Antony's Role In The Catholic Church

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In modern Church history, one of the most contentious and controversial issues that the Roman Catholic Church has had to deal with in its ecumenical dialogue with other Christian churches is the Dogma of Papal Infallibility. This dogma was officially promulgated by Pope Pius IX at the First Vatican Council (1869-1870) in the Dogmatic Constitution Pastor Aeternus. This magisterial document defined the role and ministry of the pope within the Church. In their attempt to define the Petrine office, the Council Fathers at Vatican I unknowingly opened a ‘can of worms’ that would, unfortunately, have long-lasting consequences on the Catholic Church’s movement towards Christian unity. The impact of Pastor Aeternus is still noticeable today in ecumenical …show more content…
One of the reasons why the papacy is an obstacle to Christian unity is because other Christians fear the Dogma of Papal Infallibility. For many non-Catholics, they are suspicious of papal infallibility because to them it is a “‘creeping infallibility,’ [which] is an exercise of infallible authority that seems at first to grow so gradually [that] it is hardly noticed, but then could run out of control.” Pope John Paul II recognized that other Christians’ concerns about papal primacy and infallibility are reasonable; however, John Paul II wanted to begin his dialogue with these other denominations by stressing that the first step in reforming the papacy is by engaging in ecumenical dialogue. Pope John Paul II began this initiative in earnest in his encyclical Ut Unum Sint in which he wrote: “Thus it is absolutely clear that ecumenism, the movement promoting Christian unity, is not just some sort of "appendix" which is added to the Church's traditional activity. Rather, ecumenism is an organic part of her life and work, and consequently must pervade all that she is and does.” Later on in that encyclical, Pope John Paul II conceded “that in the ministry of the Bishop of Rome... [there] constitutes a difficulty for most other Christians, whose memory is marked by certain painful recollections. To the extent that we are responsible for these, I join my Predecessor Paul VI in asking forgiveness.” Pope John Paul II also mentioned in Ut Unum Sint that the pope “has the duty to admonish, to caution and to declare at times that this or that opinion being circulated is

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