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Non-Catholics Section: Pope / Papacy

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Non-Catholics Section:

The Pope / The Papacy

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Do You Reject the Papacy / the Pope?

Do You Think That the Catholic Church Has Erred in the Past so it Can't be Infallible? Or That the Pope Can't be Infallible Since Peter Denied Jesus? Or That the Bad Behavior of Some Popes Disproves Infallibility?

Do You Believe That St. Peter Was Never in Rome?



Do You Reject the Papacy / the Pope?


* How can you disregard Christ's own words: "Jesus said to [Peter] in reply, "Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah. For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father. And so I say to you, you are Peter [meaning 'Rock'], and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven." (Mt. 16:17-19, emphasis added)? Do you try to disprove that Peter is the rock relying on Greek? Why is it that you do not consider that Jesus spoke in Aramaic and that Scripture preserves the Aramaic name for Peter - 'Kepha' (Cephas / Kephas) - which means rock ("a massive stone"!)? Furthermore, the apologists have pointed that if the Evangelist was wanting to refer to a 'small stone', there was an even more common word in Greek that could have been used ("lithos"). And, do not forget that Jesus named Peter "Rock" at their first meeting (Jn. 1:42)! Remember that name changes in Scripture are very significant: "It is meant as a token of particular merit, when a man has a name given him or changed by God." (St. Bede the Venerable, Doctor of the Church) and that none of the other of the twelve Apostles had their name changed. How is it that you can disregard the clear testimony of Scripture? Why is it you twist Scripture so much to distort the clear meaning of Jesus' statement? Why do you suppose that Jesus speaks to Peter and says "you", if he is not really referring to Peter? How can you claim that "rock" refers to faith? How is it that one's faith can bind and loose? Why was Simon renamed Peter ("Rock")? Why was it that none of the other of the original twelve apostles had their names changed?

* How can you discount the fact that keys - a symbol of authority - were handed over? This means a great deal! If keys are necessary to enter heaven, how can one expect to enter heaven without them? Do you really propose that it was meaningless for Christ to have left the keys to heaven? How could the keys be given otherwise than to Peter when Jesus was speaking to Peter and repeatedly said "you"? Do you not think it dangerous to forgo the keys to heaven? How is it you expect to get in? Remember that even though Jesus conferred power on the other apostles (see Mt. 18:18), he never gave the other apostles the keys (although the other apostles were given power, Peter alone was given supreme authority). Rather, Peter alone was given the keys to heaven - by Christ. [Note: The obvious fact that Christ also retains the keys, does not disprove the fact that Jesus gave the key to Peter any more than your giving a second key to someone else proves you no longer have yours!] 

* If Peter was not to head the Church, why does Christ tell Peter - three times - that he is to tend to Christ's sheep (cf. Jn. 21:15-17)? If you deny the papacy, what do you imagine this means?

* If Peter was not 'in charge', why would Christ say he was to strengthen his brethren (see Lk. 22:32)?

* If Peter did not enjoy supremacy among the apostolic college, why is his name always given first (while the others are sometimes simply referred to as apostles or companions) [e.g. see Mt. 10:2-4, Mk. 3:16-19, Lk. 6:14-16, Lk. 9:32, Acts 1:13, Acts 2:37, Acts 5:29, etc.]?

* How is it that you cannot see the supremacy of Peter considering that Peter often speaks for all the apostles (e.g. Mt. 16:13-16, Mt. 17:4, Mk. 8:29, Mk. 9:5, Jn. 6:68-69, Acts 4:5-12) and that Jesus often speaks only to Peter (e.g. Mt. 17:25, Mk. 14:37-38, Lk. 7:40-43, Lk. 22:31-32, Jn. 21:15-19)?

* If Peter did not have a leadership role, how do you explain the fact that Scripture says that the resurrected Jesus appeared to Simon (that is, Peter) - who is mentioned alone - in Lk. 24:34? (Or, as in 1 Cor. 15:5, "to Kephas, then to the Twelve")?

* If you discount Peter's primacy, how can you explain the fact that John waited for Peter to enter the tomb before he entered (see Jn. 20:3-8)?

* If Peter did not have a leadership role, why did he take charge in choosing a successor to Judas (see Acts 1:15-26), why was he first to preach at Pentecost (see Acts 2:14-40), why is he shown making the first converts (see Acts 2:41), receiving the first Gentiles (see Acts 10:44-46), and performing the first miracle after Pentecost (see Acts 3:6-7)? Why does Scripture show that it was at his rebuke that the couple who lied suffered death ("the first anathema", Acts 5:1-11)? Why does Peter act as head of the council in Acts 15:6-12?

* If Peter did not have a leadership role, why does the angel instruct Cornelius to seek Peter (Acts 10:5)?

* How can you deny Peter's supremacy when Scripture specifically indicates that Paul - the apostle called directly by Christ after His Resurrection - went to Peter after his conversion (see Gal. 1:18)?

* How can you deny the office of the papacy when it is clear in Scripture that St. Peter was the leader of the apostles? How do you explain away the fact that Peter's name is mentioned more than all the other disciples names combined?

* How can you deny the office of the papacy considering that all the earliest Christians accepted this office? If you attempt to argue that the papacy didn't exist in the first century, how can you explain quotations such as this one? - "If certain persons should be disobedient unto the words spoken by Him through us, let them understand that they will entangle themselves in no slight transgression and danger." (Pope St. Clement, c. 95 A.D.)

* Do you attempt to deny the papacy because the term "pope" wasn't used in the beginning or isn't in scripture? Based on that logic, you would also have to deny the Trinity because the term wasn't used until later. You would also have to deny the Bible because this term is not in Scripture. The fact that a word wasn't used from the beginning or doesn't appear in Scripture does not mean that the concept was unknown - it simply means a word was coined at a later date. Clearly, the office of the papacy is indicated as Scripture, just as the Trinity is - even though these exact terms are not used. In a similar vein, why is it you accept Scripture even though the Bible wasn't formally 'codified' until almost the year 400? And why do you call Scripture a 'Bible', since that term isn't contained in the Bible?

* If you reject the office of the papacy, do you also reject the fact that there was a seat of Moses (Mt. 23:2-3)? Do you only selectively reject authoritative religious offices?

