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« on: February 15, 2008, 08:18:58 PM »

I have had two Orthodox Church people tell me that Peter was never a bishop. Since we all agree that he was an apostle, does being an apostle incur higher honor than being a bishop? Is this why the Orthodox believe such? Please explain the difference between being an apostle verses being a bishop. What do the church fathers mean when they refer to the See of Peter?
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« Reply #1 on: February 15, 2008, 08:54:55 PM »

I have had two Orthodox Church people tell me that Peter was never a bishop. Since we all agree that he was an apostle, does being an apostle incur higher honor than being a bishop? Is this why the Orthodox believe such? Please explain the difference between being an apostle verses being a bishop. What do the church fathers mean when they refer to the See of Peter?

The bishops are successors to the Apostles, as such, the Apostles cannot be bishops, as they do not succeed themselves.  During the Apostolic Age, there was overlap, as the office of Apostle died out with John while the episcopate lived on.

Pope St. Gregory talks of the See of Peter as being Rome, Alexandria (through Mark) and Antioch as being one See of Peter.
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« Reply #2 on: February 16, 2008, 02:22:36 AM »

The bishops are successors to the Apostles, as such, the Apostles cannot be bishops, as they do not succeed themselves.  During the Apostolic Age, there was overlap, as the office of Apostle died out with John while the episcopate lived on.

Pope St. Gregory talks of the See of Peter as being Rome, Alexandria (through Mark) and Antioch as being one See of Peter.

Thank you. Any documents or citations with Pope St Gregory saying as much?
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« Reply #3 on: February 16, 2008, 09:09:48 AM »

Thank you. Any documents or citations with Pope St Gregory saying as much?

EPISTLE XL. To EULOGIUS, BISHOP. Gregory to Eulogius, Bishop of Alexandria. Your most sweet Holiness has spoken much in your letter to me about the chair of Saint Peter, Prince of the apostles, saying that he himself now sits on it in the persons of his successors. And indeed I acknowledge myself to be unworthy, not only in the dignity of such as preside, but even in the number of such as stand. But I gladly accepted all that has been said, in that he has spoken to me about Peter's chair who occupies Peter's chair. And, though special honour to myself in no wise delights me, yet I greatly rejoiced because you, most holy ones, have given to yourselves what you have bestowed upon me. For who can be ignorant that holy Church has been made firm in the solidity of the Prince of the apostles, who derived his name from the firmness of his mind, so as to be called Petrus from petra. And to him it is said by the voice of the Truth, To thee I will give the keys of the kingdom of heaven (Matth. xvi. 19). And again it is said to him, And when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren (xxii. 32). And once more, Simon, son of Jonas, lovest thou Me? Feed my sheep (Joh. xxi. 17). Wherefore though there are many apostles, yet with regard to the principality itself the See of the Prince of the apostles alone has grown strong in authority, which in three places is the See of one. For he himself exalted the See in which he deigned even to rest and end the present life [Rome]. He himself adorned the See to which he sent his disciple [Mark] as evangelist [Alexandria]. He himself stablished the See in which, though he was to leave it, he sat for seven years [Antioch]. Since then it is the See of one, and one See, over which by Divine authority three bishops now preside, whatever good I hear of you, this I impute to myself. If you believe anything good of me, impute this to your merits, since we are one in Him Who says, That they all may be one, as Thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee that they also may be one in us (Joh. xvii. 21). Moreover, in paying you the debt of salutation which is due to you, I declare to you that I exult with great joy from knowing that you labour assiduously against the barkings of heretics; and I implore Almighty God that He would aid your Blessedness with His protection, so as through your tongue. to uproot every root of bitterness from the bosom of holy Church, lest it should germinate again to the hindrance of many, and through it many should be defiled. For having received your talent you think on the injunction, Trade till I come (Luke xix. 13). I therefore, though unable to trade at all nevertheless rejoice with you in the gains of your trade, inasmuch as I know this, that if operation does not make me partaker, yet charity does make me a partaker in your labour. For I reckon that the good of a neighbour is common to one that stands idle, if he knows how to rejoice in common in the doings of the other. Furthermore, I have wished to send you some timber: but your Blessedness has not indicated whether you are in need of it: and we can send some of much larger size, but no ship is sent hither capable of containing it: and I think shame to send the smaller sort. Nevertheless let your Blessedness inform me by letter what I should do. I have however sent you, as a small blessing from the Church of Saint Peter who loves you, six of the smaller sort of Aquitanian cloaks (pallia), and two napkins (oraria); for, my affection being great, I presume on the acceptableness of even little things. For affection itself has its own worth, and it is quite certain that there will be no offence in what out of love one has presumed to do. Moreover I have received the blessing of the holy Evangelist Mark, according to the note appended to your letter. But, since I do not drink colatum and viritheum with pleasure, I venture to ask for cognidium, which last year, after a long interval, your Holiness caused to be known in this city. For we here get from the traders the name of cognidium, but not the thing itself. Now I beg that the prayers of your Holiness may support me against all the bitternesses which I suffer in this life, and defend me from them by your intercessions with Almighty God.

