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Chapter XI.—The Bishops of Rome.

After Innocent, Zosimus governed the Roman church for two years: and after him Boniface933933    418 a.d. presided over it for three years. He was succeeded by Celestinus. And this Celestinus took away the churches from the Novatians at Rome also, and obliged Rusticula their bishop to hold his meetings secretly in private houses. Until this time the Novatians had flourished exceedingly in Rome, possessing many churches there, which were attended by large congregations. But envy attacked them also, as soon as the Roman episcopate, like that of Alexandria, extended itself beyond the limits of ecclesiastical jurisdiction, and degenerated into its present state of secular domination. For thenceforth the bishops would not suffer even those who agreed with them in matters of faith to enjoy the privilege of assembling in peace, but stripped them of all they possessed, praising them merely for these agreements in faith. The bishops of Constantinople kept themselves free from this [sort of conduct]; inasmuch as in addition to tolerating them and permitting them to hold their assemblies within the city, as I have already stated,934934    Cf. V. 10. they treated them with every mark of Christian regard.


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