The duties of the Supreme Pontiff and the degrees of infallibility



According to the explanatory note of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith to the Apostolic Letter To protect the faith of St. John Paul II of 1998, Papal infallibility in teaching the truths of faith arises out of three degrees of authority: a maximum, un medio, a minimum. If so, the Supreme Pontiff spells out a new doctrine that touches directly or indirectly the truth of faith, explains why or comments, although in this instance there are the conditions dictated by the First Vatican Council, non per questo l’insegnamento del Sommo Pontefice non è infallibile […]



Author John Cavalcoli OP

John Cavalcoli OP



peter rubens

Where Peter, Church was there

After hearing the confession of Simon "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God " [cf. Mt 16,16], Our Lord Jesus Christ chose to build his Church on the Rock, and this rock is Peter. Which means that Christ sees "his" Church, that is, the Church He designed, volute, istituita, the new Assembly or Convocation (קהל, qahal) di Israele, as a building well-founded, robust, resistant to any enemy attack and unwavering: "The forces of hell shall not prevail against it" [cf. Mt 16,18]. No One, throughout history until the end of the world, will never change, falsify or destroy the essence and therefore the existence of the Church. This is not to say that the Church periodically, for his human, does not need to be reformed; however, not in the sense that it, deviating from its essence or form, so as to become deformed, who needs to recover its essential form. This form fact is immutable and incorruptible and is kept in place in its identity from assistance of the Holy Spirit. The shape of the Church can clarify, consolidate, bulk up or improve over the centuries - this is the work of the special ecumenical councils -, but can not substantially change.


people on a journey

the Church is a people on the move

The Church certainly knows a becoming in its history, but does not affect its essence or fundamental constitution - the so-called "divine right" -, that Christ wanted to give her. It knows ups and downs, periods of decline or recovery, periods of stagnation or progress, growth or decrease, expansion or shrinkage. It knows how to preserve the essential and perennial without falling into conservatism and knows innovate and progress without falling or evolutionism in modernism, according to which the Church has no fixed essence conceptually defined once and for all - the dogma -, but it is an existential event and concrete continuously evolving as a manifestation in the history and modernity of the saving will of Christ. The Church is in constant evolution without radical that nothing remains fixed, because the '"Christ event", as they are expressed, ie the "scandal of the cross", upsets all our certainties.


stone angolare

Jesus is mentioned several times as the cornerstone

Several times the New Testament calls Jesus the "cornerstone" [cf. Mt 21,42; At 4,11; Ef 2,20; The Pt 2,6-7]. It is then clear that Peter is the "rock" is not in the original sense, primary, radical and fundamental, but derived from the first stone divine, which is Christ and thus representing Him, partaker of his own powers, the so-called "power of the keys". The fact, then, that Christ is the Head of the Celestial Church animated by the Holy Spirto has not prevented the Lord wanted a visible head, his vicar on earth, to guide infallibly - although sinner - the earthly Church to the kingdom of God. Christ so he built up the Church in its essence and in its essential functions; and yet even Peter, for command of Christ, has a secondary task of building - what is called "ecclesiastical law" -, who, set himself on the Church founded by Christ, builds it in the sense that the leadership on behalf of Christ, with the assistance of the Holy Spirit, towards a more profound knowledge of the Word of God, towards the conquest of Christ more and more souls, fomenting the union in charity, educating in the faith and to all the virtues, always indicating the ultimate goal of the journey of the Church, establishing and forming the sacred ministers, validating the charisms, inciting good, calling him the rebels, correcting the errors and bad customs and urging all to enter the kingdom of God.


jerusalem heavenly

pictorial representation of the Heavenly Jerusalem

With his divine power If Christ had wanted could drive directly from the sky even the Church on earth, visible, using the unique mediation of the Holy Spirit acting in the hearts and souls. Thus Christ guide and organize the ranks of the blessed angels and the very souls of the heavenly Church. This is precisely what we believe Lutherans and Orthodox Eastern schismatics and many other heretics. But what, according to the Gospel narrative and the age-old tradition of the Church, non corrisponde a verità. In reality, the institution of the papacy by Christ proved to be very wise, even if its exercise de facto, given the weakness and wickedness of men, sometimes presents some difficulties, However, these can be resolved. That's what I try to do in this article.


