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infallibility

(ĭnfăl'əbĭl`ətē), in Christian thought, exemption from the possibility of error, bestowed on the church as a teaching authority, as a gift of the Holy Spirit. It has been believed since the earliest times to be guaranteed in such scriptural passages as John 14.16,17. The analogous attribute of the Bible is usually called inerrancy. Protestants widely reject infallibility of the church. The Orthodox Eastern Church holds that only the church, taken as an integral community and spiritual body guided by the Holy Spirit, is infallible. Roman Catholics hold that the infallibility of the church is vested in the pope, when he speaks ex cathedra (i.e., from the chair of Peter, as the visible head of the church) on matters of faith and morals. Definitive pronouncements resulting from an ecumenical council, when ratified by the pope, are also held to be infallible. The pope speaks ex cathedra only rarely and after long deliberation. The dogma of papal infallibility was enunciated by the First Vatican Council (1870).

Bibliography

See B. Tierney, Origins of Papal Infallibility, 1150–1350 (1972).

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References in classic literature ?
It was much later, when reports on the battle of Borodino were written at leisure, that the incorrect and extraordinary statement was invented (probably to justify the mistakes of a commander in chief who had to be represented as infallible) that the Shevardino Redoubt was an advanced post- whereas in reality it was simply a fortified point on the left flank- and that the battle of Borodino was fought by us on an entrenched position previously selected, where as it was fought on a quite unexpected spot which was almost unentrenched.
In fine, Tolstoy is certainly not to be held up as infallible. He is very, distinctly fallible, but I think his life is not less instructive because in certain things it seems a failure.
In his condolence message, the PPP Chairman while paying rich tribute to Justice (Retd.) Shah, said that he had served the country diligently and his services for the country are infallible and would always be remembered.
I am not a pessimist but I do not even trust computers to my cost, and those who say that this form of technology is safe; I would laugh in their face and I could cite many instances where computers are not infallible. I do not even trust water meters.
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His appeal suffers from the same defects as his original, Infallible?: An Inquiry.
Yes, he is the head of the police service in this State, but does that make him infallible? Of course not.
It was Samuel Butler who wrote of dogs that "you may make a fool of yourself with him and not only will he not scold you, but he will make a fool of himself too." He did not reckon with the prissy, annoyingly infallible canine hero of "Mr.
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