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The Church and the Roman Empire (301–490)

The Church and the Roman Empire (301–490)

Constantine, Councils, and the Fall of Rome 

Author: Mike Aquilina

Price: $17.95

Format: Paperback

Pages: 192

Trim size: 6 x 9 inches

ISBN: 978-1-59471-789-5

Imprint: Ave Maria Press

On-sale date: September 13, 2019

More History, Spirituality, Theology


Suspense, politics, sin, death, sex, and redemption: Not the plot of the latest crime novel, but elements of the true history of the Catholic Church.

Larger-than-life saints such as Athanasius of Alexandria, Jerome, Augustine, and political figures such as Emperor Constantine played an important part in the history of the Christianity. In The Church and the Roman Empire (301–490): Constantine, Councils, and the Fall of Rome, popular Catholic author Mike Aquilina gives readers a vivid and engaging account of how Christianity developed and expanded as the Roman Empire declined.

In The Church and the Roman Empire (301–490), Mike Aquilina explores the dramatic backstory of the Council of Nicaea and why Christian unity and belief are still expressed by the Nicene Creed. He also sets the record straight about commonly held misconceptions about the Catholic Church. Readers may be surprised to learn:

  • The Edict of Milan didn’t just legalize Christianity; it also established religious tolerance for all faiths for the first time in history.
  • The growth of Christianity inspired a more merciful society: Crucifixion was abolished; the practice of throwing prisoners to wild beasts for entertainment was outlawed; and slave owners were punished for killing their slaves.
  • Controversy between Arians and Catholics may have resulted in building more hospitals and other networks of charitable assistance to the poor.
  • When Rome fell, not many people at the time noticed.

Aquilina brings Church history to life in The Church and the Roman Empire, enabling Catholics to more deeply consider the true origins of the creed that unites us, the Bible we read, and the liturgy we celebrate.


"Accessible and engaging."

"An accessible and engaging place to begin a study of Church history and to embark on a lifetime journey of learning and faith."

Marcus Grodi Founder and president of The Coming Home Network
Host of EWTN’s
The Journey Home

"Richly informative."

"A skillfully written, richly informative account of an exciting era in the emergence and development of Catholic Christianity. The story told in this volume is a compelling one, featuring heroic figures such as Emperor Constantine and St. Augustine (along with a villain or two) as well as epochal events such as the Council of Nicaea and the Church’s long struggle against the heresy of Arianism that did so much to shape the faith Catholics now hold."

Russell Shaw
Author of American Church: The Remarkable Rise, Meteoric Fall, and Uncertain Future of Catholicism in America

"Bold, engaging, and unequivocally Catholic."

"This book debunks myths and presents authentic Catholic history as it should be: bold, engaging, and unequivocally Catholic."

Steve Weidenkopf
Author of Timeless: A History of the Catholic Church

"Crystal clear, engaging, entertaining, and myth-busting."

"This series is much needed. Every book is crystal clear, engaging, entertaining, and myth-busting. Be prepared to be surprised—and grateful for the wonders the Lord has done."

Scott Hahn
Founder of the St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology

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