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Why revere the Pope?

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chakka35 | 17:35 Thu 15th Jul 2010 | Religion & Spirituality
13 Answers
In September, to welcome a man called Joseph Ratzinger for a few days, we are going to spend £15m - twice as much as we pay our own head of State for a whole year’s work. Because he is Pope he will be revered by millions. In asking how justified is the status given him I am not talking about the dubious fellow himself but about the papacy. Is this reverence deserved? I think not, and this is why:

Ask a Roman Catholic and he will say that Jesus told Peter that when he (Jesus) died Peter would be his representative on earth. After which Peter went on to become first Bishop of Rome, which we now call Pope. The first part of this story is highly unlikely; the second part is completely untrue. Consider:

1st part: The conversation in Matthew rings false. Putting aside the minor matter of why Jesus, speaking Aramaic, should make a pun in Greek (“Thou art Peter, and upon this rock…”) the rest of that sentence (“…I will build my Church.”) would have been truly shocking coming from the mouth of a Jew, for whom there was only one Church, the church of God. Such blasphemy would have demanded stoning.

Also, this all-important chat is reported only in Matthew (written about AD85-90), not in the earlier writings of Paul, Mark and Luke or the later John.

2nd part: there is not the slightest evidence that Peter ever went to Rome, let alone became Bishop there; there is no record of any Simon Peter becoming leader of Christians in that city in the 1st Century.

But there are plenty of indications that he did not. I can enlarge on that but I didn’t want to make this question too long.

What do others think – especially RCs?


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You can revere me instead if you like.
He is God's Vicar on Earth. That's why.
It is said that most people on earth revere some form of god or that god's prophet or living representative. I think they are misguided but that is their choice. The Pope is head of a major religion and also a head of state. We are a civilised country and it is in our tradition to welcome leaders of religions and foreign states. The cost is trivial in the scheme of things and will make many people feel good, just like they did when Nelson Mandela came.
we have a large amount of Catholics here in Scotland and he is the head of their religion so as far as i am concerned, he is welcome here any time
I agree chakka; in the NT two words are used; Petros and petra.
Paul did a lot more than Peter at spreading the word and at least Paul went to Rome.
What I find unbelievable is that the Pope after all his years of study, can stand up and be revered by millions of people. Only God can be revered not a human being. Makes me wonder what his beliefs really are!
because he has global influence
If only God, and not man, can be revered, why is it that clergymen of various denominations are addressed as 'Reverend', Latin for 'one who is to be revered'?
Did God or Jesus give them these titles? No disciple was called reverend.
There are an estimated 4.5m so-called Roman Catholics in the UK, that's just over £3 each. Bargain.

I personally don't think there is anything that the pope can do or say that will affect my life and I don't give a crap about him so count me out of the 'influential' or 'inspiring' crowd. He hasn't even got a Popemobile for Christ sake.

I would tell him that we can't afford it this year and he'll have to pay for his own holiday but instead give the money to helping the homeless which I'm sure such a humble and pious man will understand.
I like your style, billym, you can tell him from me, too.
//Ask a Roman Catholic and he will say that Jesus told Peter that when he (Jesus) died Peter would be his representative on earth.//

Yeah right. I'd wager 50/1 that if you asked 100 catholics about this 90% or more would not have a clue what you were on about.

I find about religion and religious beliefs that very little thought is put into the details. Basically you are whatever you were born, if you go to mass it's a bonus, but don't think about it too much. It annoys me slightly actually but its best to keep schtum.
I wonder if he will put his safety, by faith in the hands of God, or by having faith in the manufacturers of the popemobile bulletproof glass?
Anyway, as head sharang of the Vatican Sports & Social Club, he'll probably sway the crowds by running a few raffles and calling the bingo numbers!
//He is God's Vicar on Earth. //

He is? Who said?

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