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Councils of Valence

Numerous church councils were held in this city on the Rhone River in the province of Dauphiné, France. Several are of particular significance. In 374 about twenty-four bishops convened and acted on four disciplinary issues. They ruled the ordination of digamists to be unacceptable; they defined the penance required of lapsed virgins and of idolatrous-then-rebaptized Christians; they considered the problem of clerics renouncing ordination on false pretexts. The last issue assumed concreteness in an extant conciliar letter regarding Acceptus, who refused the bishopric of Forum Iulii (Frejus).

About the time of the Council of Orange* (592), a council met in Valence to consider the doctrine of grace. Rejecting Pelagianism* and Semi-Pelagianism,* it favored the position of Caesarius of Arles,* also adopted by Pope Boniface II. A similar issue was treated by the Council of Valence called by Emperor Lothair in 855. Having investigated charges against the bishop of Valence, the council under the leading of Archbishop Remigius of Lyons refuted the position defended by Hincmar* of Reims and the Council of Quiercy* (853). It asserted double predestination in a manner guarding divine holiness and human responsibility, and it affirmed Christ's death for the elect only. Jansenists* later appealed the approval given these canons by Pope Nicholas I.*

Other councils were held in Valence in 585, 890, 1100, and 1209. In 1248 a so-called Council of Valence meeting at Montelimar anathematized Emperor Frederick II* and promoted the Inquisition.*