Catholic....Roman or not?


#1

I’ve read a lot on this forum lately regarding how early church fathers and such referred to the “Catholic Church” or even the “One Holy Apostolic Catholic Church”, or something else similar. Most posters here, as expected equate this to the church of Rome. Of course, they do this based on the idea that they have a true line of apostolic succession which can be traced back to Simon Peter, on whom Christ supposedly built “his church”.

I did some reading, and I have come to a view which will be disagreed with by many. I came to the conclusion that there was, at the beginning of the “church era” (that is, following the death of Jesus), a unified Christian church which, while at odds with the prominent Jewish and pagan beliefs of the day, wasn’t at odds with itself.

Over time, we see that there were numerous splits in this church, resulting in the modern variety of churches that we have. The Roman church, of course, claims that it is the only true apostolic and catholic (that is, universal) church. However, in my research, I see that there are no fewer than dozens of other churches (with over half a dozen major ones) which call themselves catholic and which claim apostolic succession for their current leaders.

In other words, they claim exactly what the Roman Catholic Church does – Jesus established “his church” on Peter, and that their current leader is the successor of Peter, and that their church extends back to Bible times, and thus is the “one true church”.

My question then, is how Roman Catholics can defend against these? They believe themselves to be catholic, and they believe that their leader is the successor of Peter. What else is there that gives the Roman church superiority over the others?

(No dogmatic ranting, or rhetoric, please.)


#2

My first question would be: when did this splitting occur?

IOW, how long was it before that group which is today based in Rome became distinct from the other churches that allegedly existed from the beginning?


#3

We know this because it was handed down to us. It’s called Apostolic Succession.

I did some reading, and I have come to a view which will be disagreed with by many. I came to the conclusion that there was, at the beginning of the “church era” (that is, following the death of Jesus), a unified Christian church which, while at odds with the prominent Jewish and pagan beliefs of the day, wasn’t at odds with itself.

Over time, we see that there were numerous splits in this church, resulting in the modern variety of churches that we have. The Roman church, of course, claims that it is the only true apostolic and catholic (that is, universal) church. However, in my research, I see that there are no fewer than dozens of other churches (with over half a dozen major ones) which call themselves catholic and which claim apostolic succession for their current leaders.

That is partly true. The Eastern Orthodox also claimed to be Apostolic. She is rightly so because the Catholic Church affirms are valid even though the two ancient Christian Churches are in schism.

In other words, they claim exactly what the Roman Catholic Church does – Jesus established “his church” on Peter, and that their current leader is the successor of Peter, and that their church extends back to Bible times, and thus is the “one true church”.

My question then, is how Roman Catholics can defend against these? They believe themselves to be catholic, and they believe that their leader is the successor of Peter. What else is there that gives the Roman church superiority over the others?

(No dogmatic ranting, or rhetoric, please.)

If you have not taken a course on Christian History based on un-bias sources, you would find that the Early Christianity in its common belief was very Catholic.

After the death of the Apostle, there were Popes, after Peter died named Linus, after Linus died, he was succeeded by Cletus, after Cletus died, he was succeeded by St. Clement, after he died, he was succeeded by St. Evaristus, St. Alexander I, St. Sixtus I, St. Telesphorus, St. Hypios, St. Pius, and so on. There have been 266 Bishop of Rome since Peter. Pope Benedict XVI is the 266th Pope and the 265th Successor of Peter.

See Papal List

There are Catholics out there that claim to Be Catholic. The Secavant (I don’t think I spell this right), they believe the See of Peter is empty since Pope Pius X, they are oppose to Second Vatican Council, and we also have the SPPX, and others. Many of these so called Catholics who do not believe the current Pope Benedict XVI are putting themselves in serious error.

If what they claim is True then Jesus promised to Peter that the gates of hell shall not prevail against it was not fullfilled.

I hope this helps.

If you have not notice there were Catholics who did not feel that Second Vatican Council was right to remove the Tridentine Mass, and did they did not like the many changes that took place because of it.

Since they disagree they cut themselves off through schism, and forming their own “Catholic Church.”

There is only One Church and its the Catholic Church and Pope Benedict XVI is the Pope, the 265th Sucessor of St. Peter.


#4

Some of the first splits happened in the 400s. At this point, there obviously would have become distinctly separate groups. Interestingly, both call themselves Catholic to this day. Additionally, both claim a lineage of Patriarchs/Popes going back to Peter. Also, both claim the time in church history up until the split as part of their own.

So, how do we objetively tell which church was right?


#5

The Roman Catholic Church came into existance during the Apostolic age. (Read the last chapters of Acts)

All churches at that time were trying to maintain ONE system of belief, which is strongly implied by the word “catholic”.

Many of those churches remain and still call themselves “catholic” because of the system of belief. All of the Orthodox churches, the Coptic Church of Egypt, the Armenian Church and the Assyrian Church of the East are examples. All have Sacraments, the priesthood, bishops, veneration of Mary and many, many other similar beliefs. It is what it means to be “catholic”.

The Great schism came in 1054. At that time the Pope of Rome and the Patriarch of Constantinople were at serious odds, the Roman Church trying to hold onto its prominant position and the Constantinople church trying to gain position. The two bishops excommunicated each other. The seperation came over time and the schism was the culmination.

