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Correction: The History of the Catholic Church, Presented On-Air Today, Edited & Corrected

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Mandeville, LA – On today’s show I recollected a conversation with my daughter Madison over the history of the Christian faith and the evolution of the Catholic & Lutheran Church. I received several responses from listeners who gently persuaded me that i had some of my history and chronology in error. I happily, in the pursuit of the truth in all matters of history, present the following note as a  correction of the history I presented on-air and welcome further contributions.

Hi Mike,
Was listening this morning to your show–today finally took the plunge and became a member–but wanted to just offer a bit of corrective revision to your brief discourse on church history.

You are correct in asserting that there was one Church–established, officially, at Pentecost as recorded in the Acts of the Apostles. Peter was appointed head of that church by Christ–Matthew 16:18. From the beginning of church history, there was a tendency toward fragmentation, mostly due to geography–there were issues that Paul faced when he planted churches in Asia Miinor, for example. The early Christians felt torn in their allegiance to Paul, or Apollos, or Cephas. Theological issues divided also–you had groups like the Marcions, the Nestorians, all claiming to be faithful Christians. The Council of Nicea was convened essentially so that orthodoxy could be established, and the canon of Scripture was one result of the early church councils, as well as the Niceno-Constantinopoliatan Creed (The Nicene Creed, recited in the Roman Catholic church and the Episcopal Church, as well as in Lutheran, Presbyterian, and others.) In that creed Christians confess that “we believe in the one, holy catholic and apostolic church,” and catholicity means universal (small “c”).

The “Great Schism” occured in 1054 when the churches of the “East”–what we consider Eastern Orthodox (Greek, Russian, Ukrainian, Estonian, so on) split from what we know as the Roman Catholic church. The split was essentially over the supremacy of the Bishop of Rome and over the use of the filioque clause in the Nicene Creed, and some other issues.

This is all prologue to addressing what you raised today. The Protestant Reformation, with Martin Luther serving as the trigger of that event, preceded the English Reformation, Henry VIII, and the Church of England splitting from Rome. Luther nailed his 95 Theses to the door of the Wittenberg church in 1517; Henry didn’t “break” from the Church of Rome until Parliament severed all legal (and financial) ties to the Pope in 1536. You had it the other way around–it was Luther first, Henry later.

I enjoy your show, and thank you for continuing to instruct me.

Blessings to you,

Bill Feus

And from listener Greta H. I received this with a corresponding link.

I would like to respectfully disagree with your assertion that the Roman Catholic Church was the original one. Actually, it was Orthodox. The Church was one, with the Pope being the Patriarch of Rome & nothing further, first among the other equals of patriarchs, & the Holy Spirit proclaimed as proceeding from the Father only, until the year 1054 when the Great Schism occurred & Rome BROKE AWAY from the established Church.

Here is an overview of the history:

Thank you, sir, for reading my message. May God bless you.

Yours truly,

Greta H

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Host of the Mike Church Show on The Veritas Radio Network's CRUSADE Channel & Founder of the Veritas Radio Network. Formerly, of Sirius/XM's Patriot channel 125. The show began in March of 2003 exclusively on Sirius and remains "the longest running radio talk show in satellite radio history".

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Madison Avenue

A note on the email from yours truly to Mike Church that he inserted into this “corrected” history of the Catholic Church. I referred to apostasy. The word has Greek origins, and means a defection or revolt; in more common usage, we think of apostasy as the renunciation of religious belief. Some have read what I wrote above and inferred that I was stating that The Episcopal Church is apostate. That’s not what I am saying. Some of what passes for theological liberalism, such as The Jesus Seminar is, in my opinion, a defection or revolt against traditional Christian teaching. My use of the word apostasy was too extreme based on our current understanding of the word. God alone judges what is faithful and what is apostate. The Episcopal Church is the place where I have found Jesus, and as such, could never be apostate.

Steve Cunningham

To the first letter you received. No the “c” is not a little ‘c’ the protest-ants say it is a little ‘c’ where in fact it is not. The gentlemen can read St Ignatius of Antioch’s letters & St Justin Martyr for that which they were around long before the Council of Nicea & the Credo was to combat the heresies around like Arianism. He is also writing against his heretical stance of protest-antism since he claims, correctly, that we all believe on one holy Catholic & apostolic Church but in fact he is against that b/c there is no protestant group that is one, nor catholic aka universal, nor apostolic at all.

To the Orthodox comment. Her assumption IS COMPLETE error. How can the Church, which has an unbroke line of apostolic succession, break away from itself since Christ promised the gates of hell would not prevail against it? So your argument is the Church, which did not break away from herself, broke away from herself b/c the orthodox broke away? To claim Rome broke away from herself is not only error but non historical. The Orthodox keep claiming this but facts are facts you cannot break away from the Holy Sea that Christ established & claim the Holy Sea broke away. Illogical at best. Here is a perfect example of this from an former Orthodox again if your claim is right the why did St Ignatius say the following in 110AD being led to being fed to lions? “Wherever the bishop appears, there let the people be; as wherever Jesus Christ is, there is the Catholic Church.” — Letter to the Smyrnaeans 8 he shoulda said there is the Orthodox church is you are correct in the claim that the Catholic Church wasn’t there. See the Orthodox is in schism with us, they left & hopefully one day they will rejoin in full communion. Pope JP II & Bendedict XVI have done great things to try to bring them back in. Which one doesn’t have the Chair of Peter? The Orthodox. I just get tired of hearing this false idea.


Troy Lizenby

I would venture to say Mr. Church that you have some of the best informed, polite and well learned folks as members of your audience, I’m glad to benefit from them and benefit from the discourse that you and only you provide. You are gracious and kind sir.

Sandra Tebbens

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