Council of Ephesus
The Council of Ephesus was a council of Christian bishops convened in Ephesus in AD 431 by the Roman Emperor Theodosius II. This third ecumenical council, an effort to attain consensus in the church through an assembly representing all of Christendom, confirmed the original Nicene Creed, condemned the teachings of Nestorius, Patriarch of Constantinople, who held that the Virgin Mary may be called the Christotokos, "Birth Giver of Christ" but not the Theotokos, "Birth Giver of God", it met in July 431 at the Church of Mary in Ephesus in Anatolia. Nestorius' doctrine, which emphasized the distinction between Christ's human and divine natures and argued that Mary should be called Christotokos but not Theotokos, had brought him into conflict with other church leaders, most notably Cyril, Patriarch of Alexandria. Nestorius himself had requested the Emperor to convene the council, hoping that it would prove his orthodoxy; the council declared Mary as Theotokos. Nestorius' dispute with Cyril had led the latter to seek validation from Pope Celestine I, who authorized Cyril to request that Nestorius recant his position or face excommunication.
Nestorius pleaded with the Eastern Roman Emperor Theodosius II to call a council in which all grievances could be aired, hoping that he would be vindicated and Cyril condemned. 250 bishops were present. The proceedings were conducted in a heated atmosphere of confrontation and recriminations and created severe tensions between Cyril and Theodosius II. Nestorius was decisively outplayed by Cyril and removed from his see, his teachings were anathematized; this precipitated the Nestorian Schism, by which churches supportive of Nestorius in the Persian Empire of the Sassanids, were severed from the rest of Christendom and became known as Nestorian Christianity, or the Church of the East, whose present-day representatives are the Assyrian Church of the East, the Ancient Church of the East, the Chaldean Syrian Church, the Chaldean Catholic Church. Nestorius himself retired to a monastery. McGuckin cites the "innate rivalry" between Alexandria and Constantinople as an important factor in the controversy between Cyril of Alexandria and Nestorius.
However, he emphasizes that, as much as political competition contributed to an "overall climate of dissent", the controversy cannot be reduced to the level of "personality clashes" or "political antagonisms". According to McGuckin, Cyril viewed the "elevated intellectual argument about christology" as one and the same as the "validity and security of the simple Christian life". Within Constantinople, some supported the Roman-Alexandrian and others supported the Nestorian factions. For example, Pulcheria supported the Roman-Alexandrian popes while the emperor and his wife supported Nestorius. Contention over Nestorius' teachings, which he developed during his studies at the School of Antioch revolved around his rejection of the long-used title Theotokos for the Virgin Mary. Shortly after his arrival in Constantinople, Nestorius became involved in the disputes of two theological factions, which differed in their Christology. McGuckin ascribes Nestorius' importance to his being the representative of the Antiochene tradition and characterizes him as a "consistent, if none too clear, exponent of the longstanding Antiochene dogmatic tradition."
Nestorius was surprised that what he had always taught in Antioch without any controversy whatsoever should prove to be so objectionable to the Christians of Constantinople. Nestorius emphasized the dual natures of Christ, trying to find a middle ground between those who emphasized the fact that in Christ God had been born as a man, insisted on calling the Virgin Mary Theotokos, those that rejected that title because God as an eternal being could not have been born. Nestorius suggested the title Christotokos, but this proposal did not gain acceptance on either side. Nestorius tried to answer a question considered unsolved: "How can Jesus Christ, being part man, not be a sinner as well, since man is by definition a sinner since the Fall?" To solve that he taught that Mary, the mother of Jesus gave birth to the incarnate Christ, not the divine Logos who existed before Mary and indeed before time itself. The Logos occupied the part of the human soul, but wouldn't the absence of a human soul make Jesus less human?
