Macedonius, St.

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Anchorite renowned throughout Syria, Phoenicia, and Cilicia; d. near Antioch, c. 430. theodoret (Hist. relig. 13) furnishes information about Macedonius, who was called Critophages because for 40 years, refusing bread, he lived on barley moistened with water. For the first 45 years of his desert life (360430 according to L. de Tillemont) Macedonius disdained a tent or hut and lived in a cave which the crowds, flocking to see him, often forced him to change. He worked many miracles with water and the sign of the cross, and Theodoret, whose mother had been childless for the first 13 years of her marriage, attributed his own birth to the hermit's prayers. Macedonius was persuaded by Patriarch Flavian of Antioch to accept priestly ordination (after 381), and his counsels of moderation profited the Antiochenes in their peril from the riots over the imperial statutes in 387 (see john chrysostom).

Feast: Jan. 24.

Bibliography: theodoret of cyr, Historia religiosa, Patrolofia Graeca, ed. j. p. migne (Paris 185766) 82:1399. Acta Sanctorum Jan. 3:207212. s. c. tillemont, Mémoires pour servir à l'histoire ecclésiastique des six premiers siècles (Paris 16931712) 10:533; 12:487, 681. c. hole, A Dictionary of Christian Biography, ed. w. smith and h. wace (London 187787) 3:778. a. butler, The Lives of the Saints, ed. h. thurston and d. attwater (New York 1956) 1:161.

[a. a. stephenson]