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Investigating Mary Magdalen


Christopher L.C.E. Witcombe

Mary Magdalen and the Early Church Fathers

    Between 100 and 600 CE, various Christian bishops and teachers set forth the basic tenets of the Church. The authors of those tenets that tended to prevail in later disputes over doctrine became known collectively as the Fathers of the Church. Today, these are divided between the Eastern Orthodox or Greek Church and the (Western) Roman Catholic (or Latin) Church. Among the Fathers of the Eastern Orthodox Church are: St. Athanasius, St. John Chrysostom, St. Basil the Great, St. Gregory of Nyssa, and St. Gregory of Nazianzen. The Fathers of the Roman Catholic Church include St. Augustine, St. Ambrose, St. Jerome, St. Leo I (Leo the Great), and St. Gregory I (Gregory the Great).

    A number of the early Fathers of the Church, both 'Greek' and 'Latin', distinguished Mary Magdalen from other women also named Mary (such as Mary of Bethany, the sister of Martha and Lazarus) who appear in the canonical gospels.

    St. Augustine


    John Chrysostom