What really is the difference between the “Roman Catholic Church” and the “Catholic religion”?


The Catholic Church practices the Catholic Religion. This Church is the group of sui iuris or self-governing Churches in communion with the Pope. We treated this in a different article describing the many Churches that form the Universal Catholic Church. Click here to read

These particular Churches have distinctive rites, which term refers to a liturgical, theological, and spiritual heritage. All these particular Church, though distinct in customs and rubrics, adhere to the Pope and have essentially one doctrine. So any Church that isn’t in communion with the Pope isn’t part of this Universal, Catholic Church.

The Roman Catholic Church or the Roman rite includes most of the Catholics in the Western world. A Roman Catholic is a person who is a member of the Roman rite. So, a person who is a member of the Catholic Church, but isn’t part of the Roman rite is Catholic, but not Roman Catholic. He could be Catholic, but part of the Armenian Rite.


  • lorraine schwartz says:

    the word Catholic is the same as universal. Anglicans call themselves catholic too. you have to say roman Catholic. Also the law of fast for one hour before receiving Communion applies to all food and drink except water is permitted.

    • Clint De says:

      I do not think there is need to divide the religion on types of catholic…how many times we gonna redefine our religion…being a catholic and a follower of the church is enuf…everytime we see a differnt community outside the church use the same name we try to use a different term…it started with being a christian to a catholic to now a roman catholic…..

      • Silvia says:

        It’s extremely sad that Jesus came to unify us. But as our human egos take over, we have decided to fight among ourselves to see who is more right. My question is to all. There’s only one GOD, we have that in common, there is only one Jesus, and his teachings were to love one another, to help each other, to become one in good . in GOD. We humans keep trying to destroy the only one thing that is true. The Love God has for us and gave his Son Jesus to show us how much he love us . why can we do the same. Stop fighting who’s the best or the real one. The truth is simple. GOD is real, Jesus is real, his teachings are real. Let’s take a closer look at what the Scriptures say and unify us in LOVE one another. And only then we will become one in GOD.

        • Joe says:

          U r absolutely right n the reason the Catholic Church has different rites is because Catholics come from every corner of the world n many have different traditions. I don’t think it like the reformation .where people were in protest of the Church. we r all in communion with the Pope n no rite believes they have the “true”Catholic Church. Just different traditions Also I enjoy going to Mass at different rites. I enjoy the bisintyn mass very much

        • Michael Motisi says:

          This is the real problem. Everyone believes THEY know what God or Jesus wants us to do. But only the Roman Catholic Church seems to make sense. For over 2,000 years
          they have been teaching the same thing. No wavering.

          • One God the Lord God of Israel who sent Christ to redeem us from satan’s power and sealed the new covenant with His blood, see Jeremiah 31 verse 31, that all who hope in Him, shall receive eternal life, But you see not everyone calls upon the name of the Lord God and ask forgiveness in the name of Christ our Lord and Redeemer,so the commandment is to those who are truly repentant and ask the Lord Christ to come into their hearts and follow Him.

        • Romel says:

          Having different rites does not mean not being unified. We came from different cultures, so we have to respect that. The traditions they have are different from ours. And that is good. Being different does not mean not being unified. Being unified means having the same values & morals & teachings with regards to peace, human life, etc. That each rite adheres to that – because they are in communion with the Pope.
          In the Phil. We are the only ones who having “Simbang Gabi” w/c is a 9 days Novena and Mass early in the morning before the break of dawn. It came or developed, rather, from the tradition and culture during the Spanish era. But does that mean we are violating the Catholic teaching? Of course not. The Pope even granted a special “I forgot the term” for the Simbang Gabi.
          Being in communion with the Pope, his teachings, means we adhere to Christ’s teachings about morality and etc, we adhere to the Dogmas, about Mary, etc.
          And is one proof of the love of Christ, He respects the uniqueness of each one, how each person does things differently but what is important is everyone meeting the same goal, the goal that Christ wants for everyone.
          A problem can have (different) 2 or 3 or more approaches / solutions but all arriving at the same answer / conclusion. And that’s the beauty of the Catholic Church.
          Unity despite being different. Different approaches, same goals, same beliefs.

          • it is written “even the devil believes there is a God and trembles. Christ gave the commandment “to love one another even as I have loved you” to those who believe in Him, as their Lord and savior, who believe on His Word, and do not follow a religion, but rather ask the Lord Christ Jesus to come into their heart and cleanse it from all iniquities, as only Christ can cleanse our hearts from evil desires. as it is written in Jeremiah 31 verse 31 “I will make a new covenant with the House of Israel, I will write my laws on their hearts and foreheads and they shall be my people and I shall be their God” Chris sealed this new covenant with His blood at Calvary. so for roman catholics believing in Mary that she can influence the Lord our God, is heresy and therefore you are not walking in the love of Christ our Lord.

          • lea not true as your pope does not adhere to the teachings of Christ, as he plays footsie with Islam and Islam has made covenant with death, they glorify death, whereas Christ clearly told us that He is “I am the resurrection and the Life, so we listen to His Word that He spoke, not the pope as the pope is not even a christian but a compromiser being afraid of Isis who has vowed to make Islam the world religion, history repeating itself, re the roman catholic church compromising with Hitler to stay silent in order not to have their churches bombed?

        • David says:

          Very well said, let us unite and pray for peace and forgiveness. God bless all.

        • ron says:

          We both see the same Jesus to love and adore and no one can just simply take this belief away and its individual freedom and I respect one’s individual view but as for me after a some sort of research, I tried joining and listening other views. But finally I see a Roman Catholic is the new Covenant with God between His people through Jesus then Jesus sent Peter and the link down to Pope Francis was never been broken. As Jesus says “This is my blood of the new testament which shall be shed for many.” . I stay in Roman Catholic is a way of obedience to the God the Father’s will. As Jesus said to Peter and the apostles “As My Father sent me, I also send you, He who hears you, hears me and hears Him who sent me.” refer to a book of Almanac “Peter was the first Pope and down to the current Pope Francis”

      • Joe says:

        The reason there r different rites of the Catholic Church r based mainly on the different regions of the world n so there r different traditions each rite adheres to we r all in communion with the Pope. N no rite thinks of itself as being better than another

        • Only those whom confess that Jesus is the Christ the son of the living God, whom raised Him up from the dead, and now sits at the right hand of the Father making intercession for all who come to Him with a contrite spirit and humble in heart truly repentant of their sins, and the Lord God forgive us our trespasses solely for the sake of Christ redemptive work are of His church, as Christ is the head of the church, whom gave His life for same.

      • Mike says:

        Clint, you must keep refining and re-defining Catholicism because it cannot stand on its own….with all the discrepancies and contradictions. It must keep changing in order to keep from being pinned down as nothing more than fables, written and communicated during the dark ages.

    • jason suggs says:

      Anglicans are not Catholics, though they may be catholic in some sense. Many Episcopalians are heretics, in fact.
      As the article states, Roman Catholics are members of the Latin Rite of the Catholic Church. Many Catholics who are in communion with Rome are not Roman, but Eastern Catholics.

      • Truth Hurts says:

        Another wonderful Roman Catholic who believes they are the only true Catholics? Let me ask you something oh holy Roman Catholic, where in the bible are you told to pass judgement on your fellow man? Point to me in the bible where it says the Roman Catholic Church is the ONLY One, Holy, Apostolic Church. What a hypocrite you are. Episcopalians are heretics? According to whose theology? Yours? You are the one that now dictates what is and isnt appropriate? Or is it your infallible Pope? You truly believe the Pope is infallible? Then I feel for you. This from an Old Catholic who believes that everyone is entitled to their religious beliefs and not to be put down by someone else. That is what God and Jesus taught was it not? Dont bother to respond, I do not wish to wate any more time on a blow hard!

        • samuel says:

          You really are hurting.

        • Kitty says:

          Infallible Pope? The Pope isn’t infallible, the WORD OF GOD IS INFALLIBLE!!!
          WOW, I am sorry that you were offended by someone else’s post, but replies like yours only lead to MISGUIDED & UNEDUCATED portrayals of both my Catholic Faith AND YOUR Episcopalian Faith.

          • Jean Potts says:

            The Pope is infallible in the teaching of. faith and morals.

          • Julian Kent says:

            Actually, in the Roman tradition, it is believed that Pope IS infallible in matters of faith and morals.

          • Sientje says:

            wow you have been badly brainwashed. If it is not according to the Word of God the pope speaks then he is pushing his own idology on others Was Peter infallible? certainly not, the maid speaking about Peter This man was also with Jesus of Gallilee,” Peter “I do not know the man” meaning our Lord Jesus Christ” PPeter replied and you want to build your faith on htis? I pity you, do you not see that it was the Holy spirit that revealed to Peter that ?Jesus is the Christ the son of the Living G-d that He is our hope and strenght and the “Rock of our salvation” the cornerstone that the builders rejected? Why do you not acknowledge that Christ speaks Truth, when He said “I am the way, the Truth and the Life, NO ONE can come unto the Father except through me” believe on Christ and His Word and be saved. the church is not the saviour of the world nor your deceitful pope,

        • William says:

          Can you please enlighten us as to how the Anglican and Episcopal Churches came to be?
          By all historical accounts they were formed by heretics in opposition to Papal authority, around the same time as the protestant reformation.
          No one is passing judgement, but scripture does tells us we are to give reproof to our brothers, right correction and to admonish the idle, and if someone wanders from the truth, to be patient with them and bring them back.
          As I read the other parts of “your judgement”, I can see any reasonable response to you is fruitless, as you have already formed your opinion of the Church, the Pope, and the Bible.
          God Bless.

          • Michel Paul Marie says:

            Science/knowlege starts w humility! Check if you are humble enough to be enlighted by others than urself!

          • I dont know am not an episcocal or presbyterian am a reformed member of the Canadian reformed church, as some like the baptists dont believe in infant baptism,till the child is ready to decide for itself, but we are not under papal authority but are to listen to the Word which Christ spoke the Word. “I am the Way the Truth and the Life, no one can come unot the Father except through Me.” showing that He is our mediator between God and us, and there is no other saviour beside Him. also Mary is not Jewish name and she was the instrument or a prophesy fulfilled spoken of by Isaiah the prophet in I believe chapter 7 verse 14 as Miriam probably was her name worshipped the Lord God of Israel seeing she was Jewish. so since Christ was with God at the beginning of creation.”before Abraham I Am” Mary cannot be Christ mother, but His caretaker.

          • mark morin says:

            Actually sientje, scripture does tell us that Peter is the rock upon which Jesus will build His Church. It is for that reason that we believe the Pope to be infallible when speaking on matters of faith and morals and when explicitly calling upon his role of infallible teacher. Not everything he says is infallible. It should also be noted that scripture tell us that the Church is infallible because Jesus promised to be present through His Church until the end of time.
            Much of the split between the Anglican and Catholic Churches came about because of the King’s wish to divorce his wife. The Pope refused to grant an annulment. But that was also a time in history when world politics were closely intertwined with Church business.
            Martin Luther’s reformation may not have happened if Erasamus and Luther had not painted each other into corners where they were not listening to each other. It got to the point where the only possible solution was to break away.
            But all of this misses the point of the article. When most people hear the word “Catholic” they think “Roman Catholic.” There are something like 23 other rites that are just as “Catholic” as the Roman Catholics. As a Maronite Catholic, I am proud of the fact that my Church is Antiochean–where we were first called Christians. Our clergy are allowed to marry (up until recent maronite churches in predominantly latin lands were not allow to have married clergy. That has changed.) Much of our liturgy is spoken in the language that Jesus spoke.

