Faithful Friday: Macarius of Jerusalem

By Sarah Levesque

St. Macarius of Jerusalem was the bishop of that city during the time of the First Council of Nicea in 325. Nothing is known of his early life, but he was elevated to the rank of bishop in 312. Macarius was a strong opponent of the heretic Arius, who denied the divinity of Christ. The council at Nicea was called largely to settle the question of Arius, and Macarius was one of the bishops in attendance. He may have been an influential voice in the drafting of the Nicean Creed. 

After the council, a delegation of people was sent to look for the holy sites in Jerusalem – the sites of Jesus’ passion, death and resurrection. St. Helena, mother of Emperor Constantine, was deeply involved, and she and Macarius likely supervised the resulting excavations. The sites were discovered, along with the relics of the True Cross. Macarius was given instruction and supplies to build lavish churches on each site, as well as on the sites of Jesus’ nativity and ascension. Macarius died around 334.

May we, like Macarius, be ready to answer those who teach errors and to unearth the truth.


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