Mileum a city of Numidia, in the northern part of Africa, is celebrated in Church history as a place where, at the beginning of the 5th century, two synods were held. The first of them, which is of little importance, convened Aug. 27, 402. Aurelius of Carthage presided. The canons of Hippo and Carthage were confirmed, and five canons of discipline published, which are contained in the African Code (comp. Codex Canon. Eccl. Afric. pages 85- 90). It was decided that the younger bishops should give place to those of older standing, excepting the primates of Numidia and Mauritania, who always took precedence of all other primates of whatever standing (Conc.

2:1323). The second synod, which was held towards the autumn of A.D. 416, is known as the Concilium Milevitanum. This was a provincial council of Numidia, and was attended by sixty-one bishops of the province. It was chiefly owing to Augustine's (q.v.) influence, and to the happy issue of the synod at Diospolis (q.v.), that the African bishops assembled in a synodical meeting. Having learned the proceedings of the Council of Carthage of the same year, they wrote a synodal letter to pope Innocent I (q.v.), in which, after enlarging upon the enormity of the Pelagian heresy, which denied the necessity of prayer in adults and of baptism for children, and after showing how worthy it was of the notice and censure of the Church, they entreated him, since the salvation of Pelagius (q.v.) and Ccelestius (q.v.) could not be secured, that he would at least provide for that of others by condemning their heresies. They did not ask the excommunication of Pelagius and Celestius, as has sometimes been stated, but that they should be commanded to renounce their heresies, and that only the heresies themselves should be condemned. "Hoc gestum," they concluded, "Domino frater, sanctae caritati tuae intimandum ducimus, ut statutis nostrae mediocritatis etiam apostolicae sedis adhibeatur auctoritas." Among the names attached to this letter are those of Silvanus, primate of the province of Numidia, Alypius, St. Augustine, Severus of Mileum, Fortunatus of Citha, and Possidius. Another and more confidential letter was addressed to Innocent by five North African bishops, of whom Augustine was one (see Mansi, 4:321 sq.). Pelagius also sent him a letter and a confession of faith, which, however, were not received in due time. Innocent understood both the controversy and the interests of the Roman see. In his reply, which is to be found in August. Epist. page 182, he commended the Africans for having addressed themselves to the Church of St. Peter, before which it was seemly that all the affairs of Christendom should be brought. He praised the zeal and pastoral care of the African bishops, briefly established the true doctrine of grace, and condemned Pelagius and Coelestius, with their followers, declaring them to be separated from the Catholic Church. "Non solum enim," he says, "qui faciunt sed etiam qui consentiunt facientibus, digni sunt morto; quia non multum interesse arbitror inter committentis animum et consentientis favorem." He refrained, however, from giving judgment respecting the Synod of Diospolis. He also replied to the letters which Augustine and the four bishops — Aurelius, Alypins, Evodius, and Possidius — had addressed to him. These letters of Innocent were written in a council held at Rome upon the subject in January, 417, and are to be found in Mansi (3:1071 sq.). See Schillstraten, Antiq. Eccles. Afric. Diss. volume 3; Norris, Hist. Pelag. 1:10; Hefele, Conciliengeschichte, 2:100; Gieseler, Eccles. Hist. 1:330 sq.; Schaff, Church Hist. 3:797; Milman, Hist. of Christianity, pages 389, 414 sq.

Bible concordance for MILE.

Definition of mile

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