A SLIGHT DISAGREEMENT
Catholic Church was at first viewed as a sect of the Jewish religion
since most of her members were Jews. They were called "Nazareans."
Then Helenists (Greeks) began to enter the Church.
the preaching of Stephen, the ire of the Jewish people turned on the
nascent religion, forcing the first Christians to flee from
Jerusalem to Samaria and Antioch. It was at this time that Saul,
later on to be St. Paul, became the fiercest persecutor of Christ's
disciples. But, struck down on the road to Damascus, Saul became the
foremost proponent of the Gospel.
vision confirmed to Peter that the Gospel was not only for the Jews
but for all. Then he saw Cornelius, who was not a Jew, receive the
was in Antioch, where many of the Helenists had taken refuge, that
the disciples were called "Christians." From Antioch, the
evangelization of the Roman Empire began.
the Jewish Christians were slow in abandoning their Jewish
practices, like circumcision and dietary prohibitions. They even
imposed these practices on the Gentile Christians. To settle this
once and for all, the apostles met in Jerusalem and decreed that
Jewish practices were not to be imposed on Gentile Christians,
though Jewish Christians were to continue some of these Old
Testament practices since they did not go against the new commands
of the New Testament, like abstaining from eating blood of animals.
states that this is the way the Gospel spread: Mark is said to have
gone to Egypt where he founded the Church of Alexandria. Thomas
preached to the Parthians, Matthew to Ethiopia, Bartholomew went to
upper India. Andrew to Scythia and John to Asia. Peter preached in
Pontus, Galatia, Bythinia, Cappadocia and Asia.
of Caesarea "Ecclesiastical History"