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To Paul, Bishop.
Gregory to Paul, etc.
I appointed your Fraternity to preside for the present over the church of Naples, to the end that you might convert all you can to God by persuasive preaching. And, while you ought to be giving your whole mind to this work, you are in haste to return before bringing forth this fruit to the Lord, and request me to settle the affairs of this same church speedily, my mind being meanwhile by no means unoccupied in this matter. But, being desirous of fortifying securely the well-being of this Church, I hold it needful to consider the matter with long continued deliberation, so as to be able to arrange its affairs by the ordination of a worthy whom Christ may reveal to us. Wherefore let your Fraternity meanwhile study to watch for the good of souls, so that the opinion I have of you may be strengthened by the effect of your working. All you have written concerning the deacon Peter has now been made known to us by the ex-consul Theodorus. And so, now that I know that he is constant to you, and, according to your testimony, studies the advantage of the Church, he ought to be afraid of no one's opposition or enmity, but persevere in benefiting the Church and serving God all the more watchfully as he feels that others have a grudge against him; that so they may have no power at all to injure him. Moreover, your Fraternity ought not hereafter to be suspected with regard to him; since no surreptitious proceedings will have effect on me.
Source. Translated by James Barmby. From Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, Second Series, Vol. 12. 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/360202015.htm>.
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