          • I have no idea about the Episcolian church, but the anglican church came into being as King Henry the 8th I think not sure wanted a boy heir, and I think her name was Anne Boveyn not sure either gave birth to a girl, so he wanted a divorce but the pope refused to grant him a divorce, so he her guillotined and started his own church the Church of England or Anglican church. where instead of the pope the King or queen is head of the church, there is the High anglican church, and the lower anglican church, as the higher anglican church approved of homosexuality so they split again and the lower anglican church has Christ Jesus as head of the church as most protestant denominations revere the Lord Christ Jesus as the head of the church, i.e “salvation in Christ alone”

          • I beg to difffer. as when Christ asked His disciples, who people thought He was, some said “a prophet, and then He turned to Peter, and you Peter, whom do you think I am?” and Peter replied.”Thou art the Christ (anointed) the Son of the Living God” and listen to what Jesus Christ our lord tells Peter. “flesh and blood has not revealed this to you” so who did reveal to Peter that Jesus is the Christ the Son of the Living God? Is it not the Holy spirit? which the Lord God also gives to al believers who repent of their sinful ways and sincerely believe in Jesus being the Christ the Son of the Living God. and it is this same Holy spirit that will reveal to us also that Christ is whom He says He is the Redeemer the Holy one of Israel. and against this faith in Christ and His Word, the gates of hell cannot prevail. Not peter himself as Peter tells the Lord.”depart from me Lord, for I am a sinful man” as shortly after Peter tell the lord that he is lying as Jesus tells peter about that He the Lord will be crucified and peter tries to tell the Lord that this wont happen and the Lord says to Peter. “Get behind me satan” so you see the church cannot be built upon peter but on Christ redemptive work as He sealed the new covenant with His blood, see jeremiah 41 verse 31

        • David Blyth says:

          Truth Hurts you should read your Bible a little and ask for guidance

        • okispider says:

          Mathew 16:18: “I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it.” … This was the commission that Jesus gave to St. Peter, one of his disciples to build his church, which has stood the test of time for over 2,000 years.

          • As for Matthew 16:18 Here Jesus Christ our Lord and savior asks Peter whom he thinks Jesus really is, and Peter replies. “thou art the Christ, the Son of the Living God.” now listen very carefully to what Christ Jesus tells Peter. “Flesh and blood has not revealed this to you.” so whom revealed this to Peter? was it not the Holy spirit speaking through Peter? why are you giving credit to Peter, when the Lord tells you it is not Peter? therefore believing that Jesus is the Christ, (Messiah) the son of the Living God, against this faith, the gates of hell will not prevail. Not Peter himself, as he denied the Lord three times, Remember that Peter told the Christ that He was not telling the truth, when Christ said that He would be crucified as then the Lord told Peter “Get behind me satan.” so you are wrong in believing that when you belong to the roman catholic church and you will be saved. Christ sealed the new covenant with His blood, see Jeremiah 31 verse 31

          • David Blyth says:

            Indeed the Holy Spirit inspired Simon to reply “thou art the Christ, the Son of the Living God.”. In the same way Moses was inspired. Jesus then changed Simon’s name to Kephas (Peter or Rock) – typical when a person’s role in salvation history is defined (eg Abraham, Paul, etc)
            According to Scripture Jesus’ reply differs from your statement “against this faith, the gates of hell will not prevail”. According to Mat 16: 18, Jesus’ statement was: “And I tell thee this in my turn, that thou art Peter, and it is upon this rock that I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it”. Thereafter he promised that He would commission Simon Peter with a level of authority in His Church,
            Indeed when speaking without the Holy Spirit’s inspiration, Simon Peter did receive a reprimand from Jesus. But kindly explain where you Peter telling Jesus that He was not telling the truth.
            After His resurrection, Jesus asked Simon Peter to care for His sheep – meaning “tending His Church”.
            A study of Acts and the writings of the early Church fathers further bear out the role of Simon Peter and his successors.

          • David Blyth says:

            You are very confused!
            Worship is reserved for God alone.
            Veneration or reverence can be given to people.
            Read the writings of the early Church fathers to learn about Christianity.

          • AL YBZ says:

            Jesus said ” I will build my chruch…” so its clear that Jesus himself is the church and His teachings is as hard as the rock He is pointing to. Nobody, even Peter, was tasked to build an edifice to be called a church. A structure is only a place where believer of Christ come together to fellowship with each other, praising and do worship to Jesus. Sharing and doing communion with Christ.

          • Sientje says:

            the difference between roman catholic church and catholic is that catholic means universal. the universal church that acknowledges that Christ is head of the church, as He gave His life for same. The Roman catholic have the pope as head of the church, which the protestants reject, as it was Christ who redeemed His church, not the pope. protestants believe this to be a heresy. As it was the Holy spirit that revealed to Peter that “Jesus is the Christ (Messiah) the son of the Living God,” and against this faith that Christ is the Rock of our salvation, the gates of hell cannot prevail. as He sealed the new covenant with His blood, see Jeremiah 31 verse31

          • Okispider you have left out the rest of what the Lord told Peter, where He said “flesh and blood has not revealed this to you” so who revealed it to Peter that Jesus is the Christ the son of the living God?” why are you omitting this, which shows that it wasnt Peter who spoke these Words but it was revealed to peter by the Holy spirit and when confess our sinfull ways to the Lord God and ask forgiveness in the name of Christ the Lord God of Israel pours His love into our hearts so that we ive thanks and praise to His name for sending Christ who redeemed us with His blood, why did Christ say “I am the way the Truth and the Life NO ONE can come unto the Father except through Me.: that includes the pope and you and me and everyone.

        • Phil says:

          All that hatre is also not Christ like.

          • Sientje says:

            I agree it is those whom believe in their heart that Jesus is the Christ the Son of the Living God and that the Lord God raised Him from the dead are the saints which the apostles are proclaiming the gospels to, as it with us those that acknowledge Christ suffering and look to Him for salvation of of His flock, as He is the Rock of our salvation. the Hojy One of Israel, the roman catholic church is full of heresies and false teachings. which constantine added, in order to make more converts from the Egyptians.

          • Sientje says:

            Mary was a prophesy fullfilled, she was of the royal line of David as prophesied by Isaiah. Mary had other children but they did not believe in Christ until after His resurrecwotion. You dont know your bible very well as Eve is the mothowher of all humanity, as the was the first created woman. Christ spoke these Words “Before Abraham, I AM” Mary was not even born yet Beside Mary was Jewish maiden, whom gave praise and glory to the Lord G-d of Israel, her saying “My soul magnifies the Lord” whom do you suppose was she giving homage to and whom sent Christ as a ransom for many? not the roman catholic church, There was no roman catholic church at that time, Nero fiddled while Rome burned remember and the christians were blamed, No authority was passed onto Peter It was the holy spirit that revealed to Peter whom Christ Jesus was. did the Lord not tell Peter “Flesh and blood has not revealed this to you.” and later telling Peter “get behind me satan” when Peter denied that Christ would be crucified. Christ knew this was His mission to ransom those whom are predestined to be called. Listen to how King David refers to the Lord as “The rock of my salvation” not the roman catholic church, not Peter, but the Lord G-d forgives us our transgressions when we come before Him with a humble heart and believing in Christ as being the Holy One of Israel who sealed the new covenant with His blood see Jeremiah 31 vrse 31. and the Lord God sent His holy spirit into our hearts and removes our transgressions as far as east is from the west,solely for the sake of Christ redemptive work we are saved by grace. It is a gift from God, the roman catholic church is just the roman empire now disguises as christian with popes at the head instead of Ceasars to which you give homage instead of giving praise and thanks to the Lord God of Israel, whom redeemed us with His blood.

          • Phil says:

            None of us are Christ-like. If we could be we would not need His death and resurrection for our sins.

          • When Christ was on the cross, He said to John, re Mary. “Behold your mother and to May re John. “behold your son.” it was to show us how to treat one another as christians as brothers and sisters, mothers and fathers. Also Mary is not a Jewish Name and Miriam I would think probably was closer to her name, was of the Jewish faith, giving praise and thanks to the Lord G-d of Israel, not the roman catholic church, which is a human institution whom believes it has the keys to heaven and earth. You are so far of the mark, as Mary or Miriam was a prophesy fulfilled as prophesy have to be fulfilled. She was of the royal line of David. whom also worshipped the Lord G-d of Israel. Christ came to perfect Judaism, and why dont you believe the Holy scriptures instead of the roman catholic church? What did Christ tell Peter after He asked whom Peter thought He was? and Peter said “Thou art the Christ (anointed Messiah) the Son of the Living God” and Christ said to Peter. “flesh and blood has not revealed this to you” so whom do you think revealed to Peter that Jesus is the Christ the Son of the Living God?” Is it not the Holy spirit, and since when we acknowledge like Peter that Jesus is the Christ the son of the Living God,” and believe it with all our heart, mind and soul, then the Lord pours His love into our hearts so that we are able to uphold the commandment “To love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, mind and soul” and the second “Your neighbor as oneself.” as it is not possible to love your neihbor as yourself without having the love of God in one;s heart. therefore it not on Peter He will build his church, but on that we believe that Christ was send by God and is the Holy redeemer of Israel, whom made the Lord God known to us gentiles also. I dont go by rules except knowing the Christ sealed the new covenant with His blood spoken of by Jeremiah 31 vrse 31, where God speaks of that He will put His laws on our hearts, mind and forehead, and He will be our G-d and we His people, nothing to do with Peter, but the Holy spirit which testifies of Christ saving and redeeming work. and your church has fostered the lie of no salvation outside of the roman catholic church, which is so far from the Truth as it is salvation in Christ alone” the reason He was sent to reconcile a sinful world to God the father in heaven. And it is agains this faith the gates of hell will not prevail as Christ is our strenght and shield whom defend us from the wickedness of this world.

        • John says:

          If you WERE a Catholic, then you missed the important parts about the Pope and the congress of Bishops being infallible when in congress with each other and speaking on matters of doctrine. Perhaps you should go read through this link and simmer your obvious anger down a notch. So many who have left our faith have done so out of misinformation about our own teachings. It is a shame to see both sets of comments, as both reflect intolerance and anger, not love and acceptance.

          • John no one is infallibel we ask the Lord for understanding into His Word, the pope is not infallible neither were the church fathers even Paul acknowledges that he is a sinner so does Peter, “Depart from me Lord for I am a sinfull man” you see we acknowledge our sinfull ways and ask forgivenes in the name of Christ and the Lord God removes our transgressions as far as east if from the west, as no earthly priest can forgive your sins. only through Christ does the Lord God look on us with favour. Did King David the apple of God’s eye confess to a priest, no he acknowledged his sin and repented accordingly, calling Christ the Rock of his salvation

        • Richard says:

          “You are Peter and upon this Rock I will build MY Church and the gates of hell will NOT PREVAIL against IT”. And since our 1st Pope all the way to Pope Francis 266 Popes later.

        • Marcella says:

          May God Bless you ! and touch your heart and give you the right understanding in Jesus name !

        • Tessie colob says:

          Why you don’t accept the truth? Since the formed of the church we follow already what the people was doing before, the first Pope was Peter, Jesus said to Peter, Peter upon this rock I will build my church. Jesus gave an authority to Peter and the Popes to be the leader of his church, Pope is our shepherd and our spiritual guidance, we respect Pope so much like we respects our own parents or grandparents.

          • hi how deluded you are. Peter was never the first pope, Peter denied the Lord three times, and guess what when Jesus asked Peter whom Peter thought He Jesus Christ our lord was, Peter replied, “Thou art the Christ the Son of the Living God.” and now listen carefully what Christ tells Peter. “flesh and blood has not revealed this to you” so who was it that revealed to Peter that Jesus is the Christ the son of the living God? Is it not the holy spirit? and does God not pour his Holy spirit into our hearts when we confess that Jesus is the Christ the son of the living God and acknowledge His work of redemption. Here is another question, King david of Israel was anointed with the Holy spirit and calls Christ our redeemer the “Rock of his salvation” and King David never met Peter, who was also a sinner in need of Christ redemption and if you dont believe me look up Jeremiah 31 verse 31 where Christ sealed the new covenant with His blood, wake up the pope is just a sinner like the rest of us in need of the grace of our Lord and saviour Christ the only begotten Son of the Lord God of Israel.

