In 1970, on the occasion of the inauguration of a new Insititute of Patrology, Pope
Paul VI said : " The return to the Fathers of the Church is part of the return to
Christian sources without which it will not be possible to activate biblical renewal,
liturgical reform and the new theological research desired by the Second Ecumenical
Vatican Council ." As we know Pope Benedict too often refers to the Church Fathers.
But who exactly were they and what are they remembered for . That' s what Jill
Bevilacqua has been telling us over the past weeks in her series by the title of
"A Gallery of Church Fathers" .Today we bring you a sound portrait of Saint Basil's
younger brother, Saint Gregory of Nyssa , Doctor of the Church, mystic, writer and
theologian who was born in Caesarea about 335 A.D.:
"...Gregory was presumably
a widower when his life changed direction ..in the autumn of 371 and much against
his will he was consecrated bishop by Basil ."
"...At the synod of Antioch
in 379 Gregory was entrusted with the visitation of the diocese of Pontus and elected
metropolitan of Seabaste . Basil had since died and now his brother began to emerge
as a mainstay of orthodoxy. At the second ecumenical council in Constantinople in
381 he was one of the leading theologians and was acclaimed as "pillar of truth ".