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Papolatry is defined as an "Excessive reverence for the Pope". If a catholic have an excessive defense for the teachings or moral laws of the Pope (when he contradicts the Deposit of Faith in his interactions, statements, homilies, exhortations, encyclicals, or synods), holding that the Pope cannot be questioned or err.

This believer could be accused of papolatry, so how can he defend himself?

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  • If you vote to close for clarifications, please add what kinds of clarifications or details do you need. Sep 5 '20 at 19:04
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    Ignoring for the moment that you have an axe to grind, does this question about papal infallibility and heresy answer your question? (I'm not the downvoter.) Sep 5 '20 at 19:05
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    Please bear in mind popes may have personal opinions on certain theological subjects. They may even pronounced as such in homilies talks discourses, articles, etcetera. These would not be binding unless spoken ex cathedra.
    – Ken Graham
    Sep 5 '20 at 19:29
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    Anyone can accuse anyone else of idolatry. The accused does not have to argue against the accusation. The accuser is the one who must justify the accusation with firm and undeniable evidence. You need to clarify, with considerable detail, what evidence you are going to bring in order to justify your accusations. You focus on Catholicism but this is a general matter, not restricted to Catholicism at all. A Protestant could be just as easily accused of idolising a Protestant Minister.
    – Nigel J
    Sep 5 '20 at 20:26
  • Who am I to judge?
    – Kris
    Sep 5 '20 at 23:45
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For one thing, "papolatry" was a word invented by anti-catholics not more than 200 years ago, and does not reflect actual Catholic doctrine — unsurprisingly. That is to say, it substitutes a straw man for genuine Catholic doctrine, in order to make it look bad, because the real doctrine doesn't look bad enough — because the real doctrine doesn't demand 'papolatry.' The straw man is implying Catholic doctrine demands that Catholics worship popes, or that everything popes say or do is considered to be infallible and irrevocable.

Since this isn't Catholic doctrine, that is the response or defense: we don't have to defend what we don't believe.

However, there is an actual error among some Catholics ignorant of Catholic doctrine, which is that they will defend everything a pope says as though Catholic doctrine were that everything the pope says or does is infallible or orthodox, which it does not.

Today, if you criticize the last few popes for literally hosting idolatry meetings or kissing the Qur'an, which blasphemes Christianity, you are labelled a heretic by such people. And it's implied that since they cannot be wrong, they were ignorant or naive — but not sinning or giving any harmful impression to the faithful.

This isn't 'papolatry' so much as it's just misunderstanding the doctrine of papal infallibility, which is much more restricted in scope than these people realize.

Suffice it to say, the Church has never taught that popes must be believed absolutely, in every word or action, and thus the defense against this error is simply rejecting the premise of the straw man in the first place.

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Anyone can accuse anyone else of idolatry.

The accused does not have to argue against the accusation.

The accuser is the one who must justify the accusation with firm and undeniable evidence.

You need to clarify, with considerable detail, what evidence you are going to bring in order to justify your accusations.

You focus on Catholicism but this is a general matter, not restricted to Catholicism at all. A Protestant could be just as easily accused of idolising a Protestant Minister

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Cardinal Caffara can be considered a Papalotry or a Papist...

"He said, I was born a Papist, I lived as a Papist and I mean to die a Papist!.. If a Bishop has a thought contrary to that of a Pope- he concluded: he must go away, but really he musylt go away from the diocese. Because he would lead a faithful into a path that is not one with Jesus anymore. Therefore, he would lose himself eternally and would risk the eternal loss of the faithful. "(Cardinal Cafarra)

Therefore, if anyone tells you that you are a Papalotry be thankful because, siding with Pope means" we are united with Christ" as Cardinal Caffara beautifully explained..We don't have to defend ourselves rather we must be thankful because being a Papalotry or a Papist is oneness with Christ..

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