Catholic Answers Press

Pope Peter: Defending the Church's Most Distinctive Doctrine in a Time of Crisis

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  • Discover the essence of the papacy—from controversy to conviction—with Pope Peter by Joe Heschmeyer.
  • Uncover the truth behind centuries of papal history and doctrine in Pope Peter, a compelling defense of Catholicism’s defining authority.
  • Dive deep into the biblical roots and historical context of the papacy with Pope Peter, illuminating its enduring significance.
  • Explore the complexities of Catholicism's central authority in Pope Peter, offering clarity amidst controversy and critique.
  • Strengthen your faith in the Church's foundation with Pope Peter—a compelling journey through the papacy's challenges and triumphs.
  • Pope Peter offers a compelling defense of the papal office, drawing on scripture and history to reaffirm its spiritual importance.
  • Navigate the controversies surrounding the papacy with Pope Peter, revealing its profound role in the Catholic faith.


The papacy is no stranger to controversy.

In many ways it’s Catholicism’s defining doctrine—but also its most divisive. From medieval pontiffs who acted like princes to a modern pope whose every casual statement sets off a social-media firestorm, there has been plenty for non-Catholics to criticize and for the faithful to feel anxious about.

We profess that Jesus made St. Peter the visible head of his Church on earth and that his successors throughout the ages are guided by the Holy Spirit to govern, teach, and sanctify it. How can we strengthen this belief in the papacy in the face of challenges (both outside the Church and within it) and so strengthen our faith in the One who instituted it?

In Pope Peter, Joe Heschmeyer says that papal flaws are an opportunity to understand what the papacy really means, not to abandon it (or the Church). Drawing deeply on the scriptural and historical witness, he offers a thorough but accessible defense of the papal office and an edifying picture of the extent—and limits—of its authority.

Jesus made Peter the Rock of the Church and promised that the gates of hell would not prevail against it. Pope Peter will confirm your faith in that promise and help you proclaim its truth to others.

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Additional Information

Joe Heschmeyer
Softcover Book, 280 pages
Other Formats:
ebook|/pope-peter-defending-the-churchs-most-distinctive-doctrine-in-a-time-of-crisis-digital/, Audible|
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10 Reviews

  • 5

    Pope Peter

    Posted by Daniel A Self on Oct 19th 2023

    Stunning... Absolutely stunning work of scriptural exegesis and Catholic Apologetic! As a new convert I found this book amazingly helpful in understanding the scriptural foundation for the Papacy.

  • 5

    Pope Peter

    Posted by Jose Rodriguez on Aug 31st 2022

    Gives a great teaching as to why we have a pope and how it is biblical. A great read!

  • 5

    Great Insights on the Establishment of the Papacy

    Posted by Steve D on May 10th 2022

    I really enjoyed this book as it provided compelling evidence on various levels in support of the papacy. I especially enjoyed the section explaining the meaning of Peter using the coin from the fish's mouth to pay the Temple tax for Jesus and himself. This story from the Bible was always very confusing for me. This is just one example of the many ways the book defends the primacy of Peter. It is an excellent resource for understanding more about the origins of the papacy as well as defending the Catholicism.

  • 5

    Mind blown

    Posted by Angela on Feb 17th 2022

    My jaw dropped when Joe explained Jesus tethering himself to Peter in Matthew 17:24-27. So grateful to learn more about the biblical support for the papacy. Love you guys!

  • 5

    Well written book

    Posted by Michael Chatterson on Feb 15th 2022

    I have just started to read the book, but I can already tell this book is written in manner that all can understand, i.e. doesn't take a degree in philosophy to understand. I am hoping this book will help my daughter who has left the Church for a large non-denominational church. She now seems confused on what the Catholic Church is and why all churches are not equal. I think this book will help straighten out some of the confusion.

  • 5

    Pope Peter

    Posted by Carla on Oct 9th 2021

    I could not put this wonderful book down. Very well written, logical and brilliant! The author explained difficult passages of the Bible and the importance of having a Christ appointed head of authority over His Church. I purchased additional copies to share with my friends and family - God bless.

  • 5

    One of My Favorites

    Posted by Austin Wright on Mar 17th 2021

    This book brought me to a deeper understanding of the papacy and a newfound love and connection to St. Peter. It feels like the rock of the Church was placed under my feet providing more confidence in the fullness of truth present in the Catholic Church. It's become one of my favorite books. I have been recommending to all of my Protestant and Catholic friends who have questions and struggles.

  • 5

    Papal Primacy

    Posted by Stephen Griffin on Dec 11th 2020

    I strongly recommend that you buy this book - I bought two copies. It is lucidly written - clean, very readable. Great tool for discussing the issue with Catholics and non-Catholics alike.

  • 5

    Not Just The Well Known Arguments

    Posted by Chris Morris on Nov 14th 2020

    As a person that considered himself well versed in the arguments to be made in defense of the Papacy I was reluctant to buy this. I am glad I did as the author does not rely on the traditional defenses of the Papacy. He brings to light a series of other arguments that are equally powerful and then caps them off with the ones we all know. I was humbled and you can ask my wife and she will tell you that is not easy. Thank you Joe for both writing the book and reminding me that no how much you may know there is always more to learn and someone out there to teach you.

  • 5


    Posted by Mark Fiedeldey on Jul 6th 2020

    Awesome. Simply Awesome. Mr. Heschmeyer is an excellent writer. He argues logically based on historical record and reasoning. Which I would expect from a trained litigator. Rock solid and indisputable. Thanks a bunch. Mark

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