Field Marshall Ratzinger today declared that most non-catholic christian denominations could not even be considered churches:he Vatican on Tuesday said Christian denominations outside the Roman Catholic Church were not full churches of Jesus Christ.
The Vatican said other churches are "wounded" since they do not recognize the primacy of the pope.
A 16-page document, prepared by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, which Pope Benedict used to head, described Christian Orthodox churches as true churches, but suffering from a "wound" since they do not recognize the primacy of the Pope.
But the document said the "wound is still more profound" in the Protestant denominations -- a view likely to further complicate relations with Protestants.
"Despite the fact that this teaching has created no little distress ... it is nevertheless difficult to see how the title of 'Church' could possibly be attributed to them," it said.