True Church vs Apostate Church debate.
The part about Rome losing the faith is not in the original and that version was put on the index--probably because the idea that the Church of Rome could fall into error was definitively condemned as "manifest heresy" by Pope Sixtus IV in the Bull "Licet ea," Denzinger 730. (the error promoted by Peter de Osma was "the Church of the city of Rome can fall into error").

Scriptorium raises an important issue. There needs to be an externally verifiable authority--it's why Eastern Orthodoxy is internally inconsistent. For them, you can have A consider B to be a legitimate church, B consider C to be a legitimate church, but A not to consider C a legitimate church--so A=B=C≠A. They also have no fixed standard of orthodoxy--theirs is a meaningless tautology: the standard of orthodoxy is orthodox people. So when there's a dispute with well-informed, well-meaning people on both sides, there's no real way to settle the issue. Which side is the orthodox side? On the other hand, the Catholic principle enunciated by St. Ireneaus is that every church must agree with the Church of the city of Rome--and this is proper because of the principle behind Sixtus IV's condemnation above. Rome, as the See of St. Peter, is the rock, the fixed standard. That's why Bl.Pius IX condemned the idea that the First See could be transferred out of Rome in "Ad Apostolicae"  (cited by the Syllabus #34). The primacy is not just permanent, it is permanent in Rome so every generation can look to the same place, the simple and the intelligent. The particular/local Church of Rome is that visible, externally verifiable standard.

As an aside, this is why I think certain SSPX writers err when they harp on Rome for supposedly talking about a continuity of subject rather than a continuity of truth. For a Catholic, that's a false dichotomy since the the two cannot be separated (I think this is either the cause of or the result of their "eternal Rome" versus actual Rome dichotomy). The true religion perdures in the one subject, which itself perdures until the end of time. The true religion does not exist apart from the primatial Church and the primatial Church is fixed at Rome.

That's not to say that some sort of bad organization or "church" that opposes the Catholic Church doesn't or won't exist or that the Catholic Church won't be persecuted or won't shrink or lose members, but rather the Church of Rome will not be on the side of the apostate church.


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Re: True Church vs Apostate Church debate. - by SaintSebastian - 01-17-2012, 10:51 PM

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