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Antonia Nowers-Kessler wrote:

Hi, guys —

I'm gonna ask one question at a time I think. I searched the knowledge base but couldn't find an answer.

  • What proof is there that Jesus founded the Catholic Church and not just, say, any church that claims faith in Him?
  • How do we known that the Catholic Church just isn't the oldest of all the man-oriented denominations?

Thanks so much,

Antonia

  { How do we known the Catholic Church just isn't the oldest man-oriented of denominations? }

Mary Ann replied:

Antonia,

In Scripture, He said Peter was the foundation rock of His Church. The Catholic Church is the only Church with succession from Peter. It is the only Christian Church that has existed since the time of Christ.

  • The Church of the Apostles
  • the Church of the Scriptures
  • the Church of the post-apostolic Fathers and the martyrs
  • the Church of St. Augustine

    was the Catholic Church.

Mary Ann

Paul replied:

Antonia,

We know not only from faith but also from historical records that Jesus established His new Community on the twelve apostles, Peter being its head (Matthew 16:16-19; Luke 22:32).
We know that Jesus won for His new covenant people the Holy Spirit, who was sent nine days after His resurrection to Peter and the apostles (Acts 2:1-4, 14-41), which was promised to them by Christ a number of times before Jesus died. This union of the Holy Spirit through the apostles gave birth to the Catholic or universal Church. Before this occurred on Pentecost Sunday, Jesus established the seven sacraments with them as well as Church authority and infallibility
(Matthew 16:19; Luke 10:16), all of which remain in His Catholic Church.

It is through the historical succession of this authority, a power of the Holy Spirit given to the apostles or original Magisterium, that we see the growth of Christ's Church through time and space. In an unbroken line of succession the Holy Spirit continues the Church Christ promised and established on the hierarchy of Peter and the apostles through today's pope and bishops.

That Church, that Christ established and the Holy Spirit continues to animate and lead, is fully present in the Catholic Church. Any other Christian denomination that has broken off from Christ's Church in the past 2000 years is objectively in schism, and contains a portion of the Truth and Life Christ has given to the degree that it has maintained union with the Catholic Church, of which the fullness still subsists within the Catholic Church.

Paul

Mike replied:

Hi, Antonia —

It's just a matter of looking at Church history. Check out the main video on my home page and the similar text version.

(Interesting factoid, though: the first use of the term "Catholic" is in 110 A.D., where St. Ignatius of Antioch, a martyr later thrown to the lions, wrote to a church in Asia Minor. There he said:

"Where the bishop is, there let the people gather; just as where ever Jesus Christ is, there is the Catholic Church".

Antioch was also where the term "Christian" was first used.

Mike

Please report any and all typos or grammatical errors.
Suggestions for this web page and the web site can be sent to Mike Humphrey
© 2012 Panoramic Sites
The Early Church Fathers Church Fathers on the Primacy of Peter. The Early Church Fathers on the Catholic Church and the term Catholic. The Early Church Fathers on the importance of the Roman Catholic Church centered in Rome.