Since then the excommunications have been rescinded and the churches are trying to work out differences. (www.patriarchate.org) The last Pontiff, Pope John Paul II has called the two seperated churches the “two lungs” of Christ’s church.

Subrosa


#6

to pcmaster maybe this will answer your question Catholics, Protestants, and History **MARTY **[FONT=Arial Black]**ROTHWELL **[size=2]**Hail Mary
**V. Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee; blessed are thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
R. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and at the hour of our death. Amen.:slight_smile:
[/size][/FONT]


#7

The only Church I can think of that would make this claim is the Antiochian Orthodox Church. Yes, their patriarch is a successor of Peter. Yes, they extend back to Apostlic times.

However, the ther Eastern Orthodox and the Oriental Orthodox also extend to Bible times as well, and are true particular churches.

The objection is overruled because Peter went to Rome and was martyred there. He wasn’t martyred in Antioch. Martry’s Blood overrules a second see’s claims.


#8

So? Gimme a list of these supposed Catholic churches that supposedly split as early as the 400s.

You probably are confusing separate churches with “rites” that really are in communion with Rome.

Until you offer examples…


#9

[PC Master;2361017]I’ve read a lot on this forum lately regarding how early church fathers and such referred to the “Catholic Church” or even the “One Holy Apostolic Catholic Church”, or something else similar. Most posters here, as expected equate this to the church of Rome. Of course, they do this based on the idea that they have a true line of apostolic succession which can be traced back to Simon Peter, on whom Christ supposedly built “his church”.

Is an historical fact that the Catholic church is the early church of established by Jesus Christ. Even Wikipedia which is secular affirms this…

"The Roman Catholic Church or Catholic Church (see terminology below) is the Christian church in full communion with the Bishop of Rome, currently Pope Benedict XVI. **It traces its origins to the original Christian community founded by Jesus Christ and spread by the Twelve Apostles, **in particular Saint Peter."
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Roman_Catholic_Church

I did some reading, and I have come to a view which will be disagreed with by many. I came to the conclusion that there was, at the beginning of the “church era” (that is, following the death of Jesus), a unified Christian church which, while at odds with the prominent Jewish and pagan beliefs of the day, wasn’t at odds with itself.

There was a unified Church called the Catholic church. A plain reading of the Apostles creed affirms it is the one holy Catholic and Apostolic Church…

Over time, we see that there were numerous splits in this church, resulting in the modern variety of churches that we have. The Roman church, of course, claims that it is the only true apostolic and catholic (that is, universal) church. However, in my research, I see that there are no fewer than dozens of other churches (with over half a dozen major ones) which call themselves catholic and which claim apostolic succession for their current leaders.

And would you name these other so called “Catholic” churches?
Again, your version of history isn’t in line with any reputable historian, secular nor Christian.

In other words, they claim exactly what the Roman Catholic Church does – Jesus established “his church” on Peter, and that their current leader is the successor of Peter, and that their church extends back to Bible times, and thus is the “one true church”.

Show us which church makes this claim.

My question then, is how Roman Catholics can defend against these? They believe themselves to be catholic, and they believe that their leader is the successor of Peter. What else is there that gives the Roman church superiority over the others?

(No dogmatic ranting, or rhetoric, please.)

High Beam Encyclopedia…

"Catholic Church Term used in Christianity with one of several connotations: (1) It is the Universal Church, as distinct from local Churches. (2) It means the Church holding ‘orthodox’ doctrines, defined by St Vincent of Lérins as doctrines held “everywhere, always, and by all” – in this sense the term is used to distinguish the church from heretical bodies. (3)** It is the undivided Church as it existed before the schism of East and West in 1054**. Following this, the Western Church called itself ‘Catholic’, the Eastern Church ‘Orthodox’."
encyclopedia.com/doc/1O142-CatholicChurch.html

Columbia Encyclopedia…
"[Gr.,=universal], the body of Christians, living and dead,
considered as an organization. The word catholic was first
used c.110 to describe the Church by St. Ignatius of Antioch.
In speaking of the time before the Reformation in Western
Europe, Catholic is technically used to mean orthodox
(i.e., those who accept the tradition as mediated by the
Roman Church). Today in English it usually means the
Roman Catholic Church. Protestants use the word
catholic in its original sense to designate the Christian
Church taken as a whole."

bartleby.com/65/ca/catholic.html


#10

I did some reading, and I have come to a view which will be disagreed with by many. I came to the conclusion that there was, at the beginning of the “church era” (that is, following the death of Jesus), a unified Christian church which, while at odds with the prominent Jewish and pagan beliefs of the day, wasn’t at odds with itself.

Over time, we see that there were numerous splits in this church, resulting in the modern variety of churches that we have. The Roman church, of course, claims that it is the only true apostolic and catholic (that is, universal) church. However, in my research, I see that there are no fewer than dozens of other churches (with over half a dozen major ones) which call themselves catholic and which claim apostolic succession for their current leaders.

The difference between the former and the latter is that the former were in communion with the See of Rome. It is this communion which strengthens and really gives substance to the Catholic unity following the death of Peter and the apostles.