      • Cookie says:

        Well said Jason…just cuz you call yourself Catholic, does not mean you are in communion with the Pope…

    • I remember well as one of the very few times my father was angry with me and it was because I referred to myself as a Roman Catholic instead of a Catholic. He saw it as a remnant of the persecution of Catholics in England emphasising the belief that our first loyalty was to Rome rather than as British citizens. Of course they were partly right in that we should follow the wishes of our Pope as the Bishop of Rome and the successor of Peter, should his command come into conflict with British law, for example where Abortion, same sex Marriage, Contraception etc is concerned.

      • David Blyth says:

        Well stated.
        I prefer to refrain from the term “Roman” Catholic though

      • Sientje says:

        Goodness dont you have your own conscience telling you that it is wrong to kill the child within, especially when you follow the Lord God and His commanments. Thou shalt not murder, or kill? Does the Lord not pour His love for Him into your heart when you acknowledge christ as your lord and saviour? isnt this why we uphold the law?

        • christina says:

          Please don’t interpret the Bible in your on way.That what other Protestants do. They just say what they like to justify their believes. Its difficult for us to understand the deeper meaning of the verses,so the Catholic Church gives the correct explanation for them inspired by God.And again we don’t consider pope as god,he is a person who helps us to get closer to god and to know him better.the Protestants unlike catholics they create their own verses and tend to lead us through a different path away from Jesus Christ and his teachings.Jesus had warned us about them. So make sure you read the Bible to understand more about Catholic Church as we still remain same unchanged just as Jesus created the church.That’s what I believe.

          • Christina you are explicitly going against the Lord’s commandment “Do not put your trust in mortal men” but put your trust in the Living God of Israel. and are you ever mislead it is Christ who makes the Lord God of Israel known to us.come to know christ and He will reveal His Word to you, as does He not tell you “Behold I am at the door and knock” wanting for you to let Him into your heart so that He makes His Word come into remembrance when you are beset with temptations He is our good shepherd who leads us into green pastures.

          • Christina I dont I ask the Lord God for understanding into His Word and since Christ promised to send His Holy spirit to all who believe on Him and ask Him into their hearts, The Holy spirit makes the Word of God known to us, as it was men who were inspired by the Holy spirit whom wrote the Holy Bible there is no other way to interpret it, as also the Holy spirit searches our hearts and makes our requests known to the Lord God in heaven. repent of your insinuations. it is the roman catholics that have put their own spin on the Holy Bible, as for instance there is no purgatory. and you do not honor the Lord God of Israel with all your statues and praying to dead saints a form of idolatry.

        • christina says:

          Please make sure you interpret the verses correctly. Don’t make you’re own explanation. That’s what Catholic Church do they interpret the verses correctly as god want it to be.

      • Julia Welch says:


    • Aldrin says:

      IFI here in the Philippines are called also Filipino Catholic.. not a Roman but a Filipino Catholic..

      • ChRaS says:

        maybe, but in the Philippines we follow the Roman rites, so we are Roman Catholic..

      • bel says:

        IFI is not a Catholic nor Filipino Catholic since it is not in full communion with the Pope in Rome successor of St.Peter. It is just a copycat.

      • felix says:

        We are all children of one God, iregardless of our race, belief or religious affiliations…

        • not true, as in Genesis 3 verse 12-15 it is written “I will put enmity between thee and the woman and between thy seed and the seed of the woman, she shall crush thy head, and ye shall bruise its heel” and there are children of disobedience and the children of obedience. the children of obedience accept that Christ is the “Way, the Truth and the Life, no one can come unto the Father except through Him” and the disobedient children whom seek to enter by a different way, Just read John chapter ten, where the Lord speaks of those whom try to enter a different way. Christ tells that He is the Good shepherd whom lays down His life for the sheep. Listen to His voice not the pope, not your priest but to Christ whom when we look to Him, conforms us into His image helping us become children of the Lord God. the reason He was sent.

          • David Blyth says:

            Your statement “I will put enmity between thee and the woman and between thy seed and the seed of the woman, she shall crush thy head, and ye shall bruise its heel”. The woman is Eve.
            On the cross Jesus instructed John that Mary was his mother – this was understood by the early Church that she became their mother.
            Your suggestion that Mary replaces the Christ is both false and disingenuous.
            If you read the books of the New Testament, you will read the infancy narratives which the early Church would have received from Mary.

    • MarMay says:

      The word “catholic” means universal, but our cutch is “Catholic” with a capital “C”. As just explained above, a Catholic is a Catholic, practicing under a rite or according to the customs or traditions of his region. An apple is an apple, be it pippin, green, red delicious, gala, Fuji, etc…, but an orange is a different fruit. Anglicans are Protestant.

    • Rev. George Gabriel says:

      Catholic=Universal. You have One Church, established by Jesus Christ. CATHOLICS ARE: Romans (Eastern and Western Rite); Orthodox; Anglicans; Lutherans… ALL CHURCHES SEPARATES from ROME DIRECTLY: ARE “TRUE” CHURCHES… Others are: Denominations… And ALL ARE CHRISTIANS… AMEN!!!

      • David Blyth says:

        That comment is incomprehensible

        • David Blythe not true you know, as when we look to Christ for our salvation and confess our sinfull ways, the Lord God pours His love into our heart to uphold His commandments. to love neighbor as ourselves and to give praise and thanks to Him for sending Christ, those that deny Christ’s redemptive work are from the devil, the pharisees did not believe in Him and so persecuted those that did believe in Christ as their lord and saviour the same with the roman catholic church persecuting the ones whom did not give homage to the pope the Spanish inquisition, since the romans nailed Christ to the cross, the whole world is guilty of crucifying Christ as this was His mission to redeem captive Israel and all those whom the Lord God has elected.

      • cristina says:

        So wrong. Not Amen because I don’t believe Anglicans( and all others who protest the catholic church )are Catholic. All faiths stemmed from the one true, holy, apostolic church which is the Holy Catholic Church. I am a Roman rite Catholic but have attended orthodox (catholic) masses. What is most important of making this distinction that to be Catholic you must believe the Eucharist , is the summit and source of our faith, and not just a symbol. It is truly the body and blood of Christ. You can not have His presence to partake of His meal in other place than in a Catholic mass through his priests with the prayer of the faithful and by the power of the Holy Spirit to be in communion and believe what He said to “do this in memory of me.”

        • what do you mean believe the eucharist Christ told us that as oft as we come together to remember the Night before He died, that He broke bread with His disciples, and since He is the Word, made flesh, the bread is the Word He spoke lived and died for, and the wine is symbolic of Him shedding His blood on Calvary for the remission of our sins. Christ sealed the new covenant with His blood see Jeremiah 3 verse 31. therefore when we come before His throne with a contrite spirit and humble in heart, in prayer, the Lord God of Israel forgives us our trespasses, when we ask this in the name of Christ our Lord,and the Lord God forgives us our trespasses when we are truly repentant solely for the sake of CHrist redemptive works. as without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of our sins. That is why we need to examine ourselves when partaking of the Lord’s supper

    • David says:

      We are a diverse world and we need a diverse Catholic church. We are many parts of One Body we all have our part to play in Christs church which we are all one. There isn’t one size fits all , we should celebrate its diversity as testimony to God’s plan.

  • Kabelo says:

    Am not sure I understand this brother

  • monet_floro says:

    I am confused !

    • Akah says:

      Don’t be confused. He just gave a vivid distinction between the ROMAN CATHOLIC and the CATHOLIC CHURCH. The fact that the church is in Rome didn’t make everyone there worship like a Roman. CATHOLIC means Universal. Each part of this world has a Tradition or Culture but the traditions of the bible cannot be changed. Where you are has a tradition likewise Rome. The tradition of Rome can’t be forced to you who is say in the middle east or Africa. The Catholic church follows Biblical traditions which she merges with the tradition of any people. Tradition has to do with dressing, eating mode, building designs etc. For instance a Church Built in Roman must not have the same design like the one built somewhere in the Coast of Africa but the Bible or messages preached in the churches are the same But they are all Catholic!

    • BobbiLynn Harrigan says:

      Me to

  • Erlinda M Ursua says:

    Catholic, broadminded as in belief ,tastes, or view, or comprehensive,or universal in reach.
    Catholic, of or pertaining to the ancient , undivided christian church or later division, as the
    Anglican or eastern orthodox.

  • Lori Wilcox says:

    I wish they would start off with: Catholicism is not a religion…its a denomination. Christianity is our religion.

    • Bruce Bridgewater says:

      The Catholic Church is NOT a denomination. Protestant churches are denominations. Denomination means “renaming”

      • Nicoletta Jones says:

        It’s a “remanimg”. Christianity IS the religion. Catholicism is a branch of Chrisitanity like any other denomination.

        • Dom says:

          “IN the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” – Just like that, before there were any denominations like you say .. there was only one truly universal church .. and then certain people decided they wanted to re-think and re-build the Church from within (starting with the chair of the Pope) but they decidedly failed .. and so the very first ‘denomination’ or “re-maiming” was formed when they ‘protested’ .. then further & further re-thinks & re-builds later, you have your denominations.. or the re-‘maiming’s.. But our Catholic Church has remained the very same .. as promised (Matt. 16:18) .. Im so happy & blessed that I was born a catholic .. I feel like I was chosen into the Faith.. I just wish other catholics feel the same way and return home..

          • Abby Young says:

            I very much agree with you Dom..the Catholic Church never changed as promised. And it will cover the land on earth until the end of time…Jesus Christ was and is a Jew, coming from the chosen people of the Father in Heaven and through Jesus Christ the Catholics becomes the brothers and sisters of the chosen people of God…And I am happy and we must be happy that we belong to the Catholic Church and are not being a lost Christian.

          • marmay says:

            Dom, I couldn’t have explained it better!!! Amen!!

          • Dom says:

            Thank you Abby & marmay!! Its just the way i feel.. is all.. 🙂 btw I request you and anyone reading this to pray for me.. I am awaiting a kidney transplant – it will happen very soon.. God willing in the next few months as my brother is the donor.. I strongly believe in intercession (I am Catholic after all) and I believe in the selfless prayers of others .. Thank you in advance.. God bless!

          • Mwashigadi Mwang'ombe says:

            True and Amen!

          • tonia says:

            May our blessed virgin mary intercede for you I really pray that your kidney transplant goes smoothly for you in Jesus name amen hope to hear a great news soonest the

          • Susy Barneond says:

            It’s funny how everyone has an opinion, but people should do some research before they give theirs. You are correct. What matters is that Catholicism is the original Christian religion, established by Jesus Christ himself, when he appointed our first pope, St. Peter. Then, the Protestants left and made their new “religion” and after them so many others decided they don’t like something and they just start what they call a new “religion” but the only religion established by Jesus is ours, the Catholic religion.

          • there was no roman catholic church when Christ was crucified, Christ started the church at the cross, when He became intercessor for everyone but especially those whom put Him on the cross being under orders from Pontius Pilate a governor of Rome. “Forgive them Father, for they know not what they do.” also He spoke to John His disciples re Mary and said to John, :Behold your mother” and to Mary re John “behold your son” to show us how to treat one another and look out for each other. may the Lord give you understanding into His Word, when you study His Holy Word.

          • David Blyth says:

            Sientje Seinen there was no “Roman” Catholic Church at the Crucifixion. It’s accepted that the Church was inaugurated at Pentecost.

