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Photius the Great

18 bytes added, 04:57, February 26, 2007
started editing life section, put cleanup tag where I stopped
Our father among the [[saint]]s '''Photius the Great''' (also ''Photios'', in Greek ''Φωτιoς''), [[Patriarch]] of Constantinople, is considered one of the greatest patriarchs of Constantinople. His [[feast day]] is celebrated on [[February 6]].
St. Photius was condemned as patriarch by the [[Robber Council of 869-870]], but the [[Eighth Ecumenical Council]] (879-880) affirmed his restoration to his [[see]]. Although he was accused of causing the [[Filioque#The "Photian" Schism|"Photian" Schism]], he was recognized as a major peace-maker peacemaker of that time. He reconciled with Patriarch [[Ignatius I of Constantinople|Ignatius]], who named him as his successor (for a second time) upon Ignatius' death in 877. {{stub}}
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The Photius' parents of Photios were wealthy and pious Christians. His father was attached to the imperial court with the office of "Guardian of the Emperor and the Palace." They belonged to the party which venerate venerated [[icon]]s and , but the current Emperor emperor was an [[iconcoclast]] and thus was against the use of icons in the [[churchChurch]]. They were exiled when Photios Photius was seven, their wealth disposed of their wealth , and were eventually [[martyr]]ed. PhotiosPhotius' brother was the later became [[Patriarch]]s [[Patriarch Tarasius of Constantinople|TarasiosTarasius]] , and he was also related to [[Patriarch John VII of Constantinople|John VII Grammatikos]]. He was known as one who was inclined to the quiet, prayerful , and [[monasticism|monastic]] life. Byzantine writers report that Emperor [[Leo VI the Wise|Leo VI]] once angrily called Photios Photius "[[Khazar]]-faced,", but whether this was a generic insult or a reference to his ethnicity is unclear.
As soon as he had completed his own education, Photios Photius began to teach [[grammar]], [[rhetoric]], [[divinitytheology]] , and [[philosophy]]. The way to public life was probably opened for him by (according to one account) the marriage of his brother Sergios Sergius to the Irene, a sister of the Empress [[Theodora (9th century)|Theodora]], who upon the death of her husband [[Theophilos, Byzantine Emperor|Theophilos]] in 842, had assumed the regency of the empire. Photios Photius became a captain of the guard and subsequently chief imperial secretary (''prōtasēkrētis''). In 855, at thirty-five years of age, Photios Photius was recognized for his political skills and made the ambassador to the Persian caliph in Bagdad Baghdad with the charge to negotiate an end to the Christian persecution in the Moslem Muslim territories.
The dissension between the patriarch [[Patriarch Ignatios Ignatius of Constantinople|Ignatios]] and the Caesar Bardas, the uncle of the youthful Emperor [[Michael III]], concerning Bardas' illicit relationship with his daughter-in-law and other questionalble questionable moral pracitcespractices, brought led to Photius' promotion to Photios. Ignatios Ignatius was arrested and exiled to the island or of Terebinthos in 858 , where he submitted his resignation. PhotiosPhotius, a [[laity|layperson]], was inducted into the [[priest]]hood and made a [[bishop]] within six days, and then installed as patriarch. He resisted this appointment , as he wished for a more contemplative life of contemplation. He was the most distinguished scholar at that time and was seen as being above suspicion, being because he was strongly opposed to the iconoclast party since , which had caused his parents had died in opposition to that cause' death.
Several months after his exile, a few of supporter of Ignatios Ignatius' supporters came together in the Chruch Church of Saint Irene and plotted to restore Igantios Ignatius to the patriarchate. They made an appeal to Pope Nicholas trying to discrediting the his rival Ignatius' appointment of Phtios. This was signed by only six metropolitans and fifteen bishops. There were several [[monk]]s in this camp that set out for Rome , even though Ignatios Ignatius had volutarily voluntarily resigned. They were recieved received by [[Pope Nicholas I]], who was eager to assert his power over the Eastern church. [[Pope Nicholas I]] had previously been successful in bringing the Western church under his absolute control , and he now sought to bring the Eastern chruch under same power over the same controlEast.
{{cleanup}}Photios convened a council in the Church of the Holy Apostles in 859. The intent was to stop the controversy about his appointment. This council found that Ignatios had not been elected by a [[synod]] and therefore his election to the patriarchate was illegal. He had been appointed by Empress Theodora. Unfortunately the Caesar Barda was vengeful against the opposition and imposed an exile on Ignatios to the island of Mytiline and persecuted some of his folowers. Photios strongly objected to this action.
Pope Nicholas felt that the appointment needed the consent of Rome and objected to the fact that Photiuos was a layperson even though there was precedence for this in both the Western and Eastern church. He also demanded that the Byzantines give back to Rome the territory of Calbria and Sicily.

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