The question of how, precisely, one is to understand the concept of “primacy” in the Church continues into the present age. As the Catholic and Orthodox Church continue to dialogue, this issue, which has been a central factor in the division between the two, will continue to be a point of discussion. Most catechumens can probably end this post here, with the awareness that the issues behind the Great Schism (A.D. 1054) continue to be wrestled with today.
For those who prefer to delve into the contemporary issues in more depth, I have three links below. Thank you to Randy, a catechumen, for pointing out the third link from the Ecumenical Patriarch’s website. There is a considerable amount of “theological” language in these texts and the arguments are, in places, fairly nuanced.
First, in 2007, representatives from the Orthodox and Catholic Church met for “theological dialogue” between the two. In October of 2007, in Ravenna, the commission unanimously approved the following document, translated into English and available on the Vatican website. While the entire document is interesting, for the purpose of “universal primacy,” see, especially, points 35ff.
Secondly, the Moscow Patriarchate of the Russian Orthodox Church was not present at the meetings and, after reviewing the Ravenna document, took issue with some of the points. They published a response to the document:
Thirdly, the Ecumenical Patriarchate published a response to the Moscow Patriarchate on their concerns with the Ravenna document.A Response to the Text on Primacy of the Moscow Patriarchate