The early teachers, writers, theologians, and leaders of the Church – in the days before the Great Schism – were concerned for the unity of the Church.

These are some of the most clear expressions of their writing:

It behooves the sons of God to be peacemakers, gentle in heart, simple in speech, agreeing in affection, faithfully linked to one another in the bonds of unanimity.

St. Cyprian of Carthage

Treatise “On the Unity of the Church” 

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No human power can part what God has united. It is said of husband and wife: Wherefore a man shall leave father and mother and shall cling to his wife; and they shall be two in one flesh [Gen. II: 24.]: Therefore what God has joined together, let no man put asunder. [Matt. XIX: 6.] Thou canst not, O man, dissolve the nuptial tie: how hopest thou to divide the Church?

St. John Chrysostom

407 AD

For if I in this brief space of time, have enjoyed such fellowship with your bishop — I mean not of a mere human, but of a spiritual nature — how much more do I reckon you happy who are so joined to him as the Church is to Jesus Christ, and as Jesus Christ is to the Father, that so all things may agree in unity! Let no man deceive himself: if any one be not within the altar, he is deprived of the bread of God. For if the prayer of one or two possesses such power, how much more that of the bishop and the whole Church! He, therefore, that does not assemble with the Church, has even by this manifested his pride, and condemned himself. For it is written, God resists the proud. Let us be careful, then, not to set ourselves in opposition to the bishop, in order that we may be subject to God.

St. Ignatius of Antioch

Ad Ephes., n.5

In essentials, unity; in non-essentials, liberty; in all things, charity.

St. Augustine of Hippo

And as many as shall, in the exercise of repentance, return into the unity of the Church, these, too, shall belong to God, that they may live according to Jesus Christ. Do not err, my brethren.

St. Ignatius of Antioch

Ad Philadelph., n.3

Love unity; avoid divisions; be the followers of Jesus Christ, even as He is of His Father.

St. Ignatius of Antioch

Ad Philadelph., n.7

Why are there quarrels and ill will and dissensions and schism and fighting among you? Do we not have one God and one Christ, and one Spirit of grace poured out upon us? And is there not one calling in Christ? Why do we wrench and tear apart the members of Christ, and revolt against our own body, and reach such folly as to forget that we are members of one another?

St. Clement of Rome

First Epistle to the Corinthians., c. 96 AD