* Do you imagine that St. Paul's authority was equal to St. Peter's? How can this be when Scripture shows that St. Peter was given supremacy by Christ Himself (symbolized by the keys in Mt. 16:19)? Remember that after Jesus called St. Paul, he did not go out on his own, but respected the authority of St. Peter and "went up to Jerusalem to confer with Kephas [Peter] and remained with him for fifteen days" (Gal 1:18). It should be noted that if certain terminology appears to indicate a "shared or divided episcopate" between St. Peter and St. Paul, it may more aptly refer to their "shared teaching" (it does not mean that they had equal authority). At no time in history was it held by the Church that St. Peter and St. Paul shared the papacy or had equal authority in the universal Church. Rather, St. Peter's supremacy has always been recognized in the Church.

* How can you reject the fact that Christ authorizes certain persons to act in his name and that rejection of them means rejection of Christ? Consider that Scripture says...

Lk. 10:16: "Whoever listens to you listens to me. Whoever rejects you rejects me. And whoever rejects me rejects the one who sent me."

Jn. 13:20: "Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever receives the one I send receives me, and whoever receives me receives the one who sent me."

Rom. 13:2: Therefore, whoever resists authority opposes what God has appointed, and those who oppose it will bring judgment upon themselves.

How can you not be concerned that you are rejecting those who have received authority from Christ?

* Do you imagine that the office of the pope ended with St. Peter? How is it that you think a supreme leadership role would end at death, but Judas's lesser office required the election of a successor (see Acts 1:15-26)? How is you think the keys would not be transferred to another? Would heaven simply be closed after the death of Peter? Does the presidency of the country end because a President dies?

* If the papacy was to end with St. Peter's death, why didn't Peter write more Scripture? Why did he leave but three (relatively short) letters and no Gospel or other writings? If such a great office was to end, why is it that he didn't leave more instruction while he had the chance? Why did the Jews (and Jesus) recognize Moses' seat (Mt. 23: 1-3) if religious offices didn't survive death? Are we really to believe that Christ left His Church - a visible Church (click here) - without a visible head? As the Baltimore Catechism states: "We know that the rights and privileges bestowed on St. Peter were given also to his successors, the Popes, because the promises made to St. Peter by Our Lord were to be fulfilled in the Church till the end of time, and as Peter was not to live till the end of time, they are fulfilled in his successors." 

* If the papacy was to end with St. Peter's death, how can you explain the unbroken succession of popes since that time (complete with historical records to back them up)? If no successor was supposed to take St. Peter's place, why did not the apostle St. John (who was still alive) complain? In fact, why was Pope Clement (the fourth pope!) consulted to resolve a particular matter in the Church when St. John was still alive? Why did they not go to St. John instead? In fact, why did they not go to St. John considering that St. John was at a much closer distance to them than Pope Clement? You should know that this is a documented fact!

* Again, how is it that the earliest Christians accepted the papacy, but you reject it? (And, once again, their acceptance of it is a documented fact!) In fact, all (orthodox) Christians accepted the office of the papacy prior to the schism of the Orthodox!

* Do you think that Paul's rebuke of Peter disproves Peter's supremacy? Would you, then, also have the nerve to imply that Jesus did not have ultimate supremacy over Peter because Peter rebuked Jesus in Mk. 8:32? Clearly, Paul's rebuke of Peter doesn't disprove Peter's supremacy any more than if you rebuked your superior, his supremacy over you would be disproved!

* Do you reject the papacy because some popes have been bad, even scandalous? Would you then also reject the fact that one's father remains one's father even if his behavior is scandalous? Would you reject the office of the presidency over a bad president? How is it you expect that popes will not have faults? Do you expect a pope to be perfect - to be God Himself? Can you not see that "primacy does not depend upon the worthiness of any particular pope, but on the office alone"? Remember that Jesus himself chose Judas.

* Why can you not see the necessity of the papacy? For example...

* How can you not see that it is necessary for a visible organization to have a visible head? What country could survive without a ruler? How could a company continue without a leader? What organization of people could possibly continue for thousands of years with no one in charge?

* If you look honestly at history, can you not see that the Church couldn't have survived without a pope? That there would be nothing but chaos?

* Without a final authority, how can one ever be certain in matters of doctrine?

* Since all truth is not contained in Holy Scripture (click here) and since Scripture cannot interpret itself, it is necessary that there be a supreme teacher. The need for such an authoritative interpreter is obvious, and may be clearly demonstrated by the fact that those who claim to be able to interpret Scripture on their own (click here) cannot agree among themselves on its interpretation.

* In fact, can you not see that there would have been no authoritative bible without the popes, since there would have been no infallible authority to judge which books were inspired?

* Can you also not see how having a final authority protects against false doctrine?

* Can you not see how having a final authority - whose job it is to preserve the faith undefiled - is so necessary to combat the democratic spirit which wants to change teachings to suit personal desires?

* Can you not see how having a final authority promotes - and is, in fact, necessary for - unity? "The Church has but one ruler and one governor, the invisible one, Christ, whom the eternal Father hath made head over all the Church, which is his body; the visible one, the Pope, who as the legitimate successor of Peter, the Prince of the Apostles, fills the Apostolic chair. It is the unanimous teaching of the Fathers that this visible head is necessary to establish and preserve unity in the Church." (Catechism of the Council of Trent) As Pope Pius XI has said, "... unity can only arise from one teaching authority" (Pope Pius XI, "Mortalium Animos", 1928 A.D.)

* Can you not see that without the Pope there would be no preserver of doctrine, no center of unity, and no supreme authority visible on earth? The Church was literally founded by our Lord on the "rock" of St. Peter, and without this foundation, the entire structure would fall.

* Does not the very fact that there are thousands and thousands and thousands of competing Protestant sects constitute positive proof of the need for a supreme authority? Protestant sects have no supreme authority and therefore they are wholly incapable of unity [contrary to Christ's desire that "they may all be one" (Jn. 17:21)] As Pope Pius XII has said, "For often those who disagree with the true Church complain openly of their disagreement in matters of dogma and thus unwillingly bear witness to the necessity of a living Teaching Authority." (Pope Pius XII, "Humani Generis", 1950 A.D.)

