I'm less than a day new here, but I'm rather enjoying the intelligent discussion here, and hope people don't mind the presence of an "anti-Catholic fundy" as I've been called before. I hope in the spirit of glorifying our mutual Savior we can at least learn to understand eachother better and at best gain a respect for our differing traditions.
As I've mentioned before, I'm a former Catholic who enjoys apologetic discussions. One of the main topics that Catholics like to bring up about us protestants is that we don't have Apostolic Succession. Personally, I don't believe that bishops are a necessity in the Church. However my question to you all is What does it matter? Why should I as a protestant feel threatened when you tell me that my church doesn't have a validly ordained episcopacy? What do the Roman Catholic and Orthodox churches gain from having their Apostolic Succession?
A bit of trivia, there are a small number of protestant churches with recognized succession. The Church of Sweden is Lutheran, but Rome recognizes them of maintaining the Historic Episcopacy. Also if someone can give me a link to the pre-Vatican II ordination rite, I'd be interested to read that.
Thanks for the help!