Skip to comments.St. Peter and Rome
Posted on 10/27/2006 8:14:39 PM PDT by Salvation
|St. Peter and Rome
Dear Catholic Exchange:
Matthew also issued among the Hebrews a written Gospel in their own language, while Peter and Paul were evangelizing in Rome and laying the foundation of the Church (Book 3, Chapter 1, verse 1).The African theologian Tertullian tells us that Peter and Paul both died in Rome in Demurrer Against the Heretics (c. A.D. 200):
Come now, if you would indulge a better curiosity in the business of your salvation, run through the apostolic Churches in which the very thrones of the Apostles remain still in place; in which their own authentic writings are read, giving sound to the voice and recalling the faces of each.... [I]f you are near to Italy, you have Rome, whence also our authority [i.e., in Carthage] derives. How happy is that Church, on which the Apostles poured out their whole doctrine along with their blood, where Peter endured a passion like that of the Lord, where Paul was crowned in a death like Johns [i.e., the Baptist], where the Apostle John, after being immersed in boiling oil and suffering no hurt, was exiled to an island.Tertullian was certainly not the only ancient author who testified that Peter was crucified in Rome. An ancient, orthodox historical text known as the "Acts of Saints Peter and Paul" elaborates on the preaching and martyrdom of the two Apostles in Rome. The dating of this document is difficult, but historians cited in the Catholic Encyclopedia placed its probable origins between A.D. 150-250.
One of the earliest thorough histories of the Church was Bishop Eusebius of Cæsareas Ecclesiastical History. Most of this work was written before Constantine became emperor in A.D. 324, and some portions were added afterward. Eusebius quotes many previous historical documents regarding Peter and Pauls travels and martyrdom in Rome, including excellent excerpts from ancient documents now lost, like Presbyter Gaius of Romes "Disputation with Proclus" (c. A.D. 198-217) and Bishop Dionysius of Corinths "Letter to Soter of Rome" (c. A.D. 166-174). Penguin Books publishes a very accessible paperback edition of Eusebiuss history of the Church, and most libraries will probably own a copy as well.
For more ancient accounts of Peters presence in Rome, see the writings of the Church Fathers, which are published in various collections. Jurgenss Faith of the Early Fathers, volumes 1-3, contains a collection of patristic excerpts with a topical index which apologists find very useful (Liturgical Press). Hendrickson Publishers and Paulist Press both publish multi-volume hardcover editions of the works of the Church Fathers. Penguin Books and St. Vladimirs Seminary Press publish a few works of the Fathers in relatively inexpensive paperback editions.
More treatments of Petrine questions may be found in Stephen K. Rays Upon This Rock (Ignatius); Jesus, Peter, & the Keys by Butler, Dahlgren, and Hess (Queenship); Patrick Madrids Pope Fiction (Basilica); and in the Catholic Answers tracts Was Peter In Rome? and The Fathers Know Best: Peter In Rome.
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Peter was converting Jews and learning to pass this along to Gentiles even tho he was stumbling while Paul was in Arabia learning first hand from God about the mystery of the adoption of the Gentiles, grace thru faith without works, eternal security, etc..
Where is this "documentation from the earliest Christians" on this matter. Please post all that you have. Search the writings of the Ante-Nicene Fathers and send them to me. We are doing a wonderful ecumenical treatise on the Evidence that Saint Peter was in Rome for that 25 year Bishopric as Saint Jerome pontificates and to date we have no evidence from Scripture or the "earliest Christians" or the Ante-Nicene Fathers, other than Jerome and Eusebius, of course, way off in the 4th century. But what were their sources????
They didn't pontificate on this matter without proof, did they? Or were their sources that thin over their heads there on Vatican hill or perhaps that ream of whole cloth down there in the basement that the magisterium have been using for years?
Please post all that you have from the Ante-Nicene Fathers that in the wildest imagination could be construed by the most rhetorical among us to possibly be some shred of evidence of that legendary Petrine Bishopric in Rome followed by upside down crucifixion under Nero. Just the words not the rhetoric.
Well, shucks. I thought Peter was the see of Rome.
Nonsense. Paul went preaching for three years before he even met Peter. Paul never states that he was ordained by Peter. Instead he states that God called him.
I wondered if we shouldn't ask Myth Busters to do a special on this but then the Catholics would all boycott the show.
What does it matter whether the Apostle Peter founded the church in Rome or not?
Why is it important that he was the first Bishop of Rome for 27 years?
What part of your dogma is Peter so critical to that without him the dogma becomes meaningless?
Your post is full of so many logical fallacies and strawmen that I don't know where to start. But most specifically the argument that God must be an idiot to rely on the Roman model for anointing (and I'm not clear on whether you refer to the Roman Empire or the Roman Catholic Church when you say "Roman").
All of it.
It rides and falls on the contention that "Peter and his successors" have a connection that allows them to be the final say no matter what. Doctrinal development, custom, everything is attached to this claim of essentially absolute authority.
The Pope is the last "absolute" monarch on earth.
Good to see that you've stepped into this discussion with humility, charity, and love to your brethren.
I said that we dont hear MUCH about Peter after he betrayed Jesus and we dont. I didnt say that we never hear about him again. He betrayed Jesus and was forgiven, however, his position within the fold diminished considerably after that.
This still does not answer my original question were is there physical proof that Peter ever visited Rome?
Whether he was there, or not, is irrelevant.
"What he and Paul did was to lend their authority to the see of Rome, especially since each man was martyred there. As a result the capital city of the empire became the main focal point of the Church, especially after the destruction of Jerusalem."
What proof is there that Peter was martyred upside down in Rome. We know Paul was because of the books he wrote.
I think your second point is much more on target about why Rome emerged as the dominant power within the early church. They were located where the money and power of the state was.
Are you being sarcastic? That would be an attitude that is condemned in the Bible as " mocking ". If so, isn't that an attitude inconsistent with the characteristics you cited, doing precisely what you are criticizing?