          • Sientje says:

            In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and is God, therefore since Christ Jesus was the Word made flesh, He was with the Lord God at the beginning of creation. thus the Word He spoke. ” Before Abraham I Am” so how can Mary be the mother of God as she was then not yet even born? she was a prophesy fulfilled as Christ chose the lowly womb to make His entry into this world. the Lord is the rock of our salvation and it is on this faith that Christ is the redeemer the Holy one of Israel, that the gates of hell cannot prevail against.

          • fres.joseph says:

            Tell me the different between Roman Catholic and Catholic religion please.

          • Sientje says:

            the difference is that we put our trust in the Lord G-d of Israel who sent Christ to redeem us with His blood, as He sealed the new covenant see Jeremiah 31 verse 31 with His blood, as without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins. We pray directly to the God the father and make our requests known to Him, also asking forgiveness for our wrong doing, being truly sorry in the name of Christ Jesus, our Lord. and the Lord God removes our transgressions as far as east is from the west, solely for the sake of Christ suffering at Calvary. this is the protestants faith that Christ is our high Priest who is our intercessor between us and the God the Father
            The roman catholic one has to confess to a priest who also is a sinful human being, who has no authority to forgive your sins, as Christ did away with the priesthood, Him being the faithful High priest, the reason He said “It is finished: Also we give reverence to Christ our Lord as He redeemed us with His blood, not the pope so Christ is above all and over all. and head of the church or those whom believe in Him and call upon His name. we dont pray to saints as those whom believe in Christ as being their Lord, are the saints, and He is their good shepherd as spoken of in the gospel according to St John chapter 10. Ask the Lord for understanding in His word and He will reveal Himself to you a little at at a time as your faith progresses. God bless

          • Christy says:

            Amen, Dom!!

          • Dom you are so way out there. did you not know that Christ came to perfect Judaim as did He not say “Think not that I have come to abolish the law but to fullfill it” so there was no roman catholic church during the time Christ walked on earth. as the first church was at Jerusalem at pentecost where the holy spirit was given and so the Word came true that “salvation is of the Jews” as they were the chosen people with whom God made a covenant that out of them would come the Messiah the reason they were chosen.

        • Yes in fact Christianity IS the religion so why all the other names? Why they don’t keep it simple and worthy to our Savior “CHRISTIANITY”

          • The religion wasnt called Christianity it was called “The Way” it was constantine that added mary as co redemptress, as Mary is not even a Jewish name, She worshipped the Lord God of Israel and was a prophesy being fulfilled as she was of the royal line of David. It was the prophesy by Isaiah that a virgin should conceive and bear a son and the government would be on His shoulders, i.e our Lord Jesus Christ, not the pope, as Christ is our mediator between God and us who stands in the breach for us when we come before His throne asking forgiveness in His Name and the Lord God looks on us with favour solely for the sake of Christs redeeming work.

      • Robert M. says:

        Technically speaking, Catholicism & Protestantism are Christian denominations, but are not generally referred to as such. That said, there are “denominations” within both the Catholic church & the protestant grouping. “Protestant” is the name given to those religions that “protested” the belief that the Pope is in direct lineage to Peter, the first Pope of Christ’s “church”, & broke away from the universal church for that reason, not to mention differences in other common beliefs of the universal church at the time. The first Protestant group was the Lutherans, I believe, led by Martin Luther, in the 16th century. There is a great deal of history that goes along with this, but no space for all that here.
        The word “denomination” also does not mean “renaming”. The definition of the word is “name; designation – general name for a category…”. Look it up.

        • marmay says:

          Robert M, sorry, but the Catholic Church is NOT a “de”nomination, subgroup, sect, unit, branch, subtle, smaller part of ANY other church. You look it up!!!

        • Lea leger says:

          Robert, Catholic Church is the only Church that Jesus established on earth, There are only 2 Churches in the world, the first , the Catholic Church founded by Christ and the second is other churches that founded by men. The protestant, anglican are denomination because they are not in union with the Pope or not belong to the Church that Jesus established. The article is very clear to understand.

          • phyllis palermo says:

            Mark 9:40 for whoever is not against us is for us… I think this says it all.

          • Sientje says:

            we are not suppose to be in union with the pope, he is just an ordinary man, whom also needs to acknowledge that Christ is Lord of lords and King of kings. As did Christ not tell His disciples. “I am the way, the Truth and the Life, No one can come unto the Father, except through me.” that includes everyone, as Paul mentions “for all have sinned and come short of the glory of God” also Christ directly tells His disciples after washing their feet, ‘Not to lord one over the other” but be servants of one another, here you have set up the pope as if he God himself. There is only one Redeemer which is Christ the Holy one of Israel, whom makes the Lord God of Israel known to us. therefore we give praise and thanks to the Lord God our heavenly Father for sending Christ to redeem us with His blood.

      • Bruce Bridgewater did you know that the first church was comprised of Jewish believers re at Pentecost, where the Holy spirit was given and it was called hold your breath, not the roman catholic church, but it was called
        “The Way” and their symbol was a fish, as the Jewish disciples were fisherman, did Christ not tell them that He would make them fishers of men”? so you are all way out there. salvation is of the Jews, as Christ was send to the House of Israel to call them to repentance, Even the disciples did not understand why He had to be crucified until His resurrection as Christ upbraided them for their hardness of heart.

    • Carlos says:

      Those who believe in Jesus Christ as the one true God can are considered Christians. Those who believe in Christ as God AND the Catholic Church as the one true religion established by Jesus Christ himself are Catholics. It is not a denomination anymore than the Earth is just another land mass.
      Those who do not accept the fact that the current leader of the Catholic Church who sits in succession of, Saint Peter, who was personally installed by Jesus Christ himself as the very first Pope of the one true Mother Church cannot consider themselves Catholic. Protestant churches have many denominations, none of which existed until after 1529.
      You also cannot consider yourself as being Catholic if you do not believe in the Holy Trinity (Father + Son + Holy Spirit) or the Immaculate Conception and Assumption of the most Holy Virgin Mary.
      Basically, all Catholics are Christians; but not all Christians are Catholic.

      • nena parcon says:

        Amen…thanks for sharing this..

      • yes, I agree, this is the best reason….

      • jun magallanes says:

        Very good. thanks for sharing this…

      • kofctim says:

        Very well said Carlos

      • Dave says:

        Peter was not appointed by Jesus Christ as the first pope. Peter answered, “thou art the Christ”, when Jesus asked him who he thought he (Jesus) was. Jesus’ reply to Peter was “on this rock (TRUTH), I will build my church.” In actual fact if you read on you will see where Peter and Paul have a BIG falling out and we hear very little about Peter afterwards. Paul actually becomes the leader and Peter fades into the background. Had Peter won out basically only Jews would have been converted to Christianity. It is Paul who expands it to the gentiles and it is Paul who defines Christianity as witnessed by the number of books written by him in the New Testament.
        I love this site.

        • Elva says:

          Peter is a translation of the word rock. Be it pietro, pierda, petro, etc. Jesus was talking to Peter and to him Jesus said He would build His church. Peter became our first pope when Christ gave him the keys to all.

        • David Blyth says:

          Paul’s conflict with Peter was due to Peter not complying with the very rule that he established. Should you read Acts and the works of the Church fathers you will see that other bishops take their lead from the incumbent of the Chair of Peter.
          Even the books of the New Testament were declared to be part of the canon of Scripture by Damasus the pope during the late 4th century.
          Should you count the number of times that each apostle’s name is mentioned in the New Testament, you will see that Peter’s occurs many times more than the others because of his pre-eminent role in the Church.

          • Sientje says:

            Not true as Peter wanted to establish the same tradition unto the gentiles as the Jewish people were following, and Paul said that this wasnt necessary as we celebrate the resurrection of Christ while the Jewish people celebrate Passover the Lord setting them free of being in bondage to slavery. while Christ sets us free from the bondage of slavery to sin. and you are wrong about Mary as she was a Jewish maiden whom gave praise and thanks to the Lord G-d of Israel for sending Christ she was a prophesy fulfilled. she spoke these Words :My soul magnifies the Lord is it not the same Lord God whom sent Christ to redeem those of us whom are elected. Eve is the mother of all nations as she was the first woman created. Constantine brought in all kinds of heresies which Paul warned against Peter was of Jewish descent and they were not allowed to marry outside of their faith.

          • Sientje says:

            you are giving credit to Peter where Christ tells you that it is not flesh and blood that has shown this to Peter that Jesus is the Christ (messiah) the son of the Living God. It was the Holy spirit which manifested this to Peter and if you are devoid of the spirit, Peter is not able to save you from hell as it was Christ who defeated satan and death when He sealed the new covenant with His blood. Since Peter is a sinner himself in need of salvation, whom was of Jewish descent, was married as Christ healed his mother in law, and started the first church at Jerusalem the city of God which the pope constantly covets

          • Sientje says:

            Peter was never pope of rome, there was no roman catholic church, Paul was sent to the gentiles and Peter sometimes visited the dispersed Jews in Macedonia, you do twist the holy scriptures to your own liking. Why dont you read revelation 22 verses 18 and 19 which warns about same.

          • Sientje says:

            what is with you roman catholics Christ came to the House of Israel to call them to repentance, He chose 12 disciples one for each of the tribes of Israel, so salvation is of the Jews, Did peter die for mankind as a ransom for many.? Peter knew he was a sinner, as he said “Depart from me Lord for I am a sinfull man” When Christ spoke of His crucifixion, peter told the Lord this was not to be and the Lord told Peter “get behind me satan” shows that Peter was not immune to pride and self importance. and then the Lord told Peter that before the c*** crowed peter would deny Him three times, the Holy scriptures are not about Peter but about how “God loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, so that we whom believe should not perish but gain eternal life.” without God sending Christ to redeem us, there would be no hope for any of us. as Christ is the Light of the World, but people refuse to come to Him, as their deeds are done in darkness and the Light overcomes the darkness so if you refuse to come to the LIght how great is the darkness within you.

      • Carlos why do the roman catholic call Jesus Christ God? when He never said He was God, but the son of God and man, as He came and took on human flesh. And does God the Father, Christ the Son and the Holy spirit not work together for the salvation of mankind? three in one?

    • Marmay says:

      Lori Wilcox, I beg to differ. Catholicism is NOT a “de”nomination or subgroup or any other church. Protestant churches are.

    • dave says:

      Exactly right Lori.

  • The Church Catholic comprises of all Christians. The Roman Catholic Church is part of the whole. All who recite the Nicene Creed declare they believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church. The Catholic Church is the Universal Church and it is united in its diversity, Roman Catholic, Protestant, Orthodox and Messianic believers are all included in its Catholicity. Sects and cults that deny the trinity, divinity of Jesus, and the Virgin birth are not part of the Catholic Church.

    • Robert M. says:

      Most of what you state is simply untrue. All Christians are NOT Catholic, nor is the recital of the Creeds any indication of such. To be Catholic means the following, at minimum: belief in the Pope as the infallible leader of Christ’s church on earth, in lineage with St. Peter; the Transubstantiation; the Virgin Birth; the Holy Trinity; & the Divinity of Jesus, the man. Any group that does not follow these tenets is simply NOT Catholic. Please do some research before you post statements like these.

