My roommate has been extremely hostile towards the Catholic faith ever since I started conversion more than 5 months ago (despite the fact that he’s the one that got me to look into the Church to begin with). Up until now I like to think I’ve held my own against him in all of our arguments.
Lately he’s begun using papal infallibility to attack the Church. Saying that “if papal infallibility fails as a doctrine, then the entire faith falls apart” and that it is one of the “foundation blocks” of the faith. Personally I think it’s a ridiculous statement to say that somehow even if the Church did get papal infallibility wrong that it somehow means that everything else the Church has ever taught is wrong. I also don’t really consider it to be one of the “foundation blocks” of the faith either.
That being said, I was hoping to get some help on how to combat him on this:
When is the pope infallible? I know it’s on matters of dogma, but I was hoping to get some hypothetical examples of what might be considered infallible.
What is meant by the term infallible? I’ve seen differing opinions of what papal infallibility is and I’m honestly very confused. Does it mean that it is 100% impossible for the pope to be wrong about something declared ex cathedra? Or is it just an acknowledgment of the fact that we have to have a leader to decide certain matters of dogma and that we should regard these pronouncements as being infallible?
Honestly, I’m just confused on the entire thing, and I have no idea how to argue something I don’t fully understand. Any help would be greatly appreciated