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Re: Infallibility and Reception [Re: StuartK] #357506
12/24/10 12:23 PM
12/24/10 12:23 PM
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danman916 Offline
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Originally Posted by StuartK
In all of this, you have never actually explained why it is necessary that the Pope be infallible.

this is a rather odd question, to my estimation.
It is like asking why it was necessary for Christ to be born of a virgin.
It simply is what it is.

Re: Infallibility and Reception [Re: MichaelB] #357507
12/24/10 12:28 PM
12/24/10 12:28 PM
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StuartK Offline
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No, it's not. The Church believed Christ was born of a Virgin from the beginning. It is a divine revelation, given to us in Scripture and the Church's rule of faith, believed, as St. Vincent of Lerins puts it, "By all people, at all times, in all places".

On the other hand, the Pope was most definitely NOT infallible until the year 1871, and the process by which he was defined as infallible was and remains highly controversial (else we would not be having this discussion).

The Church functioned for centuries, indeed, for more than 1800 years, without any need for infallibility. Since that time, it has been used twice--once in an ex officio manner, once in accordance with the definition of Pastor aeternus--and in both cases, to dogmatize matters that are entirely tangential to the core of the Christian faith. This leads one to believe maybe those who believe the Pope is infallible have not done a good job of explaining why he needs this authority.

Re: Infallibility and Reception [Re: StuartK] #357517
12/25/10 12:31 AM
12/25/10 12:31 AM
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Dear brother Stuart,

Originally Posted by StuartK
In all of this, you have never actually explained why it is necessary that the Pope be infallible.

Very smart question. I suspect you already know how I will respond, given everything that has been discussed here and in the past. wink

In fact, I couldn't begin to answer your question. After all, I've never claimed the Pope is infallible, nor did Vatican 1 claim the Pope is infallible.

Vatican 1 taught that the Magisterium is infallible, the Magisterium being the teaching authority of God. It does not belong personally/ontologically to any body on earth, not the Church, not an Ecumenical COuncil, not the Pope. It is God's and God's alone. However, for the upbuilding of the body of Christ, God allows the Church to share in His infallibility when the Church is called by God to teach His Truth. God's Truth is intrinsically universal, and therefore, His Truth must necessarily be taught by a body with the authority to speak to and for the Church universal. This prerogative to speak to and for the Church universal is recognized by the Catholic Church to reside in three bodies of authority - (1) an Ecumenical Council speaking authoritatively on an issue of Faith or morals; (2) the bishops of the world in union with its head bishop even while geographically separated when teaching in a definitive manner on an issue of Faith or morals; (3) the head bishop of the Church (the Pope) when defining an issue of Faith or morals.

So infallibility comes naturally with the universal authority to teach. It's just a given. The question is not whether the Pope can exercise infallibility, but whether or not the Pope as protos has the prerogative to speak to and for the Church universal.

Blessings,
Marduk

Re: Infallibility and Reception [Re: StuartK] #357518
12/25/10 12:42 AM
12/25/10 12:42 AM
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Dear brother Stuart,

Originally Posted by StuartK
On the other hand, the Pope was most definitely NOT infallible until the year 1871, and the process by which he was defined as infallible was and remains highly controversial (else we would not be having this discussion).

Not a problem for me, because I don't believe the Pope is infallible. Your quandary was not a problem for V1 either because V1 never taught such a thing. We have here an example of a straw man argument. wink

Quote
The Church functioned for centuries, indeed, for more than 1800 years, without any need for infallibility. Since that time, it has been used twice--once in an ex officio manner, once in accordance with the definition of Pastor aeternus--and in both cases, to dogmatize matters that are entirely tangential to the core of the Christian faith. This leads one to believe maybe those who believe the Pope is infallible have not done a good job of explaining why he needs this authority.

Actually, the Church East and West had been appealing to Rome on doctrinal questions several times when the Church was united. If it was so unnecessary, why do we have such a solid record of such appeals on doctrinal questions?

That the papal exercise of the Church's infallibility is appellate in nature cannot be doubted (the Pope can't exercise infallibility on his whim and fancy). That it never existed or was unnecessary is a stretch of the imagination.

