Council of Arles (314)

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The Council of Arles was a synod in 314 , the decisions of which were significant for the further development of the Christian church .

The reason for the synod was the dispute with the Donatists in North Africa . A synod in Rome chaired by Bishop Miltiades did not bring about a solution to the dispute.

Emperor Constantine I therefore called another Synod of Bishops to ensure the unity of the Christian Church. It met on August 1, 314 in Arelate in the Roman province of Gaul . The synod condemned Donatism and recognized the election of the bishop of Carthage , Caecilian, as a contested by the Donatists .

Theologically significant is above all the rejection of Donatist sacramental subjectivism: The validity of the sacraments , especially baptism and ordination , was recognized regardless of the orthodoxy or personal worthiness of the sacrament giver. The Synod of Arles thus contradicted not only the Donatists, but the entire North African tradition, for which Tertullian and Cyprian of Carthage stand.

In addition, the Synod of Arles dealt with disciplinary matters and reached the question of the Easter date in the Easter controversy one.

The Roman bishop and Pope Silvester did not personally attend the synod, but sent two deacons and two priests as representatives.

See also


  • A. Mehat: Le Concile d'Arles (314) et les Bagaudes . In: Revue des sciences religieuses . tape 63 , no. 1–2 , ISSN  0035-2217 , p. 47-70 .

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