What Polish king gave this decree?[i know but i ain't telling].
If you know then why are you asking me? But since you asked it was most probably King Sigmund-August II.
[Orthodoc, you have to know something about Polish history.... Tke Polish King never gave out such rulings.. For this he would been killed]
The Orthodox Church In The History Of Russia - by * Professor Dimitry Pospielovsky
(*) Dimitry Pospielovsky is Professor Emeritus of History at the University of Western Ontario. He is the author of The Russian Church Under The Soviet Regime, 1917-1982v (SVS Press, 1984) and is one of the foremost authorities on Russian Church History.
The laity, the parish clergy, and particularly the brotherhoods refused to accept the union with Rome. The protest movement developed and spread quickly, joined at first by a single bishop, Gideon (Bolodan) of Lvov. The Polish King gave in to these pressures and authorized the convening of a local council of those bishops, clergy and laity of the Roman and Greek Church who accepted the papacy --i.e. those who did not accept the Unia were not invited.
The Council met in the city of Brest on October 6, 1596. In order to prevent a parallel Orthodox council in any of the numerious Orthodox Churches in the city, the now Uniate Metropolitan of Kiev sealed all Orthodox Churches on the day before the Council was to begin, except for the cathedral where the Council was to take place. The Orthodox, nevertheless, converged on Brest as well, with prince Ostrozhskii and his private army at the head. Failing to find an open church, and after waiting in vain for an invitation from the Uniates, they accepted an offer of a Protestant church school for a separate Orthodox Council. The Uniate Council passed a resolution excommunicating all the Orthodox clergy and laity participating in the Orthodox Council. The Orthodox in turn suspended all the clergy and lay participants in the Uniate Council and addressed a petition to the King, asking him to deprive "the traitors" of their dioceses and parishes. But the Polish King decided otherwise: his edict of October 15, LEGALIZED ONLY THOSE BYZANTINE RITE CHRISTIANS WHO JOINED THE UNIA; IT DECREED THE ORTHODOX CHURCH NULL AND VOID AND ALL ITS CLERGY EXCOMMUNICATED; WHILE CONTINUING MEMBERSHIP IN THE ORTHODOX CHURCH WAS DECLARED TO BE AN ACT OF TREASON AGAINST THE STATE.
The Polish government could ill afford continuous persecutions of the Orthodox. A war with Turkey loomed on the horizon, and in 1621 the Cossacks presented an ultimatum to the Polish Crown, stating that unless all persecutions of the Orthodox Church ceased, they would refuse to fight the Turks. In response, the 1623 Sejm declared toleration of the Orthodox Church and permitted the legitimization of Orthodox bishops and the restoration of their dioceses.
But the joy of the Orthodox was short-lived. The legalization of the Orthodox Church resulted in mass return to Orthodoxy especially in Eastern Belorussia. This resulted in mass attacks on Orthodox households and Churches led by bishop Josaphat (Kuntsevish). The citizens revolted which resulted in Josaphat's death.
Roman Catholic revenge was immediate and brutal. All Orthodox Churches were once again confiscated or closed. Everywhere in the commonwealth the Orthodox lost the right not only to build but to repair churches; Pope Urban VII proclaimed that any Roman Catholic who dared to oppose the use of the sword against the Orthodox would be excommunicated.
Now, since we have gotten way of he original subject of this thread as well as the 'papal Catholic' issue, if you want to continue this open up a new thread.