside’. My unfortunate experience has been that, to get ‘inside’, one must sign a basically creedal statement that includes as requirements things that not all Christian people believe in, nor imo are things that anyone MUST believe in order to be worthy of the Lord’s supper.
That is my reasoning and my belief at this time. I myself would not be welcomed as a member of any Reformed church that I am aware of. There is no room for personal conscience.
I do understand the ‘reasoning’ behind the closed communion; but surely there are other things to consider other than overly specific creedal requirements?
I really don’t think every Christian denomination, requires you to sign a document. In fact, I don’t know any that do. I think it’s more a matter, of verbally being in accordance - with the church’s or denomination’s stated beliefs. But it’s not just churches, mind you. It extends to things like lodges (i.e. Elk’s Club, Freemasons, etc.), Motorcycle Clubs (i.e. Christian motorcycle clubs, 1% clubs like Hell’s Angels or Outlaws, military clubs like Iron Crosses, etc.), etc. Perhaps when the zombies from Z-Hell (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9) arrive, I can “hang out” with them. But they will have a stated belief system, in order to become a “member”. Especially if they have a motorcycle club.
I should mention that I feel Eastern Orthodoxy, has quite a fit of room - for “private, theological opinions”. I asked the priest about Inclusivism (1, 2, 3, 4) and Hopeful universalism (1, 2, 3, 4, 5), early in my going there. He had no issue, with either view. However, If I unleased the “full gambet”, of my private theological opinions…anywhere from using Native American plant Medicine (1; 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10), as tools for psychotherapy, health and healing…to the zombies from Z-Hell (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9)…as the most probable, end-times tribulation scenerio…they will probably have heart attacks.
Now here’s an interesting article to ponder:
As I ponder joining this biker gang, down the road. Or at least, hanging out with them.
Actually though, they do. My only experience has been with Reformed churches in this matter, but at least in those particular congregations, as they doubled down on ‘reformed’ theology, asked that a statement of faith, provided by the church, be signed - or communion was blocked.
This was for those who wanted to become ‘members’. That’s worth thinking about, since people who are ‘members’ of Christ’s body could be banned from communion. Ah well.
Further, to become deacon or otherwise hold positions of service, the embracing of creedal statements was even more pronounced.
Just my experience.
No doubt some Reformed churches on the “right” side of a wide spectrum required that in the past. Today, few are so demanding.
Imo, that is a reasonable requirement if one wants to be an officer of the church. I have already advised my pastor that I could never be an elder again in a Reformed church since I would be unable to agree that “all the articles and points of doctrine” in the Confessions (including the Canons of Dort) “do fully agree with the Word of God”. I offered a compromise: “insofar as they agree with the Word of God”, but that was not acceptable.
Well, not to be a smart arse, but read the book before you call him crazy. Frank was there in the thick of it as his father dealt with Dobson and Roberts and Reagan… Hell C Everett Coop was a friend of Francis…
Well I didn’t call him crazy - I said someone told me he was atheist or some crazy thing now, but I don’t know anything other than that. Doubt I’ll read the book since I’ve got some lined up already and I’m old…but I’ll bet it is interesting.
Francis was known as one of the greats that formed the ‘religious right’. Francis started l’abri in Switzerland, a very focal community in his era. Very influential and a bit controversial. Edith (Francis’s wife) also wrote a stellar book called ‘The Tapestry’ very good book. But as you read the history of this family and especially Franks accounts you see that everyone has their own opinion of what is and what happened. As a casual observer of modern evangelical Christianity’s history, it is must read stuff. But I digress. Just an opinion.
Frank Schaeffer (b. 1952) is a well-known and much sought-after speaker. He lectures on the Orthodox Faith, Christianity and the arts, and his conversion to the Orthodox Faith.
…Schaeffer is a controversial figure among many Orthodox Christians because of statements he’s made, including those where he’s said that he does not believe in God (although he indicates that he still receives the Eucharist at his parish). Alternately, he has also claimed, as in the title of his book published in 2014 that he is an “atheist who believes in God”. He also has written that "In my lifetime I can’t think of a more insidious act done in the name of the Christian God than the Republican Party’s nefarious campaign to teach Americans that God opposes abortion." Furthermore, he has also written that the Russian Orthodox Church is “homophobic”.
“Nefarious”? 60,000,000 and counting would beg to differ…
I attended his dad’s and C. Everett Koop’s seminar in San Francisco in 1979 or 1980. The seminar was on the subject of abortion. To understand now that Jr. has fallen from that clear and moral call that his dad put out challenging the abortion culture, is a real shock.
No, I haven’t. So I took at trip to Amazon’s website:
And it has gotten 4 out of 5 stars, from 269 folks and counting. So it’s definitely worth looking at. I’ll see if the local public library, adult reference librarian…has a copy or can obtain one, down the road.