Thank you for your cogent comment which succinctly puts this debate into perspective - one in which it has found itself for the better part of a millennium! Frankly I am comfortable at this point in my life in admitting that our two churches have to coexist in this realm and agree to disagree on this subject while recognizing the historical and intellectual underpinnings of the other's point of view on this issue. If all else were to be put aside, the papacy issue would still remain. (Of course we Orthodox would say that the role of the pope is not part of the Catholic faith - as we hold that faith to mean - but that will just make the merry go round go round and round!)
All primatial power and authority [and in that I would include monastic superiors though they are not strictly primatial] is of spiritual benefit to the entire Ecclesia. From it comes great opportunity for humility born on the back of obedience. Faith is that movement of the nous which brings us into direct contact with the divine, and faith, Jesus tells us, cannot be fully exercised without humility.
So indeed the wholeness of the Church, east and west, is bound in obedience to the reality of primatial power [brought by the Holy Spirit] and authority [passed on by the Apostles.]
I think it is just too darned easy to pass all that off...We, east and west, have very serious...what do they call it?....issues with authority.