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 XVIII
If any who have been constituted bishops, but have not been received by the parish to which they were designated, shall invade other parishes and wrong the constituted [bishops] there, stirring up seditions against them, let such persons be suspended from office and communion. But if they are willing to accept a seat among the presbyterate, where they formerly were presbyters, let them not be deprived of that honour. But if they shall act seditiously against the bishops established there, the honour of the presbyterate also shall be taken from them and themselves expelled.
Ancient Epitome of Canon XVIII.
If a bishop who has been duly constituted, is not received by the Church to which he was elected, but gives trouble to other bishops, let him be excommunicated.
If he wishes to be numbered among the presbyters, let him be so numbered. But if he shall be at outs with the bishops duly constituted there, let him be deprived of the honour of being even a presbyter.
The word I have translated “suspended from office and communion” is ἀφορίζεσθαι . Suicer in his Thesaurus shews that this word does not mean only, as some have supposed, a deprivation of office and dignity (e.g., Van Espen), but also an exclusion from the communion of the Church.
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