And at first he made secret enquiry respecting the ministers of God subject to his dominion, who had never, indeed, in any respect offended against his government, in order to bring false accusations against them. And when he found no ground of accusation, and had no real ground of objection against them, he next enacted a law, to the effect that the bishops should never on any account hold communication with each other, nor should any one of them absent himself on a visit to a neighboring church; nor, lastly, should the holding of synods, or councils for the consideration of affairs of common interest, 3152 be permitted. Now this was clearly a pretext for displaying his malice against us. For we were compelled either to violate the law, and thus be amenable to punishment, or else, by compliance with its injunctions, to nullify the statutes of the Church; inasmuch as it is impossible to bring important questions to a satisfactory adjustment, except by means of synods. In other cases also this God-hater, being determined to act contrary to the God-loving prince, enacted such things. For whereas the one assembled the priests of God in order to honor them, and to promote peace and unity of judgment; the other, whose object it was to destroy everything that was good, used all his endeavors to destroy the general harmony.
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