Todor Pišteljić

Was the mediaeval Bosnian church heretic or orthodox

pages: 216-227

Abstract

The old popular opinion that the Mediaeval Church of Bosnia was Manichean (»bogumil« in Serbian), and therefore heretic, is rejected by the author. The incorrect hypothesis was establisched by Dr. Franjo Racki (in 1869), former Professor at the Theological Faculty in Zagreb, who based his work on the records of the Papal inquisitors exclusively. However, Dr. Bozidar Petranovic had accepted the opposite opinion (in 1867): Bosnia had its national independant church, which essentially was and remained Orthodox. To prove his thesis Petranovic used domestic sources as well.

The author points out the conclusion on the matter reached by the well-known- scholar Dr. Vaso Glusac, who (in 1953) enumerated 11 points clearly showing the Chistian Orthodoxy of the Bosnian Church in the Middle Ages: structure, oath on 318 Fathers of Nyceae, veneration of the Eastern Orthodox Saint, Gregory of Nazianz, observance of other feasts, veneration of icons, erection and consecration of churches, baptism, Holy Communion, wedding, belief in the resurrection ol the dead. All these elements do not belong to a heretic community and doctrine of the Manichean sect in the Middle Ages. In addition to it, the author, supported by documents, speaks of some Bosnian Orthodox rulers, among whom Tvrtko 1 was even crowned in the Serbian Orthodox Monastery of Mileseva in 1377.

In the conclusion the author rejects the alleged Heterodoxy of the Bosnian Church as a fabrication of the Latin inquisitors they made up in order to vindicate their aspirations to proselytise as well as Hungarian pretensions to conquer Bosnia.

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