Sainted Alexander, Patriarch of Alexandria

Commemorated on May 29

      Sainted Alexander, Patriarch of Alexandria, was the chief defender of the Orthodox Faith destined to engage in struggle with the heretic Arius. Saint Alexander governed the Alexandria Church from the years 313 to 326. The life of the saint occurred during a difficult period in the history of the Church, when it became necessary to defend the Orthodox confession of faith from the heresy of Arius. Striving to preserve the unity of the Orthodox Church, Saint Alexander with all his resolve rose up in struggle for the truth. In numerous written missives and talks he denounced the false teachings and errors of the arch-heretic Arius and his followers. Seeing the irreconcilability of Arius, the saint convened a Local Council (around the year 320), at which the heresy of Arius and his confederates was condemned, and they themselves excommunicated from the Church. Arius however continued to sow dissension with the Alexandrian and other Churches. At the proceedings of the First Ecumenical Council at Nicea in the year 325 Saint Alexander was one of the chief participants. The Council condemned and bestowed anathema upon the heresy of Arius. The activity of Saint Alexander, a brave defender of Apostolic dogmas, made possible the preserving of the truthful integrity of the Christian teaching about the Holy Trinity. The blessed end of the saint followed in the year 326.
      The Church historians, Blessed Theodorit of Cyr (Comm. 8 March), Sokrates and Sozomen, report Saint Alexander as being an eminent theologian and archpastor of the Church of Christ.

1996-2001 by translator Fr. S. Janos.

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