Saint Of The Day



When Hilary was born to pagan parents in Poitiers, France, no one could have guessed he would one day be exiled for defending Christian beliefs. After a thorough education, Hilary married. He and his wife had one daughter, Afra. All who knew Hilary said he was a friendly, charitable, and gentle man. Hilary’s studies led him to read Scripture. He became convinced that there was only one God whose Son became man and then died and rose to save all people. This belief led him to be baptized a Christian along with his wife and Afra.

The people of Poitiers were impressed with Hilary and chose him to be their bishop. Hilary spoke out against Arianism. He warned people of this heresy that denied that Christ was God. When Emperor Constantius II wanted Hilary to sign a paper condemning St. Athanasius, the great defender of the faith, he refused. Furious, the emperor exiled Hilary to Phrygia. In exile for three years, he did even greater good through his preaching, writing, and suffering. He even asked to debate the Arian bishops. The followers of Arianism begged the emperor to send Hilary home.

The emperor recalled Hilary. Hilary’s writings show that he could be fierce in defending the faith, but in dealing with the bishops who had given in to the Arian heresy, he was very charitable. He showed them their errors and helped them to regain and defend their faith.

Although the emperor called Hilary “disturber of the peace,” Saints Jerome and Augustine praised him as “teacher of the churches.”

St. Hilary was also one of the first Latin hymn writers. He saw how St. Ambrose used them against Arianism.

St. Hilary, pray for the Church!

Source: Saints Kit by Sister Mary Kathleen Glavich , S.N.D and oher Sisters of Notre Dame, Chardon

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