issues. Alexandria continuously fought with Antioch and Constantinople, a feud which was somewhat simplified when Antiochene presbyters regularly became the bishops ofNew Rome. Third, Western attendance at these councils was always limited; not even the Church of Rome was consistently represented. Fourth, rarely were bishops from east of Antioch party to these discussions, and even when they were their numbers were small. As a result, their different languages and insights never were integrated in the formulations. After Ephesus, few representatives from beyond the Roman empire appeared at church councils. Some of them specifically rejected Chalcedon when they discovered what had been decided there. The anti-Chalcedonian churches in Syria and elsewhere held their own councils, on occasion contravening what was decided at the 'ecumenical' councils.115 Fifth, perhaps the most important point to be emphasised is that the creeds, canons and decisions of these councils attained universal force only when they were received as normative by Christians in the Eastern Mediterranean, Europe, Egypt, Ethiopia and elsewhere.116

The emergence of the Great Church did not destroy the rich diversity of Christianity in the East, precisely because it was unable to enforce full unity. Even the major fractious parties had differences among themselves. Other churches existed around the Mediterranean: Apollinarians, who affirmed in Christ no human soul, mind or will; Messalians, who insisted upon the need for ceaseless prayer after baptism; Novatians, who were theologically orthodox, but puritanical in their dealings with those who failed during earlier persecutions and sacrificed to pagan gods; Theopaschites, who maintained that one of the Trinity was crucified; and others. This brief sampling in no way exhausts the diversity that would have been found in the Christian East and Orient. This is to say nothing of the religious diversity that existed beyond Christianity, when local pagan religions continued to exist even as Christians were making converts among rural peasants.117

There can be no doubt that the influence of emperors on the Christian religion changed it profoundly. In addition to promoting certain expressions of the faith and certain practices and framing laws that promoted the established positions of 'Catholic' and 'Orthodox' Christianity, patronage from the upper echelons of society also resulted in the foundation of justly famous buildings as well as the production of luxurious Bibles and the development of ornate and beautiful liturgies. Imperial power formed the Great Church. Establishment,

115 See chapter 4, below.

116 A. de Halleux, 'La reception du symbole œcuménique'.

117 See chapter 7, below.

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