apostolic succession

work depicting the apostolic succession

A first question It may be that of the succession rules of a Pope ad un altro. Christ did not give precise provisions about. In the New Testament will make recommendations about the prudence in the choice of the shepherds and they list the requirements and virtues necessary. One thing that still gives security is the assurance given by Christ that the Church, assistita dallo Spirito Santo, will of its pastor until the end of the world and. And in fact it is surprising to note the perfect succession of popes from St. Peter to the current Holy Father Francis. The election of the Popes took place from the beginning - and this is quite logical - on the basis of the vote of the apostolic college and then, later to the present day, the College of Cardinals. However at this point, given the fragility and the malice of men, may arise agonizing questions: have always respected the rules? And if a Pope is elected due to a breach of the rules of the election, è valido? And we ordinary faithful, how can we be sure that a given pope was validly elected? Who will ensure? Who can enlighten? Antipopes Are not arisen as a result of complaints by the cardinals about the validity of the election of Pope? Who is to resolve issues of this kind? How to discern the true Pope? I believe that we should not ask so many problems. The municipality does not normally faithful instruments to check things so difficult. The Pope is always elected by the College of Cardinals for many centuries. When a Pope is officially proclaimed, there is to assume that his election was valid. If there had been any irregularities such as to invalidate it, the only authoritative and credible voice would not say that one or two cardinals, who may speak on the sly, but it should be a public pronouncement of at least one group of cardinals, which should provide evidence, which did not happen during the Schism of the West. And why the Cardinals rebels did not elect a true Pope, but only an anti pope.



il pettegolezzo, that evil so sadly prevalent even within the Church …

Do not just stick to the rumors, because they may be interested, dictated by the desire for novelty, envy or other unmentionable reasons. Even if they can leak out strong indications pensions, or even in certain environments more or less extended, if the College of Cardinals as a whole shows no sign of protest, it is good to be with the official positions. This was probably the case of Alexander VI, who won the election so simoniac, ma, since there appeared a clear challenge by Cardinals, History has recorded this Pope as valid.


Benedict XVI waiver

The Supreme Pontiff Benedict XVI during the reading of his public withdrawal from the active ministry

One issue that has set itself recently with the withdrawal from the Petrine ministry of Benedict XVI and the election of the present Pope is the legal meaning of the "pontificate emeritus", especially considering that an event of this kind had never occurred in the history of the Church. These are two legitimate Popes coexisting, one of which is charging, while the other is at rest; something similar to what is already happening in dioceses, wherever it happens to coexist with the holder of the bishop emeritus official. The question can be the following: what is the authority of the Pope "Emeritus"? Certainly he has ceased from papal functions of head of the Church, who were hired by Pope Francis. So the case of Pope Benedict XVI highlights the fact that you can give a true Pope, which, however, for just cause, no longer has the Petrine ministry. So the authority of Joseph Ratzinger seems to be limited to that which already owned before being elected Pope, ie episcopal authority cardinal, as well as that of eminent theologian, former prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, Man therefore of great value and international prestige, Former expert of the Council, that can give a valuable aid to the action of this Pope, obviously in submission to him, as of any faithful.


Another issue is the degree of doctrinal authority of the Petrine ministry. Jesus is limited here to two key directives: “Strengthen your brothers"And"Traps oats meas”. Existsdegrees of authority then a first distinction, that touches the two plans of action: the magisterium and the government: therefore a power of teaching the faith and power of government or ministry. Jesus promised to Peter the assistance of the Holy Spirto, which makes infallible, ossia assolutamente vero, teaching doctrinal or dogmatic. But he has promised impeccability ethical behavior and in the conduct of the Church in terms of pastoral and disciplinary. A pope can be a mediocre man, a bad shepherd, a vicious man, but it can never be a heretic or a forger in faith. Anyone can err in faith except Peter. The Pope corrects anyone errs in faith: but he is wrong by anyone.


