Science of the Saints, 29 January, Transfer of the Relics of Hieromartyr Ignatius the God-bearer


After, on orders of the emperor Trajan, the holy Hieromartyr Ignatius was thrown for devouring by wild beasts at Rome, dying in the year 107, Christians gathered up his bones and preserved them there at Rome.

Later in the year 108 they were transferred to the outskirts of Antioch. A second transfer – into the city of Antioch itself – was done in the year 438. And after the taking of Antioch by the Persians, the relics of the Hieromartyr Ignatius were returned to Rome and placed into the church in honour of the holy Hieromartyr Pope Clement in the year 540 (but according to other histories, the year was 637).

The Hieromartyr introduced antiphonal singing into Church Divine-services. He has left us seven archpastoral epistles in which he provided instruction on faith, love and good works, he urged likewise the preserving of the oneness of the faith and to beware of heretics, and he bid the obeying and honouring of bishops, “looking upon the bishop as upon Christ Himself.”

“Hearken ye unto the bishop, so that God in turn might hearken unto you… let Baptism remain with you, like a shield and buckler; faith – like an helmet; love – like a spear; patience – like full armour.”

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