Neocaesarea

Catechumen

CATECHUMEN In the early church, a new Jewish or heathen convert undergoing a course of basic instruction and training in Christian doctrine and ritual, prior to BAPTISM and full incorporation into the body of the faithful. Just before His ascension, Christ had entrusted to the disciples the task of propagating His teachings among all nations …

Catechumen Read More »

Chorepiscopus

CHOREPISCOPUS An assistant to a bishop. The rapid diffusion of Christianity in the early centuries and the consequent increase in the number of churches and the duties of the diocesan bishops necessitated the appointment of assistants to these bishops, holding the title of chorepiscopus, to assume some of the pastoral duties in rural areas. In …

Chorepiscopus Read More »

Council Of Neocaesarea

COUNCIL OF NEOCAESAREA This synod took place between 313 and 321, after the great persecution and before Constantine became the sole emperor of the Roman Empire. The council issued 15 canons, dealing with disciplinary measures for the clergy and moral questions. Other canons deal with the catechumenate, with the age for ordination to the priesthood …

Council Of Neocaesarea Read More »

Dionysius The Great

DIONYSIUS THE GREAT The fourteenth patriarch of the See of Saint Mark (247-264), whose letters dealt with the major religious issues of the time. Dionysius was born at an unknown date, probably in the last decade of the second century. The son of a wealthy pagan family, he was converted to Christianity at a mature …

Dionysius The Great Read More »

Alexander I

ALEXANDER I The nineteenth patriarch of the See of Saint Mark (312-326). Life Alexander succeeded ACHILLAS, who died in the year 312, after one of the shortest episcopates in Coptic history. His death was ascribed by the pious Copts to supernatural chastisement for breaking the command of PETER I, “Seal of the Martyrs,” by accepting …

Alexander I Read More »

Council Of Neocaesarea

COUNCIL OF NEOCAESAREA A synod held during the period of toleration for the Christians (313-c. 321) in the reign of Licinius. The council’s canons deal mainly with moral questions and indicate the ecclesiastical concern with sexual issues at this time. Other canons deal with the catechumenate, with the age for ordination to the priesthood (not …

Council Of Neocaesarea Read More »

Digamy

DIGAMY A practice of remarriage after the death of one’s spouse. In the event of the dissolution of Christian marriage through the death of either spouse, the surviving partner may, if desired, be married again in the church. Nevertheless, it is not strongly recommended by the church, in harmony with the Apostle Paul’s teaching. The …

Digamy Read More »

Acacius, Bishop Of Caesarea

ACACIUS, BISHOP OF CAESAREA To whom a Coptic Encomium of the Martyr Mercurius (of Caesarea of Cappadocia) is attributed. Some ambiguity exists concerning this attribution, for, whereas patrologists recognize only one Acacius, bishop of Caesarea in Palestine (340-366), Coptic literature makes mention of another Acacius in Dioscorus’ Encomium of Macarius of Tkow. The first-named Acacius …

Acacius, Bishop Of Caesarea Read More »