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Fathers of the Church

Letter CCLXXXII: to a Bishop

Description

Basil chastises a bishop for not coming to visit him when invited.

Provenance

St. Basil's correspondence is a copious and invaluable store of information for the history of the Eastern Church in the fourth century, particularly in Cappadocia. Since he never found a real biographer, his letters represent the best source for his life and times, for his many activities and far-reaching influence, especially for his personality and his character. (Quasten)

by Basil the Great in 357-370 | translated by Blomfield Jackson, M.A

You blame me for not inviting you; and, when invited, you do not attend. That your former excuse was an empty one is clear from your conduct on the second occasion. For had you been invited before, in all probability you would never have come.

Act not again unadvisedly, but obey this present invitation; since you know that its repetition strengthens an indictment, and that a second lends credibility to a previous accusation.

I exhort you always to bear with me; or even if you cannot, at any rate it is your duty not to neglect the Martyrs, to join in whose commemoration you are invited. Render therefore your service to us both; or if you will not consent to this, at any rate to the more worthy.

Taken from "The Early Church Fathers and Other Works" originally published by Wm. B. Eerdmans Pub. Co. in English in Edinburgh, Scotland, beginning in 1867. (PNPF II/VIII, Schaff and Wace). The digital version is by The Electronic Bible Society, P.O. Box 701356, Dallas, TX 75370, 214-407-WORD.