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Actual Author or Source  unknown
Source of Attribution to Julius I  Pseudo-Isidorian forgery
Text  Latin:
Other Translations
Source of Information Thompson, Correspondence of Julius I, xxxv-xxxvi, xli, 186

The letter of the eastern bishops sent to the Julius the Roman pontiff, upset about the fact that without consulting them he accepted into fellowship Paul bishop of Constantinople and Athanasius bishop of Alexandria together with their allies whom they had condemned and by his apostolic authority had rendered the churches and everything which applies to them his own:

10. To the most blessed lord and honorable father Julius, venerable bishop of the apostolic see. Eusebius, Theognis, Theodore, and Berintus together with the rest of our brothers and fellow bishops gathered in Antioch.
Although almost all of us know that the Roman church has the dutiful and apostolic care and always exists as the mother of piety even though those who preached piety to it came from the east, yet we desire that you be in agreement with us and that you suspend from fellowship those whom we suspend and confirm in the order of bishop those whom we confirm and that you do not be consider us to be in a second place since the Apostles who taught doctrine came all the way from these parts to you. For we have not reverberated against our decisions even though we had the opportunity to do so when Novatian was driven out from the Roman church. For, to use a common expression, everyone who wants to withdraw from a friend seeks hostilities, and he who accepts into fellowship someone who was excommunicated by someone else without the permission of him by whom he was deprived of fellowship cannot be without the guilt, because, that is, the canons order that whoever is excommunicated by some is not accepted by others while those by whom it was decided that he was deprived of fellowship are still alive. And not only in this do you inflict abuse on us, but also in this, that you dissolve our councils and do not allow them to be considered. For we, and especially the bishops of all the east, have condemned Athanasius of Alexandria, Paul of Constantinople, Marcellus of Ancyra, Asclepius of Gaza, and Lucianus of Hadriopolis for certain crimes. They have been branded among us as adversaries. We do not dismiss that your holiness recognizes all these things through those who propose this letter under its certain relation. These things being recognized, if you are pleased to agree with us rather than with their devices and choose to ratify the bishops ordained in the place of the condemned, we want to have peace and fellowship with you. But if you do otherwise and decide to agree with them rather than with us, we will celebrate opposition councils and from now on we will not want to assemble with you or obey you or support you and yours, but we will try to do on our own whatever better thing we select. For there is no one of age in this region of the earth who can ignore the mass of seductive preachers. For because of them many evil things have been completed, many councils celebrated at various and irregular times, many seductions, many devices, many reproaches have been thrust upon us, and many other things which would take too long to enumerate. For if you choose to agree with them, then it is evident that you want to destroy us and not support us as a father does his sons. For both their own citizens and their fellow priests say and affirm that the ones they want you to support are murderers, destroyers of holy temples, rapists of virgins, burners of holy books, swindlers of holy vessels and other holy services, neglectors of businesses, faithless to emperors, traitors to nation and homeland, and those who generate greatest discord among the priests because they have placed the word “consubstantiality,” which is not found in Scripture, in their doctrine of the faith. Why is it necessary to relate more? For as we and all the inhabitants of this region know, because of them such a great a slaughter of men has been perpetrated that more than a thousand men have been struck down. But what is supporting them other than to agree with their crimes? For Holy Scripture prohibits these things, saying, “Not only those who do it are to blame, but also those who agree with those who did it” (Rom 1:32). For it is necessary that you oppose such things with all force so that you do not become enveloped in their sins and receive their excommunication. Cast such people far away from you so that because of the animosity of such men weak minds and ignorant people are not ruined by sacrilegious quarreling. And so it is necessary that you properly oppose what is improper. Because of this, if you neglect to knock down the perverse, it is evident that you are protecting their error. But he who clearly stops getting in the way of crimes is not at all without a hidden alliance. For it is fitting to incite you to convict their impudent tongues and repel them from you as poisonous, so that you and yours are not in some way wounded by their venom. Therefore the complaints leveled against them are sufficient for us, according to which the Apostle says, “Time would fail us if we wanted to produce grievances of all the objections offered against them, especially since these which were surveyed above were sufficient for us.” And it is not necessary for us to divulge their evils again since they go forth on their own and especially since everyone in the East is a witness of their evils. For as it has been written, “Every word will stand by the mouth of two or three witnesses” (2 Cor 13:1), how much more by the multitude of so many priests and peoples and abbots and monks crying out to us daily against their bad condition either both in writing and not in writing. But we have very patiently waited a long time for them so that they might produce grapes, but they made wild vines instead. Therefore it is necessary that you no longer do nothing about such people and give them rest, so that—God forbid—you do not submit to remembered crimes by irrationally placing them as bishops. For I urge you, unless they are corrected, “according to their obstinacy and their impenitent heart they store up wrath for themselves on the day of wrath and the revelation of the righteous judgment of God., who repays each one according to his works,” as the blessed Apostle testifies (Rom 2:5,6). They must be corrected so that through temporal delight and through lies and their own inventions they do not because you provided them approval lose the eternal reward which they could have obtained through true repentance. And we do not inflict only these things which have been already said on Athanasius and his followers, but also that he acted against the rule which we decreed. For he did not receive the priesthood by the decree of a common council of bishops but had advanced and remained in his seat by imposing himself on the church. For in the past it had been decreed that no one should be restored by a number smaller than that by which he has evidently been deposed. For also at his coming a commotion was generated and many people died in the riot, and this not only happened through him and because of him but also those murdered by said Athanasius are said to have been delivered together to the judges. These things and innumerable others have been shamelessly perpetrated by him and his followers. These people, excommunicated from fellowship, you join with in fellowship, as we have heard, contrary to the rule and to the insult of all the people of the East. And so having first recited the lavish obligation of the salutation due because of the office of blessed Peter, we demand that from now on you do not so easily admit to your ears those who come there and that you be unwilling to arbitrarily receive those excommunicated by us, so that you are not found to be transgressors of the canons but rather that you with safe brotherly love in no way permit this error to continue in the future.
And the subscription: May the Lord for a longer time watch over your apostolate which prays for us, blessed father. Amen.

Translated by AMJ

Last updated: 8-31-2012

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