Pomegranates and Pantomimes (215 AD)

Saturday, February 10, 2007

I've been reading "Apostolic Tradition" by Hippolytus (d. ca. 236AD). It is a document from the early pre-Constantine church that describes the process one had to go though in order to be baptized in the faith. Here's some stuff I bet you didn't know about the early church:

If you were a juggler, pantomime, or a grade school teacher you would need to quit your job before you could become a Christian.

"Inquiry shall be made about the professions and trades of those who brought to be admitted to the faith... if a man is an actor or pantomimist, he must desist or be rejected. A teacher of young children had best desist...a juggler...must desist or be rejected"

I can understand why they rejected pantomimes. I always hated mimes...

I also bet you didn't know that if you wanted to bless fruit (heck, who knew they blessed fruit in the first place?) that pomegranates, peaches, and mulberries are OK, but pumpkins and cucumbers are out. "Excuse me", says the usher, "I'm going to have to ask you to take your cucumber out of the sanctuary, brother"

And I've saved the best for last:
(drum roll please)

people were baptized naked.
"When the elder takes hold of each of them who are to receive baptism... the bishop passes each of them on nude to the elder who stands at the water. They shall stand in the water naked...Then, drying themselves, they shall dress and afterwards gather in the church"
woohoo! Pray naked!



At 12:56 PM, Blogger xaJoshua said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

At 12:57 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow, interesting stuff. Thanks for sharing the research! I would love to hear the reasoning behind excluding teachers.

At 7:38 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Josh,

I think it had to do with teachers at the time teaching paganism. That's just a guess.


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