One must distinguish, without separating, the doctrine of the Popes from the doctrine of Ponteficichurch. The first is an initiative of the Pope - for example, the motu proprio - and by that becomes the doctrine of the Church. The second one comes from the Councils, and is approved by the Pope.
In fact never occurs in the case of a Pope, abusing his charisma of universal teacher of the faith, has supported the heresy or vice versa has taught as dogma something that later proved to be a heretic or not according to the Gospel, as foolishly believed Luther. A case of the rest would be unthinkable, because it disproves the assistance of the Holy Spirit promised by Christ.


condemnation of Aryan

dell'assisa depiction of the Nicene Council that condemned the heresiarch Arius

The Pope is infallible both when sentencing a heresy, both when approving or dogmatizza a doctrine. Rome has spoken, Because over. Dad, assistito dallo Spirito Santo, in these decisions never comes back. If not, should say that the Pope can confuse what is of faith with what is contrary, which is wicked at the mere thought. And mind you that it is not only a matter of condemning a heresy in itself, but also to condemn it in the sense of heretic. Famous in this respect was the case of the Jansenists, who claimed to accept the papal condemnation of heresy in itself, but denied that it was doomed in the sense of Jansen. To which the Pope replied, saying instead that he had condemned in the sense understood by Jansen. From here you can see how foolish are Lutherans and modernists in supporting, even after five centuries, according to unnecessary quibbles, that the Council of Trent was wrong in condemning Luther. But in reality it is they who should decide a good time to accept the truth, without teasing ecumenists naive.


pictorial representation of Pope John XXII

There have been very few cases of some sontanto Papi who succumbed momentarily to threats; but it is evident that their act was extorted foreign to their responsibilities, tanto è vero che, having regained their freedom, they themselves have canceled the act invalid. The most difficult case is perhaps that of John XXII in the fourteenth century which, in some of his homilies, argued that the souls of the dead have the beatific vision until the end of the world. It is true that there was no dogma in this sense; but it should have been clear from Scripture and Tradition. He thought then Benedict XII in 1336 dogmatically define the beatific vision as an act of the soul immediately after death. With John XXII we have the case of an indiscreet attachment to their own opinion, although the Pope recanted on his deathbed. Here in any case the charisma of Peter comes out unscathed, because the Pope paused to videtur and would not give any definition. This does not mean that the Pope can not have personal opinions on theological issues discussed or theological doctrines uncertain and therefore in this field can not err. When instead, as teacher of the faith, comes in many different circumstances, levels, forms or modes, of issues that affect directly or indirectly the faith, ie the teachings of Christ, divine revelation or the creed or dogma already defined, the Pope can not err, ie is infallible, because if errasse would mean that Christ did not keep promises, that it would be blasphemous to think only.


the Vatican council

Blessed Pope Pius IX in the middle dell'assisa Vatican Council's

The First Vatican Council lays down certain conditions in which a doctrinal teaching of the Pope is infallible, but that does not mean that it is infallible only to those conditions: conditions of infallibility is not to say the only conditions of infallibility. So I can say that a degree in medicine can treat influenza. But this does not mean that it can not do so even non-medical. The conditions laid down by the Vatican are extraordinary, are the most strict and solemn, that give the utmost certainty, certainty of divine faith or theological, that teaching is of faith. They concern the definition of a new dogma, ie precisely the interpretation that the Pope is the Word of God. On that occasion the Pope declares or defines that the doctrine of faith that he proposes is or is contained in divine Revelation. Here we have the so-called defined dogma.



not the slight problem of confusion …

Be careful not to confuse mode defining characteristic of the proclamation of a new dogma with easy to define matters of faith or coming to faith. The Pope can give the definitions in the field of faith, for example, can give a definition or say or explain what is the Church, What is holiness, what is the dogma, What is the truth, what is the heresy, what are heaven and hell, what is the creation, What is the grace, What is transubstantiation, What is faith, what is love, What is the natural law, cosa sono i sacramenti, who is the priest, who is the religious, What is the resurrection and so on, without this he puts on the level of dogma. But these are issues in which he is teacher of the faith, assistito dallo Spirito Santo, even in these cases is infallible, and should be listened to, if not with faith in God as solemn definitions, certainly with total confidence and with religious submission of will and intellect.


