The Protestant Dilemma Writ Catholic

Devin Rose thinks he found all the dilemmas that haunt Protestants (and that led him to Rome). But has he along with Jason and the Callers really escaped the thicket of difficulties.

On the one hand, having a written basis for determining church teaching really comes in handy (as opposed to the slippery way that oral tradition or papal whim might operate. According to Gerhard Cardinal Mueller:

Not even an ecumenical council can change the doctrine of the Church, because her Founder, Jesus Christ, entrusted the faithful preservation of his teachings and doctrine to the apostles and their successors. The Gospel of Matthew says: “Go and teach all people everything that I commanded you” (cf. Mt 28:19–20), which is nothing if not a definition of the “deposit of the faith” (depositum fidei) that the Church has received and cannot change. Therefore the doctrine of the Church will never be the sum total of a few theories worked out by a handful of theologians, however ingenious they may be, but rather the profession of our faith in revelation, nothing more and nothing less than the Word of God entrusted to the heart—the interiority—and the lips—the proclamation—of his Church.

We have an elaborate, structured doctrine about marriage, all of it based on the words of Jesus himself, which must be presented in its entirety. We encounter it in the Gospels and in other places in the New Testament, especially in the words of Saint Paul in the First Letter to the Corinthians and in Romans.

On the other hand, the dilemma for all Christians is whether they will submit to religious authority. This includes Roman Catholics and Protestants:

The hallmark Protestant idea of priesthood of all believers allows the individual — whose relationship with God is unmediated — to determine his or her fitness to receive the sacrament. The Catholic Church, meanwhile, retains a few layers of priestly and catechetical scrutiny.

Last week at the synod, Cardinal Andre Vingt-Trois of Paris worried that couples “do not believe that the use of contraceptive methods is a sin and therefore they tend not to speak of them in confession and so they receive Communion untroubled.” Perhaps because married women might think it inappropriate to be questioned about contraception by a cadre of celibate men.

Either way, confessors tend not to press the issue, and no one pulls married couples out of the Communion line. Few believe a solid majority of Catholic women or their husbands will burn in hell for using artificial contraceptives.

In the case of cohabitating couples, there is little the Church can do. Marriage preparation classes acknowledge its sinfulness, but priests and bishops cannot afford to turn away half of what is already a declining number of couples seeking marriage in the Church. The US Conference of Catholic Bishops advises that priests can point couples toward a holier union by “supporting the couple’s plans for the future rather than chastising them for the past.”

Yet even for Catholics whose relationships put them in a perpetual state of mortal sin, individual conscience and church authority are often in fierce tension. In practice, LGBT Catholics often rely on their own consciences in determining whether they will go forward for Communion. In some locales, it is common enough for partnered gays and lesbians to receive Communion that it only makes news when they are turned away.

Meanwhile, Bryan Cross and company have yet to recognize a dilemma that cost a night’s sleep.

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89 thoughts on “The Protestant Dilemma Writ Catholic

  1. Hey Flush, first time commenter here, mega dittos.
    Bryan Cross, Devin and company couldn’t recognize a dilemma if Ray “The Rottweiler” Rice was standing by to drive home the point.
    If you “Look Inside” Devin’s new book, The Protestant’s Dilemma it becomes obvious that as an ex evangelical he couldn’t recognize or understand what a reformed catholic was if his life depended on it.
    Same goes for Bryan. Of course, originally you might not have been able to tell if it was wilful or just his Covenant Sem. background, but by now there is no excuse.

    Oops, we bad. Implicit faith really is a silver bullet.

    Meanwhile Jimmy Akin (right?) looks like Duck Dynasty. Clever these catlick papists are. What will they think of next?

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  2. Dreher recently posted on the latest GSS report on views about sexual ethics. The items that jump out at me are first, the overwhelming extent to which mass going Catholics (and Catholics generally) are pushing the sexual revolution forward. They are even more liberal on these issues than mainliners. I was surprised by that. Second, and perhaps even more surprising, was the international connection between catholicism and sexual permissiveness – the more catholic a country is, the more open the country is to divorce and ssm.

    Reading what Maggie Gallagher has to say in NR about this synod and seeing Allen’s report on how divided the Bishops were on the final vote creates a stark contrast with the propaganda presented over at CtC.

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  3. sdb, exactly. By this logic (from the Archbishop of Georgia), Rome will have female clergy soon:

    Like parents everywhere they love their children, and like faithful Catholics they also love our Church. Yet they also are deeply troubled to feel that our Church does not love their children, and therein is the conflict that fills and saddens their hearts.

    As parents, they have all faced and accepted the reality of having a child who has openly shared their sexual orientation with them in trust and in the hope of being lovingly received as a son or daughter. As devoted parents, they obviously reacted with concern that their child’s revelation would become the source of hurt and discrimination. They know that it too often does bring rejection and insult to a child that they love and cherish.

    What they hope for now is that our Church will become more loving and understanding of the worth and dignity of their children.

    These wonderful people asked the Archbishop if he could love their children with the same compassion and understanding that the Lord Jesus embraced those He encountered as living outside of the social and religious norms of his time.

    I assured them that not only could I respect and love their children, I was obliged to do so by the same Gospel mandate that governs the entire Church.

    Our conversation included a personal description of the young people represented by these parents. Some of them brought photographs, and many spoke of their children with tears. These young men and women were raised in Catholic homes, some attended Catholic schools, and many were very active in parish activities.

    Their parents then spoke of the hostile environment that many of them encountered from the Church. The language that the Church uses in speaking of their sexual orientation is often unwelcoming and condemnatory. These parents said repeatedly that their children do not feel welcome in the faith of the Church in which they were raised.

    I assured them that the Church must welcome all of her sons and daughters—no matter what their sexual orientation or life situation might be—and that we have not always done so with a spirit of compassion and understanding. I spoke of the distinction that our Church makes between orientation and behavior, which admittedly needs reexamination and development.

    We are all called to conversion—not just some members of the Church.

    The severity of some of our moral language occasionally suggests that certain members of the Church are superior to others. St. Paul reminds us that “all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God (Rom 3:23).”

    I encouraged this group to continue to meet and pray together. I will ask one of our deacons with a child who is gay to serve as my liaison with them. I invite any pastor who has been in conversation with parishioners who might face some of these same challenges to contact Amy Daniels in our Formation and Discipleship Office to refer them to this group. I will celebrate Mass in November for the group at their fall retreat, and I will continue to support them, as they remain very much in my heart, as do their children.

    I ask all of us to pray for them and their children that we might together discover ways to draw them closer to the heart of the Church—where they belong and where there is always room. I am very glad to know that the Bishops’ Synod is asking these very same questions right now in Rome!

    Actually, the church could use more of Bryan’s logic and less of feeling the other’s pain.

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  4. Darryl,

    C’mon, you know that the failure of Roman Catholics to believe and follow their church does not affect the truth of their faith. They can teach true dogma that is true and principled even if no one in the pew believes it. That is, we could believe the Magisterium actually thought it was true if they disciplined somebody. But with, even that is okay, because this is a PASTORAL synod that isn’t changing dogma but just feeling out how to apply it to people who have absolutely no interest in every following the dogma. Let those cohabitating couples take the Eucharist, the dogma hasn’t changed.

    What do you have to be drinking to actually believe this nonsense?

    In the pseudo-peace of the principled paradigm.

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  5. Money quote from Darryl’s post:

    I spoke of the distinction that our Church makes between orientation and behavior, which admittedly needs reexamination and development.

    If the distinction means that acting on the orientation is sin but merely possessing it is not, what kind of development is going to make that more accommodating exempt to say possessing and acting are, well, maybe not ideal but certainly not damnable.

    Do these people really think a church filled with leaders like the archbishop of Georgia is going to hold to anything resembling a traditional Christian sexual ethic? Were these converts asleep during church history at their Reformed seminaries when they were discussing Machen?

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  6. You can view sexual ethics in two ways:

    (1) God decides what is ethical and reveals it in nature and in Scripture

    (2) Man decides what is ethical and that decision is based on some principle that man comes up with. The modern principle that man has settled on is that if the sexual activity is between people with equal power and is not hurtful to either one of them or to innocent third parties, it is ethical.

    So consensual gay sex is ethical.