http://www.clerus.org/clerus/dati/2001-02/13-999999/e7.html
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« Reply #4 on: February 16, 2008, 02:57:53 PM »

Thank you very much. Does the Chair of Peter mean the same thing as the See of Peter as well? Are the three Sees you mention all the Chair of Peter? Or are there different Chairs?

God Bless you.
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« Reply #5 on: February 16, 2008, 03:13:47 PM »

Thank you very much. Does the Chair of Peter mean the same thing as the See of Peter as well? Are the three Sees you mention all the Chair of Peter? Or are there different Chairs?

God Bless you.

See comes from Latin sedes "seat" refering to the cathedra "chair" in the bishop's CATHEDRAl, i.e. an expression of his authority. I don't have the Latin available for the letter (or the Greek, which would be more telling).  The three make up one See in the sense that 50 states make up the US Federal government.
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« Reply #6 on: February 16, 2008, 03:31:19 PM »

See comes from Latin sedes "seat" refering to the cathedra "chair" in the bishop's CATHEDRAl, i.e. an expression of his authority. I don't have the Latin available for the letter (or the Greek, which would be more telling).  The three make up one See in the sense that 50 states make up the US Federal government.

Are you saying that the Chair of Peter is the same Chair of Mark?
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« Reply #7 on: February 16, 2008, 03:43:45 PM »

Are you saying that the Chair of Peter is the same Chair of Mark?

No.  St. Gregory is saying that.
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« Reply #8 on: February 16, 2008, 03:47:39 PM »

No.  St. Gregory is saying that.

What do you say?
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« Reply #9 on: February 16, 2008, 03:51:57 PM »

Are you saying that the Chair of Peter is the same Chair of Mark?

Looking at it from the Orthodox point of view, one should not get too hung up on which bishop is heir of which apostle.  From our POV, all bishops are in a sense the "descendents" of Peter and all the other apostles.  For the Orthodox, the bishop of Rome has primacy of honour (if he is Orthodox, which as far as we are concerned is not the case nowadays)  amongst all the other bishops mainly because his see was the capital of the Roman empire, and not primarily because of the succession from Peter.  Likewise, the reason why Constantinople has the second ranking in terms of primacy (first ranking nowadays) is because it is "New Rome."  Constantinople can't claim ancient foundation by an apostle in the same way other sees can.  That's another reason, btw, why Roman claims about apostolic foundation seem peculiar to us.  There are literally thousands of sees in the East that can claim apostolic foundation, wheras the West can only claim one such foundation, that of Rome.  And yes, Alexandria (through Mark) and Antioch, also claim specifically Petrine foundation.  But the heart of the matter from our POV is that all bishops share equally in the one apostolic succession.  There are differences in honour, that end up carrying differences in authority to make Church governance run more smoothly and to use as a dispute-solving mechansim (appeals can be made to "higher" sees in some cases, and quite a lot of flowerey language has historically been used to describe more important sees), but in the sacramental sense we admit to no differences between bishops.  
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« Reply #10 on: February 16, 2008, 04:09:52 PM »

Thank you for you reply. God bless you.

So is the Church of Rome also the Church of Alexandria? Are they one church? Or different churches? Do they share one chair, or do they each have a chair?

Thank you for helping me understand this confusing matter.
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« Reply #11 on: February 16, 2008, 04:21:21 PM »

No.  St. Gregory is saying that.

Is St Gregory right in saying that then?
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« Reply #12 on: February 16, 2008, 05:44:12 PM »

Thank you for you reply. God bless you.

So is the Church of Rome also the Church of Alexandria? Are they one church? Or different churches? Do they share one chair, or do they each have a chair?

Thank you for helping me understand this confusing matter.

Is St Gregory right in saying that then?

Yes.

The episcopate is ontologically a whole, so in a sense there is no difference between the Pope of Rome and the Pope of Alexandria, even if there was no Petrine connection with the latter.  That of Alexandria is through St. Mark, who was an Apostle in his own right.