* Do you reject the papacy because of the portrayal of Babylon in Revelation? Do you not realize that 'Babylon' referred to pagan Rome - the very Rome that killed St. Peter and St. Paul - and not to Christian Rome, which was later to conquer pagan Rome? Do you not see that it is pagan Rome - not Christian Rome - that is condemned in Scripture for persecuting the Church (see Rv. 17:6)? Babylon most certainly does not refer to the Church itself, but to her persecutors! Do you further try to associate the papacy with the "seven hills" indicated in Rv. 17:9? Are you unaware of the fact that Vatican Hill (where the Pope resides) is not one of the seven hills of Rome [which are namely: Aventino (Aventine), Caelio (Celian), Capitolino (Capitoline), Esquilino (Esquiline), Palatino (Palatine), Quirinale (Quirinal), and Viminale (Viminal)]? Do you bring forward the tired argument that the number 666 refers to the pope? Have you not heard the apologists easily rebut this argument (e.g. by the fact that the title used to add up to 666 is not even a true title of the Pope - nor has it ever appeared on any papal tiara, that many things add up to 666, that the name of the woman who started the religion who argues this point so heavily adds up to 666, etc.)?

* Do you protest that the Pope must be the 'antichrist' since there is an upside-down cross in Rome? Are you unaware that this is symbolic of St. Peter' death (he was crucified upside down)?

* Do you think that the pope is the 'antichrist' for some other reason? Are you not aware that there are so many myths - and even downright lies put forward by the enemies of the Church over many years? Have you never considered that Christ said that his followers would be hated (see Mt. 10:22, 24:9, Mk. 13:13, Lk. 21:17)? Throughout history, it is clear that the Popes (and the papacy) have had many enemies. Those who dislike the Pope or the papacy are sometimes easily led to believe certain erroneous, derogatory things regarding the popes, ranging from insulting comments to accusations of the Pope being the antichrist himself. While it is true that the behavior of some popes has been scandalous, it is also true that the behavior of many has been glorious. This should come as no surprise since popes are human beings. Christ himself picked apostles that doubted, betrayed, and denied Him. Enemies of the Church often use these events as well as other myths, misunderstandings, errors, or even lies to attack the institution of the papacy itself. When one looks into such accusations objectively, one often finds that they are easily disputed, that they are myths or empty claims, that they are based on errors or misunderstandings or forgeries, or made up "facts", that no evidence supports the charges, that the charges do not stand up to careful examination, etc. Even stories with a kernel of truth are sometimes twisted to "prove" that the papacy is "corrupt" or "merely a human institution". Catholics are not surprised by this considering the treatment our fully innocent Lord received and the calumnious accusations He suffered. Those who reject or hate the papacy may be merely misled - or perhaps they may be lashing out against the divinely instituted teaching authority that condemns the lifestyle they wish to lead.

* Do you reject the Papacy because you think the Pope creates new doctrine or makes new revelations? You should know that the Pope is not a creator of doctrine, but its guardian. He is rather like a steward or a trustee who is charged with preserving and interpreting Divine Revelation. Although he may make more explicit what is already contained in the deposit of faith (e.g. the Immaculate Conception of Mary), he may not create entirely new doctrines. As stated by the First Vatican Council, "The Holy Spirit was not promised to the successor of Peter that by the revelation of the Holy Spirit they might disclose new doctrine, but that by His help they might guard sacredly the revelation transmitted through the Apostles and the deposit of faith, and might faithfully set it forth."

* Do you reject the papacy because you don't like what it teaches? If so, then you are also rejecting Christ's teaching because the Pope does not create new doctrine, but merely passes on, clarifies, and preserves what he has received.

* Why is it you reject the authority of papacy (which Christ established - as Scripture testifies and history proves), but you accept a 'pastor' who felt 'inspired' to start a 'church'? Why do you reject the Pope but make your 'pastor' a 'mini-pope'? Do you not realize the contradiction? Why is it that Christ tells Peter to "feed his flock" (cf. Jn. 21:15-17), yet you reject Peter and go to 'Pastor Bob'? Are you intending to admit that you are not one of Christ's sheep?

* Finally, considering that the papacy was instituted by Christ, enjoys his protection and the guidance of the Holy Spirit, is necessary for the Church, has always existed, and has been - by Christ's authority - entrusted with the keys to Heaven, how can you reject it? If Christ builds His Church on St. Peter (Mt. 16:18), how do you claim to be in His Church if your 'church' isn't built on St. Peter? How do you expect to gain access to heaven if you forgo the one entrusted with the keys? How do you deny Jesus' authorized "agents" despite the fact that Scripture condemns persons who reject those whom Christ sends? Why do you deny Peter's ability to govern in Christ's name when Scripture is clear that this authority has been given to him? Why is it that Christ tells you that He gives power to Peter but you deny that power has been given to him? "Why is it that Jesus entrusts His flock to St. Peter but you do not trust Jesus' judgment?" 

Closing Quotations...

"Where Peter is, there is the Church." (St. Ambrose, Doctor of the Church, 4th century A.D.)

"Two synods having written to the Apostolic See about this matter; the replies have come back; the question is settled." (St. Augustine, Doctor of the Church)

"It has never been allowed that that be discussed again which has one been decided by the Apostolic See." (Pope St. Boniface I, 422 A.D.)

"Are you ignorant that the custom has been to write first to us and then for a just decision to be passed from this place [Rome]?" (Pope St. Julius, 341 A.D.)

"Anyone who dares to secede from Peter's solid rock may understand that he has not part or lot in the divine mystery." (Pope St. Leo I the Great, Doctor of the Church, 445 A.D.)

"For this will seem to be best and most fitting indeed, if the priests from each and every province refer to the head, that is, to the chair of Peter the apostle." (Council of Serdica, 343-344 A.D.)

"The tradition of the Fathers has attributed such great authority to the Apostolic See that no one would dare to disagree wholly with its judgment." (Pope St. Zosimus, 418 A.D.)

"It is clear to everyone who knows the Gospel that the care of the whole Church has been committed to the blessed Peter, chief of the apostles." (Pope St. Gregory I the Great, Doctor of the Church, c. 595 A.D.)

"They have not the heritage of Peter who have not the see of Peter, rent by their impious division." [Tertullian ("an excellent early Christian writer" - although he would ultimately fall into heresy), 3rd century A.D.]

"Just what do these keys mean, which were entrusted personally to Simon son of John, to Peter, if they are not an indication of the universal rule over the Church which was entrusted to him?" (Pope John XXIII)

"If cases of greater importance are to be heard, they are, as the synod decrees and as happy custom requires, after episcopal judgment, to be referred to the Apostolic see." (Pope St. Innocent I, c. 404 A.D.)

"Reckon up the priests form the days that Peter sat, and in their ancestral ranks note who succeeded whom; for that is the rock over which the gates of hell shall never prevail." (St. Augustine, Doctor of the Church, 4th century A.D.)

