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Proof of the Papacy From Ephesus to Chalcedon (A.D. 420-500)



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Part 1: in the Ante-Nicene Church (A.D. 00-300)

Part 2: from Nicaea to Constantinople I (A.D. 300-400)

Part 3: from St. Augustine to the Council of Milevis (A.D. 400-420)

Part 4: from Ephesus to Chalcedon (A.D. 420-500)

Part 5: Rome During the Years of the Rising East (A.D. 501-700)

Part 6: The Schism of the Universal Church (A.D. 700-1053)



St. Cyril of Alexandria

“...by the words ‘on this rock I shall build my church’, Christ makes Peter its Pastor, literally he places Peter over it as shepherd [ποιμένα].” (Commentary on Matthew).

“They (the Apostles) strove to learn through one, that preeminent one, Peter.” (Cyril, Ib. 1. ix. p. 736).

“He suffers him no longer to be called Simon, exercising authority and rule over him already having become His own. By a title suitable to the thing, He changed his name into Peter, from the word ‘petra’ (rock); for on him He was afterwards to found His Church.” (Cyril, T. iv. Comm. in Joan., p. 131 [c. A.D. 424]).

“If Peter himself, that prince of the holy disciples, was, upon an occassion, scandalized, so as suddenly to exclaim, ‘Lord, be it far from Thee,’ what wonder that the tender mind of woman should be carried away?” (Cyril, Ibid, p. 1064 [c. A.D. 424]).

“That the Spirit is God we shall also learn hence. That the prince of the Apostles, to whom ‘flesh and blood,’ as the Savior says, ‘did not reveal’ the Divine mystery, says to Ananias, ‘Why hath Satan tempted thy heart’.” (Cyril, T. v. Par. 1. Thesaur. p. 340 [c. A.D. 424]).

“Besides all these, let there come forward that leader of the holy disciples, Peter, who, when the Lord, on a certain occassion, asked him, ‘Whom do men say that the Son of man is?’ instantly cried out, ‘Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.’” (Cyril, T. v. P.2, Hom. viii. De Fest. Pasch. p. 105 [c. A.D. 424])

“‘If I wash thee not, thou shalt have no part with me.’ When the Coryphaeus (Peter) had heard these words, he began to change.” (Cyril, Ib. Hom. [c. A.D. 424]).

“He (Christ) promises to found the Church, assigning immovableness to it, as He is the Lord of strength, and over this He sets Peter as shepherd.” (Cyril, Comm. on Matt., ad loc. [c. A.D. 424]).

“Therefore, when the Lord had hinted at the disciple’s denial in the words that He used, ‘I have prayed for thee that thy faith not fail,’ He at once introduced a word of consolation, and said (to Peter): ‘And do thou, when once thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.’ That is, ‘Be thou a support and a teacher of those who through faith come to me.’ Again, marvel also at the insight of that saying and at the completeness of the Divine gentleness of spirit. For so that He should not reduce the disciple to despair at the thought that after his denial he would have to be debarred from the glorious distinction of being an Apostle, He fills him with good hope, that he will attain the good things promised. …O loving kindness! The sin was not yet committed, and He already extends His pardon and sets him (Peter) again in his Apostolic office.” (Cyril Comm. on Luke’s Gospel [c. A.D. 424]).

“For the wondrous Peter, overcome by uncontrollable fear, denied the Lord three times. Christ heals the error done, and demands in various ways the threefold confession … For although all the holy disciples fled, …still Peter’s fault in the threefold denial was in addition, special and peculiar to himself. Therefore, by the threefold confession of blessed Peter, the fault of the triple denial was done away. Further, by the Lord’s saying, Feed my lambs, we must understand a renewal as it were of the Apostleship already given to him, washing away the intervening disgrace of his fall, and the littleness of human infirmity.” (Cyril, Comm. on John’s Gospel [c. A.D. 424]).

“They (the Apostles) strove to learn through one, that preeminent one, Peter.”(Cyril, Ib. 1. ix. p. 736 [c. A.D. 424]).

“And even blessed Peter, though set over the holy disciples, says ‘Lord, be it far from Thee, this shall be done to Thee.” (Cyril, Ibid. 924 [c. A.D. 424]).

“This bold man (Julian), besides all this, cavils at Peter, the chosen one of the holy Apostles.” (Cyril, T. vi.l. ix. Contr. Julian. p. 325 [c. A.D. 424]).

“He [Jesus] suffers him to be no longer called Simon... He changed his name into Peter, from the word petra (rock); for on him He was afterwards to found His Church.” (Commentary on John).

“Or to show that men being as nought, (as regards human nature, and the proneness of our minds to fall,) it is not meet that they should wish to be above their brethren. Therefore passing by all the others, He comes to Peter, who was the chief of them, saying, But I have prayed for you, that your faith fail not.”

“According to this promise of the Lord, the Apostolic Church of Peter remains pure and spotless from all leading into error, or heretical fraud, above all Heads and Bishops, and Primates of Churches and people, with its own Pontiffs, with most abundant faith, and the authority of Peter. And while other Churches have to blush for the error of some of their members, this [Apostolic Church of Peter] reigns alone, immovably established, enforcing silence, and stopping the mouths of all heretics; and we, from the necessity of salvation, not drunken with the wine of pride, confess, together with it, the formula of truth and of the holy apostolic tradition.” [Pseudo-Cyril, Catena Aurea of St. Thomas on Mt 16:18].

“No marvel if a woman fell into such an error, when even Peter himself, the elect of the holy disciples, was once offended when Christ plainly told him that he would be betrayed.” (Commentary on John's Gospel, Book 12, On John 19:25).

“The divine Word pronounced Peter, the chosen one of the holy apostles, to be blessed. For when, in the parts of Caesarea called Philippi, the Saviour asked "Who do men say that the Son of man is? " . . . he cried out saying " Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God", and speedily received,the reward of his true conception about him, Christ saying "Blessed art thou . . . ", calling, I imagine, nothing else the rock, in allusion to his name, but the inmovable and stable faith of the disciple on which the Church of Christ is founded and fixed without danger of falling.” (On the Holy Trinity, Dialogue 4).

“Therefore, passing over the other disciples, he comes to the Ieader himself, and he says " Often Satan wished that he might sift you as wheat", for proof and trial. For it is Satan's way to attack those of good repute. . . . Therefore when the Lord had hinted at the disciple's denial in the words that he used, "I have prayed for thee that thy faith fail not", he at once introhced a word of consolation, and said: "And do thou, when once thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren." That is, "Be thou a support and a teacher of those who through* faith come to me ". Again, marvel also at the insight of that saying and at the completeness of the divine gentleness of spirit. For so that he should not reduce the disciple to despair at the thought that after his denial he would have to be debarred from the glorious distinction of being an apostle, he fills him with a good hope, that he will attain the good things promised. In fact he says "And when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren ". loving kindness! The sin was not yet committed, and he already extends his pardon and sets him again in his apostolic office.” (Commentary on Luke's Gospel).

“Through the mystical communion of his own body, which is one, he blesses those who believe in him, and he makes us one body with himself and with each other. For who shall divide and eject from a natural union with one another those who through the one holy body are bound up into oneness with Christ? For if "we all partake of the one bread ", we are all made one body. For Christ cannot be divided; therefore the Church is also called " the body of Christ ", and we too are " members in particular ", according to the mind of Paul. For we all, being joined to the one Christ through the holy body (in which we have received in our own bodies him, the one and indivisible), owe our membership more to him than to ourselves. And that while the Saviour is accounted the head, the Church is called the rest of the body, as members joined together, Paul will show by the words : [Eph. 4. 14-16].” (Commentary on John's Gospel, Book 2).

“If anyone brings you a letter purporting to have been written by Philip, most reverend presbyter of the Roman church, and reading just as if the most holy bishop Sixtus had resented the deposition of Nestorius, and had helped him, do not believe it. For he [Sixtus] wrote in harmony with the holy synod, and confirmed all its acts, and is in agreement with us.” (Epistle 40, to Acacius of Melintene [A.D. 434]).

“Take notice then that in conjunction with the holy synod which was assembled in great Rome, under the presidency of our most pious and religious brother and fellow minister, Bishop Celestine, we conjure and counsel you, in this third letter also, to abstain from these mischievous and perverse doctrines, which 'I you both hold and teach, and to adopt in place of them the orthodox faith delivered to the churches from the beginning 1, by the holy apostles and evangelists, who were both eye1 witnesses and ministers of the word. And unless you do this by the time prescribed in the letter of our aforementioned most 1 pious and religious brother and fellow minister, Celestine, bishop of the church of the Romans, know that you have i neither part nor lot with us, nor place nor account among the priests and bishops of God.” (Third Letter to Nestorius, Cum Salvator [A.D. November 430]).

“Cyril sends greetings in the Lord to the most holy and beloved-of-God, the father Celestine. I. . . . It would be more agreeable if we could keep silence, but God demands of us vigilance, and ancient church custom requires me to inform your holiness. . . . I have hitherto observed a profound silence, and have written neither to you nor to any other fellow priest on him who now is in Constantinople and governs the church there, because haste in such a case is a fault; but now that the evil has come to a climax, I feel bound to speak and explain all that has occurred. . . . The people now refuse to assemble at church with him [Nestorius], except a few light-headed ones, and those who take the opportunity to flatter him. Almost all the monasteries along with their archimandrites and many of the senate have stopped going to church for fear of receiving injury to their faith. . . .. Your holiness is also to know that we have all the oriental bishops with us; all are shocked and grieved, especially the bishops of Macedonia. . . . I was unwilling openly to sever communion with him until I had laid these facts before you. Deign therefore to decide what seems right,l whether we ought to communicate at all with him, or to tell him plainly that no one communicates with a person who holds and teaches what he does. Further the purpose of your holiness ought to be made known by letter to the most religious and Cod-loving bishops of Macedonia, and to all the bishops of the East, for we shall then give them, according to their desire, the opportunity of standing together in unity of soul and mind, and lead them to contend earnestly for the orthodox faith which is being attacked. With reference to the matter in hand, our fathers, who have said that the Holy Virgin is Mother of God, are involved in the condemnation, along with us who are here to-day. For although he did not like to do this1 with his own lips, yet by sitting and listening to another, namely Dorotheus, he has encouraged him to do it, for immediately on leaving the throne, I he communicated him at the holy mysteries.. And that your holiness may be well informed about his opinions, and about those of the fathers, I send you the books with the passages marked. I have had them translated as well as could be done at Alexandria. I also send you, by PossiIll '11 ' donius, the letters I have written.” (Letter to St. Pope Celestine [A.D. April 430]).

Marius Mercator

“The same Celestius, thrown out of Constantinople, quickly went to Rome in the time of the late Bishop Zosimus. He was there questioned (according to our copies of the acts), and being terrified by such an examiner, he gave rise to hope by numerous answers, promising that he condemned those chapters about which he was accused at Carthage. For he was earnestly ordered and expected to do so, and for this reason was gently treated by that holy priest, and procured from him a kindly letter to the African bishops, which kindness he still abuses, deceiving the ignorance of many.”

“When the African bishops replied, exposing the whole cause which had been thrashed out there, sending the acts of their councils which had been held about him, whether present or absent, he was then called for a fuller hearing, that he might hasten to fulfil his promise of condemning the aforesaid chapters, and so be absolved from the excommunication he had undergone from the African pontiffs. But not only did he fail to appear, but he fled from Rome, and for this he was condemned by the aforesaid Bishop Zosimus of blessed memory in a very long and complete document. In this document, the chapters of which Celestius was accused are contained, and his whole case, and that of his more depraved master, Pelagius, is narrated. We have copies of these writings, and we note that similar copies were sent to the bishops, to the churches of the East, to the diocese of Egypt, to Constantinople, Thessalonica, and Jerusalem…

“All the above-quoted chapters are contained, as was said, in that letter of the late Bishop Zosimus which is called "Tractoria", by which Celestius and Pelagius were condemned. This letter was sent to Constantinople and throughout the world, and was strengthened' by the subscriptions of the holy fathers. Julian and his accomplices refused to sign it, and to consent to those fathers. They were deposed not only by imperial laws, but also by decrees of the Church, and banished from all Italy. Many of them came to their senses, and, being corrected of their errors, returned as suppliants to the apostolic see, and being accepted received back their churches. Celestius and Pelagius were not for the first time condemned by Zosimus, of blessed memory, but by his predecessor Innocent, of holy record, by whom Julian had been ordained. And Julian after their condemnation, until the death of Innocent, remained in his communion, and persevered in the sound opinion ; and since he communicated with him who had condemned Pelagius and Celestius, doubtless he himself condemned them; and what he wants now, and what he complains of, we do not know.

“...Now when they were condemned by Innocent of holy record, the position was as follows: after the devastation of Rome, Pelagius was living in Palestine. His books were found by certain studious bishops in which he seemed to have written many various things against the catholic faith. These books were sent to Africa with letters to the fathers and bishops, and they were read at three councils which were summoned. After that reports were sent to Rome, and the books were sent there, and an apostolic ruling was returned to the said councils, excommunicating Celestius and Pelagius. I have in my hands a copy of these writings.”

St. John Cassian

“That great man, the disciple of disciples, that master among masters, who wielding the government of the Roman Church possessed the principle authority in faith and in priesthood. Tell us, therefore, we beg of you, Peter, prince of Apostles, tell us how the Churches must believe in God.” (Cassian, Contra Nestorium, III, 12, CSEL, vol. 17, p. 276 [c. A.D. 430]).

St. Maximus of Turin


“This Peter on whom Christ freely bestowed a sharing in his name. For just as Christ is the Rock, as the Apostle Paul taught, so through Christ Peter is made Rock, when the Lord says to him: ‘Thou art Peter and upon this rock I will build My church.’ ” (Homilia LXVIII, Patrologia Latina 57 [c. A.D. 380-465]).

Anonymous

“Whereas divine and fatherly affection has conferred upon us the apostolic leadership4 and has ordained by divine dignity the see of the vicar of the Lords and we bear the original authentic apostolate upon which Christ founded the Church in the person of our predecessor, who received at the same time the power of loosing and binding, and the responsibility of forgiving sins, we are warned by the doctrine of salvation that while we are continually pardoning sinners we ourselves must not be perverted equally with them.

“So, inasmuch as he has appointed us, that is the bishops, to be shepherds of the spiritual shee6,that is the faithful who are placed under our care, let us see to it that no sore of vice be found among them, and let us watch carefully every day that after the heavenly medicine has been applied, their fleece may grow in beauty as they approach the radiance of the garments.

“In the gospel the Lord spoke to Peter. "Peter," he said " lovest thou me? " And Peter answered : " Yea, Lord ; thou knowest that I love thee." And he said : "Feed my sheep. Wherefore since we have received into the heart's guestchamber this bishopric, that is, the Holy Spirit through the imposition of hands, let us show no harshness to our neighbour The Lord warns us and says0: ‘Grieve not the Holy Spirit that is within you’ . .

“And that blessed apostle Paul, the agent, the vicar of Christ, discharging his office in the Church, asserts and says : "Ye are the temple of God, and Christ dwelleth in you." (De Aleatoribus, usually printed with Cyprian’s works [c. A.D. 426, though it could date as early as the middle of the third century]).

Pope St. Celestine I

“We enjoin upon you [my legates to the Council of Ephesus] the necessary task of guarding the authority of the Apostolic See. And if the instructions handed to you have to mention this and if you have to be present in the assembly, if it comes to controversy, it is not yours to join the fight but to judge of the opinions [on my behalf]” (Letters 17, written to Saint Patrick of Ireland, [A.D. 431].

“Take heed that unless you teach, about Jesus Christ our God, what the Roman, Alexandrian, and universal church holds, and what up to your time was held by the Holy Church of Constantinople; and if within ten days after the receipt of this you do not openly and in writing condemn this impious novelty, which tends to undo what the ancient scriptures join, you are excluded from the communion of the whole Catholic Church. We have directed this our sentence to be taken by my son, the deacon Possidonius, with all the documents, to the holy pontiff of the city of Alexandria, my felloiv priest, that he may act in our room; and that our decree may be known to you and to all our brethren.” (Letter to Nestorius [A.D. 429).

“We are replying briefly to your holiness… You ask whether the holy Synod [of Ephesus] ought to receive a man who condemns what it preaches; or, because the time of delay has elapsed, whether the sentence already delivered is in force. Concerning this matter let us consult the Lord in whose worship we are united. Will he not answer us straightway through the prophet, ‘I do not desire the death of the one who dies’; and through the apostle Paul that he ‘willeth all men to be saved and come to know the truth’? Never is a quick repentance displeasing to God in any man.” (Epistle 16, to St. Cyril of Alexandria).

“If he, Nestorius, persists, an open sentence must be passed on him, for a wound, when it affects the whole body, must be cut away at once. For what has he to do with those who are of one mind, he who considers that he alone knows best, and dissents from our faith? Let those therefore remain in our communion whom this man has excluded from communion for opposing him; and tell him that he himself will be unable to retain our communion, if he continues in his way of error, opposing the apostolic teaching. 4. And so, appropriaiing to yourself the authority of our see, and 1 using our position,l you shall with resolute severity carry out this sentence, that eitherhe shall within ten days, counted from the day of your notice, condemn in writing this wicked assertion of his, and shall give assurance that he will hold, concerning the birth of Christ our God, the faith which the Romans, and the church of your holiness, and the universal religion holds; or if he will not do this (your holiness having at once provided for that church) he will know that he is in every way removed from our body. We have written the same to our brothers and fellow bishops John, Rufus, Juvenal, and Flavian, so our judgement about him, or rather the divine sentence of our Christ, may be known.” (Tristitiae nostrae, Epistle 11, to Cyril of Alexandria [A.D. 430]).

The Council of Ephesus (The Third Ecumenical Council)

“We offer our thanks to the holy and venerable synod, that when the writings of our holy and blessed pope had been read to you, the holy members, by our holy voices, you joined yourselves to the holy head also by your holy acclamations. For your blessedness is not ignorant that the head of the whole faith, the head of the apostles, is blessed Peter the apostle. And since now [we], after having been tempest-tossed and much vexed, [have] arrived, we ask that you order that there be laid before us what things were done in this holy synod before our arrival; in order that according to the opinion of our blessed pope and of this present holy assembly, we likewise may ratify their determination’” (Said by the Roman legate Philip, legate of Pope Celestine I at The Third Ecumenical Council, Acts of the Council, Session 2 [A.D. 431]).

‘There is no doubt, and in fact it has been known in all ages, that the holy and most blessed Peter, prince and head of the apostles, pillar of the faith, and foundation of the Catholic Church, received the keys of the kingdom from our Lord Jesus Christ, the Savior and Redeemer of the human race, and that to him was given the power of loosing and binding sins: who down even to today and forever both lives and judges in his successors. The holy and most blessed Pope Celestine, according to due order, is his successor and holds his place in this holy synod, which the most humane and Christian Emperors have commanded to assemble, bearing in mind and continually watching over the Catholic faith..” (Said by the Roman legate Philip during the Acts of the Council, session 3 [A.D. 431]).

