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From Encyclopedia Britannica

Catholic Church
The Catholic Church, often referred to as the Roman Catholic Church, is the largest Christian church and the largest religious denomination, with approximately 1.3 billion baptised Catholics worldwide . As the world\'s oldest and largest continuously functioning international institution, it has played a prominent role in the history and development of Western civilisation. The church consists of 24 particular churches and almost 3,500 dioceses and eparchies around the world. The pope, who is the Bishop of Rome (and whose titles also include Vicar of Jesus Christ and Successor of St. Peter), is the chief pastor of the church, entrusted with the universal Petrine ministry of unity and correction. The church\'s administration, the Holy See, is in the Vatican City, a tiny enclave of Rome, of which the pope is head of state. more...

Related Topics: Sacraments of the Catholic Church, Catholicism, Eastern Orthodox Church, Sacrament of Penance, Arianism, Nicene Creed