Are the Orthodox right?

I grew up Catholic but after a lot of research I have come to realize their is no fault of the Orthodox in the schism. The original church only saw the bishop of Rome as a place of respect, the first among equals. Nowhere did it ever mean the bishop was infallible. The church of Antioch also claimed and claims succession from Peter. The more I study it it seems to me that the pope only gained power from the fall of western Rome, added filioque without even addressing this in a synod first, and closed all Greek rite churches in Rome. How can this even be countered? It is all historical fact.

It is not really a question of the Eastern Orthodox or the Western Church being right or wrong. Each are valid Churches with all seven valid sacraments. Mistakes have been made East and West. What we can say is that schism is very gravely wrong, and one of our top priorities should be re-communion.


Scripture proves that whatever is the true Church must have one visible head. In fact, Noah’s Ark is a prefigurement of the Church, and that Ark had one head, Noah. Similarly, the Catholic Church has one head who is Christ, the head of His Spouse, and the Supreme Pontiff is His vicar. It would be absolutely inappropriate to state that the Church has two heads—Christ and the Pope—because the Pope’s authority comes only from Christ.

With the Eastern Orthodox, there is no clear, visible head of the entirety of Orthodoxy. Each national Church has an incredible amount of autonomy, which decreases unity. It is essentially collegiality gone completely off the rails. This lack of unity also explains the fact that there is no Supreme Pontiff for the Orthodox, and thus they cannot be the Ark of Salvation, which must have one head.

It is often customary, but not strictly necessary, for these things to be addressed in a Synod. Other bishops advise the Pope on whether it is prudent to definitively declare a dogma at a certain point, but this concerns merely nature the proclamation of the teaching, and not the nature of the teaching itself. To say that the Pope must consult with other bishops is characteristic of the error of conciliarism.


Yes. Peter was at Antioch before he was at Rome. Also Galatians 2:9 mentions James first , before Peter. If Peter was recognised as the infallible, Supreme Head of the Catholic Church with universal jurisdiction over the whole Church, why was he not mentioned first before James. James was subject to the universal jurisdiction and supreme authority of Peter, therefore is it not correct protocol to mention Peter first before James?

There are quite a few protestant theologians that would argue otherwise and do so pretty effectively.

There’s nothing in scripture that indicates the Petrine office, or even the apostolic office, was to continue past the deaths of the originals. Of course, I’m not hugely convinced by those arguments, but it’s not like scripture clearly contradicts them.

Then there’s the discussion concerning the powers and limitations of that theoretical head, if indeed it is supposed to exist.
Again, scripture is either silent or very vague on the issue.

Sure there is. Your bishop.

Over-vague, particularly as Thomas took the gospel east to Bactria and the Indus Valley and disappeared from western Christian history. I suppose he violated the implicit requirement to look Rome-ward (or Peter-ward)?

Again, this is just something you state axiomatically without having actually shown it. I observe tremendous unity in Orthodoxy. If I could be so bold, I think they consistently endure less clamor than their papist cousins.

I seem to recall the Ark of the Covenant having two seraphs upon it. Presumably both with heads intact. Just pointing that out :slight_smile:

Which is the big rub. From an Orthodox perspective, no man is above council. No one can unilaterally alter what council declares save other council - not even a particularly influential bishop (say, of Rome).

Yes, it was anathematized by the last ecumenical council (well… ecumenical to Catholics, anyway) before the protestant reformation.

I’ve heard it said before that all the Apostled enjoyed personal infallibility in matters of faith and morals, but Peter was the head. After the Apostles, only the Pope enjoyed personal guaranteed infallibility.

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Did Peter have universal and supreme jurisdiction over the entire church including James? But James is mentioned first, then after James, Peter is mentioned, indicating that Peter came second. Gal 2:9.

Just because Peter was listed second does not mean that he wasn’t the head.

I thought that protocol would have the supreme head of the church listed first, and then those subject to his universal and supreme jurisdiction listed after.

Peter is mentioned first every time all of the apostles are mentioned in the gospels (even before James).

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Were did you hear that?

Of course it would be appropriate, but the simple fact of listing the Pope second somewhere does not mean he isn’t the supreme head.

That is my point.

To whom were the keys given?


As we read in Isaiah, keys can be lost.

Moreover, we read nowhere in scripture that the keys can be passed to a successor.

Christ placed a guarantee on the Church, NOT the petrine seat.

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One could make a pretty decent argument that the current Catholic understanding of a successor-pope didn’t exist until Leo I.

Well, the proclamation of a dogma doesn’t mean that the dogma was only true from the point of declaration onward.

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When Christ said “feed My sheep”, He was referring to the sheep in general, including in the ages to come.

That’s a great pro-Catholic interpretation. But that involves putting words into Christ’s mouth that he simply didn’t say, thus it’s hazardous.

Evidently you’re not a Catholic; no wonder why you’re ignoring Pope Boniface VIII’s decree Unam sanctum. This is the magisterial interpretation.

Have a nice day.

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No, I’m not Catholic, thus the magisterium isn’t binding upon me.

Are Catholics the only ones allowed to discuss Orthodoxy and related issues?

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