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Three Millennia of Greek Literature

Alexander Schmemann

A History of the Orthodox Church













From Schmemann's The Historical Road of Eastern Orthodoxy, translated by Lynda W. Kesich
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1.   The Beginning of the Church :: Acts of the Apostles.   Community in Jerusalem — The First Church.   Early Church Organization.   Life of Christians.   Break with Judaism.   The Apostle Paul.   The Church and the Greco-Roman World.   People of the Early Church.   Basis of Persecution by Rome.   Blood of Martyrs.   Struggle of Christianity to Keep its Own Meaning.   The New Testament.   Sin and Repentance in the Church.   Beginnings of Theology.   The Last Great Persecutions.

2.   The Triumph Of Christianity :: Conversion of Constantine.   Relations between Church and State.   The Arian Disturbance.   Council of Nicaea — First Ecumenical Council.   After Constantine.   The Roman Position.   Countermeasures in the EaSt. End of Arianism.   New Relation of Christianity to the World.   The Visible Church.   Rise of Monasticism.   State Religion — Second Ecumenical Council.   St. John Chrysostom.

3.   The Age Of The Ecumenical Councils :: Development of Church Regional Structure.   The Byzantine Idea of Church and State Constantinople vs.   Alexandria The Christological Controversy — Nestorius and Cyril.   Third Ecumenical Council.   The Monophysite Heresy.   Council of Chalcedon (Fourth Ecumenical Council).   Reaction to Chalcedon — the Road to Division.   Last Dream of Rome.   Justinian and the Church.   Two Communities.   Symphony.   Reconciliation with Rome — Break with the EaSt. Recurrence of Origenism.   Fifth Ecumenical Council.   Underlying Gains.   Breakup of the Empire — Rise of Islam.   Decay of the Universal Church Last Efforts: Monothelitism.   Sixth Ecumenical Council.   Changing Church Structure.   Byzantine Theology.   Quality of Life in the New Age.   Development of the Liturgy.   Veneration of the Virgin Mary.   Reflection of Theology and Asceticism in the Services.  

4.   Byzantium :: Significance of the Byzantine Period.   Background of Iconoclasm.   Icons in the Seventh Century.   Iconoclastic Movement.   Seventh Ecumenical Council.   Persecution by the Iconoclasts.   Church and State in the Eighth Century — The Issue of Monasticism.   Victory for the Monastic Principle.   Late Byzantine Theocracy — The Church’s Version.   Outward Signs.   Inherent Weaknesses.   The Conservative Trend.   Official Theology.   A Vital Liturgy.   New Hellenization.   Monastic Theology.   Mt.   Athos.   The Mystical Root of Theology.   Basic Church Unity.   Elements of Misunderstanding with Rome.   Deepening Divergence.   Loss of Communication.   Schism of 1054.   Alienation Completed.   Cyril and Methodius.   Rise of the Bulgarian Empire.   Bulgarian Orthodoxy.   The Serbian Empire.   Early Slavic Orthodoxy.  

5.   The Dark Ages :: Turkish ConqueSt. Christians Under Turkish Rule.   Rise of Religious Nationalism Greek Control of Outlying Orthodox Areas.   Cultural Decline.   Silence of Orthodox Theology.   The Precious Core.   Liberation.  

6.   Russian Orthodoxy :: Conversion in Kiev — St. Vladimir.   Quality of Kievan Christianity.   Kievan Culture.   Shallows and Hidden Darkness.   Tatar Conquest Beginning of Moscow Kingdom.   Early Russian Monasticism — St. Sergius.   Consolidation of Russian Lands under Moscow.   Independence from Byzantium — Messianic Theocracy.   Muscovite Domination of the Church.   Inner Crisis and Turmoil.   Conservatism and Ritualism.   Western Leanings and Resistance to Them.   True Holiness.   The Seventeenth Century.   Encounter with the WeSt. Schism of the Old Believers.   Reforms of Peter the Great.   The “Synodal Period.” Culture Under Peter the Great.   Bridge and Unifier.   Tragic Halt.    

Short Biliography :: History, Doctrine, Spirituality, Liturgy.  


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