THE FIFTH ECUMENICAL COUNCIL
The Second held in Constantinople

The Holy and Ecumenical Fifth Council (which was the second one held in Constantinople) was held in the year 553 in the reign of Emperor Justinian I. According to Dositheus (Book V, ch. 16 of the Dodecabiblus), its proceedings and transactions were contained in eight Acts written in Latin, and, according to the Collection of the Councils (p. 261 of vol. ii), in five written in Greek. It was attended by Fathers to the number of 165, among whom Menas shone with the greatest splendor at first, and afterwards in succession Eutychius, both of them having served as Patriarchs of Constantinople; followed by Vigilius, the Bishop of Rome, who, though at the time in Constantinople, was not actually present at the Council itself either in person or by proxies (as, for instance, was done at the Second Ecumenical Council), but who nevertheless sanctioned the Council later in a written publication; Apolinarius of Alexandria, Domnus of Antioch, Didymus and Evagrius, these two taking the place of and representing Eustochius of Jerusalem. The Council anathematized the written works of Diodorus of Tarsoupolis (or Tarsus) and those of Theodore of Mopsuestia, and indeed even Theodore himself, and Diodorus, according to Photius, Code 18, and the respective Act of the Seventh Ec. C. See also p. 14 in the first volume of the Series concerning the Reporters, who, holding the tenets of Nestorius, left these records in writing upon their death (especially Theodore of Mopsuestia, who served as the teacher of Nestorius and declared the Logos to be a different God than the one called Christ, who was troubled by the passions of the soul and by the desires of the flesh). It also anathematized what had been written by blissful Theodoret against the twelves "heads" (or chapters) of St. Cyril (of Alexandria), and the so-called letter of Ibas, the Bishop of Edessa, to Mares the Persian. It further anathematized even Origen himself, and Didymus, and Evagrius, and their detestable tenets, who foolishly affirmed that souls were existent prior to bodies, and that upon the death of one body they enter another; that there is an end to the punishment suffered in hell; that demons are going to recover the original dignity of angelic grace which they used to have; that souls are going to be resurrected naked without a body; and that the heavenly bodies have souls; and still other cacodoxical notions. It also anathematized Anthimus of Trebizond for entertaining the ungodly beliefs of Eutyches, and also Severus, and Peter the Bishop of Apameia, and Zooras. But this Council did not promulgate any Canons relating to the ecclesiastical constitution, but only fourteen anathematisms against the said heretics and others, and twenty-five more directed solely against the Origenists (p. 341 of the second volume of the Councils).

+

14 Anathemas

+

Online Version
2005 - Most Rev. Victor Prentice
All Rights Reserved

1