July 19, 2006

St. Macrina the Younger - July 19th

Sister of St. Gregory of Nyssa

Her brother, St. Gregory, writes:

"As I told my own trouble and all that I had been through, first my exile at the hands of the Emperor Valens on account of the faith, and then the confusion in the Church that summoned me to conflicts and trials, my great sister said-

'Will you not cease to be insensible to the divine blessings? Will you not remedy the ingratitude of your soul? Will you not compare your position with that of your parents? And yet, as regards worldly things, we make our boast of being well born and thinking we come of a noble family. Our father was greatly esteemed as a young man for his learning ; in fact his fame was established throughout the law courts of the province. subsequently, though he excelled all others in rhetoric, his reputation did not extend beyond Pontus. But he was satisfied with fame in his own land.

'But you,', she said, 'are renowned in cities and peoples and nations. Churches summon you as an ally and director, and do you not see the grace of God in it all ? Do you fail to recognise the cause of such great blessings, that it is your parents, prayers that are lifting you up on high, you that have little or no equipment within yourself for such success?'

Thus she spoke, and I longed for the length of the day to be further extended, that she might never cease delighting our ears with sweetness. But the voice of the choir was summoning us to the evening service, and sending me to church, the great one retired once more to God in prayer."

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