Social Doctrine Compendium

The Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church

So too, if the Pope sets out a new doctrine that touches directly or indirectly the truth of faith, explains why or comments, although in this instance there are the conditions dictated by the Vatican, non per questo l’insegnamento del Papa non è infallibile. So, to know whether the content of a doctrine, of a speech, of a document, of an intervention, or of any papal pronouncement are of faith, necessary first to see if the Pope speaks as a private doctor, in which case we have no records of teaching, but only private opinions and questionable, or if he speaks as Pope. In the latter case there is no need to require all the conditions set by the Vatican, but it is necessary and sufficient that the Pope explicit, developments, Explain, comments or apply a given that you already know to be of faith or because the Word of Christ or because of tradition or because of previous Councils or why article of the Creed, or because dogma already defined or because anyway teaching of the Magisterium of the Church previous.


Pope dove

Saint John Paul II

According to the explanatory note of the Congregation for the Doctrine ofin Faith alla Lettera Apostolica To protect the faith of St. John Paul II of 1998 [cf. WHO], Papal infallibility in teaching the truths of faith arises out of three degrees of authority: a maximum, un medio, a minimum. These three degrees are justified in relation to three levels of firmness or certainty or credibility with which a teacher can propose the same truths of faith. The Pope can not speak or on behalf of Christ, supreme authority, or can speak as sent by Christ to proclaim the Gospel, or as an interpreter of the Gospel.


Pio IX

image of Blessed Pope Pius IX

The doctrine enunciated in the first level is defined dogma, namely the proposition of faith that is defined by the Pope ex cathedra as of faith or as contained in Revelation - for example the definition of the dogma of the Immaculate Conception and the Assumption of Mary into heaven -. This doctrine is the subject of divine faith or theological. Denying it is heresy.


The doctrine of the second level is derived or inferred from dogma or is necessarily connected to the dogma, whereby, if it is denied, denied the dogma. For instance, support the priesthood of women, not directly heresy, but is close to heresy, because it contrasts with the sacrament of Orders, which is a dogma of faith. Or as Pope Francis taught about mercy. These doctrines are the subject of ecclesiastical faith or Catholic faith. To deny it is error next heresy.
While at first instance the Pope teaches simply the doctrine of Christ is not in the formal words of Christ, but in the form of dogma, the second degree he teaches, as the Vicar of Christ, his interpretation of the dogma and truth that must be observed in order to save the dogma, rational truths, as for example the natural law or the existence of free will or consciousness, and factual truth, as for example the legitimacy of a given Pope: if in fact he was not legitimate, collapse all that he has taught in terms of faith.


three levels

three levels, tre gradi

At the third level, then, Pope deduces consequences, provides explanations and interpretations of his own instruction to the second level. Understandably, At that time, that here we are at the lowest level of his authority; But, as it suggests the comment of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith to the papal document, we make sure that even here it is always a matter of faith, even if it is no longer pay an assent of theological faith. Instead, it is a "religious submission of will". Speculate, so, that at least at this level the teaching of the Pope is fallible, is unthinkable. Denying these doctrines is disobedience to the doctrine of the Church.




As examples of the latter level we can think about the consequences that Pope Francis draws from his teaching about mercy, relating to the duty of every believer to be more open to the needs of others, especially small, the poor and the suffering, the duty to forgive those who repent, to tolerate the weak and incapable. The Pope is the supreme preacher of the Gospel, supreme and infallible guardian and transmitter of God's Word, or of divine Revelation contained in Scripture and Tradition. He has the task of promoting a better knowledge of the Word of God by stimulating the prophetic gifts, biblical studies and theology and preaching the Gospel in all forms, mode and degree. Must address and resolve the major issues of doctrine and discipline, especially those that can disturb the Church, using his collaborators, of experts and of the Roman Curia, beginning with the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and, in serious cases, the work of the synods of bishops and especially of the ecumenical councils.


theological academy

The Pontifical Academy of Theology, of which our Father John Cavalcoli is ordinary member

The Pope must pay particular attention to the work of theologians, that seem at times with prophetic gifts, work itself invaluable, but now often gives concern to the good and faithful to the Church for the independence of some of the Magisterium of the Church, then ultimately, by the Word of God and the faith itself. The theologian can, with his research, propose new interpretations of the content of faith, that can be approved by the Magisterium and even rise to the level of dogma; but certain theologians, for their indiscipline, they need to be corrected. Today also have great influence journalists in better or worse: the Pope has the task of following and be informed about their ideas, that can affect a wide audience for the good as for evil.


