He reluctantly accepted, on condition that church unity would be restored with Rome and the oriental Patriarchs. To make him eligible for the office of patriarch, Tarasios was duly ordained to the deaconate and then the priesthood, prior to his consecration as bishop.
"Empress Irene's main achievement during her reign was the settling of the Iconoclastic Controversy. Her predecessors had denounced and destroyed icons, were the living pictures of the saints, and Mary and Christ. The emperor had taken the Jewish and Muslim stance that these icons were idols. She was responsible for the eventual most important festival known as the Feast of Orthodoxy, which is still celebrated in the Eastern Orthodox Church."
Tarasios had demanded and obtained the promise that the veneration of icons would be restored in the church. As a part of his policy of improving relations with Rome, he persuaded Empress Irene to write to Pope Hadrian I, inviting him to send delegates to Constantinople for a new council, to repudiate heresy. The Pope agreed. The council convened in the Church of the Holy Apostles on 17 August 786.
Icon of the Seventh Ecumenical Council, c. 1670s
177 x 133 x 4.5
Ushakov lived during an era of great changes, and, like the masters of the Renaissance, he worked in a wide range of media. At the same time, he was representative of traditional Muscovite piety and an admirer of monasticism. One of the icons he painted was celebrated for its healing powers, and—according to the hagiography of Saint Hyllarion, who was related to Ushakov—miracles occurred in Ushakov’s Moscow home near the Church of the Trinity in Nikitniki. More on Simon Ushakov
The council, known as the Second Council of Nicaea, condemned Iconoclasm and formally approved the veneration of icons. The patriarch assumed a moderate policy towards former Iconoclasts.
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