Blessings

Re: Infallibility and Reception [Re: ByzBob] #357522
12/25/10 01:31 AM
12/25/10 01:31 AM
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Dear brother Bob,

Originally Posted by ByzBob
Originally Posted by mardukm

…On facts???

Yes, we disagree on the facts, the definition, and practically everything else associated with it.

It's your right to stick to liberal sources.

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So he was not the absolute ruler of the Council, as detractors of V1 suppose?

He was working behind the scenes. He may not have gotten everything he wanted...

Thanks for the admission. wink

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The Church has never fully recovered. Witness the liturgical wreck that has occurred in the west, the multiple schisms [old Catholics...

Let's get our facts straight:
(1) The Old Catholic Schism was established many years before Vatican 1.
(2) Not a single bishop initiated a schism as a result of Vatican 1.

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SSPX, sedevacantists, etc].

What goes on in the Latin Church is no business of yours nor mine. They were opposing him on his authority as their Patriarch, and their complaints have nothing to do with the Eastern or Oriental Catholic Churches.

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Before engaging on this topic, I request a clarification. There are three points at issue here:
1) The activation of the Pope's exercise of the Church's infallibility
2) The manner by which the Pope formulates a Decree
3) The authority to promulgate the Decree.
We need not discuss #3 at this point. I am confused as to whether you are referring to #1 or #2. I have been referring to #1. It seems you are referring to #2, but I am not at all sure now. Are you saying that the Pope can indeed wake up one morning and arbitrarily decide that the Church needs a new dogma, and then impose it on the Church without any say from the rest of the bishops of the Church? And this, after all the quotes I gave you indicating that the Pope cannot exercise the Church's infallibility at his whim and fancy?

Yes, he could do that. There is nothing stopping him in the definition.

I see you validate my observation that opposition to the papacy is based completely on a myopic focus on the definitions, instead of the Decrees as a whole.

I recall that Pope St. Cyril of Alexandria was criticized by the Eastern Council Fathers of Ephesus for not sticking to prior conciliar definitions in his exhortations against Nestorius. St. Cyril correctly shot back that our Faith is not restricted to the definitions, but to the whole witness of the Church.

It's so ironic that those who oppose the papacy often claim that they oppose legalism, yet these same people exhibit the very same thing that they (supposedly) oppose when they insist on myopically focusing on the definitions, instead of the whole context of the Decrees.

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Nor could anyone judge him for doing so,

Well, that's not part of the Decree on Infallibility. In any case, you are referring to the appellate authority of the Pope. Please read the Council of Sardica and tell us if there is another level after appeal to the bishop of Rome that is recognized by the early Church.

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appeal to a council.

Nope. The statement to which you refer provides a very important mitigating clause - namely, "as to an authority above the Pope." There is nothing that could prevent appeal to a Council under the presidency of the Pope where the Pope could very well change his mind through the counsel of his fellow bishops. In any case, we're not talking about infallibility anymore.

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That is what the definition says.

Nope. That's not even part of the Decree on the Infallibility! You're referring to the Decree on the Primacy. You're just grasping at straws now, brother. wink

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Really? If his argument was so strong, I wonder how the Council could have failed to utilize the giving of the keys as Scriptural support for papal infallibility(???). Your source makes a sensationalist claim to make Cullen's contribution more important than it actually was.

Are you suggesting that the basis of Papal Infallibility isn’t the tortured reading of Mat 16?

Which verse? IIRC, there is no mention of the keys in the Decree on Infallibility.

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...And Bishop Gasser, the official spokesman for the commission that proposed the text of the Decree, asserted that neither does infalliblity flow through the Pope, but directly from God. Did your source mention that? Would it be correct to say that your source is only interested in giving a an Absolutist Petrine caricature of Vatican 1?

Quite the opposite. The “source” would defend Vatican 1, while opposing those who think the Pope has absolute authority. It would appear then that there are differing accounts of what happened, who said what, etc., even from those who agree on certain aspects of the council? Not surprising. Yours is truly the most novel that I have read.

How novel could it be, given the quotes from the Council Fathers that I gave you? grin

Blessings

Re: Infallibility and Reception [Re: Melkite Convert] #357523
12/25/10 02:23 AM
12/25/10 02:23 AM
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mardukm Offline
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Dear brother Scott,

Please read my response to brother Stuart at 11:31 P.M. Let's consider the issue in that context. Does it offer any answers to your question?