    Premarital sex between adults (and between consenting minors) is ethical.

    Extramarital sex that does not hurt either one of the spouses (they both consent to play around) is ethical.

    Anal sex is ethical.

    Pornography is ethical if everyone involved in making it consents and is paid fairly.

    S&M could be ethical if everyone involved agrees to it.

    Basically anything goes as long as one party does not have unequal power over the other (adult with minor, clergy with parishioner, counselor with patient, etc.)

    Once the church starts buying this argument and adds to it the fact that someone is “in love” (and who can really help who they love?) it becomes easy for that to trump (1). After all, that person is right in front of us seeking our approval and God is off in heaven.

    Once a church wants to please people and not God, they’re toast.

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  7. Irish American papist Pat Buchanan puts his foot in it.

    Should such be attempted, the pope would be speaking heresy. And as it is Catholic doctrine that the pope is infallible, that he cannot err when speaking ex cathedra on faith and morals, this would imply that Francis was not a valid pope and the chair of Peter is empty.

    Bryan, Jase, Devin, Taylor and crew in shock and denial.
    Clint Eastwood interview of empty chair forthcoming.

    Robert, correct me if I’m wrong, but CTC published your comment before they could pony up a rebuttal from the killer bee epigones. Or is that just my lying eyes?

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  8. Bob S,

    I’m not sure what comment you’re talking about. I’ve been telling Bryan over the past day or two that what he accuses Protestants of doing (“picking a church that agrees with their interpretation of Scripture”) is exactly what he did once he decided, by his own interpretation of his own felt needs (or something), that he needed a “principled means.” He then went off and found the church that had the principled means that looked like what he thought it should look like (and even then by ignoring what Rome actually does in practice, but we haven’t gotten there yet.)

    I don’t expect him to have a good answer to that no matter how many words he writes. He hasn’t been able to answer anyone else on it.

    And I LOVE the quote from Buchanan. For all the whining that Rome does about Protestants being their own pope, their goes Buchanan being his own pope and declaring that Francis won’t be a valid pope if he does such and so.

    Of course, the majority of RCs, since they largely ignore the pope, have thought the chair was empty for decades. How many American RCs thought JPII or B16 had any meaningful authority over them?

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  9. This collegiality is interesting. Outside of Vat II. this way of the church leading was not how RC worked when I was growing up. Maybe more than the decisions reached, is this evolution in how the magisterium is moving forward. What may end up being remarkable or noteworthy would be if Francis or the next pope reversed course and tried to be more insular or ethnocentric(again) or monarchical. This looks to be a sea change in leadership style.

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  10. Hi Robert,

    I can understand how it is that you think that Protestants who convert to the Catholic Church are just picking a church that they believe is more scriptural that our previous church, but that isn’t what we have done. To become a Catholic is to give up looking for a community that accords with scripture the way I read the scriptures. Scriptually(minus long standing Catholic tradition) nearly anything that any Protestant community said that I had to hold to dogmatically is supportable. This is why Protestants representing their respective heirarchy argue among each other about essential doctrines. I had to relinguish disagreements about particular doctrines that I had previously said were supported by scripture ,per Protestant confessions, because I could see that when I was Protestant the only thing that the local URC could censure me about was only any visibly wrong moral conduct. Of course, in my thoughts, I wasn’t permitted to agree with Roman Catholic doctrine or promulgate it amoung my fellow Reformed congregants, but intellectally, no one could command me to bend my knee in adherance. They could never censure my reason, bringing it into conformity with their confessions unless “I” was personally convinced that those confessions were reasonable both to natural reason and supernatural faith. That left me, epistemically speaking, terrified. I didn’t want. To be the captain of my own soul; that is very far from believing that there exists a Church where I give up my own private idea about matters of faith and morals. To show. You how this looks in practice, I will share a little of myself personally… I would have been just fine going along my life using contraception, but when I became Catholic, I had to be willing to be open to life in a way very radical to the modern mind. I had to be open to a reversal of my tubal ligation. Robert, I am 48 years old! And I can already imagine the jokes that this information will elict! lol! As you can imagine,I was terrified, but I was also willing to go through with it because I was comimg to understand just how high and unwavering is Christianity’s view of the family, the sacramental nature of marriage, and ultimately towards the importance and dignity of human life,even though I would have to give up my life as I know it, gain weight, suffer ridicule, be even more exhausted than I am, be an embarrassment to my adult children, a stupid woman in the eyes of the medical community, etc… I shouldn’t have used the word, “view” in regards to Catholic dogma, for that would conontate the idea of relativism when in truth morality since fixed being authored by Trust Himself must be unveiled through the revealed religion of Christianity as represented through Christ’s own body on earth, His Church.
    I “got out of it” so to speak because I have already had four c-sections and in the opinion of my doctor who I am obliged to trust, it would be dangerous for me. So the Church isn’t heartless, but that it would speak with authority and consistancy was a big motive of credibility. If I were able to have children, I would have still become Catholic and not have returned to my old Reformed fellowship even if in my heart there was some degree of rebellion and fear, for I would believe that ultimately everything is in His say, and I couldn’t stand between two opinions. If God be God than it is better to submit to Him than create a God of my own liking.
    Does this help you understand the difference?

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  11. Robt.
    What I am referring to is CTC loosening up (no kidding?!#*) so that the last comment is not necessarily a clone response from the fooled faithful. Korrect me if I am wrong, but it used to be that a prot comment was held up till there was an answer from a mod.
    And they did post Brandon Addison’s article before they got around to responding to it.

    But in the spirit of Poe’s Purloined Letter (no papist he, though a resident of Baltimore he be), eureka, the answer has been there all along in front of Pinnochio’s presbyterian noses.

    Bry et al are nominalists, no matter the name calling on the imputation thread over at the Colored Hobbit. The church says it is the church. It has all the paraphernalia (apostolic fossils bones) and external things that say “church”, so it must be The Church. Case perfunctorily/performatively closed.
    The pope says he is the pope. Ergo Francis is the pope.
    Until he’s not and everybody does an about face in unison and if they don’t, we still say they did. “Why we’ve always believed in papaltransubstantiationability.”

    But the revolution reformation was and Bryan needs to bone up on hisArchimedes Aristotle and his Book on popery Politics where he talks about the form remaining, but the reality being otherwise.

    cheers

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  12. Susan,
    If justification by faith alone in Christ alone as found in Scripture alone is not an essential Prot doctrine that the URC couldn’t discipline you on, then all bets are off and you better be sure your beanycopter works, because there is no other way you’re leaving the Alice in Wonderland theme park.

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  13. Robert, that’s true. At the same time, Cross has said on multiple occasions that it all comes down to the church. This coincides with what so many of the CtC conversion narratives claim, as well as some cradles: “The RCC is the church that Jesus Christ founded.©” In other words, ecclesia is prior to scriptura, just the opposite of the Protestant priority. But he’s still his own interpreter. Where is The Church? Surprise, it’s where Bryan is.

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  14. Zrim
    Posted October 21, 2014 at 2:35 pm | Permalink
    Susan, tmi.

    Too much nasty, Mr. Z.

    Darryl’s blocking me again so I guess you’ll have to find the error of your ways without me around here.

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  15. Erik Charter
    Posted October 20, 2014 at 10:21 pm | Permalink

    Anal sex is ethical.

    Ah, something to remember you by, Erik. If you decide to reply with your typical snideness, I’m sorry Darryl won’t let me turn my other cheeks to you.

    Meanwhile, Darryl Hart and company have yet to recognize a dilemma that cost a night’s sleep.

    “Protestantism” and Presbyterianism collapse around you, but all you can manage is going after the Pope and Tim Keller. Weak.

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  16. Bob S,

    If justification alone is found in scripture alone is your dogma then you are not Reformed for Luther and Calvin’s reformations claim to also appeal to the tradition of Mother Kirk.

