Peter's Bones and the Roman Tradition

Discussion in 'Church History' started by BibleHoarder, Oct 31, 2017.

  1. BibleHoarder

    BibleHoarder Active Member

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    I wanted to know what you guys think of this discovery:

    https://www.christianpost.com/news/...-uncovered-at-1000-y-old-roman-church-198885/

    I know Anglicans and Orthodox accept the tradition that Peter had some involvement with the Roman church or became it's bishop, but the discovery seems to suggest that whoever knew of his bones, gathered them together and treated them in the same honor of succeeding popes. Is there any validity to this claim, and what does it mean to anti-Papal apologists?
     
    anglican74 likes this.
  2. DivineOfficeNerd

    DivineOfficeNerd Active Member Anglican

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    As far as I can tell, the claims are valid indeed. It doesn't surprise me in the slightest, considering the veneration of other ancient relics throughout the orthodox world.
     
  3. anglican74

    anglican74 Well-Known Member Anglican

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    I wouldn't be surprised, as the church fathers attribute that Peter had died in Rome. It still belies the reality of the fact that St. Paul plays a gigantic role in the New Testament and St. Peter does not. Attaching sentimental significance to the fact that St. Peter died in Rome obscures the fact that that was like the last 1-2 years of his life at best... He spent most of his life in the Middle East and is far from playing a towering significance for planting the faith in Rome... After all it was not he who authored the epic Epistle to the Romans! There is no indication in that Epistle that Peter was someone who had to be considered when the letter was written..

    So yes, he died in Rome, after spending 95% of his life somewhere else, and he had made no impact on the Roman church, certainly nothing like an Epistle to the Romans, or even St. Clement's Epistle to the Romans.. I am frequently puzzled about how this makes Rome and Peter a center for Christianity in the Roman-Catholic tradition.
     
  4. BibleHoarder

    BibleHoarder Active Member

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    I agree with this, but, do you know if the popes mentioned in the tomb were all the ones before the idea of an accepted papal leadership? As far as I know, most of them in the beginning were referred to as simply bishops, before they were called popes in retrospect. If most of the ones preserved are prior to the formation of the papal doctrine, it may suggest that the early Christians keeping it were aware that there was no such thing as the papal office in the sense that we know it today. I want to know to confirm whether this theory is correct in arguing for or against the papal doctrine. Even still, they may have preserved them in this manner without having accepted the idea of the papal office I'm speaking of. In other words, honor is still due to leaders, even if you disagree with a lot of their doctrines or claims.
     
  5. Peteprint

    Peteprint Well-Known Member Anglican

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    My understanding is that the Bishop of Rome was accorded a primacy of honor quite early in the Church's history, but it was not until much later that the Popes began claiming universal authority over the whole Church. The Eastern bishops have never accepted the Bishop of Rome as head of the Church, though they recognize him as first among equals.
     
  6. Botolph

    Botolph Well-Known Member

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    The first Council of Constantinople 381 AD determined that the Patriarch of Constantinople was accorded the status if 2nd only after Rome.

    This clearly did not imply and authority structure as we see later that Photius Patriarch of Constantinople excommunicated the Pope for the heresy of double procession.

    The claim for the Universal Sovereignty came into play during the Filioque discussion and in 1054, Cardinal Humbert sought to have the Oecumenical Patriarch stripped of his title and accept the Universal Sovereignty of Rome. His failure to do so causes Humbert to deliver the writ of excommunication in the Pope's name, though as an interesting sidelight the Pope had died unbeknownst to Humbert of Michael 1 Celarus who responded by excommunicating the Pope. These excommunications were lifted at the end of Vatican II.

    Following a delegation to Pope Leo from Charlmagne asking for the Filioque to be allowed, the Pope ordered the Nicene Creed be engraved of two Shields, one in Latin and one in Greek, and that the shields be hung outside the tomb of St Peter. So it would seem in the early ninth century they knew where the bones were, and the shields seem to have disappeared before or around 1014.
     

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