Pope Francis dialogue

image of the Holy Father Francis during a catechesis

The Pope should promote religious dialogue and wisdom with all people of good will, whatever the culture or the religion to which they belong, including non-believers. Must illuminate the blind, bring the most distant, improve closer, reconcile between them opponents, correct the errant, admonish sinners, counsel the doubtful, encourage the fainthearted, intimidate the arrogant, redarguire and gorgeous, console the afflicted, pray to God for the living and the dead.


The language of the Pope must be decent, consistent with his dignity, neither too high or refined, nor secolaresco and vulgar, so that people, also the farthest from the faith being aware of being in front of a man of God, a sign of the goodness and mercy of God among men. Must "express things with spiritual" [cf. The Cor 2,13].


Pope Francis gives a thumbs up next to father Lombardi during his flight to Turkey

the Holy Father during an interview with journalists

The degree of authority of the papal magisterium appear in some way from the kind of papal documents. Starting at the top, we have the solemn definitions dgmoabout potential, which are very rare events. Coming down we pass the Encyclical Letters and still coming down we find different names like "Encyclical Epistle", "Apostolic Constitution", "Apostolic Letter", up to the speeches, to general audiences, speeches of circumstance and homilies of Masses.


The present Pope has very inventive adopting new means of preaching once unthinkable for a Pontiff, as the interview, phone, Twitter and others. We are careful that the novelty and the modesty of the medium should not make us forget the importance of the papal magisterium. As for the government of the Church (“trap oats meas”) - Power of sanctification, pastoral power, judicial and administrative - the Pope certainly has a special charisma, but it is not infallible, nor is impeccable, even if there is to be assumed, in principle, which normally act with charity, prudence and justice. Fortuna is great when we Popes Saints. The lefevriani, who declare themselves as religious, are in this not excusable and justifiable in their unjust polemic against the popes of the council and the council post. But in this field also a Pope's good intentions and good principles can be ill-informed, ill-advised, circumvented. Throughout church history, may himself have moral defects, as attachment to power, arrogance, ambizione, partisanship, impetuosity, disloyalty, favoritism, stubbornness, diffidenza, irresolution, mollezza, prevarication, shyness, astuteness, human respect, etc.


Pope United Church

unity of the Church

The Pope is the promoter and the supreme and final guardian of unity and harmony in the Church, the pluralism of the legitimate tendencies. He is to spread the Church in the world, must support it in front of earthly powers and defend it from enemy attacks. But it is said that all its initiatives are the best; indeed sometimes can commit some real errors or may neglect his duty or does not rise to the occasion or lack impartiality.


Pope rota judges

the Holy Father during the audience concezza judges of the Roman Rota

The Pope as chief judge and magistrate of the visible Church, is required to enforce the order and the law by all the faithful. He then has the power to excommunicate schismatics, the disobedient, rebels, gli eretici. Today the use of excommunication is very rare. But not that many who do not give, by rights law, deserve to be excommunicated or for their offenses to the Pope or the Church or for their offenses to ecclesiastical discipline or their falsification of the Doctrine of the Faith. But the Popes, especially since the council post, usually prefer to deal with the serious issue of deserving of excommunication, which today are very many, even in the high places of the Church, means more of a pastoral nature that canonical, gestures with mild but significant, who do not have a legal form, but they still understand the disapproval of the Pope, as fraternal correction, shifts, degradations, isolamento, decrease of offices, suspension from teaching, removals, promoted to be removed, interruption or cooling of relations. Nothing canonical; but those who have ears to hear, intends; Whether the faithful or the person concerned.


rahner 2

the German Jesuit Karl Rahner

Interestingly, the Popes of the post-conciliar non nominino mai né Rahner né i rahneriani, although this current modernist is widespread even in high places; but the Pope did not lose the opportunity to refute with grace and acuity errors rahnerismo.


