Did you ever attend a school of higher learning and wonder who started this institution? Have you even considered what your studies would be like had someone without a background in your chosen endeavor attempted to pass on what they do not have?
Jump ahead to the 21st Century, where so many institutions, in spreading the Gospel of Christ, teach from somewhere, but do not have any idea where their background came from. Sure, as with all Christian religions, they say it is based on Jesus Christ. True! But who, I ask, originally passed on the words and mission of God’s only Son to announce to humanity the Paschal Mystery, and Life after death with Almighty God?
I once heard a priest (not Roman Catholic) put down the premise of Peter being the first pope and those who continue the Apostolic Succession with the Roman Catholic Church. His reasoning had to do with the words of Jesus, “I will give to you the keys to the kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven”. (Mt. 16: 19). Interesting since his own ordination succeeded from somewhere and someone. It makes me wonder where the Rite of Ordination in the Church he is part of got its authority.
Do some of these splinter groups, who profess Jesus Christ as Lord and King, believe that their teaching comes through osmosis? The same thought would be considered if your studies in an institution of higher learning became the result of someone with their head outside a window waiting for words from who knows where, to enter into a cranium that awaits an astounding revelation.
Who did Jesus expect to pass on the authority of His Church without choosing someone to lead the flock He taught, loved, and led to Calvary? Even God does not throw Grace around as pixie dust and hope it will land on someone who will use this most precious gift for His Kingdom. God freely, but carefully, extends this most auspicious gift on those as He chooses. So it is with Peter, the first chosen by Jesus to bind on earth as in heaven those to be forgiven for their sins. Yes, He died for all sinners, but all sinners do not adhere to God’s extreme Mercy and Forgiveness. The point is Jesus chose Peter and Peter passed on the Legacy of the Priesthood through Apostolic Succession.
Isn’t it amazing that when one appears to have most, if not all, of the basic requirements of a movement in tact, that everyone else tries to step in with a better way to subscribe its very tenets. That is what we have seen over the centuries, from the very roots of what we now call Christianity to the modern world. Here we see New-age philosophies are stepping in as pseudo-Christian entities and calling themselves the New Way to God. Only problem is God appears to take a back-seat to these ultra-organized groups and He becomes an after-thought of the original Plan that He created for mankind.
Somewhere, the essence of a Holy God; the Very Holy Trinity, are just words and the predictions we find from so many learned people, “when man ceases to worship God” the outcome will mean devastation to the human race. The Roman Catholic Church, in spite of the many setbacks throughout history, shall remain the only path to God’s Kingdom. Not because I am an ordained cleric and believe in my ordination commitment, but because on my understanding of the Catechism, the Sacraments, and my adherence to Peter, the Vicar of Christ, and the proclamation of, “You are rock, and on this rock I will build my church”. (Mt. 16: 18).
Ex Cathedra; “From the chair”, “With the full authority of office”, Do not dare to undermine these tenets of faith and papal authority, since they are not human aspirations, but the very words of Christ, after His Resurrection and the Commissioning of authority to His Disciples before He ascended into heaven. We who believe follow the stringent meaning of these words, adhering to the Vicar of Christ.