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Pseudo-Ignatius (5th Century)

by John Wijngaards

This shadowy figure seems to have been a bishop in Syria and follower of Apollinarius, a 4th century teacher who denied that Christ had a rational human soul, since Christ’s mind was divine. Pseudo-Ignatius wrote in the name of the legendary St. Ignatius of Antioch. The interest in this passage lies with the mention of three groups of women: deacons, nuns and widows.
I greet the women who watch the holy doors, the [women] deacons in Christ [τας εν χριστωι διακονους]. I greet the virgins who have accepted Christ, and whom I brought up in the Lord Jesus. I greet the very chaste widows.[1]


1. Letter to the inhabitants of Antioch, 12: 2-3; Patres apostolici, vol. 2, ed. Fr.Diekamp, Tübingen 1913, p. 222.