of the New Testament period. How were they different from each other, and what elements did they share?
McBrien states ‘Throughout the period covered by the New Testament there were both diversity and development in the various local churches … On the other hand, one can also find some degree of unity within the various ecclesiologies of the New Testament’. (McBrien, 23) Diversity and development also marked the post-biblical period before Vatican I.
This essay will demonstrate a critical perspective on fundamental ecclesial themes in the New Testament and of major historical landmarks influencing the Catholic Church’s development.