Back to Documents Concerning the Meletian Schism

Date c. 333
Ancient Source(s) Athanasius, Ap. 69

To the blessed Pope Athanasius, Arsenius, Bishop of those who were heretofore under Meletius in the city of the Hypselites, together with the presbyters and deacons, wishes much health in the Lord.

Being earnestly desirous of peace and union with the catholic church, over which by the grace of God you preside, and wishing to submit ourselves to the Canon of the Church, according to the ancient rule, we write to you, dearly beloved pope, and declare in the name of the Lord that we will not for the future hold communion with those who continue in schism, and are not yet at peace with the catholic church, whether bishops, presbyters or deacons, neither will we take part with them if they wish to establish anything in a council; neither will we send letters of peace to them nor receive such from them; neither yet without the consent of you, the bishop of the metropolis, will we publish any determination concerning bishops, or on any other general ecclesiastical question; but we will yield obedience to all the canons that have theretofore been ordained, after the example of the Bishop Ammonian, Tyrannus, Plusian and the rest. Therefore we beseech your goodness to write to us speedily in answer, and likewise to our fellow ministers concerning us, informing them that we will henceforth abide by the aforementioned resolution and will be at peace with the catholic church and at unity with our fellow ministers in the [various] districts. And we are persuaded that your payers, being acceptable to God, will so prevail with Him, that this peace shall be firm and indissoluble to the end, according to the will of God the Lord of all, through Jesus Christ our Lord.

We, and those that are with us, salute the sacred ministry that is under you. Very shortly, if God permit, we will come to visit your goodness. I, Arsenius, pray for your health in the Lord for many years, most blessed pope.

Translation from NPNF2 vol. 4, p. 136

Adapted by SMT

Last updated: 3-12-2011

Previous DocumentNext Document

No Responses yet