The Pope may also impose an unjust excommunication and therefore null and void. This is the case of the excommunication inflicted by Alexander VI Savonarola. For a long time there have been doubts whether Savonarola was right to speak of excommunication "surreptitious". Father Hyacinth Scaltriti, which for fifty years has dedicated himself to the study of this intricate case, concluded, based on solid evidence, that Savonarola was right. For this the Dominican Order for some time has promoted the cause of beatification of martyr Dominican.


giovanni Paolo II e giovanni XXIII

the last two Popes canonized

Dad, like any good Christian, is bound to become a saint, ed anzi, as Pope, to be an example to the other faithful. This duty is even more clear, if we think of the office that the Pope, as a priest and bishop, to sanctify the faithful. And this office appears even more, if we think that he, always as Pope, is the chief liturgist and supreme moderator in church administration and discipline of the sacraments.


Peter strengthen your brothers

"I have prayed for you, that thy faith fail not:, and you, turned again, confirm your brothers ".

But if Christ has assured the Pope, as teacher of the faith (“strengthen your brethren”) inerrancy or infallibility, not assured, although he lacks the grace, the impeccabilità, that no owner, even the most holy of the sons of Adam. The Pope, therefore, can sin is in his moral conduct staff, both in his way of governing the Church (“trap oats meas”). As the supreme shepherd of the flock of Christ, as judge and magistrate in the causes of the Church, and in relations with the powers of this worldly, can commit indiscretions, injustices, abuse, breaches of the law.


Paul VI biretta Ratzinger

Blessed Pope Paul VI imposes the cardinal's hat to Archbishop Joseph Ratzinger

The Pope is the head the college of cardinals and the bishops'. From the perspective of sacramental he is the bishop of Rome and is then bishop like everyone else. However, only the bishop of Rome is the Roman Pontiff. His supremacy over the bishops is not a sacramental record, but of teaching, of sanctification and of jurisdiction and is to confirm them in the faith and pascerli elected as part of the flock of Christ. On the contrary, as successors of the apostles, they are his close associates in proclaiming the Gospel and in leading the Church. The College of Bishops united with the Pope, in his ministry doctrinal, foolproof.



Judas' betrayal

Christ conferred upon Peter a spiritual power, obviously not forbid him to exercise administration earthly, as evidenced by the fact that Judas "had the bag". Like this, since the early centuries the Roman headquarters began to administer a number of territories gradually increasing or because donated to the Popes by the powerful of the earth or from private or because you volunteered to be under the leadership of the Pope temporal. Thus were born the United Church, who took their maximum extension and power in the sixteenth century. It happened then that the papacy is found gradually and increasingly engaged in a temporal government so absorbent, that ended the government to prevent a wider spiritual freedom, and for certain aspects, if offered to the Holy See independence towards other European states, constituted a counter-witness to the fact inevitable to propose and act as a force against other earthly earthly forces, inter alia with means guerreschi, that little remembered Christ's kingdom that is not of this world.


La riforma Trent certainly gave a new impetus to the papacy spiritual, but did not question the task of having to manage immense territories for that time, increasingly so with renewed risk of temporalism and excessive involvement in worldly affairs and political.
Even today the Pope is a head of state, la Città del Vaticano, state entity tiny, whose guidance, however, the Pope entrusts to a special governorship run by laymen, which obviously leaves the Pope all the freedom to devote himself fully to his spiritual ministry of universal pastor of the Church.


Vatican Council II

l'assise del Concilio Vaticano 2

What I regret the Middle Ages an Innocent III or a Gregory IX is religious unity, which unfortunately broke with the Lutheran Reformation. Only for that brief period the papacy was able to be the spiritual master of Europe using its temporal power for the good of Europe. Thus the Holy See was able to gain from all over Europe an estimate that since then no longer able to regain.


The Second Vatican Council a renewal program even in the exercise of papal ministry prospettandogli closer communion with the Bishops (collegiality) footprint and more missionary and evangelizing, open to all people of good will, believers and non-believers, especially those who seek the truth and justice and in need of divine mercy. It is the program of Pope Francis, whom we wish a full success and to which we promise full obedience, entrusting it to Mary Queen of Apostles and Mother of the Church.


