"Simon, Simon, behold Satan has desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for thee that thy faith may not fail; and when once thou hast turned again, strengthen thy brethren." (Lk. 22:31-33) 

Submission to the authority of the Pope is required of all the faithful:

Saint Thomas Aquinas: “For it is revealed that subjection to the Roman Pontiff is from the necessity of salvation.” [opusc. contra errores Graec. fol. 9]

Pope Boniface VIII: “Moreover, that every human creature is to be subject to the Roman pontiff, we declare, we state, we define, and we pronounce to be entirely from the necessity of salvation.” (Unam Sanctam 9).

Fifth Lateran Council: “it arises from the necessity of salvation that all the faithful of Christ are to be subject to the Roman Pontiff, just as we are taught by the testimony of the divine Scriptures and of the holy Fathers”

*All those who claim that the Pope and the body of Bishops have gone astray are guilty of schism, for rejecting their authority, and are guilty of formal heresy, for contradicting the dogma of the indefectibility of the Church. 


Second reason considering the role of the Pope. Only the Pope is said to be the Vicar of God: because he alone is able to bind and loose, possessing alone loosing and binding given to him by God. The decision of the Pope and the decision of God constitute one decision, just as the decision of the Pope and his disciple are the same. Since, therefore, an appeal is always taken from an inferior judge to a superior, as no one is greater than himself, so no appeal holds when made from the Pope to God, because there is one consistory of the Pope himself and of God Himself, of which consistory the Pope himself is the key-bearer and the doorkeeper. Therefore no one can appeal from the Pope to God, as no one can enter into the consistory of God without the mediation of the Pope, who is the key-bearer and the doorkeeper of the consistory of eternal life; and as no one can appeal to himself, so no one can appeal from the Pope to God, because there is one decision and one court of God, and the Pope. 

Source: Pope Boniface VIII, Bull Unam Sanctam, promulgated November 18, 1302, in Translations and Reprints From the Original Sources of European History, Vol. 3 (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 189–), No. 6, pp. 20–23 (from Latin text of Mury, Revue des Questions Historiques, Vol. 46, pp. 225, 256, based on the facsimile from the Papal Regesta).


Summa de potestate ecclesiastica, Augustini Triumphi (Agostino Trionfo), Question 6 Ad 1. See 666, The Number of the Beast for details.

Also well known is the Catholic teaching that no one can be saved outside the Catholic Church. Eternal salvation cannot be obtained by those who oppose the authority and statements of the same Church and are stubbornly separated from the unity of the Church and also from the successor of Peter, the Roman Pontiff, to whom “the custody of the vineyard has been committed by the Savior.”

Source: QUANTO CONFICIAMUR MOERORE, On Promotion of False Doctrines, Encyclical of Pope Pius IX, August 10, 1863.

I alone, despite my unworthiness, am the successor of the apostles, the vicar of Jesus Christ: I alone have the mission to guide and direct the bark of Peter. I am the way, the truth, and the life: they who are with me are with the church: they who are not with me are out of the church—they are out of the way, the truth, and the life. Let men well understand this, that they be not deceived, or led astray by soi-disant Catholics, who desire and teach something quite different from what the head of the church teaches. (The Guardian, London, April 11, 1866)

Attributed to Pius IX, who on March 24, 1866, spoke in French, in response to an address by Catholics of various nations in which certain liberal ideas were expressed. Published in France in the Catholic monthly Revue du Monde Catholique, the L’ Union, and the Observateur Catholique of April 1, 1866, p. 357.


