Is the Magisterium infallible?
Does the Magisterium….?
A. always teach infallibly
B. sometimes teach infallibly and other times teach non-infallibly
C. always teach fallibly
A. No. I think this is heresy.
B. Yes. The Magisterium teaches infallibly through defining statements of Papal infallibility and Ecuminical Councils and non-infallibly through the Universal Magisterium. The UM can also teach infallibly if their teachings are proven and tested over time.
C. Individual bishops and the pope can teach fallibly such as during talks and in books etc. or on things of a speculative nature. The purpose of the Magisterium is as a final authority to settle contentious opinions within the body of Christ so as to lead the faithful to salvation. Thus the Magisterium cannot always teach fallibly. Its purpose is quite the opposite.
A. It is material heresy to say that the Magisterium always teaches infallibly, or to say that the Papal Magisterium always teaches infallibly. Vatican I infallibly taught the criteria under which the Pope teaches infallibly; to say that the Pope always teaches infallibly is to contradict the dogma on papal infallibility taught by Vatican I.
B. Yes, the Pope teaches infallibly through papal infallibility (i.e. solemn definitions), and an Ecumenical Council can teach infallibly also by solemn definitions. The Universal Magisterium always teaches infallibly; if a teaching has not been taught widely enough, i.e. universally, in the Church, then it would not fall under the UM at all.
The Ordinary Magisterium teaches non-infallibly, i.e. with limited possibility of error.
The Magisterium always teaches either infallibly or non-infallibly.
The fallible theological and personal opinions of the Pope or of the Bishops is not an act of the Magisterium. All are free to disagree.
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