May 8, 2023

    Introduction:   In the previous post, some advancement was made towards answering and juxtaposing the contrary concepts of the material and formal sufficiency of Scripture.  It was stated that while the former is a position that could be held by Catholics, the latter is a view closely associated with Sola Scriptura.   As such, it is more or less the Protestant view on the authority of Sacred Scripture.[1]  Also in the previous post and with the assistance of Catholic... Read more

April 3, 2023

  In a previous post, the question was raised as to whether or not Scripture is sufficient.  Although the concept of the sufficiency of Scripture is one that is arguably most associated with the Protestant notion of Sola Scriptura (rejected by the Catholic Church), it was said that Catholics could indeed agree that Scripture is sufficient.  This of course presupposes that a distinction be made between what has been called the material sufficiency of Scripture, – a view approximating that... Read more

March 2, 2023

  Introduction: Although there seems to be some variation within contemporary Protestant explanations of their doctrine of Sola Scriptura (Scripture Alone), there is widespread agreement among them as to the assertion that “Sola Scriptura denies that there is any other infallible rule of faith for the church.” This claim runs directly contrary to the belief of the Catholic Church as expressed at Session IV of the Council of Trent (A.D. 1546).    A more recent Catholic explanation of the relationship... Read more

January 30, 2023

  “ [2] And all in Moses were baptized, in the cloud, and in the sea: [3] And did all eat the same spiritual food, [4] And all drank the same spiritual drink; (and they drank of the spiritual rock that followed them, and the rock was Christ.)”  (1 Cor. 10, DRB).   A while back I had an exchange on a Facebook group that hosts debate/dialogue between Protestant, Eastern Orthodox, and Catholic Christians.  This particular interaction was with an individual who seemed to fit more into the... Read more

December 7, 2022

    Background:   December 8 marks The Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception in the Latin Rite of the Catholic Church.  Officially proclaimed in Pius IX’s Ineffabilis Deus in 1854, the dogma reads as follows: “We declare, pronounce, and define that the doctrine which holds that the most Blessed Virgin Mary, in the first instance of her conception, by a singular grace and privilege granted by Almighty God, in view of the merits of Jesus Christ, the Savior of the... Read more

November 23, 2022

  Introduction: In a previous article, I laid the groundwork for the introduction of a brief citation from Mark of Ephesus’ (d. 1444) First Homily: Refutation of the Latin Chapters Concerning Purgatorial Fire.  There also was given some brief biographical information on the Metropolitan of Ephesus, and a general context of the text that will be analyzed in the present post.  As previously indicated, Mark is answering a Latin probe into the Greek understanding of the “middle-state” during preliminary discussions... Read more

October 23, 2022

        Introduction: As the feast of All Souls Day (November 2nd) fast approaches in the Latin Rite of the Catholic Church, I figured a post (or two) on Purgatory was in order.  In these articles, I wish to examine a passage from Mark of Ephesus’ (aka Markos Eugenikos) First Homily wherein he argues against the Catholic conception of the post-mortem “middle state”, which came to be known as Purgatory.   Mark of Ephesus (d. 1444) was perhaps... Read more

October 15, 2022

  Such appears to be the claim in a meme (above) that was posted in a Facebook group this week that I occasionally participate in.  The origin of the meme itself is unknown to me (it can also be found here).  The message is straight forward.  Catholics regularly refer Protestant interlocutors to the Early Church Fathers to support their arguments.  In the meme, the advice is taken, and a citation from St. Basil of Caesarea’s (d. A.D. 379) Epistle 283... Read more

October 8, 2022

      The dual apostolicity of the Roman church was a fact well known to the Early Church Fathers.  Not only did Peter and Paul labor there, but they were also ultimately martyred in the imperial capital making their residence permanent in a certain sense.[1]  This apostolic pedigree became a useful tool for second and third century apologists such as Irenaeus of Lyons and Gaius in combatting Gnosticism.[2]  Thus the appearance of the first extant episcopal lists of the... Read more

October 1, 2022

  Comments that the primate of the Russian Orthodox Church made earlier this week caused something of a stir on the internet.  As the Associated Press reports, Patriarch Kirill gave a sermon this past Sunday wherein he assured his listeners that “If someone, driven by a sense of duty, the need to fulfill an oath, remains true to his calling and dies in the line of military duty, then he undoubtedly commits an act that is tantamount to a sacrifice”. ... Read more

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