[quote=ak_mike]At school this year, I am taking European History. Among the main topics we are discussing this year is the papal bull, Unam Sanctam. My teacher shows his disapproval of the Catholic Church as well as his approval of the Reformation freely.
In the papal bull (which was in response to a dispute with King Phillip of France), Pope Boniface VIII states: 'Now, therefore, we declare, say, determine and pronounce that for every human creature it is necessary for salvation to be subject to the authority of the Roman pontiff" (Porro subesse Romano Pontifici omni humanae creaturae declaramus, dicimus, definimus, et pronuntiamus omnino esse de necessitate salutis).’ I was under the impression that salvation was through the church, but that not everyone who will go to heaven will have necessarily been under the authority of the Pope.
I am worried that with this, my teacher will damage the legitimacy of the Catholic Church by showing this (apparently infallible) proclamation and comparing it with current church teaching. This issue has made me abundantly confused, and I need help from anyone willing.
Your teacher cannot damage the legitimacy of the Catholic Church. If the gates of Hell cannot prevail against her, then we’ve little or nothing to worry about from him .
The following is from the Catechsim of the CCC:
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
I don’t think any of this contradicts EENS. It explains it, clarifies it, illuminates it, etc. Don’t let your teacher attempt to tell you what the Church teaches, let the Church tell you what she teaches.