"[I]f [a deposed bishop] declare that he will seek further redress, another should not be appointed to his see until the bishop of Rome can be acquainted with the case and render a judgment" (Council of Sardica, c. 343 A.D.)

"It is clear that this Church [of Rome] is to all churches throughout the world as the head is to the members, and that whoever separates himself from it becomes an exile from the Christian religion." (Pope St. Boniface I, 422 A.D.)

"Rome has kept a straight course from of old, and still does so, uniting the whole West by sound teaching, as is just, since she presides over all and guards the universal divine harmony." (St. Gregory of Nazianzen, Doctor of the Church)

"It is to Peter himself that He says: 'You are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My Church.' Where Peter is, there is the Church. And where the Church, no death is there, but life eternal." (St. Ambrose of Milan, Doctor of the Church, c. 385 A.D.)

"For to Peter himself the Lord said, 'Whatever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven' (Matt. 16:19). Whoever, therefore, resists this authority thus ordered by God, resists the command of God (see Rom. 13:2)" (Pope Boniface VIII, " Unam Sanctam")

"In the same reign of Claudius, the all-good and gracious providence who watches over all things guided Peter, the great and mighty one among the Apostles, who, because of his virtue, was the spokesman for all the others to Rome." ('History of the Church', c. 300-325 A.D.)

"Moreover, he who is set over the whole flock must have authority, not only over the sheep dispersed throughout the Church, but also when they are assembled together. Do the sheep when they are all assembled together rule and guide the shepherd?" (Pope Leo XIII, "Satis Cognitum", 1896 A.D.)

"History proves clearly that the Apostolic See, to which has been entrusted the mission not only of teaching but of governing the whole Church, has continued 'in one and the same doctrine, one and the same sense, and one and the same judgment' (Const. de fide, Chapter iv)" (Pope Leo XIII, "Testem Benevolentiae Nostrae", 1899 A.D.)

"Certainly Christ is a King forever; and though invisible, He continues unto the end of time to govern and guard His Church from Heaven. But since He willed that His kingdom should be visible He was obliged, when He ascended into Heaven, to designate a vice-regent on earth." (Pope Leo XIII, "Satis Cognitum", 1896 A.D.)

"As the Son of God came to do the Father's will, so shall ye fulfill the will of your mother, which is the Church, the head of which, as has been stated already, is the church of Rome. Wherefore, whatsoever may be done against the discipline of this church, without the decision of justice, cannot on any account be permitted to be held valid." (Pope St. Calixtus, c. 220 A.D.)

"If, therefore, the Greeks or others say that they are not committed to Peter and to his successors, they necessarily say that they are not the sheep of Christ, since the Lord says there is one fold and one shepherd (Jn. 10:16). Whoever, therefore, resists this authority thus ordered by God, resists the command of God." (Pope Boniface VIII)

"[I]t can never be that the Church committed to the care of Peter shall succumb or in any wise fail. 'For the Church, as the edifice of Christ who has wisely built 'His house upon a rock,' cannot be conquered by the gates of Hell, which may prevail over any man who shall be off the rock and outside the Church, but shall be powerless against it'" (Pope Leo XIII, "Satis Cognitum", 1896 A.D.)

"Be thou blessed, O divine Shepherd! For thy having thus provided for the necessities of thy fold, which could not be one, were it to have many shepherds without one supreme shepherd. In obedience to thy command, we bow down before Peter, with love and submission; we respectfully kiss his sacred feet; for it is by him that we are united to thee; it is by him that we are thy sheep." (Dom Gueranger) 

"Against which [the gates of hell] we read that Peter received the saving keys, that is to say, our prince, to whom it was said by Christ: 'To thee will I give the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven, and the gates of Hell shall not conquer them.' Whence is it therefore that you strive to obtain for yourselves the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven - you who fight against the chair of Peter?" (Optatus of Milevis, as quoted by Pope Leo XIII in "Satis Cognitum", 1896 A.D.)

"We exhort you in every respect, honorable brother, to heed obediently what has been written by the Most Blessed Pope of the City of Rome; for Blessed Peter, who lives and presides in his own see, provides the truth of the faith to those who seek it. For we, by reason of our pursuit of peace and faith, cannot try cases on the faith without the consent of the bishop of the city of Rome." (St. Peter Chrysologus, Doctor of the Church, c. 449 A.D.)

"As Christ is the Shepherd, is Peter not a shepherd? On the contrary, Peter is also shepherd... For if he be not shepherd, why should it be said to him: feed my sheep? Yet it is the true shepherd who feeds his own sheep. Now it was said to Peter, not, Feed thy sheep, but my sheep. Hence Peter is shepherd not in himself, but in the body of the Shepherd. For if he fed his own sheep, they would immediately become goats which he was feeding." (St. Augustine, Doctor of the Church, 5th century A.D.) 

"No one doubts, but rather it has been known to all generations, that the holy and most blessed Peter, chief and head of the Apostles, the pillar of the faith, the foundation stone of the Catholic church, received the keys of the kingdom from our Lord Jesus Christ the Savior and Redeemer of the human race, and that the power of binding and loosing sins was given to him, who up to this moment and always lives in his successors, and judges." (Council of Ephesus, 431 A.D.) 

"They did not regard anything as finished, even though it was the concern of distant and remote provinces, until it had come to the notice of this See [Rome], so that what was a just pronouncement might be confirmed by the authority of this See, and thence other churches [that is, Catholic churches - there were no others at the time] - just as all waters proceed from their own natural source and, through the various regions of the whole world, remain pure liquids of an incorrupted head." (Pope St. Innocent I, 417 A.D.)

"He founded a single chair, and He established by His own authority a source and an intrinsic reason for that unity. Indeed, the others were that also which Peter was; but a primacy is given to Peter, whereby it is made clear that there is but one Church and one chair... If someone does not hold fast to this unity of Peter, can he imagine that he still holds the faith? If he desert the chair of Peter upon whom the Church was built, can he still be confident that he is in the Church?" (St. Cyprian of Carthage, c. 251 A.D.) 

"Indeed no true and perfect human society can be conceived which is not governed by some supreme authority. Christ therefore must have given to His Church a supreme authority to which all Christians must render obedience. For this reason, as the unity of the faith is of necessity required for the unity of the Church, inasmuch as it is the body of the faithful, so also for this same unity, inasmuch as the Church is a divinely constituted society, unity of government, which effects and involves unity of communion, is necessary jure divino." (Pope Leo XIII, "Satis Cognitum", 1896 A.D.)