Of course, we live in history, and as individuals, and on geography, so yes there are two Churches, but no, there is only One Church.  Both Rome and Alexandria exist within the Church by adhering to Her.  If either, as say Rome, ceased to confess the Faith of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church, it would seperate itself into a seperate existence, making two churches, but not impairing the unity of the One Church, which remains One.
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« Reply #13 on: February 16, 2008, 05:57:41 PM »

Not to be pedantic or anything, but I think part of the hangup is on the word "of" in the phrases "Church of Rome" and "Church of Alexandria," which lends itself to the impression that they are completely separate things.  For that reason, I think the OCA's reference to itself as the "Orthodox Church in America" lends itself more to the understanding of the Church as being One Body, but present in many places.  "Of" implies that it belongs only to a particular place, while "in" suggests that it is a larger whole that is present in a particular place.
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« Reply #14 on: February 16, 2008, 06:09:50 PM »

Not to be pedantic or anything, but I think part of the hangup is on the word "of" in the phrases "Church of Rome" and "Church of Alexandria," which lends itself to the impression that they are completely separate things.  For that reason, I think the OCA's reference to itself as the "Orthodox Church in America" lends itself more to the understanding of the Church as being One Body, but present in many places.  "Of" implies that it belongs only to a particular place, while "in" suggests that it is a larger whole that is present in a particular place.

Yes, I would agree.  One translation of St. Ignatius' letters says "the Church sojourning in X to the Church sojourning in Y."
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« Reply #15 on: February 16, 2008, 09:23:53 PM »

I was asked to move this question here:

^^I guess the problem is: I do not understand where you are confused in these terms, after reading both Ialmisry's and Veniamin's contribution in the following thread:

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,14707.msg209672.html#msg209672

Can you explain (in that thread, not this one, which should not involve this topic since your own OP was a request for a catechism) where you are confused?


To answer, I was told elsewhere from an OC member, that the See of Peter pertains to Rome only, and the See of Mark pertain to Alexandria only . On the contrary, here, I have been told that the See of Peter includes Alexandria, which confuses me.

I understand that the catholic church included at one time both Sees. I realize that they represented one church in the bigger picture. However, it seems to me that they were two different Sees and Chairs in one church, as I have been told by other EOC members. I am just trying to figure out why?
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« Reply #16 on: February 16, 2008, 09:33:53 PM »

To sum up:

I am under the impression that when we are talking about the one catholic church in the first centuries, it includes all of the Sees. However, the See of Peter is not the See of Mark. But they both made up the one catholic church. Does this jive?
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« Reply #17 on: February 16, 2008, 09:56:26 PM »

To sum up:

I am under the impression that when we are talking about the one catholic church in the first centuries, it includes all of the Sees. However, the See of Peter is not the See of Mark. But they both made up the one catholic church. Does this jive?


Okay, let's just start from the ground up on this one, because I'm starting to get confused with all the questions.  The term "see" refers to the episcopal office of a particular local church (aka diocese, metropolis, eparchy, etc.) or more generally to the territory of that local church (and chair is a colloquial term for the see, as both see and chair refer to the bishop's throne).  For example, the See of Rome refers specifically to the office of the Bishop of Rome but is also used more loosely to refer to the entire Diocese of Rome.  Now, some of the most ancient sees are associated with a particular apostle and are sometimes referred to as that apostle's see (such as Rome with St. Peter, resulting in the name "the See of Peter").  Furthermore, two or more sees might be associated with the same apostle and thus both be termed that apostle's see, but that doesn't make them the same see.  As an analogy, my dining room chair might be the "Chair of Veniamin" and my living room chair might also be the "Chair of Veniamin," but that doesn't make them the same chair.  Finally, don't be confused by the term "church" applied here to two diffferent locations.  When we speak of local churches, we don't mean that they are different churches the way we normally think that Orthodoxy and the RCC are different churches.  Instead, we mean it in the sense ialmisry and I spoke of earlier, that the local church is that portion of the church residing in a particular place, rather than being a wholly separate entity.
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« Reply #18 on: February 16, 2008, 10:08:09 PM »

Thank you for your input. Would you agree with how I put it? That when we speak of the catholic church in the first couple of centuries, we include all of the Sees? Whereas the See of Peter is not the See of Mark? However, they made up the catholic church in the first couple of centuries?
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« Reply #19 on: February 16, 2008, 10:10:27 PM »

Thank you for your input. Would you agree with how I put it? That when we speak of the catholic church in the first couple of centuries, we include all of the Sees? Whereas the See of Peter is not the See of Mark? However, they made up the catholic church in the first couple of centuries?

