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Hilarion of Gaza, Saint

(204 words)

Author(s): Holze, Heinrich
[German Version] (291–371), was a Palestinian monk, whose life is described by Jerome in the Vita Hilarionis (= VH; c. 390). According to this, Hilarion, who had acquired a philosophical education in Alexandria, was converted and became a student of Anthony, then settled in nearby Gaza as a hermit and performed miracles; he became the founder of Palestinian monastic life. After the death of Anthony (356) Hilarion fled from fame, sought solitude, and embarked on many years of peregrination; this led him to Cyprus,…

Knipstro, Johannes

(191 words)

Author(s): Holze, Heinrich
[German Version] (May 1, 1497, Sandau, Altmark – Oct 4, 1556, Wolgast, Pomerania). As a Franciscan monk, Knipstro began his studies at Frankfurt an der Oder, but was then transferred to Pyritz (Pyrzyce), where he emerged in 1521 as one of the first Protestant propagandists in Pomerania. There followed stays in Stettin (Szczecin), Stargard, and Stralsund. In 1531 he was called to Greifswald to implement the Reformation. At the diet of Treptow (Trzebiatów) in1534, which resolved to introduce the Ref…

John Climacus (Saint)

(201 words)

Author(s): Holze, Heinrich
[German Version] (late 6th cent. – mid-7th cent. ce) was an anchorite for many years and abbot of St. Catherine's Monastery (Sinai, St. Catherine's Monastery). His epithet comes from his major work, Κλίμαξ τοῦ παραδεῖσου/ Klímax toú parade ίsou (“Ladder to heaven”). In this tractate on the ascetic life, with which he became the spiritual teacher of Eastern monasticism, John offers a portrayal of the path that the monk must travel in pursuing perfection. Comparable to Jacob's Ladder, i…

Cenobites

(120 words)

Author(s): Holze, Heinrich
[German Version] The word “cenobites” is derived from Gk κοινός βίος/ koinós bíos and refers to the common life as the characteristic feature of the monastery, ¶ as opposed to the isolated life of anachorites. Pachomius is considered the founder of cenobitic monasticism; his rules committed the monks to poverty, celibacy, and obedience. Basil the Great of Caesarea anchored cenobitic monasticism in the church as an impetus toward its reform. John Cassian regarded the cenobites as the earliest fo…

Vigilius, Pope

(178 words)

Author(s): Holze, Heinrich
[German Version] (Mar 29, 537 – Jun 7, 555), Roman deacon and apocrisiary in Constantinople, made pope after the conquest of Rome by Byzantine troops. His pontificate was dominated by the superior power of the Byzantine hierarchy. While Vigilius asserted papal supremacy over the Western churches (correspondence with Arles), in the Three Chapters Controversy he had to submit to Justinian I. Initially he refused to assent to the edict of 544, but he abandoned his resistance at the Council of Constan…

Slüter, Joachim

(190 words)

Author(s): Holze, Heinrich
[German Version] (1490, Dömitz an der Elbe – May 19, 1532, Rostock). After studying in Rostock, he was appointed chaplain at Sankt Petri there in 1523; his Protestant preaching attracted large crowds. He drafted theses for a disputation in 1525, but the council disallowed it. The episcopal vicar succeeded in having him expelled from Rostock for a short time, but he returned in 1526. With his hymnal, catechism, and prayer book in Low German, he became t…

Rupert of Deutz

(310 words)

Author(s): Holze, Heinrich
[German Version] (1075/1080, probably near Liège – 1129, Deutz), monastic theologian from the Benedictine abbey of St. Lawrence near Liège. Rupert’s criticism of the simony of Bishop Otbert of Liège during the Investiture Controversy led to his banishment for several years, an exile lamented in his Carmina de sancto Laurentio. In 1108/1109 he was ordained to the priesthood. A few years later, he wrote De divinis officiis, a meditation on the church year, which drew criticism from William of Saint-Thierry on account of its eucharistic doctrine. His De voluntate Dei, a treatise on evi…

Kammin

(203 words)

Author(s): Holze, Heinrich
[German Version] is a city on the Dievenow in Pomerania; since 1176 an episcopal seat, first founded in Wolin in 1140 following the missionary journeys of Otto of Bamberg. The diocese received broad independence (Exemption) since it was subject to the Holy See in Rome, but not to the archdioceses of Gniezno or Magdeburg. In the 13th/14th centuries, the diocese, initially restricted to the territories subject to the dukes ¶ of Pomerania, expanded to the west (Mecklenburg) and southeast (Uckermark, Neumark). In 1248, the bishops of Kammin gained sovereignty over an ecclesial territory centered on Kolberg, Köslin and Bublitz. After the death of Bishop Erasmus of Manteuffel in 1544, the Reformation as introduced in the duchy of Pomerania by J. Bugenhagen was also established in Kammin. The diocese was administered by Protestant bishops until 1566 and thereaf…

Dorotheus of Gaza

(185 words)

Author(s): Holze, Heinrich
[German Version] (500/510, Antioch – 560/580, near Gaza) lived for years in a monastery near Gaza, where he was a student of Barsanuphius and John the Prophet. In 540 he founded his own monastery. His writings include works of spiritual instruction, several letters, a vita, and a collection of aphorisms. Building on Evagrius Ponticus, Basil the Great, and John Chrysostom, Dorotheus developed a cenobitic spirituality rooted in baptism. Under the guidance of a spiritual leader, …

Pelagius I, Pope

(193 words)

