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An Analysis of Anglican Concepts of the Papal Magisterium from the First Through the Tenth Lambeth Conference
PETRINE PRIMACY OF AUTHORITY (1908 to 1930)
by Burns K. Seeley
This chapter will examine Anglican scholarship written between 1908 and 1930. Also examined will be statements of the Sixth (1920) and the Seventh (1930) Lambeth Conferences. Generally speaking, we will see that both scholars and the councils continued to express goodwill towards the Church of Rome. Although this did not necessarily imply a change of attitude towards the papacy itself. With respect to the latter, the concept of a primacy of honor, with one notable exception, continued to prevail. With regard to the Petrine office also, most scholars continued to stress an honorific primacy. However, towards the end of the period under consideration, one author described what appeared to be an authoritative primacy and two explicitly perceived such a primacy.
1. Francis Hall
An American theologian, Francis Hall, considered the problem of ecclesiastical authority in a work published in 1908.  A graduate of Racine College (Wisconsin) in 1882, he received his theological education at General Theological Seminary in New York City and Western Theological Seminary in Chicago. Priested in 1886, Hall became professor of dogmatic theology at Western and later its president. In addition to the volume on authority, he also wrote Theological Outlines (3 vols.), Milwaukee, 1892-1895, Historical Position of the Episcopal Church, 1896, and Theology (2 vols.), 1907-1908.
In the book on authority, Hall asserted that the Vatican I doctrine of papal infallibility was not held by the primitive Church,  since the latter resorted instead to general councils to define the faith.  It was noted too that reception of the doctrine of papal infallibility was confined to only one branch of the Catholic Church, inasmuch as the Eastern Churches and the Anglican Communion possessing genuine freedom to discuss the merits of the concept, refused to accept it. 
With respect to Petrine authority, the author perceived no unique prerogative attached to the commandment given Peter by Christ to strengthen the brethren.  Moreover, the threefold charge to feed the sheep[ 6] was held to be only a signification of Peters restoration to the apostolate following his threefold denial.  It was believed that Scripture taught only that Peter had a personal leadership among equals.
In Matthew 16:18, it was pointed out that although addressed to Peter, the promise of indefectibility was made to the whole Church since it was said that the gates of hell would not prevail against it, rather than not prevail against a person. If, however, we examine the entire sentence, we will see that the Church was to be founded immutably upon the rock. And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of Hell shall not prevail against it. In other words, the reason for the Churchs indefectibility was the rock upon which it would rest; and as we have already seen, the rock was commonly interpreted by the Fathers as Peter.  And John Chrysostom called Peter the foundation of the Church  Therefore, according to patristic testimony at least, the indefectibility of the whole Church inherently depended upon Peter.
With regard to infallible papal definitions, Hall believed that it was impossible to devise practical rules for discerning them.  As Jones noted, however, Rome did in fact provide practical rules or means for accomplishing this. These assumed the form of certain conditions which were to be fulfilled. They were noted and explained at Vatican I by the Bishop of Brixen, Monsignor Gasser, a member of the conciliar Deputation of the Faith [ 11] They are summarized below.
Hall thought it remarkable that Roman Catholics acknowledged so few infallible papal judgments in light of their insistence on a living voice to provide infallible guidance in periods of confusion. 
This remark, and that above stating the impossibility of devising practical rules for discerning infallible judgments, actually obscured the basic point at issue between Anglicans and Roman Catholics. The real problem was the legitimacy of the claim that popes, as the inheritors of Peters primacy, had divinely authorized power or ability to teach infallibly. If this could be established, other matters regarding the doctrine become relatively unimportant. And as we have already noticed, belief in papal infallibility was not absent in patristic writings,  thereby lending significant support to the Roman Catholic position.
The doctrine of papal infallibility, according to Hall, was a denial of the supreme prerogative of the Church to be the judge of her own mind. He did not deem it satisfactory for Rome to reply that papal definitions are in reality the Churchs own utterances in her final court of appeal.  He pointed out that, that court of appeal may fail to work correctly, and the Church cannot be deprived by her agents of the right and duty to be herself the final court of appeal, in such a case. 
Hall maintained that only the Church itself, as opposed to the papacy, could be the Churchs final court of appeal. Precisely what was meant by this was not explained. But he seemed to mean that no means could be employed to define doctrine other than the entire Church itself. This, in turn, suggests that every member of the Church was believed to have a direct voice and vote in ultimately determining matters of faith and morals.
The author believed that there was no scriptural or patristic evidence for a Petrine authority which included the possession of doctrinal infallibility. Since this was believed so, the assertion by the papacy to derive such authority from Peter was said to be unfounded.  True infallibility in doctrinal matters was held to be determined only by the Church itself.
The authors belief in a Petrine primacy of leadership among equals concurred with the convictions of Puller. With the notable exception of Jones, Halls views of papal authority essentially paralleled those examined earlier in our study. They also reflected those contained in the first five Lambeth Conferences.
2. Edward Denny
In 1912, Papalism: A treatise on the Claims of the Papacy was published.  It author, Edward Denny, was a student at Oxford under William Bright to whom the former was particularly indebted for Brights understanding of the papacy.  Denny was ordained priest in 1877 and spent most of his ministry in parish work. Prior to his work on the papacy, he wrote Anglican Orders and Jurisdiction (1893), and co-authored De Hierarchia Anglicana Dissetio Apologetica (1895).
A. Peter in Scripture and in the Fathers
In Papalism,  the author wrote that he detected no support in either Scripture or in the Fathers for the Roman Catholic doctrine of Petrine primacy. Attention was drawn to the fact that no mention was made of a visible Church head in either Ephesians 4:15-16 or in I Corinthians 12. Instead it was noted that all the Apostles were appointed to the first place in the Church under their invisible Head, Christ. Denny held that if Peter were actually thought to be the visible head of the Church, then Paul would have been compelled to state so at this point. Otherwise, it was believed that Pauls readers would have been given the false impression that Jesus did not appoint a visible vicar over the Church. They, therefore, would have erroneously concluded that the Apostles holding the first place in the Body were all members under the one Head Whom he (Paul) had just named. 
If we reflect on these remarks, we will note a certain conflict of ideas. The concept of the Body of Christ, or the entire Church in this life and in the next, was intertwined with the concept of the Church militant. But Paul in both the Ephesian and Corinthian passages spoke specifically only about the entire Body of Christ. Therefore, it would have been both inappropriate and irrelevant for him at this point to have interjected with a comment about Peter being the visible head of the Church militant, if Peter were in fact thought to be such.
It was Dennys conviction that Jesus words to the Apostles in John 20:21, As the Father has sent me, even so I send you, were proof that the Lord entrusted his authority to all the Apostles and not solely to an individual visible head. 
It is true that Jesus bestowed authority upon all the Apostles collectively, but this does not necessarily preclude the validity of the Roman Catholic doctrine that Peter was the visible head of the apostolic college. Nor does John 20: 21 necessarily preclude the validity of the Roman Catholic teaching that the proper use of the authority granted by Christ to all the Apostles was dependent upon the latters union with Peter.
In the Acts of the Apostles, Denny was unable to find any explicit or implicit reference to a visible head of the Church.  It will be recalled, however, that Spencer Jones believed that the proceedings of the Jerusalem Council  indicated a Petrine primacy over the Church, which included authority over Pauls work among the Gentiles. 
Among the Fathers, the author stated that Cyril of Alexandria could not have believed in a Petrine primacy over the Church since he taught that all the Apostles were entrusted with governing the Churches. This was thought to imply a belief that they all were of equal rank.  Since this was thought to be the case, Denny concluded that Cyril also could not have believed that the Bishop of Rome possessed a primacy over the Church as Peters successor. 
In contrast to the above conclusions, an examination of the following texts reveals that Cyril held Peter to be leader and the chosen one of the Apostles, thus implying a certain inequality between Peter and the others. Therefore, passing over the other Apostles, he (Jesus) comes to the leader himself, and he says, Often Satan wished that he might sift you as wheat ( ). Peter himself, the elect of the holy disciples ( ). The divine Word pronounced Peter, the chosen one of the holy Apostles, to be blessed. 
B. The Papal Magisterium and the Council of Ephesus
In a discussion of ecumenical councils, Denny contended that the fact that such were actually convened during the early centuries destroyed Roman Catholic arguments for the primacy of the papal magisterium. If Romes claims were true, the author wondered why the pope did not quickly settle the Arian controversy, for example, with an ex cathedra pronouncement. 
This attitude towards the papal magisterium evidences a lack of understanding regarding the position of the Church of Rome in the matter. Even though Roman Catholicism teaches that the pope may define doctrine independently of his fellow bishops, this does not free the pontiff from the responsibility of seeking the Churchs teaching concerning some disputed point of faith or morals. This means that he must resort to Scripture and to apostolic tradition. 
If a pope actually sought to define some doctrinal point without the aid of the episcopal college, it could be reasonably expected that the process leading up to a definition would be lengthy indeed. Therefore it is reasonable to suppose that popes would often enlist the aid of general councils in order to expedite matters 
Denny believed that the decrees of ecumenical councils were definitive because of the inherent authority of the councils themselves.  This contrasted with the belief of the Church of Rome and with that of many Anglo-Catholics.
Roman Catholicism held that conciliar decrees had to conform to infallible papal teaching before they could be regarded as definitive. This was said to be accomplished normally by papal confirmation or acceptance of the decrees. Such confirmation could be anticipated, however, where the popes teaching had been passed by a council. Among the Anglo-Catholics, men such as Gore taught that the decrees of general councils could not be considered definitive until they were confirmed by the whole Church. 
