Skip to comments.Protestants aren't proper Christians, says Pope
Posted on 07/10/2007 6:55:28 PM PDT by indcons
Pope Benedict XVI declared yesterday that Christian denominations other than his own were not true churches and their holy orders have no value.
Protestant leaders immediately responded by saying the claims were offensive and would hurt efforts to promote ecumenism.
Roman Catholic- Anglican relations are already strained over the Church of England's plans to ordain homosexuals and women as bishops. The claims came in a document, from a Vatican watchdog which was approved by the Pope.
It said the branches of Christianity formed after the split with Rome at the Reformation could not be called churches "in the proper sense" because they broke with a succession of popes who dated back to St Peter.
As a result, it went on, Protestant churches have "no sacramental priesthood", effectively reaffirming the controversial Catholic position that Anglican holy orders are worthless.
The document claimed the Catholic church was the "one true church of Christ".
Pope Benedict's commitment to the hardline teaching comes days after he reinstated the Mass in Latin, which was sidelined in the 1960s in an attempt to modernise.
The timing of the announcement fuelled speculation that the pontiff - regarded as an arch-conservative before his election in 2005 - is finally beginning to impose his views on the Catholic Church.
The Vatican said it was restating the position set out by the then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger in 2000 in a document called Domine Jesus because theologians continued to misunderstand it.
At that time, Anglican leaders from around the world made their anger felt by snubbing an invitation to join Pope John Paul II as he proclaimed St Thomas More the patron saint of politicians.
Bishop Wolfgang Huber, head of the Evangelical Church in Germany, said the Vatican document effectively downgraded Protestant churches and would make ecumenical relations more difficult.
He said the pronouncement repeated the "offensive statements" of the 2000 document and was a "missed opportunity" to patch up relations with Protestants.
Well, just wait until I'm Pope.
I'll be redefining a value or two for sure!
Right after I take the PopeMobile mudding at the river.
Actually, I don't think either one of you understood. My fault for not being clearer...
I don't feel that any one Christian religion is the only "proper" one...
Are you saying that Catholics have a lock on being self-righteous? If so, you are EXTREMELY ignorant.
I’m guessing you must have a big shortage of Southern Baptists down in LA.
And I didn't accuse the Pope of saying that either...
He simply said that the only legitimate apostolic succession rests with the Roman Catholic Church. And in that, he is stating the simple truth. You dont even have to be Catholic, or believe that that matters, to acknowledge that.
If you're only referring to an unbroken line of bishops beginning with the original Apostles, ok, sure. However, I'm not sure how that causes a non-Catholic to be "improper"...
Sorry if that offends anybody, but its the fact.
Not offended...just don't agree...
Really? I had no idea the Pope lived in such luxury as you claim.
I think that living a life in the spotlight, under the constant threat of assassination, and of having every move watched is not exactly luxury.
I am a Catholic.
:) Actually, they're quite prevelant. I was actually raised Southern Baptist, but that's not what I consider myself now. I honestly never heard any sermons from the pulpit about those "improper" Catholics.
I'm not saying there aren't old-schoolers that feel that their brand is the only way, but this is coming from the Pope for goodness sake...
Where in Scripture do we have a practice of Apostles directly appointing bishops of churches? I know that Paul writes of the qualities that an individual should have to be an elder, but the practice was for the congregation to select their elders and bishops. The monobishophoric hierarchy did not develop until after the end of the Apostolic era.
They sure did during the religious wars and the RCC has a long history of destruction when it had the power of the state behind it.
Agreed. My point was that if the big claim of being a “proper” Christian lies with apostolic succession, then why?
It never has. A "proper" Christian is a believer and follower of Jesus Christ, indwelt by the Holy Spirit, who knows they only path to salvation is through our Saviour Jesus Christ. No institution of man has that power and the theory of Apostolic succession is not supported by Scripture.
It may have developed in response to external forces, but it was never mandated by Scripture. In fact in Scripture you see at the council in Jerusalem a congregational approach to resolving issues.
when Peter died he was succeeded by Linus, who was succeeded by Anacletus, who was succeeded by Clement, etc.
Your list has some gaps and problems with credibility. Also, you do not see in the generations following the Apostles the supernatural powers in these leaders that the Apostles had. Thus you may a lengthy historical lineage, but it is no direct pipe line to GOD.
This was coming into being before the writing of some of the latest New Testament scriptures and certainly before they were codified and declared Holy Scripture (by bishops).
The Scriptures were Holy whether one group of Christians recognized them or not.
Your welcome Brother.
He wears the finest clothes, has the finest foods, lives in a palace with servants where his ever need is catered to and DOES NOT fear assassination....he has his own secret service.
What does he need? Nothing.
He is no more closely examined than any other powerful person who leads a semi public life.
I guess Jesus is d@mned to burn in hell for eternity, according to the Catholics.
After all, he wasn’t Catholic... and didn’t believe in the trinity... or worship himself.
And if you don’t do that, then you’re ‘supposed’ to go to hell.
For only Catholic faith can get you into Heaven.