The event horizon of a black hole is where gravity is such that not even light can escape. This is also the point I understand that according to Einstein time dilation will be infinite for a far-away-observer.
If this is the case how can anything ever fall into a black hole. In my thought experiment I am in a spaceship with a powerful telescope that can detect light at a wide range of wavelengths. I have it focused on the black hole and watch as a large rock approaches the event horizon.
Am I correct in saying that from my far-away-position the rock would freeze outside the event horizon and would never pass it? If this is the case how can a black hole ever consume any material, let alone grow to millions of solar masses. If I was able to train the telescope onto the black hole for millions of years would I still see the rock at the edge of the event horizon?
I am getting ready for the response of the object would slowly fade. Why would it slowly fade and if it would how long would this fading take? If it is going to red shift at some point would the red shifting not slow down to a standstill? This question has been bugging me for years!
OK - just an edit based on responses so far. Again, please keep thinking from an observers point of view. If observers see objects slowly fade and slowly disappear as they approach the event horizon would that mean that over time the event horizon would be "lumpy" with objects invisible, but not passed through? We should be able to detect the "lumpiness" should we not through?