his North African sect believe that the efficacy of a sacrament depended upon the spiritual state of the priest administrating it. The orthodoxy answer to this position was that the sacrament was sacred within itself and independent of the spirituality of its administrator. This heresy had to be stopped quickly because upon it rested the entire edifice of the Church for there was no possible certainty as to the spirituality of priests. Consequently, the Church had to declare even heretics could administer the sacraments. A.G.H.

Source: 55.