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Council of Epaon

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The Council of Epaon in Burgundy (517) enacted the first legislation against wooden altars, forbidding the building of any but stone Altars.[1]

The Council, in canon xvi, allowed baptized heretics to be admitted to the Church by a rite of unction (Presbyteros, . . . si conversionem subitam petant, chrismate subvenire permittimus). This was the practice also in the East, but in Rome and Italy admission was by laying on of hands.[2]

It also "abrogate(d) completely in the entire Kingdom the consecration of widows who are named Deaconesses."[3]

It is also one of the witnesses to the rise of the practice of mitigation of canonical penance that became necessary due to the changing times and social conditions of Christians: a more severe penance could be replaced with something new and milder.[4]


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