    Steve,

    Jesus didn’t tell the Apostles to write down anything. Just like the visible covenanted people of the O.T. who happened to write about God yet weren’t told to keep a record since they were to remain a people who by grace were being kept for God,the N.T. Church is also covenanted through faith in the same God who also didn’t command that a written record be kept.
    But you know that there is supposed to be a visible church, otherwise you wouldn’t leave your house every Sunday morning. You just put your confidence in the exegesis of a man who could plausibly be wrong about much. If the Catholic is just essentially doing what Protestants are doing,that is interpreting scripture as we want, then why not leave us to our own interpretation,and not be so dogmatically Protestant? We are within our rights doing only what you yourselves are doing after all. Protestantism only lives on what it protests about Catholicism. So where Protestantism is correct it is correct because it is still Catholic in that regard; and where it protests it is outside the moral consensus of the Church. If that moral consensus is wrong there is no such thing a Christianity but only man’s opinion, and that is why I would be forced to walk away.

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  17. Steve,

    Srsly? Kids in government grade school get more info than this. I would tell my friends over dinner that I’ve had my tubes tied. You must be kidding. The thing with modern society is it feels shame and repugnance where it shouldn’t and none where it should.

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  18. Susan – Steve,

    Jesus didn’t tell the Apostles to write down anything.

    Erik – Nice that they did, though. It appears to be God’s way, given the Old Testament Scriptures.

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  19. Erik,

    Jesus did found a Church though, and that is why you get your notions of such in the first place. No one was supposed to grab a bible that had , at the first, not yet even been completed and say, ,
    “Thanks, I have the Book of St. Mark. See ya later!” They were a community that was community around the Eucharist. The Church is Eucharistic foremost. And that was in place from the start, eVen before a word that would come to be the NT was penned.

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  20. “No one was supposed to grab a bible that had…”
    And yet Jesus appeals to “as it was written”, Peter appeals to the scriptures, Paul appeals to the scriptures, the Bereans are commended for checking what Paul said against the scriptures, and Paul notes that even apostles could promulgate a false gospel – their word’s had to be checked against…the scriptures. One might be forgiven for reading the NT and coming to the conclusion that the scriptures are foundational. If angels and apostles could err (as Paul noted is possible), then certainly their successors (individually and as councils could) err as well. Tradition is a crucial teacher, but it must always be tested against scripture because tradition isn’t inerrant – the OT “church” got a lot of stuff wrong (without losing their authority) and had to be corrected on the basis of scripture, and the NT church continues to get a lot of stuff wrong – some even cease to be a legitimate church.

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  21. Susan, “To become a Catholic is to give up looking for a community that accords with scripture the way I read the scriptures.”

    See, you really don’t believe the Bible is the Word of God.

    And whatever happened to the Roman Catholic tradition of affirming reason? You just go along with whatever they tell you? No wonder the church doesn’t reform.

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  22. Zrim, and just remember that on the day that Christ rose from the dead, the only believer was Mary. At one time the church existed without a pope. Strike that. The whole OT had no pope (and when they did have monarchs it didn’t work out so well).

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  23. Susan,

    Being willing to do something that you weren’t exactly sure was right for you personally isn’t unique to Roman Catholicism. Confessional Protestants don’t rise up every time the church asks them to do something they aren’t personally convicted of yet. Every one who comments here and is a church officer takes vows to maintain the purity and the peace of the church. Very few Presbyterian pastors are convinced that every jot and tittle of the WCF is correct, and yet they submit to their presbyteries if the presbyteries tell them not to teach against the section they disagree with.

    I’m not trying to be rude, but based on what you have said here and elsewhere, it doesn’t seem that you were actually paying attention to the ecclesiology of the Reformed Church that you were in. Yeah, it’s messy, but its certainly no less messy or orderly than Rome. Have you been paying attention to the Synod? Have you seen that the members are nearly divided in half over whether to approve language “valuing homosexual orientation”? You’re not paying attention to what Rome actually is. It would be a lot easier talking to you and the CTC folks if you all would at least be consistent and say “Yeah, Rome is supposed to be the way we say it is supposed to be, but it certainly isn’t. It’s liberal all the way to the top and we’re mad about it because this is supposed to be Christ’s church, not the church of what’s happening now.” But we never get that.

    What we get are thousands of words from Bryan Cross telling us that you all didn’t “choose” a church, you discovered the church. I’m sorry, that just isn’t true. You continually complain about the disagreements among Protestant bodies and lament the lack of a “principled means” for settling them. The problem is that there isn’t a lack of a principled means, there is a lack of a principled means in the fashion you all want, which is a spotless Magisterium that never errs. You decided that the only way to settle these disagreements is to find a church that claimed infallibility for itself, and then you looked for the church that met your opinion of what this should look like. You all have convinced yourselves that you didn’t do that, but that’s exactly what you did. It’s what everyone who isn’t a nominal believer does.

    I’m sorry, but I’m not buying it. But I hope you are well.

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  24. SDB,

    I will try to address some of the things you said later , but I would like to concentrate on one thing if you don’t mind. Where in scripture is it explicitly clear that babies should be baptized? I don’t know which tradition you are a part of but if you agree with infant baptism it is only because your tradition retained the Catholic Church’s tradition.

    Darryl,

    How could I not believe the bible? The Catholic Church wrote it, copied it over and over, teaches it at bible studies, uses it in personal readings,and it is recited at ever Mass.If it isn”t the word of God it wouldn’t be allowed in The Church.

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  25. Susan, I’m glad that someone like you who reads CTC regularly can boil down the arguments for us. Sometimes I’m not sure if there is some substance beneath all the sophistry. Your arguments are so appallingly poor (and thankfully, far less verbose), that it makes me far more certain that there is no substance there at all. Keep it up. I do think that aphorism about telling a lie enough times is applicable here.

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  26. Susan, my point wasn’t to debate the merits of ecclesia being prior to scriptura in the Catholic mind (and vice versa in the Protestant mind), just that those are the priorities. And given those priorities, the respective teaching what conclusions are understandable. But what gets not a little annoying from your side of the table is how we’re begrudged interpreting scriptura to find the right (visible) ecclesia, but when you guys interpret ecclesia to find the right (visible) ecclesia it’s perfectly kosher to use private judgment.

    re your tmi, I know, such a prude over here. But it’s not a little ironic that those who claim conservative and bemoan the trends in society also feel so free to publicly discuss their own unmentionables–it starts looking more like a selective moralism than an abiding conservatism.

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  27. Robert,

    There is so much here to unpack, but really” You decided that the only way to settle these disagreements is to find a church that claimed infallibility for itself, and then you looked for the church that met your opinion of what this should look like”

    First of all I can start from scripture that Jesus breathed on the disciples sending them to do what the Father sent the Son to do, that is forgiving and retaining sins. Can Protestants communities do this? The scriptures say that the Church is the pillar and foundation of the truth. So it’s actually scripture that clues me in that I am supposed to be on the lookout for the church.
    http://www.newmanreader.org/works/discourses/discourse10.html

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  28. Robert,

    There are liberals who have bought into modernism who would love to see the Church change its stance, but it won’t ever do this no matter who seats in the seat of St Peter. If this is what you’re worried about well then you can hold onto the scriptures to give you certainty that liberalism is not of God,but ecclessiastically speaking you have no surety that your community will agree with you.

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  29. Susan, what do you do when the seat of St. Peter moves to Avignon? Or what happens when you have three occupants of St. Peter’s seat?

    Were you this easy when it came to buying that Dodge Durango?

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  30. Susan,

    First of all I can start from scripture that Jesus breathed on the disciples sending them to do what the Father sent the Son to do, that is forgiving and retaining sins. Can Protestants communities do this?

    It’s a huge leap to go from “Christ empowered and enabled the Apostles to do x” to “the pope can do x.” I realize this is a brief forum, but nobody comes to the conclusion you have unless they first accept Roman presuppositions. Nobody but nobody who has never read a Bible before picks it up and then says “I need to find a principled means, and it must be in Italy.”

    Again, you were disillusioned by Protestant disagreements. Decided that there must be authority of a certain kind to settle them, then you went and found a church that agreed with what you decided that authority should be. It’s all over the stories you’ve told. It’s all over Bryan Cross’s testimony, Jason Stellman’s testimony, etc.

    IOW, you guys do exactly what you accuse us Protestants of doing.

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  31. But Robert, Bryan wrote an article about the Tu Quoque. So Protestants aren’t allowed to make that argument anymore. Duh.

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  32. Susan,

    You have a few basic problems: You learn about the validity of the Catholic church from Scripture (“On this rock”, etc.) and the Catholic church wrote Scripture. That’s circular.

