Christology and Hybridity in Nemesius of Emesa
Roberto E. Alejandro, Durham
The bishop as spiritual father in early Christian writings and the Eastern Orthodox tradition of spiritual fatherhood
Liviu Barbu, Norwich, UK
The ‘Measured’ Approach:
Bad Pun or Theological Stance in the Poetry of Gregory of Nazianzus?
Grant D. Bayliss,
The Ethics of Organ Donation: Insights from St Symeon the New Theologian
John Bekos, Nicosia, Cyprus
Charity as Equity in the Hermeneutics of Augustine’s De doctrina Christiana
Jeremy W. Bergstrom, Durham, England
The human soul between death and resurrection in Eustathius of Antioch
Sophie H. Cartwright, Edinburgh
Preaching at the Council of Ephesus (431 A. D.)
Luise Marion Frenkel, Cambridge
A few texts closely related to the Ecumenical Council of Ephesus (431 A.D.) contain information about liturgical celebrations involving some, occasionally most, of the hundreds of bishops gathered in that city for several weeks. There are also reports of some bishops being denied access to churches and therefore being denied a space within which to defend and develop their theological and ecclesial ideas. This is significant because preaching was an important means of mobilising support among other members of the council as well as the clergy and population of the city. The authority of the fathers and of the church, the defence of orthodoxy as well as the condemnation of opposing views, were among the main themes of such homilies. It has been shown how these themes dominate and unify the written output of the Council(s), that is, in letters and the recorded proceedings. The aim of this paper is to discuss how the bishops were openly defending their views, in homiletic forms. Personal attacks, slogans, and interaction with the audience were some of the rhetorical devices which make these homilies worth examining.
‘Working the Earth of the Heart’: images of cultivation and harvest in Macarius and Ephrem
Biblical interpretation in Jerome of Stridon’s Vita Hilarionis
Thomas Hunt, Cardiff
Theodor von Mopsuestia zur Kanonizität des Hoheliedes
Nestor Kavvadas, Tübingen
Augustine of Hippo on the Bishop as Spiritual Father
Maria Kilby, Cambridge
Dialogue and Ideology in the Martyrdom of Polycarp: A Bakhtinian Analysis
Lai Pak Wah, Durham and Singapore
Sight and Perception: The Male Gaze and the Desert Fathers
Andrew Brower Latz and Fr. Serafim Aldea, Durham
Rational or Radical: Origen on Romans 9:10-4
Jonathan A. Linebaugh, Durham
Reassembly, Purification or Restoration: The Resurrection of the Body in St Gregory Of Nyssa
Robin Orton, London
How to Lynch a Patriarch Without Really Trying:
Peter the Iberian and the Ambiguities of Late Antique Sanctity
Paul Parvis, Edinburgh
Peter the Iberian was a leading figure in the flourishing monastic movement of Gaza and Palestine and an ardent and influential opponent of Chalcedon, heavily involved in the first faltering steps toward the creation of a Miaphysite hierarchy. His career and the way that career is portrayed in the Life of Peter by his disciple John Rufus of Maiuma reveal something of the ambiguities of Late Antique sanctity.
In a narrative which is rather a tour de force, John Rufus manages to present Peter’s involvement in the consecration of Timothy the Weasel in 457 as an exemplum of his love of retirement and monastic calm. And John Rufus elides the more problematic features of Peter’s involvement with Theodosius and the monastic rebellion in
. But Peter was also a member of a powerful elite – a former royal hostage on close terms with the imperial family itself. In the Life, and reading between its lines, we can see him enjoying the patronage and support of such figures as Eudocia, Melania, and Pulcheria, and a series of anecdotes in both the Life and the Plerophoriae of John Rufus show his ability to negotiate his way through the power structures of fifth-century society. Jerusalem
The Lost Sheep who is Found: Irenaeus’ Intertextual Reading of Genesis 3 in
Adversus Haereses III 23.1-8
Stephen O. Presley, St Andrews
The Dialogue of Adamantius: A Document of Origen’s Thought?
