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The patriarchate of Antioch was displeased by the rise of the patriarchate of Constantinople, at the Council of Chalcedon 451, to first see of the East. Meanwhile it was infiltrated by heresy, so much so that the patriarchal see alternated between heretics and orthodox until, under the monophysite patriarch Severus 512 518, Jacob Baradeus organized the Jacobite church: by the mid 6th c., about half of the inhabitants of Syria adhered to this. The situation deteriorated during the Arab occupation 638 969. The patriarchate of Jerusalem, to defend itself from Antioch and Alexandria, sought help from Constantinople, whose faith it followed. The Persian invasion 614 put an end to a brief period of splendor. The histories of the patriarchates of Constantinople and Rome are interwoven.

The bishops of Constantinople aimed at second place in the hierarchy after the pope and at privileges equal to his, though without demanding universal primacy, still acknowledged by them to the Roman see, though passed over in silence as far as possible M. Jugie, Le schisme byzantin. Aper§u historique et doctrinal, Paris 1941, 37. The matter appeared more logical on the death of Theodosius I 395 and the division of the Roman Empire into two parts. Now, in can. 28 of the Council of Chalcedon CoeD, pp. 99-100, which modified can. 3 of Constantinople 381 CoeD, p. 32, the privileges of the see of Constantinople were made equal to those of Rome, while conceding first place to the latter; the bishop of Constantinople had the right to ordain the metropolitans of the civil dioceses of Pontus, Asia and Thrace. Kansas City Map The patriarchate of Constantinople, comprising these three exarchates, was now founded de jure.

Can. 28 served the bishop of Constantinople for his patriarchal jurisdiction. In the mid 7th c., the patriarchate counted 33 metropolises with 352 suffragan bishoprics and 24 autocephalous archbishoprics. From the 7th c. the see of Constantinople was also called apostolic; indeed in the 9th c. it was declared to be of apostolic origin heir of Ephesus, therefore of St. John the apostle; linked to the legend of St. Andrew the apostle, evangelizer of Byzantium: we thus arrive at the theory of the pentarchy, installed by the Holy Spirit, of apostolic succession and composed of superior leaders of identical dignity. Kansas City Map The Roman see was agreeable to the pluralistic structure as long as the patriarchates were shown to be based on apostolic origin. Conflicts arose through Rome’s vaunting her preeminent apostolic origin, claiming to be the universal leader of the church.

The Decretum Gelasianum, the case of John Chrysostom under Innocent I 402 417, Leo I’s 440 461 opposition to can. 28 of Chalcedon, the patriarch of Constantinople’s assumption, against Roman protest, of the title ecumenical = imperial patriarch 6th c., etc., are so many steps in a gradual tension and distancing between Rome and Constantinople. Kansas City Map But the primacy of the bishops of Constantinople among the churches of the East was uncontested, all the more so since the Eastern patriarchates went over either to the Nestorian Antioch or the monophysite Alexandria heresy, and ended up under Muslim rule 7th c.. Relationships with the emperor were regulated by mutual exchanges of synodal letters with a profession of faith by the pope or the patriarch elect; with the insertion of the patriarch’s name or that of the pope into the diptychs and its commemoration during the canon of the mass, read by the deacon from the ambo; and with the diplomatic representation of the pope or patriarch to the emperor through permanent ambassadors or special nuncios apocrisiarii. This diplomatic network, though necessary, failed to prevent the rift between the sees of Constantinople and Rome from widening further and further and culminating in the schism of 1054.

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