The name Apostolic Fathers was first applied in 1672 to a group of five writers who were taken either to have been in touch directly with some of the original Twelve Apostles or, in the next generation, to reflect the teaching of their immediate successors: Clement of Rome (fourth in the list of Popes), Ignatius (second bishop of Antioch), Polycarp of Smyrna (recorded as a disciple of the evangelst John), "Barnabas" (reputedly St. Paul's co-worker), and a Hermas, associated, though wrongly, with Hermas of Romans 16.14. With the later addition of Papias of Hierapolis and the unknown writer of the Epistle to Diognetus, the number of the Apostolic Fathers rose to seven; a final addition to the group was the Didache, a brief, early manual on morals and Church practice. Anything but homogenous in origin, form, and purpose, and ranging widely in all of these respects, these writings are of prime importance for the understanding of the Church around the year 100 A.D. Unless it be the Apostles' Creed itself, nothing precedes them in the development of Patrology.
The Apostolic Fathers
[The Apostolic Fathers]
The Catholic University of America Press
Year of publication:
Requires prior general knowledge of the subject.
Readers with knowledgeable about the subject matter.
Contains doctrinal errors of some importance.
Whilst not being explicitly against the faith, the general approach or its main points are ambiguous or opposed to the Church’s teachings.
Incompatible with Catholic doctrine.
Ideas that contradict Church teaching:
The rating of the different categories comes from the opinion of Delibris' collaborators
Author: Redacción Delibris, Italy, 2020