Sts. Basil the Great and Gregory Nazianzen

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Sts. Basil the Great and Gregory Nazianzen
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Sts. Basil the Great and Gregory Nazianzen

Feast day: January 2

Born to a saintly family in Caesarea, Basil studied rhetoric in Constantinople and Athens. He was baptized with his friend, St. Gregory Nazianzen, and was ordained around 365. After being chosen as bishop of Caesarea, he championed the faith at the Council of Nicaea and refuted the Arian heresy. He wrote influential theological works and helped establish the monastic Rule of St. Basil. St. Basil is revered as a Doctor of the Church.

Gregory’s father was bishop of Nazianzus, in what is modern Turkey. Gregory met his friend St. Basil the Great in Caesarea and studied with him in Athens. He was called to Constantinople to encourage Christians against the Arian heresy and was elected bishop there in 381. Controversy over his transfer left Gregory to resign and return to Nazianzus. For his teachings on the Trinity, Gregory was named a Doctor of the Church. St. Gregory and St. Basil share this feast.


O God, who were pleased to give light to your Church
by the example and teaching
of the Bishops Saints Basil and Gregory,
grant, we pray,
that in humility we may learn your truth
and practice it faithfully in charity.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
God, for ever and ever.

Our Sunday Visitor Staff

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