Christian Classics Study Group: Cyprian: On the Unity of the Church

8.00 pm Friday 3 May

Saint Cyprian (LatinThaschus Cæcilius Cyprianusc. 200 – September 14, 258 AD) was bishop of Carthage and a notable Early Christian writerHe was a pagan public speaker and teacher from Carthage in North Africa who converted to Christianity around the year 246 AD. He immediately set himself to the study of Scripture and the writings of the first great Latin theologian from North Africa, Tertullian. Saint Cyprian grew so rapidly in holiness and knowledge of the faith that he was appointed bishop of Carthage only two years later. Within only a few months of his election to the episcopacy, the persecution of Decius broke out and Cyprian was forced to flee his see. Upon returning, he set himself to dealing with the problem of the reconciliation, after suitable penance, of those who buckled under pressure and lapsed in their faith. After a few years of peace, the persecution of the emperor Valerian began. Cyprian gave himself up and was martyred in Carthage on September 14, 258.

St. Cyprian’s writings that survive are mainly letters and short treatises. Most notable among them are De Ecclesiae Catholicae Unitatis (251) on the Unity of the Catholic Church and the importance of the Episcopate as safeguard of this unity. His skillful Latin rhetoric led to his being considered the pre-eminent Latin writer of Western Christianity until Jerome and Augustine.

We will focus on that most famous workDe Ecclesiae Catholicae Unitate.

The evening will led by the Rev Jos Strengholt.

When: Friday 3 May AD 2019

Where: The Parsonage, van Hogendorpstraat 26.

What: Supper begins at 6:30pm, the talk and discussion begins at 8:00pm