Varazze, 17 February 2015




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5 replies
  1. yr says:

    Reverend Father,

    I always wondered why it is necessary to say that "the college of bishops united with the Pope, in his ministry doctrinal, is infallible ". In fact if the Pope alone is infallible, the fact that the bishops united with the Pope is infallible not add or detract from. Anche il sottoscritto, if it goes by the Pope to ask him to proclaim a dogma and accept these, united with the Pope is infallible…

    Perhaps the answer to my question is that is there any difference between the infallibility of the Pope and the infallibility of the College of Bishops united with the Pope.

    • Giovanni Cavalcoli, ON
      Giovanni Cavalcoli, ON says:

      Dear Sir,

      Jesus said to the Apostles: “Who listens to you, hears me” [LC 10,16] ; though he gave Peter the task of confermre brothers in faith [cf. LC 22,32]. This involves logically the infallibility of the College of bishops together with the Pope in matters of faith.
      As though the Pope is the head of the Apostolic College, always the will of Christ, it follows that the Pope can, if he wants, proclaim a new dogma on its own and with its infallible authority, even regardless of a decision of the Bishops.
      However normally it doesn't because it prefers to act collegially with Bishops.

      • father ariel
        Ance1943 says: the father Cavalcoli, and even this masterly article on Pope and his duties sings clear to anyone who wants to understand, as the last of his father Levi of Gualdo “the Pope will return to wearing the red shoes” (those of martyrdom!).
        Are you aware (spero di si!) of the great good that we have done with these latest articles, to us, those whom the father Levi of Gualdo often called “lost Christians … disoriented …?”.
        That is the question, dad, We don't have those, as you, It orients itself. Parishes is a whole swarm of Neocatechumenal movement, charismatics … people like me and my wife had the misfortune of stumbling on “Kiki” (call now so the neocatechumenals) It was thrilled. Clear that then, in front of that uproar, a lot of, inclusi noi, end by lefevriani, where at least (and honestly you've admitted you always), There are devout and liturgies maintained, and … the problem, however, (as you say and explain) is that what's behind those liturgies … in clear words you have said and explained that there is heresy.
        If the bishops understand that they're losing the faithful, because mostly what they do the neocatechumenals and their omnipotent catechists in parishes, and if him a solemn calmed down, perhaps, the father Cavalcoli and father Levi of Gualdo, they should not tell us “attenti, do not go to seek refuge from lefevriani”.
        We fully agree with you, and thank you, But, These good bishops, the stop washing hands, let their parishes are increasingly neocatecumenalizzate, and take measures toward this sect, why a sect it is, Needless to go around.
        A courteous greeting from two in their seventies happily husband&wife for almost 50 year old.

        Andrew and Louise Ceccherini, Florence

  2. Timorous says:

    First of all thank you for the time it devotes.
    How come there are 3 types of teaching, and only one degree of obedience to all three, then if the difference that determines the various degrees does not exist having obedience request?
    Mi sembra “tyrannical” this requirement, as blatantly contradictory.
    Indeed, if there are three types of teaching-and do not know why, tralaltro- why you should attend with only one type of obedience that is the infallible Magisterium?

    Then, Lei says:

    "...... .A Pope can never be a heretic or a forger in faith ..... he is wrong by anyone. ”

    And as it refutes this (presumed) truth if eg. abbiamo, a certain proof that this is not the truth, as evidenced by the p. Kramer when it recognizes:
    the "Pope" Francis Evengelii Gaudium n. 247: "A look very special addresses the people jew, whose covenant with God has never been revoked ". This text is an explicit profession of heresy [cf. Our life?, n° 4, N.d.A.], directly opposite the solemn dogmatic definition of Pope Eugene III and the Ecumenical Council of Florence, and the doctrine that the supreme magisterium of Pope Benedict XIV in "Ex Quo Primum", who repeatedly and explicitly cited the definition of Florence, where the alliance Mosaica has been "revoked" and "repealed".????