      • Sientje says:

        you have been mislead the bread at the Lord’s supper does not become the body of our Lord Jesus Christ, as Christ was the Word made flesh, you better take a look at the gospel of St John which speaks of same. So if the Word was made flesh, as Christ came in human form, the Word He spoke should find room in your heart. if your heart is ready to listen and retain His Word, we are not cannibals, and the wine is a symbol of the sealing of the new covenant with His blood, see Jeremiah 31 verse 31. And we proclaim His death, until He comes again, since Christ is the head to whom we look for salvation and guidance we are part of the body of Christ or those whom He has elected,

    • marmay says:

      Dalybreadcrumbs, in our Church we say “…give us this day our daily BREAD”, not breadCRUMBS. So someone lied to you, because catholic with a small “c” is NOT the same as Catholic with a capital “C”. Protestants and other churches, whether they believe in the Trinity or not, are definitely NOT in communion with the Catholic Church headed by the Pope as the Vicar of Christ here on earth and, therefore, are NOT included in Catholicism with a capital “C”. Anyone can called himself a Catholic, but a TRUE Catholic must be Baptized, in Full Communion with the Catholic Church, and TOTALLY obedient to its Teaching Magisterium!!! Fujis and galas, red delicious and pippins are all APPLES…but valencias and navels are ORANGES…and they’re all fruits that contain juices, pulp and sugar!

      • Marmay remember when a gentile woman came to Christ and asked for Him to heal her daughter who was very sick, and the lord said to her, “It is not lawful to give the bread of the children to dogs” ( gentiles were known as dogs at that time) but she replied “even so the dogs eat the crumbs from the childrens table” the Lord surprised at her faith, told her “Her faith had saved her, and that her daughter was healed” so you see that Christ was sent to the House of Israel and we are adopted into spiritual Israel when we acknowledge that Christ is the Holy one of Israel our Lord and redeemer.

    • Lea Leger says:

      Other Churches hurthat is not in communion with the Pope are not called Catholics. The one and only Church that Jesus establihed. The Protestant or anglican are not Catholics because they are not in union with the Pope or not belong to the Church of Christ. I would say they are ex Catholics. Read marmay’s comments……Read the article properly and understand it.

    • From the replies and further remarks, I find it sad that so many have no comprehension of the universality of the Body of Christ! There is only one ‘Church’ and it is not the Roman Catholic Church! The Roman Catholic Church is indeed part of the Body of Christ but it is not the whole…it is not the Bride! All who are in Christ are of the ‘Catholic’ Church..the ‘Universal’ Church, that Christ Jesus established and is building! I think some of my Roman Catholic family still live with fundamentalist religious blinkers on! Lord have mercy on us all!

  • Bruce says:

    The name of our church is the Catholic Church, and NOT the Roman Catholic Church. Roman was added by Anti-Catholics as a derogatory term.
    Anti-Catholics can’t even get our name right, let alone anything else.

  • John D Sommer says:

    Churches not in communion with the Pope are not part of the Catholic religion and thus are not part of the universal church. They are followers of Christ but not Catholics.

  • Robin Springer says:

    I love, but I’m confused too. I am baptized Roman Catholic

  • Bob says:

    This entire article, as well as the title, seems to be worded very oddly. What they’re trying to say is this: There is the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church with the Vicar of Christ (the Pope) as its visible head on Earth. The Earth is a very big place with many different people and cultures. We can agree that the Catholic Church is present in all corners of the Earth, right? This means there are many different lands where the Church grew, and each has their own different traditions, but follow the Pope and all doctrine that comes through the Magisterium of the Catholic Church. There are actually 23 different Catholic Churches, the Roman Catholic Church being the largest. And as mentioned above, the other 22 churches include sui iurus churches such as the Ukrainian-Greek Catholic Church, the Syro-Malabar Catholic Church, the Chaldean Catholic Church, and so on.
    But remember, all 23 of these churches are part of the One, Holy, CATHOLIC, and Apostolic Church. The Eastern Churches are just much smaller compared to the Western, Roman Catholic Church. All 23 of these churches are in union with the Pope, and a number of the bishops of these churches are actually among the College of Cardinals that elect the Pope. For example, Baselios Cleemis Cardinal Thottunkal is the Major Archbishop of the Syro-Malankara Catholic Church. A simple Google search of the Cardinal’s name will show pictures of him in his church’s traditional priestly attire, but with the Cardinal red we always associate with Cardinals. A search for “Eastern Catholic Churches” on Wikipedia or Google will also be very informative if any of you want to learn more. Hopefully what I wrote here makes a little more sense. The Catholic Church is truly universal!

  • Max Cap. says:

    ” I am of Apollo…..I am of Paul….!!!?” Dear Friends let us not divide Christ anymore. Let us try to live in Peace and Harmony.

  • Lawrence says:

    Yes Brothers proud to be Catholic, yes not divide our Christianity just by having different opinions we are all one in Christ, who ever is baptised in Jesus name as to say that it is not that I who leave, Christ lives in me amen thanks with prayers Lawrence

  • lijin antony paul says:

    what ever it is . christ dosen’t belong to a particular group :-p

    • true as Christ was sent to the House of Israel to call them to repentance, so the call is for everyone of us to repent of evil thoughts, acknowledge Christ as our Lord and savior, whom defeated satan and death at calvary. thereby being the Holy One of Israel whom gave His life as a ransom for many.

  • Carlton Williamson says:

    I myself am Anglo-Catholic ( Episcopal ) however I fully support Pope Francis I think he is just wonderful and fully committed to the faith!

    • Robert M. says:

      Episcopalian is considered a Protestant denomination – you are NOT Catholic. Episcopalians may like the Pope, but your church does not believe in the fact that the Pope is the successor to Peter, nor does your church believe in the Transubstantiation.

    • carlton Williamson I dont I hear he has made a treaty with Isis that in return for staying silent once again History repeats itself, that they wont ransack his churches or their wealth, while Isis is beheading his flock right and left. beside he is not of the true faith as he speaks out that the “koran and the Holy Bible are the same” thereby denying Christ our lrod as muslims do not believe that Christ was crucified to redeem captive Israel and all those whom God has elected.

  • The christian so called is not a religion,it is a follower of Christ before,in the time of Jesus, when Roman Catholic do not excess,but in the time of Peter,which Jesus call him as ROCK. The Roman Catholic Religion is born.

  • Zizi says:

    So what do you call us Catholics in Africa?

    • Tom says:

      Unless you’re up around Egypt or Ethiopia, you’re probably following the Roman rite. It’s by far the most common, and those that follow a different rite generally are aware of the fact. But as a Catholic, you’re free to participate in communion in any Catholic church.

  • Greg says:

    This article unfortunately isn’t getting the facts straight. “Roman” Catholic indeed originated as a derogatory term in England. I’m not Roman Catholic, I’m a Canadian Catholic. The liturgy I take part in is Latin Rite (as opposed to Ukrainian Rite, Ambrosian Rite, etc.). A Catholic is a Catholic is a Catholic. Many of us celebrate different liturgies, but that doesn’t change the name of what we are; Catholic. Full stop.

    • Julia Welch says:

      The history of how the term “Roman” Catholic came about is at the New Advent website – the 1911 Catholic Encyclopedia. There are a number of Eastern Catholic Churches, but many of them share the same “rite”, such as Byzantine. A “rite” is not the same as a “church”. The Western Church is often called the Latin Church because of its liturgical language. “ROMAN” is a style of liturgy, common in Rome and most elsewhere in the West. There are other still existing Western rites such as that of Milan. It was the English who invented the term Roman Catholic; you will not find it used in Vatican documents except for ecumenical papers involving the Anglicans bc they insist on it.

      • did you know that the first church at Jerusalem consisted mostly of Jewish christian but since the roman catholic church insisted they had become like the gentiles instead of the gentiles accepting the Jewish roots as Christ was sent to the House of Israel to redeem captive Israel, the Jewish christians went underground and did not want to give up their heritage after all they were the chosen whom the Lord God delivered out of Egypt. Lately since the return of the Jewish people to Israel, the Jewish christians not wanting to be associated with the roman catholic church because of the persecution they suffered during the spanish inquisition, Hitler who was indoctrinated by the Roman catholic church the Jewish christians are now known as the Messianic Jews which God has brought back into their own land and who accept Christ Jesus or Yeshua as their lord and saviour like us protestants do. We are adopted into spiritual Israel, and not as the church believes one has to be part of the roman catholic church to be saved.

        • Julia Welch says:

          Most of you folks miss the point that it was the English government that invented the term Roman Catholic. Before that it didn’t exist. The Roman Empire was gone for many centuries before the English invented the term. The term “Catholic” was used by the church HQ in Rome to refer to all the churches wherever located around the world in communion with the Pope, as opposed to just a church in one locality. It did not presume that everybody in the world was beholden to the Pope. As one commenter said, most of the Eastern churches aligned with the Pope choose to add an identification signifying their ethnic connections. The Western Church is not all one ethnicity – very few of us are Italian. I happen to be Norwegian, German, English, Irish and Swiss. Historically, English people who refused to give up the old religion were called Roman Catholics and were legally outlaws subject to large fines; and harboring a Catholic priest could get you executed along with the priest.

          • Good lord did Christ not come to redeem a people for Himself, by shedding His blood on Calvary? so that we could ber reconciled to the Lord God of Israel? and here you are saying we are suppose to be in communion with the pope. Your roman catholic church surely is living in idolatry and adulterous relationship as we are the Bride of Christ not the roman catholic church or the pope. the roman catholic church is also known as the “w**** of babylon” which sits on seven hills no catholic means universal with Christ being the head of all those who believe that He sealed the new covenant with His blood, see Jeremiah 31 verse 31. and re the roman catholic church “come out of her my people lest ye partake of her sins.” God calling to you.

          • Still the roman catholic church is separate from the Catholic (Universal church) which holds to the head that Christ is our shepherd to whom we look when in trouble or beset with temptations. Christ reconciled us to the Lord God of Israel and so He is our redeemer the Holy one of Israel, to be in communion with the pope sounds like idolatry. as we have One Lord God, the God of Israel and Christ Jesus whom He sent to the House of Israel, to the Jew first then the gentiles.

          • Richard how come the gates of hell were opened in your church with priests molesting altar boys was that not hell for the parents of those children and the church covering up, is that not deceitfull in itself.

  • Robert M. says:

    Curiously, I see one glaring omission in these comments/explanations. First & foremost, Catholicism is not a “denomination” of anything – it IS indeed the TRUE universal church of Christ. There are denominations within the Catholic church – Roman, Eastern, Orthodox, etc. The word “Christian” denotes those who believe in Christ, therefore Catholics are Christians, but Protestants are NOT Catholics – they do not believe in the lineage of the Pope as the leader of the church on earth, as established by Christ through Peter. One MAJOR difference, in addition to this, is the fact that non-Catholics do not believe in the Transubstantiation, or the fact that the “bread & wine” is indeed the actual Body & Blood of Christ. Catholics know that during the Consecration, bread & wine is miraculously transformed into the actual Body & Blood of Christ, shed on the Cross for us.
    So 2 requisites must be fulfilled in order to be a Catholic – Belief in the Pope as the hand-picked successor to Peter as the true leader of the church, & the belief in the Transubstantiation at every Mass.
    In response to Greg above, if you follow the Roman rite of Catholicism, you are a Roman Catholic – full stop.

  • John says:

    What’s odd and sad is that there is a label period. There is no man that is infallible. Only Christ alone was perfect. To follow or obey someone who claims infallibility is heretical. If one claims infallibility then why is that one not functioning in the capacity that was lived out in the book of acts. This so-called infallible one lives in a “palace” performs no miracles while the rest of the “church” is sick and in poverty. The Bible also tells us to call no man father in the sense of a spiritual heavenly father yet catholics do this. The church is full of idolatry as well . even Mary acknowledged herself as a sinner not someone perfect. The Bible shows us that all we have to do is confess our sins to Christ to be forgiven, and prerequisite to saying a certain amount of prayers is going to provide forgiveness. Jesus Christ alone is the high priest, who forgives me (1 John 1:9) when I confess to him. However these rantings are not limited to the Catholic Church alone. Many churches are full of the same blasphemy and heresy and Idol worship. So to tidy this all up, thank God the only true creator and one true God, and Jesus Christ the risen savior and the Holy Spirit that forgives us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us. Yeah that’s part of the Lord prayer. The only example we should follow.

