Feast of the day

St. Ignatius of Antioch

10/17/2020 12:00:00 AM

Bishop and Martyr
(† c. 107)

        St. Ignatius, Bishop of Antioch, was a disciple of St. John. During Domitian's persecution, St. Ignatius obtained peace for his flock through fasting and prayer. St. Ignatius was already, at that point, suffering with Christ and proving himself a genuine disciple.

        In 107 A.D., Emperor Trajan came to Antioch and forced the Christians to choose between apostasy and death. When the emperor questioned St. Ignatius about the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, St. Ignatius explained that Jesus dwelt in his heart through the affections, in his mind through the intellect, and in his soul through grace. St. Ignatius' fearless and heroic testament moved the Roman authority to issue the death penalty.

        Condemned to death, St. Ignatius was brought to Rome and thrown to lions in the amphitheatre. The lions tore St. Ignatius apart and ate his whole body. The bones and pieces remaining were reverently collected and interred at Antioch until their transfer to the Church of St. Clement in Rome in 637. After St. Ignatius' death, many Christians beheld him in visions interceding for them before Christ.