Saints and Holy People

Find out about their lives and how they changed the world

Saint Gregory of Nyssa (c. 335–395)

Saint Gregory of Nyssa (c. 335–395)

Feast day: January 10

Saint Gregory of Nyssa was a member of a very holy family. His grandmother was Saint Macrina the Elder, his parents were Saint Basil and Saint Emmelia, his older brother was Saint Basil the Great, and an elder sister was Saint Macrina the Younger. He excelled at his studies and became a professor of rhetoric.

Over time, Saint Gregory felt called to devote his life and his time to the Church and joined his brother’s monastery. He felt called to enter into the priesthood and was later elected bishop of Nyssa. Saint Gregory’s election came at a time of great turmoil in Nyssa over the Arian heresy. This heresy denied the divinity of Jesus Christ. Gregory was incarcerated for a short time after Arians accused him of mismanaging Church funds, but he eventually regained his see after Emperor Valens, who was a proponent of Arianism, passed away.

Saint Gregory’s return was joyfully celebrated by his people. He attended the Council of Constantinople, where he was given an important position and was a great defender of the true faith.

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