Apostolic Succession in non catholic churches

Which non catholic churches are having apostolic succession in it’s correct meaning.what is the meaning of apostolic succession in catholic view

In Catholic view, Apostolic Succession is when every Deacon, Priest or Bishop is ordained by Bishop who can trace this line back to Apostles- sort of like “he was ordained by him, he was ordained by him…” until you reach Apostles. Apostolic Succession in Catholic Sense only affects men- hence if someone was ordained by “Female Bishop” they are not real Priest, Deacon nor Bishop. If church permits Female Bishops you can never be sure when was the line broken and to be sure, Catholic Church recognizes such churches as without Apostolic Succession. If, however, someone stops understanding ordination to clergy as sacrament, or views it in wrong way, sacrament itself does not get conferred- which stops Apostolic Succession. Prime example of this being protestant ministers.

Those who have Apostolic Succession:
Catholic Church (Eastern and Western, all sui iuris Churches)
Traditionalist Churches (broke communion but not Apostolic Succession)
Eastern Orthodox Church (all autocephalous Churches and also those in schism with mainline orthodoxy)
Oriental Orthodox Church (all autocephalous Churches)
Church of the East

those are all historical Churches that can claim their lineage back to Apostles. Anglican Church (and some Episcopalians and Lutherans afaik) try to claim Apostolic Succession but because of how clergy are understood in Anglican Church, Popes decided to revert looking on Anglican Church as Church with Apostolic Succession. Old Catholic Church and some liberal movements similar to it consider themselves to have valid Apostolic Succession but because of Female Bishops, their Apostolic Succession is not valid in eyes of Catholic Church either.

Hope it that was helpful, if I made a mistake please, anyone, correct me :slight_smile:


could you please list these churches with name

Those are their names…

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There are many Traditionalist Churches, I can not name them all but they all have one thing in common- they would be perfectly Catholic if it weren’t for their denial of Second Vatican Council as ecumenical, and their belief that currently there is no valid Pope on Earth.

Eastern Orthodox Churches are:
Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople (opposed by Russia at the moment)
Russian Orthodox Church
Antiochian Orthodox Church
Alexandrian Orthodox Church
Orthodox Church of Jerusalem
Serbian Orthodox Church
Bulgarian Orthodox Church
Romanian Orthodox Church
Georgian Orthodox Church
Orthodox Church of Cyprus
Orthodox Church of Greece
Orthodox Church of Albania
Polish Orthodox Church
Orthodox Church of Czech Lands and Slovakia
Orthodox Church in America (opposed by some)
Estonian Orthodox Church (opposed by Russia)
Ukrainian Orthodox Church (opposed by Russia)

out of communion from Eastern Orthodox but identify themselves as Eastern Orthodox:
Greek Old Calendarists
Old Calendar Bulgarian Orthodox Church
Serbian True Orthodox Church
Russian Autonomous Orthodox Church
Old Calendar Romanian Orthodox Church
Russian Orthodox Old-Rite Church
Pomoranian Old-Orthodox Church
Russian Old-Orthodox Church


The SSPX would likely be on your list of traditionalist churches not in communion with Rome, but they believe that Pope Francis is the Pope.

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Oriental Orthodox Churches:
Armenian Apostolic Church
Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria
Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church
Eritrean Orthodox Tewahedo Church
Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church
Syriac Orthodox Church of Antioch

Church of the East = Assyrian Church of the East

Catholic Church:
Latin Church
Eastern Catholic Churches (23 sui iuris Churches in complete union with Rome)

Well, that is pretty complicated, as they are technically not in schism but in irregular state (something I consider to be very confusing). If they believe Pope Francis is the Pope they are one condition short of making the list of traditionalist churches, but at the same time if you define Schism as “refusal of submission to Roman Pontiff”, they fit into it. I’m pretty confused about it myself so I’ll let competent authorities guide me, and they seem to put them into “irregular state”, whatever that means :smiley:

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I’m not denying that they’re in an irregular state, they certainly are. But they don’t reject Francis as Pope, that’s all I wanted to clarify on.

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Oh alright, my mistake then. Fact they pray for Pope Francis and consider him legitimate Pope puts line between them and traditionalist churches in schism.

any thing about Traditionalist Churches

There are too many of them and they usually don’t even have a name, as they think they are original Catholic Church. If they celebrate Mass in Latin, hold that Pope is infallible but there is currently no valid Pope, you can bet they have apostolic succession. Is there any particular Church you are unsure about?

i am confused about syro malankara orthodox church and syro malankara jacobites church .i haven’t heard about traditionalist churches before .

First, it depends how you define “apostolic succession.” If we merely mean a valid episcopate–which seems to be the definition used these days in common parlance–then there are many which have been mentioned in this thread. In fact, those led by a validly ordained bishop celebrating the Eucharist are the only ones who can properly be called “churches.” Other groups–like most Protestants–are generally referred to as church-like or ecclesial communities, but they cannot be said to be churches.

However, the more traditional and more precise definition of apostolic succession can only be applied to the Catholic Church. It includes not just lineal sacramental heritage, but also successive, collegial communion with the Apostolic See. It is only the college of bishops headed by the successor of Peter that truly succeeds the college of the Apostles. Bishops who lack succession in this unity do not succeed in the commission given to the pastors of the one Church of Christ alone.

what about Chaldean Catholic Church? they were out of catholic church for some period right ?

Yes, they were, but schism itself does not invalidate Holy Orders, therefore Apostolic Succession in that sense was never lost.

Apostolic Succession in sense of unity with Peter, as Genesis wisely points out, is retained upon renewing union with Catholic Church (or coming to union with Catholic Church).

They are both autocephalous Churches in India. They have different heads are both united in communion with Oriental Orthodoxy. They are in communion with each other, but they are not same autocephalous Churches.

They are basically in Schism from Catholic Church. They believe Pope Francis is Antipope (false Pope) and think they keep entire Catholic truth. Most are sedevacantists (they believe there is no valid Pope) but some are sede impedists (they believe real Pope is hidden and can’t officially assume Papacy right now) or conclavists (they elected their own Popes). They have liturgies in Latin, they reject current Church hierarchy and current Vatican, and they reject Second Vatican Council. They are based mostly on polemics and conspiracy theories.

No; they were not.

They were out of contact because of the Mohammedan armies in the way.

I’ve moved this to Liturgy and Sacraments, as it is fundamentally about Holy Orders.

While I’m at it, I’ll note that there are many small breakaway churches, led by “vagante” bishops, some of who do have actual orders.

If you read the archives in the East and West forums on byzcath.org, you’ll find plenty of information.

And then there is the Polish National Church, a breakaway group in the US that still has orders.

Until recently, the “Old Catholic Church” had orders, but they’ve rejected the understanding of orders and attempt to ordain females.


I thought that some Orthodox Churches might not see the OCA as an autocephalous Church but the Orthodox as a whole do recognize them as a canonical Church.

Someone please correct me if I’m wrong.


So apostolic succession depends on union with catholic church or
succession of holy orders from any of 12 twelve apostles to present with out any breakage.
any church out of catholic church and which is allowing married priests -is there anything wrong even though they are having apostolic successionbased on above two facts ?.if one part of that group reunited with catholic church ,now they are in catholic church communion .what will be their apostolic succession ,any comment

only one part of church of east reunited with catholic church which is known as Chaldean Catholic Church.Right ?.there are two groups out side, Assyrian church of the east and ancient church of the east .please correct me if i am wrong ?

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