    • marmay says:

      John, clearly, you have no idea what is meant by “infallibility” of the Pope.

    • Lea Leger says:

      OMG John,,,you are narrow minded. Pope is human, he makes mistakes, or i say he is not God so dont expect him to perform miracles.The Pope is infalible by his doctrines or teachings of the Church because he is guided by Holy Spirit of Jesus Christ. That is why the doctrines and teachings of the Church has not been changed from the time of Peter. Search about Pope infalliability in the internet. Abraham was called Father of all nation. You are totally ignorant about the teachings of the Church and no knowledgeof the scripture. Do u really read the scripture? all the doctrines of the church are based on the Bible and there is none that is not based on the BBle.Who complied the Bible? Read all the passages of the Bible and you wil know the truth.

      • Dom says:

        Well said Lea! – The problem is people outside the Catholic church dont understand the teachings, doctrine, dogma and they get the wrong interpretations from their pastors etc and just stubbornly stick with the wrong views. Such people think only what they know is right.. What about being ‘reborn’ in mind? What about being like ‘Little Children’? That innocence has been lost to them and they are all grown up, unwavering..
        Remember there will be mockers .. There will be people who will denigrate our worship tradition; they will spew lies about it being un-biblical .. Remember even Peter denied Jesus and was repentant.. so was that denial a sin? Still Jesus asked him 3 times ‘Do you love me?’ and when he affirmed ‘yes, Lord’ he was ‘instructed’ – Feed my Lambs, Tend my sheep, Feed my sheep – (John 21:15-17) and thats where infallibility comes .. for the Pope is the representative of ‘that’ Peter today.
        Please dont confuse ‘infallibility’ with ‘impeccability’ – Do you think that Catholics think that the Pope cannot sin? Infallibility is not the absence of sin. Infallibility has everything to do with the teaching of the doctrine – and its belongs to the entire body of bishops as a whole – not just the pope – they solemnly teach a doctrine as true .. This was a promise from Jesus himself (Luke 10:16; Matt. 18:18) ..
        There will be ppl here today as the likes of the pharisees and sadducees of Jesus’ time .. Let us all not argue about the Catholic church and do what Jesus did .. in Luke 23:34, “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.” And they cast lots to divide his garments .. (the Catholic church)

        • Jesus asked Peter this three times as Peter denied the Lord three times in fear of his life, it was to humble Peter, as Peter was always so impetuous. as the Lord chastises all whom He receives to show us what is not good within us. and did the Lord not tell us “Ask and ye shall receive, so when we ask Him to open up our hearts to His Word, would He then refuse us? isnt that against what He is telling us to believe on Him, and confess our sins and we shall be saved,

      • Not so Lea Leger, there is nothing in the bible about purgatory that Mary is co-redemptress, as Mary is not even a Jewish name, I suppose it would be Miriam in the Jewish faith, she was a prophesy fulfilled and prophesied by the prophets, and whom was Mary worshipping? did she not tell the angel Gabriel, “My soul magnifies the Lord, then would she not be giving thanks and praise to the Lord God of Israel, whom send Christ to redeem us from our sinfull ways? does the Bible not tell you that when Christ is baptized that heaven was opened and a voice was heard to say. “this is my beloved Son with whom I am well pleased. Listen to Him?” why are you putting your trust in man instead of the Living God of Isreal and Christ Jesus whom He sent?

      • lea Leger, there is not such scripture saying that Mary is co-redemptress with Christ our Lord, as she was a prophesy being fulfilled as the scriptures have to be fulfilled, as she was of the royal line of David and isaiah prophesied of a young maiden being with child on whose shoulders would be the government and that He would be called Prince of Peace, wonderful counsellor, our High priest who pleads for us with God the Father when we come before His throne and confess our sinfulness and ask forgiveness for same. there is no other saviour beside Him, all praise to the Lord God of Israel who sent Christ to make Him known to us.

    • ronan says:

      So your not catholic?jesus is god too.

    • I believe as you John that Christ was sent by the Father in heaven to call sinners to repentanc and that He is the “Way the Truth and the Life, that only through Him can we receive forgiveness of our wrongdoings when we are truly repentant and sorry for same. there is no other saviour beside Him. notice the thief on the cross acknowledging his sins to Christ and calling on Christ to remember him the thief when He comes into His kingdom and the Lord Christ Jesus tells him, “today, thou shalt be with me in paradise,” no worshipping of Mary or dead saints but having faith in Christ alone whom sealed the new covenant with His blood, see Jeremiah 31 verse 31 God bless

  • says:

    THREE elements are necessary to be a true Catholic Christian — Baptism, Full Communion with the Catholic Church, and Total Obedience to its Magisterium !!

    • so then you give obedience to Rome, so where is the difference between that and the people having to give homage to the ceasars which were at Rome. as you give homage to the popes of rome. I cannot see the difference as you still have household gods like the Romans had their household gods, instead of listening to G-d’s commandment. Thou shalt not make any graven image of anything that is above the earth, on the earth, or in the waters.”

  • Chris says:

    There is nothing to confuse! The explanation is very clear.

  • sis in Christ says:

    john; to refer our LADY as saying a sinner; is blasphemy!!! very insulting!.. what about Jesus? Is he a sinner?…BLESSED VIRGIN MOTHER MARY IS MOTHER OF GOD… choose your words well; Lord have mercy.

    • to sis in Christ. Mary is not a Jewish name, she in probability was called Miriam, and she was a prophesy being fulfilled re Isaiah chapter 7 verse 14 and see also Isaiah chapter 53, Isaiah speaking to the Jewish people. Christ chose the lowly womb to make His entry into the world, She was blessed in that she was of the royal line of David, and as she was of the Jewish faith, as she replied to the angel Gabriel. “My soul magnifies the Lord” was she not talking about the Lord G-d of Israel whom sent Christ to call the House of Israel to repentance, and also hear Paul saying “for all have sinned and come short of the glory of G-d, that would include Abraham, David, Miriam and Joseph as they believed on Christ redeeming work and so are blessed as we are also when we confess that Christ is Lord of lord and King of kings.

      • David Blyth says:

        Mary is the Ark of the New Covenant

        • Sientje says:

          Why dont you study the Holy scriptures and find out for yourself that Christ put an end to the priesthood, when He said “It is finished: when He died and the curtain in the temple tore in half, no more need of priests or sacrifices, as Christ became the ultimate sacrifice offering up His life as a ransom for many, as now He is is our faithfull High priest, whom intercedes for us with God the Father, and when we come before His throne with a contrite spirit and humble in heart to confess our transgressions, the LOrd God forgives us solely for the sake of Christ redemptive work. We are saved by grac, not by works it is a gift from God and therefore we give thanks and praise to His Holy Name Why are you not listening when the Holy scriptures tell you not to put your trust in men, but in the Living God?

        • Mary is not the ark of the covenant, better read Jeremiah 31 verse 31 Where Christ sealed the new covenant with His blood, As without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness of sins.

    • Since Paul whom was sent to the gentiles. “For all have sinned and come short of the Glory of God” does not include Christ whom was begotten by the Lord G-d of Israel to sent to redeem all of mankind. Christ spoke these Wors. “Before Abraham, I AM” Mary or Miriam was not even born then yet. and in Genesis notice that Christ was with the Lord G-d at the beginning of creation “Let us make man into our image.” it is plural. and did Christ not also say “I saw satan falling from heaven, having great wrath” as Christ was there when war arose in heaven and satan and his angels were cast down to earth.

    • sis in Christ you dont know your bible as Mary had more children, James was his half brother, read your bible and Christ gave His life for Mary also, notice Mary is not even a Jewish name and she worshipped the Lord God of Israel, notice also that Christ said “Before Abraham I AM” Mary or Miriam was not even born yet, and Christ was with the Lord God at the beginning of creation. as God said “let us make man into Our image” plural read your Bible and ask the Lord God to give you understanding into His Word. dont take your priest word for it as he is also a sinner, Is it not written “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God” stop with your idolatry

  • Kevin Beach says:

    I don’t think there is a “Roman” rite within the Church. It’s the “Latin” rite. The term “Roman Catholic” was coined by those Anglicans who like to pretend that they are Catholics too, to distinguish us from them. However, given that some Churches in the Orthodox Communion also call themselves Catholic, it might be wise to accept the term “Roman Catholic”, just for the purpose of distinctions. If we do, though, then it will also apply to those rites that are in communion with the Pope but are not part of the Latin rite.

  • John Stone says:

    The response above is the Roman Catholic view of the Catholic church and I feel the answer is telling the truth but in such a way that it makes it seem that the Pope is the head of all Catholic rites.The assertion that if another rite is not in communion with the Pope they are not Catholic is misleading. The Pope is simply the head bishop of the Roman rite. All other rites have their own head bishop that they see as an equal to the Pope. In the broad sense they are in communion with the Pope as all members of all Catholic rites are in communion with each other. Stating that if they were not in communion with the Pope they are not Catholic is equivalent of saying if they are not in communion with The Kennedy family they are not Catholic. It is true but meaningless and in my opinion used to once again try to assert the supremacy of the Roman rite over all other Catholic rites.

  • sixthromeo says:

    HIjacking words is what this is. The Roman Catholics, recently, attempted to further hijack the word “Catholic” by insisting they are the “true” owners of “” All the while, if one wishes to insist, what Constantine commanded, “Bishops, get your act together and only then will the law of the land support you in your claims, for the sake of the empire, you WILL BE ONLY ONE.” The church, then, was partitioned as it was a parody of the Empire. People forget the politics of Christianity, they forget the rulers of countries were the rulers of the church in those countries just as the Pope was ruler of Italy because the land was actually his, when Luther came about those politics hit hard and christian fought against christian all about the supremacy of individual egos.People forget, just like they forget the extreme criminal nature of the Puritans “honored” at the USA Thanksgiving.

    • the church’s firm foundation, is Jesus Christ Her Lord,
      She is His new creation, by water and the Word,
      From heaven He came and sought her to be His Holy Bride
      And with His blood He bought her, and for her Life He died.
      Elect from every nation, yet one o’er all the earth
      Her charter of salvation, One faith, One Lord one birth,
      One Holy Name she blesses, partakes One Holy food
      and to one hope she presses with every grace endued
      though with a scornfull wonder, man see her sore oppressed
      With schism rend asunder, with heresies oppressed
      Yet saints their watch are keeping, their cry goes up “How Long?”
      And soon the night of weeping, will be the morn of song.
      see the pope is not the head of the church but Christ our Lord is, who has
      defeated satan and death at Calvary, so that when we confess our sinful ways and are truly
      repentant, the Lord G-d of Israel pours His love into our hearts so that with His aid we can love
      our neighbors as ourselves as Christ said without Him we can do nothing, it is by grace we are
      saved it is a gift from God the Lord God of Israel.

  • acm says:

    IFI (iglesia filipina idependiente, or the Aglipayan church) is not catholic and its members are not Filipino catholics. IFI is not in communion with the Pope and its doctrines are not the same as that of catholic. Although their mass looks like a catholic mass, such similarity is on the outside only as they do not believe in transubstantiation.

  • Mathew says:

    Yes Catholic Church is the Union of Roman Catholics and 22 Eastern rites, but unfortunately lots of people dosnt know this.

