Category Archives: Podcast

#356 – A History of the Catholic Church – Athanasius Contra Mundum

Constantius II moves against the bishops of the West, including bishop Liberius of Rome, in his desire to establish a common theology and obtain an empire wide condemnation of Athanasius. The Nicene/Eusebian division becomes more complicated as we look at the homoousions – those who said the Father had the same nature as the Son and the homoiousions – those who said that the Father had a similar nature to the Son.

Links:

Image of Athanasius

Trial of Liberius of Rome

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#356 – A History of the Catholic Church – Athanasius Contra Mundum

#355 – A History of the Catholic Church – Fighters for Christ

The Trinitarian Controversy continues to divide the Church and the Donatist Controversy breaks out again. Constans is overthrown and Constantius II emerges triumphant, much to the dread of the Western Church. Things aren’t looking good.

Links:

Image of Constans

345 Macrostich/Long-lined Creed

351 Creed of Sirmium

Maureen A. Tilley, “Sustaining Donatist Self-Identity: From the Church of the Martyrs to the Collecta of the Desert”, Journal of Early Christian Studies, 5.1, 1997, pp. 21-35.

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#355 – A History of the Catholic Church – Fighters for Christ

#354 – A History of the Catholic Church – The Sons of Constantine

The death of Constantine finds the empire divided among his relatives and the Church divided between the Nicenes and the Eusebians – none of whom work well together.

Links:

Image of Constantine with his three sons

Map of empire divided among Constantine II, Constantius II and Constans

The many creeds of the many councils in the 4th century – including the 341 Council of Antioch, the 343 Council of Sardica and the 343 Council of Philippopolis

The Holy Notaries

Jorg Ulrich, “Nicaea and the West”, Vigiliae Christianae 51, pp. 20-24.

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#354 – A History of the Catholic Church – The Sons of Constantine

#353 – A History of the Catholic Church – Constantine and the Church

The legacy of Constantine continues to effect different understandings of the history of the Church. For some, Constantine is the model Christian ruler. For others, Constantine corrupted the Christianity. In this episode, we will look at Constantine’s legacy in terms of the Church’s relation to the State and the treatment of those deemed outside the Church.

Links:

Image of Statue of Constantine by Jean-Christophe Benoist

Section of Lactantius’ “Divine Institutes” on forebearance.

Elizabeth DePalma Digeser, “Lactantius, Porphyry, and the Debate over Religious Toleration”, The Journal of Roman Studies, Vol. 88, 1988, pp. 129-146.

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#353 – A History of the Catholic Church – Constantine and the Church

#352 – A History of the Catholic Church – Anathematizations and Glorifications

In his final years, Constantine continues to have a profound effect on the Church and the Trinitarian Controversy moves in a new direction with the death of Arius. We also look at the development of the Canonical Scriptures and the importance of the Roman Army on the expansion of Christianity.

Links:

Image of Raphael’s Baptism of Constantine.

Information on Marcellus of Ancyra

Icon showing death of Arius

Eusebius and Athanasius on the Scriptures

Lead tank used by Roman army for baptisms

Images of the Church of the Holy Apostles can be found here and here.

Apotheosis of Constantine

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#352 – A History of the Catholic Church – Anathematizations and Glorifications

#351 – A History of the Catholic Church – Nicenes and Eusebians

The Council of Nicaea did not resolve the controversy over the relationship between the Father and the Son, despite the wishes of Constantine. Indeed, as theology and politics and personalities become more intertwined, the Trinitarian Controversy becomes more intense.

Links:

Image of Constantine burning Arius’ books.

Timothy Barnes, “The Exile and Recalls of Arius”, Journal of Theological Studies, Vol. 60, No. 1, April 2009, 109-129.

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#351 – A History of the Catholic Church – Nicenes and Eusebians

#350 – A History of the Catholic Church – The Conversion of Georgia

As with the Church in Egypt, the Syriac Church in the East will develop its own monastic traditions – following the examples of Julianus Saba, Jacob of Nisibis and Aphrahat. This period also witnesses the conversion of the Kingdom of Iberia to Christianity under the influence of Saint Nino – Equal to the Apostles.

Links:

Image of the Saint Nino.

Selections from Aphrahat’s “Demonstrations”

Pope Benedict XVI’s words on Aphrahat

Traditional accounts of the conversion of Iberia

Map of the region between the Roman and Sassanid Empires – showing location of Armenia and Iberia

Alexander Angelov, “Bishop over ‘Those Outside’: Imperial Diplomacy and the Boundaries of Constantine’s Christianity, Greek, Roman, and Byzantine Studies 54 2014 274-292.

Sidney H. Griffith, “Julian Saba, ‘Father of the Monks’ of Syria,” Journal of Early Christian Studies 2 (1994) 185-216.

Cornelia B. Horn, “St. Nino and the Christianization of Pagan Georgia”, Medieval Encounters 4 (3) 1998, pp. 242-264.

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#350 – A History of the Catholic Church – The Conversion of Georgia

#349 – A History of the Catholic Church – The Cenobites

One cannot overestimate the importance of Pachomius and Pachomian monasticism upon the development of religious life in the Catholic Church. His emphasis on the importance of living together in community as the means for obtaining holiness will not only influence monasticism throughout the East and West, it will set the foundation for all religious communities up to the present day.

Links:

Image of the prayer rope.

Information on Pachomian monasticism including links to description of Pachomian monasteries

James E Goehring, “Withdrawing from the Desert: Pachomius and the Development of Village Monasticism in Upper Egypt”, The Harvard Theological Review, Vol. 89, No. 3 (July 1996), pp. 267-285.

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#349 – A History of the Catholic Church – The Cenobites

#348 – A History of the Catholic Church – The Anchorites

Alongside the rise of Christianity under the reign of Constantine also comes the rise of semi-eremetical monasticism under the examples of Amun/Ammon, founder of the communities of Nitria and Kellia, and Macarius the Great, founder of the community of Scetis. The Desert Fathers provide examples of Christian living and play important roles in Roman society.

Links:

Image of the monastic community of Kellia as it looks today by Geo24

Photographs and maps of hermitages in Egypt and Sudan

Maps and information on Nitria, Kellia and Scetis

More information on Nitria, Kellia, and Scetis – including images of monastic cells

Lucian Regnault, “The Day to Day Life of the Desert Fathers in Fourth Century Egypt”

Hugh G. Evelyn White, “The Monasteries of Wadi ‘N Natrun”

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#348 – A History of the Catholic Church – The Anchorites

#347 – A History of the Catholic Church -The Mysteries

Increasing numbers of Christians and the legalization of Christianity under Constantine motivate changes in the religious practice of the Christians – especially in the rites of Baptism, Chrismation and the Eucharist. We also look at changes in the practice of Penance and other practices that will later become known as Sacraments.

Links:

Image of the baptistry in Milan where Ambrose baptized Augustine – by Fr. Gaurav Shroff

Catechetical Lectures of Cyril of Jerusalem – the Mystagogical Lectures on Baptism, Chrismation and Eucharist begin with #19.

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#347 – A History of the Catholic Church – The Mysteries