Gregory Thaumaturgus

c.213-c.270. Bishop of Neo- Caesarea. One of Origen's pupils during the first half of the third century, Gregory had been a pagan lawyer from Neo-Caesarea in Pontus when he came under the influence of Origen. He was converted and became an enthusiastic supporter of Origen's emphasis: that the church should attempt to use all wisdom and literature for its own use. The good of heathen learning should be used, the evil cast away. Gregory, like all of Origen's students, was led through various academic disciplines, culminating in theology. Soon after leaving Origen, who was in Caesarea of Palestine, Gregory was consecrated bishop of Neo- Caesarea. As bishop he made attempts to draw the Christian believers away from their pagan festivals by instituting martyrs' festivals which could substitute as times of celebration. His ministry appears to have been successful on a numerical scale, for there was a marked increase in the number of Christians on the completion of his ministry in Neo-Caesarea. His biography was written in the fourth century by Gregory of Nyssa.