  • The Reality of the catholic church is all those who are In Christ and Whom in them. We don’t actually think The Lord our God picks and chooses what church or denomination a person goes to determines the Body of Christ do we? Going to a specific building of religionism determines who is one of ‘the many sons’ in the Body of Christ , not. I’d think God knows Exactly who has received Him and who has not, and eating a piece of bread does not mean they have received him. Turning their lives over in Repentance and losing thier life to Receive His and the Faith of Christ is what’s going to matter. There is not easyocity that is going to pass by as He Passes Over without Him seeing the Blood of His Son in Spirit and in Truth. The Pope has not place in my heart or anyone’s . he’s a regulat person like you and me…he is not High Priest, God Our Saviour in the Person of Emmanuel is.

  • ebe says:

    How do you convert to Catholicism a JW

  • jojo says:

    what matters most is that we follow Christ teachings, love God above all and love others as you love yourself. Then and only then can we call ourselves Christians. It doesn’t matter if you are Protestant,Catholic,Iglesia ni Cristo,Muslim,Buddhist.

  • Anooj Mathai says:

    There is no need to suffix the word ‘Roman’ along with Catholic. There is ‘Latin Catholic’ under the direct Patriarchal of the Pope and then other Sui Juris Churches, mostly western. The term Roman Catholic was used by the Anglicans to refer us as they don’t want to accept us as Catholic Christians (means Universal Christians). So they degraded us as just Roman Catholics and thereby they can come at par with us as Anglican Christians. Sadly, we Catholics also started using the same term to refer ourselves.

  • Brother Chris, OFJ says:

    Recently the Roman Catholic Diocese of Providence RI has put forth a decree that I feel needs some further discussion and clarification as it relates to the subject first broached by this thread. Reference:!churches-not-affiliated-with-rome/c17fw
    Now I am only a seminarian and a Franciscan, and not a theologian or historian, or even a writer or diplomat but as I read this link(s) I thought, “Wouldn’t it have been nice if the Diocesan Office of the Chancellor of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Providence to have spoken with love and compassion instead of implied fear and hate?” I do not pretend to speak for the Old Catholic Tradition, The Independent Catholic Church of the Americas of or ST. THERESE OLD CATHOLIC CHURCH of West Warwick, RI but felt a need that education would be a better response.
    The Roman Catholic Diocese of Providence could have simply stated the difference with a compassionate edge which would have had him take the higher road in his argument. He simply could have put the following into his response:
    The Independent Catholic Church of the Americas (ICCA) of which includes ST. THERESE OLD CATHOLIC CHURCH of 1500 Main Street, West Warwick, RI is a separate denomination within the universal Christian Church. The ICCA shares with all Christians, including the Roman Church, the belief that Jesus is the Son of God and Redeemer of humanity. And like the Roman Church the ICCA is united with others through the rebirth of Baptism and the fellowship of the Eucharist.
    There is only one “Roman” Catholic Church. However, it is important to point out that the” Roman” Catholic Church is not the only Catholic Church, as there are a fair number of additional Catholic “denominations,” of which the Roman Catholic Church is only one. It is true that the Roman Church is the world’s largest of the Catholic denominations. If one wishes to be totally truthful and committed to this discussion there is really no such thing as “Roman” Catholic, but rather those of the Latin Rite Catholic Churches who are fully in communion with the Bishop of Rome (the Holy Father, the Pope). Today the catholic (universal) Church is made up of sister congregations: Roman Catholic, Eastern Uniate and Eastern Orthodox, Old Catholic, “Oriental” Churches, such as Coptic, Syrian and “Nestorian” Churches.
    The ICCA and its parishes are considered an ‘independent’ Catholic denomination only because it is not controlled by the Bishop of Rome (AKA the Pope). That is, they are independent of the jurisdiction of Rome and not under either the control or the government of the Church of Rome commonly called the “Roman Catholic Church.” The parishes with the ICCA are actually part of the greater ‘Old Catholic Church’ that split from the control Rome at the declaration of the pope being made infallible in the 1870’s after Vatican I. Understanding that infallibility, universal jurisdiction, and secular interference have long been sticking points between Independent Catholics, Old Catholics, and Roman Catholics, if one recalls the Bonn Agreement, a document negotiated on the 2nd of July 1931, which established full communion between the Church of England and the Old Catholic Churches of the Union of Utrecht, including the Old Catholic Church of the Netherlands, they would recall that this full communion has since been extended to all members of the Anglican Communion through the synods.
    That agreement expresses three principles:
    -Each communion recognizes the catholicity and independence of the other and maintains its own.
    -Each communion agrees to admit members of the other communion to participate in the sacraments.
    -Full communion does not require from either communion the acceptance of all doctrinal opinion, sacramental devotion or liturgical practice characteristic of the other, but implies that each believes the other to hold all the essentials of the Christian faith.
    And the ICCA (a newer legal and full church within the Old Catholic Tradition), though not officially affiliated with the Church of England and the Old Catholic Churches of the Union of Utrecht, including the Old Catholic Church of the Netherlands, could be considered in similar fashion since there has been full communion between Anglicans and Old Catholics from the 1930s, meaning that the [Vatican] judgment of Apostolicae Curae [against the validity of Anglican and Old Catholic orders] no longer holds. This reality really comes to a blow to conservative and often ill-informed’ Roman’ Catholics. The ICCA is a worldwide church offering an alternative Catholic worship experience to all humanity as it is all-welcoming.
    The truth as to who runs the independent Catholic communities that the Roman Catholic Diocese of Providence has listed in their concerns is that the universal church is run by Almighty God through the example of our Savior Jesus Christ through the animation of the Holy Spirit. Generally, the bishop of an Independent Catholic Church is elected by a synod, or governing council of bishops, to be the Patriarch, or Presiding Bishop (in the early “Roman” Church this was an actual and customary practice). Sometimes we call this bishop, The Archbishop, the Metropolitan, or leader of the denomination with a variety of titles. A Bishop is then responsible for each denomination. The Pope is a Bishop; he is the Bishop of Rome. The word “bishop” comes from the Greek word meaning “Overseer.” Pope Francis has been elected by his fellow bishops to head the Roman Catholic Church. Like the various Eastern Orthodox Churches, all Old Catholic communities accord the Holy Father respect due him as Patriarch of the West and the title of “First among Equals,” realizing that he does not have ultimate jurisdiction over all Christian Churches. Old Catholics adhere to the teaching from apostolic times that the Church in General Council is infallible.
    With the passing of these original organizers of the Old Catholic schism, the Old Catholic Church in the United States has evolved from a fairly centralized administration with structured oversight of ministry to a local and regional model of administration with self-governing dioceses and provinces. This local model more closely follows the ancient tradition of the early Christian Churches as a communion of communities each laboring together to proclaim the message of the Gospel. In 1990 there were about 500,000 Old Catholics in the United States and about 15 million world-wide.
    Apostolic Succession-In fact the lines of Apostolic Succession within the ICCA are valid- just like the ‘Roman’ Church. Fact again, even the Roman Church says they are valid and sufficient. The ICCA shares many of these lines with the Roman Catholic and other Catholic denominations as well. And unlike the Roman church all ministers of the ICCA go through criminal background checks before being accepted as clergy; additionally the ICCA clergy go through a rigorous course of study and seminary, continual spiritual development and lifelong learning.
    As for the concerns of the sacraments presented by the ICCA … the ICCA continues to honor the historic and traditional 7 Sacraments as a vital means of experiencing the Presence of God.
    ♦ Sacraments of Initiation: Baptism and Confirmation, Eucharist
    ♦ Sacraments of Reconciliation and Healing: Penance, Anointing of the Sick
    ♦ Sacraments of Adult Vocation: Marriage and Holy Orders (Deacon, Priest, Bishop)
    Truth is that the sacraments of the ICCA are considered valid but illicit by the Roman Church. What this truly infers is that the Roman Catholic Church has stated that the celebrant administering the sacrament is unauthorized by the Roman Church alone to celebrate that sacrament under Roman Church law(illicit), but nevertheless that sacrament has effect and is in turn valid. This is per the ‘law’(Cannon Law) of the Roman Church, and keep in mind that rules laid down by the Church alone are “merely ecclesiastical law”, and not law by Christ himself (a higher law). The short answer is that the Roman Church recognizes the validity of Old Catholic Orders and other Sacraments. Pope John Paul II ratified and ordered the publication of “Dominus Iesus.” The Declaration of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith which was signed and published by Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger (Pope Benedict XVI). In this Declaration, the Roman Catholic Church recognizes the validity of Orders and Sacraments of Old Catholic denominations:
    “The Churches which, while not existing in perfect communion with the Roman Catholic Church, remain united to her by means of the closest bonds, that is, by Apostolic Succession and a valid Eucharist, are true particular Churches. Therefore, these separated Churches and communities as such have by no means been deprived of significance and importance in the mystery of salvation. For the Spirit of Christ has not refrained from using them as means of salvation which derive their efficacy from the very fullness of grace and truth entrusted to the Catholic Church.”
    -IV. Unicity and Unity of the Church, 17
    And yes the ICCA does follow the Latin Rite, as so does the Roman Church. It is true that there are some noticeable difference between the ICCA and Roman Church. For instance the ICCA believes that all Holy Orders (bishops, priests, and deacons) are open to both men and women and that celibacy of those in Holy Orders is a personal decision. We appreciate culturally diverse people and we welcome all those who are seeking a spiritual comfort. The ICCA does not discriminate against anyone regardless of sexual orientation, race, gender, marital status, or age and the ICCA does reject any doctrine that excludes anyone. The ICCA does perform commitment and wedding ceremonies for those members who are gay and lesbian as well as weddings for heterosexual couples; the ICCA further believes that Jesus is merciful and those who have been divorced and/or remarried are offered the Sacraments of the church as well. The ICCA does believe in the inclusion of ALL God’s peoples regardless of social or economic status and does NOT discriminate against ANYONE on the basis of race, color, ethnic origin, political belief, gender, sexual orientation, marital status, age, or national origin. If this is something the Roman Catholic Diocese of Providence has issue with then so be it- that alone says a lot in itself.
    The issue of abortion and euthanasia has come up in past discussions and it is the belief of the ICCA that abortion and euthanasia is the taking of human life and should be avoided; family planning is a personal decision and this includes birth control and abortion should never be considered as a form of birth control. However, each scenario is different and the ICCA does NOT condemn those who have participated in these acts. Rather, they try to comfort, understand and pray for those who are in need of help. The ICCA is truly an all welcoming Christian Faith Based Community; can the Roman Catholic Diocese of Providence say this and show this publically through their words and actions?
    In summary NO ministry in the ICCA has ever called itself Roman or being affiliated with the Roman Church, and though there are many out there who have prejudices against the Old Catholic Church, the ICCA, and ST. THERESE OLD CATHOLIC CHURCH of West Warwick, RI I believe there are even more that do or would support them if they only were privy to the truth and not lead by fear and hate.
    the Roman Catholic Diocese of Providence should follow Pope Francis as he explained that since the Second Vatican Council, it “has been possible to build new bridges of a more profound mutual understanding and practical co-operation,” between the Old Catholic Church and the Roman Catholic Church instead of falling under Satan to spread distrust and separation.
    pax et bonum
    Brother Chris Bashaw, OFJ
    Seminarian: Seminary of The Independent Catholic Church of the Americas

  • Musoke Augustine says:

    Please don’t complicate things Roman Catholic is the person who belongs to the Catholic Religion and Catholic Religion is that religion which is in full communion with the Pope who is the successor of Peter. Residing in Rome.

  • Plejeune says:

    I suppose I don’t really think of Christianity as a religion. Christ means anointed. Jesus is The Anointed One. Christian means a follower of Jesus, The Anointed One. Christianity, to me, is the belief in and a relationship with the Anointed One, Jesus. A lot of these remarks don’t seem very Christian, to me.