“In the most holy church which is called Mary, there were present the bishops Cyril of Alexandria, who also held the place of Celestine, the most holy and devout archbishop of the Roman church….

“Theodotus, bishop of Ancyra, said : "The letter of our most religious and pious father, the bishop Cyril, shows clearly and openly the exposition of the faith by the holy fathers who I met at Nicaea….

“...Taught by the vigour of ancient authority, you have driven from your midst the new doctrines which were not formerly heard by the ears of the Church, and you have withstood any new and similar mistakes. Let not these things be revived which the Church has previously opposed, and, recently rejecting, has defeated by the authority of the aposiolic see, and by the unanimous decision of priests, lest a voice long since swept away might appear to be renewed under the pretext of fresh discussions. . . . For whoever desires that his decrees concerning the catholic faith should be permanent must confirm his opinion, not by his own authority, but by the judgement of the ancient fathers; so that in this way, corroborating his opinions partly by the decrees and sentences of the ancients and partly by those of the moderns, he may show that he asserts, teaches, and holds the one truth of the Church…

“...The holy synod said: "As, in addition to other things, the impious Nestorius has not obeyed our citation, and did not receive the holy bishops who were sent by us to him, we were compelled to examine his ungodly doctrines. We discovered that he had held and published impious doctrines in his letters and treatises, as well as in the discourses which he delivered in this city, and which have been testified. Urged of necessity thereto by the canons, and because of the letter of our most holy father and fellow servant Celestine, the bishop of the Roman church, we have come with many tears to this sorrowful sentence against him, namely that our Lord Jesus Christ, whom he has blasphemed, decrees by the holy synod that Nestorius be excluded from the episcopal dignity, and from all priestly communion. " (Session 1).

“In the episcopal residence of Memnon, there were present the bishops Cyril of Alexandria, who also held the place of , Celestine, the most holy and blessed archbishop of the Roman church ; Juvenal of Jerusalem ; Memnon of Ephesus ; Flavian of Philippi, who also kept the place of Rufus, most reverend bishop of Thessalonica ; and Theodotus of Ancyra in Galatia; and all as related before. Then those who came from the West entered and sat down: the most reverend bishops Arcadius and Projectus, and also the most beloved of God, Philip, a presbyter and legate of the apostolic see. Philip said : "We bless the holy and adorable Trinity that our lowliness has been deemed worthy to attend your holy synod.

“For a long time ago our most holy and blessed Pope Celestine, bishop of the apostolic see, through his letter to the holy and most pious man, Cyril, bishop of Alexandria, gaue judgement concerning the present cause and affair, which letter has been shown to your holy assembly. And now again, for the corroboration of the catholic faith, he has sent through us letters to all your holinesses, which you will bid to be read with I becoming reverence and to be entered on the ecclesiastical minutes." Arcadius and Projectus, bishops and legates of the Roman church, said : "May it please your blessedness to give order that the letter of the holy and ever-to-be-mentioned-with veneration Pope Celestine, bishop of the apostolic see, which has been brought by us be read, from which your reverence will be able to see what care he has for all the churches. . . ." And afterwards the most holy and beloved-of-God Cyril, archbishop of the church at Alexandria, spoke as is next in order. He said: "Let the letter of the most holy and most I blessed Celestine, bishop of the apostolic see of Rome, be read to the holy synod with due honour." Siricius, notary of the holy catholic church of the city of Rome, read it. And after it had been read in Latin . . . all the most reverend bishops asked that it should be read in Greek. . . . Arcadius and Projectus . . . said : "The letter has been translated into Greek, and if you so command, let it be read." . . . Peter, presbyter of Alexandria and senior notary, read :A synod of priests gives witness to the presence of the Holy Ghost. For true is that which we read, since the truth cannot lie, to wit, the promise of the gospel: "Where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them." And since this is so, if the Holy Ghost is not absent from so small a number, how much more may we believe he is present when so great a multitude of holy ones are assembled together!

“For he wills that all of us should form that office which he thus entrusted in common to all. We must needs follow our predecessors. Let us all, then, undertake their labours, since we are the successors in their honour. And we show forth our diligence in preaching the same doctrines that they taught, besides which, according to the admonition of the apostle, we are forbidden to add aught. For the office of keeping what is committed to our trust is no less dignified than handing it down. . . . We must strive in common to keep the faith which has come down to us to-day through the apostolic succession. For we are expected to walk according to the apostle. For now, not our appearance, but our faith is called in question.

“Let us be unanimous, thinking the same thing, for this is expedient; let us do nothing out of contention, nothing out of vain glory; let us be in all things of one mind, of one heart, when the faith which is one is attacked.

“Owing to our anxiety, we have sent our holy brethren and fellow priests, who are at one with us and are most approved men, Arcadius and Projectus, the bishops, and our presbyter, Philip, that they may be present at what is done and may carry out what things have been already decreed by us. To the performing of which we have no doubt that your holinesses will assent when it is seen that what has been decreed is for the security of the whole Church.

“And all the most reverend bishops at the same time cried out : "This is a just judgement. To Celestine, the modern Paul! To Celestine, the guardian of the faith! To Celestine, of one mind with the synod! To Celestine the whole Synod offers its thanks One Celestine! One Cyril! One faith of the Synod! One faith of the world! " Projectus, the most reverend bishop and legate, said : " Let your holinesses consider the form of the writings of the holy and reverend Pope Celestine, the bishop, who has exhorted your holinesses (not asif teaching theignorant, but as reminding them that know) that those things which he has long ago dejined, and now thinks it right to remind you of, you may command to be carried out to the uttermost, according to the canon of the common faith, and according to the use of the Catholic Church." Firmus, the bishop of Caesarea in Cappadocia, said : "The apostolic and holy see of the most holy bishop Celestine has previously given a decision and formula in this matter, through the writings which were sent to the most God-beloved bishops, to wit, to Cyril of Alexandria,' and to Juvenal of Jerusalem, and to Rufus of Thessalonica, and to the holy churches both of Constantinople and of Antioch. This we have also followed and . . . we carried into effect the formula, having pronounced against him a canonical and apostolic judgement." Arcadius, the most reverend bishop and legate, said: " Although our sailing was slow, and contrary winds hindered us, so that we did not know whether we should arrive at our destination as we hoped, nevertheless by God's good providence . . . "

“Wherefore we desire to ask your blessedness that you command that we be taught what has been already decreed by your holinesses. " Philip, presbyter and legate of the apostolic see, said : "We offer thanks to the holy and venerable synod, that when the letter of our holy and blessed Pope had been read to you, you holy members by your holy voices joined yourselves to the holy head also by your holy acclamations. For your blessedness is not ignorant that the blessed apostle Peter is head of the apostles and of the whole faith. We insignificant ones have now arrived after a stormy voyage and much hardship, and we request you give an order that those matters dealt with in this holy synod before our arrival be put before us, so that we too may ratify the decisions, in agreement with the opinion of our blessed Pope and of this holy assembly here present."

“Theodotus, bishop of Ancyra, said : "By the letter of the most religious bishop Celestine, and by the coming of your holinesses, the God of the universe has shown the sentence of the synod to bejust. For you have shown the zeal of the most holy and reverend bishop Celestine, and his care for the pious faith. And since, very reasonably, your reverence wishes to learn, from the minutes of the acts, what has been done about the deposition of Nestorius, your reverence will be fully convinced of the justice of the sentence, and of the zeal of the holy synod, and the harmony of the faith which the most pious and holy bishop Celestine has proclaimed with a great voice. Of course, after your full conviction, the rest shall be added to the acts." (Session 2)

“Philip, presbyter and legate of the apostolic see, said : "We have read the acts and we have learnt what your holy synod has done in the case of Nestorius. From the minutes we find that everything has been carried out according to the canons and the discipline of the Church. And although it may be useless, we also seek from your honour that the documents read in your synod may now again be read to us also, so that we may follow the formula of the most holy Pope Celestine (who committed this care to us) and of your holiness, and may be able to confirm the decisions.

“Philip, presbyter and legate of the apostolic see, said : " There is no doubt, and in fact it has been known in all ages, that the holy and most blessed Peter, prince and head of the apostles, pillar of the faith, and foundation of the Catholic Church, received the keyr of the kingdom from our Lord Jesus Christ, the Saviour and Redeemer of the human race, and that to him was given the power of loosing and binding sins: who, even to this time and always, lives and judges in his successors. Our hob and most blessed Pope Celestine the bishop is according to due order his successor and holds his place, and he sent us to supply his presence in this holy synod which the most humane and Christian emperors have convened, bearing in mind and continually guarding the catholic faith. For they both have kept and are now keeping intact the apostolic doctrine handed down to them from their most pious and humane grandfathers and fathers of holy memory. . . . Accordingly the decision of all the churches is-firm, for the priests of the eastern and western churches are present in this priestly gathering either themselves or certainly by their legates. . . . 'And his bishopric, another will take'. Wherefore Nestorius knows that he is alienated from the communion of the priests of the Catholic Church.

“Cyril, bishop of Alexandria, said : " The professions which have been made by Arcadius and Projectus, the most holy and pious bishops, and also by Philip, the most religious presbyter of the Roman church, are clear to the holy synod. For they have made their profession in the place of the apostolic see, and of the whole of the holy synod of the God-beloved and most holy bishops of the West. Consequently let those things which were defrned by the most holy Celestine, the God-beloved bishop, be carried into effect, and the vote cast against Nestorius the heretic by the holy synod which met in the metropolis of Ephesus be agreed to unanimously; for this purpose let there be added to the acts already prepared the proceedings of yesterday and to-day, and let them be shown to their holinesses, so that by their subscriptions according to custom, their canonical agreement with all of us may be shown." Arcadius, the most reverend bishop and legate of the Roman church, said: "According to the acts of this holy synod, we necessarily confirm their doctrines with our signatures.'' The holy synod said : "Since Arcadius and Projectus, the most reverend and most religious bishops and legates, and Philip, the presbyter and legate of the apostolic see, have said that they are of the same mind with us, it only remains that they redeem their promises and confirm the acts with their signatures, and then let the minutes of the acts be shown to them." Philip, presbyter and legate of the apostolic see: "I have undersigned the minutes." Arcadius, bishop and legate of the apostolic see: "I have signed the sentence against Nestorius which pronounces him to be the author of schism and heresy and every blasphemy and impiety." Proiectus, bishop and legate of the apostolic see : " I have signalled the just judgement of this holy and ecumenical synod, assenting to - - all things. " just as we have been informed through the acts., concerning the deposition of the impious Nestorius." (Third Session).

“The holy synod which by the grace of God was assembled at Ephesus, to the most holy and reverend fellow minister Celestine, health in the Lord. The zeal of your holiness for piety, and your care for the right faith, so dear and pleasing to God the Saviour of us all, are worthy of all admiration. For it is your custom in such great matters to make trial of all things, and to support the churches which you have made your orun care. But since it is right that all things which have taken place should be brought to the knowledge of your holiness, we are writing of necessity to inform you that, by the will of Christ, the Saviour of us all, and in accordance with the orders of the most pious and Christloving emperors, we assembled together in the metropolis of the Ephesians. . . . . . . There were sitting with us the most reverend bishops Arcadius and Projectus, and with them the most holy presbyter Philip, all of whom were sent by your holiness, who gave to us your presence and filled the place of the apostolic see. .When there had been read in the holy synod what had been done touching the deposition of the most irreligious Pelagians . . . and those inclined to like errors, we also considered it right that the decisions of your reuerence concerning them should stand strong andfrm.1 And we are unanimous in holding them deposed. And, that you may know accurately all things that have been done, we have sent you a copy of the acts and of the subscriptions of the synod. We pray that you, dearly beloved and most longed-for, may be strong and mindful of us in the Lord.” (To Pope Celestine [A.D. July 17th, 431].

“...assembled together, the most holy and pious Celestine, bishop of great Rome, presiding. And now they have approved with one accord our sentence concerning the faith, and those who differed they have pronounced to be cut off from the priesthood. And before the assembly of this synod, Celestine, bishop of great Rome, showed [the same opinion by his letter to Cyril, beloved of God, bishop of the great city of Alexandria, whom he appointed to act in his place. And now once more he has conjrmed this by another letter which he sent to the holy I synod convened by Your Majesties in the city of Ephesus. He sent this letter by Arcadius and Projectus, most holy bishops, and Philip, most religious presbyter of great Rome, who represent Bishop Celestine. Moreover these men who came imade known to us, by a letter to this our synod, the opinion of the holy council of the whole West; they declared that they were likeminded with us in faith and religion, and they decreed the same as we and put it in writing. We inform. Your Majesties of their agreement with us, that your pieties may rest assured that the judgement which went out from us is the one common sentence of the whole world.” (Letter to the Emperors Theodosius and Valentinian [A.D. 431].

St. Vincent of Lérins


“Nor is there anything new in this? For it has always been the case in the Church, that the more a man is under the influence of religion, so much the more prompt is he to oppose innovations. Examples there are without number: but to be brief, we will take one, and that, in preference to others, from the Apostolic See, so that it may be clearer than day to every one with how great energy, with how great zeal, with how great earnestness, the blessed successors of the blessed apostles have constantly defended the integrity of the religion which they have once received.


“Once on a time then, Agripinnus, bishop of Carthage, of venerable memory, held the doctrine — and he was the first who held it — that Baptism ought to be repeated, contrary to the divine canon, contrary to the rule of the universal Church, contrary to the customs and institutions of our ancestors. This innovation drew after it such an amount of evil, that it not only gave an example of sacrilege to heretics of all sorts, but proved an occasion of error to certain Catholics even.


“When then all men protested against the novelty, and the priesthood everywhere, each as his zeal prompted him, opposed it, Pope Stephen of blessed memory, Prelate of the Apostolic See, in conjunction indeed with his colleagues but yet himself the foremost, withstood it, thinking it right, I doubt not, that as he exceeded all others in the authority of his place, so he should also in the devotion of his faith.” (Commonitorium 6; English from E. Giles, p. 272; Patrologia Latina 50.645 [c. A.D. 434]).


“And lest perchance the doctrine ratified by the Council should be thought peculiar to one city and province, there were added also those lights of Cappadocia, St. Gregory of Nazianzus, bishop and Confessor, St. Basil of Cæsarea in Cappadocia, bishop and Confessor, and the other St. Gregory, St. Gregory of Nyssa, for his faith, his conversation, his integrity, and his wisdom, most worthy to be the brother of Basil. And lest Greece or the East should seem to stand alone, to prove that the Western and Latin world also have always held the same belief, there were read in the Council certain Epistles of St. Felix, martyr, and St. Julius, both bishops of Rome. And that not only the Head, but the other parts, of the world also might bear witness to the judgment of the council, there was added from the South the most blessed Cyprian, bishop of Carthage and martyr, and from the North St. Ambrose, bishop of Milan” (Commonitorium, Chapter 30, on the Council of Ephesus).


“The foregoing would be enough and very much more than enough, to crush and annihilate every profane novelty. But yet that nothing might be wanting to such completeness of proof, we added, at the close, the twofold authority of the Apostolic See, first, that of holy Pope Sixtus, the venerable prelate who now adorns the Roman Church; and secondly that of his predecessor, Pope Celestine of blessed memory, which same we think it necessary to insert here also.” (Commonitorium, Chapter 32).


“ It happened in the past that Agrippinus, bishop of Carthage, of venerable memory, was the first of all mortals to think it right to rebaptize, contrary to the divine canon, contrary to the rule of the universal Church, contrary to the feeling of all his fellow bishops, contrary to ancestral custom and regulations. And this innovation brought about such an amount of evil that it afforded to all heretics an example of sacrilege, and even to some catholics an occasion of error. When, then, all protested against the newness of this practice, and the priests everywhere, each as his zeal prompted him, opposed it, Pope Stephen of blessed memory, prelate of the apostolic see, acting indeed with his colleagues, but euen so before them, opposed it, thinking it right, as I imagine, so far to excel all the rest in his devotion to the faith as he surpassed them by the autlzority of his place. Accordingly, in a letter which he sent then to Africa, he sanctioned these words : "Let nothing be innovated beyond what has been handed down." For that holy and prudent man knew that the policy of piety does not permit any other rule than that the selfsame things which have been received as of faith from the fathers should be taught under seal of faith to the children…And what validity in the end had that African council or its decrees? None whatever, thanks to God ; but the whole affair, like a story, like a dream, like refuse, was effaced, rejected, and trampled under foot….


“All this would be enough in its cumulative abundance to crush and extinguish every profane heresy; but yet, lest anything should be wanting to the completeness of our contention, we will add at the end a double authority from the apostolic see-one of S. Sixtus, the venerable Pope who now adorns the Roman Church, the other of his predecessor, Pope Celestine of blessed memory, which we have thought it right to insert here. Holy Pope Sixtus says in an epistle which he sent to the bishop of Antioch about Nestorius' case : "Therefore because, as the apostle says, there is one faith, which has evidently been held hitherto, let us believe what ought to be confessed and held." What are the things which ought to be believed and confessed? He goes on, " Let no licence be allowed to novelty, because it is not fitting that anything be added to antiquity. Let not the clear faith and belief of our fathers be clouded by any admixture of filth.l Decidedly aposiolical, that he should adorn the belief of the fathers with the light of clearness, and describe profane novelties as a mixture of filth. But holy Pope Celestine was equally of the same opinion. , For he says in his letter which he sent to the priests in Gaul, convicting them of connivance in error because, by their keeping silent, they were abandoning the old faith and suffering profane novelties to spring up : "Deservedly are we to blame, if by our silence we encourage error. Therefore let those who are guilty of this be rebuked. Do not let them have unrestricted liberty of preaching." . . . He goes on . . . " If this be true, let novelty cease to assail antiquity. That was the blessed opinion of blessed Celestine-not that antiquity should cease to subvert novelty, but that novelty should cease to attack antiquity.


“Whoever shall break these apostolic and catholic decrees is bound first of all to insult the memory of S. Celestine, who enjoined that novelty should cease to assail antiquity. Next he must mock the decision of S. Sixtus, who believed that no licence ought to be given to novelty, because it is not fitting that anything should be added to antiquity. He also despises the fixed opinion of blessed Cyril, who loudly praised the zeal / of the venerable Capreolus,s because he desired the doctrines I of the ancient faith to be confirmed and novel inventions to be condemned Moreover he tramples on the synod of Ephesus, the judgements of the holy bishops from almost the whole of the East. . . . Finally such a one despises the whole Church of Christ and her teachers, apostles, and prophets, and especially the blessed apostle Paul, as so much dirt.” (Commonitorium).



St. Proclus

“Peter, the coryphaeus of the disciples, and the one set over (or chief of) the Apostles. Art not thou he that didst say, ‘Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God’? Thou Bar-Jonas (son of the dove) hast thou seen so many miracles, and art thou still but Simon (a hearer)? He appointed thee the key-bearer of Heaven, and has though not yet layed aside thy fisherman’s clothing?” (Patriarch of Constantinople, a disciple of Saint John Chrysostom (Proclus, Or. viii In Dom. Transfig. t. ix. Galland [434 A.D]).

