The Cappadocian Fathers


Cappadocia was an area in what is now central Turkey.   In the later 300’s two brothers, Basil and Gregory, their sister Macrina and a friend Gregory of Nazianzus, came out of this area to become among the most influential teachers and theologians of their time.

Basil the Great, on Holy Communion: “For myself, I communicate four times a week…In Alexandria and Egypt it is the general rule for each member of the laity to keep communion at his own house. “He…is bound to believe that he rightly partakes of it and receives it from him who gave it.”

Gregory of Nyssa wrote concerning baptism: “Since the death of him who leads us to life involved burial under the earth.  So, everyone who is linked to him and fixes his eyes on the same victory has water poured on him, instead of earth, and thus represents the grace of resurrection attained after three days.”

Macrina:  When her fiancé died she devoted herself to pursuing Christian perfection, leading a community dedicated to ascetic meditation and prayer.

Gregory of Nazianzus, was sent to Constantinople to preach on behalf of the Orthodox faith.  Regarding infant baptism: “Let him be sanctified from babyhood, and consecrated by the Spirit in his tender years.  You have no need of charms or spells.  Give your child the powerful and lovely amulet of the Trinity,”


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