Nestorius rejected this proposition, answering that, because the human soul was based on the archetype of the Logos, only to become polluted by the Fall, Jesus was "more" human for having the Logos and not "less". Nestorius argued that the Virgin Mary should be called Christotokos, Greek for "Birth Giver of Christ", not Theotokos, Greek for "Birth Giver of God". Nestorius believed that no union between the divine was possible. If such a union of human and divine occurred, Nestorius believed that Christ could not be con-substantial with God and con-substantial with us because he would grow, mature and die and would possess the power of God that would separate him from being equal to humans. According to McGuckin, several mid-twentieth-century accounts have tended to "romanticise" Nestorius. Nestorius's opponents charged him with detaching Christ's divin
Council of Florence
The Seventeenth Ecumenical Council of the Roman Catholic Church was convoked as the Council of Basel by Pope Martin V shortly before his death in February 1431 and took place in the context of the Hussite wars in Bohemia and the rise of the Ottoman Empire. At stake was the greater conflict between the Conciliar movement and the principle of papal supremacy; the Council entered a second phase after Emperor Sigismund's death in 1437. Pope Eugene IV convoked a rival Council of Ferrara on 8 January 1438 and succeeded in drawing the Byzantine ambassadors to Italy; the Council of Basel first suspended him, declared him a heretic, in November 1439 elected an antipope, Felix V. The rival Council of Florence concluded in 1445 after negotiating unions with the various eastern churches; this bridging of the Great Schism was a political coup for the papacy. In 1447, Sigismund's successor Frederick III commanded the city of Basel to expel the Council of Basel; the initial location at Basel reflected the desire among parties seeking reform to meet outside the territories of the Papacy, the Holy Roman Empire or the kings of Aragon and France, whose influences the council hoped to avoid.
Ambrogio Traversari attended the Council of Basel as legate of Pope Eugene IV. Under pressure for ecclesiastical reform, Pope Martin V sanctioned a decree of the Council of Constance obliging the papacy to summon general councils periodically. At the expiration of the first term fixed by this decree, Pope Martin V complied by calling a council at Pavia. Due to an epidemic the location transferred at once to Siena and disbanded, in circumstances still imperfectly known, just as it had begun to discuss the subject of reform; the next council fell due at the expiration of seven years in 1431. Martin himself, died before the opening of the synod; the Council was seated on 14 December 1431, at a period when the conciliar movement was strong and the authority of the papacy weak. The Council at Basel opened with only a few bishops and abbots attending, but it grew and to make its numbers greater gave the lower orders a majority over the bishops, it adopted an anti-papal attitude, proclaimed the superiority of the Council over the Pope and prescribed an oath to be taken by every Pope on his election.
On 18 December Martin's successor, Pope Eugene IV, tried to dissolve it and open a new council on Italian soil at Bologna, but he was overruled. Sigismund, King of Hungary and titular King of Bohemia, had been defeated at the Battle of Domažlice in the fifth crusade against the Hussites in August 1431. Under his sponsorship, the Council negotiated a peace with Calixtine faction of the Hussites in January 1433. Pope Eugene acknowledged the council in May and crowned Sigismund Holy Roman Emperor on 31 May 1433; the divided Hussites were defeated in May 1434. In June 1434, the pope began a ten-year exile in Florence; when the Council was moved from Basel to Ferrara in 1438, some remained at Basel, claiming to be the Council. They elected Duke of Savoy, as Antipope. Driven out of Basel in 1448, they moved to Lausanne, where Felix V, the pope they had elected and the only claimant to the papal throne who took the oath that they had prescribed, resigned; the next year, they decreed the closure of what.
The new council was transferred to Florence in 1439 because of the danger of plague at Ferrara and because Florence had agreed, against future payment, to finance the Council. The Council had meanwhile negotiated reunification with several Eastern Churches, reaching agreements on such matters as the Western insertion of the phrase "Filioque" to the Nicene-Constantinopolitan Creed, the definition and number of the sacraments, the doctrine of Purgatory. Another key issue was papal primacy, which involved the universal and supreme jurisdiction of the Bishop of Rome over the whole Church, including the national Churches of the East and nonreligious matters such as the promise of military assistance against the Ottomans; the final decree of union was a signed document called the Laetentur Caeli, "Let the Heavens Rejoice". Some bishops feeling political pressure from the Byzantine Emperor, accepted the decrees of the Council and reluctantly signed. Others did so by sincere conviction, such as Isidore of Kiev, who subsequently suffered for it.