No, they were two sees within the Church during the first couple of centuries, but they were neither the only ones nor the sum total of it.
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« Reply #20 on: February 16, 2008, 10:13:39 PM »

No, they were two sees within the Church during the first couple of centuries, but they were neither the only ones nor the sum total of it.

Why do you say no? I think we agree. I believe that the See of Peter was a different See than Mark, although they were both part of the one catholic church. Am I wrong?
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« Reply #21 on: February 16, 2008, 10:18:40 PM »

Why do you say no? I think we agree. I believe that the See of Peter was a different See than Mark, although they were both part of the one catholic church. Am I wrong?

I'm disagreeing with this:

However, they made up the catholic church in the first couple of centuries?

This implies that Rome and Alexandria were either the sum total of the Church or the Church's sine qua non.  A particular see is neither the whole of the Church nor a necessary component of it.
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« Reply #22 on: February 16, 2008, 10:21:20 PM »

I'm disagreeing with this:

This implies that Rome and Alexandria were either the sum total of the Church or the Church's sine qua non.  A particular see is neither the whole of the Church nor a necessary component of it.

I see, I did not mean that they were the sum total. Do you agree with my last post:

I believe that the See of Peter was a different See than Mark, although they were both part of the one catholic church. Am I wrong?

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« Reply #23 on: February 16, 2008, 11:06:25 PM »

I am sure that the input on the evolving polity of interrelation of what we know now as the RC and the EO is accurate information.

I am chiming in, only to point back to the fact that in the NT such drastic distinctions did not exists among what is now viewed as separate offices. IN the NT record the terms bishop, elder, overseer, pastor, are all used synonymously (i.e. Acts 20:28 and surrounding verses).

Apostles were recognized as bishops.
1. Judas had his "bishopric" replaced by Matthias. Acts 1:20, & 25
2. Apostle John calls himself an elder, or bishop. 2 John1:1, and 3 John 1:1
3. Jesus, the Apostle of our faith (Hebrews 3:1), is also the Bishop and Shepherd of our Souls. 1 Peter 2:25


But all bishops were not recognized as Apostles.
1. Note the distinction between the Apostles and elders. Acts 15:6 - 16:4
2. In numerous places the bishops or elders are addressed, along with deacons, without any reference to apostles, underscoring the distinct function of the two offices. (references can be cited if needed).


Furthermore, Peter declares in his epistle, by his own hand (and under divine inspiration no less), that he was indeed one among the bishops (sumpresbuteros**). 1 Peter 5:1

**Note the use of sumpresbuteros, a variant of presbuteros, implying "part of the whole" or "one among equals." Peter thus denies any supremacy of his role as a bishop or elder in the church. In fact  Peter who uses the only reference in the NT to designate the shepherd of supremacy in the church, and he does not use it of himself. Rather he uses the designation to refer to our Lord, Jesus Christ.


So, without doubt, Peter was both an Apostle and a Bishop.
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« Reply #24 on: February 17, 2008, 12:09:19 AM »

Thanks for the input!!

However, in Orthodox Church discussions, sola scriptura does not apply, since that is a recent construct comparatively speaking. The traditions handed down by the apostles plays a key role, as well as councils. Knowing history is crucial for a dialogue with a seasoned OC member.

But to add something to the discussion, I have no problem whatsoever with the Orhtodox not considering Peter a bishop anymore, since they reward him with a much higher honor. What confused me earlier, but not anymore, is why they confused the Sees in one of their responses. I believe that question has been answered. They in fact recognize that the See of Peter is not the See of Mark. And if you read the quote of Pope St Gregory above, that very same quote was used against the Roman Catholic Church, since Pope St Gregory was trying to claim universal jurisdiction, which the Orthodox reject. Huh I am not sure if they realize that.

God bless everyone here.
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« Reply #25 on: February 17, 2008, 01:24:02 AM »

Thanks for the input!!

However, in Orthodox Church discussions, sola scriptura does not apply, since that is a recent construct comparatively speaking. The traditions handed down by the apostles plays a key role, as well as councils. Knowing history is crucial for a dialogue with a seasoned OC member.