Socrates

“There were present at this Synod ninety bishops from various cities. Maximus, however, bishop of Jerusalem; who had succeeded Macarius, did not attend, recollecting that he had been deceived and induced to subscribe the deposition of Athanasius. Neither was Julius, bishop of the great Rome, there, nor had he sent a substitute, although an ecclesiastical canon commands that the churches shall not make any ordinances against the opinion of the bishop of Rome…

“…Athanasius, meanwhile, after a lengthened journey, at last reached Italy. At the same time also Paul, bishop of Constantinople, Asclepas of Gaza, Marcellus of Ancyra, a city of the Lesser Galatia, and Lucius of Adrianople, having been accused on various charges, and expelled from their several churches arrived at the imperial city. There each laid his case before Julius, bishop of Rome. He on his part, by virtue of the Church of Rome's peculiar privilege, sent them back again into the East, fortifying them with commendatory letters; and at the same time restored to each his own place, and sharply rebuked those by whom they had been deposed. Relying on the signature of the bishop Julius, the bishops departed from Rome, and again took possession of their own churches, forwarding the letters to the parties to whom they were addressed. These persons considering themselves treated with indignity by the reproaches of Julius, called a council at Antioch, assembled themselves and dictated a reply to his letters as the expression of the unanimous feeling of the whole Synod. It was not his province, they said, to take notice of their decisions in reference to any whom they might wish to expel from their churches; seeing that they had not opposed themselves to him, when Novatus was ejected from the church. These things the bishops of the Eastern church communicated to Julius, bishop of Rome…

“…When Julius, bishop of Rome, was apprised of these fresh machinations of the Arians against Athanasius, and had also received the letter of the then deceased Eusebius, he invited the persecuted Athanasius to come to him, having ascertained where he was secreted. The epistle also of the bishops who had been some time before assembled at Antioch, just then reached him; and at the same time others from the bishops in Egypt, assuring him that the entire charge against Athanasius was a fabrication. On the receipt of these contradictory communications, Julius first replied to the bishops who had written to him from Antioch, complaining of the acrimonious feeling they had evinced in their letter, and charging them with a violation of the canons, because they had not requested his attendance at the council, seeing that the ecclesiastical law required that the churches should pass no decisions contrary to the views of the bishop of Rome: he then censured them with great severity for clandestinely attempting to pervert the faith….

“....There were present at this synod of Antioch ninety bishops from various cities. But Maximus, bishop of Jerusalem, who had succeeded Macarius, did not go, remembering that he had been deceived and induced to subscribe to the deposition of Athanasius. Neither was Julius, bishop of great Rome, there, nor did he send a representative, although the ecclesiastical canon orders that the churches may make no ordinances contrary to the mind of the bishop of Rome.

“Athanasius at last reached Italy. . . . At the same time, Paul of the city of Constantinople, Asclepas of Gaza, Marcellus of Ancyra of Galatia Minor, and Lucius of Adrianople, having been expelled from their churches on various charges, reached royal Rome. Each of these laid his case before Julius, bishop of Rome, who, exercising the privilege of the church in Rome, fortified them with outspoken letters, and sent them back to the East, restoring to each his proper place, and upbraiding those who had hastily deposed them. They sailed away from Rome, and trusting to the impresses of Bishop Julius, they again took possession of their own churches, forwarding the letters to those to whom they were addressed. These people considered themselves treated with indignity by the reproaches of Julius; they assembled in council at Antioch, and dictated a reply to his letters, as the expression of the feeling of the whole synod. It was not his province, they said, to notice their decisions in reference to any whom they might wish to expel from their churches, seeing that they had not opposed him when Novatus was ejected from the Church. These things the eastern bishops sent to Julius, bishop of Rome.

“ . . . When Julius, bishop of Rome, was aware of these fresh plots of the Arians against Athanasius, and had also received the letter of Eusebius, then dead, he summoned Athanasius, having learnt where he was hidden. The letter of the bishops who had previously assembled at Antioch reached him just then, with others from the bishops in Egypt assuring him that the charge against Athanasius was a fabrication. On receipt of these contradictory documents, Julius first replied to the bishops who had written to him from Antioch, complaining of the acrimonious feeling they had shown in their letter, and charging them with a violation of the canons, because they had not summoned him to the council (the ecclesiastical canon orders that the churches may make no ordinances contrary to the mind of the bishop of Rome), and saying that they deceitfully perverted the faith. ” (Ecclesiastical History, Book 2 [AD. 439]).

“When those convened at Sardica, as well as those who 1 had formed a separate synod at Philippopolis in Thrace, had ' each done what they considered right, they returned to their own cities. The West therefore was separated from the East, and the boundary of communion between them was the hill called Tisoukis, which belongs to the people of Illyria and / Thrace. As far as this hill, there was indiscriminate communion, I though the faith happened to be different; but beyond they did not communicate with one another. Such was the confused state of the churches at that time.” (Ecclesiastical History, Book 3 [AD. 439]).

“This Celestine took away the churches from the Novatianists at Rome, and forced their bishop, Rousticula, to hold meetings packed in houses. Until then the Novatianists had flourished greatly at Rome, possessing many churches, well attended. But envy attacked them also, and the Roman episcopate, like that of Alexandria, went beyond the office of the priesthood, to its present state of domination. And from then the bishops would not allow even those who agreed with them to assemble in peace, but took away all they had, only praising them for their agreement. But those in Constantinople did not behave like that.” (Ecclesiastical History, Book 7 [AD. 439]).

Praedestinatus

“The Cataphrygians arose as the twenty-sixth heresy, taking their name from the province whence they came . . . holy Soter, Pope of the city, wrote a book against them, and so did Apollonius, the president of the Ephesians, against whom Tertullian, a presbyter of Carthage, wrote. Tertullian always wrote extremely well, but he laid himself open to blame in this only, that he defended Montanus and attacked the aforesaid Soter, Pope of the city. . We read that once upon a time the Tertullianists were condemned by Soter, the Roman Pope. . . . . . . Opposition of all kinds was charged against Celestius to condemn him, but he argued that he was orthodox in many of these matters, and that he could not be condemned in respect of the rest. Then, when the matter was referred to him by almost all the African bishops,' Pope Innocent condemned Pelagius and Celestius. But they, both before and after they were condemned by the universal Church, did not stop writing to the effect that man can be without sin, and that Adam did not damage the human race.” (De Haeresibus [A.D. 440]).

St. Sechnall of Ireland

“Steadfast in the fear of God, and in faith immovable, upon [St. Patrick] as upon Peter the [Irish] church is built; and he has been allotted his apostleship by God; against him the gates of hell prevail not” (Hymn in Praise of St. Patrick 3 [A.D. 444]).

Emperors Theodosius and Valentinian

“The Emperors Theodosius and Valentinian [the third] to Aetius, Master of the Military and Patrician. It is certain that for us the only defence lies in the favour of the God of heaven; and to deserve it our first care is to support the Christian faith and its venerable religion. Inasmuch then as the primacy of the apostolic see is assured, by the merit of S. Peter, who is chief of the episcopal order, by the rank of the city of Rome, and also by the authority of a sacred synod, let no one presume to attempt any illicit act contrary to the authority of that see. For then at length will the peace of the churches be maintained everywhere, if the whole body acknowledges its ruler. Hitherto these customs have been observed without fail ; but Hilary of Arles, as we are informed by the trustworthy report of that venerable man Leo, Pope of Rome, has with contumacious daring ventured upon certain unlawful proceedings ; and therefore the churches beyond the Alps have been invaded by abominable disorders, of which a recent example particularly bears witness. For Hilary who is called bishop of Arles, without consulting the pontiff of the church of the city of Rome, has in solitary rashness usurped his jurisdiction by the ordination of bishops. He has removed some without authority, and indecently ordained others who are unwelcome and repugnant to the citizens. Since these were not readily received by those who had not chosen them, he has collected to himself an armed band and in hostility has either prepared a barrier of walls for a blockade or embarked on aggression. Thus he has led into war those who prayed for peace to the haven of rest. Such men have been admitted contrary to the dignity of the empire and contrary to the reverence due to the apostolic see ; and after investigation they have been dispersed by the order of that pious man the Pope of the city. The sentence applies to Hilary and to those whom he has wickedly ordained. This same sentence would have been valid through the Gauls without imperial sanction; for what is no allowed in the Church to the authority of so great a pontiff? Hilary is allowed still to be called a bishop, only by the kindness of the gentle president ; and our just command is, that it is not lawful either for him or for anyone else to mix church affairs with arms or to obstruct the orders of the Roman overseer. By such deeds of daring, confidence, in, and respect for, our empire is broken down. Not only then do we put away so great a crime ; but in order that not even the least disturbance may arise amongst the churches, nor the discipline of religion appear in any instance to be weakened, we decree by this eternal law that it shall not be lawful for the bishops of Gaul or of the other provinces, contrary to ancient custom, to do aught without the authority of the venerable Pope of the eternal city. And whatever the authority of the apostolic see has sanctioned, or may sanction, shall be the law for all; so that if any bishop summoned to trial before the pontiff of Rome shall neglect to come, he shall be compelled to appear by the governor of that province. Those things which our divine parents conferred on the. Roman church are to be upheld in every way. Wherefore your illustrious and eminent magnificence is to cause what is enacted above to be observed in virtue of this present edict and law . . .” (Certum Est [A.D. July 8, 445]).

“Your piety therefore will do well, as soon as the approaching feast of Easter shall be passed, to repair to Ephesus so as to be ready by the day of Pentecost; you will bring with you such bishops as you shall think necessary, providing that a sufficient number remain to conduct the business of the province, and that so many as shall be sufficient may come to the council. . . . In the meantime no one shall introduce privately any innovation until the holy synod be assembled and until the common sentence of the same is given by all. . .” (Epistle to Cyril).

“. . We wish the sacred doctrine to be discussed and examined in a holy synod, and that which seems to conform to the right faith to be ratified, whether those who are defeated are granted indulgence by the fathers or not. Further we by no 1 means permit the cities and churches to be disturbed ; but since we do not allow the doctrine to remain in dispute, they ought to be judges of this affair who preside over the priesthood everywhere, and through whom we ourselves are or shall be professing the truth.” (To Cyril and to all Metropolitans. Constantinople, Mansi 4.11 [A.D. November 19, 430]).

Nestorius

“The Bishop of Rome was not there, nor the See of St. Peter, nor apostolic honor, nor the primacy dear to the Romans.” (Regarding the Robber Synod of Ephesus).

“The faithful Leo, head of the priests, who fought for piety.” (Fr. Nau, Le Livre d’Heraclide de Damas, 1910).

Pope St. Leo the Great

“For since the most blessed Peter received the headship of the Apostles from the Lord, and the church of Rome still abides by His institutions, it is wicked to believe that His holy disciple Mark, who was the first to govern the church of Alexandria, formed his decrees on a different line of tradition: seeing that without doubt both disciple and master drew but one Spirit from the same fount of grace, and the ordained could not hand on aught else than what he had received from his ordainer.” (Letter 9)

“Through the Apostles’ trumpet blast go out for the salvation of all men, as it is written: “Their sound has gone out into every land, and their words into the ends of the world.” But this mysterious function the LORD wished to be indeed the concern of all the apostles, but in such a way that He has placed the principal charge on the blessed Peter, chief of all the Apostles and from him as from the head wishes his gifts to flow to all the body, so that anyone who dares to secede from Peter’s solid rock may understand that he has no part or lot in the divine mystery. He wished him who had been received into partnership in his undivided unity to be named what he himself was, when he said: ‘You are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church’ [Matt. 16:18], that the building of the eternal temple might rest on Peter’s solid rock, strengthening his Church so surely that neither could human rashness assail it nor the gates of hell prevail against it” (Letters 10:1 [A.D. 445).

“what I will call the frenzy not the judgment of one man, protesting that those things which 55 were being carried through by violence and fear could not reverse the mysteries of the Church and the Creed itself composed by the Apostles, and that no injuries could sever them from that Faith which they had brought fully set forth and expounded from the See of the blessed Apostle Peter to the holy synod.” (Letter 45)

“As for the resolution of the bishops which is contrary to the Nicene decree, in union with your faithful piety, I declare it to be invalid and annul it by the authority of the holy apostle Peter” (Letters 110 [A.D. 445]).

“Whereupon the blessed Peter, as inspired by God, and about to benefit all nations by his confession, said, ‘You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.’ Not undeservedly, therefore, was he pronounced blessed by the Lord, and derived from the original Rock that solidity which belonged both to his virtue and to his name [Peter]” (The Tome of Leo [A.D. 449]).

“Our Lord Jesus Christ . . . established the worship belonging to the divine [Christian] religion. . . . But the Lord desired that the sacrament of this gift should pertain to all the apostles in such a way that it might be found principally in the most blessed Peter, the highest of all the apostles. And he wanted his gifts to flow into the entire body from Peter himself, as if from the head, in such a way that anyone who had dared to separate himself from the solidarity of Peter would realize that he was himself no longer a sharer in the divine mystery” (ibid., 10:2–3).

“Although bishops have a common dignity, they are not all of the same rank. Even among the most blessed apostles, though they were alike in honor, there was a certain distinction of power. All were equal in being chosen, but it was given to one to be preeminent over the others. . . . [So today through the bishops] the care of the universal Church would converge in the one See of Peter, and nothing should ever be at odds with this head” (ibid., 14:11).

“For the solidity of that faith which was praised in the chief of the Apostles is perpetual: and as that remains which Peter believed in Christ, so that remains which Christ instituted in Peter. For when, as has been read in the Gospel lesson, the LORD had asked the disciples whom they believed Him to be amid the various opinions that were held, and the blessed Peter bad replied, saying, “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living GOD,” the LORD says, “Blessed art thou, Simon Bar-Jona, because flesh and flood hath not revealed it to thee, but My Father, which is in heaven. And I say to thee, that thou art Peter, and upon this rock will I build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it. And I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven. And whatsoever thou shall bind on earth, shall be bound in heaven; and whatsoever thou shall loose on earth, shall be loosed also in heaven.” St. Peter’s work is still carried out by his successors. The dispensation of Truth therefore abides, and the blessed Peter persevering in the strength of the Rock, which he has received, has not abandoned the helm of the Church, which he undertook. For he was ordained before the rest in such a way that from his being called the Rock, from his being pronounced the Foundation, from his being constituted the Doorkeeper of the kingdom of heaven, from his being set as the Umpire to bind and to loose, whose judgments shall retain their validity in heaven, from all these mystical titles we might know the nature of his association with Christ. And still to-day he more fully and effectually performs what is entrusted to him, and carries out every part of his duty and charge in Him and with Him, through Whom he has been glorified.” (Sermon 3).

“On the dispersing of the Twelve, St. Peter was sent to Rome. For when the twelve Apostles, after receiving through the Holy Ghost the power of speaking with all tongues, had distributed the world into parts among themselves, and undertaken to instruct it in the Gospel, the most blessed Peter, chief of the Apostolic band, was appointed to the citadel of the Roman empire, that the light of Truth which was being displayed for the salvation of all the nations, might spread itself more effectively throughout the body of the world from the head itself.” (Sermons, par 82).

“Through the most blessed Peter, chief of the Apostles, the holy Roman church holds the principiate over all the churches of the whole world.” (Letter 65).

“But the bishops' assents [in proposing Canon 28 of Chalcedon], which are opposed to the regulations of the holy canons composed at Nicæa in conjunction with your faithful Grace, we do not recognize, and by the blessed Apostle Peter's authority we absolutely dis-annul in comprehensive terms…” (Pope St. Leo the Great, Letter 105).

*Canon 28 of Chalcedon: “Following in all things the decisions of the holy Fathers, and acknowledging the canon, which has been just read, of the One Hundred and Fifty Bishops beloved-of-God (who assembled in the imperial city of Constantinople, which is New Rome, in the time of the Emperor Theodosius of happy memory), we also do enact and decree the same things concerning the privileges of the most holy Church of Constantinople, which is New Rome. For the Fathers rightly granted privileges to the throne of old Rome, because it was the royal city. And the One Hundred and Fifty most religious Bishops, actuated by the same consideration, gave equal privileges to the most holy throne of New Rome, justly judging that the city which is honoured with the Sovereignty and the Senate, and enjoys equal privileges with the old imperial Rome, should in ecclesiastical matters also be magnified as she is, and rank next after her; so that, in the Pontic, the Asian, and the Thracian dioceses, the metropolitans only and such bishops also of the Dioceses aforesaid as are among the barbarians, should be ordained by the aforesaid most holy throne of the most holy Church of Constantinople; every metropolitan of the aforesaid dioceses, together with the bishops of his province, ordaining his own provincial bishops, as has been declared by the divine canons; but that, as has been above said, the metropolitans of the aforesaid Dioceses should be ordained by the archbishop of Constantinople, after the proper elections have been held according to custom and have been reported to him.”

“By God’s precepts and the Apostle’s admonitions we are incited to keep a careful watch over the state of all the churches: and, if anywhere ought is found that needs rebuke, to recall men with speedy care either from the stupidity of ignorance or from forwardness and presumption. For inasmuch as we are warned by the Lord’s own command whereby the blessed Apostle Peter had the thrice repeated mystical injunction pressed upon him, that he who loves Christ should feed Christ’s sheep, we are compelled by reverence for that see which, by the abundance of the Divine Grace, we hold, to shun the danger of sloth as much as possible: lest the confession of the chief Apostle whereby he testified that he loved God be not found in us: because if he (through us) carelessly feed the flock so often commended to him he is proved not to love the chief Shepherd.” (To Sicilian Bishops).

“…For although the pastors, each one singly, preside over their flocks with a special care and know that they have to render an account for the sheep entrusted to them, we have a duty which is shared with all; in fact the function of each one is part of our work: so that when men resort to the see of the blessed Apostle Peter from the whole world, and seek from our stewardship that love of the whole Church entrusted to him by the Lord, the greater our duty to the whole, the heavier we feel the burden to rest on us. There is further reason for our celebration: not only the Apostolic but also the episcopal dignity of the most blessed Peter, who does not cease to preside over his see, and obtains an abiding partnership with the eternal priest. For the stability which the rock himself was given by that Rock [Christ] ,he conveyed also to his successors, and wheresoever any steadfastness is apparent, there without doubt is to be seen the strength of the Shepherd.” (Leo’s Sermons #5 – PL 54 153).

“But in this present letter the affection displayed seems to us greater than usual: for it informs us of the state of the churches, and urges us to a vigilant exercise of care, by a consideration of our office, so that being placed, as it were, on a watch-tower, according to the will of the Lord, we should both lend our approval to things when they run in accordance with our wishes, and correct, by applying the remedies of compulsion, what we observe gone wrong through any aggression: hoping that abundant fruit will be the result of our sowing the seed, if we do now allow those things to increase which have begun to spring up to the spoiling of the harvest” (Epistle [6] to Anastasius, Bishop of Thessaloniki).

