(around)360 : : Died:
Porphyry was born at Thessalonica, in Greece to wealthy, noble parents. He left his family when he was twenty-five and went to Egypt to enter a monastery as a Hermit, in the desert of Skete. After five years, he made a trip to Jerusalem. He wanted to visit the places where Jesus had actually been while he was on earth.
Porphyry was very fascinated by the Holy Land. His love for Jesus made him more deeply aware of the sufferings of the poor. At home in Thessalonica he had never known what it was like to be poor. Now he still owned all the property and wealth that his parents had left him, but not for long.
He asked his friend Mark to go to Thessalonica and sell everything for him. After three months, Mark returned with the money. This, Porphyry gave away to those who really needed it. He then lived for a while as a Hermit in Palestine on the banks of the river Jordan.
At the age of forty he became a priest and was given care of the relics (remains) of the true cross of Jesus. Porphyry was then made bishop of Gaza in Palestine. He worked generously to lead the people to believe in Jesus and to accept the faith.
But it was hard and slow work that required a great amount of patience. Most of people who lived there at that time were pagans who worshiped false gods and had wrong ideas. Although Porphyry was able to stop many of these pagan practices, he had enemies who made him suffer much.
Others who were Christians loved and admired him very much. They prayed and made sacrifices for him begging God to protect him. Bishop Porphyry spent many years strengthening the Christian community, teaching and preaching about all that Christianity stood for. He died in 420.
Have I trusted God in all my undertakings, believing that he watches over me? Are there some parts of my life still controlled by fear?
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