Saint Athanasius

c. 295–373

Saint Athanasius, c. 295–373
May 2

Saint Athanasius was a bishop in Egypt. He lived at a time when some people said that Jesus was not really the Son of God. Athanasius taught that Jesus was both God and man. He also defended the doctrine of the Trinity. He helped people understand that there are three Divine Persons in one God. He suffered many hardships because of his faith. He was even sent far away from his home—not once, but five times! When he was alone, he spent his time writing, praying, and encouraging other Christians.

Discuss: How do you show your faith in the Holy Trinity?

Saint Athanasius spent six years in exile as a hermit in the desert of Egypt. During that time, he completed several works of writing. Athanasius has been called a “Pillar of the Church” for his defense of the Trinity. While he did not write the Church’s Athanasian Creed, the creed was developed from his writings. He is considered one of the Doctors of the Church because his influence was so important. Athanasius is often shown as a bishop, holding an open book.

Trinity Design

Explain to the child that Saint Athanasius trusted and defended the doctrine of the Holy Trinity.

  • Provide the child with art supplies.
  • Have them create a symbol for the Holy Trinity that represents three Persons in one.
  • Remind them that the Holy Trinity consists of the Person of God the Father, the Person of God the Son, and the Person of God the Holy Spirit.
  • Display their work.