“Seeing that, as my predecessors acted toward yours, so too I, following their example have delegated my authority to you, beloved: so that you, imitating our gentleness, might assist us in the care which we owe primarily to all the churches by Divine institution and might to a certain extent make up for our personal presence in visiting those provinces which are far off from us….” (Epistle [14] to Anastasius, Bishop of Thessaloniki).

“By God’s precepts and the Apostle’s admonitions we are incited to keep a careful watch over the state of all the churches: and, if anywhere ought is found that needs rebuke, to recall men with speedy care either from stupidity of ignorance or from forwardness and presumption. For inasmuch as we are warned by the Lord’s own command whereby the blessed Apostle Peter had the thrice repeated mystical injunction pressed upon him, that he who loves Christ should feed Christ’s sheep, we are compelled by reverence for that See which, by the abundance of the Divine grace, we hold, to shun the danger of sloth as much as possible: lest the confession of the chief Apostle whereby he testified that he loved God be not found in us: because if he [Peter], through us, carelessly feed the flock so often commended to him he is proved not to love the Chief Shepherd” (Epistle [16] to the Bishops of Sicily).

“…But blessed be our God, whose invincible Truth has shown you free from all taint of heresy in the judgement of the Apostolic See. To whom you will repay due thanks for all these labours, if you keep yourself such a defender of the universal Church as we have proved and do still prove you. For that God has dispelled all calumnious fallacies, we attribute to the blessed Peter’s wondrous care of us all, for after sanctioning the judgement of his See in defining the faith, he allowed no sinister imputation to rest on any of you, who have laboured with us for the catholic faith….” (Epistle 70 to Theodoret, Bishop of Cyrus).

“Our Lord Jesus Christ…has placed the principal charge on the blessed Peter, chief of all the apostles, and from him as from the head wishes his gifts to flow to all the body, so that anyone who dares to secede from Peter’s solid rock may understand that he has no part or lot in the divine mystery. He wished him who had been received into partership in his undivided unity to be named what he himself was, when he said: ‘You are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church, that the building of the eternal temple might rest on Peter’s solid rock, strengthening his Church so surely that neither could human rashness assail it nor the gates of hell prevail against it.” (Letters 10:1).

“[The Emperor]…has desired your holy brotherhood to assemble for the purpose of destroying the snares of the devil and restoring the peace of the Church, so far respecting the rights and dignity of the most blessed Apostle Peter as to invite us too by letter to vouchsafe our presence at your venerable Synod….” (Epistle 93, letter to the Council of Chalcedon).

“Upon this firmness, He says, I shall raise My Temple, and it will rise upon the steadfastness of this Faith, and the loftiness of My Church shall mingle with the heavens. The gates of Hades shall not master this profession (of faith); nor shall the bonds of death bind it. For these words are the words of life, and as they raise those who confess them up to heaven, so they plunge those that deny them down to hell.” (Sermon 83).

‘I will give to thee the keys… loosed in heaven.’ The right of this power did indeed pass on to the other apostles, and the order of this decree passed on to all the chiefs of the Church; but not in vain was that which was imparted to all entrusted to one. Therefore this is commended to Peter separately, because all the rulers of the Church are invested with the fiture of Peter. The privilege therefore of Peter remains, wherever judgement is passed from his equity… So then in Peter the strength of all is fortified, and the help of divine grace is so ordered that the stability which through Christ is given to peter, through Peter is conveyed to the apostles…

“And yet, out of the whole world, one, Peter, is chosen, who presides both at the call of the Gentiles, and over all the apostles and collected fathers of the Church; so that though there be , among God’s people, many priests and many shepherds, yet Peter especially rules all whom Christ also rules originally. Beloved, it is a great and wonderful sharing of his own power which the divine honor bestowed on this man, and if he wished that other rulers should be in common with him, yet he did never give except through him what he denied to others....’I will give unto thee the keys’….the right of this power did indeed pass on to the other apostles, and the order of this decree passed on to all chiefs of the Church; but not in vain was that which was imparted to all was entrusted to one”.…So then in Peter the strength of all is fortified, and the help of divine grace is so ordered that the stability which through Christ is given to Peter, through Peter is conveyed to the other Apostles.” (Sermon 4).

“Commenting on these words, "Whatsoever you shall bind on earth, it shall have been bound in heaven, and whatsoever you shall loose, shall have been loosed in heaven," he says: "This power is confided to him in a special manner, because the type ("forma") of Peter is proposed to all the pastors of the Church. Therefore the privilege of Peter dwells wherever judgement is given with his equity.” (Sermon 3).

“If in your view, in regard to a matter to be handled and decided jointly with your brothers, their decision was other than you wanted, then let the entire matter, with a record of the proceedings, be referred to us. . . . Although bishops have a common dignity, they are not all of the same rank. Even among the most blessed Apostles, though there were alike in honor, there was a certain distinction of power. All where equal in being chosen, but it was given to one to be preeminent over the others. From this formality there arose also a distinction among bishops, and by a great arrangement it was provided that no one should arrogate everything to himself, but in individual provinces there should be individual bishops whose opinion among their brothers should be first; and again, certain others, established in larger cities, were to accept a greater responsibility. Through them the care of the universal Church would converge in the one See of Peter, and nothing should ever be at odds with this head.” (Letter to Anastasius, Bishop of Thessalonica [c. A.D. 446]).

“From the whole world only one, Peter, is chosen to preside over the calling of all nations, and over all the other Apostles, and over the Fathers of the Church. Thus, although among the people of God there are many priests and many pastors, it is really Peter who rules them all, of whom, too, it is Christ who is their chief ruler. Divine condescension, dearly beloved, has granted to this man in a wonderful and marvellous manner the aggregate of its power; and if there was something that it wanted to be his in common with other leaders, it never gave whatever it did not deny to others except through him.” (Sermon 4).

“Our Lord Jesus Christ . . . established the worship belonging to the divine religion. . . . But the Lord desired that the sacrament of this gift should pertain to all the apostles in such a way that it might be found principally in the most blessed Peter, the highest of all the apostles. And he wanted his gifts to flow into the entire body from Peter himself, as if from the head, in such a way that anyone who had dared to separate himself from the solidarity of Peter would realize that he was himself no longer a sharer in the divine mystery. . . . [You, my brothers], must realize with us, of course, that the Apostolic See—out of reverence for it, I mean—has on countless occasions been reported to in consultation by bishops even of your own province [Vienne]. And through the appeal of various cases to this see, decisions already made have been either revoked or confirmed, as dictated by long-standing custom” (Letters 10:2–3 [A.D. 445]).

“As for the resolution of the bishops which is contrary to the Nicene decree, in union with your faithful piety, I declare it to be invalid and annul it by the authority of the holy apostle Peter” (ibid., 110).

“Although bishops have a common dignity, they are not all of the same rank. Even among the most blessed apostles, though they were alike in honor, there was a certain distinction of power. All were equal in being chosen [to be apostles], but it was given to one to be preeminent over the others. . . . [So today through the bishops] the care of the universal Church would converge in the one see of Peter, and nothing should ever be at odds with this head” (ibid., 14:11).

“Upon this firmness, He says, I shall raise My Temple, and it will rise upon the steadfastness of this Faith, and the loftiness of My Church shall mingle with the heavens. The gates of Hades shall not master this profession (of faith); nor shall the bonds of death bind it. For these words are the words of life, and as they raise those who confess them up to heaven, so they plunge those that deny them down to hell.” (Sermon 83).

“because this special statement of your teaching is so highly regarded wherever the Churches meet together, that the unanimous opinion is expressed that the primacy of the Apostolic See is rightfully there assigned, from whence the oracles of the Apostolic Spirit still receive their interpretations.” (Letter 68).

“But this mysterious function the Lord wished to be indeed the concern of all the apostles, but in such a way that He has placed the principal charge on the blessed Peter, chief of all the Apostles: and from him as from the Head wishes His gifts to flow to all the body: so that any one who dares to secede from Peter's solid rock may understand that he has no part or lot in the divine mystery. For He wished him who had been received into partnership in His undivided unity to be named what He Himself was, when He said: "Thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build My Church :" that the building of the eternal temple by the wondrous gift of God’s grace might rest on Peter's solid rock: strengthening His Church so surely that neither could human rashness assail it nor the gates of hell prevail against it. But this most holy firmness of the rock, reared, as we have said, by the building hand of God, a man must wish to destroy in over-weaning wickedness when he tries to break down its power, by favouring his own desires, and not following what he received from men of old…

“If in your view, [Anastasius of Thessalonica], in regard to a matter to be handled and decided jointly with your brothers, their decision was other than what you wanted, then let the entire matter, with a record of the proceedings, be referred to us. . . . Although bishops have a common dignity, they are not all of the same rank. Even among the most blessed apostles, though they were alike in honor, there was a certain distinction of power. All were equal in being chosen [to be apostles], but it was given to one to be preeminent over the others. . . . [So today through the bishops] the care of the universal Church would converge in the one see of Peter, and nothing should ever be at odds with this head"” (Letter 10).

“Since, therefore, the universal Church has become a rock (petra) through the building up of that original Rock, and the first of the Apostles, the most blessed Peter, heard the voice of the LORD saying, “Thou art Peter, and upon this rock (petra) I will build My Church,” who is there who dare assail such impregnable strength, unless he be either antichrist or the devil.” ( Letter 156)

“The special care of Peter is received from the Lord; he prayed for the faith of Peter in particular in as much as the state of the others would be more certain if the mind of the Prince were not conquered. Therefore, in Peter the strength of all is fortified and the help of divine grace is so ordered that the strength which was given to Peter through Christ would be conferred through Peter to the remaining Apostles.”

“If our Lord willed that there should be something common to Peter and the rest of the princes of His Church, it was only on this condition, that whatsoever He gave to the rest, He gave it to them through Peter.”

“[The Pope is] the primate of all bishops.”

“the care of the universal Church converges in the one See of Peter”

“Whereas not a few who glory in the name catholic linger in the condemned opinions of heretics, whether by wickedness or by inexperience, and presume to dispute with pious chamI pions, and, while they do not hesitate to anathematize Pelagius and Celestius, yet speak against our teachers as those who go beyond the right measure, and whereas they profess to follow and approve only what the most sacred see of the most blessed apostle Peter, through the ministry of its presidents, has ratified and taught against the enemies of God's grace, it has become necessary diligently to inquire what the directors of the Roman church have judged concerning the heresy which arose in their times, and what they considered should be held about God's' grace, against the most noxious defenders of free will.

“At the same time we shall add some decisions of African councils, which without doubt the apostolic prelates made their own when they approued them. Therefore, in order that those who I doubt about any point may be instructed, we make the constitutions of the holy fathers plain in a comprehensive syllabus, by which if anyone is not too contentious, he may recognize that the whole dispute is summed up in the short quotations which follow, and that no reason for contradiction remains to him, if he believes and speaks with catholics. [Here follow extracts from Epistles 29 and 30 of Pope Innocent, from the Trattoria of Pope Zosimus, and from the reply of the African bishops.]

“For since the most blessed Peter received the headship of the Apostles from the Lord, and the church of Rome still abides by His institutions, it is wicked to believe that His holy disciple Mark, who was the first to govern the church of Alexandria, formed his decrees on a different line of tradition: seeing that without doubt both disciple and master drew but one Spirit from the same fount of grace, and the ordained could not hand on aught else than what he had received from his ordainer.” (Letter 9)

“For God so works in the hearts of men, and in free will itself, that holy thought, pious counsel, and every motion of good will is from God : whereas through him we can do anything good, without him we can do nothing. Indeed the same doctor, Zosimus, established this declaration when he spoke in support of divine grace to the bishops of the whole world.

“[Here follows another extract from the Tractoria] Furthermore that which is laid down among the decrees of the Carthaginian synod, as it were embracing the possession of the apostolic see :

“[Here follow Canons 3, 4, and 5 of the council of Carthage]. Besides the inviolable sanctions of the most blessed and apostolic see, by which the most devout fathers, trouncing I enthusiasm for pernicious novelties, have taught us to ascribe to the grace of Christ both the beginning of good will, and any progress in laudable endeavours, and perseverance therein to the very end, let us also be mindful of the sacraments of priestly intercession, which, having been handed down by the apostles, are celebrated in the same way throughout the world and in the whole Catholic Church, that the law of prayer may determine the law of belief explains that the uniform ritual and universal practice of infant baptism imply the need of casting out evil spirits.] Therefore by these ecclesiastical rules, and by documents selected from divine authority, the Lord helping us we are so strengthened . . . -

“And so, for the establishment of the grace of God (whose works and honour may by no means be deprecated), we believe to be quite enough whateuer the writings sf the apostolic see have taught us, according to the aforesaid rules ; so that we absolutely regard as not catholic anything that is seen to be contrary to the decisions we have just quoted.” (The Syllabus on Grace, Quia Nonulli; modern historians attribute this document to Pope Leo. Discovered in the sixth century, it was mistaking attached to the 21st epistle of Pope Celestine. It was also once attributed it to Prosper of Aquitaine [A.D. 435]).

“It is by far more profitable, and more worthy, to raise the mind's eye to the contemplation of the glory of the most blessed apostle Peter, and to celebrate this day chiefly in honour of him who was watered with so copious streams from the very fountain of all graces that, while nothing has passed to others without his participation, yet he received many special privileges of his own. . . . And yet, out of the whole world, one, Peter, is chosen, who presides both at the call of the Gentiles, and over all the apostles and collected fathers of the Church; so that though there be, among God's people, many priests and many shepherds, yet Peter especially rules all whom Christ also rules originally. Beloved, it is a great and wonderful sharing of his own power which the divine honour bestowed on this man, and if he wished that other rulers should be in common with him, yet did he neuer giue except through him what he denied not to others. And then the Lord asks all the apostles what men think of him; and they answer in common-so long as they set forth the doubtfulness of human ignorance. . . . "And upon this rock I will build my Church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it." On this strength, he says, I will build an eternal temple, and the loftiness of my Church, reaching to heaven, shall rise upon the firmness of this faith

"I will give to thee the keys . . . loosed in heaven." The right of this power did indeed pass on to the other apostles, and the order of this decree passed on to all the chiefs of the Church; but not in vain was that which was imparted to all entrusted to one. Therefore this is commended to Peter separately, because all the rulers of the Church are invested with the figure of Peter. The privilege therefore of Peter remains, wherever judgement is passed from his equity. Nor is there too much severity or indulgence, where nothing is bound, nothing loosed, except what blessed Peter either looses or binds. Again as his passion pressed on, which was to shake the firmness of the disciples, the Lord says, "Simon, behold Satan has desired to have you that he may sift you as wheat, but I have prayed for thee that thy faith fail not, and when thou art converted, confirm thy brethren, that ye enter not into temptationyy. The danger from the temptation of fear was common to all apostles, and they equally needed the help of divine protection, since the devil desired to harass and shatter all ; and yet special care is taken of Peter by the Lord, and he asks specially for the faith of Peter, as if the state of the others would be more certain if the mind of the chief were not overcome. So then in Peter the strength of all is fortified, and the help of divine grace is so ordered that the stability which through Christ is given to Peter, through Peter is conveyed to the apostles.

“Since then, beloved, we see such a protection divinely granted to us, reasonably and justly do we rejoice in the merits and dignity of our leader, rendering thanks to the eternal King, our Redeemer, the Lord Jesus Christ, for having given so great a power to him whom he made chief of the whole Church, that if anything, even in our time, by us be rightly done and rightly ordered, it is to be ascribed to his working, to his guidance, unto whom it was said, "And thou, when thou art converted, confirm thy brethren" ; and to whom the Lord after his resurrection, in answer to the triple profession of eternal love, thrice said, with mystical intent, "Feed my sheep ". And this, beyond a doubt, the pious shepherd does even now, and fulfils the charge of his Lord, confirming us with his exhortations, I and not ceasing to pray for us, that we may be overcome by . no temptation. But if, as we must believe, he extends this care of his piety to all God's people everywhere, how much more will he condescend to grant his help unto us his children, among whom, on the sacred couch of his blessed repose, he rests in the same flesh in which he ruled! To him, therefore, I let us ascribe this anniversary day of us his servant, and this festival, by whose patronage we have been thought worthy to share his seat itself, the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ helping us in all things, who liveth and reigneth with God the Father and the Holy Ghost for ever and ever. Amen.” (Sermon 4).

. . . For although the pastors, each one singly, preside over their own flocks with a special care and know that they will have to render an account for the sheep entrusted to them, we have a duty which is shared with all; in fact the function of each one is a part of our work : so that when men resort to the see of the blessed apostle Peter from the whole world, and seek from our stewardship that love of the whole Church entrusted to him by the Lord, the greater our duty to the whole, the heavier we feel the burden to rest on us. There is a further reason for our celebration: not only the apostolic but also the episcopal dignity of the most blessed Peter, who does not cease to preside over his see and obtains an abiding partnership with the eternal Priest. For the stability which the rock himself was given by that Rock, Christ, he conveyed also to his successors, and wheresoever any steadfastness is apparent, there without doubt is to be seen the strength of the shepherd. For if to almost all martyrs everywhere, in recognition of their endurance of the martyrdoms which they underwent, this has been granted in order to make their merits manifest, namely that they are able to bring help to those in danger, to banish diseases, to drive out unclean spirits, and to cure countless bodily weaknesses, who so ignorantly or grudgingly estimates the honour of blessed Peter as not to believe that all parts of the Church are ruled by his care and enriched by his help? There flourishes and survives still in the chief of the apostles that love of God and men which neither the bars of the prison, nor chains, nor the onslaughts of the mob, nor the threats of a king could terrify, and an unconquerable faith, which waged unceasing warfare, and did not wax cold in defeat.” (Sermon 5).

“ . . . Besides that reverence which to-day's festival has gained from all the world, it is to be honoured with special and peculiar exultation in our city, that there may be a predomi nance of gladness on the day of their martyrdom in the place where the chiefs of the apostles met their glorious end. For these are the men through whom the light of Christ's gospel shone on thee,Rome, and through whom thou, who was the teacher of error, wast made the disciple of truth. These are thy fathers and true shepherds, who gave thee claims to be numbered among the heaverily kingdoms, and built thee under much better and happier auspices than they by whose zeal the first foundations of thy walls were laid, and of whom the one that gave thee thy name defiled thee with his brother's blood. These are they who have promoted thee to this glory, that being made a holy nation, a chosen people, a priestly and royal state, and the head of the world through the blessed Peter's holy see, thou didst attain a wider sway by divine religion, than by earthly domination. For although thou wert increased by many victories, and didst extend thy rule on land and sea, yet what thy toils in war subdued is less than what the peace of Christ has conquered.

