On St. Dioscorus and the Synod of 449.

Hello brethren. I am rather new to Oriental Orthodoxy, and even newer to this website, so I’m quite excited to use it. Now I grew up in an ex-Catholic Hispanic protestant household, and soon after wanting to leave protestantism, I’ve researched about Orthodoxy for over a year. I have my friends who I’ve gained from this, mostly Eastern Orthodox because that was the direction I was headed to at the time, eventually I felt that I needed to become Oriental, and many of course were disapproving of this. I have one particular friend who is becoming more and more harsh towards in his sentiment towards Copts, and today he mentioned the “Anti-Canonical” actions of St. Dioscorus, and I’ve obviously heard of the ordeal before but I’ve never fully looked into it, and I’ve tried finding information on this. If you guys can share what you know, that would be magnificent. God bless you all.


  • I highly recommend a book titled "Re-examining the Council of Chalcedon" by Fr. V.C. Samuel. The author is a renowned Indian Orthodox Priest and theologian who examines the history of Chalcedon. This of course involves and even requires a proper understanding of the events that took place in the council of Ephesus (431) and Ephesus II (449). Ephesus II is known in the West and by Chalcedonians as "the Robber Council" or "the Robber Synod." Fr. Samuel dispells the myth that St. Dioscorus is guilty of any anti-canonical actions. In short, Ephesus II was presided over by Dioscorus and a number of other prominent bishops from across the Roman Empire (Juvenal of Jerusalem and Thalassius of Caesarea, etc.). Also,  one bishop in a Council cannot make decisions on his own. In order for a decision to be made at a council, there has to be a consensus.  So your Eastern Orthodox friend should be mad at not just Dioscorus but Ephesus II as a whole (which they already are mad at). Furthermore, when St. Dioscorus was deposed at Chalcedon, it was not for any theological error, it was for not complying to a summons. Basically, Dioscorus was deposed and excommunicated for not following procedure strictly. This is a basic summary, if you want the nitty-gritty, you need to buy this book.
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