  • JAM says:

    Actually, Roman Catholic is a most proper term for all Catholics, Eastern and Western, as Rome is the Mother Church of all the Particular Churches. So Easterns are no less Roman than Westerns in regards to the term. In fact they are “Eastern Roman” Catholics who actually call themselves that in their native tongue. Their terminology actually comes from the time of Byzantium when the East was Roman too because that’s where the Roman Emperors resided after they recognized the true Roman Pontiff, the Bishop of Rome and Vicar of Christ.

  • Michael says:

    I’m Roman Catholic I Rome in at Christmas and Easter

  • I am very happy to read all the comments and realized how many Catholics have deepened their faith and knowledge in our Church and our Catholic faith. I am from the Philippines and I study Catholic Apologetics. I read a Filipino above calling himself as Filipino Catholic and I don’t see anything wrong with that, I consider myself as a Roman Catholic and I still see nothing wrong with that. I AM CATHOLIC. Like most of the commentators above are. THAT shouldn’t be divided into different names, though the terms given are already there even before (I guess) all of us were conceived. I must say that WE ARE THE ONLY CHRISTIAN RELIGION THAT HAS EVER EXISTED HERE ON EARTH. I need not mention a verse since most of the comments are standing firm for the Catholicism. Let’s not divide ourselves into different portions. THOSE WHO DO NOT OBEY THE CHURCH THAT CHRIST’S BUILT ALONG WITH ALL HER DOCTRINES AND DOGMAS HAS NO RIGHT TO CONSIDER THEMSELVES CHRISTIANS. They follow Christ, yes. They believe in the Holy Trinity, yes. But they will never follow nor respect the Pope and disregard Mama Mary – THAT DOES NOT MAKE THEM CHRISTIANS. Brothers and sisters, remember when Jesus was on the Cross and He offered His mother to John and John to Mary? THAT is the strong evidence that MARY IS THE MOTHER OF CHRISTIANS. Therefore those who do not acknowledge Mary as their mother is not a Christian! And when Jesus built His Church on Peter (Simon), Matt.18:20, along with the handing over of the keys of heaven and earth, THE AUTHORITY WAS PASSED ON ST. PETER. And if one person who calls himself Christian but does not follow thr Catholic Church and IS NOT IN THE CATHOLIC CHURCH, is a heretic and a blasphemer! May I correct one line I read above: NOT ALL CHRISTIANS ARE CATHOLICS? WRONG. IF YOU ARE NOT CATHOLIC YOU ARE NOT CHRISTIAN! Because as I’ve mentioned in my comment here, YOU ARE NOT ABIDING TO THE RULES OF THE LORD ANS SAVIOR JESUS CHRIST!

      • christy you are deceived as salvation is not from the roman catholic church but salvation is of the Jews, as it was them whom brought the gospels to us Gentiles, as Peter was Jewish of the Jewish faith, as Christ chose 12 disciples one for each tribe of Israel. it is by grace we are saved putting all our hope and trust in Christ whom came to ransom captive Israel. as when I asked the Lord this question ” does the church believe it is the saviour of the world” the answer came back like this “so Eve believed and ate the apple: therefore if you believe your salvation lies within the church, you have fallen from grace like Eve

    • brgeem says:

      What a load of absolute nonsense. No wonder people are leaving the church with this kind of rubbish being promulgated.

  • Denis Khan says:

    ‘During the period of the Reformation, A Roman Catholic was identified as owing allegiance to the Pope of Rome, and was tortured or killed.
    Re Matthew 16:18, the New American Bible explains that the ‘keys of the kingdom’ given to Peter is an indication, not an identification’ of the Church and the Kingdom of Heaven.

    • Sientje says:

      so what exactly do you mean by the keys to the kingdom of heaven? as Christ said that His “kingdom is not of this world” so surely he doesnt mean a key like a ordinary house key? but isnt it that the Lord plants His Word into your heart, and the key being giving all of your life over to Him, to conform you into His image, so that we can become children of the Living God of Israel?

  • My mom always told me to put “Roman Catholic” when it asks for religion. Up until this day and reading this article, I’m still confused as to what is so different.

    • Sientje says:

      Hi: thank you for replying. actually the difference is that “catholic” means universal, the church that has Christ at the head, whereas “roman catholic church” has the meaning that it is the church with the pope at the head, which protestant dont recognize, as the pope did not ransom the church with his blood, It is Christ whom redeemed those whom were elected with His blood and sealed the new covenant spoken of in Jeremiah 31 verse 31. It was the Holy spirit that revealed to Peter that Jesus is the Christ the son of the living God, and against this faith the gates of hell cannot prevail. God bless

  • I was baptized as a roman Catholic but prefer to be called a Christian and nothing more.

    • Sientje says:

      I dont understand how one can be a christian and believe that the pope is the holy see. as we have one mediator between us and the Lord God, whom is Christ Jesus, who sealed the new covenant written in Jeremiah 31 verse 31 eiyh His Blood, As there is no forgiveness of sins without the shedding of blood. Not a roman catholic,

  • Leo says:

    Is there really a God? What if there’s no God at all?

    • Marcella says:

      Leo , there is God the father the son and the holy spirit . Ask and pray to him so that he will show it to you , then you will reached and feel the real happiness , when you are in his care.

  • stephen says:

    We can complicate things so much,That we fail to see the Forest,for the Trees!

  • Julia B W says:

    Check out the history of the term “Roman”Catholic in the 1913 Catholic Encyclopedia which is easy to google. When it became legal again to have Catholic churches and bishops, etc. In the 1800s, there a big battle when the new Archbishop of Westminister was to be officially presented to Queen Victoria. She and her government ministers refused to receive him unless he was announced as the Roman Catholic Archbishop. There was a stalemate that went on for at least a month. Finally, the Archbishop gave in and wrote a letter to all the Catholic people of Britain explaining why he decided to do so.
    In the US we were given boxes to check off on school applications and hospital admission sheets that said Roman Catholic because the US inherited British terminology. Before long non- English Catholics forgot all about how we got the name. It was meant to emphasize our loyalty to a foreigner.
    Usually you don’t find the term on the Continent, but with English becoming a universal language it is starting to pear in more than English-speaking countries.
    Im 71 now. When I first checked, Vatican documents only used Catholic unless the document dealt with ecumenical matters concerning or were communications with the Anglican Church. It was/is a matter of courtesy and friendliness.
    A few years ago there was a synod of Eastern Catholic Churches. An American Cardinal in attendance as an observer was shocked to learn that many Eastern Catholics resent the term “Roman”Catholic because they are also in Communion with the Church in Rome. A less off-putting term would Western or Latin Church. Roman Rite only refers to liturgy. There are a number of Eastern churches that use, say, the Byzantine Rite. Many Catholics don’t realize there are still ancient rites in the Western church other than the Roman Rite, such as the Sarum in England and the Mozarabic in Spain.

  • Midhun Jose says:

    Hi I am from the syro Malabar catholic community of Kerala , I think this naming just shows our ethnicity.

    • you are wrong it is only the roman catholic church that is in communion of the pope, as they take their orders from Rome, protestants listen to the Word of God and heed the Word Christ Jesus our Lord spoke. “Go and sin no more”

      • brgeem says:

        Before you make such a sweeping statement beginning with the words ‘you are wrong’ I feel you should learn the history of the Church and come to realise that there are other churches in communion with the Roman pope.

  • Don John says:

    Very interesting

    • I dont think so, there are so many churches but does the Lord God dwell in houses build by men, or does He live within the human heart and does He not speak these Words. “be still and know that I am God?”

  • Angeles Yangilmau says:

    I am a member of the Roman Catholic Church and still a strong believer. God bless you in your church and I hope you should also respect others practice their own faith in their own church

    • yes well we dont wnat to be member of the roman catholic church, which is nothing more than the roman empire under the disguise of christianity with popes at the head instead of Ceasars. we have our faithful High priest Christ Jesus as head of our church, against with the gates of hell cannot prevail. God bless and wake up

      • Sientje Seinen exactly well said that what I noticed.

      • Michel Paul Marie says:

        a real christian is never sectarian and respects others believe. The message and the life of Jesus testifies it. and if you know abt Jesus today its because the church, the catholic one, of course, transmitted this message in the NEW Testament, a testament of love, not of hatred for people who think other than you. Think abt and study!
        Im a proud catholic from France, the oldest daughter of the catholic church, leaving in the mostly christian catholic Philippines. i admire the way , generally speaking,how catholic christianity is lived here.

        • brgeem says:

          Yes, but what do you mean by catholic? The word catholic means universal, which also means inclusive, and yet the Roman catholic church is very exclusive.

        • I beg you pardon the roman catholic church did not convey the message of “salvation in Christ alone” it was Christ Jewish disciples that brought us that message, Paul to the gentiles and Peter to the Jews at Jerusalem and the dispersed Jews abroad. They Jewish disciples are the authors of what is written in the New testament, Acts, Romans Thessalonians 1 and 2 Ephesians, Corinthians 1 and 2, Hebrews, all written by Paul whom was Jewish pharisee, struck down by the Lord Jesus on the road to Damascus while he was persecuting christians, Rome was very much a pagan city where homosexuality was rampant and threw the christians to the lions. Rome only joined christianity which was called “The Way” when constantine saw it growing by leaps and bounds and added pagan worship in order to convert more to his religion, as it has it is steeped in idolatry with al their statues.

  • brgeem says:

    “If a group or community does not adhere to the Pope, it is not part of the Catholic Church.” What absolute rubbish. Catholicism is not a religion – it is a denomination of Christianity. The bishop of Rome is the leader of the Roman Catholic Church. Please remember there are three popes ( four if you count Benedict XVI ). I am Catholic – the bishop of Rome is not my bishop or my pope.

    • for your information catholic means universal those of us that believe that Christ is head of the church and we are the body or saints who believe that salvation is in Christ alone, are the universal church, the pope is head of the roman catholic church, much like the roman empire where they worshipped ceasars instead of popes.

      • brgeem says:

        Thank you, I am well aware of the meaning of the word catholic. To compare the ‘leader’ of the Roman Catholics with the Caesars is very demeaning. Pope Francis does not consider himself the ‘head’ of his church – he proclaims Jesus Christ as its head.

        • but stll the people confer on him the title of “Holy Father” and we have one earthly father and the Lord God in heaven is our “Holy father” not the pope see this what is confusing to the protestant. As Christ constantly was in touch with His father in heaven while on earth, who spoke of Christ when baptized “This is my beloved Son with whom I am well pleased”

          • Michel Paul Marie says:

            this is for me not helpful semantics. What abt the tiltles you like to give to politicians like honorable, his excellency, Lord!!!!etc. You are fighting against wind mills like Don quichotte de la mancha. this has nothing to do with faith which is love.

          • But you see the disciples were servants of the Lord, and they had no titles, they were known by their Jewish names, actually some of them were lowly fisherman with little or no education, and does the Lord Jesus Christ not admonish his disciples that they are not to lord it over others? politicians are earthly and do not seek the kingdom of God, they will promise you anything if they think it will bring votes. No us christians are suppose to be seperate from the world as the Lord God has set us apart, to walk, talk and live His according to His commandments.

  • Francis Russell says:

    The term Roman was added as a suffix to the name Catholic by protestants as an insult. It was a way of saying that the Church is not universal but an agent of a foreign power and thus has nothing to do with us. I do not know why Catholics accept this insult so readily as it is still used today as such by some.During the 19th century those who wanted to reconnect with their Catholc roots, as with the Oxford Movement, distinguished between the high church of England calling them ‘Angol’ Catholics and ‘Roman’ Cathlics. Unfortunately some Catholics think of it as a formal term for the Church not realising the underlining insult.

    • It is not an insult if you really know what the roman catholic church is. It is the roman empire now under the guise of christianity with popes at the head instead of Ceasars. Rome the city build on seven hills is also known as the “W**** of babylon”

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