The Catholic Encyclopedia of 1917 gives the following definition of the Church's indefectibility:
"By this term is signified, not merely that the Church will persist to the end of time, but further, that it will be preserved unimpaired in its essential characteristics. The Church can never undergo any constitutional change, which will make it, as a social organism, something different from what it was originally. It can never become corrupt in faith or in morals; nor can it ever lose the Apostolic hierarchy, or the Sacraments through which Christ communicates grace to men." 
<>"Simon, Simon, behold Satan has desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for thee that thy faith may not fail; and when once thou hast turned again, strengthen thy brethren." (Lk. 22:31-33) 
Jesus chose Peter to be the first Pope: he was impetuous, vacillating, courageous and cowardly all at the same time. He was probably the strongest and, paradoxically, the weakest of all the Apostles, yet even though he denied our Lord three times he ended by being crucified upside down in contrition. Peter in the end proved that he truly was "the Rock". Peter is the perfect example to demonstrate that Christ meant what He said, His Church is indefectible.
The Daily Catholic, October 2, 1999
By the indefectibility of the Catholic Church is meant that the Church, as Jesus Christ founded it, will last until the end of time. The Archangel Gabriel announced to the Blessed Virgin Mary that Christ “shall be king over the house of Jacob forever; and of His kingdom there shall be no end” (Luke 1: 32-33).
Christ meant His Church to endure to the end of the world. It is to be indestructible and unchanging, - to possess indefectibility. Christ, God Himself, could scarcely have come, and with such incredible pain and labor have founded a Church which would die with the Apostles. He came to save all men. Those to live in future ages needed salvation as much as the people of Apostolic times.
Christ said too Peter: "Upon this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of Hell shall not prevail against it" (Matthew 16:18). By the "gates of Hell", He meant all the power of the devil - all kinds of attacks, physical violence as well as false teaching. Christ promises here that the Church would be assailed always, but never overcome. This promise of Our Lord has been proved for almost 2000 years by the facts of history. Not one of the persecutors of the Church has prevailed over it. On the contrary, many of them have come to a fearful end. There will always be Popes, bishops, and laity, to compose the Church; the truths taught by Our Lord will always be found in His Church.
3. After telling His Apostles to teach all nations, Christ said: "Behold, I am with you all days, even unto the consummation of the world" (Matthew 28:20). As the Apostles were not to live to the end of the world, Christ must have been addressing them as representatives of a perpetual Church.
The Apostles themselves understood Christ to mean that His Church should endure. After organizing Christian communities, they appointed successors in their place, to live after them and carry on the Church. The Apostles instructed these successors to ordain in turn other bishops and priests. All these acts were to assure the perpetuity of the Church.
Christ intended the Church to remain as He founded it, to preserve the whole of what He taught, and the shining marks which He gave it in the beginning. If the Church lost any of the qualities that God gave it, it could not be said to be indefectible, because it would not be the same institution. Indefectibility implies unchangeability. Our Lord promised to abide by the Church, to assist it, and to send the Holy Spirit to remain in it. God does not change: "Behold I am with you all days, even unto the consummation of the world" (Matthew 28:20).

Because of its indefectibility the truths revealed by God will always be taught in the Catholic Church. Saint Ambrose said: “The Church is like the moon; it may wane, but never be destroyed; it may be darkened, but it can never disappear.” Saint Anselm said that the bark of the Church may be swept by the waves, but it can never sink, because Christ is there. When the Church is in greatest need, Christ comes to its help by miracles, or by raising up saintly men to strengthen and purify it. It is the bark of Peter; when the storm threatens to sink it, the Lord awakens from His sleep, and commands the winds and waters into calm: “Peace; be still!” 