“In order that the result of this unspeakable grace [the incarnation] might be spread abroad throughout the world, God's providence made ready the Roman empire, whose growth has reached such limits that the whole multitude of nations are brought into close connexion. For the divinelyplanned work particularly required that many kingdoms should be leagued together under one empire, so that the preaching of the word might quickly reach to all people, when they were held beneath the rule of one state.

“When the twelve apostles . . . had distributed the world into parts among themselves . . . the most blessed Peter, chief of the apostolic band, was appointed to the citadel of the Roman empire, that the light of truth which was being displayed for the salvation of all the nations might spread itself more effectively throughout the body of the world from the head itself.

“Of the excellence of these two fathers [Peter and Paul] we must rightly boast in louder joy, for God's grace has raised them to so high a place among the members of the Church, that he has set them like the twin lights of the eyes in the body whose head is Christ” (Sermon 82).

“Our Lord Jesus Christ, Saviour of the human race, instituted the worship of the divine religion, which hz wished by God's grace to flash upon all nations. The mystery of his gift the Lord willed to belong to the office of all the apostles, in such a way that he has placed the principal charge on blessed Peter, chief of all the apostles, and from him, as from ' the head, wishes his gifts to flow to all the body: so that anyone who dares to secede from the firmness of Peter may under- / stand that he has no share in the divine mystery. For he wished him who had been received into partnership in his undivided : unity to be named what he himself was, when he said: "Thou art Peter and upon this rock I will build my Church"; that the building of the eternal temple by the I wondrous gift of God's grace might stand on Peter's solidity, strengthening his Church so surely that neither could human rashness assail it nor could the gates of hell prevail against it.

“But Hilary has quitted this path so well maintained by our fathers, and has disturbed the position and harmony of the priests by a new presumption.

“We, however, have done what, God judging, we believe you will approve. After holding council with all the brethren, we have decreed that the wrongfully ordained man should be deposed, and the bishop Projectus abide in his I priesthood. 6. A gang of soldiers, as we have learnt, follows the priest through the provinces, and wherever the churches have lost their rightful priests, he makes a disorderly invasion, protected in his presumption by an armed guard. Before this court are dragged for ordination men unknown to the cities over which they are to be set.

“Tell him [Hilary] that he is not only deposed from another's rights, but also deprived of his power over the province of Vienne which he had assumed wrongfully. . . . he may now be kept by our command, in accordance with the clemency of the apostolic see, to the priesthood of his own city alone. “

Leo the bishop and the holy synod assembled in Rome, to Theodosius Augustu;. I. From your clemency's letter which, in your love of the catholic faith, you sent some time ago to the see of the blessed apostle Peter, we drew such confidence in your defence of truth and peace, that we thought nothing harmful could happen in so plain and well ordered a matter; especially when those who were sent to the episcopal council which you instructed to be held at Ephesus were so fully taught, that if the Alexandrian pontiff had allowed the writings which they brought, either to the holy synod or to Bishop Flavian, to be read in the ears of the bishops, by the declaration of the most pure faith, which, since it is divinely inspired, we have received and hold, all noise of disputings would have been hushed, so that neither ignorance could act foolishly any longer, nor jealousy find occasion to do harm. But since private interests are considered under the cover of religion, the disloyalty of a few has brought about what must wound the Church universal. For from no unreliable messenger, but from , a most faithful reporter of the facts, namely our deacon Hilary (who, lest he should be forced to subscribe, with difficulty escaped), we have learnt [that the proceedings viere irregular and the voting not free]. . . . This our delegates from the apostolic see saw to be so blasphemous and opposed to the catholic faith, that no pressure could force them to assent; for in the same synod they stoutly protested, as they ought, that the apostolic see would never receive what was being passed, since the whole mystery of the faith will in fact be torn out (which in your piety's time should not be), unless this foul evil, which exceeds all former sacrilege, is abolished.

“Because this mystery is being impiously opposed by a few ignorant people, and since our delegates faithfully protested, and Bishop Flavian gave them an appeal in writing, therefore all the churches of our parts, and all the priests, entreat your clemency, with groans and tears, to order a general synod to I be held in Italy. This synod will either dismiss or appease all disputes in such a way that there be nobody any longer either doubtful in faith or divided in love. To this synod of course the bishops of the eastern provinces must come, so that if any of them were overcome by threats and injury, and deviated from I the path of truth, they may be fully restored by sound means ; likewise that they themselves whose case is harder, if they 1 acquiesce in wiser councils, may not fall from the unity of the Church. And how necessary this request is, after the lodging of an appeal, is witnessed by the canonical decrees passed at Nicaea by the priests of the whole world, which are added below.” (Epistle 44, to Theodosius II, Ptteris clementiae, on The Robber Synod, or the second council held at Ephesus. [A.D. 449]).

“And so, dearest brothers, let all attempts to call in question the divinely inspired faith be entirely put down, and the vain unbelief of heretics be laid to rest, and do not let that be defended which may not be believed, since in accordance with the evangelical decrees, the voices of the prophets, and the teaching of the apostles, with the greatest fullness and clearness in the letter which we sent to the late Bishop Flavian, it has been made clear what is the devout and genuine confession upon the mystery of the incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ.” (Epistle 93, to the Council of Chalcedon).

“On the return of our brothers and fellow priests whom the see of blessed Peter sent to the holy council, we ascertained, beloved, the victory you and we together had won, by help from above, over the blasphemy of Nestorius and the madness of Eutyches. Wherefore we glory in the Lord, chanting with the prophet: "Our help is in the name of the Lord, who hath made heaven and earth" : who has allowed us to sustain no harm in our brethren, but has corroborated, by the irrevocable assent of the whole brotherhood, what he had before dejined by our ministry, to show that what had before been enacted by the first see of all, and received by the judgement of the whole Christian world, had truly proceeded from himself, that in this too the members may agree with the head. And herein our cause for rejoicing grows when we see that the more fiercely the foe assailed Christ's servants, the more did he afflict himself. For lest the assent of the other sees, to that which the Lord of all has appointed to precede the rest, might seem mere complaisance, or lest any other evil suspicion might creep in, some were found to dispute our decisions. And while some, instigated by the author of dissension, rush forward into a war of contradiction, a greater good results from his evil, under the dispensation of the author of all goodness. For the gifts of divine grace are sweeter to us when they are not gained without great toils, and continued peace through idleness is liable to seem a lesser good than one which is restored by labours. Besides, the truth itself shines more brightly, and is more bravely upheld, when what the faith had already taught is afterwards confirmed by further inquiry. And finally the merit of the priestly office gains much in lustre, where the authority of the higher is preserved, so that the liberty of the inferiors is thought to be in no way diminished. And the result of a discussion contributes to God's greater glory when the debaters exert themselves with confidence in overcoming the gainsayers, that what of itself is proved wrong may not seem to be passed over in prejudicial silence.” (Epistle 120, to Theodoret of Cyrus).

Now that these things about which so great a number of' priests assembled have been brought to a good and desirable end, I am surprised and grieved that the peace of the universal Church, which had been divinely restored, is again being disturbed by a spirit of ambition. For although my brother Anatolius seems of necessity to have consulted himself in forsaking the error of those who ordained him, accepting the catholic faith by a healthy correction, yet he should have taken care not to mar, by any depravity of desire, that which he is known to have obtained by your kindness. For we, having regard to your faith and intervention, wish to be kind rather than just towards him, though his beginnings were suspicious on account of those who consecrated him. . . . Anatolius the bishop detracts greatly from his proper merits by desiring undue aggrandizement.

“Let the city of Constantinople have, as we desire, its glory, and, under the protection of God's right hand, long enjoy the rule of your clemency. Yet things secular stand on a different basis from things divine, and there can be no sure building save on that rock which the Lord has laid for a foundation. He that covets what is not his due loses what is his own. Let it be enough for him that by the aid of your piety, and by my gracious favour, he has obtained the bishopric of so great a city. Let him not disdain a royal city, though he cannot make it an apostolic see; and let him on no account hope that he can rise by doing injury to others. For the privileges of the churches determined by the canons of the holy fathers, and fixed by the decrees of the Nicene synod, cannot be overthrown by any unscrupulous act, nor can they be disturbed by any innovation. And in the faithful execution of this task by the aid of Christ, I am bound to display an unflinching devotion; for it is a charge entrusted to me, and it tends to my condemnation if the rules sanctioned by the fathers and drawn up under the guidance of God's Spirit at the synod of Nicaea for the government of the whole Church are violated with my connivance, which God forbid, and if the wishes of a single brother have more weight with me than the common good of the Lord's whole house.

“With earnest entreaty, I pray and beseech your piety to refuse assent to this monstrous attack against Christian unity and peace, and to curb effectively the obnoxious greediness of my brother Anatolius.” (Epistle 104, to Emperor Marcian).

“My brother and fellow bishop Anatolius, not sufficiently considering your grace's kindness and the favour of my assent, whereby he gained the priesthood of the church of Constantinople, instead of rejoicing at what he had gained, has been inflamed with undue desires beyond the measure of his rank, believing that his intemperate ambition could be advanced by the assertion that certain persons had signified their assent thereto by an extorted signature; in spite of the fact that my brethren and fellow bishops who represented me, faithfully and laudably expressed their dissent from these attempts, which are doomed to speedy failure.

“For it is alleged that connivance at this sort of thing has been going on for about sixty years, a fact which the aforesaid bishop supposes will help his cause. . . .

“Indeed resolutions of bishops which are repugnant to the rules of the holy canons composed at Nicaea, in conjunction with the loyalty of your faith, we dismiss as invalid, and by the authority of Peter, the blessed apostle, we absolutely disannul by a general decree in all ecclesiastical cases, obeying those laws which the Holy Ghost defined by the 318 bishops for the pacific observance of all priests, in such sort that even if a much greater number were to pass a different decree from theirs, whatever was opposed to their constitution would have to be held in no respect.” (Epistle 105, to the Empress Pulcheria).

“It seems that this time is opportune for the see of Alexandria to lose the privilege of the second place, and for the church of Antioch to be deprived of its right to the third rank,l with the result that when these places are subjected to your law, all metropolitan bishops are stripped of their rightful office. . . . The Nicene council has been divinely endowed with so great a privilege that if ecclesiastical decisions are approved, whether by few or many, whatever is inconsistent with its decrees is altogether devoid of authority.

“Your purpose is in no way supported by the writing of certain bishops given, as you allege, sixty years ago, and neuer brought to the knowledge of the apostolic see by your predecessors. And this transaction, which from its outset was doomed to fall through, and has long since done so, you now wish to bolster up by useless means which are too late, namely by extracting from the brethren an appearance of consent, which their tired modesty presented to you to their own injury. . . . The rights of provincial primates may not be overthrown, nor may metropolitan bishops be defrauded of privileges based on antiquity. The see of Alexandria may not lose any of that dignity which it merited through S. Mark the evangelist, and disciple of blessed Peter, nor may the splendour of so great a church be obscured by another's clouds, Dioscorus having fallen through his persistence in impiety. The church of Antioch too, in which first, at the preaching of the blessed apostle Peter, the Christian name arose, must continue in the position assigned it by the fathers, and, being set in the third place, must never be lowered therefrom. For the see is on a different footing from the holders of it; and each individual's chief honour is his own integrity. And since that does not lose its proper worth in any place, how much more glorious must it be when placed in the magnificence of the city of Constantinople, where many priests may find, through your observance, both a defence of the canons of the fathers, and an example of uprightness!” (Epistle 106, to Anatolius [A.D. 452).


Emperor Valentian I


Since, then, the primacy of the Apostolic See is established by the merit of St. Peter (who is the chief among the bishops), by the majesty of the city of Rome, and finally by the authority of a holy council, no one, withot inexcusable presumption, may attempt anything against the authority of that see. Peace will be secured among the churches if every one recognize his rule.

[After a reference to the independent action of certain prelates of Gaul, the edict continues.] Lest even a slight commotion should arise in the churches, or the religious order be disturbed, we herewith permanently decree that not only the bishops of Gaul, but those of the other provinces, shall attempt nothing counter to ancient custom without the authority of the venerable father [Papa] of the Eternal City. Whatever shall be sanctioned by the authority of the Apostolic See shall be law to the, and to every one else ; so that if one of the bishops be summoned to the judgment of the Roman bishop and shall neglect to appear, he shall be forced by the moderator of his province to present himself. In all respects let the privileges be maintained which our deified predecessors have conferred upon the Roman church.

((445 A.D]).


St. Nilus

“Peter, Head of the choir of Apostles.” (Patriarch of Constantinople, a disciple of Saint John Chrysostom (Nilus, Lib. ii Epistle [448 A.D]).

“Peter, who was foremost in the choir of Apostles and always ruled amongst them.” (Nilus, Tract. ad. Magnam).

Sozomen

“Peter appears to have preached in Pontus, Galatia, Bithynia, Cappadocia, and Asia to the Jews of the dispersion. And at last, having come to Rome, he was crucified head-downwards; for he had requested that he might suffer in this way. What do we need to say concerning Paul, who preached the Gospel of Christ from Jerusalem to Illyricum, and afterwards suffered martyrdom in Rome under Nero? These facts are related by Origen in the third volume of his Commentary on Genesis.

“After the martyrdom of Paul and of Peter, Linus was the first to obtain the episcopate of the church at Rome. Paul mentions him, when writing to Timothy from Rome, in the salutation at the end of the epistle.” (Church History, Book 3).

“In the second year of his reign [of Emperor Titus], Linus, who had been bishop of the church of Rome for twelve years, delivered his office to Anencletus. But Titus was succeeded by his brother Domitian after he had reigned two years and the same number of months….In the twelfth year of the same reign Clement succeeded Anencletus after the latter had been bishop of the church of Rome for twelve years. The apostle in his Epistle to the Philippians informs us that this Clement was his fellow-worker. His words are as follows: With Clement and the rest of my fellow-laborers whose names are in the book of life…In the third year of the reign of the emperor mentioned above, Clement committed the episcopal government of the church of Rome to Evarestus, and departed this life after he had superintended the teaching of the divine word nine years in all.” (Church History, Book 3).

“There is extant an epistle of this Clement which is acknowledged to be genuine and is of considerable length and of remarkable merit. He wrote it in the name of the church of Rome to the church of Corinth, when a sedition had arisen in the latter church. We know that this epistle also has been publicly used in a great many churches both in former times and in our own. And of the fact that a sedition did take place in the church of Corinth at the time referred to Hegesippus is a trustworthy witness.” (On the Epistle of St. Pope Clement I, Church History).

“The time of John's death has also been given in a general way, but his burial place is indicated by an epistle of Polycrates (who was bishop of the parish of Ephesus), addressed to Victor, bishop of Rome. In this epistle he mentions him together with the apostle Philip and his daughters in the following words:

‘For in Asia also great lights have fallen asleep, which shall rise again on the last day, at the coming of the Lord, when he shall come with glory from heaven and shall seek out all the saints. Among these are Philip, one of the twelve apostles, who sleeps in Hierapolis, and his two aged virgin daughters, and another daughter who lived in the Holy Spirit and now rests at Ephesus; and moreover John, who was both a witness and a teacher, who reclined upon the bosom of the Lord, and being a priest wore the sacerdotal plate. He also sleeps at Ephesus.’ ” (Church History, Book 3).

“…[The Roman bishop] wrote to the bishops of the East, rebuking them for their wrong judgement of these men, and for disturbing the peace of the Church by abandoning the Nicene doctrines. He bade a few of them to come to him on a certain day to show that they had now reached a just decision about them, and threatened to bear with them no longer should they introduce more innovations. . . . The partisans of

Athanasius and Paul were reinstated in their sees, and they forwarded the letter of Julius to the bishops of the East. These bishops were highly indignant at these [letters] and met at Antioch and framed a reply to Julius, replete with elegance and the graces of rhetoric, but couched in a tone of irony and defiance. They confessed therein that the Roman church was entitled to the honour of all, because it was the school of the apostles and was from the beginning the metropolis of religion, although those who imported the doctrine came to her from the East. But they ought not to take second place because their church was small in size and numbers, for they excelled in virtue and wisdom. They called Julius to account for communicating with the partisans of Athanasius and were indignant against him for insulting their synod and abrogating their sentence. And they rejected his action as unjust and opposed to ecclesiastical law. After these complaints and protests, they offered peace and communion to Julius [the Pope], if he would sanction the deposition of those whom they had expelled, and the ordination of those whom they had elected instead; and they threatened the contrary, if he opposed their decrees. They added that the priests of the East before them had raised no objection when Novatian was expelled by the church of Rome.” (Sozomen, Church History, Book 3 [A.D. 450]).

“…the Bishop of Rome, having investigated into the accusations of each [Athanasius, Paul of Cple, Marcecllus of Ancyra, & Asclepas of Gaza), found them all agreeing with the Nicene synod, admitted them to communion, as agreeing with him. And insofar as the care of the universal church belonged to Pope Julius on account of the rank of his see, he restored each to his respective Church.” (Ecclesiastical History, Book III, Ch. VIII).

“The bishops of Egypt, having sent a declaration in writing that these allegations were false, and Julius having been apprised that Athanasius was far from being in safety in Egypt, sent for him to his own city. He replied at the same time to the letter of the bishops who were convened at Antioch, for just then he happened to have received their epistle, and accused them of having clandestinely introduced innovations contrary to the dogmas of the Nicene council, and of having violated the laws of the Church, by neglecting to invite him to join their Synod; for he alleged that there is a sacerdotal canon which declares that whatever is enacted contrary to the judgment of the bishop of Rome is null.” (Ecclesiastical History).

“The Macedonians, in, apprehension of further sufferings, sent deputies to various cities, and finally agreed to have recourse to Valentinian and to the bishop of Rome rather than share in the faith of Eudoxius and Valens and their followers.” (Ecclesiastical History, Book 6).

“They [Athanasius and Bishop Paul of Constantinople] confessed in this epistle, that the Church of Rome was entitled to universal honor, because it was the school of the apostles, and had become the metropolis of piety from the outset, although the introducers of the doctrine had settled there from the East.” (Ecclesiastical History, Book 3:8).

“Athanasius, escaping from Alexandria, came to Rome. Paul, bishop of Constantinople, Marcellus of Ancyra, and Asclepas of Gaza went there at the same time. Asclepas, who was opposed to the Arians, had been accused by them of having thrown down an altar, and Quintian had been appointed in his place. Lucius, bishop of Adrianople, who had been deposed from his office on another charge, was also staying in Rome. The Roman bishop, on learning the accusation against each one, and finding that they were all like-minded about the doctrine of the council of Nicaea, admitted them to communion as of like orthodoxy. And alleging that the care for all belongs to him, because of the dignity of the see, he restored each to his own church.

“Julius, learning that Athanasius was not safe in Egypt, called him back to himself. He replied at the same time to the letter of the bishops who were convened at Antioch, for just then he happened to have received it, and he accused them of having secretly introduced innovations contrary to the dogmas of the Nicene council, and of having violated the laws of the Church by not calling him to the synod. For there is apriestly law, making uoid whatever is effected against the mind of the bishop of Rome.” (Church History, Book 3).