Only one Eastern Bishop, Mark of Ephesus, refused to accept the union and became the leader of opposition back in Byzantium. The Russians, upon learning of the union, angrily rejected it and ousted any prelate, remotely sympathetic to it, declaring the Russian Orthodox Church as autocephalus. Despite the religious union, Western military assistance to Byzantium was insufficient, the fall of Constantinople occurred in May 1453; the Council declared the Basel group heretics and excommunicated them, the superiority of the Pope over the Councils was affirmed in the bull Etsi non dubitemus of 20 April 1441. The democratic character of the assembly at Basel was a result of both its composition and its organization. Doctors of theology and representatives of chapters and clerks of inferior orders outnumbered the prelates in it, the influence of the superior clergy had less weight because instead of being separated into "nations", as at Constance, the fathers div
First Council of Nicaea
The First Council of Nicaea was a council of Christian bishops convened in the Bithynian city of Nicaea by the Roman Emperor Constantine I in AD 325. This ecumenical council was the first effort to attain consensus in the Church through an assembly representing all of Christendom. Hosius of Corduba, one of the papal legates, may have presided over its deliberations, its main accomplishments were settlement of the Christological issue of the divine nature of God the Son and his relationship to God the Father, the construction of the first part of the Nicene Creed, establishing uniform observance of the date of Easter, promulgation of early canon law. The First Council of Nicaea was the first ecumenical council of the Church. Most it resulted in the first uniform Christian doctrine, called the Nicene Creed. With the creation of the creed, a precedent was established for subsequent local and regional councils of Bishops to create statements of belief and canons of doctrinal orthodoxy—the intent being to define unity of beliefs for the whole of Christendom.
Derived from Greek, "ecumenical" means "worldwide" but is assumed to be limited to the known inhabited Earth, at this time in history is synonymous with the Roman Empire. One purpose of the council was to resolve disagreements arising from within the Church of Alexandria over the nature of the Son in his relationship to the Father: in particular, whether the Son had been'begotten' by the Father from his own being, therefore having no beginning, or else created out of nothing, therefore having a beginning. St. Alexander of Alexandria and Athanasius took the first position; the council decided against the Arians overwhelmingly. Another result of the council was an agreement on when to celebrate Easter, the most important feast of the ecclesiastical calendar, decreed in an epistle to the Church of Alexandria in, stated:We send you the good news of the settlement concerning the holy pasch, namely that in answer to your prayers this question has been resolved. All the brethren in the East who have hitherto followed the Jewish practice will henceforth observe the custom of the Romans and of yourselves and of all of us who from ancient times have kept Easter together with you.
Significant as the first effort to attain consensus in the church through an assembly representing all of Christendom, the Council was the first occasion where the technical aspects of Christology were discussed. Through it a precedent was set for subsequent general councils to adopt canons; this council is considered the beginning of the period of the First seven Ecumenical Councils in the History of Christianity. The First Council of Nicaea was convened by Emperor Constantine the Great upon the recommendations of a synod led by Hosius of Córdoba in the Eastertide of 325; this synod had been charged with investigation of the trouble brought about by the Arian controversy in the Greek-speaking east. To most bishops, the teachings of Arius were dangerous to the salvation of souls. In the summer of 325, the bishops of all provinces were summoned to Nicaea, a place reasonably accessible to many delegates those of Asia Minor, Armenia, Egypt and Thrace; this was the first general council in the history of the Church summoned by emperor Constantine I.
In the Council of Nicaea, "The Church had taken her first great step to define revealed doctrine more in response to a challenge from a heretical theology." Constantine had invited all 1,800 bishops of the Christian church within the Roman Empire, but a smaller and unknown number attended. Eusebius of Caesarea counted more than 250, Athanasius of Alexandria counted 318, Eustathius of Antioch estimated "about 270". Socrates Scholasticus recorded more than 300, Evagrius, Hilary of Poitiers, Dionysius Exiguus, Rufinus recorded 318; this number 318 is preserved in the liturgies of the Eastern Orthodox Church and the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria. Delegates came including Britain; the participating bishops were given free travel to and from their episcopal sees to the council, as well as lodging. These bishops did not travel alone. Eusebius speaks of an innumerable host of accompanying priests and acolytes. A Syriac manuscript lists the names of the eastern bishops which included twenty two from Coele-Syria, nineteen from Palestine, ten from Phoenicia, six from Arabia, etc. but the distinction of bishops from presbyters had not yet formed.
The Eastern bishops formed the great majority. Of these, the first rank was held by the patriarchs: Alexander of Alexandria and Eustathius of Antioch. Many of the assembled fathers—for instance, Paphnutius of Thebes, Potamon of Heraclea, Paul of Neocaesarea—had stood forth as confessors of the faith a
One true church
A number of Christian denominations assert that they alone represent the one true church – the church to which Jesus gave his authority in the Great Commission. The Catholic Church, the Eastern Orthodox Church, the Oriental Orthodox communion and the Assyrian Church of the East each understands itself as the one and only original church; the claim to the title of the "one true church" relates to the first of the Four Marks of the Church mentioned in the Nicene Creed: "one, holy and apostolic church". The concept of schism somewhat moderates the competing claims between some churches – one can repair schism. For example, the Catholic and Eastern Orthodox Churches each regard the other as schismatic rather than heretical. A number of groups, such as the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, view apostolic succession as an essential element in constituting the one true church, arguing that it has inherited the spiritual and sacramental authority and responsibility that Jesus Christ gave to the Apostles.
