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By Gideon in All of God, Blog on July 18, 2016

Ignatius Theophorus was appointed by the Apostle Peter to succeed Eusebius as bishop of Antioch.
He was the first to speak of the Church as “catholic” meaning “universal”. Antioch is also noted as the place where the followers of Christ were first called Christian. Towards the end of his life, he was interrogated by the Emperor Trajan and asked, “Dost thou then carry within thee Him that was crucified by Pontius Pilate?” Ignatius replied “Truly so; for it is written, ‘ I will dwell in them, and walk in them’ Then Trojan pronounced his sentence, “We command that Ignatius, who affirms that he carries about within him ‘Him that was crucified’, be bound by soldiers, and carried to Rome, and there be devoured by the beast for the gratification of the people.” Ignatius was so excited and grateful to God who has counted him to died for the gospel of Christ.
The holy martyr re-affirmed his decision and said ” May nothing entice me till I happily make my way to Jesus Christ! Fire, cross, struggles with wild beasts, wrenching of bones, mangling of limbs – let them come to me, provided only I make my way to Jesus Christ” he then prayed for the Church while going home via bloodthirsty beasts. 30-117 AD.

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