Nicene and Ante-Nicene Fathers, Ser. II, Vol. XIV:Early Church Fathers Index Previous Next
The Canons of the Councils of Ancyra, Gangra, Neocæsarea, Antioch and Laodicea, which Canons were Accepted and Received by the Ecumenical Synods.: Canon IX
As many as have not merely apostatized, but have risen against their brethren and forced them [to apostatize], and have been guilty of their being forced, let these for three years take the place of hearers, and for another term of six years that of prostrap. 67 tors, and for another year let them communicate without oblation, in order that, when they have fulfilled the space of ten years, they may partake of the communion; but during this time the rest of their life must also be enquired into.
Ancient Epitome of Canon IX.
Whoever has not only sacrificed voluntarily but also has forced another to sacrifice, shall be a prostrator for ten years.
[It will be noticed that this epitome does not agree with the canon, although Aristenus does not note the discrepancy.]
From this canon we are taught that the circumstances of the sin that has been committed are to be taken into account in assigning the penance.
When the ten years are past, he is worthy of perfection, and fit to receive the divine sacraments. Unless perchance an examination of the rest of his life demands his exclusion from the divine communion.
Next: Canon X
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