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Q. Who was St. Ignatius of Antioch?

Q. Who was St. Ignatius of Antioch (feast, October 17)?

A. St. Ignatius (c. A.D. 50–c. 107) was the martyr Bishop of Antioch, Syria, an “Apostolic Father” of the Church — that is, one who received the Christian faith directly from the Apostles. According to ancient tradition, he was taught by St. John, appointed as bishop by St. Peter, and consecrated at the hands of several Apostles. He refused to deny Christ in the persecution of the Church during the reign of the Emperor Trajan. So he was transported from Antioch to Rome and thrown to the wild beasts in the Coliseum there.