ST. BASIL OF CAESAREA
To the Governor of Sebasteia.
I am aware that your excellency is favourably receiving my letters, and I understand why. You love all that is good; you are ready in doing kindnesses. So whenever I give you the opportunity of showing your magnanimity, you are eager for my letters, because you know that they furnish an occasion for good deeds. Now, once more, behold an occasion for your showing all the signs of rectitude, and at the same time for the public exhibition of your virtues! Certain persons have come from Alexandria for the discharge of a necessary duty which is due from all men to the dead. They ask your excellency to give orders that it may be permitted them to have conveyed away, under official sanction, the corpse of a relative who departed this life at Sebasteia, while the troops were quartered there. They further beg that, as far as possible, aid may be given them for travelling at the public expense, so that, of your bounty, they may find some help and solace in their long journey. The tidings of this will travel as far as to great Alexandria, and will convey there the report of your excellency's astonishing kindness. This you well understand without my mentioning it. I shall add gratitude for this one more favour to that which I feel for all which you have done me.
Source. Translated by Blomfield Jackson. From Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, Second Series, Vol. 8. Edited by Philip Schaff and Henry Wace. (Buffalo, NY: Christian Literature Publishing Co., 1895.) Revised and edited for New Advent by Kevin Knight. <http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/3202306.htm>.