Why did the RCC not accept the canons of the Council of Constantinanople of 381 until 1295?


#1

I had always thought that all the councils were accepted by the Western church but then I found that the ecuminical council of Constantinople of 381 - 4 canons were not accepted until 1295. What about the creed which established then that I hear recited in Mass. Did the RCC not accept that until then either?


#2

If you mean the Nicene Creed with flioque, the Vatican did not accept it until 1014.

Btw, the Fathers of Constantinople I were not in communion with Rome at the time.


#3

I think the flioque was added before 381. There were some significant changes to the creed without changing the substance of the Nicene Creed. 381 was centered around the Holy Spirit and his role in the trinity. It seemed to be a compromise between The perspective by Gregory of Nizianzus and the Macedonians or the Pneumatomachians. I guess Rome didn’t like the idea of the Bishop of Constantanople being regarded as 2nd to Rome making the historical Metropolis centers of Christianity like Alexandria and Antioch take a back seat to the new city. But what about the Creed?
I see that you are orthodox? Is that right? Why were the eastern Churches so strongly in support of Anomoeanist?


#4

No. A couple centuries after. At a local council, way out in Spain.

There were some significant changes to the creed without changing the substance of the Nicene Creed. 381 was centered around the Holy Spirit and his role in the trinity. It seemed to be a compromise

No, with all the fighting between the homoousians and homoiousians, Arians, etc. no, compromise was not on the agenda.

between The perspective by Gregory of Nizianzus and the Macedonians or the Pneumatomachians. I guess Rome didn’t like the idea of the Bishop of Constantanople being regarded as 2nd to Rome making the historical Metropolis centers of Christianity like Alexandria and Antioch take a back seat to the new city

.
Rome was worried about the new capital being made equal to her.

But what about the Creed?
I see that you are orthodox? Is that right? Why were the eastern Churches so strongly in support of Anomoeanist?

Why was the Western Church so strongly in support of Pelagianism. It wasn’t, it just so happened that the Pelagians were from the West.
The Anomoeanians appeared in the 350s and quickly died out like the rest of the Arians, in the East (the West was a different story) soon after Constantinople I. So why do you pick them out?


#5

I didn’t purposely pick them out. Just in my reading it seemed that they were a seriously contentious issue leading up to the council of 381 creating their own councils and forcing out Athenasius from Alexandria. Maybe it was the way the author put the issue. I’m just trying to get a grasp on how everything played together. It seems that the author show a lot of discord from the eastern churches. I know that before Ambrose there were some serious issues with the church in Milan.

I don’t think with the creed of Constantinople you find the Holy Spirit being Homoosiuos with Jesus or the Father but it does say Jesus became incarnate from the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary. Which is why I gathered the author Leo Donald Davis and JND Kelly thought it may have been some comprimise going on. I’m just following their thoughts.

Yes, I’m sure Rome had a problem with Constantanople having the possibility of becoming ahead of Rome since the western part of the empire was in decline and the eastern part would become prominant in the world there by giving the Papa there prominance as well. But I find it strange too that the Bishop of Rome was used as the court of appeals for the churches then. That would seem to give Rome the authority it claims (from Peter) How then do the Eastern churches fall out of communion with it. I do know Bruno had a lot to do with it and the crusaders. You can probably guess I’m an arm chair historian rather than an academic but as I try to put things together in my mind I have questions.


#6

Yes, Council of Toledo, 6th century IIRC.

Even then, it seems to have been added in accidentally. I.e. the Council of Toledo thought that the Greek equivalent of “filioque” had been in the original Greek text.

(We do know, however, that the filioque was added in deliberately by about 800, if not sooner, because we know that Pope Leo III specifically instructed the Carolingians to not do so.)


#7

This was true.

At least until Latin military conquered Constantinople and the surrounding Greek territories. Once Latin bishops were firmly in control of Constantinople with the support of the police the church had this to say in 1215AD:

*Renewing the ancient privileges of the patriarchal sees, we decree, with the approval of this sacred universal synod, that after the Roman church, which through the Lord’s disposition has a primacy of ordinary power over all other churches inasmuch as it is the mother and mistress of all Christ’s faithful, the church of Constantinople shall have the first place, the church of Alexandria the second place, the church of Antioch the third place, and the church of Jerusalem the fourth place, each maintaining its own rank.

*[FONT=Arial]What can they mean by renewing if Popes never approved of this before? An admission that Rome’s opposition had no affect in all of those years? This is quite a reversal of an 800 year old adamantly held position. Of course, the wording of this document goes a long way to explaining why they were not able to hold on to all those Greek Catholic faithful they had suddenly acquired.

They were presenting myth to the public as if it were fact.

Rome had ordinary power only as far as it could project the blade, and no further. Relying on this was ultimately a real admission of the bankruptcy of their position. Once the Latin states collapsed, so did the authority of the Papal installed patriarch who was quickly abandoned by the local flock (and who subsequently left the country to become an empty title).

The bishops of Rome never had ordinary authority over any section of the eastern churches, at any time before the schism.
[/FONT]


#8

yes, and he put the silver plates on St. Peter’s and St. Paul’s. Leo forbade the addition of “filioque” to the Nicene Creed which was added by Franks in Aachen in 809. He also ordered that the Nicene creed be engraved on silver tablets so that his conclusion might not be overturned in the future. He wrote «HAEC LEO POSUI AMORE ET CAUTELA ORTHODOXAE FIDEI» (I, Leo, put here for love and protection of the Orthodox Faith)(VITA LEONIS, LIBER PONTIFICALIS (Ed.Duchene, TII, p.26)


#9

If that is the case then why was the bishop of Rome the Appelate court (so to speak) at that time. We see in our culture that the supreme court is the final court of appeals and therefore has authority. Would not the same view be held in regard to settiling dispute?


#10

No, because Ecumenical Councils are above Rome, shown by the facts that the Second was held by those condemned by Rome, the Third over someone whom Rome had already condemned, the Fifth held over Rome’s objection (and him being struck from the diptychs), the Sixth condemned Rome.


#11

I don’t know if you know. But what about the Creed of 381 it is different than the Nicene creed. Though it is the Creed of 381 I’m more familiar with since it closely resembles the creed now used. Did the RCC not hold to that before 1295? Still Though the ecuminical councils hold the authority the Bishop of Rome was consulted on matters regarding appeals there must be some greater authority there right?

Nicene Creed: We believe in one God the Father Almighty, Maker of all things visible and invisible; and in one Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, begotten of the Father, only begotten, that is from the substance of the Father, God from God, Light from Light, True God from True God, begotten not made, of one substance with the Father, through Whom all things were made. Who for us men and for our salvation came down and became incarnate, and was made man, and suffered and rose on the third day, and assended into heaven, and is coming again with Glory to judge the living and the dead, and in the Holy Spirit. But those who say, there was when God was not, and before he was begotten he was not, and that he came into being from things that are not, or that he is of a different hypostais or substance, or that he is mutable or alterable, the Catholic and Apostolic Church anathemizes- Leo Donald Davis The First Seven Ecumenical Councils 325-787 Their history and theology

Creed of 381: We believe in One God the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth and of all things visible and invisible; and in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son of God, begotten from the Father before all ages, Light from Light, True God from True God, begotten not made, of one substance with the Father, through Whom all things were made, who for us men and our salvation, came down from heaven, and became incarnate from the Holy Spirit and the Virgin Mary, and was made man, and was crusified for us under Pontius Pilate, and suffered and was buried, and rose the third day according to the scriptures, and assended into heaven and sit on the right hand of the the Father, and is coming again with glory to judge both living and dead, Whose kingdom shall have no end; And in the Holy Spirit the Lord and giver of life, who proceeds from the Father, who with the Fahter and the Son is jointly worshipped and jointly glorified, who spoke through the prophets; in one Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church; we acknowledge one baptism for the remission of sins, we look for the ressurection of the dead, And the life of the world to come. Amen. - ibid