Ilaria L.E. Ramelli, Milan, Italy
The present essay stems from a long and careful research triggered by Richard P. C. Hanson’s invitation to a closer examination of the Dialogue of Adamantius (which indeed, notwithstanding some contributions that have appeared meanwhile, remains an important desideratum in Patristic scholarship and early Christian literature), and by the mystery that surrounds this text, its composition, its double redaction, Greek and Latin, and its relation to Origen, a mysterious ‘Maximus’, Eusebius, Methodius, the Philocalists, and Rufinus.
After an investigation into Origen’s byname, Adamantius (used only by Christians, and not by pagans, in reference to him), and into the relationship between this dialogue and the dialogues publicly held by Origen in his life, I adduce arguments for the anteriority, and priority, of Rufinus’ version over the extant Greek, which even includes very late words. The most extensive part of the study is devoted to a detailed demonstration that the doctrines and conceptions supported by Adamantius in this dialogue, his way of arguing, his Scriptural quotations and exegesis, and many details in fact correspond to Origen’s true thought and methodologies. The final section is a refutation of all the arguments adduced against the identification of ‘Adamantius’ in the dialogue with Origen. The conclusion proper is followed by a few suggestions that hopefully will help cast some light onto the mystery of the Dialogue of Adamantius.
Athanasius as Trinitarian Theologian
The main purpose of this paper is to stimulate a discussion especially between English and German speaking patristic scholars which, I am sorry to say, normally or at least rather frequently does not take place. The trinitarian theology of Athanasius of Alexandria seems to be an especially worthwhile subject for such a discussion.
Conflict or Collusion? Pope Martin I (649-54/5) and the Exarch Olympius in Rome after the Lateran Synod of 649
Eileen Rubery, Cambridge/UK
The Collatio at Carthage and the Unity of the Church
William G. Rusch, New York, NY
Epiphanius’ account of the Alogi: Historical Fact or Heretical Fiction?
T. Scott Manor, Edinburgh
Epiphanius’ work is an important resource for the study of the struggles between ‘orthodoxy’ and ‘heresy’ in early Christianity. A majority of the heresies catalogued in the Panarion have correlations with the refutations of Irenaeus and Hippolytus, and Epiphanius provides valuable expositions on these sects with details that are not included in the heresiologues of his predecessors. Yet there are a number of entries that appear for the very first time with Epiphanius that have little or no corroborating evidence to support their historical existence. One group in particular, the Alogi (Haer. 51), who are said to have rejected the Gospel and Apocalypse of John, has been the subject of much scrutiny throughout much of the twentieth century. In an attempt to better understand the nature, provenance, theology and dates of this heretical group, numerous scholars have attempted to align various descriptive features of the Alogi with information found in the writings of other early Church Fathers. In spite of the fact that the results of such inquiries are inconclusive, this heretical group is said to represent strong anti-Johannine sentiments from within the early Church. In contrast, this essay will explore the likelihood that these so-called Alogi are, in fact, a manufactured heretical group created by Epiphanius based on disparate elements of the testimonies of his predecessors.
A ‘Robber’s Den’? A Fresh Look at the Second Council of Ephesus, AD 449
Mark S. Smith, Cambridge University
Ephesus II has become regarded as the archetypal ‘bad’ church council: shamelessly rigged, inexcusably violent, and lamentably heretical. Yet much of this familiar depiction derives not from the evidence of the proceedings of 449, but from the claims of various interested parties at Chalcedon. The traditional charges against Ephesus II will be considered under four headings: (i) violence, (ii) erroneous theology, (iii) anti-papalism, and (iv) procedural impropriety; and it will be contended that each of these accusations is at best problematic. Indeed, much of what happened at Ephesus II was entirely within the boundaries of normal church practice: the Council was convened by an emperor, presided over by a senior bishop (acting in concert with imperial officials), scrupulously followed very clear imperial instructions, rightly found fault with the Home Synod of 448, and so on. Indeed, it is somewhat ironic that Chalcedon succeeded not by repudiating Dioscorus’ methods but by perfecting them, stage-managing proceedings so effectively that violence could remain a threat rather than needing to become a reality. Ephesus II has, in short, too readily been evaluated not on the basis of its intrinsic merit (or lack thereof), but in line with the subsequent rulings of later assemblies, with their own particular prejudices and agendas.