"But the Episcopal order is rightly judged to be in communion with Peter, as Christ commanded, if it be subject to and obeys Peter; otherwise it necessarily becomes a lawless and disorderly crowd. It is not sufficient for the due preservation of the unity of the faith that the head should merely have been charged with the office of superintendent, or should have been invested solely with a power of direction. But it is absolutely necessary that he should have received real and sovereign authority which the whole community is bound to obey." (Pope Leo XIII, "Satis Cognitum", 1896)

"Now if we acknowledge a permanent miracle in the uninterrupted succession of the Bishops of Rome, in spite of all the revolutions of eighteen centuries, we acknowledge it to be a still higher prodigy that, notwithstanding the instability of man's opinions and judgments, the Chair of Rome has faithfully preserved the truth without the slightest admixture of error, whereas the sees of Jerusalem, Antioch, Alexandria and Constantinople were scarcely able to maintain the true Faith for a few centuries, and have become so frequently those Chairs of pestilence spoken of by the Royal Prophet (Ps. i I)" (Dom Gueranger)

"According to this promise of the Lord (Mt. 26:18), the Apostolic Church of Peter remains pure and spotless from all leading into error, or heretical fraud, above all Heads and Bishops, and Primates of Churches and people, with its own Pontiffs, with most abundant faith, and the authority of Peter. And while other Churches have to blush for the error of some of their members, this reigns alone immovably established, enforcing silence, and stopping the mouths of all heretics; and we, not drunken with the wine of pride, confess together with it the type of truth, and of the holy apostolic tradition." (St. Cyril, Doctor of the Church)

"Ignatius, also called Theophorus, to the Church that has found mercy in the greatness of the Most High Father and in Jesus Christ, His only Son; to the Church beloved and enlightened after the love of Jesus Christ, our God, by thee will of Him that has willed everything which is; to the Church also which holds the presidency in the place of the country of the Romans, worthy of God, worthy of honor, worthy of blessing, worthy of praise, worthy of success, worthy of sanctification, and because you hold the presidency of love, named after Christ and named after the Father. This Church do I salute in the name of Jesus Christ, Son of the Father." (St. Ignatius of Antioch, c. 110 A.D.)

"For if, indeed as you assert, some sin has risen among them, a judicial investigation ought to have been made according to the ecclesiastical canon, and not in this manner. Everyone should have written to us, in order that thus what was might be decided by all; for the bishops were the ones who suffered, and it was not the ordinary churches that were harassed, but which the apostles themselves governed in person. Yet why has nothing been written to us, especially regarding the Alexandrian church? Or do you not know that it is the custom to write to us first, and that here what is just is decided? Certainly if any suspicion of this nature did fall upon the bishop of that city, the fact should have been written to this church." (Pope St. Julius I, 341 A.D.) 

"Simon, My follower, I have made you the foundation of the holy Church. I betimes called you Peter, because you will support all its buildings. You are the inspector of those who will build on earth a Church for Me. If they should wish to build what is false, you, the foundation, will condemn them. You are the head of the fountain from which My teaching flows, you are the chief of My disciples. Through you I will give drink to all peoples. Yours is that life-giving sweetness which I dispense. I have chosen you to be, as it were, the first-born in My institution, and so that, as the heir, you may be executor of my treasures. I have given you the keys of my kingdom. Behold, I have given you authority over all my treasures!" (St. Ephraim, Doctor of the Church, 4th century A.D.)

"Should anyone object that the Church is content with one Head and one Spouse, Jesus Christ, and requires no other, the answer is obvious. For as we deem Christ not only the author of all the Sacraments, but also their invisible minister - He it is who baptizes, He it is who absolves, although men are appointed by Him the eternal ministers of the Sacraments - so has He placed over His Church, which He governs by His invisible Spirit, a man to be His vicar and the minister of His power. A visible Church requires a visible head; therefore the Savior appointed Peter head and pastor of all the faithful, when He committed to his care the feeding of all His sheep, in such ample terms that He willed the very same power of ruling and governing the entire church to descend to Peter's successors." (Catechism of the Council of Trent)

"In this same sense He says: 'Whatsoever thou shall bind upon earth it shall be bound also in Heaven, and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth it shall be loosed also in Heaven.' This metaphorical expression of binding and loosing indicates the power of making laws, of judging and of punishing; and the power is said to be of such amplitude and force that God will ratify whatever is decreed by it. Thus it is supreme and absolutely independent, so that, having no other power on earth as its superior, it embraces the whole Church and all things committed to the Church. The promise is carried out when Christ the Lord after His Resurrection, having thrice asked Peter whether he loved Him more than the rest, lays on him the injunction: 'Feed my lambs - feed my sheep.' That is He confides to him, without exception, all those who were to belong to His fold." (Pope Leo XIII, "Satis Cognitum", 1896 A.D.)

"Our Lord Jesus Christ, Savior of the human race, so established the worship of divine religion, which He wanted to shine out by God's grace unto all nations and peoples, that the truth, previously contained in the proclamation of the Law and the Prophets, might go forth through the apostolic trumpet to the salvation of all, as it is written: 'Their sound has gone forth to all the earth, and their words to the ends of the earth.' But the Lord desired that the sacrament of this gift should pertain to all the Apostles in such a way that it might be found principally in the most blessed Peter, the highest of all the Apostles. And He wanted His gifts to flow into the entire body from Peter himself, as it from the head, in such a way that anyone who had dared to separate himself from the solidarity of Peter would realize that he has himself no longer a sharer in the divine mystery" (Pope St. Leo I the Great, Doctor of the Church, c. 445 A.D.)