    • Giovanni Cavalcoli, ON
      Giovanni Cavalcoli, ON says:

      Caro Timorato,

      the three degrees or levels of authority of the Magisterium of the Church, as explained in To protect the credit (appendix of the CDF to the letter of St. John Paul II 1998), are motivated by the fact that the Church teaches and interprets the doctrine of Christ taking into account three things:

      1. The same words of Christ in the Gospel;
      2. The relationship between the knowledge of reason and the knowledge of faith;
      3. deductions, explanations, the clarification, and the consequences that the Church draws from their teachings in the light of the Gospel.

      All these teachings are infallible with the assistance of the Holy Spirit. However, there are three degrees of infallibility and consequently three degrees of obedience or adherence by us due to these teachings.
      The maximum degree, the first, di autorità, is given by the explicit solemnly defined dogma, ie when the Magisterium (Pope or Council), interpreting the Word of God or the data revealed (Bible and Tradition), states or clarifies a truth of faith, specifying that it is of faith (will define).

      These measures have the utmost confidence, when there is a doubt whether a given proposition is or is not of faith.
      But since even in the lower grades it comes to matters of faith, good Catholic must be content with the assurance given by those degrees, which are the most frequent (Simple and ordinary Magisterium) without expecting to give his absolute adherence, the Church must decide each time to the first level.

      To this doctrine of first level we have the obedience of theological faith or divine. Those who disagree is a heretic explicit and formal.
      In the second instance, the Church teaches truth of reason connected with the fact of faith, without which the faith would be impossible. For instance, the existence of free will.

      Since the act of faith is an act of free will, if there were no free will, could not exist even the act of faith.

      Or explain the Word of God in a simple, pastoral and homiletic, no solemn definitions. This is the style of the doctrines of Vatican II.

      To this Magisterium is due adherence of faith in the Church (fides ecclesiastical). Those who disagree is “next heresy” (haeresi proximus). Or you can say that the risk is heresy or “to heresy” (heresy wise)

      In third grade, the Magisterium develops or explicit doctrine of the second degree. For instance, la proibizione degli anticoncezionali, that the Church deduces sexual ethics taught in second grade. Those who disagree here, disobeys the authentic Magisterium.

      The adhesion is due “religious submission of will” and an opinion contrary or contradictory is a false proposition, that “offend pious ears” (Hostile to pious ears).

      As for God's covenant with the Jewish people, basically it is not I been revoked, as St. Paul in his Letter to the Romans (CC. 9-11) Israel ensures that the Parousia will be converted to Christ, ie recognize Jesus as the Messiah promised in the Covenant of Moses.

      We must therefore distinguish the concept of God's covenant with humanity two aspects:

      – an account is the Alliance itself, in its substance and immutable divine. It consists mainly of two things, that persist in both Testaments: 1. God wants to save man; 2. man must obey God.

      This Alliance is manifested first with Noah, but Christ, even with all the changes occurring accidental (for example the abolition of circumcision or the sacrifice of the lamb or the ancient priesthood) has done nothing but to see it through and give of efficacy (the forgiveness of sins), that the first had not.

      Indeed, God saves all through Christ and the Church (least invisibly), but can save even without the sacraments.
      Undoubtedly there is a significant difference between the two Covenants, because while the first God saved through the symbol of animal sacrifices, the new he saves through the sacrifice of his own son. Ma, as already said St. Augustine, the ancient foreshadows the new and the new reveals ancient shadows.

      Moreover, se Dio avesse voluto, could save us even with the ancient. If he wanted to save us with the new, It is not because the old does not saved, but because he wanted to save us in a better way with a greater love, giving us his own son.
      It remains of course the fact that the old saved in relation to Christ; but it is also always that God, If she wanted to (of absolute power), could save us even without Christ.

      In this sense,, being a divine decision ab aeterno God faithful and irrevocable, the Alliance has never been revoked. This meant the Pope;

      – an account is the Alliance in its historical development. In this sense,, Certain, There is talk of more Alliances, so as we speak more of the same individual or age of the progress of knowledge of one and the same truth.

      God then in history, as narrated by the same Scripture and as Christ himself says, wanted later refine this unique and everlasting Covenant to remedy the infidelity of men and why He wanted to manifest in Christ more, and most definitely his mercy.

      In this sense the Church speaks of a “New Covenant”, which is in continuity with the ancient, According to the words of Jesus, that did not come to abolish the law, but to bring it to fruition.

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