Other groups, such as Iglesia ni Cristo, believe in a last-messenger doctrine, where no such succession takes place. A few believe they have restored the original church, in practice; the Seventh-day Adventist Church regards itself to be the one true church in the sense of being a faithful remnant. Many mainstream Protestants regard all baptized Christians as members of the Christian Church; some other Christians, such as Anglicans of Anglo-Catholic churchmanship, espouse a version of branch theory which teaches that the true Christian Church comprises Anglican, Eastern Orthodox, Old Catholic, Oriental Orthodox, Scandinavian Lutheran, Roman Catholic branches. The Catholic Church teaches that Christ created only "one true Church", that this Church of Christ is the Catholic Church, subsists only in the Catholic Church. From this follows that it regards itself as instrumental to "the universal sacrament of salvation for the human race" and "the only true religion". According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, Catholic ecclesiology professes the Catholic Church to be the "sole Church of Christ" e.g. the one true church defined as "one, holy and apostolic" in the Four Marks of the Church in the Nicene Creed.
This teaching was formulated at the Council of Nicea at which time the Apostle's Creed had been ratified. The church teaches that only the Catholic Church was founded by Jesus Christ, who appointed the Twelve Apostles to continue his work as the Church's earliest bishops. Catholic belief holds that the Church "is the continuing presence of Jesus on earth", that all duly consecrated bishops have a lineal succession from the apostles. In particular, the Bishop of Rome, is considered the successor to the apostle Simon Peter, from whom the Pope derives his supremacy over the Church; the Church is further described in the papal encyclical Mystici corporis Christi as the Mystical Body of Christ. Thus, the Catholic Church holds that "the one Church of Christ which in the Creed is professed as one, holy and apostolic... This Church constituted and organized in the world as a society, subsists in the Catholic Church, governed by the successor of Peter and by the Bishops in communion with him."In responding to some questions regarding the doctrine of the Church concerning itself, the Vatican's Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith stated, "Clarius dicendum esset veram Ecclesiam esse solam Ecclesiam catholicam romanam..."
And it clarified that the term "subsistit in" used in reference to the Church in the Second Vatican Council's decree Lumen gentium "indicates the full identity of the Church of Christ with the Catholic Church". One of the earlier councils declared that: "There is one universal Church of the faithful, outside of which there is no salvation", a statement of what is known as the doctrine of extra Ecclesiam nulla salus; the Church is further described in the papal encyclical Mystici corporis Christi as the "Mystical Body of Christ". In the encyclical Mortalium animos of 6 January 1928, Pope Pius XI wrote that "in this one Church of Christ no man can be or remain who does not accept and obey the authority and supremacy of Peter and his legitimate successors" and quoted the statement of Lactantius: "The Catholic Church is alone in keeping the true worship; this is the fount of truth, this the house of Faith, this the temple of God: if any man enter not here, or if any man go forth from it, he is a stranger to the hope of life and salvation."
Accordingly, the Second Vatican Council declared: "Whosoever, knowing that the Catholic Church was made necessary by Christ, would refuse to enter or to remain in it, could not be saved. In the same document, the Council continued: "The Church recognizes that in many ways she is linked with those who, being baptized, are honored with the name of Christian, though they do not profess the faith in its entirety or do not preserve unity of communion with the successor of Peter." And in a decree on ecumenism, Unitatis redintegratio, it stated: "Catholics must gladly acknowledge and esteem the Christian endowments from our common heritage which are to be found among our separated brethren. It is right and salutary to recognise the riches of Christ and virtuous works in the lives of others who are bearing witness to Christ, sometimes to the shedding of their blood. For God is always wonderful in His works and worthy of all praise."The Church teaches that the fullness of the "means of salvation" exists only in
Council of Constance
The Council of Constance is the 15th-century ecumenical council recognized by the Catholic Church, held from 1414 to 1418 in the Bishopric of Constance. The council ended the Western Schism by deposing or accepting the resignation of the remaining papal claimants and by electing Pope Martin V; the council condemned Jan Hus as a heretic and facilitated his execution by the civil authority. It ruled on issues of national sovereignty, the rights of pagans and just war, in response to a conflict between the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, Kingdom of Poland and the Order of the Teutonic Knights; the council is important for its relationship to ecclesial Papal supremacy. The council's main purpose was to end the Papal schism which had resulted from the confusion following the Avignon Papacy. Pope Gregory XI's return to Rome in 1377, followed by his death and the controversial election of his successor, Pope Urban VI, resulted in the defection of a number of cardinals and the election of a rival pope based at Avignon in 1378.
