The Church, One or Many?


#1

I was talking to my aunt and she donsn’t like the Catholic Churches stance on being the “one and only true Church” and she states that there was never “A Church” that from the very beggening after Christs assension into heven there were divsions. She points to Paul cusing Peter out for not hanging out with the Gentile converts and sticking with the Jews. And she also says that dispite the theological differances that in a sense all the Churches are all the same and form the Body of Christ. And she proboly has more up her sleave that I do not know of yet. What would I say to her? Edited out inapporpriate remark I don’t want to do that.


#2

There is only one faith,there is only 1 salvation, that is the Catholic Church. If you deny that there is only one Church who holds the only truth, then you deny the existence of absolute truth. Anyone who is outside the Catholic Church does not have salvation.

It seems that by the way your mother talks, she is a of a Protestant denomination. Protestants are rationalists who believe in private interpretation of the Bible. They make themselves their own popes.
To say that there are many churches that make up the Body of Christ and quote Scripture to “support” that, then they are guilty of misinterpretation. There is only one Interpreter-The Holy Roman Catholic Church.

But you dont have to take my word for it. Read the writings of the earliest Church Fathers, the ones who lived right after the Apostles.
For example, read the wiritings of St. Ignatius of Antioch.

The Church Fathers will attest to my claim.

Also, read the book called “The Teachings of the Church Fathers”. Edited out inappropriate remark


#3

Its a simple matter of logic really.

There is one God. There is only one truth. Therefore there is only one set of beliefs about him that is accurate. Either there exists a church that has accurately told the one truth of God, or there hasn’t. Suppose there hasn’t. Then Jesus is a liar. (I am with you always, till the end of the age. I will send you an advocate who will lead you in all truth. On this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell will not prevail against it.)

So there must be one true church. From that point it just becomes historical… which ones have valid claims tracing back to Christ?

Concerning Peter and Paul fighting: There is a difference between two people disagreeing on their private preaching styles, and changing what the church officially teaches. That’s like saying someone isn’t my sister because we’re fighting over what to have for dinner one night.

Josh


#4

[quote=Montie Claunch]I was talking to my aunt and she donsn’t like the Catholic Churches stance on being the “one and only true Church” and she states that there was never “A Church” that from the very beggening after Christs assension into heven there were divsions. She points to Paul cusing Peter out for not hanging out with the Gentile converts and sticking with the Jews. And she also says that dispite the theological differances that in a sense all the Churches are all the same and form the Body of Christ. And she proboly has more up her sleave that I do not know of yet. What would I say to her? Please don’t tell me to tell her to Edited out inapporpriate remark I don’t want to do that.
[/quote]

Good Lord! I doubt anyone here would tell your aunt what you’re worried that we might!

How many churches do you reckon Our Lord intended to found when He said to Saint Peter, “Blessed art thou, Simon bar Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this unto thee, but My Father which is in Heaven! And I say unto thee, thou art Peter and upon this rock I shall build My Church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I shall give unto thee the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in Heaven and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in Heaven.” ?


#5

[quote=AsStAnselmPrays]There is only one faith,there is only 1 salvation, that is the Catholic Church. If you deny that there is only one Church who holds the only truth, then you deny the existence of absolute truth. Anyone who is outside the Catholic Church does not have salvation.

Also, read the book called “The Teachings of the Church Fathers”. then tell your mother to Edited out inapporpriate remark .
[/quote]

I would be extemely careful of how you put the bolded area above.
From the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

818 "However, one cannot charge with the sin of the separation those who at present are born into these communities [that resulted from such separation] and in them are brought up in the faith of Christ, and the Catholic Church accepts them with respect and affection as brothers . . . . All who have been justified by faith in Baptism are incorporated into Christ; they therefore have a right to be called Christians, and with good reason are accepted as brothers in the Lord by the children of the Catholic Church."272 819 "Furthermore, many elements of sanctification and of truth"273 are found outside the visible confines of the Catholic Church: "the written Word of God; the life of grace; faith, hope, and charity, with the other interior gifts of the Holy Spirit, as well as visible elements."274 Christ’s Spirit uses these Churches and ecclesial communities as means of salvation, whose power derives from the fullness of grace and truth that Christ has entrusted to the Catholic Church. All these blessings come from Christ and lead to him,275 and are in themselves calls to "Catholic unity."276

And further, from the Catechism:

838 "The Church knows that she is joined in many ways to the baptized who are honored by the name of Christian, but do not profess the Catholic faith in its entirety or have not preserved unity or communion under the successor of Peter."322 Those "who believe in Christ and have been properly baptized are put in a certain, although imperfect, communion with the Catholic Church."323 With the Orthodox Churches, this communion is so profound "that it lacks little to attain the fullness that would permit a common celebration of the Lord’s Eucharist."324

Also, to the original poster, I apologize, I guess there are posters hear who WOULD recommend. you being disrespectful to your mother!