I was not intending to apply sola scriptura. I was however attempting to point to prima scriptura in relation to what has come to be versus what was actually recorded as being. if tradition informs Scripture, then it must also not contradict Scripture, and vice versa. Thus, referencing the account of sacred writ should only further enlighten us as to the truth. If it does not then we make the word of God a contradiction. If we hold Scripture and tradition to be on par, then both are the word of God, and cannot contradict without throwing suspicion on both.

Quote
But to add something to the discussion, I have no problem whatsoever with the Orthodox not considering Peter a bishop anymore, since they reward him with a much higher honor. What confused me earlier, but not anymore, is why they confused the Sees in one of their responses. I believe that question has been answered. They in fact recognize that the See of Peter is not the See of Mark. And if you read the quote of Pope St Gregory above, that very same quote was used against the Roman Catholic Church, since Pope St Gregory was trying to claim universal jurisdiction, which the Orthodox reject. Huh I am not sure if they realize that.

God bless everyone here.

I believe I understand what you were after specifically. I am sorry if I muddied the waters. But, now I am curious, does my answer not stand to scrutiny just the same? Does not the written word of God tell us Peter was both a bishop and an apostle? If it does then must we not embrace it's witness?
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« Reply #26 on: February 17, 2008, 01:46:32 AM »

I believe I understand what you were after specifically. I am sorry if I muddied the waters. But, now I am curious, does my answer not stand to scrutiny just the same? Does not the written word of God tell us Peter was both a bishop and an apostle? If it does then must we not embrace it's witness?

I dont think so, since scripture has to be interpreted. And the Orthodox believe that there is no such thing as private interpretation.

"2 Pet 1:20 Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation."

Without the church Christ founded, how do you interpret?
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« Reply #27 on: February 17, 2008, 01:50:39 AM »

That's why with an Orthodox, history of the early church fathers is key. Albeit, interpretation is even a problem there too, but at least the problems are limted to that only.
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« Reply #28 on: February 17, 2008, 09:16:28 AM »

Okay, let's just start from the ground up on this one, because I'm starting to get confused with all the questions.  The term "see" refers to the episcopal office of a particular local church (aka diocese, metropolis, eparchy, etc.) or more generally to the territory of that local church (and chair is a colloquial term for the see, as both see and chair refer to the bishop's throne).  For example, the See of Rome refers specifically to the office of the Bishop of Rome but is also used more loosely to refer to the entire Diocese of Rome.  Now, some of the most ancient sees are associated with a particular apostle and are sometimes referred to as that apostle's see (such as Rome with St. Peter, resulting in the name "the See of Peter").  Furthermore, two or more sees might be associated with the same apostle and thus both be termed that apostle's see, but that doesn't make them the same see.  As an analogy, my dining room chair might be the "Chair of Veniamin" and my living room chair might also be the "Chair of Veniamin," but that doesn't make them the same chair.  Finally, don't be confused by the term "church" applied here to two diffferent locations.  When we speak of local churches, we don't mean that they are different churches the way we normally think that Orthodoxy and the RCC are different churches.  Instead, we mean it in the sense ialmisry and I spoke of earlier, that the local church is that portion of the church residing in a particular place, rather than being a wholly separate entity.
Sort of like one television broadcast being received on milliions of TV sets around the globe. Cheesy
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« Reply #29 on: February 17, 2008, 05:34:24 PM »

So, without doubt, Peter was both an Apostle and a Bishop.

I think what one has to remember here is that things were very much in a state of flux in the early centuries of the Church's existence when it came to which ministry was what, and which performed which function.  I think that the threefold ministries of bishop, priest (presbyter), and deacon were not finalised into forms that we would more or less recognize until the second half of the fourth century.  Very early on, the terms "presbyter" and "bishop" could mean the same thing, depending on which community one belonged to.  And presbyters were not universally sacerdotal in their functions until it became the standard thing by the fourth century to have them stand in for their bishop when the bishop could not be around.  (Before this, they were in many cases elders who stood around the altar at the liturgy but did not neccessarily participate in the sacrificial offering as priests in the way that we would clearly understand today.) Some, like St. John Chrysostom, were even of the opinion that the original diaconate was not the same thing as the diaconate that later grew out of the original diaconate, but that early deacons were rather like ordained "head waiters."  Others, while agreeing that this part of the "waiting on tables" ministry was important to the diaconate and remained so, disagreed with St. John in his understanding that the early diaconate was not the same as the later one.  So I don't know if you can say that "Peter was definately a bishop".  Remember, too, that there were different ways of understanding what an apostle was.  There are the 12 apostles, who were quite unique, and along with Paul, undoubtedly the "fount" of apostolicity if you will, but also the 70.  And many others were referred to as "apostles" too.  One such person would have been James, the brother of the Lord, who was also the first bishop of Jerusalem.  The important thing to remember is that apostolic succession was, and is, living, organic, and a vital part of assuring the genuine nature of the Church.  And it is the whole Church that is the guardian and the transmitter of this apostolicity, not just the bishops.
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« Reply #30 on: February 19, 2008, 06:03:49 AM »

