Part Three: The Pelagian Crisis (411–430)
Edited By Frederick Van Fleteren
Article 315: Anthony, Bishop of Fussale
Anthony, Bishop of Fussale
Baronius dates the death of Pope Boniface on October 25, 423, and the election of Celestine as his successor on November 3 of the same year.1 These events are difficult to date but it is at least probable Boniface died on September 4, 422 and that Celestine succeeded him in the same year. This obliges us to date 422 as the beginning of the saga of Anthony of Fussale, one of the more memorable events of Augustine’s life.
Fussale was a market town near Hippo, sixteen leagues from the city itself but in the same diocese.2 Fussale had never had a bishop until Augustine’s time. He reports miracles there during his episcopacy after the conversion of Maximus of Sinite in 405.
Hesperus, a tribune living in Hippo, governed the territory of Fussale [Zubedi]. He saw evil spirits tormenting his slaves and cattle and asked our priests in my absence that someone go there to evict them by prayer. One of them went and offered the sacrifice of the mass and prayed earnestly to stop this vexing problem. By God’s mercy it immediately ceased.3
Through a friend in Jerusalem, Hesperus had received a piece of earth from Christ’s tomb. He hung it in his room lest a demon attack it. After delivery from this infestation he thought of what to do with this piece of earth. Out of respect he no longer wished to keep...
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