After thirty years of schism, the rival courts convened the Council of Pisa seeking to resolve the situation by deposing the two claimant popes and electing a new one. The council claimed that in such a situation, a council of bishops had greater authority than just one bishop if he were the bishop of Rome. Though the elected Antipope Alexander V and his successor, Antipope John XXIII, gained widespread support at the cost of the Avignon antipope, the schism remained, now involving not two but three claimants: Gregory XII at Rome, Benedict XIII at Avignon, John XXIII. Therefore, many voices, including Sigismund, King of the Romans and of Hungary, pressed for another council to resolve the issue; that council was called by John XXIII and was held from 16 November 1414 to 22 April 1418 in Constance, Germany. According to Joseph McCabe, the council was attended by 29 cardinals, 100 "learned doctors of law and divinity", 134 abbots, 183 bishops and archbishops. Sigismund arrived on Christmas Eve 1414 and exercised a profound and continuous influence on the course of the council in his capacity of imperial protector of the church.
An innovation at the council was that instead of voting as individuals, the bishops voted in national blocs. The vote by nations was in great measure the initiative of the English and French members; the legality of this measure, in imitation of the "nations" of the universities, was more than questionable, but during February 1415 it carried and thenceforth was accepted in practice, though never authorized by any formal decree of the council. The four "nations" consisted of England, France and Germany, with Poles, Hungarians and Scandinavians counted with the Germans. While the Italian representatives made up half of those in attendance, they were equal in influence to the English who sent twenty deputies and three bishops. Many members of the new assembly favored the voluntary abdication of all three popes, as did King Sigismund. Although the Italian bishops who had accompanied John XXIII in large numbers supported his legitimacy, he grew more suspicious of the council. In response to a fierce anonymous attack on his character from an Italian source, on 2 March 1415 he promised to resign.
However, on 20 March he secretly fled the city and took refuge at Schaffhausen in territory of his friend Frederick, Duke of Austria-Tyrol. The famous decree Haec Sancta Synodus, which gave primacy to the authority of the council and thus became a source for ecclesial conciliarism, was promulgated in the fifth session, 6 April 1415: Legitimately assembled in the holy Spirit, constituting a general council and representing the Catholic church militant, it has power from Christ. Haec Sancta Synodus marks the high-water mark of the Conciliar movement of reform; this decree, however, is not considered valid by the Magisterium of the Catholic Church, since it was never approved by Pope Gregory XII or his successors, was passed by the council in a session before his confirmation. The church declared the first sessions of the Council of Constance an invalid and illicit assembly of bishops, gathered under the authority of John XXIII; the acts of the council were not made public at the behest of the Council of Basel.
The creation of a book on how to die was ordered by the council, thus written in 1415 under the title Ars moriendi. With the support of King Sigismund, enthroned before the high altar of the cathedral of Constance, the Council of Constance recommended that all three papal claimants abdicate, that another be chosen. In part because of the constant presence of the King, other rulers demanded that they have a say in who would be pope. Gregory XII sent representatives to Constance, whom he granted full powers to summon and preside over an Ecumenical Council; this would pave the way for the end of the Western Schism. The legates were received by King Sigismund and by the assembled Bishops, the King yielded the presidency of the proceedings to the papal legates, Cardinal Giovanni Dominici of Ragusa and Prince Carlo Malatesta. On 4 July 1415 the Bull of Gregory XII which appointed Dominici a
Council of Chalcedon
The Council of Chalcedon was a church council held from 8 October to 1 November, 451, at Chalcedon. The Council was called by Emperor Marcian to set aside the 449 Second Council of Ephesus, its principal purpose was to assert the orthodox catholic doctrine against the heresy of Eutyches and the Monophysites, although ecclesiastical discipline and jurisdiction occupied the council's attention. The council is numbered as the fourth ecumenical council by the Catholic Church, the Eastern Orthodox Church, most Protestants. Oriental Orthodox Churches do not agree with the conduct and the proceedings of the Council calling it "Chalcedon, the Ominous". Followers of the Council believe its most important achievement was to issue the Chalcedonian Definition, stating that Jesus is "perfect both in deity and in humanness; the council's judgments and definitions regarding the divine marked a significant turning point in the Christological debates. In 325, the first ecumenical council determined that Jesus Christ was God, "consubstantial" with the Father, rejected the Arian contention that Jesus was a created being.
