How to Resolve the Filioque Controversy between Catholics and Orthodox?

In my book 𝙏𝙝𝙚 𝙁𝙞𝙡𝙞𝙤𝙦𝙪𝙚, I’ve described that I agree with Metropolitan Kallistos Ware on how to look past the structural incompatibilities of Greek and Latin Trinitarianism. I figured I would quote the section where I think he lands right next to me. Though, I should mention that I think he is slightly off when he says “two kinds of processions” and I also think that we should not forget that there is probably a larger school within Orthodoxy that does not accept this resolution, namely those communities added together who are Photian Monopatrist Fundamentalists and the Neo-Palamites who restrict “from/through the Son” to the triadic action of God only. In any case, Ware writes:

“When Augustine stated that the Spirit proceeds from both Father and Son, he was careful to qualify this by insisting that the Spirit does not proceed from the Son in the same manner as He proceeds from the Father. There are two different kinds of procession. The Spirit proceeds from the Father 𝐩𝐫𝐢𝐧𝐜𝐢𝐩𝐚𝐥𝐢𝐭𝐞𝐫, ❜𝐩𝐫𝐢𝐧𝐜𝐢𝐩𝐚𝐥𝐥𝐲❜ 𝐨𝐫 ❜𝐩𝐫𝐢𝐧𝐜𝐢𝐩𝐢𝐚𝐥𝐥𝐲❜, states Augustine, but He proceeds from the Son only 𝒑𝒆𝒓 𝒅𝒐𝒏𝒖𝒎 𝑷𝒂𝒕𝒓𝒊𝒔, ‘through the gift of the Father’. The procession of the Spirit from the Son, that is to say, is specifically something that the Father Himself has conferred upon the Son. Just as the Son receives all things as a gift from the Father, so also it is from the Father that He receives the power to ‘spirate’ or ‘breathe forth’ the Spirit. 🔥𝑰𝒏 𝒕𝒉𝒊𝒔 𝒘𝒂𝒚 𝒇𝒐𝒓 𝑨𝒖𝒈𝒖𝒔𝒕𝒊𝒏𝒆, 𝒂𝒔 𝒇𝒐𝒓 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝑪𝒂𝒑𝒑𝒂𝒅𝒐𝒄𝒊𝒂𝒏𝒔, 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝑭𝒂𝒕𝒉𝒆𝒓 𝒓𝒆𝒎𝒂𝒊𝒏𝒔 𝒕𝒉𝒆 ❜𝒇𝒐𝒖𝒏𝒕𝒂𝒊𝒏𝒉𝒆𝒂𝒅 𝒐𝒇 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝒅𝒆𝒊𝒕𝒚❜, 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝒔𝒐𝒍𝒆 𝒔𝒐𝒖𝒓𝒄𝒆 𝒂𝒏𝒅 𝒖𝒍𝒕𝒊𝒎𝒂𝒕𝒆 𝒐𝒓𝒊𝒈𝒊𝒏 𝒘𝒊𝒕𝒉𝒊𝒏 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝑻𝒓𝒊𝒏𝒊𝒕𝒚 🔥 . Augustine’s teaching that the Spirit proceeds from the Father and from the Son — but with the qualification that He proceeds from the Son, not ‘principially’ but ‘through the gift of the Father’ – 🔥𝒊𝒔 𝒕𝒉𝒖𝒔 𝒏𝒐𝒕 𝒔𝒐 𝒗𝒆𝒓𝒚 𝒅𝒊𝒇𝒇𝒆𝒓𝒆𝒏𝒕 𝒇𝒓𝒐𝒎 𝑮𝒓𝒆𝒈𝒐𝒓𝒚 𝒐𝒇 𝑵𝒚𝒔𝒔𝒂❜𝒔 𝒗𝒊𝒆𝒘 𝒕𝒉𝒂𝒕 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝑺𝒑𝒊𝒓𝒊𝒕 𝒑𝒓𝒐𝒄𝒆𝒆𝒅𝒔 𝒇𝒓𝒐𝒎 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝑭𝒂𝒕𝒉𝒆𝒓 𝒕𝒉𝒓𝒐𝒖𝒈𝒉 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝑺𝒐𝒏 🔥. The Council of Florence, in endorsing Augustine’s doctrine of Double Procession, explicitly re-emphasized the point that the inspiration of the Spirit is conferred on the Son by God the Father. The contrast, then, between Orthodoxy and Rome as regard the ‘monarchy’ of the Father is not nearly so stark as appears at first sight…For all these reasons there is today a school of Orthodox theologians who believe that the divergence between east and west over the Filioque, while by no means unimportant, is not as fundamental as Lossky and his disciples maintain. The Roman Catholic understanding of the person and work of the Holy Spirit, so this second group of Orthodox theologians concludes, is not basically different from that of the Christian East; and so we may hope that in the present-day dialogue between Orthodox and Roman Catholics an understanding will eventually be reached on this thorny question”

The Orthodox Church, 2nd Ed. (1997), pages 217-218.

1 thought on “How to Resolve the Filioque Controversy between Catholics and Orthodox?

  1. Hey Erick,
    I have a good solution to the problem. Why don’t we follow the advice of Pope Leo III and add nothing to the Creed. You have a Pope making a clear statement that we all can agree on, or don’t you think a Pope’s testimony is worth following?

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