With respect to the convocation of the Council of Ephesus (431), Denny noted that the Roman emperors directed the Churchs bishops to act as judges in the Nestorian controversy. Therefore the author concluded that the emperors must have regarded the universal episcopate as the Churchs ultimate doctrinal arbiter, rather than the papacy.  However, the author did not consider the possibility that the emperors may well have expected papal confirmation or rejection of the councils acts, thus believing that the pope was the ultimate judge of the Churchs doctrine.
Prior to the convocation of the council, a letter of Pope Celestine was forwarded to Nestorius in which the latter was condemned and threatened with exclusion from the whole Catholic Church.  Denny remarked that, according to modern Roman Catholic teaching, Celestines decree should have been received as definitive by the Council of Ephesus. But the scholar did not believe that this was actually the case. 
Before an accurate appraisal of the councils attitude towards the papal decree can be made, several considerations should be kept in mind. Celestines decree, for example, does appear to bear all the earmarks of a definitive or ex cathedra pronouncement. For one thing, it dealt with a matter of faith. Celestine also directed Cyril of Alexandria to execute the decree by exercising the authority of the See of Rome in the popes name.  In addition the pope notified Nestorius, the Bishop of Constantinople, and the Bishops of Jerusalem, Philippi, Thessalonica and Antioch of his judgment. This, he said, was the divine sentence of Christ.  Later, in a letter to the Council of Ephesus, Celestine spoke of his decree as one promulgated for the security of the universal Church. 
The emperors wrote their letters convoking the council to settle the Nestorian controversy in November 430. This was the same month that Cyril forwarded from Alexandria the popes letter to Nestorius in Constantinople, which did not arrive until December 7. Therefore, it seems unlikely that the emperors, who were also in Constantinople, were aware of the papal decree. Moreover, the emperors made no mention of the popes action in their letters. Consequently, there is no evidence that they sought a general council to either supercede or annul the papal judgment.
Cyril, who was to preside at the council, was of course well aware of the decree, and his actions after it took effect and before the council convened indicted that in his mind the bishops of the Church were to defer to papal authority. It was at this time that he wrote to Celestine asking him if Nestorius should be received at the council since he was a heretic. Cyril also wanted to know if the papal sentence against Nestorius was still in force. 
The popes reply, which was not received until after the end of the councils first session, stated that the council should give Nestorius the opportunity to repent.  Apparently this meant that the sentence was still binding, but that it could be annulled if Nestorius had a change of heart. The reply also revealed that the council was thought to be subject to the popes authority.
It should also be noted that the popes reply did not indicate any disapproval of the emperors action. There was no apparent objection to the bishops gathering together to pass judgment in the Nestorian controversy. This attitude could also be seen in the councils first session when the bishops indicated that Cyril was Celestines representative.  It would have been inconsistent for the pope to have a representative at the council, if in fact he did not approve of the councils existence. Papal approval was also evidenced by the arrival before the beginning of the second session, of the papal legates who had been delayed by a storm.
During the first session, however, the bishops did not act in a purely passive manner in their condemnation of Nestorius. In compliance with the emperors wishes, they collectively judged Nestorius to be deposed and excommunicated. This was accomplished after examining his doctrines and after Nestorius, failing to heed three summonses, refused to appear before the council.
The reasons given for the condemnation of Nestorius were twofold. They appealed to the seventy-third Apostolic Canon which required the censure of those failing to appear before an episcopal tribunal after three summonses. They also appeared to the authority of Celestines letter to Nestorius which threatened the latters excommunication if he did not repent within ten days after the letters receipt.
Urged by necessity thereto by the canons, and because of the letter of our most holy father and fellow servant Celestine, the bishop of the Roman Church, we have come with many tears to this sorrowful sentence against him. 
The first session did no more than comply with the emperors desire for an episcopal judgment regarding the dispute which was dividing the Church and threatening the welfare of the empire. Furthermore, all the evidence points to the fact that the bishops condemnation of Nestorius was not performed independently of Celestines sentence. Rather the prelates showed their concurrence with it when they based their sentence upon his.
Taken by itself, however, the testimony of the first session could also be interpreted to mean, as Denny indicated, that the bishops did not believe in the magisterial primacy of the papacy. It has only been demonstrated here that the proceedings of the first session did not exclude the possibility that the bishops acknowledged the doctrinal primacy of the Bishop of Rome. Yet as we examine the following sessions, we will see additional light shed upon the matter.
During the second session, a letter from Celestine was read which had been brought by his legates. The pope urged the bishops to keep the faith which they had received through apostolic succession. He noted that the task of teaching the faith was entrusted to the entire episcopate and that it was expedient that it be taught with a unanimous voice.
Celestine then informed the council that the legates were sent so that the provisions of his decree against Nestorianism might be put into effect.
To the performing of which we have no doubt that your holinesses will assent when it is seen that what has been decreed is for the security of the whole Church. 
We see that the pope addressed the council as one possessing doctrinal primacy over the Church. He reminded the bishops that as successors of the Apostles they were responsible for proclaiming the faith with one voice. He then told them that what he had already decreed was for the safety of the whole Church. He also expressed confidence that when the bishops were aware of the nature of the decree they would not hesitate to assent to the performance of its provisions.
This was not the language of one who regarded himself the equal in every respect of the other bishops. He had spoken decisively regarding the faith. Consequently, he expected the universal episcopate to unite in one voice with his.
After the letter was read, all the bishops hailed the pope.
This is a just judgment. To Celestine, the modern Paul! To Celestine, the guardian of the faith! To Celestine, of one mind with the Synod! To Celestine, the whole synod offers its thanks! One Celestine! One Cyril! One faith of the synod! One faith of the world. 
The bishops rejoiced that Celestine, the guardian of the faith, and council were of one mind. They offered Celestine their thanks for his proclamation of the faith which they noted conformed to that declared in the first session.
Taken by itself, the cry that the pope was of one mind with the council might indicate that a general council, instead of the papacy, was held to be the Churchs final arbiter of doctrine. But the context in which the cry was made does not suggest this. Rather the impression is given that the bishops were thankful for the popes reclamation because it was regarded as a standard of orthodoxy by which their declaration could be measured. Further light on the councils attitude towards the papacy was shed by some of the comments of individual bishops.
Firmus, the Bishop of Caesaria in Cappadocia, said that the council accepted the popes decision and put his formula into effect.
The apostolic and holy see of the most holy bishop Celestine has previously given a decision and formula in this matter, through the writings which were sent to the most God-beloved bishops, to wit, to Cyril of Alexandria, and to Juvenal of Jerusalem, and to Rufus of Thessalonica, and to the holy Churches both of Constantinople and of Antioch. This we have also followed and ( ) pronounced against him (Nestorius) a canonical and apostolical judgment. 
It will be noticed that Firmus spoke of the apostolic authority of the bishops in their condemnation of Nestorius. Yet, in doing so, they also conformed to the authority of Bishop of Rome.
Theodotus, the Bishop of Aneyra, addressed himself to Celestines letter and to the presence of the papal legates.
By the letter of the most religious bishop Celestine, and by the coming of your holinesses, the God of the universe has shown the sentence of the synod to be just. 
Theodotus measured the action of the council by the prior action of the pope.
Philip, a priest and one of the papal legates, gave his interpretation of the bishops response to Celestines letter.
We offer thanks to the venerable and holy synod, that when the letter of our holy and blessed pope had been read to you, you holy members by your holy voices joined yourselves to the holy head also by your holy acclamations. 
We see that the legate believed that the prelates joined themselves to the pope as their head by their acclamation of the faith proclaimed by the Roman pontiff.
During the third session of the council, Philip requested that the acts of the first session be read to the papal legates. The request was made, Philip said, so that we may follow the formula of the most holy Pope Celestine (who committed this care to us) and of your holinesses, and may be able to confirm the decisions. 
Arcadius, one of the popes episcopal legates, seconded Philips motion. Then Memnon, the Bishop of Ephesus, directed the councils condemnation of Nestorius to be read again. 
It can be seen that the council fathers were aware that the papal legates were intent upon either confirming or rejecting, in the name of the pope, the councils action with respect to Nestorius. They were also aware that the pope claimed to be their head. It is significant, therefore, that not only was no objection made but the council itself assisted the legates in their task. Consequently, the evidence indicates that they accepted the pope as the ultimate doctrinal authority in the Church.
It was Dennys belief, however, that the legates were required by Cyril to assent to the decision of the council. The author also noted that the council fathers seconded Cyrils motion.  Nevertheless, an examination of the documents of the third session reveals that, instead of requiring the legates to assent to the conciliar judgment, Cyril required that the things defined by the pope be put into effect.
Let those things which were defined by the most holy Celestine, the God-beloved bishop, be carried into effect, and the vote cast against Nestorius the heretic by the holy synod which met in the metropolis of Ephesus be agreed to unanimously; for this purpose let there be added to the acts already prepared the proceedings of yesterday and today (i.e., the second and third sessions), and let them be shown to their holinesses (the papal legates) so that by their signatures according to custom, their canonical agreement (praise) with all of us may be shown. 
It will be recalled that Celestine in his letter directed that his decree concerning Nestorius be put into effect by his legates. The pope was also confident that the council would assent to this course of action. However because of a storm, the letter was not read until after the council had already taken action of its own against Nestorius. The legates therefore requested to have the conciliar handling of the matter read to them so that they might confirm it. Memnon consequently directed that this be accomplished. Cyril then ordered that the popes direction be carried out. This was to be accomplished by the signatures of the papal legates being affixed to the document containing the conciliar condemnation of Nestorius. In other words, the legates signatures would be proof that the council had in fact acceded to the popes request.
After Cyril spoke, the legate Arcadius said that, According to the acts of this holy synod, we necessarily confirm their doctrines with our signarures.
Before signing the council fathers said that since the legates were of one mind with them, it only remained that the latter redeem their promises by confirming the acts with their signatures. The prelates next ordered that the minutes of the acts be brought to the legates. This being accomplished, the legates signed their names. 
