Saturday Saints- #112

Fascinatingly enough, this series has also been quiet for a while. We resume where we left off, with the letter E. This gives us the saint of the day, Emmelia of Caesaea:

Emmelia of Caesarea (Cappadocia, Central Anatolia, Turkey) was born in the fourth century, a period in time when Christianity was becoming more widespread, posing a challenge to the Roman government and its Pagan rule. She was the wife of Basil the Elder and bore nine or ten children, including Basil of Caesarea (born circa 330), Macrina the Younger, Peter of Sebaste, Gregory of Nyssa, and Naucratius.

Emmelia—also known as Emilia or Emily—is venerated as a saint in both the Eastern Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church and is said to have died in 375. However, she is not the only woman in her family to be venerated as a saint. Both her mother-in-law, Macrina the Elder, as well as her daughters, Macrina the Younger and Theosebia are recognized as saints in the Eastern Orthodox Church.

Emmelia spent much of her later years living with her eldest daughter, Macrina the Younger. Macrina the Younger had a profound impact on her mother. With her husband no longer around, Emmelia and her daughter lived a life dedicated to Christianity, surrounded by servants that they treated as equals, at Macrina the Younger’s insistence. Their ascetic way of life attracted a following of women which created a convent like atmosphere, where one was considered rich if she lived a pure and devout Christian life and disregarded the materialistic lure of earthly pleasures and possessions.

(Source)

Half of this pious woman’s children became saints, with several of them highly influential in the development of the faith. Here I suspect we find a woman whose reward in heaven will be great indeed- for she valued treasures of a spiritual nature, not a worldly one.

19 “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal, 20 but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consumes and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

(Matthew 6:19-21)

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