The Empress Pulcheria

“The letter of your blessedness we have received, with all reverence due to a bishop ; by which we know that your faith is pure and such as ought with holiness to be held forth in the sacred Church. But I equally, with my lord, the most serene emperor, my spouse, have ever abode, and do still abide therein, turning away from all perverseness, defilement, and evil doing. The most holy bishop, therefore, of glorious Constantinople hath continued in the same faith and worship, and embraces the confession of your apostolic letters, putting away that error arisen from some, which from his own letters, also, your holiness will be able to perceive; and he hath, without delay of any kind, subscribed the letter likewise of catholic faith which your blessedness addressed to the bishop.

“Flavian of holy memory. And accordingly, let your reverence deign, in whatever way you see good, to signify to all bishops, even of the whole East, of Thrace and Illyricum, as also it hath pleased our lord the most pious emperor, my spouse, that they may be able quickly to muster from the western parts and meet in one city, and there, having formed a council, let them at your invitation proceed to decree about the catholic confession and concerning those bishops who previously held aloof, as the faith and Christian piety may require. Moreover let your holiness know that by the command of our lord and most serene prince, my spouse, the body of Flavian of holy memory has been brought to the most glorious city of Constantinople, and has been duly placed in the basilica of the apostles in which his predecessors were wont to be buried. And likewise, by the authority of his decree, he has ordered those bishops to return who for the same cause of having agreed with the most holy Flavian in the concord of catholic faith had been sent into exile, in order that by the sanction of the council and the decree of the bishops assembled they may be enabled to recover the episcopate and their own churches.” (Epistle 77, To St. Pope Leo the Great [A.D. 450]).

St. Theodoret of Cyrus

“I therefore beseech your holiness to persuade the most holy and blessed bishop (Pope Leo) to use his Apostolic power, and to order me to hasten to your Council. For that most holy throne (Rome) has the sovereignty over the churches throughout the universe on many grounds.” (Theodoret, Bishop of Cyrus in Syria, Tom. iv. Epist. cxvi. Renato, p. 1197 [A.D. 450]).

“If Paul, the herald of the truth, the trumpet of the Holy Spirit, hastened to the great Peter, to convey from him the solution to those in Antioch, who were at issue about living under the law, how much more do we, poor and humble, run to the Apostolic Throne (Rome) to receive from you (Pope Leo) healing for wounds of the the Churches? For it pertains to you to have primacy in all things; for your throne is adorned with many prerogatives. For other cities get a name for size or beauty or population, and some that are devoid of these advantages are compensated by certain spiritual gifts: but your city has the fullest abundance of good things from the Giver of all good. For she is of all cities the greatest and most famous, the mistress of the world and teeming with population. And besides this she has created an empire which is still predominant and has imposed her own name upon her subjects. But her chief decoration is her Faith, to which the Divine Apostle is a sure witness when he exclaims your faith is proclaimed in all the world Romans 1:8; and if immediately after receiving the seeds of the saving Gospel she bore such a weight of wondrous fruit, what words are sufficient to express the piety which is now found in her? She has, too, the tombs of our common fathers and teachers of the Truth, Peter and Paul, to illumine the souls of the faithful. And this blessed and divine pair arose indeed in the East, and shed its rays in all directions, but voluntarily underwent the sunset of life in the West, from whence now it illumines the whole world. These have rendered your See so glorious: this is the chief of all your goods. And their See is still blessed by the light of their God's presence, seeing that therein He has placed your Holiness to shed abroad the rays of the one true Faith.

“After such toils and troubles I am condemned without a hearing….However, I wait for the verdict of your apostolic throne, and beg and pray your holiness to help me, when I appeal to your right and just tribunal, and to bid me come to you and show that my teaching follows in the apostolic track. . . . I beseech you not to spurn my petition, nor to overlook the insults heaped upon me.

“Before all, tell me whether I ought to acquiesce in this unrighteous deposition or not. I awaityour verdict; and if you bid me abide by my condemnalion, I will do so, and will trouble no one hereafter, but await the unerring verdict of our God and Saviour. . .

“. . . . I entreat your holiness . . . to consider my slandered position, so falsely attacked, to be worthy of your protection. Above all I beseech you to defend with all your might the faith that is now plotted against, and to keep the hereditary doctrine intact for the churches. So shall your holiness receive from the bountiful Master a full reward.” (Theodoret Epistle to Pope Leo, preserved in the 52 Epistle of Leo the Great.)

“For that all holy throne has the office of heading the Churches of the whole world, for many reasons; and, above all others, because it has remained free of the communion of heretical taint, and no one holding heterodox sentiments ever sat in it, but it has preserved the Apostolic grace unsullied.” (Theodoret, Epist Renato)

“Hasten to your Apostolic See in order to receive from you a cure for the wounds of the Church. For every reason it is fitting for you to hold the first place, inasmuch as your see is adorned with many priviledges. I have been condemned without trial. But I await the sentence of your Apostolic See. I beseech and implore Your Holiness to succor me in my appeal to your fair and righteous tribunal. Bid me hasten to you and prove to you that my teaching follows in the footsteps of the Apostles.” (Theodoret to Pope Leo, Ep. 113).

“The great foundation of the Church was shaken, and confirmed by the Divine grace. And the Lord commanded him to apply that same care to the brethren. ‘And thou,’ He says, ‘converted, confirm thy brethren.’”(Tom. iv. Haeret. Fab. lib. v.c. 28 (A.D. 450))

“‘For as I,’ He says, ‘did not despise thee when tossed, so be thou a support to thy brethren in trouble, and the help by which thou was saved do thou thyself impart to others, and exhort them not while they are tottering, but raise them up in their peril. For this reason I suffer thee also to slip, but do not permit thee to fall, thus through thee gaining steadfastness for those who are tossed.’ So this great pillar supported the tossing and sinking world, and permitted it not to fall entirely and gave it back stability, having been ordered to feed God’s sheep. ” (Theodoret, Oratio de Caritate in J. P. Minge, ed., Partrologiae Curses Completus: Series Graeca).

“The whole world, dearly-beloved, does indeed take part in all holy anniversaries, and loyalty to the one Faith demands that whatever is recorded as done for all men's salvation should be everywhere celebrated with common rejoicings. But, besides that reverence which today's festival has gained from all the world, it is to be honoured with special and peculiar exultation in our city, that there may be a predominance of gladness on the day of their martyrdom in the place where the chief of the Apostles met their glorious end. For these are the men, through whom the light of Christ's gospel shone on you, O Rome, and through whom you, who was the teacher of error, was made the disciple of Truth. These are your holy Fathers and true shepherds, who gave you claims to be numbered among the heavenly kingdoms, and built you under much better and happier auspices than they, by whose zeal the first foundations of your walls were laid: and of whom the one that gave you your name defiled you with his brother's blood. [Romulus was the traditional founder of Rome. He murdered his brother, Remus.] These are they who promoted you to such glory, that being made a holy nation, a chosen people, a priestly and royal state 1 Peter 2:9, and the head of the world through the blessed Peter's holy See you attained a wider sway by the worship of God than by earthly government. For although you were increased by many victories, and extended your rule on land and sea, yet what your toils in war subdued is less than what the peace of Christ has conquered.” (Sermon 82).

“But I await the sentence of your Apostolic See. I beseech and implore your holiness to succour me in my appeal to your fair and righteous tribunal.” (Letter 113 to St. Pope Leo the Great).

With these and similar arguments, they attacked the vacant mind of the emperor and persuaded him to expel Athanasius from the Church. But he, having discovered the plot, withdrew and went to the West. The Eusebians had falsely accused Athanasius to the bishop of Rome (just then Julius was shepherding that church). He therefore, obtying the law of the Church, summoned the accuselrs to come to Rome, and called the devout Athanasius to trial. And he, accepting the call, set out at once ; but the false accusers, seeing that the lie would easily be detected, did not go to Rome. (Church History, Book 2).

“Twenty-six years I have been a bishop ; I have undergone countless labours ; I have struggled hard for the truth; have freed tens of thousands of heretics and brought them to the Saviour, and now they have stripped me of my priesthood, and are exiling me from the city. They have no respect for my old age, or for my hairs grown grey in the truth. Wherefore I beseech your sanctity to persuade the very sacred and holy Archbishop Leo to bid me hasten to your council. For that holy see has precedence of all churches in the world, for many reasons; and above all for this, that it is free from all taint of t heresy, and that no bishop of false opinions has ever sat upon its throne, but it has kept the grace of the apostles undefiled.” (Ep. 116, to Renatus thepresbyter [A.D. 449).

“Dioscorus is turning the see of blessed Mark upside down ; and this he does, well knowing that the metropolis of Antioch possesses the throne of the great Peter, who was teacher of blessed Mark, and first and leader of the choir of the apostles.” (Epistle 86, to Flavian).

[Quoting Luke 22. 31, 32.1 "For as I ", he says, " did not despise thee when tossed, so be thou a support to thy brethren in trouble, and the help by which thou wast saved do thou thyself impart to others, and exhort them not while they are tottering, but raise them up in their peril. For this reason I suffer thee also to slip, but do not permit thee to fall, [thus] through thee gaining steadfastness for those who are tossed." So this great pillar supported the tossing and sinking world, and permitted it not to fall entirely and gave it back stability, having been ordered to feed God's sheep. (Oratio de Caritate).

Eutyches the Monophysite

“I take refuge, therefore, with you, the defender of religion and abhorrer of such factions. …I beseech you not to be prejudiced against me by their insidious designs about me, but to pronounce the sentence which shall seem to you right upon the Faith.” (Eutyches to Pope Leo, Ep. 21. [448])

Flavian

“When I began to appeal to the throne of the Apostolic See of Peter, the Prince of the Apostles, and to the whole sacred synod, which is obedient to Your Holiness, at once a crowd of soldiers surrounded me and barred my way when I wished to take refuge at the holy altar. …Therefore, I beseech Your Holiness not to permit these things to be treated with indifference …but to rise up first on behalf of the cause of our orthodox Faith, now destroyed by unlawful acts. …Further to issue an authoritative instruction …so that a like faith may everywhere be preached by the assembly of an united synod of fathers, both Eastern and Western. Thus the laws of the fathers may prevail and all that has been done amiss be rendered null and void. Bring healing to this ghastly wound. (Patriarch Flavian of Constantinople to Pope Leo, [449]).

Galla Placidia Augusta

“…the synod held at Ephesus (the Robber synod) is alleged to have rather stirred up hatred and contention, intimidating by the presence of soldiers, Flavianus, the bishop of Constantinople, because he had sent an appeal to the Apostolic See, and to all the bishops of these parts by the hands of those who had been deputed to attend the Synod by the most reverend bishop of Rome, who have been always wont to attend, most sacred Lord and Son and adored King, in accordance with the provisions of their Nicene Synod. For this cause we pray your clemency to oppose such disturbances with the Truth, and to order the faith of the catholic religion to be preserved without spot, in order that according to the standard and decision of the Apostolic See, wherein assuredly He first adorned primacy, who was deemed worthy to receive the Keys of heaven: for it becomes us in all things to maintain the respect due to this great city which is the mistress of all the earth; and this too we must most carefully provide that what in former times our house guarded seem not in our day to be infringed, and that by the present example schisms be not advanced either between the bishops of the most holy churches” (Letter from Galla Placidia Augusta, the wife of the Western Roman Emperor, Constantius III, to her son Theodosius I, the Eastern Emperor; preserved in Epistle 56 of St. Pope Leo the Great).

Armenians

[an invasion of outside peoples would] “...destroy among us the faith we received from the prince of bishops, who is at Rome.” (Armenians, Writing to Emperor Theodosius II, Fr. Tournebize, Historie politique et religieuse de I’ Armenie, Paris 1900).

St. Eusebius of Doryleum

“The Apostolic throne has been wont from the beginning to defend those who are suffering injustice. I entreat Your Blessedness, give me back the dignity of my episcopate and communion with yourself, by letters from you to my lowliness bestowing on me my rank and communion.” (Eusebius of Doryleum to Pope Leo [A.D. 450]).

The Council of Chalcedon (The Fourth Ecumenical Council)

“Bishop Paschasinus, guardian of the Apostolic See, stood in the midst and said, ‘We received directions at the hands of the most blessed and apostolic bishop of the Roman city [Pope Leo I], who is the head of all the churches, which directions say that Dioscorus is not to be allowed to sit in the assembly, but that if he should attempt to take his seat, he is to be cast out. This instruction we must carry out..We cannot go counter to the decrees of the most blessed and apostolic bishop, who governs the Apostolic See, nor against the ecclesiastical canons nor the patristic traditions.”” (Acts of the Council, session 1 [A.D. 451]).

“After the reading of the foregoing epistle [The Tome of Leo], the most reverend bishops cried out: ‘This is the faith of the fathers! This is the faith of the apostles! So we all believe! Thus the orthodox believe! Anathema to him who does not thus believe! Peter has spoken thus through Leo! . . . This is the true faith! Those of us who are orthodox thus believe! This is the faith of the Fathers!’” (The Fourth Ecumenical Council, composed of 600 Eastern bishops, Acts of the Council, session 2 [A.D. 451]).

“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, has stripped him [Dioscorus] of the episcopate” (Acts of the Council, session 3 [A.D. 451]).

“For if ‘where two or three are gathered together in His name’ He has said that ‘there He is in the midst of them,” must He not have been much more particularly present with 520 priests, who preferred the spread of knowledge concerning Him …Of whom you were Chief, as Head to the members, showing your good will.” (Chalcedon to Pope Leo, Repletum est Gaudio, November 451).

“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 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).

“You have often extended your Apostolic radiance even to the Church of Constantinople.” (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).

“Paschasinus, the most reverend bishop and legate of the Apostolic See, stood up in the midst with his most reverend colleagues and said: We received directions at the hands of the most blessed and apostolic bishop of the Roman city, which is the head of all the churches, which directions say that Dioscorus is not to be allowed a seat in this assembly, but that if he should attempt to take his seat he is to be cast out. This instruction we must carry out; if now your holiness so commands let him be expelled or else we leave.” (Session 1).

“Lucentius, the most reverend bishop having the place of the Apostolic See, said: Let him give a reason for his judgment. For he undertook to give sentence against one over whom he had no jurisdiction. And he dared to hold a synod without the authority of the Apostolic See, a thing which had never taken place nor can take place.” (Session 1).

“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, has stripped him of the episcopate, and has alienated from him all hieratic worthiness. Therefore let this most holy and great synod sentence the before mentioned Dioscorus to the canonical” (Session 3).

“And in the third place the writings of that blessed man, Leo, Archbishop of all the churches, who condemned the heresy of Nestorius and Eutyches, show what the true faith is.” (Session 4).

“Since the most religious bishops of Egypt have postponed for the present their subscription to the letter of the most holy Archbishop Leo, not because they oppose the Catholic Faith, but because they declare that it is the custom in the Egyptian diocese to do no such thing without the consent and order of their Archbishop, and ask to be excused until the ordination of the new bishop of the metropolis of Alexandria, it has seemed to us reasonable and kind that this concession should be made to them, they remaining in their official habit in the imperial city until the Archbishop of the Metropolis of Alexandria shall have been ordained.” (Canon 30).

Bishop Paschasinus, guardian of the apostolic see, stood in the midst and said : "We received directions at the hands of the most blessed and apostolic bishop of the Roman city, who is head of all the churches, which directions say that Dioscorus is not to be allowed to sit in the assembly, but that if he should attempt to take his seat he is to be cast out. This instruction we must carry out; if now your holiness so commands, let him be expelled or else we leave." The judges said : "What special charge do you prefer against the most reverend Bishop Dioscorus? " And when Dioscorus, the most religious bishop of Alexandria, at the bidding of the judges and of the sacred assembly had sat down in the midst, and the most reverend Roman bishops had also sat down in their own places, and kept silence, Eusebius, bishop of Dorylaeum, stepping into the middle said . . . [Edward Giles commentary: “This Eusebius was a keen heresy-hunter, and had been deposed along with Flavian at Ephesus in 449. He now asks that the minutes of the Robber Synod be read out, in order to show that Dioscorus was the real heretic. The reading began with the emperor's letter to Dioscorus, dated 3 March 449, by which that council was convened.]

“Constantine the secretary said : "The same letter was sent to the other bishops." The most glorious judges and illustrious senate said: "The most reverend bishop Theodoret should take his place in the synod, because the most holy archbishop Leo restored him to his episcopate, and the pious emperor decreed his presence at the sacred synod." And, Theodoret coming in, the bishops of Egypt, Illyricum, and Palestine cried out: " Mercy! the faith is destroyed ; the canons have rejected him ; throw him out, throw out the teacher of Nestorius." The Orientals . . . cried out : "We were beaten, and signed a blank paper; throw out the Manichaeans, throw out the enemies of Flavian, throw out the enemies of the faith." [After more clamour] Theodoret came into the middle and said: " I have presented a petition to the rulers of the world in which I set forth the cruelties I have endured; I beg to be examined. ' ' The judges said : "The bishop Theodoret, having recovered his proper place from the archbishop of Rome, has now entered as an accuser; wherefore, to avoid confusion, let us finish what we had begun. The presence of Theodoret shall prejudice no one's cause; all the claims you have against him, or he against you, shall stand good, . . . especially since the bishop of Antioch testifies to his orthodoxy.

“On the 8th of August 449, at the synod of Ephesus, at the church called Mary, the bishops present were Dioscorus of Alexandria, Julian, legate of Leo, most holy bishop of the Roman church". And when this was read the Orientals and bishops with them cried out: "He was thrown out; no one acknowledged the name of Leo." Constantine continued reading, " and ~uvenal of Jerusalem and Domnus of Antioch and Flavian of Constantinople". And when this was read, the Orientals shouted : " Flavian is entered as if condemned ; this is manifest slander; why did not Flavian sit in his own Why did he put the bishop of Constantinople fifth?" Bishop Paschasinus said: "See, we, God willing, have placed the lord Anatolius first : these put the blessed Flavian fifth." Diogenes, bishop of Cyzicus, said : " Because you know the canons."

“Peter, bishop of Corinth, said: ."I was not present at the Ephesian synod, for at that time I was not ordained bishop, hut I realize, from what has been read, that Flavian's statement does in fact explain the words of Cyril. I have withdrawn my hesitation. When they were read, they informed me more perfectly." And getting up, he crossed over to the other side. The Orientals cried : "Peter tllinks with Peter; welcome blessed orthodox!" . . . Dioscorus of Alexandria said : " Flavian was justly condemned, because he said 'After the union, two natures'. I can prove from Athanasius, Gregory, and Cyril in many places that we ought not to say '.After the union, two natures', but ' One incarnate nature of the Word'. I am rejected with the fathers, but I stand by their doctrine. I transgress in nothing. . . . And I must request that the rest be read."