This was reaffirmed at the Council of Ephesus. About two years after Cyril of Alexandria's death in 444, an aged monk from Constantinople named Eutyches began teaching a subtle variation on the traditional Christology in an attempt to stop what he saw as a new outbreak of Nestorianism, he claimed to be a faithful follower of Cyril's teaching, declared orthodox in the Union of 433. Cyril had taught that "There is only one physis, since it is the Incarnation, of God the Word." Cyril had understood the Greek word physis to mean what the Latin word persona means, while most Greek theologians would have interpreted that word to mean natura. The energy and imprudence with which Eutyches asserted his opinions led to his being misunderstood. Thus, many understood Eutyches to be advocating Docetism, a sort of reversal of Arianism —where Arius had denied the consubstantial divinity of Jesus, Eutyches seemed to be denying that Jesus was human. Pope Leo I wrote. Eutyches had been accusing various personages of covert Nestorianism.
In November 448, Bishop of Constantinople held a local synod regarding a point of discipline connected with the province of Sardis. At the end of the session of this synod one of those inculpated, Bishop of Dorylaeum, brought a counter charge of heresy against the archimandrite. Eusebius demanded. Flavian preferred that the bishop and the archimandrite sort out their differences, but as his suggestion went unheeded, Eutyches was summoned to clarify his position regarding the nature of Christ. Eutyches reluctantly appeared, but his position was considered to be theologically unsophisticated, the synod finding his answers unresponsive condemned and exiled him. Flavian sent a full account to Pope Leo I. Although it had been accidentally delayed, Leo wrote a compendious explanation of the whole doctrine involved, sent it to Flavian as a formal and authoritative decision of the question. Eutyches appealed against the decision, labeling Flavian a Nestorian, received the support of Pope Dioscorus I of Alexandria.
John Anthony McGuckin sees an "innate rivalry" between the Sees of Constantinople. Dioscurus, imitating his predecessors in assuming a primacy over Constantinople, held his own synod which annulled the sentence of Flavian, absolved Eutyches. Through the influence of the court official Chrysaphius, godson of Eutyches, in 449, the competing claims between the Patriarchs of Constantinople and Alexandria led Emperor Theodosius II to call a council, held in Ephesus in 449, with Dioscorus presiding. Pope Leo sent four legates to represent him and expressed his regret that the shortness of the notice must prevent the presence of any other bishop of the West, he provided his legates, one of whom died en route, with a letter addressed to Flavian explaining Rome's position in the controversy. Leo's letter, now known as Leo's Tome, confessed that Christ had two natures, was not of or from two natures. On August 8, 449 the Second Council of Ephesus began its first session; the Acts of the first session of this synod were read at the Council of Chalcedon, 451, are thus preserved.
The remainder of the Acts are known through a Syriac translation by a Monophysite monk, written in the year 535 and published from a manuscript in the British Museum. Nonetheless, there are somewhat different interpretations as to what transpired; the question before the council by order of the emperor was whether Flavian, in a synod held by him at Constantinople in November, 448, had justly deposed and excommunicated the Archimandrite Eutyches for refusing to admit two natures in Christ. Dioscorus began the council by banning all members of the November 448 synod which had deposed Eutyches from sitting as judges, he introduced Eutyches who publicly professed that while Christ had two natures before the incarnation, the two natures had merged to form a single nature after the incarnation. Of the 130 assembled bishops, 111 voted to rehabilitate Eutyches. Throughout these proceedings, Hilary called for the reading of Leo's Tome, but was ignored; the Eastern Orthodox Church has different accounts of The Second Council of Ephesus.