Denny concluded from his examination of the Council of Ephesus that whatever claims the legates may have made in support of papal primacy the council did not acknowledge them. The acts of the Synod manifestly show that the Fathers in no way accepted them. 
C. The Papal Magisterium and the Council of Chalcedon
The Ecumenical Council of Chalcedon met in 451 to deal with the Monophysite controversy. Pope Leo I sent a dogmatic letter to the council in which he taught that Jesus Christ was one divine Person with two complete natures; one divine and the other human. The letter, now commonly referred to as Leos Tome, was originally written in 449 and sent to Flavian, the Archbishop of Constantinople.
In Dennys opinion, the Tome was on Papalist principle(s) ( ) an ex cathedra definition on a point of faith, irreformable of itself ( ).  The author also asserted that from the point of view of Roman Catholic doctrine, the Council of Chalcedon would have been morally bound to accept the Tome as an infallible statement. But in fact, he said, it did not. 
Leo himself indicated that the Tome represented infallible teaching. This can be for example in his letter written to the emperor, Theodosius II, concerning the Robber Council of Ephesus (449). Leo remarked that the councils presiding bishop, Dioscorus of Alexandria (d. 454), prevented the Tome from being read, but that the doctrine contained within it was divinely inspired, representing the pure faith. Leo added that had Dioscorus allowed its teaching to be received and held all the disputes would have been silenced. 
In another letter addressed to the Council of Chalcedon, Leo was more precise.
And so, dearest brothers, let all attempts to call in question the divinely inspired faith be entirely put down, and the vain unbelief of heretics be laid to rest, and do not let that be defended which may not be believed, since in accordance with the evangelical decrees, the voices of the prophets, and the teaching of the Apostles, with the greatest fullness and clearness in the letter which we sent to the late Bishop Flavian, it has been made clear what is the devout and genuine confession upon the mystery of the Incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ. 
It is clear from the above letters that Leo regarded his Tome as containing irreformable doctrine. It is also clear that Leo expected the council to adopt the doctrine in order to lay to rest the unbelief of heretics.
In another letter, written after the council to Theodore of Cyrus (c.393-c.458), Leo spoke of his Tome as containing defined doctrine.
Wherefore, we glory in the Lord ( ) who has allowed us to sustain no harm in our brethren, but has corroborated, by the irrevocable assent of the whole brotherhood, what he had before defined by our ministry, to show that what had before been enacted by the first see of all, and received by the judgment of the whole Christian world, had truly proceeded from himself, that in this too the members may agree with the head 
It can be seen that Denny was correct in assuming that the Tome, according to Roman Catholic principles, contained an ex cathedra definition of the faith. But he also argued that the council did not receive it as such, since the bishops wished to examine the document before subscribing. This was proof, in his eyes, that the council regarded itself as the Churchs final judge in doctrinal matters. 
It is true that according to Roman Catholic teaching an ex cathedra statement would not be subject to further judgment by a general council in order to establish its validity. On the other hand, mere examination of a document need not be equated with an attempt to pass formal judgment upon it. The intent may only be to better understand it. As a matter of fact only a few bishops at Chalcedon wished to examine the popes doctrine, and many of these had Monophysitic tendencies.  The majority of the prelates had previously subscribed to the Tome without requesting an examination of its contents.
At the beginning of the second session, the judges said that the main purpose of the council was to set forth the pure faith, so that they who do not seem to have understood all these things may be brought to unity by the full knowledge of the truth. 
Immediately after the judges finished speaking, Bishop Cecropius of Sebastopol made a reference to the Tome.
The affairs of Euthyches have been examined, and on them the most holy Archbishop of Rome has given a formula with which we agree, and we have all subscribed to his letter. 
To this, the council bishops replied, So say all of us. The things set forth are sufficient; it is not possible to make any others. 
The judges then requested the Tome to be read aloud. Afterwards, it was acclaimed by the prelates.
This is the faith of the fathers; this is the faith of the apostles. So we all believe; so the orthodox believe. Anathema to him who does not so believe! Peter has spoken these things through Leo. So taught the Apostles. Piously and truly did Leo teach ( ). This is the true faith. So think the orthodox. This is the faith of the fathers. Why were not these things read at Ephesus? Dioscorus hid them. 
The bishops held that the Catholic faith had been declared by Peter through Leo. It will be recalled that in the councils famous letter to Leo the pope was referred to as the interpreter of the voice of Peter. As such, the bishops asserted that he had been charged by Christ with the custody of the Church.  All of this bears witness to the fact that the council believed in the primacy of the papal magisterium.
After the acclamation of the Tome, some of the bishops (those with Monophysitic tendencies) doubted portions of it, believing them to represent Nestorian doctrine. Consequently, the doubters asked for a few days to reflect upon the letter of our master and holy father, Archbishop Leo, who adorns the apostolic see. 
The judges then postponed the council for five days, instructing the bishops to meet with Anatolius, the Archbishop of Constantinople, to consult together concerning the faith. Some of the bishops who had already subscribed to the Tome thought that they were being instructed to go over the matter again. They protested, noting that they had already assented to Leos doctrine. The judges, therefore, said, You need not all meet, but since it is suitable to persuade all who doubt, let Archbishop Anatolius choose from the bishops who have signed, those he thinks fit to instruct the doubters. 
It can be seen that the Tome was immediately regarded as the standard of the faith by the majority of the bishops. It was then thought expedient that the doubters be persuaded of its orthodoxy.
After the five-day period expired, the judges reassembled the council. This time a unanimous declaration of the faith was sought. Bishop Paschasinus, one of the papal delegates, noted that the council held fast to the faith of the Councils of Nicaea, Constantinople and Ephesus, as well as to the teaching of Leo, the Archbishop of all the Churches. He pointed out that it was Leo who condemned the heresies of both Nestorius and Eutyches with his doctrine. The council, he said, could neither add to faith expressed in the Tome, nor subtract from it. To this the bishops responded that they so believed. 
Next, the judges, noting that the Gospels were on display before the council, requested the bishops to declare whether the Tome accorded with the Councils of Nicaea and Constantinople.
Anatolius was the first to reply. He said that Leos doctrine concurred with the faith of Nicaea, Constantinople and Ephesus. I therefore agree to it and have willingly signed. 
The papal legates remarked that the Tome was in total agreement with the earlier councils. Afterwards, 107 bishops (not including the doubters) expressed themselves in similar words.
Then Sozon, Bishop of Philippi, spoke for some of the doubters. He said that they professed the faith of the first three ecumenical councils and that they were also convinced that Leo was most orthodox. They agreed that the letter accorded with all that the fathers proclaimed and testified that they had signed it. 
Another bishop, Ananias, representing some doubting prelates from Jerusalem declared that they all believed that Leos letter conformed to the Catholic faith. 
The judges finally asked the bishops who had not yet spoken whether they agreed with what had been spoken thus far. They replied that they did and added that five former Eutychian bishops did also.
We are all agreed. We all cling together. We all believe alike. We all think this thing. Thus we think ( ) Long live the emperors! The five have also subscribed to the faith. As Leo, so they think. Long live the emperors! 
It is significant that Leo was held to be the doctrinal norm rather than the majority of the council fathers.
It was this unanimous acclamation of Leos Tome during the fourth session which convinced Denny that the council was unaware of the primacy of the papal magisterium.
It would have been impossible for the Fathers of Chalcedon to have made their subscription to The Tome conditional on the result of their examination of it, to have subjected it to a comparison with the Nicene and Constantinopolitan Creeds, and to have made the Question of its orthodoxy dependent upon its agreement with the letter of St. Cyril (i.e., the faith of the Council of Ephesus). On Papalist principles The Tome, as an ex cathedra definition on a matter of faith of the Supreme Teacher, was ex sese de finde; it could not be reviewed. 
It has been seen, however, that the council fathers as a whole did not make their subscription to the Tome dependent upon a critical analysis of it in comparison with other documents. Without any evidence of hesitancy or doubt, they exclaimed that Peter had spoken through Leo.
It is evident from the testimony of the fourth session that the judges sought a unanimous acceptance of the Tome. It had already been subscribed to by the majority. There was nothing in the proceedings to suggest that the document itself was called into question. Actually, the Tome was held to contain the faith. It only remained to see how many of the bishops were willing to acknowledge this irrevocably.
The presence of the Gospels indicates that the bishops were asked to testify under oath to their belief in the Tomes doctrine. Consequently, it was the bishops who were subjected to scrutiny, rather than the Tome.
It is appropriate to reproduce here Leos words to Theodoret of Cyrus, since they demonstrate that the pope did not regard the forth session as calling his doctrine into question.
Wherefore, we glory in the Lord ( ) who has allowed us to sustain no harm in our brethren, but has corroborated, by the irrevocable assent of the whole brotherhood, what he had before defined by our ministry, to show that what had before been enacted by the first see of all, and received by the judgment of the whole Christian world, had truly proceeded from himself, that in this too the members may agree with the head. 
With reference to the doubters, Leo stated that in the long run their actions in the council served to enhance the truth.
For lest the assent of the other sees, to that which the Lord of all has appointed to precede the rest, might seem mere complaisance, or lest any other evil suspicion might creep in, some were found to dispute our decisions. And while some, instigated by the author of dissension, rush forward into a war of contradiction, a greater good results from this evil, under the dispensation of the author of all goodness. For the gifts of divine grace are sweeter to us when they are not gained without great toils ( ). Besides, the truth itself shines more brightly, and is more bravely upheld, when what the faith had already taught is afterwards confirmed by further inquiry 
It does not appear that Denny had access to this letter of Leo, since he held that the pope did not regard the Tome as an ex cathedra statement.
It must be remembered that St. Leos own language shows that he did not himself regard his letter as having the unique authority which Papalism would, if it were true, require it should possess 
All the evidence, however, indicates that not only did Leo consider his doctrine definitive, but the majority of the bishops at Chalcedon did so as well.