Blessings,
Marduk

Originally Posted by Melkite Convert
Originally Posted by mardukm
Originally Posted by Melkite Convert
If this dogma does not separate Councils and the papal office (and I'm not asserting it does), then it raises some questions that have yet to be answered:

1. Why do we need Councils if the Pope can just consult with the bishops and then, after doing so, speak infallibly? I mean the Pope can still work within the Church, gathering the bishops, asking for their input, discussing doctrine with them, asking them if something should be defined. Then, once he has their consent, he defines the dogma, and that pronouncement is infallible. How is that different than a Council? I don't mean to be problematic, but I have yet to read a really good explanation that answers these questions.

That's a very valid question. Let me pose a question to you, and if you can answer my question, then it will perhaps answer to your own question (if not, then we can discuss further):

The Catholic Church also recognizes that infallibility can be exercised by the bishops of the world in union with their head bishop (the Pope) even while they are geographically spread throughout the world when they teach definitively on a matter. I gather you will agree with that. My question to you is - if infallibility can be exercised in this way, why is there a need for an Ecumenical Council?

This is something I would like to discuss. It does puzzle me. I don't know if this is accurate, but it seems to me that this is a latter understanding of how infallibility works in the Church. I'm not sure how this was exercised in the days of the Church prior to our modern means of communication or if this is just a distinction without a difference, as Stuart is fond of saying. smile

Re: Infallibility and Reception [Re: mardukm] #357536
12/26/10 03:18 PM
12/26/10 03:18 PM
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MichaelB Offline OP
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Does anyone know what's contained in the profession of faith Pope Clement IV impossed on Emperor Michael Palealogus?

Does it meet the criteria of an infallible, ex-cathedra pronouncement?

Are Papal professions of faith considered ex-cathedra pronouncements?

Re: Infallibility and Reception #357537
12/26/10 03:36 PM
12/26/10 03:36 PM
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MichaelB Offline OP
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Does anyone know what's contained in the profession of faith Pope Clement IV impossed on Emperor Michael Palealogus?

(Does it say that babies who die in original sin go to hell?)

Does this document meet the criteria of an infallible, ex-cathedra pronouncement (and are Papal professions of faith normally considered ex-cathedra pronouncements)?

Anyone, please.

Last edited by MichaelB; 12/26/10 03:37 PM.
Re: Infallibility and Reception [Re: MichaelB] #357538
12/26/10 03:55 PM
12/26/10 03:55 PM
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Quote
That the papal exercise of the Church's infallibility is appellate in nature cannot be doubted (the Pope can't exercise infallibility on his whim and fancy). That it never existed or was unnecessary is a stretch of the imagination.


That, of course, is not how Pastor aeternus is worded, and, moreover, does nothing to explain how an appellate authority can be used unilaterally to promote innovations and impose them over the entire Church of God.

Re: Infallibility and Reception [Re: MichaelB] #357541
12/26/10 07:40 PM
12/26/10 07:40 PM
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Interesting, I have read discussions about this but I would not be able to answer this question. I hope someone will respons to this.


Re: Infallibility and Reception [Re: MichaelB] #357542
12/26/10 07:53 PM
12/26/10 07:53 PM
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http://www.cantius.org/go/sacraments/baptism/unbaptized_infants/

" The fate of infants who die without baptism must be briefly considered here. The Catholic teaching is uncompromising on this point, that all who depart this life without baptism, be it of water, or blood, or desire, are perpetually excluded from the vision of God. This teaching is grounded, as we have seen, on Scripture and tradition, and the decrees of the Church. Moreover, that those who die in original sin, without ever having contracted any actual sin, are deprived of the happiness of heaven is stated explicitly in the Confession of Faith of the Eastern Emperor Michael Palæologus, which had been proposed to him by Pope Clement IV in 1267, and which he accepted in the presence of Gregory X at the Second Council of Lyons in 1274. The same doctrine is found also in the Decree of Union of the Greeks, in the Bull “Lætentur Caeli” of Pope Eugene IV, in the Profession of Faith prescribed for the Greeks by Pope Gregory XIII, and in that authorized for the Orientals by Urban VIII and Benedict XIV. Many Catholic theologians have declared that infants dying without baptism are excluded from the beatific vision; but as to the exact state of these souls in the next world they are not agreed.

