Second Saturday Seminar with Prof. Mary Marrocco
Healing and Wholeness in St. Mary of Egypt and the Early Fathers
One of Mary Marrocco's favorite subjects to study and discuss is the Patristic texts, that is, the writings of the early church fathers and mothers. She brought with her texts of St. Irenaeus of Lyons and St. Gregory of Nyssa's "Life of Macrina", his work on his sister Macrina.
St. Irenaeus lived "a stone's throw" from the time of Christ himself, only a couple hundred years following. In a He held a rather different view of the healing of humanity, and, in a nutshell, that is: what is humanity in it's glory? and how are we going to get there? So different from "how am I going to fix your problems?"
Little would be known of St. Macrina had it not been for her brother St. Gregory of Nyssa who recognized her virtue and penned her hagiography. She was saintly as a child, was engaged to be married but when her husband-to-be died before the wedding, would take no other suitor, saying she wanted to be faithful to him. She was very close to her mother, it is said never leaving her side, and eventually persuaded her mother to live very simply despite their wealth, and treat their servants as equals.
Much, much more can be said and ruminated upon when considering these patristic texts. We are thankful to Mary Marrocco for spending the day contemplating these saints with us.