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Understanding Catholicism – Authoritative Sources

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  • Understanding Catholicism – Authoritative Sources

    Understanding Catholicism – Authoritative Sources.

    To understand what the Catholic Church actually teaches we need to go to authoritative sources. Anecdotal sources (‘my sister said’, ‘a friend said’) are not authoritative sources. Being taught in a Catholic school or being an altar boy doesn’t make a person authoritative source. Also we cannot be sure that what was heard was what was actually said.

    There are three major authoritative sources of Catholic teaching:

    1. General (Ecumenical) Councils. These are where all the bishops of the Catholic Church (or at least a representative group), under the presidency of the Pope (or his representative), convene to discuss major matters that concern the whole Church. There have been 21 such councils – 22 if we count the Council of Jerusalem described in Acts 15.

    Note: -There are many local councils and synods. They are convened to deal with local issues that arise and their conclusions are not necessarily applicable to the whole Church.

    2. Major Papal Documents (such as Apostolic Constitutions and Encyclicals). Many of the more recent ones (the last 100 years) can be found on the Vatican web site:
    (The Holy See

    3. The Catechism of The Catholic Church. This is available on the Vatican web site:
    Catechism of the Catholic Church.

    There is also the Compendium to the Catechism of The Catholic Church which is a simplified version in question and answer form. It has references to related paragraphs in the full Catechism.
    Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church

    Of course there are many more good sources of Catholic teaching but they are not as authoritative as the above.



  • #2
    If, on the other hand, we want to know what God teaches we should rely on the Bible alone.
    Clyde Herrin's Blog
    Comment>

    • #3
      Originally posted by theophilus View Post
      If, on the other hand, we want to know what God teaches we should rely on the Bible alone.
      Gotta love that answer.

      Comment>

      • #4
        Originally posted by theophilus View Post
        If, on the other hand, we want to know what God teaches we should rely on the Bible alone.
        Show me a scripture that says that.

        As I said in the other thread:
        Originally posted by Bede View Post
        Can you find a scripture that says ALL of God’s revelation is written down in scripture?
        Good luck with that because there isn’t one. It’s a Protestant tradition.
        Comment>
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