To sum up:

I am under the impression that when we are talking about the one catholic church in the first centuries, it includes all of the Sees. However, the See of Peter is not the See of Mark. But they both made up the one catholic church. Does this jive?


The See of Peter, or the Apostolic See, included Alexandria because St. Mark was St. Peter's disciple. Antioch was directly founded by Peter so of course it was also the Apostolic See. That was why there was such a big controversy about the 28th Canon of Chalcedon; since it placed Constantinople above the other two Churches of the Apostolic See (although below Rome). As St. Gregory says, quoted earlier:

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Wherefore though there are many apostles, yet with regard to the principality itself the See of the Prince of the apostles alone has grown strong in authority, which in three places is the See of one. For he himself exalted the See in which he deigned even to rest and end the present life [Rome]. He himself [Peter] adorned the See to which he sent his disciple [Mark] as evangelist [Alexandria]. He himself stablished the See in which, though he was to leave it, he sat for seven years [Antioch]. Since then it is the See of one, and one See, over which by Divine authority three bishops now preside, whatever good I hear of you, this I impute to myself. If you believe anything good of me, impute this to your merits, since we are one in Him Who says, That they all may be one, as Thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee that they also may be one in us (Joh. xvii. 21).

As for St. Peter not being a Bishop, most of the early witnesses say St. Peter only founded the Church of the Romans and installed its first Bishop (sometimes in conjunction with St. Paul). So while it is quite legitimate to trace the Apostolic succession of Rome directly back to St. Peter, it isn't really correct to say he was its first Bishop. Fr. Vladimir Guettee's The Papacy discusses this.
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« Reply #31 on: February 20, 2008, 12:48:27 AM »

The See of Peter, or the Apostolic See, included Alexandria because St. Mark was St. Peter's disciple. Antioch was directly founded by Peter so of course it was also the Apostolic See. That was why there was such a big controversy about the 28th Canon of Chalcedon; since it placed Constantinople above the other two Churches of the Apostolic See (although below Rome).

Hello?  You are Orthodox, and you use the expression "the Apostolic See" with a straight face, as if there are no other apostolic sees?  The Orthodox find the Latin usage of this expression amusing at best, and arrogant at worst.  Are you going to tell me that the literally hundreds of sees founded in the East that claim apostolic foundation could not possibly call themselves an "apostolic see" because their foundation is not Petrine in origin?

Again, I ask, you are Orthodox?  You believe the propaganda of St. Gregory that the sees founded by Peter are literally one see?  Veniamin has already explained that one see is one see, period.  His explanation is in harmony with Orthodox ecclesiology; yours is not.
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« Reply #32 on: February 20, 2008, 02:46:12 AM »

Hello?  You are Orthodox, and you use the expression "the Apostolic See" with a straight face, as if there are no other apostolic sees?  The Orthodox find the Latin usage of this expression amusing at best, and arrogant at worst.  Are you going to tell me that the literally hundreds of sees founded in the East that claim apostolic foundation could not possibly call themselves an "apostolic see" because their foundation is not Petrine in origin?

Again, I ask, you are Orthodox?  You believe the propaganda of St. Gregory that the sees founded by Peter are literally one see?  Veniamin has already explained that one see is one see, period.  His explanation is in harmony with Orthodox ecclesiology; yours is not.

Oh wow. What an outpouring of venom over.... nothing. The "propaganda of St. Gregory?" First of all, it is not just St. Gregory, but his predecessors and also the sees of Alexandria and Antioch who believed this (y'know, ancient eastern sees). The concept of the Petrine Apostolic See was primarily a Canonical matter, based on the Canons of Nicea. Secondly, I was just explaining St. Gregory's meaning to our friend earlychurch here, because he wants to limit the "Apostolic See" to only one see, when that was not the ancient usage. Thirdly, where have I denied that all the other sees can be called "apostolic"? My point was only to show the historical usage of the term and how it is contrary to the current usage.

Are you Orthodox? Do you believe St. Gregory was Orthodox?
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