    You have a gap between Peter & the acceptance of the Papacy.

    The notion of one holy, visible, apostolic, Christian church was viable as long as magistrates upheld that notion. They no longer do.

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  33. Speaking of one true Christian church as opposed to churches being more or less faithful is also troubling. When people believe that their church is the only true one it facilitates abuse of power by its leaders. Would the abuses that were present at the time of Reformation have occurred without that belief? Would the priest sex abuse scandal have been as widespread as it was without that belief? Would nominalism in the church be the problem it is? (i.e., “I was born into the one true Christian church, that’s what counts.”)

    Better that we judge churches by how well they match up with Scripture and individual Christians and church leaders by whether or not they have the fruits of the spirit and biblical qualifications for leadership.

    In Protestant churches, clergy who prove themselves unfaithful are no longer allowed to be clergy. In the RCC, until quite recently, they were just moved along to another Parish. That is not right.

    We need to be willing to sacrifice the “certainty” that Susan thinks she’s found and have faith not in men, but in Scripture, to guide us.

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  34. BV – But Robert, Bryan wrote an article about the Tu Quoque. So Protestants aren’t allowed to make that argument anymore. Duh.

    Erik – Summary of the Tu Quoque: “You can’t say that my church sucks like your church sucks because, well, my church doesn’t suck and yours does.”

    Only a Ph.D. could think that was deep.

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  35. Robert – I realize this is a brief forum, but nobody comes to the conclusion you have unless they first accept Roman presuppositions.

    Erik – It gets worse. Rome says you can’t just believe their claims on blind faith. That’s fideism, and it’s forbidden. They say that you must accept what Rome says based on the motives of credibility — because they’re objective. Then you look at the motives of credibility and find that they’re not objective and that nobody would believe them that didn’t presuppose them to be true. In other words, fideism is not allowed, but fideism is the only way you buy their presuppositions that are supposed to help you avoid fideism.

    More circularity, more doublespeak.

    http://literatecomments.com/2014/01/31/reflections-on-lawrence-feingolds-lecture-on-the-motives-of-credibility-objective-evidences-for-the-truth-of-roman-catholicism/

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  36. Susan – There are liberals who have bought into modernism who would love to see the Church change its stance, but it won’t ever do this no matter who seats in the seat of St Peter.

    Erik – Like anyone can know that, Napoleon.

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  37. Susan – Erik,

    Jesus did found a Church though, and that is why you get your notions of such in the first place. No one was supposed to grab a bible that had , at the first, not yet even been completed and say, ,
    “Thanks, I have the Book of St. Mark. See ya later!” They were a community that was community around the Eucharist. The Church is Eucharistic foremost. And that was in place from the start, eVen before a word that would come to be the NT was penned.

    Erik – Jesus did found a church, and have you noticed how unconcerned the Apostles seem to have been about establishing a top-down structure or telling us what City the undisputed leader should be located in? Also odd that Paul appears to be the undisputed star author of the epistles and the doctrine of justification, not Peter.

    The Eucharist, baptism, preaching, prayer, singing. Not mainly the Eucharist. Once again, you presume too much.

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  38. Susan – They (the URCNA) could never censure my reason, bringing it into conformity with their confessions unless “I” was personally convinced that those confessions were reasonable both to natural reason and supernatural faith.

    Erik – Good grief, since when is the RCC censuring anyone’s reason? Half the church can think shacking up is o.k. and Pope Francis tells bishops to not hold anything back at a conference on the family — and the liberals spout off accordingly — with no censure or consequences.

    You have not joined a church that is all about making everyone toe the line.

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  39. With due respect to Susan, an RC coming here is like throwing a mouse into the Piranha tank, which is why most don’t come here anymore.

    She was feeling her oats today, though.

    Like

  40. If only Tom wasn’t being blocked he would set all this right.

    Tom,

    Call Compuserve, I think the problem’s on your end. They can mail you a new floppy disk.

    Also go to Radio Shack and upgrade the Commodore 64.

    Like

  41. There are too many people speaking to me all at once, so because of time I will just respond to Darryl and to everyone else in a general way as I any of the questions you put to me today make their way to the front of my mind. But I know I won’t be able to finish up this evening.

    “Susan, what do you do when the seat of St. Peter moves to Avignon? Or what happens when you have three occupants of St. Peter’s seat?”

    If the seat of St. Peter moves in location that wouldn’t hurt magisterial authority.” ‘See’ is a metaphorical term, used, as happens in all languages, to express the abstract notion of authority by the concrete name of the place in which it is exercised. Such phrases have the double advantage of supplying a convenient sense-image for an idea purely intellectual and of exactly defining the nature of the authority by the addition of a single adjective. An Apostolic see is any see founded by an Apostle and having the authority of its founder; the Apostolic See is the seat of authority in the Roman Church, continuing the Apostolic functions of Peter, the chief of the Apostles. Heresy and barbarian violence swept away all the particular Churches which could lay claim to an Apostolic see, until Rome alone remained; to Rome, therefore, the term applies as a proper name. But before heresy, schism, and barbarian invasions had done their work, as early as the fourth century, the Roman See was already the Apostolic See par excellence, not only in the West but also in the East. Antioch, Alexandria, and, in a lesser degree, Jerusalem were called Apostolic sees by reason of their first occupants, Peter, Mark, and James, from whom they derived their patriarchal honour and jurisdiction; but Rome is the Apostolic See, because its occupant perpetuates the Apostolate of Blessed Peter extending over the whole Church. Hence also the title Apostolicus, formerly applied to bishops and metropolitans, was gradually restricted to the Pope of Rome, the Domnus Apostolicus, who still figures in the Litany of the Saints at the head of the ecclesiastical hierarchy. The authoritative acts of the popes, inasmuch as they are the exercise of their Apostolical power, are styled acts of the Holy or Apostolic See. The See is thus personified as the representative of the Prince of the Apostles, as in Pope Leo II’s confirmation of the Sixth General Council (Constantinople, 680-681): “Ideirco et Nos et per nostrum officium haec veneranda Sedes Apostolica his quae definita sunt, consentit, et beati Petri Apostoli auctoritate confirmat.” (Therefore We also and through our office this venerable Apostolic See give assent to the things that have been defined, and confirm them by the authority of the Blessed Apostle Peter.) It is a fact worthy of notice that, in later times, all those who wished to minimize the papal authority, Protestants, Gallicans, etc., used the term Curia (Roman Court) in preference to “Apostolic See”, seeking thus to evade the dogmatic significance of the latter term. The cathedra Petri, the chair of St. Peter, is but another expression for the sedes apostolica, cathedra denoting the chair of the teacher. Hence the limitation of papal infallibility to definitions ex cathedra amounts to this: papal definitions can claim inerrancy or infallibility only when pronounced by the pope as the holder of the privileges granted by Christ to Peter, the Rock upon which He built His Church. The same formula conveys the meaning that the pope’s infallibility is not personal, but derived from, and coextensive with, his office of visible Head of the Universal Church, in virtue of which he sits in the Chair of Peter and Shepherd and Teacher of all Christians. (See INFALLIBILITY.)” ~ Catholic Encyclopedia

    It would be very sad though because Vatican Hill is a beautiful location and has been there for so many centuries.

    Erik,

    ” You learn about the validity of the Catholic church from Scripture (“On this rock”, etc.) and the Catholic church wrote Scripture. That’s circular.”

    No it isn’t. The scripture is part of the deposit of faith while the authority of the Church is another aspect of the deposit of faith. Yes, I can see that the scriptures do point to an authority, but if there was no authority in existence that claimed what the RCC claimed then all I would have a treaure map without any treasure. But scripture, while written by Catholic men, wasn’t written in order to blatently fulfill the X at the end of the treasure map. That it speaks of the church, I am thankful for, but if there were no scriptures the church could still exist. Just like if there were no family photos, birth/death records, letters and so forth, the Charter family will still exist and move on into the future.

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  42. Good night fellows. You guys are obstinate, sarcastic and gruff, but I like you and care about you even though we disagree.

    THE PRIMACY OF PETER

    Matt. to Rev. – Peter is mentioned 155 times and the rest of apostles combined are only mentioned 130 times. Peter is also always listed first except in 1 Cor 3:22 and Gal. 2:9 (which are exceptions to the rule).