"With only one exception, all the documents which attest Clement's intervention in the affairs of distant churches have perished with time; but the one that remains shows us in full action the monarchical power of the bishop of Rome at that primitive epoch. The church of Corinth was disturbed with intestine quarrels caused by jealousy against certain pastors. These division, the germ of which had appeared even in St. Paul's time, had destroyed all peace, and were causing scandal to the very pagans. The Corinthians at last felt the necessity of putting an end to a disorder which might be prejudicial to the extension of the Christian faith; and for this purpose it was requisite to seek assistance from outside. The apostles had all departed this life, except St. John, who was still the light of the Church. It was no great distance from Corinth to Ephesus where the apostle resided: yet it was not to Ephesus but to Rome that the church of Corinth turned. Clement examined the case referred to his judgment by that church, and sent to Corinth five commissaries to represent the Apostolic See. They were bearers of a letter, which St. Irenaeus calls potentissimas litteras. It was considered at the time so beautiful and so apostolic, that it was long read in many churches as a sort of continuation of the canonical Scriptures. Its tone is dignified but paternal, according to St. Peter's advice to pastors. There is nothing in it of a domineering spirit; but the grave and solemn language bespeaks the universal pastor, whom none can disobey without disobeying God Himself. These words so solemn and so firm wrought the desired effect: peace as reestablished in the church of Corinth, and the messengers of the Roman Pontiff soon brought back the happy news." (Liturgical Year)

"It was necessary that a government of this kind, since it belongs to the constitution and formation of the Church, as its principal element - that is as the principle of unity and the foundation of lasting stability - should in no wise come to an end with St. Peter, but should pass to his successors from one to another. 'There remains, therefore, the ordinance of truth, and St. Peter, persevering in the strength of the rock which he had received, hath not abandoned the government of the Church which had been confided to him' (S. Leo M. sermo iii., cap. 3). For this reason the Pontiffs who succeed Peter in the Roman Episcopate receive the supreme power in the Church, jure divino. 'We define' (declare the Fathers of the Council of Florence) 'that the Holy and Apostolic See and the Roman Pontiff hold the primacy of the Church throughout the whole world: and that the same Roman Pontiff is the successor of St. Peter, the Prince of the Apostles, and the true Vicar of Christ, the head of the whole Church, and the father and teacher of all Christians; and that full power was given to him, in Blessed Peter, by our Lord Jesus Christ to feed, to rule, and to govern the universal Church, as is also contained in the acts of oecumenical councils and in the sacred canons' (Conc. Florentinum). Similarly the Fourth Council of Lateran declares: 'The Roman Church, as the mother and mistress of all the faithful, by the will of Christ obtains primacy of jurisdiction over all other churches.' These declarations were preceded by the consent of antiquity which ever acknowledged, without the slightest doubt or hesitation, the Bishops of Rome, and revered them as the legitimate successors of St. Peter. Who is unaware of the many and evident testimonies of the holy Fathers which exist to this effect?" (Pope Leo XIII, "Satis Cognitum", 1896 A.D.)

"Jesus was one day, previous to his Passion, in the country of Cesarea Philippi; his Apostles were standing around him, and he began questioning them about what they thought of him. One of them, Simon the son of John or Jonas, and brother to Andrew, answered in the name of all, and said: Thou art Christ, the Son of the living God! Jesus expressed his pleasure at receiving Simon's testimony, which was not the result of any human knowledge, but the expression of a divine revelation there and then granted to him; and he immediately told this Apostle that from that time forward he was to be, not Simon but Peter (which means rock). Christ has been spoken of by the prophets under the name of a Rock, or a Stone; by thus solemnly conferring upon his disciple a title so characteristically that of the Messias, Jesus would give us to understand that Simon was to have something in common with himself which the other Apostles were not to have. After saying to him: 'Thou art Peter' (that is, thou art the rock), he added: 'And upon this rock I will build my Church.' Let us weigh the force of these words of the Son of God: I will build my Church. He has, then, a project in view - he intends to build a Church. It is not now that he will build it, but at some future period; but one thing we already know as a certainty - is that this Church will be built on Peter. Peter will be its foundation; and whosoever is not on that foundation will not belong to the Church. Let us again give ear to the text: And the gates of hell shall not prevail against my Church. In scriptural language gates signify powers: the Church of Christ, therefore, is to be proof against all the efforts of hell. And why? Because the foundation which Jesus is to give to it shall be one that no power can shake. The Son of God continues: And I will give to thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven. In the language of the Jews, keys signify the power of governing; and in the Gospel Parables the kingdom of heaven is the Church built by Christ. By saying to Peter (which is henceforth to be Simon's name), I will give to thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven, Jesus implied this: 'I will make thee the King of my Church, of which thou art to be the foundation!' Nothing could be clearer." (Dom Gueranger)

"Union with the Roman See of Peter is to [St. Jerome] always the public criterion of a Catholic. 'I acknowledge everyone who is united with the See of Peter' (Ep. xvi., ad Damasum, n. 2). And for a like reason St. Augustine publicly attests that, 'the primacy of the Apostolic chair always existed in the Roman Church' (Ep. xliii., n. 7); and he denies that anyone who dissents from the Roman faith can be a Catholic... In the same way Maximus the Abbot teaches that obedience to the Roman Pontiff is the proof of the true faith and of legitimate communion. 'Therefore if a man does not want to be, or to be called, a heretic, let him not strive to please this or that man...but let him hasten before all things to be in communion with the Roman See. If he be in communion with it, he should be acknowledged by all and everywhere as faithful and orthodox. He speaks in vain who tries to persuade me of the orthodoxy of those who, like himself, refuse obedience to his Holiness the Pope of the most holy Church of Rome: that is to the Apostolic See.' The reason and motive of this he explains to be that 'the Apostolic See has received and hath government, authority, and power of binding and loosing from the Incarnate Word Himself; and, according to all holy synods, sacred canons and decrees, in all things and through all things, in respect of all the holy churches of God throughout the whole world, since the Word in Heaven who rules the Heavenly powers binds and loosens there' (Defloratio ex Epistola ad Petrum illustrem). Wherefore what was acknowledged and observed as Christian faith, not by one nation only nor in one age, but by the East and by the West, and through all ages, this Philip, the priest, the Pontifical legate at the Council of Ephesus, no voice being raised in dissent, recalls: 'No one can doubt, yea, it is known unto all ages, that St. Peter, the Prince of the Apostles, the pillar of the faith and the ground of the Catholic Church, received the keys of the Kingdom from Our Lord Jesus Christ. That is: the power of forgiving and retaining sins was given to him who, up to the present time, lives and exercises judgment in the persons of his successors' (Actio iii.). The pronouncement of the Council of Chalcedon on the same matter is present to the minds of all: 'Peter has spoken through Leo' (Actio ii.), to which the voice of the Third Council of Constantinople responds as an echo: 'The chief Prince of the Apostles was fighting on our side: for we have had as our ally his follower and the successor to his See: and the paper and the ink were seen, and Peter spoke through Agatho' (Actio xviii.). In the formula of Catholic faith drawn up and proposed by Hormisdas, which was subscribed at the beginning of the sixth century in the great Eighth Council by the Emperor Justinian, by Epiphanius, John and Menna, the Patriarchs, this same is declared with great weight and solemnity. 'For the pronouncement of Our Lord Jesus Christ saying: 'Thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church...' cannot be passed over. What is said is proved by the result, because Catholic faith has always been preserved without stain in the Apostolic See' (Post Epistolam, xxvi., ad omnes Episc. Hispan., n. 4). We have no wish to quote every available declaration; but it is well to recall the formula of faith which Michael Paleologus professed in the Second Council of Lyons: 'The same holy Roman Church possesses the sovereign and plenary primacy and authority over the whole Catholic Church, which, truly and humbly, it acknowledges to have received together with the plenitude of power from the Lord Himself, in the person of St. Peter, the Prince or Head of the Apostles, of whom the Roman Pontiff is the successor. And as it is bound to defend the truth of faith beyond all others, so also if any question should arise concerning the faith it must be determined by its judgment' (Actio iv.)." (Pope Leo XIII, "Satis Cognitum", 1896 A.D.)

