Did Peter the Apostle found the Church of Rome?
The current revision says so, but according to this source:
- St. Peter was never a pope of Rome, indeed he was not a bishop at all, but an Apostle. This is the early tradition of the Church of Rome itself and therefore remains the tradition of the rest of the Orthodox Church today. Moreover St. Peter founded not the Church of Rome, but the Church of Antioch. The Church in Rome was founded by St. Paul. This is clear to any reader of the Acts of the Apostles and the Epistle of St. Paul to the Romans.
Was St. Paul the founder? --Filius Rosadis 06:08, September 29, 2007 (PDT)
- This is a somewhat interesting question, and I hope the following will at least give pause for thought. My husband suggested reading Romans, where it doesn't look like Paul was the first to tell the Romans about Christ: "...I have made it my aim to preach the gospel, not where Christ was named, lest I should build on another man's foundation, but as it is written: "To whom He was not announced, they shall see; And those who have not heard shall understand." For this reason I also have been much hindered from coming to you."Romans 15:20-22, Orthodox Study Bible The Orthodox Study Bible also includes this footnote to vv. 20-24: "Paul's missionary strategy was to preach the gospel in virgin territories, where the name of Christ had not been heard. He knew a church in Rome had long existed." This seems to contradict (or at least confuse the message of) the note for 1:11: "Paul had not yet visited Rome when he wrote this letter. He wrote the Romans what he preached to other churches: the core of true apostolic doctrine, necessary for the full foundation of a church. For this reason the Orthodox Church reads Romans immediately following Pentecost, the birthday of the Church, and the season when the ancient Church completed the instruction of those who had been baptized at Easter (Pascha)." This does not make it at all clear whether Paul went to Rome prior to Peter.
- "That Peter went to Rome is well documented by early Christian literature. The earliest reference is in a letter written by Clement, bishop of Rome (A.D. 88-97) to the Corinthians.cf. ch. 5 Tertullian (A.D. 200) mentions the death of Paul and Peter at Rome under Nero's persecution. Eusebius also mentions Peter's death at Rome. It is possible that Peter reached Rome during the middle 50s."
- The wikipedia article on Linus states "According to Irenaeus, Jerome, Eusebius, John Chrysostom, the Liberian Catalogue and the Liber Pontificalis, Linus was the second Bishop of Rome, succeeding Saint Peter and succeeded by Anacletus" and has footnoted links for each claim which seem to provide the proper citations. However, the wikipedia article on Peter quotes Irenaeus' Against Heresies: "founded and organized at Rome by the two most glorious apostles, Peter and Paul ... The blessed apostles, then, having founded and built up the Church, committed into the hands of Linus the office of the episcopate." The third-cited Eusebius (who seems to treat Peter and Paul as a set) includes a footnote referring to another footnote (author probably Philip Schaff, not actually Eusebius): "Neither Paul nor Peter founded the Roman church in the strict sense, for there was a congregation of believers there even before Paul came to Rome, as his Epistle to the Romans shows, and Peter cannot have reached there until some time after Paul. It was, however, a very early fiction that Paul and Peter together founded the church in that city."cf. footnote 17
- "The Fathers of ancient Christian Orthodoxy credit St. Paul with establishing the Apostolic Church at Rome, assisted by St. Linus, while the Roman Church claims St. Peter as its founder. St. Paul addressed his letters and greetings to the early Christians and would likely have greeted St. Peter specifically in his letters if he was known to be present in Rome at the time, consistent with St. Paul’s presence in the early Roman community as a leader." This is a definite statement, but there don't seem to be any citations about where the "Fathers of ancient Christian Orthodoxy" actually credit St. Paul.
- All that being said, what would be the best way to indicate who founded the Church of Rome on the Pentarchy page? —magda (talk) 19:23, October 1, 2007 (PDT)