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Author Topic: St. Meletius of Antioch  (Read 1038 times) Average Rating: 0
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Justin Kissel
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« on: February 09, 2011, 02:08:59 AM »

Can someone give me a quick rundown of how St. Meletius of Antioch got back in the good graces of Rome? Did his agreement with Paulinus do it? His presidency at the 2nd Ecumenical Council? His being accepted by St. Theodosius? Something else?
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« Reply #1 on: February 09, 2011, 02:44:56 AM »

Can someone give me a quick rundown of how St. Meletius of Antioch got back in the good graces of Rome? Did his agreement with Paulinus do it? His presidency at the 2nd Ecumenical Council? His being accepted by St. Theodosius? Something else?
He didn't, at least not in his lifetime. St. Chrysostom and St. Flavian restoring communion with Rome did it.
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« Reply #2 on: February 09, 2011, 02:49:56 AM »

Well, see, that's what I don't understand. I was reading tonight about the idea that, according to Roman Catholic theology, if you aren't in communion with Rome then you are considered a schismatic (at best). Then again, the book I was reading it in was from early in the 20th century, before ecumenical niceties came along... Smiley  Still, since Rome apparently considers him a saint, I figured maybe they reestablished communion somehow and I just didn't remember reading about it. After St. Meletius I was going to move on to St. Gregory the Theologian...
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« Reply #3 on: February 09, 2011, 07:51:16 PM »

Huh... I was reading that, according to one Roman Catholic, St. Meletius was never out of communion with Rome. According to this view, Rome (and Alexandria) may have preferred a different bishop for Antioch, but they never actually broke communion with St. Meletius. On a related note, there was supposed a Council of Antioch in 379, which St. Meletius presided over, and at which St. Meletius and the other eastern bishops assembled there approved a statement of faith from Rome. However, even according to this view, St. Meletius seemed to be in some kind of... I don't know what to call it... an imperfect communion, because it is said that St. Meletius and his supported needed to be reconciled to Rome, and that that didn't happen until 398. All of this is based on some things that the Catholic Fortescue said. Any Catholics want to chime in here on this idea?
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« Reply #4 on: February 10, 2011, 02:36:28 PM »

Huh... I was reading that, according to one Roman Catholic, St. Meletius was never out of communion with Rome. According to this view, Rome (and Alexandria) may have preferred a different bishop for Antioch, but they never actually broke communion with St. Meletius. On a related note, there was supposed a Council of Antioch in 379, which St. Meletius presided over, and at which St. Meletius and the other eastern bishops assembled there approved a statement of faith from Rome. However, even according to this view, St. Meletius seemed to be in some kind of... I don't know what to call it... an imperfect communion, because it is said that St. Meletius and his supported needed to be reconciled to Rome, and that that didn't happen until 398. All of this is based on some things that the Catholic Fortescue said. Any Catholics want to chime in here on this idea?
The history of who is in and out of communion is messy. It's one of the reasons why many Catholics feel comfortable venerating Sts. Gregory Palamas and Serphim of Serov.
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« Reply #5 on: February 10, 2011, 02:59:00 PM »

Huh... I was reading that, according to one Roman Catholic, St. Meletius was never out of communion with Rome. According to this view, Rome (and Alexandria) may have preferred a different bishop for Antioch, but they never actually broke communion with St. Meletius. On a related note, there was supposed a Council of Antioch in 379, which St. Meletius presided over, and at which St. Meletius and the other eastern bishops assembled there approved a statement of faith from Rome. However, even according to this view, St. Meletius seemed to be in some kind of... I don't know what to call it... an imperfect communion, because it is said that St. Meletius and his supported needed to be reconciled to Rome, and that that didn't happen until 398. All of this is based on some things that the Catholic Fortescue said. Any Catholics want to chime in here on this idea?
Rome supported his rival and placed Paulinus in its diptychs, and then tried to impose Paulinus after St. Meletius' death, refusing to recognize the election of St. Flavian to succeed until 399.  Remember what the Vatican's "Pastor Aeternus" says:
First dogmatic constitution on the Church of Christ

Chapter 1
On the institution of the apostolic primacy in blessed Peter

1. We teach and declare that, according to the gospel evidence, a primacy of jurisdiction over the whole Church of God was immediately and directly promised to the blessed apostle Peter and conferred on him by Christ the lord.


3. And it was to Peter alone that Jesus, after his resurrection, confided the jurisdiction of Supreme Pastor and ruler of his whole fold, saying:
Feed my lambs, feed my sheep [44].

4. To this absolutely manifest teaching of the Sacred Scriptures, as it has always been understood by the Catholic Church, are clearly opposed the distorted opinions of those who misrepresent the form of government which Christ the lord established in his Church and deny that Peter, in preference to the rest of the apostles, taken singly or collectively, was endowed by Christ with a true and proper primacy of jurisdiction.

5. The same may be said of those who assert that this primacy was not conferred immediately and directly on blessed Peter himself, but rather on the Church, and that it was through the Church that it was transmitted to him in his capacity as her minister.

6. Therefore, if anyone says that blessed Peter the apostle was not appointed by Christ the lord as prince of all the apostles and visible head of the whole Church militant; or that it was a primacy of honor only and not one of true and proper jurisdiction that he directly and immediately received from our lord Jesus Christ himself: let him be anathema.

