Doctrine vs Dogma


Can someone please give me a simple way of understanding the difference between Doctrine and Dogma! :confused:


Rhonda in GA





I would say, that simply speaking, Dogmas are those truths that the Church has decided on definitively. Some examples would be: The Assumption of Mary, Transubstantiation (the name for the change that takes place when the bread and wine become the Body and Blood of Our Savior), and the Infallibility of the Pope when he speaks “ex-cathedra”.

Doctrines, while still truths of the faith, are of a somewhat lesser scale, only in the regards that they have not been defined solemnly.

Usually, the reason a truth is declared a dogma, is because there has arisen a dispute over it and so it needs to be clarified.

Hope that helps!


The way I explain it is that Dogma is Doctrine.

Dogmas are those truths proclaimed by the Magisterium of the Church to be held by all the Faithful and that may be found implicitly in the Scriptures.

Doctrine are the truths taught by the magisterium of the Church to be held by all the faithful and that may be found explicitly in the Scriptures.


Clearly, in both cases, it requires the **assent **of all Catholics. Gerry :slight_smile:


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit