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A History Of The Church In Nine Books by Sozomen

ON reflecting that while it was indispensably requisite to check the incursions of the barbarians of the Danube in Thrace and Illyria, his presence was equally necessary in Gaul to repel the inroads of the Alemanni, Gratian associated Theodosius with himself at Sirmich, in the government of the empire. Theodosius belonged to an illustrious family of the Pyrenees in Spain, and had acquired so much renown in war, that before he was raised to the imperial power, he was universally considered capable of guiding the reins of the empire.

At this period all the churches of the East, with the exception of that of Jerusalem, were in the hands of the Arians. The Macedonians differed but little in opinion from those who maintained the doctrines of Nicæa, and held intercourse and communion with them in all the cities; and this had been more especially the case with the Macedonians of Constantinople, ever since their reconciliation with Liberius. But after the enactment of Gratian’s law, by which every sect was permitted the full exercise of its own form of religion, the Macedonians re-took possession of the churches from which they had been ejected by Valens. They assembled together at Antioch in Caria, and protested that the Son is not to be declared “consubstantial” with the Father, but only like unto Him in substance. From that period, many of the Macedonians seceded from the others, and held separate assemblies, while others, condemning this schismatic spirit, united themselves still more closely with the followers of the Nicene doctrines.

Many of the bishops who had been banished by Valens, and who were recalled about this period in consequence of the law of Gratian, manifested no ambition to be restored to the highest offices in the church: on the contrary, they urged the Arian bishops to retain the posts they occupied, and not to rend the church by their love of contention and of personal promotion, or disturb the unity which had been established by God and the apostles. Eulalius bishop of Amasia in Pontus, was one of those who pursued this course of conduct. It is said that when he returned from exile, he found that his church had passed into the hands of an Arian bishop, and that scarcely fifty inhabitants of the city had submitted to the control of this new bishop. Eulalius, desiring the restoration of concord above all other considerations, offered to take part with the Arian bishop in the government of the church, and expressly agreed to allow him the precedence. But as the Arian would not comply with this proposition, it was not long before he found himself deserted by the few who had followed him, and who went over to the other party.








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