The current version: We believe (I believe) in one God, the Father Almighty, maker of heaven and earth, and of all things visible and invisible. And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God, and born of the Father before all ages. (God of God) light of light, true God of true God. Begotten not made, consubstantial to the Father, by whom all things were made. Who for us men and for our salvation came down from heaven. And was incarnate of the Holy Ghost and of the Virgin Mary and was made man; was crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate, suffered and was buried; and the third day rose again according to the Scriptures. And ascended into heaven, sits at the right hand of the Father, and shall come again with glory to judge the living and the dead, of whose Kingdom there shall be no end. And (I believe) in the Holy Ghost, the Lord and Giver of life, who proceeds from the Father (and the Son), who together with the Father and the Son is to be adored and glorified, who spoke by the Prophets. And one holy, catholic, and apostolic Church. We confess (I confess) one baptism for the remission of sins. And we look for (I look for) the resurrection of the dead and the life of the world to come. Amen."


#12

The problem with that sentence is that the Creed of 381 is still used.


#13

Ok. It still for me resembles the creed I’m familiar with. Yet it still doesn’t answer my question if the Oriental Council was not accepted until 1295 then was the Creed used in the RCC? Surely it must have been with the Orthodox but what about the RCC?


#14

Stated that way, I have no problem with that sentence. :slight_smile:

Rome accepted the First Council of Constantinople (381) as ecumenical long before 1295. The issue was just with one canon.


#15

The third canon? But that’s not what davis says:

It’s second president, Gregory of Nazianzus, was not in western eyes the legitimate Bishop of Contantinople. Strong doubts were later expressed about the authenticity of its creed. Its canons were rejected in the west for nine hundred years- Leo Donald Davis The First Seven Ecumenical Councils (325-787) their history and theology - the Liturgical Press Collegeville Minnesota 1983

Since Davis does not list the third canon I can only assume that the RCC has never accepted it.


#16

Sorry, I may have misspoken. I thought the issue was with just Canon 28.

I’m afraid I’m not really familiar with the claim that “its canons were rejected in the west for nine hundred years.” I did discover that what you quoted is also quoted by Montalban in post #434 of the “Papal prerogatives” thread. If I have a chance, I might try and read some of that thread. (I think I’d skip over the first 433 posts. :))


#17

I don’t believe your history is correct.

The only canon that was controversial was canon 3, the one where Constantinople claimed a rank higher than that established by the Council of Nicea.

Canon 3 was was rejected by the papal legates at the Council of Chalcedon. St. Leo the Great (Ep. cvi in P.L., LIV, 1003, 1005) declared that this canon has never been submitted to the Apostolic See and that it was a violation of the Nicene order. The other canons sumbitted were never disputed.

Moreover, at the Eighth Council of Constantinople in 869, the Roman legates acknowledged Constantinople as second in patriarchal rank. This was still not an acceptance of canon 3 of Constantinople I, per se, because canon 3 (and canon 28 of Chalcedon) put forth an improper reason which linked primacy to secular importance of the city of Constantinople. This was absurd reasoning, as the primacy of See of Peter comes from God, not secular authority. This was admitted to by the fathers of the Council of Chalcedon.