D. Irenaeus and Augustine
Irenaeus (c.130-c.200) and Augustine (354-430) were cited by Denny as representing the patristic attitude towards the papacy. Neither, in the authors opinion, was cognizant of papal primacy in matters of doctrine.
It was thought that if Irenaeus actually believed in the primacy of the papal magisterium, he would have said so in his work against heresies.
Had St. Irenaeus believed the doctrine as to the papacy ( ) he would necessarily have adopted a very different course of procedure. He would simply have said: These heretics are manifestly proved to be wrong by the fact that their doctrine differs from that of the Supreme Pastor of the One Flock. Should there be any case of doubt, recourse ought at once to be had to him for an infallible decision thereon. A very effective method, much simpler than the appeal to the tradition of the Apostolical Churches. 
It is seen once more that the authors understanding of Romes position on the papal magisterium differed from that of Vatican I. It will be recalled that the council explicitly held that the Holy Spirit assisted the Roman pontiff in guarding and explaining, in an infallible manner, the apostolic tradition taught by the Fathers. The papacy was said to have no other doctrinal source than apostolic tradition which also encompassed Scripture. In other words, the doctrinal tradition of the Church of Rome was held to be precisely the same as that proper to the other apostolic Churches. The chief difference between the former and the latter was that the Bishop of the Church of Rome was said to be empowered as the Catholic Churchs final arbiter of doctrinal truth. 
In Irenaeus day, there were no differences among the apostolic Churches with respect to Catholic truth since they all faithfully adhered to the apostolic tradition. During the latter part of the second century there were no apostolic bishops such as Nestorius of Constantinople and Dioscorus of Alexandria. For this reason Irenaeus could state that one could distinguish truth from heresy by consulting bishops who had been appointed by the Apostles or by their successors.  Consequently, there was no need for definitive papal teaching.
In another passage of his work, however, Irenaeus wrote of the necessity for every Church to agree doctrinally with the Church of Rome, the greatest, the best known and most ancient of all.
For to this church on account of her more powerful principality it is necessary that every church should agree (or come together), that is the faithful from everywhere, in which, always, that which is the tradition from the Apostles has been preserved by those who are from everywhere. 
Among the apostolic Churches, only the Church of Rome was so distinguished. It is not impossible that the reason for this was a belief in the primacy of the papal magisterium.
With respect to Augustine, there are passages from his writings which indicate that he believed in the magisterial primacy of the Bishop of Rome. Underlying this conviction was his belief in the primacy of Peter.
In his work on the Gospel of John, he declared that Peter was the first of the Apostles.  In a sermon, he stated that Peter held the chief place in the apostleship.  In another work, it was held that the same chair in which Peter sat in Rome was that occupied in Augustines day by Pope Anastasius. 
Communion with the See of Peter was considered necessary for inclusion in the Catholic Church.
Why! a faggot that is cut off from the vine retains its shape. But what use is that shape, if it is not living from the root? come, brothers, if you wish to be engrafted in the vine. It is grievous when we see you thus lying cut off. Number the priests (i.e., bishops) even from the see of Peter itself. And in that order of fathers see who to whom succeeded: that is the rock which the proud gates of hades do not conquer. 
The popes therefore were regarded as the successors of the rock against which the gates of hell would not prevail. As Peter was necessary for the stability of the Catholic Church, so were the Bishops of Rome.
In another writing, Augustine states that the papacy was one of the things which kept him in the bosom of the Catholic Church.
There are many things which rightly keep me in the bosom of the Catholic Church. The consent of peoples and nations keeps me, her authority keeps me, inaugurated by miracles, nourished in hope, enlarged by love, and established by age. The succession of priests keeps me, from the very see of the Apostle Peter (to whom the Lord after His resurrection gave charge to feed his sheep) down to the present episcopate. 
The popes, as the successors of Peter, were said to be in charge of feeding the Lords sheep. The context suggests that the sheep are those of the entire Church militant, rather than those of a diocese or a province.
Perhaps the clearest indication that Augustine believed in the primacy of the papal magisterium is to be found in a letter written to Paulinus, Bishop of Nola. Here he made reference to Pope Innocents reply to the Council of Carthage in 417. He asserted that the pope wrote in the manner that was right and proper for the pontiff of the Apostolic See. 
Innocents letter contained an explicit assertion of his magisterial primacy which he said was acknowledged by the bishops at Carthage.
For you decided that it was proper to refer to our judgment, knowing what is due to the Apostolic See, since all we who are set in this place desire to follow the very Apostle from whom the very episcopate and whole authority of this name has emerged; following whom, we know how to condemn the evil and to approve the good. So also, you have by your priestly office preserved the institutions of the fathers, and have not spurned that which they decreed by a sentence not human but divine, that whatever is done, even though it be in distant provinces, should not be ended until it comes to the knowledge of this see, that by its authority the whole just pronouncement should be strengthened, and that from there the other churches ( ).
I congratulate you, therefore, dearest brothers, that you have directed a letter to us ( ) and that while caring for the Churches which you rule, you also show your concern for the advantage of all, and that you ask for a decision which may benefit all the churches of the world together ( ) 
Augustines approval of Innocents letter can only mean that he too believed that the Bishop of Rome, as the inheritor of Peters primacy, was the Churchs chief teacher and doctrinal arbiter.
Denny wrote that Augustine held general councils to be the Churchs highest court of appeals in matters of doctrine.  In support of his view he cited Augustines De Baptisma contra Donatists, Book 2, where Cyprian was said to be exonerated for his erroneous baptismal doctrine because he did not have the advantage of an investigation and decree of a general or plenary council on the subject.  Denny argued that if Augustine believed in the primacy of the papal magisterium, he would have said so at this point rather than emphasizing the authority of a general council. Moreover, Augustine would have pointed out that Cyprian should have heeded the infallible judgment of Pope Stephen on the subject which was binding on the whole Church the moment it was made. 
Actually the evidence does not support the view that Stephens reply to Cyprian was in the form of a definitive judgment. The popes words in the matter are found only in two fragments. One was identified by Cyprian as coming from Stephens letter; the other was cited by Cyprians friend Firmilian. Whether the latter was derived from the same letter or not is not known. Both fragments are reproduced below.
If anyone comes to you from any heresy whatever, let nothing be innovated beyond what has been handed down, namely that hands be laid on them to repentance; for the heretics themselves do not baptize those who specially come to them from another (heresy), but simply communicate them. 
But the name of Christ avails so much for the faith and for the holiness of baptism, that whoever is anywhere baptized in Christs name at once receives Gods grace. 
Among other things, a definitive statement by a pope concerning either faith or morals would be addressed to the whole Church. Or language would be employed indicating that the matter dealt with was binding upon the entire Church. Such, however, is not found in the evidence presented above.
We will now return to Augustines writings in order to demonstrate that there was no conflict between his belief in the primacy of the papal magisterium and the ability of general councils to resolve doctrinal controversies.
In a work addressed to Pope Boniface (418-422), Augustine stated that the whole episcopate shred the responsibility for guarding the Church from doctrinal error. Yet he also noted that, among the bishops, the pope occupied the highest position.
Since they (heretics) do not cease to growl at the entrances to the Lords fold, and on every side to tear open the approaches so as to plunder the sheep redeemed at such a price; and since the pastoral watch-tower is common to all of us who discharge the episcopal office (although you (Boniface) are preeminent therein on a loftier height), I do what I can in respect of my small portion of the charge, as the Lord condescends to grant me, by the aid of your prayers, to oppose their pestilent and crafty writings. ( ) 
These words are compatible with the belief that the pope, as the successor of Peter, is the ultimate judge of doctrine in the Church. At the same time, it also supports the position that the universal episcopate, meeting in general councils, has a responsibility for defending the Church from error.
Augustines concept of the place of general councils in the Church can be found in his De Baptismo already referred to by Denny. It was pointed out that the decisions of general (plenary) councils were superior to the judgments of individual bishops and to those of district and provincial synods 
Augustine noted next that general councils were subject to correction by later general councils.
And that even of the general councils the earlier are often corrected by the later, when by some experiment things are brought to light which were concealed, and that becomes known which was hid ( ). 
Consequently, it was not held that general or plenary councils were in themselves the final teaching authority in the Church. This view concurred with Augustines belief in the magisterial primacy of the papacy. Accordingly, only papal confirmation of general or plenary councils would make their decisions irrevocably binding upon the whole Church.
Our examination of Dennys work revealed that the author found no evidence in Scripture, patristic literature, or the proceedings of the early councils to support Roman Catholic claims for the doctrinal primacy of the papacy. The principal reasons for this attitude were the belief that the Church of Rome taught that papal authority was the converse of that of the episcopate, and that the source of infallible papal teaching was other than apostolic tradition.
3. Tomas A. Lacey
Thomas A. Lacey (1853-1931), an Anglican ecumenist, wrote a book on church unity entitled Unity and Schism.  Published in 1917, it dealt in part with the Roman primacy.
Educated at Oxford, Lacey was ordained priest in 1876. In 1884, in conjunction with F.W. Puller, he provided much of the Anglican documentation for the papal commission investigating the validity of Anglican orders. He also collaborated with Edward Denny on a work about the succession of the Anglican episcopate, De Hierarchia Anglicana Dissetio Apologetica (1895).
In Unity and Shism, Lacey differed with most of the early Anglican scholars about the relationship of the Petrine texts in the New Testament to the Roman Catholic position on the papacy. It will be recalled that these writers believed that the texts did not support the Roman claims. But Lacey held that the passages were indeed capable of supporting the Roman Catholic doctrine, although in themselves they bore inconclusive testimony.  Against the Roman position, it was noted that Cyprian, for example, used the same texts to support the belief that all the Apostles and their successors inherited the privileges first assigned to Peter.
