To a Catholic: Where was Peter's church located before it was established in Rome?

What I mean, naturally, is where was Peter's church located while he resided as the first pope? Anyone have any definite location?

9 Answers

  • 8 years ago
    Favorite Answer

    Where did Jesus reside? Why did Peter need to have a particular residence?

    Peter spread the Gospel all over the lands between Jerusalem and Rome for many years without having his own "Church."

    Peter's office was given to him personally by Jesus Christ and is in effect where he happened to be.

    John 21:15-17 states:

    When they had finished breakfast, Jesus said to Simon Peter, "Simon, son of John, do you love me more than these?" He said to him, "Yes, Lord, you know that I love you." He said to him, "Feed my lambs."

    He then said to him a second time, "Simon, son of John, do you love me?" He said to him, "Yes, Lord, you know that I love you." He said to him, "Tend my sheep."

    He said to him the third time, "Simon, son of John, do you love me?" Peter was distressed that he had said to him a third time, "Do you love me?" and he said to him, "Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you." (Jesus) said to him, "Feed my sheep.

    Matthew 16:17-19 states:

    Jesus said to him in reply, "Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah. For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father. And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven."

    The Catholic Church believes the Lord made Simon alone, whom he named Peter, the "rock" of his Church. He gave him the keys of his Church and instituted him shepherd of the whole flock.

    The Pope is the senior pastor of 1.1 billion Catholic Christians, the direct successor of Simon Peter.

    The Pope’s main roles include teaching, sanctifying, and governing.

    For more information, see the Catechism of the Catholic Church, section 880-882:

    With love in Christ.

  • 8 years ago

    Top Reporter: Thats were you are wrong he was killed in Rome. He is know by both Cephas, aramaic for rock and Peter, greek for the same. His brother was Andrew who was also an Apostle. Paul was a natural wonderer and yes he went were the wind blew him.

    The Basillica of St Peter is built were Peter was buried after having been crusified upside down. The reason he was crusified in this way is because he did not feel that he was good enough to died in the way Christ died. As to where the early church was it would have been whereever Peter was preaching and did not have a set place. The Church was officially estabilshed many years later by Constantinople in Constantinople better known as the old City of Istanbuhl. In the mean time the Church would have moved from house to house and area to area. It could not have been in one place as it would have made them targets.

  • 8 years ago

    By tradition -- families handing down stories from one generation to another -- we know one of the first Christian churches in Rome was the home of the wealthy Laterani family. That home became a basilica, and St. Peter celebrated the sacrament of holy Eucharist there during his lifetime.

    Watch the movie Quo Vadis for a dramatization of sorts.

    The Vatican is where Peter was crucified and buried (cast outside the Vatican Circus -- a horserace track where Nero murdered Christians. A shrine grew around Peter's burial site, eventually Constantine the roman emporer erected the Vatican cathedral there, it was rebuilt in the 16th Century to present splendour, and Peter's bones were exhumed during WWII.

    Back to the Laterani family. Their house became the Basilica of St. John Lateran, and it is the official cathedral church of the Bishop of Rome, which is what the popes are. That started during the days of St. Peter and has existed in the Catholic Church for more than 2,000 years. There is a website

    God is praised in that church all day every day. For 2,000 years. And it's been blessed beyond human estimation. Many people think the pope's church is the Vatican, but it isn't. It's the old Laterani house. The Vatican is a gift of and by the Catholic Church for the whole human race: Christian, Jew, Muslim, Hindi, Buddhist or non-believer.


    Just re-read your question. Another take is clear from the Gospels. The word "church" or "ecclesia" referred to the coming together of followers of Christ to break bread (eucharist). The word is only used twice in the Gospels, both times in Matthew, and, I believe Chapter 16. It is a foreshadowing of the Eucharist, which is one of the many basises that Catholics have to know that the Catholic Church is authentically original and of Jesus Christ and St. Peter and the whole Apostolic thang (and yes, that includes the orthodox churches which grew because that side of the former Roman Empire was dominated by Islam and Sharia Law and communications with the Greek-speaking East were very difficult for the Latin-speaking West (Rome). Especially when the entirety of the barbariian hoards were sacking your city and taking over the empire. Paul however uses the word ecclesia all the time to refer to the celebration of Eucharist. When Christ instituted this sacrament on Holy Thursday to replace the blood sacrifice of the lamb that the Jews had been practicing since the days of Egyptian enslavement, He was showing the most import of Gods works that humans could participate in. Which is why it grieves so many Catholics that the world after the 16th Century started spinning the sacrament based opinions (theological). Most Protestants in this country have no idea how few they are, but the many, the Catholic Church, is a constantly growing force, not a stagnant world of opinion that keeps subdividing within itself. What is constant in the Catholic Church however is the breaking of the bread, the Eucharist, as a timeless paschal sacrifice that Jesus Christ humbled himself to so that all humans could have access to be as God made us to be: in unity with him forever. Scott Hahn, the evangelical Christian who does a great job of explaining Revelations (google his website and listen to him), shows how the Eucharist is explained allegorically by the youngest apostle, John, who took care of Mary until her Blessed Assumption into Heaven. In Acts, and in the Epistles of Paul, we learn the defining meaning of church is where Eucharist is PROPERLY celebrated by the ordained ministry from the Apostles (Corinthians, Phillipians). For whatever reason, God chose the Roman Empire to bring us Jesus Christ. For whatever reason, God chose a backwater of the Roman Empire, and a stable manger and a refugee mother and father. For whatever reason, that reality is the most influential reality ever to squash a boson beneath His feet. What is of this earth that is holy is the Catholic Church. To fight that nowadays you have to willfully disrespect the largest, most effective charitable force the world has ever known, you have to hunt up reasons to disrespect Mother Church and then you have to gravitate towards bigotry and ignorance. The Father of Lies will be waitiing there with open arms and a big smile. Wither goest Simon Peter, the Rock? whewwwwwwwwww =) He went straight into the heart of the beast and converted an empire. Not bad for a capitalist selling fresh fish and bacala. Eat up y'all and be in Him.