    Matt 10:2; Mark 1:36; 3:16; Luke 6:14-16; Act 1:3; 2:37; 5:29 – these are some of many examples where Peter is mentioned first among the apostles.

    Matt. 14:28-29 – only Peter has the faith to walk on water. What other man has walked on water? This faith ultimately did not fail.

    Matt. 16:16, Mark 8:29; John 6:69 – Peter is first among the apostles to confess the divinity of Christ.

    Matt. 16:17 – Peter alone is told he has received divine knowledge by a special revelation from God the Father.

    Matt. 16:18 – Jesus builds the Church only on Peter, the rock, with the other apostles as the foundation and Jesus as the Head.

    Matt. 16:19 – only Peter receives the keys, which represent authority over the Church and facilitate dynastic succession to his authority.

    Matt. 17:24-25 – the tax collector approaches Peter for Jesus’ tax. Peter is the spokesman for Jesus. He is the Vicar of Christ.

    Matt. 17:26-27 – Jesus pays the half-shekel tax with one shekel, for both Jesus and Peter. Peter is Christ’s representative on earth.

    Matt. 18:21 – in the presence of the disciples, Peter asks Jesus about the rule of forgiveness. One of many examples where Peter takes a leadership role among the apostles in understanding Jesus’ teachings.

    Matt. 19:27 – Peter speaks on behalf of the apostles by telling Jesus that they have left everything to follow Him.

    Mark 10:28 – here also, Peter speaks on behalf of the disciples by declaring that they have left everything to follow Him.

    Mark 11:21 – Peter speaks on behalf of the disciples in remembering Jesus’ curse on the fig tree.

    Mark 14:37 – at Gethsemane, Jesus asks Peter, and no one else, why he was asleep. Peter is accountable to Jesus for his actions on behalf of the apostles because he has been appointed by Jesus as their leader.

    Mark 16:7 – Peter is specified by an angel as the leader of the apostles as the angel confirms the resurrection of Christ.

    Luke 5:4,10 – Jesus instructs Peter to let down the nets for a catch, and the miraculous catch follows. Peter, the Pope, is the “fisher of men.”

    Luke 7:40-50- Jesus addresses Peter regarding the rule of forgiveness and Peter answers on behalf of the disciples.

    Luke 8:45 – when Jesus asked who touched His garment, it is Peter who answers on behalf of the disciples.

    Luke 8:51; 9:28; 22:8; Acts 1:13; 3:1,3,11; 4:13,19; 8:14 – Peter is always mentioned before John, the disciple whom Jesus loved.

    Luke 9:28;33 – Peter is mentioned first as going to mountain of transfiguration and the only one to speak at the transfiguration.

    Luke 12:41 – Peter seeks clarification of a parable on behalf on the disciples. This is part of Peter’s formation as the chief shepherd of the flock after Jesus ascended into heaven.

    Luke 22:31-32 – Jesus prays for Peter alone, that his faith may not fail, and charges him to strengthen the rest of the apostles.

    Luke 24:12, John 20:4-6 – John arrived at the tomb first but stopped and waited for Peter. Peter then arrived and entered the tomb first.

    Luke 24:34 – the two disciples distinguish Peter even though they both had seen the risen Jesus the previous hour. See Luke 24:33.

    John 6:68 – after the disciples leave, Peter is the first to speak and confess his belief in Christ after the Eucharistic discourse.

    John 13:6-9 – Peter speaks out to the Lord in front of the apostles concerning the washing of feet.

    John 13:36; 21:18 – Jesus predicts Peter’s death. Peter was martyred at Rome in 67 A.D. Several hundred years of papal successors were also martyred.

    John 21:2-3,11 – Peter leads the fishing and his net does not break. The boat (the “barque of Peter”) is a metaphor for the Church.

    John 21:7 – only Peter got out of the boat and ran to the shore to meet Jesus. Peter is the earthly shepherd leading us to God.

    John 21:15 – in front of the apostles, Jesus asks Peter if he loves Jesus “more than these,” which refers to the other apostles. Peter is the head of the apostolic see.

    John 21:15-17 – Jesus charges Peter to “feed my lambs,” “tend my sheep,” “feed my sheep.” Sheep means all people, even the apostles.

    Acts 1:13 – Peter is first when entering upper room after our Lord’s ascension. The first Eucharist and Pentecost were given in this room.

    Acts 1:15 – Peter initiates selection of a successor to Judas right after Jesus ascended into heaven, and no one questions him. Further, if the Church needed a successor to Judas, wouldn’t it need one to Peter? Of course.

    Acts 2:14 – Peter is first to speak for the apostles after the Holy Spirit descended upon them at Pentecost. Peter is the first to preach the Gospel.

    Acts 2:38 – Peter gives first preaching in the early Church on repentance and baptism in the name of Jesus Christ.

    Acts 3:1,3,4 – Peter is mentioned first as going to the Temple to pray.

    Acts 3:6-7 – Peter works the first healing of the apostles.

    Acts 3:12-26, 4:8-12 – Peter teaches the early Church the healing through Jesus and that there is no salvation other than Christ.

    Acts 5:3 – Peter declares first anathema of Ananias and Sapphira which is ratified by God, and brings about their death. Peter exercises his binding authority.

    Acts 5:15 – Peter’s shadow has healing power. No other apostle is said to have this power.

    Acts 8:14 – Peter is mentioned first in conferring the sacrament of confirmation.

    Acts 8:20-23 – Peter casts judgment on Simon’s quest for gaining authority through the laying on of hands. Peter exercises his binding and loosing authority.

    Acts 9:32-34 – Peter is mentioned first among apostles and works healing of Aeneas.

    Acts 9:38-40 – Peter is mentioned first among the apostles and raises Tabitha from the dead.

    Acts 10:5 – Cornelius is told by an angel to call upon Peter. Angels are messengers of God. Peter was granted this divine vision.

    Acts 10:34-48, 11:1-18 – Peter is first to teach about salvation for all (Jews and Gentiles).

    Acts 12:5 – this verse implies that the “whole Church” offered “earnest prayers” for Peter, their leader, during his imprisonment.

    Acts 12:6-11 – Peter is freed from jail by an angel. He is the first object of divine intervention in the early Church.

    Acts 15:7-12 – Peter resolves the first doctrinal issue on circumcision at the Church’s first council at Jerusalem, and no one questions him. After Peter the Papa spoke, all were kept silent.

    Acts 15:12 – only after Peter (the Pope) speaks do Paul and Barnabas (bishops) speak in support of Peter’s definitive teaching.

    Acts 15:13-14 – then James speaks to further acknowledge Peter’s definitive teaching. “Simeon (Peter) has related how God first visited…”

    Rom. 15:20 – Paul says he doesn’t want to build on “another man’s foundation” referring to Peter, who built the Church in Rome.

    1 Cor. 15:4-8 – Paul distinguishes Jesus’ post-resurrection appearances to Peter from those of the other apostles.

    Gal.1:18 – Paul spends fifteen days with Peter privately before beginning his ministry, even after Christ’s Revelation to Paul.

    1 Peter 5:1 – Peter acts as the chief bishop by “exhorting” all the other bishops and elders of the Church.

    1 Peter 5:13 – Some Protestants argue against the Papacy by trying to prove Peter was never in Rome. First, this argument is irrelevant to whether Jesus instituted the Papacy. Secondly, this verse demonstrates that Peter was in fact in Rome. Peter writes from “Babylon” which was a code name for Rome during these days of persecution. See, for example, Rev. 14:8, 16:19, 17:5, 18:2,10,21, which show that “Babylon” meant Rome. Rome was the only “great city” of the New Testament period. Because Rome during this age was considered the center of the world, the Lord wanted His Church to be established in Rome.

    2 Peter 1:14 – Peter writes about Jesus’ prediction of Peter’s death, embracing the eventual martyrdom that he would suffer.

    2 Peter 3:16 – Peter is making a judgment on the proper interpretation of Paul’s letters. Peter is the chief shepherd of the flock.

    Matt. 23:11; Mark 9:35; 10:44 – yet Peter, as the first, humbled himself to be the last and servant of all servants.

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  43. Susan – No it isn’t. The scripture is part of the deposit of faith while the authority of the Church is another aspect of the deposit of faith.

