Henoticon

HENOTICON

When Emperor Zeno returned to Constantinople in 482, he issued his famous Henoticon to the Christians of the world in Alexandria, Egypt, Libya, and Pentapolis. In it, he confirmed the faith of the Fathers of the Councils of Nicaea and Constantinople; nothing, however, is mentioned concerning the Councils of Ephesus and Chalcedon. Zeno condemned both Eutyches and Nestorius and confirmed the faith of St. Cyril as expressed in the 12 chapters.

The Henoticon confirmed also the title of Theotokos for the Virgin Mary, and refuted the formula of the one hypostasis (person) in two natures, which was rejected by the Alexandrians. The text was balanced in a way for it to be accepted by Chalcedonians and non-Chalcedonians.

It avoided difficult theological issues and aimed to restore a position prior to that of Chalcedon. Peter Mongos accepted the Henoticon in Alexandria. Although Zeno did not succeed in his attempt, he is well thought of and remembered in the Coptic Church.

According to tradition, his daughter Hilaria went to Scetis and disguised herself as a monk. She interceded for the construction of the monastery fortresses. She is commemorated in the Coptic Church on the 21st of Tubah.

GAWDAT GABRA

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