Category Archives: Popes

Faithfulness in Disagreeing with Any Roman Pontiff

The Catholic faithful are required under pain of mortal sin and excommunication, to avoid heresy and schism, to believe what the Magisterium teaches as doctrine, and to accept the authority of the Church over discipline. But we also have the … Continue reading

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A Call To Faith

Suppose that a Pope, any Pope at all, issues a papal document, containing a new definition of dogma. In this hypothetical, everyone agrees that the teaching meets all of the conditions for it to be infallible under Papal Infallibility. However, … Continue reading

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On the Never-failing Faith of Each Pope

The First Vatican Council infallibly taught the following. “For the holy Spirit was promised to the successors of Peter not so that they might, by his revelation, make known some new doctrine, but that, by his assistance, they might religiously … Continue reading

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The Indefectibility of the Church, the Pope, and the body of Bishops

It is a dogma of the ordinary and universal Magisterium that the Church is indefectible. She can never go astray from the path of salvation and She can never lead anyway astray from the path of salvation. This dogma is … Continue reading

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If I lived in the time of past Popes

If I lived in the time of Pope Honorius, I would hold him to be the valid successor of Peter and defend him against any accusation that he has taught or committed heresy. I suppose I would have realized that … Continue reading

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Fr. Iannuzzi asks Can a Pope Become a Heretic?

Rev. Joseph L. Iannuzzi, STD, Ph.D. has written an in-depth article answering the question: Can a Pope Become a Heretic? [PDF file] Please download a copy and take the time to read it. Rev. Joseph Leo Iannuzzi is a doctoral … Continue reading

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What is the role of the Holy Spirit in papal elections?

Mirus’ View Over at, Jeff Mirus takes a dim view of the work of the Holy Spirit when the Cardinals of the universal Church gather to elect the next Vicar of Christ. His post, On the role of the … Continue reading

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Does the Holy Spirit choose the Pope?

Each Roman Pontiff, for many generations now, has been chosen by a conclave of Cardinals. Most Cardinals are Bishops, so they are ordained to the episcopal degree and certainly are able to exercise the non-infallible Magisterium individually. Each Bishop can … Continue reading

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Did Pope Paul VI approve of contraception for nuns in the Congo? No!

It is commonly said, in discussions on the use of contraception for a good purpose or in a dire circumstance, that Blessed Pope Paul VI approved of the use of contraception by nuns in the Congo (during the revolutions of … Continue reading

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Can A Pope Go To Hell?

Certainly a Cardinal, Bishop, priest, deacons, monk, nun, or any layperson can possibly die unrepentant from actual mortal sin and suffer eternal punishment in Hell. It is the teaching of the Church that not all Christians will reach eternal life … Continue reading

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Papal Infallibility and the Canonization of Saints

Currently, it is the opinion of a majority of Catholic theologians that the canonization of Saints by the Pope is an exercise of papal infallibility. The Congregation for the Causes of the Saints (CCS) supports this opinion. And some Bishops … Continue reading

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Who can be elected Pope?

Fr. Z.’s comments on who can be elected Pope are here. He has some good points. I’ll give a similar but more expansive answer. The Pope is the Bishop of Rome; he is the head of the college of Bishops, … Continue reading

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