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152Chapter XXVIII.—Of John’s boldness for God.

When the great John had received the tiller of the Church, he boldly convicted certain wrong doers, made seasonable exhortations to the emperor and empress, and admonished the clergy to live according to the laws laid down. Transgressors against these laws he forbade to approach the churches, urging that they who shewed no desire to live the life of true priests ought not to enjoy priestly honour. He acted with this care for the church not only in Constantinople, but throughout the whole of Thrace, which is divided into six provinces, and likewise of Asia, which is governed by eleven governors. Pontica too, which has a like number of rulers with Asia, was happily brought by him under the same discipline.916916    Valesius points out that those commentators have been in error who have supposed Theodoretus to be referring here to ecclesiastical divisions and officers.
   Chrysostom is here distinctly described as asserting and exercising a jurisdiction over the civil “diœceses” of Pontica, Asia, and Thrace. But the quasi patriarchate was at this time only honorary. Only so late as at the recent council at Constantinople (381) had its bishop, previously under the metropolitan of Perinthus, been declared to rank next after the bishop of Rome, the metropolitans of Alexandria and Antioch standing next, but it was not till the Council of Chalcedon that the “diœceses” of Pontus, Asia, and Thrace were formally subjected to the see of Constantinople.


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