The Pope in Rome is the literal and metaphorical head of the Roman Catholic Church. He is recognized by the followers of the Roman Catholic religion as such. He is not recognized as the head of the Catholic Church by the followers of the Eastern Orthodox Church, and yet he remains the figure which most people associate with Catholicism. But this was not always true. Before he was the figurehead of the Catholic Church the Pope was no more than the Bishop of Rome. Many large cities had there own bishops who presided over the church. How and why did this particular bishop come to be the Pope? The political and economical conditions in various points in the Roman Empire allowed this bishop to become prominent and eventually the sole
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Peter (who is chief among the bishops), by the majesty of the city of Rome, and finally by the authority of a holy council”. Valentian goes on to say that “no one, without unexcusable [sic] presumption, may attempt anything against the authority of that see”. By 445 the primacy of the Bishop of Rome had been firmly established, but it was the Emperor Constantine over a century earlier that had provided the impetus for this change.
When the Emperor Constantine entered Rome after the victorious battle which brought him the title he needed to convince the population of his legitimacy as a ruler. The legend goes that Constantine was losing the battle until he saw a vision of Christ which prompted him to convert, which lead to his victory. However it is more likely that Constantine actually converted on his deathbed. Constantine recognized the power this religion could have however and used it to his political advantage. At the beginning of Constantine’s reign as Emperor the position of the Bishop of Rome, Miltiades, was weak and precarious. He was by no means the prominent Bishop of Christianity. The Roman Church however, began taking a leadership role in the third century. It was expected that the Roman Church give finding to the other churches, and because of this the Roman church needed to start amassing resources and land. The Roman church began