#6

People…there was no point in the first inappropriate remark. Self edit for content from now on “or else”, and that includes quotes.


#7

[quote=Montie Claunch]I was talking to my aunt and she donsn’t like the Catholic Churches stance on being the “one and only true Church” and she states that there was never “A Church”
[/quote]

Jesus thought differently :slight_smile: “…Upon this rock I will build My Church” - not churches: Church. Not “our” - but “My”.

that from the very beggening after Christs assension into heven there were divsions.

The Church is well aware of this :slight_smile:

She points to Paul cusing Peter out for not hanging out with the Gentile converts and sticking with the Jews.

Senators have criticised Presidents - that does not mean they deny they are Presidents. Was President Clinton any less the President because he was impeached ? No - he was impeached because he was bringing shame on the Presidency: because he was President, his behaviour was a matter of great importance.

So with Peter - his weakness was a serious matter, serious enough for him to be rebuked: the fact of the rebuke goes some way to suggest that St.Paul recognised St. Peter’s position.

Several Popes have been criticised by Catholics - Alexander VI was denounced to his face for his sins by Blessed Columba of Rieti: & he admitted her words were true. That has not stopped her being declared Blessed.

Popes are not all-wise, incapable of great evil, or right in all their acts - to rebuke a Pope is consistent with having the liveliest respect for his authority, and with obeying it when called on to do so. Pius IV (1555-59) did not think much of his immediate predecessors - he said that the Church’s Divine origin was shown by the fact that not even they had been able to destroy her. There is no virtue in being more Papalist than the Pope.

And she also says that dispite the theological differances that in a sense all the Churches are all the same and form the Body of Christ.

Up to a point, & in a variety of ways, different Christians belong to it - but only one Church on earth is the Church founded by Christ on St. Peter: there can no more be two Churches than two Gods. We have to go by what the Bible says & means - whether it offends us or others to do so. & what it means, is witnessed to by Sacred Tradition; and of this Sacred Tradition the final judge is the Pope, assisted by the Holy Spirit of God in judging what belongs to Sacred Tradition.

Because Christ keeps His promises & is faithful. IOW, the Church’s faith is stable and unconqered because the Church is assisted and guided by Her Divine Founder, Jesus Christ, Who has poured out His Spirit, the Spirit of Holiness & Truth, upon her.

And we have no business to contradict God :slight_smile:

Certain doctrines are revealed by God - such as Transubstantiation. It is as certainly true as if it had been described in the New Testament. It has been defined as a dogma - therefore, it is true beyond any doubt at all.

Almost no other Christian body accepts it as true - that does not make it any less a fact. If only one Catholic were left on earth, that person would be right in believing it, and the rest of Christians would be wrong not to.

Since God has revealed it, to deny it is (in effect) to say that God is mistaken. As it is revealed, it is important enough for us to need to know it.

If Christians deny dogmas - how can they be fully in Christ’s Church ? Is Christ divided ? Does He teach different Christians that:
[list]
*]there are 66 Biblical books - & 73 books
*]that the Church is purely invisible - & that it has a visible part
*]that the Pope is Antichrist - & is Christ’s vicar on earth
*]that the Church will be destroyed - & that it will last for ever
*]that Mary was not sinless - that Mary was sinless
*]that women can be priests - that they never can ?
[/list]To treat all Christian bodies as equally parts of the Church is to say God is a God of confusion: which denies 1 Corinthians 14. They are not all the same - if they are, why do some of them criticise each other for teaching false doctrine ?

The idea that all Christians are members of the Church in exactly the same way, despite doctrinal differences, may be generously meant - but it is like calling good evil & evil good: which is hateful to God. However well meant it may be, it is false, untrue, and very dangerous. How can we think straight, if lies and truth are equally entitled to be believed ? Coffee is not cyanide. To give truth & error equal status, is to deceive others - it’s wicked, satanic: for the devil is “the father of lies” (John 8) When truth is at stake, the Church has a God-given duty to be utterly intolerant. ##

And she proboly has more up her sleave that I do not know of yet. What would I say to her?.


#8

**Ephesians 4:4-6 **

4There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;

5One Lord, one faith, one baptism,

6One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in all**.**


#9

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