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Saint of the Day for 2 May: St. Athanasius

St. Athanasius of Alexandria: Defender of the Faith and Architect of the Trinitarian Doctrine


St. Athanasius


Bishop and Doctor of the Church


296 AD, Alexandria, Egypt


May 2, 373, Alexandria, Egypt


2 May


2004 edition



answer our prayers

which we address to you on the solemnity

of your blessed confessor

and bishop Athanasius;

and, through the intercession of the merits of him

Who knew how worthily to serve you,

absolve us from all sins.


Patron of

Bellante, Santa Sofia d’Epiro, Cellino Attanasio, Firmo

Roman Martyrology

Memory of St. Athanasius, bishop and doctor of the Church, of distinguished holiness and doctrine, who in Alexandria of Egypt from the time of Constantine until the time of Emperor Valens fought strenuously for the righteous faith and, undergoing many conspiracies on the part of the Arians, was several times sent into exile; finally returning to the Church entrusted to him, after much struggle and suffering with heroic patience, in the forty-sixth year of his priesthood he rested in the peace of Christ.



The Saint and Mission

St. Athanasius, bishop of Alexandria, played a crucial role in shaping the course of Christendom through his tireless mission to defend Orthodox doctrine against the prevailing heresies of his time, particularly Arianism. His life was marked by exceptional courage and determination, often at the cost of exile and persecution, demonstrating an unconditional commitment to theological truth. Athanasius not only fought heretical ideas but actively worked to edify a deeper understanding of the faith among believers through influential theological writings and effective ecclesiastical leadership. His dedication not only safeguarded the integrity of the church in its critical early stages but also educated and formed future generations. This legacy of faith and determination underscores how true mission can often require personal sacrifice and steadfast resistance to challenges, inspiring believers to remain faithful to the fundamental tenets of Christianity.

The Saint and Mercy

St. Athanasius, in the context of his theological battles and his many exiles, manifested a form of mercy deeply rooted in his faith and his commitment to truth. His struggle against Arianism was not driven by a desire for personal victory, but by a sincere concern for the spiritual well-being of the Church and its members. Athanasius understood that the defense of Orthodox doctrine was essential for the salvation of souls, and his tenacity was a reflection of his mercy toward those in danger of being led astray by erroneous teachings. Even in times of greatest conflict, he sought to bring errant people back to the truth, offering them a way to reconciliation and salvation. This attitude shows that mercy, at its deepest heart, can sometimes require decisive and courageous actions to protect what is most dear and vital to the community.


It was the end of the second century: by this time the tenth and final persecution was also drawing to a close, when a new hurricane was about to be unleashed against the Church. But God, ever watchful and…


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