Here's a doozy!


So long as you have Catholics disagreeing over doctrines, then any assertion of doctrinal unity is simply superficial and does not reflect the underlying reality.

How do you answer that one?


First of all, if a Catholic doesnt agree with a Church teaching that doesnt mean “doctrinal chaos” or that the Church is wrong.

Second, I would ask what specific doctrine you or your friends think are being disagreed upon, and we will check to see what official Church decrees have stated on the issue. If the Church has spoken on an issue in a dogmatic fashion, then it must be believed. If the Church has not spoke in an authoritative manner then the Catholic has a certain freedom on that topic.


Was the early Church dis-unified because they disagreed over the need for circumcision? (Acts 15)

Disagreeing Catholics (the ones that disagree with established Catholic Dogma) are dissenting Catholics. They are wrong - not the Church.


I think that’s the point I am facing … if there are ‘disagreeing catholics’ means that there is no unity. We may believe that the church is right, but that still means that there is no unity.

I do like the point about Acts 15, though.


I think that’s the problem I face - ‘Disagreeing catholics’ means that there is no unity and it doesn’t matter whether we believe the Church is correct or not.

I do like the Acts 15 part though.


Just because the Jews didn’t accept the message of Jesus, doesn’t mean that His message was false.

Just because the Corinthians went a little south in their practices doesn’t mean the message of Jesus and the Apostles was false.

Just because Catholics can think for themselves and foolishly reinvent doctrine, doesn’t make the Church false, it just makes the individuals false.


Catholics don’t disagree over doctrine as in disagreeing what doctrines the Church teaches. They (some of them) simply disagree over whether they choose to believe the Church teaching in particular cases.

The underlying reality is that the Church teaches doctrine received from the apostles (and thus from God), and that some individual Catholics choose to reject those teachings for whatever (bad) reasons.

The underlying reality, that is to say, is that all of mankind are fallen creatures, even Catholics. But we knew that, right?


It’s not about truth, it’s about unity.


This is another way of saying that there is no objective truth. There are still people who believe that the earth is flat and even though they do say it, it does not make the world flat or even spark a controversy because the truth of it has already been seen and proven.

In other words, a person can be wrong and because they are wrong does not refute a truth.



Ooooh, that’s right. Sorry.

The unity is in the fact that the teachings haven’t changed over the 1000’s of years. They’ve held up to the test of time. Even though other’s have succumbed to societal pressures (homosexuality is not sinful, contraception is all right, a woman’s choice is her business), the Church has not.

The unity is in the fact that I can go to a Mass anywhere in the world and experience the same format and the same readings. It’s in reading the writings of Justin Martyr in the 2nd century and Hippolytus in the 3rd (?) and seeing the same Mass (with only a surprisingly few changes) as we see today.


I see you’re having the same problem I’m facing - defining unity. Your first part highlights the Church’s consistency, not really unity.

I think the chap I’m chatting with in a Protestant forum sees unity as ‘every member accepting the same doctrines’. We know that that is impossible and should not be how unity is defined, but he sees it as catholics holding on to different doctrines, and not so much going against the church per se.

I guess it revolves around how we define unity.

You define unity as being able to go for mass anywhere and hearing the same readings? Well, other denominations are able to do likewise within their own denomination … does that mean they have unity too?


No, Consistency in teaching can only be maintained in unity, or else we would have split from each other time and time again. This hasn’t happened.

For instance, when the Arian heresy was addressed, those that believed in it didn’t simply leave and form a new Church. This happens throughout our brothers churches. I’ve seen the local Church of Christ parish break up into to churches simply over the disagreement of whether the grape juice should be taken from a single cup or placed in multiple paper cups.

The Unity of the Mass cannot be maintained over the entire world, for churches in other countries don’t like to be told what readings to cover in their Sunday services from people in other countries (and some ONE has to decide these readings).


This dead horse has been beaten many times. It’s a specious argument at best.


Hi, Inquirer

Jesus was well aware in the disunity of the world as to how they worshiped God, which is the reason Jesus became flesh to show the world, how much God loves them. That’s why preaching the gospel, with the same mind is so vital to our unity as Christians. Jesus prayed for this to happen.

John 17:23,23 I in them and thou in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that thou hast sent me and hast loved them even as thou hast loved me.

Quote =OneNow1, So the reality is the Church of Jesus Christ through the Catholic Church for nearly 2000 yrs. has set the standard toward that unity of mind and heart.

There will be dissenters in all the Christian world, as is seen readily, from Gnostics to the Reformation. The attribute of the Catholic Church is this. She knows sinners will be mixed with the rest of the Church, but as Jesus hoped and prayed she does so for all her members and for the whole world to become one with Christ, through His Church.The Church has taught Christ on the cross for 2000yrs. My 2 cents worth.

Peace, OneNow1


Now, to address the unity of the followers:

A) Although there will always be dissenters, the Catholic followers will be more united when the leaders of the Church become holier.

B) The leaders of the Church will become holier as the Faithful pray more for the holiness of the Church Leadership.

Will it go round in circles… :whistle:


Sounds more like the way the Body of Christ works according to St. Paul’s letters to the Corinthian church now doesn’t it?


Exactly, this lesson was taught to us by reading the Old Testament stories of Israel. When the Israelites followed their religious leaders, and these leaders were holy, walls fell, armies were routed, nations trembled, and the Land prospered.


This is what Catholics believe:

813 The Church is one because of her source: "the highest exemplar and source of this mystery is the unity, in the Trinity of Persons, of one God, the Father and the Son in the Holy Spirit."259 The Church is one because of her founder: for "the Word made flesh, the prince of peace, reconciled all men to God by the cross, . . . restoring the unity of all in one people and one body."260 The Church is one because of her “soul”: "It is the Holy Spirit, dwelling in those who believe and pervading and ruling over the entire Church, who brings about that wonderful communion of the faithful and joins them together so intimately in Christ that he is the principle of the Church’s unity."261 Unity is of the essence of the Church:

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