Observe, from the Council of Chalcedon, session 3:

Wherefore the most holy and blessed Leo, archbishop of the great and elder Rome, through us, and through this present most holy synod together with the thrice-blessed and all-glorious Peter the Apostle, who is the Rock and foundation of the Catholic Church, and the foundation of the orthodox faith, hath stripped him (Dioscorus, Bishop of Alexandria) of his episcopate, and hath alienated from him all hieratic worthiness." (Acts of Chalcedon, Session 3)

Also, from the letter to Pope Leo from the fathers of Chalcedon:

"You are set as an interpreter to all of the voice of blessed Peter, and to all you impart the blessings of that Faith. … (Chalcedon to Pope Leo, Ep 98)

Besides all this, he (Dioscorus, Bishop of Alexandria) extended his fury even against him who had been charged with the custody of the vine by the Savior. We refer to Your Holiness. … (ibid)

Knowing that every success of the children rebounds to the parents, we therefore beg you to honor our decision by your assent, and as we have yielded agreement to the Head in noble things, so may the Head also fulfill what is fitting for the children. (ibid)

Thus, it was “the Savior” who charged the Bishop of Rome with “the custody of the vine,” called elsewhere the “Head” by the fathers of Chalcedon, who referred to themselves as “the children.”

In fact, Patriarch Anatolius of Constantinople, after the Council of Chalcedon, admitted to Pope Leo that the acts of the council had no force whatsoever unless ratified by the Bishop of Rome.

"As for those things which the universal Council of Chalcedon recently ordained in favor of the church of Constantinople [ie. canon 28], let Your Holiness be sure that there was no fault in me, who from my youth have always loved peace and quiet, keeping myself in humility. It was the most reverend clergy of the church of Constantinople who were eager about it, and they were equally supported by the most reverend priests of those parts, who agreed about it. Even so, the whole force of confirmation of the acts was reserved for the authority of Your Blessedness. Therefore, let Your Holiness know for certain that I did nothing to further the matter, knowing always that I held myself bound to avoid the lusts of pride and covetousness.

(Patriarch Anatolius of Constantinople to Pope Leo, Ep 132, on the subject of canon 28 of Chalcedon)

Why would Chalcedon submit canon 28 (substantively repeats canon 3 of Constantinople I), if canon 3 was already ratified by the Pope? Why, in fact, would they send the canons of Chalcedon for ratification to the Bishop of Rome, if he did not have the authority to either ratify or veto the canon? That they sent these canons to Leo alone for ratification shows a primacy of both jurisdiction and honor.

Nonetheless, the 2nd rank in primacy of Constantinople was again acknowledged by Roman legates in 1215, at the Fourth Lateran Council, still not accepting the prior argument linking such rank to secular influence.

If you follow the East’s reasoning to its logical conclusion, why should the See of Constantinople be of any importance today? Surely the city is no longer the seat of any secular importance, right? Russian Orthodox have made this same claim, saying that their See is the New, New Rome, since the Byzantine Empire has fallen. Yet, the Bishop of Washington D.C. could probably claim that it is the New, New, New Rome since that city is the seat of the modern day hegemony.

However, the above only illustrates the absurdity of linking secular hegemony with ecclesiastical primacy, and the acceptance of the primacy of the Roman Pontiff, even in matters of jurisdiction (ratification or veto of ecclesial canons).


#18

I don’t see how Davis can be correct.

According to Photius (Mansi, III, 596), Pope Damasus (d. ca. 383) approved the council. It is ambiguous, however, what canons were approved, exactly. Clearly, according to extant writings of Pope Leo (d. ca. 461), not all the canons were forwarded to the apostolic see. Probably the creed was ratified.

Pope St. Gregory (d. 604), and according to him Vigilius (d. 555) and Pelagius II (d. 590), recognized it as sacred general council, but only in its dogmatic utterances (P.G., LXXVII, 468, 893).


#19

Look at Canon 28 itself. It repeats that New Rome its position as capital, There is also another canon how the ecclesiastical status follows the civil status of the city. (Sorry, the ccel website is down, otheriwise I’d post).

Observe, from the Council of Chalcedon, session 3:
Also, from the letter to Pope Leo from the fathers of Chalcedon:
Thus, it was “the Savior” who charged the Bishop of Rome with “the custody of the vine,” called elsewhere the “Head” by the fathers of Chalcedon, who referred to themselves as “the children.”

