The Second Council of Constantinople?
#1
I remember reading awhile back from Fr. Gruner's newsletter that Constantinople II was just as or almost as confusing and disorienting as Vatican II has been to the Church. Does anyone know or have any clue why theologically this was so?
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#2
I don't know if that statement is all that accurate--it was a really a totally different situation.  The ecumenical character of the Council was doubted for a while, and generally acquired that character through popular acceptance.  The controversy centered around the the fact that Vigilius in his earlier judgments (which were most likely under duress and/or forged by the deacon Pelagius anyway) did not condemn the Three Chapters in their entirety on doctrinal grounds. He only condemned some Nestorian propositions as well as some individual statements of Theodore (without impugning his person), but not Theodoret or Ibas. Nor did he excommunicate on doctrinal grounds those who either condemned or supported the three chapters, but instead treated it as a matter of freedom (until after he ratified the Council, of course).

Vigilius' main concern was protecting the integrity of Chalcedon which the Emperor Justiniun was trying to undermine to please the monophysites--he saw a strong condemnation of the Three Chapters as potentially overshadowing the Chalcedonian definition (rather than keeping it equal to Ephesus). It was Justinian who was urging the condemnation of the Three Chapters which were ambiguous at best (leaning towards Nestorianism at worst). He put a lot of duress on both Vigilius and the bishops of the East.

The Council was convened by the emperor and the bishops at the wanted Vigilius to come, but he was fearful of doing so since no Western bishops would be there (they were forbidden by Justinian). The bishops of the Council reassured him that he would be treated as he deserves to be if he comes and participates in the Council: they will treat him as their head. To further this point, they still sent the acts of the Council to him for his ratification even though he didn't show up. Anyway, when he didn't come Justinian forced the Council to go forward and to strike Vigilius' name from the diptychs--they complied, but only with the condition that it was done without prejudice to communion with the Roman See. Finally, after much persuasion from the emperor and the bishops, Vigilius ratified the acts, which were imposed with pretty extreme imperial violence.

Sure, there was disquiet surrounding the Council, but the circumstances weren't really comparable.

That being said, periods of distress after Councils are not unheard of--Fulton Sheen mentioned some instances in his autobiography in the section on Vatican II. Also, after the first two Ecumenical Councils, St. Gregory of Nazianzen said:

"To tell the truth, I am convinced that every assembly of bishops is to be avoided, for I have never experienced a happy ending to any council; not even the abolition of abuses ..." (Epistle Ad Procopium 130)

Likewise St. Basil wrote of the "shocking confusion and disorder" and the "incessant chatter" that filled the Church after those councils...
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#3
Councils are weird, aren't they? Was Vigilius the pope at that time? When was the Council? I'm not familiar with it at al as you can see which is why I asked. Is there any book(s) you would recommend on it?
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#4
(09-26-2012, 03:07 AM)GodFirst Wrote: Councils are weird, aren't they? Was Vigilius the pope at that time? When was the Council? I'm not familiar with it at al as you can see which is why I asked. Is there any book(s) you would recommend on it?

Vigilius was Pope from 537 to 555. The Council was held in 553.
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#5
Pope Gregory the Great instructed the faithful that this Council should be ignored as it confused the nature of the Monophysite heresy.
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#6
I did some more reading on this topic and there may be more parallels than I thought.  Various bishops in the Istrian peninsula and in places like Ireland believed that condemning the Three Chapters overturned the definition of Chalcedon and they went into schism.  They also pointed to the fact the Apostolic See had first opposed the condemnation of the Three Chapters, but then affirmed their condemnation at hte Council.  Pope Pelagius II and later St. Gregory (who was deacon to Pelagius II) wrote to these bishops to re-assure them that the work of Constantinople II was in line with what Chalcedon had taught, that it did not change the dogma of the faith proclaimed at that and the previous three Councils, and that its authority rested on that of the same Apostolic See. 

It does sound similar to the disputes between the SSPX and Rome, at least on  some level.

CrusaderKing mentioned St. Gregory instructing the faithful to ignore Constantinople II, but I could not find that anywhere--Crusader, do you have a source?  From what I read, he tolerated dissent from those who upheld the faith of Chalcedon until they could be given a better chance to educate themselves (there was a lot of rumors that the Council had explicitly condemned Chalcedon or related orthodox propositions).  For example, in the following letter St. Gregory gives those that had rejected the Council the chance to read a book by Pope Pelagius I on the topic, but stated to them that if after that they did not accept, they would be accounted obstinately outside the Church.

http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/360202051.htm

(note the address to "all bishops" meant the schismatic ones).

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#7
(09-26-2012, 02:27 PM)SaintSebastian Wrote: CrusaderKing mentioned St. Gregory instructing the faithful to ignore Constantinople II, but I could not find that anywhere--Crusader, do you have a source?  From what I read, he tolerated dissent from those who upheld the faith of Chalcedon until they could be given a better chance to educate themselves (there was a lot of rumors that the Council had explicitly condemned Chalcedon or related orthodox propositions).  For example, in the following letter St. Gregory gives those that had rejected the Council the chance to read a book by Pope Pelagius I on the topic, but stated to them that if after that they did not accept, they would be accounted obstinately outside the Church.

http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/360202051.htm

(note the address to "all bishops" meant the schismatic ones).
It was mentioned in the book "The Great Facade" on pages 326-333 and its main source comes from here:
http://www.documentacatholicaomnia.eu/18...,_MLT.html

For what it's worth I also found this (scroll down):
http://www.catholictradition.org/Mary/fatima37.htm
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#8
I don't have access to that book at the moment, but at the least it did seem that Popes Pelagius I, Pelagius II, and St. Gregory all were very loath to have the condemnation of the Chapters be a source of division between those professing the faith of Chalcedon (this is actually one reason Pope Vigilius himself did not want an ecumenical Council to address the Three Chapters--he thought it would distract from Chacledon).  It seems those Popes saw the dissenters as more misinformed about the Council and misinterpreting its decisions rather than the dissenters having any problem with the doctrine of the faith.  That being said, they did seem to try and get the dissenters to accept the Council's decisions as orthodox (as St. Gregory's letter linked earlier shows). His subsequent letters to the bishop of Milan the Queen of the Lombards all show a concern about them or their subjects considering the Council heretical.
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