The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is the world's largest Christian church, reporting more than a billion members. Led by the Pope, it defines its mission as spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ, administering the sacraments and exercising charity.

The Catholic Church, also known as the Roman Catholic Church, is the world's largest Christian church, reporting more than a billion members. Led by the Pope, it defines its mission as spreading the gospel of Jesus Christ, administering the sacraments and exercising charity.

The Catholic Church is among the oldest institutions in the world and has played a prominent role in the history of Western civilisation. It teaches that it is the one true Church founded by Jesus Christ and that its bishops are the successors of Christ's apostles and the Pope of St. Peter.

Catholic doctrine maintains that the Church is infallible when it dogmatically teaches a doctrine of faith or morals. Catholic worship is centred on the Eucharist in which the Church teaches bread and wine are supernaturally transubstantiated into the body and blood of Christ.

The Church holds the Blessed Virgin Mary in special regard. Catholic beliefs concerning Mary include her Immaculate Conception without the stain of original sin and her bodily Assumption into heaven at the end of her earthly life.

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