The Anglican Tradition does not believe, as Rome does, that the totality and completeness of the whole Catholic Church on earth is contained in and comprehended by the See of Rome. We cannot say, as Rome does, that the Papal Communion is coterminous and coextensive with the One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church.
The Church Catholic is not identified with or synonymous with the Roman Communion in an exclusive sense, and yet this is precisely what Rome claims for herself. According to Rome, those Churches in communion with the Pope are the Church, and uniquely the Church qua Church. We find that proposition an inadmissible and flatly anti-historical claim. The Papal Church also professes that the Bishop of Rome is infallible ex cathedra, from St Peter's Chair, and exercises a ministry of infallible teaching in faith and morals apart from the consensus of the Catholic episcopate. Rome also contends that the Bishop of Rome possesses universal and immediate jurisdiction over every Church and Christian on earth, disregarding the ancient sees and dioceses which have historically constituted Catholic communion. We maintain that papal infallibility ex consensu ecclesiae and papal universal jurisdiction are contrary to Scripture and Apostolic Tradition. We assert that the Pope is not above Tradition and the Ecumenical Councils, and cannot legislate doctrine in opposition to received universal Tradition or the consensus patricum and consensus ecclesiae.
Saint Cyprian of Carthage teaches that the Chair of Peter, the Petrine ministry, is really the Apostolate, the undivided episcopate of the whole Catholic Church: every bishop of the one Church is 'Peter' and shares in the Petrine commission and authority because of episcopal consecration. No one bishop can claim to be the successor of St Peter in an exclusive sense, because it is the episcopate itself, the apostolic college of bishops, which holds the priesthood, authority and consecration of St Peter.
Saint Gregory the Great, a Bishop of Rome, states there is no such thing as a 'supreme bishop' or a 'bishop of bishops' above the episcopal college.
The Bishop of Rome is indeed the Bishop of Rome, no more, no less, a chief representative bishop of the Catholic world. His role is analogous to that exercised by Peter amongst the Twelve. He is a representative voice, a spokesman, a primate, first amongst equals, primus inter pares. He holds the 'primacy of love' proclaimed by St Irenaeus of Lyons, the 'primacy of honour' affirmed by Saint Cyprian. The Pope is a Vicar of Christ, but not in a unique or exclusive sense again, for every bishop, every latter-day Apostle in the episcopal college, is a Vicar of Christ, the sacramental representative of Our Lord in his local particular Church. For his Diocese, every bishop is Peter, every Bishop is the Apostle. And, according to Sacred Tradition, all bishops are equal in sacramental power and jurisdictional canonical authority within their own local Churches. Such has always been the consentient teaching of the orthodox and catholic Church of Christ.
The modern Papal Claims are just that, modern. The dogmas of papal infallibility ex cathedra and the immediate and universal jurisdiction of the Pope were created at the First Vatican Council of 1870. They are neither universally-received nor ancient. They are novelties, innovations added to the Catholic Faith. Rome has the essential Faith of the Catholic Church, but has added to it that which it should not.
No doubt every Christian heart ought to be filled with longing for union of the Churches, and especially the whole Orthodox world ardently longs for the unity of the Churches in the one rule of faith, and on the foundation of the Apostolic doctrine handed down to us through the Fathers, ‘Jesus Christ Himself being the chief corner stone.’ Agreeably, therefore, to this sacred longing, the Orthodox Church is always ready to accept any proposal of union, if only the Bishop of Rome would shake off once for all the whole series of the novelties that have been privily brought in to his Church, and have provoked the sad division of the Churches of the East and West, and would return to the basis of the Seven Holy Ecumenical Councils, which, having been assembled in the Holy Spirit, of representatives of all the holy Churches of God, for the determination of the right teaching of the faith against heretics, have a universal and perpetual supremacy in the Church of Christ.