Author(s): Holze, Heinrich
[German Version] (pontificate Apr 16, 556 – Mar 4, 561). Already an influential figure while still a deacon (Roman apocrisiary in Constantinople), in 546 he tried in vain to persuade the Goths not to sack Rome. In the Three Chapters Controversy, Pelagius took an equivocal position. Initially he spoke out against condemning them, but later, under pressure from …

Siricius, Pope

(98 words)

Author(s): Holze, Heinrich

Pelagius II, Pope

(139 words)

Author(s): Holze, Heinrich
[German Version] (pontificate 579–590), of Gothic ancestry. His pontificate was dominated by conflicts ¶ with the Lombards, against whom he sought an alliance with the Franks when help from the emperor was not forthcoming. Of his actions, the Liber pontificalis records that he donated his own house for the care of the poor and earned respect for building several churches. He tried in vain to end the schism of Aquileia, a product of the still smoldering Three Chapters Controversy. Relations with the Byzantine church…

Loccum Abbey

(218 words)

Author(s): Holze, Heinrich
[German Version] Loccum Abbey, a Cistercian monastery lying 50 km northwest of Hanover, founded in 1163 as a filiation of Volkenroda, Thuringia. It was granted papal exemption in 1183 and an imperial charter in 1152. Its imperial immediacy was confirmed in 1530. The monastery gradually made the transition to the Reformation in the late 16th century, although it retained its autonomy. In 1677, G.W. Molanus organized the hospice according to the principles of Protestant monasticism (

Persecutions of Christians

(4,158 words)

Author(s): Barceló, Pedro | Holze, Heinrich | Hummel, Karl-Joseph | Gensichen, Hans-Werner | Pointer, Richard W.
[German Version] I. Early Church During the period of the Early Church, the Roman state took violent measures against confessing adherents of Christianity, on the basis of a negative view of Christian congregations as groups of conspirators, since they refused to recognize the Roman gods or participate in the emperor cult. As a rule, adherence to Christianity was determined by judicial proceedings, the nature of which is quite clear from the Acts of the Martyrs. Additional sources include both pagan …

Cassian, John (Saint)

(395 words)

Author(s): Holze, Heinrich
[German Version] (360, Dobruja – 430/435, Marseille). Born in a Christian home, Cassian undertook a pilgrimage to Palestine and Egypt, where for more than a decade he was a student of the monastic fathers. During the Origenistic controversies he left Egypt c. 399/400, went to Constantinople and John Chrysostom, went to Rome after the latter's banishment, and ultimately settled in southern Gaul, where in 415 he founded a monastery and a convent. With his writings, in which he reflected on the experiences of ascetic life, he became the teacher of western monasticism (Benedict, Rule of). In D…

Bruno of Segni

(169 words)

Author(s): Holze, Heinrich
[German Version] (1040/1050, Asti – Jul 18, 1123, Segni, near Rome) was educated in the monastery of St. Perpetua near Asti and studied in Bologna. In 1073, he became a canon of the cathedral at Siena. In 1079, he debated with Berengar of Tours in Rome; shortly thereafter he was elected bishop of Segni. Under Gregory VII and his successors, he was one of the most influential members of the curia. In 1103, he entered the abbey of Monte Cassino and in 1107 became its abbot. Initially, he retained his ecclesiastical offices, but after ¶ the Investiture Controversy (1111) he withdrew from church politics. Bruno's commentaries and homilies present him as a monastic theologian interpreting the Bible through experience of the Holy Spirit. His other writings ( Libellus de symoniacis) reveal an aggressive supporter of Gregorian ecclesiology. He was canonized in 1183. Heinrich Holze Bibliography PL 164–165 MGH.LL 2, 546–5…

Sternberg

(159 words)

Author(s): Holze, Heinrich
[German Version] (Mecklenburg). Sternberg is a town north of Schwerin where pogroms took place after Jews were charged with desecrating the host. After a hearing and trial, the accused were burnt at the stake, a prelude to the expulsion of all Jews from Mecklenburg. In the years that followed, the miraculous hosts in Sternberg made it a popular pilgrimage site. Duke Magnus underwrote the building of a chapel of the Sacred Blood. An Augustinian monastery was also built, whose promoters included J. v. Staupitz and Johann v. Paltz. In his An den christlichen Adel, Luther called for the dem…

Confession (of Faith)

(12,201 words)

Author(s): Bochinger, Christoph | Kreuzer, Siegfried | Reumann, John | Staats, Reinhart | Holze, Heinrich | Et al.
[German Version] I. History of Religions – II. Bible – III. Church History – IV. Systematics – V. Practical Theology – VI. Law – VII. Judaism – VIII. Islam I. History of Religions The term confession refers to various phenomena, including the confession of faith and of sin. A confession of faith can be understood as an officially sanctioned, formulaic summary of the central doctrines of a religious or a confessional community (“denomination”). Recited in cultic procedures and/or in everyday piety, i…

Marcellinus

(207 words)

Author(s): Holze, Heinrich
[German Version] (bishop of Rome Jun 30, 295/296 – Oct 25, 304). His pontificate marks “a dark chapter in the history of the Roman church” (Caspar, 98). He is mentioned in 30th place in the Liber pontificalis , but in many lists of the 4th/5th centuries his name is lacking, his period in office being assigned to his successor Marcellus I. This is because of misconduct during the Diocletian persecution (Persecutions of Christians: I): “He was led to the sacrifice, so that he should perform the incense rite, and he…
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