Author Topic: Pope St. Gregory the Great  (Read 529 times)

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Offline gueranger

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Pope St. Gregory the Great
« on: December 10, 2013, 11:22:51 AM »
What do Roman Catholics make of these quotes? Pope St. Gregory the Great seems to repudiate the idea that the Pope or anyone else has universal jurisdiction that is immediate and episcopal, as Vatican I says. He seems rather to have a powerful view of primacy where other Sees are "subject" to Rome, only if they fall into error. He also seems to repudiate infallibility.




Book V, Letter 43

http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/360205043.htm  

"Now eight years ago, in the time of my predecessor of holy memory Pelagius, our brother and fellow bishop John in the city of Constantinople, seeking occasion from another cause, held a synod in which he attempted to call himself Universal Bishop. Which as soon as my said predecessor knew, he dispatched letters annulling by the authority of the holy apostle Peter the acts of the said synod; of which letters I have taken care to send copies to your Holiness...

"For, as your venerable Holiness knows, this name of Universality was offered by the holy synod of Chalcedon to the pontiff of the Apostolic See which by the providence of God I serve. But no one of my predecessors has ever consented to use this so profane a title; since, forsooth, if one Patriarch is called Universal, the name of Patriarch in the case of the rest is derogated. But far be this, far be it from the mind of a Christian, that any one should wish to seize for himself that whereby he might seem in the least degree to lessen the honour of his brethren. While, then, we are unwilling to receive this honour when offered to us, think how disgraceful it is for any one to have wished to usurp it to himself perforce.

"Wherefore let not your Holiness in your epistles ever call any one Universal, lest you detract from the honour due to yourself in offering to another what is not due...

"For, if this expression is suffered to be allowably used, the honour of all patriarchs is denied: and while he that is called Universal perishes per chance in his error, no bishop will be found to have remained in a state of truth."


Book VII, Letter 40

http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/360207040.htm

"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 you I will give the keys of the kingdom of heaven Matthew 16:19. And again it is said to him, And when you are converted, strengthen your brethren (xxii. 32). And once more, Simon, son of Jonas, do you love Me? Feed my sheep John 21:17. 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. He himself adorned the See to which he sent his disciple as evangelist. He himself established the See in which, though he was to leave it, he sat for seven years. 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."

Book IX, Letter 59

http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/360209059.htm

"...for, as to his saying that he is subject to the Apostolic See, if any fault is found in bishops, I know not what bishop is not subject to it. But when no fault requires it to be otherwise, all according to the principle of humility are equal."
« Last Edit: December 10, 2013, 11:25:39 AM by gueranger »

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Re: Pope St. Gregory the Great
« Reply #1 on: December 10, 2013, 12:24:18 PM »
Is there any teaching or canon concerning who Rome is liable to if it is in the wrong?
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Offline gueranger

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Re: Pope St. Gregory the Great
« Reply #2 on: December 10, 2013, 12:27:42 PM »
Is there any teaching or canon concerning who Rome is liable to if it is in the wrong?

If there were such a canon I can't imagine there would have been an East-West schism.

Offline gueranger

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Re: Pope St. Gregory the Great
« Reply #3 on: December 10, 2013, 12:32:52 PM »
This isn't a canon, but St. Augustine might point to an Ecumenical Council:

"Well, let us suppose that those bishops who decided the case at Rome were not good judges; there still remained a plenary Council of the universal Church, in which these judges themselves might be put on their defence; so that, if they were convicted of mistake, their decisions might be reversed."

http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/1102043.htm

« Last Edit: December 10, 2013, 12:33:09 PM by gueranger »