Statue of Saint Dominic in the Church of Santa Sabina in Rome

Today's Quote:

The Pope has no authority from Christ in temporal matters, in questions of politics.... His authority is ecclesiastical authority; it goes no further than that of the Church herself. But even in religious matters, the Pope is bound, very considerably, by the divine constitution of the Church. There are any number of things that the pope cannot do in religion. He cannot modify, nor touch in any way, one single point of the revelation Christ gave to the Church; his business is only to guard this against attack and false interpretation. We believe that God will guide him that his decisions of this nature will be nothing more than a defense or unfolding of what Christ revealed. The pope can neither make nor unmake a sacrament; he cannot affect the essence of any sacrament in any way. He cannot touch the Bible; he can neither take away a text from the inspired Scriptures nor add one to them. He has no fresh inspiration nor revelation. His business is to believe the revelation of Christ, as all Catholics believe it, and to defend it against heresy.... The Pope is not, in the absolute sense, head of the Church; the head of the Church is Jesus Christ our Lord.... The Pope is the vicar of that head, and therefore visible head of the Church on earth, having authority delegate from Christ over the Church on earth only.... If the Pope is a monarch, he is a very constitutional monarch indeed, bound on all sides by the constitution of the Church, as this has been given to her by Christ. --Fr. Adrian Fortescue (England's greatest liturgical historian, 1874-1923), The Early Papacy to the Synod of Chalcedon in 451 (St. Austin Press, 1997), pp. 27-28