The Catholic Church has, throughout its long history, proved itself indefectible, against all kinds of attack from within and without, against every persecution and every heresy and schism. As its Founder was persecuted, so the Catholic Church has been and ever will be persecuted. “You will be brought before governors and kings for My sake” (Matthew 10:18). “And you will be hated by all for My name’s sake” (Matthew 10:22). “No disciple is above his teacher, nor is the servant above his master” (Mathew. 10:24). “They will deliver you up to councils, and you will be beaten in the synagogues” (Mark 13:9). “They will arrest you, and persecute you” (Luke 21:12). 
The Church survived three hundred years of incredible persecution under pagan Rome. Of the 33 Popes that ruled before the Edict of Milan, 30 died as martyrs. That mighty Empire, with its colossal strength, before whose standard the nations quailed, could not kill the infant Church or stop its progress. In a short time the Popes were ruling where the imperial Caesars had issued edicts against the Christian Church. The Roman Empire waged ten fierce persecutions against the Church, but could not destroy it. In the year 313 the Emperor Constantine was converted and granted the Church freedom by the Edict of Milan. 
Then for two centuries hordes of barbarians swept upon civilized Europe, destroying the old Roman Empire. The Church not only survived, but converted and civilized the barbarians. God’s ever-watchful providence brought about the conversion of the Frankish King Clovis, with a great number of his warriors. This was the beginning of the firm establishment of the Church in the Frankish kingdom, although missionaries had gone there from the first century. In the eight century Saint Boniface converted Middle and Northern Germany, until then the home of violent paganism. 
For nine centuries Mohammedanism threatened Christian civilization. It was the Church under the Popes that urged the nations to league against Islam. In the sixteenth century the Mohammedan menace was subdued for awhile. In recent decades it has made its rise again and we can see the threat in Iraq, in the Holy Land and East Timor. 
Not only non-Christians, but its own rebellious children have persecuted the Church. From the beginning heresy has attacked it from within. And still the Church lives greater than ever, changeless, indefectible. The long history of the Catholic Church is attended by schism and heresy, but each attack has only strengthened it. It has continued to live and spread in spite of everything and everybody. 

The Church is the Bride of Christ, cast into prison, starved, thrown to the beasts, trampled underfoot, hacked, tortured, crucified, and burned. But this fair Bride emerges from it all in the bloom and freshness of youth, serene, calm, immortal. 


The Barque of Peter and the Captain of the Ship
We have all heard of the rich symbolism that is often used where the Church is referred to as our Holy Mother, and the Pope is often referred to as our Holy Father. Well, we should ask ourselves what kind of faithful sons or daughters of the Church would seek to fling fiery arrows of accusations at their father at every turn? Or again, another rich symbolism of the Church and the Papacy is the Barque of Peter, with the heavenly Captain of the boat being Jesus, and His appointed representative, the Pope, being the earthly captain who is inspired by the Holy Spirit to guide the boat safely through often treacherous waters. What then should we think of certain passengers on a boat who frequently question the Captain's rightful authority and his judgement on navigation and other important matters, thus stirring up mutiny--especially amidst certain storms---when the Captain gives of himself completely in his appointed mission, all for the well being and concern of his passengers?

I will close by stating that as Catholics we should be exceedingly grateful not only for the Sacraments, but also for the inestimable security that is afforded to us by Jesus through following the Pope, the successor of Peter, and the thousands of Bishops, successors to the apostles, who in union together form the Magisterium, knowing that through them we possess the promise and assurance that the defined doctrines and dogmas as taught by the Church are free of any errors.

The Church is likened to Noah's Ark
A very wise and astute man recently made this analogy:
"Basically, the Church is like Noah’s ark – the ark of salvation.
-The Devil will try anything to get us to jump overboard;
-The Captain (Pope) seems erratic at times and we don’t understand or appreciate some of his directives, statements and personnel moves;
-The fellow passengers grate on us as some of them are complete miscreants and don’t follow the Ark rules, but yet they insist upon remaining; while the more cunning ones who think they know better than the Captain seek to sow mutiny amongst the other passengers.
-The ark isn’t going quite in the direction that we think is best,
-And to top it off, the stench of the proverbial animals is nigh unbearable (the stench being all the many sins of the "faithful".)

Yet, while all of the above may be true, but the Ark is STILL the only path to salvation that Christ instituted, and if one jump overboard, the sharks will have their opportunity with them.

-I say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hell will not prevail against It." (Matt 16:18)

Nenhum comentário:

Tecnologia do Blogger.