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History of the Christian Church, Volume IV: Mediaeval Christianity. A.D. 590-1073.
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§ 115. Reaction of Monotheletism. The Maronites.


The great oecumenical councils, notably that of Chalcedon gave rise to schismatic sects which have perpetuated themselves for a long time, some of them to the present day.

For a brief period Monotheletism was restored by Bardanes or Philippicus, who wrested the throne from Justinian II. and ruled from 711 to 713. He annulled the creed of the sixth oecumenical Council, caused the names of Sergius and Honorius to be reinserted in the diptycha among the orthodox patriarchs, and their images to be again set up in public places. He deposed the patriarch of Constantinople and elected in his place a Monotheletic deacon, John. He convened a council at Constantinople, which set aside the decree of the sixth council and adopted a Monotheletic creed in its place. The clergy who refused to sign it, were deposed. But in Italy he had no force to introduce it, and an attempt to do so provoked an insurrection.

The Emperor Anastasius II. dethroned the usurper, and made an end to this Monotheletic episode. The patriarch John accommodated himself to the new situation, and wrote an abject letter to the Pope Constantine, in which he even addressed him as the head of the church, and begged his pardon for his former advocacy of heresy.

Since that time Dyotheletism was no more disturbed in the orthodox church.

But outside of the orthodox church and the jurisdiction of the Byzantine rulers, Monotheletism propagated itself among the inhabitants of Mount Lebanon and Anti-Lebanon under the lead of abbot John Marun (Marwvn), their first patriarch (d. 701). The maronites,643643    Μαρωνεῖται. as they were called after him, maintained their independence of the Greek empire and the Saracens, and adhered to the Monotheletic doctrine till the time of the crusades, when they united themselves with the Roman church (1182), retaining, however, the celebration of the communion under both kinds, the Syrian liturgy, the marriage of the lower clergy, their own fast-days, and their own saints.



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