In fact, Patriarch Anatolius of Constantinople, after the Council of Chalcedon, admitted to Pope Leo that the acts of the council had no force whatsoever unless ratified by the Bishop of Rome.

Anatolius’ career makes me question anything he said: he took advantage of the deposition of Flavian by his mentor Pope Dioscoros, and then manuveurs to have Dioscoros deposed, and consecrate a new patriarch for Antioch. His crowning of the emperor is the first such instance.

Why would Chalcedon submit canon 28 (substantively repeats canon 3 of Constantinople I), if canon 3 was already ratified by the Pope? Why, in fact, would they send the canons of Chalcedon for ratification to the Bishop of Rome, if he did not have the authority to either ratify or veto the canon? That they sent these canons to Leo alone for ratification shows a primacy of both jurisdiction and honor.

Couple problems:
the canons in question are not the only repititions among the canons.
The Church had been implementing canon 3 since Constantinople I. Even Leo, deriding Ephesus II as a Robber Council, asks why Flavian of Constantinople did not preside instead of Dioscoros of Alexandria, according to their rank.
Leo himself writes to the emperor and empress complaining that his own bishops our ignoring his veto and implementing canon 28.
The canons, btw, were always sent to each of the patriarchates. Rome wasn’t exceptional in that.

Nonetheless, the 2nd rank in primacy of Constantinople was again acknowledged by Roman legates in 1215, at the Fourth Lateran Council, still not accepting the prior argument linking such rank to secular influence.

It stamped the secular influence: at the time of Lateran IV, the Crusaders had set up the Latin empire at New Rome.

If you follow the East’s reasoning to its logical conclusion, why should the See of Constantinople be of any importance today?

The same why Rome was: at the time of Nicea I Rome was no longer the capital, and by Nicea II, it was just barely a village.

Surely the city is no longer the seat of any secular importance, right? Russian Orthodox have made this same claim, saying that their See is the New, New Rome, since the Byzantine Empire has fallen. Yet, the Bishop of Washington D.C. could probably claim that it is the New, New, New Rome since that city is the seat of the modern day hegemony.

However, the above only illustrates the absurdity of linking secular hegemony with ecclesiastical primacy, and the acceptance of the primacy of the Roman Pontiff, even in matters of jurisdiction (ratification or veto of ecclesial canons).

The prestige accrued during their heyday (e.g. the saints who occupied their throne) also play their part.


#20

I know. That’s why it was rejected, like canon 3 of Constantinople I. Its a ridiculous reason for ecclesial primacy. Today, the city of Constantinople (or its empire) doesn’t even exist, so its primacy should be nil according to this absurd reasoning. Antioch and Alexanderia had primacy after Rome at Nicea, yet because of civil influence, they dropped in ecclesial influence. What a strange by-product of ceasaropapism. On the contrary, Peter’s successor is the Roman Pontiff, and his primacy is due to the will of the Savior, not the city’s place in secular culture.

Anatolius’ career makes me question anything he said

Regardless, at the time of Chalcedon, it was not only Rome who affirmed a primacy of both honor and jurisdiction, but this was also the Patriarch of Constantinople’s view, the revisionist claims to the contrary notwithstanding.

The Church had been implementing canon 3 since Constantinople I.

As I stated above, the papal legate recognized the primacy of the Patriarch of Constantinople, second only to Rome, over time, but never recognized the faulty reasoning put forth by canon 3 of Constantinople or canon 28 of Chalcedon.

The canons, btw, were always sent to each of the patriarchates. Rome wasn’t exceptional in that.

LOL :smiley: They didn’t send them begging ratification of the acts by the “Head” (pope of rome) so as to favor the “children” (fathers of Chalcedon). They didn’t write to every bishop telling them that unless ratified by them, the acts of the council have no force whatsoever. Yet this is exactly the singular authority Roman Pontiff had in relation to ecclesial councils.


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