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A History Of The Church In Nine Books by Sozomen

IN consequence of this law, Meletius returned about this period to Antioch in Syria; and his presence gave rise to great contentions. Paulinus, whom Valens from veneration for his piety had not ventured to banish, was still alive. The partizans of Meletius, therefore, proposed his association with Paulinus in the government of the church. This was opposed by the followers of Paulinus, who condemned the ordination of Meletius, because it had been conferred by Arian bishops. The other party, however, possessing the advantage in point of strength, placed Meletius over a church in the suburbs of the city. The mutual animosity of the two parties increased, and sedition would doubtless have been the consequence, had not means been devised for the restoration of concord. Flavian and five of the clergy who were in expectation of eventually being elected to the episcopal dignity, promised that they would not accept this office during the life of Paulinus and Meletius, and that in the event of the decease of either of these great men, the other should succeed to the bishopric. On their ratifying this promise with oaths, unanimity was restored among the people, and no further dissension remained except among a small party of Luciferians, who contended that Meletius had been ordained by heretics. On the termination of this contest, Meletius proceeded to Constantinople, where some bishops had assembled together to deliberate on the necessity of translating Gregory from the bishopric of Nazianzen to that of this city.








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