Thursday, May 19, 2022

Saints for Today: Cyril of Alexandria, Bishop (376-444)

Must Read

Christening a New Fire Truck? There’s a Catholic Blessing for That

When the firefighters at Blanco, NM's Station 1 needed a Catholic blessing for their new truck, they turned to local Deacon Patric Valdez.

Little Sisters of the Poor: Caretakers of the Elderly

The Diocese of Gallup is fortunate to have one of the homes of the Little Sisters, “Villa Guadalupe”, within the city of Gallup

Meet the Seminarian: Nathanael Block

I entered the seminary when I was 18, in 2004. God kept me in His Hands, and continues to guide me into closer conformity with His Heart.
Dr. Jean Lee
Jean M. Lee, M.A., D.Min., is a licensed behavioral health and substance abuse counselor, founding a nonprofit, state-licensed behavior health counseling agency and Christian gift/book store. Volunteer work includes: Jail ministry, Legion of Mary membership, door-to-door evangelization, and writing a weekly newspaper column titled “Faith and Inspiration: Encyclopedia of Saints for Today.” A Catholic revert after 32 years away from the Church, she is devout in the Catholic faith, loves the saints, and lives a deeper spiritual/religious and more joyful life since returning to the Church.

Feast Day: June 27

Cyril was born in Alexandria, Egypt. His uncle, Theophilus, was the patriarch of Alexandria and upon his death, Cyril succeeded him as patriarch. It is thought that Cyril was present at the Synod of the Oak, a meeting at which Saint John Chrysostom was deposed.

Saints are not born with halos around their heads. Cyril, recognized as a great teacher of the church, began his career embroiled in the church politics of heresies. He pillaged and closed the churches of the Novatian heretics and confiscated Jewish property, expelling the Jews from Alexandria in retaliation for their attacks on Christians. Cyril’s importance for theology and church history lies in his championing the cause of orthodoxy against the heresy of Nestorius. Besides needing to soften some of his opposition to those who had sided with Nestorius, Cyril had difficulties with some of his own allies, who thought he had gone too far, sacrificing not only language but also orthodoxy.

Presiding as Pope Celestine’s representative at the Council of Ephesus (431), Cyril condemned Nestorianism and proclaimed Mary truly the “God-bearer” (the mother of the one Person who is truly God and truly human). In the confusion that followed both Cyril and Nestorius were arrested. However, Cyril was released upon intervention of the pope and welcomed back to Alexandria as a second Athanasius (the champion against Arianism). Eventually Nestorius was condemned and banished to the Great Oasis of Egypt.

A brilliant scholar, Cyril left a legacy of exegetical works, treatises, commentaries on the Gospels and the Pentateuch, sermons, letters and an apologia against Julian the Apostate. He is known especially for his writing on the Holy Trinity and the Incarnation. “On Adoration in Spirit and Truth” is a 17-book exposition on the spiritual nature of the Old Law.

Until his death, Cyril’s policy of moderation kept his extreme partisans under control. On his deathbed, despite pressure, he refused to condemn the teacher of Nestorius.

I have been amazed that some are utterly in doubt as to whether or not the Holy Virgin is able to be called the Mother of God. For if our Lord Jesus Christ is God, how should the Holy Virgin who bore him not be the Mother of God?”—Saint Cyril of Alexandria, Letter to the Monks of Egypt

BIBLIOGRAPHY:
Foley, Leonard, O.F.M., and Pat McCloskey, O.F.M. “Saint of the Day.” Cincinnati: St. Anthony Messenger Press, 2009.
Guiley, Rosemary Ellen. “The Encyclopedia of Saints.” New York, NY: Checkmark Books, 2001.
Hoagland, Victor, C.P., ed. “The Book of Saints: The Lives of the Saints According to the Liturgical Calendar.” New York: Regina Press, 1986.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Latest News

Elderly and the Victims of War

‘Grandparents are the living memory of a people, and young people and children ought to listen to their grandparents.’

Advertisement

Other recent stories:

AZ Bishops’ Statement On Governor Ducey Signing Bill to Improve Religious Accommodations for Dying Patients

Being able to have clergy present at the end of life is important to people of many different faiths.

Bishops of the Arizona Catholic Conference Statement on Governor Ducey Signing Bill to Ban Abortions at 15-Weeks Gestation into Law

The 15-week ban in SB 1164 is much more in line with the rest of the world in terms of abortion laws.

From Zuni to Gallup: Undertaking the First Annual St. Kateri Pilgrimage

Neither the cold nor the many miles were a deterrent to the walkers, each of whom had a personal reason for making the journey.

Friday News Briefs: Check out these rallies and marches for life near you!

Plus: V8s for Vocation raffle tickets available for a 1969 Pontiac GTO!

Advertisement

More Articles Like This