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Home > Fathers of the Church > Letters (St. Basil of Caesarea) > Letter 122

Letter 122

ST. BASIL OF CAESAREA

To Pœmenius, bishop of Satala.

When the Armenians returned by your way you no doubt asked for a letter from them, and you learned why I had not given the letter to them. If they spoke as truth lovers should, you forgave me on the spot; if they kept anything back (which I do not suppose), at all events hear it from me.

The most illustrious Anthimus, who long ago made peace with me, when he found an opportunity of satisfying his own vain gloriousness, and of causing me some vexation, consecrated Faustus, by his own authority and with his own hand, without waiting for any election from you, and ridiculing my punctiliousness in such matters. Inasmuch, then, as he has confounded ancient order and has made light of you, for whose election I was waiting, and has acted in a manner, as I view it, displeasing to God, for these reasons I felt pained with them, and gave no letter for any of the Armenians, not even for your reverence. Faustus I would not even receive into communion, thereby plainly testifying that, unless he brought me a letter from you, I should be permanently alienated from him, and should influence those of the same mind with me to treat him in the same manner. If there is any remedy for these things, be sure to write to me yourself, giving your testimony to him, if you see that his life is good; and exhort the rest. If on the other hand the mischief is incurable, let me perfectly understand it to be so, that I may no longer take them into account; although really, as they have proved, they have agreed, for the future, to transfer their communion to Anthimus, in contempt of me and of my Church, as though my friendship were no longer worth having.

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Source. Translated by Blomfield Jackson. From Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, Second Series, Vol. 8. Edited by Philip Schaff and Henry Wace. (Buffalo, NY: Christian Literature Publishing Co., 1895.) Revised and edited for New Advent by Kevin Knight. <http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/3202122.htm>.

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