    Erik – The whole notion of “the deposit of faith” is a Catholic notion.

    You can’t get “the authority of the church” from “the deposit of faith” because you have only believed in the concept of “the deposit of faith” because you believe in “the authority of the church”.

    It’s circular reasoning.

    Take two aspirin and go to bed. Don’t try to fight through all this tonight.

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  44. Susan,

    One could put a similar thing together of how unique Paul is.

    Or Ringo or George, for that matter.

    You still can’t link Peter to the first Pope (and no, it wasn’t Peter), let alone to Francis without great pains and logical leaps. Lots of bumps in that road.

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  45. If justification alone is found in scripture alone is your dogma then you are not Reformed for Luther and Calvin’s reformations claim to also appeal to the tradition of Mother Kirk.

    Susan,
    Huh? This is incohernent (sic)

    Jesus didn’t tell the Apostles to write down anything

    Maybe not explicitly, but neither are the catholic reformed (OLTS) dispensational arminian fundamentalists.
    But then maybe the prot converts are still really anabaptists at heart.

    John 16:13  Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.

    2 Thessalonians 2:15  Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions[teachings] which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle.

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  46. Erik,

    Neither you or I are coming to conclusions on our own, we are both being taught by others what the scriptures reveal, so I am including a article that deals with this passage that you mention and I find through use of reason that it is sensible and solves the concern that Paul was literally letting Peter have it as if Peter had failed to shepherd the sheep. Look it over as time permits if it is a stumbling block. For myself, I agree with St. Jermome on this subject as it is summarized in this article that I’m linking. I should go further and read it, but right now it suffices my curiosity. 🙂

    http://www.defendingthebride.com/ch/pa/gatatians.html

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  47. (Hey, not so fast. How’d that post by accident before I was ready?)

    Hebrews 4:12 For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any twoedged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.

    Joel, hilarious. See below.
    Grim, be nice.
    I know it’s tough.

    Neither you or I are coming to conclusions on our own, we are both being taught by others what the scriptures reveal,

    Really? And how do we/you know this? IOW yo assume this combox is more perspicuous than either Scripture OR the magisterium. Really?
    Rather you are trying to teach us and we are not cooperating/trying to teach you.
    But if we can’t understand each other, then we best just leave off and only listen to our respective teachers.
    I’d be down with that.

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  48. Erik Charter
    Posted October 21, 2014 at 8:56 pm | Permalink
    If only Tom wasn’t being blocked he would set all this right.

    Tom,

    Call Compuserve, I think the problem’s on your end. They can mail you a new floppy disk.

    Also go to Radio Shack and upgrade the Commodore 64.

    Why don’t you ask Darryl if he’s blocking me? He thinks you’re stupid, and he may be right.

    He can give it but he can’t take it, and frankly Susan’s more than a match for him. Peace.

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  49. Susan,

    You left this out:

    Peter Built the Church in Rome

    “Through envy and jealousy, the greatest and most righteous pillars [of the Church] have been persecuted and put to death. Let us set before our eyes the illustrious apostles. Peter, through unrighteous envy, endured not one or two, but numerous labours and when he had at length suffered martyrdom, departed to the place of glory due to him.” Clement of Rome, The First Epistle of Clement, 5 (c. A.D. 96).

    “I do not, as Peter and Paul, issue commandments unto you.” Ignatius of Antioch, Epistle to the Romans, 4 (c. A.D. 110).

    ‘You have thus by such an admonition bound together the plantings of Peter and Paul at Rome and Corinth.” Dionysius of Corinth, Epistle to Pope Soter, fragment in Eusebius’ Church History, II:25 (c. A.D. 178).

    “Matthew also issued a written Gospel among the Hebrews in their own dialect, while Peter and Paul were preaching at Rome, and laying the foundations of the Church.” Irenaeus, Against Heresies, 3:1:1 (c. A.D. 180).

    “As Peter had preached the Word publicly at Rome, and declared the Gospel by the Spirit, many who were present requested that Mark, who had followed him for a long time and remembered his sayings, should write them out.” Clement of Alexandria, fragment in Eusebius Church History, VI:14,6 (A.D. 190)

    “It is, therefore, recorded that Paul was beheaded in Rome itself, and that Peter likewise was crucified under Nero. This account of Peter and Paul is substantiated by the fact that their names are preserved in the cemeteries of that place even to the present day. It is confirmed likewise by Caius, a member of the Church, who arose under Zephyrinus, bishop of Rome. He, in a published disputation with Proclus, the leader of the Phrygian heresy, speaks as follows concerning the places where the sacred corpses of the aforesaid apostles are laid: ‘But I can show the trophies of the apostles. For if you will go to the Vatican or to the Ostian way, you will find the trophies of those who laid the foundations of this church.'” Gaius, fragment in Eusebius’ Church History, 2:25 (A.D. 198).

    “[W]hat utterance also the Romans give, so very near (to the apostles), to whom Peter and Paul conjointly bequeathed the gospel even sealed with their own blood.” Tertullian, Against Marcion, 4:5 (inter A.D. 207-212).

    ‘We read the lives of the Caesars: At Rome Nero was the first who stained with blood the rising blood. Then is Peter girt by another (an allusion to John 21:18), when he is made fast to the cross.” Tertullian, Scorpiace, 15:3 (A.D. 212).

    “Peter…at last, having come to Rome, he was crucified head-downwards; for he had requested that he might suffer this way.” Origen, Third Commentary on Genesis, (A.D. 232).

    “Thus Peter, the first of the Apostles, having been often apprehended, and thrown into prison, and treated with igominy, was last of all crucified at Rome.” Peter of Alexandria, The Canonical Epistle, Canon 9 (A.D. 306).

    “[W]hich Peter and Paul preached at Rome…” Lactantius, The Divine Institutes, 4:21 (A.D. 310).

    “Peter…coming to the city of Rome, by the mighty cooperation of that power which was lying in wait there…” Eusebius, Ecclesiastical History, II:14,5 (A.D. 325).

    “This man [Simon Magus], after he had been cast out by the Apostles, came to Rome…Peter and Paul, a noble pair, chief rulers of the Church, arrived and set the error right…For Peter was there, who carrieth the keys of heaven…” Cyril of Jerusalem, Catechetical Lectures ,6:14-15 (c. A.D. 350).

    “And Peter, who had hid himself for fear of the Jews, and the Apostle Paul who was let down in a basket, and fled, when they were told, ‘Ye must bear witness at Rome,’ deferred not the journey; yea, rather, they departed rejoicing…” Athanasius, Defence of his Flight, 18 (c. A.D. 357).

    “I think it my duty to consult the chair of Peter, and to turn to a church whose faith has been praised by Paul…My words are spoken to the successor of the fisherman, to the disciple of the cross.” Jerome, To Pope Damasus, Epistle 15 (A.D. 377).

    “For if when here he loved men so, that when he [Peter] had the choice of departing and being with Christ, he chose to be here, much more will he there display a warmer affection. I love Rome even for this, although indeed one has other grounds for praising it, both for its greatness, and its antiquity, and its beauty, and its populousness, and for its power, and its wealth, and for its successes in war. But I let all this pass, and esteem it blessed on this account, that both in his lifetime he wrote to them, and loved them so, and talked with them whiles he was with us, and brought his life to a close there.” John Chrysostom, Epistle to the Romans, Homily 32 (c. A.D. 391).

    “Which was mere to the interest of the Church at Rome, that it should at its commencement be presided over by some high-born and pompous senator, or by the fisherman Peter, who had none of this world’s advantages to attract men to him?” Gregory of Nyssa, To the Church at Nicodemia, Epistle 13 (ante A.D. 394).

    “But some people in some countries of the West, and especially in the city, [Rome] not knowing the reason of this indulgence, think that a dispensation from fasting ought certainly not to be allowed On the Sabbath, because they say that on this day the Apostle Peter fasted before his encounter with Simon [Magus].” John Cassian, Institutes, X (ante A.D. 435).