Pope Dioscorus requested deferring reading of Leo's Tome, as it was not seen as necessary to start with, could be read later. This was seen as a rebuke to the representatives from the Chur
Nostra aetate is the Declaration on the Relation of the Church with Non-Christian Religions of the Second Vatican Council. Passed by a vote of 2,221 to 88 of the assembled bishops, this declaration was promulgated on 28 October 1965 by Pope Paul VI, it is the shortest of the 16 final documents of the Council and "the first in Catholic history to focus on the relationship that Catholics have with Jews." It "reveres the work of God in all the major faith traditions." It begins by stating its purpose of reflecting on what humankind have in common in these times when people are being drawn closer together. Pope John XXIII had conceived it as an expression of the relationship between the Catholic Church and the Jews. Over the course of several substantial revisions, the focus of the document was broadened to address relationships with several faiths. Opposition from conservative elements in the Church was overcome and support was gained from Jewish organisations. Nostra aetate was intended to be about the relations between the Catholic church and Judaism.
Some objected, including Middle Eastern bishops. Cardinal Bea decided on a less contentious document that stressed ecumenism with all non-Christian faiths. While coverage of Hinduism and Buddhism is brief, two of the five sections are given to Islam and Judaism; the first draft, Decretum de Iudaeis, was undertaken by Cardinal Bea, head of the Secretariat for Christian Unity, at the direction of Pope John XXIII on 18 September 1960. It was never submitted to the Council; the question arose of whether this should be a separate document of the Council, included in a document on the Church or on ecumenism among Christian religions, or a separate declaration on the Church's relations with non-Christian religions. Five drafts were to be produced and amendments to the declaration before its final adoption; the first draft, entitled Decretum de Iudaeis, was completed in November 1961 fourteen months after Pope John XXIII tasked Cardinal Augustin Bea, a Jesuit and biblical scholar, with its composition.
This text was not submitted to the Council, which opened on 11 October 1962. It read: The Church, the Bride of Christ, acknowledges with a heart full of gratitude that, according to God's mysterious saving design, the beginnings of her faith and election go as far back as to the Israel of the Patriarchs and Prophets, thus she acknowledges that all Christian believers, children of Abraham by faith, are included in his call. Her salvation is prefigured in the deliverance of the Chosen People out of Egypt, as in a sacramental sign, and the Church, a new creation in Christ, can never forget that she is the spiritual continuation of the people with whom, in His mercy and gracious condescension, God made the Old Covenant. The Church, in fact, believes that Christ, who "is our peace," embraces Jews and Gentiles with one and the same love and that He made the two one, she rejoices that the union of these two "in one body" proclaims the whole world's reconciliation in Christ. Though the greater part of the Jewish people has remained separated from Christ, it would be an injustice to call this people accursed, since they are beloved for the sake of the Fathers and the promises made to them.
The Church loves this people. From them sprang Christ the Lord, who reigns in glory in heaven. Furthermore, the Church believes in the union of the Jewish people with herself as an integral part of Christian hope. With unshaken faith and deep longing the Church awaits union with this people. At the time of Christ's coming, "a remnant chosen by grace", the first fruits of the Church, accepted the Eternal Word; the Church believes, with the Apostle that at the appointed time, the fullness of the children of Abraham according to the flesh will embrace him, salvation. Their acceptance will be life from the dead; as the Church, like a mother, condemns most injustices committed against innocent people everywhere, so she raises her voice in loud protest against all wrongs done to Jews, whether in the past or in our time. Whoever despises or persecutes this people does injury to the Catholic Church; the first draft was reworked as a supplementary fourth chapter of a "Decree on Ecumenism". Debate on this document, "On the Attitude of Catholics Toward Non-Christians and Especially Toward Jews", although distributed to the Council's Second Session on 8 November 1963, was postponed until the Third Session.
This draft was notable for addressing the "deicide" charge against the Jews directly, saying "it is wrong to call them an accursed people... or a deicidal people". The third draft, "On the Jews and Non-Christians", took the form of an appendix to the "Schema on Ecumenism", it deleted the word "deicidal" and added material on other religions Muslims. In presenting the document to the Council on 28 September 1964, Cardinal Bea encouraged the Council Fathers to strengthen it, they discussed this draft on 29 September. The publicly recorded debate on the third draft took place on 28 September 1964 and on the following days. Since the Vatican Council archives are still "substantially inaccessible", it is difficult to measure the impact of the public and the behind-the-scenes initiatives. Participants included Cardinals Joseph Ritter of St. Louis, Richard Cushing of Boston, Albert Meyer of Chicago, Lawrence Shehan of Baltimore, Lercaro of Bologne, Liénart of L