Bull of Union with the Copts

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The Bull of Union with the Copts was promulgated by Pope Eugene IV at the Ecumenical Council of Florence on 4 February 1442. It was part of an attempt by the Catholic Church to reunite with other Christian groups including the Coptic Church of Egypt. The attempted union with the Copts failed.

The Bull of Union with the Copts denounced Christians who continued to observe the practices of circumcision, the Jewish sabbath and "other legal prescriptions as strangers to the faith of Christ" as practiced by the Copts.[1]


  1. ^ Eugenius IV, Pope (1990) [1442]. "Ecumenical Council of Florence (1438-1445): Session 11—4 February 1442; Bull of union with the Copts". In Norman P. Tanner. Decrees of the ecumenical councils. 2 volumes (in Greek and Latin). Washington, DC: Georgetown University Press. ISBN 0-87840-490-2. LCCN 90003209. Retrieved 2008-04-10. [The Holy Roman Church] firmly believes, professes and teaches that the legal prescriptions of the Old Testament or the Mosaic law, which are divided into ceremonies, holy sacrifices and sacraments, because they were instituted to signify something in the future, although they were adequate for the divine cult of that age, once our Lord Jesus Christ who was signified by them had come, came to an end and the sacraments of the new Testament had their beginning. Whoever, after the Passion, places his hope in the legal prescriptions and submits himself to them as necessary for salvation and as if faith in Christ without them could not save, sins mortally. It does not deny that from Christ's passion until the promulgation of the Gospel they could have been retained, provided they were in no way believed to be necessary for salvation. But it asserts that after the promulgation of the gospel they cannot be observed without loss of eternal salvation. Therefore it denounces all who after that time observe circumcision, the [Jewish] sabbath and other legal prescriptions as strangers to the faith of Christ and unable to share in eternal salvation, unless they recoil at some time from these errors. Therefore it strictly orders all who glory in the name of Christian, not to practise circumcision either before or after baptism, since whether or not they place their hope in it, it cannot possibly be observed without loss of eternal salvation.

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