Macarius of Jerusalem; was Bishop of Jerusalem from 312 to shortly before 335, according to Sozomen. He is recognized as a saint within the Orthodox and Catholic churches. As with many saints from that early period, there is very little information available about him. What we do know is that Macarius was named bishop of Jerusalem in the year 314. He was noted for his defense against the heresy of Arianism (denial of the divinity of Christ). Macarius was evidently present at the Council of Nicaea, since he was one of those who signed the documents from that Council.
The Roman Emperor Constantine’s mother, St. Helena, a convert to Christianity, went on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land to locate where the important events in the life of Jesus Christ occurred, and to preserve the relics of the Christian faith that remained there. One of her goals was to find the place of Jesus’ crucifixion and the very Cross on which he was hung.
Legend has it that Macarius was with Saint Helena when she discovered three crosses in Jerusalem. Legend further maintains that it was Macarius who suggested that a dying woman be touched with each of the crosses. When one of them instantly cured her, they determined that it was the true cross — the one on which our Lord was crucified.
Macarius’ name appears first among those of the bishops of Palestine who subscribed to the Council of Nicaea. St. Athanasius, in his encyclical letter to the bishops of Egypt and Libya, places the name of Macarius among those of bishops renowned for their orthodoxy. More on Macarius of Jerusalem
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