The Church… though disseminated throughout the world, carefully guards this preaching and this faith, which she has received, as if she dwelt in one house. She likewise believes these things as if she had but one soul and one and the same heart; she preaches, teaches and hands them down harmoniously, as if she possessed one mouth. For though the languages of the world are dissimilar, nevertheless the meaning of tradition is one and the same.
To explain, the churches which have been founded in Germany do not believe or hand down anything else; neither do those founded in Spain and Gaul or Libya or in the central regions of the world. But just as the sun, God’s creation, is one and the same throughout the world, so too, the light, the preaching of the truth, shines everywhere and enlightens all men who wish to come to a knowledge of the truth. Neither will any of those who preside in the churches, though exceedingly eloquent, say anything else, for no one is above the Master; nor will a poor speaker subtract from the tradition. For, since the faith is one and the same, neither he who can discourse at length about it adds to it, nor he who can say only a little subtracts from it.
St. Irenaeus of Lyons Against the Heresies1.10.2