According to Zenit.org, some of the Catholics of Rome are having their 23rd annual meeting in Rimini. The focus is social media and the use of the internet. Well, I would like to suggest that the media (online and otherwise) should look at a more doctrinally important meeting that was held in Rimini in the 4th century.
The then Bishop of Rome, Liberius, agreed to a non-trinitarian statement to the Godhead as the majority of many Greco-Roman areas of theology held to a Semi-Arian (also called binitarian) view of the Godhead (it took an imperial decree several decades later for the trinitarian formula to be forced on many by imperial might).
Notice what The Catholic Encyclopedia teaches and the Council of Rimini:
The second Formula of Sirmium (357) stated the doctrine of the Anomoeans, or extreme Arians. Against this the Semi-Arian bishops, assembled at Ancyra, the episcopal city of their leader Basilius, issued a counter formula, asserting that the Son is in all things like the Father, afterwards approved by the Third Synod of Sirmium (358). This formula, though silent on the term “homousios“, consecrated by the Council of Nicaea, was signed by a few orthodox bishops, and probably by Pope Liberius, being, in fact, capable of an orthodox interpretation. The Emperor Constantius cherished at that time the hope of restoring peace between the orthodox and the Semi-Arians by convoking a general council (Benigni, Umberto. “Council of Rimini.” The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 13. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1912. 11 Jul. 2008 <http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/13057b.htm>).
Pneumatomachi…The majority of this sect were clearly orthodox on the Consubstantiality of the Son; they had sent a deputation from the Semi-Arian council of Lampsacus (364 A.D.) to Pope Liberius, who after some hesitation acknowledged the soundness of their faith; but with regard to the Third Person, both pope and bishops were satisfied with the phrase: “We believe in the Holy Ghost” (Arendzen, John. “Pneumatomachi.” The Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol. 12. New York: Robert Appleton Company, 1911. 11 Jul. 2008 <http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/12174a.htm>)
“In the Council of Rimini, 359 A.D…nearly all bishops present, 400 in number” decided “to sign a semi-Arian creed” (Kramer H.B. L. The Book of Destiny. Nihil Obstat: J.S. Considine, O.P., Censor Deputatus. Imprimatur: +Joseph M. Mueller, Bishop of Sioux City, Iowa, January 26, 1956. Reprint TAN Books, Rockford (IL), p. 165).
Hence, the idea that the majority in the 4th century were semi-Arian has a lot of support in Greco-Roman writings. Also, the fact that 400 bishops who met in Rimini, Italy in 359 A.D. signed a “semi-Arian creed” indicates that the majority of leaders in West accepted some type of non-trinitarian position on the Godhead. (The illustration at the beginning of this post, which trinitarians sometimes claims explains their view, shows that it violate accepted laws of logic.)
The Council of Rimini was also called the Council of Ariminum. Notice what Sozomen reported about it:
The partisans of Acacius remained some time at Constantinople, and invited thither several bishops of Bithynia, among whom were Maris, bishop of Chalcedon, and Ulfilas, bishop of the Goths. These prelates having assembled together, in number about fifty, they confirmed the formulary read at the council of Ariminum, adding this provision, that the terms “substance” and “hypostasis” should never again be used in reference to God. They also declared that all other formularies set forth in times past, as likewise those that might be compiled at any future period, should be condemned (Sozomen, Book IV, Chapter 24 ).
Socrates Scholasticus reported the following as part of the declaration of that Council:
We believe in one God the Father Almighty…And in…Christ our Lord and God…
But since the term ούσία, substance or essence which was used by the fathers in a very simple and intelligible sense, but not being understood by the people, has been a cause of offense, we have thought proper to reject it, as it is not contained even in the sacred writings; and that no mention of it should be made in future, inasmuch as the holy Scriptures have nowhere mentioned the substance of the Father and of the Son. Nor ought the “subsistence” of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit to be even named. But we affirm that the Son is like the Father, in such a manner as the sacred Scriptures declare and teach (Socrates Scholasticus, Book II, Chapter 41, pp. 221,222).
The same Council also taught this about the Holy Spirit:
We believe also in the Holy Spirit…as the Comforter; according to how it is written, the Spirit of truth (Ibid, p. 221).
So while Semi-Arians believe that there is a Holy Spirit, they tend to limit their beliefs to what the Bible says about it—they do not declare it to be the third co-equal person of a non-existent Greco-Roman trinity.
In 359, there was also a semi-Arian council of Seleucia (359) attended by Greco-Roman church leaders (Bagatti, The Church from the Gentiles in Palestine, p.56). And “in 335, the semi-Arian bishops, returning from the council of Tyre” consecrated a basilica (Bagatti, The Church from the Gentiles in Palestine, p.59). In other words, even among the Greco-Roman bishops, many were “Semi-Arians..
Did you know that?
If the media really reported the truth about Rimini and the similar Catholic Councils, many would realize that they need to look more into the now trinitarian view of the Catholics of Rome, Eastern Orthodox, and the Protestants.
Those interested in studying this doctrine in more detail, should consider looking at the following documented articles:
Binitarian View: One God, Two Beings Before the Beginning Is binitarianism the correct position? What about unitarianism or trinitarianism?
Is The Father God? What is the view of the Bible? What was the view of the early church?
Jesus is God, But Was Made Man Was Jesus fully human and fully God or what?
Did Early Christians Think the Holy Spirit Was A Separate Person in a Trinity? Or did they have a different view?
Did the True Church Ever Teach a Trinity? Most act like this is so, but is it?
Was Unitarianism the Teaching of the Bible or Early Church? Many, including Jehovah’s Witnesses, claim it was, but was it?
Binitarianism: One God, Two Beings Before the Beginning This is a shorter article than the Binitarian View article, but has a little more information on binitarianism.
Valentinus: The Gnostic Trinitarian Heretic He apparently was the first Christ-professing heretic to come up with the idea of three hypostases.
Which Is Faithful: The Roman Catholic Church or the Genuine Church of God? Do you know that both groups shared a lot of the earliest teachings? Do you know which church changed? Do you know which group is most faithful to the teachings of the apostolic church? Which group best represents true Christianity? This documented article answers those questions. Português: Qual é fiel: A igreja católica romana ou a verdadeira igreja do deus? Tambien Español: ¿Que es fiel: La Iglesia Católica Romana o la Iglesia verdadera de Dios? Auch: Deutsch: Welches ist treu: Die römisch-katholische Kirche oder die Kirche Gottes Original?