“Dioscorus, bishop of Alexandria, said : ' The holy and great synod of Nicaea, long ago assembled by the will of God, decreed our true and pure faith, and the council which recently assembled here confirmed it and declared that anyone who altered it should be subject to the penalties . . . Well now you see that Flavian, bishop of Constantinople, here before us, and Eusebius of Dorylaeum have unsettled everything, and are become a scandal to all the churches and to the orthodox everywhere. It is plain then that they have made themselves liable to the punishment decreed by our holy fathers. It follows that Flavian and Eusebius must be deposed from all episcopal and priestly dignity. I therefore pronounce them deposed, and all the bishops shall declare their opinion. Further the emperors will be informed of today's proceedings.' Bishop Flavian said : ' I disclaim your authority.' Hilary, deacon of the Roman Church, said : ' It is contradicted.' " And when this was read, the Orientals and bishops with them shouted : " Anathema to Dioscorus! this 'hour condemns him ; this hour he is damned. Blessed Lord, thou hast avenged him [Flavian]. Orthodox emperor, you have avenged him. Long live Leo! Long live the patriarch!” (Session 1)

When all were seated before the rails of the most holy altar the judges said: ". . . The question now to be investigated, studied, and decided is how to establish the true faith. This is the main purpose of the council. . . . Hasten therefore, without fear or favour or enmity, to set forth the pure faith, so that they who do not seem to have understood all these things may be brought to unity by the full knowledge of the truth. For we wish you to know that the most divine and pious lord of the whole earth and ourselves hold the orthodox faith set forth by the 318 and the 150, and what has also been taught by the rest of the most holy and glorious fathers, and thus we believe." The bishops cried: ". . . The fathers taught, and in their writings are preserved what they set out, and we cannot say more." Cecropius, bishop of Sebastopol : "The affairs of Eutyches have been examined, and on them the most holy archbishop of Rome has given a formula with which we agree, and u7e have all subscribed his letter." The bishops cried : " So say all of us. The things set forth are sufficient; it is not possible to make any other."

The most glorious judges and the illustrious senate said: "Let there be read also the letter of the most worthy Leo, archbishop of the royal and elder Rome." Beronician, the most devout clerk of the sacred consistory, read from a book handed to him by Aetius, archdeacon of the holy church of Constantinople : "Leo to the beloved brother Flavian . . . [dated 13 June 449]." After the reading of-the above letter, the most reverend bishops cried out : "This is the faith of the fathers ; this is the faith of the apostles. So we all believe ; so the orthodox believe. Anathema to him who does not so believe! Peter has spoken these things through Leo. So taught the apostles. Piously and truly did Leo teach; so taught Cyril ; the eternal rnenory of Cyril! Leo and Cyril taught the same; anathema to him who does not so believe! This is the true faith. So think the orthodox. This is the faith of the fathers. Why were not these things read at Ephesus? Dioscorus hid them." Part of the foregoing letter, " In order to pay our debt, the invisible nature united itself with the passible, so that, as our salvation required, the one mediator between God and man, the man Jesus Christ, on the one side could die, on the other could not ", was doubted by the bishops of Illyria and Palestine. Aetius, archdeacon of Constantinople, read from the late Cyril of Alexandria : "But forasmuch as his own body by the grace of God, as the apostle says, tasted death for every man, he is said to have suffered death for us. It is not that he experienced death as regards his nature, to say or hold which is madness, but that, as I said just now, his flesh tasted death." Likewise the part which contained : "Each nature in union with the other performs the actions which are proper to it, the Word those which are proper to the Word, the body those which are proper to the body. The one is resplendent with miracles, the other submits to insults" was doubted by the bishops of Illyria and Palestine. Aetius, archdeacon of Constantinople, read from the late Cyril: "There are some sayings which apply best to God, others to the manhood, and others again hold a middle position, showing that the Son of God is both God and man." 4 Likewise the part of his letter which contained : "For although in the Lord Jesus Christ there is one person of God and man, yet the glory and the shame which are common to the two natures have different sources. From us he has the manhood which is inferior to the Father; from the Father the divinity equal to the Father" was doubted by the bishops of Illyria and Palestine. Theodoret, bishop of Cyrus, said : "There is an example of this also from the most blessed Cyril, thus : 'He became man and changed not his properties, but remained what he was. The one, however, is understood as thoroughly dwelling in the other, that is, the divine nature in the manhood."'

The most magnificent judges said : "After all this, who doubts? " The most reverend bishops cried out: "No one doubts." Atticus, bishop of Nicopolis, said: "We beg your magnificence to allow us a few days for quiet consideration of the letter of our master and holy father, Archbishop Leo, who adorns the apostolic see, and the letter of Cyril with the twelve chapters."

“The bishops cried out : ‘If you order inquiry, we request that the fathers meet together.’

“The judges said : "The assembly is postponed for five days, and in the meantime your reverences shall come to Archbishop Anatolius and consult together concerning the faith."

“All the most reverend bishops cried : " So we believe, so all believe ; none of us doubt; we have already subscribed." The judges continued : "You need not all meet, but since it is suitable to persuade all who doubt, let Archbishop Anatolius choose, from the bishops who have signed, those he i thinks fit to instruct the doubters." (Session 2).

“"To the most holy and beloved of God and ecumenical archbishop and patriarch of great Rome, Leo, and to the holy and ecumenical synod which is assembled at Chalcedon by the will of God and the sacred injunction, from Theodore, deacon of Alexandria. .

"To the most holy and most blessed ecumenical patriarch of great Rome, Leo, and to the holy and ecumenical synod which by the will of God and the divine command is assembled in the city of Chalcedon, from the wretched Athanasius, formerly Alexandria, and nephew of the late Archbishop Cyril…

“Julian, bishop of Hypaipa, said : " Holy fathers, listen. When I Dioscorus held the supreme power at the city of Ephesus for judging between S. Flavian with Bishop Eusebius, and ' Eutyches, putting forward an opinion which was unfair in every way, he himself led off with an unjust judgement, and all of necessity followed his lead. Now your holinesses hold the 1 supreme power from the most holy Archbishop Leo; and the whole of the sacred council that is assembled by God's grace, and by the decree of our most pious emperors, has heard every 1 one of the injustices committed at Ephesus ; and everything I done there has become known toyour holinesses ; and the council has cited Dioscorus, not once or twice, but three times, to appear, but he has absolutely refused to obey. We therefore urge your sanctity who hold, or rather ye who hold, the place of the most holy Archbishop Leo to speak out against him, and to define concerning him the canonical penalties. For we all, and the whole universal council, are voting with your sanctity.

“Bishop Paschasinus said : "Again I say, what is the pleasure of your blessedness? " Maximus, bishop of great Antioch, said : "With what your sanctity thinks we agree." Paschasinus, bishop of Lilybaeum in Sicily, and with him Bishop Lucentius and Boniface, the priest of the church of great Rome, legates of the most holy and most blessed patriarch of great Rome, Archbishop Leo, pronounced: "It has been clearly shown by to-day's and the previous session what Dioscorus, bishop of the great Alexandrian church, dared to do against the order of the canons and church discipline. To pass over much else, he has received back into communion Eutyches, as being of the same opinion as himself, although he had been justly deposed by his bishop Flavian, and this he did in an irregular manner,' before he united with the other bishops at the Ephesian synod. But the apostolic see pardoned them for what they did there against their will and they have as far as possible shown obedience to Archbishop Leo and to the universal council.

“But he, up till now, has proudly persisted in those things for which he ought to have lamented and bowed to the earth. Moreover, he did not allow the letter of the blessed Pope Leo to the late Flavian to be read, though he was often requested, and though he promised on oath, to do so; which not being read, the holy churches throughout the world have suffered scandal and injury. . . . He has ventured to pronounce excommunication against the most holy and pious Leo, archbishop of great Rome. Several complaints against him have been presented to the holy and great synod, and once, twice, and three times he has not oheyed the summons according to the episcopal canons. . . . so he has proclaimed the vote against himself. Wherefore ihe most holy and blessed Leo, archbishop of the great and elder Rome, through us and through this present most holy council, together with the thrice blessed and all glorious Peter the apostle, who is the rock and support of the Catholic Church and the foundation of the orthodox faith, has stripped him of the episcopal and all priestly dignip. Assuredly, therefore, this most holy and great synod will vote upon the aforesaid Dioscorus according to the canons.

“Anatolius, bishop of royal Constantinople, new Rome, said : " Considering all matters in the. ~ame tcay as he apostolic see, I uote with it about the condemnation of Dioscorus, who was bishop of the great city of Alexandria, who has proved himself unworthy of all priestly ofice by disobeying in all things the canons of the fathers, and by not choosing to obey when three times canonically summoned. "

“Theodore, metropolitan bishop of Tarsus, said : " Dioscorus has alienated himself from priestly worth by receiving Eutyches into his communion, contrary to rule, when he had been condemned by Flavian . . . whence he has been justly condemned by the greatest sees, as well of great Rome as of new Rome, by Leo and Anatolius, archbishops of the most holy churches, with whom I agree, and I have so spoken, judging him to be alien from all pontifical ministry."

“Peter, metropolitan bishop of Gangra, said : " On the condemnation of Dioscorus, I consent to what the apostolic see and the holy fathers have decided."

“Euphrates, bishop of Eleutherna, said : "I agree with the holy fathers on the condemnation of Dioscorus, formerly bishop of Alexandria, and I judge him to be alien from all priestly ministry."

“The holy, great, and universal council which by the grace of God, according to the oracle of our pious and beloved emperors, assembled at Chalcedon, a city of Bithynia, in the martyry of the most holy and victorious martyr Euphemia, to Dioscorus. Learn that on' 13 October you were deposed from the episcopate, and made a stranger to all church order, by the holy and ecumenical synod, on account of your disregard of the divine canons and your disobedience to this holy and ecumenical synod, and on account of the other crimes of which you have been found guilty; for even when called to answer your accusers three times by this lioly and great synod, according to the divine canons, you did not come.” (Session 3).

“The judges said: " Let the council now declare what seems good concerning the faith. . . ." On behalf of the papal legates, Bishop Pascliasinus said : "As the holy and universal council holds fast and follows the rule of faith which was set forth by the 318 at Nicaea, it also confirms the faith set forth by the 150 gathered at Constantinople at the bidding of the late emperor Theodosius the great. Moreover the exposition of the creed set forth at the council of Ephesus by the late Cyril, in which Nestorius was condemned, is likewise welcomed. And in the third place the writings of that blessed man Leo, archbishop of all the churches, who condemned the heresies of Nestorius and Eutyches, show what the true faith is.

“Likewise the holy synod holds this faith : this it follows; nothing further can it add, nor can it take anything away." When this had been translated into Greek, the bishops cried : " So we all believe, so we were baptized, so we baptize ; so we have believed, so we now believe." The judges said : "Since we see that the holy gospels have been placed alongside of your holiness, let each one of the bishops here assembled declare whether the epistle of archbishop Leo is in accordance with the exposition of the 318 fathers of Nicaea, and with the decrees of the 150 fathers afterwards assembled in the royal city."

Anatolius, bishop of Constantinople, said: "The letter of the most holy Archbishop Leo agrees with the creed of the 3 18 holy fathers of Nicaea, and of the 150 who afterwards assembled at Constantinople and confirmed the same faith, and with the proceedings at Ephesus of the ecumenical synod (under the blessed Cyril, who is among the saints) which condemned Nestorius. I therefore agree to it, and have willingly signed." The papal legates said: "It is plain, and there can be no doubt, that the one faith of the most blessed Pope Leo agrees with the faith of the 318 fathers of Nicaea and with that of the 150 at Constantinople, and with the definitions set forth at Ephesus . . . and in no way differs. Therefore the letter of the most blessed Pope, which expressed that faith on account of the error of Eutyches, is seen to be of the same sense, and also of one spirit with that creed." Maximus, bishop of Syrian Antioch, said: "The letter of Leo, most holy archbishop of royal Rome, agrees with the expositions of the 318 holy fathers of Nicaea and of the 150 of Constantinople, new Rome, and with the exposition of faith by Bishop Cyril in Ephesus, and I have signed it."

[Sixty-two other bishops spoke to the same effect. I give three specimens] John, bishop of Sebaste, in the first Armenia, said : "As I see it, the meaning of the letter of Leo, bishop of the Romans, agrees with the faith of the 318 and of the 150 afterwards assembled at Constantinople, and with the exposition of Ephesus at the deposition of the ungodly Nestorius, at which blessed Cyril presided, and I have signed this same letter." Seleucus, bishop of Amasea, said: "We have found the synodical letter of our most holy father Cyril to be in harmony with the faith of the 318 holy fathers. Likewise we have found the letter of the most holy Archbishop Leo to agree with the 318 and with those who agree with Cyril." John, bishop of Germanicia Augusta on the Euphrates, said: "In the faith of the 318 . . . and of the 150 . . . we have been baptized and baptize. And having found what was set forth by S. Cyril and confirmed in the former council of Ephesus, as indeed the letter of the most holy Archbishop Leo, to be in harmony with this, we have signed it. [On behalf of 31 bishops of Illyria] Sozon, bishop of Philippi, read from a chart : " We keep the faith of the 318 holy fathers, which is our salvation, and to it we devote our lives ; nowhere do we disagree with the faith of the 150, and we follow in all things the decrees and definitions of the first synod of Ephesus, at which Celestine and Cyril were leaders ; and we are fully convinced that the most holy father and archbishop Leo is most orthodox. But that which in his letter appeared doubtful has been explained to us by the papal legates. . . . For when by your authority we assembled with Anatolius, bishop of Constantinople, . . . they banished our doubts. For they rejected all who separate the flesh of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ from his Godhead, and who do not say that the divine and human existed in him from the Holy Virgin Mary, Mother of God, unmingled, unchanged, and undivided. With this we are satisfied; we agree that the letter accords with all that the fathers have proclaimed, and we have signed it."

[On behalf of 16 bishops of Palestine] Bishop Ananias read from a chart: "We all have always kept the faith of the 318 . . . and we do keep it, and thereto we devote our life. We follow without disagreement that of the 150, and agree with the decrees and definitions of the late Cyril at the first synod of Ephesus. But when the letter of Leo, archbishop of Rome, was read to us, we accepted the greater part as correct. But some parts seemed to express a certain separation and division, and so we hesitated to accept them. . . . We learnt, however, from the representatives of Archbishop Leo, that they admit no separation of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, but confess one and the same Lord and Son of God. And now we think, if your greatness permits, that these things should be put on record for the benefit of the whole world." All the aforesaid bishops said : "So say all of us and agree." [There were 44 more speeches like that of Maximus of Antioch.] The judges said : "The other bishops will state whether they agree that what has been said accords with the sayings of the holy fathers." All the most reverend bishops shouted : "We are all agreed. We all cling together. We all believe alike. We all think these things. Thus we think . . . Long live the emperors! The five also have subscribed to the faith. As Leo, so they think. Long live the emperors!” (Session 4).

The bishops cried: "Theodoret must anathematize at once." Theodoret stepped forward at once: "I have presented a petition to the emperor and a paper to the legates of Archbishop Leo, and if you wish, let it be read, that you may know how I think." The bishops cried : "We will have no reading ; anathematize Nestorius at-once." - Theodoret said: "By God's grace I was brought up by orthodox priests, and rightly instructed, and I have also taught rightly and reject not only Nestorius and Eutyches, but every man who does not rightly think."

The bishops, interrupting, cried : "Say clearly 'Anathema to Nestorius and his doctrines, anathema to Nestorius and his friends! ' " Theodoret said : " In truth I say nothing, unless I know that it is pleasing to God. First I assure you that neither do I think of a city, nor do I desire honour, nor am I here for such, but because I have been slandered. I came to prove that I am orthodox, and that I anathematize Nestorius and Eutyches, and all who confess two Sons." The bishops, interrupting, cried : "Say openly 'Anathema to Nestorius and those who think with him! ' " Theodoret said : "If I have not explained how I believe, I say nothing, but I do believe." The bishops, interrupting, cried : " He is a Nestorian heretic ; throw him out." Theodoret said : "Anathema to Nestorius, and to him who does not call the Holy Virgin Mary ' Mother of God', and who divides into two Sons the one only begotten Son! And I have signed the rule of faith, and the letter of Archbishop Leo, and so I think. And after all this, may you be saved!" The judges said: "Every remaining doubt about the beloved Theodoret is removed, for he has anathematized Nestorius in your presence, and has been favourably received by Archbishop Leo, and has readily accepted the definition of faith which your pieties have accepted, and has also subscribed the letter of the aforesaid most holy Archbishop Leo. It remains that, by the exercise of your reverences' vote, he receive back his church, as the most holy Archbishop Leo has thought right." All the bishops cried : "Theodoret is worthy of the see. The orthodox to the Church! The Church takes back the shepherd. . . . Long live Archbishop Leo! Leo has judged with God. The people take back the orthodox. Worthy of the see! The Church restores Theodoret to the episcopate." (Session Eight).

Canon 28. We, following in all respects the rules of the holy - . fathers and recognizing the canon 1 of the 150 most religious bishops just recited, do also define and vote for the same things respecting the privileges of the most holy church of Constantinople, new Rome. For to the throne of the elder Rome, because that was the imperial city, the fathers naturally rendered2 the first honours; and moved by the same consideration, the 150 most religious bishops assigned equal honours to the most holy throne of new Rome, judging with reason that the city which is honoured with the government and senate, and enjoys equal privileges with the elder royal Rome, should also be magnified like her in ecclesiastical matters, being second after her : so that the metropolitans only, of the Pontic, and Asian, and Thracian dioceses, and moreover the bishops of the aforesaid dioceses who are among the barbarians, shall be ordained by the above-mentioned most holy throne of the most holy church of Constantinople. Clearly . each metropolitan of the aforesaid dioceses, with the bishops of the province, is to ordain the bishops of the province as has been declared by the divine canons ; 3 but the metropolitans themselves of the said dioceses shall, as has been said, be ordained by the archbishop of Constantinople, after the usual election has been reported to him. (Session Fifteen).

“Lucentius, bishop and legate of the apostolic see, said : " In the first place your excellency should notice that it was brought about by the circumstances of the holy bishops, who were forced to sign the said canons." The bishops cried : "No one was forced! " Eucentius said: "It seems that the decrees of the 318 have been passed over, and that mention has only been made of those of the 150 which are not among the synodical canons (and which were made, as they acknowledged, eighty years ago).' If during those times they experienced the benefit, why do they now seek what is not canonical?" Aetius, archdeacon of Constantinople, said : " If they have received any instructions on this head, let them be expressed."

“Boniface, a Roman legate, said: "The most blessed and apostolic bishop among other things gave us this order. (And he recited from a chart) 'The rulings of the holy fathers shall with no rashness be violated or diminished. Let the dignity of our person in all ways be guarded by you. And if any influenced by the power of his own city should undertake to make usurpations, withstand this with suitable firmness'." The judges said : " Let each party quote the canons."