Lacey thought, however, that Jesus command to Peter to feed the brethren in Luke 22:31-32 indicated a commission not shared by the rest. It was maintained that this was a surer text for Roman Catholic apologists than the appeal to Matthew 16:18-19. But it was held that even in this instance there was no evidence that Peters commission was to be passed on to successors. The author concluded that the Roman Catholic position was based only upon an interpretation of the Petrine texts and not upon the texts themselves. 
This is undoubtedly true. But it should be borne in mind that any piece of writing must be interpreted in one sense or another by the reader. Texts do not interpret themselves. Throughout the history of the Church certain biblical passages have been subjected to a great variety of interpretations. The primary difficulty is not that they have been interpreted. Rather, it is knowing which are the correct interpretations.
Trinitarianism and the concept of the complete humanity and divinity of Christ are classical examples of biblical interpretations. Still, most Christians would not reject the doctrines because they are only interpretations.
Lacey conceded that at least as early as the third century there was a tradition to the effect that the See of Peter was located in Rome and that a certain seniority or even supremacy  was attached to it. But it was thought that this may only have reflected the fact that the Roman Church was of apostolic origin and that it consequently exercised a certain inevitable leadership over others.
The author noted that Pope Victor (189-198), who claimed to be able to excommunicate entire provinces from the Catholic Church, assumed an authority which was more than episcopal, and not less than apostolic.  The same was thought to be true of Pope Stephen (254-257). In both instances, it was believed that this special authority was only felt rather than defined. It was felt at Rome and the rest of the world was more or less aware of it.
It will be remembered, however, that Firmilian of Caesarea in Cappadocia (bishop from c. 230-268) spoke of Stephen as one who claimed to succeed Peter on whom the foundations of the Church were laid. It was also pointed out that the pope said he had authority to excommunicate all within the Church.  Tertulian also was aware of similar claims made by the papacy of his day [ Cyprian as well spoke of the pope as the successor of Peter who for the time was judge instead of Christ.  It can be seen therefore that the authority of the Bishop of Rome was more than merely felt.
Lacey believed that, if the claims of the papacy were derived from Peter, there should be evidence supporting them from the beginning equally as strong as the overwhelming testimony that the episcopate received its authority from the Apostles. 
It is true that in the extant documents of the first and second centuries until the time of Irenaeus there is no explicit reference to papal primacy. Even the witness of Irenaeus is not altogether clear. On the other hand, it was not until the time of Irenaeus and Tertullian that the doctrine of apostolic succession was beginning to be developed and defended. Nor did the Church explicitly refer to Christ as being one substance  with the Father until the fourth century. Yet few Anglo-Catholics would deny that these doctrines were implicitly held from the beginning. Consequently, the absence of an explicit belief in a doctrine is not a sure sign it is untrue.
In the case of papal primacy, its actual exercise occurred in the very first century as can be seen from the evidence provided by I Clement.  The distinguished Anglican scholar J.B. Lightfoot noted this when he spoke of Pope Clements protest to the Church of Corinth. It may perhaps seem strange to describe this noble remonstrance as the first step towards papal domination. And yet undoubtedly this is the case.  This exercise of papal authority over an eastern Church represented at least an implicit belief in papal primacy present in the very early years of Church history.
We have seen from his study of Scripture and the documentation of the early Church that Lacey was unconvinced that Roman Catholic doctrine of papal primacy was true. Yet, unlike many of his scholarly predecessors, he allowed that the scriptural evidence for the most part was at least patient of a Roman Catholic interpretation.
His genuine desire to appreciate better Roman Catholicism mirrored that expressed in the 1896 and 1908 Lambeth Conferences.
4. Norman Powell Williams
The next Anglican work to be examined was published on 1918.  Its author, Norman Powell Williams (1883-1943), was a prominent Anglo-Catholic theologian. Educated at Oxford, he remained there as a teaching fellow, later becoming Lady Margaret Professor of Divinity, and Canon of Christ Church. He was ordained in 1906. Among his other published works were Northern Catholicism: The Theology of the Catholic Revival (1933), The Ideas of the Fall and of Original Sin (1927), and The Grace of God (1930).
In the introductory pages of the book dealing with the Church of Rome, Williams made reference to the decree of papal infallibility promulgated by Vatican I. He said that this and other Roman Catholic documents held the pope to be the one and only sovereign and autocratic ruler, teacher, owner and proprietor of the whole Church militant here on earth.  The Roman pontiff was also thought to be able to bind the Church to any formulation of doctrine that he might choose, as long as past papal definitions were not contradicted. 
In spite of the authors conclusions, a careful study of Roman Catholic doctrine does not bear them out. With reference to the belief that the pope was the sole ruler, teacher, etc. of the Church, it will be recalled that both the early popes and Vatican I spoke of the authority of bishops, as successors of the Apostles, in matters of doctrine.  The council described bishops as true shepherds of their individual flocks having ordinary and immediate jurisdiction in their respective churches. Moreover, it was noted that they met from time to time in councils to decide doctrinal matters. These functions clearly indicate that bishops were held to share with the papacy in the teaching and government of the Church. The reason that this was so was because they were successors of the Apostles and not mere papal suffragans. 
With regard to the belief that popes could declare as infallible any doctrine unopposed to that defined by their predecessors, Vatican I expressly taught that popes could define only that which was consonant with Scripture and apostolic tradition.  The Roman pontiffs were not thought to be either the originators of doctrine or the sole teachers of the Church.
You are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church. These words, Williams believed, would be claimed by the supporters of the Roman theory as the charter of the Papacy, its authentic title deeds coming straight from the hands of our Lord Himself.  Therefore, he thought it strange that Luke, who claimed to have written everything about Christ and the primitive Church worth noting, did not have a passage paralleling that contained in Matthew.
There can be no doubt that supporters of the Roman Catholic claims for papal primacy often appealed to the Matthean text, but not exclusively so. Leo I, for example, cited more than once Luke 22:31-32, Simon, Simon. ( ) When thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.  Vatican I also referred to both the Lucan text and to John 21:15-17, Simon, Son of John. ( ) Feed my sheep, in support of the primacy of the papacy.  Both of these texts were held to teach essentially the same doctrine as that contained in Matthew 16. It will be remembered also that Jones detected a distinct parallel between the Matthean and Lucan passages. 
Williams suggested that the reference to Peter as a rock in Matthew 16:18 was not an exclusive designation. He thought that Jesus may well have regarded the Apostle as only one rock among many upon which the Church would be built.  Yet the New Testament itself speaks only of Simon Peter as the rock upon which the Church militant would be built, and Jesus surnamed only Simon as the Rock.
The Roman Catholic interpretation of the Matthean text in itself, Williams held, was a plausible one, but not from the point of view of the entire New Testament. It was pointed out, for example, that the other Apostles did not regard Peter as the exclusive foundation of the Church. 
We have just noted that the New Testament speaks only of Peter as the rock upon which the Church was to be built. Williams, however, switched metaphors from rock to foundation. But there is no reference in the Matthean passage to Peter as foundation. The author may have had in mind Ephesians 2:20 where the Church is described as being built upon the foundation of the prophets and the Apostles. Yet, as we have noted elsewhere, the Matthean and Ephesian texts deal with different topics. The former has to do only with the Church militant, while the latter deals with the entire mystical Body of Christ.
Throughout the New Testament, Williams found evidence to support only the belief that Peter enjoyed a primacy of honor among the Apostles. Moreover, after the advent of Paul and his work among the Gentiles, Paul was thought to have shared in the primacy with Peter. 
It was pointed out that on several occasions Peter was regarded by his fellow Apostles more as a chairman or president than as an autocratic sovereign.  This was indicated, for example, by his condescending manner and apologetic tone with respect to his dining with the Gentiles. 
In effect, Williams noted that Peter did not behave in a manner conforming to the Roman Catholic doctrine of papal primacy. But we have already noticed that the Church of Rome did not regard the pope as the sole ruler and teacher of the Church. This is not to say, however, that the Church of Rome regarded either Peter or the pope as solely the first among equals. They were also held to be the Churchs ultimate rulers and teachers. They possessed a final authority not found in their confreres. This doctrine was supported by the Petrine texts and by the doctrinal stand taken by Peter in the Council of Jerusalem. 
Peter the fisherman, of course, did not always behave in precisely the same manner as popes in later ages when the doctrine of papal primacy was more fully developed. Nor was the importance of the Chair of Peter for the welfare of the whole Church as fully perceived in the early years when doctrinal purity was constantly maintained in the apostolic sees. Nevertheless, both Jesus words and Peters words and actions demonstrate that the Roman Catholic doctrine existed in all the essentials from the very beginning.
Williams maintained that the primacy of honor enjoyed both by the later papacy and the See of Rome was inherited from Peter.  But it was also stressed that much of the primacy of honor derived from the fact that Rome was the imperial capital, and that both Princes of the Apostles, Peter and Paul, were martyred there. 
It was held that from this primacy a papal sovereignty over the Church developed in the West.  It was acknowledged that many eastern Fathers spoke of a primacy in connection with the Roman see in very exalted and poetic terms, but nevertheless it was only a primacy and not a sovereignty to which they referred. 
From the context of Williams writing, it is gathered that primacy meant primacy of honor and sovereignty meant ultimate authority over the Church militant bestowed solely on the papacy by divine authority.
We need to be reminded only of the letter of the Council of Chalcedon to Leo and its assertion that the pope was the guardian of the Church appointed by the Savior to realize that the entire Church of that era accepted the popes sovereignty.  Similar testimony was borne by both Cyril of Alexandria and the Council of Ephesus. These facts, of course, need not preclude a parallel belief in the early Church that the Roman see also enjoyed a certain primacy of honor due to the fact that it was located in the imperial capital and that the two chief Apostles were martyred there.
