Eucherius of Lyons, Saint
Bishop of Lyons, theologian, b. in the latter half of the fourth century; d. about 449
Eucherius, Saint, Bishop of Lyons, theologian, b. in the latter half of the fourth century; d. about 449. On the death of his wife he withdrew to the monastery of Lerins, where his sons, Veranius and Salonius, lived, and soon afterward to the neighboring island of Lerona (now Sainte-Marguerite), where he devoted his time to study and mortification. Desirous of joining the anchorites in the deserts of the East, he consulted John Cassian, who, in reply, sent him some of his “Collations”, describing the daily lives of the hermits of the Thebaid. It was at this time that Eucherius wrote his beautiful letter “De laude Eremi” to St. Hilary of Arles (c. 428). Though imitating the virtues of the Egyptian solitaries, he kept in touch with men renowned for learning and piety, e.g. Cassian, St. Hilary of Arles, St. Honoratus, later Bishop of Marseilles, and Valerian, to whom he wrote his “Epistola paraenetica de contemptu mundi”. The fame of Eucherius was soon so widespread in southeastern Gaul, that he was chosen Bishop of Lyons. This was probably in 434; it is certain, at least that he attended the First Council of Orange (441) as Metropolitan of Lyons, and that he retained this dignity until his death. In addition to the above-mentioned letters, Eucherius wrote “Formularium spiritualis intelligentiae ad Veranium”, and “Institutiones ad Salonium”, besides many homilies. His works have been published both separately and among the writings of the Fathers. There is no critical edition but the text is most accessible in Migne, “P.L.”, L, 685-894. In the same volume (appendix, 893-1214) is to be found a long series of works attributed to Eucherius, some of doubtful authenticity, others certainly apocryphal.