In speaking of souls who have failed to attain salvation, these theologians distinguish the pain of loss (paena damni), or privation of the beatific vision, and the pain of sense (paena sensus). Though these theologians have thought it certain that unbaptized infants must endure the pain of loss, they have not been similarly certain that they are subject to the pain of sense. St. Augustine (De Pecc. et Mer., I, xvi) held that they would not be exempt from the pain of sense, but at the same time he thought it would be of the mildest form. On the other hand, St. Gregory Nazianzen (Or. in S. Bapt.) expresses the belief that such infants would suffer only the pain of loss. Sfondrati (Nod. Prædest., I, i) declares that while they are certainly excluded from heaven, yet they are not deprived of natural happiness. This opinion seemed so objectionable to some French bishops that they asked the judgment of the Holy See upon the matter. Pope Innocent XI replied that he would have the opinion examined into by a commission of theologians, but no sentence seems ever to have been passed upon it. Since the twelfth century, the opinion of the majority of theologians has been that unbaptized infants are immune from all pain of sense. This was taught by St. Thomas Aquinas, Scotus, St. Bonaventure, Peter Lombard, and others, and is now the common teaching in the schools. It accords with the wording of a decree of Pope Innocent III (III Decr., xlii, 3): “The punishment of original sin is the deprivation of the vision of God; of actual sin, the eternal pains of hell.” Infants, of course, can not be guilty of actual sin. "

Re: Infallibility and Reception [Re: Litvin] #357543
12/26/10 08:04 PM
12/26/10 08:04 PM
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Christ is Born!! Glorify Him!!

What does this thread have to do with the Eastern Churches, their spirituality, their theology, or their approach to the Mystery we celebrate today on the Gregorian calendar?

Bob
Moderator

Re: Infallibility and Reception [Re: MichaelB] #357545
12/26/10 08:23 PM
12/26/10 08:23 PM
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I agree. In the future let's just allow one thread and move all new posts on the same topic to that thread. Let's remember that the focus of The Byzantine Forum is Eastern Christianity.

Re: Infallibility and Reception [Re: Administrator] #357550
12/26/10 09:33 PM
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Originally Posted by Administrator
I agree. In the future let's just allow one thread and move all new posts on the same topic to that thread. Let's remember that the focus of The Byzantine Forum is Eastern Christianity.


I will note that Litwin's post does starkly point out the difference between the East's approach to issues like those cited in Litwin's post and the (for lack of a better term) hyper-legalistic approach of the West. Coming from an Eastern background, my brain starts to spin when I start reading and trying to understand such arguments as set out on the specific post and the thread as a whole. I think that is something that most of us who are either Eastern Catholic or Orthodox can agree upon.

Re: Infallibility and Reception [Re: DMD] #357552
12/27/10 12:58 AM
12/27/10 12:58 AM
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Originally Posted by DMD
Originally Posted by Administrator
I agree. In the future let's just allow one thread and move all new posts on the same topic to that thread. Let's remember that the focus of The Byzantine Forum is Eastern Christianity.


I will note that Litwin's post does starkly point out the difference between the East's approach to issues like those cited in Litwin's post and the (for lack of a better term) hyper-legalistic approach of the West. Coming from an Eastern background, my brain starts to spin when I start reading and trying to understand such arguments as set out on the specific post and the thread as a whole. I think that is something that most of us who are either Eastern Catholic or Orthodox can agree upon.


Except Litvin quotes theological opinion and not the teaching of the Catholic Church. From the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

"1261 As regards children who have died without Baptism, the Church can only entrust them to the mercy of God, as she does in her funeral rites for them. Indeed, the great mercy of God who desires that all men should be saved, and Jesus' tenderness toward children which caused him to say: "Let the children come to me, do not hinder them,"63 allow us to hope that there is a way of salvation for children who have died without Baptism. All the more urgent is the Church's call not to prevent little children coming to Christ through the gift of holy Baptism."
http://www.vatican.va/archive/catechism/p2s2c1a1.htm#VI


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