Our study of Williams thought has revealed that he was unconvinced that the Roman Catholic argument for Petrine primacy was valid. Nor did he believe that the testimony of the early Church substantiated the Roman Catholic doctrine of papal primacy. At most, the Bishops of Rome were thought to have inherited from Peter a primacy of honor. This primacy was said to be enhanced further by the fact that Peter and Paul were put to death in Rome and by the fact that Rome was the capital of the empire.
On the basis of his conclusions, Williams saw no reason why the Anglican Communion and the Eastern Churches could not unite with Rome, thereby acknowledging only its primacy of honor. In turn, the papacy would be expected to divest itself of its doctrine of a divinely willed sovereignty. 
By his ecumenical outreach towards Rome, Williams reflected what was beginning to be a trend among both Lambeth Conferences and Anglo-Catholic scholars.
5. The Sixth Lambeth Conference (1920)
The Sixth Lambeth Conference convened in 1920 under the presidency of Archbishop Randall Davidson who also presided over the Fifth Conference in 1908.
The Sixth Conference adopted a new appeal for Christian unity. At first glance it appeared to have repudiated the inclusion of the historic episcopate as a basis for unity found in the Lambeth Quadrilateral of 1888. The new appeal contained a paraphrase of the Quadrilateral, but the fourth point presented below no longer specifically mentioned the historic episcopate.
A ministry acknowledged by every part of the Church as possessing not only the inward call of the Spirit, but also the commission of Christ and the authority of the whole body. 
An explanatory paragraph followed, however, in which the bishops expressed their belief that the Episcopate is the one means of providing such a ministry.  They also said that considerations of both history and present experience justified the claim made on behalf of episcopacy. Therefore, in the total context of the appeal there was no rejection of the historic episcopate as a basis for Church unity. As a matter of fact, the Sixth Conference seemed to endorse the doctrine of apostolic succession. This can be seen by the fact that the episcopate was considered the only form of ministry having not only the inward call of the Spirit, but also the commission of Christ and the authority of the whole body. 
As in earlier conferences, this one condemned the practice of contraception.
We utter an emphatic warning against the use of unnatural means for the avoidance of conception, together with the grave dangersphysical, moral, and religiousthereby incurred, and against the evils with which the extension of such use threatens the race. 
In this connection, the prelates said that the distribution and use of so-called prophylactics was not to be condoned since it was regarded as an invitation to vice. 
The only specific reference to the Church of Rome in the Sixth Conference was in an unendorsed report of a subcommittee of the committee on reunion. The members of the sub-committee seconded the committee report of the 1908 Conference to the effect that there could be no genuine Christian unity which did not include the great Latin Church of the West.  They also stated that they would be ready to discuss the conditions for reunion with Rome at any time.
Noted with favor was the increased willingness by Roman Catholic theologians to discuss theological matters with other Christians. This was taken as a sign of improved future relations between the two Communions. The subcommittee, on the other hand, gave no indication of a desire to accommodate themselves to distinctively Roman Catholic doctrines.
Although the conference proper made no specific reference to the Church of Rome, a resolution was passed recommending Anglican authorities to invite authorities of other traditions to seek ways for restoring Christian unity. This would, of course, include Roman Catholics,  as would the new appeal for Christian unity addressed to all Christians. 
As with past Lambeth Conferences, the Sixth Conference continued to stress the importance of episcopal authority in Christianity. Although it certainly showed no signs of a willingness to accept papal authority, there were signs of a willingness to discuss the matter with Roman Catholics. The ecumenical attitude towards the Church of Rome evidenced in the conference reflected not only the attitude of the Fourth and Fifth Conferences but also of such scholars as Jones, Lacey and Williams.
6. Joseph Armitage Robinson
Between 1921-1925, Anglican and Roman catholic scholars presented a series of doctrinal papers at Malines, France, dealing with the problem of unity between the two communions. These were to become known as the Malines Conversations. While unofficial in nature, the conversations were conducted with the approval of both the Archbishop of Canterbury, Randall Davidson, and Popes Benedict XV and Pius XI.
The Anglican participants were all Anglo-Catholics. Consequently, their view did not necessarily reflect those of the entire Anglican Communion.
The two papers analyzed here are those dealing specifically with the question of papal primacy. One was presented by Joseph Armitage Robinson and the other by B.J. Kidd. 
Robinson (1858-1933) was a New Testament and patristics scholar. He was educated at Christs College, Oxford, where he remained as a Fellow from 1881 to 1899. He was ordained priest in 1882. Among his published works were St. Pauls Epistle to the Ephesians (1903), a commentary, and The Historical Character of the Fourth Gospel (1929).
In his Malines paper, Robinson said that Paul revealed no knowledge of a Petrine primacy over the Church. It was pointed out for example that in Ephesians 2:20 Paul described the Church as built upon the foundation of the prophets and the Apostles, and not only upon Peter.  But as we have noted elsewhere, Paul was not speaking specifically of the Church militant. But it was only this portion of the mystical Body of Christ which Roman Catholics believed was taught and governed by Peter and the popes with unique and supreme power.
Robinson noted that Paul went to Jerusalem to visit the Apostles. Afterwards, Paul remarked that they added nothing to his doctrines. Moreover, Paul held that he rebuked Peter for failing to withstand the Circumcision Party.  These incidents, the scholar thought, did not attest to a belief in a Petrine primacy of authority.
Paul described these events in Chapter 2 of Galatians. He said that his visit to Jerusalem occurred fourteen years after his trip to Arabia. He went to the Apostles to discover if his version of the Gospel which he preached to the Gentiles was correct. This implied that he believed the Apostles had the power to make such a judgment. The fact that they added nothing to his doctrine simply means that they judged it to be complete and orthodox. Robinson, on the other hand, gave the impression that Paul judged himself equal to all of the Apostles in matters of doctrine.
It is true that Paul considered himself to be an Apostle also. Why then did he seek a judgment from those in Jerusalem ? The first chapter of Galatians may supply the answer. Here Paul wrote that after his conversion, he went to preach to the Gentiles. At the time he said that he did not confer with flesh and blood, nor did he go to Jerusalem to confer with the Apostles. He then journeyed to Arabia. Three years after his return from Arabia, Paul wrote that he went to Jerusalem to confer with Peter with whom he spent fifteen days. (He also mentioned that he saw no other Apostle except James, the Lords brother.) This meeting with Peter may well indicate that Paul thought that the former possessed a unique authority among the Apostles. This possibility is substantiated in I Corinthians 15, for example, where Paul spoke of the risen Lord appearing first to Peter, then to the twelve. In light of this, during Pauls later meeting with the Apostles noted above, Peter alone would have been thought to have the last word in matters of doctrine.
Why then, did Paul rebuke Peter if he considered the latter to be superior to himself? This can best be explained by the fact that Peters behavior was regarded as scandalous, especially since he was the chief of the Apostles.
Robinson did believe that Peter was the most conspicuous of the Apostles in the Gospels. But this was not thought to indicate to a bestowal of any special authority. Jesus command to Peter to strengthen the brethren in Luke 22:31-32 was taken to mean that the Apostle was charged to be the foremost in the recovery of his comrades.  But the reason for this was thought to be because he was the foremost in his denial of Christ.
This same sort of argument was used concerning John 21:15-17 where Jesus ordered Peter to care for the sheep. If he is specially charged to care for Christs sheep, the duty is imposed upon him on the ground of his restoration from a specially grievous fall.
Whether or not Peters fall was the proximate reason for the charges issued by Christ is not particularly important. What is significant is that Peter was specially charged and charged to be foremost. These words which indicate a divinely authorized primacy of responsibility for the welfare of the Apostles and the entire Church correspond to the words found in Matthew 16:17-19.
Robinson did not believe that Matthew 16:17-19 attributed any distinctive authority to Peter, since the scholar regarded Ephesians 2:20 as teaching that the same authority was granted to all the Apostles.
At most, the New Testament was thought to indicate that Peter had a primacy of honor, that is, a primacy of leadership over the Apostles making him their spokesman. This, however, was not meant to convey the concept of sovereignty or rulership. A similar primacy was believed to be held by Paul over the Gentile Churches. 
7. Beresford James Kidd
The paper of Beresford James Kidd dealt with the patristic evidence concerning papal primacy. Kidd (1864-1948), a Church historian, was educated at Oxford where he later became warden of Keble College. He was ordained to the priesthood in 1888. He was the author of several books including The Primacy of the Roman See (1936), Documents Illustrative of the History of the Church (ed.), 2 vols. (1920-1923), and A History of the Church to A.D. 461, 3 vols. (1922).
Kidd acknowledged that the papacy had a primacy over the Church which in fact was no more than a primacy of honor. The basis of this primacy was that the See of Rome was the only one founded by two Apostles, and these were the two chief Apostles, Peter and Paul. 
As used by Kidd and other Anglican scholars, the title primacy of honor was, of course, quite distinct from primacy of jurisdiction. The latter, in reference to the pope, implies that he has the right to command acceptance with respect to precepts, under penalty of sin. These rights are derived from Christs delegated power, He who hears you hears me, and he who rejects you rejects me. 
In the primacy of honor, the pope would have only the right to counsel rather than to command; to direct instead of decreeing; and to persuade, as opposed to prescribing.
Kidd believed that it was not until after the time of Pope Damasus (366-384) that the Petrine texts were employed to support the idea of papal supremacy over the Church. It was thought that as late as the Council of Rome in 382, Matthew 16:17-19, for instance, was used only to demonstrate a primacy of honor. 
Despite this belief, Tertullian as a Montanist used language indicating that the papacy of the early third century appealed to the Matthean text to support a primacy of jurisdiction. Sarcastically, Tertullian asked the pope the basis of his claim to remit the crimes of adultery and fornication.
