- Testimony From The Didache:
- Testimony From 1 Clement:
- Testimony From The Shepherd Of Hermas:
- Basic Presentation On The Historical Development Of The Roman Catholic Hierarchy As Confirmed By Modern-Day Scholarship:
+250-450 AD: During this time period, we see the rise of diocesan bishops, who presided over small groups of churches along with their own local, individualized congregation. We also see the rise of diocesan bishops from the largest and wealthiest cities of this time, who came to be known as the patriarchs.
+450-590 AD: The five patriarchs during this time frame were Jerusalem, Antioch, Rome, Constantinople, and Alexandria. Each patriarch governed itself. Though Rome and Constantinople were perceived as having equal authority, the Church of Rome was viewed in highest regard (the patriarch of the west; Constantinople was the leading patriarch of the east). But neither of the two competing patriarchs possessed universal authority over the rest of Christendom.
+590-610 AD: This was the final struggle between the Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches for the title of Universal Bishop. In other words, the two most powerful patriarchs fought for jurisdiction over the entire Christian church. Although Constantinople was first to appoint its head as being the Universal Bishop of the church, the Roman Bishop Gregory condemned the usage of the title as being characteristic of an anti-Christ. He declared that no man, not even himself, was worthy of possessing such an arrogant title! In the end, the Church of Rome ended up being victorious in the competition for the title of Universal Bishop when Gregory's successor Boniface III reserved it for himself. The head of the Roman Catholic Church still wields this title of absolute power, wealth, and authority. Thus we see the historic origin of the Papal office in its current organizational structure.
- The Words Of Church Historian Henry C. Sheldon On The Development Of Papal Authority