“Paschasinus, bishop and legate, read: "The canon of the 318 holy fathers : ' The Roman church always had the primacy. Let Egypt therefore so hold itself that the bishop of Alexandria have the authority over all, for this is also the custom of the Roman bishop. So too he who is established at Antioch. And in the other provinces let the privileges of the churches be preserved. . . .'" Constantine, the secretary, read from a book handed to him by Aetius, archdeacon of Constantinople : "The canon of the 318 holy fathers : 'Let the ancient customs prevail, those of Egypt so that the bishop of Alexandria shall have jurisdiction over all, since this also is the custom of the bishop in Rome [etc. as in Doc. 621 .' " The same secretary read from the same book : "The decision of the second synod: these things the bishops decreed who assembled in Constantinople . . . 'The bishop of Constantinople shall have the privileges of honour after the bishop of Rome, because it is new Rome'." 2 The judges said: "Let the bishops of Asia and Pontus who have signed the tome just read say whether they signed willingly, or were compelled by any necessity." And these coming into the middle, Diogenes, bishop of Cyzicus, said : "Before God I signed of my will." [Twelve others spoke to the same effect, and then :]

“The remaining bishops cried : "We signed willingly." The judges said : "From what has been done, and from everything laid down, we observe that the primacy of all and the chief honour according to the canons is to be kept for the beloved archbishop of old Rome, but that the reverend archbishop of the royal Constantinople, which is new Rome, is to enjoy the honour of the same primacy, and to have the power to ordain the metropolitans in the dioceses of Asia, Pontus, and Thrace. . . ." The bishops cried out : "This is a just sentence ; so we all say. These things please us all. This is a just judgement. Establish the proposed decree. . . . Let us go. . . . We all say the same."

“Bishop Lucentius said : "The apostolic see gave orders that all things should be done in our presence [or Latin version: "The apostolic see ought not to be humiliated in our presence " ; and therefore whatever was done yesterday in our absence, against the canons of the court, we beseech your highness to order it to be rescinded. But if not, let our protest be recorded in the minutes, and pray let us know clearly what we are to report to that most apostolic bishop who is the ruler of the whole Church, so that he may be able to speak out about the insult to his own see, and about the upsetting of the canons. " The judges said : "The whole council has approved what we proposed." (Session Sixteen, Discussing Canon 28 {A.D. 451).

"Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I commanded you".l You have kept this command, which is like a golden cord leading down from the author of it to us. You are set as an interpreter to all of the voice of blessed Peter, and to all you impart the blessings of that faith. And so we too, wisely taking you as our guide in all that is good, have shown to the sons of the Church their inheritance of the truth. We have not given our instruction singly and in secret, but with one mind and agreement we have made known the confession of the common faith. We were all delighted at the spiritual food which Christ supplied to us through your letter; we revelled in it as at an imperial banquet and we seemed to see the heavenly Bridegroom actually present with us. For if where two or three are gathered together in his name, he has said that he is in the midst of them, must he not have been much more particularly present with 520 priests who preferred to their country and their ease the spread of knowledge about him? Of all these you were the chief, as head to members, showing your goodwill in matters of organization. The faithful emperors were eager to renew the doctrinal fabric of the Church and presided for the sake of good order, just like Zerubbabel to Joshua in the matter of the temple at Jerusalem.

“The enemy would have been like a wild beast outside the fold . . . if the late pontiff of the Alexandrians had not thrown himself to him for a prey. . . . By his terror-won votes he acquitted Eutyches, who had been condemned for heresy, and restored to him the dignity which your holiness had taken away from him as unworthy of it. And, like the strangest of wild beasts, he fell upon the vine which he found in the finest condition, uprooted it, and planted that which had been cast out as unfruitful. He cut off those who acted like true shepherds, and he placed over the flocks those who had shown themselves to be wolves. Resides all this he extended his fury even against him who had been charged with the custody of the uine by the Saviour-we refer to your holiness-and he intended to excommunicate one who was zealous to unite the body of the Church. 4. We mention further that we have made certain other decisions also for the good management and stability of church affairs, as we are persuaded that your holiness will accept and ratify them when you are told. The long prevailing custom which the holy church of God at Constantinople had of ordaining metropolitans for the provinces of Asia, Pontus, and Thrace we have now ratified by the vote of the synod, not thereby adding anything to the see of Constantinople, but to provide for the good order of the metropolitan sees, because of the frequent disorders that arise when their bishops die. . . . We have also ratified the canon of the 150 holy fathers who met at Constantinople . . . which declares that after your most holy and apostolic see, the see of Constantinople shall - have privileges, being placed second; for we are persuaded that, with your usual interest, you have often extended that apostolic radiance of yours even to the church of Constantinople also. This you will increase many times by sharing your own good things ungrudgingly with your brethren. And so deign, most holy and blessed father, to embrace as your own, and as lovable and agreeable to good order, the things we have decreed, for the removal of all confusion, and the confirmation of church order. For the legates of your holiness, the most holy bishops Paschasinus and Lucentius, and with them the godly presbyter Boniface, tried hard to resist these decisions, wishing that this good work also should start from your foresight, so that the establishment of discipline, as well as of faith, should be credited to you. But we, regarding our most devout and Christian sovereigns, who delight therein, and the illustrious senate, and, so to say, the whole capital, recognized as fitting the confirmation of the honour by this universal council, and we confidently endorsed it, as if it were initiated by your holiness, as you always hasten to cherish us, knowing that every success of the children redounds to the parents. We therefore beg you to honour our decision by your assent, and as we have yielded agreement to the head in noble things, so may the head also fulfil what is fitting for the children. Thus will our pious emperors be respected, who have ratified your holiness' judgement as law, and the see of Constantinople will receive its recompense for having always displayed such loyalty on matters of religion towards you, and for having so zealously linked itself to you in full agreement. But that you may know that we have done nothing for favour or in hatred, but as being guided by the divine will, we have informed you of the whole scope of our actions, to strengthen our position and.to ratify and establish what we have done.” (Writting to Pope St. Leo the Great).

Bishops of Moesia

“That is had been by the command of Pope Leo, who was truly the head of the bishops, convened.” (On Chalcedon, Hard., Conc. II, 710)

Emperor Marcian

“…[your] belovedness does confirm that the council of Chalcedon, with the assent of all the bishops, followed the catholic and truly orthodox faith. For this reason your venerableness should speedily issue your own letter in which you show most clearly that you confirm the council at Chalcedon, so that those who desire roads that are no roads may be in no misapprehension about your holiness’ judgement.” (Letter to St. Pope Leo the Great, in the acts of the Council of Chalcedon).

“After that, this decision was actually made, so that the resolution of the 150 most holy bishops in the time of the divine Theodosius the Elder concerning the honour of the venerable church of- Constantinople, and the recent prescription of the holy synod on the same subject, should be upheld intact: namely that, after the apostolic see, the bishop of the city of Constantinople receives the second place, because the said most glorious city is called Rome the Younger. Let your holiness think fit to add personal assent also to this part, even though the most reverend bishops who met together at the holy synod as representatives of your devoutness have voted against it. For they absolutely forbad anything to be settled concerning this venerable church by the synod.

“And we beg that your devoutness will also give instructions that those things which the holy synod has decreed be observed for ever. Other things by hand. May God preserve you for many years, most holy and devout father.” (Letter to Pope Leo).

St. Peter Chrysologus

“We exhort you in every respect, honorable brother, to heed obediently what has been written by the most blessed pope of the city of Rome, for blessed Peter, who lives and presides in his own see, provides the truth of faith to those who seek it. For we, by reason of our pursuit of peace and faith, cannot try cases on the faith without the consent of the bishop of Rome” (Chrysologus, Doctor of the Church, writting to Eutyches of Constantinople, Letters 25:2, preserved in Pope St. Leo Ep. 25 [A.D. February, 449]).

“Just as Peter received his name from the rock, because he was the first to deserve to establish the Church, by reason of his steadfastness of faith, so also Stephen was named from a crown . . . the first who deserved to bear witness with his blood. Let Peter hold his ancient primacy of the apostolic choir. Let him open to those who enter the kingdom of heaven. Let him bind the guilty with his power and absolve the penitent in kindness.” (Sermo 154).

Anatolius, Bishop of Constantinople

“As there was no doubt that your holiness and your church possessed still higher honour, the synod willingly confirmed the canon of the 150 fathers that the bishop of Constantinople should have the next rank after the most holy Roman see, since Constantinople is new Rome. And they further decreed that he should ordain the metropolitaiis of the provinces of Pontus, Asia, and Thrace, the bishops under them being ordained by their own metropolitans, a decree by which the see of Constantinople lost several rights of ordination which it had exercised for sixty or seventy years. But when all things were going well, and were joyfully concluding, the most pious bishops Paschasinus and Lucentius and the most reverend presbyter Boniface (who had often been informed by us about this same matter), not knowing thc intention of your holiness which you have towards the holiest church of Constantinople, after the sacred synod had signed and by subscription confirmed this decree, scorn the synod, and without cause throw the assembly into confusion, setting this see at nought, and bringing much occasion of insolence on me and on this most holy church of Constantinople. Moreover these decrees had been drawn up in. accordance with the will of our most pious emperors, the most magnificent and glorious judges of the council assisting by pronouncing the definition of the holy synod to be secure. . . . God is witness that we on our part, both before and after their arrival, were careful in all things which pertain to your glory and honour, and this being clear, it is also evident that similar honour and reverence was accorded to them. And in accordance with your dignity, the sacred synod has remitted this decree to your holiness, that we may obtain approval and contrmation from you; and we implore you, 0 most holy one, that this be made effective by you. For the throne of Constantinople has your apostolic throne as its father. . . . (Letter to Pope Leo I [A.D. 451].

“As for those things which the universal Council of Chalcedon recently ordained in favor of the Church of Constantinople, 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.” (On the subject of Canon 28 of Chalcedon, an apology by Patriarch Anatolius of Constantinople to Pope Leo for trying to make Constantinople the 2nd See after Rome, Ep 132, [A.D. 453]).

Eastern Bishops

‘Christ, the best Shepherd, had entrusted the chair of the blessed Prince of the Apostles to you… to tend the sheep of Christ entrusted to you over the whole inhabitable world’ (Eastern Bishops who accepted Chalcedon writting to St. Pope Gelasius).


Patriarch Macedonius II of Constantinople

“Macedonius declared, when desired by the Emperor Anastasius to condemn the Council of Chalcedon, that ‘such a step without an Ecumenical Synod presided over by the Pope of Rome is impossible.’ ” (Macedonius, Patriarch of Constantinople, Patr. Graec. 108: 360a [A.D. 466–516]).

Victor of Vita

“The Roman Church, which is the head of all the churches.” (Victor, De persecute. Afric. [A.D. 485).

Bishop Fravitta of Constantinople

“[you are] the successor of Peter, prince of the Apostles, the rock of faith and steward of the heavenly mysteries by the authority of the keys” (Written to Pope St. Felix III. Regesta Pontificum Romanorum, 51 [A.D. 490]).

Pope St. Simplicius

“Those genuine and clear [truths] which flow from the very pure fountains of the Scriptures cannot be disturbed by any arguments of misty subtlety. For this same norm of apostolic doctrine endures in the successors of him upon whom the Lord imposed the care of the whole sheepfold , whom [He promised] He would not fail even to the end of the world , against whom He promised that the gates of hell would never prevail, by whose judgment He testified that what was bound on earth could not be loosed in heaven … Let whoever, as the Apostle proclaimed, attempts to disseminate something other, than what we have received, be anathema. Let no approach to your ears be thrown open to the pernicious plans of undermining, let no pledge of revising any of the old definitions be granted, because, as it must be repeated very often, what has deserved to be cut away with the sharp edge of the evangelical pruning-hook by apostolic hands with the approval of the universal Church, cannot acquire the strength for a rebirth nor is it able to return to the fruitful shoot of the master’s vine, because it is evident that it has been destined to eternal fire. Thus, finally, the machinations of all heresies laid down by decrees of the Church are never allowed to renew the struggles of their crushed attack.” (From the epistle “Cuperem quidem” to Eastern Emperor Basiliscus Augustus, who had hoped to remove the Council of Chalcedon from the list of general Councils. January 10, 476; Denzinger, H., & Rahner, K. (Eds.). (1954). The sources of Catholic dogma. (R. J. Deferrari, Trans.) (p. 64). St. Louis, MO: B. Herder Book Co.)

Gelasius of Cyzicus

"Hosius himself, the famous Beacon of the Spaniards, held the place of Sylvester, bishop of great Rome, along with the Roman presbyters Vito and Vincent, as they held council with the many [bishops]." (Historia Concilii Nicaeni, bk. II, c. v (PG 85:1229).”

Pope St. Gelasius I


“This is what the Apostolic See guards against with all her strength because the glorious confession of the Apostle is the root of the world, so that she is polluted by no crack of depravity and altogether no contagion. For if such a thing would ever occur (which may God forbid and we trust cannot be), why would we make bold to resist any error?” (Epistle to the Emperor Anastasius; quoted in: Bellarmine, Robert. On the Roman Pontiff, vol. 2: Books III-V, De Controversiis, p. 161, Mediatrix Press (Pope from A.D. 492-496).

“Yet, we do not hesitate to mention that which is known to the Universal Church, namely, that as the See of Blessed Peter the Apostle has the right to loose what has been bound by the judgments of any bishops, whatsoever, and since it has jurisdiction over every church, so that no one may pass judgement on its verdict, the canons providing that an appeal should be to it from any part of the world, no one is permitted to appeal against its judgement.” (Epistle 26).

“These are the canons which decreed that appeals from the whole Church should be directed to this See. They have, however, by no means sanctioned an appeal elsewhere from its judgement; in this way they have ordained that it should sit in judgement over the whole Church, but that it should itself be judged by no one, and never that its judgement should be nulled, but rather ordered that its decrees should be followed.” (Commentary on the Canons of Sardica, or an epistle of instructions to Magister Faustus, Patrologia Latina 59.28B).

“The entire Church over the entire world knows that the Chair of Blessed Peter has the right to loose what has been bound by the sentences of any bishop whatsoever, as the See of Peter is entitled to jurisdiction over any Church, while no one is entitled to pass judgement on its decision, for the canons have permitted that appeals should be directed to it from all the world, but no one is permitted to appeal its decision…”

“If it is fitting that, in general, the faithful should subordinate their hearts to all priests who are correctly administering things divine, how much more should one endeavor to be in accord with the holder of the See, whom not only the divine will wished to be superior to all priests, but whom also the common piety of the Church following the divine will has continually celebrated as such. As your piety can clearly realize, never can anyone elevate himself through any human counsel whatever to that privilege or confession of Peter whom the voice of Christ had placed above all, and whom the venerable Church has always confessed and reverently regarded as its primate. What has been established by divine decree can be attacked by human presumption; it cannot however, be defeated by any power” (Epistle to the Emperor Anastasius).

“The Apostolic See has often had the freedom (facultas), without a Synod preceding it, to loose those whom a Synod had unjustly condemned, and also, if necessary, to condemn others without the convocation of a Synod…”

“and thus he [the Pope] judges the whole Church and himself stands before no tribunal and no judgment can be passed on his judgment, nor can his decision be abrogated.”

“[The Keys] which our Savior delegated to blessed Peter the apostle before the rest.”

“[The Roman See] whom the voice of Christ set before all, whom the venerable Church has always acknowledged and in her devotedness holds as primate…[safeguarding] the upright root [that] is the glorious confession of the Apostle…from any gash of crookedness, by any infection at all.

“They [Easterners] may say, as usual, that if the Council of Chalcedon is allowed to stand, they will have to accept everything which apparently was done there. It must everything or, if some part can be rejected, then no part of it can stand. These people should know that only that part must be accepted by the whole Church which is in accordance with the Holy Scriptures, the tradition of our ancestors, in accordance with the canons and regulations of the Church, only that part which promotes the Catholic and Apostolic faith, communion, and truth, for the accomplishment of which the Apostolic See has ordered this done and has confirmed it after it had been accomplished. But other things [Canon 28], those which were done or simply talked about through foolish presumption, things which the Apostolic See in no way ordered, which were clearly and speedily rejected by the legates of the Apostolic See which the Apostolic See, even with the Emperor Marcian asking for them, in no way approved, which the bishop of Constantinople at the time, Anatolius, claimed not to have sought and did not deny was in the power of the bishop of the Apostolic See; in sum, as we said, that which the Apostolic See has not accepted, because it was shown to be contradictory to the privileges of the universal church, can in no way be accepted.” (Bond of Anathema, On the Council of Chalcedon and Canon 28).

“If we lose them [right believing faith and communion], God forbid, how could an ything ever be restored again, especially if in its summit, the Apostolic See, it became tainted with heresy, something God would never allow to happen….If I, God forbid, were to become an accomplice in the evil [heresy], then I would be in need of a remedy myself, rather than being able to offer others remedy; and the see of blessed Peter would be seeking a remedy from elswhere rather than itself offering a remedy to others, something God would never allow to happen….Therefore those in the East stand firm in the Catholic faith, because they see me defending it and are encourage by me..” (Epistle 1, Gelasius to the Eastern bishops, taken from Ybarra’s “Papal jurisdiction & The Universal Petrine Episcopate”).

“It is no wonder that they [Eastern schismatics] presume to blaspheme the see of the blessed apostle Peter…And on top of this, they call us proud when the first See has never ceased offering them whatever there is of piety. They with their utter shamelessness trust they will be able to subjugate it….I will ask them this: the trial which they call for, where can it be held ? With them in the East, so that they may be the plaintiff, witnesses, and judges all in one? Neither human affairs nor the integrity of the divine faith must be entrusted to such a tribunal. In matters of religion, the canons say that the ultimate judgement must come only from the Apostolic See. The powers of this world? It is not for them to judge — rather they are to learn from the bishops — and above all from the vicar of blessed Peter, about divine things. No ruler of this world, however powerful, whether Christian or not, can presume to claim this for himself, unless of course, he is a persecutor” (Letter 10, to Faustus, an Eastern Christian).

Bishops of Dardania

“It is a protestation of the fidelity of Eastern bishops to the Apostolic See, that they observe in everything the precepts of their fathers and follow inviolably the rules of the holy canons, and so endeavor to obey all, with a common faith and an equal devotion to the Apostolic See of the Roman pontiff exalted and angelic.” (Bishops of Dardania (Balkans), Writing to Pope Gelasius I, Mansi VIII [c. A.D. 494].

Avitus

“We were anxious in mind and fearful in the cause of the Roman Church, as feeling our own position tottering in the head assailed…the chief of the universal Church…If the Pope of that city is called into doubt, not a bishop, but the episcopate will at once seem to be in danger.” (Atvius, Bishop of Vienne, Epistle. XXXI)

The Roman Synod of 495

Pope St. Gelasius I, at the Roman Synod of A.D. May 13th, 495, was saluted with the words: “Vicar of Christ.” This was the first time this title was used.




Part 1: in the Ante-Nicene Church (A.D. 00-300)