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Achillius of Larisa

Our father among the saints Achillius of Larisa was the Bishop of Larisa during the reign of emperor Constantine the Great in the early decades of the fourth century. He attended the First Ecumenical Council in Nicea. His feast day is on May 15.


Little is known of the life of St. Achillius. He is the first recorded bishop of Larisa, Achillius who apparently was named the Bishop of Larisa in Thessaly in central Greece after emperor Constantine I became the Emperor of the Roman Empire. He participated in the proceedings of the First Ecumenical Council in Nicea. He was noted for his vehement defense of orthodoxy during the Council where he boldly denounced the heretic Arius when he took up a stone and called to the Arians, saying, "If Christ is a creature of God, as you say, tell oil to flow from this stone." The heretics kept silent, amazed at this demand by St. Achillius. Then, Achillius continued, "And if the Son of God is equal to the Father, as we believe, then let oil flow from this stone." There upon oil flowed from the stone, to the amazement of all. [1]

In his city, Achillius is reputed to have destroyed many pagan temples, built and adorned many churches, and cast out many demons. Achilles had the gift of healing sickness, especially demonic possession. He also worked many miracles. Bp. Achillius died peacefully in Larisa about the year 330.

When the Tsar of Bulgaria Samuel conquered Thessaly in the tenth century, he translated the relics of Achillius to Prespa, to an island in a lake that was subsequently named after the saint. His relics have been in Prespa, (now the village of Akhila, as it was renamed in his honor) since 978.


Succession box:
Achillius of Larisa
Preceded by:
Bishop of Larisa
c. 324 - c. 330
Succeeded by:
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