Now with reference to your decision, I ask: how do you come to usurp the prerogatives of the Church ? Is it because the Lord said to Peter, Upon this rock I will build by Church, to thee I have given the keys of the heavenly Kingdom ( )? 
The pope claimed to speak in the name of the Church. Tertullian doubted that the Matthean text, used by the pope as a basis for his authority, applied to Petrine successors. Rather, it was thought to apply only to Peter.  Nevertheless, we find here a third-century example of a pope supporting his claim to universal jurisdiction by an appeal to a Petrine text.
Another example of the same period can be seen in Firmilians letter to Cyprian where he disapproved of Pope Stephens baptismal doctrine.
Stephen maintained that he had authority to excommunicate all, indicating a belief in a jurisdictional primacy. The basis of his authority was said to be found in the teaching of Matthew 16. Thus we find the Petrine texts associated with the idea of papal supremacy well before the end of the fourth century.
In another paper presented at Malines, Kidd summarized his position on papal primacy.
A primacy of leadership, and a visible centre of unity---such as is claimed and can be found nowhere else---we are quite ready to acknowledge in the Roman See: impelled to the acknowledgment not only by the course of development which the history of the Church has actually taken but by our sense of the pressing necessity that the ranks of Christendom must close up in face the chaotic condition of things within the Church, as well as in order to meet the forces of evil outside. It is, however, one thing thus to accommodate ourselves to an order or Constitution of the Church which, in the course of history, has actually arisen. It is quite another to affirm that this constitution was divinely intended. To make that affirmation seems to us to be going beyond the evidence. 
Here we see manifested a genuine desire for Anglican unity with Roman Catholicism, but only on the basis of a recognition of a papal primacy of honor. A primacy of jurisdiction was not thought to be held by either the papacy or the Church at large until about the beginning of the fifth century. Yet our study of early Church history showed that there was a de facto exercise of a jurisdictional primacy by the papacy as early as the first century. 
Over the years a clearer understanding of this authority developed whereby both popes and ecumenical councils explicitly taught that it was of divine origin.  The papacy itself never claimed other than jurisdictional primacy. At times however, the Church at large ascribed a primacy of honor to the See of Rome because of its association with the secular city. This was true at the Councils of Constantinople and Chalcedon. But these affirmations were not intended to represent a denial of a divinely authorized papal primacy of jurisdiction, as the Chalcedonian letter to Leo clearly revealed.
In the case of Christology, Catholic Christianity proclaimed both the divinity and the humanity of Christ in the very first century. But it was not until the doctrine was developed over the years that a clearer understanding was achieved. Consequently, it is not reasonable to expect the exercise of the popes primacy of jurisdiction in the first century to have fully understood, nor its implications to have been fully developed, by either the papacy or the Church of that era.
The Malines Conversations represented an honest attempt to overcome the doctrinal barriers existing between Anglicans and Roman Catholics. They were especially extraordinary for their time in that they were face to face scholarly exchanges. On the other hand, they were a logical extension of earlier Anglican endeavors by both scholars and Lambeth Conferences. It is true that polemics were still in evidence to some extent, but they were becoming less common.
8. Cuthbert Hamilton Turner
In 1926, two essays were published on the question of Petrine primacy by C.H. Turner (1860-1930),  a New Testament and patristics scholar.
A layman, Turner was educated at Oxford where he also taught from 1899 until his death in 1930. His principal work was an edition of the early Latin canons of the Church, Ecclesiae Occidentalis Monumenta Turis Antiquissima (1899-1939). The Apostolic Succession, in Essays on the Early History of the Church and the Ministry (1919, H.B. Swete, ed.) was another important piece of scholarship written by Turner.
It was the authors belief regarding Petrine authority that Anglican scholars were often so concerned with demonstrating the unique authority of the apostolic college in Scripture that they tended to ignore Peters uniqueness within the college itself. 
That which impressed the author most in the evidence provided by the Gospels was the convergence of the testimony of these four documents in the prerogative position allotted to S. Peter.  It was noted that the more important passages witnessing to Peters prominence in each of the Gospels were not found in the other three. This independent testimony was said to represent the common attitude of all parts and sections of Christian society in its earliest stages. 
In Marks Gospel, Turner stated that the most preeminent disciples were Peter, James and John. He noted that James and John were mentioned together once, John by himself once, and James by himself was not mentioned at all. But Peter by himself was mentioned on at least six occasions.
Most of Matthews witness to Peter was based upon the Marcan account. But Turner pointed out that there were four instances in which Matthew either uniquely introduced or added Peters name. Three of these had no parallel in the other Gospels. In one of them, the passage dealing with the tribute money,  Jesus told Peter to pay the money on behalf of both of them. Consequently, Turner said that Peter was associated with Jesus in a way that the other Apostles were not. The author also noted that in Matthew 16:17-19, Peter the chief Apostle was held to be the rock upon which the Church would be built. 
It was pointed out that Luke heightened Peters prominence in two passages based upon Mark.  In another Lucan passage, Jesus told Peter alone that he would become a fisher of men.  This contrasted with the Marcan account which included Andrew.  In still another passage peculiar to Luke it was declared that the resurrected Christ appeared to Peter. 
It was Turners belief that Jesus charge to Peter to strengthen the brethren in Luke 22: 31-32 indicated that the Apostle was appointed as the chief Apostle.
Simon, Simon, behold Satan has demanded you (Apostles) for himself, that he sift you as wheat is sifted; but I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not. And thou, so soon as ever thou shalt be converted, establish thy brethren. Whether the brethren are Christians generally, or (as the context suggests) the Apostles in particular, S. Lukes Gospel comes into line with S. Matthew and S. John in thus assigning to our Lord a solemn commission of leadership---we might almost say of authority---to His chief Apostle. 
Peters divinely appointed primacy was thought to be one of leadership, approximating one of authority. In the former instance Turner apparently meant that Peter was only the spokesman and representative of the Apostles, whereas in the latter he would have authority over them.
It was noted that the Johannine Gospel accorded the same prominence to Peter as contained in the other Gospel accounts. This was said to have special significance since the Fourth Gospel was rather independent of the Synoptics.
The witness of Matthew 16:17-19, Luke 22:31-32, and John 21:15-17  was held to reflect the teaching that Peter was the chief of the Apostles. This was said to be the constant tradition of the primitive Church. 
Turner observed that both Peter and Paul were the prominent figures in the Acts of the Apostles, but it was Peter who was pre-eminently so. In chapter 15, for example, Peter rather than Paul secured the freedom of the Gospel which would be preached to the Gentiles. 
As we have seen, Turner was reluctant in his first essay to state that Peters primacy was one of authority. But such hesitancy was absent in his second.
In the previous paper we considered, on the basis of all four Gospels, S. Peters position as leader and spokesman of the Apostles, and on the express testimony of three of themthe fourth being defective at the point where its evidence may well have reinforced theirsthe commission to Peter, by express words of Christ, of a place of unique authority, whether in relation to the other Apostles or to the Christian community as a whole. 
With the exception of Spencer Jones, this position was more advanced than that found in the works of the other scholars cited in our study. As will be recalled, several perceived a primacy of leadership or honor for Peter, but no primacy of authority or jurisdiction.
In the Pauline epistles also Turner believed that the concept of Petrine primacy was maintained. This was seen, for instance, in Galatians 1:18. Here Paul spoke of going to Jerusalem to visit Peter in order to learn from him alone about the ministry and Christs teaching  Paul also spoke of the risen Lord first appearing to Peter, then to the Twelve. 
Galatians 2:8 declared that Peter was entrusted with the Jewish mission, just as Paul was entrusted with preaching the Gospel to the Gentiles. This, said Turner, indicated that both Apostles in this respect had equal authority. But the author added that in the context of all of Pauls epistles it was clear that in Pauls mind Peter held a primacy among the Apostles and in the Church. 
Among the Fathers, it was noted that Cyprian taught that what Peter was among the Apostles, the Bishop of Rome was among the college of bishops. But Turner believed that Cyprian did not make any distinction in authority or dignity between Peter and the others. Both Peter and his successor in Rome were held to be only the symbols and sources of unity among the Apostles in the first instance, and among the bishops in the second. In each case there was a college and a head, but the head could not act independently of his colleagues. 
We have seen elsewhere, however, that Cyprian clearly taught that the pope as the successor of Peter, differed in authority and dignity from the other successors of the Apostles. In his treatise on Church unity, for example, he maintained that whoever deserted the Chair of Peter was no longer in the Church.  And in his Epistle 59, the Bishop of Rome was spoken of as the one bishop who for the time was judge in the Church in the place of Christ.  These writings indicate a belief in both a Petrine and a papal primacy of authority.
It was Pope Damasus in the fourth century, Turner thought, who made an unwarranted development in the tradition of the Petrine primacy. This pope began to claim that the See of Rome was the exclusive inheritor of all and more than all that the New Testament tells us of the prerogative of S. Peter. 
In response to this, it will be recalled from the writings of Tertullian and Firmilian in the third century that the popes of their day claimed, as the successors of Peter, to exercise a primacy of jurisdiction over the Church. 
Belief that the Bishops of Rome were the successors of Peter was present at least as early as the second century, as we learn from Irenaeus.  And the actual exercise of juridical primacy by a pope occurred in the very first century.  This evidence, bolstered by explicit testimony of the Fathers and the early general councils, lends credence to the constant claims of the Church of Rome.
In our analysis of Turners essays, we detected an ambivalent attitude by the scholar towards Peters primacy. In one instance the primacy was thought to be only one of honor, yet very closely approximating one of authority. But in the other instance, the primacy was clearly held to be one of authority.  In light of his interpretation of Cyprian and Damasus however, Turner in the last analysis seemed to favor only a primacy of honor.
