Feast of St. Irenaeus



St. Irenaeus was born in Asia around 120 A.D. He sat under the teaching St. Polycarp who was instructed in the Faith by St. John the Apostle. From St. Irenaeus’ Against Heresies:

Mary is the Mother of God

“The Virgin Mary, …being obedient to His word, received from an angel the glad tidings that she would bear God.”

On the Eucharist:

“He (Jesus) has declared the cup, a part of creation to be His own Blood, from which He causes our blood toflow: and the bread a part of creation, He has established as His own Body, from which He gives increase to our bodies.” 5,2,2

On the Gospels:

There is such certainty surrounding the Gospels that the heretics themselves bear witness to them: and starting from the Gospels, each one of them attempts to establish his own doctrine. …It is not possible that the Gospels can be either greater or fewer in number than they are. Just as there are four regions of the world in which we live, and four universal winds and since the Church is disseminated over all the earth, and the pillar and mainstay of the Church is the Gospel, the r breath of life, it is fitting that she have four pillars breathing immortality on every side and enkindling life in men anew. From this it is evident that the Word, the Artificer of all, who sits upon the cherubim and embraces all things, and who was manifested to man, has given us a fourfold gospel embracing one spirit. 3,11,7 & 8

On St. Polycarp:

Poly carp, however was instructed not only bht the Apostles, and conversed with many who had seen Christ, but was also appointed bishop of the Church in Smyrna, by the Apostles in Asia. I saw him in my early youth; for he tarried a long time and when quite old he departed this life in glorious and most noble martyrdom. He always taught those things which he had learned from the Apostles, and which the Church had handed down and which are true. To these things all the Churches in Asia bear witness, as do also the successors of Polycarp even to the present time….Once he was met by Marcion ( a heretic) who said to him,

“Do you recognize me?” and Polycarp replied,

“I recognize you as the firstborn of Satan.”

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