The latter are out of communion with the See of Rome; hence, are no longer reflective of the communion of the earlier era. They are a different Church from the earlier period.


#11

When you have a split, normally it is pretty obvious which is the main organisation and which is the splinter group. Sometimes the splinter group will admit is a reformed or an independent branch, sometimes it will try to claim it is the main body.

When you’ve got the second case, the Roman Church defines the main body as the one which goes with the Pope. However that is never the only way of telling. Every schism is slightly different. Sometimes validly ordained bishops go with the schismatic group, sometimes not. Sometimes there is a deep ideological divide, sometimes it is more about secular politics. Occasionally, as in China at the moment, people are both members of the Church and the schismatic group.


#12

My second question would be: Can you name these groups and provide any online links to them so that we can do a bit of research into them?


#13

Those who claim to be Catholic but were in disagreement with the rest of the Church were called Heretic which stem from Gnosticism, Nestorianism, Arianism, all of which was condemned by the Church Council. They based their belief in Scripture Alone…


#14

I think your signature answers the question. A quote by St. Augustine, my patron saint.

[quote=St. Augustine]“The very name of Catholic…belongs to this Church alone…although all heretics want to be called `catholic,’” (Augustine, 397 AD).
[/quote]


#15

I think part of the problem may be an overemphasis on “Roman.” Personally, I prefer to call myself just plain Catholic, because the whole distinction of “Roman” Catholicism really came about from the Anglicans, and was used in a pejorative way. I think the fact that people are so shocked to hear there are actually other rites attests to the fact that people have this confused idea that the whole “Roman” identity is a necessity to be Catholic…but it’s not, Catholicism is much more than Romanism.

So, perhaps as someone else said, the OP is confusing other Catholic rites, who are every bit as Catholic as Latin rite Catholics, with “splits,” which they aren’t.

Just a thought, anyway…the emphasis on Romanism that I see a lot of places, especially as a favorite among anti-Catholics, really annoys me sometimes.


#16

It would be helpful if you would share your research with us.
You can start by lisitng these dozen or so Churches and the half dozen major ones AND when they split. In other threads you have thrown out the names of Churchs that were mainly regional and differed with catholic Doctrine almost exclusively with the status of the Pope.

If you really reasearch you will find that the Catholic Church is inded the one true Church founded by Christ. It is the ONLY Church that can trace it roots back to the Apostolic Era… Even the Churchs you have yet to name were offshoots of this Church and occured many centures after the death of Christ.

What you wont find is anythig even remotely resembling the false Doctrines of Sola Fidelis and Sola Scriptura-the core Doctirnes of Protestantism.


#17

Hello PC,

I have read a lot of your posts and I find that you seem to love to riffle feathers. If you are truly looking for an answer why don’t you post links to your questions. Many people will say they know something but until they prove it I must assume they know nothing. You stated that you did some studying can you please let us know exactly what you where studying. Until you do I can only assume you have only studied anti-catholic bigotry (jack-chick?:shrug: ) You mentioned you have seen a list of Popes that aren’t part of the Catholic church. Where is this list so that we may take a look at it. You stated that splits where happening in the 400’s do you have a link or a book that can shed some light on your statements.

Your last statement.

No dogmatic ranting, or rhetoric, please.

Really shows how you live life in a tunnel. You can state all the ranting and rhetoric of your own beliefs but we can not rebuttal with our own documents. :hmmm: Seems a little biased don’t you think?


#18

Can you name these Churchs? I suspect you are confusing a split with doctrinal Disputes within the Church-mainly the Arianism and Gnoticism

Arianism was in no way shape or form a new Church-it was a dispute over the Nature of Jesus. In the end it was soundly rejected.

The other dispute concerend Gnosticism-but this was not a new Church or a even split for the Catholic Church-it was a 'religion" that had existed in one form or another since around 500 BC. Far from splitting from the Church the Gnostics tried to co-opt portions of Christianity into there age old beleifs. Again it was soundly rejected (remeber the gates of hell will not prevail against Gods Church). although we have see a re-emergence of Gnosticism in the last generation .

Again it would be very helpful to all of us if you would name these Churchs which allegedly split from the One True Church.


#19

Being ROMAN Catholic is extremely important to me because it emphasizes my connection to the Holy Father. You will find in the U.S.A. many alleged Catholics who go to Mass and receive Communion regularly, but reject the teachings and admonitions of John Paul II and Benedict XVI. They claim to be Catholic, but practice birth control and proudly proclaim themselves to be pro-abortion (the word they use is pro-choice). I feel a deep need to be identified differently than they are, and I find that Roman Catholic does the job very nicely.


#20

“Roman Catholic” while originally a pejorative, accurately applies to Catholics of the Latin Rite, as you probably are.

But there are many, many Catholics in union with the Holy Father but do not follow the Roman Rite; these are the Eastern Catholics, who follow other rites, such as Byzantine, Coptic, Antiochene, and others. They are not properly called Roman Catholics but are just as Catholic as we are.

The Roman Church is only one of 22 autonomous churches of the Catholic Church in union with the Pope.


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