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St. Justin

Born: c.100

Died: 165

Canonized: pre-Congregation

Feast Day: June 1

Patron Saint of: apologists, lecturers, philosophers

Justin is credited to be the very first Christian philosopher. He was born into a pagan Greek family in Palestine and studied the great philosophers. Upon learning of and accepting as his own the Christian faith, he turned his skills and energies toward the philosophy of Christianity, debating that faith was compatible with rational thought. Justin never shied away from a public debate, despite the fact that Christians were being actively pursues and persecuted. His first public debate was before the Emperor Antoninus Pius, the second was addressed to the Roman Senate. In AD 165, he was arrested and martyred by beheading along with six other Christians who refused to make sacrifice to idols. Two of his extant works are still used today: Dialogue with the Jew Typho and Apologies for the Christian Religion.