Chapter 2.
On the permanence of the primacy of blessed Peter in the Roman pontiffs

1. That which our lord Jesus Christ, the prince of shepherds and great shepherd of the sheep, established in the blessed apostle Peter, for the continual salvation and permanent benefit of the Church, must of necessity remain for ever, by Christ's authority, in the Church which, founded as it is upon a rock, will stand firm until the end of time [45].

2. For no one can be in doubt, indeed it was known in every age that the holy and most blessed Peter, prince and head of the apostles, the pillar of faith and the 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 this day and for ever he lives and presides and exercises judgment in his successors the bishops of the Holy Roman See, which he founded and consecrated with his blood [46].

3. Therefore whoever succeeds to the chair of Peter obtains by the institution of Christ himself, the primacy of Peter over the whole Church. So what the truth has ordained stands firm, and blessed Peter perseveres in the rock-like strength he was granted, and does not abandon that guidance of the Church which he once received [47].

4. For this reason it has always been necessary for every Church--that is to say the faithful throughout the world--to be in agreement with the Roman Church because of its more effective leadership. In consequence of being joined, as members to head, with that see, from which the rights of sacred communion flow to all, they will grow together into the structure of a single body [48].

5. Therefore, if anyone says that it is not by the institution of Christ the lord himself (that is to say, by divine law) that blessed Peter should have perpetual successors in the primacy over the whole Church; or that the Roman Pontiff is not the successor of blessed Peter in this primacy: let him be anathema.

Chapter 3.
On the power and character of the primacy of the Roman Pontiff

1. And so, supported by the clear witness of Holy Scripture, and adhering to the manifest and explicit decrees both of our predecessors the Roman Pontiffs and of general councils, we promulgate anew the definition of the ecumenical Council of Florence [49], which must be believed by all faithful Christians, namely that the Apostolic See and the Roman Pontiff hold a world-wide primacy, and that the Roman Pontiff is the successor of blessed Peter, the prince of the apostles, true vicar of Christ, head of the whole Church and father and teacher of all Christian people.

To him, in blessed Peter, full power has been given by our lord Jesus Christ to tend, rule and govern the universal Church.

All this is to be found in the acts of the ecumenical councils and the sacred canons.

2. Wherefore we teach and declare that, by divine ordinance, the Roman Church possesses a pre-eminence of ordinary power over every other Church, and that this jurisdictional power of the Roman Pontiff is both episcopal and immediate. Both clergy and faithful, of whatever rite and dignity, both singly and collectively, are bound to submit to this power by the duty of hierarchical subordination and true obedience, and this not only in matters concerning faith and morals, but also in those which regard the discipline and government of the Church throughout the world.

3. In this way, by unity with the Roman Pontiff in communion and in profession of the same faith , the Church of Christ becomes one flock under one Supreme Shepherd [50].

4. This is the teaching of the Catholic truth, and no one can depart from it without endangering his faith and salvation.


6. Furthermore, it follows from that supreme power which the Roman Pontiff has in governing the whole Church, that he has the right, in the performance of this office of his, to communicate freely with the pastors and flocks of the entire Church, so that they may be taught and guided by him in the way of salvation.


8. Since the Roman Pontiff, by the divine right of the apostolic primacy, governs the whole Church, we likewise teach and declare that he is the supreme judge of the faithful [52], and that in all cases which fall under ecclesiastical jurisdiction recourse may be had to his judgment [53]. The sentence of the Apostolic See (than which there is no higher authority) is not subject to revision by anyone, nor may anyone lawfully pass judgment thereupon [54]. And so they stray from the genuine path of truth who maintain that it is lawful to appeal from the judgments of the Roman pontiffs to an ecumenical council as if this were an authority superior to the Roman Pontiff.

9. So, then, if anyone says that the Roman Pontiff has merely an office of supervision and guidance, and not the full and supreme power of jurisdiction over the whole Church, and this not only in matters of faith and morals, but also in those which concern the discipline and government of the Church dispersed throughout the whole world; or that he has only the principal part, but not the absolute fullness, of this supreme power; or that this power of his is not ordinary and immediate both over all and each of the Churches and over all and each of the pastors and faithful: let him be anathema.
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« Reply #6 on: February 10, 2011, 03:29:25 PM »

St. Basil the Great was not a fan of Paulinus.  Cheesy

Letter 263
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« Reply #7 on: November 13, 2011, 12:50:32 AM »

Does anyone know where you can find an icon of Saint Meletius?
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Justin Kissel
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« Reply #8 on: December 21, 2011, 12:09:59 AM »

Does anyone know where you can find an icon of Saint Meletius?

Fwiw, I found this icon of him in a parish. If you really want/need one of him, perhaps your could contact the parish, who could put you in touch with the iconographer, who might either have one or know where you can get one from. But you probably already came across that one, come to think of it...
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« Reply #9 on: October 14, 2012, 12:57:21 AM »

Well, see, that's what I don't understand. I was reading tonight about the idea that, according to Roman Catholic theology, if you aren't in communion with Rome then you are considered a schismatic (at best). Then again, the book I was reading it in was from early in the 20th century, before ecumenical niceties came along... Smiley  Still, since Rome apparently considers him a saint, I figured maybe they reestablished communion somehow and I just didn't remember reading about it. After St. Meletius I was going to move on to St. Gregory the Theologian...

According to Hefele, the Meletian schism was still existing at the time of the First Ecumenical Council of Constantinople (381).
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