    “The whole world, dearly-beloved, does indeed take part in all holy anniversaries [of Peter & Paul], and loyalty to the one Faith demands that whatever is recorded as done for all men’s salvation should be everywhere celebrated with common rejoicings. But, besides that reverence which to-day’s festival has gained from all the world, it is to be honoured with special and peculiar exultation in our city, that there may be a predominance of gladness on the day of their martyrdom in the place where the chief of the Apostles met their glorious end. For these are the men, through whom the light of Christ’s gospel shone on thee, O Rome, and through whom thou, who wast the teacher of error, wast made the disciple of Truth.” Pope Leo the Great (regn. A.D. 440-461), Sermon LXXXII (ante A.D. 461).

    Anyone can copy and paste. Yes, I’d say your reason is bound (and it’s screaming to get out).

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  50. Erik, Tom thinks Susan is an intellectual heavy weight. He must believe in the perpetual virginity of Mary. Sad to see an intellect that could win so much on Joker’s Wild go to waste.

    (And if I were blocking Tom, why do some of his comments get through. Maybe the gods of the Interweb have finally condemned that blasphemous gravatar.)

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  51. Erik, I say let them have their bare apostolic succession and play connect-the-dots from Jesus to Peter to Linus, etc. and so forth. But if scriptura really is prior to ecclesia–and men really are tested by the Word of God–then things begin to crumble. After all, if Paul can use the Word of God to rebuke Peter…

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  52. Zrim,

    Erik, I say let them have their bare apostolic succession and play connect-the-dots from Jesus to Peter to Linus, etc. and so forth. But if scriptura really is prior to ecclesia–and men really are tested by the Word of God–then things begin to crumble. After all, if Paul can use the Word of God to rebuke Peter…

    C’mon, you know the rules. When Peter wasn’t eating with Gentiles he wasn’t eating ex cathedra. I think he must have been lying down or something.

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  53. Tom,

    Good to see Radio Shack came through for you. Now go to Sears and buy a washer & dryer before they shut down.

    Why would anyone block you and forego all the amusement that ensues as a result of your cosmic incoherence?

    Your lukewarm Catholicism tempered with half-hearted universalism threatens absolutely no one.

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  54. Susan,

    You’re taking the absolutely wrong approach to Roman Catholic Apologetics. Ask the average Catholic in your parish who has been Catholic since birth why they are Catholic. You will hear none of the answers you are putting forth.

    If Roman Catholicism & Reformed Protestantism were people RC would be 5’9″ and 400 lbs. and RP would be 6’2″, 220 lbs. Your church has to make so much that is incoherent cohere – Bad popes, gay priests, Medjugorge, worshipping Mary, Exorcists, The Bible, Vatican II, Unam Sanctam, bad liturgical music, Masses where people dress up for Halloween, censorship then no censorship, Catholics shacking up, rampant nominalism, and on and on and on. A 3,000 Q&A Catechism does not solve these problems, nor does Bryan Cross writing 10 million words and tightly screening comments.

    Meanwhile we have the Three Forms of Unity or the Westminster Standards as faithful summaries of Scripture. Concise, efficient, and sufficient for the Christian life.

    In short, no one here is buying what you are selling.

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  55. Darryl,

    So you have already seen the extra scriptural proof for St Peter’s authority. This is the Apostolic faith by the leading of the Holy Spirit at work interpreting the scriptures. Those same scriptures, and perhaps more ,that I linked in my mindless copy and pasting by randomly investigating and then haphazardly hitting at the keys of this computer I’m sitting in front of.

    Did you read that Newman article by any chance?

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  56. @Susan

    Where in scripture is it explicitly clear that babies should be baptized? I don’t know which tradition you are a part of but if you agree with infant baptism it is only because your tradition retained the Catholic Church’s tradition.

    Uh no. It is because the tradition with which I am aligned recognized that your tradition interpreted scripture correctly on the (narrow) point that babies should be baptized. The reformers allowed that the church has always existed, though more or less purely. Not everything every RC (or EO) ever said is wrong just because they are fallible. The RCC can certainly teach, serve as a faithful repository of truth, etc… But they aren’t infallible.

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  57. Acts 15:7-12 – Peter resolves the first doctrinal issue on circumcision at the Church’s first council at Jerusalem, and no one questions him. After Peter the Papa spoke, all were kept silent.

    Acts 15:12 – only after Peter (the Pope) speaks do Paul and Barnabas (bishops) speak in support of Peter’s definitive teaching.

    Acts 15:13-14 – then James speaks to further acknowledge Peter’s definitive teaching. “Simeon (Peter) has related how God first visited…”

    This is a very strained reading of Acts 15

    6 The apostles and the elders were gathered together to consider this matter. 7 And after there had been much debate, Peter stood up and said to them, “…” And all the assembly fell silent, and they listened to Barnabas and Paul… 13 After they finished speaking, James replied, “Brothers, listen to me. 14 Simeon has related how God first visited the Gentiles,…19 Therefore my judgment is that we should not trouble those of the Gentiles who turn to God, …22 Then it seemed good to the apostles and the elders, with the whole church, to choose men from among them and send them to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas.

    So the group gathers and debates. Peter pipes up and everyone listens to him, then Paul and Barnabas speak, then finally James (the real boss man?) has the last word and states what they should do (therefore my judgment is…). James’s judgement carried the day with the synod. One might almost conclude that James was the head honcho based on this text if one insists on establishing a head honcho. But it is a stretch to draw any such conclusion from the text.

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  58. SDB,

    Indeed, if Acts 15 is about the first pope, its James who filled that role, not Peter. A fact routinely overlooked by our RC interlocutors.

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  59. Susan’s comment (list of Peter facts) reminds me of this post prior to the Purdue-Iowa game this year: http://www.blackheartgoldpants.com/football/2014/9/23/6834861/our-most-hated-rival-a-history-of-iowa-being-better-than-purdue

    Of course, all of that is factual information, but even average football fans realize that those facts have no bearing on the coming game. Do Romanists take type of argument seriously, or is it kind of a joke like the Black Heart Gold Pants site? Maybe Susan has learned to employ the successful technique of CTC in using walls of text to wear down critical thinking of opponents.

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  60. “Your church has to make so much that is incoherent cohere.”

    Maybe this is all about perception, because I truly don’t have a dog in this fight. But I see a Mexican Standoff. I don’t see reformed Calvinist dogma as any more coherent as Roman Catholic dogma. Sola Scriptura? Every single letter of TULIP is debatable on Sola Scriptura grounds.

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  61. Jon, that’s the point. The Prot-turned-RC’s can’t ever concede that RC’sm has flaws that afflict other Christian traditions.

    Though, I’m surprised you don’t see total depravity. Not sure you need the Bible for that. The founders got it.

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  62. Jon,

    But we can have the debate based on Scripture. Try debating with Rome based on Scripture or anything else. They’re a moving target, if they’ll even entertain the debate.

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  63. Erik,

    That comment to Jon wasn’t really fair. I presented scripture list that someone else pulled together to show how scripture can easily support the Petrine Ministry and got accused of throwing in baseless facts. This is why I had to give up on the notion of the perspecuity of scripture. When there exists another interpretation and it is older, and supported by the Church Fathers, I at least know that it isn’t far-fetched to believe it.

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  64. Susan,

    When there exists another interpretation and it is older, and supported by the Church Fathers, I at least know that it isn’t far-fetched to believe it.

    How much of the fathers have you read? It isn’t far-fetched to believe that women are the root of all evil, that a woman by herself is not the image of God, that women are defective?—because all of those beliefs can be supported by patristic biblical interpretation and were held by many of the Church Fathers.

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  65. What not just say Rome has some things right but Protestants have some things right as well? Protestants did during the Reformation, didn’t they? No more Tetzels that I’m aware of, no more selling of offices.

    It’s this “Rome 100, Protestants 0” attitude that is so offensive.

    The Pope doesn’t act that way, not even toward Islam.

    Like

  66. Susan,

    When you see wonderful Protestant people who love Jesus and have the fruits of the Spirit, are you willing to tell them they are going to hell because they are not Roman Catholics and do not obey the Pope?

    Like

  67. Pope Francis is a victim:

    The synod was not primarily concerned with offering encouragement to young couples eager to embrace the great adventure of Catholic marriage. The couples who are living with quiet heroism the blessings and burdens of that adventure appeared in the background of the synod’s focus.