Do You Think That the Catholic Church Has Erred in the Past so it Can't be Infallible? Or That the Pope Can't be Infallible Since Peter Denied Jesus? Or That the Bad Behavior of Some Popes Disproves Infallibility? 


* The Catholic Church does not teach that every action or utterance of a Pope (or the Church or any particular member of the Church) is infallible or that a pope is perfect. Infallibility is necessarily limited to matters of faith and morals, and then only under certain conditions (for more information, click here). In fact, it should be noted that the popes rarely invoke infallibility.

* Infallibility does not mean sinlessness. Besides Jesus and the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Church teaches that all persons are sinners. "It is a misrepresentation often repeated that Catholics imagine the supreme pontiff to be free from all liability to moral transgression, as though they believed that no action performed by him could be sinful. It can hardly be necessary for me to deny so gross and absurd an imputation." (Cardinal Wiseman)

* Peter's denial of Jesus and Paul's rebuke of St. Peter do not disprove papal infallibility because Peter's actions were of a personal nature and had nothing to do with Peter teaching doctrinal error. Rather, in both cases, Peter was merely demonstrating human weakness. Note that he had taught correctly, but was not living up to his teachings. Despite Peter's weaknesses, however, "he always had the right answers" (cf. Mt. 16:16, Mt. 17:26, Lk. 7:43). And, clearly, Peter was rebuked for his behavior, not his teaching. As Tertullian says, "Moreover, if Peter was reproached [by Paul] because, after having lived with the gentiles, he later separated himself from their company out of respect for persons, the fault certainly was one of procedure and not of doctrine." [Tertullian ("an excellent early Christian writer" - although he would ultimately fall into heresy), c. 200 A.D.]

* Why is it you reject the Catholic Church's claim regarding infallibility on one hand, but rely on it for your Bible? Do you not know it was the Catholic Church that determined which books make up the Bible? Did you know there were other books claiming to be New Testament Scripture (cf. 2 Thes. 2:2) and the Church had to decide which books were truly inspired? So, "if the Church was infallible when codifying the Bible in the late fourth century, why do you deny her infallibility now?"

* Do you reject papal infallibility based on the scandalous actions of some popes? Do not bad popes rather serve to prove infallibility than dispute it considering that that not even the worst of popes have never erred in matters of faith or morals when formally teaching as head of the Church? Even the actions of popes whose doctrinal teachings were problematic do not disprove infallibility (e.g. because they weren't binding on the Church, because they could be taken in an orthodox manner, etc.). Remember further that matters that are merely disciplinary cannot fall under infallibility, nor can the failure to take action fall under infallibility. Despite the bad (and some extremely scandalous!) popes, the faith has been preserved unstained for about two thousand years. Once again, does this not serve to prove rather than dispute infallibility? As Christ said in Scripture, "The scribes and the Pharisees have taken their seat on the chair of Moses. Therefore, do and observe all things whatsoever they tell you, but do not follow their example. For they preach but they do not practice." (Mt. 23:2-3, emphasis added) Note that Jesus does not reject the authority of bad persons, nor excuse others from observing their commands.

* How could the pope not enjoy infallibility in light of Christ's promise that the gates of hell would not prevail against the Church (see Mt. 16:18), that fact that Christ will remain with the Church always (see Mt. 28:20), and the fact that the Holy Spirit - the Spirit of truth - will always remain with the Church (see Jn. 14:16-17)? 

* Do you reject papal infallibility as a "novel invention" because it was not formally pronounced until the 19th century? Are you unaware that the formal defining of a dogma does not mean it is newly created? Rather, it has always been held, but it is at that time explained with more precision. How could infallibility be a creation of the 19th century when we can see, for example, Pope St. Agatho referring precisely to this infallibility in the 7th century...? "The Roman See has never erred, and never will err, because of Christ's promise." (Pope St. Agatho, 680 A.D.)

* Do you deny papal infallibility because you think the pope creates new doctrines? The Catholic Church's teaching regarding infallibility specifically rejects such ideas! As stated by the First Vatican Council, "The Holy Spirit was not promised to the successor of Peter that by the revelation of the Holy Spirit they might disclose new doctrine, but that by His help they might guard sacredly the revelation transmitted through the Apostles and the deposit of faith, and might faithfully set it forth."

* Do you reject papal infallibility because you think the Catholic Church teaches that all a pope's writings are inspired? Are you aware that the Church teaches that divine revelation was closed with the death of the last apostle. Therefore, no writing of a pope (besides St. Peter's letters in Scripture) could ever be regarded as "inspired".

* How is it you reject papal infallibility, but believe you are "infallible" when it comes to Scripture interpretation (especially in light of the fact that your interpretations may differ so greatly among your peers)? Do you realize that you "claim more than the pope" when it comes to infallibility? Note: For more on personal interpretation of Scripture, click here.

In Closing...

"For men whom the truth had set free were to be preserved by the truth; nor would the fruits of heavenly doctrines by which salvation comes to men have long remained had not the Lord Christ appointed an unfailing teaching authority to train the minds to faith." (Pope Leo XIII, "Aeterni Patris", 1879 A.D.)

"But the Only-begotten Son of God, when He commanded His representatives to teach all nations, obliged all men to give credence to whatever was made known to them by 'witnesses preordained by God,' and also confirmed His command with this sanction: 'He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be condemned.' These two commands of Christ, which must be fulfilled, the one, namely, to teach, and the other to believe, cannot even be understood, unless the Church proposes a complete and easily understood teaching, and is immune when it thus teaches from all danger of erring." (Pope Pius XI, "Mortalium Animos", 1928 A.D.)

