Life of Mar Aba – chapter 6

6. Then he went up to Nisibis, and joined the local holy school, and gained the opportunity to handle the divine scriptures, dearer than his life.  He learned the (Psalter) of David in a few days, and began with the contemplation of the divine scriptures.  He associated with the at-peace-in-God Ma’na, the bishop of Arzon, a godly man and teacher of truth, who mainly by his good manners and through his acumen and scholarship surpassed all who were around at that time and (even) most of his predecessors.  After Mar Ma’na became a bishop, he joined him and went with him and was entrusted with the authority to teach in the province of Arzon.  Everyone there profitted greatly from him, and he converted many heretics to the true faith. 

Afterwards he returned to Nisibis and made great strides every day, in dealing with the explanation (of the scriptures) and spiritual studies. 

Then he felt obliged to go even into the Roman empire, in order to see the longed-for places of the saints, to receive the blessing of their prayers and then about a man named Sergius, who had linked the Arian ideas with paganism, with whom he wanted to dispute and establish the true faith.


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