  • 8 years ago

    1] Ancient cave Church of St Peter in Antioch, Syria which govt closed it due to hazzard conditions

    2] Concrete and massive evidence from the Church history by Eusebius:

    >>And they say that Peter — when he had learned, through a revelation of the Spirit, of that which had been done — was pleased with the zeal of the men, and that the work obtained the sanction of his authority for the purpose of being used in the churches. Clement in the eighth book of his Hypotyposes gives this account, and with him agrees the bishop of Hierapolis named Papias. And Peter makes mention of Mark in his first epistle which they say that he wrote in Rome itself, as is indicated by him, when he calls the city, by a figure, Babylon, as he does in the following words: “The church that is at Babylon, elected together with you, salutes you; and so does Marcus my son.”

    If you read further, Eusebius even wrote the successors of St Peter, e.g. Linus & Clement, disciple of Christ; thus constitute the uninterrupted papal successions.

    It was also known while Peter n Paul were in Rome, they were still hiding from persecutions, thus were teaching in the houses of the christians at that time; e.g. in the house of Cornelius, a rich roman soldier, house of Pesca and Priscilla, which lies at the bottom of the St Peter Basilica. Even the ancient chair of Peter is still there in the Basilica.


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  • Anonymous
    8 years ago

    There is NO proof that Peter even went to Rome..

    That is a tall claim by Roman Catholics...Only Catholic's revisionist history would say that...No secular historians would agree to that

  • 8 years ago

    Well, I am not a Catholic.

    I just wanted to say that it is 'a wonder' why the Catholic Church wasn't established in Babylon.

    Because THAT is where Peter went,not to Rome. Rome is one of the places the apostle Paul went to:

    . . . As “an apostle to the nations,” Paul journeyed thousands of miles on land and sea, establishing many congregations in the Roman province of Asia and in Greece. (Romans 11:13) He also traveled to Rome and possibly even to Spain.

    Meanwhile, the apostle Peter, entrusted with “the good news . . . for those who [were] circumcised,” traveled in the other direction to serve in Babylon, an important center of Judaism at that time. (Galatians 2:7-9; 1 Peter 5:13) . . .

    “A Witness to All the Nations”

    "The Apostolic Fathers—Truly Apostolic?"

  • 8 years ago

    It was never Peter's church, it was/is Jesus' church and his church is a concept not a building, not people. It is in heaven and always has been.

    Source(s): non-believer if you can believe that :P
  • ?
    Lv 7
    8 years ago

    He went first to Antioch (A.D. 38-44), then to Alexandria, then to Rome where he permanently established his See, as Supreme and Visible Head of the Church.

  • 8 years ago

    According to St. Ignatius (1) the disciple of St. Peter and of St. John in his letter to the Smyrnaeans, "where the bishop is there is the Church". He wrote this at the end of the first century to define the Church as those who gather around the bishop. However, St. Peter was the first to hold the Holy office of prime minister ordained by Christ personally. He was Pope from that moment on. St. Peter established the Church of Antioch and was also its bishop. He then went to Rome (2) and served as the bishop of Rome. St. Peter was crucified in Rome upside down because he requested not to be martyred in the same way as Christ. He is buried under the Peter's Basilica in Rome beneath the altar.

    (1) St. Ignatius was the 3rd bishop of St. Peters bishopric of Antioch. He was subsequently martyred in the Roman coliseum. On his way to Rome he wrote seven letters to the seven congregations of the Catholic Church that give us insight to the practice and beliefs of the 1st century Church as well.

    (2) in the greeting at the end of the first epistle: “The Church here in Babylon, united with you by God’s election, sends you her greeting, and so does my son, Mark” (1 Pet. 5:13, Knox). Babylon is a code-word for Rome. It is used that way multiple times in works like the Sibylline Oracles (5:159f), the Apocalypse of Baruch (2:1), and 4 Esdras (3:1). Eusebius Pamphilius, in The Chronicle, composed about A.D. 303, noted that “It is said that Peter’s first epistle, in which he makes mention of Mark, was composed at Rome itself; and that he himself indicates this, referring to the city figuratively as Babylon.”

    Consider now the other New Testament citations: “Another angel, a second, followed, saying, ‘Fallen, fallen is Babylon the great, she who made all nations drink the wine of her impure passion’” (Rev. 14:8). “The great city was split into three parts, and the cities of the nations fell, and God remembered great Babylon, to make her drain the cup of the fury of his wrath” (Rev. 16:19). “[A]nd on her forehead was written a name of mystery: ‘Babylon the great, mother of harlots and of earth’s abominations’” (Rev. 17:5). “And he called out with a mighty voice, ‘Fallen, fallen is Babylon the great’” (Rev. 18:2). “[T]hey will stand far off, in fear of her torment, and say, ‘Alas! alas! thou great city, thou mighty city, Babylon! In one hour has thy judgment come’” (Rev. 18:10). “So shall Babylon the great city be thrown down with violence” (Rev. 18:21).

    These references can’t be to the one-time capital of the Babylonian empire. That Babylon had been reduced to an inconsequential village by the march of years, military defeat, and political subjugation; it was no longer a “great city.” It played no important part in the recent history of the ancient world. (Catholic Answers)

    God bless!

    In Christ

    Fr. Joseph

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