PONTIFICAL ORTHODOX OLD CATHOLICISM
An Ancient and Modern Ethno-Religious Minority
IMPERIAL ROMAN CHURCH
The historic representative of over 400 million people worldwide, the Stato Pontificio Romano, Imperial Roman Church, and its various components that comprise the modern expression of ancient Pontifical Orthodox Old Catholicism is now a worldwide ethno-religious minority. Its ethnic roots are Latin, Germanic, Central European, and Eastern European. Its religious roots are Roman Catholic, Greek Orthodox, Russian Orthodox, Gallican, Syrian, Anthioch, Chaldean, and Armenian. Diverse ancient ethnic and religious lines converge to create a unique community today. In terms of modern countries, it is associated primarily (though not exclusively) with the heritage of Italy, Spain, Germany, Russia, Greece, Syria, and Armenia.
According to the sociologist Louis Wirth (1945), a minority group can be defined as “any group of people who, because of their physical or cultural characteristics, are singled out from the others in the society in which they live for differential and unequal treatment, and who therefore regard themselves as objects of collective discrimination.” Unfortunately as is so often seen today, the concept of "minority" status is associated with subordination and discrimination. In many cases, minorities are small groups. One indeed need not be a numerical minority, for there are examples of large groups that are nevertheless supressed or exploited by those currently in power.
Today the members of the various parts of the Imperial Roman Church move forward in faith to preserve their heritage and religion, both for the benefit of the world today and for future generations. As an organisation and as an ecclesiastical government, the Church works to end discriminatory and exploitative practices against all marginalised populations around the world.
The Stato Pontificio Romano constitutes an ecclesiastical sovereignty by right of Rome as heir to the Roman Empire with an independent government in special consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council (as the Anglican Rite Roman Catholic Church). Additionally, the church descends from the See of Utrecht, which was granted autonomy in 1145 by Pope Eugene III and confirmed in 1520 by Pope St. Leo X in the Bull Debitum Pastoralis. As the sole successor of Pope St. Leo X and temporal successor of St. Peter the Apostle, the Catholicate and Patriarchate are fully Catholic and holds the same canonical authority as the Roman Communion (Vatican). The Catholicate and Patriarchate are the ecclesiastical successor to temporal Rome, the temporal patrimony of the Roman Empire claimed historically by right of the papacy. The succession passed to the Catholicate after Benedict XVI by right of Rome and Florence, with the Papa-Catholicos of Rome-Ruthenia with papal authority as temporal successor of St. Peter, and the Pope-Bishop of Rome as spiritual successor of St. Peter and de facto sovereign of the Vatican City-State. Although administratively independent, the Apostolic See embraces as brethren other Catholic, Orthodox, and Anglican bodies, such as the current Roman Communion (commonly referred to as the Roman Catholic Church), the Anglican Ordinariate, Eastern Orthodox Churches, and the Anglican Communion. The Imperial Roman Church is defined as the Gallo-Russo-Byzantine Catholicate, the Anglican Patriarchate of Rome, and the churches of all Bishops recognised by the Catholicate. The governments of the modern republics of Italy, German, France, Switzerland, Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, and the United States, and of the modern kingdoms of Great Britain and Spain, as well as the European Union and all other civil states, are not affiliated with the Stato Pontificio government in exile.
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