9. S. Herbert Scott
Another work dealing with the question of papal primacy was written by S. Herbert Scott and published in book form in 1928. It was originally a doctoral thesis written for Oxford University.
Scott graduated from Durham Theological School in 1895, and received his doctorate from Oxford in 1926. Priested in 1901, he was an army chaplain from 1908-1912. The rest of his ministry was spent principally in parish work. Among his other publications were Anglo-Catholicism and Reunion (1923) and General Councils and Anglican Claims (1927).
In the work of the papacy it was Scotts conviction that during the period of the early undivided Church, eastern as well as western Christians professed belief in the divinely bestowed primacy of the papacy. He observed that Cyril of Alexandria held the Bishops of Rome to be the inheritors of Peters primacy of authority.  He was also convinced that other eastern bishops attending the Council of Ephesus believed in the popes primacy of jurisdiction. Among them were Eutherius of Tyana and Helladius of Tarsus.
In a letter written after the council to Pope Sixtus III (432-440), these two prelates sought the popes aid against what they believed to be Monophysitism. They said that it was their duty to appeal to the Bishop of Rome whom God appointed as pilot of the Church. They were confident that the pope would punish and correct the heretics in a manner agreeable to God. They noted that the apostolic see on several occasions reformed that which needed reform in order that the universe might be protected. The pope on this occasion was asked to help the entire world; both the portion in error, and the rest which needed papal protection against those who sought to force compliance to heretical doctrine 
Scott concluded that from the letter Eutherius and Helladius believed that the pope was the divinely appointed pilot of the Church charged with guarding the faith, condemning false teaching, correcting abuses, and imposing punishments. He was also believed to be the receiver of appeals from the entire world. 
During the Council of Ephesus, the author noted that both Pope Celestine and the papal legates made bold assertions for the papal primacy. The legate Philip, for example, exclaimed that the council bishops joined themselves to Celestine their head who was the successor of Peter, the head of the Apostles and of the whole faith.  Scott, therefore, thought it significant that there was a complete lack of protest to the claims by the council, which was taken to be indicative of an acceptance of the papal position. 
The author held that the bishops at Ephesus conceived their duty as not only to register Celestines judgment against Nestorius, but also to manifest their concurrence with it to the world. 
It was pointed out that many Anglicans believed Leo I was the first Roman pontiff to assert a divinely authorized primacy of authority over the Church. Scott, however, maintained that the same assertion was made at least as early as the second century by Pope Victor and was repeated by other pre-Leonine popes such as Stephen, Julius, Damasus, Innocent I, and Boniface. 
Canon 28 of the Council of Chalcedon, according to Scott, dealt with the patriarchal position of the See of Rome, not with its jurisdictional primacy. Therefore, it was not to be regarded as a denial of the latter. 
It was also observed that the same bishops who ratified Canon 28 also sent the letter to Pope Leo seeking confirmation of their action,  since they regarded him as the head of the Church and the divinely authorized guardian of the Vine. 
It was noted that after the pope refused to confirm the canon, the emperor remarked that Leo acted in a manner fitting for the Bishop of Rome. Furthermore, Scott observed that Anatolius, the Archbishop of Constantinople who was adversely affected by the papal judgment, stated that he would obediently obey all that Leo commanded.  And he added that all the value of the canon depended upon the popes confirmation and sanction. 
As for those things which the universal council of Chalcedon recently ordained in favor of the Church of Constantinople ( ) it was the most reverend clergy of the Church of Constantinople who were eager about it ( ). Even so the whole force and confirmation of the acts was reserved for the authority of your blessedness. 
In Scotts opinion these words of Anatolius and those of the emperor and the other bishops reflected a belief in the popes primacy of jurisdiction.
Leo, according to the author, did not regard Canon 28 as a threat to papal supremacy. Actually, his concern was that it gave an unwarranted second place of honor to Constantinople, thus jeopardizing the traditional honor rendered to Alexandria and Antioch as patriarchal sees. 
In the conclusion of his study, Scott maintained that in the early centuries the testimony of the ecumenical councils in particular demonstrated that the whole Catholic Church believed in the papal primacy of jurisdiction. Moreover, it was held by the early Church that the primacy was inherited from Peter, who, in turn, received it from Christ. 
We have seen that the results of Scotts research paralleled those of Spencer Jones. For ecumenical reasons, it is of critical importance to note that these two Anglicans were led to accept on scholarly grounds the Roman Catholic doctrine of the papacy, rather than the traditional Anglican views.
10. The Seventh Lambeth Conference (1930)
On July 7, 1930, the Seventh Lambeth Conference convened. The Archbishop of Canterbury and president of the conference was Cosmo Gordon Lang.
Lang, (1864-1945) was raised as a Scottish Presbyterian. He became an Anglican while attending Oxford in 1889, and was ordained priest in 1891. He returned to Oxford to teach theology in 1893, remaining there for three years. In 1908, Lang became archbishop of York and was translated to Canterbury in 1928. He resigned his see in 1942.
In the conference encyclical, the bishops spoke of the life-long union of husband and wife upon which Christ decisively placed his seal, as the ideal of marriage.  Here, we see repeated the constant teaching of the Lambeth Conferences that the matrimonial bond was only ideally indissoluble, as opposed to being indissoluble by nature. This position, as we noted earlier in our study, paralleled that of classical Protestantism rather than the teaching of the early undivided Church.
In the area of contraception, however, previous conferences upheld the traditional Catholic doctrine by their condemnation of the practice as immoral and unnatural. This conference, on the other hand, reversed the earlier position. It held that other methods than complete abstinence could be employed if there were moral reasons present for avoiding parenthood  In contrast to past conferences, there was no censure of contraceptives except for the unmarried.  This naturally indicated that conferences approval of their use by the married.
A conference committee dealing with the problem of birth control stated that it could not condemn the use of scientific methods to prevent contraception, which are thoughtfully and conscientiously adopted.  Here, clearly, contraceptive techniques and devices were included.
This was a significant departure from traditional Catholic and Anglican doctrine, which indicated the difficulty experienced by Anglican bishops in reflecting, with one voice, the mind of Christ in a vital aspect of Matrimony. Obviously, both positions could not be correct, yet Anglicans looked to their bishops for orthodox doctrine in both faith and morals.
With respect to the practice of abortion, however, the 1930 Conference condemned it, thus echoing the traditional Christian teaching maintained by earlier conferences.
In the encyclical of the 1930 Conference, a proposed Church of South India was discussed. If it became a reality, Anglicans in South India would unite with Wesleyan Methodists and the South India United Church which consisted of Congregationalists and Presbyterians. This would be the first union of a portion of the Anglican Communion with non-episcopal Churches.
The Lambeth fathers however envisioned some difficulties with the proposal inasmuch as actual unity of faith and order was not expected to be accomplished until after several stages of anomalies and irregularities were traversed.  At the end of this process, the bishops hoped that only those things which were of God in the several traditions would remain. Until such was achieved, they said that the Anglican Communion could not give its approval.
The bishops were especially concerned that provision was made for only a limited number of episcopally ordained clergy in the initial stages of the united Churchs existence. If such should prove to be the case, said the prelates, non-episcopally ordained clergy would not be allowed to minister in the Anglican Communion. 
It can be seen, therefore, that the conference sought to cling to the principle of the historic episcopate and an episcopally ordained clergy. But it did not state whether the basis for this position was a belief in the necessity of bishops, priests and deacons, to the exclusion of other forms of ordained clergy. It is possible that at least some of the bishops sought only to retain a good but non-essential custom, thus not really subscribing to the doctrine of apostolic succession.
In a resolution, the conference expressed its gratitude for the Malines Conversations, since they were an opportunity for separated parts of the Body of Christ to seek the removal of error and misunderstanding. 
A committee report mentioned the recent papal encyclical Mortalium Animos (1928). The members of the committee were saddened by the fact that the encyclical declared that the absorption of non-Roman Catholic Churches by the Church of Rome was necessary for unity.  The members also repeated the conviction, found in the committee reports of earlier conferences, that there could be no genuine Christian unity which did not include the Church of Rome.
A conference resolution dealing with the Old Catholic Church stated that there was nothing in the Declaration of Utrecht inconsistent with the teaching of the Church of England.  This is significant since the Declaration, an Old Catholic profession of faith, acknowledged a primacy of honor for the Bishop of Rome.  As we have seen, this concept reflected the thinking of scholars such as Lacey, Williams and Kidd.
It has been shown that the Seventh Lambeth Conference stressed the necessity of the historical episcopate and maintained that only episcopally ordained clergy could be included in united Churches involving Anglican participation. The conference also bore indirect testimony to a belief in a papal primacy of honor.
The conferences appreciation of the Malines Conversations revealed a desire for the Anglican Communion to deal ecumenically with Roman Catholicism so that error and misunderstanding might be removed.
In the course of this chapter, new insights into the nature of Petrine authority emerged. Earlier, with the exception of Jones, Peter was thought to possess at most a primacy of honor among equals. Lacey however hinted, and Turner and Scott affirmed, that Peter had a divinely bestowed primacy of authority over his fellow Apostles (although Turner did so ambivalently).
In the area of papal authority proper, Scott alone accepted the doctrine of the Church of Rome. The other scholars made allowance at most for a papal primacy of honor among equals. Of these, only Williams believed that this primacy was inherited from Peter. The usual opinion was that it was due to the secular greatness of the city of Rome and to the unique association of Peter and Paul with the Roman see.
A significant aspect of this chapter was the almost constant ecumenical outlook of both scholars and the Sixth and Seventh Lambeth Conferences towards the Church of Rome. In general, there was no evident desire to substitute papal primacy for episcopal primacy. Nevertheless, a groundwork was being laid by which the problem of Church authority could be examined more thoroughly and in charity by succeeding scholars and conferences.
Footnotes Chapter III
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