    On the contrary, the synod stirred up giddy excitement among those — both within and without the family of faith — desirous that the Church would finally make its peace with the “sexual revolution.” The beatification of Pope Paul VI at the conclusion of the synod should have signified that rank capitulation on moral teaching was never in the cards, but it was destabilizing to hear some prelates speak rather loosely about the Christian tradition on marriage, chastity and family life.

    Yet what left me astonished was that, after 18 months of Pope Francis dominating world headlines, the synod seemed strangely out of sorts with his priorities. This synod badly failed Pope Francis’ bold vision for the Church in 11 distinct ways.

    This is why popes don’t like councils.

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  68. Francis makes Christianity appealing but Roman Catholicism not so much. (So much for no salvation outside the church):

    The most illuminating moment of the “promise,” in cultural terms, is the shock of Pope Francis. The Catholic Church has been embroiled in scandal for many years. It has been seen as bureaucratic and unresponsive. Then, all of a sudden, there appears this authentic, living disciple. Here is someone who seems to live out of this deep spirit of humility—a Jesus follower who wants a life rooted in simple action.

    Across the world, people have looked at his example—economically, politically, socially—and said, “That’s what the church is about?” And Francis is shocked by their shock: “This is what Christians do.” To live with integrity in a way that’s counterintuitive to the wider culture—that’s the promise of following Jesus today.

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  69. Darryl,

    There isn’t any contradiction. Since there is only one Savior who created all, governs all and began a church that is His body, that is sacramentally uniting us with Himself, all baptised people(and those who would desire baptism if they heard the gospel) are inside the Church, albeit not fully. So yes, outside the body of Christ,which is mystically united to Him, there is no salvation.
    “Neither is there salvation in any other. For there is no other name under heaven given to men, whereby we must be saved.”

    Like

  70. This just in: Pope Francis marches to his own drummer:

    “These attitudes aren’t surprising,” said Kasper, whose thoughts on Communion for divorced and remarried Catholics have greatly angered some within the Roman Curia. “There are a lot of you,” he said, “even among the episcopate and the younger clergy, who do not really trust this new style or this new enthusiasm” and who display a “condescending wait-and-see attitude.”

    Remarking on the tension that grips the church today, Kasper quipped that what for many “is the beginning of a new spring is for others a temporary cold spell.”

    While efforts may exist to “trivialize Pope Francis” or to appropriate him “for one’s own reform concepts,” especially in the Western world, he said, the Argentine pope “does not fit into our now rather worn-out scheme of progressive or conservative.”

    He “cannot be categorized, much less appropriated, by any specific school — he’s not an academic theologian in the professional sense, but a man of encounter and practice.”

    For Pope Francis, “reality has primacy over ideas,” Kasper said. And with a focus on the Gospel, he “is intent on overcoming the absence of joy in the church and the modern world.”

    He “wants to initiate a new beginning for the church,” Kasper said, but not by destroying tradition. Rather, “Pope Francis stands in a great tradition, reaching back to the earliest beginnings.”

    “He does not represent a liberal position, but a radical position, understood in the original sense of the word as going back to the roots, the radix.” By reaching back through time, he is, in fact, “constructing a bridge to the future.”

    At the center of Pope Francis’ vision stands the concept of mercy, Kasper said — “God’s mercy.”

    “Mercy has become the theme of his pontificate,” he said. “… With this theme, Pope Francis has addressed countless individuals, both within and without the church.” He has “moved them intensely, and pierced their hearts.”

    And “who among us does not depend on mercy?” Kasper asked. “On the mercy of God, and of merciful fellow man?”

    Could you imagine Bryan and Francis in the same room, one all logic, one all encounter?

    Like

  71. Jason and the Callers have nothing to say about the elephant in the room, but others do:

    One of the interesting things about the current state of affairs in mater ecclesiae is watching the way people are bending over backwards to square the circle regarding the messages coming from Rome – trying to explain how everything is fine, calm down, relax, nothing to see here, move along, etc. etc. The contortions many are putting themselves into could make professional gymnasts envious. It would be funny if it wasn’t so sad.

    A major threat to the “nothing to see here” mentality is of course the stubborn persistence of traditional Catholic bloggers who insist loudly that there is in fact quite a bit to see here, and that this is not business as usual. This can be disconcerting to the worldview of some Catholics, I admit; how could it not be? The implications, if accepted, could be very troubling. It would mean nothing less than that the Church herself is responsible for her sorry state of affairs – not the world, the media, or whomever else. To admit this would constitute a revolution of Copernican proportions for many Catholics.

    Therefore, it often prompts anger, confusion and resentment, characterized by lashing out at “rad trads” and Catholic bloggers who dare to point out that the emperor has no clothes. Many of you have been on the receiving end of this. I know I have.

    We traditionalists are all terribly sick of the “shoot the messenger” nonsense. The bishops of the world dally around with changing two millennia of pastoral practice, with devastating consequences to doctrine, and we are the kill-joys for pointing it out! After seven and a half years of blogging, I am still banging my head against the wall trying to figure out how the problem is not that there are priests, bishops and cardinals actively trying to destroy the faith, but that I am writing about their attempts to destroy the faith. Their perfidity merits a shrug – after all, who am I to judge? But our writing about their perfidity merits condemnation.

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  72. Kasper – “He “cannot be categorized, much less appropriated, by any specific school — he’s not an academic theologian in the professional sense, but a man of encounter and practice.”

    Erik – This is always a big hit down at the singles bar.

    Like

  73. Kasper – “He does not represent a liberal position, but a radical position, understood in the original sense of the word as going back to the roots, the radix.” By reaching back through time, he is, in fact, “constructing a bridge to the future.”

    Erik – So basically he’s Christopher Lloyd to Bryan’s Michael J. Fox

    Like

  74. Does anyone remember that bishops were meeting this week in Philadelphia? R-E-S-P-E-C-T!

    The World Meeting of Families finished with a capacity crowd listening to Rick Warren, bestselling author and pastor of Saddleback Church, and Cardinal Sean O’Malley of Boston taking the stage to talk about “The Joy of the Gospel of Life.”

    Pastor Warren was invited by Pope Francis to be the concluding speaker at last November’s Humanum Colloquium at the Vatican.

    Cardinal O’Malley addressed the importance of Warren being among so many Catholics:

    “It’s important that Rick Warren is here. This is a witness of unity that’s important in today’s world, as we strive to proclaim the gospel of life: the need to protect every human being from the first moment of conception until natural death, to defend the family as a sanctuary of life, and family as a sacred calling described on the first pages of the Bible as a man who leaves his mother and father to be joined in one flesh to his wife. It’s a great consolation to share this stage with a fellow Christian who is truly committed to preaching the Gospel. We are truly blessed by his presence and his friendship.”

    Following prayers and introductions by Archbishop Charles Chaput and author Scott Hahn, Rick Warren opened the hour by saying simply, “Thank you for caring about the family.” He quoted Pope Francis, saying that today the family is being threatened. This inspired Warren to make a list of root causes threatening the family, which he read to thunderous applause:

    “In today’s society, materialism is idolized, immorality is glamorized, truth is minimized, sin is normalized, divorce is rationalized, and abortion is legalized. In TV and movies, crime is legitimized, drug use is minimized, comedy is vulgarized, and sex is trivialized. In movies, the Bible is fictionalized, churches are satirized, God is marginalized, and Christians are demonized. The elderly are dehumanized, the sick are euthanized, the poor are victimized, the mentally ill are ostracized, immigrants are stigmatized, and children are tranquilized. In families around the world, our manners are uncivilized, speech is vulgarized, faith is secularized, and everything is commercialized.

    “Unfortunately, Christians, you and I, are often disorganized and demoralized, our faith is compartmentalized, and our witness it compromised. So what do we need? We need to revitalize our worship, minimize our differences, mobilize our members, and evangelize the lost, and we need to re-energize our families.”

    Bishops don’t matter compared to the bishop. I know what Peter would say:

    So I exhort the elders among you, as a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, as well as a partaker in the glory that is going to be revealed: shepherd the flock of God that is among you, exercising oversight, not under compulsion, but willingly, as God would have you; not for shameful gain, but eagerly; not domineering over those in your charge, but being examples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the unfading crown of glory. Likewise, you who are younger, be subject to the elders. Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”

    Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, (1 Peter 5:1-6 ESV)

    Like

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