Monday, October 1, 2012

Lesson 19: The Great Eastern Schism of 1054

The Great Eastern Schism did not happen instantly but a result of a gradual tension that started with initial estrangements.   
- (+) Contrasts in liturgy, discipline, politics and dogma between the Eastern and Western Church.
- (+) Political, social, religious disciplinary, linguistic, cultural reasons
- (+) Increase tension caused by:
a.   Establishment of the Western Empire under Charlemagne and Otto the Great. Remember that after the fall of the Western roman empire in 476, the East wanted to assume the role as Basileia Romaion = empire of the romans but because of the concept of Translatio imperii (transfer of rule) the pope granted the rule of the empire to leaders such as Charlemagne and Otto the Great.

b.   Iconoclasm Controversy– this was clarified by the second council of Nicaea and was seen as the protest of the Frankish empire against the east roman claim to leadership in the dogmatic, ecclesiastical and political sphere.

c.   Territorial claims of Byzantine in Italy (Ravenna and Southern Italy)
d.   Frankish expansion into Italy.
e.   Acacian Schism (482-519)

The Acacian schism between the Eastern and Western Christian Churches lasted thirty-five years, from 484-519. It resulted from a drift in the leaders of Eastern Christianity toward Monophysitism ( the Christological position that Jesus Christ has only one nature, his human nature being absorbed by his divine nature), and Emperor Zeno's unsuccessful attempt to reconcile the parties with the Henotikon (The Henotikon (ἑνωτικόν "act of union") was issued by Byzantine emperor Zeno in 482, in an unsuccessful attempt to reconcile the differences between the supporters of the Council of Chalcedon and the miaphysites. It was followed by the Acacian schism.)with the death of accacius, patriach of constantinople and pope Felix III, the schism ceased.

f.    Photian Schism (863-867)

This conflict was precipitated by the opposition of Roman Catholic Pope Nicholas I (r. 858-867) to the appointment by Byzantine Emperor Michael III of a lay scholar as Patriarch Photius I of Constantinople. The schism effectively ended in 867 with both the death of Pope Nicholas I and the first deposition of Photius. 

g.   330 – Constantinople made capital of the Roman Empire

h.   Great Heresies (IV-V-VI centuries)

The Church was shaken and agitated by dogmatic controversies especially in the East about the most important doctrine of Christianity, such as the Trinity, Christology, doctrine of the Sacraments and the dispute on Grace. These were the times of the bitter disputes on Arianism, Nestorianism, Monophysitism, Monothelism, Origenism, Donatism, Pelagianism, etc…embittered and prolonged because of the intervention of the imperial authority, but most of them were concluded in Great Ecumenical Councils, which fixed the triumph of truth and Christian theology.  The Eastern Church, however, saw the separation of whole regions because of these disputes (Syria, Persia, Egypt, Abyssinia, Armenia).

i.    Barbarian invasions
j.    Moslem invasions
k.   Normans in Italy


How did it formally begin?
-       Constantine IX (ca. 1000-1055) and Argyros (Governor for South Italy) were inclined toward an alliance with the Pope to fight together the Normans in Southern Italy.
-       The German Pope Leo IX (1049-1054) extended his political power into Southern Italy at the same time the Normans were seizing it from the Byzantines.

Patriarch’s Move
-       Patriarch Michael Cerularius of Constantinople (1043-1058) feared an expansion of papal power into his sphere of jurisdiction and prevented an understanding by emphasizing ecclesiastical conflicts by:
    1. Closure of Latin Churches and monasteries in Constantinople
    2. Condemnation of the Latin use of unleavened bread during mass.
    3. Condemnation of clerical celibacy
    4. Condemnation of the inclusion of filioque in the creed.

-       The Western Church uses a version of the Nicene Creed which has the Latin word filioque ("and from the Son") added after the declaration that the Holy Spirit proceeds from the Father. Scripture reveals that the Spirit proceeds from the Father and the Son. The external relationships of the persons of the Trinity mirror their internal relationships. Just as the Father externally sent the Son into the world in time, the Son internally proceeds from the Father in the Trinity. Just as the Spirit is externally sent into the world by the Son as well as the Father (John 15:26, Acts 2:33), he internally proceeds from both Father and Son in the Trinity.

-       FOR THE EAST:
Καὶ εἰς τὸ Πνεῦμα τὸ Ἅγιον, τὸ κύριον, τὸ ζῳοποιόν, τὸ ἐκ τοῦ Πατρὸς ἐκπορευόμενον
(And in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of life, from the Father proceeding).

-       FOR THE WEST:
Et in Spiritum Sanctum, Dominum, et vivificantem: qui ex Patre Filioque procedit
(And in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, and giver of life, who from the Father and the Son proceeds).

-   The Pope sent 3 legates to Constantinople
a.   Cardinal Humbert of Silva Candida            Lotharingian nobles who are ardent defenders of the
b.   Papal Chancellor Frederick of Lorraine      Gregorian Reform
c.   Archbishop Peter of Amalfi
-   The Legates rely on (1) Donation of Constantine[1] which was then regarded as genuine and (2) the absolute primacy of the Pope derived from the succession from Peter.
-  Legates demanded recognition of the Roman primacy of jurisdiction and Western customs were regarded as valid ones and the only one corresponding to tradition à Patriarch refused to receive the legates.
-   Cardinal Humbert delivers a passionate polemic against the patriarch and made a bull of excommunication (July 16, 1054) which he placed on the altar of Hagia Sophia and in the presence of the clergy and populace exclaimed “Videat Deus et Judicet” (Let God see and judge)
-   Implication of the Bull of excommunication: It shows clearly how the Western Church had developed a new and independent direction and how little the reformers understood the mentality of the Greek.

-       When Leo IX died on April 19, 1054, his successor [Hadrian IV (1054-1059)] was not chosen until  December 4, 1054, that’s why the patriarch’s counter excommunication is neither for the Pope nor the Roman Church, but for the legates.

-       The mutual excommunications by the Pope and the Patriarch that year became a watershed in church history. The excommunications were not lifted until 1965, when Pope Paul VI and Patriarch Athenagoras, following their historic meeting in Jerusalem in 1964, presided over simultaneous ceremonies that revoked the excommunication decrees.
-       In spite of renewed attempts at unification, the schism continued to this day.

[1]    According to which Constantine the Great when he had transferred his residence from Rome to Byzantium  ca. 330, had ceded Pope Sylvester (314-335) and the Roman See the sovereign authority over the whole western half of the Roman empire. It is based on an old Sylvester legend of the 5th century. According to the fantastic and completely invented narrative, Constantine attributed his miraculous cure from leprosy to Pope Sylvester and in gratitude transferred the control over Rome and the Western countries to the Roman See. The basis was possibly the intention to protect the papacy against the tutelage of East Rome and to guarantee its political and ecclesiastical independence in the West.

No comments:

Post a Comment