• Christ made Peter the leader and the first pope.
• Christ made Peter the ultimate authority and leader of the church.
• Peter became the first bishop of Rome, making Rome and the bishop of Rome the head of the true church.
• This authority, leadership, and infallibility is passed on to Peter’s successors—the popes.
Then there was James who was known as the brother of the Lord. For he too was called Joseph’s son, and Joseph, Christ’s father, though in fact the Virgin was his betrothed, and before they came together she was found to be with child by the Holy Spirit, as the inspired Gospel narrative tells us. This James, whom the early Christians surnamed the Righteous because of his outstanding virtue, was the fi rst (as the recorders tell us) to be elected to the episcopal throne of the Jerusalem church. (19)
Peter, James and John, after the Ascension of the Savior, did not claim preeminence because the Savior had especially honored them, but chose James the Righteous as Bishop of Jerusalem…James the Righteous, John, and Peter were entrusted by the Lord after his resurrection with the higher knowledge. They imparted it to the other apostles, and the other apostles to the seventy. (20)