"Grant, then, that all have erred; that the Apostle was mistaken in bearing witness; that the Holy Spirit had no such consideration for any one Church as to lead it into truth, although He was sent out for that purpose by Christ, who had asked the Father to make Him the Teacher of truth; that the Steward of God and Vicar of Christ neglected his office, and permitted the Churches for a time to understand otherwise and to believe otherwise than He Himself had preached through the Apostles; now, is it likely that so many and such great Churches [that is, Catholic Churches - there weren't any others] should now have gone stray into a unity of faith?" [Tertullian ("an excellent early Christian writer" - although he would ultimately fall into heresy), c. 200 A.D.]

"O precious and necessary gift of Infallibility in the Church! Gift without which the mission of the Son of God would have been a failure! Gift whereby faith, that essential element of man's salvation, is preserved upon the earth! Yes, we have the promise; and the effects of this promise are evident even to them that are not of the Church. Where is there an unprejudiced man, who would not recognize the hand of God in the perpetuity of the Catholic Symbol of Faith [the Creed], whereas everything else on earth is for ever changing? Can we attribute to natural causes such a result as this - that a society, whose link is unity of belief, should live through so many ages, and yet lose nothing of the truth it possessed at its commencement, nor imbibe anything of the falseness of the world around it; that it should have been attacked by thousands of sects, and yet have triumphed over them all, survived them all, and be as pure in the faith now at this present day, as it was on the day when first formed by its divine Founder? Is it not an unheard-of prodigy, that hundreds of millions of men, differing from each other in country, character, and customs, yea, and frequently enemies to each other, should be united in one like submission to the same authority, which, with a single world, governs their reason in matters of faith?" (Dom Gueranger) 

Do You Believe That St. Peter Was Never in Rome?


* How can you deny Peter was in Rome despite the numerous written testimonies to the contrary? For example, consider...

Text of fragment dating from c. 198 A.D. to 217 A.D.: "I can point out the [trophies, that is the relics] of the Apostles. For if you are willing to go to the Vatican or to the Ostian Way, you will find the [trophies] of those who founded this Church"

"Ad. An. Dom. 42: Second year of the two hundred and fifth olympiad: the Apostle Peter, after he has established the Church in Antioch, is sent to Rome, where he remains as bishop of that city, preaching the gospel for twenty-five years." ('The Chronicle', Eusebius Pamphilus, c. 303 A.D.)

"Ad. An. Dom. 68: Fourth year of the two hundred and eleventh olympiad: Nero is the first, in addition to all his other crimes, to make a persecution against the Christians, in which Peter and Paul died gloriously at Rome." ('The Chronicle', Eusebius Pamphilus, c. 303 A.D.)

"You have also, by your very admonition, brought together the planting that was made by Peter and Paul at Rome and at Corinth; for both of them alike planted in our Corinth and taught us; and both alike, teaching similarly in Italy, suffered martyrdom at the same time." (St. Dionysius of Corinth, c. 166-174 A.D.)

"Peter, the first chosen of the Apostles, having been apprehended often and thrown into prison and treated with ignominy, at last was crucified in Rome. And the renowned Paul, oftentimes having been delivered up and put in peril of death, having endured many evils, and boasting of his numerous persecutions and afflictions, was even himself put to the sword and beheaded in the same city." (St. Peter of Alexandria, c. 306 A.D.)

"The holy Apostles and disciples of the Savior, however, were scattered throughout the whole world. Thomas, as tradition holds, received Parthia by lot; Andrew, Scythia; John, Asia, busying himself among the people there until he died at Ephesus. Peter, however, seems to have preached to the Jews it the diaspora in the Pontus and in Galatia, Bithynia, Cappadocia, and Asia; and at last, having come to Rome, he was crucified head downwards, the manner in which he himself had thought it fitting to suffer. Is it needful to say anything of Paul, who fulfilled the gospel of Christ from Jerusalem to Illyricum, and afterwards in the time of Nero was martyred in Rome?" ('History of the Church', c. 300-325 A.D.)

"When Nero was already reigning Peter came to Rome, where, in virtue of the performance of certain miracles which he worked by that power of God which as been given to him, he converted many to righteousness and established a firm and steadfast temple to God. When this fact was reported to Nero, he noticed that not only at Rome but everywhere great multitudes were daily abandoning the worship of idols, and, condemning their old ways, were going over to the new religion. Being that he was a detestable and pernicious tyrant, he sprang to the task of tearing down the heavenly temple and of destroying righteousness. It was he that first persecuted the servants of God. Peter, he fixed to a cross; and Paul, he slew." (From 'The Deaths of the Persecutors', c. 318 A.D.)

"Come now, if you would indulge a better curiosity in the business of your salvation, run through the apostolic Churches in which the very thrones of the Apostles remain still in place; in which their own authentic writings are read, giving sound to the voice and recalling the faces of each. Achaia is near you, so you have Corinth. If you are not far from Macedonia, you have Philippi,. If you can cross into Asia, you have Ephesus. But if you are near to Italy, you have Rome, whence also our authority derives. How happy is that Church on which Apostles poured out their whole doctrine along with their blood, where Peter endured a passion like that of the Lord, where Paul was crowned in a death like John's [that is, John the Baptist], where the Apostle John, after being immersed in boiling oil suffered no hurt, was exiled to an island." [Tertullian ("an excellent early Christian writer" - although he would ultimately fall into heresy), c. 200 A.D.]

* Why is it that those who attempt to associate Revelation's 'Babylon' with the Catholic Church (saying that Babylon refers to Rome), deny that St. Peter's own reference to 'Babylon' (see 1 Pt. 5:13) means Rome? Is it because it doesn't suit their agenda? Because it proves the falsity of their claims?

* How can you deny that Peter was in Rome considering that it is been demonstrated that he was buried there (his relics have been shown to be directly under the altar in St. Peter's Basilica) and that pilgrims have been visiting there at least since c. 150 A.D.? Further, why has no one else ever claimed his relics?

* How is it that St. Irenaeus, a pupil of St. Polycarp (who was a hearer of John the Apostle) says that "Peter and Paul were evangelizing in Rome and laying the foundation of the Church" and all the evidence testifies to this fact, but you know better? Were you there?


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