The Instrumentalization of Christ’s Human Nature in Athanasius of Alexandria
Darren O. Sumner, Aberdeen
A Performative Reading of Augustine’s Doctrine of Predestination
Direct or Discrete – On inter-textuality and counter-textuality in Athanasius, Orations against the Arians I-III
Encountering Christ in the Psalms:
Antecedents of the Jesus Prayer in Eastern Monastic Psalmody c.350-c.450
James F. Wellington, Nottingham
More Nicene than Nestorian:
Ancient Theology in the Church of the East
D.H. Williams, Waco, Texas
Except for the first council held at Nicaea in A.D. 325, in what is now the town of Iznik in northwest Turkey, all seven councils that have been received authoritatively for Latin/Greek speaking Christians were Roman/Byzantine events. The Church of the East had nothing to do with the decisions made at these councils. It is true that Persian Christianity embraced most of the theological perspectives that emerged from Nicaea and Chalcedon. Nevertheless, the middle and far eastern churches did not share most of the conciliar and political history that has so fundamentally shaped the Christianity in the Roman Empire and its descendants.
Death and the Possibility of a Ladder
Jonathan L. Zecher, Durham, UK
Within the uniquely Sinaite ascetic landscape of confluent ascetic and theological influences, of living traditions and constructed origins, at a crossroads between memories of 4th Century Egypt and the influential thought of the Gaza Fathers, John Climacus wrote a uniquely ‘synthetic’ book: The Ladder of Divine Ascent. A monk and later abbot of the Vatos Monastery, living (probably) between 579 and 649 or 659 A.D. The Ladder, which Climacus described as a treatise inked with the humility and wisdom of the saints, comes from the last age of his life, when he was abbot. In the Ladder Climacus developed a compendious and complex vision of ascetic spirituality, shaped as much by his own experience, humour, and compassion, as by the literary and theological traditions of which he was an inheritor. The Ladder quickly became one of the most popular and influential Christian works of the Byzantine world, and it is not without reason that John Chryssavgis compares Climacus with Maximus the Confessor—two synthesizers of inherited tradition, each casting wide shadows over ages to come.
John Damascene's conception of individual: hypostasis versus person
Anna Zhyrkova, Versailles
As identification of the notion of person with the one of hypostasis is frequently considered as a revolutionary achievement of Greek Patristics, one may easily overlook the fact that John Damascene takes much care to distinguish the two notions, both on theoretical level and in his practice of theological utterance.
To be sure, both terms refer to individuals. Yet, ‘hypostasis’ conveys an ontological conception, explaining the actual existence of an individual entity, whereas ‘person’ refers to the way in which individuals of rational nature express themselves.
In contrast to Boetius’ definition of person, according to the one accepted by Damascene, ‘person’ is not merely a synonym for ‘a human individual’. Being a person presupposes the ontological priority of hypostasis, because it is grounded in the hypostatic being of a rational nature. A person is such an individual, who stands out from the crowd thanks to his own operations and interactions with other human individuals. Thus, being a person is a relative feature, since an individual of rational nature becomes a unique person in relations to others.
John consistently refuses to apply any kind of ‘relationality’ to the union of natures in Christ and to the Divine hypostases. The union of natures in Christ is real and essential, i.e. it is hypostatical. ‘Hypostasis’ is primarily an ontological and existential term, designating the exclusive mode of real existence. Therefore, it is ‘hypostasis’ which expresses the three modes of existence of one God, whose existence is not determined by any relations.