These quotes show the richness of the faith and the ancient roots of Catholic teaching in the early centuries of the Church.
A doctor of the Church and one of the Church Fathers, St. Cyril of Alexandria (376-444) had many struggles throughout his life. He began his term as patriarch of Alexandria with a forceful arm that drew much criticism.
He even harbored a personal dislike of St. John Chrysostom, which was inherited from his uncle who deposed Chrysostom from Constantinople, forcing the saint into exile.
However, St. Cyril eventually repented of his wrongdoing and became a fierce defender of the faith, boldly asserting that Mary was the Mother of God at the Council of Ephesus.
His commitment to orthodoxy put him under fire from others, but he remained steadfast in his beliefs for the rest of his life.
Here are five inspiring quotes from Saint Cyril that show the richness of the faith and the ancient roots of Catholic teaching in the early centuries of the Church.
The first is about the doctrine Cyril defended at Ephesus:
1) That anyone could doubt the right of the holy Virgin to be called the Mother of God fills me with astonishment. Surely she must be the Mother of God if our Lord Jesus Christ is God, and she gave birth to him! Our Lord’s disciples may not have used those exact words, but they delivered to us the belief those words enshrine, and this has also been taught us by the holy fathers.
This one is a quick reminder of why we rejoice in our faith:
2) Indeed the mystery of Christ runs the risk of being disbelieved precisely because it is so incredibly wonderful.
Are you glad you’re Catholic?
These two on the Eucharist will have you wanting to make sure daily Mass is in your schedule:
3) As two pieces of wax fused together make one, so he who receives Holy Communion is so united with Christ that Christ is in him and he is in Christ.4) If the poison of pride is swelling up in you, turn to the Eucharist; and that Bread, Which is your God humbling and disguising Himself, will teach you humility. If the fever of selfish greed rages in you, feed on this Bread; and you will learn generosity. If the cold wind of coveting withers you, hasten to the Bread of Angels; and charity will come to blossom in your heart. If you feel the itch of intemperance, nourish yourself with the Flesh and Blood of Christ, Who practiced heroic self-control during His earthly life; and you will become temperate. If you are lazy and sluggish about spiritual things, strengthen yourself with this heavenly Food; and you will grow fervent. Lastly, if you feel scorched by the fever of impurity, go to the banquet of the Angels; and the spotless Flesh of Christ will make you pure and chaste.
And finally, a reflection on our new life in Our Lord:
5) From Christ and in Christ, we have been reborn through the Spirit in order to bear the fruit of life; not the fruit of our old, sinful life but the fruit of a new life founded upon our faith in him and our love for him. Like branches growing from a vine, we now draw our life from Christ, and we cling to his holy commandment in order to preserve this life