Presbyters Uniwersytet Warszawski
ER 1877
Pope Simplicius writes about the misappropriation of Church funds by Gaudentius, the bishop of Aufinum in Samnium (Italy), and about the proper distribution of the money of the Church. He orders the Presbyter Bonager to heal the situation created by Gaudentius. Simplicius, Letter 1, to Bishops Florentius, Equitius, and Severus, Rome, AD 475.
Letter 1
1. Those ordained illicitly by Gaudentius, bishop of Aufinum in Samnium (Italy), should be removed from the office.
2. Simul etiam de reditibus ecclesiae vel oblatione fidelium quid deceat nescienti, nihil licere permittat, sed sola ei ex his quarta portio remittatur. Duae ecclesiasticis fabricis et erogationi peregrinorum et pauperum profuturae, a Bonagro presbytero sub periculo sui ordinis ministrentur; ultimam inter se clerici pro singulorum meritis dividant. At vero ministeria ecclesiae, quae alienata comperimus, reparare praesumptor praedicti fratris compellatur instantia et quod abstulit restituere cogatur. Cui etiam in hoc specialiter praecipimus immineri, ut tres illas portiones, quas per treinnium dicitur sibi tantummodo vindicasse, restituat. Data decimo tertio Calendarum Decembrium post consulatum Leonis Augusti.
(ed. Thiel 1868: 176-177)
Letter 1
1. Those ordained illicitly by Gaudentius, bishop of Aufinum in Samnium (Italy), should be removed from the office.
2. Let this who does not know what is right to do with the revenue of the Church and the offerings of the faithful, learn that the only thing that he can take from it is the fourth part. Two parts should go for the church buildings and be distributed among the strangers and the poor; the presbyter Bonager should minister to it under the threat of losing the dignity of his order. The last part is to be divided by the clergy among themselves, according to their particular merits. As for what belongs to the Church, and what, as we have learnt, was alienated, we order the said brother [Gaudentius] to give it back, and to make him restore what he took away. It should be especially explained to him in the strongest terms that he must restore those three parts that he is said to have been taking for three years. Given on the thirteenth day of the Kalends of December, after the consulate of Leo Augustus.
 (trans. S. Adamiak)

Place of event:

  • Rome
  • Italy south of Rome and Sicily
  • Rome
  • Aufinum

About the source:

Author: Simplicius
Title: Epistulae, Letters
Origin: Rome (Rome)
Denomination: Catholic/Nicene/Chalcedonian
Simplicius was the bishop of Rome between AD 468 and 483.
Thiel A. ed., Epistulae Romanorum pontificum genuinae et quae ad eos scriptae sunt a S. Hilario usque ad Pelagium II, 1, Braunsberg 1868, 175-214.
H. Dockter, Klerikerkritik im antiken Christentum,  Bonn 2013, 95-99.


Described by a title - Presbyter/πρεσβύτερος
Ecclesiastical administration - Administering Church property
Relation with - Bishop/Monastic superior
    Pastoral activity - Helping the poor and needy
    Please quote this record referring to its author, database name, number, and, if possible, stable URL: S. Adamiak, Presbyters in the Late Antique West, ER1877,